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What are the Cells?

The cells have an inner composition or structure which corresponds to the structure of the universe. So the link is established between identical external and internal states.... It is not "external", but it is external for the individual. That is, the cell, in its internal composition, receives the vibration of the corresponding state in the composition of the whole. Each cell is composed of different radiances, with a wholly luminous centre, and the connection is established between light and light. That is, the will, the central light, acts on the cell by touching the corresponding lights, by an inner contact of the being. Each cell is a world in miniature corresponding to the whole. [1]


But the cells are an already very developed thing, in the sense that they are a form of LIFE in Matter; they are a form of life, they’re not purely material, inert Matter…. [2]

Cellular Constitution

It had internal constitutions of varying radiances ("Mother draws points or various concentrations within the cell"), and the centre was wholly luminous. And there was a big hand, almost a paw, you know, a big hand holding this cell very carefully: he took great care to touch it as lightly as possible ("Mother draws two big fingers holding the cell"). It was luminous, held up with two fingers, like this.... I don't know what the scientific shape of cells is, but it was like this. And he showed me the various radiances. The periphery was the most opaque; the deeper inside, the more luminous it became; and the center was wholly luminous, it was bright, that is, radiating. Then there were different colors—not very intense, but different colors. The hand was magnified perhaps twice, because it was this big (about ten inches), while the object was this big (about three inches), and it was a cell. [3]


But as soon as you descend into that realm, the realm of the cells and even of the cells' constitution, how much less heavy it seems! That sort of heaviness of Matter disappears: it becomes fluid and vibrant again. Which would tend to show that the heaviness, the thickness, the inertia, the immobility, is something that has been ADDED ON, it's not an essential quality of Matter—it's false Matter, Matter as we think or feel it, but not Matter itself as it is. [4]


When the concentration which forms the body comes to an end and the body dissolves, all the cells that have been especially developed and have become conscious of the divine Presence within them, are scattered and enter other combinations in which they awaken, by contagion, the consciousness of the Presence that each one has had. And in this way, by this phenomenon of concentration, development and dispersion, all matter evolves and learns by contagion, develops by contagion, has the experience by contagion. [5]


The central will of the physical being abdicates its will to hold all the cells together. That is the first phenomenon. It accepts dissolution for one reason or another. One of the strongest reasons is the sense of an irreparable disharmony; the other is a kind of disgust with continuing the effort of coordination and harmonisation. In fact, there are innumerable reasons, but unless there is a violent accident, it is above all this will to maintain cohesion which abdicates for one reason or another, or without reason. It is this which inevitably precedes death. [6]

Cellular Consciousness

…you have lots of cells in your body; each cell has its own consciousness and you have a consciousness which is the consciousness of your total individuality, though made up of all these small cellular consciousnesses. [7]


In this physical consciousness as a whole, there is the physical mind—a mind that is occupied with all the ordinary things and responds to everything around you. There is also the vital consciousness, which is the awareness of sensations, impulses, enthusiasms and desires. Finally, there is the physical consciousness itself, the material consciousness, the body consciousness, and that is the one which has so far never been entirely transformed. The global, overall consciousness of the body has been transformed, that is, one can throw off the bondage of thought, of habits that one no longer considers inevitable. That can change, it has been changed. But what remains to be changed is the consciousness of the cells. [8]


There is a consciousness in the cells: it is what we call the "body consciousness" and it is wholly bound up with the body. This consciousness has much difficulty in changing, because it is under the influence of the collective suggestion which is absolutely opposed to the transformation. So one has to struggle with this collective suggestion, not only with the collective suggestion of the present, but with the collective suggestion which belongs to the earth-consciousness as a whole, the terrestrial human consciousness which goes back to the earliest formation of man. That has to be overcome before the cells can be spontaneously aware of the Truth, of the Eternity of matter. [9]

Ignorance in Cells

…when it comes to incorporating matter into the work, matter as it is in this world where the very starting point is false (we start off in unconsciousness and ignorance), well, it's very difficult. Because, to recover the consciousness it has lost, Matter has had to individualize itself, and for that—for the form to last and retain this possibility of individuality—it has been created with a certain indispensable measure of rigidity. And that rigidity is the main obstacle to the expansion, to the plasticity and suppleness necessary for receiving the Supermind. I constantly find myself facing this problem, which is utterly concrete, absolutely material when you're dealing with cells that have to remain cells and not vaporize into some nonphysical reality, and at the same time have to have a suppleness, a lack of rigidity, enabling them to widen indefinitely. [10]


But when you have no longer any mental or vital fear, then you become aware of it [physical fear]. It is a curious little vibration that gets into your cells and they begin shivering that way.But the cells are not like a heart beating very fast. It is in the very cells: they tremble with just a slight quivering. And it is very difficult to control this. Yet it can be controlled.

