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November 25, 2020

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

Video series: Exhibition, the Future Realisation, Aurodhan Gallery Pondicherry, 2014

Q&A with PNB, Aurodhan Art Gallery, Pondicherry, 27 Feb 2014

Below is a list of links to The Future Realisation Exhibit Video Series, featuring footage and Q&A with Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet from the exhibition which took place 9-27 February 2014 at Aurodhan Art Gallery in Pondicherry. The exhibition was a presentation ‘connecting the Supramental Gnosis of the Mother to the Vedic Age’ and featured the sacred measurements given by the Mother regarding the Inner Chamber of her Temple, from 31 December 1969 to 17 January 1970. The videos discuss the significance of these sacred measures in terms of the Supramental Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and the fact that these measures were not employed in the building of the Auroville Matrimandir

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

Guidebook and Video series: Exhibition, The Future Realisation, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi, 2015

Aeon Centre of Cosmology presented “The Future Realisation” (TFR) exhibition at the Mati Ghar gallery, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), in New Delhi, January 1-15, 2015. Mati Ghar was designed by its architects with the “cosmic dimension of a temporal reality” in mind and is “composed as three concentric rings, their radii in the proportion of 1:2:3, and with the radial division of the outermost, middle & innermost ring into twelve, twenty four and thirty six equal divisions respectively.” Thus this space was the perfect venue to display the Mother’s Supramental Gnosis and sacred measure, in which the numbers 12, 24 and 36 figure prominently as measures of the Cosmic Mother, the Mother of Light in the Vedic tradition.

The Mother saw the luminous core of her temple as ‘the symbol of the future realisation’ and from this act of seeing the exhibition takes its name. Aeon Centre of Cosmology utilised the inner, middle and outer rings of Mati Ghar to display ‘The Core’, ‘The Foundation’ and ‘The Application’ of the Mother’s vision and gnosis.

The Core

The sanctum sanctorum of the Mother’s Temple is one of its kind and may be considered the first cultural expression of the Supramental Truth-Consciousness. Her vision is not to be confused with a construction in cement and steel; the foremost material adequate for a construction of this unique quality is the light of Gnosis. This exhibition, following the Mother’s precise architectural plan, reveals the third stage of the revolutionary mission of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother of Pondicherry.

The Innermost Gallery is the Core; in sacred architecture it is the Garbha Griha. In this intimate space there is a model of the Globe and Pedestal as found at the centre of the Chamber’s original plan, a contemporary updating of the geometric vedi (altar) of the Vedic Age.

The Foundation

The Middle Gallery highlights panels to illustrate four different views of the Chamber based on the original plan which the Mother revealed to a select few in January 1970: Transcendent (9), Cosmic (6) Individual (3) and Integral (0-1). Reproductions of paintings and sculptures of mythology are presented to assist viewers in relating the abstract concept of numbers to the more familiar personifications of these cosmic energies.

The Application

The Outermost Gallery contains elements of a new and unique indo-centric cosmology. It integrates number, cosmic harmonies and geometry with India as centre in a first-ever geo-cosmological formulation.

Thea teaching about the Zodiacal Ruler

The ultimate message of the Future Realisation exhibition is that the temple is within. The Core of the Mother’s inspired vision is the property of each individual; its light as we see in the translucent Globe—is within. In this new age the task is to become the Temple—to unveil that light and free it from the shadows that until now have covered the soul’s luminous rays.

Excerpts from The Future Realisation Guidebook

Sri Aurobindo wrote early in the last century, The body of the knowledge remained but the soul had fled from its covering. …

It is time to retrieve what was lost and, in addition, to resurrect the knowledge foundation of every Hindu Temple, large or small, that graces this sacred bhoomi, since the zodiac is the source of most myths; and myth is the narrative of the temple, its heart and soul. There has never been a conceptualisation as sophisticated and as saturated with higher knowledge than the Hindu Temple. However, the time has come to re-connect the later developments to the ancient Veda and on that basis to re-establish the Eternal Way. It is the task awaiting us in this period of Vishnu’s last stride.

All we do or create must be consistent with the abiding spirit of India, but framed to fit into a greater harmonised rhythm and plastic to the call of a more luminous future. [Sri Aurobindo, Foundations of Indian Culture, p.43]

But in no way is this a fundamentalist effort to bring forward a past unenhanced by the centuries between then and now. The Sanatana Dharma has the very special characteristic, unique on the planet today, of an in-built mechanism of renewal. This mechanism relies on the accurate placement in time of the Vishnu Line of Ten—veritably the backbone of the Dharma. To do so the cosmic connection must be re-forged, a specific task of each of Vishnu’s emanations. The central purpose of this exhibition is to assist the public to better appreciate not only the purpose of avatarhood, but that regardless of the appearances, to be born in the age of the descent of the Avatar is a supreme boon.

Aeon Centre of Cosmology brings to a larger audience than ever before allowed, the once hidden knowledge, revealed only to an initiated elite. We entered the Aquarian Age of the 9th Manifestation in 1926, therefore we take up the task ordained by the Time-Spirit to place before the world what was once reserved for a privileged few because in this Aquarian Age the masses are uplifted, the Earth, field of the transformation, is cleansed, cobwebs and shadows are removed by the light of the supramental Truth-Consciousness captured in the Mother’s inspired architectural plan, the garbha griha for the new Age. Therein we see the structure of the Soul, if it may be so called.

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

The Mother’s Chamber, an appeal for America in defense of the Sacred Feminine, 2 – 4 August, 2015 , Part One:

In early January of 1970, the Mother, Sri Aurobindo’s co-worker, had a vision that changed forever the conceptual nature and relevance of the sacred in geometry and architecture. Nothing like it had ever occurred; nor is it likely to recur. This was more than just a vision – phenomenal occultist that she was, the Mother had the ability to navigate through many dimensions, from the most dense to the most ethereal. On that momentous occasion she moved into what is known from the very ancient Vedic Age in India as the Solar World, Swar in the Rig Veda. What she ‘saw’ there was a ‘hidden chamber closed and mute’, as described by Sri Aurobindo in his epic poem Savitri, Book 1, Canto 5:

The body’s rules bound not the spirit’s powers;
When life had stopped its beats, death broke not in;
He dared to live when breath and thought were still.
Thus could he step into that magic place
Which few can even glimpse with hurried glance
Lifted for a moment from mind’s labored works
And the poverty of Nature’s earthly sight.
All that the Gods have learned is there self-known,
There in a hidden chamber closed and mute
Are kept the record graphs of the cosmic scribe,
And there the tables of the sacred Law,
There is the book of Being’s index page,
The text and glossary of the Vedic truth
Are there; the rhythms and metres of the stars
Significant of the movements of our fate:
The symbol powers of number and of form,
And the sacred code of the history of the world
And Nature’s correspondence with the soul
Are written in the mystic heart of life.

The Mother’s feat did not end merely with a vision of the chamber. The truly astonishing part came when she called in the Ashram engineer, Udar Pinto, and drew up a minutely detailed floor plan to explain to the architect exactly what had to be built, respecting above all the measurements and the precise arrangements for a ray of the Sun to enter the chamber at all times of the day. To achieve this exactitude she requested the services of an engineer rather than an architect for the sake of the precision required.

It was the Mother’s act of measuring that linked the vision to the most ancient Vedic Age and placed it not only on a par with certain extant structures that indicate the presence of a now-lost knowledge such as the Great Pyramid at Giza, but far above them in that she brought to the Earth what is known as the Divine Measure. She accomplished what St John had prophesied in Revelation as the ‘golden reed’, Chapter XXI-15:

And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof.

Thus was born the Geometry of Time that is the foundation-stone of the new cosmology. The Golden Reed is the measurement of the descending solar ray falling into the translucent Globe and Pedestal of the core of the chamber. With its precisely-given measure of 15.20m, the symbol of the future realisation became ‘materialised’ – or better, the tool that makes the supramental Gnosis applicable for Earth use became operable.

One would logically have expected her vision and plan to have been received with great joy by her entourage, with the highest respect and appreciation for what she herself described as ‘the symbol of the realisation of the future’. Lamentably this was not the case. Nonetheless, it is providential that the disciple charged with conveying to the architect the description of her vision had taped those discussions that covered 18 days, from 31.12.1969 to 17.1.1970. What they reveal is a determined attempt by her entourage to alter every single item and never accept the plan from her hands, following her repeated order to ‘make no changes’. The tapes also reveal that since the Mother was then 90 years old she had difficulty speaking; this seems to have emboldened her entourage to take advantage of the situation.

Changes were indeed made while she was present on Earth. New plans were drawn up which the chief architect insists she ‘blessed’, thereby giving her approval. What the taped discussions reveal is something quite different: she had no choice. Thus, she closed the issue of the implementation of her plan on 17.1.1970, with these words: ‘But you know, I do not believe in external decisions. I believe simply in one thing: the force of the Consciousness that makes PRESSURE like this [gesture of pressing from above] and the pressure is increasing…which means that it will sort out the people…I believe only in that: the pressure of the Consciousness. All the rest, they are things men do; they do it more or less well, then it lives, and then it dies, and then it changes, and then it becomes deformed, and then… – everything that they have done. It is not worth it. The power of execution must come from above, like that, imperative.’ (17.1.1970)

The result is that the ‘soul’ of the new creation she saw and measured in the solar world was never built. It became not a chamber in the Divine’s image but rather in man’s, reproducing most accurately in its symbolism man as he stands today, with the ego central and not the soul – much less the soul of the Supramental Creation of her vision: in her words, ‘the things men do’. That this Shadow Temple came into being as it has, perfectly reproducing in geometric symbols the ego structure of the human being, in itself is a remarkable demonstration of one of Supermind’s prime demands: to put each thing in its rightful place.

We accept that. We accept that the builders and the community wilfully chose to build the architect’s version and not the Mother’s original before anything had been built, and that they have the right to choose in this Age of Aquarius. However, what is unacceptable is that the structure was publicised thereafter as the ‘the Mother’s original’. When this came to light it was the signal that an immediate intervention was required. In the years that followed this took the form of the Matrimandir Action Committee (MAC); the details of that particular campaign can be accessed at www.matacom.com.

Already by mid-1975 the building coming up at the centre of the township was lost to higher knowledge forever. It could only serve to expose the actual condition of the human species – a shadow of the light – and nothing more. But the question to ask is why, after deliberately choosing to construct the architect’s plan and not the Mother’s, before anything had been built, (see www.matacom.com for factual evidence), was it necessary to hide this from the public for years by fair or foul means. The answer is that the tradition of sacred architecture is alive and well in India, and the vision of the Seer is sacrosanct in these matters; therefore it could never be made known to the Mother’s devotees and the public throughout the world that what was actually being built was not her original. Indians, true to their ancient culture of respect for a Sage’s vision, would never have donated funds for the project, knowing the facts of the case.

On my part the real issue was not one of funds, and the like. It was that the Shadow could not be handed down to posterity as the Mother’s vision. And this was what their agenda seemed to be – or at least this was the result. Even as late as 2013, in spite of our persistent campaign to expose the truth, visitors from the Ashram to Aeon Centre of Cosmology informed us that they were regularly conducting tours to the Matrimandir and presenting to the visitors what stands there as ‘the Mother’s original’. In my view there can be no more grievous transgression than to distort the truth in full awareness in such an unforgivable manner. I repeat, the transgression is not necessarily that of having chosen to discard her vision; it is the misrepresentation that followed and lasted for many years. Ample evidence is provided on MAC’s website, as well as in the second volume of my autobiographical study, The Tenth Day of Victory (Aeon Books).

The chamber saga did not end there, with the misrepresentation of the Mother’s vision in the Shadow Temple. The attempts to suppress awareness of the fact that she had such a vision were continuous, from 1970 to the present; we have documented evidence to prove that the powers-that-be who rule over Sri Aurobindo’s and the Mother’s legacy will not allow this information to leak out – and when it does, as in 2013, the tactic remains, as always, to discredit. In fact, this saga makes the Dan Brown thrillers pale in comparison; the difference is that this is a real-life documented conspiracy and not fiction. At this point, after 45 years have passed since her original breakthrough, there is ample evidence to suggest that like the author conveyed in his best-selling novel, what has been under attack from the outset is nothing less than the reinstatement of the Sacred Feminine.

To appreciate the fullest implications it is necessary to understand why the Mother’s vision and act of measuring were so important in the long labour to regain what was decimated during the Age of Pisces. During those 2000 years prior to our times, Goddess worship throughout the world was decimated. For Europe the final blow came in 396 CE with the closure of the Eleusinian Mysteries and the rise to supremacy of Christianity. Until that time the sacred symbol of the faith was different than what we know today. It was the Ichthyus, or Fish symbol, in keeping with the movement of the Ages into Pisces, the Fish of the zodiac. About the time the Goddess was smothered under a blanket of darkness, the Cross displaced the earlier symbol; its supremacy continues until today.

Scholars and even occultists, or what Dan Brown calls symbologists, in my view have not understood that this displacement by the off-centred Cross is a precise revelation of the calamities we face today in all areas of life, even down to the constant rape of the Earth by a humanity that has lost touch with the Feminine. We are playing out the rape of Persephone, the Divine Demeter’s daughter and the central figure of the Eleusinian Mysteries. The Damocles Sword that hangs over our heads, threatening by one form or another a complete destruction of the human species and the planet we inhabit, is rendered perfectly clear if we delve deeply into the true meaning of the symbolism of the crucified Son. Even more telling with regard to the Sacred Feminine is his resurrection to join his Father in heaven; certainly not on Earth, or to bring about the New Heaven and the New Earth prophesied in Revelation. I quote from my Explorations into the Leonardo Mysteries(2005, Aeon Books), a scholar’s findings on the shift from Fish to Cross; the timing is important to note because it occurred at the end of the Eleusinian Mysteries in 396 CE, when the Goddess was finally extirpated from Europe’s religio-cultural experience:

‘When questioned about changing Christian symbols over time, Diane Apostolos-Cappadona states in an interview: ‘The fish has had multiple connections and meanings, from the Last Supper to the risen Christ. The fish was found in original depictions of the Last Supper… [It] had many meanings in early Christianity; then, it basically disappeared from the Christian consciousness…only to return in the late twentieth century when the ichthyus was retrieved, or rediscovered, as a symbol. It, not the cross, was the first symbol of Christian identity. The cross didn’t become an identifying and visual symbol until the fourth and fifth centuries…’. (Secrets of the Code, Dan Burnstein, Orion Books 2005.)

Yes, we have played out the Mother/Daughter myth of ancient Greece. After Persephone is abducted and carried away to the Underworld, it is said that Demeter withdrew her grace from the Earth, the crops withered and all sorts of calamities ensued while Demeter mourned the loss and roamed the Earth far and wide in search of her beloved Daughter. I have always sustained that myths, the language of the Soul, are tales of recurrent history – and are therefore universal. Indeed, we are playing out the tale, from the rape (have not women been subjugated to unspeakable physical and psychological horrors, with no end in sight?) to the withering away of the Earth’s offerings.

The Chamber Saga tells us that the culmination has been reached. The chamber the Mother saw andmeasured is the contours in sacred geometry of the Earth’s Soul (Persephone). This is what is required to save the Earth. This is the grace of the Divine Demeter restored. The New Creation must and will be centred on that luminous truth and not the ego, for the Great Mother herself took birth along with her Daughter, the Kore (Kumari in India), to whom she passed on this treasure to save the Earth and restore the Sacred Feminine for all times to come.

I have called the Son’s crucifixion a cosmic aberration. It indicates the conclusive victory of Death. More to the point, it makes of the Earth (the ravished Persephone) Pluto’s Underworld. The precise meaning, because of which I call it a cosmic aberration, is that the evolutionary process the Earth is destined to house is brought to an end if that symbol of the crucified Son and his off-centred Cross is to be the last word of our existence.

The Supramental Shakti has, however, numerous contingency plans up her voluminous sleeve; one of the most meaningful is the Mother’s chamber. The symbolism of its Core is the prophecy in sacred geometry of the Son Victorious and not crucified; it confirms the descent of the Supramental Gnosis as the next level of evolution. Armed with this weapon and its power of Gnostic Truth, the Goddess conquers, and, just as the culmination of the Greek Mysteries portrayed, the initiates chant: Brimos is born of Persephone! The Mother’s chamber-core even tells us the precise year.

That sacred birth, however it was conveyed in the ritual, for the acolytes were sworn to secrecy and none were allowed to reveal explicit details, brings the Fourth Power, the Son, to Earth, and not relegated to any transcendent heaven, just as the Mother’s chamber-core reveals by its sacred geometry. Triptolemos, the conqueror of the ‘three wars’, as he was known, does not fall in line with the Negators and Nay-sayers who seek to prolong the rule of Death and Pluto’s victory. He is the Son Victorious – even as Shiva’s and Parvati’s son Kartikeya is known in India. His coming indicates the transformation, definitive and conclusive, of the fourth planet Mars and all that the planet signifies for the Earth in the human species.

How this relates to the Sacred Feminine is simple to explain: the crucified Son indicates that the play of thegunas, or the Divine Shakti’s play of energy, is interrupted. That play is threefold. In the cosmic harmonies it is expressed as Creation (Rajas), Preservation (Sattva), and Tamas (Dissolution). Without the Fourth Power, the Son, Tamas/Dissolution operates only as Destruction; whereas the true harmony, the true cosmic experience requires Dissolution. This becomes the case if the threefold movement is completed – that is, the movement is not interrupted to force Destruction/Death. Therefore it is said that Inertia is the greatest enemy of humankind. Only if that Fourth Power is impeded in adding his capacity of reversal to the play, can Inertia win the day; he reverses the movement and draws it back to Rajas. From there the play begins again renewed, replenished of energy for another round into eternity.

The glory of our Age is the descent into Earth time of the embodiments of the three gunas, ‘through a wonder cleft in the bounds of birth’, as the poet sings, for without this completion the Earth is not saved and doom and gloom prevail.

Incompletion – this is where the aberration comes in: this collapse of energy. Death can never happen as long as the Goddess IS. Hence the desperate attempt during the last Age of Pisces to eliminate any trace of her supremacy and to install in the deepest layers of the human being’s collective consciousness the victory of Death via the Son Crucified. With it went the grand undermining through dogmas that also became rooted deeply in the human collective sub-consciousness: eternal damnation. The worst part is we persist in allowing this to be taught to children from the tenderest age.

