Source of knowledge

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(A teacher in the Ashram school:) “Mother, now there is one question, another important question. You have often told us that it is only in the inner silence that we can find the true answer to a question. What is the best way to make the children discover how this silence is established? Is this how consciousness is substituted for knowledge?

(Long silence)

You see, in this system of classes where everyone is sitting down, the teacher is there and they have a limited time in which to do the work, it is not possible. It is only if you have absolute freedom that you can establish the silence when you need to be silent. But when all the students are in class and the teacher is in class... when the teacher is establishing the silence in himself, all the students... then it is not possible.
         He can establish the silence at home, at night, the day before, to prepare himself for the next day, but you cannot... It cannot be an immediate rule. Naturally, when you are at the very top of the scale and you are used to keeping your mind absolutely silent, you cannot help it; but you have not reached that point, none of you. So it is better not to speak about it. So I think that during the... Especially with this system, classes with a fixed time, with a fixed number of students, with a fixed teacher, and a fixed subject... you must be active while you are there.
         It must be... If the students want to practise meditation, concentration, to try to come into... it is to come into contact with the intuitive plane, it is — instead of receiving a purely mental reply which is like that — to receive a reply from above which is a little luminous and living. But that habit should be acquired at home.
         Naturally, someone who has this habit, in the class — when the teacher asks the question, writes this question on the blackboard, “Who can answer?” — he can do this (Mother puts both hands to her forehead), receive, oh! and then say... But when we reach that point, it will be a great progress.”[1]

  1. On Education, p.421, Conversation of 11 November 1967

See also