Stalin and Hitler
In February you gave a message saying “a new light shall break upon the earth”, 3 and just after that [on 5 March 1953], Stalin died. Does this signify anything?
That would truly be a small result. The death of Stalin (unfortu- nately not any more than the death of Hitler) has not changed the present state of the world. Something more than that would be necessary. For this is like the assassin who is guillotined: when his head is cut off, his spirit remains behind and is projected outside him. It is a vital formation and it goes and takes shelter in one of the benevolent spectators, who suddenly feels a criminal instinct in himself. There are many men like that, specially very young criminals who when questioned have acknowledged this. They have been asked: “When did this desire to kill come to you?” and the frequent reply is: “It got hold of me when I saw so-and-so executed.”
So, this is of no use, the death of this one or that other. That does not help very much — the thing goes elsewhere. It is only one form. It is as though you did something very wicked with a particular shirt on and then threw away your shirt and said: “Now, I shall no longer do harm.” You continue with another shirt on!
If life has been converted into death, why doesn’t it itself die?
Because it protects itself well. What you say is quite true, but it takes good care not to incarnate on earth. And in the vital world there is no death, it does not exist there. It is in the material world that this exists, and it takes very good care not to incarnate.
Was Stalin predestined to be what he was?
Was Stalin predestined to be what he was?
But he was possessed. He was rather mediocre by nature, very mediocre. He was a medium, a very good medium — the thing took hold of him, besides, during spiritism s ́ eances. It was at that moment that he was seized by those fits which were described as epileptic. They were not epileptic: they were attacks of possession. It was thus that he had a kind of power, which however was not very great. But when he wanted to know some- thing from that power, he went away to his castle, and there, in “meditation”, there truly he invoked very intensely what he called his “god”, his supreme god, who was the Lord of the Nations. And everything seemed to him magnificent. It was a being... it was small — it appeared to him all in silver armour, with a silver helmet and golden plume! It was magnificent! And a light so dazzling that hardly could the eyes see and bear that blaze. Naturally it did not appear physically — Hitler was a medium, he saw. He had a sort of clairvoyance. And it was at such times that he had his fits: he rolled on the ground, he drivelled, bit the carpet, it was frightful, the state he was in. The people around him knew it. Well, that being is the “Lord of the Nations”. And it is not even the Lord of the Nations in its origin, it is an emanation of the Lord of the Nations, and a very powerful emanation.
If it chooses to disappear, would that be a loss of power for the Divine?
What? What are you saying! Disappear where? What do you call disappearing? — Disappear where? You know the story of the Ramayana. What did Ravana choose? You know that? Very well, this is what is called choosing to disappear: that is to say, he has no longer any individuality.
What happened to Ravana after his death we are not told.
We are not told? To me it has been told. It is said that Ravana chose to disappear into the Supreme, and that he was com- pletely dissolved in Him, that is, he lost his individuality, he was no longer a separate being, he returned to the Origin, he was dissolved in the Supreme. And even before doing it, he had chosen to play that part, his part as a hostile being, because the road is much shorter than for those who are devotees and obey. One goes much more rapidly, for, one day, the Divine decides that it is enough, and he just destroys them. He cannot go out of the Divine, for all is divine! He may lose his individuality, that is, may be fused, dissolved into the Supreme.
Besides, nothing disappears, it is the form which disappears but the constituent elements continue. Everything is eternal, for everything is the Divine, and nothing can go out of the Divine, for everything is divine. But the forms disappear. And it is through this identification with the form that the impression of death comes; but the constituent elements are eternal, for all is eternal. It is the form which disappears.
So, some of those beings prefer to be just completely dis- solved and to disappear totally like that, into the infinite, the oneness (that is, they lose their personal consciousness, they have no longer any personal consciousness, they exist no longer as a personal consciousness), they prefer that, rather than having a personal consciousness which gives itself to the Divine and becomes by this very fact consciously and personally immortal. They like dissolution and personal disappearance better than conversion, that is, self-giving.
Through pride, I suppose. It is always pride. Fundamentally, from the very beginning it is pride — but almost all the religions have said it. It is pride, that is, a sort of consciousness of one’s power and one’s importance.
You said that these four emanations were parts of the Supreme. Then how can they have another consciousness than His?
Another consciousness? But there is no other consciousness! The very principle of emanation is an objectivisation of a part of himself, which potentially keeps the qualities of the emana- tor. But if this emanation is made (as they were made) with a will to give freedom of choice, as I said, these emanations can either follow that freedom and independence or continue to keep the connection with the emanator, for there is a freedom of choice. That strength and force which they hold in themselves is quite sufficient to give them the impression of their importance and power. If they themselves, of their own will, choose not to remain in contact, in a relation of surrender to the Supreme, if they choose to use the amount of power and consciousness and force they contain in themselves to do what they must do independently, by that very fact they cut themselves off from their source — but in spite of that the constituent elements of their being are those which belonged to the Source. And it is because of this that, even if they cut themselves off voluntarily, there is in the very depth of the consciousness a link which is indestructible. It is the link of identity. But in the outer mani- festation, as they were emanated with this essential quality of freedom of choice, well, they are free to choose to do this or that. That is why, even in the worst criminal, there is somewhere in the depths, somewhere, the divine light. I believe you have read that passage of Vivekananda where he says (I don’t know the exact words), that the criminal must be told: “Awake, awake, being of light, and shine forth!”
Just a while ago, when I told you I shall narrate the story to you as one does to children, that is precisely because I narrated it as if it were a material story. And narrated thus, it becomes a child’s story. But these things must be seen in their own domain, which is a spiritual domain and not a material one. Things do not happen as they would here.
But still, yes! What happens here is symbolically the same thing, in the sense that the child who is born is nothing else but a little piece of his mother, even materially, altogether materially, for during almost... completely during a few hours, about two days, and to a lesser extent though still very perceptibly during at least two months, this link of substance is so great that it feels really like a physical material prolongation of herself, but outside herself. That is just the element of emanation. Well, this does not prevent children, when they grow up, from becoming quite independent of their parents and at times completely differ- ent, but at the source, at the beginning, it is the same thing. It is simply the same matter, absolutely the same, simply exteriorised, that’s all.
And for the emanations, it is the same phenomenon, but instead of being on a material plane it is on the highest spiritual plane. And what happens here is a symbol of what happens up above.
Well, doesn’t it ever occur to you to say: “How is it that this child whose father and mother are so good, so honest, so generous, so truthful, how is it that he is such a rascal?” You may wonder at it, but it does not seem anything impossible. So, this is the same thing. Fundamentally, all depends on the inner constitution of the being. There are no two beings who are exactly alike; there are no two constitutions which are the same. And all depends on the inner organisation, the integral organisation of the being, on the order in which the elements are organised and what their inner relation is — even as the external form differs because the cells are not organised in the same way. But as this is a phenomenon you constantly see, in the midst of which you are born, which you see every day, it seems quite natural to you. But it is the same thing. It seems quite natural to you that a child is different from its mother and father — and yet this is the same thing. And in an emanation of the Supreme, to begin with, one part is necessarily different from the whole, though it may potentially contain the whole, but the whole is not expressed. And as the whole is not expressed, it is perforce different from the whole, for the inner organisation is different. There then, I think that is enough.
We have almost touched philosophy.
Au revoir , my children.
Questions and Answers 25 November 1953