September 20, 2018

Truth, Beauty, Delight, Life, and the Spirit

The First Hymn of Rishi Vāmadeva
Rig Veda Mandal IV Sukta 1
By RY Deshpande_Part-1


The fourth Mandala of Rig Veda essentially coming from Rishi Vamadeva is a masterpiece in the Vedic literature. It has 58 Hymns with 589 verses. The first 15 Hymns are devoted to Agni. For our present study we have picked up the opening one. It has all the necessary elements of Vedic thought, symbolism, esotericism, spirituality, Vedic aims and goals and, of course, all the rich elements of the Vedic poetry. It is felt that study of this Hymn itself should prove quite rewarding to get into the spirit of Vedic compositions.

What a delightful thing the Gods have done for the mortal! They sent Agni inwards, the most welcome Guest, विश्वेषाम्अतिथिःमानुषाणाम्, he the Immortal in us the mortal, अमर्त्यंयजतमर्त्येषु. Because of him begins our journey to the World of Truth-Bliss-Immortality.

Yes, this is poetry whose soul is essentially the soul of Truth-Light, Truth-Light with Truth-Joy and Truth-Force accompanying it. It is the Truth which speaks of the Truth, speaks in the language of metrical or rhythmic Sound and the Truth that sees things with the quickness of theseeing Eye. The utterance is in the company of the Gods of Truth-Right-Vast, सत्यम्-ऋतम्-बृहत्, even as the Gods speak to us in that language.

But in the urging poetry there should also enter in not only the Gods of the Truth-Right-Vast; there should also be the supreme Gods of Mind and the Gods of Life and the Gods of Matter. There is the Beauty of form, there is sensuous beauty, there is imaginative beauty, there is intellectual beauty, there is the ideal beauty; there is the psychic beauty, of love and joy and lilt; there is the beauty of the spirit in its vastness, in its calm, in its splendour and glow, of oneness; there is the beauty of the form as much as there is the beauty of the formless. Beauty is there everywhere, and it is that we must express.

The Gods of Life-Force give dynamism to the Spirit’s expression, its Power and Strength working in it. Even so do the Gods of the mental world bring another dimension of Wisdom into play. There should be through poetry the manifestation not only of the Gods of Heaven but also of these Gods, the Gods of Beauty, of ennobling Dynamism, of Thought leaping to Intuition and Knowledge. The art of poetry should open itself to it.

In the thoughtful profundity of poetry and in the intensity of its inspiration there have to be aglow the five suns of poetry, the Suns of Truth, Beauty, Delight, Life, and Spirit.

This is the aspect of Rig-Vedic ArsPoetica, the Art of Poetry, which goes far beyond Horace stressing only the aspect of Art; there cannot be Art for the sake of Art only. Horace is perhaps unaware the power of Inspiration. He stipulates for a poem “unity secured by harmony and proportion, and having a wise choice of subject and good diction. Metre and style must be appropriate to theme and to character.” But the Vedic theory has an altogether different view. There is the Chhanda, छंद, metre, in the world of Truth-Rhythm, eternal and dynamic, in the movement of the Truth, ऋतम्. There is Gāyatri of Gāyatri, and Anushtubha of Anushtubha, and Hexameter of Hexameter, and it is that which must come through our expression. It is the Inspiration that brings with it the Art. This is the Vedic foundation of the Æsthetic Theory of Art. Nor is it just Art for the sake of expression of the Truth, it is Truth with the tremendous impulsion to let itself go in the forms of Beauty, Truth and Beauty in the rhythms and movements of Joy, of Bliss, of Ananda, they bringing with them greatnesses of Knowledge and Power and Feelings and Thoughts, bringing in the abundances of the revealing Spirit, they aglow in the Suns of Poetry.

Can it come back? But maybe it is a far cry, appears to be a far cry in today’s milieu. But the aspiring spirit of art, the aspiring spirit of man, of this creature, is not going to remain quiet, is not going to rest where he is. There is the looking for something in that Vedic direction, something beyond the mere mental; but it is not yet able to figure out how to achieve what should be achieved, something more perhaps than what the Veda did. There are white gods of the Veda who from below ascend to heaven; there have to be the gods who in their shining speeds rush towards the earth and bring their strength to her.

Vedic Gods, and immortality, and the home of Truth, and the movements in the measures of the truth-metres, — that is high and noble and very Aryan. It is gloriously Aryan. But there is Life, there is the beauty of form, there is the divine thought and wisdom, there is the dark ocean, and the dark Woman waiting to find her divine meaning and divine significance and divine prospects. There are the powers of the Spirit that have not yet entered into the working of the terrestrial scheme, have not yet into our speech; but these must, these must. The Veda has brought to our world of mortality strength and light that is full of Truth, that is full of Wideness, that is flaming with the fire of Agni, and is in possession of the wisdom of Varuna. That is extraordinary, absolutely extraordinary at the very dawning of the soul-seeking, truth-seeking, immortality-seeking civilisation itself. But there are other aspects, there are aspects of this material creation also, of this mortal world opening to the spirit’s thrills and raptures; these must acquire form and shape and beauty and joy and possess the power of the manifold Word, brahma, ब्रह्म, itself. Time is waiting for it to happen. Time seems to be arriving at it.

