I painted this picture shortly after returning from my Vipassana meditation retreat last November. I called it ‘Touching the surface’. I now know that it should be renamed “Be like a waterlily” (although the flower is pink not white…read on)!
The image and colours simply appeared on the canvas as usual, me just holding the brush steady and mixing colours on the palette. I assumed it was an image brought about by my state of tranquillity following 10 days of noble silence, rest and no responsibilities, 10 days of relinquishing my basic needs and care of my being to the generosity of others. Then a few days ago I read some text in the ‘Mother’s Agenda’ – 27 March, 1965 (Volume VI) – which put it all in perspective. Often the reasoning becomes clear only after the event (!), when the time to learn the lesson arrives.
Following surgery and a long, uncomfortable recovery Satprem is expressing his concern to the Mother that he is feeling ‘heavy’ after returning to a non-vegetarian diet on the recommendation of his doctor. He asks if he should resume his vegetarian diet.
The Mother explains that this doesn’t really make a difference to the consciousness. The important thing for regaining one’s physical strength is to eat well and get plenty of rest. She says:
“Basically, in order to cure the misdeeds of that physical mind, it’s not bad to become…we could say in jest, vegetarian in the sense of becoming a plant -the peaceful life of a plant, like that (gesture, stretched out in the sun).
Yes, there is a kind of vegetative immobility which is excellent for overcoming the agitation – the frantic agitation – of that physical mind… Oh, look, it’s the sensation of a waterlily floating on water: those large leaves spreading out like that – a very quiet, still water, and a waterlily.
The waterlily is the white flower opening up to the light, above those large floating leaves… Oh, how good it is to be carried.
When the nerves have really calmed down because one has eaten well, one can go into a blissful contemplation – don’t be occupied with anything, above all don’t try to think: like this (gesture of floating, offered), invoking the Lord and his Harmony – a luminous harmony – and then lying like that at least half an hour, three quarters of an hour after the meal. It’s very good, it’s excellent. Don’t fall asleep: blissful – nothing, being nothing. Nothing but a blissful tranquillity. That’s the best remedy.
I think it’s easier after eating well!
Try to be a waterlily… A waterlily, that’s pretty!
Even watching animals is very pretty – they know far better than men how to rest.
We could make a slogan: If you want to keep well, be a waterlily! (Mother laughs)…I see the picture of a pond in the sun…”
There are many more wonderful revelations and lessons being experienced in the yoga (Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo)…but sharing one at a time is enough 🙂
Om Namo Bhagavati
Love & light
Louise (aka Mermie)