News & Notes 706:House of Mother's Agenda
- Is delight the highest state? And if so, could it be said that when one loses delight, one's consciousness is lowered?
Sri Aurobindo has said that the universe is built upon the delight of existence and that delight, being its origin is necessarily also its goal, so this would mean in fact that delight is the highest state.
But I don't need to tell you that this is not delight as it is understood in the ordinary human consciousness….Indeed, that delight is beyond the states which are generally considered as the highest from the yogic point of view, as for instance, the state of perfect serenity, of perfect equality of soul, of absolute detachment, of identity with the infinite and eternal Divine, which necessarily raises you above all contingencies. Parallel to this state there can be another which is the state of perfect, integral, universal love, which is the very essence of compassion and the most perfect expression of the Grace which wipes out the consequences of all error and all ignorance. These two states have always been considered as the summit of consciousness; they are what could be called the frontier, the extreme limit of what the individual consciousness can attain in its union with the Divine.
But there is something which lies beyond; it is precisely a state of perfect delight which is not static: delight in a progressive manifestation, a perfect unfolding of the supreme Consciousness.
The first of the two states I spoke about leads almost always to a withdrawal from action, an almost static condition, and very easily would it lead to Nirvana — in fact, it has always been the way prescribed for all those in search of Nirvana. But this state of delight I am speaking about, which is essentially divine because it is free, totally free from all possibility of oppositions and opposites, does not break away from action; on the contrary, it leads to an integral action, perfect in its essence and completely liberated from all ignorance and all bondage to ignorance.
One can experience, on the path ― when one has made some progress, when there is a greater understanding, a more total opening, a more intimate union with the divine Consciousness, one can experience this Delight as something that passes by and colours life and gives it its true meaning, but as long as one is in the human consciousness, this Delight is very easily deformed and changes into something which no longer resembles it at all. Therefore, one could hardly say that if one loses the delight, one's consciousness is lowered, for….the Delight I am speaking about is something which cannot ever be lost. If one has reached beyond the two states I spoke about a while ago, that is to say, the state of perfect detachment and close union, and the state of perfect love and compassion, if one has gone beyond these two states and found the divine Delight, it is practically impossible to come down from there. But in practical life, that is, on the path of yoga, if you are touched, even in passing, by this divine Delight, it is obvious that, should it leave you, you are bound to feel that you have come down from a peak into a rather dark valley.
But Delight without detachment would be a very dangerous gift which could very easily be perverted. So, to seek Delight before having acquired detachment does not seem to be very wise. One must first be above all possible opposites: indeed, above pain and pleasure, suffering and happiness, enthusiasm and depression. If one is above all that, then one may safely aspire for Delight.
But as long as this detachment is not realised, one can easily confuse Delight with an exalted state of ordinary human happiness, and this would not at all be the true thing nor even a perversion of the thing, for the nature of the two is so different, almost opposite, that you cannot pass from one to the other. So, if one wants to be safe on the path, it seems to me that to seek for peace, for perfect calm, perfect equality, for a widening of the consciousness, a vaster understanding and liberation from all desire, all preference, all attachment, is certainly an indispensable preliminary condition.
It is the guarantee of both inner and outer equipoise.
And then on this equilibrium, on this foundation which must be very solid, one may build whatever one wants. But to begin with, the foundation must be there, unshakable.
Someone has asked me what I meant by these words: “One must be calm.”
It is obvious that when I tell someone, “Be calm”, I mean many different things according to the person. But the first indispensable calm is mental quietude, for generally that is the one that's most lacking. When I tell someone, “Be calm”, I mean: Try not to have restless, excited, agitated thoughts; try to quieten your mind and to stop turning around in all your imaginations and observations and mental constructions.
Questions and Answers 1956, p.326
|The Ponder Corner:||“All those around me, all the circumstances of my life, all the people near me, are a mirror held up to me by the Divine Consciousness to show me the progress I must make. Everything that shocks me in others means a work I have to do in myself.”|
Words of the Mother – II, p.336