Given the content of the Mother’s chamber, that ‘forces’ rose up as in one voice to suppress the knowledge of its existence, should not surprise us. In spite of the trials and tribulations we have had to experience over the past 40 years to keep the vision alive, it has been a fascinating adventure – indeed, far surpassing any fictional thriller. Fascinating to witness is that all, positive and negative, became the tools for its preservation and final overcoming. Using the off-centred poise of man, the Divine Shakti was able to ‘sort out’ those who could ‘build the temple’. When the Mother handed the matter over to the Divine Consciousness for this sorting out, she did so confidently because she knew that her Act of Seeing and Measuring, once having occurred could not be erased from the evolutionary matrix. That is, in the very act of penetrating the Solar World where ‘angels fear to tread’ because one must pass through Death’s realm (which the Mother did in April 1962) before reaching those luminous heights, the Mother opened the passage-way down upon which the new solar creation descends. Sri Aurobindo describes it in his poem A God’s Labour:

Heaven’s fire is lit in the breast of the earth
And the undying suns here burn;
Through a wonder cleft in the bounds of birth
The incarnate spirits yearn
Like flames to the kingdoms of Truth and Bliss:
Down a gold-red stair-way wend
The radiant children of Paradise
Clarioning darkness’s end.
A little more and the new life’s doors
Shall be carved in silver light
With its aureate roof and mosaic floors
In a great world bare and bright.
I shall leave my dreams in their argent air,
For in a raiment of gold and blue
There shall move on the earth embodied and fair
The living truth of you. (31-7-1935)

Because it is the Goddess in command, the property over which she presides in the cosmic manifestation is movement, motion. Indeed, this is her very essence – and therefore she rules over all things that move: as long as movement IS, she is. Thus, as long as the universe exists, so does the Sacred Feminine and each step forward brings to fruition her Divine Plan. Therefore her only enemy is Inertia, and this is symbolised in the crucified Son. He resurrects, this much is certain – but it is to rise up and away from our woebegone planet Earth, and to pass into the static peace of the transcendence of his Father in heaven, and Earth left bereft of the Sacred Feminine. In this light, in order that the dogma be maintained, our planetary base can never be allowed to experience the Life Divine Sri Aurobindo prophesied. It has to be the hell it presently is.

Sri Aurobindo took birth to reverse that flight. The Mother took birth to re-establish in the hearts of human beings the truth of the cosmic manifestation, as only the Great Mother Demeter could do. The third, her Daughter, took birth to forge the bridge between the cosmos and this Earth – that ‘gold-red stair-way’ of Sri Aurobindo’s vision-poem – on the basis of the secrets she inherited from the Mother in her chamber’s plan, and to thereby eradicate once and for all times to come the rule of Pluto on Earth. She gives birth to Brimos as the myth foretells, and he conquers for his two Mothers on this very Earth.

The two mothers in whom is the Truth, in whom is the mage-wisdom, formed him and brought him to birth like an infant child, they have put him firm in his place and make him grow. Men found in him the navel-centre of all that is moving and stable and they weave by the mind the weft of the seer.(Rig Veda, X, 5)

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

On the Nature of Centreship: a Message to India 1, 11 January 2013

‘The vehemence of the Amnesty report at this time is what made all this come into greater focus. Secularism…The point is, secularism might indeed intend to give equal rights to all religions, and all the other slogans that go with it. But this is precisely the point: the real battle, the real element being worked out for the Earth is just that: Is it to be the religious consciousness, or the spiritual. This is what ‘Hindu Dharma’ is all about. The Eternal Dharma, that ‘core’ means a SPIRITUAL foundation rather than religious. The West upholds the religious, because that is all it knows, that is as far as it has gone. India alone in the world upholds the Spiritual and not at all the religious. For the past 2000 years, and particularly the past 200, and particularly the past 20, this struggle has been the real motivator of all our problems.‘Let me put it more clearly. The only way to a world of unity and harmony—in other words, exactly the opposite of what we have—is when the basis of the Order is the Spiritual. Unity can only be achieved if that consciousness is the determining force. On the other hand, the religious consciousness is the force of division and disunity. If we want to perpetuate that old world, then we must cling to the religious consciousness, we must ‘protect’ all religions, we must ensure that our nation is founded on that ‘right’, because then we will ensure that it is the religious consciousness which governs India and therefore the world.’ (PNB, extract from a letter to Girilal Jain, 11.5.1991)
Once again hostilities have erupted on the border between India and Pakistan. There is no need to discuss the causes of the recent turmoil; periodically, for one reason or another, this does come to pass. And if we scrutinize these happenings in the light of the new Indo-centric cosmology, it will be clear that such periodic upheavals will continue. The issue is therefore to examine the causes of Partition – the root of it all – in a manner unknown to our contemporary disciplines. The tools I use are cosmological, just as India has done since this civilisation began a slow and steady evolution across the astrological ages. It is as if a building plan had been drawn up using these tools to help the civilisation transition into the time-edifice of our current 9th Manifestation, a period during which India is to become established as the accepted centre of the Earth – that is, the planet’s soul-centre.A Centre defined: superpower irrelevancyIt is appropriate at this point to define centreship, if it may be so called. It is not to be confused with the term superpower. Though this may cause disbelief in many on the subcontinent, it needs to be stated that the destiny of India has nothing to do with being recognised as a superpower. On the contrary. Even to apply the word today to the United States of America is inadequate because the presence or even the necessity of a superpower implies a global society poised binarily – the unavoidable end-product of what I call the Binary Creation. This condition – or affliction, if you will – collapsed in the 1980s when the Wall came down and the Soviet Union, one of the extremities of the binary superpower polarity, fell apart. We refer to what happened then as a ‘velvet revolution’ because there does not seem to be any clear root-cause for such a colossal and relatively peaceful remaking of the world order. But the truth is the dismantling was the first visible effect of what I call the Aquarian Wave which came about due to a set of conspiring circumstances with that singular objective. Everything and everyone then converged to further the operation, to bring an end to a world poised on a binary pole of tension.However the truth be told, it was the Time-Spirit in control of the play of circumstance and who brought the Wall down and did away with the binary condition that had produced two superpowers wedded to interminable hostility. Or rather, that decade marked the beginning of a process of transition to a true new world order based on unity and a perceived oneness governing our societal exchanges. Therefore I stated that the issue of superpower does not exist in the new order that is already evolving in our midst. It was the correct nomenclature for the Binary Creation – i.e., the linear structure based on a fragmentary, divisive outlook ruled by Mind as the highest principle influencing the evolving species. If we wish to understand the limitations of a species under the aegis of Mind we need only observe the world the human being has created. Our societies across the globe have clearly reached a point of near collapse, the finality of just such an incomplete condition.In order to rectify the situation adjustments are brought about. To this end there is a yogic process behind any given break-through, particularly when a monumental transition to a new spherical order of unity is the objective. Indeed the current passage was preceded by just such a breakthrough. It occurred in the first half of that singularly-important ennead of the last century, 1980-89. What occurred in 1983, to be precise, was a process of centering and consequent re-alignment, the outcome of bringing into being, through yogic processes, the Centre that fills the Void. It is to be noted that the breakthrough, though yogic and unknown to the layperson, had a cosmological foundation. It was the first step on the road to establishing a new world order with its accompanying revolutionising paradigm, a product of a faculty higher than Mind.
The binary see-sawWhat relation does this have to the current disturbances on the border? The question is pertinent because the issue underlying the trials and tribulations of the past 100 years on the subcontinent is society’s determined refusal to eschew the now-surpassed paradigms of the 8th Manifestation and to give way to the new unitary order. The goal of the process is for India to take possession of the world’s cosmological centre; that is, the geo-cosmological Centre as presented in The Partition of India (2009). That document describes the cosmic properties of centrality upon which the new world order is based – but it is more than that. This new Indo-centric cosmology finally and conclusively inserts our very planet into the cosmic harmony in her rightful place; thereafter she can contribute legitimately to the overall Harmony on her own terms.This issue demands an in-depth analysis because the hostilities on the subcontinent will not come to an end unless India updates the vision of herself and cosmos that she carries over from the now-concluded (1926) Age of Pisces. We note that it was precisely around the end of Pisces and the beginning of the Age of Aquarius that a definitive consolidation of the Hindu/Muslim divide became established. This was made possible because India had lost her cosmic moorings. By the end of the Age of Pisces she roamed anchorless in the cosmic sea and could therefore be held captive in the binary epistemology of the former Age. To do that Hinduism had to allow itself to be treated as a religion, a categorisation Bharat’s ancient roots could never allow. In the Vedic Age and even in the pre-Christian Old World, exclusivist religions did not exist. They are products of the so-called Kaliyuga which is purported to have begun at Krishnavatar’s demise. And I have pointed out in earlier publications (The Gnostic Circle, 1975, Aeon Books) that the famous kali darkness lasts only until the new light of a principle higher than Mind can effectively take over and begin to re-mould the species in preparation for the new times ahead.Those times are upon us. First of all we need to dismantle the binary polarity of Hindu/Muslim because it is illusory. Hinduism cannot be accommodated within a linearity of this nature, something entirely foreign to its essence. But the next question to ask is how did it factually happen that the ancient pre-religion civilisation of Vedic origin became trapped on this see-saw finally resulting in Partition?The answer lies precisely in the fact that India lost the anchor she had securely maintained in the cosmic surround. Despite protests to the contrary, her renowned ‘cosmic connection’ became disrupted during the Age of Pisces when the rise of Religions took centre-stage and moulded the world we know today. The multi-faceted constellation of beliefs enjoyed in the pagan world – that is, the situation prevailing in every society and culture across the globe – could not be accommodated during the Age of Pisces, an astrological period known for its self-undoing propensities. The limitation of Exclusivism was the required instrument of the time.
In the extract of the 1991 letter quoted at the beginning of this message, the issue was religious or spiritual. This conforms to the terminology the world was familiar with at the time; if we were to use different terms to express the newness that was taking shape, hardly any would be able to follow. I have included the extract precisely for this reason: to reveal the limitations that closet India in a pattern inherited from the former Dark Age. In clinging to the old formulas India is found to be as rigid as other conservative and even fundamentalist societies, though Hindus believe the contrary. Fundamentalism has many guises; precisely for this reason it is so hard to eradicate.Much yoga has passed under the bridge of time since 1991. The breakthrough of the 1980s discussed earlier set on its way the first concrete attempts at a very different understanding of the matter. The unitary consciousness being established since then could not occur on the basis of spirituality as its supporting pillar. In fact, the dichotomy Religion or Spirituality, as it has reached us in the Age of Aquarius, was the result of passage through an age of darkness. This binary terminology did not exist in the Vedic period. Then it was Dharma and a society faithful to its dictates that was the sustaining pillar of the civilisation. Contemporary thinkers have translated the word as religion because when this came about we were in the thick of the Binary Creation, moving toward a definitive collapse that would begin with the onset of the new age in 1926.To rid the world of the Binary, a faculty considerably higher than Mind had to be introduced in the evolutionary matrix through yogic means, precisely because Mind, dualistic as it is, was the begetter of the religious consciousness. We can go further to state that the spirituality inherited from the former Age bears all the limitations of a mental constriction. Finally, it has become the staunchest propagator of the strategy of escape and therefore the primary cause of the Earth’s woes. This statement will be found disturbing, but if one has the courage to probe the matter deeply, there can be no other conclusion.When the motor of evolution reached the point when it was ready to carry the species up the ladder to a higher level, the mental constriction breathed its last, but not before energetically leaving its stamp on the species in the form of a distortion of the very element that would be its sustenance in the new order of unity. Therefore, through yogic methods the 9th Avatar (not to be confused with Gautam the Buddha) did succeed in imprinting the principle that would displace Mind and cause the earlier dichotomy to be superseded – that is, the truth-conscious Supermind. The decades following 1926 consolidated this imprinting, and gradually with Mind superseded the higher principle has been able to create the conditions for its complete emergence.Consequently, at this point we can no longer revert to the old nomenclature in the effort to convey the contours of the new world order.
Sphericality definedWhile the political/diplomatic binary world of superpowers has collapsed, the linear hold of religions is merely at the initial stage of responding to the Time-Spirit’s pressure for change. An unmistakable indication is the intransigence observed in a rising fundamentalism across the globe. No society is free from this type of reaction to the Aquarian Wave whose intent is to do away with the Binary Creation under whatever guise it presents itself. The goal, I repeat, is a Unitary Creation, spherically poised around a centre, no longer linear. This will be completely set in place when India agrees to accept her centre-ship, when, in a reversal of the poet’s words, the Centre WILL hold. She will then abandon the mesmerising aspiration to become a superpower, for that simply indicates a clinging to the old binary formulation with its now outdated nomenclature that does not express the true reality of the new world order she is destined to facilitate. It indicates her reticence to move ahead on the crest of the Aquarian Wave and to be the channel for the ‘waters’ the Water Carrier dispenses upon Earth from his cosmic kumbha or jug. Millions of Hindus celebrate this astrological event at Allahabad precisely during the month of the Aquarian Kumbha. But the point is missed when the oneness is overlooked between the ‘water’ he carries in his kumbha and those the heavenly Ganga releases periodically upon Earth – provided the correct anchoring is done in calendrical/zodiacal time to permit reception of the River-Goddess’ boundless grace, just as the myth describes. The ‘jug’ is filled with her beneficent, re-vitalising energies; therefore her sign, Capricorn, precedes Aquarius in the wheel and the celebration should rightfully begin in her period – more specifically, when her sacred Source is reached in our annual zodiacal time-journey. This is January 3rd in calendar time each year, or when the Sun is seen to occupy the 12th degree of the sign. As centre, India can bridge the heavens to engage in this replenishing directly from the Source. (The New Way, Vol.2, Chapter 9, Aeon Books, 1981)Pervasive senselessness: a civilisation without ‘purpose’We have discarded the true Harmony. We have pulled up the Anchor from the ecliptic wherein we and all the planets orbit the Sun, the Anchor which should serve to steady us in the cosmic surround. For instance, we have allowed the split between astrology and astronomy to rule our lives and to limit this ancient civilisation to a binary shadow of its former unitary poise. What we fail to realise is that the split between the acknowledged mother-of-all-sciences and the contemporary discipline we call scientific cosmology, which is based on an astronomy devoid of sense and purpose, is the root-cause of much of the pain the Earth suffers. Indeed, astrology’s primary aim is precisely to offer sense and purpose to life on this planet. In this view evolution is part and parcel of the cosmic harmony which, through the zodiac or the Vedic journey along the 12-stage ecliptic plane, that sense could be known and consciously lived in a progressive evolution to ever higher plateaus of consciousness-being. It is this divine Purpose the enriching waters of Ganga nourish.The ancients did not revel in the observation of phenomena as an end in itself. Their goal was simply to preserve the Anchor intact and to assure that the individual and society would never lose the cosmic connection by an incorrect positioning in the ecliptic plane in orbit of the grand luminary, a misplacement the currently-used Nirayana system of astrology and ritual timings promotes. A ‘dark age’ or a Kaliyuga is defined by that loss: the light of the Sun is eclipsed and an all-pervading darkness chills the mind and spirit of humanity, allowing for all sorts of distortions which blot out the soul’s luminosity. But exposure to the light by yogic processes is the key, failing which the Harmony continues but the perceiver can no longer find his place therein. The vision of Oneness is lost and the result is pure and simple chaos.That is the definition of our present collapsing world. It is being carried away by the Aquarian Wave as by a veritable tornado, but no one really knows why and when the disaster began or what its finality will be. The Anchor is pulled out of the cosmic sea and like a rudderless ship civilisation meanders aimlessly toward a sombre unknown. This is the inevitable end to a world where sense and purpose have been lost, to a world beholden to the rule of Mind.Is a total devastation to be permitted? One thing above all else is certain: the emergence of this new creation is under the complete control of the Time-Spirit, more apparent now, on the basis of the new paradigm, than ever before. But it operates with an impeccable control when order prevails; chaos is its enemy and therefore the task we are set upon is to re-establish that Order, but now in the new mould provided by the truth-conscious Supermind. Therefore, to know the goal of the Zeitgeist’s pre-planned new Order we must turn to the cosmic harmony itself to discover the nature of the anchoring that can create order out of chaos. We must have the courage to discard the cosmic formulas of the Dark Age and, above all, to realise that India cannot pretend to re-shape herself and re-fashion her destiny in any manner other than what the Indo-centric cosmology establishes. She must do away with those time-bound formulas that are carrying this civilisation farther and farther away from consciously occupying the geo-cosmological Centre that is her dharmic right.
Centreship as ‘cosmological constant’It needs to be emphasised that the role of a planetary geo-cosmological Centre is to serve as the bridge to ‘the other side’ for the entire planet, as defined in the new paradigm beyond science and spirituality. (See: Beyond Contemporary Scientific Paradigms – an essay on ‘End Time’) That is, the Centre provides a direct connection to the source of those ‘heavenly waters’ of the sacred Ganga that the Water Carrier dispenses upon Earth in this Aquarian Age. For this reason her astrological ruler is Capricorn/Makar, the zodiacal sign that opens before us with the December Solstice each year when the Light begins to increase and when, in a direct connection, the Earth and the heavens can be bridged to receive the grace India deserves when she consciously embraces her role as cosmological constant for the world. India as geo-cosmological Centre is to the Earth what the soul is to individual incarnation. The soul contains the individual’s private portal to the Source. Similarly, India, as the planet’s own soul, is the link or the portal to an ever-replenishing, eternal fount of light and power and bliss. Unique among cultures she is the cosmological constant that connects the comity of nations to ‘the other side’ where the source of Light and Power is found.In the effort to encourage a dismantling of the old and the definitive unveiling of the new cosmology that establishes India as centre, I am presenting once again The Partition of India wherein that geo-cosmology is clearly defined – and with it the understanding that the end of all conflicts will come about when the updating is completed and India re-anchors herself in the cosmic harmony she lost touch with centuries ago and which then left her vulnerable and empty. This emptiness permitted the possession and ravaging of the body of Mother India time and time again, leaving her subject to lesser effete formulations, in contrast to the robustness of her Vedic Soul with its anchor in the true Zero of the cosmic surround. In that Zero lies fullness. An exuberance of its multi-faceted Self that does not fear diversity because as Centre of a circumscribing firmament it can accommodate all and everything in the periphery it holds to its bosom in the true expression of oneness and unity that destiny demands of this sacred Bhoomi. That true ayanamsha, or the 0 degree beginning of the zodiacal wheel on the March Equinox and no later, is the means to enjoy stability in the midst of an evolving world.The great secret is stability and change, rest and motion, or 0 and 9, as a simultaneous experience of unity and oneness. This new Order can become a reality on Earth but only by and through India because of her destined ‘centreship’, because of which she can bring Swar to Earth.

