LESSON 30: THE ENTRY INTO INNER COUNTRIES
The movement from the outer world to the inner world is complicated by our habits, addictions, daily routines, and the content of the mind that seeks to stay addicted to those routines. Anyone who has managed to discipline themselves in the art of meditation can speak volumes about the endless resistance of the mind to be still. It takes work to enter the inner country and there’s no need to be naive about this struggle.
“A formidable voice cried from within:
‘Back, creature of earth, lest tortured and torn thou die.’
A dreadful murmur rose like a dim sea;
The Serpent of the threshold hissing rose
A fatal guardian hood with monstrous coils,
The hounds of darkness growled with jaws agape,
And trolls and gnomes and goblins scowled and stared
And wild beast roarings thrilled the blood with fear
And menace muttered in a dangerous tongue.”
The hounds of darkness, trolls, gnomes, goblins and wild beast roarings…these are of your own making, stored and shelved neatly in your mind, artifacts of your past whose essential purpose is to be right about the perceptions you created of yourself and the world that resulted from your journey of surviving.
“Life was consigned to a safe level path;
It dared not tempt the great and difficult heights
Or climb to be neighbor to a lonely star
Or skirt the danger of the precipice
Or tempt the foam-curled breakers’ perilous laugh.
Adventure’s lyrist, danger’s amateur,
Or into her chamber call some flaming god,
Or leave the world’s bounds and where no limits are
Meet with the heart’s passion the Adorable
Or set the world ablaze with the inner Fire.”
The barriers you face in extricating yourself from your past, from the drama of your life, these barriers are not you, the real you. But make no mistake about it, you are the one who created them. Any resistance you experience in trying to improve your life, your relationships, your work…it is you who is doing the resisting! So, don’t be naive. Your mind is going to resist.
The pursuit of this necessary step from the outer world to the inner countries (your inner worlds, your soul) is the purpose of time itself. Time is the cradle in which the divine is slowly nursed. Your becoming is the principal objective of the entire curriculum of duality, beset by ups and downs, ambrosia and poison, and as Aurobindo points out, “Its faith in heaven, its intercourse with hell.”
This journey is the great reconciliation of the outer and the inner, making of the outer world heaven on earth by realizing that heaven is in you! The world is an effect. It is not the cause of why you are the way you are. You are the reason you are the way you are. So, if you do not go within, you’re going to keep going without. It’s that simple.
But you are not alone. Regardless of the difficulties, the companions will appear, helping you along the way to your inner country.
“O Savitri, from thy hidden soul we come.
We are the messengers, the occult gods
Who help men’s drab and heavy ignorant lives
To wake to beauty and the wonder of things
Touching them with glory and divinity;
In evil we light the deathless flame of God
Who seekst the deity thou keepest hid
And livest by the Truth thou has known,
Follow the world’s winding highway to its source.
There in the silence few have ever reached,
Thou shalt see the Fire burning on the bare stone
And the deep cavern of thy secret soul.”
The difficulties of being motivated, disciplined and focused are known by all. But this is part of your journey to the inner countries and all that you need to live a life of joy, fulfillment and knowledge of your beautiful Self. And the way to begin is by being still. The question is not if but when will you begin the journey to the inner countries.