30 Dec 2015

The Right and Left in India - Dr. David Frawley - India Inspires Talks


Published on Nov 26, 2015
In this Talk, Dr. Frawley clearly explains the intellectual roots of "The Right" and "The Left" in India. He states that in India, the political terminology of right and left is defined by Marxists, who like to call anyone that opposes them right-wing or fascists. According to their view anything traditionally Hindu would have to be right-wing on principle, just as only their views are deemed progressive, even if supporting Stalinist tactics. This means that in India such subjects as Yoga, natural healing, vegetarianism and animal rights are all automatically right-wing because they are causes of the Hindu mind, with antecedents in ancient Indian culture. Great Hindu yogis and sages from Shankaracharya to Sri Aurobindo are classified by modern Marxists as right-wing, if not fascist.

However, the Indian left is mainly the Old Left, emphasizing a failed communist ideology and state economic planning such as dominated Eastern Europe in the decades following World War II and took it nowhere. It wreaked the same havoc with the economy and educational systems of India and kept the country backward. Indian communists are among the few in the world that still proudly honor Stalin and Mao (while warning of the danger of Hindu fundamentalism)! 
  ...full text...

19 Dec 2015

Tarak Fateh - Partition of India and the forgotten question of Baluchistan


Published on Dec 7, 2015
While India is known to have taken birth in 1947 as a modern state, the civilisational ethos of India has survived for ages. Mr. Fatah proposes the need to develop a grand narrative of the Indian civilisation that extends beyond the geographical boundaries of the Indian Territory. Narrating the horror of the continuing conflict in Baluchistan, Tarek Fatah supports the cause of Baloch nationalists to be liberated from the control of Pakistan.

Writer, Broadcaster, a Secular and Liberal Activist. Tarek Fatah is a scholar par excellence with command over a range of subjects.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx
  ...full text...

15 Dec 2015

The Necessity of Proper Procedures in Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Baikunth

It is therefore high time that some proper procedures are introduced in the current administrative setup of the Ashram without, at the same time, paralysing it with procedures as we see in various Government institutions. It is true we have made a parody of democracy in our country, but that cannot be a justification for not introducing basic democratic structures in the Ashram. It is also true that spirituality and democracy may be incompatible, but in the present predicament of the Ashram when the Integral Yoga has become an excuse to enjoy the ordinary life at other people’s expense, it is time to put in place a few checks and balances on the unlimited powers of the Trustees to prevent the most arrogant human errors in the name of divine justice. [read full article below]
  ...full text...

24 Nov 2015

The Mahabharata in Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Sampdas

This has reference to an interesting write-up titled The Bhishmacharya Complex in Sri Aurobindo Ashram (posted on this site on 25 October, 2015). The write-up has touched the crux of the matter; to me and a large number of followers of the Mother, the legend of the Mahabharata looks as being re-enacted at the Ashram, with variations in content and scope. While the ancient epic is largely a legend and a symbol, when we ponder on the present state of affairs in the Ashram, it looks that today’s Mahabharata is for real.
  ...full text...

13 Nov 2015

Peter Heehs on the Crisis in Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Bireshwar Choudury

Peter Heehs says that the crisis in the Ashram can be solved by offering career “advancement prospects” to the senior sadhaks who are unhappy with the present administration of the Ashram. The Ashram Trust could also establish daughter Ashrams which could provide “new job opportunities for young men anxious to obtain leadership positions upon finding themselves blocked by a lack of available positions, with older men holding onto their positions for life”! [read full article below]
  ...full text...

6 Nov 2015

On the Visit of BJP President Amit Shah to Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Sampdas

It is both comical and ironical that the Ashram Trustees first took the BJP President, Sri Amit Shah, to the Samadhi of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and then to the Archives Cold Storage, where their manuscripts are  preserved. It is ironical because the very supporters of the denigration of Sri Aurobindo posed as earnest followers of the Master in front of powerful politicians. At the same time, it is comical that those who insolently tamper with the writings of Sri Aurobindo are introduced as the ones who reverentially preserve his writings. [read full article below]
  ...full text...