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

Barbara White, The Geometry of Time – Keys of Gnosis, 4 August, 2015

We are accustomed to thinking of elementary Geometry as a function of Space, a way of plotting out relationships between points on a flat plane. Thea has added a new function for Geometry, a means of connecting points in Time and applying them to real events in the world by date; the year or month or day they occurred. In the Mother’s Chamber, envisioned by her in 1969-70, a central Ray descends from the top of the Chamber and passes through the Globe and Pedestal below where it comes to a halt at the Mother’s upholding symbol. Here at the critical point the vertical descent shifts to the horizontal plane and number values shift from 9-6-3-0 to 1, 2, 3 and so forth. The movement has changed into an energy that pervades all that is encompassed in that point’s wide influence on Earth. It is the birth of Form in the world we sense.

Accuracy is one of the principal attributes of Thea’s work. Although the Mother gave most of the essential measurements in the Chamber she did not give the size of the Pedestal. She stated, however, that the Globe’s diameter was 70cm. Intuiting that something was missing Thea set out to correct this omission.

The atmosphere in the Ashram and Auroville appeared to have reached the lowest ebb….I saw the cause to be that each one was clinging to his or her ideas without making a sincere effort at allowing those of others to evolve… A brittleness existed… A deadlock had been reached…On my part I did not feel that I was separate from what was transpiring, like it or not, I was a part of the Ashram and therefore as responsible for the impasse as everyone else…and because I understood the Mother’s legacy in the inner chamber my responsibility seemed compounded.March 1976, The Tenth Day of Victory, pp. 314-315

She opened herself to a very deep exploration and finally this stalemate was resolved during a supreme act of yoga. Thea was reminded of words she had read of Sri Ramakrishna years earlier: ‘One can give up everything but not truth’. After collecting herself from the force of this experience, Thea intuited ‘…what if the Globe of 70cm is the basis for a vesica piscis construction—vertical, upright—and the lower circle holds the Pedestal?’ (Tenth Day of Victory, AE, Volume 2, Book One p.317) This ancient sacred symbol formed of two equal circles, one overlapping the other, and sharing a common radius proved to be the key to unlocking the supreme knowledge contained in the Core of the Chamber. The reason the Mother had not given this measurement became clear when Thea laid the 70cm vesica piscis over the globe and realised that the bottom circle would contain the pedestal made up of four of Sri Aurobindo’s upright symbols engraved on each side. The Mother had stated that the angles of Sri Aurobindo’s symbol should touch at the corners of the pedestal. When these conditions were met the height of the Pedestal measured 50cm.globe-pedestal-sa-symbol

Thea, The New Way, Vols. 1&2, p. 241

The descent down the central ray marked each Avatar in the Solar Line according to their place by date of birth: the Transcendent (9) 1872, the Cosmic (6)1878, and the Individual (3) 1938 and finally the (Integral) 0 point which shifted to 1 completing the formula: 9, 6, 3, 0/1. This astonishing culmination signaled the rebirth of Sri Aurobindo from the 9 to the 1.In a word, from the Transcendent to the Immanent. This action has remained an unsolved puzzle to those who have considered the problem, but now the method was revealed as a fact and a new science, the Geometry of Time was added to mankind’s keys of knowledge.geometry-of-time-core-1

Introductory Guide to TFR exhibition, Delhi 2015, p. 14

The Ray of the Chamber begins at the top of the Chamber where an aperture lets a beam of sunlight into the room (at night artificial lighting is used). The Ray continues to the floor where it meets the Mother’s symbol. As it passes through the Globe it glows until it reaches the top of the Pedestal at 15.20 and there it continues hidden for an additional 13 days or 50cm until it reaches the floor. This is called the point of Reversal and occurs when the vertical descent shifts to horizontal expansion. The point of Reversal contained a ‘secret’ never before revealed. It indicated that this was “the fourth missing or hidden power [I] had intuited was lacking. This was the secret laid bare of the transmutation of Transcendence to Immanence. Or, as he has described this power in Savitri, the ‘masked Transcendent mounting his throne’. Such was the immensity of the unveiled ‘secret’. It was Sri Aurobindo’s own rebirth.” [The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol.2, No.1, AB, 2014, p.320]

Here, from Sri Aurobindo’s epic, Savitri, is the pertinent passage:

There in a hidden chamber closed and mute
Are kept the record graphs of the cosmic scribe,
And there the tables of the sacred Law.
There is the Book of Being’s index page,
The text and glossary of the Vedic truth
Are there; the rhythms and metres of the stars
Significant of the movements of our fate:
The symbol powers of number and of form.
And the secret code of the history of the world
And Nature’s correspondence with the soul
Are written in the mystic heart of life…Savitri, Book 1, Canto 5

Along this passage through the Globe and Pedestal, the Ray crosses six critical points. They are the top, bottom and center of the Globe and the top, bottom and center of the Pedestal:core-6-points

Thea, The New Way, Vols. 1&2, p. 246

By calculating the measure along the ray of 15.20cm and beginning the Time measure at the top of the Globe with the Time year (22/23 December) or the beginning of the Space year (21/22 March) each of these points can be given a date. The Time year begins with the Winter Solstice when the days are the shortest and always falls on 22/23 December. This date is perfectly stable and can easily be confirmed by scientific observation. The Space Year begins with the first degree of Aries in March. It is thus that the equivalency of Time and Space are measured.

Upon the descending Ray the Geometry of Time is illustrated and can be applied to Earth events in real time. The visible Ray ends at the top of the Pedestal (the Globe glows from within) and the date calculated there is 5 January, which is also the date of the Third’s birth. When using the formula 1 day equals 1 year, it is 1950, the year of Sri Aurobindo’s passing, and continues on down to the bottom where the year is 1963, the year of Sri Aurobindo’s Return.

This is another awe-inspiring aspect of the Geometry of Time. The details in the lives of the Solar Line reveal this content contained in the Core of the Chamber which is a direct result of the Globe’s diameter the Mother insisted on: 70cms. The vesica piscis based on this figure provided the missing Pedestal details.

This was the One born of the Zero. It was confirmed in the Mother’s plan by the measurement of the descending solar Ray, the translucent Globe and the Pedestal—at the exact end of which there is a shift which is described as horizontal from the vertical, no longer triadic but sequential, starting with the 1. This simple element of the design is the key to applicability of the Formula in Earth time.  Her symbol makes this perfectly clear, laying horizontal, upholding the chamber’s Core—because in the New Way symbols are the things symbolised.The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol.2, Book 1, AB, p.321

The alchemy of transmutation in the Pedestal is the miracle life on Earth offers, whereby the Transcendent becomes the Immanent; the vastness beyond is compressed to a ‘seed’: the intensity of compaction gives birth to the One. The pedestal is four-sided, each side of which corresponds to the contents of the soul wherein Transcendent, Cosmic, and Individual creative principles are compacted; the reversal is the great Mystery of our material creation, whereby this side of the material demarcation is joined to the upholder of the universal manifestation ‘on the other side’. Their number equivalents are 9/6/3/0-1.Introductory Guide to TFR exhibition, Delhi 2015, p.14

This ultimate ‘secret’ is the seal of the Supramental Evolutionary process and demonstrates the truth of this phenomenal occurrence which has become real in our time. The Truth prevails and sets in place the Future Realisation. It opens the way to a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of ‘reality beyond relativity: ‘3 dimensions of Time, the 4th of which is the point of Space.’Thea

Another calculation that has arisen from this new Geometry of Time is the height of the Pedestal which equals 13 days. Added to the days of the year 365+13 =378 days which is the synodic period of Saturn. This astonishing concordance confirms the whole construction within our Solar System and demonstrates the Mother as the ‘greatest of all geometricians of the Sacred’.Thea

The act of comprehending and making use of this measure is applied in many instances in Thea’s books. This initial application however stands as the key to all the others and illustrates Thea’s greatest contribution to a new way of seeing and experiencing our cosmos. In fact we may say that science and spirituality have come together in a totally new discipline that rests upon Truth and is valid for the whole Earth.

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

The Mother’s Dialogues on her Temple (continued from Volume 1, no. 5), The Vishaal Newsletter, volume 1, number 6, February 1987.

(We continue in this issue to present the more complete version of the Mother’s Talks on the Matrimandir than appeared as Appendix I of The New Way, Volumes 1&2. The period covered by these dialogues was from 31 December, 1969, to 17 January, 1970, eighteen days in all. The Talks reproduced in this issue are the final two.)

10 January, 1970

            I have a letter from Paolo.

I am going to see him this afternoon.

I told you that I had seen the central building of Auroville…I have a plan. Would you be interested in seeing it?… There are some rolls there.

(The Mother unrolls the plan as she explains.)

There will be twelve facets. And, at an equal distance from the centre, twelve columns. At the centre, on the ground my symbol, and at the centre of my symbol, there are four of Sri Aurobindo’s symbols, upright, forming a square, and on the square, a translucent globe (we don’t know yet in what material). And then when there is sunlight, from the roof the sun will fall in a ray onto it, – nowhere else, only there. When there is no sun, there will be electric spotlights which will send a ray (also ONE ray, not a diffused light) exactly onto it, onto this globe.

There are no doors, but…going deep down, one comes up again into the temple. One goes under the wall, and comes up again inside. It is another symbol. Everything is symbolic.

And then there are no furnishings, but, like here, there is probably first wood on the ground, then over the wood a thick ‘dunlop’ and over that a carpet. The colour must be chosen. Overall it will be white. I am not sure if the symbols of Sri Aurobindo will be white…I don’t think so. I did not see them in white, I saw them in an indefinable colour which was between gold and orange. A kind of colour like that. They will be upright. They will be carved in stone. And a globe which is not transparent but rather translucent. At the bottom (under the globe) there will be a light projected upward. From above there will be the ray of light which will fall onto the centre. And no other lights, no windows, an electric ventilator. And not a single piece of furniture, nothing. A place…for trying to find one’s consciousness.

Outside, it will be something like this…

(The Mother unrolls another plan)

We don’t know if the roof will be completely pointed or…very simple, very simple. It would hold about 200 people….

Well, Paolo’s letter?

Very sweet Mother, I saw Roger [the architect of Auroville] on Sunday. He came to my room and we had lunch together.

With love, I arranged some very beautiful flowers for You and for Roger. You were there with us. We spoke a lot. I felt Roger as a brother.

I told him that Auroville could not be born as any other city (problems of urbanism, sociologic, economic, and all that – later). The beginning must be ‘something else’. For this reason we must begin with the Centre. That Centre must be our lever, our fixed point, the thing in which we can find support in order to leap to the other side – because it is only on the other side that one can begin to understand what Auroville should be. And that Centre must be the form which manifests in matter the content that You can transmit to us on all the planes (even the occult). We should be simply the open and sincere instruments through which you can consolidate that.

And I told him how I felt the need to attain all of that by living the experience inwardly and all united – those  from the East and those from the West – in a vast movement of love, because that is the only cement possible to build ‘something else’.

What he says is good.

 …And the Centre can give us that love immediately because it is love for You!

I told him that in practical terms we could start with a moment of silence, all gathered together, and try to make a complete blank, and in that, with everyone’s aspiration, make the signs for the beginning descend. But all united and all together; especially those who are spiritually more advanced: the Indians.

Roger was in perfect agreement. He said that was really what had to be done.

(The Mother nods)

I will see Paolo this afternoon to give him this plan. Because that is what I saw. We will make it in white marble. Udar has said that he will go to find the marble, he knows the place.

The whole structure in white marble?

Yes, yes.

But Paolo said something to me which I feel is quite right. He said: we are going to build this Centre, we are going to put all our heart and our aspiration into it, into this Centre…

Yes, yes.

And through the years it will become more and more ‘charged’.


So this Centre must be the real thing. This temple should not be removed to build another, bigger one later.

I said that to reassure the people who think that something fantastic is needed. I said, ‘We begin with this, and then we will see…’  You understand? I said, ‘This Centre should be there until the town is completely built, and afterwards we will see…’ Afterwards no one will want to remove it! Because many were thinking of something ‘formidable’.

But he says that from the architectural point of view it is quite possible to extend the thing from the outside, without touching what has already been built.

Yes. Oh, it is quite possible.

Roger said to me, ‘And then, what will we do afterwards?’ I said, ‘Well, we will think about that later!’ It’s that! They don’t know that one must not think. Myself, I didn’t think about it at all, at all, at all – one day, I saw it like that, as I see you. And still now, it is so living, that it is enough for me to look and I see it. And what I saw, was the Centre, and the light falls on it, and then quite naturally while looking at it, I noticed, I said, ‘See, it is like that.’ But it was not thought, I did not think ‘twelve columns and then twelve facets and then…’ I did not think all that. I saw.

It is like these symbols of Sri Aurobindo…when I am speaking of the Centre, I still see four symbols of Sri Aurobindo, which support each other at their corners, like that, and this colour, a strange colour…I don’t know where one could find that. It is an orange-tinted gold, very warm. And it is the only colour in the place, all the rest is white, and the globe is translucent.

Paolo said that he would go immediately to inquire in Italy, at Murano, the place where they make big crystals to find out what size globe can be made. For example one of 30cm in crystal.

The exact measurement is on the plan, it must be marked.

There is a big crystal factory there.

Oh! They make marvellous things there…. Isn’t it marked, the size of the globe?


It can be hollow. It need not be solid, so that it is not too heavy.


This tunnel entrance…. One will enter at a dozen metres or so from the wall, and at the foot of the urn. It will be the urn which will indicate the place of descent. I must choose exactly from which side…and then, it is possible that later, the urn, instead of being outside, will be within the enclosure. Then one could perhaps simply put a great wall all around, and then the gardens. Between the enclosure wall and the building we are going to make now, to have the gardens and the urn. And that wall will have one entrance. One, or several ordinary doors. People could walk around the gardens.

One should fulfil certain conditions in order to have the right to descend into the tunnel and emerge in the temple… That must be a little like an initiation, not just ‘like that’, no matter how…


To Roger, I said, ‘We will see in twenty years’ – so, that kept him calm!

But the first idea was to surround it with water, to make an island so that one would have to cross the water to be able to reach the temple – it is quite possible to make an island…

17 January, 1970

What did you want to say to me?

I have received a visit from Paolo and Nata. There are two things. But first there is the plan of this Centre, – more precisely, of the outside of this Centre.

The outside – I have seen nothing. There is a sketch, it is a sketch by Udar…I did not see anything at all and I am open to all suggestions…and then?

He explained to me something which I found very beautiful, which I wanted to submit to you… When you had spoken of this Centre, in fact for the outside you said, ‘I don’t know if the walls will be at an angle, or if it is the roof which will be at an angle.’ You seemed to hesitate, so Paolo says that he received something like an inspiration, and that he has seen something very like a great shell, of which part was emerging from the surface, and another part would be buried in the earth. And he has drawn a sort of outline which he would like to show to you.

Have they seen Roger also? Because Roger had two ideas, he came to see me with two ideas, and I told him which of the two I preferred but nothing is decided yet. And Roger is to make a sketch of his idea. So I am going to see what Paolo says and then I will tell you Roger’s idea.

(The disciple unrolls the plans)

So you see, here is the outside, which would be simply like a shell. The inside is exactly as you have seen it: this great bare carpet, and then the ball at the centre. And what has given Paolo his inspiration was that you said one would go underground and re-emerge. So he had the idea of going deeply down, to make a spiral staircase here, which would rise again, and on arriving here, there would be a kind of series of stairs, which would come out in the temple itself. So, all the lower part would be in black marble, and all the upper part very simply in white marble. And the whole thing is like a great bud, you see, as if it was growing up from the ground.

Are you sure that he has not seen Roger? Because Roger told me, ‘I want to make a great circle; the interior is exactly a semi-circle, and the other semi-circle would be underground’. He used almost the same words.

Because Paolo told him his idea.

Ah! Paolo told him! Ah, that’s it.

It is like a bud that comes out of the earth.

Yes, yes, that was the first idea that Roger told me, almost identically the same words. And then, his second idea was a pyramid. But I had also thought of a pyramid, and I told him, ‘I thought of a pyramid…’ But he said that he would make both plans and that then we would see. But if that agrees with Paolo’s idea it is very good.

But Roger’s idea, in fact, is Paolo’s idea.

Yes, that’s it.

So, when one arrives at the top of the ‘stalk’ there is a whole series of stairs in all directions, so that one can come out into the temple on any side…and the centre is absolutely bare, and all around there is a kind of gallery, through which one comes out, that is where all these stairways come to. And all will be bare. There will be simply this huge carpet which will be held from corner to corner by these galleries. It will seem as if suspended. All white, all a whole. And there was the question of the twelve columns. Paolo said that he felt that the columns were another ancient symbol which did not go well with the shell, and he said: In place of the twelve columns, one could put symbolically twelve supports, twelve bases of columns, which would act as backrests.

Oh! But the columns have a use, because it is at the top of the columns that the spotlights will be placed which will send the light onto the Centre. There will be light night and day; for the day, openings will be arranged, but as soon as the sun is gone the spotlights will be lit and they will be fixed to the twelve columns and converge onto the Centre.

But, Sweet Mother, if the columns are only useful for the spotlights, they could also be fixed to the walls.

The columns are not near to the wall. The columns are here, exactly half-way between the Centre and the wall.

Because he saw this space at the centre all bare, with just the symbols in the middle and this great carpet all whole, without being broken up by columns. But instead to put like big blocks, twelve big blocks which would indicate the position of the columns and which would serve at the same time as supports.

That has no meaning.

Symbolic meaning? Because you spoke much of the pillars as a support also to the people who would like to sit down.

Oh! For their backs.

So he said that these twelve blocks could be, for example, each one in a different material, like a symbol: twelve different materials.

I saw columns, myself.

On the outer walls the general ventilation will be arranged, which will be electric (no windows), and then on the columns there were the lights…I saw columns, I can’t say. I clearly saw columns.

Oh well, I will tell him that.

As for the gallery all around, I don’t know if I like that much…I did not see it, I saw the walls completely bare, without windows and then the columns, and then the Centre. Of that I am sure because I have seen it and I have seen it for a long time.

Does the shell shape suit you?

That means that it makes a perfect circle: half above, half below…that may do. Only an arrangement must be made for the sun.

Yes, Nata understands very well the question of lighting by prisms – because if one wants to catch a ray of sun, one must use prisms. He says he will solve the problems very easily, he will take care of it. Simply, one puts prisms at a certain number of places, which will capture just a ray of sun.

It must be one ray. What I have seen, one saw one ray.

That’s it. With a prism one sees the ray. So there will be a certain number of geometrical openings according to the movement of the sun… But inside, on the inner walls, the twelve facets will be reproduced.

Yes, yes.

And this, in theory, [The disciple points to the circular gallery] these were the entrances by which one came out of the tunnel.

