The first meeting of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Mirra Alfassa

About midway down the Coromandel coast of southeastern India stands the quaint little port-town of Pondicherry, which was a French colony from 1673 to 1954.  It was here on a nondescript afternoon in March, 1914 that the spiritual collaboration between Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Mirra Alfassa began.   This is an account of that memorable meeting along with some related anecdotes.

It was in the year 1910 that Mirra Alfassa (then Mirra Richard) first heard of Sri Aurobindo.  Her husband Paul had just returned from a trip to Pondicherry, which was one of the slivers of territory controlled by the French in what was then largely British-occupied India.  He informed her that he had met a Yogi in Pondicherry named Aurobindo Ghose and had been captivated by his profound philosophy.  The photograph of this Yogi that he had brought back was of poor quality and didn’t seem to indicate anything extraordinary to her[1].  Later, she heard another positive account of this Indian mystic from her friend, the Buddhist explorer and writer, Alexandra David-Neel, who had met him in November, 1911 and come away impressed by the striking lustre in his eyes and the remarkable clarity of his thought[2].  Mirra Alfassa herself was no stranger to the spiritual path.  She had had spontaneous experiences since early childhood, and had studied under a Jewish occultist named Max Theon and his wife Alma.  She was also well-versed in the Indian spiritual tradition, having read the Bhagavad Gita, the Dhammapada as well as Swami Vivekananda’s books on Raja Yoga [3].

Paul had told Sri Aurobindo that he would return with his wife who was “spiritually more advanced” than him [4].  It was in early 1914, four years after Paul’s first trip, that their plans to visit India finally materialized.  To raise money for the trip, one-fourth of Mirra’s small fortune had to be sold.  They hoped this money would be sufficient to sustain their stay in India for upto two years [5].  The Richards boarded the Japanese steamer Kaga Maru at Marseilles on the 8th March, 1914.  After disembarking on the 27th March at Colombo in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), they crossed the Palk strait, reaching Dhanushkodi in India where they boarded the Boat Mail train, as it was called then, to reach their intended destination, Pondicherry, on the 29th of March.  Paul went to apprise Sri Aurobindo of their arrival earlier in the day. Mirra wanted to meet Sri Aurobindo alone and  arranged an afternoon appointment for herself[3].  Their arrival was not unexpected.  According to Amrita, who would later become their disciple, the associates who had gathered around Sri Aurobindo had been informed of the impending arrival of “two Europeans from the highest circles of France” who were coming expressly to practice Yoga [6].

Photo: S.S. Kaga Maru owned by the Nippon Yusen Kaisha (Japan Mail-Boat Company). Courtesy: http://www.findboatpics.net.au/ypny.html

It was about 3:30 pm in the afternoon of the 29th that Mirra Richard made her way to Sri Aurobindo’s residence at 37, Rue Francois Martin[3].  As she began climbing the staircase, he emerged from the room and quietly stood at the top of the stairs.  “It’s the vision dress!”, she froze and silently exclaimed.  Her mind flew back to the visions she had had several years ago of a dark Asiatic figure whom she called Krishna, who used to be clad in what she thought was a “vision dress” (which, in reality, turned out to be the Indian garment named dhoti that Sri Aurobindo used to wear).  Those visions had convinced her that she would one day meet this individual named Krishna.  And now, he stood before her – dressed in the same way, in the same position in profile, his head held high.  The inner vision abruptly merged with the outer experience and there was a fusion – a decisive shock, as she would recall many years later[1].

The meeting had a profound effect on her. The next day, she wrote in her diary: “It matters little that there are thousands of beings plunged in the densest ignorance, He whom we saw yesterday is on earth; his presence is enough to prove that a day will come when darkness shall be transformed into light, and Thy reign shall be indeed established upon earth.[7]”  Sri Aurobindo also used to keep a diary now published as the The Record of Yoga.  About seven weeks after their meeting, on May 23rd, 1914, he made a cryptic note in that diary: Soul-kinship (reference to the Rs [Richards]).[8]” It is difficult to state with certitude but this may be the earliest written record of his premonition that she was his Shakti and twin soul.  In a letter to an associate, Motilal Roy, he wrote, “He(Paul) and Madame Richard are rare examples of European Yogins who have not been led away by Theosophical and other aberrations. I have been in material and spiritual correspondence with them for the last four years. [9].

Paul and Mirra Richard taken a house in Rue Dupleix not far from where Sri Aurobindo lived. They began having regular meetings to discuss spiritual and occult topics. Mirra began learning Sanskrit and Bengali under the guidance of Sri Aurobindo.  It was decided to start a monthly philosophical review, the Arya, under the joint editorship of Sri Aurobindo, and Mirra and Paul Richard. The first issue of Arya was published in August 1914  [3].

One day, Paul and Sri Aurobindo were sitting at a table having a long discussion on yoga, the war and the world at large, while Mirra was sitting passively near them on the floor.  Suddenly, she felt a massive Force – a vast silence – descending into her and saturating the three centers in the forehead, between the eyebrows and the throat.  By the time they had finished talking, she realized that her mind had fallen completely blank. She had received a gift of mental stillness from Sri Aurobindo, which would remain with her for the rest of her life [10].

