Archive for September 2011
Sri Aurobindo Mandir Annual [Published on the occasion of the 70th Birthday of Sri Aurobindo (15-8-1942), by Sri Aurobindo Patha Mandir, Calcutta. Price Rs. 3-8.]
Sri Aurobindo’s teachings and message have profound significance as at once a masterly and magnificent presentation of ancient Indian wisdom and a challenging metaphysical contribution, both as speculation and as sadhana. It must be admitted, however, that the appeal of Sri Aurobindo’s writings has been limited to but a small number, the cultured and philosophical elite of India and abroad. Any work, like the one under review, which may make the thoughts of Sri Aurobindo better known to the world is therefore welcome.
The Annual opens with three poems by ‘Arjava’, Amal Kiran and Dilip. Then follow eleven articles which give brief and illuminating studies of Sri Aurobindo’s teachings under different heads. “Our Ideal” by Nolinikanta Gupta, “Divine Evolution” by Dr. K. C. Varadachari and “Towards A New World” by sisirkumar Mitra give in general terms an appraisal of the message of Sri Aurobindo and an exposition of his chief metaphysical ideas. To students of Indian philosophy, Dr. Mahendra Nath Sircar’s “Sri Aurobindo and Mayabad”, Sri Anilbaran Roy’s “Sri Aurobindo and the Gita”, Sri Birendra kishore Roy Chowdhury’s “Sri Aurobindo and the Tantra” and Sri V. Chandrasekharam’s “Sri Aurobindo and the Veda” provide valuable material to arrive at an estimate of Sri Aurobindo’s special contribution to philosophical thought and interpretation in a comparative setting. Dr. S. K. Maitra’s, “Sri Aurobindo and Bergson” shows how Sri Aurobindo is “a more uncompromising opponent of all respectability and convention and an even greater volcanic thinker” than Bergson himself Prof. Haridas Chaudhury’s “The Supermind in Sri Aurobindo’s Philosophy” is an illuminating psychological study, which gives valuable guidance to the understanding of the philosophical method and specific terminology adopted by Sri Aurobindo, Sri K. D. Sethna’s, “Sri Aurobindo–Poet of Yoga” is literary criticism touched with spiritual rapture in estimating one whose vision ‘is a revelatory process’ and ‘whose poems burn in an aura of beatitude’.
The volume is sumptuously got up and leaves nothing to be desired in the matter of printing and binding.