I am not sure if it is good to multiply the entries like that. There will be a practical problem to solve: if there is one single entrance and there is a very strict surveillance at that entrance, it is all right, but if there are several entrances, and there is not enough light, there will be catastrophes.

No, no Sweet Mother, there will be only one entrance from the outside, but one comes out at the base of the shell, there will be this multiplicity of entries. No, outside there is only one descent, which comes out here, at the foot of this spiral staircase.


He had thought of this gallery all around because he said that would make this central carpet stand out more, all white; it would seem as if floating, detached, instead of being stuck against the wall.

I did not think ‘stuck against the wall’; there was always a passage around the wall.

So it is this passage, with a certain number of bridges. And it was also this idea of bareness which has made him take away the columns.

What I don’t like is the idea of these bridges, because the walls were quite straight, from top to bottom in white marble.

Ah! but the gallery is not high, it is about 30cm above the floor.

Yes, that, that’s all right.

And then he was saying that on that gallery, or rather that border that marks off the passage around, the carpet could come to the angle, cover the angle.

Yes, that’s all right.

Well, good. It is necessary for them to come to an understanding. But it must be half done because Roger spoke to me of this idea. If I had known that it was Paolo’s idea, I would have said yes right away. But it will be arranged. It is going well.

Then I will tell him to work on this basis…the only question to be decided is the outside: should one leave a space around the shell so that the descent can be clearly seen? Otherwise if it is all filled up, it will simply look like a hemisphere resting on the earth. So that one understands properly the descent of this shell beneath the ground he thought of making an opening all around.

I don’t know. I tell you, I have seen nothing for the outside, so I don’t know. But it would be dangerous, one could fall.

Or perhaps one could make a sort of moat with water all around, transparent water which would show the descent of the shell, for example?

Yes, yes, that might be good.

There is also a question of measurement. According to the plan, you have given 24 metres – twelve metres from each side to the globe. But can we keep a little extra distance on each side for the passage? The plan shows 24 metres in diameter and 15m 20cm for the height.


He asks if the proportion can change? To keep 24m for the base of the carpet, but with the possibility, for example, of keeping 2 or 3 metres on each side for free movement.

Then where would the walls come?

They would be there.

(The disciple points to the outside of the circular passage)

It is the wall which must be at 24 metres.

He says that if there are to be these passages 24 metres would be a little short.


And the height is also in question.

The question exactly was that it should make a perfect circle.

If it makes a perfect circle, then the height will make the radius of the distance between the two walls.


(long silence)

The thing that would really give me pleasure would be if they both came to an agreement and both present me a project at the same time. Like that it would be easy to carry out…. Hasn’t Roger adopted Paolo’s ideas, why don’t they both together see how to carry it out?

Yes, that would simplify things.

Oh, very much.


What will happen under there… (The Mother indicates the underground part of the shell). All that is mental, but when you are going to have a big basement, all black, what is going to happen there? What is going to happen? Lots of unmentionable things, Humanity is not transformed, one should not forget it. And there will be all kinds of people who will come…. Even if there is a control at the entrance you can’t prevent people going to see, so then what is going to happen under there? It was my objection when Roger told me, ‘We could make wonderful underground passages!’ I said to him, ‘That’s all very well, and who will control what happens under there?’

I thought it was your idea, the descent?

My idea was quite a short descent, which came out there (The Mother points to the single opening of the original plan). Quite a short descent, not a great tunnel like that. But it is possible, it is a question of control, that’s all. Only there is a big difference between a tunnel where there is space for two lines of people, (one going up and one going down) which comes out there, and an enormous tunnel like this one – there is a big difference! And now he adds to it, that it will be all black!

In black marble, yes.

Yes, then? That means that one will not see very well in there. Then what is going to happen in there?

These underground parts are not in the form of tunnels. It is a spiral staircase, and when you arrive at the top of the staircase, it branches into a series of stairways in the open, suspended like bridges. It is not enclosed, it is all floating.

There will be no accidents? Ah! there are people ready and waiting with hallucinations who will break their heads on the floor. You know, it’s a bit too mental for my taste – that means that from the mental point of view it is very attractive, but when one sees…

The idea was above all the collective building of this underground, like a symbol…

(long silence)

We’ll see (The Mother laughs).


In any case they must get together. And then I will see. I would like to be able to have them both together with their papers. Then that would be very good….

Because he doesn’t tell me it is the other’s idea – he presents it as if it were his own (!) and then the other doesn’t tell me that he has spoken to the first one!…

But he hasn’t had the opportunity to tell you.

No, but you said it because I mentioned it to you…. But I…I know. And so, you know, one works for the ‘unification of humanity’, and the workers cannot get along!

And I see clearly, I see clearly what in each one is like this (a gesture of something twisted). It is not that I am surprised, but… My reasoning goes like this: ‘Yes, it is all very good, you are very nice, you work for human unity – at least be united!’… You understand?

But I am certain that Paolo only wants to come to an understanding with Roger.

But you can well understand that if Roger took Paolo’s idea, it means that he admires Paolo’s intelligence, otherwise he wouldn’t have taken it. Therefore, why this side like this and that side like that… We don’t want any more of those petty things.

But when Paolo showed me his plan I had the impression that it was something very beautiful…I will tell you what I felt. I felt: I am witnessing the birth of Auroville.

No, it is not true.

The material birth, I mean.

Yes, yes, I understand, but it is not true.

(The Mother enters into a long concentration)

We will let it sort itself out. Because you see, to accept changes, it is necessary that I be certain that the origin of the inspiration is of the same quality as mine… For the building, I know very well that people are needed who know their job and who do the work. But for the inspiration it is necessary that I be certain that the origin of the inspiration be AT LEAST of the same level as mine… And I am not sure, because I saw it so clearly. And immediately with Paolo’s ideas I saw the mixture. His ideas are all mental, I can guarantee it because it is easy for me to see that. Well, they bring all the same MIXTURE that there is in everything that is done in the world. And that…what is the use in beginning again, again, again…?

There is something that disturbs me. Entering from below, that is very good, but that enormous basement?… (The Mother grimaces)


We shall see. Things must be left to settle, and we will see.

And for the underneath, shall we leave this idea of the shell, or is it perhaps to be studied further?

Shell? …the idea was a sphere. Why a shell?

‘Shell’ – well, a round form, a spherical form.

An egg-shell is elongated, it is not spherical. The egg as it is really is a little like a spinning-top – for the upper part would be bigger and the base narrower with only stairs…. That, it is quite possible.

Give me a paper… (The Mother draws an egg as she explains).

And then, there, down there below, there would be only stairs, like that, yes.

His idea was to reproduce the egg of Brahman, you know, the original egg. That the temple would represent the original egg.

But what is it like, the egg of Brahman!?

I don’t know…like an egg, I think!

An egg with a base which is narrower than the summit. So if one conceives an egg like that [the Mother draws] and then at the base there is a staircase, and the spiral staircase comes as far as the temple. For example, seven…

Seven instead of twelve.

And here [the Mother draws the central part of the ‘egg’] it is 24 metres and only 15m 50cm in height. Then like that it is correct.

24 metres for the total width or for the carpet?

No, it must have straight walls, the walls cannot be curved, I saw them straight.

Straight, and which go up into a curve.

According to what I had seen, the columns were higher than the walls, and that is why the roof was at an angle. And then it was on the columns that the electric light was positioned.

And the widest point of the egg would be here [The Mother draws a line at the level of the carpet].

At ground level.


And you said seven openings?

Seven stairs. And then an underground passage which leads to the base of the egg from where the seven stairs start. That is possible.

In fact the inner walls of the temple ought to be straight.

That is to say that one can for the outside, for the appearance, make them round. But inside, the wall must be straight.

The wall straight, and a dome over the straight wall.

Yes, a dome over the straight wall. But the dome can be the dome of the egg, and I had thought that the place where the dome comes to join the walls would be on the columns. Twelve columns. And here, for the outside, they can continue their wall in a rounded form like that. [The Mother draws.]

There would even be this possibility – to have a space between the outermost wall and the inner wall. To make a space. That is to be seen.

That means in addition to the 24 metres.

Yes, that is understood. The 24 metres end at the walls.

And the openings for the seven stairs?

I would like it better if they were outside the wall.

Yes, that would be better, because that would give more space in the centre.

Oh! Yes, and the interior would be much neater. To see all these stairs would not please me. Even one stairway, I did not like it, but seven…

So a passage outside.

The passage outside.

Yes, like in India when one goes around the temple.

Yes, that, that is good.

And the seven staircases start directly from the base of the shell, without this ‘stalk’ which comes up from the bottom?

That is however they want it. Below, I don’t mind. If they want it to be a staircase like that or a staircase…. So long as it is not too steep.


What else have you?

There is the second part of the problem.

Ah! What is it?

Nata and Paolo have realised that if one leaves Auroville, or the building of this Centre, to the people of Auroville, as distinct from the Ashram, it will never work. There will never be the true force, the people who are there are not receptive enough to do the work. If there is this division between the Ashram and Auroville, we will never get there, they will make another ‘fabrication’ but not something true. According to them, the only hope is that really this Centre should be built not by Aurovilians, but by all the people of the Ashram, without a distinction between Aurovilians and non-Aurovilians: that the whole force unites in the construction of this Centre – not to abandon the Aurovilians to an external separation…. Just as all the disciples have built ‘Golconde’ in the same way all the disciples should build the Centre of Auroville, without outside labour.

At Golconde there was outside labour.

Anyway, limiting as much as possible the outside element, so that it is a work of consecration. Otherwise, says Nata, the people of Auroville are all full of arrogance, of incomprehension, they see the outside of things. It is necessary that there should mix with that the force of the people from here. And if the people of the Ashram do not come to infuse the force, nothing will be achieved…. At the present moment, Paolo told me, Auroville, such as it seems from the outside, looks like a necropolis.  [The Mother laughs.] It is the ‘living’ fruit of egoism. The only thing which can save it, is that the people of the Ashram go in there and do the work and that the others be absorbed in it – otherwise.

(After a long silence)

But at the Ashram, we have three centres which do construction: there is Phoni, who looks after the maintenance, Abhay Singh and Udar…Abhay Singh is not equipped for that, and then he is too busy because he hasn’t only construction work, there are all the automobiles, and then the lands. I feel that now he is fully occupied and he does his work well. If we gave him too much he couldn’t do it well any longer. Udar is very interested. He even said that he would arrange for the white marble; he would go to get it and choose it himself… But this would not be better.

But that was not what he meant. He was not speaking at all of a problem of construction, he spoke of the question that the disciples work with the Aurovilians. …Nata, as an engineer, and with the money collected will do the construction, but all the labour should be provided by the people of the Ashram as a whole, who should mix with the Aurovilians. That is the idea.

It is not possible. All the people of the Ashram who are of working age are all working, they have all got their work.

He saw a kind of rotation, each one giving, for example, an hour a day, or one day a week. Because otherwise…

They would ask for nothing better! They would take it as an extraordinary amusement. I have more trouble to prevent them from dispersing themselves than I would have difficulty to make them do something. That would be an amusement for them.

Because he says that if there is not the inner force of the people of the Ashram who mix with those of Auroville, those from Auroville will remain what they are. There is a split between Auroville and the Ashram.

I don’t find that it is sufficient.

The split?


Ah! Well!

I don’t find it sufficient. It is not at all on the same level. The people here…


All you have to do is imagine what it would be if I were gone.


Just imagine that and you will see, you will see immediately what would happen.

Well, it is the only hope.

If they came and said: It is necessary for YOU (the Mother) to take the responsibility. Ah! I would say, ’In that they are right’, it is entirely different.

They have kept to one side. That is not it.

But, Sweet Mother, I think that is what they mean to say, isn’t it so?

(The Mother laughs) They do not think clearly! It is confused thinking!

When they say that all the Ashram disciples should join in the construction of Auroville, as they did in Golconde, they mean that it is you who gives the impulsion to all the disciples to go and participate in the work. That is the idea. But you say that on the contrary a separation is needed – no mixing.

(Laughing) If you knew the things as they are!… The people from Auroville bring drugs here and…all sorts of things.

Yes, yes, I know – I know, sweet Mother. That is why he says that it is the only hope.

That they go there and catch all sorts of things!

He says, ‘Otherwise there is no hope.’

Oh no, he doesn’t know! It is all in the mind, it is all mental. They do not know. Who is there who knows? It is only when one sees. There is not one who sees.

All thoughts, thoughts, thoughts…it is not thoughts that build.

The people in Auroville can do the work?

I am in the process of working, working [Kneading gesture] to gather the energies that can do it. And there must be a sorting out process there.


But, you understand, they talk about physical work, and for physical work there are only the young people who are in the School – all the Ashramites have become old, my child! They are all old. There are only the young people of the School. And the young people who are at the School are not here to become Ashramites: they are here for their education – it is for them to choose… There are many, many who want to go to Auroville. Then it would be the Ashram education that would go to Auroville – there are many. But…give me some names, who can go there and work with his hands?

But, Sweet Mother, the only way is if YOU say so; then tomorrow, I would go spend two hours in Auroville collecting ‘baskets’! [Of rubble.]

[The Mother laughs] My child, you are one of the youngest… Can you see me telling Nolini: go to work.

But that would draw all the others… In any case, it was Nata’s and Paolo’s idea.

[The Mother laughs] Poor Nolini!

(long silence)

If you knew all the letters I receive from so-called Aurovilians who say: ‘Oh, I want to be in peace finally. I want to come to the Ashram, I don’t want to be an Aurovilian any more…’ There. It is just the contrary: ‘I want peace.’ Voila.


But you know, I do not believe in external decisions. I believe simply in one thing: the force of the Consciousness that makes a PRESSURE like this [crushing gesture]. And the Pressure is increasing…. Which means that it will sort out the people.

Otherwise it will be issueless, because before (just ten years ago), I would come and go, and see… But that is finished. It is not a decision that I have taken. I didn’t think at all that it was finished; it is not at all like that: it is something that OBLIGED me. You understand? So, I said all right. It is not an incapacity; this body is extremely docile, it does everything that one asks of it. If one asks it to go out, it arranges things so that it can go out. It is extremely docile. But it is like this, there is an Order. NO. And I know why…

You know, I believe only in that: the pressure of the Consciousness. All the rest, they are things men do; they do it more or less well, and then it lives, and then it dies, and then it changes, and then it becomes deformed, and then… – everything that they have done. It is not worth it. The power of execution must come from above, like that, imperative [gesture of descent] And so, for that, [the Mother points to her forehead] this must be quiet. Not to say, ‘Oh this must not be, oh! That must not be, oh! We should do this….’ Peace – peace – peace, He knows better than you what is necessary. There.

So, since there are not many who can understand, I say nothing: I watch and I wait.

I LOOK… Isn’t that so, someone gives me a paper as you have just done when you gave me that drawing; I look in this way and I see very well what in that paper is the result of something from above and what has become mixed and what is… Like that. But one is not going to say it! – to begin with, they would not believe me.


I understand very well – very well – why Sri Aurobindo did not say ‘superman’, why he said supramental. He didn’t say superman because he didn’t want it to be ‘a man who could perfect himself’. It is not that. He said supramental because… He said: leave all of that.

Supramental – SUPRA, you understand?

In these last days I have seen the photographs of those people who have gone to the moon… Have you seen them? Have you seen the way they are decked out?

Yes, I have seen them.

Well, they have become machines.

That is it; robots.

Yes, then, [laughing] the Russians said: why not send robots, it is not worth it!


Nata has spent all his time saying as many bad things about Roger as he could, saying that all his plans are bad and that his work cannot succeed. Roger has spent his time saying: ‘Nata has ruined all my work!’ And another says, ‘That one…’ and this one says, ‘this one…’ And they are all like that! So, I see with absolute certainty that IF the work is meant to be done, FIRST they must overcome this little human pettiness. They ‘see’, they have ‘ideas’ (they all have many ideas), they have ideas, they see; the others see other things and have other ideas…then: ‘Oh! that is worthless, my idea is good….’ They are like that! And all my action is like this: a PRESSURE on them to make their little ‘person’ abdicate. While that does not abdicate, the work CANNOT be done.

And they look in effect for all sorts of reasons for not seeing the true one.

It is necessary that…ouf! a bit of air.

The body – this body – is in the process of receiving a discipline, you know, oh! terrible… But it does not complain, it is happy, it asks for it. And it SEES to what an extent one is full of MANY LITTLE THINGS which are always………the Force. Well, one must start by getting rid of that. One has to be like this [gesture of abandon, openness] and receive the Force. Then all the inspirations will come, and not only the inspirations but the MEANS to execute them, – and the TRUE Thing. Otherwise…

And since they are not all quite ready, I act like the Consciousness: I put the Pressure and I say nothing – I wait [the Mother laughs].


If you knew everything that is going on, it would amuse you… The agricultural side, it is the same thing; education, the same thing; everywhere it is the same… The international scene, it is the same everywhere, everywhere: Man…Man puffing himself up.

They must FIRST understand: abdicate. Then we will see.

Shall I give them your message?

Oh no, my child! They will become frightened, the poor things!

You think so? It would do them good.

Oh no, no, it would be too much for them. The Pressure, that is the best thing. Because they don’t understand what you think, what you say. They understand only what is in their heads. They change the meaning of the words… As happened with A.R., who took it as a personal attack.

Yes, that’s true! It is true, I have noticed that: they take it as a personal attack.

That’s it. But that is the way it is everywhere, that is the difficulty: the person above all else. Then that spoils everything.

One speaks the truth objectively, as one sees it – it is as if one were attacking them!

One attacks them, yes.

So, one must w-a-i-t until they mature – you understand, one loses a lot of time. It is best not to say anything: just put the Pressure. In that I am merciless [the Mother laughs].

Then what am I to do in the midst of all these people?

You can tell them that… Actually Roger spoke to me (it was the same thing put in different words), and I didn’t say yes or no. I was waiting because I wanted to know how the others were seeing things. Now I have seen, I see that they agree. If they can get together the work would go faster! There. Objections about details are not important because one sets out with one idea and one arrives with another – and one makes a lot of progress between the two. Well, there is no need to discuss the matter, only… Try to put your energies together in order to take off faster, that’s all. [The Mother laughs.]

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

The Mother’s Dialogues on Her Temple, The Vishaal Newsletter, Volume 1, number 5, December 1986.

(In The New Way, Volumes 1&2, Appendix I consists of extracts from the Mother’s Talks on the Matrimandir. In 1981, a more complete version of these dialogues was released by the editor. They appeared in L’Agenda de Mere, Volumes 10 and 11. To provide our readers with this fuller version, we shall be reproducing these dialogues in this and the next issue of Vishaal, omitting only what is not directly related to the genesis of the Temple.)

