Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ever widening noose

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[Broadcasters: True quality has been drowned out in this cacophony of voices
The Sony radio awards last week acquired a new category - for 'broadcasters' broadcaster'. But, says Robert Hanks, the shortlist says much about the medium's diminishing sense of history
Home > News > Media Monday, 2 April 2007 ©]

Savitri Era of those who adore, Om Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. May the whisper of The Mother’s Lasso not be drowned out in the crowd and the cacophony! [TNM]

Their Enron, our Satyam

[Satyam saga exposes India Inc's shortfalls Analysts say the saga exposes serious shortfalls in corporate India that mu... Indian Express - 31 Dec 2008 Related Stories
Post-Satyam, corp governance issues come to life at IIM-A Economic Times, India - 25 Dec 2008 Apart from the lessons learnt, Satyam’s dubious transaction seems to have also left some disillusioned about the corporate honchos. “Our heroes have fallen. ... There is a widespread angst on the campus, too. Many didn’t mince words and even went ahead in calling it a mini-Enron of sorts. BOM:500376 And students seem all set to question and debate ethics and corporate governance in classrooms, showing a rising interest in the community to learn about their roles in similar crisis scenarios.
Promoter deception Indian Express, India - 24 Dec 2008 It’s time Indian promoters discarded their assumption of quasi-immunity from not only shareholders’ scrutiny but also the law. Satyam has raised a lot of ...]

Satyam failed to stick to truth. At the end of the day, it is the question of governance; be it the country, the corporate or an Ashram. [TNM]

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Vinoba, JP, & V.P. Singh are a rare trinity

Vinoba, JP, & V.P. Singh are a rare trinity in the firmament of post-Independence India. Savitri Era Party remembers their revolutionary contributions steeped in sagacity and compassion. [TNM] 3:52 PM

Bottom up

[See '09 as terrific year for investing: Raamdeo Agrawal
Raamdeo Agrawal of Motilal Oswal Securities feels 2009 will be a terrific year for investing. "The market may see better days in the second half of 2009-10." According to him, companies with cheap valuations should be bought...
Mkt to bottom in '09; H2'09 may be better: Jaipuria
Jyotivardhan Jaipuria, Head-Research, DSP ML, feels the bottom for the markets have not yet been put in place. “We will get to 15-20% lower on the market,” he said. Manishi Raychaudhuri, MD and Head-Research, BNP Paribas, said...]
Along with the stock valuations, civility in our discourse too plumbed new lows during this year. This should coerce us to go for a reality check and institute crucial safeguards. May all Savitri Erans unite in a new spirit of solidarity forgetting all past hatred and rancor! [TNM]

Monday, December 29, 2008

Grit, determination and constant innovation

[Reliance Inds, NTPC, ONGC, Bharti Airtel, MMTC Ltd, SBI, ITC Ltd, Bharat Heavy Ele, NMDC Ltd, Infosys Techno, Hindustan Unilever Ltd, Indian Oil Corp, ICICI Bank, Tata Consultancy, DLF Ltd, RelianceCommu. Ltd, HDFC, HDFC Bank, Power Grid Corpo, Wipro Ltd, Markets Home]

In times of an economic slowdown, it is perhaps appropriate to congratulate and celebrate the success of the Top 20 Indian Companies in terms of Market Capitalization. It is useful to remember that no organization can be a frontrunner without grit, determination and constant innovation. [TNM]

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Shabash Saaba

Shabash Saaba for being instrumental in multiplying the mythology surrounding the practitioners of Integral Yoga. [TNM]

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Savitri editing issue is mired in needless secrecy smacking of conspiracy

Re: The Lives of Sri Aurobindo—a Controversial Biography by Peter Heehs
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Thu 25 Dec 2008 12:47 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

Many thanks for raking up the Savitri editing issue that is mired in needless secrecy smacking of conspiracy. Although a lot of acrimony has appeared in the past, a fresh effort to put the whole affair in perspective is needed with specific stands taken.

I, further, agree with you that the role of Auroville Today has been patently partial. [TNM] Reply

by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Thu 25 Dec 2008 01:17 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

Apropos of revision of Savitri, opening any number of Can Of Worms is worth the trouble if even a single genuine comma can be rescued. It is certain at this point of time that there is no dearth of talent for this task. [TNM] Reply

Monday, December 22, 2008

Heraclitus’s notion of divine conflict

SSRC Home SSRC Blogs Blog Home Responses toHeraclitean spirituality: ephemeral selves
Tusar N. Mohapatra: December 22nd, 2008 at 7:47 am

May I draw the attention of the readers to a short and perceptive treatise on Heraclitus authored by Sri Aurobindo. [TNM]

V.P. Singh vindicated

[Sen’s sensibility on justice Express Buzz - CHENNAI: Economist Amartya Sen spoke in favour of reservation, adding that any issue has to be looked at in the perspective of ‘justice. IITs should address illiteracy and poverty: Amartya Sen Hindu Amartya Sen backs quotas, wants IIT-ians to do more for society Times of India]

