Tuesday, November 26, 2013

December 5, 1950 : Sri Aurobindo left his body

After Sri Aurobindo withdrew from his body, the Mother may be said to have become physically even more Aurobindonian than before. Once, when some recent photographs of her were under scrutiny, she told us that her very face and particularly the manner in which she smiled were becoming like Sri Aurobindo's. Before his passing, there were two bodies to establish the Supermind's victory; now there was only one and Sri Aurobindo was packing everything into it as if it were at the same time his own and the Mother's. A clue to this biune fact came to me on my birthday in 1968. She had occasion to mention the event of December 5, 1950. She said:
"You see, when he left his body, he gave his whole supramental force to me. It came to me most concretely."
Then she touched the skin and flesh of her left arm to convey the sense of the concreteness, as if even flesh and skin had felt that supramental force. She added: "His force passed from his body into mine. Its passage was like a wind blowing upon and into my body."
The point about the intensified and redoubled presence of Sri Aurobindo in her was driven home to me on two other occasions. On April 30, 1953 I spoke to the Mother about a friend who had left the Ashram "he claims that Sri Aurobindo is all the time present with him, communicating with him and guiding him." The Mother replied: "The fact simply is that Sri Aurobindo made an emanation of himself for him. And this emanation Sri Aurobindo has not withdrawn. That is an act of Grace. It does not mean that the central Sri Aurobindo, Sri Aurobindo himself, is there. He is here with me all the time and working through me."
The book Champaklal Speaks quotes a direct letter to the person concerned, written on 5.5.1953:
  "I do not deny that you have got a connection with something of Sri Aurobindo, the something that was interested in you and in what you are doing. This something might have remained with you to inspire and help you in your work in America and elsewhere. But it is only a part, a very, very small part of the Sri Aurobindo whom I know and with whom I lived physically for thirty years, and who has not left me, not for a moment — for He is still with me, day and night, thinking through my brain, writing through my pen, speaking through my mouth and acting through my organising power."
-      K.D.Sethna

(Our Light And Delight, pp. 9-10)
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20 December, 1972
Satprem : I had a question about Sri Aurobindo. I was wondering what
 stage he had reached when he left - what stage in the transformation?
 For instance, what difference is there between the work you are doing now and what he was doing at the time?

Mother : He had accumulated a great deal of supramental force in his body, and as soon as he left he.... He was on his bed, you see, and I was standing beside him, and all the supramental force that was in him passed quite concretely from his body into mine - so concretely that I thought it was visible. I could feel the friction of the passage. It was extraordinary - extraordinary! It was an extraordinary experience. It went on for a long, long time like this (gesture of the Force passing into Mother's body). I was standing beside his bed, and it passed into me.
Almost physical - it was a physical sensation. It lasted a long time.
That's all I know.
Satprem :But what I want to understand is at what stage he was in the
inner work - for example, cleansing the subconscient and all
 that? What difference is there between the work he had done
 at the time and where you have reached now, if you will? I
 mean, is the subconscient less subconscious or ... ?
Mother :Oh, yes! Certainly, certainly!
But that is the mental way of looking at things, you see - I don't have it anymore.
Satprem :Yes, Mother.
Perhaps the difference lies in the general or collective intensity
of that Power, that Force?
Mother : There is a difference in the POWER of the action.
He himself - he himself has a greater action, a greater power or action now than when he was in his body. Besides, that's why he left - because it had to be done that way.
It's very tangible, you know. His action has become very tangible. Of course, it isn't something mental at all. It is from another region. But it isn't ethereal or - it's tangible. I could almost say material.
Satprem : I've often wondered about the right inner movement needed to go into that other region. There are basically two possible
movements: a movement inwards in the direction of the soul,
 as it were, and a movement of annihilation of the individuality,
 in which you are in a sort of impersonal vastness.
Mother :Both are needed.
Satprem : Both ?
Mother : Yes.
(Mother plunges in)

-      The Mother

(Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 13, pp. 326-328)

