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(Sri Aurobindo:) “In these things our sadhana does not cleave to the knowledge given in the books, but only keeps to the central truth behind and realises it independently without any subjection to the old forms and symbols.”[1]

(Mother to Satprem, 1962:) “That's where I find fault with the Tantric system – they have no belief in the possibility of something helping you from above. They believe in walking the tightrope. It's no good.”[2]

(Mother to Satprem, 1960:) “When I went inside Panditji, I saw ... It was rather curious, for it's the opposite of the method we follow. In his material consciousness (physical and vital), he has trained himself to be impersonal, open, limitless, in communication with all the universal forces. In the physical mind, silence, immobility. But in the speculative mind, the one there at the very top of the head ... what an organization, phew! ... All the tradition in its most superb organization, but such a ri-gi-dity! And it had a pretty quality of light, a silver blue – VERY pretty. Oh, it was very calm, wonderfully calm and quiet and still. But what a ceiling it had! - the outer form resembled rigid cubes. Everything inside was beautiful, but that ... There was a very large cube right at the top, I recall, bordered by a purple line, which is a line of power – all this was quite luminous. It looked like a pyramid; the smaller cubes formed a kind of base, the lower part of which faded into something cloudy, and then this passed imperceptibly downwards to a more material realm, or in other words, the physical mind. The cube on top was the largest and most luminous, and the least yielding – even inflexible, you could say. The others were somewhat less defined, and at the bottom it was very blurred. But up at the top! – that's where I wanted to go, right to the top.
         When I got there, I felt a moment of anguish; my feeling was that nothing could be done. Not for him in particular, but universally, for all those in his category – it seemed hopeless. If that was perfection, then nothing more could be done. This lasted only a second, but it was painful. And then I tried ... that is, I wanted to bring my consciousness down into the highest cube – this eternal, universal and infinite consciousness which is the first and foremost expression of the manifestation – but ... nothing doing. It was impossible. I tried for several minutes and saw that it was absolutely impossible. So I had to make a curious movement (I couldn't get through it, it was impassable), I had to come back down into the so-called lower consciousness (not lower, actually – it was vast and impersonal), and from there I came out and regained ... my equilibrium. This is what gave me that splitting headache I told you about. I came out of there as if I were carrying the weight ... the weight of an irreducible absolute – it was dreadful. Unfortunately, I was unable to rest afterwards, and as people were waiting to see me, I had to talk – which is very tiring for me. And this produced a bubbling in my head, like a ... this dark blue light of power in matter was there, shot through with streaks of white and gold, and all this was flashing back and forth in my head, this way and that way – I thought I was going to have a stroke! (Mother laughs)[3]

(Sri Aurobindo:) “In our Yoga it is not necessary to go through the systematised method, — for this psycho-physical process is only a part of the movement of the Yoga and it takes place spontaneously according to need by the force of the aspiration and the call for the workings of the Divine Power. As soon as there is an opening, the Divine Power descends and conducts the necessary working, does what is needed, each thing in its time, and the Yogic consciousness begins to be born in the sadhaka.”[4]

(Mother to Satprem about his karma, November 1958:) “I am used to seeing the process or the working of things more from a spiritual point of view, something more universal, whereas this needs to be seen from a detailed, occult point of view.
         For example, one thing had always appeared unimportant to me in action – intermediaries between the spiritualized individual being, the conscious soul, and the Supreme. According to my personal experience, it had always seemed to me that if one is exclusively turned towards the Supreme in all one's actions and expresses Him directly, whatever is to be done is done automatically. For example, if you are always open and if at each second you consciously want to express only what the Supreme Lord wants to be expressed, it is done automatically. But with all that I have learned about pujas, about certain scriptures and certain rituals as well, the necessity for a ‘process’ has become very clear to me. It's the same as in physical life; in physical life, everything needs a process, as we know, and it is the knowledge of processes that constitutes physical science. Similarly, in a more occult working, the knowledge and especially the RESPECT for the process seem to be much more important than I had first thought.
         And when I studied this, when I looked at this science of processes, of intermediaries, suddenly I clearly understood the working of karma, which I had not understood before. I had worked and intervened quite often to change someone's karma, but sometimes I had to wait, without exactly knowing why – the result was not immediate. I simply used to wait without worrying about the reasons for this slowness or delay. That's how it was. And generally it ended, as I said, with the exact vision of the karma's source, its initial cause; and scarcely would I have this vision when the Power would come, and the thing would be dissolved. But I didn't bother about finding out why it was like that.
         One day I had mentioned this to Panditji when he was showing me or describing to me the different movements of the pujas, the procedure, the process of the puja. I said to him, “Oh, I see! For the action to be immediate, for the result to be immediate, one must acknowledge, for example, the role or the participation of certain spirits or certain forces and enter into a friendly relationship or collaboration with these forces in order to obtain an immediate result, is it not so?” Then he told me, “Yes, otherwise it leaves an indefinite time to the play of the forces, and you don't know when you will get the result of your puja.”
         That interested me very much. Because one of the obstacles I had felt was that although the Force was acting well, there was a time lag that appeared inevitable, a time element in the work which seemed unavoidable – a play left to the forces of Nature. But with their knowledge of the processes, the tantrics can dispense with all that. So I understood why those who have studied, who are initiated and follow the prescribed methods are apparently more powerful – more powerful even than those who are conscious in the highest consciousness.
         What interested me is that in their case (those who follow tantric or other initiations), what is doubtful is whether or not they can succeed in receiving the response of the true Power, the divine power, the supreme power; they do everything they can, but this question still remains. Whereas for me, it is the opposite situation: the Power is there, I have it, but how can I make it act here in matter? The process for making it act immediately was missing – though not totally; I know from the psychological standpoint, but there is something other than the psychological power, there is the whole play of conscious, individualized forces that are everywhere in Nature and that have the right to exist. Since it was created this way, it must express something of the supreme Will, otherwise He wouldn't have made use of intermediaries – but in His plan, it is obvious that the intermediary has a legitimate place.”[5]

See also