V.P. Singh must be smiling in his grave. [TNM]

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Blemishes woo attention space

I have every right to disagree with the contents of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs and feel anguished about its potentiality for misleading a reader, but am not for revision of the book. For, like a sculpture, it may have its own blemishes but also possesses the power of attracting attention space. [TNM] Reply
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Sun 21 Dec 2008 04:47 PM IST Profile Permanent Link
Whether Peter Heehs “is at heart a rebel” is hard to infer from his present work as this biographical account is avowedly written specially for a niche audience. We shall have to wait for a few future offerings from Heehs’ stable in order to make any cogent assessment of his identity and intention. [TNM] Reply

Saturday, December 20, 2008

What they wanted us to do

Re: Intellectual Fundamentalism—by Raman Reddy
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Sat 20 Dec 2008 10:45 AM IST Profile Permanent Link
[The matter is simple, they wanted us to do their yoga of transformation, they did not want us to start proselytising and found another religion.]

Hi Raman, I had just reacted to your aforesaid sentence as I thought that saying something like this aphoristically should ideally be backed by sound arguments. [TNM] Reply

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sri Aurobindo secures the leadership in philosophy for India

[India will be world's knowledge park: PM Sify - Chennai: India is on its way to becoming a knowledge park of the world and IITians are contributing to realizing this dream in a big way, said Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on Friday.]

[Transfer of the leadership in philosophy from the West to India
Much before the independence of India, Prof.
Sisir Kumar Maitra in an inspired tone wrote in 1942, “Thanks to Sri Aurobindo, the leadership in philosophy, which India had enjoyed in the past and which she lost for some centuries, has come back to her.” That is the India we must be proud of. Savitri Erans will have to work together to see this prophecy into fruition. - TNM 11:21 AM 1:16 PM]

Knowledge must be adored in its integrality and the present lopsidedness remedied. [TNM]

Arm’s-length at Ashram

[The fact is that the relationships each of us has with our fellow citizens overwhelmingly are of the arm’s-length, impersonal variety. They are market relationships, governed chiefly by self-interest on both sides of each exchange. They are not the sorts of personal relationships that guide decisions made within households. They are, indeed, precisely the sorts of relationships that each of us has with strangers from foreign countries. The Nation Is Not a House from Cafe Hayek by Don Boudreaux]

[When the Stranger says: "What is the meaning of this city ?
Do you huddle close together because you love each other?"
What will you answer? "We all dwell together
To make money from each other"? or "This is a community"?
Choruses from The Rock
Work-Life Insights from T.S. Eliot]

[In his New Year message of peace, Pope Benedict XVI says: “If economic activities require a favourable context in order to develop, this must not distract attention from the need to generate revenue. While it has been rightly emphasized that increasing per capita income cannot be the ultimate goal of political and economic activity, it is still an important means of attaining the objective of the fight against hunger and absolute poverty. Hence, the illusion that a policy of mere redistribution of existing wealth can definitively resolve the problem must be set aside. In a modern economy, the value of assets is utterly dependent on the capacity to generate revenue in the present and the future. Wealth creation therefore becomes an inescapable duty, which must be kept in mind if the fight against material poverty is to be effective in the long term.” The Pope... And The Rukawat
from ANTIDOTE by Sauvik]

[Who's a true Aurovillian? PEOPLE LIKE US Kishore Singh, Business-Standard :: New Delhi December 20, 2008 7:55 AM]

[Re: Goodbye To All That: Nature and the Future Body in Sri Aurobindo
by jaydev on Thu 18 Dec 2008 07:53 AM PST
Profile Permanent Link
Sir, This is a brilliant thought and one which is about to explode into the vast array of human waking consciousness as we continue to witness the extent of corruption, greed, fraud, deceit, being exposed in the arenas of public trust vested in a few indviduals all accross the world-earth.]

What would be the tenor of relationships amongst the inmates of Sri Aurobindo Ashram? Someone should venture to pick up the lens so that an appraisal is possible of what is intended and what obtains. [TNM]

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Heehs is free to profess his faith in the Mother and Sri Aurobindo

Angiras and his accomplices are out to mischievously peddle the term “Excommunication” for what actually was a demand “to expel Peter Heehs from the Ashram” and therein lies a huge difference. Heehs may be unwanted in the Ashram for writing things antithetical to it, but he is free to profess his faith in The Mother and Sri Aurobindo and no one complains about that. [TNM] 9:55 AM 9:34 AM

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

India will continue to be an antidote to the pessimistic scenario

On December 15, 2008 at 11:10 pm Tusar N. Mohapatra Said:

Rarely did I read such a post by you. India will continue to be an antidote to the pessimistic scenario that you paint. [TNM]

Matter not simple

Re: Intellectual Fundamentalism—by Raman Reddy
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Tue 16 Dec 2008 11:28 AM IST Profile Permanent Link

“The matter is simple,” claims Shri Reddy while definitely it is not. It is hoped that he examines each factor in greater detail instead of this obfuscating conflating of too many. [TNM] Reply

Monday, December 15, 2008

Savitri Erans should devise suitable structural alignments

Inclusion of chronology of world events in the summary section of the Mother’s Agenda gives the impression that the conversations reflect a global perspective and The Mother, as it were, had a hand in major political happenings. Today, on the contrary, we see a complete shrinking away from discussing socio-political matters or current affairs.

Difference of opinion is a normal feature of any community and we are no exception. The fear of triggering conflicts, therefore, should not force us into silence. Enormous challenges are at hand, and special skills need to be honed to tackle them. We need a grid of proficient personnel in order to grapple with various eventualities.

Savitri Erans will have to set up a world organization of their own and deploy competent Senators across geographical divides. If the Universe runs in accordance with certain patterns and coherences, then there is no reason why we should shy away from devising suitable structural alignments. [TNM] 9:39 AM 10:05 AM 11:01 AM

Heehs is preserving all these documentary evidences for his next book

Re: A Chapter from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Mon 15 Dec 2008 11:18 AM IST Profile Permanent Link

It seems quite unlikely that Heehs being Heehs is telling something without adequate substantiation. So, it is my suspicion that he is preserving all these documentary evidences for his next book, for no author ever feels contented with the quantum of his offspring. Reply Mirror of Tomorrow

[Re: A Chapter from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs
by RY Deshpande on Mon 15 Dec 2008 11:37 AM IST
Profile Permanent Link
Are these "documentary evidences" a private property of Heehs, that he is "preserving" them for future use? RYD Reply]

Re: A Chapter from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Mon 15 Dec 2008 12:24 PM IST Profile Permanent Link
The evident answer has to do with the (mal)functioning of the Ashram, deliberations on which, I presume, you would not like to see in these pages that ennoble as you envision. Reply

Followers of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo are feverishly busy in fighting each other

Tusar N Mohapatra has left a new comment on the post "Sri Aurobindo and Ken Wilber on Wikipedia":

You are right Alan. For, right now the followers of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo are feverishly busy in fighting each other in an internecine war of words and through court cases. Posted by Tusar N Mohapatra to Integral Transformation at 8:34 PM 9:39 AM

Friday, December 12, 2008

Language will ever seduce and stave off fossilizing

[Thus, for example, the affects of a bat consist, on the one hand, in its capacity to encounter the world in terms of sonar, but also in its ability to fly, grasp, tear with its teeth, etc. Likewise, my fingers pounding away on this keyboard constitute an affect or capacity of my body. Or rather, my body here enters into an assemblage of affects produced through the conjunction– the “and” –of my hands and the key board, the two acting upon one another and being acted upon by one another. Through this conjugation of affects the power of bodies, according to Spinoza, is either enhanced or diminished, checked or assisted. Networked Emotions
from Larval Subjects by larvalsubjects Dec 5, 2008]

[Not only am I not allowed by this sort of policy to disseminate my own words, I am also not allowed to remix the words of others.
I can get more readers for anything I post on this blog than for an article published under such circumstances; so what’s the point?... There obviously needs to be some sort of open access policy for scholarship in the humanities, as there already is to a great extent in the sciences.
Copyright, again from The Pinocchio Theory by Steven Shaviro 10:38 AM]

[(HERE) I am always happy for fully-credited extracts from Lost Legacy. It helps spread Adam Smith's authentic ideas, without fear or favour. Market Time is published in India where Lost Legacy has a fair number of regular readers.
Lost Legacy Quoted from Adam Smith's Lost Legacy by Gavin Kennedy 3:53 PM]

[As a blogger, I know full well how technology has empowered me. The Planner's Evil Eye
from ANTIDOTE by Sauvik]

[As history too often has demonstrated, soon after the words accompanying the originating darshan or imaginative vision are spoken, the Future becomes imprisoned by the disciplinary regime of language and fossilizes into the structures of representation that become the liturgy of the faithful. The resultant future is merely the projection or programming of the past. In excavating the past within the future Derrida contrast L'Avenir the unpredictable future. Re: The Evolution of Discourse and The Lives of Sri Aurobindo
by Rich on Sun 07 Dec 2008 08:48 PM PST
Science, Culture and Integral Yoga Profile Permanent Link]

As long as fingers pound away on keyboards, language will ever seduce and stave off fossilizing. [TNM]

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Switch over to electing the Chief Executive directly

[Rajasthan CM race turns ugly; supporters clash Times of India - 11 Dec 2008, 1530 hrs IST, PTI JAIPUR: The race for chief ministership in Rajasthan turned ugly on Thursday with supporters of Ashok Gehlot and Jat leader Sis Ram Ola clashing ahead of the Congress Legislature Party meeting here to decide the new ...]

