Children naturally have direct contact with the universal vital energy but this tends to fade into the background and be ‘lost’ as the mind ‘learns’ the ‘laws of nature’ which do not recognise the energy or its relationship to us. This is a circumstance of the artificially limiting action of the mind hindering the access to the larger reality of existence of which we are a part, and of which we partake at all times.

The question then is more ‘how do we unlearn’ what our minds ‘know’? The heavy programming that takes place to teach children logical thinking, the processes of the mind in relation to the world, and the apparent laws under which things operate must be modified, or removed. Various practices can aid in this process, including receptivity to Nature, the opening to the psychic being, and a sense of Oneness with the larger creation.

The Mother notes: “First of all, you must know that it [universal vital force] exists and that one can enter into contact with it. Secondly, you must try to make this contact, to feel it circulating everywhere, through everything, in all persons and all circumstances; to have this experience, for example, when you are in the countryside among trees, to see it circulating in the whole of Nature, in trees and things, and then commune with it, feel yourself close to it, and each time you want to deal with it, recall that impression you had and try to enter into contact.”

“Some people discover that with certain movements, certain gestures, certain activities, they enter into contact more closely. I knew people who gesticulated while walking … this truly gave them the impression that they were in contact — certain gestures they made while walking … But children do this spontaneously: when they give themselves completely in their games, running, playing, jumping, shouting; when they spend all their energies like that, they give themselves entirely, and in the joy of playing and moving and running they put themselves in contact with this universal vital force; they don’t know it, but they spend their vital force in a contact with the universal vital force and that is why they can run without really feeling very tired, except after a very long time. That is, they spend so much that if they were not in contact with the universal force, they would be absolutely exhausted, immediately. And that is why, besides, they grow up; it is also because they receive more than they spend; they know how to receive more than they spend. And this does not correspond to any knowledge. It is a natural, spontaneous movement. It is the movement… a movement of joy in what they are doing — of joyful expenditure. One can do many things with that.”

Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, Living Within: The Yoga Approach to Psychological Health and Growth, General Methods and Principles, Recuperating One’s Energies, pp. 17-22

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 16 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.