Sri Aurobindo ( 15 August 1872 – 5 December 1950 ) was a great seer, saint, philosopher from India. He is an Avtaar ( a descent of Divinity on earth ) who came to Earth for the benefit of mankind. His main mission was to make the world ready for next big step of evolution of man. He set up an ashram in Puducherry in South India where spiritual aspirants from all over the world come to follow his path which he called Integral Yoga. His main disciple called The Mother was his Shakti or Power. She came from France and lived in Puducherry throughout her life. Sri Aurobindo was an extremely compassionate saint. Very few know or understand how he showered his Divine compassion on mankind and the entire world. To ease the path of evolution, he wrote a mega epic in English called “Savitri”.
So what makes Savitri so special ? This wonderful mystical book is gift to mankind by Sri Aurobindo. It is an epic poem based upon tale of Satyavan and Savitri from the Mahabharata. It consists of 24,000 lines. The tale of Satyavan and Savitri is recited in the Mahabharata as a story of conjugal love conquering death. But Sri Aurobindo has taken the story as a base to explain how a soul shrouded and burdened by ignorance and darkness is resurrected by Divine Grace.
Savitri simply cannot be comprehended by human intellect.
Here is what the Mother has said on Savitri: ( courtesy Mona Sarkar )
A Talk By The Mother On Savitri (a report written from memory, 5-Nov-1967, by Mona Sarkar)
Do You read Savitri ?
Yes Mother, yes.
You have read the whole poem?
Yes Mother, I have read it twice.
Have you understood all that you have read?
Not much, but I like poetry, that is why I read it.
It does not matter if you do not understand it . Savitri, read it always. You will see that every time you read it, something new will be revealed to you. Each time you will get a new glimpse, each time a new experience; things which were not there, things you did not understand arise and suddenly become clear. Always an unexpected vision comes up through the words and lines. Every time you try to read and understand, you will see that something is added, something which was hidden behind is revealed clearly and vividly. I tell you the very verses you have read once before, will appear to you in a different light each time you re-read them. This is what of happens invariably. Always your experience is enriched, it is a revelation at each step.
But you must not read it as you read other books or newspapers. You must read with an empty head, a blank and vacant mind, without there being any other thought; you must concentrate much, remain empty, calm and open; then the words, rhythms, vibrations will penetrate directly to this white page, will put their stamp upon the brain, will explain themselves without your making any effort.
Savitri alone is sufficient to make you climb to the highest peaks. If truly one knows how to meditate on Savitri, one will receive all the help one needs. For him who wishes to follow this path, it is a concrete help as though the Lord himself were taking you by the hand and leading you to the destined goal. And then, every question, however personal it may be, has its answer here, every difficulty finds its solution herein; indeed there is everything that is necessary for doing the Yoga.
He has crammed the whole universe in a single book. It is a marvellous work, magnificent and of an incomparable perfection.
You know, before writing Savitri Sri Aurobindo said to me, “I am impelled to launch on a new adventure; I was hesitant in the beginning, but now I am decided. Still, I do not know how far I shall succeed. I pray for help.” And you know what it was? It was ? before beginning, I warn you in advance ? it was His way of speaking, so full of divine humility and modesty. He never. . . *asserted Himself.* And the day He actually began it, He told me,”I have launched myself in a rudderless boat upon the vastness of the Infinite.” And once having started, He wrote page after page without intermission, as though it were a thing already complete up there and He had only to transcribe it in ink down here on these pages.