25 Oct 2015

The Bhishmacharya Complex – by A Concerned Ashramite

The situation of the old guard of the Ashram is the same as that of Bhishmacharya, who was unable to use his mighty bow in the service of dharma and was forced to fight on the side of adharma with an anguished conscience. This inability and helplessness to stand for the truth, this forced loyalty towards the powers that be, and the apparently virtuous stand which actually facilitates falsehood is what I call the Bhishmacharya complex!
[read full article below]

  ...full text...

19 Oct 2015

Culture wars – By Swapan Dasgupta

It's more a clash of lifestyles than a battle of ideas

In 1961, in a monograph woefully difficult to locate today, the Chicago sociologist Edward Shils studied the predicament of the Indian intellectual in the high noon of the Nehruvian era. His approach was sympathetic but his larger conclusions were not terribly flattering to a community that saw itself as the vanguard of India’s journey to modernity. 

Despite its near-uninterrupted Brahmanical tradition of scholarship and sustained exposure to the West, India, Shils felt, “has not yet developed the traditions which are essential to intellectual life.”
  ...full text...

12 Oct 2015

The flawed logic of the award-returnees – By Swapan Dasgupta

Let me state at the outset that I have a great deal of respect and admiration for writer Nayantara Sahgal who I have had the privilege of knowing for the past 37 years. I have also had very convivial conversations with Ashok Vajpeyi, poet and culture apparatchik, during various literary festivals over the years. I may not have shared all their political likes and dislikes — and Sahgal has occasionally teased me about my “wrong politics”— but there is more to life than common voting intentions, or so I hope. 

Therefore, when Sahgal takes it upon herself to publicly disavow her Sahitya Akademi award, a gesture that Vajpeyi and some others have emulated, the least I can do is to seriously examine the rationale of their protest.
  ...full text...

27 Sept 2015

Indians and Westerners in Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Baikunth

I see a silver lining in the clouds in those few Westerners who dared to stand by Sri Aurobindo at the expense of their national pride and ego. For the true test of the World Unity that all of us aspire for, is not in how we sing and dance and hold our hands together in a symbolic circle when all is well, but in how we rise above national feeling and racial prejudice when differences arise between people from various nations and cultures. Until we can do so, the project of the New World, which Sri Aurobindo and the Mother wanted us to build, will never take off. We will remain on the ground imagining that we are flying high in the sky! [read full article below]  
  ...full text...

13 Sept 2015

BJP President Amit Shah’s Visit to Sri Aurobindo Ashram – by Bireshwar Choudhury

The Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, while pretending to be above politics, has taken full political mileage from the recent visit of the BJP President Amit Shah to the Ashram on 25 August, 2015. A casual bystander reported to us on how the Trustees accompanied by their Secretary Matriprasad Satyamurthy (the Ashram’s best sweet-talker and accomplished sycophant) went out of their way to please Mr. Shah, fawning over him every second of the thirty-five minutes flat he spent in the Ashram main building.
  ...full text...

6 Sept 2015

Why India must embrace Modi like the Hindus of America – David Frawley

It has been remarked how well Indians do outside of India. It could also be said how well Hindus do outside of India, and additionally how well Hindu-based teachings like yoga do outside of India.

The Hindu-American community has been rated as one of the most affluent and educated religious communities in America over the last more than ten years, far above the dominant Christian population. Perhaps more importantly, Hindus have been able to maintain their traditions and their families better than other religious groups.
  ...full text...

29 Aug 2015

Battle for Indian History: How to fight it, and how not (part 3) – Virendra Parekh

3 – A history cast in a mould

The shoddiness and incompetence visible in history books written by the so-called eminent historians are not due to individual carelessness or lack of information. For communists, the use of any history is to prove their dogma. The moving power of communism is a deep-rooted self-alienation and its main ally is cultural and spiritual illiteracy. The Leftist writers have done their best to propagate these ‘values’ through their books on history.

Their histories are set to a formula: Ancient India must be presented as a land of discord, a land in the grip of a social and political system marked by injustice, extreme inequalities and oppression leading to perpetual social tensions.
  ...full text...

22 Aug 2015

Battle for Indian History: How to fight it, and how not (part 2) – Virendra Parekh

2 – Guidelines intended to misguide

British historians, nationalist leaders of freedom struggle, Aligarh school of historians and Marxist activists passing for historians, all had some purpose other than presentation of colourless truth in their treatment of historical material. Indian history which is intellectually fashionable, politically correct and taught in schools and colleges comprises lies, half-truths and distortions emanating from the all these sources.