At another time, while Sri Aurobindo was discussing his childhood and his formation, she asked him why, despite innumerable experiences and realizations, she remained so mediocre.  Everything she did seemed mediocre to her.  Her painting wasn’t bad, but many others could do as well.  Her music wasn’t bad either, but she wasn’t a musical genius.  Her philosophical capacity excelled those of her friends, but she seemed to have no special gift for it.  Sri Aurobindo’s answer was that people who are perfected in one field tend to be more concentrated and specialized in consciousness, whereas in her case, not being exceptional in any particular field allowed her to have greater suppleness and vaster scope.  While hearing the answer, she thought that he was being sympathetic to her but later discovered there was a deep truth behind those words.  As she was to remark later, this incapacity had indeed endowed her with a suppleness and breadth to open herself up to newer fields of human endeavour[11].

Another question she asked him at some point was regarding the state of absorptive trance (samadhi) that she had read about in the ancient Yogic texts.  She asked him, “What do you think of samadhi, that state of trance one does not remember? One enters into a condition which seems blissful, but when one comes out of it, one does not know at all what has happened.” Then he looked at her, saw what she meant and told her, “It is unconsciousness.”  She asked him for an explanation.  He replied, “You enter into what is called samadhi when you go out of your conscious being and enter a part of your being which is completely unconscious, or rather a domain where you have no corresponding consciousness… a region where you are no longer conscious … that is why, naturally, you remember nothing …. ” So this reassured her and she said, “Well, this has never happened to me.” He replied, “Nor to me” [12].

She also inquired about the “rising of the Kundalini” that she had experienced earlier in Paris.  Her experience did not match the description she had read in Swami Vivekananda’s books, because in her case, the Force(Kundalini-Shakti) had risen above the head and settled there about eight inches above the head.  She asked Sri Aurobindo to explain the anomaly.  He replied that the same thing had occurred to him, and according to ancient texts, you cannot live when that takes place.  He reassured her, “Here are two people who haven’t died!”[13].

On 28th July, 1914, the First World War had broken out across Europe between the Allies and the Central Powers.  A few months later, it would bring an abrupt end to Paul and Mirra’s stay in Pondicherry.  Before coming to Pondicherry, Sri Aurobindo had been a pre-eminent political leader fighting against the British occupation of India, but his spiritual realizations had forced him to set aside the political work.  Guided by his spiritual visions, he had come to French-controlled Pondicherry seeking a retreat where he could practice Yoga.  The British, however, continued to view him as a dangerous extremist who could cause further trouble if left unmonitored.  His house was therefore kept under constant surveillance by British spies and details of all visitors were regularly reported back to the British government.  Since Paul and Mirra had become intimate with Sri Aurobindo and the other anti-British extremists,  they inevitably became targets of British action.  The colonial French government asked Paul to return to France to serve as a reservist in the army, and accordingly, in February 1915, the Richards left Pondicherry for France after an eleven-month stay[16].  During the Richards’ stopover in Colombo, the British confiscated the Sanskrit grammar that had been prepared for Mirra by Sri Aurobindo[17].  They probably assumed it was anti-British extremist literature.

The Mother Mirra Alfassa’s vision of Krishna actually consisted of two parts.  The first part in which she saw Krishna in a “vision dress” came true when she saw Sri Aurobindo in 1914.  In the second part of her vision, she had seen herself standing next to Krishna gazing out of a window.  It took six more years for the second part to be fulfilled.  In between, she had to return to France and travel to Japan before coming back to Pondicherry[18].

In hindsight, it must be noted that the visions in which the Mother had seen Sri Aurobindo had occurred between the ages of eleven and thirteen, even before Sri Aurobindo began practicing Yoga[19].  So it seems that the fact that Sri Aurobindo would turn to Yoga and attain Enlightenment was pre-destined.

Staircase where the Mother first saw Sri Aurobindo. Source: Champaklal's book "Champaklal Speaks"

The Rameshwaram Express, which travels from Rameshwaram to Chennai Egmore, is the modern-day equivalent of the Boat Mail train, which the Mother Mirra Alfassa took in March, 1914 from Dhanushkodi to Villipuram.  This is a video of the train as it starts at the tip of the Indian ocean.

References

  1. Mother’s Agenda, 20 Dec 1961 and 5th Nov, 1961
  2. Sri Aurobindo Archives and Research, April 1987, p 114
  3. Srinivasa Iyengar. On Sri Aurobindo, pp 396-398; Srinivasa Iyengar. On the Mother, pp 78-100.
  4. Life In Pondicherry 1910 And After.  Documents in the life of Sri Aurobindo, no. 26
  5. Sri Aurobindo.  Letter to Motilal Roy dated 5 May 1914, Autobiographical Notes, CWSA vol 36, p 204.
  6. Amrita.  Old Long Since, p 27.
  7. The Mother. Prayers and Meditations. Collected Works, vol. 1, p 113.
  8. Sri Aurobindo.  The Record of Yoga, p 478.
  9. Sri Aurobindo.  Autobiographical Notes, CWSA vol 36, p 195.
  10. Mother’s Agenda, 25th July, 1962.
  11. Mother’s Agenda, 5th Sept, 1962 and 18th Feb, 1967.
  12. The Mother. Collected Works of the Mother, vol. 8, p 276.
  13. Mother’s Agenda, 11th July, 1970.
  14. The Political Situation In Pondicherry 1910-1915. Documents in the life of Sri Aurobindo, no. 25
  15. Nirodbaran, Talks with Sri Aurobindo, vol. 1, p 229.
  16. Sri Aurobindo, The Mother And Paul Richard 1911-1915.  Documents in the life of Sri Aurobindo, no. 29
  17. Srinivasa Iyengar. On the Mother,  p 852.
  18. Mother’s Agenda,  5th Nov, 1961
  19. The Mother. Collected Works of the Mother, vol. 13, p 38.