Those five suns of poetry have to blaze in the intensity of their joy, they have to shine not only in the Home of Truth, ऋतस्य्सदनम्, but must bring their light and fire to the terrestrial sky also, their beauty, their life, their delight, bring them to the world of this earth. It is that poetry which would voice the supreme harmony of five eternal powers, Truth, Beauty, Delight, Life, and the Spirit. In the words of a Vedic poet-seer, “New states come into birth, covering upon covering awaken to knowledge, till in the lap of the Mother one wholly sees.” We have to see wholly in the lap of the Mother.

Sri Aurobindo takes it forward:

Aditi, the infinite Mother, cries in the ancient Vedic hymn to Indra the divine Power now about to be born in her womb, “This is the path of old discovered again by which all the gods rose up into birth, even by that upward way shouldst thou be born in thy increase; but go not forth by this other to turn thy mother to her fall,” but if, refusing the upward way, the new spirit in process of birth replies like the god, “By that way I will not go forth, for it is hard to tread, let me come out straight on the level from thy side; I have many things to do which have not yet been done; with one I must fight and with another I must question after the Truth,” then the new age may do great things, as the last also did great things, but it will miss the highest way and end like it in a catastrophe. There is no reason why we should so limit our new birth in time… .

There an attempt will lead us in the journey to the goal — as didthe Vedic Agniof the Old, the fiery giver of the word, yuvākaviḥ, युवाकविः, priyoatithiramartyoṛtacit, प्रियोअतिथिर्अमर्त्योऋतचित्, ṛtāvā, ऋतावा, the Youth, the Seer, the beloved and immortal Guest with his honied tongue of ecstasy, the Truth-conscious, the Truth-finder, born as a flame from earth and yet the heavenly messenger of the Immortals. The Immortal is here seated in the mortal to achieve this objective. That will be the song of unrealised heavens sung by our heart and our soul.

The Rishis of the Rig Veda gave us Poetry of the Gods, of the Truth-Vast. But even as the Gods of the Heart found their expression in the Bhakti song, the Gods of the material Body, the Gods of the Life-Force, the Gods of Mind and its powers of Intuition, the Gods of the Soul of Man, the Gods of the Spirit of the Earth are waiting to find their tongue and their utterance, their language, the phrase and the idiom, full of harmonies and full of visions, multi-tonal multi-hued harmonies, great concordances, all in dynamics of the Truth-Right-Vast, सत्यम्-ऋतम्-बृहत्. The coming age should prepare itself for them to run on the tracks of the world of Transcendent Speech, परावाणी.

Goddess Vāk, वाक, Speech, travels with the Rudras and the Vasus and the Ādityas and All-Gods, and she holds aloft Varuna and Mitra, Indra and Agni, and the Aśvins:[X:125]

अहंरुद्रेभिर्वसुभिश्चराम्यहमादित्यैरुतविश्वदेवैः |

But the day is dawning when she will also travel with the Gods that have not been active this long, the Gods who have not awakened in our creation to the powers of the Spirit. We prepare ourselves to be in her company, she who gives wealth to the zealous sacrificer who pours the juice of delight and offers his oblation, keeps the Yajna kindled and ascending, ascending to newer and newer skies. She is the Queen, अहंराष्ट्रीसंगमनीवसूनां, the gatherer-up of treasures, most thoughtful, first of those who merit worship. We have to become her adorers, we have to receive the boons of new expression from her, receive new Word from her, the Word speaking in the materiality of matter, in the noble vitality of the life-forces, in the possibilities of reason living in the greatness of the Word itself. With the ease of all confidence, and in the distinctness of voice, she declares:


Beyond this wide earth and beyond the heavens has this Queen of Speech become mighty, mighty in her grandeur.Let us live, and do poetry, in that grandeur of hers.

If this hurried study of the Poetry of Rig Veda has led us to these grand prospects of the future, we must say that the Queen of Speech has taken us forward.

The First Hymn of Rishi Vāmadeva
Rig Veda Mandal IV Sukta 1

by RY Deshpande (Author), Dr David Frawley (Foreword)

The Foreword says

RY Deshpande is a great Vedic scholar, prolific author, disciple and writer on Sri Aurobindo’s Yoga, including how it relates to the Veda. He has taken one of the key hymns of Rishi Vamadeva that explains the mystery of the ancient seers and their spiritual origins, notably the great Angirasas, the oldest and most central of the Vedic rishi families (gotras). He studies the hymn as a point of entrance in the vast Rigvedic universe beyond the ordinary human mind and its limited perceptions.

The book addresses this monumental mantric hymn on all levels of meaning, application, chanting, symbolism and structure. Having examined the existing literature of translations and interpretations of Vedic hymns, I do not think that any such comparable detailed and comprehensive study of a single hymn of the Rigveda has been made, and certainly not from a deeper vision like that of Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga.

Deshpande’s study approaches the Rigveda as a Book of Poems, primarily as a book of deep spiritual poems, a Book of Poetry, and other factors follow in the sequel afterwards. He searches out the sources from which these mantric poems originate, linking them to inspirations from the worlds of Higher Mind, Illumined Mind, Intuition, and Overmind, the spiritual planes beyond Mind, as described in Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga. He follows Sri Aurobindo in his various writings about what he calls the Overmind Æsthetics.

