object:1.06 - Psychic Education
book class:On Education
SOME EXCERPTS ON PSYCHIC EDUCATION
In her small but great book on Education, The Mother has stated the' following:
"The psychic being is a great discovery which requires at least as much fortitude and endurance as the discovery of new continents. A few simple words of advice may be useful to one who has resolved to undertake it.
"The first and perhaps the most important point is that the mind is incapable of judging spiritual things. All those who have written on this subject have said so; but very few are those who have put it into practice. And yet, in order to proceed on the path, it is absolutely indispensable to abstain from all mental opinion and reaction.
"Give up all personal seeking for comfort, satisfaction, enjoyment or happiness. Be only a burning fire for progress, take whatever comes to you as an aid to your progress and immediately make whatever progress is required.
"Try to take pleasure in all you do, but never do anything for the sake of pleasure.
"Never get excited, nervous or agitated. Remain perfectly calm in the face of all circumstances. And yet be always alert to discover what progress you still have to make and lose no time in making it.
"Never take physical happenings at their face value. They are always a clumsy attempt to express something else, the true thing which escapes our Superficial understanding.
"Never complain of the behavior of anyone, unless you have the power to change in his nature what makes him act in this way; and if you have the power, change him instead of complaining.
"Whatever you do, never forget the goal which you have set before you. There is nothing great or small once you have set out on this great discovery; all things are equally important and can either hasten or delay its success. Thus before you eat, concentrate a few seconds in the aspiration that the food you are about to eat may bring your body the substance it needs to serve as a solid basis for your effort towards the great discovery, and give it the energy for persistence and perseverance in the effort.
"Before you go to sleep, concentrate a few seconds in the aspiration that the sleep may restore your fatigued nerves, bring calm and quietness to your brain so that on waking you may, with renewed vigor, begin again your journey on the path of the great discovery.
"Before you act, concentrate in the will that your action may help or at least in no way hinder your march forward towards the great discovery.
"When you speak, before the words come out of your mouth, concentrate just long enough to check your words and allow only those that are absolutely necessary to pass, only those that are not in any way harmful to your progress on the path of the great discovery.
"To sum up, never forget the purpose and goal of your life. The will for the great discovery should be always there above you, above what you do and what you are, like a huge bird of light dominating all the movements of your being."1.
As far as the aid that parents and teachers can give, it may first be noted that a good many children are under the influence of the psychic presence which shows itself very distinctively at times in their spontaneous reactions and even in their words. All spontaneous turning to love, truth, beauty, knowledge, nobility, heroism, is a sure sign of the psychic influence. To recognize these reactions and to encourage them wisely and with a psychic feeling would be the first indispensable step.
It is also important to note that to say good words, to give wise advice to a child has very little effect, if one does not show by one's living example the truth of what one teaches.
The best qualities to develop in children are sincerity, honesty, straightforwardness, courage, disinterestedness, unselfishness, patience, endurance, perseverance, peace, calm and self-control, and they are taught infinitely better by example than by speeches, however, beautiful.
The role of the teacher is to put the child upon the right road to his own perfection and encourage him to follow it watching, suggesting, helping, but not imposing or interfering. The best method of suggestion is by personal example, daily conversation, and books read from day-to-day.
These books should contain, for younger students, the loftiest examples of the past, given not as moral lessons but as things of supreme human interest, and for elder students, the great thoughts of great souls, the passages of literature which can set fire to the highest emotions and prompt the highest ideals and aspirations, the records of history and biography which exemplify the living of those great thoughts, noble emotions and inspiring ideals.
Opportunity should be given to students to emulate in action the deeper and nobler impulses which rise within them.
The undesirable impulses and habits should not be treated harshly. The child should not be scolded except with a definite purpose and only when it is felt indispensable. Particularly, care should be taken not to rebuke the child for a fault which one commits oneself. Children are very keen and clear-sighted observers; they take no time to find out the weaknesses and note them without pity.
When a child makes a mistake, one must see that he confesses it to the teacher or the guardian spontaneously and frankly; and when he has confessed, he should be made to understand with kindness and affection what was wrong in the movement and precaution should be taken to see that he does not repeat it. A fault confessed must be forgiven. The child should be encouraged to think of wrong impulses not as sins or offences but as symptoms of a curable disease, alterable by a steady and sustained effort of the will, - falsehood being rejected and replaced by truth, fear by courage, selfishness by sacrifice, attachment by renunciation and malice by love.
Due care should be taken to see that unformed virtues are not rejected as faults. The wildness and recklessness of many young natures are only the over-flowing of excessive strength, greatness and nobility. They should be purified and not discouraged.
Affection that sees clearly, is firm and yet gentle and a sufficiently practical knowledge will create bonds of trust that are indispensable for the educator to make education of the child effective.
When a child asks a question, he should not be answered by saying that it is stupid or foolish, or that the answer will not be understood by him. Curiosity cannot be postponed, and effort should be made to answer the question truthfully and in such a way as to make the answer accessible to the brain of the hearer.
With the growing awareness, the child should be taught to concentrate on the inner psychic presence and make it more and more a living reality.
The child should be taught that whenever there is an inner uneasiness, he should not pass it off and try to forget it, but should attend to it and try to find out by an inner observation the cause of the uneasiness so that it may be removed by some methods, inner or outer.
When the psychic being begins to be discovered, we find that it burns in the temple of the inmost heart behind the thick screen of the ignorant mind, life and body. As Sri Aurobindo points out:
"The veiled psychic is the flame of the Godhead always alight within us, inextinguishable even by that dense unconsciousness of any spiritual self within which obscures our outward nature... It is the concealed Witness and Control, the hidden Guide, the Daemon of Socrates, the inner light or inner voice of the mystic... It is the individual soul, caitya purusa, supporting mind, life and body, standing behind the mental, the vital, the subtle-physical being in us and watching and profiting by their development and experience... It is this secret psychic entity which is the true original Conscience in us deeper than the constructed and conventional conscience of the moralist, for it is this which points always towards Truth and Right and Beauty, towards Love and Harmony and all that is a divine possibility in us, and persists till these things become the major need of our nature... If the secret psychic person can come forward into the front... the whole nature can be turned towards the real aim of life, the supreme victory, the ascent into spiritual existence."2
~ The Mother On Education
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