Related Posts

  1. Twin souls
  2. The foundation of spiritual relationships
  3. The Mother Mirra Alfassa as a Guru
  4. Some disciples of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother
  5. How to choose the right life partner
  6. Sri Aurobindo’s interaction with an American soldier during World War II
  7. Sri Aurobindo’s 1947 meeting with two French visitors
  8. Silviu Craciunas has a dream of Sri Aurobindo
  9. Early mystic experiences of Sri Aurobindo
  10. Sri Ramakrishna’s occult contact with Sri Aurobindo
  11. Ramana Maharshi on World War II
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46 thoughts on “The first meeting of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Mirra Alfassa

  1. Hermann

    there is another wonderful quote in this context:

    We sat together in silence for a few minutes, enjoying the company of our soul, and we witnessed the gates of Eternity opening wide before us. – The Mother, 5 January 1955

    Reply
  2. Sandeep Post author

    The Mother is not a disciple of Sri Aurobindo. She has had the same realisation and experience as myself.The Mother’s sadhana started when she was very young. When she was twelve or thirteen, every evening many teachers came to her and taught her various spiritual disciplines. Among them was dark Asiatic figure. When we first met, she immediately recognised me as the dark Asiatic figure whom she used to see a long time ago. That she should come here and work with me for a common goal was, as it were, a divine dispensation.

    The Mother was an adept in the Buddist yoga and the yoga of the Gita even before she came to India. Her yoga was moving towards a grand synthesis. After this, it was natural that she should come here. She has helped and is helping to give a concrete form to my yoga.
    This would not have been possible without her co-operation.
    One of the two great steps in this yoga is to take refuge in the Mother.

    – Sri Aurobindo, 17 August 1941.

    (published in the Bulletin of the SAICE, Aug 1995:20)

    Reply
  3. sandesh

    Dear Sandeep,
    Could you please let us know what is the current stage/status of supramental descent after Sri Aurobindo and Mother have left their body. Is there anybody in the Sri Aurobindo ashram continuing with this yoga (Satprem was continuing i believe). I have read somewhere that Sri Aurobindo was continuing his yoga from subtle realms.( i am not sure what it means!).
    Please enlighten us
    Thanks

    Reply
    1. Sandeep Post author

      Dear Sandesh

      > Please enlighten us
      I can only confer enlightenment with respect to this question 🙂

      This is a difficult question to answer. I have no idea who is practicing and what stage they have reached. I can’t speak for others. I also cannot confirm or deny whether Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are doing anything in the subtle realms.

      Such high-level questions are best left unanswered because they serve as a litmus test to separate wheat from chaff. Those who are discouraged by such questions tend to be unfit for Yogic practice. On the other hand, those who have received the inner call to practice Yoga will continue to stake the path irrespective of any doubts regarding current status because they have realized that there is no other choice, since the phenomenal world cannot offer the joys that Yoga brings.

      So you have to find the answer on your own through your yogic practice. And if you don’t practice, then the question doesn’t need to be answered, because if I give you an answer, it becomes dogma.

      I had answered a similar question sometime ago over here:
      https://auromere.wordpress.com/constitution-of-man/psychic-being/#comment-2432

      Reply
  4. sandesh

    >When you are inwardly ready for something, the knowledge will be automatically disclosed to you in a vision
    i missed typing a line in the above comment
    thanks

    Reply
  5. Hermann

    dear Sandesh,

    as Sandeep elucidates, you cannot be enlightened either by mental gymnastics nor by stargazing. nevertheless, your ‘high-level question’ stirs up a hornets’ nest. obviously, you do not give a damn about Sri Aurobindo’s and Mother’s death. and instead of getting in line with all the weeping people you imagine subtle realms, not knowing what it is, to be the basis for an ongoing Endeavor. that is how you base your question on a hope for a better world, a New World.

    if you look into Sri Aurobindo’s and Mother’s writings, you will find numerous statements like this:

    ‘I know with absolute certitude that the supramental is a truth and that its advent is in the very nature of things inevitable. The question is as to the when and the how. That also is decided and predestined from somewhere above; but it is here being fought out amid a rather grim clash of conflicting forces. For in the terrestrial world the predetermined result is hidden and what we see is a whirl of possibilities and forces attempting to achieve something with the destiny of it all concealed from human eyes. This is, however, certain that a number of souls have been sent to see that it shall be now. That is the situation. My faith and will are for the now.’

    we are quite normal human beings. but instead of believing in Sri Aurobindo’s words, i take them for Truth. marvellous certainties, book for book, word for word, and so is each utterance of Mother’s. She is always eager to bring into our limited perspective that we are doing now a new thing: ‘It has nothing to do with the past.’ that is why, right now, in this crucial stage of evolution, we need faith: ‘The Supreme Power is infinite, it is our faith that is small.’

    it lights up to see the whole Picture, to extend our small faith to an unfailing Faith which is engraved into the bones. a good means to do that is to read the books of Georges Van Vrekhem. to start with ‘Beyond Man’ resp. ‘Beyond the Human Species’, there is a heavenly panorama outlined by intuitive combination of quotes and dates. Georges gives a commented synopsis of Mothersriaurobindos footprints on Earth.

    if you plunge into this new but true Reality, you will leave, more and more, the tracts of an ordinary mind which is deeply immersed into falsehood and illusion. simultaneously, you will begin to feel what subtle realms are. and you will understand the meaning of this word of Mother’s: ‘The greatest victories are the least noisy. The manifestation of a new world is not proclaimed by beat of drum.’