It is time we switch over to electing the Chief Executive directly and dump the present tortuous system. [TNM]

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Savitri Erans must apply every caution to shun Hindutva

It is incontestably cause for celebration for all Savitri Erans that the obscurantist BJP which specializes in hoodwinking the Indian public by obfuscating various national issues has suffered a decisive defeat in Delhi and Rajasthan. Hindutva brand of nationalism is a sham and Savitri Erans must apply every caution to shun it. Sri Aurobindo and Hinduism (a speech by Peter Heehs: Hyderabad 2006 Permanent Link) is a helpful guide in this respect. [TNM]

Savitri Era Party presents a unified vision before the youth of this country

[Appadurai, Chakrabarty, Ganguly, and Prashad respond to the attacks in Mumbai at The Immanent Frame] 10:21 AM

[Sri Aurobindo argued that pacifism can do nothing to root out the ... December 07, 2008 When elites eschew defense: The case of India By Ed Kaitz. Profound thinkers like Aurobindo Ghose, India's greatest...]

[For many decades the highest quality of democracy is assessed to have been in Scandinavian countries. But all have an established evangelical Lutheran church. So we cannot say, as theoreticians of democracy, that an established church per se is dissonant with the democratic state.
But it would have been totally inappropriate for India to select the Scandinavian model. India has great religious heterogeneity and by Scandinavian standards, a terrific intensity of religious practice. So the unique Indian model was devised — one that recognises all religions, respects all religions, even financially supports all religions. The French idea of secularism based on state hostility to religion and the US notion based on its separation from the state was also not attractive in the Indian context.
India has also overturned the secularists’ prediction and hope ? that the more urban and educated the people are, the less involved in religion they would be, and therefore more secular. In India, data proves the exact opposite has happened — the greater the size of the city you live in, the more educated you are, the more you practice religion.
I am horrified by events in Orissa and in Gujarat earlier. But as a comparativist, I must look at the larger frame.
The conventional wisdom is that the greater the intensity of religious practice, the more dangerous it is for democracy. But our data tells us that for all of India’s four major religions — Hinduism, Islam, Christianity and Sikhism — the reverse is true. The greater the intensity of religious practice, the greater the support for democracy. My judgment is that this would not have happened if India had not chosen its inventive form of secularism. Sometimes the state doesn’t live up to it. But in comparative terms, it is a success story. --
Alfred C. Stepan, Indian Express > Op-Ed > ‘In India, the greater the intensity of religious practice, the greater the support for democracy’ Vandita Mishra > Oct 24, 2008: You have written about the need to recast notions of secularism, to see the relationship between the democratic state and religion as one of “twin tolerations”. Where do you place Indian secularism? 10:44 AM] 11:45 AM

[Can religion be compatible with liberal democracy? World Religions and Democracy brings together insights from renowned scholars and world leaders in a provocative and timely discussion of religion’s role in the success or failure of democracy. An essay by Alfred Stepan outlines the concept of “twin tolerations” and differentiation, and creates a template that can be applied to all of the religion-democracy relationships observed and analyzed throughout the volume. “Twin tolerations” means that there is a clear distinction and a mutual respect between political authorities and religious leaders and bodies. When true differentiation is accomplished, the religious sector enjoys freedom of activity and the ability to peacefully influence its members but does not wield direct political power. A country’s ability to implement the principle of differentiation directly affects the successful development of democracy.]

It was somewhat agonizing to sit through the speeches made during the Annual Conference of Sri Aurobindo Society (Hindi Zone) in Noida on 6 & 7 December 2008 as recurring allusions (and expressing affiliation) to Hinduism was nauseating. No wonder, RSS chief K S Sudarshan’s message was prominently read out at the outset.

Although the religion vs. spirituality issue was deliberated on the expected literal lines, it seemed that as if there is no difference between the official Neheruvian version and what is taught by The Mother and Sri Aurobindo. Strangely, there was no willingness to debate the matter and voluntary interventions were prevented.

Savitri Era Religion refuses to perpetuate the confusing obsession for plurality which holds that all religions are good. Savitri Erans must organize themselves to present a unified vision before the youth of this country through the Savitri Era Party. [TNM]

Monday, December 08, 2008

Banerji's eagerness to eradicate the disease of the religion of Aurobindonianity

[Re: The Evolution of Discourse and The Lives of Sri Aurobindo
Debashish on Sat 06 Dec 2008 02:38 AM PST Profile Permanent Link The arduous and disciplined thinking of a Heidegger, Foucault or Derrida walks perpetually at the edges of human possibility, testing the limits of language... a discipline of deconstruction (the social equivalent of "rejection" in the triple formula of the yoga)... by Debashish on Fri 05 Dec 2008 01:22 PM PST Profile Permanent Link its dynamic rejection of all and every stereotype and sastric injunction (sarva dharman parityajya) and its surrender to the Nameless Unborn Impossible of infinite distance who is yet very near and intimate to us as our very Self. by Debashish on Sun 07 Dec 2008 04:07 PM PST Profile Permanent Link]