The seed is contained in the NCERT guidelines for history books announced in 1982. These are full of recommendations for telling lies to our children, or for not telling them the truth at all. The guidelines say, quite commendably, that ‘the term Aryan cannot be used as a racial category’. However, the Aryan Invasion Theory, baseless and divisive as it is, is to be retained faithfully.
  ...full text...

14 Aug 2015

Supreme Court considers probe into Aurobindo ashram harassment allegations

Daily Mail Online India
By Harish V. Nair
Published: 22:39 GMT, 13 August 2015 | Updated: 00:14 GMT, 14 August 2015

At a time when several self-proclaimed godmen, godwomen and ashrams are making news for wrong reasons, the Supreme Court has hinted that it might set up a commission headed by a retired high court judge to probe complaints of sexual harassment filed by women and child inmates of the famous Aurobindo Ashram in Puducherry against its members. 

The panel may also probe several other irregularities, including misappropriation of funds.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India H.L. Dattu said this on Thursday after hearing suggestions made by Gopal Subramaniam, counsel for the ashram. 
  ...full text...

Battle for Indian History: How to fight it, and how not (part 1) – Virendra Parekh

1 – A history in service of rulers

Indian history is a battlefield. Hindu nationalists fight off invading colonial canards and Marxist mumbo jumbo of materialistic interpretation of history. Secularists, alarmed by the saffron surge, sound shrill warnings against communalization of history writing. Stalinist activists masquerading as historians girdle up to resist intrusion of sundries (i.e. anyone outside their clique) onto their turf in media, academia and research institutions. Muslim scholars resist attempts to portray Islam and Muslims as villains. Academic historians raise their hands in despair at politicization of the past to serve current needs. And the new generation just wonders why there is so much fuss over an age that is dead and gone.
  ...full text...

5 Aug 2015

Sri Aurobindo was a Terrorist, says Peter Heehs – by Krish Patwardhan

Sri Aurobindo was a Terrorist, says Peter Heehs, in his book Nationalism, Terrorism, Communalism – Essays in Modern Indian History, published by Oxford University Press in 1998. The fourth impression of the book was published in 2011 and the present administration of Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry, has been quietly sitting back enjoying the vilification of Sri Aurobindo by an American inmate of the Ashram. 
  ...full text...

27 Jul 2015

Reply to Benimadhav Mohanty – by Bireshwar Chowdhury

Yesterday Benimadhav Mohanty took a nasty swipe at a friend of mine who (along with many others) had the gumption to take on the Ashram Trustees when they shamelessly supported the denigration of Sri Aurobindo in his own Ashram by Peter Heehs.  As we all know, the crisis in Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry, still continues, and perhaps by the end of this month the Supreme Court of India will give a major judgment in the Enquiry Case pending against the Ashram Trust. It is in this backdrop that I am replying to Benimadhav Mohanty who made the silly accusation of “self-aggrandisement” on those who have stood up to the Trust instead of whimpering down like puppies, as most Ashramites have done, to the insidious threats of the Ashram Trustees
  ...full text...

22 Jul 2015

Campaign to censor Rajiv Malhotra proves that Dinanath Batra was right – by Govind Nishar

The attack against Rajiv Malhotra is being portrayed as a kind of revenge for the court case against Wendy Doniger’s book “The Hindus” that led to its withdrawal from the Indian market. The implicit assumption behind this view is the hypothesis that had Doniger’s book not been withdrawn, Rajiv Malhotra’s enemies in the US & India would have rolled out the red carpet for his books. No proposition could be further from the truth.

The coordinated attack against Malhotra, initiated by followers of Sheldon Pollock & led by Richard Fox Young, an internet troll consumed by an anti-Malhotra obsession, has come at this time solely to prevent the launch of his forthcoming book “The Battle for Sanskrit” which has the explosive potential to seriously hurt future funding & thus endangering the work of those who Malhotra refers to as “American Orientalists” and who he has exposed as seeking to dominate global discourse about the ancient traditions of the Hindus.
  ...full text...

