June 11, 2002

 

Whether Faith Can Be Created or Increased?

 

v      One has the faith he is born with, as his intelligence is known to be native intelligence.

v      Faith is one of those things, in human belief, that cannot be raised.

v      The determinism of Force cannot, of course, be changed.

v      The Being does not suffer from any such external determinism. It enjoys Self-determinism. For one centred in the Being, it is not true that Faith cannot be raised.

v      A devotee is neither centred in the Force of Becoming nor in the Peace of Being. He acts from the Force of the Being of Becoming.

v      Can this be explained in terms of our limited faith in action when that faith reaches its limits?/

v      Mother's answer is it can rise by perseverance as perseverance is the unconscious energy awareness of the physical. Perseverance acquires emotions as well as knowledge before it reaches its goal of faith which is the knowledge of the soul.

v      For one who acts, the point of beginning is the perseverance of the physical. For one who thinks he can begin from knowledge, the further knowledge the greater faith he will have.

v      For those who are capable of greater action through greater concentration, the higher faith yields directly without having to commence at the physical, mental levels of perseverance or knowledge.

v      The thought can be presented for better appreciation through common comprehension. It has differing expressions.

       Coming closer to Mother or letting Her take greater possession of our being.

       Acquiring spiritual mastery over matter in a greater measure, however small the increment is.

       To enjoy inner calm better.

       Like this the idea can be expressed in every field where spirit expresses which means all fields.

v      One who pushes the frontiers of his faith must do so on the very frontier, not earlier.

v      Man comes there either in JOY or in distress.

v      In the days of Mahabharatha or Shakespeare or even up to the world wars, the world could reach its intensity of consciousness negatively.

       Krishna's greatest victories were won by the falsehood of ruse. And it was wrought by destruction of evil more than creation of GOOD. The greatest JOY Krishna created was in the gopis outside the social norm or in contravention of it.

       Shakespeare excelled himself in tragedies.

       Earth enjoyed her intensity of Spirit in exploding as world wars.

       The Cold War that followed it for forty years was a greater horror than the actual war, as war on the field expresses the emotion of patriotism or idealism.

       So far such intensities were not seen in JOY except when Tom Peters and Harry Potter came on the scene.

v      Great is the soul of the individual who brings himself there in Joy or creation.

v      Maybe the greatest soul can convert despair into the joy of hope.

v      Ordinary men come there in sorrow and disappointment or are brought there by external events. Thus it is outer, not even inner.

v      He who has come there to the frontiers of his being or personality or is brought there by external events, will be face to face with the limitation of his faith.

v      For him is the opportunity to raise it, because he sees his faith getting exhausted and the lack of faith or faith in other things such as law, life response, social relationship or material security, etc. reviving. Not to let that faith revive or exert is the first condition. He will find himself helpless.

v      As long as his faith keeps company, he will be Spirit centred. The moment he moves to law, he will be in mind. He will centre himself in his vital emotions if he relies on blood relations or friends.

v      To move further away to material property is to move to the physical.

v      This definition of the centre of personality is a knowledge that has power to move him back to the Spiritual centre, however feeble it is.

v      To believe in a law of correspondences or life response or an idea of goodness or even a law of contradiction is ONLY a mental existence different from communion with The Mother.

v      To trust Her is to trust Her directly, not through any medium.

v      This perception can move one back, raising his faith for the moment.

v      In the given SITUATION which is the problem, there will be many elements present that offer support to a sinking soul.

v      As and when they rear their heads severally or together, one must face them and tell himself squarely,

       NOT this, but Mother.

       The will of faith thus exercised, perseveres.

       It may be understood as rising faith, will in the knowledge, knowledge in the will, opening, alertness, receptivity or the grace of Spirit, etc.

v      When the devotees prefer to rely on The Mother behind the problem and not succumb to the problem, they do this. It will solve the problem and may indirectly give knowledge too.

v      If one has a problem on hand that has brought him to the brink, it will be easy for him to experiment in this way.

v      My illustrating it here will be of secondary importance, thought it will make comprehension defined enough to let perception emerge out of conception.

v      For one who aspires to enter the Supermind, logic requires him to be in Overmind which means to see one's act as unique in itself. It is in uniqueness one finds the play of Overmind.

v      One knows he is in the Time of surface mind when he wants to know the result or evaluates oneself in terms of the past. Presence of the past is cancellation of the future. Absence of the past is to render the present ever-present.