This poetic study by Deshpande vis-à-vis Rigveda is perhaps the first of its kind in the field. It shows that the Rigveda constitutes a much more exalted type of mantric poetry that opens the mind to higher planes of awareness far beyond the concerns of poetry in ordinary aesthetics that are largely confined to the intellect. Our inner being can follow such a mantric poetic energy towards a fundamental change of consciousness to a level of truth perception that takes us far beyond the ignorance of the world.

The attached image shows the full cover.
Indian Print
The First Hymn of Rishi Vāmadeva
Price: Rs 600/-
pp. xxiv + 416
Hard Cover, opens fully

can be had from

Savitri Foundation
875 Sector 178
Gurugram 122001

Payment through bank. For details please contact
Dharmendra Singh


Sri Aurobindo accepts that all the 25,000 verses of veda was originally one collection, later divided into four samhitas. Some particular suktas like RV (10.70) is called ‘late’ by Sri Aurobindo.

The potential reader of your book has to have some exposure to Veda, Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri and your high class English which is beyond the pale of the most modern Indians of call-centre tradition.

SAKSHI is proud to publish the complete translation of four Vedas in 3 other Indian languages Kannada, Telugu and Tamil. Its smaller books are in 7 Indian languages. We teachveda chanting to children in govt. schools in low income area houses, 3500 students in about 50 schools in Karnataka. The Veda mantra are in Kannada script with meaning. The feedback from students is very very positive.

With best regards
R.L. Kashyap


April 29, 2018

Gnostic Centre, Savitri Bhavan, SACAR, SAFIC, and Esalen courses

Assorted tweets for general information:

Indian Psychology - online course starts on 2nd June 2018 - Sign up NOW (

Savitri Bhavan: May 2018 Sun 10.30–12.00: Savitri Mon & Tue 3-4pm: Jai Singh Tue, Fri, Sat 4-5pm: Gangalakshmi Tue 4.45-5.45pm: ‘Mudra Chi’ Anandi; 5-6pm: Savitri, Buvana in Tamil Wed 5-6pm: Gita & Thu 4-5pm: Savitri, Shraddhavan Fri 3-4pm: Gita, Jai Singh

स्पन्दनम् - Feeling the Pulsation of a Divine Language
Sri Aurobindo Foundation for Indian Culture (SAFIC) announces its second-level Sanskrit Intensive Course to be held in Pondicherry from May 20 to 26, 2018. For details please visit:

On our way to Esalen for a magical weekend workshop on Saivism and Sri Aurobindo, with Stefanos…

[The fourth way was to live like Solomon and Schopenhauer — life is a stupid joke, and still to go on living, washing oneself, dressing, dining, talking, and even writing books. This was to me repulsive and tormenting, but I remained in that position.] -Leo Tolstoy (A Confession)

[Alan Lightman Immortality and Why We Long for Permanence in a Universe of Constant Change]
[John Cage “No why. Just here.”
[George Lucas “There is no why. We are. Life is beyond reason.”]
[Stuart Firestein “thoroughly conscious ignorance”]
Flannery O’Connor "religion and faith"]

[Much of Blaise Pascal's skepticism in his Pensées has been traditionally attributed to his reading Montaigne's Essais]
[Pierre Bourdieu, Pascalian Meditations - Synthesizing forty years' work this book links sociological theory, historical information, and philosophical thought]

[Maqbool Hasan Khan (1938-2018) lived and breathed Shakespeare. He considers Iqbal that of the exalted self. He also links Iqbal’s philosophy with voluntaristic and vitalistic thoughts in Europe; high regard for Nietzsche. He also finds parallels between Iqbal and Sri Aurobindo.]

Outstanding piece Josh Marshall on Ulysses S. Grant and fine writing:

[Alphonso Lingis: “Go outside on a starry night and get a sense for the vastness of the universe...Your brain is wired to do something that nothing else in the universe can do. And if you don’t do it, it’s not going to get done.”] from Graham Harman's blog

[José Ortega y Gasset (9 May 1883 – 18 October 1955) is one of the best philosophical stylists]
[Donald Woods Winnicott (1896–1971) was a better prose writer than Freud]
[Jorge Luis Borges (24 August 1899 – 14 June 1986).]
[Alphonso Lingis (November 23, 1933) is a superb stylist]

"I will now turn to Hegel’s interpretation of the Bhagavad Gita which offers interesting challenges even today." | Read Rahul Govind's #BookReview of Hegel's India

Heard Ababahikara Swapna by Manoranjan Das yesterday @AkashvaniAIR after three decades where Jharana Das recites Juan Olivarez's [If I had wings on which to fly, Up in the clear blue sky] & Percy Bysshe Shelley's [The fountains mingle with the river And the rivers with the ocean]

[As for the playlet, The Ascent to Truth, it grew out of a painting made by the Mother of the Hall of Aspiration. (of Sri Aurobindo Ashram) - Prema Nandakumar] #MirraAlfassa Cf. "Jacob's Ladder" by William Blake (1757–1827).

