July 31, 2007

During his stay in Baroda his endeavours in the spiritual field had the nation’s freedom as the goal

Sage of Puducherry SAROJINI PREMCHAND The Hindu Tuesday, Jul 31, 2007 Book Review Telugu SRI ARAVINDA DARSHANAM: Srisarvari; Master Yogashram, Plot 89, Krishna Enclave, Military Dairy Farm Road, Tirumalagiri Road, Secunderabad-500015. Rs. 100.
THE ‘SUPERMIND’ which is in its very essence truth-consciousness manifests when there is a complete change in the consciousness of man. This book unfolds the life of the sage of Puducherry, Sri Aurobindo, who gave the above message to the world.
Born on August 15, 1872 he was taken to England for studies when he was seven. Passion for English and French literatures, European history and writing poetry were the marked features of his student days. While setting foot on Indian soil he had a unique spiritual experience.
According to Sri Aurobindo he started ‘looking inward’ when he was 13 and Max Mueller’s writings instilled in him a penchant for Vedanta. During his stay in Baroda his endeavours in the spiritual field had the nation’s freedom as the goal.
While in prison he was overpowered by a radical change. Later renouncing political life he embarked on a secret journey. Subramanya Bharati was one among those who received him when he came to Puducherry. It was the arrival of Mirra Alfassa, a French lady, that propelled his spiritual journey with a new force and the Ashram grew into a focal point for seekers from all over the world.
The author of this biography shows fine command over language and excels while describing Aurobindo’s ethereal states of being. Good photographs and quality printing make this an attractive volume.

July 29, 2007

Prof. Anil Baran Roy

Krishna Chandra College Hetampur Rajbati, Hetampur Dist. :- Birbhum (W.B.) PIN – 731124 Phone :- (03462) 270236 It is interesting to note that quite a number of celebrated scholars and academics started their professional career here. We may mention a few e.g. Dr. B B Majumdar (noted historian associated with Patna University), Prof. Anil Baran Roy (brilliant scholar of philosophy and literature and one of the leading figures of Sri Aurobindo Ashram , Pondicherry )…
Ramkinkar received his primary education in a local ‘Pathshala’ (rural lower primary school). Later, he studied sporadically in the Banga Vidyalaya and Jatiya Vidyalaya. In the interim, he got admitted in the Night School as well. During the Non Cooperation Movement, he had established propinquity with the renowned professor and patriot Anil Baran Roy. The latter inspired Ramkinkar to make portraits of Chittaranjan, Arabindo Ghosh and M.K. Gandhi in oil - colours.

July 26, 2007

Why Agni and Vak are together?

Tue, 17/07/2007 - 10:06 — vladimir
So Brahman is present in all our faculties as the Sight of our Sight, the Hearing of our Hearing, the Mind of our Mind, Word of our Word, Life of our Life, Body of our Body. And since all our faculties are turned outside to the surface of consciousness, we cannot perceive Him, but we can perceive because of Him present in all these faculties. He is the Sense of our Sense (and here is the link to the studies of consciousness of samjnana as essential sense, etc.)
The Kena Upanishad goes even further, it gives us an educational model how to educate these faculties that they may perceive Brahman. They have first to turn within and reflect in themselves their Universal Prototypes: the Universal Sight, Hearing etc. and then they have to learn to look even beyond their domains to the Transcendental Spirit, Brahman, to reflect His Light in our Sight, His Space in our hearing, His Word in our speech, His Thought in our thinking, they have to become faithful and pure transmitters of his Being in our being.
The names of Vayu, Dishah, Agni, Aditya, Soma are the Universal representatives of these faculties, Vayu is the Universal Life force, Matarishvan, Dishah is the all Space (all the directions), Agni is the Universal Fire, the Divine Will, Aditya is the Sun, the Eye of Gods, the Universal Sight, Soma is the Moon, the reflected light of the Sun, the Universal Mind.
Why Agni and Vak are together, you ask. Because Agni is the Divine Will, the Divine Summoner of the Gods, the Hotar, the Immortal among mortals, calling for the higher powers to come down and transform it into the life Divine. (please have a look into my article Chaturvarnya the Vedic Concept of it). browse the library add new resources learn about projects create new project The University of Human Unity

Update February 4, 2013:
Sri Aurobindo was convinced that the Vedantic and Puranic systems are identical and depend on the same idea of seven principles of subjective consciousness formulating themselves in seven objective worlds, thus giving him a total clarity on the symbolism.
It is essential to understand that these worlds are not the physical worlds but in reality are different states of consciousness. These are not reachable by physical means. If a human being is conscious only of matter, at this particular time he is living in the world of matter. If his consciousness is dwelling on desires, feelings, emotions etc., he is living in the vital world. When immersed in thought, he is in the mental world.
Though the Veda refers to all these seven principles, they constantly speak of the three outer worlds only. Relatively, they are of direct concern to us. This is the reason why more riks are devoted to Agni, who is nearest and presides over Earth. Many riks laud Indra as he is the lord of all the Gods of this triple.

Pandit N.R. Bhatt: Felicitation Volume - Page 45 - Pierre Sylvain FilliozatSatya Pal NarangC. Panduranga Bhatta - 1994 - Preview -More editions Ratri in Veda and the Concept of Night in Sri Aurobindo - P.K. Mishra
Very objectively Sri Aurobindo draws the symbol of dawn and dusk with the revelation of light and darkness of human heart. Along with this, cosmic light is also drawn to the picture where night and dawn are concerned. The Night that wombs ... 2:21 am 

J.L. Mehta on Heidegger, Hermeneutics, and Indian Tradition - Page 165 - Jarava Lal MehtaWilliam J. Jackson - 1992 - Preview In my own humble judgment, however, Aurobindo's Vedic studies constitute the one single, central pillar which carries the burden of Aurobindo's creative thought, the one stalk on which the thousand-petalled lotus of his thinking blossomed, ... 2:37 pm

July 22, 2007

It is a struggle for an ideal that has to establish itself on earth in the life of humanity, for a Truth that has yet to realise itself fully

