Successorship and other tales

The following was posted on the Auroconf Internet e-mail  list a few moths ago.  It was part of a long discussion among many participants on the general subject of who might be the "successor(s)" to Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.


by Kenny Schachat
On a personal note I should add that for me the vision, work, being and consciousness of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother are more alive and present than ever, both within me and in the world.  How can you have successors when something hasn't gone away? 

What follows is not directed at anyone in particular and although it may 
seem a bit pointed, the course of this (email) thread has brought up some 
very important points and I guess I feel compelled to say things as I see 

Tll of these messages about the status of the various people, "gurus" and 
"teachers" talked about here has emphasized to me that it's crucial in all 
of these matters to refrain from judging by externals, inference, or even 
an encyclopedic reading of the voluminous literature on Integral Yoga and 
to then try and assemble and put together what "should and shouldn't be 
done" and apply it to events and individuals.  All we wind up with is a 
"put together" version of truths that are incomplete and fragmentary and 
ultimately become orthodoxy and dogmatic. 

Another area that I consider very critical is that constantly applying the 
"written rules" can erode one's own spontaneous insight, intuition and 
vision. This can become a form of "spiritual conditioning" and takes one 
farther from what is Real. Ultimately one can become so attached, mentally 
and emotionally to all of the words, ideas, concepts, etc. that one becomes 
literally (pun intended) dependent on them.  A subtle fear of letting them 
go so as to dive into direct experience grows and can become a very 
difficult area to move on from. This additional conditioning becomes 
another layer between our sense of who we are and the spontaneous 
perception that is part of the psychic being. 

In other words, all of that "stuff" becomes a substitute for doing Yoga. 
And doing Yoga, living it, applying it to "all life" is what Sri Aurobindo 
and The Mother came to show us. Not to follow them in the sense of adhering 
to the rules but to do as they did, for and in ourselves-to become Yogis in 
the true sense of the word! And I'll apply this to questions surrounding 
all the "teachers" and "gurus," etc.  If someone truly gets help in their 
Yoga from anyone else, who are we to judge that? One true inner step of 
consciousness is infinitely more valuable and a greater honor to Sri 
Aurobindo and The Mother than any adherence to a rule. 

All the rest of it: whether anyone has attained a specific spiritual status 
and how that applies to lines of successorship is just politics. It's 
played out everywhere to some extent-the Ashram, Auroville, almost any 
spiritual path and right here on Auroconf. No one seems to be immune to it: 
it makes for interesting debate and it certainly is entertaining gossip but 
let's not get carried away to thinking that it has anything at all to do 
with Yoga or the vision and teaching of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. 
That all being said, I'm feeling rather mischievous so I'll add my 
contribution to the Sri Aurobindo Zen/Yiddish Koan Archives: 

Tow quick, who is the true successor? 

If you answer something like: 
"the person closest to the Supramental Transformation" 
"Sri Aurobindo, when he manifests in a Supramental Body" 
"The Mother when she comes again" 
"Mother Meera" 
"Patrizia and her son" 
anyone you ever heard of 
"there is no successor, they said so themselves" 

or especially if you quote anything...Then you get a deft potch (Yiddish 
Sanskrit for a smack) from the Zen Supramental Baal Shem Tov's themselves. 
Now quick, who is the true successor? 

Of course, you are the successor...and I am the successor...we are the 
successor. The only successorship that truly matters is the realization and 
transformation in our own consciousness and being.  Sri Aurobindo could 
come and sit on our heads and that alone ultimately wouldn't matter. Didn't 
The Mother relate in The Agenda that he did just that to the whole Ashram 
during one Darshan after he left his body, and hardly anyone knew it! 

So, let's not look around, let's look in the mirror. Until we see the 
successor there we won't be able to see it anywhere else, either. 

-Kenny Schachat (
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