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Category Archives: Beyond Religion

Auroville Round

The program 'Matter Precipitates... It is in a hurry to transform itself' by Sri Aurobindo Centre for Studies... India and the World, concluded with the 'Auroville Round'. It was a session open to all to come together and share their perceptions of how to take the next steps towards creating a new collective space. Aurovillians, scientists, philosophers, researchers, followers of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and curious tourists, who had attended all or some parts of the program got together to share their learnings and experiences.

Comments: 0 Date: 12 Feb 2012

Right Action

Devdip Ganguli reflects on dilemma around 'right action' - how to evaluate an action as right or wrong? In the context of solutions provided over the ages, such as codes, testaments and religious principles, Devdip uses some very interesting anecdotes and letters written by the Mother to present her view on this issue and her strong belief in a person's inner sense to take decisions. Devdip concludes that 'right action' is what is inspired from the highest light available to us at that time.

Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012

Indian Dance and Spirituality

Dr. Rekha Tandon, an Indian Classical dancer, presented an often forgotten similarity between yoga and dance, especially classical Indian, where both are exploratory forms in which we work through matter to find the spirit. As in yoga, the Indian classical dance poses are much about balancing the body, the spinal chord, and so the chakras. And as in the yogic chakra system, by practicing the Indian classical dance forms, a person can truly begin to experience the transition from matter to spirit.

Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012

Genes and Life

A presentation by Dr. Anand Kumar, Professor & Chairman, Department of Reproductive Biology, AIIMS, New Delhi. Also a student of Life Divine, Dr Kumar discussed how Science has used several connection, metaphors and simile to explain the wonder of human life. Often 'life' has been reduced laws of chemistry and physics, sometimes DNA, genes and proteins. But do they explain our being? 'No', comes the clear answer from Dr Kumar. Perhaps there is no definite 'program' that explains the 'higher beings' that we are.

Comments: 0 Date: 10 Feb 2012

A Conscious Collective

Deepti Tewari has been in Auroville since she was 16. She has read the Mother and Sri Aurobindo extensively and has achieved much clarity on their ideas of the 'earth consciousness'. Today she shared with us her understanding of the 'type of consciousness' that Auroville was built on, and the consciousness that Aurovillians perhaps need now. Auroville was built to be a psychological garden of harmony, sweetness and beauty, she says, but it can be that only if we renounce our egos and let the 'collective realization' take over.

Comments: 1 Date: 12 Feb 2012

The Visionary Element

Dr. Chris Macann, a philosopher, first explains that it's crucial to know 'whose' vision we subscribe to in our understanding of the world. He goes on to draw comparisons between the philosophy of Sri Aurobindo and that of the French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson on the 'visionary element in human thinking', and the 'Ladder of Being' (i.e. matter / life / consciousness / self consciousness). He then proposes an alteration in the ladder, that of replacing 'matter' with 'nature', and explains what can be made possible with this change.

Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012

A Matter of Matter

Georges Van Vrekhem, as a physicist, curiously observes that 'matter is weird stuff'. With interesting examples and clarity, he compares the general religious view of matter or the human body (i.e. burdensome) with that of Sri Aurobindo's (i.e. miracle of matter). He also explains the 8 ways of interpreting matter and goes on to ponder on texts by Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and explains the relationship between matter, mind and spirit. His conclusion: In matter lies the truth, the reality. Human existence is then a matter of matter!


Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012

Greening Auroville: Lessons

Joss Brooks, one of the first Aurovillians, told us a heartening story of 'greening Auroville' and the lessons learnt along the way. What was is it that made people come from all over the world to convert almost 60 acres of arid land outside Chennai into a thriving green space for plants, birds, animals as well as the local people? And how did they do it? Joss speaks of grit and determination, of learning from the locals, and of the satisfaction that comes by loving the miraculous world that's a gift to humanity.

Towards the end, Joss also talks about another more recent and successful ecological restoration project by Auroville which involved turning a dump in the middle of Chennai (a busy metro city) into an eco-park.

Comments: 0 Date: 12 Feb 2012

Seal of The Last Chapter

Dr. Prema Nandkumar talked about the growing need for humanity to break the seal of the last chapter of the play she calls the 'evolutionary destiny of man'. With stories and poems ranging from Norwegian folklore to western legends, from Indian mythology to Greek mythology, Dr Prema spoke about the meaning of the cycle of life and death, and if a total transition of the matter is possible. Finally she draws our attention to relying on the power of the soul, not science, to explore matter.

Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012

Creative Chaos

Uma Haimavati, founder of a design unit at Auroville, shares her experiences of being in Auroville and of the inspirations that the Mother provides her. After experiencing 'extreme vulnerability' during the recent cyclone Thane, Uma's past experience was reinforced that 'creativity' must apply itself to human unity in order to counter the feeling of nullness that arises after a disaster. She strongly believes 'knowledge would be delivered at the doorstep of action,' and looks forward to humanity arriving at its best composite for the future.

Comments: 0 Date: 11 Feb 2012