v      The ever-present moves to the Higher mind through Silence.

v      Silence understands without thinking and it is a movement upwards.

v      Instead of the selfish emotion, one moves to appreciate the other man emotionally, thus moving from the emergence of the psychic in the mind to the touch of the vital psychic.

v      When the understanding reveals as a vision one finds himself receiving a ray of the illumined mind which, in moments of action by the grace, can be accompanied by the psychic of the emotion in action which is sympathy.

v      His own persistence that is perseverance dispenses with the need of understanding, Silence, light and vision to reveal the needed knowledge directly. Now it is the intuitive mind that acts.

v      Ideas or emotions of gratitude arise announcing the emergence of the psychic in the physical substance of the vital emotion.

v      Moving to the Overmind, he finds the uniqueness of the act well revealed. Uniqueness of his swabhaba nature can be seen while on the path of yoga, not when an isolated problem is solved.

v      This will change the idea of gratitude into an emotion of gratitude or the emotion into sensation in the plane of physical consciousness of his body.

v      One can choose to move into Nirvana before entering the Supermind or directly enter. He had the option to do so even when he was in the intuitive mind. He always has the choice of escaping Overmind and the Nirvana in reaching Supermind.

v      As these things are attempted by the intensity of the occasion, not the general preparedness of the whole personality, a vertical growth is always possible escaping several their necessities. That is why HE always speaks of the greatest moment Now.

v      The UNIQUENESS of Sri Aravindam the wholeness of integral unity is any single point permits the explanation of ALL the other points of the entire whole.

v      It may be my own peculiarity to explain it through JOY.

v      Happiness is the JOY of success, the success of ego while JOY is the sensation of Sat. Delight is the sensation of Ananda in Matter and Life.

v      Faith gives security, which serves as the foundation of joy.

v      Raising faith is to raise Joy.

v      One can place himself in a scale of Joy which starts from success and happiness that travels up to the cosmic joy Ishwara and ends in the Ananda of Sat and Brahman. The scale also can be constructed down until it reaches the ecstasy prior to surrender in the physical substance.

v      Again, the question is how to raise JOY. The answers are,

       Greater comprehension is greater joy.

       Reaction is irritation; equality is joy.

       When Silence at any level loses itself in the Peace of that level, it matures as JOY of that level.

       As Spirituality, at one level, is exactly like the any other subject, what pays dividends are

         information, ideas, knowledge.

         energy, skill, force, power, results.

         strategies, devices, innovations, adaptation of means to ends.

       JOY in the spiritual field is as much an end result or a product in any other field. One can try anything as long as he is successful.

v       Silent will can be effectively used to raise JOY or FAITH.

v      The secret of creation for any of us who are in the field of Force, i.e. Becoming is to move to Being or further still.

v      The strategy of creation for Brahman is self-conception followed by self-absorption aided by self-limitation.

v      HE spoke of the first step of Yoga in several ways.

       Thinking from above the head.

       Concentrating on the centre behind the heart.

       Silence.

       Entering into the subliminal through the inner mind.

       All-inclusive concentration.

       Moving away from ego, Time, Mind, Surface.

       Dissolution of desire.

       Surrender of all the four parts of being.

       Mind ruling over Matter.

       Harmony between the inner and outer, between the parts of being.

       Equality.

       Self-Perfection.

       To realise not mind, but Supermind is our ultimate reality.

       Not the part, but the integral whole.

       Faith of the evolving soul in Brahman.

       Discovering the psychic being.

v      We see nothing here can be attained without all the other items entering into play fully.

v      To review the present faith we have in this light and see the faith we want to reach in the same light will explain the role of perseverance as Mother explained and the call Sri Aurobindo speaks of as one of the two powers that can victoriously handle the difficulties of physical Nature.

v      Call from inside; call so that JOY issues, faith will grow.

v      Have faith, have JOY in faith; feel the JOY of Not knowing, not even trying to know and it is the integral JOY of the unorganised or unconditioned personality of ours and therefore more powerful than any JOY we have consciously formed which can raise one's faith. As it is of the unorganised part, it can be ever-growing in increasing measure.

v      The success of the experiments will show itself momentarily as increasing faith as a result of receding thoughts, shifting reliance to a higher element, growing inner steadiness, etc. We also see that the reverse is the path of our degenerating into faithlessness.

v      To know this path, shall we say, of ascent and descent, is itself a shade of higher knowledge that can steady one from degeneration.