31 December, 1969

Do you know Paolo, have you seen him? He is nice.

He is nice. But as a matter of fact, I have something on that subject. Yesterday I had a visit from Paolo and Nata together, and Paolo explained to me a sort of inspiration he had regarding Auroville. I found it very beautiful, very good, very good, very important. So I said to him: It is absolutely necessary that you yourself speak directly to the Mother about this. So, when can you receive Paolo?

Will I be able to hear him? Because the difficulty is that people do not know how to speak, they speak too fast, and I cannot follow them. Tell me what he wants to say.

He says that as of several years the energies of Auroville have been dispersed: they are egotistical, each one wants to build his small hut, his little thing, or, at best, he hopes to build a super-city which will be an improvement over all the existing cities in the world. In this Auroville what is lacking is an axis; a centre is lacking. What is lacking is a unification of consciousness around a centre, around an axis. So he says that in the past pyramids were built, cathedrals were built, and around those symbolic constructions consciousnesses were unified…

 (The Mother nods in agreement.)

and elevated and purified. Well, it is necessary that in Auroville an axis, a centre, a temple symbolic of the new world one wishes to create is built, and that all the consciousnesses unite in the construction of that pyramid of the new world or of that temple of the new world — and at the same time that will help to bring down what should be expressed there.

That is very good, that was the first idea: there was a centre and the city was organised around it. But now they are doing the contrary! They want to build the city and put the centre after…

And that is why it is not working, he says. He says: we must begin with that, and if one doesn’t, nothing will be done.

That was my first impression. But how can we make Roger [the architect of Auroville at that time] understand that? I don’t know. Because it is Roger who changed; he is the one who wanted to start with ‘Auromodele’, that is by trials and experiments.

What this produces is that people are occupied with their little stories and their little huts and there is no ‘cement’, the Thing that would lift them above themselves and their small concerns.

Theoretically, he is right.

Oh, yes, And it is strange, because when he was speaking to me about it, I saw almost, I was seeing. He is a person who could ‘bring that down’.

Yes, he has the power.

But why doesn’t he meet Roger?

He said to me, Should I speak with Roger about it? He says it is a problem if he speaks to Roger, he will withdraw or…. So I told him: No, don’t speak about it with Roger; speak to the Mother, it is the Mother who will say what has to be done.

I am seeing Roger tomorrow and I can tell him. Paolo is an architect, isn’t that so?

You’re the only one who has an authority over Roger.

Yes…no, if I tell him, ‘Do it’, he will not say no, but he won’t do it!…he must be convinced…. All that I can do is to tell him that I know of the idea and that I approve of it fully, and that I am asking him to see Paolo and come to an agreement.

Yes, in any case, when he was speaking to me, I felt the inspiration and the ‘Thing’ that was ready to come.

It is ready to come! I have known this for a long time! It is there [gesture above], and it is waiting.

Well, he is in contact with that.

Yes. Yes.

He was speaking, one felt that he had contacted the true thing. While others are thinking only about bringing millions, making propaganda, — they are doing things completely the other way around.

I believe that Paolo and Roger have not met yet.

Yes, they have. But Roger’s point of view is very materialistic.

Oh, yes.

I am worried that he will immediately say, ‘Why is he interfering?’

No, if I tell him, he won’t say that…

You are the only one who can…

No, I must speak to him about it.

Yes, sweet Mother, because they are putting the cart before the horse.

(After a silence)

I believe that they don’t even have the land. That is the difficulty. Because one fixed the centre of the city and there is still a large portion of that centre which belongs, I believe, to the government; and they are in the process of negotiating for it.

Roger’s idea is an island at the centre, with water around it, and it is running water which will provide the complete water supply for the city; when it has passed through the city, it will be sent to a factory, and from there it will go out for the irrigation of all the surrounding cultivation. So this centre is like a vast lake, and in the middle there is what we called at first the ‘Matrimandir’ — which I, myself, always see as a very big room, and absolutely bare, which receives a light that comes from above, which would be concentrated on a place where there would be — whatever one wants to put as the centre of the city. At first, we had thought of Sri Aurobindo’s symbol, but one can put whatever one wants. Like this, with a ray of light that always strikes it, that turns, turns, turns…, with the sun, you understand. If that were well done, it would be very good. And then underneath, so that people can sit and meditate, or simply rest, nothing, nothing, nothing except something comfortable underneath so that they can sit without getting tired, with probably some pillars, which would serve as backrests at the same time. And that, that is what I see always. A high room, so that the sun could enter as a ray according to the time of day, and strike the centre which will be there. If that is done, it will be very good….

Then, about the rest, it is all the same to me. They can do what they like. In the beginning there was the idea to make an apartment for me, but I will never go there, so it is not worth it, it is completely useless….

And then, the reply is always the same: But we don’t have any money!

But, sweet Mother, what I think and what Paolo has touched also, is that if sincerely these…let’s say twenty or fifty Aurovilians would join their hearts in the construction of that pyramid or that temple of the new world, that would BRING the money, millions.

It should.

It will come. It is not a question of ‘searching for millions’, it is first necessary to unite their consciousnesses around something.


That is the key to the millions.

Explain to Paolo everything I have said…. In this way we will have something very good.

But evidently what is needed…. There are material difficulties: for that island, water is needed – naturally, otherwise it wouldn’t be an island. For water, there is not enough underground water.

But before building the island one can start to build the ‘temple’ itself…. It is necessary to start by lifting a stone.

Yes, that can be done.

That is what is important, that people take a first stone with their hands and that they place it, and that in that they unite — because they will never become united through their little and their small concerns.

Yes, that would be much better.

Obviously, logically, or rather, psychologically, it is a mistake to build around and the centre after.

Of course!

How can we make him understand that?…

Since we want to do ‘something else’, the minimum is to have faith in something else.

Yes. I will speak to Roer about it tomorrow and I will ask him to see Paolo.

I think that to a certain degree Paolo can bring in money, if he is interested.

Good. That is, build before it is even an island.

For the outside of this kind of temple, Roger had thought of making a big lotus. But then this interior, this play of light, I do not know if that would be possible with a lotus shape.

If they could both collaborate…if they could both come together, and if one of them would always be here, one or the other of them, if there were always one of the two here, with a single plan they had made ― then it would go much quicker, a hundred times quicker.

This idea of a ray of sun, that…when I look, straightaway that is what I see. And a ray of sun which could come at all times — it would be arranged in such a way that it enters all the time [a gesture following the movement of the sun]. And then, there would be something there, a symbol, which would be at the same time upright so that it can be seen from all around, and flat so that it receives the light fully…. And let it not become a religion, for heaven’s sake!

You know, I am in contact with certain Ethiopians (I believe it is the country that has remained most Christian throughout the world). And there is a young man who is Secretary at the embassy in Delhi (the Ethiopian Embassy), who is completely taken, completely, and so… [laughing] it was his birthday two days back, and he came with a present….something in wood (ebony), this big, and on one side there was my picture, and on the other side there was Sri Aurobindo’s. In the middle there was a cross…in silver. On this cross, on top where the two arms meet, there was my symbol to one side and Sri Aurobindo’s to the other. What came into his head?!…

And naturally as soon as I saw it, when he put it on my lap…as soon as I saw it, this came [a gesture of a massive descent], as a response to the will of Christianity to transform itself. And it was so powerful, there was such a powerful vibration, that I had the impression that it was ACTUALLY HAPPENING….

The cross is the symbol of transformation: Matter penetrated by the Spirit; and the juncture of the two arms is the transformation. A formidable Force came, like that, so that that cross becomes really…the flower of the transformation.

But I didn’t say anything to him! And even he doesn’t know, that is he didn’t think — he didn’t think about it, he did it instinctively.


That the Force is working, there is not even the shadow of a doubt. And there is such a great… (how to say)…will, very active: NO RELIGION, no religion, no religious forms. But naturally, people immediately…. So, that is the reason why I leave people very free. That is the reason why I had not insisted on the construction of the centre first, because precisely it becomes the old cathedral, the old temple, the old stuff first [the Mother makes a gesture of embedding in the ground], and then everything becomes organised around: religion. We DO NOT WANT religion.

Yes, but one can ‘bring down’ something other than religion.

But one doesn’t bring it down! It is people who have it! They are so small, they need a religion, or at least they believe they do.

They need it, I have seen…I have received some letters that I am answering… [the Mother searches through some papers near her.] They arrive every day. And Sri Aurobindo has written some admirable things on this…just recently, yesterday or the day before, I answered a question concerning an Aphorism of Sri Aurobindo in which he wrote that atheism was NECESSARY because of religions and their misdeeds. Someone asked me a question and I replied.

Men are still very small.

But there is an interesting sign: in northern Europe, in Sweden and Norway and Denmark, there are priests who write to me. There is one who is the head of a church, there is one who is the head of a monastery. They write to ask and to say that they want to collaborate to come out of…. It is very strong there. There are one or two who have sent me their photos, asking me to help them. They are doing a work, they are working for Auroville there. That means….

But even our children have such stupid reactions! There is a girl here who wrote to me, because I had mentioned that the Consciousness had descended on Earth, it was concentrated on Earth to help human beings to prepare for the transformation. She said to me: “How is it that men have been left without help for such a long time?” It’s enough to make you scream in desperation!…I had to control myself in order not to tell her: My dear child [laughing], you are really stupid!


Who could be able to find a way to execute that? Because there is no lack of sun here…. Of course there are days when there isn’t any, but after all there are many days when it is shining — so that from all sides, from no matter what angle, the ray falls. It should be arranged like that. It is a question of geometry.

You can speak to Paolo about it, because if he had an idea….

When he spoke, 1 felt he had the power to bring that down.

Yes. And that is what is needed: something, a symbol ― we will find what is needed, we will see — of course like an altar, but what? A symbol that at the same time receives the light directly from above and from the side.

And then no windows, you understand? The rest in a sort of penumbra; and that, like a light…it would be good, it would be very good. I would like someone who could feel that. I don’t know if Roger is able to, but Paolo is.

And if it were properly done that would already be useful for people. It would be a crystallisation of something…. They will begin to say that it is sun worship! [Laughs]. Oh, you know, I am used to all sorts of stupidities!


The idea of Roger and his group is to have industries which can bring in money for Auroville, then….

They are wrong, they are wrong!

That is, instead of it being done quickly it will take centuries!

And then, it would be starting from the old idea, the old concept.


It is necessary to start from something else.

It is out of fear of religions.

One can very well do this not as a religion but as the symbol of the new world.

Yes…someone is needed who understands this — maybe Paolo will.

Surely. And he has the power to convince people, I believe.


Yes, I will see Paolo. It would be better if he would come a day when you are here because I might not be able to hear him…it disturbs people to have to speak loudly. Then, Saturday perhaps? And I will speak to Roger about it tomorrow, that is, I will tell him that he should see Paolo who has some excellent ideas, — that he come to an understanding with him.

It is very simple. We shall try to make Roger understand and to create a collaboration between them. Roger will not tell me no — but he will do nothing (!), you understand. It is like that! But anyway, if he can, if they can understand each other, if that agrees with Roger, then that is good, there won’t be any difficulties. But if he can’t then it is necessary that Paolo be here when Roger is away, and then that we….!

You understand, for me it is like this! [The Mother laughs.] Because Roger has enough work (he has a formidable amount of work). It is not that we are taking work away from him. It is that if he refuses to do it, we will do it, that’s all.

I will see if they can come together on it.

For me now things are no longer exclusive, at all. I see very well the possibility of using the most contrary tendencies AT THE SAME TIME…with a little ableness; that is all. It is not exclusive. I don’t say: ‘Ah, no, not that!’ No, no, no: everything together. That is what I want: to arrive at the point of creating a place where all the contraries can unite.

That…unless one can do that… [gesture of turning round and round] that continues, one continues.

That is good. Yes, I understand: the thing is to build the centre, even if we cannot build the island. Perhaps Paolo can convince Roger. I will speak to him tomorrow, to start the new year.

There. Then, I wish you a good year.

We are changing the decade this time. It is necessary to shake up all of that.

So new and so small…in order to grow.

3 January, 1970

Yes, there is something interesting. I was feeling something for a long time, then we talked of it the other day, and I saw it. I spoke about it to Roger, I told him to see Paolo and I also told him that I had seen what should be done. Of course he did not say no, he said yes to everything, but I felt that he did not have much intention…. But anyway, this is what happened. I saw clearly, very, very distinctly…. That means that it was like that and that it is still like that, it is there [gesture indicating an eternal plane]. The interior of this place….

You should tell this to Paolo.

Should I tell him right away? Well…I can speak more easily if I am alone with you.

Then tell me, sweet Mother.

I can describe it. It came, like that. It will be a kind of tower which will be like the inside of a column. No windows. The ventilation will be artificial, with those machines [the Mother points to an air-conditioner] and only a roof. And the sun which strikes the centre. Or when there is no sun — at night and on cloudy days — an electric spotlight. And the idea is to build immediately a sort of sample, or model, holding about a hundred people. When the town is built and the experiment has been done, a large one will be made — but then it will be very big, to hold a thousand to two thousand people…and the second one will be done around the first; that means that the first one will not go away until the second has been finished. That is the idea.

Only, so as to talk about it to Paolo, and if possible…if I see that it is possible to talk of it to Roger. I would like to have a plan. I will have it made — not myself, because I can’t any more; I would have been able to do it at one time, but now I don’t see clearly enough. I will have it made this afternoon, in front of me; a plan, and with this plan I would be able to really explain well. But to you, I wanted to simply say what I have seen….

It will be a tower with twelve facets, each facet represents a month of the year; and above, the roof of the tower will be like that. [The Mother makes a gesture.] And then inside there will be twelve columns. The walls and then twelve columns. And right at the centre, on the ground there is my symbol, and above that four symbols of Sri Aurobindo, which are joined, which form a square; and above that, a globe. A globe which is, if possible, made of transparent material, and with (or without) light inside it, but the sun ought to strike the globe; then according to the month, the time, it will be from here, from there, from there… [gesture indicating the movement of the sun] do you understand? There will always be an opening with a ray entering. Not a diffused light; a ray which strikes it, which should strike it. To be carried out that requires a technical knowledge, and this is why I want to make a drawing with an engineer.

And then there will be no windows or lights inside the room. It will always be in a kind of light shadow, day and night — by day from the sun, by night from artificial light. And on the ground nothing, except a floor like this one [in the Mother’s room]. That means first wood, (wood or something else), then a sort of rubber foam, thick, very soft, and then a carpet. Carpet everywhere. And the twelve columns are for people who need to support their backs.

And then people will not come for a regular meditation or anything of that kind (but the inner organisation will be made afterwards). It will be a place for concentration. Not everyone will be able to come. There will be a time in the week or a time in the day (I don’t know) when visitors will be allowed to come, but anyway no mixture. A fixed time or a fixed day for showing it, and the rest of the time only for those who are…serious, serious, sincere, who want to learn to concentrate.

So I believe that that is good.

It was there [gesture above] I still see it when I speak of it — I see. As I see it, it is very beautiful, it is really very beautiful…a sort of penumbra: one can see, but it is very tranquil. And then very clear and very bright rays of light, (the spotlight, the artificial light, must be somewhat golden; it must not be cold — that will depend on the spotlight) fall upon the symbol. A globe made of a plastic material or…I don’t know.


If it is possible, yes. For the small temple, the globe will not need to be very big. If it were as big as this (about 30cm) it would be good. But for the big temple it will have to be big.

But how will the big temple be constructed? On top of the small one?

No, no, the small one will go away. But the big one will be built afterwards, and in vast dimensions…the small one will only go when the big one is built. But, of course, for the town to be finished, one must reckon on twenty years or so, for everything to be really in order, in its place. It is like the gardens: all the gardens which have been made are for now, but in twenty years all that will have to have other dimensions; then, it must be something really…really beautiful. And I wonder what material to use for this globe, the big one?… The small one, in crystal perhaps, a globe like that (30cm). I think that will be enough. One must be able to see the globe from every corner of the room.

It doesn’t need to be lifted too high above the ground either?

No, Sri Aurobindo’s symbol does not need to be big. It should be so big.

Twenty five or thirty centimetres?

At the most, at the very most.

That means that it will be about eye level.

Eye level, yes, that’s it.

And a very tranquil atmosphere. And nothing, you know, some great columns… We have to see if the columns are in some style…if they will be round, or if they also have twelve facets…? And twelve columns.

And the roof in two sections?

Yes, a roof in two sections in order to receive the sun. It must be arranged in such a way that the rain cannot enter. It is unthinkable to have something to open and close when it rains, that is not possible. It must be arranged in such a way that the rain cannot enter. But the sun must enter as a ray; not diffused. So therefore the opening must be of a limited size. It needs an engineer who really knows his job.

And when will they start?

For me, I would like it to begin straightaway, as soon as the plans are available. There are only two questions: first the plans (workers can be had) and then the money…I believe that it is possible with this idea of making a small temple. Of course ‘small’ is a manner of speaking! Because it still needs to be quite big so that it can easily hold a hundred people. A small scale to begin with, and then they will learn by making it, and the big one will be made only when the town is finished, not immediately.

I spoke about it to Roger, who said to me the next day: ‘Yes, but it will require time to prepare.’ I didn’t say anything of all that I’ve just told you, I spoke only of doing something. And afterwards I had the vision of this room; so I don’t need anyone any more to see what it should be; I know. And an engineer is more necessary than an architect, because an architect…it must be as simple as possible.

I told Paolo what you had seen, this large empty room. He understands well. He was also seeing this large empty room. Well, empty — that simply means a form.

But a form…like a tower, but…that’s why I would like to have a sketch, to show it. Twelve regular facets, and then there must be a wall which is not upright, a wall a little like this [slightly inclined gesture], I don’t know if it is possible. And inside twelve columns. And then an arrangement must be found to catch the sun. Twelve facets arranged in such a way that at every time of the year it can enter. It needs someone who knows his job well.

The outside…I did not see the outside, I did not see it at all. I saw only the inside.

I wanted to explain to Paolo when I had the papers. It would be easier, but since you have called him…

[Paolo enters]

Since it has been decided to build this temple, I have seen; I have seen its interior. I have just tried to describe it to Satprem. But in a few days from now I will have some plans and drawings, so I will be able to explain it more clearly. Because the outside, I don’t know at all how it looks, but the inside I know.

P: The outside comes out of the inside.

