This is the speciality of personal God. When the Divine is personal to you there is a special relationship with you. Everybody can cultivate this: a special relationship with the Divine. You determine… as Mother says: If you think that he is angry with you he is angry with you; if you think that God is happy with you he is happy with you; it depends upon you. How you build up a relationship with the Divine so he is with you. In the Bhagavad Gita there is a beautiful sentence: “As they approach me so do I approach them.” That is the speciality of the personal God. He is not like a river in which everybody can equally take water. He gives specially for each one depending on the relationship that you build up. You can relate yourself to the Divine, you recognise the Divine either as Wisdom or as Power or Love or you recognise him as an Absolute impersonal or you recognise him as a Divine Person. You can recognise him in one form or numerous forms or you can recognise him also as an Ideal. There are ideals of Liberty, of Equality or Fraternity, all kinds of ideals, virtues of various kinds. Purity may be your preferred ideal so Divine comes to you as Purity; generosity may be your ideal so he comes as Generosity. In one way or the other you begin to recognise that there is in the world something other than yourself. There is a magnet somewhere other than yourself who attracts everything in the world. Then gradually you go through all this and the Supreme Divine reveals himself supremely in all his aspects.
“The mind’s door of entry to the conception of him must necessarily vary according to the past evolution and the present nature.” How you enter into the Divine will depend upon your own past development, you past evolution, your present composition of the mind, accordingly you will enter into him.
“This inner Guide is often veiled at first by the very intensity of our personal effort and by the ego’s preoccupation with itself and its aims. As we gain in clarity and the turmoil of egoistic effort gives place to a calmer self–knowledge, we recognise the source of the growing light within us. We recognise it retrospectively as we realise how all our obscure and conflicting movements have been determined towards an end that we only now begin to perceive, how even before our entrance into the path of the Yoga the evolution of our life has been designedly led towards its turning–point. For now we begin to understand the sense of our struggles and efforts, successes and failures. At last we are able to seize the meaning of our ordeals and sufferings and can appreciate the help that was given us by all that hurt and resisted and the utility of our very falls and stumblings. We recognise this divine leading afterwards, not retrospectively but immediately, in the moulding of our thoughts by a transcendent Seer, of our will and actions by an all–embracing Power, of our emotional life by an all–attracting and all–assimilating Bliss and Love. We recognise it too in a more personal relation that from the first touched us or at the last seizes us; we feel the eternal presence of a supreme Master, Friend, Lover, Teacher. We recognise it in the essence of our being as that develops into likeness and oneness with a greater and wider existence; for we perceive that this miraculous development is not the result of our own efforts: an eternal Perfection is moulding us into its own image. One who is the Lord or Ishwara of the Yogic philosophies, the Guide in the conscious being (caitya guru or antaryamin), the Absolute of the thinker, the Unknowable of the Agnostic, the universal Force of the materialist, the supreme Soul and the supreme Shakti, the One who is differently named and imaged by the religions, is the Master of our Yoga.”
There are three ways by which we recognise either retrospectively or immediately or we recognise him as constantly accompanying us. Not in specific acts but all the time as One who is accompanying us. In all the three ways we recognise the Supreme Lord. Often we recognise him retrospectively. When you discover the Divine help suddenly at one time then you feel: Oh! But he was with me earlier at all the stages of my development. Now he has revealed himself but indeed he was present.
In my own experience my major experience was my reading of The Life Divine. The arrival of this book in my life, at what time this book came into my hands. I was struggling for the previous two or three years only with one question: “What is Truth?” That was my ishta devata. Truth was my ishta devata. What is the Truth? And I was searching desperately what is the Truth. And therefore I was struggling with pain and I read books after books after books after books –– literally. Within a few years, two years or three years I read enormously. All the time getting disappointed and finding no answer to my question. It was painful for me because I knew that I will not be able to take the next step in my life unless I know the Truth. And you need to take your next step in your life. So it was necessary for me to discover the Truth. And I did not believe in God so there was no prayer in my heart. But one day I prayed and I said: “If you are God you know what I am.” If there is God he knows me, I may not know him but if he is God, if he claims to be what he is he must know me. So I told him: “If you know me you know what I need and if you are capable give me the answer. I want to know the Truth.” There was no answer yet. So I decided that now since I don’t know what is the Truth my next step will be in the wilderness. Not knowing the Truth I will take pell–mell what seems to be the best although I will know that it is not true but still whatever is best. And I was going to take a decision of leaving my college, because I thought that these college years I was spending were useless and I was going to devote myself to village work because India requires a lot of work in villages. I was about to take a decision and then suddenly a friend of mine came and said: “My uncle has given me a book to read (it was for him to read not for me) but as you know I am incapable of giving attention to such a difficult book. But my uncle is persistent and he will ask me after week whether I read the book or not. So will you kindly help me by reading the book and tell me the summary of it and then I will tell my uncle that I have read the book and this is the summary of it and he will leave me.” I said, “What is that book?” He said: The name of the book is The Life Divine. So I told him, this was my first answer: “I have read lot of mysticism, they all speak of God who does not exist and in any case they don’t know why God should have created this kind of world. If the God exists he would have developed a better kind of world not this kind of world. If he is omnipotent what should he create this kind of world? So enough! And sometime when they ask the question the philosophers say why God has created this world is inexplicable. Then they say you can become one with God and if you become one with God then you will know the answer to the question.” These were the questions I put to him and I said: “Therefore these books I have banned I will not myself read such books.” He was disappointed but the book remained on my table. After two days his uncle asked him the question if he has read that book so he came running to me and said: “ Kireet no for God sake, for my sake you read the book. I want to tell my uncle that I have read the book and he will leave me in peace. Please read the book.” Again I told him: “Look I have no time to read this book.” Then he said “Sri Aurobindo, you know who is he?” I said: “Whoever he may be but The Life Divine and the Divine itself means that I will again go into that confusion. I don’t want any confusing writings now. I have had enough of it.” He said Sri Aurobindo sits six feet above the ground; such is the greatness of this master.” I said, “Whether he sits six feet or twelve feet I don’t want to read this book.” So he left me as a lost case, he felt that I have not been convinced and the book was still lying on my table.