Guiding Light of The Month

O Lord, how ardently do I call and implore Thy love! Grant that my aspiration may be intense enough to awaken the same aspiration everywhere: oh, may good- ness, justice and peace reign as supreme masters, may ignorant egoism be overcome, darkness be suddenly illu- minated by Thy pure Light; may the blind see, the deaf hear, may Thy law be proclaimed in every place and, in a constantly progressive union, in an ever more perfect harmony, may all, like one single being, stretch out their arms towards Thee to identify themselves with Thee and manifest Thee upon earth. - The Mother

September - October Sunday Activities at the Centre - A glimpse

September 24th – Savitri and Rig Veda

Jared has started taking us on an exciting journey, over several weeks, deep into the ‘Doctrine of the Mystics’– an almost all encompassing view of Vedas from our Master. It is packed with surface, subtle and intuitive knowledge for us to explore and enjoy.

Beyond all these, Sri Aurobindo has penned it based on his knowledge through identity and hence it is the formless infinite projected in the finite document form. As we are all aware, Savitri too is similar never ending journey for us to meditate upon and is sure to continue to reveal new insights even to very devoted deep followers.

“We have the same cosmic gradations as in the Puranas but they are differently grouped, -- seven worlds in principle, five in practice, three in their general groupings – Doctrine of the Mystics

Just before commencing the Doctrine of the Mystics, our topics of Rig Veda were Agni - the Flame and Usha - the Dawn. While delving into the Doctrine of the Mystics, we were thrilled to find the subtle knowledge that there are SEVEN occurrences of the word DAWN, FIVE occurrences of AGNI and THREE occurrences of FLAME.

Flash of intuition reveals much more – the seven dawns represent the seven ignorance we need to conquer, the five agnis represent the touching of the ‘Being of the Becoming’ (Psychic Being) for our golden psychic pathway and the three flames represent the triple transformation of Integral Yoga.

We marvelled at the significance of the clarified butter (quintessence – 5th essence- of milk) being offered to agni as emphasized in the Vedas signifying our aspiration to touch our soul (Hamsa). Thus, five also can represent the five external senses we need to purify, liberate and perfect; three can represent the internal senses of Shruti, Dristi and Smriti.

Matching with the macrocosmic view of the Doctrine of the mystics, we also took similar whole view of Savitri – of course, with our limited knowledge.

First, we glanced at the selected seven Huta paintings together representing

  • Divine self-conceptualization of Dynamic Delight (in the causal plane) represented by the World Stairs Chariot (Book 2, Canto 1, Picture 1)

  • Divine self-limitation (Spirit taking-on different aspects by gradually embracing inconscience, suffering etc) represented by the Mother of the Seven Sorrows, Madonna of Suffering and Madonna of Might (Book 7, Canto 4, Pictures 1, 4, 7)

  • Divine self-absorption (until complete Involution) carved in the massive stone of Matter’s trance (Book 7, Canto 5, Picture 20)

  • Savitri’s Triple Transformation (as the Divine role model for replication of many out of the One) represented by the ‘Flaming Serpent raising (released from sleep) through the seven chakras – as in a flash from a supernal light’ (Book 7, Canto 5, Picture 10) and the ‘Seven Lotuses representing each part of the Being trembling with Delight’ (Book 7, Canto 5, Picture 11)

Next, we glanced at another set of seven paintings together representing ‘Savitri – Usha the Dawn, Agni the Flame and OUR ROLE MODEL’ drawn from Book 4, Canto 1 and Canto 2.

The purpose of this session was
  • To reemphasize that our aim of life is to search for and grow our Psychic Flame (Being of Becoming) as well as to help others to progress towards this self-discovery. It is not ‘Matter or Spirit’ but ‘Spirit and Matter’. The same has been generalized by Mother, educating us to broaden our outlook, to even embrace aspects of the opposing ideas so that our thoughts can be channelled towards a core central idea (rooted in higher consciousness)

  • To explore the possibility of reviewing Savitri in a different sequence rather than the canto by canto approach

  • To go deeper into the Huta paintings beyond the surface view

September 28th Sep, 30th Sep, 1st Oct and 3rd Oct – Prof Mohanty’s Talks at our Centre

Professor Sachidananda Mohanty delivered a series of four inspiring talks at our Centre. He is the Vice Chancellor of the Central University of Orissa at Koraput, India. He was recently nominated as a member for the Commission on Education for UNESCO by the President of India. He is also a member of the Governing Board of the Auroville Foundation, administered by the Ministry of the Human Resources Development, (MHRD) Government of India.

On the 28th Sep, he commenced his talks with Swami Vivekananda's Message for Today. The lecture brought in the Prof’s reminiscences of his visit to Chicago in 2005, the location where Swamiji had delivered his memorable talks to the World Parliament of Religions. He elaborated on how Swamiji utilized his deep integral vision of Self, Concept of Nations, Meaning of Religions and Importance of World Union to deliver the all-encompassing Sanatana Dharma view of Hinduism and India. Swamiji further inspired our Master Sri Aurobindo - appearing in His dreams in Alipore jail revealing the Being of the Becoming and enabling the descent of Transcendental and Universal forces to accelerate our evolution on Earth. Our Master could at once experience the consciousness reversal in Him thus enabling Him to see God in everyone and everything around.

(Photo of our members and Prof. & Mrs. Mohanty's visit to Sri Ramakrishna mission, Singapore)

On the 30th Sep, the topic was ‘Sri Aurobindo and the Challenges of the Modern World’. Prof Mohanty elaborated on the four ideas of his book “Cosmopolitan Modernity”: 1) Tyranny of the State Idea, 2) Religion Vs Secular Modernity, 3) Problem of self-determination and 4) Identity Politics. In this modern world, we in the name of internationalism devalue regional cultures and unfortunately accelerate the decline of rich languages. Cosmopolitanism is the way to go – meaning to be a rich world citizen beyond the narrow ‘either/or’ view embracing a broader outlook. It is important to preserve the positive essence of the tradition and cultures (not the outer ritualistic doctrines) while also renewing our views to progress utilizing the modern developments. Prof Mohanty highlighted the deep political thoughts of Sri Aurobindo throughout His life and His prophetic solutions to most of the pressing problems inflicting the history of mankind including recent and current ones such as Northern Ireland and North Korea. Prof Mohanty also emphasized the four overlapping principles of Rationality, Individuality, Universality and Progress.

On the 1st Oct, we were treated to the significance of the meeting of our Master and The Mother – A memorable moment in the human history indeed. Their Divine Unity enabled the impossible possible - the bringing down of the Supramental Light, Force, Love and New Consciousness to our Earth. Prof Mohanty brought out the significance of Their life journeys comparing the Visionary trajectory of Sri Aurobindo with the Mystic, Power and realization driven trajectory of The Mother. These two parallel Lives had to amalgamate on a common path through the convergence of Their Divine Aspirations. Their ‘Knowledge through Identity’ led to ‘The Supramental Consciousness driven Divine Justice’ pathway. The Creative Evolution as revealed by them was also touched upon. Finally, Prof Mohanty gave us a glimpse of a rare archive material in his possession, namely, “Sri Aurobindo as I understand Him” by Barin Ghosh.

3rd Oct was devoted to a bird’s eye view of our Master’s works.

October 7th – Recording for ‘Savitri Around The World’ Recital

‘Savitri Around The World’ is a project of Auroville to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Auroville and remembering The Mother’s Words:


The plan is to start on the February 25th, 2018 early morning IST (“The hour before Gods awake”) with the recorded reading (Parayan) of the first lines of Savitri by The Mother. Then the continuous reading would be taken up by participants from the Ashram and other places in India. From India, the readings will move on from East to West following the Sun around the world passing through over 45 countries before ending at Auroville on the February 27th evening. The initial plan was to organize an online live continuous reading. But based on logistic difficulties the plan has been changed to collect recordings from around the world and play them from February 25th to 27th next year.
Singapore was allotted 12 passages from Book X, ‘The Book of the Double Twilight’, Cantos 2 and 3 (‘The Gospel of Death and the Vanity of the Ideal’ and ‘The Debate of Love and Death’). There were 22 of us and we enthusiastically shared the passages to make sure all those interested got the chance to participate in the Parayan. This shared reading idea was from Satyakam and was gladly endorsed by the Auroville team.

We assembled for the recording at our centre on Saturday the October 7th afternoon. Anand Venkat provided tremendous help with the recording, editing and uploading. Dhana helped us with the coordination during the recording. With Mother’s Grace, we all enjoyed the Divine Delight – a very rare opportunity indeed. Our special thanks to all those who participated and helped in this Divine endeavour.

 October 8th – Rig Veda: The doctrine of the mystics

We continued our journey on ‘The Doctrine of the Mystics’ covering the Vedic Sacrifice which is a form of self-giving of all our gains and works to the powers of the higher existence. The whole world is a dumb and helpless sacrifice in which the soul is bound as a victim self-offered to unseen Gods. The liberating Word must be found, the illuminating hymn must be framed in the heart and mind of man and his life must be turned into a conscious and voluntary offering in which the soul is no longer the victim, but the master of the sacrifice. By right sacrifice and by the all-creative and all-expressive Word that shall arise out of his depths as a sublime hymn to the Gods man can achieve all things. He shall conquer his perfection; Nature shall come to him as a willing and longing bride; he shall become her seer and rule her as her King.

The above is what we had tried to portray in our earlier session of Savitri using the second set of 7 pictures: “The Birth, Childhood and Growth of the Flame – Our Role Model” from Book 4, Canto 1 and Canto 2. Instead of the nature ruling us through slow trial and error progress, we can convert nature to be a willing instrument of the Divine. The last of these seven pictures is enlarged below highlighting the Love, Beauty and Delight - with Savitri in complete harmony with Nature.

The image of this sacrifice is sometimes that of a journey or voyage; for it travels, it ascends; it has a goal -- the vastness, the true existence, the light, the felicity -- and it is called upon to discover and keep the good, the straight and the happy path to the goal, the arduous, yet joyful road of the Truth.

It has to climb, led by the flaming strength of the divine Will, from plateau to plateau as of a mountain, it has to cross as in a ship the waters of existence, traverse its rivers, overcome their deep pits and rapid currents; its aim is to arrive at the far-off ocean of light and infinity.

And this is no easy or peaceful march; it is for long seasons a fierce and relentless battle. Constantly the Aryan man (the pioneering individual) has to labour and to fight and conquer; he must be a tireless toiler and traveller and a stern warrior, he must force open and storm and sack city after city, win kingdom after kingdom, overthrow and tread down ruthlessly enemy after enemy. His whole progress is a warring of Gods and Titans, Gods and Giants, Indra and the Python, Aryan and Dasyu. Aryan adversaries even he has to face in the open field; for old friends and helpers turn into enemies; the kings of Aryan states he would conquer and overpass join themselves to the Dasyus and are leagued against him in supreme battle to prevent his free and utter passing on.

But the Dasyu is the natural enemy. These dividers, plunderers, harmful powers, these Danavas, sons of the Mother of division, are spoken of by the Rishis under many general appellations. There are Rakshasas; there are Eaters and Devourers, Wolves and Tearers; there are hurters and haters; there are dualisers; there are confiners or censurers. But we are given also many specific names.

Vritra, the Serpent, is the grand Adversary; for he obstructs with his coils of darkness all possibility of divine existence and divine action. And even when Vritra is slain by the light, fiercer enemies arise out of him. Shushna afflicts us with his impure and ineffective force, Namuchi fights man by his weaknesses, and others too assail, each with his proper evil. Then there are Vala and the Panis, miser traffickers in the sense-life, stealers and concealers of the higher Light and its illuminations which they can only darken and misuse, -- an impious host who are jealous of their store and will not offer sacrifice to the Gods. These and other personalities -- they are much more than personifications -- of our ignorance, evil, weakness and many limitations make constant war upon man; they encircle him from near or they shoot their arrows at him from afar or even dwell in his gated house in the place of the Gods and with their shapeless stammering mouths and their insufficient breath of force mar his self-expression. They must be expelled, overpowered, slain, thrust down into their nether darkness by the aid of the mighty and helpful deities.

We also covered the important role Angirasas play through their chanting to recover knowledge out of ignorance, the cows (rays), the horses (strength), day, water, sun etc. Sri Aurobindo and Mother have strived to go beyond what the Vedas have revealed by bringing down the Supramental Light, Force, Love and the New Consciousness upon Earth. Through our own choice, we can open our gates to the Divine Forces through our Being of the Becoming (Psychic Being).
- Ramadoss

No comments: