Once someone asked the Mother the question – what is Nature? She replied: “I think that Nature is the most material part of the creative force which is concerned with the creation specially of the earth, of the material world as we know it upon earth.” (CWM, Vol. 7, pp. 160-161)
This Nature, the Prakriti may be understood as a mechanism of active Force, an executive force, put forth for the working of the evolutionary Ignorance (Avidya) to move the world. In the case of an individual, the lower nature is the triple nexus of mind, life and body. But there is also something that may be spoken of as the higher, Divine Nature (Para Prakriti) which is free from Ignorance and its consequences. And what is Ignorance or Avidya but the consciousness of Multiplicity, the relative and multiple consciousness. To arrive at the higher nature, to the consciousness of Oneness – both in the individual and in the creation – Love acts as a great Divine Force.
Our seers and sages tell us that the entire universe, this manifestation, is essentially an act of Love – Love of the Divine, the Perfect Supreme Consciousness. The manifestation of the Love of the Divine in the world is an act of supreme self-giving. The Love of the Supreme for its creation is a movement to help awaken in the world a longing to get back to its essential divinity.
Today, the world is acutely aware of the crisis facing our Mother Nature; the future of ecological balance will impact the next phase of earthly evolution. Solutions are being frantically sought – from science, spirituality, industry, arts; terms like conscious consumerism, ecological living are becoming commonplace among the educated elite. But the truest, the deepest, the most sustainable and effective solution lies in the evolution of consciousness – in the movement from Avidya to Vidya, from the consciousness of Multiplicity to the consciousness of Oneness, oneness with all Nature, all Existence, all Beings. In the movement of Love.
The Mother once said that the whole life of plants and trees is a worship of Light, the material symbol of the Divine. This is Nature’s yearning for its hidden Divinity, and Light awakens in the Nature a seeking for Oneness with the Creative Source and Force of it all, the Para Prakriti. In human terms, Love is a force that awakens in an individual a yearning to get to his or her true source, that deep Oneness within. Only the deepest force of Love for Mother Nature which comes from this Center of Oneness, an inner identification, has the potential to lead the humanity and earth out of the ecological crisis we face today.
This issue of Renaissance is an invocation to this Supreme Force that is the Love of the Divine for the Humanity and the Earth, the Love that carries within it the Force and Power to awaken in both – man and nature – to the deep, hidden yearning for their highest and truest Nature, their Divinity.
The Guiding Light section focuses primarily on the words of the Mother where she speaks of the intense yearning, the deep love and longing of Nature, its ardent prayer to Light. The same Love can awaken in us, the humans, an aspiration to seek the Oneness within, the truest Light within. Only when we act from that Centre of Light and Love, we act truly and most powerfully.
A beautifully composed article by Rishabhchand, first published in Sri Aurobindo Circle in 1955, is presented in four parts. The author walks us through selected poetic and prose writings (primarily poetry) of Sri Aurobindo to illustrate the deep Love Sri Aurobindo, the Self-realised Purna Yogi, has for the man and earth struggling in the quagmire of Ignorance and yet unconsciously striving for meaning, knowledge and light.
He reminds us it is in the Force of such Divine Love that humanity will find a most radical and universal power to exert its influence and action in the world. Such Love radiates not only from the soul but from the whole being, and that is why touches not only the soul but the whole being of others. Such Love alone has the potential to truly help and guide humanity evolve in consciousness, and aspire to grow in Oneness with It all. In Sri Aurobindo’s mystic poetry we find ample expressions of such love.
As always, we offer this work at the feet of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother.
Beloo Mehra (for Renaissance Editorial Team)
~ Cover painting by Bindu Popli