Skylight

Archive for April 2014

Sri Aurobindo Studies

We tend to try to value people by outward characteristics, and we thereby tend to attribute wisdom to people who either have university degrees, or a large amount of money, or other “signs” of success in the world. But worldly success is not correlated to true wisdom; rather, it can be a major distraction which actually reduces the opportunity for the successful individual to achieve wisdom.

Sri Aurobindo provides us therefore an overview of the chief characteristics that identify the sage: “…his strong turning away of the heart from attachment to outward and worldly things, his inward and brooding spirit, his steady mind and calm equality, the settled fixity of his thought and will upon the greatest inmost truths, upon the things that are real and eternal.”

The sage also will tend to exhibit a high sattwic temperament, with “…a total absence of worldly pride and arrogance, a candid soul…

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The Next Step

 The New Creation III

The New Creation 03

Sri Aurobindo and The Mother came to change the earthly life.
Sri Aurobindo said in His poem Evolution :
O thou who climbest from dull stone
Face now the miracled summits still unwon.
The first half of Evolution has been before us , the human beings — we have grown, step by step from  Matter, which is described by Sri Aurobindo as “dull stone” — we have maneuvered to become the humans through the prolonged and difficult course of Evolution — from the stone to the human. That is the story of the Advent of Man, amidst the stone and the plants and the animals.
And now, there are the new summits before us, which are still unwon — the summits of consciousness and existence : we shall have to face and conquer the new summits beyond the human existence and the human consciousness. We need…

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Sri Aurobindo Studies

The Gita begins its detailed review of the relation of Purusha, the witness consciousness and Prakriti, the active Nature, by defining and describing the field of action within which the Purusha exists, perceives, supports and causes action to occur.

Each of us experiences the world starting from a limited being conscious within a complex body that exists within a larger biosphere and ecosphere of the world and universe at large. Our immediate attention however is generally focused on the limited “self” that we perceive as separated and defined within our scope of immediate awareness. The Gita however, while acknowledging and starting from this point, does not in fact limit its definition of the “field” to the individual, but clearly includes the larger frame as part of the “field”. Thus, it is Prakriti that is the focus of attention when we describe the field of action.

Sri Aurobindo outlines the Gita’s…

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Footnotes2Plato

Watch Olafur Eliasson and Bruno Latour re-enact the debate between Einstein and Bergson about space-time and the polarity between art and science. 

Though I first heard about Latour’s re-enactment of the Einstein-Bergson debate several years ago, I only uncovered the videos of this conversation while engaging in a FaceBook thread yesterday about Einstein’s bloc universe. Einstein famously claimed that time as we experience it is a mere psychological illusion. If we want the fact of the matter regarding real time, we must accept the verdict of the positive sciences. Einstein didn’t fess up to the covert metaphysic of bifurcation he was employing, and although Bergson wasn’t unable to get through to him on this point during their debate in 1922, other philosophers were listening.

Alfred North Whitehead agreed with Bergson’s critique of Einstein, though not with Bergson’s philosophical reconstruction of relativity. Whitehead developed his own alternative (philosophical and geometrical) formulation of…

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Sri Aurobindo Studies

We see in many religious traditions that commitment is sometimes translated into a extremity that treats other paths as less worthy (or even “wrong”) and which may in some cases even lead to the extremes of fanaticism and violence such as the outbreaks of “convert or die” we have seen throughout history in a variety of settings. The Gita makes it clear that this is not the pure and true form of devotion and sets forth the qualities and nature of the devotee in its view. The basis is equality and desirelessness, and on this foundation there arises a purity of “love and adoration of the Purushottama….”

Sri Aurobindo defines the equal consciousness the Gita calls for: “First, an absence of egoism, if I-ness and my-ness…. The Bhakta of the Purushottama is one who has a universal heart and ind which has broken down all the narrow walls of the…

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Sri Aurobindo Studies

The Gita accepts the seeker, regardless of which path is chosen. Those who take the austere path of the yoga of knowledge are welcomed and accepted by the Divine. Similarly, those who choose paths of devotion or works are also accepted and they also achieve the final goal of the transformation of consciousness through unity with the supreme Purusha. There is no “bickering” here over one path being the “only way” to achieve realisation. The main thing is to focus the consciousness and the actions on the Divine and to transform the awareness to one of unity and identity with the Divine consciousness. This is not a matter of fixed rules, habits, rituals or formulae.

Sri Aurobindo explains this: “In the lower ignorant consciousness of mind, life and body there are many Dharmas, many rules, many standards and laws because there are many varying determinations and types of the mental…

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The Next Step

The New Creation II

Sri Aurobindo and The Mother have assured us of Their help on the Way. Has not He told us so in the following words?

And yet I know my footprints’ track shall be

A pathway towards Immortality. [The Pilgrim of the Night]

He has asked us to find the secrets within and proceed towards the New Becoming. To show us the Way, Sri Aurobindo had to find out the Way himself, for it was an untrodden way, a New Way. He had to work hard, undertaking an untried spiritual research.

He who would bring the heavens here

Must descend himself into clay

And the burden of earthly nature bear

And tread the dolorous way. [God’s Labour: Sri Aurobindo]

And what did He tell us to do?

A voice cried, “Go where none have gone!

Dig deeper, deeper yet

Till thou reach the grim foundation stone

And…

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Tusar N. Mohapatra

Director, Savitri Era Learning Forum
SRA-102-C, Shipra Riviera, Indirapuram, Ghaziabad - 201014 (UP) India + 91 96500-65636
tusarnmohapatra@gmail.com
Aadhaar No. 3628 2075 7337
SELF posits a model of counselling and communicative action as an instrument in order to stimulate the public sphere. The model aims at supplementing the individual’s struggle for a successful social adjustment with more aspirational inputs so as to help one take an informed and balanced attitude towards life as well as society.
Savitri Era of those who adore,
Om Sri Aurobindo & The Mother.

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