In his book The Mother, Sri Aurobindo outlines the personal effort to be made by the seeker of the Divine. This consists of the movements of aspiration, rejection and surrender. Aspiration means the inner focus and dedication to achieving the divine consciousness and living in that consciousness. Rejection means to root out the thoughts, feelings, emotions, reactions, habits, cravings and physical weaknesses that distract the individual from the focus needed, and which are based in the ego-consciousness rather than in the divine standpoint. Surrender means that once one has gained contact with the divine consciousness, one must be faithful to its direction and purposes and not indulge in any cross-purposes suggested by the vital desire-self on the surface of the being. The psychological transformation this implies requires detailed and vigilant effort until such time as the divine consciousness has gained complete control of the being in both its nature and in its actions.

Sri Aurobindo writes: “There are many ways of opening to this Divine Consciousness or entering into it. My way which I show to others is by a constant practice to go inward into oneself, to open by aspiration to the Divine and once one is conscious of it and its action, to give oneself to it entirely. This self-giving means not to ask for anything but the constant contact or union with the Divine Consciousness, to aspire for its peace, power, light and felicity, but to ask nothing else and in life and action to be its instrument only for whatever work it gives one to do in the world. If one can once open and feel the Divine Force, the Power of the Spirit working in the mind and heart and body, the rest is a matter of remaining faithful to it, calling for it always, allowing it to do its work when it comes and rejecting every other and inferior force that belongs to the lower consciousness and the lower nature.” Sri Aurobindo, Integral Yoga: Sri Aurobindo’s Teaching and Method of Practice, The Integral Yoga and the Ordinary Life, pg. 14

Author's Bio: 

Santosh Krinsky has been studying Sri Aurobindo's writings since 1971 and is the author of 16 books of Readings in Sri Aurobindo's major works. He is also editor-in-chief at Lotus Press and President of the Institute for Wholistic Education, a non profit devoted to the integration of spirituality into daily life. He writes a daily blog at