Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo
The Complete Set
I understand your protesting against “great” or “big” sadhaks, but why against “advanced” sadhaks? It is a fact that some are more advanced than others and so we mention X as an advanced sadhak, don't mean anything else.
Advanced indeed! Pshaw! Because one is 3 inches ahead of another, you must make classes of advanced and non-advanced? Advanced has the same puffing egoistic resonance as “great” or “big”. It leads to all sorts of stupidities, rajasic self-appreciating egoism in some, tamasic self-depreciating egoism in others, round-eyed wonderings why X an advanced sadhak, one 3 inches ahead of Y, should stumble, tumble or fumble while Y, 3 inches behind X, still plods heavily and steadily on, etc., etc. Why, sir, the very idea in X that he is an advanced sadhak (like the Pharisee “I thank thee, O Lord, that I am not as other unadvanced disciples”,) would be enough to make him fumble, stumble and tumble. So no more of that, sir, no more of that.1
1 Here again Sri Aurobindo wrote X, Y, Z in the MS. They are not editorial substitutions.