It is heartening to note Debashish Banerji put on his thinking cap again by shedding the horns that he had developed during the last couple of months. But it is puzzling to see his eagerness to eradicate “the disease of the religion of Aurobindonianity” although The Mother and Sri Aurobindo never visualized such a scenario in the short run. Defending denial and doubt is as paramount as their other extreme in the dialectic. [TNM]

Friday, December 05, 2008

Complex and chaotic

[His voluminous, complex, and sometimes chaotic literary output includes philosophical pondering, poetry, plays, and other works. Among his works are The Life Divine (1940), The Human Cycle (1949), The Ideal of Human Unity (1949), On the Veda (1956), Collected Poems and Plays (1942), Essays on the Gita (1928), The Synthesis of Yoga (1948), and Savitri: A Legend and a Symbol (1950). Sri Aurobindo -- Britannica Online Encyclopedia]

Thank heavens for the chaos. [TNM]

How a more enticing style can be devised

Re: The Avataric Work: Towards the Intermediate Race
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Fri 05 Dec 2008 12:09 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

This brilliant summing up, as against the instances of skeptical west referred to, is an indisputable agenda. But the question is whether any trace of this imperative enters into the list of priorities of say, the crowd that gathered on Wednesday in Mumbai. If not, then we should consider it as a communication failure on our part may be owing to certain discursive lacunae. Whether this can be remedied, and how a more enticing style can be devised are issues that need serious engagement. [TNM] Reply

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Mother’s dream of Auroville was a city complete with even an airport

Re: The Possibilities of Man
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Thu 04 Dec 2008 07:57 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

The Mother’s dream of Auroville was a city complete with even an airport. Carping against Capitalism is a questionable pastime and should never be uncritically assumed to be in consonance with Sri Aurobindo’s thinking. [TNM] Reply

Precaution against the misuse of the word “spiritual”

Re: Physical Transformation—the Early Beginnings
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Thu 04 Dec 2008 02:27 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

As a precaution against the misuse of the word “spiritual” perhaps it would be better to say “discursive insights concerning matters spiritual” instead of “spiritual insights” here. I recall having objected once in a letter to Jayantilal Parekh to an analogous incongruity in the title “Essays Divine and Human.” [TNM] Reply

Re: Physical Transformation—the Early Beginnings
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Fri 05 Dec 2008 08:55 AM IST Profile Permanent Link

I meant, how can the Essays themselves be Divine, when they simply pertain to discussions on the Divine? [TNM] Reply

It’s basically a cobbler’s job and no rocket science

Despite admirable candidness, David Hutchinson fails to articulate the ills with any clarity, partially because of his reluctance to diagnose honestly. He prefers to rely upon borrowed notions, clichéd binaries, and truncated givens. The fact is that there are

  1. certain institutions,
  2. certain individuals; and
  3. certain books

While individuals relish their freedom and autonomy, institutions fail to function in accord to their legal mandate at times and need mending. It’s basically a cobbler’s job and no rocket science. [TNM]

Brace up for reforms now and avoid false arguments

[Again you are dwelling on the superficial aspects of the Ashram. The Ashram has unfathomable depths and if one tries to scale even a bit of it, one would leave such persons alone. They are the losers are they not - those who try and seek Power or Money from the Ashram when they could get a lot more. As a westerner you respect freedom of the individual - so let people alone. And do not judge anything without having been there, without having been in the field braving it. The Ashram is full of different types of forces and it can be very challenging to survive there and emerge intact. Believe me, I have braved it for several years now. Only a direct and respectful relationship with the Ashram will allow the true spiritual potentials to emerge. Above all, one can find things to critize if one is not above the very thing that one seeks to criticize. If one realizes this one would look for the transcendent outside oneself in the Ashram and suddenly discover it within oneself too. It is this I wish for every single person who knows about the Ashram. Treat the Ashram and the Ashramites as things different in themselves and you will emerge wiser.
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "I have realized how difficult it is to be an Ashra...": Savitri Era Open Forum at 9:25 AM, December 04, 2008]

[The irony in the jihadi recoil in the Ashram is that in this case they are not confronted by any force sympathetic to McWorld. Even the critiques posted on that utmost fringe of the IY community (aka SCIY) on multi-national globalization, false consciousness, consumerism, cultural imperialism etc are savage regards these vulgar forms of economic barbarism. Unfortunately, the fundamentalist perspective has problems seeing anything other than black and white. How these folks claim any allegiance to an organizing principle or practice that defines itself as "integral" is a intellectual contortion that goes way beyond my capacity of comprehension. Re: Re: Jihad vs. McWorld by Benjamin R. Barber Rich]

[Then there is the inability of most people (educated or not, east or west) to recognize rhetorical devices, false argument, circular chains of thought, appeals to emotion couched in the voice of reason. It takes real intelligence and work to see a manipulative argument. Re: reconciliation, expectation, outcome David Hutchinson]

