For Vishaal Study Group 7 February 2007
[Link to Part 1]
When the Mother and Sri Aurobindo counselled their disciples that yoga was above astrology and that less importance should be given to the latter and concentration should be rather on tapasya, this was as correct as it was necessary, given the in-bred Indian tendency to believe in and rely on astrology. This belief and reliance would certainly interfere in the processes of sadhana if not brought within certain bounds. However, we must now go deeper into this question of destiny and the role it must play in the new dispensation. It is not that destiny as recorded in the sadhak’s natal horoscope ceases to exist. We know from various sources that both the Mother and Sri Aurobindo worked with charts throughout their lives, most of which were drawn up for them by their long-time French disciple, Pavitra. He prepared them according to the so-called western system quite proficiently; that is, his calculations were based on the tropical zodiac and its 12-part divisions resting on Equinoxes and Solstices – what is known as the Sayana system in India, now discarded in favour of the Nirayana method. To further make the point, the Mother gave a plan for the Inner Chamber of her temple that incorporates all the details of horoscopy as we know it, but with the addition of its deeper dimensions, unknown before the New Way came into being. It is true that a certain tapasya can make an impact on one’s destiny. This then appears to carry the sadhak out of the confines of that original imprinting as discussed in Part 1. But this would only be a partial understanding. Nothing of that original frozen moment, when Soul and Sun merge, is ever obliterated. It is a permanent imprint like a negative awaiting a developing procedure that takes place as Time is added to the mix and movement brings to the surface, according to certain rhythms, one or more of its details as destiny begins to unfold. Tapasya of a special order, while not erasing the original uni-dimensional print allows something of the vertical to emerge. That is, the scope of the original circle (the natal 12-part chart) is widened; or better, one’s poise of consciousness experiences an elevation and a broader perspective emerges. We are not as yet dealing with the Vertical, properly speaking, the ‘ladder’ I mentioned in Part 1, but just a broadening of the scope through elevation of one’s consciousness which the practice of integral yoga produces. This is often experienced as becoming farther removed from the physical plane and the patterns the natal horoscope determines of one’s destiny. For instance, all horoscopes give a fairly good indication of family conditions at birth and their lasting hold on the individual throughout life. Through an integral sadhana we gradually experience a loosening of those ties. Indeed it is as if one were being raised higher up and in the process the original ties that had so tightly bound us to these human patterns begin to dissolve; or at least their grip is loosened. This encourages the belief that the horoscope no longer exerts any influence and plays no further importance in a sadhak’s life. While this is not so, what then is its value? And how do we reconcile this distancing that every sadhak practising the integral yoga comes to experience with a process that bears an intrinsic respect for the Earth and therefore for the act of birth when the entire cosmos is imprinted on the individual soul? It is the moment when we, each one of us as individuals, become integrated pieces in the grand universal mosaic. This disentanglement would appear then to diminish the importance given to the Earth-oriented goal of the Yoga if we could legitimately and apparently with Divine Sanction so easily transcend those harmonies in which the Earth is central. The truth of the matter is quite different. It offers a deeper, wider perspective. There is no question at all of transcending or the dismembering of destiny obligations as originally imprinted on our souls upon entry into this material dimension. Elevation, yes, a broadening of the scope of the Eye that Sees is indeed the fruit of the yoga. More specifically, there is what must be descried as an enhancement. Never is it implied as in the old yogas that we obliterate the cosmos by an imaginary dissolution of the hold of the harmonies to which we are bound by birth on Earth. This, if it were indeed real and not an illusory accomplishment as indeed it is, would contradict Sri Aurobindo’s radically new message and the uniqueness of his Avataric mission. In this clarifying light we see the importance of acquiring a larger and all-encompassing vision where all aspects of life and yoga can be harmoniously accommodated, where each thing finds its rightful place, as Sri Aurobindo encourages. When we do reach the portals of the Inner Chamber via the required tapasya, then the greater secrets of Destiny can be known; above all, the mechanism by which it comes to be experienced as the fourth and final aid of the Supramental Yoga, without which the Truth-Consciousness cannot be realised.
[Link to Part 3]