15 March 2009

Aurobindo's Letter to His Wife

In 1905 Aurobindo Ghosh wrote a letter to his wife Mrinalini Devi. Here are some excerpts:

I think you have understood by now that the man with whose fate yours has been linked is a man of a very unusual character. Mine is not the same field of action, the same purpose in life, the same mental attitude as that of the people of today in this country. I am in every respect different from them and out of the ordinary. Perhaps you know what ordinary men say of an extraordinary view, an extraordinary endeavour, an extraordinary ambition. To them it is madness; only, if the madman is successful in his work then he is called no longer a madman, but a great genius. But how many are successful in their life's endeavour?

Among a thousand men, there are five or six who are out of the ordinary and out of the five or six one perhaps successful. Not to speak of success, I have not yet even entirely entered my field of work. There is nothing then for you but to consider me mad.

I have three madnesses. The first one is this. I firmly believe that the accomplishments, genius, higher education and learning and wealth that God has given me are His.

My second madness has only recently seized me. It is this: by whatever means I must have the direct vision of God.

My third madness is that while others look upon their country as an inert piece of matter – a few meadows and fields, forests and hills and rivers – I look upon my country as the Mother.

Half my life has been wasted – even the beast finds fulfilment in stuffing his own belly and his family's and catering to their happiness. I have three hundred million brothers and sisters in this country. Many of them are dying of starvation and the majority just manage to live, racked by sorrow and suffering. They too must be helped.

The power of the Kshatriya is not the only one; there is also the power of the Brahmin, the power that is founded on knowledge. This feeling is not new in me, it is not of today. I was born with it, it is in my very marrow. God sent me to earth to accomplish this great mission. The seed began to sprout when I was fourteen; by the time I was eighteen the roots of the resolution had grown firm and unshakable. I do not say that the work will be accomplished during my lifetime, but it certainly will be done.

(Link courtesy Nithin)

1 comment:

DEEPAK said...

Very inspiring, Dheeru.
Good stuff.

-METRO