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Sri Aurobindo fell ill. He suffered very much yet kept quiet. He
didn't say anything to anybody. In the end he began to find it
difficult to breathe. Dr. Sanyal felt it necessary to give oxygen so
the Mother asked me to arrange for it. I got an oxygen cylinder and
was shown how to use it. The Mother asked me to manipulate it, so I
happened to be in Sri Aurobindo's room at the time of his passing,
otherwise I had no business there.
Sri Aurobindo entered into a state which is medically called "coma."
It is the last stage preceding the end. We all were tremendously
surprised when suddenly in a clear and firm voice Sri Aurobindo asked,
"Nirod, what is the time?" Nobody expected a person in a coma to talk.
Even Nirod had such a shock. He is a doctor and he knows. Nirod
answered shakily, "Sir, Sir, it is one o'clock."
After speaking Sri Aurobindo went back into what doctors call coma
 but what I feel was a deep meditation. His breathing became slower
and slower with longer and longer gaps. There were a number
of people standing there and Champaklal was massaging his feet. When
the end was very near I knew of it because the gaps between breaths
became longer and longer.
Dr. Sanyal asked that the Mother be sent for. So the Mother came and
stood there—a wonderful statue of strength and silence—and finally
there was no further pulse. Sri Aurobindo had taken the last breath. I
was just standing back watching the whole scene and keeping quiet
because I knew that I was standing at a great moment in history. Dr.
Sanyal was feeling Sri Aurobindo's pulse when he took his last breath,
so he knew that Sri Aurobindo had passed away and started removing
the oxygen tube that was in his nostrils. Then Champaklal realised
that Sri Aurobindo had passed away and he started crying
hysterically, "Mother, what has happened? Mother, what has
happened?"I could see that everybody was in a state of shock.
Dr. Sanyal didn't know what to do. He looked around and saw me
standing a little to the back. Then he said to the Mother, "Mother, it
seems Udar is the only calm person in the room, so I suggest that you
give charge of the whole matter to him." Then the Mother turned to me
and said, "Udar, you take charge of everything and come to me for
directions," and she turned round and walked away.
Sri Aurobindo had passed away; yet he didn't look as if he had done
so. There was such a glow around his face. That can happen to some
people but after a time the glow passes. In the case of Sri Aurobindo
it didn't pass away. It remained, increased and became a golden light
around him. I could see it—it was very visible, very clear, and we
knew that some great Force was within him though his soul had left
the body.
The Mother said, "The body will be kept as it is. There will be no
immediate burial." Then she called me and told me to arrange for the
Samadhi. She said, "I want to keep him in the centre of the Ashram.
There are those three tanks in the courtyard. Keep the western tank
as it is; the other two you can join into one. [There was a time when
what is now the main building of the Ashram consisted of rented
houses. When they were purchased and joined together, a lot of
construction work went on. In order to wash the bricks, and to mix
cement and lime for this work, three tanks were built in 1930, in what
is now the central courtyard. When the construction work was over,
the Mother gave instructions that these three tanks should be filled up
with sand, and that pots with various types of ferns should be kept on
top of them.]  Go deep down, go down ten feet. Put Sri Aurobindo's
casket at the bottom. Then at five feet, put a slab." She gave me
instructions of exactly what to do and even detailed instructions when
it came to cutting roots of the Service Tree in the Ashram courtyard.
I consulted the Mother at each step. She would be standing upstairs
giving directions from the corridor.
We didn't get outside labour. The whole thing was dug by ourselves.
There was a man named Kaplan at Golconde. He came and worked
like three men. I proposed to the Mother and she approved that we
