Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Defending Sri

[Millenarian Elements in the Hindu Religious Traditions Hugh B. Urban The Oxford Handbook of Millennialism In the course of suppressive colonial rule, militant nationalism emerged in messianic attire. Spiritual nationalist Sri Aurobindo described it as a religion directly presented by God. The new age came up with lifestyle gurus such as Osho Rajneesh, who asserted a symbolic end of time by surrendering typical lifestyle practices. The Oxford Handbook of Millennialism - Page 375 - Google Books Result - Catherine Wessinger - 2011 - Although Aurobindo Ghose is today best known as a spiritual teacher and philosopher, he was also, in his youth, one of the primary leaders of the revolutionary ...]

Sri Aurobindo’s name underwent many metamorphoses during his lifetime. From stark anonymity to a slew of pseudonyms and acronyms, his experimentation ended with his signing as Sri Aurobindo sans any surname or caste identity. His works, understandably, have been published under that name and, ordinarily, he is referred to as so. But there are certain types of people who are intolerant of his adding Sri to his name and are always eager to geld it. The Sri to them is a canopy of fundamentalism that smacks of unjustified superiority, thus threatening secular sensibilities.

The fact is that no one can help in this matter as Sri Aurobindo is no more and can’t be questioned as to why he wanted to retain his name this way. So, the minimum one can do is not to distort his name by eclipsing Sri. In book indexes too he should appear under the alphabet S and not A or G as Sri is not an honorific here but an integral part of his name. Sri Aurobindo is yet to receive the prestige he deserves as a poet and a thinker and hence the need to resist the snatching away of his Sri. [TNM55]  

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