January 16, 2006

There is vision here in Auroville

Sri Aurobindo, The Adventure of Consciousness,” he reads aloud and continues, “you like this book?”“It might be the best book I’ve ever read,” I reply.“Why?” he asks.“Because after five years of intense spiritual searching, I can only stutter and sigh when trying to translate my learnings into words. But what I have come to know from my direct experience and experiments with Truth, Satprem seems to have captured here in this book; and with perfect grace and eloquence I believe he’s really transcribed messages divinely inspired.” He smiles like he might know something I don’t.
And then he continues, “So, how did you find out about Auroville and why have you come here?”I look to the left bottom corner of mind, where my fondest memories seem to be kept, and after reveling in the essence of the experience for a blissful minute, I tell him, “Nine months ago, I met a boy in Ecuador. As soon as I saw him I knew he was an important messenger in my life. I approached him while he sat alone on the beach, and two sentences later he said the word, “Auroville.” And when he said this name, chills ran up my arms. And for that reason, the chills of recognition, I’m here now.”His smile, this time, is completely transparent to something inside of him that he judges it now safe to share. Another question slips through his smile, “And now that you are here, what do you think?”
“I think I’m going to live here.” These words -- MY words -- startle me. There is confidence in them from which source I’m unable to identify. And my ego, unprepared for the treason, stands aghast and open-mouthed staring back at me.The tone of confidence apparently carries itself all the way to him, for without jest or doubt, he sincerely asks, “And you discovered this by coming here?”I look inside for a second to see if this statement is true and then reply, “No. I didn’t discover it. I re-covered it. And embraced the revelation like a long lost and beloved friend who’s been patiently awaiting my arrival at its recognition.” While he reflects on my comment, he looks past me and, from the bottom of its protruding roots, follows the trunk of a mighty Banyan tree up to its outstretched leafy limbs that are shielding us from the sun-reining sky and blanketing us in a bath of cool shade. His gaze falls upon the gardens and I follow it. Chipmunks tear around the grounds in a mad game of touch tag while a thousand butterflies loft and land on the sweet of their choice in this blooming flower candy-land.
He continues, “So what have you found here that makes you realize you have a place here?”I tilt my head for the delivery of my questions and ask him, “Do you know what “integral yoga” is and the philosophy behind it?”“Of course,” he replies.So I continue, “Do you know what, “ahimsa” is? And do you understand “voluntary simplicity”, “self sufficiency” and “human unity?” How about the terms, “organic”, “higher consciousness,” and “inner spirit”? And the concepts of, “the interconnectedness of all life”, “transparency to the divine within” and “synchronicity”?“Yes. Of course I am familiar with all these things,” he says plainly.“That is why I want to live here. Because I have spent a long part of my life searching, finding, defining and adopting these words into my practical living lingo. And because here in Auroville, for the first time in my life, I have found a place that not only shares my “speak,” but has these terms written into the very constitution of the community.”
He looks hesitant and I know what he is thinking, so I continue, “And I know that words are only words and that this place is so very FAR from perfect. Auroville is young. But have we not all gone through puberty? It’s the clumsiest stage of life: conflicted, rebellious, undirected, awkward, ungraceful, ugly, reckless, immature, blundering and sometimes plain scandalous! But the potential of puberty is worth every toe-stepping moment of its dance with adolescence. For in this same youth there is endless energy, passion, possibility, hope, courage, compassion, vitality, adaptability, risk, undefended love and vision! There is vision here in Auroville. And for the same reasons that I love to work with 18-year olds, I want also to invest my hope, love and energy in the mission and vision of young Auroville,” I end. “How can you be so certain?” he asks.
“I’m not. I’m not certain of anything in this life except for the certainty that nothing is certain. But do you see that painting?” I indicate to the garden. He turns around, looks and nods his acknowledgment. Embracing even my own curiosity in my voice I reply, “Nine months ago, on the back of a restaurant placemat, I drew that exact same image.”…and it’s only one of a dozen synchronistic omens that have fallen into my lap since I arrived here. I feel like the Tetris game of life’s divine mystery just jumped to a bonus round and the puzzle pieces are falling with a sudden speed that I can only respond to on intuition. And that is why I want to live here... revelation recovered INDIA, PHILOSOPHY OF TRAVEL Comments Sunday, 29 May 2005 solbeam Equipped with backpack, blog and her sense of Wonder, a perpetual pilgrim wanders aimfully on....

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