    It will happen. It is going to happen. but there is a need for a special antenna which enables us to become a part of That.

    THE LITTLE MORE

    One day, and all the half-dead is done,
    One day, and all the unborn begun;
    A little path and the great goal,
    A touch that brings the divine whole.

    Hill after hill was climbed and now,
    Behold, the last tremendous brow
    And the great rock that none has trod:
    A step, and all is sky and God.

    Sri Aurobindo

    Reply
  6. Sandeep Post author

    With reference to the following passage in the article above:

    “The Mother Mirra Alfassa’s vision of Krishna actually consisted of two parts. The first part in which she saw Krishna in a “vision dress” came true when she saw Sri Aurobindo in 1914. In the second part of her vision, she had seen herself standing next to Krishna gazing out of a window. It took six more years for the second part to be fulfilled.”

    We have the following pertinent remark by the Mother:
    Question How is it that in dreams one meets and knows people whom one meets and knows afterwards in the outer world?

    Mother : It is because of the affinities that draw certain people together, affinities in the mental or the vital world. People often meet in these planes before they meet upon earth. They may join there, speak to each other and have all the relations you can have upon earth. Some know of these relationships, some do not know. Some, as are indeed most, are unconscious of the inner being and the inner intercourse, and yet it will happen that, when they meet the new face in the outer world, they find it somehow very familiar, quite well-known.

    (Collected Works of the Mother, vol. 3, p 16, dated 21st April 1929)

    Reply
  7. Sandeep Post author

    Sri Aurobindo made several notes in his diary Record of Yoga regarding his interactions with Paul Richard and Mirra Alfassa during their first stay from Mar 1914 to Feb 1915.

    The first one related to Trikaldrishti (prevision) of their arrival

    Mar 30, 1914: Trikaldrishti of Time is beginning vaguely to arrange itself, eg Richard’s arrival on the 29th, not as had been arranged on the 28th, his visit on the same day, & less clearly in the afternoon. But the mind has as yet no confidence in this action of the trikaldrishti. Moreover exact time is now seldom right; the former siddhi is still dormant.

    Here, he notes that he had a doubt regarding Paul Richard’s theories and he was told by his guide (Krishna) that an answer would be given to him.

    April 2, 1914: Doubt as to R’s [Richard’s] theories which are assailing the mind, eg. theory of kama and ego as the seed of the world. Promise of a sortilege in reply.

    Again, he notes his doubts regarding Paul Richard’s theories.

    April 13, 1914: The reading of R’s [Richard’s] book “Les Dieux” has brought up the question of the Master &the Adesha, whether it is a God or God and the adesha an arbitrary impulsion or the voice of supreme Truth & Power.

    On the same day, he notes that he was shown in a sortilege that Paul Richard is not an even-tempered man (i.e. Asamahita Ashant manusha), hence his theories are wrong.

    April 13, 1914: The doubt not being satisfied, a more pointed & clear reply was promised in the third sortilege. It explains the origin of the difficulty. It is impossible for the Asamahita Ashanta-manusha (which R is) to know God by mere intellectuality or intellectual intuition. Only the pure vijnanamaya can do it; he does not insist on the God of pity & sorrow or the necessity of continual rebirth.

    Sri Aurobindo notes here that his effort to use his spiritual power (Aishwarya) to get Paul Richard elected as French deputy failed. A deputy is someone who represents the French colonies in India in the French parliament.

    April 17, 1914: Aishwarya in connection with the elections has been successful in all except the central point the vote for Rd.. [Richard] where it has failed entirely.

    Then, he received guidance through a Lipi (etheric writing) indicating that the failure in Paul’s election serves a purpose

    May 4, 1914: the result of the elections disappointing in itself is useful for future election

    This one is a prevision that both Paul and Mirra would come to see him.

    May 8, 1914: 1. Both will come i.e. Richard & Madame Richard.
    N.B. Madame Richard was ill; moreover the Governor visited them at the time of their usual visit here; but they both came subsequently at 6 pm, 2 hours later than the regular time

    This reference indicates that Sri Aurobindo was being shown that Mirra Alfassa was his twin soul or Shakti

    May 23, 1914: Soul-kinship (reference to the Rs [Richards]).

    In this note, he records how she automatically responded to his unspoken question – an instance of telepathic transfer.

    June 1, 1914: Typical instance of communicative vyapti
    The idea came to ask Mme. R. [Richard] how soon they would go into the new house, but the question was asked only in the mind; in 15 or 20 seconds she answered, “In one or two days perhaps we shall go into the house.”

    Here, he seemed to have had an automatic writing session with them

    July 17, 1914: Today excellent script with R. [Richard] & Madame R (This may refer to one or more of the automatic writings reproduced in Part Five)

    This one is presently not understood

    July 18, 1914: Dharma effective on R & Madame R, but more in mentality & prana than for illumination.

    Sri Aurobindo seems to suggest Paul Richard isn’t quite fit for Yoga (?)

    July 22, 1914: Strong opposition to Dharma in R [Richard].

    In this note, he notes that one of Mirra Alfassa’s visions had resolved a problem regarding spiritual practice.

    Sept 4, 1914: The figure of the Cavalier & horse, seen by M R [Madame Richard], the latter hesitating to take the leap from the brink of the precipice to the summit of the mountain, indicate the Soul pushing the Prana, which resists, to undertake the great leap,
    1 internally, from the trailokya (triple world) to the Parardha (transcendental).
    2. externally, from passivity to the supreme action.
    Both Cavalier & Horse are justified.
    In the internality the leap will now be taken.
    In the externality it is being prepared.

    This note is not currently understood

    Dec 17, 1914: Karma
    Fresh proofs of effective Karma through subjectivity in surroundings; formerly C.S & R2 [Richard and Madame Richard], now difficulties in the house righted.

    Reply
    1. Sandeep Post author

      Other remarks related to Paul Richard by Sri Aurobindo

      In a conversation with disciples, Sri Aurobindo said: “But I always remember the vision the Mother had. It was like this. The Mother, Richard and I were going somewhere. We saw Richard going down to a place from which rising was impossible. Then we found ourselves sitting in a carriage. The driver was taking it up and down a hill a number of times; at last he stopped on the highest peak. Its significance was quite clear to us. ”

      (Nirodbaran, Talks with Sri Aurobindo, 5 Jan 1939)

      Sri Aurobindo (while discussing Hitler and the occult being which was guiding him): yes. But this is the leading (spirit). That being has often come here to see what was being done. Did you read Richard’s book “The Lord of the Nations”?
      Disciple : No. I read only “To the nation”.
      Sri Aurobindo : The book was never published, but he wrote it at a time when he was in communication with that being.

      (A.B Purani, Evening Talks, 20th May, 1940)

      Reply
  8. mike

    “In hindsight, it must be noted that the visions in which the Mother had seen Sri Aurobindo had occurred between the ages of eleven and thirteen, even before Sri Aurobindo began practicing Yoga[19]. So it seems that the fact that Sri Aurobindo would turn to Yoga and attain Enlightenment was pre-destined”

    Always wondered about that. l thought that SA had already started yoga when mother was having these visions of him teaching her. Could it have been Sri Aurobindo’s psychic being that was going to her???

    “Could you please let us know what is the current stage/status of supramental descent after Sri Aurobindo and Mother have left their body. Is there anybody in the Sri Aurobindo ashram continuing with this yoga (Satprem was continuing i believe). I have read somewhere that Sri Aurobindo was continuing his yoga from subtle realms.( i am not sure what it means!).”

    l always remember satprem at mothers funeral and hearing HER voice telling him that the work hadn’t stopped.
    l believe satprem left his body a while ago.

    There are some ppl like mother meera in germany and P. Norelli-Bachelet [think that’s her name] who make big claims about being the heirs to Sri Aurobindo and Mothers yoga.
    mother meera was at the ashram for a long time and claims she is their child [had a vision about them] and also claims to be bringing down a higher light/force called paramatman light. l’m very dubious about her claims [even though l have experienced things with her]. l believe she’s probably an intermediate zone guru.
    Norelli-Bachelet claims she is the next avatar or something, and that her son is the reincarnation of Sri Aurobindo. She also says auroville was built in the wrong place, l believe, and not as mother instructed. Make what you will of that lol. l think she’s been kicked out of india now.

    Didn’t Sri Aurobindo say he would be the first to incarnate in a Supramental Body???

    As for the Twinsoul business, l’ve explained in another post my own experiences with someone l believe is my twinsoul/shakti. l’ve had some unbelievable experiences with this person and l didn’t believe she could be my twinsoul for a long time. l do believe what SA said about our progress going 10x faster when we meet the twinsoul. l’ve noticed a lot of things in my sadhana speeding up just by being in contact with this person. The main thing that happened was that the sex-impulse just seemed to drop away from me [hard to believe, l know]. All sorts of spiritual/occult stuff happened too.
    About the gender thing, [after years of research into this] l’m personally inclined to believe it can be either [the psychic being would be sexless l imagine], but in the yoga l think it has to follow the line of Shiva-Shakti [male-female] because there seems to be some kind of frequency thing involved. lf you check up on some of the twinsouls throughout history most appear to be male-female connections. l prefer to believe what P.Joudry and Pressman say about it in their book on Twinsouls [they were followers of Sri Aurobindo and Mother as well].

    Reply
    1. Sandeep Post author

      Mike: There are some ppl like mother meera in germany and P. Norelli-Bachelet [think that’s her name] who make big claims about being the heirs to Sri Aurobindo and Mothers yoga.

      This phenomenon had started even while the Mother was in her body

      We’re finding some amusing things again…. Three or four people here, at the SAME time, had come (when I wrote this, I forget when), had come to succeed the universal Mother!… Three or four. Especially two from America. And there’s also one here (Mother laughs). (Agenda, Oct 14, 1970)

      Reply
    2. Sandeep Post author

      Mike: Always wondered about that. l thought that SA had already started yoga when mother was having these visions of him teaching her. Could it have been Sri Aurobindo’s psychic being that was going to her???

      There can be a difference between the physical person and the the subtle form behind. In dreams, you may see that subtle form although in the physical world, he or she has not yet manifested it. Consider the case of Swami Vivekananda. When Ramakrishna put into him into a trance, he revealed his true condition, but he wasn’t aware of it and a few years passed before he actually regained it.

      On his third visit Naren fared no better, though he tried his utmost to be on guard. Sri Ramakrishna took him to a neighbouring garden and, in a state of trance, touched him. Completely overwhelmed, Naren lost consciousness.

      Sri Ramakrishna, referring later to this incident, said that after putting Naren into a state of unconsciousness, he had asked him many questions about his past, his mission in the world, and the duration of his present life. The answer had only confirmed what he himself had thought about these matters. Ramakrishna told his other disciples that Naren had attained perfection even before this birth; that he was an adept in meditation; and that the day Naren recognized his true self, he would give up the body by an act of will, through yoga. Often he was heard to say that Naren was one of the Saptarshis, or Seven Sages, who live in the realm of the Absolute. He narrated to them a vision he had had regarding the disciple’s spiritual heritage.

      Nikhilananda. Swami Vivekananda – A Biography, p. 16)

      Reply
  9. Mike

    Thanks, Sandeep, l hadn’t seen that info before [ agenda and vivekananda].
    L wonder if the one mother was referring to [at the ashram] was this m.meera who then went to germany!

    Reply
    1. Hermann

      i can dispel your assumption, Mike. in 1970, Kamala Reddy, the later Mother Meera, was ten years old and lived without attracting attention in a little village far off Pondicherry. her uncle Bulgur Venkat Reddy then was a sadhak who had lived in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram since 1956. in 1972, he had to go back to his home for sudden familiar reasons. on this occasion, he saw Kamala for the first time and was at once struck by her. in 1974, Kamala was 14 years old, she visited the Samadhi of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother for the first time. the Mother who was born as Mirra Alfassa once had said, as Satprem refers to on this October 14, 1970: ‘If, for any reason, this body becomes unusable, the universal Mother will again start manifesting in hundreds of individualities according to their capacity and receptivity, each one being a partial manifestation of the Universal Consciousness.’

      Reply
      1. Sandeep Post author

        Using dates (1970, 1974) can be misleading, because the Mother might have had a prevision of the future, in which four women (along with their chaperones) would come forward to claim to be her successors.

        If we read the (Agenda Oct 14, 1970), this statement: “the universal Mother will again start manifesting in hundreds of individualities” is undated (“There’s no date”) and was written specifically to calm the ambitions of charlatans. It doesn’t necessarily imply that this Kamala Reddy is anything special.

  10. amsha

    It’s not that difficult to distinguish presence of Mother’s Force even for
    those who are not doing Yoga. When I read about people in Ashram who took seriously Her departure I was truly amazed: She is Infinite and Immortal, how She could possibly die?
    Does She need successors?

    Reply
  11. Hermann

    dear Sandeep, you are absolutely right. using dates can be misleading. using words can be misleading whatsoever. but the most misleading thing at all is the human intelligence. smile with me and bring to your mind Sri Aurobindo’s mighty words. i pulled them out of a little but most important booklet titled ‘The Mother’:

    ‘…But be on your guard and do not try to understand and judge the Divine Mother by your little earthly mind that loves to subject even the things that are beyond it to its own norms and standards, its narrow reasonings and erring impressions, its bottomless aggressive and its petty self-confident knowledge. The human mind shut in the prison of its half-lit obscurity cannot follow the many-sided freedom of the steps of the Divine Shakti. The rapidity and complexity of her vision and action outrun its stumbling comprehension; the measures of her movements are not her measures. Bewildered by the swift alteration of her many different personalities, her making of rhythms and her breaking of rhythms, her accelerations of speed and her retardations, her varied ways of dealing with the problem of one and of another, her taking up and dropping now of this line and now of that one and her gathering of them together, it will not recognize the way of the Supreme Power when it is circling and sweeping upwards through the maze of the ignorance to a supernal Light. Open rather your soul to her and be content to feel her with the psychic nature and see her with the psychic vision that alone make a straight response to the Truth. Then the Mother herself will enlighten by their psychic elements your mind and heart and life and physical consciousness and reveal to them too her ways and her nature.