Whether the "let people alone" formula has served us well is apparent now. Brace up for reforms now and avoid "false arguments." [TNM]

Let's agree to follow Sri Aurobindo

[ ..., a neutral platform for change, are holding a "Billion hands" concert 0n Dec 5th in Mumbai. from Network18 date 3 Dec 2008 22:26 subject A Billion Hands]

[Jethro Tull-Anoushka Shankar A Billion Hands Concert
On 5th Dec 2008 From 7 30 PM onwards.. At Shanmukananda Hall, Kings\' Circle In an age of continuous terror threat, we stand united, both in condemning this mindless violence and in demonstrating the faith and dignity of humanity by ...
Events from]

May their "debate" understand the significance of the great day and agree to follow Sri Aurobindo. [TNM]

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Fourfold soul-forces, four stages of life

Re: The Spiritual Aim in Society
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Tue 02 Dec 2008 06:55 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

Although "the fourfold soul-forces, the four universal swabhāvas" have been considerably explicated, their linkage, if any, to the four stages of life have not been dealt with adequately. Spirituality, obviously, is not the preserve of any particular age, and hence, how do persons of different ages apprehend it needs amplification. [TNM] Reply

Heehs as Žižek

[I attempted to argue that where Badiou’s political strategy consists in the affirmation of an undemonstrable event and the truth-procedures that follow from that declaration, Žižek’s political strategy consists in trying to force the event, to produce the event, or in opening a void space within the hegemony of the ideological structure where new alternatives become available... One of Žižek’s points is that liberal democracy is every bit as obscene and brutal as these other political systems so often denounced within western democracies as being “the worst”. The problem is that Žižek doesn’t do the necessary legwork in order to demonstrate this. Yes he shows the ideological mechanisms creating the straight-jacket of capitalism and liberal democracy as the only alternative, but he doesn’t do a very good job demonstrating just what is so obscene about liberal democracy and capitalism. To see this you need to read someone like Naomi Klein or other empirically oriented writers who document the actual effects of this system. It is disappointing that many of the theorists working in the post-Althusserian tradition of structuralist Marxism (and ultimately in the Gramscian tradition of Marxist thought where everything eventually came to be reduced to the cultural or semiotic register) look down on this sort of hard empirical and historical work practiced by people like David Harvey or Naomi Klein.
I do not think, however, that Žižek genuinely advocates the violence he often glorifies, or the totalitarianism he so often celebrates. What I think he’s doing is trying to make alternative possibilities available within political discourse.
More Reflections on Žižek and The New Republic Article
from Larval Subjects by larvalsubjects]

[People take the received version of their heroes’ lives very seriously. A statement about a politician or poet that rubs people the wrong way will be turned into a political or legal issue, or possibly cause a riot. The problem is not whether the disputed statement is true, but whether anyone has the right to question an account that flatters a group identity. -- from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs]

History might see Heehs as Žižek "trying to force the event" and "make alternative possibilities available." [TNM]


[Re: reconciliation, expectation, outcome
by Debashish on Mon 01 Dec 2008 04:08 PM PST
Profile Permanent Link
The question we are debating is who gets to authorize what constitutes this force-field, once the founders of the organization have left the body?]

[by koantum on Mon 01 Dec 2008 06:55 PM PST Profile Permanent Link
I just want to add something to Debashish's comment: Who the heck knows anything about this "Force-field"?]

Who? Democracy. [TNM]

Every impediment is an incentive and every obstacle a challenge in disguise

[39.) More on the Critical Text of the Mahabharata
from Indological Provocations by arvindsharma
When nowadays people cite from the Mahābhārata they routinely cite from the critical text. I would like to challenge this habit now, not in an obscurantist but rather a stimulating way. After all, every impediment is an incentive and every obstacle a challenge in disguise.
We are all familiar with the so-called critical text, otherwise onomastically called the Poona text of the Mahābhārata... There is the further tradition that the size of the epic grew with each recitation, in its threefold recitation as Jaya (8,800 verses); Bhārata (24,000 verses) and Mahābhārata (100,000 verses).
2 ...This brings me to the third point – not only is the text of the Mahābhārata multiple, not only is it dynamic, it is also oral.]