It is a kind of tower with twelve regular facets, which represent the twelve months of the year, and absolutely empty…and it must be able to hold from a hundred to two hundred people. And then, to support the roof there will be within it (not outside), twelve columns, and right at the centre, well, the object of concentration…. And with the help of the sun, all year round the sun should enter as a beam (not diffusely, an arrangement must be made so that it can enter as a beam). So according to the hours of the day, and the months of the year, the ray will turn; there will be an arrangement above, and the beam will be directed onto the centre piece. In the centre there will be the symbol of Sri Aurobindo, supporting a globe. A globe which we will try to make from something transparent, like crystal or…a big globe. And then people will be allowed in to concentrate [laughs]; to learn to concentrate. No set meditations, nothing of all that, but they should stay there in silence, in silence and concentration.

But this place is absolutely…as simple as possible. And the floor, done in such a way so that the people are comfortable, that they are not thinking about this pain or that pain!

P: It is very beautiful.

And in the middle, on the ground, my symbol. At the centre of my symbol we will place in four parts, like a square, four symbols of Sri Aurobindo, upright, supporting a transparent globe. That, that has been seen.

So I am going to have some small plans made by an engineer, simple, to show, and then I will show them to you when they are ready. And then we will see.

For the walls, probably they will have to be in concrete.

P: The whole structure can be in reinforced concrete.

The roof should probably be at an angle, and then at the apex there will have to be a special arrangement for the sun.

You said that the walls would be slightly at an angle.

It will be either the walls at an angle or the roof which must be at an angle — whichever is the easiest to do. The walls, they could be made straight and the roof at an angle. And the upper part of the roof resting on the twelve columns, and above that the arrangement for the sun.

And inside, nothing, nothing, but the columns. The columns, I don’t know, we will have to see if they should be made with facets (like the roof with twelve facets) or simply round.

P: Round.

Or simply square — it is to be seen.

And then, on the floor, we will put something thick and soft. Here, you are comfortable as you are sitting? Yes? There is first wood, and then this kind of rubber, and over it a carpet of wool.

With your symbol?

Not the carpet. The symbol, I had thought it best to make it in something lasting.

P: It should be in stone.

The symbol…everything will be around it, of course, the symbol will not cover it all, it will be only in the middle of the space — [laughing] one shouldn’t sit on the symbol! That is in the middle. The proportion of the symbol in relation to the whole will have to be seen very carefully, in relation to the height.

P: And the room quite large?

Oh yes, it should be…. It should be like a sort of shadow with the rays of the sun, so that the ray can be seen. A ray of sun. Then according to the hour of the day, the sun will turn (the hours of the day and the months of the year). And then at night, as soon as the sun disappears, spotlights will be lit which will have the same effect and the same colour. And day and night the light will remain there. But no windows, or lamps or things like that — nothing. Ventilation with air conditioning machines (that can be done in the walls, it is very easy). And silence. There one does not speak! [The Mother laughs.] That will be good. So as soon as my drawings are ready, I will call you and show them to you…

P: Very well.

(The Mother gives two red roses to Paolo and he leaves.)

I didn’t ask him if he had seen Roger because… Roger is entirely in the ‘practical’ atmosphere of the moment.

That’s good. It has to get going!

You see this is what I have learned; the failure of the religions is because they were divided. They wanted one to be religious to the exclusion of the other religions; and all their knowledge has failed because they were exclusive; and man has failed because he has been exclusive. And what the new consciousness wants (it is on this that it insists) is no more divisions. To be able to comprehend the spiritual extreme, the material extreme, and to find…to find the point of union, there where…that becomes a real force.

From the practical point of view I will try to make Roger understand. But I have seen…. What is needed is that when Roger is here he should be occupied with ‘Auromodele’, the practical side of things, all of that (it is necessary, that is very good), and for this construction of the centre, Paolo should be the one to do it. So I would like Paolo to stay here when Roger goes; that Paolo remain here when Roger leaves, and we will do it with Paolo. Only I don’t want them to feel that it is one against the other(!). They must understand that it is to complement each other. I believe Paolo will understand.

But Roger will take it as an encroachment.

Perhaps, but I will try. I will try.

No, when I told him that it was necessary to make the Centre, that I had seen it and that it ought to be done, he did not object. He only told me ‘But that will take time.’ I told him — no, it must be done straightaway. And that is why I am having these kind of sketches made by an engineer to show him, because it is not work for an architect, it is work for an engineer, with very precise calculations for the light of the sun, very precise. It must be someone who really knows. The architect has to see that the columns are beautiful, that the walls are beautiful, that the proportions are exact — all that is very good — and then the symbol at the centre. The aspect of beauty, naturally it is the architect who ought to see to it, but all the questions of calculation…and the important thing is that, the play of the sun on the centre. Because that becomes the symbol — the symbol of the future Realisation.

The Chamber of the Mother’s Temple

The Vishaal Newsletter, Three Appendices to Volume 3, no. 2 Supplement June 1988.

The three appendices of this Supplement to the June 1988 issue of VISHAAL, offer an important means to view the development in our work over the years covered by these pieces: 1975 to 1980.

Appendix 1 (page 1): When this memo was written The Gnostic Circle, where Thea first discusses the important revelation of Time in the Mother’s original plan, had already been written and was being printed in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press. That marked one of the first attempts to interfere in the publication of her works where mention was made of the original plan of the Temple. Certain elements tried to have all footnote references to the deviation from the Mother’s original plan deleted from the text then in press. Those attempts failed. The discoveries recorded in the final section of The Gnostic Circle made Thea undertake to have the original plan readopted. But the full revelation of the Temple’s sacred content came close to a year later, in March 1976; that later yogic breakthrough provided all the material for The New Way.

Appendix 2 (page 9): A year after the fuller revelations on Matrimandir came, this ‘Note’ was written. Seeing then the hopeless state of affairs, as expressed in this ‘Note’, Thea took the decision to write The New Way to preserve all the knowledge contained in the Mother’s vision; she began writing the book in October 1977. After this ‘Note’ concerted attempts to interfere in the publication of her works surfaced everywhere.

Appendix 3 (page 17): This petition was written after the exodus to Kodaikanal and after The New Way had been destroyed in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press when its printing was almost completed. The details of this episode are given in the Postscript in the printed book, which was finally published in 1981. To keep a record of these sorts of interferences this petition was sent to the Government of India. No action was taken and therefore the falsehood continues to compound itself. In a work of this nature the ‘seed’ is all-important: if falsehood is lodged in the seed, time, in a totally impersonal manner, serves to make evident in the play of circumstances whatever is contained in this seed. Thus, years may pass but we witness the same actions that we witnessed over a decade ago.


On the Changes

In the original plan of Matrimandir

– the Mother

‘…Because you see, to accept changes, it is necessary that I be certain that the origin of the inspiration is of the same quality as mine… For the building, I know very well that people are needed who know their job and who do the work. But for the inspiration it is necessary that I be certain that the origin of the inspiration be AT LEAST of the same level as mine… And I am not sure, because I saw it so clearly. And immediately with Paolo’s ideas I saw the mixture. His ideas are all mental, I can guarantee it because it is easy for me to see that. Well, they bring all the same MIXTURE that there is in everything that is done in the world. And that…what is the use in beginning again, again, again…?


‘…So, since there are not many who can understand, I say nothing: I watch and I wait.

‘I LOOK… Isn’t that so, someone gives me a paper as you have just done when you gave me that drawing [the architect’s revised plan of the chamber]; I look in this way and I see very well what in that paper is the result of something from above and what has become mixed and what is… Like that. But one is not going to say it! – to begin with, they would not believe me.’

Extracted from L’Agenda de Mere, Volume 11
(Published for the first time only in June 1981)


A memorandum on


To: Shyam Sunder Jhunjhunwala

From: Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet

Date: 9 May 1975

Before discussing any matter that may appear harsh in your regard, I want to express my feelings of friendship for you once again, because you have been the only person living in Auroville who has listened to me and accepted my ‘interventions’ in Matrimandir matters from the beginning, without making me feel that I am an ‘outsider’ with no right to express my views. Not even those whom I had considered close friends there have been capable of this. You are able to widen your vision and to see in the destiny of Matrimandir not only those who are materially building it but also those who support it in Auroville though not involved in the actual construction, as well as others, like myself, who live in the Ashram and elsewhere, yet whose destinies are one with the Temple. And I know that in your deeper self you realise that the Mother is making use of various channels in order to have the correct building come forth.

The purpose of this memo is to clearly express to you my dissatisfaction with the way one issue has been resolved by you and your collaborators, the most important one for the present, that needed immediate action if any at all. I do not intend herein to discuss my views on the matter, for this is not the place for such a discussion, but the fact is that if we can expect the same attitude to prevail regarding all the other items on the agenda that need correction – that is, the entire room – there is little hope for Truth to manifest.

Our last meeting was discouraging. I experienced then the painful reality that there is no work done for the truth of the room to manifest, but rather you are all seeking at most and at best for some sort of expression of human unity to come about. This, in your innermost understanding, appears to be the destiny of the Matrimandir, And so, the endeavour is reduced to the level of politics: fundamental issues are decided and resolved not on the basis of the truth to be manifested in each issue but on harmoniously handling all the people involved to the satisfaction of each party, trying to make everybody happy. There are considerations of person’s feelings, the relation between people, their feuds or their alliances, the positions they hold, and so on. And an attempt to make order out of the existing chaos. In fact, there seems to be no interest in discovering the Truth that is. Each element of the Matrimandir has a specific meaning and relation to the whole. If one element is missing or is disproportionate, the rest will fail to reveal its inherent seed of Truth. Yet there is no concern for this truth of each element. You care only ‘to come to an agreement’ among yourselves.

Thus, human unity may come about, but not the Divine Truth rooted in the Earth. In fact, what real harmony can we expect if we do not care for the inherent harmony of the Matrimandir?

It is not possible for me to work on this level. I can only contribute in the endeavour of ‘solution finding’ – from the background – if there is sincerity, as far as possible, regarding Truth and Divine Knowledge. If there is no interest in these things, then I see no point in building the Matrimandir. The United Nations building exists for the purpose of working for human unity. Are we competing with them? The Matrimandir is by destiny to express the Divine Harmony and hence establish a perfect relation between Man, the Earth and the Cosmos, and the Absolute. This is its unity, and it demands on the part of those who hold any responsibility regarding its destiny that a true and sustained effort be made to lift the consciousness to those levels which do not exclude human conditions but which add to these the true aspect of Unity, by seeking first and foremost to express the Divine Will upon the planet, that contains in itself the solution to all man’s seekings, to human woes, to all earthly discords.

You seek ‘solutions’ for the entry. You seek to come to an agreement about the pillars, about the hole in the floor – whether to close it or not. Yet this is uncalled for. The Solutions have already been given. This is now a human solving – imposing upon the Divine Reality solutions of an inferior order. Human endeavour in this task should be limited exclusively to physically translating that exactly given vision into forms in matter. No other solutions were required or requested by the Divine.

Also, the attitude prevails that we cannot expect to understand what the Mother wanted to express in the Matrimandir. It is our duty to understand, otherwise what is the point in building a matrimandir? This is a convenient way of creating an excuse which allows us to impose our will upon the Divine: ‘We cannot understand You, so therefore we are free to do as we see fit.’ It is this falsehood that lies at the root of all Tamas.

There is a peculiar belief circulating that the Mother did not explain the meaning of the Room because one cannot ‘mentalise’ such things. That is, this Truth is left up above in some remote and inaccessible region, and thereby it is denied any possibility of descending upon Earth. But this, too, is for your own convenience, for it removes any pressure for effort on your parts to seek the Truth. Moreover, the possibility was not given to the Mother of explaining, because immediately after she saw, on the very day that she gave out her vision it was hacked to pieces. What could she explain to you then? In fact, no one has ever asked her to explain. There seemed to be no interest; people were more interested in their own vision. What was she then to say about the ‘new’ Matrimandir, which has no unity, no sense?

Each item of that Room has a meaning and can be fully and perfectly explained. But no one cares to know, to listen…perhaps because it might mean that we would be obliged to follow the Mother’s vision and not our own.

The 24-metre circle was the test. And it surely must be of interest to you to know that that circle is the representative in the Room of our present phase of evolution and our actual contribution to the Divine Work. The way in which you have all ‘agreed’ in favour of the outer dimension reveals that there has been no Truth-seeking. It is all political, a desire to accommodate the Matrimandir to human gropings for harmony. The question of 24 metres has been solved. But on what basis? Was there a real and sincere search to discover the meaning behind the dimension, which might then have given us all the understanding of the floor diameter’s true function – which in turn would have revealed the correct ‘solution’, whatever that may be? Many have rejoiced over Udar’s proclamation on the matter, in a manner which reduces the endeavour to the level of ‘personal’ victories and defeats; instead of seeing in each issue the opportunity to come jointly to a higher understanding and realisation, a true collaboration and a complementary action. But you yourself admit that Udar has stretched the French language to accommodate his possible error. I am not stating here that he is wrong, let it be understood, though you know that for me I can only consider the dimension interior. I am merely pointing out to you that the procedure for arriving at a decision is neither truthful nor thorough; it is only political and convenient. Therefore I cannot believe in it, and the final judgement does not satisfy me.

There is rejoicing over the matter for it allows us to continue without the need of rectification, which would cost time and money. It is interesting that Roger [Anger] is ever ready to rectify the mistakes he makes in his buildings, all of which are purely related to mundane architecture. Yet to rectify a mistake regarding the Mother’s work and vision is vehemently opposed by all. There is a legitimate problem in the 24-metre issue – contrary to all the other variations that must be rectified – and it must be solved legitimately.

I would point out to you a factor that we have not discussed: the Mother expresses in the Talks that she ‘only saw the inside’. Then she says the columns are halfway between the Centre and the Walls. Why on Earth would she expect people to see through the walls in order to perceive the halfway relationship between centre, pillars and wall? Does the Mother have a reputation for being ambiguous in the use of the French language? In my opinion her use of French is always extraordinarily clear and her meanings are always unmistakable.

Out of Udar’s plan the one dubious element is selected and is clung to tenaciously, and people say: ‘But we have built it according to the plan, so it must be correct!’ Yet what of the fact that the rest of the plan has been ignored? In the same way a few phrases are extracted from the Matrimandir Talks and distorted to fit the occasion. Then it is said, ‘But the Talks say this…’ The Talks are clear if they are read as a whole and in the right and truthful consciousness. This is not done, and then we are expected to listen to the ‘interpretations’ and to accept them. Unbiased, devoted disciples who read the Talks unanimously know what the Mother wanted, without finding different and conflicting meanings therein.

In our meeting of 5.5.1975, you said you feel it is immaterial to the Mother whether the dimension is inner or outer. It may have been immaterial to the Mother who had to become very small in order to deal with little human beings and feeble human natures. But can you be so sure it is immaterial to the Divine Consciousness-Force that is now unlimited by a human body? Certainly the facts of today show us that that Divine Consciousness cares very much about the issue. For example, the cement has been held up to give us time to seek the truth in the matter.

If you feel that this dimension is immaterial to the Mother, then you must feel that all the dimensions are immaterial. Why just this one? Let us be frank…this resolves the problem, either way works, any solution is the good solution.

I am afraid this is not so. There is only one solution, not two. There are not a few or many Matrimandirs, there is only one. The others are our formulations and they have no relation to the Whole.

The only way I could have been convinced that the 24 metres was the outer dimension – that is, that this would have been acceptable to the Mother – was if every single detail in the Room had been immediately accepted and agreed upon. As it stands, there is no reason to believe that Truth has been respected and that sincerity of seeking is there.

In The Foundations of Indian Culture, Sri Aurobindo writes,

‘Indian sacred architecture of whatever date, style or dedication goes back to something timelessly ancient and now outside India almost wholly lost. Something which belongs to the past, and yet it goes forward too, though this the rationalistic mind will not easily admit, to something which will return upon us and is already beginning to return, something which belongs to the future. An Indian Temple, to whatever godhead it may be built, is in its inmost reality an altar raised to the divine Self, a house of the Cosmic Spirit, an appeal and an aspiration to the Infinite. As that and in the light of that seeing and conception it must in the first place be understood, and everything else must be seen in that setting and that light, and then only can there be any real understanding. No artistic eye however alert and sensible and no aesthetic mind however full and sensitive can arrive at that understanding, if it is attached to a Hellenised conception of rational beauty or shuts itself up in a materialised or intellectual interpretation and fails to open itself to the great things here meant by a close response to some touch of the cosmic consciousness, some revelation of the greater spiritual self, some suggestion of the Infinite.’

You can see from this the exalted opinion Sri Aurobindo had of the tradition of the Indian Temple; in the book he consistently expresses the need for a ‘unity of design’. The Indian Temple is not some remote inexpressible Truth. The exact meanings of these designs were revealed to the sages of old, and these texts are still available. Because of this the Hindu Temple tradition still stands today, and India is one of the few places on Earth where a sacred architecture is maintained.

To achieve the effect Sri Aurobindo speaks of, and others as well, there are certain formulas which the Tradition preserves, because we are here dealing with the laws of Matter which the Cosmic Temple seeks to alter. These are very precise and respond to a certain arrangement which alone can affect the consciousness and the subtle matter, that then reflect upon the denser substance.

I am not advocating a rigid adherence to past traditions, or to the dictates of pundits, but I desire only to bring forth an understanding regarding cosmic realities which are timeless in their importance and meaning for the Earth, and which, because of the Eternal Truth of their seed, will always come forth upon Earth when the planet is in need of such a light in order to assist in the ushering in of a new era.

For this purpose the Mother brought down a new and even more sublime tradition in this respect, and the significance and importance of her vision for the Earth are only now becoming evident to us. But this necessitates that it be reproduced in all its details. This means that right now the entire room must be redesigned, for the architects are reproducing their own vision. You cannot compromise and make half the Mother’s and half the architects’. In a country such as India, where the tradition of temples is preserved and understood, it is unacceptable that you build something in the name of the Mother, calling it a ‘temple’, that is neither equal nor better than the existing tradition. You risk damaging the Mother, even making a laughing stock of her in India.

You are an administrator, not a temple builder. Piero makes houses, he is not a temple builder. Roger is a professional architect, he is not a seer with a divine vision. Considering the instruments we all are, it is necessary to follow accurately the Mother’s vision.

You say progress has been made in this matter. I cannot see how concrete progress has been made when the matter is to be left to Roger and Paolo to decide once again; and more important when you say: ‘When I listen to Udar I believe he is right, when I listen to that one I believe him. When I read the Talks I believe this, or that…’ With this confession of confusion, how will it be possible to stand before Roger, who says he has the Mother’s approval for everything he has done, and try to convince him to do the true Matrimandir? Why should he listen when you have not the strength of your own convictions and vacillate between one opinion and another? You say, ‘Let us leave all sciences out of the matter.’ But then on what basis are we to know which is the Real Matrimandir? You say, ‘Let us build it according to the Mother’s wishes only.’ But none of you can agree upon what her wishes are.

