On Youth and Meaning (19-07-2008)
If one ponders and compares the situation experienced by those of us who were present at the very beginning of Auroville – the ‘forecomers’, the ‘pioneers’, the ‘guinea pigs’, the ‘offered ones’ – to that obtaining now for the ghettoized youth of our ambiguous society, a blatant unfairness strikes one’s attention.
Instead of the collective realization of a progressive continuum of experience and change, we have apparently buckled down to the weak system of plain segregation: because of the age of their bodies, many are those who are now parked in the category of ‘youth’.
This was certainly not done to us!
She was physically available.
She who, immobile in Her room, was immeasurably younger, stronger, wider, truer than we could ever hope to become, yet made Herself completely available to each of us, addressed each of us directly and completely, from head to toe and soul to skin.
To each She gave importance. She took each to the deepest source and the highest reaches of one’s being. She poured unconditional love and trust and protection.
From the purest diamond in its humblest and most transparent material sheath, Her immense presence radiated over all and reached every heart.
Most of us then were in our twenties, some a little younger, some a little older in years, but mostly of the same rough, uncouth material, blundering and tense and arrogant and as quick to boast as to despair. Most of us had left everything.
And even though we each tried to bare ourselves to Her touch, we carried a lot of baggage; unwittingly, to be sure, we carried with us whole chunks of the human condition, cultural habits and prejudices. Perhaps we were meant to bring it all; in any case, it couldn’t be helped.
But each also had a thirst and a flame and a readiness to try and give the experiment all we had, all we were.
And She gave us the path: both the challenge and the knowing, both the impossible task and the support to meet it.
To us, who were nobodies, ignorant ducklings, She revealed Herself and She welcomed each of us as one of Hers returned for the work to be done.
The question is not what we have achieved – the work is formidable and must be done thoroughly – but, rather, whether the present wave of twenty years old is given that welcome and that challenge and that grasp of a process that invites and needs their own commitments.
Obviously, the forms as well as the terms of this giving, this mutual commitment, must be different; but happens, it must.
Among us, each one whose body is about twenty years old – ready to find one’s directions – must securely identify within oneself the perceptions, the senses, the clues that resonate with and belong to a future condition, where consciousness, being and joy will replace the dramas that still hold most of humanity in their grips.
Each one must trust that those clues are there, charged with meaning.
And accordingly, each one must let oneself be nudged to the field and the action that best correspond.
This is what must be encouraged, supported and wanted, so that the progress we all make together becomes more substantial and the new forms and processes may begin to materialize.