Q: I have started an organisation for the spread of our literature in my part of the country. What is your advice with regard to it?
A: I am neither for it nor against it in the intellectual sense. In this yoga, external action is not to be abandoned. Sometimes action has to be done.
But ordinarily, we have not to do philanthropic work from the same motives. Philanthropy has an egoistic motive, however high it may be. We have to look beyond. For instance, we need not start schools for the Depressed Classes in order to serve humanity. We have to work as a sacrifice to God and we have therefore to go beyond mental ideals and constructions. When men begin work with these mental or ethical motives, they find them to be true and therefore they are not willing to leave them behind and go beyond. We have to take up the work from the yogic point of view. For example, it is necessary to spread our literature because it spreads the new thought. Some men may receive it correctly and some incorrectly. A movement is set up in the universal mental plane. So also in social work the whole frame is shaken by the new thought and inasmuch as it moves men out of the old groove it is useful. But we have to act from the inner motives.
– Sri Aurobindo