Posted by Dharanidhar Pal, Dalijoda, District Cuttack, Odisha
We are a band of twenty-five bachelor spiritual seekers living in a community who follow the ideology of Integral Yoga of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo. We live in a jungle land of 200 acres at Sri Aurobindo Srikshetra, in Cuttack district of Odisha. Our place is an attractive sight for regular visitors and devotees. As lockdown started, we closed our main gate, kept six more workers to stay with us throughout the lockdown period. We passed on milk from our dairy farm to the regular buyers at the main gate only. Our vehicle was carrying and delivering our vegetable to a known shop in the nearest town Choudwar, 20 km away.
We had our regular life schedule of morning exercises, meditation, breakfast, work, lunch, evening meditation, Saturday Study Circle, and dinner maintaining the distance amongst ourselves. Since we are spiritual people, we are accustomed to an inward life, so it was not boring.
We had firm faith that the Supramental Force that was brought down on Earth by The Mother in 1956 is firmly in action, and it will definitely protect us. So, everybody was in a prayer mood.
My personal effort was to go deeper and to concentrate at the heart centre and to stay confident. I learnt of Sri Aurobindo’s thoughts on viruses and The Mother’s fight against the Spanish Flu during her stay in Japan (link). I delved into Sri Aurobindo’s “Thoughts and Aphorisms” which has inspiring lines of wisdom from a higher consciousness about future evolution and how to prepare for that, and how it differs from our rationalistic viewpoint. I also studied Mother’s Agenda again to refresh my spiritual defensive action. Since, many of our spiritual activities were stopped, I was inspired to take weekly online classes on Aphorisms to encourage and inform our old students how to face the pandemic bravely.
My pressing problem was how to take up our agricultural work for which we needed labour support from outside. Govt. however, relaxed and allowed agricultural activities. Thankfully, we managed to get labourers within the premises and continued work with caution, by wearing masks. But we closed our dining hall and Sri Aurobindo’s Relics Centre for outsiders. Sadly, one of our sadhaks going outside for emergency work got infected and tested positive. He was kept in quarantine and recovered with Mother’s grace. For our confidence, we all went for the COVID-19 test organised by the Govt. and were found negative.
We faced sales problem with our farm products like organic rice, dal, agarbatti, milk products, and plants raised in our nursery. We had to eventually allow people to buy plants from the nursery with all precautionary measures. But other sales were disrupted. However, we managed to sustain ourselves as basic food is grown within our campus.
I noticed some of our inmates became regular for meditation. More alert ones, started exercises, and some took preventive measures like drinking kaadha. We took Arsenic Alba 30 for three consecutive days in each month to increase our immunity. I had planted six varieties of Tulsi in front of my residence. I started preparing and drinking kaadha early in the morning from freshly collected leaves. It is now a well formed habit.
I feel that the Coronavirus has come to raise our consciousness, to improve our immunity by following good habits and exercise, balanced food and spiritual way of living. In other words, to “coronate” our soul with Light and Truth and ensure the transformation of our consciousness.
Cover Image: Author
Story Images: Author
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