Re: 17: An Ardent Prayer by RY Deshpande
on Sat 21 Jul 2007 09:04 PM PDT Profile Permanent Link
Sri Aurobindo said that Hitler was the greatest menace the world had to face and that he would stop at nothing to achieve his sinister object, even to destroy the whole civilisation,—wrote Nirodbaran in his Twelve Years with Sri Aurobindo. In the course of one of his sessions with the disciples attending on him, Sri Aurobindo asked Dr Rao: “Do you know that Hitler is trying to get a foothold in South America and doing extensive propaganda there?”
He himself answered: “It can lead to attack against the USA. He is now practically master of Europe. If he had invaded England after the collapse of France, he could have been in Asia by this time… Now another force has been set up against his. Still the danger has not passed. He has 50% chance of success. Up to the time when France collapsed, he was remarkably successful because he had behind him an Asuric Power which guided him; from that Power he received remarkably correct messages.”
In a letter to a disciple written in 1942 about the danger of the Nazi victory:
“You should not think of it as a fight for certain nations against others or even for India; it is a struggle for an ideal that has to establish itself on earth in the life of humanity, for a Truth that has yet to realise itself fully and against a darkness and falsehood that are trying to overwhelm the earth and mankind in the immediate future. It is the forces behind the battle that have to be seen and not this or that superficial circumstance… There cannot be the slightest doubt that if one wins, there will be an end of all such freedom and hope of light and truth and the work that has to be done will be subjected to the conditions which would make it humanly impossible; there will be a reign of falsehood and darkness, a cruel oppression and degradation for most of the human race such as people in this country do not dream of and cannot yet all reaslise. If the other side that has declared itself for the free future of humanity triumphs, this terrible will have been averted and conditions will have been created in which there will be a chance for the Ideal to grow, for the Divine Work to be done, for the spiritual Truth for which we stand establish itself on the earth. Those who fight for this cause are fighting for the Divine against the threatened reign of the Asura.”
In the course of a conversation with the attendant-disciples, in 1940:
“Had it not been for Hitler, I wouldn’t have cared what power remained or went down. Now the question is whether the new world-order is to come after much suffering and destruction or with as little of it as possible. Destruction of England would mean victory for Hitler and in that case, perhaps after a great deal of suffering and oppression, and reaction to them, that world order may come or may not, or it may come only after Pralaya! Of course the issue has been decided by the Divine Vision and there can be no change. But nobody knows what the decision is.”
In a poem written within six weeks after the start of Second World War Sri Aurobindo describes Hitler as the dwarf Napoleon and calls him a Titan Power supporting this pigmy man, a crude instrument of a mighty Force, violent and cruel, devil, child and brute, a screaming orator with a strident tongue,
Now the world for his eating a ripe fruit,
His shadow falls from London to Korea,
Cities and nations crumble in his course…
We are very familiar with the trick the Mother played on Hitler, even as at one crucial juncture she impersonated the Lord of the Nations and guided his disciple to attack Russia when the War was actually going well for him. The deed was done—by her. RYD

July 21, 2007

The "awakening" or identification with the "psychic being"

The Blessed Remystification of the World
Cosmos Under God Robert W. Godwin Friday, July 20, 2007
A religious genius and a scientific genius will have much more in common than either will have with a mediocre mind such as Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, or Richard Dawkins. Most people can sense this: that depth converges, regardless of the discipline. This is why people can be spiritually invigorated, say, by great music or poetry.
But we can also be spiritually nourished by science, so long as we do not reduce it to the enclosed and circular little world of scientism. The more science discovers about the cosmos, the more reason for awe and wonder. I don't think science has demystified the world at all; rather, it has remystified it, especially after a little sidetrack down the paths of empiricism and positivism that only lasted for a couple hundred years at the most. The universe is so much stranger than supposed by antequated materialists, that we literally cannot suppose how strange it is. In order to be sufficiently puzzled by reality, we have to crank our puzzler up to 11.
But there is something in the human mind that wants to contain novelty and demystify the world -- to make the anxiety of not-knowing go away. In a sense this is perfectly understandable. Ironically, it is a legacy of our evolved nature which, after all, was not designed to ponder the mystery of being, but to survive and get tenure...
Yesterday we touched on the philosophy of Sri Aurobindo. In his approach to yoga, the initial stage involves the "awakening" or identification with what he calls the "psychic being" (not to be confused with "psychics," channelers, and the like). Although Aurobindo gave it a particular name, I obviously believe that he was describing something universal, and which is recognized in some form or fashion in all the major religions. Looked at in the most abstract way, we would simply say that it is that part of man which exists on the vertical plane, both "behind" and potentially "above" the ego. It is both the subject of spiritual knowledge and the object of spritual growth. In my book, I give it the symbol (¶) to distinguish it from the horizontal self, (•)...posted by Gagdad Bob at 7/20/2007 08:46:00 AM 13 Comments

July 20, 2007

So, in 1995 I became a disciple of Sri Aurobindo

The Evolution of the Interior Horizon of the Cosmos
One Cosmos Under God Robert W. Godwin Thursday, July 19, 2007
So, in 1995, knowing that I had to choose one path and stick to it, I became a disciple of Sri Aurobindo. At the time, the choice was rather easy, based on the options available (or which I thought were available). Aurobindo (1872-1950) is widely considered to be the greatest Hindu sage of the 20th century, perhaps ever, alongside Shankara.
At the time, for reasons I have explained, I couldn't have chosen Christianity, because I just didn't know of any kind of Christianity that appealed to me, and many of the most visible forms -- or at least their practitioners -- frankly repelled me. I was a typical case of someone who turns to the east because we are exposed to so many religious yahoos from our own tradition. If I had been born in India, I'd probably have become Catholic, seeing what a wreck certain Hindu doctrines had made of the place. It was a classic case of comparing their best with our worst.
But Aurobindo also appealed to me because of his thoroughly modern intellect. Although born in India, he was educated at some of the finest schools in England, where he mastered Greek, Latin, and English -- not to mention learning French, Italian, German, and Spanish -- received various prizes for literature and history, and was eventually awarded a scholarship to Cambridge. By the time he returned to India in 1893, he had been thoroughy anglicized and actually had no knowledge of Indian culture or religion. He took a position at a university and then became one of the early leaders in the movement for independence. He was arrested on charges of sedition in 1908 and spent a year in jail, where he had some powerful spiritual experiences. He was acquitted a year later.
To make an endless story short, the spiritual experiences kept coming, and eventually a small group of followers formed around him. He began publishing a spiritual journal in 1914, and his output was somewhat staggering. For the next ten years or so, he engaged in what he called "overmental writing," in that the material would seemingly just come down through him as opposed to from him. Simultaneously he composed several major works, any one of which would be considered a signal achievement for a normal person, including The Life Divine, The Synthesis of Yoga, The Human Cycle, and commentaries on the Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads, and Vedas, not to mention reams of poetry, including the cosmic-spiritual epic Savitri, at some 24,000 lines the longest poem in the English language.
Much of his prose probably sounds a bit turgid to modern ears, since he was educated at the peak of that overly formal and florid Victorian or Edwardian or whatever you call it style. However, after the mid-1920s or so, he wrote almost nothing but letters to disciples -- thousands and thousands of them -- and in these he is much more informal, sometimes humorous and playful (he still wrote some poems as well). The letters are collected into three volumes, and are much more accessible than his formal writings. If you add the three volumes of letters together, they come to some 3400 pages, and cover most every conceivable spiritual topic.
I don't know that I want to get into a complete review of his philosophy, because it's just too complex and multifaceted. (The best introduction is The Adventure of Consciousness, by Satprem). But perhaps his central theme was the reconciliation of the perennial insights of Vedanta embodied in the Upanishads (which form the esoteric essence of Hindu metaphysics) with the evolutionary cosmos revealed by science. In this regard, he was way ahead of his time, because he recognized that there can be no conflict between religion and science -- or that if there appears to be conflict, it must be concealing a deeper unity that eludes us. He has certain rough parallels with Hegel, in that he sees the cosmos as a platform of spiritual evolution toward higher and higher syntheses of unity.
But he has even more in common with the Catholic thinker Teilhard de Chardin, whose Phenomenon of Man was the first systematic attempt to do with Christianity what Aurobindo was doing with Vedanta, which is to say, reconcile it with the new scientific views that emerged in the late 19th and 20th centuries. In turn, Aurobindo and Teilhard have some loose affinities with the process philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead, if you want a purely secular point of entry into a cosmic view of evolution.
Another thing about Sri Aurobindo that appealed to me was that his approach worked largely through grace as opposed to self-effort. As I have mentioned, I really hadn't gotten too far based upon my own efforts, so I submitted myself to the grace of Sri Aurobindo and his collaborator, known as The Mother (long strange story there). I didn't really expect anything to happen, but something did, and rather immediately. I began meditating on a darshan photo of them, and felt "zapped" by their force. I suppose that's neither here nor there, but I was soon able to understand spiritual matters in a way I never could before.
It was as if a veil had been lifted, or a new kind of transpersonal light shone on whatever it was I was looking into. It was during this period of time that the idea for my book came to me. I was just meditating and I had this four-part, circular vision of the whole. I must emphasize that I saw the whole first, and that I had no idea how or even whether I would be able to sketch it out in linear form, as a sort of story, or four part "cosmic suite." In fact, there is no doubt that I wouldn't do it the same way today, but I did the best I could with the materials available to me -- or which fell into my hands -- at the time.
The book was actually written in the order it appears, as I first attempted to tackle cosmology and physics, then theoretical biology, then human evolution, and then the algorithms of spiritual transformation. As the book unfolds, you could say that I am grappling with both the subject matter and myself in real time -- except for the prologue and epilogue, which more or less represent the distilled essence of what I came up -- or down -- with.
Somewhere along the way I stumbled upon a book that was very helpful to me at the time, The Unity of Reality: God, God-Experience, and Meditation in the Hindu-Christian Dialogue. In it, von Bruck writes that "yoga is nothing else than a preparation of the body and mind for non-dual, intuitive knowledge." Elsewhere he writes that "Western culture is determined more by reflection, Asiatic cultures by meditation. The meeting of the two is the important historical event of the present century."
That's how I feel. I just don't see how any kind of fundamentalist religion can survive if it isn't compatible with everything else we know to be true about the cosmos, both in its exterior and interior aspects. This post was interrupted by child care responsibilities, and I lost the thread. I'll have to try to pick it up again tomorrow. Assuming anyone's interested, since the ol' site meter indicates that increasing numbers flee from the blog every day.
I have broken the limits of the embodied mind
And am no more the figure of a soul.
The burning galaxies are in me outlined;
The universe is my stupendous whole. --Sri Aurobindo, The Cosmic Spirit
Till all is done for which the stars were made,
Till the heart discovers God
And the soul knows itself.
And even thenThere is no end. --Sri Aurobindo, Is This the End
posted by Gagdad Bob at 7/19/2007 08:51:00 AM

This concept of race consciousness or national-soul goes a long way in explaining universality in art

Anandavardhana lays great stress on the suggestive element in poetry and advocates the Dhvani theory, which is vyanjana or suggestion applied to poetry. This vyanjana suggests an extension of the original meaning and it relates to the fundamental problem of interrelating facts, speech and thought with their vast hinterlands. Dr. Seal in fact got them correlated in an aesthetic context by the postulation of mass consciousness, race consciousness, and time consciousness thereby implying that in the art-activity facts, speech and thought as understood in the aesthetic context get fused together and their disparateness disappears when they are touched upon by the magic of the artist’s imagination.

This concept of race-consciousness as explained by Brojendranath, in a way, comes close to Aurobindo’s idea of nation soul…This concept of race consciousness or national-soul goes a long way in explaining universality in art. Art, as communication could be well explained with this idea of nation-soul or race-consciousness. This concept again stresses the importance of the study of the history of art and art in its own environment, i.e. empirical study of art. -- Studies in Modern Indian Aesthetics (p.98-99) by S.K. Nandi (IIAS-1975)

July 18, 2007

The Academy no longer trains the integral person

Re: In search of Integral Education Paradigm: Chaturvarnya, the concept of 'integral man'. by Vladimir by Rich on Tue 17 Jul 2007 08:51 AM PDT Profile Permanent Link Vladamir writes: The creation of a prototype of the Universal Purusha and his reflection through the faculties of consciousness in manifestation of the individual is the key concept of cognitive faculties of consciousness in the Vedic Vision. Individual Purusha is embodying and reflecting all the faculties of the Universal, which was the uttamam rahasya, the great secret of Vedanta and Veda. According to Shankara this part of Aitareya Upanishad is the most secret. Thus the individual is nothing but a prototype of the Universal. He is already chaturvarnya.
Rich: Its interesting that this method of representation which depicts a resemblance between the particular sign and its universal phenomena by drawing a concrete analogy was - at least through the Renaissance the dominant way of representing the things of world by simulating their likeness to it. This was according to Michel Foucault the episteme which governed the perception of the world of the 16th century. He writes:
Analogy makes the marvellous confrontation of resemblances across space but it also speaks of bonds and joints. Its power is immense for the similitudes of which it treats are not the visible, substantial ones between things themselves , they need only be more subtle resemblances of relations Disencumbered thus, it can extend from a single point to an endless number of relations,. The one privileged point in space that is saturated with analogies is man, He stand in proportion to the heavens just as does the animals and plants and as he does the earth , to metals, to stalactites or storm. Upright between the surface of the universe, he stands in relation to the firmament (his face is to the body what the face of heaven is to the other; his pulse beats in his veins as the stars circle the sky according to fixed paths; the seven orifices in his head are to his face what the seven planets are to the sky; but he is also the fulcrum upon which these relationships turn, so that we find them again, their similarity unimpaired, in the analogy of the human animal to the earth it inhabits , his flesh is a glebe, his bones are rocks, his veins great rivers, his bladder is the sea, and his seven principle organs are the metals of in the shaft of mines. (The Order of Things)
So yes to construct an integral person Sri Aurobindo is quite correct that we can not lean upon a foregone episteme which identifies the individual with a ordering of the world coextensive with universality and structures a social discourse according to this order. The Renaissance man was thought to be an integral man of sorts in that he was supposed to be a master of many separate disciplines, however we are several orders of “epsitemes” removed from that era, we are now in the age of the “expert” whose mastery extends only to his/her specialty.
The course of human knowledge has evolved to such a magnitude that the Academy no longer trains the integral person but the specialist who parses his thin slice of learning through sorting out “difference” rather than in looking for the resemblance with the universal. In such a fragmented age, the challenge of communities like Auroville whose efforts are specifically to develop the integral ideal, is to adopt education and training methodologies (as described by Vladamir) to nurture a new Renaissance ideal however, such efforts have to not only seek to excavate the resemblances of signs to phenomena , but would also have to honor the pastiche and differences which define the surfaces of our post-modern age even as they reconstruct them into an integral whole. rc

July 17, 2007

Secular democratic institutions as being facilitative for social change

Re: What is Hindutva? The Eternal Word
by Rich on Mon 16 Jul 2007 09:09 AM PDT Profile Permanent Link
YS wrote: It is therefore necessary to have a social working instrument available as well, so designed on these lines for this purpose; and let us also believe that the redefined and revised “Hindutva ‘ for the reasons narrated above would fulfill the Divine Spiritual Task.<
But these social instruments has been defined in the Ideal of Human Unity and the Human Cycle and nowhere in these document are we forced to choose to adopt any particular tradition's religious practices as a social vehicle for transformation. In fact for this period in history, Sri Aurobindo seems to highlight the workings of secular democratic institutions as being as facilitative for social change as any particular religious organization of society. rc

Lack of clear solutions to our many differences

Anonymous said...
Once and for all, to explain my stand: the issue in question is not whether new material is being discovered or whether the Publication Department is or should be writing articles...The sooner we have everything, the better, no doubt, but I care 2 hoots as long as I have the full set within the next 15 years, or before I die, I hope!
My objection is simply that the attitude expressed in the above paragraph, and the first post in general, is unfair towards the people and the Asram which is working towards compiling the new edition, (apart from being arguably 'unyogic', or as the blogmaster might prefer, a bit 'unSavitri-Eranlike' - excuse my harmless sense of humour.)
> A devotee has the right to know more and more about the Lord and there is nothing wrong to be restless for the same.
Indeed, indeed, and who is stopping the devotee? Plunge into the Yoga of Knowledge, read Srinivas Iyengar or George Van Vrekhem, read On Himself, The Mother - know and experience all you want about every aspect of the Divine...but, what is expressed in the above para is something quite other than wanting to know "more about the Lord".
I may add here, that I am expressing my concerns only because I genuinely feel that the kind of feelings expressed in the above quoted para, and which is frequently done by others online too, work like acid, eating away at the tender and special bonds that hold together the Aurobindonian community. Particularly, in the absence of the physical presence of our Gurus and the lack of clear solutions to our many differences, may we be a little more understanding, patient, and kind to each other, and abtsain from flinging around unchastened, unsubstantiated emotions and thoughts. This holds true for me too, and I apologise for any ruffled feathers.
I believe, not restlessness, but an intense and yet patient individual quest is the need of the hour; if successful, its repurcussions will no doubt echo around us, in the larger Aurobindonian community, and in the human collectivity beyond as well.
And then, maybe, just maybe, the new set will be out quicker too. :)
"May we grow wide," as the Vedas say. V 11:34 PM

July 16, 2007

You seem to vent your (anger? / frustration? / unhappiness? / irritation?) on a number of fronts

Anonymous said...
> Thanks for replying.
Same here.
> I never demanded immediate publication of the Series. The basic thrust of my post was:[What is the progress with respect to different volumes.The subscribers are totally in dark. It is astonishing why a simple letter is not issued every quarter or so.]You have not commented on that.
Your original post doesn't have 'one' basic thrust. You seem to vent your (anger? / frustration? / unhappiness? / irritation?) on a number of fronts. What you posit as your 'basic thrust' is one of them, and perhaps the most justified of these. The PD could indeed let subscribers know how things are progressing every once in a while. My comment and observation on the rather harsh and accusative tone of your original post continues to stand. On this of course we may both choose to disagree...
> Further, you have mentioned that:[Even now new letters of Sri Aurobindo are surfacing.] This is what we outsiders are eager to know. When did it surface? From where? These kind of tidbits can light up our day. And these facts are of enormous historical significance.
Indeed, but would you rather they work on completing the set first, or start a journal to disuss new finds?
> You have asked me to [elaborate on charges such as "those who have access go on to publish books and articles by leveraging their privilege"]I am willing to do so provided, 1) You disclose your full identity and location,
You don't hesitate to make charges publicly, so why do you refrain from elaborating them publicly? Is my identity so important? Consider me a fellow-sadhak with another point of view.
> and 2) You assert that they have not published books or articles.
I have no clue, and you are the expert, it seems! On one hand, you want them to provide you with 'tidbits', what research is going on and what findings are taking place, and on the other you would not like them to use the information they are 'privileged' to access, for writing articles. Strange contradiction this!
> Personally, you are free to defend [the quality of what has come out so far], but that cannot be taken as a critical acclaim.
You are quite right on this. I am curious though, what do you think about what has come out so far?
"May we grow wide", as the Vedas say. V 1:42 PM

July 14, 2007

There is no mention of a priest lighting a fire

Rig-Veda is not a textbook or a manual. It is a collection of hymns, in a free-flowing language that is universal and that requires no elaboration. To make a connection with that ancient culture, we have to live the same inner experience.
Rig Veda is often criticized as being a book of rituals. However, not a single hymn in Rig Veda out of its 1017 hymns gives a description of a ritual or a rite. For instance, Agni translated as fire in the altar, is mentioned in several hundred verses, there is however no mention of a priest lighting a fire. Agni is used symbolically to signify the subtle energy in all beings. Sometimes, the fire principle is the same as the sun, which illumines the universe; the same Reality underlies Ushas that makes everything effulgent...
The high idealism of the Rig Veda poetry represents the soaring human aspirations. It is the intense desire to grow out of the limited physical confines and to reach out to the super consciousness that inspired the Vedic rishis. Sri Aurobindo believed that the human being is at the crest, on the threshold of evolving into super consciousness. He asserted that Rig Veda encases that esoteric message and attainment of that super consciousness was the vision of the Rig Veda. ssubbanna Recent Entries Archive References:

This was much before

Re: 16: The Divine Mother Counsels Aswapati by RY Deshpande on Wed 11 Jul 2007 02:14 AM PDT Profile Permanent Link Here is the fourfold negation
Can the physical cells of the body experience the divine consciousness, can it be present in them, they not just embody it but be it? Traditionally Matter has been treated as brute stuff, full of darkness and inertia, incapable of holding the luminous substance of the spirit in it. It is in that context that the question of the physical cells’ having it assumes a fundamental significance. In the Evening Talks, AB Purani records Sri Aurobindo’s answer to it as follows:
“Yes, the cells can have peace, joy, etc. and when they are quite conscious, they can throw out the opposing forces.”
This was much before the work of physical transformation had acquired the intensity and certitude with the opening of the physical’s mind to the supramental light, with the establishment of the Mind of Light in Sri Aurobindo, the Mind of Light being that mind of physical opening to the supramental light.
When peace descends in the physical it is a great force for cure; the physical can go even beyond this, become an instrument for the divine expression. The Mother’s work was concerned with this stuff, of preparing it to receive the divine Light and Power.
On 14 March 1970 she spoke of the work Sri Aurobindo had given to her. Before long she found that, indeed the physical is capable of receiving the supramental Light and Power, “the physical is capable of receiving the higher Light, the true Consciousness and of manifesting it”—not only receiving but also manifesting it. She was already on the way towards the great transformation. The emphasis was on the higher Power working in the physical, of manifesting in it. In fact, she had the early certitude of it being soon accomplishing it, of it being done. There was even a conscious prayer from the cells of the body to the Supreme:
O Supreme Lord of the universe, we implore Thee, give us the strength and the beauty, the harmonious perfection needed to be Thy divine instruments upon earth.

We must re-look at the editing of the present text of Savitri

Re: 16: The Divine Mother Counsels Aswapati by RY Deshpande on Fri 13 Jul 2007 04:45 AM PDT Profile Permanent Link No more in earthly limits pen thy force
Let us take the following lines from the current passage in which the divine Shakti is instructing Aswapati, instructing him in a voice “absolute and wise”: (Savitri, p. 340)
Assent to thy high self, create, endure. Cease not from knowledge, let thy toil be vast, No more in earthly limits pen thy force; Equal thy work with long unending Time’s.
Aswapati has already “endured” and “toiled” so much, made his work so much vast and incomparable that even the long unaeonic time cannot match it, cannot do it, and yet he is told to continue, in his high self, to do what he had been doing since long. Is it because of any shortcoming in what he has done so far, his yoga-tapasya not adequate to deserve the kind of reward or siddhi he is aspiring for, or is there some real practical difficulty that haste would prove disastrous? In either case, the tone of the voice, “absolute and wise”, is imperative and not recommendatory, not indicative, suggestive. There is a strong implication of it being obligatory.
It is in this context that we must re-look at the editing of the present text of Savitri. There is some difficulty about punctuation at the end of the second line and the verbal use in the third line. About “vast,” or “vast.” in the second line, we are told the following: “The punctuation of the manuscript is unclear. There is only a faint cluster of dots. The ledger has a comma. The reasons for rejecting this comma do not appear to be very strong. However, it might be pointed out that with ‘can’ in the following line, there is a change from the imperative in the present line (‘Cease not from knowledge, let thy toil be vast’) to the indicative in the next line (‘No more can earthly limits pen thy force’, as Sri Aurobindo wrote in his last handwritten version). Perhaps this makes a full stop after ‘vast’ somewhat more appropriate than a comma, if the next correction is accepted.” The next correction pertains to the third line in the above, whether it is “in” or “can”.
This line in Sri Aurobindo’s own hand, in the penultimate draft, is “No more in earthly limits pen thy force” which he revised to “No more can earthly limits pen thy force” in the last version when he himself revised the passage. However, when this was transferred by Nirodbaran—who was the Savitri-scribe—to the ledger, while making a fair copy, he wrote “in” in place of “can” of the last manuscript that was in front of him. Or could it be that both the drafts were there with him while copying, just for reference, and he copied “in” from the previous one—which is not unlikely? With this—“can” of the final text replaced by “in” in the fair copy of the ledger—the indicative of “No more can earthly limits…” becomes imperative in “No more can earthly limits…”; if the indicative is to be accepted then the line should be separated from the previous two imperative lines, “Assent to thy high self…” and “Cease not from knowledge…”
So with two imperatives at the beginning and one at the end, and with one indicative in the third, the lines should be read as follows:
Assent to thy high self, create, endure. Cease not from knowledge, let thy toil be vast. No more can earthly limits pen thy force; Equal thy work with long unending Time’s.
But the following will admit all the four imperatives:
Assent to thy high self, create, endure. Cease not from knowledge, let thy toil be vast, No more in earthly limits pen thy force; Equal thy work with long unending Time’s.
This combination of four imperatives has the advantage of forming one single block of thought- or idea-suggestion and has a certain homogeneity which seems to be more appealing, more acceptable than the hybrid of the imperative-indicative. We should also remember that the four-imperative block was read out to Sri Aurobindo on several occasions later and he allowed it to stand, with his own earlier “in”. After all, there is no compelling reason or convincing way of refuting that the “faint cluster” of dots after “vast” was not referred to Sri Aurobindo and the matter was settled with “vast,” and “in”. RYD

July 11, 2007

The Seal of Solomon or the Star of David

The Six Pointed Star By, Dr. O. J. Graham
August 16, 1999
I checked Jewish sources and all their encyclopaedias attested that it was not originally Jewish and was not used as the symbol for any of the twelve tribes of Israel. Jewish sources said it wasn't originally Jewish. So, what was it? That took four years of research. From archive to archive, library to library...history book to history book.
The first mention of the star was in Amos 5:26 regarding the trek from Egypt to Canaan. Then in 922 B.C., when Solomon married the daughter of Pharoah and went into magic and witchcraft and built an altar to Ashtoroth and Moloch. The book traces the six pointed star from Egypt to Solomon, to Arab Magic and Witchcraft, to Druid use(references are documented). The book traces the star through Freemasonry usage to Mayer Amschel Bauer, who, in the 17th century, changed his name to depict the red six-pointed star (or shield) which he had hung on his door in Germany, and thus began the family of "Red Shield" or Rothschild. The research carried on through this family, to their court of arms, to Cabala, to Astrology, to Hitler and his putting a yellow six-pointed star on all Jews during the holocaust, to the Zionist symbol, and finally to the flag of the State of Israel and beyond.
Because this symbol is comprised of a six within a six within a six (6 points, 6 triangles, 6 sides of the hexagon in the middle) the research also included a look at the 666 prophecies in the Book of Daniel etc., regarding the "wilful King" (anti-Christ) and the "mark of the beast". The Scriptural significance of the number seven and a Biblical description of the real Messiah and the seven-branched Candlestick (Menorah) which God gave to the children of Israel as an everlasting covenant (which is also mentioned in the New Testament) is covered. All the sources are written at the bottom of each page making it easy for readers to see and check for themselves...
"Sri Aurobindo, a Hindu guru well-known in the New Age affirms that SATURN IS REPRESENTED BY THE NUMBER 6… because the planet Saturn is 6th of the nine planets in distance from the sun." (Marrs: Mystery Mark, p. 68) ...
Emblem of the Theosophical Society
"The Interlaced Triangles, one (lighter) pointing upwards and the other (darker) pointing downwards, symbolise the descent of spirit into matter and its emergence from the confining limits of form. At the same time they suggest the constant conflict between light and dark forces in nature and man. When, as in the emblem, the double triangle is depicted within the circle of the Serpent, the whole of manifested nature is represented, the universe bounded by the limitations of time and space. The symbol of the interlaced triangles is known in the Hebrew religion as the Seal of Solomon or the Star of David."

