‘That Vexatious Question of Abortion’

LETTERS FROM SKAMBHA

…And this brings me to another point. You bring up this burning question plaguing America right now: abortion and all that is connected to it. But I have to sound a warning here; and in fact that is the main purpose of this letter. I was rather alarmed at what you were reading into this issue, insofar as you sere seeing a ‘connection’ to my work behind it all, but in a way that seems misconstrued. If I have understood rightly from what you write, abortion somehow goes against my work. This is the only conclusion I can come to from your statement… ‘It is the war of the Womb being played out on a secular level… The battle is really about whether to give birth or to negate birth and the issue is the child. What could be more central to the work at the present stage?’

These dramatic pronouncements leave me bewildered! But I am not sure I understand the connection you are seeking to make, or the implications regarding my position on these issues. Why I hasten to clarify the matter is simply because you are now attempting to write something on me and my work. Therefore it is important that you form a clear idea about these connections, or else there is the risk that you will be reading into my work connections that are not there, or somehow missing the point or the ‘forest for the trees’.

I don’t see that this is the ‘war of the Womb’ at all (but I admit that I don’t really know what you mean by that). For me the issue is clear, and if there is any connection to the work I am doing it lies only in the fact that a shift is taking place and a ‘new purpose’ is being established as the new foundation for a new race. Central to this issue is the old purpose: procreation and atavism. That is, until now the pivotal function of the race has been to maintain its continuity in a field totally governed by the Ignorance and the Falsehood, and within that field to promote its evolution to a higher poise. In the binary system the sex centre was the dominant pivot, given the ‘old purpose’. What is happening to women the world over is simply a reaction to the Power which is seeking to introduce a new purpose and place that central, once and for all. The ‘right to give birth’ has absolutely nothing to do with this at all. Just the contrary. So, I am perplexed by your ‘discovery’. The right of women to give birth has been sacred and well protected from the beginning. No one disputes that. The issue at stake is simply a secular one: government funding for abortion. After all, no one is FORCING a woman to abort. It is simply a question of whether it is proper or not for a government to fund operations which a large segment of the population feels is abhorrent to and unmindful of their religious beliefs.

I am neither in favour of nor against abortion. To me it is simply a question of accommodation within the old structure. I am for changing that structure entirely. Then these issues will find their true place and solution. But, within the old structure, and living in a country with a bulging population and all the problems this gives rise to, I have to admit that when I hear Mother Theresa going around preaching against abortion at the behest of the Pope, I am rather disturbed. For the point is that to impede government from funding abortions means that the poorer classes must bear the brunt. Government funding is required FOR THEM. Remember, it is all a question of money since no one can force anyone to have an abortion who does not want it. Thus, there is no question at all of ‘rights’ here, except the right to allocate funds or not for the purpose, and in the process to OBLIGE sectors of the population to fund projects which they are against religiously.

You would agree that some form of family planning is a must, especially in Third World countries. And that, given the ignorant condition of the human being, tied to the drives of his lesser functions, this condition has to be taken into consideration. That is, one cannot expect the populace to abstain, as Gandhi expected, totally unrealistically. One can provide women and men with means to avoid pregnancy; but we are dealing with very basic and simple drives and states of consciousness governed by rudimentary reasonings and compulsions. One has to take into account ‘accidents’ such as unwanted pregnancies, forced intercourse and the like. And these situations are prevalent in poorer sections of society. To withhold government funds for the purpose of providing safe abortions is criminal, in my view, and must cause great hardship to a certain sector of the population.

What has this got to do with ‘the right to give birth’, or in what way is it reflective of a ‘war of the Womb’, which you seem to feel reflects my work? You have to be very careful about reading things into issues, projecting your own feelings and conditionings or lacks into this work; moreso since you intend to present this work to the public in some form. Then the responsibility is even greater to be faithful to the truth to the best of your ability. By this I do not mean that you have to agree with me on everything. Not at all. I simply mean that when you write you must be sure that you are not attributing thoughts or actions or concepts or perceptions to me that are not mine.

All of these movements throughout the world are simply the way the old consciousness deals with the influx of the new Power. The responses are old, and within the old what else can we expect? They are accommodations, given the limitations of the field. That is why I insist that while one seeks to enlarge the perspective, at the same time there must be an effective means to enlarge the whole field of consciousness and being. Otherwise, it will be an action within a closed circuit that gets us nowhere ultimately. Or rather, that serves finally to destroy rather than create. A limited field can take only so much influx. If that field is not extended, those in-coming forces, no matter how ‘good’ they are, will hasten the collapse.

There is a certain rajasic leaping to conclusions. In your case this is heightened by Sun conjunct Uranus in Aries. Sometimes perceptions are astoundingly accurate, inspiring. But at other times they are ‘eccentric’ and clear cases of mis-seeings. That is why it is so important to do the yoga seriously, so that while Knowledge is being given there is a sensitised, stable receptacle that is receiving this Knowledge. Distortion is then minimised. One MUST work on oneself constantly, as you are doing. Otherwise the lens gets foggier and foggier, rather than a purer and more crystalline instrument of perception.

 

27 July 1989

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