In 1949, after the two World Wars had been finally won, but the same anti-divine occult Beings that had been trying in that way to stop the new step in Evolution, or to corrupt it into the horribly twisted form of it that Nazism was, Sri Aurobindo one day explained to the Mother that the only thing that could prevent a new attempt by those same Dark Forces, and a Third World War even more difficult to stop, was to achieve at last the direct connection between the Supramental Realm and the Earth, because that would activate the same Supramental Power asleep in Matter itself, and that would be an irreversible, permanent victory.
But to do that sufficiently quickly, he would have to leave the physical dimension – to be in a physical body was too much of a hindrance, slowing down that work he had been doing inwardly since November 24, 1926. She, the Mother, would have to stay behind, as only her physical body had the extraordinary endurance that would then be necessary in order to be the first body to receive the new, much higher energy physical bodies would have to gradually learn to function with.
And about a year later, indeed, Sri Aurobindo fell sick – something very surprising, as usually any illness trying to enter his body was simply warded off; the Mother then remembered what Sri Aurobindo had explained, and understood he was now preparing to withdraw, using that illness to do it in the least conspicuous manner possible, and make his deliberate departure look like an ordinary death.
In the intervening year Sri Aurobindo had discretely stopped reviewing for re-publication any of his previous books, and had worked only on a series of articles about the future of the body, which the Mother had asked him to write and which together formed the amazing new book titled ‘The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth’. The Mother, who would herself be still playing tennis at 80, had started introducing the practice of many sports activities in the life of the disciples – something totally revolutionary in an Ashram – and she wanted to encourage them by giving them some idea of what our physical body too was headed towards as our evolution went on; this became for Sri Aurobindo the occasion to explain the true potential of the body in a way he had never done before.
The only other book Sri Aurobindo had deemed important enough for working on it till the end was his long, very special epic poem, ‘Savitri’, about the immense process of Evolution, that one of the first lines describes as ‘the adventure of consciousness and joy’. It is that poem in which he has crammed all the incredibly varied and complete experience he had had of the One but many-faceted Divine Reality we are part of. Some of his other, older books like ‘The Life Divine’ might still be the ones better known and most celebrated, but the one that in his own eyes he saw as the most important, the true ‘testament’ he left for humanity, was ‘Savitri’, in which he even foresaw and described the dangerous difficulties that would have to be faced and conquered by the one who would open the way of the physical transformation: the one he had recognized at once under her new earthly embodiment, and was always calling ‘the Mother’.
For that very body of the Mother, since they had met in 1913 the physical presence of Sri Aurobindo upon Earth had become the constant inner basis and support for its own existence, and had become also somehow the concrete assurance that the physical transformation of the human body would one day be an undeniable fact. It was in 1950 a tremendous shock for her body-consciousness to realize it would have now to do without that physical presence of Sri Aurobindo, and be itself the first body that would have to discover and learn the yet unknown process of physical transformation.
Because of that extremely upsetting effect his departure was having for the Mother’s body, in spite of its total self-dedication and surrender to the necessities of the Work to be done, as long as she was present in the room, Sri Aurobindo simply couldn’t withdraw; the Mother realized that, and went into an adjacent room; almost immediately she was called back in by Sri Aurobindo’s attendants, and she could see he had indeed now left his body; but as she stood there next to his couch, she started feeling the coming into her own body of all the consciousness that had been accumulated over the years in Sri Aurobindo’s body-cells; it went on and on like that for quite a while, and then finally stopped.
Still, even after most of its consciousness had been in that way transferred to the Mother’s body, the body that had housed Sri Aurobindo’s consciousness remained in perfect condition for days after his passing, until ultimately it was put into the lower vault of the two-vaulted white marble ‘samadhi’ the Mother had ordered to be built under the big ‘Service’ tree, in the middle of the courtyard inside that Ashram Main Building where Sri Aurobindo’s apartment had been, on the first floor, still visited daily since then by a stream of devotees from everywhere.
On November 20th, 1973 the body of the Mother too was laid to rest there, in the upper vault of the ‘samadhi’. For many people, whether they have known them physically before or not, sitting around the squarish courtyard or kneeling for a while around the samadhi itself still gives an intense experience of the sweetness of their combined presence, in a different way than is the case at Matrimandir, or anywhere else.
On this day more specifically dedicated to Sri Aurobindo, here is the message that had been given out by the Mother:
‘…Grant that we never forget to own towards Thee a deep, an intense gratitude.’