make a real room, a kind of vault, a solid room made of concrete blocks,
with a concrete slab flooring and with a concrete roof. Then the Mother
told me to build two rooms - one below and one above and I was very
upset and objected, "Why two rooms?" First she was quiet and afterwards
she told me, "Because I order you to do so." After that
there was nothing for me to say. I had to make two rooms. Later the
Mother told me, "You know, it is good tactics to let the hostile
forces think that what they want will happen." I understood her to
mean that if the hostile beings were made to believe that she was sure
of her own death, they would not attack her too much, or put too
many obstacles in her way.
Then she gave instructions for the making of the coffin. The coffin
was made of very solid wood and lined with silver sheet and silk. It
was very heavy and had large brass strips and rings for carrying with
Sri Aurobindo was still on his bed. There was this golden light around
him. It was something remarkable and marvellous. What a Force was
emanating from his body, unbelievable! And of course, thousands of
people came as soon as the news of his passing became known.
There was a continuous stream of people passing by his body
to have his last Darshan. It went on like this till the morning, of
the 9th. Then Dr. Sanyal said to the Mother, "Mother, decomposition
has set in. Start preparations to have him buried." The Mother turned
to me and said, "Udar, arrange for it." I said, "No, Mother. You have
given me charge and so I protest. I am a layman and Dr. Sanyal
is a great doctor and I don't want to contradict him; but I know
one thing. When decomposition sets in there is an unmistakable smell,
I have smelt it in several cases—I know. Where is that smell? There
is only a perfume coming out. If you go near Sri Aurobindo there is
a celestial perfume. As long as there is no smell, as a layman I say
there is no decomposition and I will not bury him. You have given me
charge. I will physically prevent anybody from burying him." I was 
furious—Dr. Sanyal kept quiet. He  was a doctor, he knew. But
 it was something beyond medical science. So I had every right to speak.
Then the Mother called me to one side and told me very quietly, "Udar,
I don't go by what the doctor has said. I have my own reasons. You
know that golden light that was around his face and body all these
days?" I replied, "Yes, Mother, it was a marvellous light." She asked,
"Do you see the light now?" And I had to admit the light had gone and
a greyness was setting on his face. She said, "For me that is the
sign. I am not concerned with the medical advice. I am concerned with
the inner signs. Sri Aurobindo has given the sign that now is the time
to bury. So go and do it."
Of course after that I could only say to her, "Mother, I will bury
him. I have the coffin ready. But I have the faith that the body is
not decomposing and it will not decompose. It will last for thousands
of years. This is my firm belief." The Mother said, "Udar, you keep
your belief. I don't want you to lose your belief. But the body has to
be buried." So I said, "Yes, I have made a coffin and now I will make
an airtight lid in such a way that nothing from outside can get
within. If it decomposes, it decomposes by itself. Nothing from
outside will be able to enter to attack it." The Mother said, "Yes, do
that. That is very good. I fully approve." I made such a solid coffin
and so heavy that it took ten people to lift the empty coffin.
The time came for the burial. The coffin was brought into his room
and we lifted Sri Aurobindo up to put him into the coffin. A lot of
liquid had come out of his body. Normally this body liquid has a foul
smell. But in this case there was a celestial perfume. The whole
mattress, the whole bed was wet with it. (For years the mattress
carried the perfume.) I was drenched with it. Such a wonderful perfume!
I did not change my clothes or take a bath for two days in order to keep 
that perfume with me as long as I could.
                                                                                               -  Udar Pinto