19 Jul 2015

Indian Culture and Hinduism – by Prof. Kittu Reddy

Indian culture has been from the beginning and has remained a spiritual, an inward-looking religio-philosophical culture. Everything else in it has derived from that one central and original peculiarity or has been in some way dependent on it or subordinate to it; even external life has been subjected to the inward look of the spirit.

(Sri Aurobindo, CWSA, Vol. 20, The Renaissance of India, p. 108)

It is this inward-looking religio-philosophical culture which goes by the name of Hinduism.
  ...full text...

12 Jul 2015

Sri Aurobindo and the Hindu-Muslim problem – By Prof. Kittu Reddy

There is widespread belief among a certain section of intellectuals and historians – both Indian and abroad – that Sri Aurobindo was responsible for the partition of India and the consequent blood letting and other problems that followed. The reason given to justify this position is that Sri Aurobindo during his active political career stressed heavily on Hinduism and on Hindu nationalism and this provoked a natural and inevitable reaction among the Muslims; this reaction led ultimately to the formation of Pakistan. [extract]
  ...full text...

7 Jul 2015

S Gurumurthy: Indians Hate Hindus

Gurumurthy on how Indian scholars have been guided and influenced by Western thinkers who did not even visit India!
  ...full text...

2 Jul 2015

Rajiv Malhotra on Hinduism (2)

Freedom to Choose a Personal Path (Svadharma)

In most dharmic traditions, each individual has a unique ‘svadharma’ (personal dharma) or purpose in this world. This is based on his or her ‘svabhava’ (character) as shaped by past karma and gunas and on the context or circumstances of the person’s life. Buddhists have the notion of’upaya’ (skilful means), which becomes the basis for mutual respect between those who are different. In the Jain tradition, principles of relative and multiple perspectives of truth, combined with the inherent uncertainty in knowledge, serve as protection against dogmas and universal absolutes. All of this demonstrates that dharmic spiritual practices are diverse, eclectic, and adaptable by communities, families, and individuals, and for specific circumstances.
  ...full text...

25 Jun 2015

Rajiv Malhotra on Hinduism (1)

Freedom from History and Institutional Authority

In Hindu traditions, the state of consciousness of Jesus is achievable by each one of us and is not dependent on belief in a specific deity or historical event or institution. Nor do we have to die in order to achieve this state of consciousness; we can do so while living in this world, just as Christ presumably did. ‘Dhyana’, ‘jnana’, ‘tantra’ and ‘bhakti’ are some of the do-it-yourself methods and techniques that do not rely on external authority. There is no church, pontiff or central authority. Rather, numerous incarnations, prophets, saints and spiritual methods over several millennia have kept the traditions alive with fresh interpretations. As Sri Aurobindo puts it:
  ...full text...

15 Jun 2015

Hijacking Sri Aurobindo – by Rajesh Patel

The religious culture which now goes by the name of Hinduism … gave itself no name, because it set itself no sectarian limits; it claimed no universal adhesion, asserted no sole infallible dogma, set up no single narrow path or gate of salvation; it was less a creed or cult than a continuously enlarging tradition of the Godward endeavour of the human spirit. An immense many-sided and many-staged provision for a spiritual self-building and self-finding, it had some right to speak of itself by the only name it knew, the eternal religion, Sanatana Dharma…. (Sri Aurobindo, 1919)

Of recent years there has been an academic controversy amongst the more scholarly followers of Sri Aurobindo on the subject of whether he should be considered a Hindu and whether his teachings could be classed as Hinduism.
  ...full text...

7 Jun 2015

Did Sri Aurobindo Reject Hinduism? – Certainly not!

It is to Dara [1] that Sri Aurobindo wrote the following letter in the thirties, dissociating his Ashram from Hinduism:

The Ashram has nothing to do with Hindu religion or culture or any religion or nationality. The Truth of the Divine which is the spiritual reality behind all religions and the descent of the supramental which is not known to any religion are the sole things which will be the foundation of the work of the future.

(Bulletin, Feb 2001, p 72)
  ...full text...

1 Jun 2015

The Three Basic Ideas or the Three Fundamentals of Hinduism – Sri Aurobindo

And if we are asked, “But after all what is Hinduism, what does it teach, what does it practise, what are its common factors?” we can answer that Indian religion is founded upon three basic ideas or rather three fundamentals of a highest and widest spiritual experience. First comes the idea of the One Existence of the Veda to whom sages give different names, the One without a second of the Upanishads who is all that is and beyond all that is, the Permanent of the Buddhists, the Absolute of the Illusionists, the supreme God or Purusha of the Theists who holds in his power the soul and Nature,—in a word the Eternal, the Infinite. This is the first common foundation;
  ...full text...

26 May 2015

Let’s all be Hindu Fundamentalists – by Maria Wirth

Religious fundamentalists are on the rise and that is bad for our societies. Most people will agree on this. Yet few examine who religious fundamentalists are. Obviously, such persons would want to stick to the fundamentals of their religion. They want to live a life that is advocated in their holy books and would please their God. Now, since religious fundamentalists pose a problem, does it mean that the fundamentals of religions are bad for our societies? Let’s look at the three biggest religions:
  ...full text...

19 May 2015

Did Sri Aurobindo Lie in the Uttarpara Speech? – Extract from Jugal Kishore Mukherji’s Letter

[The following extract from Jugal Kishore Mukherji’s first letter to the Ashram Trustees in June 1986 shows that Matriprasad Satyamurthy (the present secretary of the Ashram Trust) has been colluding with Peter Heehs for a long time. Peter Heehs was then editor of the Ashram’s Archives and Research magazine in which he first published his “great discoveries” on how Sri Aurobindo was a coward, on how he played a double game with the British police, on how he lied to the public with regard to instructing his lawyer Chittaranjan Das who defended him in the Court, etc, etc. This particular extract deals with the last distortion – that Sri Aurobindo continued to give advice to Chittaranjan Das in the Alipore Bomb Trial despite what he said in the Uttarpara speech on having left everything to God during his year-long confinement in Alipore Jail! – Bireshwar Choudhury]

At times, in the pages of our Journal Archives and Research, accounts of events given by some sundry persons are made use of in order to prove Sri Aurobindo wrong!! Sri Aurobindo’s own spiritual statements are controverted and are sought to be proved false – and that, too, on the authority of our young friend MATRIPRASAD! Too strange to believe? – Yes, so is it. Let me explain. 
  ...full text...

13 May 2015

Amal Kiran on Sri Aurobindo's Adesh (republished)


[For those who have publicly displayed their spiritual insensitivity and ignorance of the facts relating to Sri Aurobindo’s life, Amal Kiran’s article should be an eye-opener. The article was first published in the Mother India issue of May 1988, pp. 305-310 and later in Aspects of Sri Aurobindo (2000), pp. 196-204. It is a rejoinder to Peter Heehs’ interpretation of the Adesh (divine command) that Sri Aurobindo received in 1910 to go from Calcutta to Chandernagore, and then from there to Pondicherry. The discussion is subtle and abstract and even Amal Kiran says that at first he “was inclined to agree broadly” with Heehs. But he changed his mind “on a closer inspection” when he realised the deeper implications of the author’s presentation of the event in the Archives & Research issue of December 1987. For the consequences of whether you agree or not with Heehs’ presentation (as also in the recent case of his book) are tremendous. Either you conclude that Sri Aurobindo ran away in fear of being arrested by the British police or that the Divine commanded him to escape in order to make him undertake in Pondicherry the much greater work of the supramental transformation, of which he was perhaps not aware at that point of time. In both cases, the outer actions remain the same, but the motivations behind become totally different.]
  ...full text...

3 May 2015

Matriprasad Satyamurthy’s Remark on a Controversial Take on Sri Aurobindo’s Life – by Bireshwar Choudhury

This is with regard to the news story titled “Bengal minister’s Aurobindo play sitting on a time bomb / Controversial Take On Guru’s Exit From Freedom Struggle” published in The Times of India (Mumbai edition) on 25 April, 2015. The controversial take is stated in the following manner:

“Did Rishi Aurobindo ‘run away’ from the freedom movement?”

“Standing behind prison bars, Hemchandra bursts out in anger: “You (Aurobindo) have saved yourself but history won’t forgive you.” In another scene, Aurobindo’s brother Barin says: “Why did I tell my brother’s survival lies only in mixing religion with politics? Little did I know he’d give up politics and take refuge in religion.”
  ...full text...