v      Mother's method to raise faith when subdivided to precisely suit the various steps of rising will more effectively or more keenly serve our purpose.

v      For that purpose, the capacity to subdivide the path of ascent and define as precisely as possible the strategy will be of use.

v      The capacity to subdivide the path is different from the capacity to define the strategy precisely, as each commands an area of existence that is infinite.

v      Acquiring any little of any of them is an asset that can express itself as the satisfaction of victory.

v      Note very seriously that one who can persevere with a little event has the potential to persevere to the end.

v      In that sense, HUMAN CHOICE is decisive in Spiritual evolution.

v      We have the phenomenon of faith enjoying what is has and refusing to move an inch ahead through a determination that is obsessive. In this too aspiration is born. It shows itself as a negative self-awareness of "I do NOT have faith". In the vital it expresses as frustration. Such people grow subconsciously over a long period and burst into the greatest of faith known as sudden conversion, as in the tallest Bengali personality of the nineteenth century Keshav Chander Sen.

v      No moment or movement is ever wasted for anyone.

 

Inevitable Excess

 

v      To create in excess what we want is a way of life.

v      On many occasions, that excess cannot be utilised for other purposes.

v      One mark of progress is the ability to convert excess in place for the production of other parts.

v      Sri Aurobindo says Nature is that way most efficient and most perfect without wasting a drop of energy. To man, it is the highest known waste.

v      This excess in our way of life can be used as a means of increasing one's faith.

v      In times of wars, nations throw up their reserves, turn their essential energies to war effort often resulting in an efficiency which is two-fold or twenty-fold.

v      One who is not petulant or organised in the reverse can raise his faith ten fold this way.

v      The method is to exhaust excess faith everywhere in our life.

v      When we want a book from upstairs, we go and get it. It is the most appropriate social behaviour though it is a physical method.

v      Just at that moment someone bringing that book to your table for some other reason is a life response, an exercise of silent will of the external atmosphere of your personality or an expression of the grace around you. A method of faith can work through a person, an event or for no reason.

v      The policy of exhausting one's faith before resorting to methods physical, organisational, mental whether is silent will or orders given, when exhausted fully has the virtue of raising one's existing faith anywhere from two fold to twenty fold.

v      To raise faith through FAITH is a superior method.

v      To surrender that method too is what HE would appreciate in us.

 

What is Faith?

 

v      Faith is the knowledge of the soul. That is why mind does not know of its existence.

v      When you know the snake thrown at you is a rubber snake, the fear is removed, if not the shock of the startle. That knowledge keeps you calm, while those who do not have that knowledge panic.

v      A boy who usually expects 100% in the exam is not really shattered when told of his failure. He KNOWS it is an error, a removable one too.

v      When a solid fact is there, the surface ripple cannot break things.

v      Knowledge of the SOUL is solid, true of the Reality. Doings of men, legal actions, loyalty of others, even life response all belong to the surface. A ball of metal will not dissolve in an ocean of water.

v      If faith is the knowledge of the soul, can it not become the knowledge of mind. It is the most desirable spiritual growth. Should it happen, it will be like a Parliament where all members are Nehrus, Gandhijis, Sri Aurobindos, Tagores, Churchills, Einsteins, etc. Presently the distant touch of the soul enables Mind to rely on it. In case of the Spirit emerging in the mind, Mind itself will have the knowledge of the Soul. As it is a higher knowledge in possession of a lower member, it will be formidable.

v      What is Spirit in transcendence is soul in cosmos. Man relying on the Soul's knowledge is of the lower hemisphere as he lives there. His knowing the Soul can upgrade itself so that he may know the Soul in the cosmos. An advocate is free to practise in a country town or in the supreme court. It is his choice.

v      Man given to social values, lost in physical work, relying on mental knowledge, can reach the human soul.

v       It is up to the man to raise the values of his life. Along with that, his Soul too will travel through the range of spiritual mind and can reach its origin in cosmos where it will be cosmic SOUL.

v      In the cosmos Spirit is soul. When the soul moves into transcendence, it becomes Spirit. Here is a choice given to man. Maybe it can start at the start. Instead of the soul moving the Spirit in transcendence, the Spirit can be born in the SOUL. It is the ultimate power.

v      The Spirit is the experience of Sat.

v      One can go to Sat from Spirit and can go further to Brahman.