(More Vignettes, edited by Shyam Kumari)

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               Dr. Prabhat Sanyal with the Mother (1960)


ON the evening of the 29th November 1950, as I was resting after a heavy day, a servant brought me a telegram which read: "FLY—URGENT—MOTHER". Never could I have imagined the amount of meaning there was in those few words.
Then it came to me—Is Sri Aurobindo ill?—Why otherwise would the Mother send such a telegram? Other thoughts crept into my mind and I could not decide how best to equip myself for the errand.
The next morning, 3oth November, I flew to Madras, only to find that the next train for Pondicherry did not leave until 9-50 p.m., and so I would reach my destination by 7-a.m. the next morning. It was a torment to think that after traveling   1000 miles in 5 hours it was now to take me twenty hours to cover 100 miles. I looked at the telegram—read it once again—No! I could not waste time, so I hired a car.
It took me an hour to obtain a permit from the Police authorities, who looked me over thoroughly, trying to decide whether I was a smuggler or some thirsty drinker wanting a joy ride to French India. They finally decided however that I could go. The driver being assured of extras, my car literally flew along the roads to Pondicherry having only to stop twice at the inefficient and rude customs barriers—and by six in the evening I was at the Mother's feet in the Ashram playground. As usual She greeted me with her heavenly smile, saying She had expected me that very evening. She then told me of Sri Aurobindo's illness and asked me to examine Him; She added that She would be coming to his room after the programme was over in the playground.
On the way Dr. Nirod of the Ashram and my young colleague Dr. Satya Sen acquainted me with the history and present condition of the Master. Softly but quickly I ascended the stairs and entered the room. There I looked on the Master, my divine patient, semi-recumbent on His bed, seemingly unconcerned, eyes closed, like a statue of massive peace. I approached the bed, knelt by His side and made my pranams at His feet. Champaklal called : " Look, Master, who has come ". There was a quiver on His face; heavy eyelids opened a little—then all was still again. But again Champakial called: "Master, see, Sanyal has come". This time He opened His eyes fully, looked at me and smiled—Oh such a smile, serene and beautiful, it carried one to ecstasy, lighting the innermost corners of the heart.
He placed His hand on my head and lovingly patted it a few times—all thoughts vanished, it seemed my heart had stopped. I was overpowered with a mighty peace and calm. He had closed His eyes—except for His respiration all was still and a great silence reigned. Then Champaklal whispered delightedly, "He has given you a Darshan Smile and Blessing".—It was a blessing no words could describe; only one who has seen it and known it in his heart could appre­ciate what it meant, it for it was an experience of the soul.
I waited for the opportunity to become the doctor. I asked Him what the trouble was and whether I could give Him any relief. I put to Him the regular professional questions, perhaps then forgetting that my patient was the Divine housed in a mortal frame, and He answered: "Trouble? Nothing troubles me —and suffering! one can be above it." I mentioned the urinary difficulties. "Well, yes", He answered, "I had some difficulties but they have been relieved, and now I do not feel anything." Again there was silence.
We retired to the next room and I had a consultation with Nirod and Satya. His urine analysis report had arrived, showing slight albumen and sugar, specific gravity a little above normal. The Mother now entered the room and stood in silence near the foot of the bed and watched Sri Aurobindo. Soon She called me out into the next room where I explained the position to Her, that He was suffering from a mild kidney infection—otherwise there was nothing very serious as far as could be judged from the urine report.
We thought that, Deo volente, continuous drainage would suffice and antibiotics would gradually improve the rest.
The following morning, 1st December, was very encouraging; our Lord was absolutely alert and responsive and His temperature was normal. After His sponging He took His simple breakfast and even cracked jokes with us. I was giving Him a scalp massage and enquired if He was liking it or not. He remarked: "I know you went to England for your Fellowship but where did you learn massaging?" I suggested that we would like to have His blood exa­mined for a detailed bio-chemical examination, to which He smiled and retorted: You doctors can think only in terms of diseases and medicines, but always there is much more effectual knowledge beyond and above it. I do not need anything". All of us were very happy by this most remarkable improvement and the day passed on.
The next day, 2nd December, there was little change except for a rise of one degree in temperature towards the evening. The day was a heavy one for the Mother as it was the second day of the annual display in the playground; but as soon as the activities were over She came to His room and stood at the foot of His bed. Her countenance was very grave but She did not say anything. I suggested, as the urinary infection was again flaring up in spite of continuous drainage, that we should try Antibiotics and Infusion therapy. Mother then warned me that orthodox methods of treatment were unsuitable for Him—not only would Sri Aurobindo not like them but they would be harmful. She also reminded me that my patient was the Divine, "He will work out whatever is necessary." I could only give some simple medicines to allay symptoms if any.
