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Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo

The Complete Set

In your proposed (or promised?) volume on the subject of woman1 I would like to have answers to these points.

There will be no volume.

1) You say that man has kept woman under his heels from time immemorial. But how has that been possible? Was there no tacit consent from the inferior and weak power to the superior intelligence and strength of man?

They used their superior strength and cunning and took advantage of the psychic trend in woman, that's all. If you think that is a justification!

2) Are women created only for the preservation of the species and the race?

Much as doctors are? Only of course the doctor does not produce the species out of himself.

3) It is said that woman is man's guru and shakti. Sounds queer, doesn't it?

No more queer than the husband being a god (husband-god, patidevata). The husband is supposed to be the wife's proper and only guru, so why should not the wife return that compliment and be the man's guru? Tit for tat.

4) Is this shakti needed to make a man complete and whole?

Is man needed to make a woman complete and whole?

How are we different from Buddha who, you say, was bound for Nirvana, so far as our relation with woman is concerned?

Don't understand. We are not going for Nirvana – at least I am not.

As for shakti, we can get any amount of it from above, can't we?

It doesn't look like it – most of the shakti is either not received or spilled. It does not follow that you should all go hunting for shaktis to complete you.

5) In the law of rebirth, is it true that once a man always a man and once a woman, always a woman?

No fixed rule, at least not invariable but a general line or tendency.

I haven't left any marginal space in my writing, because I want an exhaustive answer. The book can wait till Sunday.

As you put no margin, I have put interstitials instead of marginals.

Hitler and Mussolini are much better than Manu and Chanakya,2 I should say, for they haven't excluded women.

They want women to be subject to men and confined to the domestic drudgery and child-bearing – which is the same position as Manu and as all the old masculines had towards women.

The Divine Grace has done something. I acted up to your advice and N felt better the whole day, as he wasn't in bed.

It was not the Divine Grace but the Divine Force. If it had been the Grace, it would simply have said tathāstu and the thing would be done. As it is, last night I had to work a damned lot for this result – I only hope it will last and complete itself.

M has ringworm. It's a nasty business and very likely to spread. He has to go on persistently and patiently applying medicine and waiting till one day he is cured – as for the Divine Grace, I am afraid!

Tell him all that and give him the treatment. He is as sceptical about medical Force as others are of the Divine species.

I am thinking of giving him Benzoic and Salicylic ointment. May I ask if you know anything better?

No, we don't. Benzoic and the other fellow can be tried.



1 in the letter of the 19th instant


2 Manu was the original law-giver. He is also called “the father of man”. Chanakya, a contemporary of Alexander the Great, codified the political laws of kings.











1935 01 30 Exact Writting Letter Nirodbaran