Sri Aurobindo himself has left his opinion on the matter. But a new Mahabharata has erupted, and hence, the more interesting aspect is how to deal with the conflicting views with regard to the revision of Savitri. [TNM]

Monday, December 01, 2008

Jhumri Tilaiya, Hakimpara, and the simple peasant

[A few years ago upon my visit to Puducherry, I realized the truth that the simple peasant there is closer to God than you and I. It was truly a humbling experience. No care for personal comfort and leading simple lives. Re: Taking Stock Dave Mon 27 Oct 2008 11:23 PM PDT 6:08 PM]

[Here are extracts from a letter to the editor of Sri Aurobindo's Action, Pondicherry, written at the beginning of October by a devotee in Hakimpara, West Bengal. Without the benefit of advanced education, the writer accurately assessed the situation by virtue of simple sincerity... Re: Competing Visions of History in Internal Islamic Discourse and Islamic-Western Dialogue - ABDULLAHI A. AN-NA'IM
by Angiras on Sun 16 Nov 2008 11:48 PM PST
Profile Permanent Link] 2:31 PM

"A devotee" "of simple sincerity" or "the simple peasant" is as illusive as R. K. Laxman's The Common Man or a telescopic view of Jhumri Tilaiya. [TNM]

There is no methodology by which he can reach it in a step by step manner

[Re: The Path by Sri Aurobindo by RY Deshpande on Fri 28 Nov 2008 06:55 AM IST Profile Permanent Link
"Man cannot by his own effort make himself more than man; the mental being cannot by his own unaided force change himself into a supramental spirit. A descent of the Divine Nature can alone divinise the human receptacle."
Human potential can grow and flourish in the human domain. But if transcendence of the human is dsired, something else has to happen, something more than even the spiritual. The approaches are different. RYD
Re: The Path by Sri Aurobindo by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Sat 29 Nov 2008 06:30 PM IST Profile Permanent Link
This cryptic "something more" begs elaboration. [TNM] Reply
Re: The Path by Sri Aurobindo by RY Deshpande on Sun 30 Nov 2008 10:39 AM IST Profile Permanent Link
It does. But I’ll be brief. The process is of course subtle for the gross sense faculties to cognize its movement, yet silently moving forward even without our being quite aware of it. If we divide the human reserve into four general categories, four qualities of man, the fourfold soul-forces, the four universal swabhāvas of the ancient description, then in different proportions all our potentials and all our possibilities get governed by them. In fact we are made of them with varying measures in us. Thus a man of learning and knowledge can go the extent of “pure” reason, but to go beyond it, into the suprarational, is not known to him—unless there’s something that can open in him. A certain poise can surely prepare him to receive it, for instance intuition, but there is no methodology by which he can reach it in a step by step manner. So too the inspiration of an artist, or the scientist’s understanding of nature. All is “screened, subliminal, mystical” to him and what is needed is an intuitive heart, or the state of a quiet receptive mind. Once in a while “inspiration with her lightning feet, a sudden messenger from the all-seeing tops” has to traverse the corridors of his mind—if we are to use the description of Savitri. Same applies to other types, to man of skill, man of heroic action, man of commerce and give and take, in a deeper sense the representative of universal Harmony. RYD Reply]

Re: The Path by Sri Aurobindo by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Mon 01 Dec 2008 07:01 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

The elaboration rather complicates instead of elucidating. Should one be directed to “Passing through the Portals of the Birth that is a Death” posted on Sun 30 Nov 2008? [TNM] Reply


[There is a name for the politics that glorifies risk, decision, and will; that yearns for the hero, the master, and the leader; that prefers death and the infinite to democracy and the pragmatic; that finds the only true freedom in the terror of violence. Its name is not communism. Its name is fascism, and in his most recent work Zizek has inarguably revealed himself as some sort of fascist. He admits as much in Violence, where he quotes the German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk on the "re-emerging Left-Fascist whispering at the borders of academia"--"where, I guess, I belong." There is no need to guess.
Zizek endorses one after another of the practices and the values of fascism, but he obstinately denies the label. Is "mass choreography displaying disciplined movements of thousands of bodies," of the kind Leni Riefenstahl loved to photograph, fascist? No, Zizek insists, "it was Nazism that stole" such displays "from the workers' movement, their original creator." (He is willfully blind to the old and obvious conclusion that totalitarian form accepts content from the left and the right.) -- by Adam Kirsch
The Deadly Jester The New Republic, Post Date Wednesday, December 03, 2008 The Deadly Jester from Continental Philosophy by Farhang Erfani]

Its name is also fasciysm. [TNM]

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Something more than even the spiritual

A comment has been posted in reference to an article titled: The Path by Sri Aurobindo
Comment posted by: Tusar N. Mohapatra [1:27 PM]

This cryptic "something more" begs elaboration. [TNM]

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The way Sapta Chatushthaya is forced upon the readers of The Synthesis of Yoga is disconcerting

Re: An Entry from Record of Yoga by RY Deshpande
by Tusar N. Mohapatra on Sat 29 Nov 2008 01:18 PM IST Profile Permanent Link

Many thanks for the clarifications reiterating The Yoga and its Objects and Sapta Chatushthaya as belonging to an early stage. The way Sapta Chatushthaya is forced upon the readers of The Synthesis of Yoga (in its Note on the Text) is disconcerting. [TNM] Reply

