Dr. Ananda Reddy Lecture delivered at the Indian embassy in Berlin, on May 31st 2001
Seldom is man given to comprehend a personality like that of Sri Aurobindo. Sri Aurobindo is the synthesis between the East and the West; he is the bridge between the Past and the Future and at the same time the visionary most relevant ‘here and now for you’!
He spent his most formative years in England, absorbing the highest ideals of the Western culture and experiencing the best and noblest expressions of the West. Returning to India after fourteen years in the West, he dived into the deep foundations of the Eastern culture, as expressed and seen in India’s ancient culture. Thus gathering with his consciousness the best of the Western and Eastern cultures plumbing into the depth of the divine achievements in the past of humanity, Sri Aurobindo launched himself on a perilous adventure towards a new spiritual power, as yet unknown to man.
For achieving this stupendous task, Sri Aurobindo yoked a greater Power than all the powers that existed upon earth – all the religious, political, social powers were not sufficient to awaken and to bring together humanity and to tie it up in a unity expressing itself as a World-Unity. Sri Aurobindo did not work for humanity on the basis of the religious ideal of human brotherhood, or equality or liberty, but, he saw all humanity as ‘the self-same being and personality’ of the one supreme Divine Consciousness. And for realising this vision of man and mankind and to make it not a remote probability but an immediate possibility, Sri Aurobindo concentrated all his yogic energies in bringing down the Dynamic Force of the Divine: the Supramental Consciousness and Power.
Up until now man has been striving to raise himself both spirituality and materially through his own imperfect ways – such as science, technology, philosophy, occultism and arts – and also through narrow religious ideology and theology seeking help from lower powers than the Divine. So, man’s progress has been slow, tardy and full of wars and suffering. And, at present, mankind has reached a cul-de-sac, a crisis of consciousness. Mind is unable to extend any solution nor solace to his war-battered psyche and his materialistic death-traps. That is why Sri Aurobindo seeks to transcend the Mental Man and bring down the Supramental Man who alone can deliver the suffering soul of mankind, bringing him peace and prosperity – both inner and outer.
Towards such an ascent of man and mankind Sri Aurobindo worked for all his life: to lift mankind from his mental to the supramental level which alone assures the continuity of mankind as well as its fulfilment...Such is the consciousness of Sri Aurobindo – a cosmic consciousness manifesting gradually what is there in the womb of the future. He is not only a pointer to the New Consciousness, but also the focus for the manifestation of the Supramental Force and Consciousness...And Sri Aurobindo is indeed the Pioneer to transform this earthly life into a life of divine.