Thursday, August 07, 2008

In his early years Amal Kiran was not a believer

Aspects of Amal Kiran: Part IV Amal Kiran—the Yogi and the Seer —by Anurag Banerjee
posted by RY Deshpande on Tue 05 Aug 2008 09:20 PM PDT Permanent Link

Amal Kiran is a poet, a prose-writer, a critic and a researcher. But there is something that transcends all his multi-faceted abilities. It is his spiritual consciousness. It should be remembered that he is first a Yogi and that too a great one whose spiritual consciousness and abilities were developed by the Mother and Sri Aurobindo over the years. But surprisingly in his early years, he was not a believer. In fact he had lost his faith in God due to his study of the works of Plato, Seneca, Marcus Aurelius, Ernst Haeckel, Joseph McCabe and Bernard Shaw; also he was under the influence of a Jesuit teacher who made him despise “cheap religionism, as well as cheap materialism, puritanical sham no less than erotic tawdriness.” ...

Much has been discussed about Amal Kiran’s spiritual experiences. But the author would like to recall a personal experience of his regarding Amal Kiran. When he had gone to meet Amal Kiran in the Ashram Nursing Home for the first time, he made his obeisance to him and asked for the latter’s blessings (as he was translating the poems of Amal Kiran into Bengali). “Where is your head?” asked Amal Kiran. The author bent forward and Amal Kiran touched his head with his palm. What followed was an unforgettable experience! The author felt a strong electric current flowing in his spine. The effect was so great that it took him some time to open his eyes; when he stood up, Amal Kiran’s attendants exclaimed: “How beautiful! How beautiful!”

The author was unable to understand why they were saying so. When he went out of the Nursing Home, he saw his reflection on the side-mirror of a scooter parked in front of the gate; to his utter surprise, he saw that his face had become absolutely red—like the cover of the Bulletin of SAICE. Such was the force of Amal Kiran’s touch! After all, his were the hands that had touched the feet of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo!

Amal Kiran’s journey still continues. He no longer writes; no longer converses much, but conveys much through his silence. He was never afraid of death for he himself had written in a letter to his Guru in the early 1940s: “Death by itself does not frighten me very much. I do have the normal man’s recoil from it, but my mind has a certain detachment which makes something in me rise superior to fear…Yet death does appeal to me horribly because it would cut short my spiritual growth in this life and waste the mercy that has brought me close to you and given me a grand opportunity to be your instrument. I want to live and realise what I have never ceased to regard as my true ultimate goal. Personally, I do not and cannot even believe that I shall die and not realise that goal.”

This fearlessness still exists, fostering the progress of the soul for he claimed: “I am doing my best to live long both because I am happy and can give happiness and because I want as much time as possible to go nearer to Sri Aurobindo’s luminous Truth and the Mother’s radiant Beauty. All the same I am ready to say ‘Hurrah’ whenever they tell me, ‘Your time is up.’” (The Wonder That is K.D. Sethna alias Amal Kiran, p. 2)

Amal Kiran always craved to realize the Divine as that has been the foremost aim of his life... Keywords: Sethna, Poetry, Literature, Culture, Amal Posted to: Main Page LITERATURE .. Poetry PEOPLE INTEGRAL YOGA SRI AUROBINDO Previous: Aspects of Amal Kiran: Part III—by Anurag Banerjee Next: August 6 Quote of the Day Science, Culture and Integral Yoga

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