Friday, August 13, 2010

False impression of a balanced view

["Sri Aurobindo on Hinduism" by Peter Heehs -- reviewed by Raman Reddy
The following paragraph is from a booklet by Peter Heehs entitled 
Sri Aurobindo on Hinduism and published by the Sri Aurobindo Society,
Hyderabad centre in 2007. I have quoted it here in order to point out another classic distortion in the typically confusing and deceptive style of the author. Even the well-informed reader of Sri Aurobindo will be at first fooled by the basic correctness of the data presented by Heehs, without realising that the interpretation is faulty, to say the least. Even the interpretation and conclusion appear to be so equivocal that the reader would sometimes not realise that he has actually skimmed over deep contradictions which bear the false impression of a balanced view.] 

Raman Reddy is an ashramite working in the archives for the last many years. As a sadhak and a scholar, it is expected that his articles conform to the academic norms of politeness. The opening paragraph, conversely, appears to be combative in this instance. It is, in fact, a question of substituting a few phrases here and there. Let me attempt a cosmetic makeover so that the reader is not put off by the menacing horns. [TNM]

On reading the booklet entitled Sri Aurobindo on Hinduism by Peter Heehs (published by the Sri Aurobindo Society, Hyderabad centre in 2007), I came across certain distortions. It seemed to me that the author has deliberately adopted a deceptive and confusing style such that even a well-informed reader of Sri Aurobindo will be easily taken in by the flow of arguments. Even the interpretation and conclusion appear to be so equivocal that the reader would sometimes not realise that he has actually skimmed over deep contradictions which bear the false impression of a balanced view. I have quoted the following paragraph in order to examine the discrepancies.

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