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Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo

The Complete Set

If Shakti didn't exist for Buddha, and if for the individual, his own efforts must undo the “knot”, then I must say that his disciples had a very uphill job – to do everything by themselves.

Buddhist Yoga is an uphill business like the Adwaita Vedanta. You have to do the whole thing off your own bat, and even TotaPuri, Ramakrishna's teacher in Adwaita, was after thirty years of sadhana far from his goal, so much so that he went off to the Ganges to drown himself there – only Ramakrishna and Kali interfered in a miraculous way; that at least is the story.

The Buddhist Church, however, as distinguished from the uncompromising theory of the thing, proved weak and admitted śaraṇam in Buddha as well as in the Dharma and the Sangha.

Didn't he really “pump” his force into his disciples?

Surely not. He would have considered it a wrong thing altogether – even if he had any idea about pumping force, which he probably never had. At least I never heard of his doing this operation. He might have given enlightenment, but I think only through upadeśa – not certainly by pumping light into them. An individual knot of sanskars can tell another how to dissolve itself, but where is the ground for a more direct interference? All that of course is only the conscious theory of Buddha's action. I won't swear that without meaning it he did not influence his disciples in more secret and subtle ways.

Can you tell me why two Atelier workers have been sent to the hospital for simple conjunctivitis without consulting me? I was treating them and they were improving. All on a sudden I found one of them in the hospital. He said that his master had sent him there. I take it to be a breach in medical etiquette.

It is the workmen themselves that complained the eye was worse after the medicine, paining badly and suddenly red all over, and did not want to go back to the dispensary – so of course they have to go to the hospital. You must remember we are dispensing against the law, so we can't stand on medical etiquette.


1935 09 28 Exact Writting Letter Nirodbaran