In truth, the entire form of Savitri has descended “en masse” from the highest region and Sri Aurobindo with His genius only arranged the lines , in a superb and magnificent style. Sometimes entire lines were revealed and He has left them intact; He worked hard, untiringly, so that the inspiration could come from the highest possible summit. And what a work He has created! Yes, it is a true creation in itself. It is an unequalled work. Everything is there, and it is put in such a simple, such a clear form; verses perfectly harmonious, limpid and eternally true. My child, I have read so many things, but I have never come across anything which could be compared with Savitri. I have studied the best works in Greek, Latin, English and of course French literature, also in German and all the great creations of the West and the East, including the great epics; but I repeat it, I have not found anywhere anything comparable with Savitri. All these literary works seems to me empty, flat, hollow, without any deep reality ? apart from a few rare exceptions, and these too represent only a small fraction of what Savitri is. What grandeur, what amplitude, what reality: it is something immortal and eternal He has created. I tell you once again there is nothing like in it the whole world. Even if one puts aside the vision of the reality, that is, the essential substance which is the heart of the inspiration, and considers only the lines in themselves, one will find them unique, of the highest classical kind. What He has created is something man cannot imagine. For, everything is there, everything.
It may then be said that Savitri is a revelation, it is a meditation, it is a quest of the Infinite, the Eternal. If it is read with this aspiration for Immortality, the reading itself will serve as a guide to Immortality. To read Savitri is indeed to practice Yoga, spiritual concentration; one can find there all that is needed to realise the Divine. Each step of Yoga is noted here, including the secret of all other Yogas. Surely, if one sincerely follows what is revealed here in each line one will reach finally the transformation of the Supramental Yoga. It is truly the infallible guide who never abandons you; its support is always there for him who wants to follow the path. Each verse of Savitri is like a revealed Mantra which surpasses all that man possessed by way of knowledge, and I repeat this, the words are expressed and arranged in such a way that the sonority of the rhythm leads you to the origin of sound, which is OM.
My child, yes, everything is there: mysticism, occultism, philosophy, the history of evolution, the history of man, of the gods, of creation, of Nature. How the universe was created, why, for what purpose, what destiny ? all is there. You can find all the answers to all your questions there. Everything is explained, even the future of man and of the evolution, all that nobody yet knows. He has described it all in beautiful and clear words so that spiritual adventurers who wish to solve the mysteries of the world may understand it more easily. But this mystery is well hidden behind the words and lines and one must rise to the required level of true consciousness to discover it. All prophesies, all that is going to come is presented with the precise and wonderful clarity. Sri Aurobindo gives you here the key to find the Truth, to discover the Consciousness, to solve the problem of what the universe is. He has also indicated how to open the door of the Inconscience so that the light may penetrate there and transform it. He has shown the path, the way to liberate oneself from the ignorance and climb up to the superconscience; each stage, each plane of consciousness, how they can be scaled, how one can cross even the barrier of death and attain immortality. You will find the whole journey in detail, and as you go forward you can discover things altogether unknown to man. That is Savitri and much more yet. It is a real experience reading Savitri. All the secrets that man possessed, He has revealed, ? as well as all that awaits him in the future; all this is found in the depth of Savitri. But one must have the knowledge to discover it all, the experience of the planes of consciousness, the experience of the Supermind, even the experience of the conquest of Death. He has noted all the stages, marked each step in order to advance integrally in the integral Yoga.
All this is His own experience, and what is most surprising is that it is my own experience also. It is my sadhana which He has worked out. Each object, each event, each realisation, all the descriptions, even the colours are exactly what I saw and the words, phrases are also exactly what I heard. And all this before having read the book. I read Savitri many times afterwards, but earlier, when He was writing He used to read it to me. Every morning I used to hear Him read Savitri. During the night He would write and in the morning read it to me. And I observed something curious, that day after day the experiences He read out to me in the morning were those I had had the previous night, word by word. Yes, all the descriptions, the colours, the pictures I had seen, the words I had heard, all, all, I heard it all, put by Him into poetry, into miraculous poetry. Yes, they were exactly my experiences of the previous night which He read out to me the following morning. And it was not just one day by chance, but for days and days together. And every time I used to compare what He said with my previous experiences and they were always the same. I repeat, it was not that I had told Him my experiences and that He had noted them down afterwards, no, He knew already what I had seen. It is my experiences He has presented at length and they were His experiences also. It is, moreover, the picture of Our joint adventure into the unknown or rather into the Supermind.