Have you heard of Kaliostro? He was a mystic and a Free Mason with a great prophetic power

14-12-1938. Time: about 5-30 P. M.
Silent atmosphere. M. meditating, P. sitting by his side. Sri Aurobindo cast a glance at M. After few minutes P. tried to kill a mosquito with a clapping of hands. Sri Aurobindo looked at P. M. opened his eyes. P. felt much embarrassed.
Disciple: Were you ever a Free Mason, Sir?
Sri Aurobindo: My eldest brother was; from him I gathered that it was nothing. But Free Masons had something when it was started. Have you heard of Kaliostro? He was a mystic and a Free Mason with a great prophetic power. He prophesied about the French Revolution, the raising of Bastille and guillotining of the King and Queen. He used to prophesy about race-horses. He got into trouble and was imprisoned and died in prison. He never charged any money from any one and yet he was affluent. It was said he knew alchemy and could make gold. (There was a few minutes silence.)
Sri Aurobindo: Have you heard about Nosterdamus? No? He was a Jew. At that time Jews had great knowledge. He wrote a book of prophecy in some obscure language and prophesied about the execution of Charles I, the end of the British Empire and the lasting of the Empire for about 330 years.
Disciple: Then there is still a long time?
Sri Aurobindo: No, it was to be counted from the beginning of her colonies. That means from James I. In that case it should end now.
Disciple: From Chamberlain's speech today it seems Britain is not obliged to side with France in case of war,--it looks like it.
Sri Aurobindo: The English always keep their policy open so that they may change and correct as they like or want.
Disciple: But they cannot join Italy or Germany?
Sri Aurobindo: Why not? They can share with them France's African Colonies.
(At this time Mother came. We looked towards her and changed our position from near Sri Aurobindo's head.) She said, "Don't move, don't move."
Disciple: We have decided to meditate when you come. (Mother made big eyes and we all laughed.)
Mother: But if I want to hear the talk?
Disciple: Then we will talk.
Sri Aurobindo: (addressing the Mother): I am giving him a few prophecies of Kaliostro and Nosterdamus whom he has never read, he says.
Disciple: You know Bhikshu X was quite illogical; he called me back from here?
Sri Aurobindo: All preachers are illogical. Were you a fervent Buddhist? Is there much Buddhism in your parts?
Disciple: About one or two million people are Buddhists and there is nothing of Buddhism in what they follow.
Mother: Nothing or something of Buddhism?
Disciple: Something.
Mother: In China and Japan also no Buddhism is left. Only ceremonies remain. In Ceylon they say there is still some authentic Buddhism.
Disciple: In Burma also the same is the case. There, people put on ochre clothes at day and throw them away at night. But the Burmese people show a great respect for their Bikshus.
Disciple: Yes. Respect to dress and not to the reality.
Sri Aurobindo: Lele used to have the same idea. Once I met a Sanyasi with him. Lele asked me: "You don't bow down to him?" I replied: "I don't believe in the man". Lele said: "But you must respect the yellow robe". The Sanyasi was one of the three people whom Vivekananda drove out of his house and they became Avatars in one day (Laughter). Is he just the man to be so treated?
(As Mother had fallen into meditation we all tried to meditate with her. At about 7 P. M. she went for the group meditation and we rallied again round Sri Aurobindo.)
Addressing X,
Sri Aurobindo: You seemed to have Ananda in your meditation. Your face is beaming with it.
Disciple: Yes Sir. He is nowadays beaming with Ananda.
Disciple: (shyly), "I fell into deep sleep I think, but I had some visions also which seem to be quite distinctly outside.
Sri Aurobindo: Then why do you call it sleep? It may be the psychic being, or the inner being watching what is happening. Sometimes one goes into deeper state and remembers nothing in his outer consciousness, though many things may be going on within. What is called dreamless sleep is really a sleep in which dreams are passing on, only one does not know. Sometimes one discusses problems in such a condition, gets the ecstasy of union, etc. One may also go into other worlds with one part of this being and meet other forms etc. This is of course the first condition and a kind of a beginning

