Mar 27, 2015

Oxford University bars Dr Subramanian Swamy & Rajiv Malhotra

[So much for freedom of speech in Oxford University, UK! This reminds us very much of the double standards in Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry. Peter Heehs is made the mascot of freedom of speech by the Ashram Trustees while Dr. R.Y. Deshpande and Radhikaranjan Das are summarily dismissed from the Ashram School for being frank and outspoken!Bireshwar]

Oxford University bars Dr Subramanian Swamy & Rajiv Malhotra
Cancels lecture on "Indias Economy" & "Revisionist History"

The Human Rights Act 1998 incorporates Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights into UK law.

Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and observance.

 ‘We are stunned that a leading British University that should be championing free speech and freedom of thought, has taken such a cowardly decision.
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Mar 22, 2015

Response to Jayantilal Parekh’s Article – by An Irrational Ashramite

Jayantilal Parekh’s article “The Sri Aurobindo Ashram and its Administration” posted on the Well-wishers’ site is rather outdated. It applies perhaps to the first two decades of Ashram life after the Mother’s passing away in 1973, but certainly not to the next two decades, and especially to the present situation. Given the undeniable fact that the Ashram is going through a process of deterioration of values and motivations, we can hardly keep justifying all that happens here under the name of spirituality and Integral Yoga! How long are we going to repeat that “the Ashram is the cradle of a new world” and “not a religious monastery” in order to justify our human frailties? The question therefore is of the proportion of sadhana and human weaknesses, of when and how much their precarious balance tilts to the wrong side rather than a clear definition of what exactly qualifies us for the Ashram life. What I mean is that everybody in the wide world knows that “staying in the Ashram despite human weaknesses so that one day we can outgrow them” is different from “staying in the Ashram in order to fulfil our physical propensities and make the best of the facilities provided by the institution for that very purpose”.
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Mar 10, 2015

S. Gurumurthy speech at IIT Bombay Hindustan Times Avenue 2010 (Full)

Gurumurthy on how economics is connected with culture and why Indians should think for themselves instead of aping the West. He mentions an incident in Sri Aurobindo's life -- check 49th minute of his talk.
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Mar 4, 2015

The Colonial Native Vs The Hindu – by Vamadeva Shastri

A defeatist tendency exists in the psyche of modern Indians perhaps unparalleled in any other country today. An inner conflict bordering on a civil war rages in the minds of the country’s elite. The main effort of its cultural leaders appears to be to pull the country down or remake it in a foreign image, as if little Indian and certainly nothing Hindu was worthy of preserving or even reforming.
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Feb 26, 2015

Sri Aurobindo's Marriage (Part 2) -- by Raman Reddy (republished)

Heehs then concludes on the basis of this evidence that it was “the usual desire for gratification” that was presumably a factor in Sri Aurobindo’s decision to get married. Now is this scholarship or speculation? I thought historians base themselves on concrete evidence and not on what imaginary characters say in Vedantic commentaries. If the teacher in the commentary speaks as if he has had marital relations, does it prove that Sri Aurobindo went through the same experience in real life? Extend that argument to other authors in their respective fields and you can come to ridiculous conclusions. How many novelists would be accused of committing murder, robbery and rape just because they have convincingly described them in their crime thrillers! [extract]

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Feb 22, 2015

Evicted sisters observe token fast

The Hindu
Sunday, February 22, 2015

PUDUCHERRY: The sisters, who have been evicted from Sri Aurobindo Ashram-run premises, along with members of civil society organisations on Saturday observed a token fast in front of the BSNL office here demanding the Centre to direct the Puducherry government to take over the administration of the Ashram.
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Feb 21, 2015

Hunger Strike on Darshan Day

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Feb 18, 2015

AVOID GROUPISM – by Raman Reddy

[The following letter of Raman Reddy to the Golden Chain magazine (run by the alumni association of the Ashram School) was published in the August issue of 2005. We republish it here because of its relevance in the present context and the number of criticisms that have been raised on our blog against the stand taken by the Golden Chain Fraternity in the current crisis at Sri Aurobindo Ashram. Readers should be informed that Reddy dissociated himself from the magazine after the directors of the Golden Chain decided to become mere tools in the hands of the Ashram Trust instead of taking their own independent stand in the matter. So much for “the hero warriors” of “the great battle of the future” that they were supposed to become! – Bireshwar Choudhury]
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Feb 12, 2015

The Golden Chain Fraternity – Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust Nexus – by An Alumnus-Disciple

It is the self-regarding desire-driven leap of faith of alumni and Ashramites and would-be Ashramites that endorses SAAT’s administration as that of the Mother Herself. And in return for their defence of its assessments, policies and actions, SAAT certifies them as truly committed to the Mother and Her Ashram, hence its legitimate inmates or fit to be admitted as inmates, and admits their children to its SAICE. The criteria Sri Aurobindo and the Mother demanded for admission as sadhaks to Their Ashram have thus been clearly overridden. – Extract

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Feb 5, 2015

Sectarianism or Loyalty ─ by Nolini Kanto Gupta

MODERN culture demands that one should not be bound to one creed or dogma, swear by one principle or rule of life or be led blindly by one man. Truth, it is said, has many facets and the human being is also not a Cyclops, a one-eyed creature. To fix oneself to one mode of seeing and believing and even behaving is to be narrow, restricted, sectarian. One must be able to see many standpoints, appreciate views of variance with one's own, appraise the relativity of all standards. Not to be able to do so leads to obscurantism and fanaticism.
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Jan 29, 2015

Comment on "Who Represents the Ashram?" – by a Devotee and Disciple

If anyone has to be blamed for the possibility of a government intervention, it is the Trustees themselves. First, they behave with an absolute authority wherein no one has any right to question their decisions. Then they go about systematically diluting the work of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother by turning the Ashram into a free-for-all place where anybody who can please them can take all the benefits. By doing this and by constantly finding legal and police solutions, they have acted worse than government officials and attracted such forces into the temple of the Lord.
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