We doctors were in a state of perplexity; true, our patient was an Avatar; true, He had cured innumerable ailments in the sadhaks as also in Himself several times—would He not now cure Himself?
Champaklal once entreated Him in a favourable moment: "Why don't you use your force and cure yourself, Master?" He kept silent and showed rather a dislike for such questions.
December 3rd—After a rather quiet and restful night He looked better that morning and when the usual morning routine was over Nirod offered Him some fruit juice which He enjoyed.
The temperature had dropped to normal and so much was our relief that at 11 a.m. while making my Pranams to the Mother I ventured to suggest that as the Master was steadily improving I might perhaps leave that evening. The Mother remained silent; She looked very grave. I looked into Her eyes and felt a quiver, a pain in my heart. What had I said? Was She not willing? Why did I suggest my departure instead of waiting for Her to tell me ? I felt a wrench at my heart and I blurted out: "I would rather stay a few more days". A smile lit all Her face. "Yes," She said. In the afternoon the picture rapidly changed. The temperature had risen to 101 degrees`. There was a definite respiratory distress. The Mother came into the room at 4 p.m. and stood watching. All the afternoon we had found it difficult to get Him to drink water or fruit juice, so now we sought Her help. She brought the spoon near His lips. Immediately He opened His eyes, took a few sips and lapsed back into unresponsiveness. The Mother came with us into the ante-room and then for the first time declared: "He is fully conscious within but is losing interest in Himself". We could understand very little and dared not question further. Satya was restless as energetic treatment could not be instituted. The Mother simply said: "It all depends on Him".
As the darkness closed in upon us our hearts grew heavier. At times Nirod or Champaklal would offer Him sips to drink and He would even remark on His choice of tomato or orange juice or something of that sort, then would lapse back into a state of unresponsiveness.
Not once would He say or at any time indicate that He was uncomfortable or thirsty, but if we changed His position or offered Him a drink He smilingly accepted it. The Mother came at 11 o' clock at night as usual; the moment She offered Him a drink He was all alert and obediently drank a cupful of fruit juice—then again He lapsed into a state of repose.
The distress continued now with little sign of abating and The Mother took me into the ante-room remarking: "I don't know, He has no interest in Himself ". I suggested intravenous medication from the next day onwards, but She advised me not to disturb Him.
The long night passed, a long and worrying night. Nirod and Champaklal kept watch throughout.—If there is a quiver of the lips, it may be that He wants a drink_ If a shake of the hand—perhaps He needs His handkerchief. They are there to serve Him; that is their sadhana—life dedicated to the service of their Master.—I remembered Sri Aurobindo one day telling me of his early days of sadhana, when he used to sit up all through the night. Champaklal, then a mere boy, would lie on the stairs below, waiting for any summons. On another occasion some time before, I mentioned to Sri Aurobindo that Dr. Nirod would change the medicine when needed; He remarked. "Nirod is no doctor to me".
We continued keeping a careful watch on the urinary flow and He was still passing 50 ozs. in 24 hrs. at specific. gravity of 1012- 1010. Nirod would sit by the bottle and watch each drop as it fell and if there was any delay, which was often the case, he would immediately draw my attention to it.
December 4th—At dawn His temperature had dropped to 99 degrees. The respiratory distress was negligible and He seemed bright and responsive.
The morning duties were over and we settled Him in His usual sitting position. There He sat majestic and serene. At about 9 a.m., The Mother came and helped Him to take a light breakfast. As She walked into the ante-room, the room used for our consultations, I smiled to Her and said; "The Master seems cheerful again and taking interest". The only answer She made was "Mmm" and then went out of the room.
I settled by the side of the bed and gently massaged the Master's body while Nirod and Champaklal were attending to their duties. After a little while He opened His eyes and asked the time. I told Him 10 o'clock, I saw He was in a mood to talk so I ventured: "How do you feel"? He replied, "I am comfortable." There was a pause; He looked at the clock and then asked how Bengal was faring, especially the refugees. I narrated to Him their pitiable plight and implored: "Surely the Divine can help them?" My Lord answered, "Yes, if Bengal seeks the Divine." He closed His eyes and went into silence (samadhi).
But alas, it was only a brief lull—a belied hope. From midday the respi­ratory difficulty reappeared with greater amplitude and the temperature went up to 102 degrees. This time signs of distress could be seen in the face but there was not a word, not a protest.
