Sri Aurobindo Center

of Los Angeles

The Quest
July 2022

Theme - Sri Aurobindo’s Vision of the Future
  1. Events & Activities
  2. Sri Aurobindo’s Life Sketch
  3. Towards the Future
  4. The Five Dreams
  5. The Indian Renaissance
  6. The Ideal of Human Unity
  7. The Divine Superman
  8. The Best Homage
  9. Sadhana of the Body
  10. Sri Aurobindo’s Humor
  11. Empowering Lines from Savitri

Events & Activities          Home

The air each day of July was vibrant in anticipation of Sri Aurobindo’s 150th birth anniversary in August. The devotion of the members was notable in the regular maintenance of the premises and the garden. The kitchen renovation was completed and has a new face thanks to our renovation team. The patience, joyful enthusiasm, diligence, teamwork, and dedication to this project with attention to detail was awe-inspiring. Everything came together harmoniously and expeditiously and one felt a secret hand guiding and overseeing the whole project.

This month we take a first dip into the vastness that is Sri Aurobindo. It is as though a tiny spark of light turns its gaze towards the Sun and is met by its blazing light. But lo, we suddenly discover to our delight that the spark is not extinguished or lost but is brightened by the Sun that is Sri Aurobindo! We are sure the readers will experience the same.

Sri Aurobindo’s Life Sketch               Home

Dear Fellow Seekers,

Our August month’s issue is dedicated to Sri Aurobindo. We will refresh our memory about his life till he reached the shores of Pondicherry in this issue.
He was born on 15th August 1872 in Kolkata at Theatre Road, the then European Quarters of the city, currently there is a relics center, where one can bask in the spiritual atmosphere.
A postcard depicting Theatre Road, Kolkata

His father Krishna Dhan Ghosh (1844 -1893), was one of the first Indian students to graduate from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. He was a doctor and in 1870 went to United Kingdom for further studies. This stint was so influential in his life, that he decided to provide British education to three of his sons. Towards the end of his life, he got disenchanted of the British administration, and used to send newspaper cuttings to Sri Aurobindo, to make him aware of the maltreatments of their rule. He was a Civil Surgeon, a much respected and rewarded service back in the days, but he spent most of his money in care of others. He had five children, four boys and one girl.

Sri Aurobindo’s mother, Swarnalata Devi (1852-1907), was the daughter of Rishi Raj Narayan Bose (1826 -1899). He was one of the intellectual writers who contributed to Renaissance of Bengal. He was called as the Grandfather of Indian Nationalism, a social reformer, educationalist, a champion of women education, he was one of the best-known prose writers of the 19th century, and an influential figure in the Bengal Society. Later Sri Aurobindo wrote a sonnet on his grandfather.

From these roots Sri Aurobindo was born, souls who loved - poetry, nation, and people. He spoke English and Hindi to communicate with the servants at home, soon he was sent to a convent school. Dr Ghosh was captivated by the idea of British education; he wanted his sons to grow up and join Indian Civil Service “ICS”, the most prestigious service in British India where only a few Britishers and fewer Indians could join. In 1879, the entire family made a trip to Britain. Sri Aurobindo and his two elder brothers were left under the care Reverend W. H. Drewett in Manchester, an acquaintance of Dr Ghosh. While the elder brothers joined school, Sri Aurobindo, who was considered too young and was home schooled. Dr Ghosh left strict instructions that his boys should be taught nothing of the Indian culture or any religion. At the age of eleven, he received a strong impression that a period of general upheaval and great revolutionary change were coming, and he was destined to play a role in it. Soon their life was uprooted, the Drewett family decided to emigrate to Australia and the boys had to stay with Mr Drewett’s mother in London. In 1884, Sri Aurobindo and his elder brother joined St Paul’s school. Soon their father ran into financial difficulties and they lived under very spartan circumstances.
Sri Aurobindo when 12 years old

By 1889, Sri Aurobindo was the natural choice to fulfil his father’s dream of ICS, for his academic brilliance unmatched by his brothers. To become an ICS official, students were required to pass the competitive examination, as well as to study at an English university for two years under probation. By then Sri Aurobindo had mastered Greek, and Latin, English and French and acquired familiarity with German and Italian. He secured a scholarship at King's College, Cambridge. His papers for scholarship were noted by the reviewer as the “best he had ever seen and remarkable”.