[Erasmus wrote In Praise of Folly (1511) in space of a week while sojourning with Sir Thomas More (7 February 1478 – 6 July 1535) in London.]
[David Hume (7 May 1711 – 25 August 1776) offered refuge to Jean-Jacques Rousseau (28 June 1712 – 2 July 1778) but the friendship soured.]

[George Granville Bradley (11 December 1821 – 13 March 1903): Bradley's Arnold]
[Francis Herbert Bradley (30 January 1846 – 18 September 1924): Appearance and Reality (1893)]
[Andrew Cecil Bradley (26 March 1851 – 2 September 1935) is best remembered for his work on Shakespeare.]

[Samuel Alexander (6 January 1859 – 13 September 1938): Space, Time and Deity (1920) emergent quality and emergent evolution]
[Henri-Louis Bergson (18 October 1859 – 4 January 1941): Creative Evolution (1907)]
[Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (1 May 1881 – 10 April 1955): Omega Point]

[George Santayana (December 16, 1863 – September 26, 1952) was quoted extensively by Whitehead in Process and Reality.]
[A.J. Ayer (29 October 1910 – 27 June 1989) was known for Logical Positivism.]
[Roy Bhaskar (15 May 1944 – 19 November 2014) was initiator of Critical Realism.]

Kuhn said, [science itself evolves and is far from absolute; must be understood the context in which its theories are created.] Feyerabend rejected [existence of universal methodological rules.] Randall Collins probed [intellectual networks and their inner divisions & conflicts.]

[arithmetic is far beyond all effective theories. It is important to understand that mechanism is a vaccine agents reductionism.] [Both Changeux and Connes remain still Aristotelians, but the contradiction becomes apparent as they think deep indeed.] -Bruno Marchal, Apr 17, 2018]

[William James (January 11, 1842 – August 26, 1910): Varieties of Religious Experience (1901-2)]
[Josiah Royce (November 20, 1855 – September 14, 1916): Religious Aspect of Philosophy (1885)]
[James Joyce (2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941): Ulysses (1922), Finnegans Wake (1939)]

BTW, those who fancy such things might like to read this book:

Unity:  The Basis of Life

National Language and the Example of Modern India

The Effects of the Loss of a National Language:  The Example of Ireland

The Difficulties of Achieving Unity While Maintaining Diversity

21-CSRadhakrishnan-7(11-4-18)_AVR-SACAR_Vedanta–In the Light of Sri Aurobindo: via @YouTube

How the missionaries became scholars of Hinduism in an effort to ‘overthrow‘ it.

The Left may have entered electoral politics with the revolutionary intent of changing the system, but are now part of the system itself.

Our new columnist @DrShobha explains the citizen-state disconnect in the nation since the British era, which is causing a societal dissonance

Gandhi : A Spiritual Journey  explores the search for the truth and the spiritual transformation of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. Know about his spiritual ideas, in the book GANDHI here at Indus Source Books.

All political parties, mostly for vote bank considerations, have joined the race to glorify Ambedkar, without ever bothering to check the facts. | @SudheenKulkarni

Yes, it is a shame that parliament is not functioning. But wasn't it already irrelevant because of a law passed in 1985?
@amitvarma has more.

Issues Surrounding Adoption of a Unified World Language

The Value of a Unique Language for a People or Nation

Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education (SAICE) celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2018. A brief historical background of SAICE is shared in this edition. Since 1971 Society has ceaselessly published AIM with words of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother.

#AurovilleToday issue featuring PM Shri @narendramodi's historic visit & his inspiring address while inaugurating the  #Auroville50 celebrations.After his speech, many in the audience, residents of #Auroville walked up to say, "he has laid for us a roadmap for the next 2 decades"

Sri Aurobindo on the Peril of the World-State: Democracy/
Apropos the Idiot & the Non-Conformist

Sri Aurobindo on The motive of Evolution--The first terms of Life

16_Sampadananda Mishra Part-1 (10-4-18)AVR-SACAR_Vedanta–In the Light of Sri Aurobindo: via @YouTube

['Instant Karma'—Moral Decision Making Systems in Digital Games: T Knoll - Religions, 2018 … Aurobindo Ghose “the karmic process is an evolutionary, cosmic self-development of the mind to a higher consciousness force, which is supramental consciousness” (Bergunder 2001, p. 712)]

My new book "Life over Two Beers" deals directly (albeit in a satirical way) with how intellectual hierarchies in India can be manipulated because of this need for external validation.

Once he ridiculed a "reader" as a failed leader. Same can be said about a "writer" too. Arun Nehru (24 April 1944 – 25 July 2013) used to write a lot of columns.

[When Bipin Chandra Pal was speaking of China and Japan overthrowing European civilisation, how many understood or appreciated great issues? We have lost the faculty of great ideas, outlooks, which divines the great motions of the world.] Sri Aurobindo BANDE MATARAM April 1, 1908

Arya–4 No 9—April 1918 #SriAurobindo
Future Poetry - Poetic Vision and Mantra
Life Divine XLIII. The Order of the Worlds
Synthesis of Yoga XLI. Love and the Triple Path
Essays on the Gita - The Determinism of Nature
Ideal of Human Unity XXXII
Psychology of Social Development XXI

[Sri Aurobindo, like many postmodern thinkers, is aware of the need to go beyond Aristotelian/Euclidean logic in  what he calls a “logic of the infinite” fleshed out by looking at the ideas of Alfred North Whitehead and the French philosopher, Edgar Morin]

[comparative and cross-cultural studies in philosophy, religion, psychology, counseling, cultural anthropology, organizational studies, health studies, and the arts. Chaudhuri was the first to publish in the West on Integral Psychology, during the 1970s.]