The Mother came about 1 p.m. She watched for some time before entering the adjoining room with me. Then She said, "He is withdrawing".
Though He looked apparently unconscious, whenever He was offered drinks, He would wake up and take a few sips and wipe His mouth himself with His handkerchief. To all of us it seemed apparent that a consciousness came from outside when He was almost normal, and then withdrew when the body quivered and sank down in distress. He was no longer there!
By 5 o'clock again He showed signs of improvement. He was quite res­ponsive. We helped Him out of His bed. After which He walked to the arm-chair to rest. For the moment He seemed a different personality. He sat there with His eyes closed—calm and composed with a radiating consciousness. We remarked on the majestic beauty of His form as He sat there; such calm and beatitude brought to my mind the Vedic Rishis. But this did not last long. After three quarters of an hour He became restless and wanted to be back in bed. Respiratory distress appeared with redoubled momentum. From midday onwards the urine output which had been good all these days definitely diminished and the distress was very prominent. Though He seemed to be unconscious He was not, which was evident by the fact that He drew Champaklal several times to His breast and kissed him lovingly and this Divine compassionate embrace was extended to Nirod and myself. It may be mentioned that this emotional behaviour was evident here for the first time; but He had taken nothing to drink the whole day.
The Mother came back after Her usual attendance at the playground. She laid her garland at the foot of the bed, a thing which She does daily, and stood watching Sri Aurobindo. She looked so grave and quiet that it almost distressed me. I went to the ante-room to wait for Her. She entered and I gave Her the report and told Her that Glucose had been given by Satya and we wanted to arrange for intravenous infusions etc. She said quietly and firmly, "I told you this is not necessary, He has no interest in Himself, He is withdrawing".
We sat round His bed, wondering why He was losing interest in Himself; He, if He so desired, could certainly cure Himself as He had done on so many other occasions,—Nirod has seen Him curing the illnesses of others. But now at this crucial hour He had no interest in Himself! Was He going to sacrifice Himself?
At about 11 p.m. the Mother came into the room and helped Sri Aurobindo to drink half a cup of tomato juice. A strange phenomenon—a body which for the moment is in agony, unresponsive, labouring hard for breath, suddenly becomes quiet; a consciousness enters the body, He is awake and normal He finishes the drink, then, as the consciousness withdraws, the body lapses back into the grip of agony.
At midnight the Mother came again into the room, looked intently for some time as if there was a silent exchange of thought between them; then She left.
At 1 a.m. (5th) She returned and again looked at the Lord and stood at the foot of the bed. There was no sign of agony, fear, or anxiety on Her face. Not a thought, not a feeling could I fathom in Her expression. With Her eyesShe asked me to go into the other room and She followed me in. She asked, "What do ;you think? Can I retire for one hour?" This is a significant hour: The Mother retires—Her consciousness leaves Her body, none are to call or enter Her room then. This is imperative.—I murmured, "Mother, this is beyond me." She said, "Call me when the time comes."
I stood behind the Master and started stroking His hair which He always liked. Nirod and Champaklal sat by the side of the bed and were caressing His feet. We were all quietly watching Him. We now, knew that anything might happen, any time, only a miracle could save us and the world. I perceived a slight quiver in His body, almost imperceptible. He drew up His arms and put them on His chest, one overlapping the other—then all stopped. Death, the cruel death that was waiting so long—we had been keeping vigil for it —had descended on our Lord. I told Nirod to go and fetch the Mother.
It was 1-20 a.m..
Almost immediately the Mother entered the room. She stood there, near the feet of Sri Aurobindo: Her hair had been undressed and was flowing about Her shoulders. Her look: was so fierce that I could not face those eyes. With a piercing gaze She stood there. Champaklal could not bear it and sobbingly he implored, "Mother, tell me Dr. Sanyal is not right, He is alive." The Mother looked at him and he became quiet and composed as if touched by a magic wand. She stood there for more than half an hour. My hands were still on His forehead. My mind wandered. He lay, my Guru, Rishi Sri Aurobindo, Avatar of the new era of the dawn, a thing past! Only a few seconds ago I was watching and hoping for a miracle to happen; could there be a more appropriate time than this? Sri Aurobindo is no more! He was alive, and now He is history. Thoughts kaleidoscoped in my brain. I could almost see thousands of people passing by the bed, whispering aloud—"Here lived Sri Aurobindo." But it cannot be; I am standing here by His side, my hands almost touching Him, I am watching Him breathe, yes, every movement, all is much more quiet now,—I could not think; any more. A sharp pain went through my head. I looked at the Mother. Softly She came to me and touched my head, stilled my thoughts, quietened my mind. No trace of agony was left, I could now think normally. I asked Her, "What is to be done, we have to arrange for the last offices." She quietly said, "He will be given Samadhi, under the Prayer tree. in the pace where the giant maidenhair plants are arranged." So, this place had been earmarked beforehand; such is the way of the Divine!