v      Can a humble devotee go up to the Absolute? Is it realisable?

v      500 years ago, no king in India could go to America. It was not conceivable. Today 500 people go to USA every day because times are different. One who reads The Life Divine, accepts Sri Aurobindo is given ALL the support from all sides all the time to rise to Brahman and bring that Brahman to Matter. If one does not use that power at a moment of crisis, the infinite support he has can certainly take him to the Absolute at least with respect to one problem.

v      One who is informed about every plane from Mind to Brahman can certainly know whether he reached there or not however momentarily the experience is.

v      One ray of that Supreme can pervade millions of Universes, He says.

v      Those who have known what Mother did or those who have seen in their own lives what Mother's Force has accomplished for the world, will certainly know the Force at work when it is at work.

v      Faith of one's Soul when it is raised to that of Brahman can certainly move mountains and the devotee is free to raise the human soul to its supreme height.

v       To bring down that achievement to mind or vital, to possess it for some duration is yoga, not to raise it ONCE.

v      Raising it once raises the Faith.

v      To go to a Chief Minister and have a legitimate problem redressed is possible by dozens of circumstances, by the legitimacy of the problem, by representing an organisation, by knowing him personally, by having a contact to his attention, etc. is always possible. As it is a problem that can be solved by a Deputy Collector, at the level of the Chief Minister it can certainly be solved. It is not to become the Chief Minister yourself. Yoga can be likened to the latter.

v      Should that Spirit descend into one's mind, the problem will be transformed, the out flow of money will change into inflow.

v      Only when the person concerned takes it up, it can be transformation.

 

Is it rational?

 

v      How do we arrive at any decision?

v      We learn out of experience.

v      We learn out of thinking.

v      We also have the capacity to imagine non-existent things.

v      Sometimes it is pleasing or convenient to believe those non-existent things. They survive until experience finds the contrary. Mankind knows them to be superstition. It is irrational.

v      One thing that happens to us all the time is we are learning all the time. Our body grows, our emotions steady at a higher level, our knowledge never ceases to grow. This is a simple unarguable fact of life. We cannot shut our eyes to this phenomenon.

v      Then faith is a knowledge of the soul. It too must grow. How can we deny faith growth, while every other thing in life grows.

v      It needs no illustration to say that society has grown in the last 100 years.

v      It certainly does not entertain the beliefs of a hundred years ago.

v      Also it believes today in newer things in which a hundred years ago there was no belief.

v      If it is true that the society grows and man grows then it is rational to expect that faith too can grow.

v      Mankind has always opposed anything new.

v      Mankind has always accepted things that are new.

v      Growth and resistance to growth are patterns of human behaviour.

v      Growth, change, progress, aspiration have always won at the end.

v      Long ago man longed to reach God by himself. It was called tapas.

v      The Gita showed such a man the shorter route of surrender.

v      No longer does man think on his own. All progress is for the collective. In the last hundred years, no MAN has worked for anything individual. Sri Aurobindo calls it the last act of selfishness. Moksha is a selfish goal as it is for oneself.

v      Over the centuries, the spiritual goal itself has moved from the individual salvation to collective salvation.

v      Today it is hardly possible to work for any technology that can benefit only a single individual. All new technologies are for the collective.

v      Sri Aurobindo uses this argument to explain HIS own spiritual goal.

v      From every new phenomenon, it is self-evident.

v      We see the family vanishing and the individual standing on his own.

v      We also see the organisation he works for playing a greater role in his life.

v      The society, the government, the community, his organisation have been assuming greater and greater responsibilities of his life. Beaverbrook's plan of welfare was called "from cradle to grave".

v      All over the world people are growing taller.

v      If we concede that Faith too can grow, then the only thing we have to hunt for is for a method.

v      There was a time when man considered that the throne was not for him, the masses took for granted that education was not for them. Now things have changed. The writing on the wall is plain. Change is the order of the day and there is no exception.

v      It is rational to conclude that Faith can grow, can be created. It is equally rational to assume there are methods to grow faith.

v      Mother says when one is in contact with his psychic,

       his karma ceases to operate.

       his native intelligence begins to grow.

       his faith too begins to grow.

       all that the world believed impossible becomes possible.

       Faith is to be in TOUCH with the Psychic.

v      Mother says death itself is a habit.

v      Superstition is the habit of habits and to believe that faith cannot increase is spiritual superstition.

v                  Religious instruction is to organise superstition.