The First Lines of ‘The Life Divine’

As I know most of my visitors, on this Research Blog as on Facebook, do not know much yet of the actual writings of Sri Aurobindo (or of the Mother, for that matter), as this morning I could see myself that even by Google search these first lines are not that easy to find, and as I didn’t intend my previous post to be in anyway cryptic or tantalizing, I’m putting up now in the present new post this very first paragraph of ‘The Life Divine’ which gave me such a breathtaking experience in 1971, as just related in that previous post:

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Chapter I

The Human Aspiration

She follows to the goal of those that are passing on beyond, she is the first in the eternal succession of the dawns that are coming,—Usha widens bringing out that which lives, awakening someone who was dead. . . . What is her scope when she harmonises with the dawns that shone out before and those that now must shine? She desires the ancient mornings and fulfils thei rlight; projecting forwards her illumination she enters into communion with the rest that are to come. Kutsa Angirasa—Rig Veda.1

Threefold are those supreme births of this divine force that is in the world, they are true, they are desirable; he moves there wide-overt within the Infinite and shines pure, luminous and fulfilling. . . .That which is immortal in mortals and possessed of the truth, is a god and established inwardly as an energy working out in our divine powers. . . . Become high-uplifted, O Strength, pierce all veils, manifest in us the things of the Godhead. Vamadeva—Rig Veda.2

THE EARLIEST preoccupation of man in his awakened thoughts and, as it seems, his inevitable and ultimate preoccupation,—for it survives the longest periods of scepticism and returns after every banishment,—is also the highest which his thought can envisage. It manifests itself in the divination of Godhead, the impulse towards perfection, the search after pure Truth and unmixed Bliss, the sense of a secret immortality. The ancient dawns of human knowledge have left us their witness to this constant aspiration; today we see a humanity satiated but not satisfied by victorious analysis of the externalities of Nature preparing to return to its primeval longings. The earliest formula of Wisdom promises to be its last, —God, Light, Freedom, Immortality.


In one immense sweeping movement of awareness, we are at once taken back to the very beginnings of humankind and to its first ‘awakened thoughts’, which happen to be also the highest that human thought can envisage. We are given a brief but powerfully evocative and luminous glimpse of each of these few wondrous preoccupations from long ago, and thus our consciousness is impacted with each of them a first time. Then the same immense sweep takes us, in a kind of fantastic ‘fast forward’ acceleration, through the following eons of Time during which those earliest and highest preoccupations have been doubted and rejected again and again, only to ever reappear again and again… until today, when once again, after the superficial victories of modern Science have led us temporarily away from our depths, humankind is turning again to these deepest eternal goals. This time finally they are spelled out in the four magic Words that say it all and seize us with the full blast of the irresistible power they have on our souls: God, Light, Freedom, Immortality. For what they all together constitute is indeed, as stated earlier, our ‘inevitable and ultimate preoccupation’, and this statement  projects us already still further, toward the greater dawns that our Future is preparing for us, when this Human Aspiration will find at last its Realization here on Earth.

Throughout these first lines is woven a discrete but constant parallel between the superficial knowledge that our Mind gives us – including the skepticism it gives us too for those higher thoughts-, and the deeper, surer Knowledge from the Soul within, the only part in us which truly Knows, and is the eternal Seeker of those truths it wants to realize here too, in this realm of Physical Matter that the Mind deems too hard a soil for them to grow and live in – if it believes in them at all yet.

Wow. What a stunningly beautiful and meaningful first paragraph! It is simply astonishing how much deep content is packed tightly, yet with supreme elegance and strength of style, in just those first few lines… It is not surprising that reading such a powerful text conferred to me this instantaneous inner experience I related in that previous post of mine… (https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/2016/05/30/my-first-contact-with-sri-aurobindo-1971/)

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. krcqimpro
    May 31, 2016 @ 14:25:55

    Dear Bhaga, You may recall that a few years ago,I had found out about you and travelled from Chennai to see you and try and find out what is the actual process (sadhana?) that an aspirant has to undertake in order to achieve the “Triple Transformation” that Shri. Aurobindo has written about. To this date, nobody has been able to guide me in this.I would appreciate some guidance as to what book will lead me to this. Sincerely, Krish Chary

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    • Bhaga
      Jun 01, 2016 @ 08:25:51

      Oh yes, Krish, I think I do remember you!
      Aren’t you the one who tried to understand something in your clear and logical manner through my blog, but then declared it a ‘maze’ ?! 😀
      Well, since then I have written more, and perhaps more explicit posts about the way of the Integral Yoga. Here is something immediately available that I can give you the link to, which explains in a summarized form what is actually the Triple Transformation spoken of by Sri Aurobindo and the Mother:

      https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/2014/04/18/cellular-awakening-doesnt-mean-they-or-you-are-supramentalized/

      And before that post, thanks to whoever did see at the time my blog as a ‘maze’, I wrote another post elucidating already quite a bit the peculiar but actually quite logical main aspects and phases of the Integral Yoga, including of course the Triple Transformation, so it might be useful to look first at this older post:

      https://labofevolution.wordpress.com/2011/12/20/a-maze-and-its-amazing-omnipresent-centre/

      In the meantime I’ll look up for precise references to give you later from Sri Aurobindo’s own writings.
      I hope all this will help……
      Anyway, nice to hear from you again🙂

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    • Bhaga
      Jun 01, 2016 @ 11:36:14

      Well, Krish, as my next post I just re-blogged – actually at your intention – yet another post of mine, quite relevant also in its own way to the topic: a short Message by Mother that I always include in the workshops I give (whether on the Integral Yoga in general or specifically on cellular consciousness); I did so just a few days ago with one person, and today she asked me for the precise text of that little but precious Message, so I thought it might help you too, and many others as well, to re-post it along with my few personalcomments…

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