Friday, November 28, 2008

Hubris and hegemony

[Thursday, September 07, 2006 Savitri Era is unputdownable
Sri Aurobindo, wrote Prof.
Sisir Kumar Maitra in 1942, has accomplished the “transfer of the leadership in philosophy from the West to India.” But what we witness today in 2006 is something entirely different. Why? The whole scenario is not devoid of politics and what is at issue is not philosophy but hegemony... Sri Aurobindo gave the most full-proof philosophy in the entire human history, but the Westerners are unwilling to accept him at the top... Why? Because Sri Aurobindo is an Indian and American hubris can’t digest this... Why? For Sri Aurobindo, as Dr Maitra decreed, stands tall on merit. Every intellectual, every journal and every University will have to swallow this cruel pill. No amount of racial or colonial resistance can suppress the supremacy of Sri Aurobindo’s philosophy. The whole world, whether today or tomorrow, must turn to it where all the whys are answered. (TNM696MMYP) Posted by Tusar N Mohapatra at 11:21 AM]

All kinds of verbal terrorism are being unleashed in an vain attempt to appropriate the legacy of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo. American hubris is at its nefarious best right now and needs to be fought against. [TNM]

Thursday, November 27, 2008

V. P. Singh, the visionary passes away

V. P. Singh, the visionary passes away. Savitri Era Party dips its banner in his honour. [TNM]

Spear boomerangs

[The irreverent tenor of the terse sentences Heehs crafts in his books in order to secure his credentials as an unbiased scholar feels like to pierce as if with a spear. Posted by Tusar N Mohapatra 11:55 AM Thursday, December 21, 2006 10:08 AM 1:39 PM]

[The tone of a small number of critical comments is disparaging and may be interpreted by some readers to be disrespectful. -- An examination of the criticism against The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Larry Seidlitz on Wed 26 Nov 2008 12:02 AM PST Science, Culture and Integral Yoga Permanent Link]

[When I first bought this biography (and when I read some of Peter's other books) I did wonder how an Ashramite could take such a skeptical tone. It really did seem a bit odd to me. by ned on Wed 26 Nov 2008 09:46 PM PST Re: Orissa court stays release of book on Sri Aurobindo (the next Satanic Verses -thaindian news) Permanent Link]

The spear boomerangs. [TNM]

Us "religion"; they "political"

[ Re: Explanation of my Stand wrt The Lives of Sri Aurobindo
by David Hutchinson
on Wed 26 Nov 2008 03:06 PM PST
Profile Permanent Link Another aspect to freedom of expression and writing is that religion (which we seem to be involved with here)... But the problem in this situation is that, again, a small group has set themselves up as judges for what needs to be changed, and have engaged in essentially political activities (not spiritual ones). by David Hutchinson on Wed 26 Nov 2008 06:24 AM PST Permanent Link]

Us "religion"; they "political"! [TNM]

If our aim is to reach "countless people"

[Heehs's book is bringing new awareness of Sri Aurobindo to countless people worldwide. -- Setting the Record Straight: An Open Letter from Michael Murphy
26 Nov 2008 03:18 PM PST
Science, Culture and Integral Yoga Permanent Link]

What are the sales figures? If our aim is to reach "countless people" then why not adopt more efficient methods of persuasion? [TNM]

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Democracy, evolution, and progress

[the "democratic" fetish is merely the zealous servant of the banks. Its real name, its technical name, as I have argued for some time, is capitalist-parliamentarianism...But we will resuscitate communism, in its new-found clarity. Badiou on the financial crisis Le Monde. posted by it 3:50 PM]

[David Harvey (whose book on The History of Neoliberalism I actually liked in some ways) asks Naomi “Why aren’t people more angry?” Angry about the bailout, the cronyism, and all the rest?... But in traditional leftist economic thought it’s still really all about managing people from a top-down engineering model. I can’t help but feel the Harveys and Kleins of the world secretly (or maybe not so secretely) are in some perverse way really drawn to people like Greenspan because that is what they wish they could be doing–controlling the great events from the top-down. Bailout Meets Marx
from Indistinct Union by cjsmith]

[What is the American mind, anyway? Tocqueville described Americans as natural Cartesians, even though most have never read Descartes. To consider a contrast, French thought falls under two types — the Cartesian, and the Pascalian. One stands for reason, the other for revelation; one for science, the other for piety; one for clarity, the other for passion. While Europeans have sentiments informed by literary traditions, the American is a man of rational principles. As a result, anybody can be an American; in principle there are no natural outsiders. Our story has been one unbroken, ineluctable progress toward freedom and equality. The Closing of the American Mind
from Thoughts, Books, and Philosophy by jhbowden]

[Sri Aurobindo's yoga is unique in that it integrates certain aspects of the phenomena of the Enlightenment, with its ideals of democracy, evolution, and progress that are Western in origin. Re: The Lives of Sri Aurobindo: the aggrieved victim Rich]

After a long time this rounded post by Richard Carlson, not uncontaminated though; but he is capable of producing far superior propositions, his skewed political stance notwithstanding. The genealogy he carelessly asserts here is factually inaccurate and Sri Aurobindo himself has dwelt upon at length on these specific points. [TNM]