[California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS, 1968, San Francisco) grew out of the earlier American Academy of Asian Studies (1950-1967). Its historical roots lie among followers Sri Aurobindo, Human Potential movement, Esalen, Holism and Consciousness]

[what is most compelling about this volume is reading an influential 19th century thinker’s creation of the oriental outlook that was to dominate western scholarship; even fashion sustaining the self image which many orientals imbibed under colonial rule.]

[Patterns of the Present by Georges van Vrekhem is a profound and inspiring account of the present situation of mankind and the world it lives... - Integral Yoga/ Mother & Sri Aurobindo]

[On 13th APRIL '18  at the Sri Aurobindo Centre for Arts & Communication: Beyond the Present]

SYMPOSIUM "Beyond the Present - 2 edition" Discussions, Film Screenings, Workshops, Music Concert and Photo Exhibition at Sri Aurobindo Centre for Arts & Communication > 13th, 14th & 15th April 2018 :

Workshop on Rhythms of modern music @SACACIndia Beyond the Present 2nd Edition 2018 @toxicslink @Mixtapelive #SriAurobindo

Beyond the Present at Sri Aurobindo Centre for Arts and Communication

The Mother & Sri Aurobindo's writings are freely available online. Besides many blog sites exist where one may come across varieties of views and debates on diverse subjects including comparative perspectives

Reimagining and Refashioning Integral Management - Tusar Nath Mohapatra, Savitri Era Learning Forum (SELF) Ghaziabad

April 04, 2018

Replicability crisis and Methodological terrorism

[Shyama Kanungo, Deepak Samantray, Gadadhar Mishra, Namita Nayak, Ajay Ku. Barik, Bandita Ray, Prasad Tripathy] 48th All Orissa Sri Aurobindo Study Circle Conference: 4th to 7th April 2018, Matrubhaban, Cuttack. 9437023407, 9437120220

[What Sri Aurobindo represents in World's History: Biswanath Ray, Archana Nayak. Role of India in preparing a New Creation: Alok Pandey, Biswanath Ray. Harmony at any Cost: Malabika Ray, B.N. Mohapatra, Rabi Padhi. One day the Victory is Certain: CH. Nirakar, Saroj Kanta Mishra.]

[Foundations of  Indian Culture: Alok Pandey, Rabi Padhi, Sk Abdul Kasam, Mahendra Nath Swain, Suprakash Choudhury, Prakash Chandra Panda, Rita Chand, Mamata Dash, Pravakar Mishra, Biswanath Ray] 48th All Orissa Sri Aurobindo Study Circle Conference 4-7 April 2018 Matrubhaban Cuttack

[Indian Culture: Bhagirathi Mohapatra, Kapilash Prasad Dash, Soudamini Nanda, Ramesh Chandra Sahu, Golak Bihari Sahu, Radhakanta Mishra, Sanjaya Kumar Mohapatra, Bimal Prasanna Das, Alok Pandey] 48th  All Orissa Sri Aurobindo Study Circle Conference 4-7 April 2018 Matrubhaban, Cuttack

[Indian Culture: Subas Chandra Kar, Prasant Kumar Swain, Sangeeta Pattanaik, Debidutta Kar, Santosh Gahan, Bijayeeni Mohapatra, Dharanidhar Pal, Biranchi Narayan Mohapatra, Archana Nayak] 48th All Orissa Sri Aurobindo Study Circle Conference, 4-7 April 2018, Matrubhaban, Cuttack.

108 YEARS AGO: In the afternoon of April 4, 1910, the Pondicherry pier witnessed a scene which will remain etched in history: Le Dupleix steamer arrived from Calcutta, carrying the ‘most dangerous’ man on board. (photos of the actual steamer and of Pondicherry port at the time)

108 years of Sri Aurobindo's arrival to Pondicherry- an important milestone in the history of the synthesis of East and West but more importantly marks a decisive stride towards the next step of mankind in the process of evolution through Integral Yoga. A day to express gratitude

[Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts Cordially invites you to the Inauguration of Prof. Devendra Swarup Personal Book Collection on Wednesday, 4th  April, 2018 4:00 p.m. Kala Nidhi: Reference Library (First Floor) 11, Mansingh Road, New Delhi – 23388333, 23388362] @igncakd
Inauguration of Prof. Devendra Swarup Personal Book Collection at IGNCA Reference Library, 11, Mansingh Road, New Delhi 
4 April, 2018; 4 pm

IGNCA is holding an exhibition on Rahul Sankrityayana’s antiquity collection in collaboration with Patna Museum, Bihar till 9 April. IGNCA Twin Art Gallery, C.V. Mess, Janpath; 11 am - 7 pm

On Tue, Apr 3, 2018 at 4:09 PM, georgeweis via Matters Of Mind wrote:
I think Thomas Kuhn points the way here. He says paradigm shift is not only possible, but is the principal way science progresses. That is the "optimist" perspective. But he also says, supporting the "pessimist" perspective, that a fundamental paradigm shifts (at a sociological level) mostly by the old paradigm adherents dying out (there are some open-minded exceptions), not by changing their minds.  

