Thursday, July 05, 2018

Ashis Nandy has done immense damage to Sri Aurobindo

Tweets by @SavitriEraParty

You are right but there is a mystery behind it relating to Sri Aurobindo since August 15 is his birthday. His unseen influences are many like Hitler's downfall but they are not recorded in history books. Hitler had boasted that he will take tea in Buckingham Palace on August 15.

Contesting narratives backed by political and religious formations are seeking attention space. Immature minds are getting sucked into them easily as formidable tech power and glamour are pressed into service. Sri Aurobindo, fortunately, has left behind an alternative manifesto.

It's normal to perceive spirituality as mystic, occult, or esoteric and descriptions of successive layers of a person's consciousness spelled out by The Mother & Sri Aurobindo confirm it. The challenge however is to focus on some practical goal reflecting howsoever little of it.

That one's religion is superior and can offer smooth salvation is a superstition. A belief system is irrational by definition and hence should be seen as a prison. Science has not been able to define man or the world and the idea of God is still a supposition. So humility is must

Again you have put some conditions. Each citizen has every right to change his religion (individually or in mass) as many times as he likes or finds advantageous to reap benefits (in this life or in the afterlife) that is available instantly or likely to be available as promised.

You have set so many conditions that my original intention has turned too constricted. You may reconsider: Why people are so touchy about religion? Who gives right to someone to bother about how many times a fellow citizen converts and how does it matter? This domination must end

One can take admission in a school or college of one's choice; eat in a favourite restaurant. One has the liberty of marrying the person s/he selects but why won't religious conversion permitted in this country is a conundrum. Those who feel threatened by it shouldn't set agenda.

Modern India is beholden to a host of Westerners who have discovered countless facets of its history and literature. Their religious or political predilections might have been responsible for some slant or distortion, still they deserve respect and engagement. Krishnaprem is one.

India is so vast and varied that discourse on multiple levels go on but freedom and courage is missing for full-throated airing of opinions. Restraint imposed by tradition and culture thwarts individualism and people plough safe. Ontological uncertainty also subverts confidence.

In his enthusiasm as a scholar, Ashis Nandy has done immense damage to Sri Aurobindo. A whole generation got prejudiced; ignored Sri Aurobindo. Nandy has never shown that he has actually read some important works of #SriAurobindo but he can make some amends for the injustice done

In the last two years of his life, Sri Aurobindo wrote eight essays which are extremely significant. Dilipkumar Roy argued over Perfection of the Body. [From the Bulletin of Physical Education (1949-1950): The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth: Message]

There should to be some distinction between your own ideas and those of past authors. So mentioning their names will help in easy grasping of concepts. Further, Sri Aurobindo has written extensively on these topics which may be referred to or contrasted with wherever necessary.

Proposal to close the University Grants Commission (UGC) can be termed as a major reform venture. Fixed and outdated syllabi has become the bane of knowledge acquiring process and the free progress system recommended by The Mother & Sri Aurobindo should be applied to all stages.

The questions and answers seem to have been written by the same person. A genuine interview is perhaps an oxymoron now!

Only a hundred handles or so speak about Hindu interests stridently whereas those fanaticism is not apparent in people's daily life. Writers are making a career but such abstraction of the word Hindu is turning it lifeless which ultimately will be abandoned by everyone like Modi.

Modi has ruled the country for a period exceeding six previous non-Congress Prime Ministers (except Vajpayee). Accepting him as he is is in order because experts on event management and image management are behind him. Those opposed to him are no better: fake news, paid news, etc

Puru in Girish Karnard's Yayati denies having superhuman capabilities of his forefathers. Modi similarly steers clear of the imaginary glory of Hindutva and this ideological shift is no less significant than Deendayal, Nehru, or Roy. @Janamejayan may examine in his Dharma thread.

Humanities has evolved over three millennia and tech progress is an integral part of that. Sri Aurobindo foregrounds technology of consciousness which is gradually invading all branches and sub-branches of science and technology including AI. Bruno Marchal says same on Mechanism.

Sri Aurobindo hints at sounds being at the core of creative process and Saussure applied this principle of Sanskrit words leading to the whole philosophy of Structuralism. The Mother too highlighted the transformative potential of Japa on body cells. Mantra thus has its utility.

After earning MA degree, writing BA as qualification is no longer necessary. Encountering The Mother & Sri Aurobindo similarly turns all old texts, philosophies, and theologies redundant save strict academic purpose. Eulogising great men/women therefore should be done critically.

Lal-Bal-Pal had close links with Sri Aurobindo but they are poles apart; his praise for Bankim or Vivekananda similarly is not without criticism. Thus, the key principle is Evolution and even Tulsi, Kabir, or Nanak fall short on this count. Indians must stop looking back at past.

What Sri Aurobindo did or said responding to the necessities and challenges of his own time can't be applied to current political perceptions in toto. Rather, his prognostications should form the basis to go back to the drawing board for reinventing Nation vis-à-vis #WorldUnion.

[Many of his articles (1910) contain allusions to Ireland and its freedom struggle in different contexts. However several years later, sometime between 1943 and 1946, at his ashram in Pondicherry Aurobindo took recourse to an entirely different position.]

When we invoke the Veda in the context of Sri Aurobindo, it doesn't simply refer to the Samhitas or whole of the hymns. That would be literalism and ritualism. Knowing simple connotations of words like Bhaga or Varuna alters one's worldview and unveils its Evolutionary dimension.

Reading all of Sri Aurobindo's works is a challenge and one must aim at that. The Secret of the Veda is fundamental to understanding Sri Aurobindo and I don't think you have read it or appreciate its import fully. That alters the whole picture and later texts pale in significance

First lesson is to read about Varuna and find correspondences with Maheshwari in "The Mother" book. Thanks to Sri Aurobindo, one can read the Veda in English without any reliance on the Sanskrit texts. His translations and explanations are equally Mantric.

It boils down to removing all other pictures from your profile header except Sri Aurobindo's but I know you can't; that would be too painful and senseless for you. However, I'm lucky not to harbour allegiance to multiple people and that's what I tweet variously from time to time.

Primacy of languages should be recognised and States of India must get Sovereignty by abolishing the Central Govt. #SriAurobindo spoke of #WorldUnion and a Confederation of South Asian States will be catalyst. Modi can be an instrument of Evolutionary forces to turn a Gorbachev.
It's for the local people to defend themselves by forging suitable alliances. Such bulwark will grow organically. Besides, there is no need to paint a dismal image of China; it's also bound by many international restrictions and commitments. Sri Aurobindo has foreseen Federation.
I confess that my articulations are more philosophical than conforming to geopolitical apprehensions. But I stick to it based on my intense attraction for Odia and Sri Aurobindo's forecasts. Creation of Bangladesh and disintegration of USSR remain examples of China's irrelevance.

UPA govt was under the grip of foreign powers and Modi govt is yet to give clear signals of having a mind of its own or moving with its own strength. Yet, it needs a second term to stand on its own feet and also rid the party of the pernicious legacies of Savarkar and Golwalkar.

Lending support to Modi govt is the best possible course right now in order to oppose Congress as well as RSS. Hindutva commands a poor share of electoral dividends and hence is bound to be jettisoned. Nehruvian consensus similarly needs to be replaced by #SriAurobindo's "Dreams"

Modi govt must be distinguished from BJP, RSS, or even Modi himself. Apart from overseas lobbies, domestic top industrialists are part of decision making. So it pursues status quo with a few surprises. But overall full marks for Democratic environment and freedom for all sections.

People and not territory should be the focus in the modern world. They must decide under which govt they want to live; imposing grand narratives is counterproductive. What's the use of a large nation if people feel alienated or unhappy; perpetually harbour an inferiority complex?

