Philosophy and Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and other Essays

THE MOTHER: HER LIFE AND WORK

(A Brief Outline)

The Mother (Mirra Alfassa) was born in Paris on the 21st February, 1878. Her mother was Egyptian and her father was Turkish - both of them were perfect materialists. As a result, although she had inner experiences, including that of the divine presence, right from her childhood, she was in her external life an atheist until she entered into adulthood. In her early years, she had a good grounding in music (piano), painting and higher mathematics.

By the age of eighteen, she had begun to feel an intense need to KNOW, but all that she learnt and studied would explain nothing. Her need to know led her into two directions. The first was the world of painting. She mingled with the artists and widened her horizons. She married a pupil of Gustave Moreau, Henri Morisset, and she came to know Rodin and the great impressionists of that era. The second direction in which she turned was opened up when she heard of Max Theon and his teachings.

At this stage, she had a series of visions, and in several of these visions she saw Sri Aurobindo just as he looked physically, but glorified. She was to meet Sri Aurobindo ten years later in 1914 when she came to India from France, and it was then that she came to identify Sri Aurobindo of the vision with Sri Aurobindo as she saw him then.

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