Drawing upon some key insights from Hindu scriptures, Sri Aurobindo explains that the Hindu mind has never admitted the principle of linear progress in Nature.
In this first chapter, we get an overview of the eternal human aspiration that has been there since the beginning and promises to remain until the end. This is followed by a review of the apparent contradictions in present human life at present, which Sri Aurobindo explains are Nature’s own method of moving towards a harmony that will fructify ultimately in the transformation of mind, life and body through the light and power of a new consciousness, the emerging Supermind.
The author writes: “A splendid heroism of selflessness is here, the vividest picture of a warrior Yogi who would take any risk, if thereby he could press closer to his objective and though the formula is “I conquer or perish” the frame of mind is one that might easily avail itself of a yet more audacious formula: “I perish to conquer.””
Amal Kiran writes: “In a most special sense, Sri Aurobindo the marvellously gifted and gracious person who was our Guru and whom we loved is still at work and a concrete truth is expressed by the Mother when she says: “To grieve is an insult to Sri Aurobindo who is here with us, conscious and alive.””
The Festival of Devi is celebrated in India to mark the victory of the great Goddess Durga over the demon King Mahishāsura and his demon cohorts. Though outwardly it seems to be symbolic of the victory of Truth over falsehood which of course it is, there is much in it to help us understand the process of individual and cosmic evolution. A 3-part essay explores the deeper, inner significance of this festival.
The symbolism of the birth of Mahishasurmardini is presented here. The author also briefly outlines how the nine forms of the goddess form an ascending hierarchy of shakti or energy rising from the root chakra at the base of the spine, mulādhara, traveling upwards gaining strength and force and momentum with each upward gust and impulsion until it reaches the crown and passing beyond unites with its Lord.
The author, in this part, cites some significant descriptions given by the Mother of her realisations. These passages speak of how Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga takes a giant leap over tradition wherein he is not content with the slaying of a demon or many demons but by their conversion or dissolution for good. But for this not only man but even the gods must collaborate.
These passages give a glimpse of the fundamental difference between Integral Yoga and other paths of yoga. We learn about the evolutionary aim in Integral Yoga, which Sri Aurobindo summarises as – to become divine in the nature of the world. The Mother tells us that if one cannot change the nature it is not worth the trouble of doing yoga, for yoga is done precisely in order to change the nature.