Home Spiritmails
351ste Spiritmail

Faith Works in the Body

Thursday December 2 2004 08:26 IST

By Karmayogi

Orthodoxy is part of our life in India. Women are the bulwark of it at home. It is the fervent belief of every orthodox woman that her family runs today because of the various austerities she observes on Fridays, Mondays, and other major festivals such as Deepavali, Gokulashtami, Vinayaka Chaturthi, etc.

Their belief is true, though in moments of intensity it inclines to fortify superstition. There are a million symbols of such worship. Pre-eminent among them is the thirumangalyam she receives from her husband at their wedding.

When people hear of The Mother and a desire to worship Her arises, a serious obstacle in their way is the innumerable religious ceremonies. To give up these ceremonies is like the police giving up their uniform. The power of the police does not issue out of that uniform, but what is a policeman with no uniform? The uniform is a symbol of that power.

While Mother was alive, She faced this problem squarely when Her devotees and sadhaks had difficulty in giving up these rituals. Some asked Her directly, others wrote to Her. She never imposed Herself on anyone, allowed people to follow Her principles on their own.

Finding the Mother flexible, people started celebrating the festivals and visited the Ashram on Vijaya Dasami in large numbers. They did not stop there. They importuned Her to celebrate Deepavali, Durga Pooja, etc. She acquiesced and celebrated these days by giving darshan.

These superstitious habits narrow down the descent of Her Grace to the limits of their receptivity, which means essentially they cancel Grace. Each draws the line of demarcation between rituals and grace at various points.

A retired bank official and his wife, comfortably settled in life, sought filial affection in their children. They were rewarded with the seamy side of basic human nature which is mercenary and selfish.

That brought them to Mother and to Pondicherry for permanent residence, as their eldest child was here as an ardent devotee offering all her services. The elderly couple found in the Mothers atmosphere a sweet arm that encircled them, which they could not find in their family. When the lady crossed 65, she was hospitalised not for any particular ailment, but because of the infirmities of old age.

The doctors said she could live for another four or five years if a ventilator was installed to augment her breathing. She opted out of it. Her pulse dropped to a precariously low 20. She relied on reading Savitri, hourly consecration and any little material service she could render.

She lived for another five years and passed away last year, the day next to the November 24th darshan. Faith works, always works. Man has a way of looking for someone on whose faith he can live. That too yields a miraculous result ONCE. It is the faith in anothers faith, a vicarious human effort.

Faith in the Spirit makes the ailing body live.
Contact: info [@] sriaurobindo.nl