We desire security in life and the manner in which we satisfy this desire alters considerably as we evolve in consciousness. At the lowest level stands the social individual, who prudently nurtures an extensive network of family and friends to whom he/she can turn to in times of desperation. In the middle stands the neophyte on the spiritual path, who seeks shelter in a place of meditation – a room where the vibrations have been made serene through devotional music and incense – where he or she can withdraw to contemplate and gain strength during trials and tribulations.
At the highest level stands the adept, whose consciousness has blossomed within, who has begun to perceive a center of immobility deep within the heart (not the same as the center of the ego), with which one can look upon the world with an attitude of detached superiority. Such a person becomes ensconced in an aura or atmosphere of tranquility which insulates him or her from the tumult of the phenomenal vibrations. No longer does one need a cup of coffee, family, friends, etc to turn to for support in times of trouble ! The Bhagavad Gita (verse 3:17) uses the word Atmarati (one who lives by the pleasure of the Self) to define this condition.
yas tv atmaratir eva syad
atma trptas ca manavah
atmani eva ca santustas
tasya karyam na vidyate
Translation: One who in every way takes pleasure in the Self, who is illuminated in the Self, who rejoices in and is satisfied with the Self only – for him there is no duty.
The Mother Mirra Alfassa, while sailing from France to India in the year 1914, jotted down these lines regarding her own experience of this inward stability.
“Those who live for Thee and in Thee may change their physical surroundings, their habits, climate, “milieu”, but everywhere they find the same atmosphere; they carry that atmosphere in themselves, in their thought constantly fixed on Thee. Everywhere they feel at home, for everywhere they are in Thy house. No longer do they marvel at the novelty, unexpectedness, picturesqueness of things and countries; for them, it is Thy Presence that is manifest in all and Thy unchangeable splendour, which never leaves them, is apparent in the least grain of sand. The whole earth chants Thy praises; in spite of the obscurity, misery, ignorance, through it all, it is still the glory of Thy love which we perceive and with which we can commune ceaselessly everywhere.
O Lord, my sweet Master, all this I constantly experience on this boat which seems to me a marvellous abode of peace, a temple sailing in Thy honour over the waves of the subconscient passivity which we have to conquer and awaken to the consciousness of Thy divine Presence.
Blessed was the day when I came to know Thee, O Ineffable Eternity.
Blessed among all days be that day when the earth at last awakened shall know Thee and shall live only for Thee.”
The Mother, Prayers and Meditations: March 9, 1914
In moments when the inner lamps are lit
And the life’s cherished guests are left outside,
Our spirit sits alone and speaks to its gulfs.
A wider consciousness opens then its doors;
Invading from spiritual silences
A ray of the timeless Glory stoops awhile
To commune with our seized illumined clay
And leaves its huge white stamp upon our lives.
Sri Aurobindo, Savitri – I: The Secret Knowledge