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Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo

The Complete Set

I asked R about S's screen examination. He said he would write to you. I am doubtful about his consent.

He is sardonically permissive – displeased with S's bull-like unmanageableness and says he does not care whether he is rayed or remains rayless all his life.

I am now caught up in a triangle of confusion: one side of the triangle is story writing, another is poetry and the base – concentration, meditation, etc.

Make it a triangle of harmony.

Now all on a sudden an onrush of all these three. I've actually completed half a story. Not that it is something great or good.

All right – great or not, complete it.

My main idea is to attempt to develop a style by constant practice, and to open up my grey matter if possible, though I doubt it very much. Again doubt! Yes, Sir, doubt at every blessed nook and corner.

You must have been St. Thomas in a past life, also Hamlet, an Academic philosopher, and several other things.

If I can develop the style, I hope the rest will follow – at least you have made me believe so.

Of course.

As regards poetry, there again I am inundated by hazy ideas for 2 or 3 compositions and many lines seem to peep out.

What is the meaning of this “seem”? Do they peep or do they not peep?

But they seem more bent on tantalising me than meaning anything serious, because as soon as I sit down to transcribe them, they evaporate like ether or camphor.

What do you mean? Why should you sit down to transcribe them? Keep hold of the lines and expressions by the nose as soon as they peep out, jump on a piece of paper and dash them down for prospective immortality.

It appears so easy to catch all these amorphous beauties and put them into morphological Grecian statues!...

Why amorphous, if they are lines and expressions? – lines and expressions are either morphous or they don't exist. Explain yourself, please.

The one thing you have not written is how the third side of the triangle manifests its activity. You say, all are active together?

Can you solve this eternal disharmony and is there any possibility of harmony?

Every possibility if you will cease to Hamletise and go straight or go baldheaded for the thing to be done when there is a chance.

If poets have powerfully active sex-glands, I suppose I can also be called a poet, at any rate an embryonic one! Q.E.D. Logic, Sir! n'est-ce pas?

No, sir – ce n'est pas ca. You are illegitimately connecting two disconnected syllogisms. 1st syllogism – all poets are sex-gland-active, Nirod is a poet, therefore Nirod is sex-gland-active. 2nd syllogism – all sex-gland-actives are poets, Nirod is sex-gland-active, therefore Nirod is a poet. The second proposition does not follow from the first as you seem illogically to think. All poets may be sex-gland active, but it does not follow that all sex-gland-actives are poets. So don't start building an epic on your sex-glands, please.


1935 12 05 Exact Writting Letter Nirodbaran