Saturday, November 29, 2008

Something else has to happen, something more than even the spiritual

Re: The Path by Sri Aurobindo
by RY Deshpande on Fri 28 Nov 2008 06:55 AM IST Profile Permanent Link
"Man cannot by his own effort make himself more than man; the mental being cannot by his own unaided force change himself into a supramental spirit. A descent of the Divine Nature can alone divinise the human receptacle."

Human potential can grow and flourish in the human domain. But if transcendence of the human is dsired, something else has to happen, something more than even the spiritual. The approaches are different. RYD Reply


Re: Explanation of my Stand wrt The Lives of Sri Aurobindo Science, Culture and Integral Yoga
by Lynda Lester on Fri 28 Nov 2008 06:10 PM PST Profile Permanent Link

I think it's worth its weight in gold. What this book gives is a closer look at divine incarnation in its developmental aspects... In my opinion Peter's book brings a new and fresh air into the mental atmosphere of the Integral Yoga community; for me, it is invigorating.

I also think that in the vastness of Sri Aurobindo, there is plenty of room for many approaches to him and many books; no one work could possibly tell the whole story, or for that matter satisfy all readers.


Re: Explanation of my Stand wrt The Lives of Sri Aurobindo Science, Culture and Integral Yoga
by David Hutchinson on Fri 28 Nov 2008 09:08 AM PST Profile Permanent Link

Sri Aurobindo and the Mother's genius was in asking -- and then investigating -- questions that had been considered unthinkable and heretical not only by all religions, but also the physical sciences: the possibility that complete transformation could come from within, and include the entire being, including the physical body -- and even extend itself out to the earth itself.

This is still, in our time, a radical proposition. Most spiritualities, in their practical efforts, don't venture this far. They treat the body and the world as fixed, and the only possible change as inward. And the sciences, though the fringe may flirt with the notion of technological singularity, don't give any credence to a spiritual singularity (aka, supramental transformation).

I mention this because it is the quality of throwing open one's mind and spirit, of being open to all possibility of truth and discovery, of not keeping oneself tied to current trends of thought, no matter how sanctioned, no matter how strongly such trends may be embedded in a national consciousness (such as the emotional idea of the avatar in India) -- it is that openness that forges new ground...

Integrating the details of our lives with the higher movements of consciousness is where yoga becomes practical. Anyone can give a fine speech on the abstract ideas of this yoga, quote Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, relate them to ideas in the sciences, art, literature. The proof of yoga, however, is in how we embody those principles in our actions, our lives, our selves -- and especially, in situations such as this, when there are troubling movements abroad.

It is a moral offence to write against anybody without disclosing identity

PP Raghavachary has left a new comment on your post "How can you say that "blasphemous material" agains...":

Dear Mr. Mohapatra, Please note that I am under no obligation to respond to any anonymous comments. You should not have published anything with out any name and identity. Further, that person is a coward and it is a moral offence to write on or against anybody without disclosing their identity. It is a fundamental rule of a civilised society, that no personal attack should be allowed in any intellectual debate. In the past also the person seems to have indulged in such acts and for the same reasons I have ignored. PP Raghavachary Posted by PP Raghavachary to Savitri Era Open Forum at 12:35 PM, November 29, 2008


Re: Explanation of my Stand wrt The Lives of Sri Aurobindo Science, Culture and Integral Yoga
by David Hutchinson on Wed 26 Nov 2008 06:24 AM PST Profile Permanent Link

On a related note, the "ringleaders" should be named and known to the wider world. The practice of making accusations in secret, of anonymously slurring another person, has a long and dark history, and brings to mind the worst of McCarthyism in the United States, los desaparecidos in Latin America, and black limousines in Communist USSR.

How can you say that "blasphemous material" against a great Yogi who never founded a religion, has been published?

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Valuable manuscripts and archival materials were m...":

Hi advocate PPR, Do you still call yourself some sort of a Lawyer! Which rotten Law School did you ever attend? Maybe others could file a Writ of Mandamus for directing the Central Government to close down that bogus school which could not avoid the charge of having brought out a student like you. Or maybe such an application would be dismissed as infructuous as probably that school has already been recognized as a bogus institution.

To bring out just a few points:

In the same breath you speak about "blasphemous" and also cite (citations are somehow your passion as also your disease) Apex Court decision in SP Mittal vs Union of India (AIR 1983 SC 1) where you claim that it was held that the writings of Sri Aurobindo are beyond religion. I have not read the Mittal case but that is what you say. Then how can you say that "blasphemous material" against a great Yogi who never founded a religion, has been published? Of course in one para you add that nothing can be filed u/s 295-A IPC and at the same time you can also describe the material published as "blasphemous"?????

Is there a separate private code covering "blasphemy" which does not fall within the scope of IPC? May be there could be a section 295-A of RPC (Raghavachary Penal Code) under which the nasty offender could be charged! I know your grey matter is very limited and its use even as a dysfunction would have been very sporadic and also you are under no compulsion to be consistent but do not carry this cheap game too far as otherwise the cat (in your special case it should substituted by "rat") would be out of the bag and even your few surviving admirers would avoid seeking legal advice from you.

Similarly, even if the Book says something willfully against Sri Aurobindo (I am still open to the idea that it does - though I am as yet not 100% sure) how would that form "seditious material" as you claim, unless it be again by virtue of some special sections of RPC? When was Sri Aurobindo the Government of India? Probably only in some revised history Books throwing new lights on Indian History! I am not yet ready to buy this line in spite of some hard selling. How does discussion on procedures of Cr.PC sneak into Writ Applications???!!!

And please do not describe AG Noorani as your "friend". Mr. Noorani would surely not get too flattered to possess such bright friends! Anyway, as an advice from a practicing professional colleague - go and get a genuine Law degree before venturing to dabble in things beyond your very limited cerebral capacity?

A well-wishing professional colleague. Posted by Anonymous to Savitri Era Open Forum at 10:51 AM, November 29, 2008

Thursday, November 27, 2008

For countless people you would certainly need countless methods

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "If our aim is to reach "countless people"":

No sales figures are known but yes, for countless people you would certainly need countless methods. In any event if the method adopted is the same as the one used the very opinionated and confused TNM, then one can be sure that the countless people would remain fully innocent of whatever is written. After all I believe "The Lives of Sri Aurobindo" is much more read than "Savitri Era Blogspot" Posted by Anonymous to Savitri Era at 4:37 PM, November 27, 2008


from RY Deshpande to Tusar Mohapatra date 29 Nov 2008 08:33 subject Two Aurobindonian Sites

Dear Shri Tushar
You will be happy to know that recently two new sites have been launched to present Aurobindonian themes in thier several aspects. The underlying ideology can perhaps be briefly summarised as follows:

  • Mirror of Tomorrow — The Human Aspiration
    The earliest preoccupation of man in his awakened thoughts and... his inevitable and ultimate preoccupation... is also the highest which his thought can envisage. It manifests itself in the divination of Godhead, the impulse towards perfection, the search after pure Truth and unmixed Bliss, the sense of a secret immortality. The ancient dawns of human knowledge have left us their witness to this constant aspiration; today we see a humanity [with its] victorious analysis of the externalities of Nature preparing to return to its primeval longings. The earliest formula of Wisdom promises to be its last,— God, Light, Freedom, Immortality. Sri Aurobindo
    Our Vision
    It will be the endeavour to seek and express all that ennobles the human spirit in its quest towards perfection, towards truth and beauty and joy and sweetness and love, towards fulfilment of the sense of immortality present in its deeper soul, its ceaseless aspiration for the higher manifestation even in the material creation. The Mirror shall reflect and reflect upon things of tomorrow, bring closer the human destinies by approaching the future as much as by beckoning the future to enter into its thousand possibilities.

The other site is specifically devoted to Sri Aurobindo's epic Savitri. These sites can be accessed at:
I shall be grateful if you pl bring these to the attention of the Savitri Erans. I've been always keeping myself updated with your very perceptive and professionally well organised blogs. The coverage is amazing, and wide--and there's no doubt about it.
Thanking you and warmly
RY Deshpande
Let us live in Savitri who shall give us the truth and the things of the truth

Peter’s book contains statements that rub people the wrong way

An examination of the criticism against The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Larry Seidlitz
Debashish on November 26, 2008 12:02AM (PST)
This article continues the section of responses on The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by those who have read the book. In this essay, Larry Seidlitz, a resident and scholar at Pondicherry, examines the charges being made against the author of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo and attempts to put to rest the exaggerations and misreadings which have been circulated by the ringleaders of the "anti-PH movement" and which have become "authorized truths" to a vast range of "followers" of these ringleaders, most of whom have not read the book. more » Comments (5) Permanent Link

An examination of the criticism against The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Larry Seidlitz
on Wed 26 Nov 2008 12:02 AM PST Permanent Link

Peter’s book...contains statements that rub people the wrong way, and it sometimes questions accounts that flatter Sri Aurobindo’s followers’ group identity... If this is the standard by which the book is to be judged, it certainly is a failure, for there are statements that do rub people the wrong way and it sometimes questions views flattering to the group identity of Sri Aurobindo’s followers.

User: Larry-Seidlitz
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Larry Seidlitz, Ph.D., is a faculty member of Sri Aurobindo Darshan: The University of Tomorrow (, a project of the Sri Aurobindo Centre for Advanced Research, Pondicherry, India. The University of Tomorrow offers online programmes and courses of study on the thought of Sri Aurobindo at the introductory, master's, and doctoral levels. He is also editor of a journal on Sri Aurobindo's Integral Yoga called Collaboration. Previously, Larry Seidlitz was an Assistant Professor and researcher in psychiatry and psychology at The University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, NY, USA. He received his doctoral degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1993.

Ashram Archives should be run only by devotees of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo and not by CIA agents

Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives 18 hours ago Devotee
Peter Hees who has betrayed our Lord The Mother and Sri Aurobindo by writing the book 'The Life of Sri Aurobindo' is a traitor and does not deserve to be in the Ashram. The Archive should take immediate action by throwing out all those within the department who support Peter. This department should be run only by devotees of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo and not by CIA agents. [Cf. Permanent Link]

Monday, November 24, 2008

Spirituality is not like a commercial product to be promoted by the massive business propaganda machinery

The Spiritual Aim in Society
by RY Deshpande on Mon 24 Nov 2008 01:37 AM IST Permanent Link Cosmos

If our endeavour is to take the spiritual aim to society, society that is not yet open to it, then the problems can arise, many problems can arise. It can even be construed as a kind of proselytization. In fact even more serious problems can arise.

But one thing is certain: it cannot be, should not be by diluting the spiritual contents; it is not by adjusting or simplifying it, in order to accommodate the prevailing conditions of the society, by fiddling with it so that what it can understand and accept is fitted into it. Otherwise it would be an imposition of the spiritual on the worldly or mundane. This does not work, particularly in a society which respects individual’s freedom and freedom of expression.

Which means, if at all spirituality is to be taken to the worldly and the mundane, then there has to be something in the worldly and the mundane,—including the rational or academic, religious or even mystical or occult—to see the necessity of the spiritual; it should see it to have its own fulfilment assured, it should be for its own compelling reasons; it should be something arising from its own free and happy and spontaneous need, should be its desideratum.

As a matter of fact, spirituality is not like a commercial product to be promoted by the massive business propaganda machinery. There has to be a call for it. And the wonderful thing is, one who receives it he also gets the needed help in his quest. This is proven through the centuries of spiritual history, and the safe thing is to awaken to it if there is the basic urge for it.

RY Deshpande


Integral Yoga of the Future
by RY Deshpande on Sat 22 Nov 2008 09:05 AM IST Permanent Link Cosmos

“The supramental change is a thing decreed and inevitable in the evolution of the earth-consciousness,” wrote Sri Aurobindo in 1928. The supramental change was decreed by him, and he and the Mother had set themselves to work out its inevitability. But to realize it in us there is needed the call and we have to be ready to receive what they are constantly showering on us. Tapahprabhava and Devaprasada, as the ancient Upanishadic scripture says, together can bring fulfilment to our longings, to our soul’s aspiration. To be engaged in that spiritual growth, to live and work and enjoy divinely in the Divine is the Integral Yoga of the Future.

RY Deshpande
Posted to: Main Page

A look as inspiring as Sri Aurobindo

from Prithwin Mukherjee <> to
date 24 November 2008 14:56 subject Portraits

Bhâi Tusar, I choose this special day to send you an anecdote.

In the 60s we had several interesting friends in Rome. There was a couple among them : Angela was an actress, with a graceful yet robust Latin structure; her husband Rufus was an American poet, descendant of the English court-stenographer Goodwin (200 words per minute) who had been appointed to note down Swâmi Vivekânanda's sayings. Rufus, a disciple of Rudolph Steiner and follower of the anthroposophic disciplines, desperately wished Angela to share with him his convictions. One evening, in presence of friends, the dispute of the couple became eloquent. Angela burst out in tears and sobbed : "If at least Steiner had a look as inspiring as Sri Aurobindo!"

On looking at an earlier publication by Peter Heehs, what shocked me instinctively was the portrait of Sri Aurobindo painted on the cover; I thought that the author had Socrates in mind and wanted to prove wisdom to be necessarily associated with ugliness or hideousness. Now, on going through Peter's highfaluting discourse on the Master's photos, I discover (don't we have acquired the licence of dallying with psychoanalysis?) a complex of inferiority shooting out of his awareness of his own "handsome" face.

Kind regards. Dr Prithwindra Mukherjee, Paris

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Valuable manuscripts and archival materials were misappropriated for wrongful gain and criminal conspiracy for sedition

from PP Raghavachary <> to ... "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 19 November 2008 17:15 subject My comments on AG Noorani's Opinion

It is only if the State takes objection and forfeits the book as per the provisions of the said section, the question of denial of freedom of expression arises. [...]

If a foreigner writes any objectionable, seditious and blasphemous material particularly against a great yogi of India it is the State which has to take objection on such publication in the interests of our country. Because sedition under law is a serious offence against the state i.e., the country at large. [...]

So far the state has not forfeited the publication of the objectionable book therefore the fourth objection raised by my friend does not arise. The questions in regard to fundamentals of natural justice etc do not apply at this stage. The author will be given opportunities of being heard at the stage of section 96 of Cr.P.C. because it is on his application, the concerned High Court will hear the quash proceedings by a bench of three judges as per law.

Therefore if the devotees and followers are hurt they should lodge as many complaints as possible with specific objections on the blasphemous and objectionable publication, strenthen the hands of state for their taking action under section 95 of Cr.P.C. [...]

The question of invoking section 295-A of IPC i.e., "insult the religion or religious beliefs of that class of citizens" does not arise because of Sri Aurobindo's own writings that his yoga or philosophy is beyond religion and the same was accepted by the Apex Court in SP Mittal Vs. Union of India reported in AIR 1983 SC page1 (the famous Auroville Case) by a majority of judges of the constitution bench comprising 5 judges).

In stead a complaint for the offences of Criminal Breach of Trust can be lodged u/s 406 of IPC against Trustees and Peter Heehs by the followers, devotees, beneficiaries and inmates on the footing that the valuable manuscripts and archival materials entrusted to the Trustees under the Trust deed and through them to PH were misappropriated for wrongful gain and criminal conspiracy for sedition under section 124 A of IPC. [...]

From: PP Raghavachary Advocate First Floor, No. 15, Sri Aurobindo Street Pondicherry-605001 Ph: 0413-2228215 Mob: +91 9443602818. From: PP Raghavachary <> Date: Wed, Nov 19, 2008 at 8:00 PM Subject: "Open to Insult" - My comments. To:
Dear Editor, I supplement to my comments I have already sent to you with one more point. The author Mr. A.G. Noorani has expressed his opinion when the matter is seized by the High Court and is subjudice. I was constrained to respond on the same to prevent the damage that such an opinion could possibly do. -- Regards, PPR

Heehs' book is completely inconsequential but it has become a potent symbol only because it reflects the ideological split

Robert E. Wilkinson has left a new comment on your post "The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs, screenp...": 1 comments: 9:49 PM, November 18, 2008
Robert E. Wilkinson said...
It is so interesting to watch all the impassioned rhetoric around Peter Heehs’ book. It has evidently become a cause célèbre pitting one group of believers against another. As Tusar puts it, “…division between the two camps has hardened and no one seems to be left now who can claim to have an independent or dispassionate view.”
This is a predictable effect of the Religious consciousness that has overtaken Sri Aurobindo’s yoga. When mental Belief is substituted for Yogic Knowledge there can be no true objectivity, only irresolvable conflict. What you end up with is a “Sunni and Shia” split of the Integral yoga community, each clinging to its fundamentalist ideology and totally missing the point.
From a clearer perspective Heehs’ book is completely inconsequential but it has become a potent symbol only because it reflects the ideological split in the community of devotees. You have both sides arrogantly debating meaningless peripheral issues because they have failed to grasp the essential truths of Sri Aurobindo’s epochal work.
Tusar suggests that his camp shore up their level of scholarship as well as articulateness in making their case. Of course he knows in his heart that scholarship and articulation are poor substitutes for Supramental knowledge. His description of Ned as a “Daniel come to judgment” because of her naïve support of Relativism in a yoga based upon Absolutes is a clear indication of this kind of limited understanding.
If he truly wishes to address the underlying problem that resolves this issue as well as numerous others, he must give up his reliance on scholarship and follow the Vedic Way as prescribed by Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Thea (Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet). As he will discover, the realization of these eternal Vedic truths requires far more than just a scholarly, intellectual knowledge…
“The perfect truth of the Veda, where it is now hidden, can only be recovered by the same means by which it was originally possessed. Revelation and experience are the doors of the Spirit. It cannot be attained either by logical reasoning or by scholastic investigation… [Sanskrit text]… ‘Not by explanation of texts nor by much learning’, ‘not by logic is this realisation attainable.’ Logical reasoning and scholastic research can only be aids useful for confirming to the intellect what has already been acquired by revelation and spiritual experience. This limitation, this necessity are the inexorable results of the very nature of Veda.” Sri AurobindoThe Life Divine
In the service of Truth, Robert Wilkinson
Posted to Savitri Era at 9:49 PM, November 18, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Certain cases are precedences in themselves. This may well turn out to be one

from alok pandey <> to, ..., date 18 November 2008 16:45 subject Re: A Opinion from a Senior Counsel

Sound or unsound it is one more opinion among many. In law, as in any other mental field it is also a matter of interpretation. If things were so clear cut then cases would not drag for decades.

The issue of the degree of intellectual freedom in a society where we must live harmoniously with others is a matter of debate in all circles and law has not yet found any sure answer to this. Like many other contemporary issues such as euthanasia, this kind of intellectual vandalism and mental disfigurement is a relatively new phenomenon for modern law that has so far been used to dealing with only raw and crude things. But with an increasing subtlisation of human consciousness, the collective mind of the race is being challenged by these test cases.

What has happened and has been happening so far is not necessarily an indication of what may happen in the future. Certain cases are precedences in themselves. This may well turn out to be one.

If physical and psychological hurt are cognisable offences, then why not this one. One may be deeply emotionally hurt by a certain misrepresentations of things and public figures with whom one is identified. This identification may be, often is much deeper than family bonds. Strange that only a family member can represent and not an aggrieved person! the very definition of family needs to change and enlarge itself.

Besides, this is not a case of defamation alone but a deliberate and malified misrepresentation of facts, a falsification of things and law needs to take cognisance of it. Perhaps it will if the time has come and if man is ready for the change. Or else we may have to go through another few decades of struggles and blows before we wake up. Let us hope that good sense prevails and as a test case law shows its deeper and psychic sensitivities and not just a blind rule and norm.

If the hour has come for a greater Truth and Light to manifest in every sphere, then well, everything is possible. 'It is the hour of the incalculable'... and that Mr N obviously does not understand.

Stop pretending to be saviours of the Ashram, and get down to your respective sadhanas

S has left a new comment on your post "They steal other people's ideas and thoughts and t...":


There is no "burning question". The followers of the IY wish for no peoples' court. There is no drama. There is no stage. What in the world are you talking about? I don't know whom you are referring to, but I must say at the outset I am no great devotee of Shraddhalu, or Ananda Reddy, or Kittu Reddy, so what follows is not written in support of them.

But having said that, nobody is fooled by your high-sounding crap. Your agenda is clear since long, and it would be in your own interests to recognize that it is not any great quest for Truth which is inspiring you, but your own petty though rather gigantic ego. Unfortunately - or fortunately - your ambition is out of step with the little grey matter you possess. And so you continue to believe that systems can effect the change the Mother and Sri Aurobindo wanted instead of effecting it in ourselves.

Bijan, Srikant, Bailochan, and you are known to be following your own personal power-grabbing agendas. So stop pretending to be saviours of the Ashram, and get down to your respective sadhanas.

I came to know recently from someone in the Ashram that you live in an Ashram house, eat Ashram food, and do no work, just because of some court injunction preventing the Ashram from throwing you out? How can you possibly be so shameless? If you were less of a coward, you would come out of the system and then attack it. Trust you to swindle the resources of the Ashram and continue criticising it. Go get a life PPR. You claim to be educated and are supposedly a lawyer. Go out of the Ashram, earn your bread, live under your own roof, and then shout from the rooftops if you will. We may not listen to you, but we might just respect you a little more.

Finally, TNM, please stop making your blog a platform for such cheap michief-makers. If you really want to be an example for the IY community and a leader of sorts, you would exercise what we call 'discernment'. Since you seem to have none, I must tell you what it is: the ability to see and judge and assess and assign a balanced relative value to things. Practice a little discernment. I don't think you will have the rectitude and courage to post this letter on your site; if you do, though...hats of to you. Posted by S to Savitri Era Open Forum at 9:14 PM, November 17, 2008

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Peter’s life has become a high security risk for t...": Mr. Raghu! Thrown out of the ashram yahoogroup has landed here!!
Posted by Anonymous to Savitri Era Open Forum at 9:19 PM, November 17, 2008

Monday, November 17, 2008

Is it in the best interests of any institution to have Lifetime Trusteeship?

from PP Raghavachary <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 17 November 2008 16:03 subject Debate

Dear Mr. Mohapatra,

We must have open debates on the following subjects for bringing a great change in the Management of the Ashram:

1) Ashram Trustees-- Past, Present and Future

2) Is it in the best interests of any institution to have Lifetime Trusteeship?

3) Can Ashram afford to indulge in lawlessness, criminality and the like.
-- Regards, PPR

From: PP Raghavachary Advocate First Floor, No. 15, Sri Aurobindo Street Pondicherry-605001 Ph: 0413-2228215 Mob: +91 9443602818

They steal other people's ideas and thoughts and thrive on them in their borrowed life

from PP Raghavachary <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 16 November 2008 01:42 subject Fwd: Message from Rajendra

Dear Bijan,

The role you played is very very important. I so much appreciate you. And we consider you as the legal guardian of the Ashram. And you deserve this honour very much. We are with you and we are waiting to work as per your guidance. And this way we build up a united front and which will ultimately bring the victory. Since you are thinking how to pull out the Ashram from the impending disaster, surely the divine grace will be there with you and your intentions will be fulfilled.

We are not against anybody at the same time. We are not attached to any person. Our central loyalty goes to the institution. All other things are secondary. All foreigners who come to India seeking spiritual life and asylum, they are most welcome, they are our guests of honour. And we love them like our brothers. The gate is always open for them without any pride and prejudice. But those who come to play mischief have no place here. We totally reject them and we will never compromise on this issue. We will never bow down our heads to them.

Their material culture devoid of any spiritual support is a death-trap. It is already killing them. They are drowning and suffocating. What America is doing? They are supplying their rejected war materials and making enormous profit out of them. By all tricks they make the people fight and kill each other. They are the great buffoons. Still they think themselves very great. The way the Biritish empire has gone into gutter the same way this American supremacy will also be destroyed. Rajendra.

from PP Raghavachary <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 16 November 2008 01:13 subject So called intellectuals 2

A few shall see what none yet understands;
God shall grow up while the wise men talk and sleep;
For man shall not know the coming till its hour
And belief shall be not till the work is done.
- Savitri (SABCL:28: 55)

The so called intellectuals of the Ashram are the spineless fellows. What are they doing at this critical moment? It is a burning question in everybody's mind. They have to stand and answer before the people's court. Either they are sleeping or completely demoralised or 'I damn care' that type happy-go-lucky people. They think survival is their first necessity of life or they think that their only duty is just to write a few letters to the Trustees advising them do this, don't do that. They are honorary advisers. And then they will keep quiet and watch from their windows who is taking the lead. There is another method also they very happily adopt. That is to meet secretly like conspirators and do some hush-hush talk. Their weakness is that they are arm-chair philosophers. Any kind of courageous action does not suit to their nature and temperament. They always like to play safe. They never like to take any risk.

Their life is a paradox. On one side they are so head-weight that they themselves make unfit or misfit to be a follower. On the other hand they are so chicken-hearted or like rabbits. So they don't want to play the role of a leader also. In short, neither a leader nor a follower. That is the motto of their life. If that is so, actually what they are? They are actually pirates. They steal other people's ideas and thoughts and thrive on them in their borrowed life. They look brilliant in their expansive persuasion of ideas but they are completely hollow. We call them, they will not turn up to any extent—invoke them, provoke them or scold them. All this has no effect on them. Because they are so thick-skinned.

With due apology, we must admit that here and there, there are exceptions who do not come under the above mentioned category. We still have not lost their hope about them and we expect that they will come forward at our call—get united and make themselves a living force. The stage is set. The drama is about to begin but the actors are missing. We are therefore hauling and calling them to come forward and play their role in a befitting manner. The audience is waiting for them. And if their acting is good they are going to get thunderous applause. And if their acting is bad they will be hooted and shunted out. It is high time that they take quick decision and don't go on dosing like opium eaters. They say Nero was fiddling when Rome was burning. What is the nature and character of these intellectuals?

They are actually buffoons. But they pose as if they are prophets. When they are needed they will go and hide themselves comfortably. And when they are not needed they will blabber a lot and they will not keep quiet. Because they want to steal the show. They are all the time busy blowing their own trumpets and most of the time they blow so badly that they become totally deaf and nobody on this earth can mend them. That's why an indictment was made that the wise man only talks and sleeps. It is high time that they should come out of their lethargy and recover their lost reputation.

From: PP Raghavachary Advocate First Floor, No. 15, Sri Aurobindo Street Pondicherry-605001 Ph: 0413-2228215 Mob: +91 9443602818

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Peter’s life has become a high security risk for the Ashram

from PP Raghavachary to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" date 16 November 2008 12:21
My letter to Pranab

Pranab is our only hope. His timely action on Peter has brought great confidence in us. Manoj and Peter, both are one and the same. They are two faces of the same coin. There is a very nefarious kind of nexus between the two persons. But since it is highly inflammable issue, we are keeping our mouth shut for the time being. But that does not mean that we are blind to the reality. In the light of the above said circumstances Pranab should not give shelter to Manoj in any manner. Otherwise Pranab’s image will be compromised and damage done to him will be irreparable. At present Pranab’s image is very high because he took a bold step and took action on Peter within his jurisdiction. He is above reproach. That way nobody can find fault with him.

Peter’s life has become a high security risk for the Ashram and we should not forget that he is an American National. If anything happens to his person, the blame will fall on the whole Ashram and it will become an international issue. People have got flared up to such an extent that, even one hundred Manojs cannot protect Peter or bring him back to the Ashram. As far as we are concerned, Peter’s chapter is closed. Let Pranab not get involved in this matter any further. Now remains Peter’s book. For that there is a separate legal remedy which we will explain to Pranab in writing in what way we can take action on Peter. And that is the right course and it will be effective also.

Now our main preoccupation is what to do with Manoj? Manoj must leave the Chair and come out of it peacefully. If our method of persuasion fails then we will get it done through the Court. We are preparing the plaint. We are prepared for it. I came to know that when our boys went to the Trustees to submit a memorandum it was torn and thrown away by Batti. This matter requires investigation. And if it is found true then it is a very serious offence. Even Monarchs and Kings were inviting and welcoming the petitions made by the public. This clearly shows that all the 5 of them are rotten. And they all must go. This is for your kind information.
Sd/- (PP Raghavachary)
16 November, 2008

Pranab’s answer:
Let us be inwardy quiet and do our work as well as we can. The rest Mother is sure to do.
Sd/- (Pranab)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

It is the hundreth year of Sri Aurobindo on trial. The drama is being re-enacted

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "If one Peter Heehs is pardoned today, a thousand ...":

absolutely true. Well spoken and fearlessly too. It is the hundreth year of Sri Aurobindo on trial. The drama is being re-enacted, albeit and also by his own so-called followers who support the hypothesis of PH. Posted by Anonymous to Aurora Mirabilis at 11:21 AM, November 15, 2008 [9:52 PM 9:41 AM]

Future noons are not going to come through this kind of weak posturing and blindness and hypocrisy and this ingratitude

From: alok pandey Sent: Sunday, November 02, 2008 11:03 PM Subject: Re: An eye opener

So, to love your Master who represents for you Truth and Light, to have gratitude for the one who sustains you inwardly and outwardly, to stand up for what is True and Beautiful and Right, surrender and devotion to God, to preserve the Sacred within the individual and the collective are all belonging to the past, whereas taking sides with the petty and the base in the name of neutrality, sympathising with the arrogant and the cheat, encouraging and even appreciating falsehood under the guise that they will change, harbouring and perpetuating all that is ugly and crude is the glorious way to the future!

For Peter represents a way of life and an attitude, and if the Ashram collectivity accepts that attitude under whatever justification, then where can one draw the line between what is and what should be. Is that the way that Sri Aurobindo and the Mother has shown us that we must criticise our Master, question his experience and even his sanity, analyse his appearances and talk about him in a tone of utter irreverence? Have They taught us to compromise with untruth within and without? Have they taught us duplicity and hypocrisy and all the rest?

The road that Peter has taken and those who are encouraging it is not one of the many paths towards the Divine but the straight road and even a short cut to the abyss, and the group that practices it as an accepted principle is hurtling towards its own self-destruction. For nothing is destroyed if the outer form is changed, it may even be an evolutionary change but if the soul and the spirit is denied then the form however viable it may look now will soon die out or worse still begin to serve a diabolic purpose. Sri Aurobindo is the soul of this place which is Their Home and love for them, surrender to Them is the very source of its life and inner sustenance. Those who cannot understand this much have absolutely no right to stay and live under its premises as parasites. It is not a question of adjusting and accomodating, that can be and must be done provided we do not shift the center or barter the very soul in the process. But adjustment does not mean accepting nonsense and allowing public nuisance and endorsing falsehood in the name of human sentiment or whatever else. If the basic center is right then the rest can be adjusted but if you try to shift the very center then everything gets defocussed and disintegrates.

Please do not misuse quotes to justify a stand in such a laborious way. It is better and more honest to say that I sympathise with X or like him for personal reasons than bring in the Mother and Sri Aurobindo to justify what in the nd is yet another personal opinion! Besides for every such quote and in fact for every mental opinion there is its opposite that is equally true. If you look through Thoughts and Aphorisms you will easily see this. For example there is this other quote as well which says something to this effect that, -

'He who will not slay when God bids him, works in the world an incalculable havoc'.

Also, - 'Respect human life as long as you can; but respect more the life of humanity'.

And again,

'Call not everything evil which men call evil but only that reject which God has rejected; call not everything good which men call good. but accept only what God has accepted.'

And finally Sri Aurobindo has also said that we must take care to preserve the spirit of the past or else there is no future.