I am sure that most of you have felt this as, for example, when one does an exercise which is not done often or does it for the first time; these are tiny little vibrations which seize you in all the cells. And then naturally, you lose your full control over the movement. The body does not answer to the Force any more. When you want to put your will to do something, that brings about a kind of resistance and incapacity in the body. Only, you are not aware of it usually because your attention is drawn more to the mental apprehension or to the kind of vital recoil which is very apparent in the consciousness, whereas you are not so very conscious of the resistance produced in the body. [11]


It is a sense of protection, and if one feels that one cannot protect oneself, one is afraid. But the movement of fear which is expressed by the eyes fluttering is not a mental or a vital fear: it is a fear in the cells of the body; for it has not been impressed upon them that there is no danger and they do not know how to resist. It is because one has not done yoga, you see. With yoga one can watch with open eyes, one would not close them; but one would not close them because one calls upon something else, and that "something else" is the sense of the divine Presence in oneself which is stronger than everything. [12]


…the greatest obstacle in the way of man's progress is fear, a fear that is many-sided, multiform, self-contradictory, illogical, unreasoning and often unreasonable. Of all fears the most subtle and the most tenacious is the fear of death. It is deeply rooted in the subconscient and it is not easy to dislodge. It is obviously made up of several interwoven elements: the spirit of conservatism and the concern for self-preservation so as to ensure the continuity of consciousness, the recoil before the unknown, the uneasiness caused by the unexpected and the unforeseeable, and perhaps, behind all that, hidden in the depths of the cells, the instinct that death is not inevitable and that, if certain conditions are fulfilled, it can be conquered; although, as a matter of fact, fear in itself is one of the greatest obstacles to that conquest. For one cannot conquer what one fears, and one who fears death has already been conquered by it. [13]

Divine Qualities in Cell


…each part of the being has its own aspiration which has the nature of the aspiring part. There is even a physical aspiration; the body can. …The cells of the body understand what the transformations will be, and with all their strength, all the consciousness they contain, they aspire for this transformation. The very cells of the body—not the central will, thought or emotion—the cells of the body open in this way to receive the Force. [14]


At the centre of each cell lies the Divine Consciousness. By aspiration and repeated self-giving, the cells must be made transparent. [15]


Aspiration in the cellular consciousness for perfect sincerity of consecration. [16]


The response of the cells was interesting enough, in the sense that they seemed to attach importance ONLY TO THE CAPACITY TO REMAIN IN CONSCIOUS CONTACT WITH THE HIGHER FORCE. It was like an aspiration (not formulated in words, naturally), and like a... what in English they call "yearning, a longing" for that Contact with the divine Force, the Force of Harmony, the Force of Truth and... the Force of Love, and [the cells' response was] that because of that, they valued the present combination. [17]


It is enough to have had once one minute of aspiration and a will even if it be very fugitive, to become conscious of the Divine, to realise the Divine, for it to flash like lightning through the whole being—there are even cells of the body which respond. This is not visible all at once, but there is a response everywhere. And it is by slowly, carefully, putting together all these parts which have responded, though it be but once, that one can build up something which will be coherent and organised, and which will permit one's action to continue with will, sincerity and perseverance. [18]


...physical Matter in its cellular form has, we can't say a fear or an anxiety, but a sort of apprehension of new vibrations, and that apprehension naturally takes away from the cells their receptivity and takes on the appearance of a discomfort (it's not a suffering but a discomfort). But when that apprehension is counterbalanced and cured by aspiration and the will for total surrender and the act of total surrender, then that sort of apprehension having disappeared, there comes supreme ease. [19]


…a sort of certitude in the cells that everything that happens is with a view to this transformation and this transfer of the directing power. And at the very moment when things are materially painful (not even physically: materially painful), the cells keep that certitude. And so they withstand, they endure the suffering without being depressed or affected in the least, with that certitude that it is to prepare for the transformation, that it is even the process of transformation and of the transfer of the directing power. [20]


…when the cells have faith in the divine Presence and the divine sovereign Will and trust that all is for the good, then ecstasy comes—the cells open up, become luminous and ecstatic. [21]