He passed the written ICS examination after a few months, being ranked 11th out of 250 competitors. Next two years he spent at King's College, Cambridge. There he was member of a society Indian Majlis where he made many revolutionary speeches; this incident was noted as early streaks of a revolutionary his character by British Government. Sri Aurobindo came late to the horse-riding practical exam of ICS, purposefully to get himself disqualified for the service. He did not want to pursue that career and did not want to wage a direct war against his father’s wishes.

Sri Aurobindo grew up in a Christian environment with bible the only scripture of resort. The version of Christianity presented to him, was not appealing, and he drew away from religion altogether. After a brief period of atheism, he chose to be agnostic. But it was during his studies for the ICS, he came across the concept of “Six Philosophies” of India, where he was introduced to an elementary concept of the Atman or Soul. He was captivated by the idea that probably Atman is the reality behind the life and the world.  He made a strong and mental attempt, with limited success at that time, to seize the concept of Atman and integrate with his life. That was his first brush with spirituality.

The Maharaja (King) of Baroda, Sayajirao Gaekwad III, was travelling in England during that time. Baroda was one of the wealthy princely states of India with a good administration. A meeting got arranged between Sayajirao and Sri Aurobindo and he was selected for a position for the Baroda State Service. Sayajirao was happy that he could get an ICS quality officer for his state at a quarter of the salary. Sri Aurobindo left England for India, arriving there in February 1893. In India, Dr Ghosh, who was waiting to receive his son, was misinformed that the ship on which Sri Aurobindo had been travelling had sunk off the coast of Portugal. He passed away unable to bear the shock of the news.

His life in Baroda and Kolkata (1893 to 1910)

In Baroda, Sri Aurobindo first worked in the Survey and Settlements department, later moved to the Department of Revenue and then to the Secretariat, and much miscellaneous work like teaching grammar and assisting in writing speeches for the Maharaja of Gaekwad. He served as the secretary of the Maharaja during one of his trips to Kashmir, and his services were also used for the Baroda College. At first, he taught French and later at the time of his resignation he was the Vice-principal of the college.

Sri Aurobindo launched in a journey of self-study of Indian culture, as if to make up for all the years he had lost. He learnt and deepened his knowledge of Indian Languages, Hindustani, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, and Sanskrit. He was a voracious reader, and two bookshops in Bombay kept him regularly supplied with books sent in crates. Sitting by an oil lamp he would read late into the night, unmindful of the swarming mosquitoes and often quite unaware of the waiting food beside him. He also wrote poetry, and his first collection of poems was published from Baroda. The early ideas about Savitri took shape in Baroda days. From his letter to his elder brother, Manomohan, who was also a poet, we can see that Sri Aurobindo shared his ideas how to present an Indian epic in English, something that he did with Savitri later.
Sri Aurobindo in Baroda

The Baroda period was the only time that Sri Aurobindo came close to his family members. After a period of 14 years, he was back to India, he made trips to Bengal from Baroda, which was a considerable distance in those days to meet the members of his family including his maternal grandfather. We see friendly letter exchanges between Sri Aurobindo and his uncle, as well as with his sister in this period.  Barin, his brother also grew close to him, who would assist him later in National movement, accompany him to prison and then later join him at Pondicherry.

In 1901, Sri Aurobindo married Mrinalini Devi. Mrinalini had to go through all the joys and sorrows which are the lot of one who marries a genius and someone so out of the ordinary as Sri Aurobindo.

At college, Sri Aurobindo was a popular teacher who presided over debating sessions and encouraged his students to think originally.

But another future was preparing itself for Sri Aurobindo at the same time. It began in a most unobtrusive way soon after he came to Baroda. K. G. Deshpande, a friend from his Cambridge days, oversaw a weekly published from Bombay called Indu Prakash. He requested Sri Aurobindo to write something on the current political situation of India. Sri Aurobindo began writing a series of fiery articles titled ‘New Lamps for Old’, strongly criticizing the Congress, then the main political party in India, for its moderate policy.  He demanded the very best for India and from India. After a few of his articles were published, his editor got afraid that the proprietor of the paper will be arrested for such articles, hence Sri Aurobindo lost interest in writing for the paper. He was 21 then.

His period of stay in Baroda, specially from 1893 to 1901, was significant in several ways for Sri Aurobindo. It was here that he started working for India's freedom, behind the scenes. He perceived the need to broaden the base of the movement and to create a mass awakening. He went to Bengal and other states, contacted the secret groups working for freedom and became a link between many of them. He established close contact with Lokmanya Tilak and Sister Nivedita. He arranged for the military training of Jatin Banerjee in the Baroda army and then sent him to organize the revolutionary work in Bengal. Jatin Banerji, later died bravely, fighting with the British Police, and his son’s family found refuge in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in the 1940s.

On the other hand, the Divine too continued to work unseen, within, revealing himself only on certain occasions. In his very first year at Baroda, when Sri Aurobindo was going in a horse-driven carriage, there was the possibility of a major accident. Suddenly he felt a Being of Light emerge from him and avert the accident. He described it in a sonnet written later:

Above my head a mighty head was seen,
A face with the calm of immortality
And an omnipotent gaze that held the scene
In the vast circle of its sovereignty.

His hair was mingled with the sun and breeze;
The world was in His heart and He was I:
I housed in me the Everlasting's peace,
The strength of One whose substance cannot die.

In 1903, Sri Aurobindo went to Kashmir with the Maharaja. There on the Hills of Shankaracharya he had a beautiful spiritual experience.

“One stands upon a mountain ridge and glimpses or mentally feels a wideness, a pervasiveness, a nameless Vast in Nature; then suddenly there comes the touch, a revelation, a flooding, the mental loses itself in the spiritual, one bears the first invasion of the Infinite.”

Once Sri Aurobindo visited a Kali Temple on the bank of the Narmada. He said: “With my Europeanised mind I had no faith in image-worship, and I hardly believed in the presence of God.” But he was compelled to do so when he looked at the image and saw a living Divine presence.

The fourth experience has an interesting background. Once his younger brother Barin fell seriously ill with mountain fever. When the doctors were helpless, a monk happened to be passing by. He took a cup of water, making a cross with a knife as if cutting the water into four, while chanting a mantra and asked Barin to drink it. The next day he was completely cured. This incident opened Sri Aurobindo to the idea of Yogic force and that it can be used for the freedom of his country. He took up the practice of pranayama. Soon he observed some startling results. His mind and memory worked with a greater illumination and power. His skin became smooth and fair. But it ended with those results, and when Sri Aurobindo fell seriously ill, he stopped, and began to look for another way.

1905 was a watershed year, the British Government partitioned the Bengal state and instituted public repression. This event burst forth the anger of the public. The general climate was conducive for the rise of Nationalism. Protest meetings were held all over the country and a mass agitation was launched in Bengal.  Sri Aurobindo shifted to Kolkata, Bengal then capital of British India, the second most important city of the Empire after London, and the seat of Indian nationalism and politics. Sri Aurobindo fully plunged into the freedom movement of India, the work and the goal ahead of him was his country, and its complete freedom.  At the insistence of his brother, Barin, he started a party called Yugantar, meaning “End of an era”. Its purpose was to preach revolt and denial of British rule. Till now he was at the service of the Baroda State, though he wanted to leave earlier, but Sayaji Rao persuaded him for an arrangement of a year of leave without pay. Bengal National College was founded in 1906 with the idea of promoting Science and Technology as a part of the Self-rule industrial movement, the organization still exists as a premium institute of learning. Sri Aurobindo was appointed as the principal of the college, though at a fraction of the salary that he was drawing earlier, he resigned from his old service.

In 1906, the nationalist leader, Bipin Chandra Pal, started the daily Bande Mataram and Sri Aurobindo soon became its chief editor, though his name was not printed, to avoid prosecution. Overnight, the paper became the organ of the Nationalist Movement and a mighty force in Indian politics. The London Times complained that its articles reeked of sedition but were so cleverly worded that no action could be taken. An attempt was made to prosecute Sri Aurobindo for sedition in July 1907, but the charges could not be proved, and he was acquitted. But this attempt for sedition pushed Sri Aurobindo to the forefront and made him widely popular as a leader, till then he had managed to work from background.

