Sri Aurobindo's - 'The Life Divine' - The Human Aspiration - Chapter I (Super School Auroville) - Session viii (19 July 2000)

Has anybody written down the questions that I gave yesterday? Yes! Could you read them out?

What is the theory of evolution today? Why does Sri Aurobindo say that the theory of evolution is only a statement of a phenomenon and not an explanation?

The theory of evolution only states what evolves but does not tell us why it evolves? How does it evolve? Therefore it is only a statement of the phenomenon and not an explanation.

What is an explanation? This question has not been asked but let me ask it now. When can we say we have explained? Only when we speak of the meaning, the necessity or the probability of a phenomenon. Only then we can say that it is explained.

How does this unconquerable impulse towards God, Light, Freedom and Immortality fit into the chain by which we can suppose the Supermind will manifest?

Aspiration. This aspiration is a sign that the mind is still struggling to manifest something further. So, it is a part of the chain. It is that which causes us to evolve.

"As there, so here, the impulse exists more or less obscurely in her different vessels with an ever ascending series in the power of its will to be; as there, so here, it is gradually evolving and bound fully to evolve the necessary organs and faculties."

"As there, so here…" There is a form of argument which is manifest towards the end of the previous paragraph and which is very much present in this paragraph. I shall give it a name so that you can recognize that form of argument. It is called an analogical argument.

This is also one of the forms of philosophical argument.

We have already seen the: epistemological argument, historical argument, dialectical argument and quintessential philosophical argument and now we have here an analogical argument.

What is an analogical argument? Let us first see what is the meaning of the word analogy. Analogy is a comparison between two sets of phenomena. For every analogical argument there should be two sets of phenomena—one set of phenomena compared with another set of phenomena. You then analyse this set as also the other set of phenomena. In literature you often find analogies.

A beautiful face is compared with the moon. Very often you will find such a comparison. Moon is one set of phenomena; a beautiful face is another set of phenomena. Now it is sometimes argued that the beauty of the moon is enhanced by the spot that we see on the moon. We see the spot on the moon, no? If you analyse the moon, one of the prominent features of the moon is that we see a spot. And poets feel that this spot enhances the beauty of the moon. If you now have a face and you evaluate the beauty of that face, then you say: as there so here In any argument where there is "as there so here" you can see that this is an analogical argument. "As there the beauty of the moon is enhanced by the spot, the mole on the lip of the face enhances the beauty of the face. There it is the spot, here it is a mole on the lip of the beautiful face. So you say there it is a spot that enhances the beauty of the moon, so here it is the mole on the lip of the face that enhances the beauty of the face. The analogy now is perfect. Most good writers perceive their perceptions; compare one with the other, and the comparison seems to be so great that long poems can be written only in comparing the two sets of phenomena.

It is argued that earth is a planet, it is inhabited by people. Mars also is a planet. Can we say that as here so there, if people inhabit this planet there must be inhabitants on Mars. Simply because this is a planet, that also is a planet, you compare. This planet is inhabited by people, therefore, we may argue that Mars must also have been inhabited by people. So when we go to Mars we expect to meet people on Mars. This is an argument which is very often made.

Now let us argue. In order that your argument attains maturity, merely one feature is not enough. When you compare one with the other, you should not rely on only one feature comparable to another feature elsewhere. You should find many features. The greater the number of features in which there is identity or similarity, the greater is the probability of your argument's validity. On the earth, we say, although it is a planet, it is a special kind of planet. Is Mars also that kind of planet? That is the question. What is the specialty of this planet Earth? We have, for example, water on this planet. And water is very conducive to the development of organic life. Without organic life human bodies cannot exist. We are all organisms. So we have to show, if your argument is to be valid, that just as Earth is a planet, Mars is a planet. Just as Earth has water, can we say Mars also has water? If we find that Mars does not have water, then the third characteristic, namely inhabitance by people, will not apply. Merely one or two features agreeing are not sufficient for a proof. You should have many features and then you can say: as there so here.

