Letters on Yoga 1
Two very beatifully eloquent and clarifying texts taken from Sri Aurobindo's "Letters on Yoga" gracefully landed on my reading table recently. Although refering to Sri Aurobindo's own Integral Yoga, these texts immediately echoed in a translucid way the value that a multi-faceted Yoga path such as Sri Chinmoy's has in our modern world. "What is a perfect technique of yoga or rather of a world-changing or Nature-changing yoga? The technique of a world-changing yoga has to be as multiform, sinuous, patient, all-including as the world itself. If it does not deal with all the difficulties or possibilities and carefully deal with each necessary element, has it any chance of success?" (Letters on Yoga I, p.12) The challenges that such a wide and comprehensive spiritual discipline faces are not few, as dealing with the world in such an all-encompassing way implies becoming a multitude of persons within one, where each part tries to complement and complete the central being so that it may become a perfect whole. In regards to the multiplicity of personalities required by such an expansive field of spiritual disipline and action, Sri Aurobindo further explains: "You have many sides to your personality or rather many personalities in you; it is indeed their discordant movements each getting in the way of the other, as happens when they are expresed through the external mind, that have stood much in the way of your sadhana. What are you going to do with all these people? If you want Nirvana, you have either to expel them or stifle them or beat them into coma. If the desert is your way to the promised land, that does not matter. But - well, if it is not, then there is another way - it is what we call the integration, the harmonisation of the being. That cannot be done from outside, it cannot be done by the mind and vital being - they are sure to bungle their affair. It can be done only from within by the soul, the Spirit which is the centraliser, itself the centre of these radii. In all of them there is a truth that can harmonise with the true truth of the others. For there is a truth in Nirvana - Nirvana is nothing but the peace and freedom of the Spirit which can exist in itself, be there world or no world, world-order or world-disorder. Bhakti and the heart's call for the Divine have a truth - it is the truth of the divine Love and Ananda. The will for Tapasya has in it a truth - it is the truth of the Spirit's mastery over its members. The musician and poet stand for a truth, it is the truth of the expression of the Spirit through beauty. There is a truth behind the mental affirmer; even there is a truth behind the mental doubter, the Russellian, though far behind him - the truth of the denial of false forms. Even behind the two vital personalities there is a truth, the thruth of the possession of the inner and outer worlds not by the ego but by the Divine. That is the harmonisation for which our yoga stands - but it cannot be achieved by any outward arrangement, it can only be achieved by going inside and looking, willing and acting from the psychic and from the spiritual centre. For the truth of the being is there and the secret of Harmony also is there" (Letters on Yoga I, p. 53). Sri Chinmoy himself is a purest and most exemplary embodiment of this inner and outer, spiritual and physical integration and harmonisation. His Yoga, a blessingful opportunity to sieze the limitless potentials of the human spirit.