THE genius who not only propounded colossal ideas but also put them into practice, the visionary who dared to launch the process of transfiguring the vision into gross reality, is widely known as the Mother of Sri Aurobindo Ashram though, in truth, Sri Aurobindo Ashram is of the Mother, as is the Auroville, the `city of dawn' which she designed for a new community of seekers from all over the world aspiring to transcend racial prejudices, religious differences as well as egoistic preferences and become the forerunners of a spiritual future.
Her ministry had been multiple. She was the guide for all who pursued the Yoga of Sri Aurobindo; she was more than a physical mother to everyone who turned to her; she was the teacher nonpareil who could explain the complexities and profundities of the Aurobindonian lore in a style transparent and simple. A painter of great accomplishment in her early life, she imparted beauty and harmony to anything she handled.
But it will not be a correct approach to our understanding the Mother if we look at these achievements as ends in themselves. They are only waves on the ocean of consciousness in the laboratory of Sri Aurobindo's action and hers.
This is directed at transforming human consciousness, the mental, into supramental. That is the raison d'etre of evolution. In fact mankind at present is passing through an evolutionary crisis, said Sri Aurobindo, and it will experience no sense of fulfillment in its quest for God, Light, Freedom, Bliss and immortality — the primeval seeking that ever remains green — until this transformation had been accomplished.
The Mother remained engrossed in the method of Yoga revealed by Sri Aurobindo, in the integral mystic adventure that would enable the Supramental consciousness to establish itself in man, but without even slightly slackening her preoccupation with the material world, for the world was no illusion, but a veiled figure of the Divine on its way to becoming `the Spirit's manifest home'. Hence she brought a shine of perfection to everything she touched, for everything contained Divine potentiality.
How was this marvel of a personality possible? "Do not ask questions about the details of the material existence of this body; they are in themselves of no interest and must not attract attention," was her message to the renowned savant, T. V. Kapali Sastry, way back in 1958.
Indeed, she was such a living experience, from simply sweet to indescribably profound for whoever met her and was receptive enough, that factual aspects of her life receded into background. She is generally described as French though she was only a French citizen, her parents having settled down in Paris only a year before her birth in 1878, her mother being Egyptian, her roots deep down in the dynasty of the legendary Pharaohs — and her father of Turkish origin.
Named Mirra, she knew as a child that she belonged to no nation, not even to humanity, but to the infinity. Guided by an inner certitude, she visited the French colony of Pondicherry in 1914 (Sri Aurobindo had settled down there in 1910), met the Master and was left in no doubt about her destiny. But that was also the moment when she felt reassured of her vision of human destiny, of the half-animal, ignorant man of the day hiding deep within him the splendour of divinity, the hopelessly limited groping mental creature of today inevitably evolving into a Supramental being in days to come.
The World War I began and she had to go back, but only to return to Pondicherry in 1920 and never to leave it. "The reminiscences will be short," she once said. "I came to India to meet Sri Aurobindo. When he left his body, I continued to live here in order to do his work which is, by serving the Truth and enlightening mankind, to hasten the rule of Divine's Love upon earth."
This is how she explains the significance of Sri Aurobindo: `Sri Aurobindo came to tell the world of the beauty of the future that must be realised. He came to give not a hope but a certitude of the splendour towards which the world moves. The world is not an unfortunate accident, it is a marvel that moves towards its expression.'
Her diagnosis of the Indian condition as it is and her optimism about its future is a solace for all: "India has become the symbol representing all the difficulties of modern humanity," she said and added, "India will become the land of its resurrection, the resurrection of a higher and truer life."
Sri Aurobindo pioneered India's struggle for independence in the early 20th Century; later he devoted himself for the liberation of mankind from its bondage to inertia and ego. The Mother expected India to take the leadership of the world for the achievement of this freedom without which all other freedoms are practically futile. She poured every moment of her life in awakening us to this truth. Seeing through the Birth Centenary of Sri Aurobindo in 1972, she departed the next year, on November 17.
But their vision and optimism continue to spread to pastures new.
Courtesy and Link : http://www.hindu.com/mag/2003/02/16/stories/2003021600170600.htm