In this paragraph, such an argument is presented to us. Just as in the development of Life in Matter and of Mind in Life—this is one chain—similarly, Supermind in Mind is another chain. The comparison is between these two sets of phenomena. Development of life in matter and mind in life is one set of phenomena. Our argument is that just as Life has evolved in Matter and Mind in Life, similarly Supermind will manifest in Mind. This is the argument.

Sri Aurobindo wants to show how this argument is a strong argument. We have to show the characteristics of this set of events and characteristics in the other set of events. This is the exercise I shall do with you. You write down on one side of your paper: "Evolution of Life in matter and evolution of Mind in Life" this is one line of argument, one chain of events. Now on the other side you write down: "Evolution of Supermind in Mind" Now you read and let us write down "As there, so here, the impulse exists more or less obscurely in her different vessels with an ever ascending series in the power of its will to be…" This is a long sentence and a difficult sentence but we shall divide it into two or three parts so that it becomes easier to understand. "As there so here" that is to say as there is this side of your paper, so here on the other side. What exists commonly? In both cases, "…the impulse exists more or less obscurely in her different vessels with an ever ascending series in the power of its will to be…" The difficult words are "different vessels".

The word vessel means receptacle. A glass is a vessel, a pot is a vessel, a utensil is a vessel, and various kinds of forms are all vessels. In that sense we may say—an ocean is a vessel, a pebble is a vessel, a mountain is a vessel, a diamond is a vessel, a tree is a vessel, a worm is a vessel, a fish is a vessel, mammals of various kind are vessels, human beings are also vessels. We are all vessels.

The word vessel refers to all kinds of forms. Sri Aurobindo says that in all these forms, whether you look in this series or the other series—in both cases examine the vessels of different forms—you will find that all these forms can be arranged in an ascending series.

Matter, Life and Mind is one series. On the other side is the series of Mind to Supermind. These are the two columns. All these forms can be arranged in such a way that you see an ascending series. That is to say, as we move higher and higher, you find more complex forms, greater and greater consciousness manifesting greater and greater external impulses to move forward.

If you go to purely material forms like a mountain, or a stone, or an ocean, you don't find a very evident impulse to move forward. Everything seems to be dull, inert, and mechanical. But even there, examine more and more deeply. I don't know if you have seen crystals? Crystals are formed with such beautiful forms, such transparent forms. If you have to make a comparison between a simple stone and a crystal, and I ask you the question: Is the stone more manifest or is the crystal more manifest? Your answer will be: the crystal is more manifest. It has a purity of form, a beauty of form; the formation has its own harmony. An ordinary piece of clod or a piece of earth does not have this kind of harmony. Therefore, you can say that if you are given so many materials to put in an ascending series, you will put the crystal higher than the stone.

Sri Aurobindo says, just see Matter, Life and Mind and you will see so many forms, you will be able to arrange them in such a way that the one higher has in it a greater will-to-be. What is "will-to be"? You know, if you have twenty students in a class, and you want to arrange them in an ascending series. How will you arrange them in an ascending series? You only have to ask the question: Who has the highest will-to-be? Those who do would be on the top. Then lesser and lesser, those who want to be quite nice. Finally you come to: "Oh! I don't want to bother, who wants to make an effort, it is very difficult, so I give up." They will be the lowest rank of will-to-be.

You know, I was very pleased when I interviewed you before I left last month. What I found was, each one of you had a will-to-be, and I examined each one from this point of view. You wanted to move forward. And that was a very pleasant experience. I said to Deepti: "All passed". You all had reached a point where you had will-to-be. Somebody wanted to be a musician, and I was extremely pleased. Already clear in his mind. Somebody else wanted to be a good artist and specialise in art. Some of you want to read The Life Divine. Now at this young age, to be able to feel that I must read this great book requires a great will-to-be.If I am asked to examine the students of India and put them in an ascending series, I think you will come on a very high level of will-to-be in such an ascending series.

