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Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo

The Complete Set

I have gulped down your satires quite smoothly. I am beaten if you put the same argument for Yoga too. Still it is difficult to see how without any effort, some time or other, one can do anything. As regards poetry, my point is that Force and inspiration are there, but effort also exists...1

What then?

... and on many occasions I find that the effort predominates overmuch.

Much too much!

Inspiration leaves one sometimes and one goes on beating and beating, hammering and hammering, but it comes not!

Inspiration failing to descend, perhaps.2

Exactly. When any real effect is produced, it is not because of the beating and the hammering, but because an inspiration slips down between the raising of the hammer and the falling and gets in under cover of the beastly noise. It is when there is no need of effort that the best ponies. Effort is all right, but only as an excuse for inducing the Inspiration to come. If it wants to come, it comes – if it doesn't, it doesn't and one is obliged to give up after producing nothing or an inferior mind-made something. I have had that experience often enough myself. I have also seen Amal often producing something good but not perfect, beating the air and hammering it with proposed versions each as bad as the other; for it is only a new inspiration that can really improve a defect in the transcription of the first one. Still one makes efforts, but it is not the effort that produces the result, but the inspiration that comes in answer to it. You knock at the door to make the fellow inside answer. He may or he mayn't – if he lies mum, you have only to walk off swearing. That's effort and inspiration.

One has to work hours and hours on end. What do you call this labour?

Hammering, making a beastly noise so that Inspiration may get excited and exasperated and fling something through the window, muttering “I hope that will keep this insufferable tinsmith quiet.”

By the way I discovered today from which corner the depression has come to me. It is our remarkable D again who got it immediately after Darshan. Then from him I got it! It is a pity though that one should get depressions after Darshan! It would suggest almost a post hoc theory. And he thinks it would be good to take a trip to Calcutta, or pass some time with X. Gracious, passing time with Mother and Sri Aurobindo doesn't help and X will?..

That is why I affiliate you to D. It is not the first time I have seen your depressions coincide with his. But as a matter of fact he got depressed before the Darshan and came ready to be dark and unresponsive. The cause as usual was piffling – because Sotuda and P.S. had bothered him about his houses! Formerly it was always because I didn't smile but remained grim, aloof and supramental. I secured one happy darshan by smiling at everybody with a Herculean labour of persistence. But that only set his outer mind seeking for some new excuse for being unhappy with the Darshan and he found it that way – and then the usual gloom and horror of darkness and, frantic letters of departure – of course going back to the old grievance, no response from the Divine. Well, if anyone treated you as D does the Divine, would you be inclined to give a response? You would be more likely to be off to the Equator. And yet if he only did patiently what I have told him to do, he would get in time what he wants! Well, well!

S asks me to take him to the hospital for his eye-trouble. I asked him if R had given him permission – but R doesn't say anything. Also about the X-ray findings, when I asked R, he replied curtly as usual, “Oh I am not interested!”

R has given up S – only S goes on pushing reports saying “I am in perfect health except for a little cold” under R's door. It does not matter as S is going. He has written for his passage money.

S is in a danger-zone (suffering from chronic stomach ulcer). I don't understand why he stays here without a chance of coming to Pranam or meditation for months. I thought Mother's touch would do him good.

He is too insincere. Mother refuses to have him for Pranam or meditation. She says he is so full of falsehood that she can put no force on him except a Mahakali one and as he would resist that also, it would be more dangerous to him than helpful.

D was saying that his ailments don't ever improve after reporting to you. Please see that this report gives some response, otherwise another factor will be added to his depression!

The attitude of his physical mind prevents any result – for it is so unwilling to recognize anything as the result of the Force that his subconscient works in the direction of preventing any result coming – and it is the subconscient that is most determinative in matters of illness.

If Mother has no objection and Rajangam is willing to look after the Dispensary, I would like to fly to the Lake or Villinur on a cycle.

Mother says if nothing is needed to be done and nothing happens while you are away and R has only to sit and guard the Dispensary, then it is all right. On condition of course he doesn't kick down the Dispensary by an ill-considered movement of his legs in your absence! This last is my addition.



1 Sri Aurobindo underlined “Force”, “inspiration” and “effort also exists”.


2 Sri Aurobindo drew an arrow indicating the last sentence.











1936 03 06 Exact Writting Letter Nirodbaran