Take for example; you want to know what is equality, a word which we use very often. You want equality. Then you take that idea, concentrate only upon the idea of equality, all other ideas are abolished. Just concentrate upon equality for hours and hours and hours… You will arrive at the state of equality. When you awake from this meditation your mind will be equal to all things in the world. You arrive at that stage simply by concentrating upon the idea of equality. Or take the idea of brotherhood. How to feel that all human beings on the earth are brothers and sisters? How to feel, automatically, spontaneously, not artificially, not for greeting purposes, but for the real purpose, for real experience? How to do that? You take that idea of brotherhood, concentrate upon it until all other ideas are abolished from the mind and you will rise up in a state of a real brotherhood. You will not have to make any effort. Like Vivekananda when he spoke in the Parliament of Religions in 1893, when he said: “Brothers and sisters of America…” he spoke from that consciousness. He really felt that all humanity is one brotherhood. He was in the state of brotherhood that is why there was a tremendous response. It is the power of your idea, because he was in the state of brotherhood. This is the idea, when you pick up any idea the truth of which you want to know, you just keep yourself concentrated on that idea. If you want to know God for example just keep the idea of God in front of you. Reach a point where no other idea is present. And you will rise in the state of God-consciousness. You don’t need to believe in God, it is not a dogma that you must believe in God. No, don’t believe; just make a psychological experiment even without any belief.
That is why Yoga is a science it is not religion. In religion you need a dogma; you need a belief; while in yoga you don’t need a belief. You may not believe in God but the yogi tells you, if you just concentrate upon the idea of God in such a way that all other ideas disappear except this idea, you arrive at a concentration on it and the state of God consciousness will reveal itself. Now, if you don’t believe in this magic, do it, try, experiment! It is like any other experiment, if you are told water can be produced by hydrogen and oxygen put together you may not believe in it. But bring oxygen, bring hydrogen, put them together, see for yourself what happens. You don’t need to believe in it.
Sri Aurobindo says: “By concentration upon the Idea the mental existence which at present we are breaks open the barrier of our mentality and arrives at the state of consciousness, the state of being, the state of power of conscious-being and bliss of conscious-being to which the Idea corresponds and of which it is the symbol, movement and rhythm. Concentration by the Idea is, then, only a means, a key to open to us the superconscient planes of our existence;” Now Sri Aurobindo gives a little idea of how to concentrate, how to allow this concentration to mature: “a certain self-gathered state of our whole existence lifted into that superconscient truth, unity and infinity of self-aware, self-blissful existence is the aim and culmination; and that is the meaning we shall give to the term Samadhi.” When you can attain to that state where the idea vanishes and the actual state corresponding to the idea is experienced. That is why meditation is not a thought it leads to an experience. You know because you experience.
Now on page 308 Sri Aurobindo describes in some details the process of meditation. “To arrive then at this settled divine status must be the object of our concentration. The first step in concentration must be always to accustom the discursive mind to a settled unwavering pursuit of a single course of connected thought on a single subject and this it must do undistracted by all lures and alien calls on its attention.” That is why people who want to meditate go into a silent room so that all the calls which come by sounds of various kinds are avoided to the extent possible. “Such concentration is common enough in our ordinary life, but it becomes more difficult when we have to do it inwardly without any outward object or action on which to keep the mind; yet this inward concentration is what the seeker of knowledge must affect. Nor must it be merely the consecutive thought of the intellectual thinker, whose only object is to conceive and intellectually link together his conceptions. It is not, except perhaps at first, a process of reasoning that is wanted so much as a dwelling…” There is a difference between a process of reasoning and that of dwelling. The mind must not only go on fabricating ideas, it must dwell. “…dwelling so far as possible on the fruitful essence of the idea which by the insistence of the soul's will upon it must yield up all the facets of its truth.” Now Sri Aurobindo gives an example of one meditation: “Thus if it be the divine Love that is the subject of concentration, it is on the essence of the idea of God as Love that the mind should concentrate in such a way that the various manifestation of the divine Love should arise luminously, not only to the thought, but in the heart and being and vision of the sadhaka. The thought may come first and the experience afterwards, but equally the experience may come first and the knowledge arise out of the experience. Afterwards the thing attained has to be dwelt on and more and more held till it becomes a constant experience and finally the dharma or law of the being.” If you attain this meditation process to the end then whenever you speak, you feel it will be only Divine Love that will manifest. It becomes your own, part of your being. It won’t be a distant love that is far off somewhere. It will be in the heart and mind of your being in the very bodily vibrations. It is the Divine Love that will vibrate. This is the meditation. Sri Aurobindo says that if it is a shastra in a written book — then you meditate upon it. Every line of the shastra you meditate upon and by constant meditation the truth of the shastra will begin to illumine your mind and heart. “The spiritual knowledge is then gained through meditation on the truths that are taught and it is made living and conscious by their realisation in the personal experience; the Yoga proceeds by the results of prescribed methods taught in a Scripture or a tradition and reinforced and illumined by the instructions of the Master. This is a narrower practice…” Narrower because you take the help of a book, the wider way is not to take any book at all, but we, being narrow ourselves we take a narrower method as an aid. “This is a narrower practice, but safe and effective within its limits, because it follows a well-beaten track to a long familiar goal.” (Page 49) Therefore this is one of the easier methods by which the shastra of Integral Yoga is known and practiced. If you read this book and follow the practice prescribed here then it will be a safe method because all that is written here has been realised. And if you follow the method like a geographical map — there is a difference between making a map and following a map. If you go to a terrain which you do not know you take a map. And then you must work out wherever you want to go.