Wherever you find an impulse of will-to-be, which manifests strongly it is the higher of the ascending series. Sri Aurobindo used a very nice word in the very second paragraph: "To know, possess and be the divine being..." These words are very important. To the extent to which we want to know, to possess, to be, these are three stages. First you want to know, then you want to possess and then you want to be. Very often people want to know small things, little things: What happened in my house, what happened to my friend? But if you want to know what happens in the universe, it is a tremendous subject—to know the Universe.

One day we should have some special classes in astronomy, because we have to know the whole vast universe and then you must ask: "How do we possess the Universe? Is it possible to possess the Universe?" The moment you know you want to possess. As soon as you bring something in the presence of the child and the child sees it he wants to catch it, to possess it. So the secret of possession is knowledge. First you know and then you want to possess and then you want to be. As you move forward, you go higher and higher. There is a will-to-be. What distinguishes all distinguished people in the world? If you study the biographies of the greatest people in the world, they all want to be. They want to embody. One of the students wrote to me: "I want to have a great noble character" You know this sentence pleased my heart so deeply. It is a tremendous proposition. The more you have this kind of will, the more is the potential that you possess. You want to be and you will be.

Only yesterday the General was telling me of his brother-in-law who was one of the greatest soldiers that India produced. One day we will ask him the story. But he told me that when he was a young boy he used to say two things. Either, he said, I will get the Paramvir Chakra, the highest honor of the Army of India or I will be Commander-in-Chief. This was his will from his childhood. He gave his body in battle. His body was torn to pieces, he gave his life, but he received the highest honor. So he did rise to that position in India. If anybody writes the history of contemporary India, his name will shine out very brightly. Because he had a will-to-be.

Sri Aurobindo says that if you examine the whole of nature, there is an ascending series. And the higher you go, the greater is the impulse, the greater is the will-to-be. The greater the impulse to know, the greater the impulse to possess, and the greater the will-to-be. When you say will-to-be, it is the will to know, the will to possess and the culmination of which is the will-to-be.

Sri Aurobindo says, in Matter, Life and Mind, you put all the vessels in an ascending series and you will find that as you rise higher and higher there is a greater and greater will-to-be. Among human beings you see, there is a series. You can divide human beings on the basis of will-to-be. As there is in Nature an ascending series of will-to-be, so here also from Mind to Supermind there is an ascending series of will-to-be. This is all that is said here.

"As there, so here, the impulse exists more or less obscurely in her different vessels with an ever ascending series in the power of its will-to-be…" Therefore the analogy seems to be very correct. "As there, so here" Now, further "As there, so here, it is gradually evolving and bound fully to evolve the necessary organs and faculties." As in the first column of the ascending series, new faculties have grown—I told you yesterday how the eye develops—there must have been a tremendous urge in the form of the worm. Gradually there was a push, as a result of which this marvel of the eye developed .A new faculty developed in a worm in which there was no eye at all in the beginning.

At one time one of the students here had asked me how to develop the will-power. And I was very pleased with that question. How to develop will-power? It showed that there was first a will-to-be. There was a question about how to develop the will-power. And my answer was, you just will it. Continue to will. When you continue to will the necessary organ will develop, the necessary faculty will develop. It is said that our brain is basically undeveloped. Not even one-hundredth part of the brain has been developed so far, even in the highest genius. Once Mother said that whenever understanding increases, a convolution takes place in the brain. This is a physical phenomenon. You understand psychologically, but there is a physical result out of it. The more you understand, the more will there be convolutions in the brain. And there are so many cells in the brain, if all of them are activated, you cannot imagine what the power will be. More than sunlight!

Mother had also said in one of her prior conversations, "Examine my skull. You will find mountains and valleys." Physiologically, there is a whole science in India of telling the character of a person by reading his face, seeing the outer convolutions of his face, of his head, of his eyes, of his eyebrows, the sharpness of his look and so on. You can just look at the face and say whether this person is sincere or insincere. You can immediately say that this is a sincere face. When I see her there is so much of sincerity manifesting in her face. I can immediately say: Oh! Here is sincerity. This is a characteristic I find so common here among all of you. The very faces can indicate their inner vibrations. Whether we know it or not, our outer physical translates more and more what we are inwardly.