July 08, 2007

The origin of human speech is the greatest mystery and it will be the focus

When the Mothership Lands: Secrets of the CIA’s Psi-Plasma Vortex
By Drew Hempel, MA Anti-Copyright Fall, 2007
I call this structural plan: “The Surplus Value of Consciousness.”
For example Noam Chomsky in a 2003 response to critiques of his linguistics points out that Charles Pierce’s concept of abduction is still a misunderstood form of logic.
Abduction is considered a central form of logic but in essence it means the intuitive grasp of the key laws of nature.
In the same 2003 book Chomsky speculates that it’s very possible science is governed by the cycling of the elements even though this hypothesis is no longer considered in vogue.
Again these are aspects of techno-spirituality derived from the foundation of Chomsky’s philosophy—that there is an instinct of freedom tied to the genetic basis for I-language. The foundation for Chomsky’s philosophy is the Libertarian philosopher Wilhelm Von Humboldt who gave a series of critical lectures on Vedic philosophy which greatly influenced Hegel.
Professor Noam Chomsky analyzed how all cultures share the same universal triadic grammar structure with a noun-verb-preposition, albeit in different orders and slightly different terms. When abstract language, non-tonal language was being developed and conceptualized by Achilles, the Greek language was read like Hebrew, from right to left. Supposedly this right to left direction was to not smear the wet clay that the stylus imprinted. But Leonard Schlain, M.D. in his book Goddess and the Alphabet, discusses how there has been a shift from right-brain dependence to left-brain dominance (see also recent research on the neuroscience of right to left brain dominance reversal in the academic journal Culture and Cognition).
David Abram’s book Spell of the Sensuous goes back to the Greeks and Jews language and ecology connections but not to the psychological origins of Indo-European abstract language and their common origins. The verb “to be” is not common outside the Levant (literally “sun-riser”) but “I Am that I Am” (the definition of God) also refers to gematria – the resonance of meaning through sacred images. Chomsky was inspired by Martin Buber who studied mystic gematria and the Hindu texts have argued that even Chinese ideograms were first related to the Srutis or spiritual resonance of syllable ratios. “Natural Auditory Boundaries” blend visual signals creating cultural cognitive constructs called “magnet effects” that literally change brain perception. Malidoma Some, a shaman from Burkina Faso, says his elders talk about the “competing literacies” between tonal, non-literate land-based languages and the written text. Many scientists consider the origin of human speech to be the greatest mystery and it will be the focus of professor Christopher Knight’s forthcoming book The Human Conspiracy.
Ancient history seems just quaint storytelling to many modern cell-phone, cable-dependent city slickers but the Dravidians, a global African tonal language culture, predicted today’s materialistic destructive age as just a cycle within the eternal return of the axial precession – the spiral torque on earth driven by the Sun and Moon, galactic and cosmic forces. “I Am that I Am” is the Freemasonic gematria of the squaring of the circle that encloses infinity (“I” is the One as side magnitude and “Am” is the circle as yin-yang resonance) and this Freemasonic squaring of the circle was documented by UC-Berkeley math professor Abraham Seidenberg as far back as the 3,000 B.C. Brahmin India human sacrifice rituals. (In the academic journal Folklore Seidenberg also promoted a secret society to socially engineer the planet through the same Freemasonic rituals). The ritual sacrifice altar technology resonating with the Sun (“I”) and Moon (“Am”) forecast a trajectory now being completed with the most successful unified force theory – resonating superstrings.
Physics professor Brian Greene’s latest book, Fabric of the Cosmos, states that superstring theory turns the “Parable of the Cave” lesson from Plato in reverse. Even if humanity breaks the chains to realize that the fire is the source of the shadows on the cave wall, superstring theory states that shadows of information – or resonating nonlocal consciousness – is the source of that human perception. Greene states that the truth is not the Fire or the Sun but the Shadows (the gematria “that”) or the eternal empty awareness! Greene admits that David Bohm’s nonlocal consciousness wave could be a valid interpretation for quantum mechanics.
I study the inference of conspiracy (literally meaning the secret binding by breath) and consciousness, tantra and technology. While I write I provide direct evidence. “This is evidence that, if believed, proves a fact without inference or presumption. It precludes the necessity of inferring whether an action constitutes (in this context racial discrimination), because it compels that conclusion.” So says Harvard University law professor Randall Kennedy in his recent book Nigger.
The irony of science is amazing: all humans spoke the same language possibly just 15,000 years ago, with a proto-language explosion first driven from the apocalyptic conditions of Sumatra’s super volcano explosion in 40,000 B.C.E. – coevolution through punctuated equilibrium! As language become more formalized and less musically-based (e.g. “musilanguage”) it detached from its local ecology. Computers have now reverted to “artificial life” – contextual neural networking algorithms as adaptive resonance theory language. But will it save ecology? (An excellent overview is Imitation of Life: how biology is inspiring computing by Nancy Forbes, M.I.T. press, 2004). One of the largest supercomputers simulates and attempts to manipulate ecology – in Japan – but Gaia scientists, who analyze Earth as one self-regenerating “organism” state that the planet has gone into an unpredictable, highly volatile state of chaos (see The Wealth of Nature by professor Robert Nadeau, 2003). The U.S. military is even using biologist Andrew Parker’s evolution research book In the Blink of an Eye for adaptive resonance artificial life strategies.
Men are hunters but ultimately the quest is to kill the ego, the I-thought arising from the heart-mind. Science, as documented by former M.I.T. history professor David F. Noble’s book The Religion of Technology, is a tantric quest for technology to be the great Demiurge or Freemason Master of the Universe! About 1/3rd of U.S. university research is military funded and in the 1950s 70% of physicists were military funded so science is inseparable from genocidal imperialism. The science obsession with symmetry through axiomatic reason is really just a continuation of the Freemasonic Pythagorean Tetrad-Pyramid Power of the ancient irrigation empires. Betrand Russell calls Reason a “harmonizing, mediating force” in his book Mysticism and Logic but this harmonizing is true not for humans—it is true for empty awareness! The search for the origin of the I-thought is also the search for the origin of “I Am that I Am” which is also the “power axiom set” logic (the Pythagorean Theorem) that squares the circle.
Maverick psychologist Stan Gooch in his magnum opus book Total Man calls this search for hypofrontal cortex silence to overcome cognitive asymmetry, the harmony of “System C.” Unfortunately recovering control of what Freud called “the primary process” is also labeled “hyper-reflexive awareness” by those who treat schizophrenia...
The great unifier is Husserl’s phenomenological zero-point Being, the empty awareness allostasis, that each human joins in deep dreamless sleep, as analyzed in professor Rudolf Llinas’ recent microchip-promoting neuroscience book I of the Vortex. And that “that” is the source of the universe. Max Born in his book on the Theory of Relativity states that Einstein proved that the Ether does exist only it is Formless and without Substance! One as empty awareness is the eternal substrate, the truth of all reality, that can only be inferred from the I-thought. As Professor Dan Zahavi states in recent his book Alterity and Self-Awareness only the I-thought does not refer to anything and so as a sound it is “self-affective” and self-transcending and the I-thought demonstrates transcultural Reason. Science works on either deduction or induction but as physicist John Bell explained there is a way to escape the inference of action at a distance decried by Einstein: In the light of the outcome of the quantum mechanics Aspect experiment a perfectly valid conclusion is that there is complete absolute determinism in the universe and a complete absence of free will. This transcendent formless Reason is described in John Gribbin and Michael White’s Einstein: A Life in Science...
What must be confronted is the great crime of truth that Western Civilization was founded on. Pythagoras did not create the Pythagorean theorem even though almost all scientists based their logic and analysis on this founding lie! ...Even Aristotle, who also lied about Pythagoras, stated that only Unity is indivisible while measurement is contextual. Aristotle was against Plato’s use of Zero as an infinity as well...
The fact the scientists can not see past the event horizon of the universe with its critical mass of the Pythagorean ½ demonstrates that consciousness is beyond science! Vedic philosopher and freemasonic yogi Sri Aurobindo supported and promoted this question for the “Transhuman Rapture” as Yale lawyer James Gardner calls the quantum chaos racemization AI evolution in his book Biocosm, rated a top ten science book of 2003 by Discover magazine. Again in this context technology is defined as Tantra – the product of a commodity-fetish, subversive “left-hand” (radical evil, reptilian cerebellum) twist to the forged iron, refined sugar “right-hand” superego of logical law and religion as the axiomatic “I Am that I Am.” (Analysts Dr. Morris Berman, Stan Gooch, Colin Wilson and professor Slavoj Zizek are the best on these structural “strategies of tension”) Posted by Great Galactic Ghoul at 9:40 AM

July 03, 2007

Selfdistinguishing action of each new entity

Pulses of Emotion: Whitehead’s “Critique of Pure Feeling”
Actual entities, then, are not primordially located in space and ordered by time. Rather, spatial location and temporal sequence are themselves generated through the becoming of these actual entities. That is to say, an entity composes or creates itself by feeling the other entities that have influenced and informed it; and it feels them as being spatially and temporally distinct from itself. This selfdistinguishing action of each new entity, and the consequent differentiation of time and space, is a necessary concomitant of the very process of feeling.
Every “pulse of emotion” (163) is both a fresh creation of spacetime, and an immediate perishing, or “objectification.” The “emotional continuity of past with present. . . is a basic element from which springs the self-creation of each temporal occasion. . . How the past perishes is how the future becomes” (1933/1967, 238). It is only when an actual entity perishes – when it is no longer actively engaged in the process of feeling – that it is fully “ ‘spatialized,’ to use Bergson’s term” (1929/1978, 220; cf. 209). It is thereby fully temporalized as well, since “the atomization of the extensive continuum is also its temporalization” (72).15 Only when a process of feeling has completed itself and perished, can it be circumscribed as a datum to be felt, “a definite fact with a date” (230).16
Under these conditions, every feeling is a “ ‘vector feeling,’ that is to say, feeling from a beyond which is determinate and pointing to a beyond which is to be determined” (163). In the material world, as it is described by modern (relativistic and quantum) physics, “all fundamental physical quantities are vector and not scalar” (177); “scalar quantities are constructs derivative from vector quantities” (212). The precedence of vectors over scalars, or of relational terms over atomistic ones, means that no point of spacetime can be isolated from the overall “physical electromagnetic field” (98), with its interplay of forces and its quantum interactions. This immanent connectedness, rather than any imposition from above of the Categories of the understanding, is the real basis for physical causality.
In Whitehead’s theory of feelings, correspondingly, “the crude aboriginal character of direct perception is inheritance. What is inherited is feeling-tone with evidence of its origin: in other words, vector feeling-tone” (119). Whitehead uses the language of vectors to speak about feelings, because he makes no essential distinction between physical causality (the way that one entity transmits energy or movement to another entity) on the one hand, and perception (the way that one entity feels, and responds to, another entity) on the other. Steven Shaviro The Pinocchio Theory
14 For this account of time as “transition,” I draw heavily upon the discussion by Keith Robinson (2006, 74-77). As for the idea that repetition produces newness, or difference, I am of course drawing it from Gilles Deleuze; repetition as difference is a central motif of his thought. However, Deleuze’ssense of repetition as the affirmation of difference is developed mostly through his analysis of Nietzsche’s Eternal Return, and seems to owe very little to Whitehead.
15 This latter development is something that Bergson would not accept, since he insists on time as the form of inner intuition, and on the absolute priority of such time over mere space. Whitehead’s parallel between temporalization and spatialization follows from his endeavor to come to terms, as Bergson did not, with Einsteinian relativity, and the consequent conceptual unity of spacetime. Though Whitehead says that his own idea of feeling “has. . . some kinship” with Bergson’s “use of the term ‘intuition’ ” (41), he also objects that Bergson’s notion of intuition is incomplete, since it “seems to abstract from the subjective form of emotion and purpose” (33).
16This is also the point at which, in Massumi’s (2002) terms, impersonal “affect” has been captured and contained as a personal, psychological “emotion.” The whole question of Whitehead’s theory of space and time requires a far lengthier, and more careful, exposition than I am able to give it here. In the present context, I only wish to emphasize how Whitehead, like Bergson, is the heir of what Deleuze (1984) calls Kant’s revolutionary “reversal of the movement-time relationship,” so that, instead of time being “subordinate to movement. . .it is now movement which is subordinate to time” (vii).