    Avoid also the error of the ignorant mind’s demand on the Divine Power to act always according to our crude surface notions of omniscience and omnipotence. For our mind clamours to be impressed at every turn by miraculous power and easy success and dazzling splendour; otherwise it cannot believe that here is the Divine. The Mother is dealing with the Ignorance in the fields of the Ignorance; she has descended there and is not all above. Partly she veils and partly she unveils her knowledge and her power, often holds them back from her instruments and personalities and follows that she may transform them the way of the seeking mind, the way of the aspiring psychic, the way of the battling vital, the way of the imprisoned and suffering physical nature. There are conditions that have been laid down by the Supreme Will, there are many tangled knots that have to be loosened and cannot be cut abruptly asunder. The Asura and Rakshasa hold this evolving earthly nature and have to be met and conquered on their own terms in their own long-conquered fief and province; the human in us has to be led and prepared to transcend its limits and is too weak and obscure to be lifted up suddenly to a form far beyond it. The Divine Consciousness and Force are there and do at each moment the thing that is needed in the conditions of the labour, take always the step that is decreed and shape in the midst of imperfection the perfection that is to come. But only when the supermind has descended in you can she deal directly as the supramental Shakti with supramental natures. If you follow your mind, it will not recognize the Mother even when she is manifest before you. Follow your soul and not your mind, your soul that answers to the Truth, not your mind that leaps at appearances; trust the Divine Power and she will free the godlike elements in you and shape all into an expression of Divine Nature.’

    there is nothing to add, or is it? instead of exercising ornate reasoning one should better keep one’s trap shut. for to be silent at Her feet can remove the dust from one’s spectacles. for clarification Mother, the Mother, The Mother, Sweet Mother, the One formerly known as Mirra Alfassa (to guarantee the right corpse!) uttered on 11 May 1967:

    ‘This world is a world of conflict, suffering, difficulty, strain; it is made of it. It has not yet changed, it will take some time before changing. And for each one there is a possibility of getting out. If you lean back on the presence of the Supreme Grace, that is the only way out.’

    isn’t it a very comfortable situation? leaning back instead of engaging in armchair reasoning.

    Reply
  12. mike

    Thanks for the dates Hermann. So, what is your opinion of m.meera. l know personally she has some kind of power [l’m inclined to think it’s an lntermediate zone power], but can we believe her when she claims that she’s bringing downing a power and light greater than the Supramental, which Sri Aurobindo and Mother spent most of their lives bringing down. m.meera has only been around for 5 minutes after all. Of course, in the quote above Mother does say “according to their capacity and receptivity, each one being a partial manifestation of the Universal Consciousness.” – emphasis being on PARTIAL.
    She also claims she has never had a human birth before – whatever that means.

    Reply
    1. Hermann

      i do not care, dear mike, about all these pittoresque stories. if anyone loves to be drowned in these floods of unprecise words, wild assumptions and age-old preconceptions, he may do so and indulge in this tv-like hobby. enjoy! but i for myself know from the depth of my being that it is better to let off all that radically – for it’s only nonesense, a harmful toy for mind and ego.

      Sri Aurobindo and Mother (yes, this Mother) stressed on countless occasions that it is indispensable to stop all that. one short but precise example: ‘The first step is perfect calm and equanimity.’ – The Mother

      since ‘i’ strive ‘to do’ the Integral Yoga, this is a must to achieve. only in calmness is it possible to transcend the ego and get rid of it. in my view, then and only then the Integral Yoga begins. the Integral Yoga was not designed for human beings. the Integral Yoga is the Yoga of the Divine Himself.

      thanks to the Divine Shakti, whom i tenderly call ‘MM’ was put right before my nose, 200 kilometers away from my home. but instead of giving a consumer report i keep silent, as MM always keeps silence during Her Darshans.

      but what the hell have i done? i used a whistle-blowing majuscule. this ‘H’ simply means: yes, She works.

      with best regards from the intermediate zone 😉

      Reply
    2. Sandeep Post author

      There have also been kids who have claimed to be Sri Aurobindo! You may want to read the comments made here and here by someone who was in Pondicherry in the 1970s when Kamala Reddy first made an appearance.

      When first I came, in December 1973, there were three Mother’s successors, all living in Pondy: one Spanish, one German, and the Italian one. There were also two Sri Aurobindos: the son of the Italian “Mother” — and an Indian one, coming daily to the samadhi.

      A Western girl was posted around the samadhi to take Westerners to the divine couple: the Indian Sri Aurobindo (who did horrible paintings) and the Spanish “Mother” (a dancer pale like a ghost). But alas… I run away on the spot, missing the initiation into the sacred mysteries!

      […]

      Mother Meera was a simple girl, trying to imitate in a simplistic language the discourse on the supermind. She and her uncle-press agent had settled in Montreal, Canada; I was there when one of the two Aurobindonian Centres sent a letter to all its members inviting them to a meeting: the final decision had to be taken whether to enthrone that Meera as the official successor of the Mother!!! My husband showed me the letter and I tore it to pieces; I should have kept it instead, to show it to simpletons. The result was that Meera and her uncle had to flee to Germany, to avoid the jail because of some murky deal. There at last she gave up her pretensions vis-à-vis the Mother. I was told that the bad figure is the uncle, she is a puppet.

      The teenager had appeared for the first time shortly after the Mother’s passing and started giving darshan. Plenty of ashramites went. It seems that Nirod went too, to see what it looked like, and reported that Meera had vital powers. This may have been the case as, contrarily to Yvonne Artaud and PN(Patricia Norelli) ensnared by their minds, that girl was known for limited mental faculties.
      […]
      Pick up one of your choice, the world is full of Sri Aurobindos and Mothers cum related items!