Leonardo says,

‘For painting is the way to learn to know the maker of all marvellous things, and this is the way to love so great an inventor. For in truth love springs from the full knowledge of the things that one loves; and if you do not know it, you can love it but little or not at all.’

Without knowing, how can you discriminate between a false interpretation and a true one? a false Matrimandir and a true one? How can we love in fact?

I would remind you once again that the Matrimandir is to live and be of service to the Earth (not merely Auroville, or even India) for many millenniums to come – long after you and I and Roger and Paolo and Piero and all the rest have left the scene. We are only instruments to allow for the concrete expression of that Truth, and we are, after all, very little unimportant people. More consideration should be given to the Matrimandir’s own destiny than to any human feelings in the matter. A hundred years from now no one will speak of Roger Anger, Shyam Sunder, Peters and Pauls, and all. But the Mother will be venerated as the divinity that she is and the Matrimandir will stand as her work, not yours or Roger’s or Piero’s – though, paradoxically, you and Roger have the power to allow it to be spoiled, it would appear. For this reason, irrespective of the fact that almost all of Auroville has criticised me and made me a target of hostile feelings, I have continued in the endeavour to be of service to the Mother, and will continue, regardless of ‘public opinion’. She has granted me knowledge regarding the Matrimandir for this purpose, and I must use this knowledge for her work. The Mother says, ‘Do the best you can and leave the results to the Lord. The Lord is looking to everything.’

But it has not been the destiny of some to physically work on the Matrimandir, and for this one is criticised. Many believe only the physical presence there can bring the experience of the Temple and an involvement in its life. Such a judgement is unfair and reveals a consciousness limited to the most external dimensions.

I write you these things so as to keep a record of all the efforts that are made, so as to explain to the public, when the time comes and if need be, that any errors in the Temple are not the Mother’s, are not the result of her faulty vision, but are rather the contributions of her instruments.

Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry

9 May 1975



concerning the July 1977

issue of Gazette Aurovilienne

The entire issue of Gazette Aurovilienne of July 1977 is dedicated to Matrimandir. The editor indicates that a controversy has arisen about the dimensions and certain details in the construction of the inner room of Matrimandir. For clarification he has approached Udar [Pinto] and Roger Anger, who have submitted notes, both of which are published in the Gazette. I wish to contribute a note on the subject as well, since I have also delved deeply into the matter.

The point of view of the Gazette is clear on the issue. It is reflected in the selections from Sri Aurobindo and the Mother collected under the section entitled, ‘A Reminder’. Through their words the editor wishes to remind the readers not to make a dogma out of anything the Mother or Sri Aurobindo have said. With this then the power of the Mother’s words describing her vision of the Room that is printed in the beginning of the issue is lessened. Hence it appears to be a curious combination: on the one hand we are given, for the first time in print in English and in French, the opportunity to share in the Mother’s formidable experience, and then, on the other hand, we are ‘reminded’ not to cling to her words or ‘make a dogma’ out of them. To help us remember we have statements from the engineer [Udar Pinto] and the architect [Roger Anger] on their experiences concerning the construction’s development. In the architect’s statement one finds the same attitude that is reflected in the entire Gazette: the Mother’s words are not to be taken rigidly but are only to serve as a jumping-board to another experience.

However, if we examine the statement some perplexing questions come to mind. The architect states:

‘To sum up, she told me over again – broadly speaking – what she had explained in detail in the course of talks she had had with S. and P. She gave me, a few days later, a plan saying that in this drawing were all the detailed measurements of the inner chamber of the Matrimandir, and that I was to change nothing with regard to the dimensions which must be respected. As for the exterior, she left me the liberty to submit blueprints to her.’

It is clear from his own words that the Mother gave him her original drawing with the explicit request that it be executed as indicated therein, dimensions and all. (It is important to note that the plan was a very detailed one, with precise measurements given for everything, including the number of stairs into the Room, as well as the exact size of each step, – 0.17cm x 0.28, width of the columns, thickness of the walls, etc.) From a thorough study of the Matrimandir Talks and this part of the architect’s statement, we can safely draw the conclusion that the Mother, at that time, would have wanted her collaborators to adhere strictly to her will as expressed in the preliminary plan. We find, however, that this did not happen. For some reason the executors considered themselves free to modify the plan.

It is also evident from the architect’s statement that once the Mother became aware of the fact that the architects had no intention of following her vision and plan, she completely dropped the matter and gave them full authority to do as they liked. The result is that the entire plan was revised and nothing left intact. In a room which is almost bare it is difficult to imagine that anything could have been altered; yet in fact every item was changed.

The Gazette Aurovilienne would want us to accept this development, for in the ‘Reminder’ it is implied that not to do so would indicate a rigidity and the formation of a dogmatic consciousness such as one finds in religions, for example.

The sadhak of yoga is faced with a problem here: the Mother’s vision is the vision of Truth; the architect’s is, in terms of higher knowledge, a distortion of that Truth, no matter how aesthetically enlightened it may be. The sadhak must choose: the Mother’s or the altered version.

To me it seems that a true sadhak can only adhere to the Mother’s vision, if given the choice – as has been the case regarding the inner room of Matrimandir, for when the matter came to light nothing of it had been built at all. The architect states,

‘What is, therefore, important to me is what she told me and what she accepted in full light and knowledge and this alone remains valid even today.’

This may be valid for him, and certainly no one denies him the right to cling tenaciously to his personal contact and experience with the Mother. But these can in no way alter the power of Truth of her own vision, which, in terms of yogic knowledge, was the true moment of ‘full light and knowledge’ that the architect seems to believe was only achieved in her subsequent dealings with him. And when the sadhak is presented with that Truth, how can it possibly be considered ‘dogmatic’ or hostile to cling to it?

The issue becomes even clearer if we admit to the fact that it has been proven that the Mother’s plan has a deep occult sense written into its measurements. A sacred structure is able to serve as a bridge connecting our physical plane with the subtle plane of Truth by means of sacred geometry and the enlightened use of Number. The entire process is accomplished through strict respect for the given dimensions, – each and every one of them. Particularly important are the measurements of the major axes (diameter and height), the pedestal and globe, and the entry through the floor by way of 15 steps. Thus, when the Mother states about the Room, ‘Everything is symbolic’, she means symbol in the sense Sri Aurobindo has attributed to the word. He has said, ‘A symbol is a notation of something that is, a transcript of realities…’. Unfortunately today the use of symbols is entirely misunderstood. We find this reflected in the architect’s statement regarding the hole in the middle of the floor. He says,

‘…but I had suggested to the Mother that the centre of the hall be left open under the symbol of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo so that the descending supramental force which would illumine the ball, would also symbolically touch with its light the sheet of water situated at the level of the ground.’

And with this the most important part of the vision, the core, was altered.

For the individual who is not versed in the true function of symbols, this alteration in the plan would seem legitimate and, in some way, to even be an improvement on the Mother’s idea. To the physical mind if one wants to convey the idea of a ‘marriage of heaven and earth’, one would indeed arrange a room whereby the sun’s ray passed into the room from Heaven and plunged into the Earth through a hole in the floor, thereby joining the heights and the depths. This ‘symbol’, however, has no power. It is merely a representation of a fact on the physical plane; that is, it cannot link one plane to another, for the whole process concerns only one plane – the physical. Thus, though the idea may be pleasing in terms of modern aesthetics, in the light of a higher knowledge, when compared to the Mother’s plan, it is a distortion of the Truth.

The only way to link the plane of Truth with our dense physical one and to truly utilise the science of symbol/number-power is in the way the Mother revealed in her plan. This is the new sacred architecture for the new age. Yet in order to help us forget this wondrous accomplishment of the Mother, the editor of Gazette Aurovilienne concludes the ‘Reminder’ to the readers with this quote from the Mother: ‘All theories, all teachings are, from the ultimate standpoint, nothing but ways of seeing and saying. Even the very highest revelations are worth no more than the power of realisation that comes with them.’ And thereby the reader is thoroughly confused. It would appear then that the Mother herself is proclaiming a failure and exhorts us to cast aside her revelation! As it now stands, if we observe the development of the Room we would have to admit that this ‘highest revelation’ of the Mother is not worth much because it did not seem to have the power of realisation in it sufficient to carry it through to completion. To be consistent, this line of reasoning could be carried over to all of Sri Aurobindo’s revelations, about the divinisation of the Earth, the descent of the Supermind, the transformation of the body, and so forth. Fortunately we know this to be inaccurate because regarding the Mother’s vision of the chamber, the real power of realisation lies in the body of Knowledge that descended with her vision, and this will live on, far longer than a material construction. It is to that higher reality that the sadhak must turn.

Certainly we must agree with the editor that it can be dangerous to rigidly cling to the Mother’s words.  But only when quoted out of context, or cleverly selected in order to support an opinion. Regarding the inner room of Matrimandir, the Gazette has given its readers the entire transcribed Talks on the subject. The Mother’s words are clear and should dispel any doubts that people may have on the matter.

I should like to take this opportunity to state once more that a group of us made a continuous effort to have the Mother’s plan readopted after its significance had been made known, only because nothing had been constructed at the time, and there was every possibility to execute the work according to her precise instructions. In particular the Talks came forth when the inaccurate diameter of the room could have been easily rectified, considering that it was only a question of making new calculations on paper. From a study of the Talks (not to speak of a knowledge of sacred architecture), there can be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the Mother wished the room to have an inner measurement of 24 metres, wall to wall.

When this point was brought up, time and again it was argued by those handling the construction that since the Mother held the plan, blessed it and then gave it to the architect, there could be no error therein. We then pointed out: If this were the case, there were other errors in the drawing, i.e. eleven pillars instead of twelve, Sri Aurobindo’s former symbol used for the pedestal instead of the new one changed by the Mother in 1964, etc. We questioned: Why then are not all these errors upheld as tenaciously as that of the inaccurate diameter, which is, unfortunately, one of the most important measurements of the room, the inaccurate rendering of which has eliminated Matrimandir from the Earth’s treasure of sacred geometry and architecture? Moreover, if that original plan is now so sacred, why have other items been altered, namely, the entrance into the room from below by fifteen steps – for which very detailed measurements are given?

Unfortunately it has been clear to us from the beginning that the Mother’s plan has only been used when convenient and in fact plays no major role in the construction, for if it had it would have been followed in every detail.

The entire issue of the Gazette is dedicated to the architecture of Matrimandir. Yet the reader should note a curious fact. From the time the Mother’s plan was rejected we have no evidence that she ever referred to the inner room of Matrimandir again. She never attempted to explain her vision, (though in the Matrimandir Talks the full meaning of the vision is given but has not been understood). There are definitions of the gardens, the meditation rooms which are the architect’s creation, old references to the colours and meaning of the symbols, – but nothing further in her own words about her room.

It is evident that we are all more interested in our visions and not enough in the Mother’s. No one at the time she gave the plan cared to ask her what it meant, of what was it symbolic, what was the meaning of the measurements so exactly given? Yet we are very keen on having her instill a sense into our own fancies.

Thus the Mother spoke not a word more of her own vision and, in terms of her external consciousness, put it aside and descended to the level of her associates and collaborated with them in the manner in which they desired, as described in the architect’s statement.

But a seeing of this nature cannot be stifled and though the external consciousness may have put it aside, the Divine Consciousness took it up and brought it to light at a time when it could have been understood and accepted.

However, the editor of Gazette, using Sri Aurobindo’s words, would like us to believe that those who have had a direct experience of the room and have understood its sense and importance and who have attempted to have the plan readopted, are tools in the hands of hostile powers.

In a Centre such as this, where the highest knowledge has descended, it is a sad day for the spiritual life when we are exhorted to close our eyes to the Light, when a direct perception of Truth is sought to be equated with a dogmatic, religious consciousness, when we are no longer allowed to find inspiration in the words of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother but are rather encouraged to believe that the embellishers of their vision are to be heeded and that their alterations and amendments are more important than the vision of Truth itself.

If we wish to use Sri Aurobindo’s words to help us in this matter, we must seek his guidance intelligently, with a sincere wish to receive the correct answer – one directly related to our problem. Therefore I quote here a passage from his works which specifically pertains to sacred architecture [the passage from Foundations of Indian Culture, reproduced on page 5 of this Supplement]. Furthermore, as is usually the case, not only does he give us a real understanding of the purpose of such structures and the difficulties of the European mind to comprehend their relevance – which is the exact answer to our problem – but in the passage there are prophetic words as well. He tells us that this art will return in the future and that India will once again offer the world a cosmic temple, in a new language for a new age…

The Mother gave form to his words, but as Sri Aurobindo explains, the European mind cannot comprehend due to the limitations of its aesthetically- oriented Hellenised tradition. Hence we can understand why the Mother in the talks on the construction requested only an engineer, not an architect for the execution.

In addition, there is a passage from Savitri which is an exact description of the chamber the Mother was to see and design in the future. Once again Sri Aurobindo prophesies, though indirectly, the descent of that heavenly womb upon Earth:

The body’s rules bound not the spirit’s powers:

When life had stopped its beats, death broke not in;

He dared to live when breath and thought were still.

Thus could he step into that magic place

Which few can even glimpse with hurried glance

Lifted for a moment from mind’s laboured works

And the poverty of Nature’s earthly sight.

All that the Gods have learned is there self-known.

There in a hidden chamber closed and mute

Are kept the record graphs of the cosmic scribe,

And there the tables of the sacred Law,

There is the Book of Being’s index page,

The text and glossary of the Vedic truth

Are there; the rhythms and metres of the stars

Significant of the movements of our fate:

The symbol powers of number and of form,

And the secret code of the history of the world

And Nature’s correspondence with the soul

Are written in the mystic heart of life.

In the glow of the Spirit’s room of memories

He could recover the luminous marginal notes

Dotting with light the crabbed ambiguous scroll,

Rescue the preamble and the saving clause

Of the dark Agreement by which all is ruled

That rises from material Nature’s sleep

To clothe the Everlasting in new shapes.

He could re-read now and interpret new

Its strange symbol letters, scattered abstruse signs,

Resolve its oracle and its paradox,

Its riddling phrases and its blindfold terms,

The deep oxymoron of its truth’s repliques,

And recognise as a just necessity

Its hard conditions for the mighty work, –

Book I, Canto 5 (CE, pp. 74-5)

Everything Sri Aurobindo describes in this passage is contained in the Mother’s vision by means of the measurements and overall design of the Chamber. There is not one word in it that cannot be verified on the basis of higher knowledge of sacred architecture, supported by the core of Sri Aurobindo’s teachings. But of this he says only a ‘few can even glimpse with hurried glance…!

It is a cruel twist of fate that today, in the very centre he gave birth to, where his words are to find their material expression, to speak of the Mother’s vision in these terms is ridiculed, combated, pooh-poohed. Those who have had this vision are obliged by the collectivity to deny their experience and excuse themselves for having dared to see in the Mother’s plan the very things Sri Aurobindo here describes. It is now a sin to have a direct experience, and moreover we are told that if by chance we find support for our experience in the words of either Sri Aurobindo or the Mother, this will foment a dogmatic consciousness, and is a ‘vehement logical conclusion’ hostile to their work. Such a stand is reflected by the very fact that there is not one Ashram-based journal which will publish a legitimate defence of our position. Yet these very journals – official organs for the propagation of Sri Aurobindo’s thought – have time and again printed articles on Matrimandir replete with false information. When seeking to have these errors rectified in the journals, we have always been refused the possibility. All the work that has been done in this field has had to be executed privately, while on the other hand the official position has been reflected in journals such as the July issue of Gazette.

The problem before us has been all too simple to solve: the Mother’s vision was Truth and her force helped to being this to light; all that was asked of us was to approach the matter from a level worthy of sadhaks of yoga. When done in this way there is no longer any problem, no longer any decision to take, no longer place for controversy, discord, dispute. For when one stands face to face with the true, the real things, the question of choice itself evaporates. There is only one Chamber, and that is the Mother’s.

12 September 1977



                                                A PETITION

To: The Government Administrator of Auroville, Members of the Government-Appointed Committee for Auroville, the Prime Minister of India.

From: Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet

Subject: Un-truth of Matrimandir Architects: a petition for redress.

Personal Background Data

I have lived in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry, from 1971 to 1980. Now my residence is Kodaikanal, where I continue my work together with a few associates. This work consists of new insights into various branches of Vedic Sciences, distilled from experiences in the practice of the integral yoga of Sri Aurobindo, with particular emphasis on COSMIC HARMONIES and SACRED ARCHITECTURE. By the Mother’s grace I have been able to formulate a new synthesis of these aspects of vedic sciences, in which sacred architecture has been a focal point, on the basis of certain formidable keys of Knowledge the Mother left in her original plan of Matrimandir.

The lines on which I am now working incorporate the knowledge left by the Mother in the Temple (original plan), for the presentation of a synthetic and integral approach as the basis of a new world order, which first manifests in a nucleus of a gnostic society centred in India.

I have written and published a series of books on these subjects, which have also appeared in German and Italian translations brought out by well-reputed and large publishing houses, both in Italy and Germany as well as the USA.

The Problem

In view of the definite take-over of Auroville by the Union Government, these changed circumstances force me to approach you with a matter that is fundamental to Auroville’s destiny – especially in view of the fact that the Government of India now takes the responsibility for Auroville and pledges itself to see that its ideals are furthered.

I believe that the true ideals of Auroville and the real purpose for which it came into existence are known only to a very few souls and must remain, for the present, merely in the realm of unfulfilled dreams. But there is something that is not so lofty and difficult to comprehend and to achieve, and ought to be present even now. This is truth, in its most elementary form, – that is, to refrain from lying and speaking and printing known un-truths, especially in the name of Auroville. An example of this follows:

In 1977 a book of mine, The Gnostic Circle, a synthesis in the harmonies of the Cosmos, (first edition, 1975, Aeon Books publishers, Sri Aurobindo Ashram Press printers) appeared in the German translation, under the title DER GNOSTICHE KREIS. The publisher was one of the largest houses in Germany, Fischer Verlag; the edition was approximately 18,000 copies.

In a portion of this book I discuss the Matrimandir, in terms of sacred architecture, and several synthesised branches of higher knowledge. Given the fact that my work is one of careful precision and scientific concreteness, it was necessary to state that the plan I used in the book in the analysis of the Temple was only the original one given by the Mother and not the architects’ modified version. I include the portion of my text and its footnote (pages 255-256) to this effect:

(Translated from the German)

p. 255, text: ‘It must be mentioneed here that it is becoming more and more clear that the measurements and the plan given by the Mother are not being followed accurately in the construction. All the arrangements and dimensions we speak of here are, however, taken from the original plan the Mother had drawn up by an Ashram engineer, and her recorded talks about her vision-experience of the Temple…

p. 256, footnote 9 to the above: What it signifies for Auroville and the earth that those entrusted with the construction of the Matrimandir refuse to see or accept the importance of the exact measurements of the inner chamber has been shown in The Hidden Manna (commentary of The Revelation of St. John) and will be discussed in The New Way in detail.

