Wednesday, January 12, 2011

IV: 9

Chapter 4, Verse 9

"Those who know the nature of my task
And my divine birth
Are not reborn
When they depart the body,
But in truth come to me."

Sri Aurobindo:

"The work for which the Avatar descends has both an outward side and an inward one. The outward side is the divine force acting upon the external world in order to maintain and reshape there the Dharma, the divine law by which the Godward effort of humanity is kept from decisively regressing, to be instead conclusively carried forward in spite of the natural order of action and reaction, the rhythm of advance and relapse by which nature proceeds. The inward side is the divine force acting upon the soul of the aspirant so that it may receive new forms of revelation of the divine in humanity and may be sustained, renewed and enriched in its power of upward unfolding.

The Avatar may descend as a great spiritual teacher, like Christ or the Buddha; and always the work leads, after the earthly manifestation is complete, to a profound and powerful uptick in the ethical, social and outward life as well as the inner, spiritual ideals of humanity. On the other hand, an incarnation of the divine personality and power may manifest for a mission ostensibly social, ethical, and political, like with Krishna; and always the descent becomes in the soul of humanity a permanent power for the inner life and the spiritual rebirth.

The life of Krishna belongs to the prehistoric past which has come down in poetry and legend and may be regarded as myth, but it is immaterial whether we regard it as myth or historical fact, because the value of this life lies in its persistence as a spiritual presence in the inner consciousness of humanity.

[Myths are "true," for they express timeless human/divine values. "Use of the term 'myth' implies neither the truth nor falsehood of the narrative." ~Wikipedia]

Dharma is all that helps us to grow into divine purity, largeness, light, freedom, power, strength, joy, love, good, unity, and beauty, while against it stands its shadow: all that resists its growth and has not dredged up its secret of divine values, but presents rather a front of perversion, narrowness, bondage, darkness, and vileness, all that humanity must come to terms with in its progress. This latter is Adharma, not-Dharma, which seeks to overcome Dharma, to draw backwards and downwards the reactionary force which fosters ignorance. Between these two there is a perpetual tension in which sometimes the upward and sometimes the downward forces gain ascendancy. The Gita treats the struggle in its two aspects, the inner struggle and the outer battle. In the inner struggle, the enemies lie within the spiritual warrior, and the mastering of Rajasic and Tamasic desire is the victory. The outer struggle is between the powers of Dharma and Adharma in the human collectivity.

The Avatar comes as the divine personality which shall fill the consciousness of the receptive human being and transform the limited, egoistic personality, so that it shall be liberated into universality. Nor does it essentially matter in what name and form the Avatar appears, for in all ways, varying with their natures, the people are following paths set for them by the divine; and the aspect which best suits their nature is that which they will follow. In whatever way we accept, love and take joy in God, in that way God accepts, loves and takes joy in us."

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