Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Sri Aurobindo's Yoga and the elderly

From error to terror, human life and society is prone to countless imperfections managing which has been the story of civilisation. Further, how we are wired and how much we draw from habits is a complex mix determining behavior. Yoga introduces the chaos factor; nothing remains the same as in the past, the future becomes unpredictable. By consenting to the intervention of certain cosmic forces, one submits before their plan and action. But there are risks too and hence the necessity of vigilance.

Since science and culture alter their paradigms almost on a continuous basis, it's not easy for an individual to cope up with. Advanced age spurs survival instinct and forces to compromise with values; dependence on others leads to dilution of principles. The function of Yoga here is all the more important for providing firm ideological pillars. A keen follower can surely receive right guidance during lean periods.

Youth is celebrated in Sri Aurobindo's Yoga and the elderly in the Ashram undergo regular physical culture. But exercising apex executive functions by them may not be a corollary as the sordid state of affairs in the Ashram at present prove. On the other hand, projecting a rosy picture of Yoga is also deceptive. Be like a flower is surely what The Mother counsels but camouflaging the rough edges of old age by flowery language is akin to resorting to a defence mechanism. [TNM55]

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