Sometimes the spiritual opening comes in what appears to be a miraculous fashion and the direction of the individual’s life takes a major turn. This goes beyond a brief glimpse of the spiritual truth which can fade and require renewal in order for it to stabilise and solidify the direction. Such a sudden opening may come with a near-death experience, as there are many instances where an individual awakes and knows that he needs to focus on the spiritual aspect of life. It may of course happen through other means. In each case, it is clear that much preparation has taken place behind the scenes, either in the current lifetime or in past lifetimes, so that the way forward is obvious. Obstacles may arise, but they become part of the process of working through the limitations of the body-life-mind complex and moving the spiritual development forward to a new level of realisation.

Sri Aurobindo writes: “If the change comes suddenly and decisively by an overpowering influence, there is no further essential or lasting difficulty. The choice follows upon the thought, or is simultaneous with it, and the self-consecration follows upon the choice. The feet are already set upon the path, even if they seem at first to wander uncertainly and even though the path itself may be only obscurely seen and the knowledge of the goal may be imperfect. The secret Teacher, the inner Guide is already at work, though he may not yet manifest himself or may not yet appear in the person of his human representative. Whatever difficulties and hesitations may ensue, they cannot eventually prevail against the power of the experience that has turned the current of the life. The call, once decisive, stands; the thing that has been born cannot eventually be stifled. Even if the force of circumstances prevents a regular pursuit or a full practical self-consecration from the first, still the mind has taken its bent and persists and returns with an ever-increasing effect upon its leading preoccupation. There is an ineluctable persistence of the inner being, and against it, circumstances are in the end powerless, and no weakness in the nature can for long be an obstacle.”

Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, Growing Within: The Psychology of Inner Development, Chapter II Awakening of Consciousness, pg. 18

Author's Bio: 

Santosh has been studying Sri Aurobindo's writings since 1971 and has a daily blog at and podcast at He is author of 17 books and is editor-in-chief at Lotus Press. He is president of Institute for Wholistic Education, a non-profit focused on integrating spirituality into daily life.