Monday, August 09, 2010
Lead or be led
We, the writers on this site, are concerned about recent actions by a vocal minority among the followers or devotees of Sri Aurobindo, and reactions by impressionable masses inside and outside the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. There are signs of attempts to turn the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother into a religion with some of the characteristics of fundamentalism. …
As the years passed, various forms of outward worship developed in the Ashram, and it became generally understood that an overt devotional attitude differing little from conventional religion was the one right way of approaching Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. For a while, this attitude remained a matter of personal choice; but in recent years it has become more and more obligatory. Anyone who did not follow the dictates of the crowd in what they said and did risked general condemnation.
There is nothing in Sri Aurobindo’s writings to justify such an attitude. He always insisted that yoga had to be based on individual effort, not surrender to the dictates of the crowd. …
Recently the conflict between individual freedom and the resistance of the mass mind has risen to an unprecedented level in connection with the book The Lives of Sri Aurobindo, by Peter Heehs, an American member of the ashram.]
The challenge for the vocal minority now is to be a crowd-puller and mould the mass mind. [TNM]