February 08, 2006

Matrubhaban, a place of pilgrimage

Matrubhaban, which is located in Cuttack, the age-old cultural capital of Orissa, has completed 25 most fruitful years of service to the cause of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and its Silver Jubille is being celebrated this year. It has rendered yeomen service in spreading the message of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother far and wide in the State of Orissa. After the enshrinement of the Relics of Sri Aurobindo within the premises of the Matrubhaban some years ago, it acquired a new dynamism and has now become a place of pilgrimage to all the devotees of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother visiting the State of Orissa.
If one considers the large number of activities that are being conducted every year under the auspices of the Matrubhaban and the number of ancillary institutions that have been fostered by this parent Institution- the Annual Conferences, the Workshops, the Study Camps, the School that is rapidly growing into a major educational institution in Cuttack , the experiments in community living like the one at Dalijoda- it must be regarded as one of the most active because in this state the devotees of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother come from all sections of society. The large number of Pathachakras (Study Circles) and the Integral Schools, rapidly growing in number, draw their inspiration from the Matrubhaban.
In this task of making the institution such a radiant source of inspiration many Oriya devotees of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo have played important roles. Happily, the most loved and revered of them all, Sri Ramakrishna Das, popularly known as Sri Babaji Maharaj, is amongst us today, and we cannot be grateful enough to the Divine for this Grace.
One of the stalwarts of the Sri Aurobindo movement in Orissa was Sri Prapatti (Professor K.C.Pati), who sowed the seeds of this movement and gave it the dynamism it now has acquired by his indefatigable zeal in the early years. Sadly he is no more with us, and I have the pleasantest memories of my brief association with him, every time I go to Cuttack . I remember him and feel the vacuum left by his absence. He used to travel through out Orissa and reach even the remotest hamlet, often covering long distances on foot. He was a philosopher-cum-sadhak-cum-organiser par excellence. He literally wore himself out physically through this arduous tapasya. On this occasion I wish to offer to his memory my loving homage.
On this occasion of the Silver Jubilee of the Matrubhaban, I extend to them all my greetings and feliciations. May Matrubhaban grow from strength to strength!

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