The Mother also reminded me of the formalities that had to be observed, a French doctor must certify the death first. Then only members of the Ashram and the public could be informed. Nolini Gupta and Amrita were called and stood there as if stunned. Pavitra stood at the feet of the Master, tears rolling down his cheeks.
We were busy  in dressing the Lord. The Mother had already agreed to my request to call the Ashram photographers (sadhaks) to take the last pictures.
The French physician of the Hospital, Major Barbet, examined the Master's body and we both signed the death certificate.
Now the sadhaks of the Ashram were to be informed. It was now dawn, the eastern sky was slowly getting clearer and clearer, a shaft of light appeared over the horizon. Quietly I left the Ashram.
As I sat by the window, bewildered, in my room at Golconde, I saw the hurried but silent progress of the Ashramites towards the Ashram.—Sri Aurobindo has passed away— I felt a violent pang in my heart. I looked at the sky. Look!...There, Sri Aurobindo is rising again—the eternal Sun bursting forth with a million rays.
As the day wore on, longer and longer became the stream of people, eager but calm and patient, to have a last Darshan of the great Rishi. In the afternoon I again entered the room where our Lord lay serene and majestic. A never-ending stream of people, laymen, clergymen, doctors, lawyers, rickshaw pullers, labourers, rich men, poor men, all filed past the sage, silent but inspired. At dusk the Ashram door was closed. The Mother blessed me, asking me to come again early in the morning. I left for Golconde. Champaklal and Nirod were keeping vigil night and day.
December 6th—I entered Sri Aurobindo's room before dawn. Mother and I had a look at Him; how wonderful, how beautiful He looked, with a golden hue. There were no signs of death as science had taught me, no evidence of the slightest discoloration, or decomposition. The Mother whispered, "As long as the supramental light does not pass away, the body will not show any signs of decomposition, and it may be a day or it may take many more days". I whispered to Her, "Where is the light you speak of—can I not see it?"
I was then kneeling by Sri Aurobindo's bed, by the Mother's feet. She smiled at me and with infinite compassion put her hand on my head. There He was—with a luminous mantle of bluish golden hue around Him.
With the morning came the procession of_people, taking a last glimpse of the Divine Master. The Mother said to me, "People do not know what a tremendous sacrifice He has made for the world. About a year ago, while I was discussing things I remarked that I felt like leaving this body of mine. He spoke out in a very firm tone, No, this can never be. If necessary for this transformation I might go, you will have to fulfil our yoga of supramental descent and transformation!'"
After that night, there dawned on us the third day of Sri Aurobindo's passing. The Mother and I had a look at His body. As yet there was no sign of  decomposition. The French surgeon corroborated the findings, this being required by the law of the state.
    I was talking with the Mother, in Her room. In my own foolish way I voiced my apprehension for Her health and the strain She put on her fragile frame. She smiled at me, and asked, "Do you think I get all this energy from my frugal meals? Of course not, one can draw infinite energy from the universe when needed!" She also added, "No, I have no intention of leaving my body for the present. I have yet a lot of things to do. So far as I am concerned, it is nothing to me. I am in constant contact with Sri Aurobindo".
    Sri Aurobindo's sudden decision of withdrawal stirred the minds of us all. Was it a retreat? Or was it a means used by Him to attain something for the earth? Who can answer?
    With our limited mental logic, whatever we try to explain will only be part of the truth, or may even be a distortion. What we need is a supreme faith in Him that if many a battle is apparently lost the ultimate victory of the war is inevitable. Sri Aurobindo has no doubt withdrawn from us, from our physical eye, but the Mother is continuing the fight for humanity as the Mahashakti.
    While we all feel as if we were sliding down the incline to disappointment, —for the world torn with dissension, distrust, hatred and greed, looking for a ray in the sky, a divine gesture—for the uplift of humanity—a transformed humanity—the Mother holds out HOPE.
    I took leave of the Mother on the 7th evening—taking a last look at the Master's luminous body,—the Divine in a mortal frame, beautiful, calm, and still without a sign of decomposition. I naively asked the Mother, "Why was I not allowed to treat the Lord as I would have done in the routine way, and why was I called in?" Mother consoled me by saying, "We wanted you to be here, not so much for treatment." The Mother blessed me three times and all my sorrows, my disappointments, my doubts vanished, and my mind was aglow with hope. I bowed at Her feet. and looked up to see the Divine Mother, the Mahashakti smiling at me.