July 01, 2007

To encourage the children to know themselves and to choose their own destiny

Students' Prayer
"Make of us the hero warriors we aspire to become. May we fight successfully the great battle of the future that is to be born, against the past that seeks to endure; so that the new things may manifest and we may be ready and receive them."
To learn for the sake of knowledge, to study in order to know the secrets of Nature and life, to educate oneself in order to grow in consciousness, to discipline oneself in order to become master of oneself, to overcome one's weaknesses, incapacities and ignorance, to prepare oneself to advance in life towards a goal that is nobler and vaster, more generous and more true....
Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education is an integral part of Sri Aurobindo Ashram and it serves as a field for new experiment and research in education. Sri Aurobindo considered the formation of an Education Centre as one of the best means of realizing that end. It was, therefore, in order to give a concrete shape to his vision that the Mother opened a school for children on December 2, 1943.
At present, the Centre of Education has provision for education from the Kindergarten to higher and advanced levels of study. It has the Faculties of Humanities, Languages, Sciences, Engineering Technology, and Physical Education. There are also facilities for learning Drawing and Painting, Music and Dancing (Indian and Western), Dramatics, and Arts and Crafts. In addition, facilities are provided for practical and manual work. There are also several sectional libraries and laboratories.
As the name itself suggests, the Centre is international in character. It aspires to represent here the cultures of the different regions of the world in such a way as to be accessible to all. The ideal is that every nation with its distinctive culture should have a contribution of its own to make so that it would find a practical and concrete interest in a cultural synthesis.
So far as Physical Education is concerned, it occupies a very important place in the life of the Ashram and hence in the Centre of Education. For, "A divine life in a divine body is the formula of the ideal that we envisage".
"The basic programme", the Mother spells out, "will be to build a body, beautiful in form, harmonious in posture, supple and agile in its movements, powerful in its activities and resistant in its health and organic function."
A rational and well-conducted programme that includes athletics, gymnastics, exercises, combatives, aquatics and field games has been chalked out and the students participate in these activities every evening.
Contests and tournaments are spread over the year, helping to keep up the competitive spirit and give to push to the urge for progress. Individual attention is paid to each student and steps are taken to inculcate an aspiration in him not only to have a healthy body but also to acquire grace and beauty, strength and endurance, and to move towards the goal of physical perfection.
After all, the child is essentially a soul with a body, life-energy and mind to be harmoniously and integrally developed. The education is therefore so organised as to secure:
the fullest possible development of the physique;
a fruitful channelisation of the life-energy in pursuits that contribute to the growth of the personality;
a sufficient training of the mental faculties in the fields of various Humanities and Sciences; and
the requisite help, through a powerful spiritual atmosphere, for the soul to come forward and gradually begin to govern the rest of the being.
Thus it may be noted that the aim of education as followed at the Centre is not to prepare the individual student to "succeed" in life and society but to increase his perfectibility to the utmost.
In keeping with these aims and ideals, the Centre of Education awards no degrees or diplomas, one of its objectives being to provide an atmosphere where knowledge is sought for the sake of knowledge, for the building up of the character, and above all for the joy of learning.
All education aims at the progress of the individual.
But the basic question is: What is Progress? For the word `progress' can and does have many meanings and implications widely differing in their content and scope.
We, at the Centre, take the view that progress is essentially a growth of consciousness, discovery and increasing awareness of an inner power and principle of guidance, which holds in it the light and truth of the development, harmony and perfection of our body, life and mind. It could be said that true progress is an ever-open step towards a total evolution of our entire being and consciousness so as to transcend and transform all the limitations to which man as an evolutionary being is at present subject. And this can only be done by a constant living contact with man's true self, the soul.
And once we accept this view, it would then be irrational to set a standard of progress which is uniform for all. It would be wiser, although more difficult, to consider each individual as a special centre having his own unique rhythms and modes of progress and thus to assess each individual's progress by standards appropriate to him. Moreover, "If the individual can progress at his maximum, the group will necessarily benefit by it. If the individual is submitted to the possibility and capacity of the group, he loses his chance of total progress," says the Mother.
On this basis, education would become a process of free growth and not a rigid system. For, if man is not the last term of evolution, if Reason is not the true or highest governor of life, if the aim of human life is to discover one's inmost and highest principles and to transform by their light and power the entire mode of one's present embodied mental life, and if the specific aim of each individual is to be a special or unique centre of a higher action, then education must be a process of free progress so organised :

to give to each one the possibility to discover his own line of development in accordance with his inner truth of being:for, the one thing that needs to be done assiduously is, as the Mother has emphasised, to encourage the children to know themselves and to choose their own destiny;
to create the possibilities of progressing at one's own pace of progress; and
ultimately, to enable him to take charge of his own development.

As for the aim and necessity of free progress, we may simply say that man has in him infinite possibilities of which he is not normally aware and the aim of education is to make him progressively aware of these possibilities so as to develop them to the utmost.
As Sri Aurobindo remarked in his Preface on National Education: "...the acquiring of various kinds of information is only one and not the chief of the means and necessities of education: its central aim is the building of the powers of the human mind and spirit, it is the formation or, as I would prefer to view it, the evoking of knowledge and will and of the power to use knowledge, character, culture, -that at least if no more."
The necessity of free progress in education lies in the perception that man is an evolutionary being and education fulfils itself when through it man consciously seeks to collaborate with evolving Nature in order to exceed himself, to break the limitations of the past and to open to the exploration of new future possibilities.
This is the truth of education underlying the free progress approach as adopted at the Centre of Education. It is free because it is not prefabricated; it is free because it is not imposed on any individual; and finally, it is free because it is guided, not from without, but by oneself, by one's inner self, one's inner soul. In the words of the Mother:
"Free Progress is progress guided by the souland not subjected to habits, conventions and preconceived ideas."