Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Sri Aurobindo's Integral freedom

It was also not just any Hegel that influenced Deleuze and his compatriots, nor truly Kojève (aside from Bataille, Sartre, and the early Lacan), rather, it was Hyppolite’s. And Hyppolite’s Hegel is an extreme, a distortion of Hegel that is as much Hyppolite as Hegel, in the manner in which Deleuze’s Spinoza or Nietzsche or Bergson is as much him as them. …
It seems to me that the reason to resurrect Hegel is, as Marx so clearly saw in his day, that Hegel allows one to radically warp one’s relation to one’s time, once one pushes the teleological, totalizing side away, and get in touch with the side described by Zizek and Nancy, the Hegel of radical freedom, finitude, contingency, and freedom.]

Sri Aurobindo beats other philosophers simply because of his vast poetic output. Despite accommodating a multitude of moods and voices, the overall teleological arrow permeating all his writings invariably points towards God, light, freedom, and immortality. Like Hegel, he too borrows much from the tradition and willingly walks pretty far along with him to, of course, diverge finally. The evolutionary nisus, for Sri Aurobindo, operating integrally from various domains of one’s consciousness in tandem with the descending inducement is a much more potent mechanism than the mere rational means. An excursion to Hegel hence, though desirable, can’t be the final fount of emancipating secrets. [TNM55]      

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