      Reply
      1. Hermann

        The obstinate pertinacity with which we cling to our meagre, fragmentary, night-besieged and grief-besieged individual existence even while the unbroken bliss of our universal life calls to us is one of the most amazing of God’s mysteries. – Sri Aurobindo

        that is why i cannot stop laughing. it’s so silly a discussion. only words, no experience at all! think what you want to think, reason with utmost brilliance. but whatever your rationale may be, never, never forget:

        Surely the Divine, like everybody else, has a right to change His mind. – The Mother

      2. Mohan

        For every argument there is an equal and opposite argument. If your experience tells you to follow these Mother-incarnates, that is fine and I’m sure everybody is in agreement here.

        Surely the devotees of even “Swami” Nityananda (of Thiruvannamalai) had good reason and “experience” enough to follow him.

        For me, the one Mother has given more than can be digested! ^_^

  13. mike

    m.meera also says this:
    “On the back of the human being is a white line running up from toes to the head. In fact, two lines start from the toes, rise along the legs, join at the base of the spine and then become a single line reaching the top of the head. This line is thinner than a hair and has some knots in it here and there which divine personalities help to undo. It is very delicate work and great care has to be taken to undo the knots, as there is danger for your life if the thread is broken. When I hold your head I am untying these knots. I am also removing other kinds of obstacles to your sadhana (spiritual practice and self-discipline)”. When I touch your head, the Light moves upwards in the white line. It indicates, like a meter, the development of our sadhana. When there is no progress, the Light moves downwards along the line, showing the degree to which your sadhana has deteriorated. When the Light is continuous from the toes to the top of the head, the person may have many experiences and visions, although some people have visions and experiences without this white line. When the line gets to the top of the head, people have the Paramatman darshan. When the line has gone above the head, then there is a constant relation with Paramatman. If your aspiration weakens, the line moves downwards as I said. One day you might even fall from your sadhana. This is a great crisis, which can, however, be prevented. In the front of the body are two red lines starting from the toes, growing gradually upwards on either side of the legs and tending to meet at the base of the spine where the white lines become a single one. If the red lines reach the white line, you will achieve absolute detachment. This rarely happens and only those who have the Divine Shakti. By the growth of the white and red lines, the sadhana will be established permanently without possibility of a fall. If the red lines develop fully, you will reach great heights. The white lines will also help to support the experiences of those who have a psychic opening. Even when there is a psychic opening there is still the possibility that it will close. The opening of the psychic is effective for sadhana, but it is not enough. The establishment of the white and red lines will help you to keep the psychic continually open. If the psychic can be compared to a flower, the lines are the plant itself.”
    Has anyone heard Sri Aurobindo and Mother mention these lines because it’s new to me.

    Reply
    1. Hermann

      What strange beings we are, sitting in hell at the bottom of the dark, afraid of our own immortality. – Dschalal ad-Din ar-Rumi

      red lines, white lines. since i never saw them they must be hallucinations. but what i precisely remember is a red nose, big and remarkable. isn’t it the nose of Rudolph, the red-nosed Reindeer? indeed, i saw and see this magnificent sniffer in concrete reality, each Christmas time on tv.

      Reply
    2. Sandeep Post author

      If these lines exist, they are probably Nadis and may be mentioned in some book. I am not aware of SA&M mentioning any lines like these. They did talk about the triple cord.

      Reply
    3. Sandeep Post author

      I may be right. The lines she talks about are nothing new. They are well-known Nadis, some of which are known to travel from the toe to the crown Chakra. I don’t know the exact ones but it could be some or all of the following Nadis: Hastijiva, Yashashvini, Gandhari or Pusha. They are discussed in the Yoga Chudamani Upanishad, Gheranda Samhita, Shandilya Upanishad, etc.

      The Shandilya Upanishad says “Yasasvini which is beautiful (or belonging to the moon), proceeds to the great toes.” (The corresponding Sanskrit verse is “Yasasvini saumya ca Padangustantamishyate”)

      Reply
  14. mike

    Thanks for that sandeep.
    l remember The Mother saying towards the end of her life that all those who were claiming to have the ultimate realisation were only half way there. She saw this in some kind of vision. l can’t find the exact quote now, but l think it was in the agenda.

    Reply
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  16. Mike

    Surely The Mother would have said to someone that She would have a successor. Sri Aurobindo indicated clearly that The Mother was His successor.
    l know a few people [including her own family l believe] say that m.meera is using vital powers on people.
    Andrew Harvey has certainly believes he had an occult battle with her, although personally, l think he has lost the plot in most things.

    ” She also inquired about the “rising of the Kundalini” that she had experienced earlier in Paris.  Her experience did not match the description she had read in Swami Vivekananda’s books, because in her case, the Force(Kundalini-Shakti) had risen above the head and settled there about eight inches above the head.  She asked Sri Aurobindo to explain the anomaly.  He replied that the same thing had occurred to him, and according to ancient texts, you cannot live when that takes place.  He reassured her, “Here are two people who haven’t died!”[13″

    What does Mother mean here. Was this a rising of kundalini from the base chakra in the traditional way. If so, when did Sri Aurobindo’s method begin – the descending kundalini???

    Reply
    1. Sandeep Post author

      What does Mother mean here. Was this a rising of kundalini from the base chakra in the traditional way. If so, when did Sri Aurobindo’s method begin – the descending kundalini???

      My interpretation is that although their initial experience was of the ascending Kundalini, later they advised their disciples to invoke the descending method because that avoided the complications that could occur in the former.

      Reply
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