December 5, 1950: Sri Aurobindo leaves his body

by Bhaga

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.’


pianomonika said...

When Sri Aurobindo left his body on 5 of December in year 1950, Mother said, that she became physically even more Aurobindonian than before, and her smile was becoming like Sri Aurobindo's.
Before his passing there were two bodies to establish the Supermind's victory,but then Sri Aurobindo's force passed from his body into the Mother's.
Also a friend, who left the Ashram claimed, that he felt Sri Aurobindo's presence , a communicating and guiding.
Mother explained it as an act of Grace, Sri Aurobindo was not himself there, but he was working through the Mother.
With tears in eyes I read about the last hours of His life.
A glow was around his face, it remained, increased and became a golden light.It was very visible and clear.
A great Force was within him,though his soul left the body.

pianomonika said...

Udar was the man, who made the coffin for Sri Aurobindo.
Over days a golden light was around Sri Aurobindo's face, but the Mother saw, that this light has gone and a greyness was setting his face;
And she told Udar, that Sri Aurobindo has given the sign that the time was to bury him.
Before the Doctor said, that decomposition had began even there was no unmistakable smell.When Sri Aurobindo was lifted into the coffin,a lot of liquid came out of his body, but is was a celestial perfume smell, which kept for years in the mattress.
Udar made the coffin for Sri Aurobindo in such a way,that nothing from outside could get within, an airtight lid.

pianomonika said...

The last hours and days of Sri Aurobindo are a time capsule for posterity, and described with empathy.
''Mother'' continued the fight for humanity as the Mahashakti.

pianomonika said...

Note : Dr. Sanyal Prabhat was a devotee and prominent surgeon in Calcutta,he settled in the Ashram in 1953.
The next twenty years he was the Mother's physician.

pianomonika said...

The video : Mahasamadhi of Sri Aurobindo: A touching and great time document:An appreciation of the Life of Sri Aurobindo.
The words of the speaker : You -Sri Aurobindo- have done so much for us'' we only can affirm.
We bow our heads in reference before the great SRI AUROBINDO .

pianomonika said...

Mother's message: ''...Grant that we never forget to own towards Thee a deep, an intense gratitude'' will always be followed by all generations.
Today, 5 of December we commemorate
in awe, love, admiration and respect
the great Sri Aurobindo.

pianomonika said...

Sri Aurobindo's book:'' Savitri''
is to see as the true 'testament'
he left for the humanity.
In this book 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.
And it was in 1950 a tremendous shock for the Mother, 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.