30. I saw a child wallowing in the dirt and the same child cleaned by his mother and resplendent, but each time I trembled before his utter purity.
[Thoughts and Aphorisms : Sri Aurobindo]
Whether the child is wallowing in dirt or he is cleansed by his mother, the Seer in Sri Aurobindo trembled to see the utterness of his inner purity.
The human child is not conquered by the Ego; neither is the consciousness of the child touched by the grossness of the animal hunger and lust and anger, nor has he (or she) the egoism and narrow selfishness and the mental preparations, distortions and twists, with numerous limits and limitations of the ordinary mind that the grown-up common man has. The Mother has said that the purity that we observe in the child is the purity of the instinct. Mind has not started its play and evolution in him as yet.
The Mother says:
For the purity of which Sri Aurobindo speaks here is the purity of instinct, that obeys Nature's impulses spontaneously, never calculating, never questioning, never asking whether it is good or bad, whether what one does is right or wrong, whether it is a virtue or a sin, whether the outcome will be favourable or unfavourable.[Works Of The Mother, Volume-10]
However, in the present circumstances of the "civilized" humanity, as the child grows, the mental ego in him grows, and also grows in him his selfishness, his calculations and the sense of profit and self-interest. This is because the Mind grows in him and the elderly ones so train and teach him directly and through their own examples. As the child grows, his parents and teachers, as they are now, mostly, train him to grow with the ego and with the mental preparations and distortions and limitations.
The Mother says:
In modern "civilised" life, parents and teachers, by their practical and rational "good advice", lose no time in covering up this spontaneity which they call unconsciousness, and substituting for it a very small, very narrow, limited mental ego, withdrawn into itself, crammed with notions of misbehaviour and sin and punishment or of personal interest, calculation and profit; all of which has the inevitable result of increasing vital desires through repression, fear or self-justification. [Works Of The Mother, Volume-10]
But the emergence and the manifestation of the Mind in the innocent human child is unavoidable. The evolutionary way is that Mind must grow and evolve. Foe, after the evolution of Mind, Man has to transcend and go beyond Mind and proceed towards the Supramental Becoming and Manifestation. After the evolution of Mind, the further evolution beyond Mind can take place — for, that is the Aim and the purpose of Evolution.
As the human child shall have to grow and participate in the Future advancement and progress, he shall have to pass through the play and growth of the Mental, breaking his innocence and purity, so that he can march ahead towards the Superconscious purity and innocence of the Supramental Future.
In order to enable the child to grow ahead towards this Supreme Goal of the Supramental Becoming and Manifestation, the child needs Education, as it should be.
The Mother has said:
The education of a human being should begin at birth and continue throughout his life.
[Works Of The Mother, Volume-12, Education]
It is important to add what The Mother has further said:
Indeed, if we want this education to have its maximum result, it should begin even before birth; in this case it is the mother herself who proceeds with this education by means of a twofold action: first, upon herself for her own improvement, and secondly, upon the child whom she is forming physically.
[Works Of The Mother, Volume-12, Education]
It may be added here that according to Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, education, to be complete and integral, must have the five principal aspects: the physical, the vital, the mental, the psychic and the spiritual. [The details may be discussed later in the proper context.]
A complete and successful education alone can lead a man properly on the Path of the Next Evolution , from the inborn purity of the child to the super-conscious purity of the Supramental. It is the demand of the Evolution, backed and supported by the Divine Will, that the human being must grow beyond Mind and evolve as the Supramental Being — which is the Goal, the Task before Man.
Sri Aurobindo has given the Call to each of us:
O Thou who climbedst to mind from the dull stone,
Turn to the mirac1ed summits yet unwon.
[Evolution: Collected Poems: Sri Aurobindo.]
This Task of evolving towards becoming the Supramental Being may seem to be impossible to us. But Sri Aurobindo has also said to us about the Call of the Impossible.
The impossible is our mask of things to be,
Mortal the door to immortality.
[The Call of the Impossible: Collected Poems: Sri Aurobindo.]
Interested mainly in the Adventure of Consciousness, I believe in human progress and evolution and in the inner capacity of Man to outgrow and master all his imperfections and darkness, to grow into a creative and constructive divine being, along with the society, conquering all inner and outer darkness, crossing all barriers and divisions.
I am a retired Officer of the Orissa Administrative Service from Orissa, India. Since adolescence, I was inspired by Sri Aurobindo and The Mother (Mira Alfassa) and sought to understand and follow Their Teaching, and make others understand and follow Them. In 1956, I read The Life Divine, and gradually, read almost all that is written by Them and about Them. I have visited the Ashram and Auroville some times. I organized some Sri Aurobindo centres in Orissa, and often met Prapatti and Ramkrishna Das. I and my wife and children had a special Darshan of The Mother on my birthday on 3rd March 1972.
Mira Aditi Centre has published my Bengali translations of some books including Sri Aurobindo or the Adventure of Consciousness by Satprem, India's Rebirth and India the Mother, collections from the writings of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother.