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Read more about Effort from the works of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo.

What Are Efforts?

One makes all sorts of effort - of will, of discipline, efforts of concentration, all sorts of efforts to find the Divine, to discover what He is, to become acquainted with Him and unite with Him. [1]

The effort demanded of the sadhak is that of aspiration, rejection and surrender [2]

The energy of one’s effort is to conquer ignorance and free oneself from falsehood. [3]

Why Are Efforts Needed?

One can't live without effort! If one were to refuse to make any effort, one would not even be able to stand on one's legs or walk or even eat. [4]

It is only effort, in whatever domain it be—material effort, moral effort, intellectual effort—which creates in the being certain vibrations which enable you to get connected with universal vibrations; and it is this which gives joy. It is effort which pulls you out of inertia; it is effort which makes you receptive to the universal forces. And the one thing above all which spontaneously gives joy, even to those who do not practise yoga, who have no spiritual aspiration, who lead quite an ordinary life, is the exchange of forces with universal forces. [5]

One must use effort to triumph over tamas and lazy indifference. [6]

The first effort must be to find the soul within, to unite with it and allow it to govern one's life.

Once this effort for progress and transformation becomes the most important thing in your life, the thing to which you give constant thought, then indeed you are on the way towards the eternal existence, the truth of your being. [7] [8]

How to Make an Effort?

The psychic poise is necessary: the discrimination must develop which sees accurately what is the Divine Force, what is the element of personal effort, and what is brought in as a mixture from the lower cosmic forces. There must always be as a personal contribution, a constant consent to the true Force, a constant rejection of any lower mixture—that is very important. [9]

The effort for progress must be made for the love of the effort for progress. The joy of effort, the aspiration for progress must be enough in themselves, quite independent of the result. Everything one does in yoga must be done for the joy of doing it, and not in view of the result one wants to obtain. [10]

By Being Sincere

When one says, "See! I am going to make an effort, but that's because I want this in exchange for my effort." One is no longer spontaneous, no longer natural. Effort must not be made with a sense of bargaining. There must be a true aspiration and the result to be obtained must be left to the higher power. [11]

By Being Persistent

Remaining steady in our effort and quiet and firm in our determination, we are sure to reach the goal. [12]

Roadblocks to Do Effort

In the human mind there is a morbid and deplorable habit of doubt, argument, scepticism. This is where human effort must be put in: the refusal to admit them, the refusal to listen to them and still more the refusal to follow them. No game is more dangerous than playing mentally with doubt and scepticism. They are not only enemies, they are terrible pitfalls, and once one falls into them, it becomes tremendously difficult to pull oneself out. [13]

Laziness is a kind of tamas, but in laziness there is an ill-will, a refusal to make an effort—while tamas is inertia: one wants to do something, but one can't. [14]

What Is Effortlessness?

But a time comes when one feels the Presence and the Force constantly and more and more feels that that is doing everything—so that the worst difficulties cannot disturb this sense and personal effort is no longer necessary, hardly even possible. That is the sign of the full surrender of the nature into the hands of the Divine. [15]

When one is well prepared and the nature is ready, then the last movement is like a spontaneous blossoming—it's no longer an effort, it's an answer. It is a truly divine action in the being: one is prepared and the moment has come, then the bud opens. [16]

Read more about Effort from the works of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo.