Thursday, December 30, 2010

Knowledge may become a barrier on the path of spiritual growth

The Union Territory of Pondicherry is known for its seaside retreats and secluded getaways that draw in seekers of tranquility from India and beyond. With its French-inspired architecture, sparse population and well-planned boulevard-like avenues, Pondicherry is ideal for any peace-seeker. 
Yoga and meditation classes are available to suit tourists of every kind. A thirty-minute drive away takes one to Auroville, the home of Sri Aurobindo. It is common to visit the Aurobindo Ashram for meditation The Samadhi of Aurbindo is flocked with followers. 
The library and the main building is accessible to those who have a gate pass from the bureau central. The Matri Mandir at Auroville is a famous meditation center in Pondicherry. There is a circular shaped meditation hall. A walk through this vast expanse of greenery gives the first-timer an all-round sense of serenity and peace. Yoga classes are conducted regularly by Yoga Acharyas. 
Several followers of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother (Frenchwoman Mirra Alfassa, disciple to Sri Aurobindo) have taken residence at Auroville and live and work in a self-sustainable work-life set up within Auroville. Several handicraft and small-scale industries operate from within the area. 

Spirituality is not the same as filling the head with spiritual facts. Spirituality may or may not be associated with mental knowledge; what is indispensable to spirituality is practice and experience. Knowledge may sometimes act as a trigger for spiritual progress by arousing the curiosity of the seeker. But if the focus remains on acquiring more and more knowledge at the mental level, knowledge may become a barrier on the path of spiritual growth in at least two ways. First, the person may start treating knowledge as a substitute for experience. Secondly, knowledge at the level of the intellect might make a person critical, less open, and distract him from genuine spiritual inquiry by directing the attention to too many irrelevant questions. As the Mother has said, “the mind is incapable of judging spiritual things… … in order to proceed on the path, it is absolutely indispensable to abstain from all mental opinion and reaction” (1). […]

The right approach is to take the experiences as an indicator of the immense love of the Divine. It is through Divine Grace rather than personal effort that the seeker has received some encouragement in the form of these experiences. To negotiate the long way to the summit also Divine Grace will be much more important than personal effort. The seeker may continue his efforts, and trust that the Divine will take care of his progress in Its way and Its time. Therefore, the dictum is to continue walking the path, and to continue seeking the guidance and grace of the Divine. The walk itself is blissful; why then be in a hurry to scale the summit? [Obsessive-compulsive spirituality by Dr Ramesh Bijlani | Integral ... By Sandeep]

Peter Heehs has devoted decades to preservation and study of the legacy of Sri Aurobindo, and has resided at the Aurobindo Ashram for more almost thirty years. His website links to several reviews of the biography, and I can add nothing ...

In this short note, we cover another distortion in this book which no one seems to have caught. […] Did the Mother actually think Madame Theon's writing was deficient? [...]   
Rule of thumb while reading the book: Every negative remark in this book conceals a wealth of positive information.  One must be prepared to go back to the primary sources to uncover the distortions.

I came across this interesting passage from the book “The Varieties of Religious Experience” by Wiliam James. Here it is: […]
Psychologically time is quite a strange phenomenon. St. Augustine famously said about it that he perfectly understood what time was … till someone asked him to explain.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Rhythmic battlefield

from Sunil to date 25 December 2010 09:06 subject For posting 'Happy Christmas' 

In silence the flame is born, in silence cuts in the ray from above and penetrates the soul and leaves its signature of the beyond. In silence is grasped the wonders of within, in silence are felt the realms deep within. In silence outpours the call for above and unites all that is here and part of that supreme. We are here to be obey the divine’s will, and make this field its rhythmic battlefield. Sway we not for we know the truth, come what may for we are children of the Lord. Let us pick up the sword of the divine warrior within and slash all the ignorance that binds our feet and strike the blow on all the hush hush of the born and plant the seeds of the unborn. 

Who will come and play and take seat in the ship and cast himself to the shores of the ever green, mortality is only a stage to prepare the deity within and love a channel to embrace the race in between. 
The Glorious kingdom awaits thee. Sunil 25th Dec. 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

It will take time for the masses to understand Sri Aurobindo’s yoga

The Pioneer :: Home : Spiritual meet inaugurated RANCHI | Monday December 20, 2010 PNS
Governor MOH Farook on Sunday inaugurated the seminar on ‘Spiritual Discourse’ at Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Doranda. While addressing the seminar, Governor said, “I am delighted to be your midst today which has the feeling of home coming for me. I consider myself truly fortunate to have actually met the divine mother of Sri Aurobindo Ashram at Puducherry. I had the opportunity to come in contact with the Ashram and know the methodology of Integral Yoga followed there. I have tried to adhere yogic.
“Sri Aurobindo had been a freedom fighter and a master patriot who later became a master yogi, which is a unique phenomenon in human history with significance for the whole world. Although at the beginning of his life, his main objective was to liberate India from the foreign yoke, his real work started when he wrote - ‘Trust the Divine Power’,” the Governor said.
“Sri Aurobindo’s yoga is beyond religion. He disclosed to the mankind a new way of life which is wonderful and worth attempting but it will take time for the masses to understand because their mind-set is not yet ready for the yogic adventures. People are prone to follow ritualism. Sri Aurobindo’s contribution to humanity will be remembered by posterity for his discovery of yogic methods of following divine life without any need to renounce the worldly life,” he further added.
“I am pleased to see the serene atmosphere of Ashram Cottage. I hope this Society will be able to deliver good work to the State. My good wishes will always be with you,” the Governor concluded.

In the past few days or so, I have been amazed and fascinated by my exposure to a mystical school of thought, the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and I am undergoing a significant intellectual change of perspective from ...

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Intersection of old and new, East and West

60th death anniversary of Sri Aurobindo observed Hindustan Times Puducherry, Dec 5 PTI
Devotees from all over the country on Sunday paid homage to revolutionary-turned-spiritual leader Sri Aurobindo at his ashram here on the occasion of ...
Spiritual abodes explore emotive, engaging and experiential space Daily News & Analysis Sunday, Dec 5, 2010, 15:49 IST By Yatin Pandya
Matri mandir at auroville has been an epitome of contemporary space making for meditative purposes and spiritual pursuit. This deserves a special mention as it succeeds in doing so without any icon association, but largely on the quality of space. The gold foil fused panels provide the awe.
The ascent culminates in to mysterious chamber where top lit crystal provides the central focus for meditation, while the light radiated through internal reflection of the crystal pervades magically to offer enough darkness not to be distracted by anyone else's presence within the chamber, yet just about bright enough not to trip on any one.
The diffused and dimly lit up space renders the space limitless and mythical by dissolving boundaries of the enveloping surface. Timeless architecture trades on these dualities of time and space, of mind and matter, of the notions and reality, of the microcosm and the cosmos, of the 'conceptual' and 'perceptual'.
Sri Aurobindo emerged in the first decade of the century as a revolutionary leader of the struggle for india's freedom, who electrified the nation through ... 
The prominent philosophy of Sri Aurobindo was especially responsive to the new intersection of old and new, East and West. His clear vision of the role of the spiritual scholar emerged from a synthesis of this massive cultural ...
A Brief Description of 5th—9th December 1950 and some more ... By overmanfoundation
'The Mother then said Sri Aurobindo had lived so long in the Supramental Consciousness that it had come down into His body and made it shine with a golden light. But She added that one could not be sure how long the light would remain ...