Surrender in Cells

If you could put in the body—INTO the body—the complete surrender, that is, it should RELY on the Supreme's intervention alone, you understand; the BODY, the very body must say to Him, "Here ("Mother opens her hands"), here..." to the Supreme, with the knowledge that He is there; He is there in the atmosphere, in the cells, in everything, and... ("gesture, hands open") and that's all. That's very effective. [22]

Illness or Disorder

But physical suffering is to me like a child being beaten, because here in Matter, Falsehood turned into ignorance, which means there is no bad will—there is no bad will in Matter, everything is inertia and ignorance: total ignorance of the Truth, ignorance of the Origin, ignorance of the Possibility, even ignorance of what needs to be done so as not to suffer materially. This ignorance is everywhere in the cells, and only the experience—and the experience of what, in this rudimentary consciousness, is translated as suffering—can awaken, arouse the need to know and be cured, and the aspiration to be transformed. [23]

Doubt in Cells

Through repeated, everyday experience, I am increasingly convinced that all disorders in the body and all diseases are the result of DOUBT in the cells or a certain group of cells. They doubt the Divine's concrete reality, they doubt the Divine Presence in them, they doubt their being divine in their very essence, and this doubt is the cause of all disorders. [24]

Cure of Illness

In the body there are invaluable and unknown treasures. In all its cells, there is an intensity of life, of aspiration, of the will to progress, which one does not usually even realise. The body-consciousness would have to be completely warped by the action of the mind and vital for it not to have an immediate will to re-establish the equilibrium. When this will is not there, it means that the entire body-consciousness has been spoilt by the intervention of the mind and vital. In people who cherish their malady more or less subconsciously with a sort of morbidity under the pretext that it makes them interesting, it is not their body at all—poor body!—it is something they have imposed upon it with a mental or vital perversion. The body, if left to itself, is remarkable, for, not only does it aspire for equilibrium and well-being but it is capable of restoring the balance. If one leaves one's body alone without intervening with all those thoughts, all the vital reactions, all the depressions, and also all the so-called knowledge and mental constructions and fears—if one leaves the body to itself, spontaneously it will do what is necessary to set itself right again. [25]


...cure for all physical disorders lies in the cells becoming convinced—conscious and convinced—that they are an expression of the Divine, or even that they are divine in their essence. [26]


First of all, you must not want it and nothing in the body must want it. You must have a very strong will not to be ill. This is the first condition. The second condition is to call the light, a light of equilibrium, a light of peace, quietude and balance, and to push it into all the cells of the body, enjoining them not to be afraid, because that again is another condition. [27]


There are a thousand reasons for this unbalance but only one remedy, to instil into the being this instinct, this sense of true beauty, a supreme beauty which will gradually act on the cells and make the body capable of expressing beauty. This is still a thing which is not known: the body is infinitely more plastic than you believe. You must have surely noticed (perhaps very vaguely) that those who live in an inner peace, in an inner beauty, a light, and perfect goodwill, have an expression which is not quite the same as of people who live in bad thoughts, in the lower part of their nature. [28]

Attitude of Cells in Physical Disorder

The attitude in certain cells towards a physical disorder which, naturally, like all physical disorders, tends to recur. The attitude in the cells changes—not the disorder (!), the disorder changes only because of the cells' reaction, that's what makes it change; but it recurs with clockwork regularity—that's its job. It is the way it's received by the cells, their reaction to it, that brings about the change. And there is now a difference in the cells' reaction. The result of my observation (an impersonal, general observation) is that there are two types of change (I can't call it "progress"), two types of change in the reaction: a change that goes on improving, in the sense that the reaction grows less sharp, the cells are less affected and become not only more conscious but more IN COMMAND of the reaction (something people are not generally conscious of, but which is what brings about the cure). And, on the other hand, deterioration: under the unrelenting attack, the cells panic, become more and more affected and afraid, and it eventually results in a terrible mess and a catastrophe. [29]


If we live only in the outward physical consciousness, we do not usually know that we are going to be ill until the symptoms of the malady declare themselves in the body. But if we develop the inward physical consciousness, we become aware of a subtle environmental physical atmosphere and can feel the forces of illness coming towards us through it, feel them even at a distance and, if we have learned how to do it, we can stop them by the will or otherwise. We sense too around us a vital physical or nervous envelope which radiates from the body and protects it, and we can feel the adverse forces trying to break through it and can interfere, stop them or reinforce the nervous envelope. Or we can feel the symptoms of illness, fever or cold for instance, in the subtle physical sheath before they are manifest in the gross body and destroy them there, preventing them from manifesting in the body. Take now the call for the Divine Power, Light, Ananda. If we live only in the outward physical consciousness, it may descend and work behind the veil but we shall feel nothing and only see certain results after a long time. Or at most we feel a certain clarity and peace in the mind, a joy in the vital, a happy state in the physical and infer the touch of the Divine. But if we are awake in the inward physical, we shall feel the light, power or Ananda flowing through the body, the limbs, nerves, blood, breath and, through the subtle body, affecting the most material cells and making them conscious and blissful and we shall sense directly the Divine Power and Presence. These are only two instances out of a thousand that are possible and can be constantly experienced by the sadhaka. [30]


The secret is to emerge from the ego, get out of its prison, unite ourselves with the Divine, merge into Him, not to allow anything to separate us from Him. Then, once one has discovered this secret and realises it in one’s being, pain loses its justification and suffering disappears. It is an all-powerful remedy, not only in the deeper parts of the being, in the soul, in the spiritual consciousness, but also in life and in the body.

There is no illness, no disorder which can resist the discovery of this secret and the putting of it into practice, not only in the higher parts of the being but in the cells of the body. [31]


If one knows how to teach the cells the splendour that lies within them, if one knows how to make them understand the reality which makes them exist, gives them being, then they too enter the total harmony, and the physical disorder which causes the illness vanishes as do all other disorders of the being. [32]

Conquering Fear

People say, "Oh, yes, here I am not afraid." They don't have any fear in the mind, their mind is not afraid, it is strong, it is not afraid; but the body trembles, and one doesn't know it, because it is in the cells of the body that the trembling goes on. It trembles with a terrible anxiety and this is what attracts the illness. It is there that you must put the force and the quietude of a perfect peace and an absolute trust in the Grace. And then, sometimes you are obliged to drive away with a similar force in your thought all suggestions that after all, the physical world is full of illnesses, and these are contagious, and because one was in contact with somebody who is ill, one is sure to catch it, and then, that the inner methods are not powerful enough to act on the physical, and all kinds of stupidities of which the air is full. These are collective suggestions which are passed on from one person to another by everybody. And if by chance there are two or three doctors, then it becomes terrible. [33]


Even if the inner being is enlightened enough to be above all fear, the fear still remains hidden in the cells of the body, obscure, spontaneous, beyond the reach of reason, usually almost unconscious. It is in these obscure depths that one must find it out, seize hold of it and cast upon it the light of knowledge and certitude. [34]


When physical disorder comes, one must not be afraid; one must not run away from it, must face it with courage, calmness, confidence, with the certitude that illness is a falsehood and that if one turns entirely, in full confidence, with a complete quietude to the divine grace, it will settle in these cells as it establishes itself in the depths of the being, and the cells themselves will share in the eternal Truth and Delight. [35]


Catch hold of a peace deep within and push it into the cells of the body. With the peace will come back the health. [36]


Peace in the cells: the indispensable condition for the body's progress.

Light in the cells: the first step towards purity in the cells.

Purity in the cells cannot be obtained except through conquest of desires; it is the true condition for good health. [37]


And if the mind keeps its quietude and receptivity to higher forces only, it can then easily pass on that quietude and receptivity to the body consciousness and even to the material cells of the body. [38]


Let us assume you have a pain somewhere; the instinct (the instinct of the body, of the cells) is to tense up and try to reject—which is the worst thing to do: it invariably increases the pain. So the first thing that must be taught to the body is to stay still—not to have any reactions. Above all no tensing up, and not even a movement of rejection—a perfect stillness. That's corporeal equanimity. [39]


Wideness and calmness are the foundation of the Yogic consciousness and the best condition for inner growth and experience. If a wide calm can be established in the physical consciousness, occupying and filling the very body and all its cells, that can become the basis for its transformation; in fact, without this wideness and calmness the transformation is hardly possible. [40]


But if by widening this movement you can add a sort of mental formation with a little life in it―not just cold, but with a little life in it―that the only reality is the divine Reality, and all the cells of this body are a more or less deformed expression of this divine Reality―there is only one Reality, the Divine, and our body is a more or less deformed expression of this sole Reality―if by my aspiration, my concentration, I can bring into the cells of the body the consciousness of this sole Reality, all disorder must necessarily cease. [41]


Wake up in yourself a will to conquer. Not a mere will in the mind but a will in the very cells of your body. Without that you can't do anything; you may take a hundred medicines but they won't cure you unless you have a will to overcome the physical illness. [42]


And the play of the will on the cells, the way in which the cells obey the will, is very interesting. Because, it goes without saying, now it isn't an individual will (it isn't a personal will, it's nothing that looks like the old business of before), but it is... the Will for Harmony in the world: the Lord in his aspect of harmony. There is the Lord in his aspect of transformation and the Lord in his aspect of harmony. But the Lord in his aspect of harmony has a harmonizing will; so when that will for harmony comes, it acts in its turn, saying, "Not everything for the Will for Transformation! Things shouldn't go too fast because everything will be demolished! The will for harmony should be there and things should follow a rhythmic and harmonious movement," and then everything is sorted out. [43]


…it must be an integral faith and it must be absolute. And it must be of the right kind, not merely a force of mental thought or will, but something more and deeper. The will put forth by the mind sets up opposite reactions and creates a resistance. You must have heard something of the method of Coué in healing diseases. He knew some secret of this power and utilised it with considerable effect; but he called it imagination and his method gave the faith he called up too mental a form. Mental faith is not sufficient; it must be completed and enforced by a vital and even a physical faith, a faith of the body. If you can create in yourself an integral force of this kind in all your being, then nothing can resist it; but you must reach down to the most subconscious, you must fix the faith in the very cells of the body. There is, for instance, now abroad the beginning of a knowledge among the scientists that death is not a necessity. But the whole of humanity believes firmly in death; it is, one might say, a general human suggestion based on a long unchanging experience. If this belief could be cast out first from the conscious mind, then from the vital nature and the subconscious physical layers, death would no longer be inevitable. [44]


...this wear and tear, this deterioration (which comes from the Inconscient and is the result of the RESISTANCE of the Inconscient), if for this we can substitute the aspiration for progress and transformation (not with words—the vibration)... That experience has been given to me several times. For example, suppose there is something which goes wrong, there is a pain somewhere, something disorganized that no longer works properly; if there is the vision and conception in the faith (faith and consecration to the Supreme) that it's deliberate, that the Supreme has allowed it to be (how can I express it? All words are meaningless), has allowed or willed it, or wanted it to be, because to Him it seems the best way to transform the thing, to have it make the necessary progress, if the cells that are somewhat disorganized and "sick," as they say, are able to feel this... then straight away it takes a marvellous turn for the better—immediately, in five minutes, ten minutes. [45]


With this food, penetrate the whole body, enter into every cell, establish Thyself in every atom; may everything become perfectly sincere and receptive, free from all that obstructs the manifestation, in short, open to Thee all the parts of my body that are not already Thyself. [46]


...the physical change itself can only be brought about by a descent of the greater supramental consciousness into the cells of the body. Till then at least the body and its supporting energies have to be maintained in part by the ordinary means, food, sleep, etc. Food has to be taken in the right spirit, with the right consciousness; sleep has to be gradually transformed into the Yogic repose. A premature and excessive physical austerity (tapasyā) may endanger the process of the sadhana by establishing a disturbance and abnormality of the forces in the different parts of the system. [47]

The Future of Food

...any cellular contact with the divine Presence magnifies those things [like refusing food]. I mean all external processes—food and so on—seem then so cumbersome! Without a doubt the next creation will use something else, another way of staying alive, but we don't yet know what it is. I have a feeling there already exists a certain type of food—an intermediary type of food—which is no longer like the old kind but isn't yet... [the direct absorption of energy], and which has a minimal material basis. But we don't know anything about it, we don't know, nobody knows, we are still inexperienced; we have to find it—but how? [48]


It is not by abstaining from food that you can make a spiritual progress. It is by being free, not only from all attachment and all desire and preoccupation with food, but even from all need for it; by being in the state in which all these things are so foreign to your consciousness that they have no place there. Only then, as a spontaneous, natural result, can one usefully stop eating. It could be said that the essential condition is to forget to eat—forget, because all the energies of the being and all its concentration are turned towards a more total, more true inner realisation, towards this constant, imperative preoccupation with the union of the whole being, including the bodily cells, with the vibration of the divine forces, with the supramental force which is manifesting, so that this may be the true life: not only the purpose of life, but the essence of life, not only an imperative need of life, but all its joy and all its "raison d'être". [49]

Transformation of Cells

But this substance itself—that is, this material physical substance which forms it constitutes an organism which lives for a certain length of time in a given form and then this form declines and dissolves—the substance itself constituting these successive forms progresses through all these forms. That is, the molecular, cellular substance—perhaps even the cellular—the molecular and atomic, is progressing in its capacity to express the divine Force and Consciousness. Through all these organisms this substance becomes more and more conscious, more and more luminous, more and more receptive, until it reaches a perfection sufficient for it to become a possible vehicle for the divine Force itself which will be able to use it as it uses the elements of the other parts of the creation, like the mind or the vital. [50]


This body, this physical cellular substance contains "almighty powers," a dumb consciousness that harbors all the lights and all the infinitudes, just as much as the mental and spiritual immensities do. For, in truth, all is Divine and unless the Lord of all the universe resides in a single little cell he resides nowhere. It is this original, dark cellular Prison which we must break open; for as long as we have not broken it, we will continue to turn vainly in the golden or iron circles of our mental prison. "These laws of Nature," says Sri Aurobindo, "that you call absolute... merely mean an equilibrium established to work in order to produce certain results. But, if you change the consciousness, then the groove also is bound to change." [51]


It is something I have felt very, very clearly and which one cannot feel so long as the physical ego is there, because the physical ego has the sense of its own importance and that disappears entirely with the physical ego. And when it disappears one has the precise perception that the intervention or the manifestation of the true vibration does not depend on egos or individualities—human or national individualities or even those of Nature: animals, plants, etc. It depends on a certain play of the cells and Matter in which some agglomerates are particularly favourable to the transformation—not "transformation", but substitution, to be precise: the substitution of the vibration of Truth for the vibration of Falsehood. [52]

~'s a moment when the divine forces come and penetrate all the cells. To begin with, it is the physical consciousness, the body consciousness which opens first to the influence of the Divine and understands and wants nothing else but this, the divine Presence, the divine influence. There are also the body's feelings, and the very cells of the body, which can open to receive the force. For instance, when at a certain moment one feels a kind of very intense vibrations spreading through the whole body and at that time one feels filled with a strength, an unusual force, a consciousness also, and all things become clear and perceptible, then that's an opening of the body; it is when the body knows, you see, and has succeeded in opening to the influence. [53]


For, of all the aspects of the Mother, this is the one [personality of Ananda] which has the greatest power for the transformations of the body. Indeed, the cells which are able to vibrate to the contact of divine joy, to receive and preserve it, are regenerated cells on the way to becoming immortal. But the vibration of divine joy and those of pleasure cannot lodge together in the same vital and physical system. So one must have totally renounced experiencing all pleasure in order to be in a state to receive the Ananda. But very few are those who can renounce pleasure without, by the very fact, renouncing all participation in active life and plunging into a rigorous asceticism. And among those who know that it is in active life that the transformation must take place, some try to see pleasure as a more or less warped form of Ananda, and thus justify in themselves the quest for personal satisfaction, creating in themselves an almost insuperable obstacle to their own transformation. [54]

Effect of Physical Education on Cells

If you mean, "How does one awaken the consciousness of the physical being?", that is precisely the aim of physical education. It is physical education that teaches the cells to be conscious. But for the development of the brain, it is study, observation, intelligent education, above all observation and reasoning. And naturally, for the whole education of the consciousness from the point of view of character, it is yoga. [55]


Physical culture is the process of infusing consciousness into the cells of the body…..When we concentrate to make our muscles move according to our will, when we endeavour to make our limbs more supple, to give them an agility, or a force, or a resistance, or a plasticity which they do not naturally possess, we infuse into the cells of the body a consciousness which was not there before, thus turning it into an increasingly homogeneous and receptive instrument, which progresses in and by its activities. This is the primary importance of physical culture. When one observes the extent to which the body is capable of perfecting itself, one understands how useful this can be to the action of the psychic being which has entered into this material substance. For naturally, when it is in possession of an organised and harmonised instrument which is full of strength and suppleness and possibilities, its task is greatly facilitated. [56]


…from the standpoint of the harmony of forms, of strength and a certain sense of beauty, of the development of certain capacities of endurance and skill, of precision in the execution combined with strength, it's quite remarkable if you think of how recent physical training is…the cells, the cellular aggregates acquire a plasticity, a receptivity, a force that make the substance more supple for the permeation of the supramental forces. [57]

Effect of Japa on Cells

"Japa": the continuous repetition of a mantra. Mother's mantra is a song of the cells, the sole material or physical process used by her for awakening the cells and stabilizing the Supramental Force in her body. [58]


It is this mind of the cells which seizes upon a mantra or a japa and eventually repeats it automatically, and with what persistence! [59]


For the moment, of all the formulas or mantras, the one that acts most directly on this body, that seizes all the cells and immediately does this ("vibrating motion") is the Sanskrit mantra: OM NAMO BHAGAVATEH. [60]


It [OM NAMO BHAGAVATEH] is there, all around me; it takes hold of all the cells and at once they spring forth in an ascension. [61]

Immortality in Cell

...cell is immortal, and that aging results merely from a combination of circumstances. This research is tending towards the conclusion that aging is merely a bad habit—which seems to be true. Which means that when you LIVE in the Truth-Consciousness, Matter is not in contradiction to that Consciousness. [62]


...the closer one draws to the cell itself, the more the cell says, "But I am immortal!" Only it must become conscious. But this takes place almost automatically: the brain cells are very conscious; the cells of the hands and arms of musicians are very conscious; with athletes and gymnasts, the cells of the entire body are wonderfully conscious. So, being conscious, those cells become conscious of their principle of immortality and say, "Why would I want to grow old? Why!" They don't want to grow old. It is very interesting [63]

Vital Immortality and Body Ageing

...there's a double movement: both a cellular transformation and a capacity for "something" that could replace expansion with readjustment, a constant intercellular reorganization...The way they are now, of course, our bodies are rigid and heavy—it's unspeakable, actually; if it weren't for that we would never grow old. For instance, my vital being is more full of energy, and thus full of youth and power to grow, than when I was twenty. There's really no comparison. The power is INFINITELY greater... yet the body is going to pieces—it's really something unspeakable. So a way has to be found to bridge this gap between the vital and the material being. [64]

Ananda in Cells

all these cells have in their aspiration an Ananda of Light, of Truth, but that doesn't satisfy them completely, that is, they still have a sensation of helplessness.... Of course, it's all the Darkness, all the Falsehood, all the Disorder, all the Disharmony of the world that you constantly absorb every time you breathe (not to speak of all that you absorb with food, and all the rest—the worst of all—that you absorb mentally through contact with others, mentally and vitally). And all that has to be changed, transformed, constantly. Well, the cells feel their helplessness to face the work if That, that Vibration, isn't there. They find that Vibration irresistible, they find it's the only irresistible one. [65]

Transformation Process

And if we carry the experience still further, it seems that when one comes to the work of transformation of the body, when some cells of the body, more ready than others, more refined, more subtle, more plastic, are able to feel concretely the presence of the divine Grace, the divine Will, the divine Power, this Knowledge that is not intellectual but a knowledge by identity, when one feels this in the cells of the body, then the experience is so total, so imperative, so living, concrete, tangible, real that everything else seems a vain dream. [66]


There comes a moment when the body itself finds that there is nothing in the world which is so worth living for as this transformation; that there is nothing which can have as great an interest as this passionate interest of transformation. It is as though all the cells of the body were athirst for that Light which wants to manifest; they cry out for it, they find an intense joy in it and are sure of the Victory. [67]

Steps in Transformation

Of course a certain preliminary transformation is necessary, just as the psychic and spiritual transformation precedes the supramental. But this is a change of the physical consciousness down to the submerged consciousness of the cells so that they may respond to higher forces and admit them and to a certain extent a change or at least a greater plasticity in the processes. The rules of food etc. are meant to help that by minimising obstacles. How far this involves a change of the chemical constitution of the body I cannot say. It seems to me still that whatever preparatory changes there may be, it is only the action of the supramental Force that can confirm and complete them. [68]


This transformation by the help of the mind―by self-analysis―is a first step; afterwards, it is necessary to transform the vital impulses: that is much more difficult, and especially to transform the physical. Every cell in our bodies must become conscious. This is the work I am doing here; it will enable the conquest of death. That is another story; that will be the humanity of the future, perhaps after hundreds of years, perhaps sooner. It will depend on men, on nations. [69]


Some people try to transform their body before even having transformed their intelligence, and this produces a complete displacement, it unbalances them totally. One must first transform his thought, all his mind, all his mental activity, organise it with higher knowledge; and at the same time one must transform his character, all the movements of the vital, all impulses, all reactions. And finally, when these two things are done, in any case up to a certain point, one can begin to think of transforming the cells of his body, but not begin at the end; one must begin at the beginning. [70]

Supramental Plasticity

One of the greatest victories of this ineffable humility of God will be the transformation of Matter which is apparently the most undivine. Supramental plasticity is an attribute of finally transformed Matter. The supramental body which has to be brought into being here has four main attributes: lightness, adaptability, plasticity and luminosity. When the physical body is thoroughly divinised, it will feel as if it were always walking on air, there will be no heaviness or tamas or unconsciousness in it. There will also be no end to its power of adaptability: in whatever conditions it is placed it will immediately be equal to the demands made upon it because its full consciousness will drive out all that inertia and incapacity which usually make Matter a drag on the Spirit. Supramental plasticity will enable it to stand the attack of every hostile force which strives to pierce it: it will present no dull resistance to the attack but will be, on the contrary, so pliant as to nullify the force by giving way to it to pass off. Thus it will suffer no harmful consequences and the most deadly attacks will leave it unscathed. Lastly, it will be turned into the stuff of light, each cell will radiate the supramental glory. Not only those who are developed enough to have their subtle sight open but the ordinary man too will be able to perceive this luminosity. It will be an evident fact to each and all, a permanent proof of the transformation which will convince even the most sceptical. [71]

Mother’s Experiences

The cells feel themselves everlasting, with a certain state of harmonious inner peace which partakes of eternity, that is to say, free from the kind of disorder and friction that causes aging and disintegration. [72]


…if for instance you ask these cells, with all the consciousness and experience they now have, "Is there something you cannot do?", in their sincerity they will answer, "No, what the Lord wills, I can do." That's their state of consciousness… it's still open to the whole influence from outside and the body is forced to do things that aren't directly the expression of the supreme Impulsion, hence the fatigue, the friction.... So a supramental body suspended in a world that's not the earth is not the thing! [73]


And when the cells are goodwilled... By "goodwilled," I mean that as soon as their attention is turned to the supreme Force (or supreme Presence or supreme Existence or supreme Reality—whatever, words are nothing but words), as soon as their attention is turned to That, a burst of joy: "That's it! That's it!" In the cells that are truly not only goodwilled but thirsting for the Truth: a burst of joy. And then... the old habits start up again. And the cells say (it recurs periodically, that is, very often, thousands of times a day), "But we only have to will!" or "We only have to aspire" or "We only have to think of That" (it's not "think" as we understand it), "We only have to turn our attention"—"Oh, but it's true!" Like that. "Oh, such joy!" And then, brrf! all the old habits come back again. It's fantastic... fantastic. [74]


…the impression is as if the supreme Consciousness had undertaken the work of transformation of the body and were doing it thoroughly, but also without hesitation, without compromise or anything of the sort, and... the question is whether the body will hold out. That's how it is. The body knows it—it knows and doesn't have a shadow of fear, I must say—it's all the same to it: "What You want will be fine." At times it feels a little suffering for one thing or another, a little friction (a pain here or there... some pains aren't too pleasant), and at such times it always says (Mother opens her hands): "As You will, Lord." And within a few minutes at the most, the thing calms down. But it has stopped wondering whether or not it will last, whether or not it will succeed—all that is over, gone: "It's as You will, as You will." It uses those words because we can use only one language, which is quite incapable of expressing things; we don't know anything else, so we use that language. When it says, "As You will," there's this movement of... ("gesture of dilation and expansion") what should I call it?... It's like an easing in all the cells—they ease up. They ease up in the supreme Light, in the supreme Consciousness, like that. Then you feel the form is about to disappear, but... ("Mother looks at the skin of her hands") it must be the consciousness contained in the cells [that spreads about]; I don't think it's the substance, because ("Mother looks at the skin of her hands") so far it has remained as it is! But that [easing] stays there for a rather long time. [75]

Choice in Cells

First of all it's a choice (it looks like one): it's choosing the divine Presence—the divine Consciousness, the divine Presence, the divine Power (all that wordlessly), the "something" we define as the absolute Master. It's a choice of EVERY SECOND between the old laws of Nature—with some mental influence and the whole life as it has been organized—the choice between that, the government by that, and the government by the supreme Consciousness, which is equally present (the feeling of the Presence is equally strong); the other thing is more habitual, and then there's the Presence. [76]


There are two simultaneous states: the state of uninterrupted, almost endless continuity, and the state of... toppling over into decomposition (for the body); the two are constantly like this ("Mother places one hand closely over the other"). And the choice—the constant choice—based, in fact, on a reliance... leaning for support on the divine Consciousness for all things and every second, or ceasing to lean on it. To the cells, that choice appears to be a free choice, with a very strong sense (but not at all formulated in words) of the support constantly given by the supreme Consciousness to help them rely on it alone. [77]

More on Cells


Tumours always indicate some difficulty in the nature; certain cells decide to be independent of the discipline of the body. They do not remain in harmony with the other parts and begin to grow out of all proportion. Generally this is the result of a very strong greed in the nature. It may be greed for material things or for power or any other subtle object. [78]

The cells of the body get the habit of increasing without cause. This is cancer. If you change the consciousness in the cells and get rid of their habit, cancer can be cured. [79]

Content curated by Abhijit

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