I think Menas was thinking of both the optimist and the pessimist angle when he called it half a joke. The sapientia (wisdom) necessary for being open to changing one's mind is all too often missing Right, Menas?

Specifically regarding psi, the materialist-objectivist-"realist" family of paradigms is particularly immune to contrary evidence. It is a sad joke (not half a joke) that most of those who label themselves "skeptics" are the very least truly skeptical (i.e. the least appreciating the effect of paradigm and presuppositions on their own personal reality), and therefore the least able to identify, let alone challenge, their own presuppositions. 

But as I said before, there are open-minded exceptions, and they might make Stan's project worthwhile for someone so inclined (as they indeed do for me). But I understand that high-powered psi researchers such as Dean, given their limitations of time and money, are more interested in exploring the vast unknown (to conventional science) terrain of consciousness than in convincing those who have already shown themselves to be incapable of opening their mind and letting in evidence that threatens their hallowed beliefs.

Kathy: Maybe Dean can best answer your question. But his second objection is based on extensive experience of interactions with skeptics, and is empirically well grounded. As to Dean's first objection, no mainstream scientist has to my knowledge ever been asked to have an "objective" (i.e. "skeptical") observer present throughout the experiment. The very idea would be considered insulting and ridiculous. Instead, in mainstream science, when a scientist is skeptical of another scientist's results, and is motivated enough, he/she tries to replicate the experiment independently, or waits for others to do it. So Dean rightly rejects that demand  as an inappropriate double-standard, and the underlying presupposition about psi researchers as false (and insulting, I would add). 


Hi George, 

Many thanks for sending your thoughts on replicability in standard science. Have you been following the incredible action in that topic in the past few years? It is mainly in social psychology but also in lots of other fields including pre-clinical trials. I strongly recommend looking at:     

The good news is that mainstream science has woken up to the major replicability issues and there is lots of action now to do a lot better monitoring of the problem.  Everyone interested in replication problems should have a look at that web site and similar ones. 


Hi Stan,

Presence of skeptics at the experiments may or may not be important. But if requirement of reproducibility, especially for the so called hard sciences, is not required, it will be indeed crisis for science, in my opinion. I think the fundamental basis for science is that the results should be reproducible by any person anywhere when all other variables are controlled in the same manner. What do you think?
Best Regards.


For hard science (inanimate systems), yes. For soft science (animate systems), no.  

If strict reproducibility were possible for human performance then watching sports would be boring. Even at the Olympics level there is no guarantee on who will win an event.  And Olympic champs know that a key factor in their competitive strategy is psychological strength, not just physical strength.  

When it comes to psi, the phenomena are explicitly psychophysical, not just psychological or physical. This makes repeatability even more difficult. Still, with enough replications in hand (as there are) it is possible to show to high levels of confidence that effects are repeatable (on average).

- Dean

February 07, 2018

Consciousness, technology, and Sri Aurobindo

The Indian Way: An Introduction to the Philosophies & Religions of India
John M Koller - 2016 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
the divine life is also traditional, what marks Aurobindo as a modern visionary and reformer is his integration of individual yogic means with the transformation of social conditions. This integration will enable each person to participate in this spiritual evolution with every fiber of being and every power of expression. Aurobindo, like Gandhi, often spoke out against what was seen as excessive dependence on science and technology as the basis of social reform and the solution to society's problems. Neither was opposed to science or technology, but both saw that, by themselves, science and technology cannot provide an adequate social basis for human fulfillment and self-realization. In a similar way, both Gandhi and Aurobindo saw that merely changing the institutions of society does not go far ....

Fieldwork in South Asia: Memories, Moments, and Experiences
Sarit K. Chaudhuri, ‎Sucheta Sen Chaudhuri - 2014 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
Gandhi, and before Gandhi Aurobindo Ghosh (after Bengal was partitioned), came up with the idea of swadeshi as an economic boycott of British goods. Gandhi continued with it, in this sense. But Gandhi did not carry it forward in other areas of his thinking. He did not say that pardeshi [non-Indian] participation in the swadeshi movement was undesirable. Or about knowledge, as such, he did not have much of a problem. With technology, he did have a problem, but it was not pardeshi ...

Indian Ethics: Classical traditions and contemporary challenges
Purusottama Bilimoria, ‎Joseph Prabhu, ‎Renuka M. Sharma - 2007 - ‎Preview- ‎More editions
This tension between tradition and modernity is evident, for example, in the evolution of Gandhi's views about technology. From the wholesale rejection of modern technology that is prominent in Hind Swaraj (1909), we see him moving toward an approbation of what is nowadays called 'appropriate technology,' that is, technology adapted to human scale and to the needs and resources of a particular people. Hence his fascination with the sewing machine. Sri Aurobindo was ...

Integral Polity: Integrating Nature, Culture, Society and Economy
Sri Aurobindo's World Order, then, is not an exercise in fantasy. He sees it as part of the progressive evolution of man. He tells us that for tens of thousands of years man remained primitive. When he stepped into the age of reason he freed himself from totem and taboo, making tremendous strides forward in the arts and sciences, giving birth to modern consciousness. Man had become rational in science and technology, but was still subject to the tragic influences of the previous ...

Readings in Sri Aurobindo's The Synthesis of Yoga Volume 1: The ...
Santosh Krinsky - 2015 - ‎Preview
We see then, in terms of technology, a restriction of our interaction with life and the world, which arises from our constant interaction with the technologyand what it produces. Similarly with Yoga, this focus has frequently implied abandonment or withdrawal from the flow of life and action in the world, and the yogic practitioner has for the most part been someone who has given up any major active role in the development and support of the human endeavor. Sri Aurobindo describes the ...

The Key to a Meaningful Life
The effect of such objections and accusations has been to make the public less friendly to science, to weaken the ideal of science as a vocation, and to put science on the defensive. Are these criticisms justified? Part of the problem is that people often confuse science with technology. It is technology, emphasizing the material aspects of science, which is responsible for the concern expressed by thinkers like Sri Aurobindo. It is true that science and technology are distinct from each ...

Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures - Page 276
Debashish Banerji, ‎Makarand R. Paranjape - 2016 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
Looking at the yoga of Sri Aurobindo, the arduous subjective disciplines necessary for 'the triple transformation' also need a milieu dedicated to inner development for its habitus, something less and less possible in our present age globally networked for corporate interests of production, seduction and consumption. Yet, to speak about an expansion or integration of consciousness without recourse to an engagement with technology is a romanticism that wills its self-exile and eventual ...

Introducing the Life Divine:
M.P. Pandit - 2015 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
We discussed why we must study Sri Aurobindo. We saw that Sri Aurobindois relevant to us today because he has given a positive philosophy, affirmative spirituality. He points out how higher minds were so long turned to the Beyond. He explains and justifies the purpose in life. Each one of us is made to feel that life is an opportunity, something sacred, which we cannot fritter away. He has also given due value to Matter, the material civilisation, material technology. He underlines the ...

DNA of the Spirit, Volume 1: A Practical Guide to Reconnecting With ...
Rae Chandran, ‎Robert Mason Pollock - 2014 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
It is freely given. We have noticed that many humans do not ask for cosmic support, which is always available to them. Ask for cosmic support on a daily basis. There are many beings in service to you. Know the Creator's rule: If you do not ask, the door is not opened. Ask for teachers who have Earth experience and who have gained enlightenment. Some of the more popular names include Elijah, Anna, the great Indian teacher Sri Aurobindo, and many others. When these teachers left ...

Civilizations: Nostalgia and Utopia
Daya Krishna - 2012 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
... Sri Aurobindo was interested in literature, but not in other art forms; Tagore was deeply interested in art. Tagore was also aware of Asia. Imagine! He was the first person to establish a China Bhavan,11 thus establishing contact with China. I cannot go into further details here. In the context of the present discussion, I would like to suggest that great as these three figures have been—and they were, no doubt, great—all of them forgot one thing, and I am talking of science, technology ...

Beyond Sociology: Trans-Civilizational Dialogues and Planetary ...
Ananta Kumar Giri - 2017 - ‎Preview
The ethical imperative comes not from around, but from within him and above him (Sri Aurobindo 1962: 141). BEYOND THE TECHNOLOGY OF POWER: SPIRITUALITY AND THE TECHNOLOGY OF THE SELF In his The Imperative of Responsibility, Hans Jonas (1984: 141) argues: “it must be understood that we are here confronted with a dialectic of power which can only be overcome by a further degree of power itself, not by quietest renunciation of power.” This more power, in ...

The Spiritual Imperative: Sex, Age, and Caste Move the Future - Page 6
His historical vision is also extremely wide-ranging. He combines a focus on the inner and outer life, religion and political economy, that encompasses all aspects of social life from markets and production to the most august spiritual concerns. Larry doesn't limit himself to generalizations such as the coming of a new spiritual age in which inner knowledge and technologies of the spirit will be valued above all. After all, such predictions can be found inAurobindo and Ken Wilber, among ...

Foundations of Indian Psychology Volume 1: Theories and Concepts
12 Being an authentic self: Some insights from the lives of Sri Aurobindo and Mahatma Gandhi Shivantika SharacP You must learn to act always from within — from your inner being.... The outer should be a mere instrument and should not be allowed at all to compel or dictate ... The perennial task of carving out one's existence has become increasingly knotty in thetechnology-based world of today. The experience of an authentic or true self has become inextricably linked to fulfilling ...

Mantra Yoga and the Primal Sound: Secrets of Seed (Bija) Mantras
David Frawley - 2010 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
Now, mantra in the traditional sense no longer exists. There is mantra causing the innovation and invention of modern knowledge and wisdom. A mantric approach to science, technology, information, marketing, media and streams of knowledge is being constantly emphasized. Sri Aurobindo has presented his longest epic poem, savitri as a mantra for the transformation of the world. Mantra can only cause transformation as it is the essence of the cosmic response and the invocation of ...