Thanks for categorically spelling out crucial differences between Golwalkar and Upadhyaya. I haven't read the latter in original but have heard that his formulations are indebted to Sri Aurobindo to some extent. Hope you deal with this aspect in course of the thread. #SriAurobindo

Scholars like @RajivMessage follow the Dharmic Abrahamic contrast but it leaves out the long and rich tradition of Western philosophy and the great rishis it has produced. Heraclitus, Schelling, Bergson, Whitehead, Deleuze, et al need to be read to fully appreciate #SriAurobindo.

Religion tends to be mechanical and materialistic and hence The Mother & Sri Aurobindo added the Vedic emphasis of transformation by way of adventure of consciousness leading to Immortality. Young Indians must internalise this aim irrespective of present aptitude or enthusiasm.

Many valuable information are shared but it's difficult to retrieve them later. There is a need for a site to provide links to books and articles that demolish such fake stories and false claims. For instance, @pranasutra has posted a list of useful books

Admission to Ashram was on selective basis and some were directed to other gurus. Btw, my paper deals with individual destiny/choice. #SriAurobindo

Sri Aurobindo synthesizing Hegel, Nietzsche, Bergson, James, etc with a Judeo-Vedic Evolutionary paradigm should be considered pioneering. Of course, one has to step outside University offerings to discover such gems. Besides philosophy, his "Savitri" is a marvel. #SriAurobindo

Hitler and His God: The Background to the Nazi Phenomenon by Georges van Vrekhem is essential reading in this context which documents how intensely #SriAurobindo was involved in the whole exercise from the "tranquility" of his Ashram in Puducherry.

Critical Posthumanism and Planetary Futures (Editors: Banerji, Debashish, Paranjape, Makarand R.) incorporating insights from Sri Aurobindo can be illuminating in this context. A number of Banerji's YouTube videos are also available. #SriAurobindo

[As described by Sri Aurobindo, the ultimate aim of existence is the Divinization of Matter. This is already referred to (as "the light of Adam Kadmon") in Lurianic Kabbalah (as Tikkun Olam) and by the Tamil Siddha Swami Ramalingam.] #SriAurobindo

At the core of Sri Aurobindo's teaching is his line that Matter shall reveal the Spirit's face. So physical manifestation is the goal and intensity of aspiration on our part is the route. Hence no laxity in fighting obstacles; no indolent waiting. Arya literally means a fighter.

I think, you missed my point. In our path, both Krishna and Sri Aurobindo matter less. It's The Mother who reigns. This integration of Tantra and Vedanta is said to be the greatest contribution of Sri Aurobindo in the history of Indian wisdom. Suits prevailing gender sensitivity!

Spiral Evolution also means that progress is not continuous as civilisational downturns recur as encapsulated in the Vedic allusion to cows (light) stolen and their subsequent release by Divine intervention (or later day Avatar conceptualised in the Puranas & Gita). #SriAurobindo

Bhakti is almost absent in major Upanishads and therefore Gita was an innovation. But its thrust on surrender is different from what #SriAurobindo recommends. The Mother aspect becomes most potent upon Vedantic substratum. I sympathise with your love for Krishna but it's obsolete

You know it but just for the sake of thread: All life is Yoga signifies harnessing one's current capabilities, weaknesses notwithstanding. Traditional yoga defers everything till one's Realisation but Integral Yoga relies upon ongoing evolution. There is nothing like undeserving.

Those who pretend that there is no difference between Sri Aurobindo and Vivekananda or they can be harmonised are deluding themselves and others. Looking at Sri Aurobindo through the Hindu lens similarly is height of distortion. Accepting uniqueness of #SriAurobindo needs courage
Thanks for agreeing and that's really bold and daring for a Bengali. The day people in Bengal come out of hero worshipping Tagore, Subhas, and Vivekananda and recognise the significance of Sri Aurobindo's "escape" to Puducherry, it will be a new revolution and Evolutionary leap.
Tagore modelling Sandip in Ghore Baire broadly on Sri Aurobindo is the reason why the prejudice continues with some help from Leftist writers. Further, Sri Aurobindo is hardly considered as a Bengali since he wrote in English. So it's a Himalayan range of resistance against him!

The academic approach is to collect all past resources and it's a colossal labour. Sri Aurobindo's works on the other hand forms an efficient filter as well as a fine source of distilled wisdom. Whether one believes in what he says is secondary; being aware of his views is a must

Every word of Gita is of Vedic origin, yet even learned persons continue to ignore the Veda which is relegated to chanting or rituals. Sri Aurobindo inaugurated a new lease of life for the Veda which is being stoutly opposed by agents of tradition. It's a political battle for us.

At every step, Sri Aurobindo comes up with a critique of tradition or popular opinion. Be it history, politics, religion, or the Veda. Leftists avoided him and Hindutva votaries do the same now. Thus, a genuine critical tradition of scholarship has failed to develop in India.

Sentiments vary. One's opinion as Hindu or Muslim may clash with the Nationalist point of view. And, both positions can be at odds with Democratic principles. So, deciding what one espouses is important. Yes, there is that fourth level, the Market; all the three can put a spanner

Recounting this episode is pregnant with possibilities of a genuine meeting of hearts of dominant political formations by abdicating shrill sectarianism, factionalism, and fanaticism. The example of JP forging such a grand alliance then should serve as a template for the future.

Reading #SriAurobindo provides a rich perspective on the secret of the Veda and how to avoid literal and superficial impressions on it. Indispensable for any scholar on Indian wisdom @thesecretofveda @supremefelicity @SavitriProject @sakshitrust @bennedose

Sri Aurobindo was not merely a revolutionary leader but an astute political theorist. So, politics of today can't ignore his prophesies. He didn't simply wrote commentary on the Gita and Upanishads etc; rather he has transformed the very tenor of religions and nature of practice.

One's choice or voice can't be questioned but hosts of handles are more interested in topics like Hindu, Muslim, Christian, and other sectarian concerns instead of focusing on problems faced by citizens. Even issues like Freedom or Democratic norms are viewed in a partisan manner

Adding year of publication and appending another list by putting the titles in a chronological order would be useful. The Intellectual Roots of India’s Freedom Struggle (1893-1918) by Prithwindra Mukherjee will surely enrich the list. Thanks. #SriAurobindo

[The Mother And The Revolutionary – The Story Of Sri Aurobindo And Integral Yoga @KPSinghtweets]

Excellent presentation. Facts mentioned regarding Anushilan so succinctly however need to be checked by readers for greater details, elsewhere.

A nation means its people and not merely the govt. Problems need to be discussed and solutions found in various forums. This part of citizens' responsibilities shouldn't be left to the media alone. Building a network of such civil society organisations is the need of the hour.

Civilisation is about education and evolution. There are clear signs that BJP & RSS are trying to modify themselves according to the Constitutional values and thus preparing for the long haul. Some have turned vocal against Modi govt but I have turned a supporter after four years

Rajatarangini by Kalhana is praised by @maidros78 as faithfully recorded history (though how that is claimed is not clear), Kierkegaard creating a maze of pseudonyms both as characters as well as authors in his own works forms a fascinating contrast. He wanted the reader to think.

Young educated Indians read some bestsellers but neglect old gems. Brecht and Beckett are clues to decipher Barthes and Ricœur. Understanding Merleau-Ponty and Baudrillard is esential for reliable perception of the modern world. Many decry the Humanities stream but that's extreme

[Khili Khili Nali (Odisha Smiles) - Odia Folk Number #WorldMusicDay Voice: Tusar Nath Mohapatra @NathTusar Visuals: Chilika lake, Puri, Konark, and Bhubaneswar]

Khili Khili Nali (Odisha Smiles) - YouTube
Apr 18, 2011 - Uploaded by Silika Mohapatra
Odia Folk Number Voice: Tusar N. Mohapatra Visuals: Chilika lake, Puri, Konark, Bhubaneswar.

The Mother & Sri Aurobindo gave us the Integral lens to overcome the tyranny of immediate binaries and espouse modern values that are universal. Marx, Darwin, Nietzsche, and Freud made Theory global but Sri Aurobindo imbued it with the much-needed Vedic Evolutionary inevitability.

Kashmir is not the only problem; whole of India is a bundle of problems as the British bungled in 1947. Sovereignty to the States where people decide their fate locally is the only solution. Each State having an External Affairs Ministry should be the first step in that direction

[The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo - Volume16 - Hymns to the Mystic Fire consists of nearly all the fire hymns or hymns to Agni from the Rig Veda translated into a deeply poetic English.] @saket71 #SriAurobindo

Several people express such apprehensions about China but I don't agree. They follow their own ethics and don't have colonial ambitions. Even their commerce shouldn't be seen as inimical. Development anywhere on the globe ultimately benefits everyone. So no reason to live in fear
Each country is free to do what China is doing. They have many advantages now but the biggest threat can come from welling up of regional self-determination. It will split sooner or later. If you read Sri Aurobindo's Human Cycle the logic will become clear. But I know you won't!
They have the money and invest. But will they takeover Govt of all big nations? That's improbable. Even overthrowing current Banking bosses is not that easy. Besides, Western block has many advantages which China can't dream of. Anyway, too much of pondering over macro pointless!

These are all conjectures and the Chinese have their own compulsions not to undertake any misadventure. Further, there are international checks. When we are discussing a solution to regional aspirations, it should be confronted head on without hijacking it over the Chinese threat

The missing link might be Odisha: 1. Pali or Palli is close to Odia 2. Buddha is believed to have been born in Odisha by many 3. Kharavela was a Jain emperor 4. A vibrant maritime trade with South East Asia. Many such facets need to be investigated for clarity on its centrality.

Mythology and legends twist one's sense of history and distort perception of the present. Movies and novels similarly warp social realities leading to a skewed understanding of their solutions. A lot of theory rely upon fiction; so inferences should be taken with a pinch of salt.

Many dedicated handles are tweeting on sculpture and museums. Some others focus on old texts. All these cater to intellectual and aesthetic needs but restricting Hindutva to past glory is hardly useful. How it can invigorate the present and galvanise the future should be the task.

I have already expressed the view that we must support any attempt by BJP and RSS to occupy the mainstream space by eschewing Hindutva fanaticism. Modi govt should get a second term to fulfil its promises as its record during the last four years has been reasonable. @shantprakash

Understanding human behaviour is not an easy task as functioning of the whole Universe is linked to it. The Life Divine by Sri Aurobindo delineates the details and by reading it alone one can appreciate the profundity of the task and how to be equal to accomplish it #SriAurobindo

Fighting for a religion or some ethnicity has its own validity but the demands of Democracy are much nobler. Some learned foreigners serve the Hindu cause by fanning hatred against a section of people. It's Democracy which allows them to do so but their action corrodes Democracy.

Recognising that scholarship is a difficult enterprise is important and retaining respect for writers crucial. Errors need to be rectified but attributing motives erects needless prejudices. Let each reader decide should be the dictum. @maidros78 & @sarkar_swati insist precision.

It's profitable to consult #SriAurobindo in these matters and examine his #ThirdDream. He is emphatic about the inevitability of Evolutionary trajectory culminating in a Vedic milieu. In the absence of any coherent theories either from Science or Philosophy he should make sense.

Experts are referred to when dealing with technical subjects. Qualified persons are respected for their specialisation. #SriAurobindo is an undisputed authority on the philosophy of Yoga who holds distinct opinion than modern psychology. Yet, he is ignored when Yoga is discussed.