People operate with diverse systems of belief and we can live with this incoherence - Political Theology: Four New Chapters on the Concept of Sovereignty - Page 118 - Paul W. Kahn - 2011 - Preview - More editions In the postmodern world, the...2 months ago
Savitri Era of those who adore, Om Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.
In view of the fact that multiple anonymous comments in a thread make confusing reading and it becomes difficult to track who is telling what and to whom, only comments bearing some name/pseudonym/identity will appear in future. [TNM 011110 SEOF]
Saturday 13 January 2007
Integral Practice, Integral Esotericism - Part Six Alan Kazlev
6-x The Incompatibility of Integral Theory and Religion
The Mother of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram replied to a disciple who asked whether a religion could be founded on Sri Aurobindo's teachings with these words:
".... Men are such fools that they can change anything at all into a religion, so great is their need for a fixed framework for their narrow thought and limited action. They do not feel secure unless they can affirm, ‘this is true and that is not'. But such an affirmation becomes impossible for anyone who has read and understood what Sri Aurobindo wrote. Religion and yoga are not situated on the same plane of the being, and spiritual life can exist in its purity only if it is free from all mental dogma."
Seeing what religion has done to the current integral movement; how people in the Integral Institute and elsewhere have taken an imperfect human being and worship him as an enlightened bodhisattva (TLDI 2-x) I cannot agree with this more. Religion is not the same as spirituality; religion is an intellectual rigidity that takes one particular revelation, occasionally authentically Divine but more often just some force or attractor of the Intermediate Zone, and makes it into something fixed and inflexible about which it is claimed that this is some Absolute truth. And even where the original revelation was pure, what it becomes very often is not, as is indicated by all the ugliness and intolerance, the bigotry and oppression and wars and killing, done ion the name of religion, and still being done now. Even more benign religions like Wilberanity can still serve as serious obstacles to higher truth and new spiritual revelation, as is evident from the cultic and ossifying nature of much of the Integral movement at present. That is why it is necessary to go beyond a lteralist approach to words, and also why as The Mother indicates here attempts by Wilberians and others to understand Sri Aurobindo on a religious (or on an intellectual - TLDI 3-i) level can only result in failure.
Spirituality may sometimes occur in religion, and even a genuine Divine force may work through religion (or through atheism, or anything else), but literalist, fundamentalist, and dogmatic religion is not - as it claims - the exclusive revelation of the Divine.
This is not to say that one should go to the other extreme, and deny or explain away the real and authentic experiences behind personal faith and belief. The various religious and spiritual states and experiences can be easily mapped and explained using the esoteric metaphysic presented here, without having to rely on reductionist hypotheses or on exclusivistist religious conceptions of deity. New age and holistic healing and other such experiences can be respected and acknowledged, rather than denigrated.
 For this and other quotes by The Mother and Sri Aurobindo on the harmful nature of religion when applied to the new Yoga, see Barindranath Chaki The New Vision blog, 9 Oct 2006 - http://thenewvision-barin.blogspot.com or (same text) All choice blog http://allchoice-barin.blogspot.com/2006/10/no-religion.html Note that this criticism of religion applies to the path and the Integral Yoga of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo, it is not intended as a blanket condemnation of religion as such.