Sunday, October 29, 2006

Become a channel for the sound that is Savitri

Collaboration - Journal of the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Summer 1995, Vol. 21, No. 1 ESSAY Savitri and the mystic hero's journey by Rod Hemsell This is the last article in a four-part series exploring the ramifications of Sri Aurobindo's epic Savitri as mantric poetry. Part 4. The Journey
Everything depends on the Word. For it is the word of creation, the very sound that brings to birth the worlds, the luminous goddess-form of the Supreme: Tat savitur varam rupam jyotih parasya dhimahiyannah satyena dipayet.
and it shall illumine us with the Truth. For as Sri Aurobindo affirms often enough in Savitri, "She is the golden bridge, the wonderful fire ... She is the Force, the inevitable Word."
It is arguable, perhaps--the seer having received this boon of drsti, sruti, smrti in a clairaudient trance, as the simultaneous inevitable revelation of the truth of his realization, thence to be delivered forth by him as mantric verse for the subsequent illumination of fit hearers--that this sacred word might best be read, and received, by the listening heart of a clairaudient silence. And for those gifted with clairaudience (as we know from Sri Aurobindo's diaries that he was) and disposed to receiving the supramental revelation, this might well be true. But Sri Aurobindo's theory of mantra, the text of Savitri itself, and our experience, seem to support rather emphatically the notion that it is the audible sound, with its dynamics of pitch, rhythm, image, and conceptual spiritual content that has a unique potential and power to effect in the fit outward hearer the experience of which it speaks, and of which it is the living symbol.2
It is to demonstrate the truth of this hypothesis, at least in part, that we have undertaken the Savitri/Agenda experiment--a series of immersion workshops in which we simply allow the Word to be heard and absorbed, in as clear and deep a manner as we can manage at the present time. And in the context and atmosphere thus created by Savitri, we turn to the Mother's Agenda with the aspiration to hear and know as profoundly and intimately as possible her experience of transformation. The effect of this attempt thus far has been overwhelmingly gratifying. And it has made dramatically clear the fact that the experience of transformation narrated by Sri Aurobindo in Savitri and by the Mother in her Agenda are one and the same. The two together create a resonance that seems to literally dissolve the membrane that separates our worlds and unite us with them in a remarkably vivid and tangible sense.
This of course will not seem too surprising to those who are familiar with their work. But what can be surprising is the degree to which one finds oneself brought face to face with their experience and into a deeply luminous identity with Sri Aurobindo, the Mother, and the work of transformation. And that of course is the point, whatever else may be said.
It is tempting, however, to take this a step further, or in fact several steps further--to grasp the extraordinary quality of the experience in its total reality, and somehow establish its importance on solid ground for ourselves and for any who might wish to pursue such a process, enter the worlds of Savitri and Satyavan with eyes open, and as the Upanishad says, "to truly find our foundation." And yet, perhaps it is only the experience itself that can achieve these goals, which certainly exceed anything that mind as we know it can analyze. Its validity is to be found only in the revelation itself, which proceeds from the Truth. And this finding is the process that Savitri narrates and establishes in us. She is the supramental force as She issues forth in goddess-form from the Divine Mother, as She descends into the consciousness and speech of the supramental Avatar, as She enwraps the subtle body of the Earth and takes physical birth in the body of the Mother, to reveal the soul and tapasya of the transformation of Death and the evolution of immortal life, and as She enters our space in the form of mantric vibration. One must simply become a channel for the sound that is Savitri and receive Her without reservation.
There are innumerable instances in Savitri that illustrate, comment upon, and reveal this truth. Perhaps a negative argument in support of this notion can be made at this point, bearing in mind that the written page is dumb, and the only real proof is in the hearing. To attempt an example, nonetheless, let us look at the first few lines of the canto titled "The Adoration of the Divine Mother."
A stillness absolute, incommunicable, Meets the sheer self-discovery of the soul; A wall of stillness shuts it from the world, A gulf of stillness swallows up the sense And makes unreal all that mind has known, All that the labouring senses still would weave Prolonging an imaged unreality.
I don't know how one can have the experience of the elongation of the "All" in the next to the last line, and then of the lengthening, depending, and slowing of sound that occurs with "still would weave" culminating in the extremely elongated and heavy "Prolonging," which qualifies in an indescribably accurate way the sense of the final term "unreality," without reading these lines aloud, instrumentally. The net result of reading instrumentally is to invite that stillness absolute into the spaces we are so accustomed to being filled with sensational unrealities. And that experience of stillness is a prerequisite of all that follows. It is not difficult to understand this conceptually; it is fundamental to most spiritual discipline. But Savitri has the power to actually bring about such an emptiness and stillness, instantaneously deeper than meditation usually can achieve even with considerable effort. And then we are prepared for the uplift that follows:
But where is the Lover's everlasting Yes, And immortality in the secret heart, The voice that chants to the creator Fire, The symbolled OM, the great assenting Word, The bridge between the rapture and the calm, The passion and the beauty of the Bride, The chamber where the glorious enemies kiss, The smile that saves, the golden peak of things?

The revelation is actual

Re: Re: Reflections on THE IDEAL OF HUMAN UNITY By Debashish Banerji
by Rod on Mon 23 Oct 2006 08:46 PM PDT Permanent Link
Now we can sit in the rooms of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, as I did just last week for over an hour, and be literally flooded with divine consciousness-force. The revelation of its actuality, and not just its theoretical possibility, enters forcefully into one’s consciousness and into one’s physical nature, and this “darshan” becomes a direct seeing and knowing of the reality of the supramental truth-consciousness and force, of its self-nature, and of the immortality of those who are able to so directly transmit it from where they stand, on the other side of this dream of life. That may be termed magical, as may the “belief” that this phenomenon will lead, as indeed they said it would, to a transformation of those in whom it descends, and that such a descent will in turn lead eventually to a transformation of the instruments and structures of our mental, vital, physical, social and cultural existence.
In those last prose writings of Sri Aurobindo, as in his last and more powerfully revelatory poetic writings, what we have are formulations in language of a consciousness, a seeing but also a living force of consciousness, that does not fit into our descriptive mental categories. And so it is no big surprise that one may be at a loss as to how these more-than-language/cultural formulations might fit into such a valid and important schemata of ignorance as post-modernism, even at its most brilliant and best.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Incandescent lines of passionate beauty

Since Sri Aurobindo's Savitri first appeared in print, its incandescent lines of passionate beauty have enthralled readers of all types and persuasions. One of the books introduced below, Narad's Arrival at Madra by R.Y. Deshpande, is a study of Savitri based on the opening passage from "The Book of Fate". The following excerpt shows one of the book's important themes:
The entire terrestrial scheme is what is laid out in Narad's song of evolution. It is a Truth-song; it is the song of new birth, the song of transformation, a song which can be sung only on earth. "Heaven in its rapture dreams of perfect earth"-that is what we hear in it. Such a song is first born somewhere high up, even perhaps beyond the home of the heavenly immortals. When it comes down here rushing through the luminous spaces and continues to resonate even in the atmosphere of the earthly Matter, it changes the very tone and character of the entire existence, tissue and cell quiver in the breath of conscious Life. This Matter is stirred up by its powerful potency and vibration. ...Transfiguration and ecstasy are the result. And therefore as Narad sings the song the demons weep with joy, foreseeing the end of their difficult and horrendous task.
NEW PUBLICATIONS: To order any book, click on the title, which will locate the book in our online catalogue. Next, add it to the shopping cart. You may then proceed to pay by credit card online. ENGLISH Narad's Arrival at Madra - R. Y. Deshpande ISBN: 81-7058-839-1 Publisher: Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education, Puducherry Binding: Soft Cover Pages: 471 Price: Rs 150
The author takes the 83-line opening passage from Savitri, "The Book of Fate", which announces and describes the arrival of the sage Narad at Aswapati's palace in Madra, as the focus of his study, suggesting it as a point of entry to plunge into the very heart of the mystery of Sri Aurobindo's epic poem. He follows several discussion threads suggested by the passage, including the ancient theory of five elements and their deeper subtle-occult chemistry, a varied look at evolution's scientific and occult-yogic aspects and its fullest gnostic possibilities, and a deeper examination of a few key phrases from these lines of poetry that illumine the significance of Narad's appearance in the narrative.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Each verse of Savitri is like a revealed Mantra

The Mother to Mona Sarkar 5-11-1967
It does not matter if you do not understand it - Savitri, read it always. You will see that every time you read it, something new will be revealed to you. Each time you will get a new glimpse, each time a new experience; things which were not there, things you did not understand arise and suddenly become clear. Always an unexpected vision comes up through the words and lines. Every time you try to read and understand, you will see that something is added, something which was hidden behind is revealed clearly and vividly. I tell you the very verses you have read once before, will appear to you in a different light each time you re-read them. This is what of happens invariably. Always your experience is enriched, it is a revelation at each step.
But you must not read it as you read other books or newspapers. You must read with an empty head, a blank and vacant mind, without there being any other thought; you must concentrate much, remain empty, calm and open; then the words, rhythms, vibrations will penetrate directly to this white page, will put their stamp upon the brain, will explain themselves without your making any effort.
Savitri alone is sufficient to make you climb to the highest peaks. If truly one knows how to meditate on Savitri, one will receive all the help one needs. For him who wishes to follow this path, it is a concrete help as though the Lord himself were taking you by the hand and leading you to the destined goal. And then, every question, however personal it may be, has its answer here, every difficulty finds its solution herein; indeed there is everything that is necessary for doing the Yoga. He has crammed the whole universe in a single book. It is a marvellous work, magnificent and of an incomparable perfection....
My child, I have read so many things, but I have never come across anything which could be compared with Savitri. I have studied the best works in Greek, Latin, English and of course French literature, also in German and all the great creations of the West and the East, including the great epics; but I repeat it, I have not found anywhere anything comparable with Savitri. All these literary works seems to me empty, flat, hollow, without any deep reality - apart from a few rare exceptions, and these too represent only a small fraction of what Savitri is. What grandeur, what amplitude, what reality: it is something immortal and eternal He has created. I tell you once again there is nothing like in it the whole world.

The Mother on Savitri

If you are depressed, if you feel miserable, if you do not succeed in what you do or else if what happens is always the contrary of what you expect, however you try - if it has come to such a pass that you lose your temper, life becomes disgusting and you are unhappy, then immediately take Savitri and, after a moment's concentration, open it at any page and read. You will see that all your misery disappears like smoke. And you will have the strength to overcome the worst sorrows; you will no longer feel that which was tormenting you. Instead you will feel a strange happiness, a reversal of consciousness along with the energy and force to conquer everything, as though there were nothing impossible. And you will feel this inexhaustible joy that purifies all. Read just a few lines and that is enough to establish the contact with your inmost being. Such is the extraordinary power of Savitri.
Or else, after having read some lines, if you concentrate deeply, then too you will find the solution to what was tormenting you. You have only to open Savitri just at random without thinking and you will have the answer to your problems. Do this with faith and simplicity, the result is certain. Return to home page

Books And Papers On Savitri

Bibliography Of Books And Papers On Savitri
A Dual Power of God - Sri Aurobindo's Satyavan And Savitri - A Brief Study Sitaramayya Swarna Gouri, 1999
A Study of Savitri Prema Nandakumar, November 1962
About Savitri Huta, March 1972
An Approach to Sri Aurobindo's ?Savitri? Paper, Rakhal Bose
Dawn to Greater Dawn - Six Lectures on Sri Aurobindo's Savitri K.R. Srinivasa Iyengar, 1975
Dialogue with Death - Sri Aurobindo's Savitri, A Mystical Approach Rohit Mehta, February 1972
Eternity in Words - Sri Aurobindo's Savitri Rameshwar Gupta, 1969
Guide to Sri Aurobindo's Epic Savitri Compiled by Garry Jacobs, July 1973
Introducing Savitri M. P. Pandit, 1982
Invocation - Study Notes and Newsletter Savitri Bhavan, Issues
Lectures on Savitri A.B. Purani, December 1967
Log of a Journey Through Sri Aurobindo's Savitri William Netter, 1999
On the New Edition of Savitri Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry
On the New Edition of Savitri - Further Explanations (Part Two)
Perspectives of Savitri - Volume One Editor R.Y. Deshpande
Readings in Savitri - Volumes 1-10 M.P. Pandit
Satyavan Must Die R.Y. Deshpande, 1996
Savitri Sri Aurobindo, 1954 edition, Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Savitri Sri Aurobindo, Sri Aurobindo Birth Centenary Library Edition (in Two Volumes) 1970, Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Savitri Sri Aurobindo, Revised Edition 1993, Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Savitri Sri Aurobindo, numbered edition, Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, 2000
Savitri - A Brief Introduction (Four Talks) Mangesh Nadkarni, 1984
Savitri - An Aurovilian Commentary William Netter, 1993
Savitri - Epic of the Eternal V. Madhusudan Reddy, February 1984
Savitri - Seminar Outline and Workbook William Netter
Savitri - Talks in Germany M.P. Pandit, 1987
Savitri: A Survey (48) - Service Letter - Paper M.P. Pandit, Nov. 1996
Savitri: Woman of the Future - A concert Reading adapted from Sri Aurobindo's Epic Poem : A Legend And A Symbol Dramatic Adaptation by Seyril Schochen
Sri Aurobindo's ?Savitri? - An Approach and A Study A.B. Purani, February 1956
Sri Aurobindo's - A Study of Savitri & Other Select Poems Dr. A.N. Dwivedi, 1977
Supplement to the Revised Edition of Savitri Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry, 1994
The Ancient Tale of Savitri R.Y. Deshpande
The Book of Beginnings - Talks on Sri Aurobindo's Savitri - Book One M.P. Pandit, 1983
The Book of the Divine Mother M.P. Pandit, 1986
The Composition of Savitri - Paper Richard Hartz, 1998
Vyasa's Savitri R.Y. Deshpande, 1996
Yoga in Savitri M.P. Pandit, 1976

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

End of an old era, beginning of a new age

Home > E-Library > Works Of Sri Aurobindo > Social And Political Thought Volume-15 > Worid - Union Or World-State
have grown up as the result of its nature and temperament. In the last perfection of the State, a care ... he State is the masterful but arbitrary and intolerant science and reason of man that successfully tak ... nd organisation of a single World-State out of a newly created, though still loose, natural organic u ... Last Modified: 04-Oct-2006 Document Size: 8,230
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n settle down as people become accustomed to the new order, have misread the whole situation. The pre ... . There is in this agitation a consciousness of a new strength, the quickening of a new life, the insp ... he quickening of a new life, the inspiration of a new ideal. This agitation is not an agitation merely ... Last Modified: 04-Oct-2006 Document Size: 9,119
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free India. It marks for her the end of an old era, the beginning of a new age. But it has a signifi ... ies the entry into the comity of nations of a new power with untold potentialities which has a ... freedom and her unity; the resurgence and liberation of Asia and her return to the great role ... Last Modified: 11-Aug-2005 Document Size: 12,004
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light is on thy face in this dawn of thy liberation, in this great hour we salute thee. Gui ... T HE M OTHER ... ia. It marks for her the end of an old era, the beginning of a new age. But it ha ... Last Modified: 07-Oct-2006 Document Size: 12,657
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us flaw somewhere in this brilliant opening of a new era. The nature of that flaw has been made manif ... d. The great flaw was the attempt to combine the new with the old, to subject the conduct of the resu ... ting, men out of sympathy with the spirit of the new age, unable to grasp the needs of the future, af ... Last Modified: 06-Jul-2006 Document Size: 14,072
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poetry was born some time towards the end of an era of decline in the Indian consciousness, almost t ... nother volume of mystic poetry in the hands of a new type of spiritual practitioners. They were the Y ... type, yet possessing nuggets of gold in their utterances, and they formed a large family. This almost ... Last Modified: 13-Sep-2006 Document Size: 17,202
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bindo the Poet and Prophet of the Eternal Day, a new Dawn and Day for the human race. ... and speeches of Rabindranath and the flaming utterances of Sri Aurobindo created a psychological rev ... of a new consciousness and force, glimpses of which he was ... Last Modified: 13-Sep-2006 Document Size: 12,207
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y will be a voice of eternal things raising to a new significance and to a great satisfied joy in expe ... tating and passes from the satisfaction of the liberated intellect which has been its preoccupation fo ... That will determine the character of the coming era of the mind and life of man and consequently the ... Last Modified: 13-Jul-2006 Document Size: 28,602
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