In the meantime, differences of policy and approach were building up between the moderates and the nationalists in Indian Politics. Sri Aurobindo wanted complete freedom for his country, a dream that many were incapable of dreaming at that time. He strongly felt that the political power should not be concentrated in the hands of moderates for that would significantly delay the awakening of the country. A historic session of the Indian National Congress was held in Surat, Gujarat. Sri Aurobindo, working behind the scenes, was instrumental in creating the chasm between two parts of the Congress, for the progress of India. The whole country was galvanized by a nationalistic sprit; the people awakened to the need of complete independence of India.

Amid this turmoil, around January 1908, Sri Aurobindo met a yogi, Vishnu Bhaskar Lele. Lele asked Sri Aurobindo to remain in seclusion for three days. Sri Aurobindo describes his experience:
“It was my great debt to Lele that he showed me this. ‘Sit in meditation,’ he said, ‘but do not think, look only at your mind; you will see thoughts coming into it; before they can enter throw them away from you till your mind is capable of entire silence.’ … I did not think of either questioning the truth or the possibility, I simply sat down and did it. In a moment my mind became silent as a windless air on a high mountain summit and then I saw a thought and then another thought coming in a concrete way from outside; I flung them away before they could enter and take hold of the brain and in three days I was free.”

In three days, Sri Aurobindo had achieved the silent mind which deepened into an experience of the Silent Brahman Consciousness. When he had to address an important meeting, he found his mind calm and blank. Lele asked him to bow before the audience as Narayana and all will be well. When it came to the moment, Sri Aurobindo found that someone else spoke through him. And thus, it was for the rest of his life. Everything, whether writing, speaking or even the most intense political activity, was done from the Silent Brahman Consciousness. This incident was another turning point in Sri Aurobindo's spiritual life. He began listening to a Voice within, that he now had no need for any further instructions or an external Guru. For the next major spiritual experience of Sri Aurobindo, the Divine had a very different setting—the prison cell of Alipore Prison in Kolkata.

The atmosphere in Bengal was tense. The British Government had let loose repressive measures to crush all resistance. In this charged atmosphere, an unsuccessful attempt was made on the life of British Magistrate, when two Bengali youths threw a bomb at his horse-drawn carriage. Immediately the police carried out raids at the Manicktolla Gardens, a family property of Sri Aurobindo, where many revolutionaries were undergoing training. Sri Aurobindo was also arrested from his house in Kolkata on an early morning. He was imprisoned and, for a long time, kept in a small cell in solitary confinement in Alipore Prison, an area in Kolkata – it was May 1908.

One of the historic trials of the Indian freedom movement began. There were 49 accused and 206 witnesses. 400 documents were filed, and 5,000 exhibits were produced, consisting of bombs, revolvers, acid, etc. The judge, C. B. Beechcroft, had been a fellow student of Sri Aurobindo at Cambridge. The case for Sri Aurobindo was taken up by C. R. Das. The trial lasted for one full year. At the end, C. R. Das addressed the court in these ringing words:

“My appeal to you is this: that long after the controversy is hushed in silence, long after this turmoil, the agitation ceases, long after he is dead and gone, he will be looked upon as the poet of patriotism, as the prophet of nationalism and the lover of humanity. Long after he is dead and gone his words will be echoed and re-echoed not only in India, but across distant seas and lands. Therefore I say that the man in his position is not only standing before the bar of this Court but before the bar of the High Court of History.”
Sri Aurobindo’s cell in Alipore Jail

Sri Aurobindo was found not guilty and acquitted in May 1909. But this one year was a very important period in Sri Aurobindo's life, as it was a period of intense Sadhana when he experienced Krishna as the Immanent Divine. He had a series of spiritual experiences in the prison, which made him aware of his true work and destiny on this earth. He received guidance from Swami Vivekananda in the occult plane, for a brief but important period, till he himself understood what he had to do. After he came out, he attended a meeting at Uttar Para at the outskirts of Kolkata. where Sri Aurobindo, publicly spoke about his spiritual realisations in prison, and the work ahead of him. After his release, Sri Aurobindo re-entered the political field with a new vision and purpose. India's freedom was necessary to rise to greatness. He declared:

“India is rising. She does not rise as other countries do, for self or when she is strong, to trample on the weak. She is rising to shed the eternal light entrusted to her over the world. India has always existed for humanity and not for herself and it is for humanity and not for herself that she must be great.”

He started two weeklies: the Karmayogin in English and the Dharma in Bengali. But the air was full of rumors of an impending arrest. The view of the British Government was clearly expressed in what Lord Minto wrote about Sri Aurobindo: “I can only repeat ... that he is the most dangerous man we now have to reckon with”.

One day, when Sri Aurobindo was sitting in the Karmayogin office, news came that the Government intended to arrest him. Immediately, there was an agitated discussion all around. Sri Aurobindo sat calm and unmoving and heard a distinct voice telling him, “Go to Chandernagore.”, which was a French enclave in Bengal , and the British police could not directly arrest him there. Sri Aurobindo went straight to the Ganges river and boarded a boat for Chandernagore. By some miracle he could avoid the ever-watchful eyes of the police detectives who were always tracking. There Sri Aurobindo stayed in hiding; he changed his place of hiding a few times to avoid the detectives. Soon he received another 'adesh' (Divine Command) to go to Pondicherry. Sri Aurobindo remarked later: “I could not question. It was Sri Krishna's Adesh. I had to obey. Later I found it was for the Ashram, for the Yogic work.”  To reach Pondicherry he had to take a ship from Kolkata, which meant that he had to come back to British area. He came back to Kolkata under assumed identity, reached the port, got a fit certificate from British Doctor, and started his journey in a French Ship as the British would have no jurisdiction over a foreign vessel. There were some very anxious moments. His escape to Pondicherry itself can be made into a full-length film. He had already sent a couple of his trusted assistants to Pondicherry to find support and a place for his stay there. He reached there on 4th April 1910.

Sri Aurobindo's work in the political field had come to an end. He lit the fire of freedom in the mind of the people, the country had awakened to the call of the Mother, and India’s freedom was inevitable. He felt it was now more important to see what India would do with that freedom and what man would do with his future. It was for this work that Sri Aurobindo sailed for Pondicherry to start the most important chapter of his earthly life.
All are invited to join us for the following virtual events taking place via Zoom video and teleconferencing calls.

Aspiration for the Divine – Tuesdays, 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm Pacific Time

Savitri Reading - Thursdays, 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm Pacific Time

Readings from The Mother by Sri Aurobindo - Saturdays,
4:30 pm- 6:00 pm Pacific Time

Click here for the Zoom Meeting details.
Introducing the Podcast

Towards the Future

Sri Aurobindo came to tell the world of the beauty of the future that must be realised.
He came to give not a hope but a certitude of the splendour towards which the world moves. The world is not an unfortunate accident, it is a marvel which moves towards its expression.
The world needs the certitude of the beauty of the future. And Sri Aurobindo has given that assurance.

27 November 1971
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 15

Sri Aurobindo does not belong to the past nor to history.
Sri Aurobindo is the Future advancing towards its realisation.
Thus we must shelter the eternal youth required for a speedy advance, in order not to become laggards on the way.

2 April 1967
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 5

Sri Aurobindo is an emanation of the Supreme who came on earth to announce the manifestation of a new race and a new world: the Supramental.
Let us prepare for it in all sincerity and eagerness.

20 June 1972
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 19

… even if all smashed; I would look beyond the smash to the new creation.

10 August 1933
Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 35, Page 209

One more step towards Eternity.

15 August 1972
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 20

The Five Dreams
(A message given by Sri Aurobindo to All India Radio, on the eve of India’s Independence.)

August 15th, 1947 is the birthday of free India. It marks for her the end of an old era, the beginning of a new age. But we can also make it by our life and acts as a free nation an important date in a new age opening for the whole world, for the political, social, cultural and spiritual future of humanity.

August 15th is my own birthday and it is naturally gratifying to me that it should have assumed this vast significance. I take this coincidence, not as a fortuitous accident, but as the sanction and seal of the Divine Force that guides my steps on the work with which I began life, the beginning of its full fruition. Indeed, on this day I can watch almost all the world-movements which I hoped to see fulfilled in my lifetime, though then they looked like impracticable dreams, arriving at fruition or on their way to achievement. In all these movements free India may well play a large part and take a leading position.