These are experiences lived by Him, realities, supracosmic truths. He experienced all these as one experiences joy or sorrow, physically. He walked in the darkness of inconscience, even in the neighborhood of death, endured the sufferings of perdition, and emerged from the mud, the world- misery to breathe the sovereign plenitude and enter the supreme Ananda. He crossed all these realms, went through the consequences, suffered and endured physically what one cannot imagine. Nobody till today has suffered like Him. He accepted suffering to transform suffering into the joy of union with the Supreme. It is something unique and incomparable in the history of the world. It is something that has never happened before, He is the first to have traced the path in the Unknown, so that we may be able to walk with certitude towards the Supermind. He has made the work easy for us. Savitri is His whole Yoga of transformation, and this Yoga appears now for the first time in the earth-consciousness.
And I think that man is not yet ready to receive it. It is too high and too vast for him. He cannot understand it, grasp it, for it is not by the mind that one can understand Savitri. One needs spiritual experiences in order to understand and assimilate it. The farther one advances on the path of Yoga, the more does one assimilate and the better. No, it is something which will be appreciated only in the future, it is the poetry of tomorrow of which He has spoken in The Future Poetry. It is too subtle, too refined, it is not in the mind or through the mind, it is in meditation that Savitri is revealed.
And men have the audacity to compare it with the work of Virgil or Homer and to find it inferior. They do not understand, they cannot understand. What do they know? Nothing at all. And it is useless to try to make them understand. Men will know what it is, but in a distant future. It is only the new race with a new consciousness which will be able to understand. I assure you there is nothing under the blue sky to compare with Savitri. It is the mystery of mysteries. It is a *super-epic,* it is super- literature, super-poetry, super-vision, it is a super- work even if one considers the number of lines He has written. No, these human words are not adequate to describe Savitri. Yes, one needs superlatives, hyperboles to describe it. It is a hyper- epic. No, words express nothing of what Savitri is, at least I do not find them. It is of immense value – spiritual value and all other values; it is eternal in its subject, and infinite in its appeal, miraculous in its mode and power of execution; it is a unique thing, the more you come into contact with it, the higher will you be uplifted. Ah, truly it is something! It is the most beautiful thing He has left for man, the highest possible. What is it? When will man know it? When is he going to lead a life of truth? When is he going to accept this in his life? This yet remains to be seen.
My child, every day you are going to read Savitri; read properly, with the right attitude, concentrating a little before opening the pages and trying to keep the mind as empty as possible, absolutely without a thought. The direct road is through the heart. I tell you, if you try to really concentrate with this aspiration you can light the flame, the psychic flame, the flame of purification in a very short time, perhaps in a few days. What you cannot do normally, you can do with the help of Savitri. Try and you will see how very different it is, how new, if you read with this attitude, with this something at the back of your consciousness; as though it were an offering to Sri Aurobindo. You know it is charged, fully charged with consciousness; as if Savitri were a being, a real guide. I tell you, whoever, wanting to practice Yoga, tries sincerely and feels the necessity for it, will be able to climb with the help of Savitri to the highest rung of the ladder of Yoga, will be able to find the secret that Savitri represents. And this without the help of a Guru. And he will be able to practice it anywhere. For him Savitri alone will be the guide, for all that he needs he will find Savitri. If he remains very quiet when before a difficulty, or when he does not know where to turn to go forward and how to overcome obstacles, for all these hesitations and incertitudes which overwhelm us at every moment, he will have the necessary indications, and the necessary concrete help. If he remains very calm, open, if he aspires sincerely, always he will be as if lead by the hand. If he has faith, the will to give himself and essential sincerity he will reach the final goal.
Indeed, Savitri is something concrete, living, it is all replete, packed with consciousness, it is the supreme knowledge above all human philosophies and religions. It is the spiritual path, it is Yoga, Tapasya, Sadhana, in its single body. Savitri has an extraordinary power, it gives out vibrations for him who can receive them, the true vibrations of each stage of consciousness. It is incomparable, it is truth in its plenitude, the Truth Sri Aurobindo brought down on the earth. My child, one must try to find the secret that Savitri represents, the prophetic message Sri Aurobindo reveals there for us. This is the work before you, it is hard but it is worth the trouble.