Unifying Hinduism: Philosophy and Identity in Indian Intellectual ...
Yoga: The Technology of Ecstasy Los Angeles: Jeremy P. Tarcher. Fitzgerald, James L. (forthcoming). "The Samkhya-Yoga Manifesto' at Mbh 12.289–290. ... Ghose, Aurobindo (20 oo). India's Rebirth. Edited by Sujata Nahar. Paris and Mysore: Institut de recherches évolutives and Mira Aditi. – (2005). Nationalism, Religion, and Beyond: Writings on Politics, Society, and Culture. Edited by Peter Heehs. Delhi: Permanent Black. Gode, P. K. (1944). “The Chronology of Vijñānabhiksu and ...

Spirituality and Business: Exploring Possibilities for a New ... - Page 29
Sharda S. Nandram, ‎Margot Esther Borden - 2009 - ‎Preview - ‎More editions
Table 2.1 Forms of knowledge according to Sri Aurobindo Forms of knowledge Characteristics Indirect and separate knowledge We partly identify with the world but we also disidentify with it when we say there is a world out there Knowledge by separate and We partly identify with the mind and ... Truth is inherent in us as well as in nature; the aim cannot consist of an 2 Spirituality and Business 29 Sri Aurobindo ́s Four Types of Knowledge TheTechnology of Yoga for Deeper Knowledge.

Culture, Society And Leadership - Page 19
2006 - ‎Preview
One can go on endlessly with such one-for-one, dark-for bright factual (not virtual!) images of sci-tech. Therefore, our sci-tech-based 'vision 2020', if at all it can be called a vision, is at best a mixed one, not a glorious one. We feel that the destiny of India, as envisioned by our modern rishis (Vivekananda, Tagore, Aurobindo and others) was not one of 'sci-tech' super-power, but something else. They did not, of course, neglect appropriate attention to sci-tech as a support. In 1989 the ...Sri Aurobindo explains that it “is not only aware of things, but of forces, not only of forces, but of the conscious being behind the forces. One is aware of all this not only in oneself but in the Universe” (CollectedWorks, Vol. 24, pp. 1149–1150). Granting that the therapeutic aspect of human genetic engineering is of some positive relevance to the physical life of humans, does the human enhancement thrust of genetic technology show any sign of recognition of Aurobindo's theory of ...

Mother India: Monthly Review of Culture - Volume 60 - Page 685
2007 - ‎Snippet view - ‎More editions
For Technology as the product of the Enlightenment remains objectified Rationality but Humanity if reduced to the rational, loses its essence as an undefinable life-form in transition, seeking to create in itself its own godhood. This second duality is a realised godhood as human creation ... "To be perepetually reborn is the condition of a material immortality", SriAurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 1972, p. 1. 27. Gebser, Op. cit. the commodification of Subjectivity ...

Mother India: Monthly Review of Culture - Volume 59 - Page 318
2006 - ‎Snippet view - ‎More editions
This future can be named by us, but named only through the vocabulary of Sri Aurobindo, taken from the dictionary of Sri Aurobindo. We can call this future "the Life Divine". Or the Divine Life, if you would have it simply, without Sri Aurobindo's inversion. But what is the Divine Life? Again, using his terminology, we can call it "an ... They are not immune to technology; in facttechnology is fully represented there. They are as much a p

Mother India: Monthly Review of Culture - Volume 58 - Page 255
2005 - ‎Snippet view - ‎More editions
On the assumption that evolution is a physical process that has reached more or less the limit of what Nature can do by her old slow methods, it has recently been speculated that further evolution could be brought about by human beings themselves using technology to modify their own bodies and brains. "Transhumanists" foresee the creation, by scientific means, of "posthumans" endowed with "superintelligence", free from irrational behaviour and immune to disease and death.

The encyclopedia of religion and nature - Volume 2 - Page 131
Bron Raymond Taylor - 2005 - ‎Snippet view - ‎More editions
Mapping reality in this way, Sri Aurobindo includes "nature" and the human person in one interpretative framework, which sets out the multi-leveled interconnections between them and indicates what has to happen for the transformation of both. ... egoic consciousness to deeper, unitary supramental consciousness, thereby extending our sense of self to include the natural world, and also on the levels of the current economic, environmental, technological, political and social realities.

Advanced Educational Technology 2 Vols. Set - Page 563
D.Lit., President U.P Philosophers Association for a decade; LMI: Indian Philosophical Association and Darshan Parishad; Director: Sri AurobindoResearch Institute; Chief Editor: Research Journal of Philosophy and Social Science; Head of the Department of P.G. Studies and Research at Meerut College for two decades. He guided more than two dozen Ph.D. scholars. Dr. Sharma has authored more than one hundred research papers and an equal number of books in the field of ...

Re-Thinking the Future of Work: Directions and Visions - Page 274
Based on the vision of Sri Aurobindo and Mirra Alfassa to create a community where people of all countries can live in peace and harmony, Auroville represents a place of spiritual realization, not bound by any religious dogma. ... Auroville has a Research Centre in AppropriateTechnology); an international zone with houses for each nation acting as embassies of different cultures; and finally the Matrimandir, a 100-foot high elliptical sphere with surrounding gardens and walkways ...