Consciousness in work: The gnostic way



By Ameeta Mehra

. . . On not blaming circumstances or people, but examining inner causes for outside lapses and problems

S omeone asked Mother for sympathy regarding his circumstances. She replied:

I am full of sympathy, but unshakably convinced that each one meets in this life the circumstances which he has, inwardly and outwardly, built for himself. It is always a mistake to complain about the circumstances of our life, for they are the outward expression of what we are ourselves.

I remember many occasions when I have recalled these words, especially when things were not moving smoothly; and having resolved to work according to this principle, the growth in consciousness and in quality of work has been substantial.

Even as a group, we in the Delhi Gnostic Center have consciously adopted this method. When a new member joins the team, this perhaps is the most difficult thing to accept -- that one cannot blame others or even circumstances for one's failure in work or inability to get on harmoniously. It is a bit of a knock, for a particular characteristic of Homo sapiens is that we always look outside ourselves for the cause of our problems.

V arious small things happen during the day -- it may be that the newsletter does not come out in time, and one can cite very plausible reasons why: the printer delayed it, the scanning had to be redone, the weekend arrived, and so on. But here at the center, we ask ourselves first: "As this responsibility was given to me, where did I fall short? Did I not fully accept the responsibility, or was I a bit lackadaisical? What can I do to make sure this never happens again?" And so on.

This takes courage!

But are we here to repeat once more what has already been done by others -- to create one more efficient institution, to do some good humanitarian work and fulfill the egoistic demands of human nature?

No. We are here to go beyond the egoistic motives from which we normally act, and to consecrate ourselves to the highest truth of existence. Our first and foremost endeavor is to become examples of the truth we stand for, and for that, our whole way of looking at life and circumstances must change.

Perhaps the mantra is the conscious invocation of the word gnostic. It demands another way of looking, thinking and acting.


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Ameeta Mehra has worked in human resource development, integral psychology, and Indian philosophy. She is chair of the Gnostic Center in Delhi, India. The center has a Web page at

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