The first of these dreams was a revolutionary movement which would create a free and united India. India today is free but she has not achieved unity. At one moment it almost seemed as if in the very act of liberation she would fall back into the chaos of separate States which preceded the British conquest. But fortunately it now seems probable that this danger will be averted and a large and powerful, though not yet a complete union will be established. Also, the wisely drastic policy of the Constituent Assembly has made it probable that the problem of the depressed classes will be solved without schism or fissure. But the old communal division into Hindus and Muslims seems now to have hardened into a permanent political division of the country. It is to be hoped that this settled fact will not be accepted as settled for ever or as anything more than a temporary expedient. For if it lasts, India may be seriously weakened, even crippled: civil strife may remain always possible, possible even a new invasion and foreign conquest. India’s internal development and prosperity may be impeded, her position among the nations weakened, her destiny impaired or even frustrated. This must not be; the partition must go. Let us hope that that may come about naturally, by an increasing recognition of the necessity not only of peace and concord but of common action, by the practice of common action and the creation of means for that purpose. In this way unity may finally come about under whatever form — the exact form may have a pragmatic but not a fundamental importance. But by whatever means, in whatever way, the division must go; unity must and will be achieved, for it is necessary for the greatness of India’s future.
Another dream was for the resurgence and liberation of the peoples of Asia and her return to her great role in the progress of human civilization. Asia has arisen; large parts are now quite free or are at this moment being liberated: its other still subject or partly subject parts are moving through whatever struggles towards freedom. Only a little has to be done and that will be done today or tomorrow. There India has her part to play and has begun to play it with an energy and ability which already indicate the measure of her possibilities and the place she can take in the council of the nations.

The third dream was a world-union forming the outer basis of a fairer, brighter and nobler life for all mankind. That unification of the human world is under way; there is an imperfect initiation organised but struggling against tremendous difficulties. But the momentum is there and it must inevitably increase and conquer. Here too India has begun to play a prominent part and, if she can develop that larger statesmanship which is not limited by the present facts and immediate possibilities but looks into the future and brings it nearer, her presence may make all the difference between a slow and timid and a bold and swift development. A catastrophe may intervene and interrupt or destroy what is being done, but even then the final result is sure. For unification is a necessity of Nature, an inevitable movement. Its necessity for the nations is also clear, for without it the freedom of the small nations may be at any moment in peril and the life even of the large and powerful nations insecure. The unification is therefore to the interests of all, and only human imbecility and stupid selfishness can prevent it; but these cannot stand for ever against the necessity of Nature and the Divine Will. But an outward basis is not enough; there must grow up an international spirit and outlook, international forms and institutions must appear, perhaps such developments as dual or multilateral citizenship, willed interchange or voluntary fusion of cultures. Nationalism will have fulfilled itself and lost its militancy and would no longer find these things incompatible with self-preservation and the integrality of its outlook. A new spirit of oneness will take hold of the human race.

Another dream, the spiritual gift of India to the world has already begun. India’s spirituality is entering Europe and America in an ever increasing measure. That movement will grow; amid the disasters of the time more and more eyes are turning towards her with hope and there is even an increasing resort not only to her teachings, but to her psychic and spiritual practice.

The final dream was a step in evolution which would raise man to a higher and larger consciousness and begin the solution of the problems which have perplexed and vexed him since he first began to think and to dream of individual perfection and a perfect society. This is still a personal hope and an idea, an ideal which has begun to take hold both in India and in the West on forward-looking minds. The difficulties in the way are more formidable than in any other field of endeavor, but difficulties were made to be overcome and if the Supreme Will is there, they will be overcome. Here too, if this evolution is to take place, since it must proceed through a growth of the spirit and the inner consciousness, the initiative can come from India and, although the scope must be universal, the central movement may be hers.

Such is the content which I put into this date of India’s liberation; whether or how far this hope will be justified depends upon the new and free India.

14 August 1947
Sri Aurobindo, CWSA, Volume 36, Page 478
The Renaissance in India

… The national mind turned a new eye on its past culture, reawoke to its sense and import, but also at the same time saw it in relation to modern knowledge and ideas. Out of this awakening vision and impulse the Indian renaissance is arising, and that must determine its future tendency. The recovery of the old spiritual knowledge and experience in all its splendour, depth and fullness is its first, most essential work; the flowing of this spirituality into new forms of philosophy, literature, art, science and critical knowledge is the second; an original dealing with modern problems in the light of the Indian spirit and the endeavour to formulate a greater synthesis of a spiritualised society is the third and most difficult. Its success on these three lines will be the measure of its help to the future of humanity. …

Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 20, Page 15
The Ideal of Human Unity

… For it is necessary, if the subjective age of humanity is to produce its best fruits, that the nations should become conscious not only of their own but of each other’s souls and learn to respect, to help and to profit, not only economically and intellectually but subjectively and spiritually, by each other.

Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 25, Page 40
The Divine Superman

This is thy work and the aim of thy being and that for which thou art here, to become the divine superman and a perfect vessel of the Godhead. All else that thou hast to do, is only a making thyself ready or a joy by the way or a fall from thy purpose. But the goal is this and the purpose is this and not in power of the way and the joy by the way but in the joy of the goal is the greatness and the delight of thy being. The joy of the way is because that which is drawing thee is also with thee on thy path and the power to climb was given thee that thou mightest mount to thy own summits.

If thou hast a duty, this is thy duty; if thou ask what shall be thy aim, let this be thy aim; if thou demand pleasure, there is no greater joy, for all other joy is broken or limited, the joy of a dream or the joy of a sleep or the joy of self-forgetting. But this is the joy of thy whole being. For if thou say what is my being, this is thy being, the Divine, and all else is only its broken or its perverse appearance. If thou seek the Truth, this is the Truth. Place it before thee and in all things be faithful to it.

Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 12, Page 150
The Best Homage

Open to Sri Aurobindo’s consciousness and let it transform your life.

26 September 1971
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 14

The best homage we can pay to Sri Aurobindo is to prepare for the advent of the Supramental race.

November 1972
The Mother, CWM Volume 13, Page 15
Sadhana of the Body

In fact the physical being has a simplicity and even a goodwill (which is not always very enlightened, far from it), but still a simplicity and goodwill which puts it in a closer relation with the psychic than the passions of the vital and the pretensions of the mind.

The Mother, CWM Volume 6, Page 6

The body has a wonderful capacity of adaptation and endurance. It is fit to do so many more things than one can usually imagine. If instead of the ignorant and despotic masters that govern it, it is ruled by the central truth of the being, one will be surprised at what it is capable of doing. Calm and quiet, strong and poised, it will at every minute put forth the effort that is demanded of it, for it will have learnt to find rest in action, to recuperate through contact with the universal forces the energies it spends consciously and usefully.

The Mother, CWM Volume 5, Page 396

The physical sadhana is to bring down the higher light and power and peace and Ananda into the body consciousness, to get rid of the inertia of the physical, the doubts, limitations, external tendency of the physical mind, the defective energies of the vital physical (nerves) and bring in instead the true consciousness there so that the physical may be a perfect instrument for the Divine Will.

Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 31, Page 367

The supramental perfection means that the body becomes conscious, is filled with consciousness and that as this is the Truth consciousness all its actions, functionings etc. become by the power of the consciousness within it harmonious, luminous, right and true —without ignorance or disorder.

Sri Aurobindo, CWSA Volume 28, Page 305

This transfiguration is earth’s due to heaven:
A mutual debt binds man to the Supreme:
His nature we must put on as he put ours;
We are sons of God and must be even as he:
His human portion, we must grow divine,
Our life is a paradox with God for key.

Savitri, Page 67,
Book 1: The Book Beginnings,
Canto 4: The Secret Knowledge
Sri Aurobindo’s Humor

Nirodbaran: Everybody seems to be happy to find me shifted from the “timber throne” to the Dispensary, and says, “Now is the right man in the right place”!

Sri Aurobindo: Men are rational idiots. The timber-godown made you make a great progress and you made the timber-godown make a great progress. I only hope it will be maintained by your successor.

Nirodbaran’s Correspondence with Sri Aurobindo, Volume 1, Page 110
Empowering Lines from Savitri

I saw the Omnipotent’s flaming pioneers
Over the heavenly verge which turns towards life
Come crowding down the amber stairs of birth;
Forerunners of a divine multitude,
Out of the paths of the morning star they came
Into the little room of mortal life.
I saw them cross the twilight of an age,
The sun-eyed children of a marvellous dawn,
The great creators with wide brows of calm,
The massive barrier-breakers of the world
And wrestlers with destiny in her lists of will,
The labourers in the quarries of the gods,
The messengers of the Incommunicable,
The architects of immortality.

Savitri, Page 342,
Book 3: The Book of the Divine Mother,
Canto 4: The Vision and the Boon


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