Inner View · Personal reflections · Reminders to self · Spiritual Significance of Flowers · Spirituality beyond Religion · Words of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo

When Everything was Perfect

That moment, that morning everything was perfect. Just for a few moments, everything was right, just right, just perfect. Everything was in the right place, as it should be. Nothing was amiss, nothing was wrong.

Can it be so? Can it all be perfect?

That moment that morning it all was.

I had gone out in the garden to pluck a few curry leaves for some upma I was about to cook for breakfast. With curry leaves in my hand, I strolled lazily in the garden, and on the spur of a moment just looked up, through the branches of the coconut trees and other flowering trees and bushes. And for that moment, everything was perfect. It just was.

A sense of quiet happiness and a peaceful joy came over the heart. There was no pull or push, just a calmness in the heart. Mind didn’t bring up any of the thousand things that are normally hovering around it, routine things that consume a busy morning, or any of the non-routine things that we falsely assume are our business to resolve. Just for those few moments all was perfectly right with my life. All was right with the world.

Pretty much every morning when I am out in the garden, my mind generally gets busy preparing a list of tasks that need my attention — the bushes that need pruning, the weeds that need pulling, the plants that need re-potting, the vines that need supporting, the areas that need cleaning, etc etc. But that morning, there was nothing to be done. All was just perfect, as it should be.

Everything was in its right place and everything was as it should have been. Everything was perfect, right up to the plant that was almost dying, the last dead leaf in the flower bed, and the over-filled compost bin. I was simply there, just there midst the plants and flowers, and everything was perfect.

Such moments are precious, such moments are rare. That’s why we feel so immensely grateful for these moments. That’s why we cherish them deeply, keep them safe in our hearts, relive them via memory. That’s why we aspire to have more of such moments, to gradually build upon what we felt during these rare moments.

Her Grace and Help make possible such moments. But we must keep working on our openness and receptivity for that Grace and Help to work upon us.

“The Grace is always there, eternally present and active, but Sri Aurobindo says that it is extremely difficult for us to be in a condition to receive it, keep it and make use of what it gives us.
[…]
To receive the divine grace, not only must one have a great aspiration, but also a sincere humility and an absolute trust.”

~ The Mother, CWM, Vol 16, 17 October, 1960

IntegralOpeningtotheLight.png
Spiritual significance: Integral Opening to the Light; the assurance of the coming peace and joy. (Common name: King’s mantle, Bush clock vine).

 

It is indeed Her Grace alone that some gifts offered by my little garden over the past few weeks gave me some valuable reminders on how to be more open and receptive to the Grace. How to keep working on my aspiration, faith, sincerity, purification, peace. How to patiently wait for those rare moments when everything is perfect. 

Take a look.

A pre-requisite is to seek support only in the Divine. This does not mean there is no need for any personal effort. On the contrary, it only means to enhance the intrinsic quality of all personal effort by infusing it with an unfailing trust in the Divine which guides, supports, and energizes all our efforts.

SeekingforSupportOnlyintheDivine
Spiritual Significance: Seeking for Support only in the Divine; The Divine is the only support that never fails. (Common name: St. Vincent lilac, Italian jasmine)

 

Since we are made up of many different parts and not yet fully united in our being, some parts within us may be more resistant and hence not ready to trust the Divine support. Such obstinate parts within us, especially the most crusty physical mind* in us must go through a conversion process of sort.

ConversionofthePhysicalMind
Spiritual Significance: Conversion of the Physical Mind
Ready to understand everything and to grow continually. (Common name: Amaryllis)

 

When restlessness in the vital-emotional nature clouds the consciousness and creates a discouraging inner environment or brings in despair and sadness, we become less receptive to the higher Force, less open to the higher Light. That is when we must call upon the Peace. 

Peace that is essential for good inner health. And outer too. 

Peace in the Nerves.png
Spiritual significance: Peace in the Nerves; Indispensable for good health. (Common name: Beach gardenia, zebra wood)

 

Peace that comes from the cessation of a clinging desire or want for something. 

PeaceInTheVital
Spiritual Significance: Peace in the Vital; the result of the abolition of the desires. (Common name: Orange Jessamine)

 

Much of the hard, rough crust in our outer parts — physical, vital, mental — that continues to resist the working of the Light has its deep roots in the hidden, subconscient layers of our being. Only the Higher Light and Force can gradually purify the subconscient. **

SupramentalInfluenceIntheSubconscient
Spiritual Significance: Supramental Influence in the Subconscient; under its modest appearance it is a great force of transformation. (Common name: Firecracker flower)

 

“The subconscient is to be penetrated by the light and made a sort of bed-rock of truth, a store of right impressions, right physical responses to the Truth. Strictly speaking, it will not be subconscient at all, but a sort of bank of true values held ready for use.”

~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga, CWSA, Vol. 31, p. 612

 

Slowly, over time, with intense and sincere aspiration and with the Divine Grace, the subconscient may begin to loosen its grip. That is how the Truth from above begins to work, slowly, and in response to a sincere call, a true aspiration from below. Patience, perseverance, trust, and sincerity are indispensable.

PowerofTruthinSubconscient
Spiritual significance: Power of Truth in the Subconscient; it can only act when sincerity is perfect. (Common name: Cape honeysuckle)

 

And in time, a miracle may happen! 

“At every moment all the unforeseen, the unexpected, the unknown is before us — and what happens to us depends mostly on the intensity and purity of our faith.”

~ The Mother, CWM, Vol. 14, p. 80

 

Miracle
Spiritual significance: Miracle; Marvellous, strange, unexpected. (Common name: Ironwood)

 

A miracle happens. And all becomes perfect.

For those moments at least, everything is perfect. Those moments are miraculous indeed when we truly begin to feel that everything is perfect. Just as it should be. As it happened that morning.

 

 


* Physical Mind, in the words of Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga, CWSA, Vol. 28, pp. 179-182
The physical mind is that part of the mind which is concerned with the physical things only—it depends on the sense mind, sees only objects, external actions, draws its ideas from the data given by external things, infers from them only and knows no other Truth—until it is enlightened from above.
[….]
In the human physical mind there is always a tendency not to understand or to misunderstand and to interpret according to its own notions. That can only be removed by the Light in the mind and the power everywhere which refuses to accept suggestions of disturbance.
*
It is the physical mind that finds it difficult to believe in the reality of supraphysical things—that is due to its ignorance and its belief that only physical things are real.
*
Yes, it [the physical mind] reasons, but on the basis of external data mostly—on things as they appear to the outer mind and senses or the habitual ideas to which it is accustomed or to a purely external knowledge.
*
That part of the being [the physical mind] has no reason except its whims, its habits or an inclination to be tamasic.
*
The physical mind is in the habit of observing things with or without use.

** Subconscient, in the words of Sri Aurobindo, CWSA, Vol. 28, p. 216
In our Yoga we mean by the subconscient that quite submerged part of our being in which there is no wakingly conscious and coherent thought, will or feeling or organised reaction, but which yet receives obscurely the impressions of all things and stores them up in itself and from it too all sorts of stimuli, of persistent habitual movements, crudely repeated or disguised in strange forms can surge up into dream or into the waking nature. For if these impressions rise up most in dream in an incoherent and disorganised manner, they can also and do rise up into our waking consciousness as a mechanical repetition of old thoughts, old mental, vital and physical habits or an obscure stimulus to sensations, actions, emotions which do not originate in or from our conscious thought or will and are even often opposed to its perceptions, choice or dictates. In the subconscient there is an obscure mind full of obstinate sanskaras, impressions, associations, fixed notions, habitual reactions formed by our past, an obscure vital full of the seeds of habitual desires, sensations and nervous reactions, a most obscure material which governs much that has to do with the condition of the body. It is largely responsible for our illnesses; chronic or repeated illnesses are indeed mainly due to the subconscient and its obstinate memory and habit of repetition of whatever has impressed itself upon the body consciousness.

All photos taken in my garden, by Suhas Mehra

 

 

 

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20 thoughts on “When Everything was Perfect

  1. Being receptive is the first step to being open to the Grace. It might be easier for some, but some have to go through the struggle as mentioned.

    It is not at all difficult though…just being mindful of what we are doing can bring about a change too.

    You have a lovely garden. Enjoy the blooms ☺️

    1. Thank you, Alok! Things that seem so simple are often the most challenging to keep up with, that has been my experience at least. Let me clarify. Things can indeed be simple, we just complicate them by bringing too much of “I, me, mine” into them, in this case, too much of “my mind, my preference, my desire, my wish, my thought” etc etc. Where will the receptivity come from, if we are clouded with this me, mine business? 🙂
      Glad you liked the garden pictures. I am grateful to the Divine for this small but precious treasure, a constant source of joy 🙂

  2. It was like listening my other Guru, my sister – only in the highly spiritual words of Sri Aurobindo! There is a verse in Thiruvachagam which she keeps quoting to me, ‘One needs the Grace of Shiva even to seek His Grace.’ But then, it is necessary to quell the noise of the physical mind as you have said. Just accept everything as Grace and that can bring in peace and quiet and perfection. You are so fortunate to have experienced one such moment and now that you have become aware of it, will surely experience more and more of them.

    This post reminded be of Dagny’s post on Perfection . Now I have to experience one such moment and record it too, with Her Grace, of course!

    Lovely flowers so well photographed too. By the way, the firecracker flower is what we call kanakambaram and used to be my favourite flower to wear in my hair during my younger years. It is very light and stays fresh for a longer time.

    1. Oh how I wish I could meet your sister! It will be so illuminating. You are really fortunate to have your sister as your guru.
      As for being receptive to Grace and seeing all that happens as Her Grace, I truly wish I would be able to recall what I wrote in this post every time a real situation comes up, a situation which my ego would find unpleasant or unfortunate, which because of my personal preference I would find difficult to deal with. What I mean is that even though we know many things in theory, we fail to really live by them when a real-life situation comes up. And maybe that’s why I need constant reminders for myself through such posts!
      Yes, I remember Dagny’s post on perfection. I look forward to hearing about your “moment” 🙂 In the meantime I will picture you with beautiful kanakambaram flowers in your hair 🙂 I love the gentleness of these blossoms.

      1. i am indeed fortunate to have my sister who keeps reminding me and keeps me grounded as well. Sometimes I think it would be easier if we told ourselves that God is around and within us and so everything IS perfect. But then we forget even this small reminder 😦

  3. Beloo, I’m so grateful to you! And I’m grateful to the universe too- not only for bringing you to my life but to make me to read this first thing in the morning.  I know i will return to this post many times. You have described- oh so well!- how to get yourself ready and receptive to divine grace. I certainly needed this today. My trust in the divine has been flagging in the past few days. Thank you. You are truly my guru. 

    Sent from my Samsung device

    1. Thank you, dear Dagny! Isn’t it amazing how the Universe works and gives us exactly what we need, and most of the times we don’t even know that that is what we needed 🙂 I think we all go through these days and phases when because of life events and circumstances our trust in the Higher Force, in the Divine begins to waver. Of course, that is exactly when we need to hold on to that Trust. And that’s why perhaps those circumstances come, to help us build and keep building that Trust. I am grateful that these flower pictures gave me that inspiration to dig deep into myself and see for myself what I need to work on. And in that process, it makes me so happy that what came out through this post resonated with some dear readers and friends. Thank you! And please, no guru-talk 🙂 We are all co-travellers, learning from and with one another.

  4. This post had a certain calm about it. That moment that you described, I have experienced it as well and strangely it came as not a culmination of something spectacular but as a moment that just dawned. I remember, feeling at peace, very calm with no thoughts gushing through my mind, just a smile on my face. I love the pictures of your garden. I am blessed to have a garden as well and though the husband is the one good with gardening, I do enjoy watching the bountiful gifts of nature bloom and thrive. Thank you for sharing your perfect moment with us.

    1. Happy to read about your ‘perfect moment’ experience, Rachna! Isn’t that a marvelous and miraculous blessing?! I am glad you liked the garden pictures. I see some of the pics you share of the great gifts from your garden, this is such a joy to have home-grown, organic produce. Wishing you more moments of such perfect joy — garden-wise and beyond. Thanks for reading.

  5. We are all looking for that moment when everything seems perfect! I loved how you wove together the perfection of that moment with the teachings of The Mother and those lovely photographs from your garden. Beautiful post!

  6. Very interesting blog. A lot of blogs I see these days don’t really provide anything that attract others, but I’m most definitely interested in this one. Just thought that I would post and let you know.

  7. It was very useful for me. Keep sharing such ideas in the future as well. This was actually what I was looking for, and I am glad to came here! Thanks for sharing the such information with us.

  8. This is the precise weblog for anybody who needs to seek out out about this topic. You notice so much its almost arduous to argue with you. You positively put a brand new spin on a subject that’s been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply nice!

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