25 Apr 2015

Sampdas on Jayantilal Parekh’s Article on Sri Aurobindo Ashram

It is no surprise then that the  Wellwishers of the Ashram Trust, knowing too well which side of the bread is buttered, have no qualms about keeping quiet when Sri Aurobindo himself is derated, but take up cudgels and loudspeakers on behalf of the Trustees. The guidepost for them is that those who question the wrong actions of the Trust are necessarily heretics and their actions are blasphemous. However, on their part, they are prone to take the easy path of “we see no wrong, we hear no wrong, we speak no wrong” on the actions of the Trust. They expect that wrongs against the Divine and sadhaks be not addressed at all by chanting the rhetoric, “the Trustees can do nothing wrong and people should accept everything that they do with the non-questioning maxim of conduct that “thou shalt not think or reason or question the Trustees even if they are wrong.” Their fundamental fallacy owes to the misplaced identification of the administrative outfit of the Ashram Trust with the Ashram itself. [extract – read full article below]
  ...full text...

19 Apr 2015

Comment by an Ashram inmate who has been deeply pained by the Heehs Affair

The problem is not so much with the likes of Heehs and Doniger. Born in an alien culture, fed by the staple diet of Freudianism or else serving the cause of a militant Church, they are true to their dharma not caring about what the world may say about them. But what about us Indians who neither read nor think for themselves? Look at what happened with the Heehs issue.
  ...full text...

17 Apr 2015

“The Hindus: An Alternative History” by Wendy Doniger ― Review by Ali Sheikh

There you have it. Weird Hindu doomsdays. Sex-crazed kings. Cruel gods. Men marrying dogs. Phalluses everywhere—some erect and some flaccid. Ladies and gentlemen, we finally have an alternative history of Hinduism. And yes, left uncontested, in all likelihood these are the “insights” a whole new generation of students and researchers might learn, internalize, and cite in future scholarly works. [Extract – read full review below]
  ...full text...

12 Apr 2015

Comment on Jayantilal Parekh's article on Ashram – by Shiva

On 14th March the League of Lost Logicians a.k.a. Well Wishers of Sri Aurobindo Ashram reproduced “The Sri Aurobindo Ashram and its Administration”, an article published in Mother India in June 2001, which was “explicitly written in the backdrop of adversely critical articles that were being planted by anti-Ashram elements in the various newspapers and journals in order to malign the Ashram”, by which it means the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust (SAAT) of the day. The article, more rightly a brochure, was undoubtedly compiled-written by the self-appointed ‘archivist-scholars’ of the Archives & Research Department set up by Jayantilal Parekh and since it was based on his viewpoint, it was hung round his neck.
  ...full text...

7 Apr 2015

A Defence of Hinduism – by Amal Kiran

[Article approved by Sri Aurobindo and first published in Mother India on May 27, 1950]

Recently a well-known leader of the scheduled classes, announced his desire to embrace Buddhism because of the lot of the “untouchables” in Hindu society - a lot which seemed to him a pointer to a lack in Hinduism of the sense of human brotherhood. He also declared that if Hinduism bore the caste system for several centuries it had failed “to yield anything substantive”. According to him, Buddhism stands in striking contrast to this religion.

What shall we say to these highly “allergic” criticisms?
  ...full text...

2 Apr 2015

It is time to speak up against the Hinduphobia of foreign writers: Vamsee Juluri

March 29, 2015, 6:00 am IST Narayani Ganesh in Treasure Hunt | India | Times of India

Vamsee Juluri, professor of media studies at the University of San Francisco, speaks up for the anonymous Hindu who, he says, was silent all those years of colonial rule only to be criticized as an ‘oppressor’ post-Independence. His new book ‘Rearming Hinduism’ seeks to restore to the millennia-old faith its intellectual heritage by reintroducing Hinduism to Hindus. Juluri tells Narayani Ganesh that foreign ‘experts’ have only contributed to the misconceptions
  ...full text...

27 Mar 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.
  ...full text...

22 Mar 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”.
  ...full text...

10 Mar 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.

  ...full text...