Sri Aurobindo says that just as there is an inner impulse to grow there that is manifested in the development of organs and faculties; even so here between Mind and Supermind as we move forward, the more the impulse to will-to-be, the greater are the faculties developed.

What is a mark of the development of a faculty? When can you say that a faculty is developed? A faculty is supposed to be developed when the activity of that faculty becomes automatic. It's a mark. When that faculty is not developed you have to make a big effort. Suppose you want to develop the faculty of memory. When it is not developed, you have to remind yourself again and again and again and yet again.

Mother had once told me that children need to be told repeatedly. Adults do not understand this. Adults think that I have told this child once, so it is understood. But no! Children need to be told again and again. And don't be tired. Tell again and again. Only when the faculty develops it becomes automatic. Some people even have a photographic memory. They just read a page of this book and they remember exactly where that particular word is located, in what form it is written, at the bottom of the page or the front of the page or whatever. That is a real developed faculty.

So, you can see amongst human beings there is an ascending series of will-to-be and also an ascending series of acquired capacities. When faculties develop, when they function automatically, there is no effort in them. To arrive at an effortless result of its operation is the mark of a developed faculty.

Somebody can ride a horse without any difficulty. You just mount on the horse and the horse begins to gallop at the first stroke. If you have great control—it is a faculty. By repeated exercise you can attain to this faculty. Some people can drive a car very smoothly. Their reflexes are so developed. Some people don't have these reflexes developed, they cannot drive. Similarly, at higher and higher levels when somebody has told you to read this book within ten days, if your faculties are not developed this is a tremendous burden. How can you read this book in ten days? But if your faculties are developed you can read it in four days, maybe. It is quite possible. So it depends on the exercise you have been given. When Supermind will develop, there will be other faculties which you cannot even imagine.

We cannot imagine, for example, at our present level, as to how Shakespeare could have written plays, dramatic poetry of which Deepti was speaking yesterday. We had a seminar yesterday and she had read out the dramatic poetry of Shakespeare. We are also human beings; Shakespeare is also a human being. But he wrote dramatic poetry easily. Comfortably. Effortless. If we are to write even five sentences of that type, perhaps we may require ten to fifteen years of practice. But we can do it. It is only a question of development, our will-to-be. You aspire to develop a faculty and the power will flow.

So the argument is very simple now. "As there, so here, the impulse exists more or less obscurely in her different vessels with an ever ascending series in the power of its will-to-be; as there, so here, it is gradually evolving and bound fully to evolve the necessary organs and faculties." From both points of view, the analogy is perfect.

Now we can conclude. "As the impulse towards Mind ranges from the more sensitive reactions of Life in the metal and the plants up to its full organization in man, so in man himself there is the same ascending series, the preparation, if nothing more, of a higher and divine life." This is Sri Aurobindo's example of there and here. Just as in Matter, in Life too there is an impulse towards Mind; "as the impulse towards Mind ranges from the more sensitive reactions of Life in the metal and the plants up to its full organization in man", this has been achieved already.

How do you distinguish between an animal and man? How do you distinguish between an animal and a plant? How do you distinguish between a plant and metal? The more organisation you find in sensitivity of the reactions, the greater is the ascending movement.

What is the difference between an idiot and an intelligent man? In Sanskrit there is a verse which says: "The sun's rays fall equally upon a piece of clod and upon the diamond" the same sun ray falls upon both. The reaction that comes from a piece of clod is nil. But the reaction that comes from a diamond is dazzling! So, the difference of reaction that comes indicates whether something is at a lower level or at a higher level.

You will find that in an intelligent man, if he is sensitive, one word will vibrate so powerfully, that in one second he becomes transformed. A word coming from somebody whom you love very deeply and who says: "You did this? How could you do it!" and the next moment your character is changed. You are so sensitive, you want appreciation of someone you love and, if in the eyes of someone you love, you fall, you cannot bear it. You are so sensitive, you want to rise immediately to the top, you will be transformed in one second. That is a mark of your ascending series, of your will-to be. Other people might require ten or twenty times punishment, etc, and nothing will happen or very little will happen. There is no sensitivity.

Sri Aurobindo says that as you move from metal to plant the sensitivity to reactions begin to become greater and greater. The metal reacts mildly. Almost very mechanically, but in the plant, the reactions are much more bright. We are told by the scientists that plants feel shyness, plants feel happy, feel sorrowful, plants feel tired, plants feel great energy. There was a great scientist called Jagdish Chandra Bose, an Indian scientist. He proved in a very big conference of scientists, that plants react in the form of joy, sorrow, energy, and sleep. He invented a machine by which he could measure the sorrow or the pleasure of plants. Even now, for example, experiments are going on—if you play good music around plants, they are very happy and they bloom very quickly, flower very quickly, and give fruits also very quickly. I am sure this tree, because of your presence here, is feeling very happy. And it gives its shade and it will grow and continue to grow because of all your good-will and vibrations of your being here.

So there is a kind of reactivity and the degree to which the reactivity manifests, your distinction becomes greater and greater. Just as there is an ascending series of reactions, even so between human beings and the higher ranges, this reactivity increases as we go higher and higher.

"As the impulse towards Mind ranges from the more sensitive reactions of Life in the metal and the plants up to its full organization in man, so in man himself there is the same ascending series, the preparation, if nothing more, of a higher and divine life."

What comes now is one of the most famous sentences of The Life Divine. "The animal is the living laboratory in which Nature has, it is said, worked out man."

This is a beautiful analogy. The animal itself is a living laboratory. Just as if you go to the laboratory of Physics and Chemistry, you can make experiments and produce results. Similarly, Nature produced an animal and that animal itself was a living laboratory. That body itself was used by Nature as a laboratory in which man was worked out. Gradually the animal was so developed little by little, little by little, that out of various forms or various vessels of animals, ultimately, this human vessel has been framed and fashioned.

If so, Sri Aurobindo now says, "Man himself may well be a thinking and living laboratory in whom and with whose conscious cooperation she wills to work out the superman, the god." We shall now look upon each of our bodies as a living and thinking laboratory. Not just living. Animal was only a living laboratory in which man was worked out. But now man is both a living and thinking laboratory. So we can look upon our self, our body itself, as a laboratory, in which and with our conscious cooperation, Nature can work out miracles of the superman. Superman will not come out here suddenly, one day. It is in this body, in this laboratory. Each one of us has a possibility of this development. We are all growing towards that. And if you cooperate with it, that's what Sri Aurobindo says: "in whom and with whose conscious co-operation" If you cooperate with this, it will come very fast; the body will become very conscious that it is a laboratory. That is why Mother says one must take care of one's body. This body is a very precious instrument. We normally try to belittle the importance of the body. But that is a mistake. As I told you, even the formation of the eye takes so many millions of years, how much labour it involves. Now what to talk about all the organs of the body! To form every organ of the body, every cell of the body, every tissue of the body, it has taken millions and millions of years to make this body. Therefore this body is a living laboratory. How much Nature must have striven to make this body a thinking laboratory. It is a huge labour. So man may well be a living laboratory "in whom and with whose conscious co-operation she wills to work out the superman, the god. Or shall we not say, rather, to manifest God?" Each one of us has a capacity to manifest divine consciousness—God.

Now you see that the analogical argument has become perfect. As there, so here: the will-to-be. As there: the ascending series, so here the ascending series. As there is the development of faculties and organs, so here the development of faculties and organs. The analogy is perfect.

Sri Aurobindo simply concludes this whole argument: "For if evolution is the progressive manifestation by Nature of that which slept or worked in her involved, it is also the overt realization of that which she secretly is." You remember the two words which we have found earlier, we have said that Matter is a veiled Life and Life is a veiled Mind. Veiled means sleeping. Not overt. Overt means that which is expressed outwardly. You may be inwardly a seer, a visionary, a painter. But in childhood it is only so inwardly. You may not be able to paint a beautiful picture outwardly. But inwardly that capacity to paint is sleeping. Therefore many good parents and good teachers allow the sleeping capacities to mature. They don't disturb, the latent faculties are nourished, in many different ways. A good parent or a good teacher does not force. Because by forcing, nurturing becomes difficult. A child should be gradually nurtured. If you find that your child has great visions parents should not disturb the capacity of visions. Don't force the child to have more and more visions now. Gradually let them mature and develop. They are sleeping at present and gradually they are developing.

Then what happens is, that which was involved, which was already there sleeping, gradually manifests outwardly. After ten years, fifteen years you suddenly find a beautiful artist, like Lila. She can paint beautiful things. In fact all of you are good painters. Very nice paintings you have done. That is because in your being you had very good capacities and your teachers have been very wise in nourishing them. They are flowered. It is a beautiful crop you might say. From a human point of view if you regard every human being as a plant, and then we see the capacities you have developed, you can say there has been a very beautiful crop. A very rich crop of your faculties.

So all manifestation in Nature is nothing but that which was sleeping which manifests gradually. The entire purpose of evolution is to bring out that which was veiled, which is sleeping, that which is involved, that which is inward, to put it out externally and manifest it fully if evolution is a progressive evolution of that which was sleeping was involved in Nature. It is what she secretly is!

"We cannot, then, bid her pause at a given stage of her evolution, nor have we the right to condemn with the religionist as perverse and presumptuous or with the rationalist as a disease or hallucination any intention she may evince or effort she may make to go beyond." This is one of the most difficult lines of this chapter. Every word of this sentence is important.

"We cannot, then, bid her pause…" i.e., if Nature is striving to manifest, it has already manifested so much, and we know now it has the potential to manifest fully. If so, then we cannot tell Nature to stop here now, don't move forward, we cannot bid her to pause—bid means command. We cannot tell Nature now don't do it. We cannot bid her to pause at this given stage of evolution. Nor do we have the right to condemn any evolutionary impulse that we may have. Why is Sri Aurobindo writing this sentence?

It has a historical background. There are two groups of people in the world today. There are many groups but amongst them are two powerful groups. One group is called the religionist group and the other one is called the rationalist group. Both of them are very honorable, they are greatly honored in the world. They have great power in the world. Both of them however are standing at the edge of the evolutionary movement. And both of them say: "No, no, don't go further". The religionist says: "Finished! Man is what he is to be and nothing more. He cannot evolve further and he should not!" The rationalist also says: "Should not! Enough! What man is, man is!" This may look surprising to you but if you go out in the world, you will find these two groups. I have myself lived with both the groups quite long in my life and I have had long conversations and dialogues with religionists and rationalists and both of them tried their best to discourage any evolutionary intention that we have of surpassing mind.

Therefore Sri Aurobindo has written—in fact the whole book is written to satisfy religionists and rationalists, so that young students of tomorrow, which we all are, are not discouraged. We need to be very careful. Whenever we want to have this aspiration, you will be told, by many people, in fact this is a universal experience, the moment you try to surpass the borders of manhood, all kinds of forces will come to suppress you. There is a big battle to be fought.

There is a story. When Buddha reached a very high level of tapasya, and he had reached almost the top, not the top but almost the top, at that time there was a great battle that was waged by Mara. Mara is a force of evil. And Buddha had to fight a relentless battle with Mara. And Mara has many methods of preventing you from going beyond a certain point. It bids you "Now stop! Don't move forward!"

It is said of Christ when he was at a certain stage of his development that Satan came, and one of the challenges he threw was "If God is real, he is bound to protect you, because you say yourself God always protects. So throw yourself from this mountain top and see how God protects you." That was the challenge. Normally this kind of challenge is a very powerful challenge because one does not know whether the protection of God would come in the form in which it is demanded. And Christ said: "I don't want to test God" that was his very brave, very great answer. "I don't want to test God, I know God will protect me. Why should I prove to you? Who are you? What are your credentials?"

It is like—you know there was one person who wrote to Sri Aurobindo and said: "Can I see God?" And Sri Aurobindo said: "The question is whether God wants to see you or not!"

So such formidable questions are put to you when you want to rise from one level to another. There is always this demand of no, no, no. You can't! You shall not! And formidable arguments are given. Sri Aurobindo has said in two lines the summary of the argument of the religionists and of the rationalists. Read all the literature of the religions. Read all the literature of the rationalists. In two lines Sri Aurobindo summarizes and says, the religionists will tell you that your urge to evolve beyond mind is perverse and presumptuous. Your demand, your desire, your aspiration to move beyond mind is presumptuous and perverse. You are a human being, you want to be as great as God? Presumptuous! What are you? A little crawling creature on earth, and you want to be God! It is presumptuous on your part! You want to compete with God! You are perverse! This is the argument of the religionist. God and you—what a gulf there is between you and God! And you want to be like God? You want to sit on the throne of God? This is the argument of the religionist.

Sri Aurobindo says do not worry about these arguments. You have seen how evolution moves upwards. As there, so here. As there the will-to-be, so here the will-to-be. If Matter has become man, if that dull, insensitive, inert matter has today become a living and thinking laboratory, do not come under the impulse of this influence. When, somebody says, "Oh! You want to be like God or God himself. Man can never be God". This is the conclusion of religionists. And this is told by such vehement personalities of the earth, who uphold religions, that we become quite frightened. At least I was. Very eminent people, before whom we become overshadowed, subdued as it were. You become even more submissive than before. These people declare that you are presumptuous, you are perverse. So Sri Aurobindo says, do not come under the influence of these wrong arguments.

Now, if you go to rationalists, who are of course opposed to religion. But in discouraging you, both of them join. Both religion and rationalism join together in discouraging you. The religionist will say you are presumptuous and perverse, the rationalist what will he say? Sri Aurobindo says that he will say this urge in you is a disease. You have a diseased mind, can you ever think of those heavens of the Mind and Supermind! The rationalist will say that you are disturbed by false visions and dreams. When you are sick, very often you hear voices, you see visions, when you wake up there is nothing. It is a hallucination. Hallucination is an illusion which you think to be true, but when you really awake, it is no longer there. So they say that your idea that there will be divine manifestation, that there will be a capacity in you to possess Truth and Light, not have a seeking mind, seeking Truth and Light, but a consciousness automatically possessed by Truth and Light—is pure dream. It is a hallucination. Don't go under these false images and dreams. Be very practical. See what is real. Don't dream. You remain all the time in a dream, and then begin to see. They are all false visions. So if you go to the rationalist's ground, he will tell you that your aspirations are nothing but a disease.

Both of these, although the religionist is the opponent of rationalist, the rationalist is the opponent of religionist; both of them are equal enemies of yours. As soon as you want to go beyond your mind level and want to rise higher, both will come and say: "Stop!" Therefore Sri Aurobindo says: "We cannot, then, bid her pause at a given stage of her evolution, nor have we the right to condemn with the religionist as perverse and presumptuous and with the rationalist as a disease or hallucination any intention she may evince or effort she may make to go beyond."

He says: "If it be true that Spirit is involved in Matter and apparent Nature is secret God, then the manifestation of the divine in himself and the realization of God within and without are the highest and the most legitimate aim possible to man upon earth."

This is the conclusion. There is aspiration toward God, Light, Freedom and Immortality. It is the first statement in the beginning. Sri Aurobindo has then given arguments against harbouring this aspiration. And he has said that this aspiration is justified. Do not come under the influence of the religionist and the rationalist who want to prevent you. He now concludes giving the final argument: "If it be true that Spirit is involved in Matter and apparent Nature is secret God…" If this proposition is true and as we have seen it is true, "then the manifestation of the divine in himself and the realization of God within and without are the highest and the most legitimate aim possible to man upon earth." Do not, do not, do not hesitate to aspire for this.

We shall stop here now. I had given you the 8th chapter as homework at one time. Continue with that. Read it again, even if you don't understand, don't worry. We shall do that chapter word by word as we have done the first chapter. Go slowly, it is a very important chapter.

But still, if you read, the mind will be accustomed to some of the terms which are there, and use the dictionary sometimes if you don't follow a word, you can find out the meaning.