P.N.-B. 6.6.1977

My text was given to the publisher and the book appeared in September, 1977. It was only then that I came to know that the architects in charge of Matrimandir had succeeded in having a statement of theirs, refuting what I say, included in my book. This they did through their agent in the publishing house, the editor Ms Christa Falk, who is associated with Auroville via Michael Klaustermann. Thus, unbeknownst to me, the following publisher’s note about the state of the construction was printed after my above note:

‘During the last supervision of the manuscript before printing on 14.6.77, the master-builders of Matrimandir who are presently in Europe to get the marble for the Inner Chamber have categorically stated that after some technical discussions the construction is now going to be done exactly according to the measurement-instructions of the original plan, which the Mother had drawn up by the above-mentioned Ashram engineer. For some time this has appeared uncertain because of structural difficulties in building the outer supporting construction of Matrimandir, which required a spherical shape.’

(Publisher’s Note, 14.6.1977)

All those who are familiar with the happenings surrounding the construction of Matrimandir and what ensued from the efforts made by a group of us to have the Mother’s original plan adopted before the Temple was built, and not the architect’s modified version, know that this statement – made in the name of Auroville – to be utterly false.

When my attention was called to this note, in my book, printed without my knowledge, and which contradicts the entire foundation of my work, I immediately wrote to the Publisher. Of course there was little consolation to be had since the book was already printed and in circulation on a large scale; yet Fischer Verlag did agree to rectify the statement by adding an erratum in all the copies. But then the architect’s agent, Christa Falk, notified Auroville of this; at which point the following letter was sent to the Publisher:


(Letterhead and symbol)

Frau Wolfarth


Fischer Verlag

Geleitsstr. 25

6) Frankfurt/M 70


Dear Mrs Wolfarth,

It has come to my attention that the additional correcting Publisher’s Note (page 256) referring to Matrimandir construction in Auroville is to be removed by Fischer Verlag. As the executing architect of the Matrimandir, I wish to repeat that said note absolutely conforms to truth and therefore has to remain in the book. In case Fischer Verlag really removes the note I should be obliged and forced to institute legal proceedings against the Verlag.


Piero Cicionesi, Architect


Auroville, 605101, Tamil Nadu, India


Falsehood was thereby compounded by this letter, and in Auroville’s name once again. Fischer Verlag then wrote the following letter to my representative in Germany:


In our phone call a few days ago I already told you that unluckily we can no longer execute the solution envisaged in my letter of 23 March, 1978, because with a removal of the disputed publisher’s note a law suit by the architects of Auroville would threaten, as you can see from the letter attached herein.

We have entrusted the matter to our lawyer who will write you directly.

Cornelia Wolfarth

To purse the matter in order to undo the harm the architect did would have meant taking it through the German courts. At that time I did not want to carry something bearing the name of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother into court, for obvious reasons.

The present changed circumstances, however, force me to bring up the matter again, since there is now a responsible authority to whom one can turn.

If there is any doubt in your minds concerning the truth of what I state, apart from all the documented evidence I can furnish, I can also inform you that at the very time the architect, Piero Cicionesi, was in Germany making this false statement (i.e. that only ‘technical difficulties’ had been obstructing the adoption of the Mother’s original plan, but that these had all been solved) his wife, Gloria, was right then issuing an open letter in Auroville to me (it is on my files). Her letter states exactly the contrary: that technical difficulties made it impossible to use the original plan, and she proceeds to detail all the modifications incorporated in the structure (!).

It seems evident that husband and wife do not support each other’s false statement when separated by the seven seas…!

In my book I sustain, on the basis of a knowledge of the mechanics of sacred architecture, that a temple built in its form of perfection, following minutely every detail given by a Seer – as for example the original plan given by the Mother in her superb and accurate vision of Matrimandir – would produce and reflect conditions in the atmosphere conducive to harmony, truth, goodwill, a spirit of collaboration, etc; a reflection of the Seer’s own consciousness as it were. Thus, by stating in my book that the original plan has been followed, the architect not only casts aspersions on the integrity of my work, but, given the great confusion, chaos, stagnation and disharmony that Auroville has produced in its first 12 years of existence, he makes my thesis appear to be a lie and inexact. If then the measurements, shape, etc, have been executed exactly according to the Mother’s original plan and yet so much disharmony has ensued in Auroville, it can only mean that P.N.-B’s work is inaccurate and false in its essential premise.

Needless to say, my work has been proven time and again to be valid and true. The very take-over of Auroville by the Government is testimony to this fact. It is the architects who falsify; and this falsehood has been projected now into the very body of Matrimandir and cemented there, to the greatest distress of those who understand the significance and consequence of such an occurrence.

Until now there has been no reasonable authority to appeal to in Auroville. But since the Government has stepped in, it now takes up the responsibility of building Matrimandir. That ‘temple’ is what it is, will unfortunately remain what it is, and cannot now be changed. But the ill it produces has now to be borne in full awareness by the Government. And it becomes projected far beyond the confines of Auroville now.


As the Government is now the responsible agent, I turn to it for some redress in this matter. I would therefore expect the Government of India, in the name of Auroville, to

1) Write to my German Publisher stating clearly that the architect’s statement made verbally in Germany in the name of Auroville on 14.6.77, and later reaffirmed in his letter dated 8.4.78 from Auroville, does not correspond to truth and should be rectified.

2) Offer to bear any costs of rectification, such as inserts in the remaining books, ads in the leading German newspapers announcing this reversal, as well as bear all the expenses I personally incurred in this unhappy affair.

3) Oblige Signor Piero Cicionesi to write to Fischer Verlag admitting that his statement was false and apologise for his fault.

As you can see the architect’s false statement has attacked the very essence of my work and his behaviour stands as a black stain on the name of Auroville. And in carrying out his activities in the name of Auroville, he has brought this falsehood to bear on Sri Aurobindo and the Mother.

If there is true sincerity in ‘furthering the ideals of Auroville’ on the part of the Government of India, it would appear that this is a good opportunity to demonstrate this sincerity.

Investigation into Matrimandir’s History

The public and I have every right to question the competence and worth of such people to be in charge of building something so fundamental in Auroville as its very centre, its ‘soul’. And indeed the incompetence to handle the matter from the standpoint of higher knowledge and the fundaments of sacred architecture are now evident in the building itself. Its present form reflects that same consciousness that would lie in the name of Auroville, swearing by ‘truth’ in order to further its own end.

The Government may not be concerned with the truth of Sacred Architecture and its place in India – where it is an ancient and respected tradition – and now at the centre of the Mother’s vision of Auroville. But it ought to be concerned with behaviour of this order in the name of Auroville, if its purpose in taking over the project is indeed to assure that ‘the ideals of Auroville will be furthered’, – a fundamental one of which is Truth, all clear-thinking people would agree.

I request that satisfaction be given me and my colleagues in this matter regarding the German edition of The Gnostic Circle. But, moreover, I request that a thorough investigation into the history of Matrimandir’s construction be undertaken before all else, since it is the centre of the project and the most important focal point of energies.

I have prepared a 700-page work on the knowledge of renewed sacred architecture that the Mother has left in her plan of Matrimandir for India. I request that a competent committee be established before which this document can be presented, consisting of men and women versed in the language of sacred geometry and mathematics and possessing a consciousness attuned to the higher vision and able to grasp the significance of these occult workings, where the layman’s eyes may be closed.

If the Government of India’s true intentions are ‘to further the ideals of Auroville’, it stands evident that above all else it must acquaint itself with the very specific action of the energy field generated by Matrimandir and become aware of the central role the Temple plays in the light of Gnosis, which is the key and essence of Sri Aurobindo’s message. If this much cannot be done, or will not be done, then what meaningful future lies before this project?

Custodians of the Mother’s Vision

It is argued that the Mother left the construction of the building to the architects and therefore they are entitled to have the last word. I sustain that she did not exactly leave it to them originally; they took it, and in the process revealed their incompetence to handle or even recognise the problems that subsequently arose in the construction, – questions which should have been solved on the basis of sacred not profane architectural knowledge, which was the level on which the Mother worked, being perhaps the greatest occultist of our age. I sustain that the Mother, while urging the members of the community to set the work on its way and attend to all its details as it went along, at the very same time put her force out to call forth those who would be competent to solve the issues that would subsequently arise. I have proof that this occurred. But I also have all too much proof that their advice in the matter was ignored at best, ridiculed at worst, and the final results were even resorts to falsehood, as I have shown above. The Fischer Verlag matter is only one example of such behaviour. There are many others, evidence of which I have on my files.

It has been argued that only the Mother can know what is to be done and we have not the same consciousness to suppose that we can interpret her vision. In this case then the architects had even less right to make any alterations, if only she could know. If we accept – and indeed we must – that Auroville is a consciousness in evolution, in the process of birth and growth, then all clear-thinking people of goodwill involved in the project must try to achieve a frame of mind that will accept the New, and not remain rigidly encrusted within the old, as has been reflected in Auroville regarding all aspects of Matrimandir.

The Mother set the project on its way and saw to it that help would be given exactly when needed; and indeed the Temple was not yet built when the first appeals were made, all of which were ridiculed and labelled as superstition. The result is that the new Form, as a focal point of energy for the rise of a new world, has been mutilated (in terms of sacred architecture) and cannot now stand as the true Centre, the Soul of Auroville, in terms of its highest knowledge and light. When one discusses the Knowledge she left as this soul-foundation, one must, bound as one is to integrity in these matters, make a clear distinction now between the original integral plan and the architects’ revised one.

This matter ought to be brought to light. If the Government is sincere in its effort to promote Auroville and resolve its problems, surely it must see the need to delve deeply into the project’s heart and soul, before all else. It is only logical.

The Question of Finance

Perhaps two crores of the public’s rupees will have been spent in Matrimandir before it is finished. (The original estimate ten years ago was one crore.) The question is, was this huge amount necessary? The Mother’s plan was extremely simple yet it touched the highest summits of sacred architecture, while at the same time it offered a new aesthetics. It must be pointed out here that the revised version of the architects not only destroyed the temple’s sacred nature (in terms of the art of occult architecture) but it also vastly increased the cost of the construction.

To give just one example: contrary to the Mother’s design, the architects placed a hole in the centre of the Chamber’s floor. (It may be mentioned here that they thereby dismantled the Temple’s sanctum sanctorum and cast to the winds all the precise keys of knowledge the Mother left therein; to say nothing of the Temple’s power.) It is to be understood that to construct a 3-metre hole in the middle of that spheric shape was a difficult structural task and its execution, in order to faithfully reproduce the architect’s vision, added a terrific financial burden to the public. This can be confirmed by enquiring into the matter with the firm charged with solving the structural technicalities of the construction in Madras, as we have done.

There is now talk of closing that hole. If so, what of the huge expense in building it in the first place? One day it is one thing, the next another: Matrimandir is a field for profane architectural improvisation. And each such futile experiment is paid for by the donators, who are expected to support and fortify the architects’ right to freedom of aesthetic expression. But is Matrimandir the place for such careless experimentation?

Hence the public has every right, it would appear, to question how the funds donated for Matrimandir have been utilised. Were they spent for conveying the Mother’s vision and placing that at the centre of her City, or have those funds been utilised merely to further the whims and fancies of time-bound architecture? If the public had been given the choice there is no doubt it would have insisted on having the Mother’s far cheaper, far more aesthetic, sacred plan done in its totality. It is perhaps for this reason that at no time was anyone from ‘outside’ allowed to have a voice in the matter. Thus, an investigation into the construction of Matrimandir should also include the question of utilisation of funds and the terrific waste brought about by the desire to satisfy architectural fancies of questionable value. The hole in the centre of the building is only one such; there are others.

To Whom Does Matrimandir Belong

If Auroville ‘belongs to no one in particular and to humanity as a whole’ (as the members of the community sustain on the basis of its Charter, in order to support their claim of ownership), it stands as a logical conclusion that Auroville’s Soul also belongs to humanity; therefore the construction cannot be the exclusive property of the architects and Auroville must open itself to the whole of humanity for the Temple’s construction, drawing from its pool of knowledge the highest to be found therein in order to secure the Temple’s perfect execution, – reflecting as the original plan does, the very essence of Sri Aurobindo’s message.

Needless to say, this was not done. The temple has become the exclusive property of the architects and builders – and they have revealed time and again their incompetence in the realm of the higher knowledge that is required to build such a Soul. The sense of possession went to such extremes as to exclude all ‘locals’ from the construction (contrary to the Mother’s wishes), as well as many bona fide Aurovilians. Politics became the deciding factor of participation and ‘anti-Auroville’ the label of the day.

If Auroville is a public trust, then it belongs to all, as its charter states. But discrimination in this delicate matter must be undertaken on the basis of a sincere and serious scrutiny of the knowledge put forth by those who may make any claims in this direction. I am prepared to present the knowledge the Mother has given me of Matrimandir, in a very detailed and thorough manner. I trust that the Government will be sincere in opening Auroville to all of humanity, wherever any element can be found to further its true ideals.

It is only my misfortune that I did not have this knowledge in its complete form before the Mother left her body. Otherwise I could have presented it to her, the only person really capacitated to understand the extraordinary implications of her vision in the detailed measurements she gave. The Mother gave the vision; it was left to us to decipher it and to understand, precisely as an integrated experience of growth into her vision. I have done this, but when I sought to present my findings to the architects and builders, these efforts were met in an attitude of the most total disrespect and disdain. In fact, the builders refused all contact and would not attend any meetings we or others convened for the purpose of discussing the issues. So total was the attitude of possession that they would not permit anyone to have any say or question anything regarding their work. Thus they succeeded in having their way. And every twisted means was used to hide the knowledge from the public that there was an original plan distinct from theirs, desecrating in the process the name and purpose of Auroville, as in the case of DER GNOSTISCHE KREIS.

An Answer for Posterity

My only question to the architects now is Why? May they please present the detailed basis for their refusal before the Committee, just as I am willing and ready to present my knowledge for scrutiny before an authorised body? I believe the public – humanity – to whom Auroville belongs, merits an answer to this question from the architects and builders. I believe that a record of this must remain in the annals of Auroville’s history, more especially now since it is the charge of the Government of India.

It is too late now to change Matrimandir, though I had appealed to Sir C.P.N. Singh, to Mr. Kireet Joshi, and all the others – anyone who would listen – when everything could have been done to save the temple. All of these appeals failed. Let this appeal at least, for redress regarding my book and the establishment of a committee for uncovering this history of Matrimandir, not fail. And perhaps then one can have proof that there is now a sincere will for Truth, at least in this one fundamental matter, if nowhere else.

Humanity’s Right to Intervene and

The Question of Freedom to State and Uphold the Truth

I wish to state that my work is one of precision and clear vision. One proceeds forward on its foundations only when real knowledge is there. In all aspects of Auroville’s life this same sureness on the basis of true knowledge could have been there and available, if the community had been open to the Mother’s force which brought the needed elements, and sincere in recognising a superior understanding in matters above their heads. It is unfortunate to have experienced, however, that every detail of the project’s life – I speak with special reference to Matrimandir – was handled as any other amateur ‘new age’ community, the likes of which abound in the world today; and a possessiveness was ever present which completely closed the doors to any assistance on the basis of higher knowledge.

It is therefore amusing to note that the community stakes its right to independence and control of Auroville, citing the charter: ‘Auroville belongs to no one in particular and to humanity as a whole.’ May we please be told by the committee pledged to ‘further the ideals of Auroville’ exactly what it feels this to mean, so that we can know where we (humanity) shall be restricted in our actions when we come across what we feel to be our legitimate right to intervene, if mistakes are made in Auroville which belongs to us all?

As we, humanity, would have a legitimate right to speak the truth as we see it, and to publish this truth if we deem it necessary in the best interests of Sri Aurobindo’s and the Mother’s work, so do the architects and builders of the temple also have the right to hold their own opinions. Thus they could have easily issued a public statement to the effect that though they had been apprised of the request to return to the Mother’s plan because of discoveries made in the realm of sacred architecture since her passing, they do not consider these considerations relevant and prefer to construct the building with modifications. Such a statement, though reflecting ignorance of higher considerations, would at least have been true. (It must be pointed out that Roger Anger, the original architect who now has nothing to do with the project, did make a statement vaguely along these lines.)

It was made evident to us all, however, that there was a conscious and malicious effort to dupe the public, the humanity to whom Auroville ‘belongs’. As revealed in the problem presented before you, there were other such attempts made to suppress the information that modifications had been carried out by the architects on the original plan of the Mother for Matrimandir. This dubious activity alone is proof enough that those who have taken ‘possession’ of Matrimandir are not fit instruments to be entrusted with its execution; and it is also evident through this that the modifications they introduced do nothing else but reflect this falsehood.

Conclusion: The Vision Must Be Preserved

This is certainly a behaviour pattern that any reasonable observer would instantly recognise to be incompatible with the greatness of Sri Aurobindo’s teachings and the high calibre of his work. And it is this disregard for truth – on all sides – and a disrespect for Knowledge that has caused the most important work the Mother left for humanity to be caught in its present mire. Her vision of the original Matrimandir establishes the Mother as the greatest sacred architect the world has known. There is nothing comparable to be found anywhere in the records of sacred architecture, either in India or abroad. In her vision – but above all in the measurements she gave thereafter – the Mother achieved what has been the secret quest of all sacred architecture since time immemorial: to give the precise measure of Time in space. This has been called ‘the golden rod’ in occult tradition, and the revelation of this sacred Measure had been prophecied for our times over 2000 years ago. This discovery and revelation of that Golden Rod was to be the spiritual/occult axis of the new gnostic age. The Mother, in a superb act of yogic vision, accomplished this coveted feat for India, and through India for the rest of the world. Only those thoroughly versed in the art of sacred architecture and the fundaments of other branches of occult science can fully and realistically appreciate what this formidable achievement means for the evolution of a new humanity.

It is my duty and firm intention to preserve a record of the Mother’s achievement in this field, in spite of the fact that her vision was not accepted or understood by the community residing in Auroville. I cannot be expected to shelve this vision simply to preserve the name of certain profane architects, who by their questionable actions have proven themselves unworthy of the work they took upon themselves. If her vision could not be preserved in a material element, it is at least my duty to see to it that its content in Knowledge is not lost for a future humanity to whom Auroville truly belongs.