All these things can be interpreted in several ways. We all know that and unfortunately do that. So let us not talk about that. Let us speak with utter honesty and without any duplicity what we inwardly feel and think and sense and be equally honest as to why we do and say that. Let us respect transparency and integrity and not indulge in double standards for one thing is certain that the future noons are not going to come through this kind of weak posturing and blindness and hypocrisy and this ingratitude that strikes at the very hand that feeds.

And why are we worries after all. If PH is honest and true and sincere, he will come out through all this, even greater and stronger supported by the inner Presence that never abandons anyone and carries each one across the journey thourgh life after life. May be this is a Grace for him if he knows how to take it. After all how do things change whether he is in the Archives or not and whether the book is made public or not. The yoga does not depend upon being in a certain geographical location when you have neither faith nor an inclination towards it, nor is yoga dependent upon the writing or not writing of a book. So what difference does it really make. And who is hating him. It is his work that people are concerned with and not him. That would be giving him too much of importance. It is not he but what he represents that is the problem and an action to remove him from the Archives is another symbolic gesture that we do not accept this or encourage this. Thats all. For the rest it is his life and his path whatever that be and is between him and the Divine.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Crucification of Sri Aurobindo by His Devotees

S has left a new comment on your post "Mecca and Mantra":

There were 2 monks crossing a river. There was a beautiful woman in it too. Suddenly the boat started sinking. The older monk carried the beautiful woman out of the depths and rescued her. He left her safe on the banks. The two monks walked towards their destination. They walked and walked. The younger monk could not get over the incident. He kept cajoling the older one, How could you carry her? The older monk retorted - I left her in the banks far behind, but you carry her still. Such is the story of those who go and on taking names, criticizing, harping on the same theme - finally trying to prove to all how objective they are and how terrible are those who object to PH's book. I pray in the Buddhist strain - Fill me with a compassion, as boundless as the sky! Posted by S to Savitri Era at 5:36 PM, November 14, 2008

Re: Taking Stock Dave Mon 27 Oct 2008 11:23 PM PDT "Even before you wrote this, I anticipated a future book with a title like "The Crucification of Sri Aurobindo by His Devotees." (To avoid a misunderstanding: Peter in my opinion is not a devotee. And to avoid another misunderstanding: in my opinion a devotee is the last thing Sri Aurobindo ever wanted for his work.)".

I have to admit that I am awe-struck by the erudition and lofty spirituality expressed in the posts here!. I am shocked beyond belief. What happened to faith, surrender, aspiration and the gratitude and "all that we owe to thee"? These are the sine qua non according to SA. One has to infer then that those who aspire to such qualities are clearly not "devotees" because "a devotee is the last thing Sri Aurobindo ever wanted for his work.". This novel redefinition of a "devotee" and therefore logically of "devotion" as something that is devoid of faith, surrender, aspiration etc is surely mind boggling. I wonder what might you all say about the "devotion" and determination of the Baktas like Meera and in our times the intense "devotion" of many disciples to SA. Also, logically then all of SA's letters on Sadhana through Love and "Devotion" were just perpetuating a lie and making a fool of all the disciples.

What sort of insane idea of spirituality is this? And all the rest of the other (im)posters on this site? You (app)laud on the sidelines?! Have you actually read SA ? Hopefully you have not, because then this can be ignored and dismissed as the prating and lauding of ignoramuses. However if you have read SA, then it is more serious because it suggests the possiblity of something diabolical and sinister at work that is expressing itself through an intellectual arrogance and abysmal ignorance in these posts. Such a twisted idea of spirituality is hard to even imagine. It is bizzare. Moreover one has to read no more than a few posts here to see an overbearing pride and arrogance at work.

A few years ago upon my visit to Puducherry, I realized the truth that the simple peasant there is closer to God than you and I. It was truly a humbling experience. No care for personal comfort and leading simple lives. Here you are sitting and typing away in a nice cosy comfortable room casting aspersions on the "devoted". It is truly shameful and a disgrace. The continual slander of the ashram too is surprising. The ashram is in one way a cauldron of the forces that besiege humanity and there is a consciousness there working out the problems, and while it is in such process, for people to rail at its collective consciousness is to oppose the work of SA. Is the thread that connects you all to SA so tenuous that it is so easily cut asunder to mouth inneundo against his ashram?.

The controversy surrounding the book is an occasion for the ashram and the ashram trust to rise and live up to its responsibilities of protecting all that relates to SA. Surely violence is to be eschewed nor is it justifiable. But let us wait for the active consciousness to work it out. The hostile beings of yore operated in a human form but in this day and age they seem to work through imbecilities and arrogance as is seen in such posts.

Make no mistake that you are embarking on a perilous journey promoting such pernicious ideas of spirituality and thereby invoking divine retribution, although the retribution might not be required for most often such hostility to the divine and his "devotees" self-destructs by dissolution in its own acerbity. It would be well for the detractors in these posts to realize that although the "devoted" may seem ignorant to you but the consciousness that responds and works through their simple "devotion" is not ignorant and will not be deceived by your intellectual inanity. You might do well to stop making grandiloquent fools of yourselves and poisoning the minds of others. Dave.D

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

There is no code of conduct for sadhaks in Sri Aurobindo Ashram

The onus is on Heehs and not on the public 1 comments: Anonymous said... 9:03 PM, November 11, 2008 Dear Sir,

In the Ashram, there are hardly any rules imposed from outside. One has to find the divinity in one’s inner self and live according to truth. Hence, there is no code of conduct for sadhaks. Sri Aurobindo and the Mother have given full freedom to all followers to grow in consciousness in their own ways. As long as one is sincere, one can receive Sri Aurobindo’s help and grace in all situations. Regards. Jitendra Sharma

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A totally new style of organisational functioning is the need of the hour

from kittu reddy <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 9 November 2008 12:14 subject Re: mutilating TRUTH [ 9:09 AM ]

Dear Tusar Mohapatra,

I am in total agreement with what you write. A totally new style of organisational functioning is the need of the hour. This will prevent all such problems recurring on such a scale for remedial action could have been taken earlier. Regards

Kittu reddy

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Bijan Ghosh again writes to Manoj Das Gupta

Mr. Manoj Das Gupta 07 November 2008
Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust
Pondicherry 6050 002

Respected Manojda,
Don’t’ mind Manojda , you told a blatant lie to the world through Pranabda , it was a lie within your knowledge and made deliberately – to palliate the situation in and out ashram, the only aim being , as has been maintained all along , to protect Peter Heehs.

In your letter dtd. 05.10.08 to Pranabda , you wrote inter alia, as follows :

3. Legal aspects are being looked into as to whether the Indian publication may be at least modified if not stalled, PH, on his own has assured me that he shall try, within the limits and constraints as they exist, to modify where possible some of the passages. According to him, he didn’t imagine that the response to his work among a certain group of people would be so violent and expressed his regrets for being the “cause”.

But till date you or Ashram did not move to court. Once a Book is published , it can’t be stayed – you know it better than me .
And the Indian edition of the alleged book by PH was scheduled to be published on November , 2008 by Penguin , India. None would believe – if you say now, that such a decision has been taken by Penguin - after you wrote the letter on 05.10.08.

This shorts of Falsehood you all along harboured – calculatively and carefully – when the Critically Revised Edition of Savitri was being ready to be published by Ashram , made by this Peter Heehs – on your such false assurances since 1988, persistently, none went to court to prevent the publication of mutilated perverse edition of Savitri.

Like many other concerned persons – you personally assured me, on several occasions that no such Critical changes – which were first suggested in the ashram Journal, namely, Archives and Research - would ever be incorporated in Savitri , published by Ashram. You said that those are only academic , having no value other than for the pages of AR Journal. I could not doubt your intention – on your refusal (inspite of my repeated insistence) to initiate criminal proceedings against VAK and persons associated thereto for publishing pocket edition of Savitri in 1986, with 630 changes. You said that ashramites have to maintain ‘dignified silence’. I couldn’t then discover the true purport

And after publication of that posthumously revised edition of Savitri in 1993, when a nephew of Sri Aurobindo initiated a criminal proceeding against trustees and other persons including Peter Heehs & Richard Hartz – you escaped the Judgment of Truth through the court of law, by resorting to Falsehood alone in many ways – mainly by producing rejected and old manuscripts , which mostly of pre-1945 , some of them are even pre-1940 – taking the advantage of, that all the manuscripts of Savitri are undated. To detect this fact, a conscious eye having understanding of Savitri and the knowledge of composition of Savitri - is more than sufficient . Those were apparent on the face of record, evident from the text of manuscripts themselves – all are conclusive proof thereof

You committed fraud on the court to make an escape route. Had you had produced truthfully all the final manuscripts of Savitri, all of you would have been behind the bar by this time to serve the truth through the sentence.

I vouch in the name of Sri Aurobindo, if you produce all the final manuscripts of Savitri, and if I can not prove it that the critically revised edition of Savitri is not in terms of final manuscript – then I will serve a sentence . Can you accept this challenge, Manojda ?
Manojda, now the world would be easily convinced that there are obviously some very serious reasons, that you can not express – and for which reason you have not yet expelled PH from Ashram and withdraw the permission granted to PH by Ashram, qua the Ministry of Home Affairs , Foreign Registration Department, New Delhi, for his stay in India and making him blacklisted in India for any further entry – inspite of such many entries in the alleged Book by PH on Sri Aurobindo, utterance of any one of which lines for once in Ashram - is sufficient to expel an inmate, while those are written and published in book. ( a few of those lines of the book in verbatim are given below )

· Aurobindo's character, life, writings and thoughts did not hold integrity
· He ( Sri Aurobindo) possesses a morally loose character
· His claims to spiritual expression and realisation is questionable and irrelevant
· His ( Sri Aurobindo’s ) spirituality emerges from a streak of inherited madness
· Aurobindo's relationship with The Mother was ‘romantic in nature’

Those devotees & ashramites who moved the court of law to protect the Original Savitri, and the supporter-sympathiser, you people termed & branded them as anti-ashram. They have been humiliated, harassed and mentally tortured, even those are continuing till date. Just one representative example – Elia (mother of Sunil, PW-3 ) has not yet been allowed to take food from Ashram dinning like any other inmates ( while food in free there - including visitors – as shown / treated in the Income Tax exemption criteria ).

Manojda, I respectfully hold & I think that the world is with me that you are anti-ashram. The ashram has come to this shape for you who nourished and maintained “a drug addicted school dropout (later became) a taxi driver” – to make a claim by him of a founder of Sri Aurobindo Archives, to be the ‘author’ to make revision of Savitri posthumously and to write a biography of Sri Aurobindo .

Now you are giving an impression to us that PH has been expelled since he is no more looked around in the ashram. But fact remains, that you have not yet officially expelled PH , no notice has been issued to that effect , not published ashram Journals & magazines

By all probability, PH is staying in Pondicherry itself alongwith one of his Indian girl friends, who is also an ashramites, namely, Madhumita @ Minu Patnayak, who is the In-Charge of a boarding house of ashram (situated at 1st floor of Matri Saran) – since reportedly she is also not been looked around in the ashram.

As pointed out in newspaper reports that PH is one of the founders of Sri Aurobindo Archives and as has been wrote in the author’s bio data given in the book that PH is one of the editors of the editorial board for making revised edition of collected works of Sri Aurobindo – such a position will go in favour of PH and against ashram in upholding the order of interim stay against the publication of the Indian edition of the book, mind it.

The main architect of this Public Interest writ petition, which blessed us by an Order of Stay dtd. 05.11.08, is an ex-student of the ashram school, namely Mr. Jayanta Bhatacharya , while his wife Gitanjali Bhattacharya is the petitioner – who moved most timely in Orissa High Court. Thanks to the ex-student community living outside ashram, hope that they would be able to uphold of the dignity of Sri Aurobindo and His Ashram.

Thank you.
Yours truly,
( bijan ghosh )
enclo : true copies of some newspaper reports dtd. 06.11.08, qua this Stay Order.
cc : Pranab Kumar Bhattacharje

from bijan ghosh <> cc "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 8 November 2008 01:03 subject read and circulate. 8:56 AM 4:20 PM 7:48 PM October 17, 2008

Friday, November 7, 2008

An "invasion on the religious sentiments of Indians"

"Court stays publication of book on Sri Aurobindo" The Times of India, 6 Nov 2008.

Balasore: Orissa High Court on Tuesday stayed the publication and circulation of a book in India that is said to contain objectionable remarks against The Mother and Sri Aurobindo.

The book – The lives of Sri Aurobindo – is written by Peter Heehs, an American who is one of the founders of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives in Puducherry. It was published in the US in May this year by Columbia Press and was to be re-printed and sold by Penguin India inNovember.

On Wednesday, in response to a writ petition by Balasore resident Geetanjali Bhattacharya, an HC bench comprising Justice I M Quddasi and B P Ray ordered Penguin India not to publish the book till it got a no-objection certificate from the Union home ministry and ministry of information and broadcasting. In her petition, Bhattacharya has quoted alleged excerpts from Heehs' book and urged the court to ban the publication of the book and take action against the writer.

Some of the writings, as mentioned in the petition, are:

  • "Aurobindo's character, life, writings and thoughts did not hold integrity";
  • "He (Aurobindo) possesses a morally loose character";
  • "His claims to spiritual expression and realisation is questionable and irrelevant";
  • and that his spirituality "emerges from a streak of inherited madness".

The most shocking claim by the writer is that Aurobindo's relationship with The Mother was "romantic in nature", the petitioner has said. She quotes the preface of the book:

"A statement on the politician or poet that rubs the people wrong way will turn into a political or legal issue or possibility cause a riot".

Claiming that the book is aimed at tarnishing the images of Sreemaa and Aurobindo, Bhattacharya has called it an "invasion on the religious sentiments of Indians". "Even Heehs knows that there might be riots in the country after his book is published in India". Bhattacharya told TOI over phone, adding that the book has "objectionable descriptions" of the relationship between Shreemaa and Aurobindo and "derogatory remarks" on Mrunalini, Nalini and Meera as well."

Peter Heehs, who was a taxi driver, a school dropout and a drug-addict in the US, was rehabilitated in Aurobindo Ashram in Puducherry years ago. He has since left the Ashram." She said. During the hearing, additional Solicitor-general J K Mishra, counsel for the Union Government, approached the court with a request that the Center be asked to find out from the Author the source of his information. "the court also has asked both ministries to file affidavits on what action they have taken on the petitioner's representation. The next hearing is on December 15," said Siddhartha Das, Bhattacharya's counsel."

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Bold and Concrete Step

from Prithwin Mukherjee <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 6 November 2008 14:25 subject Re: [Savitri Era Open Forum] Orissa High Court restrains Penguin from publishing 1:03 PM 9:24 AM 8:57 AM 7:18 AM 1:13 PM 1:28 PM


Dr Prithwindra Mukherjee


from aju mukhopadhyay <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 6 November 2008 15:08 subject Re: [Savitri Era Open Forum] Orissa High Court restrains Penguin from publishing

Got the report already from Times of India where it is said that the author was once a school drop out, drug addict and a taxi driver.

Wishes, Aju Mukhopadhyay


from Prithwin Mukherjee <> to "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <>
date 6 November 2008 17:15 subject Re: [Savitri Era Open Forum]
Bold and Concrete Step



The petitioner has appealed for a ban on the book, ‘The Lives of Sri Aurobindo’ by Peter Heehs

HC conditions for release of book
Author peter heehs has reportedly made defamatory remarks on Aurobindo’s character in the book
Express News service Cuttack, November, 4

THE controversial biography ‘The Lives of Sri Aurobindo’ by Peter Heehs has been engulfed by another storm prior to its release in India by Penguin Books India Ltd with the Orissa High Court imposing restrictions on its publication.

The division bench comprising Justice IM Quddisi and Justice BP Ray today instructed the publishers not to release the book until it obtains no objection certificates from the Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry and the Union Home Ministry. The book, which has been already published by Columbia University Press in USA, was slated to be released by Penguin in India this month.

The bench also directed the Union I&B Ministry to thoroughly examine the contents of the book in terms of containing defamatory comments and insinuations against the revolutionary and spiritual leader held in high esteem in the country. A report should be submitted before the Court by December 15, which has been fixed as the next date of hearing on the issue. Affidavits have also been sought from the Government and different sections including the publisher on the book.

The directions came in response to a petition filed by Gitanjali Devi, wife of one Jayant Bhattacharjee of Balasore, alleging that the book was blasphemous in nature. Under the guise of a biography, the writer had cast aspersions on the life and character of the philosopher, sage, poet and freedom fighter.

Appearing for the petitioner, counsel Milan Kanungo said that the author who claimed to be a scholar and one of the founders of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives had resorted to gross falsity about one of the tallest sons of the country.

Heehs had made defamatory remarks on Sri Aurobindo’s character and integrity and that his claims to spiritual experience and relations were questionable and irrelevant. The author had also made extremely unacceptable descriptions about Sri Aurobindo through out the book spanning pages 25, 28, 54, 55, 199, 203, 245, the petitioner alleged. The petitioner has appealed for a ban on the book, Kanungo said. 7:18 AM HC brakes on biography

Orissa High Court restrains Penguin from publishing The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs

The Telegraph Front Page > Nation > Thursday , November 6 , 2008 HC brakes on biography OUR CORRESPONDENT

Cuttack, Nov. 5: Orissa High Court restrained Penguin Books India Private Limited from publishing The Lives of Sri Aurobindo authored by Peter Heehs without obtaining a no objection certificate from the Union information and broadcasting ministry and the Union home ministry.

The Columbia University Press in USA has already published the biography. Penguin Books was supposed to release it in India this month. The two-judge bench of Justice I.M. Qudussi and Justice B.P. Ray imposed the interim restriction in response to a writ petition yesterday seeking a ban on the book alleging that the author had cast aspersions on Sri Aurobindo’s image. Balasore-based Gitanjali Devi, the wife of Jayant Bhattacharya, had filed the petition.

The court posted the case for next hearing to December 15 while directing the Union information and broadcasting ministry to submit a report by then. The court expected the ministry to examine the content of the book and ascertain the veracity of the allegations.

The petitioner’s counsel, Milan Kanungo, in the preliminary hearing on Tuesday said the author had made defamatory descriptions questioning the character of the leader in seven pages. Heehs, who claimed to be a scholar and a founder of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Archives, had resorted to gross falsity in the book, the petitioner’s counsel further alleged.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

In the field of Psychology, Heehs is a layman. You allowed such an ill-motivated layman to make psycho-analysis of Sri Aurobindo

01 Nov 2008
Respected Manoj Das Gupta, and Trustees of the Board of Trustees
Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry 605 002
Sub : book by PH, your assurance and next developments

Dear Trustees,

MDG, by his letter dtd. 05.10.08, that is in response to the mass petition dtd. 02.10.08, assured Pranab, {who was the first signatory in the mass petition} inter alia , among the following:

Legal aspects are being looked into as to whether the Indian publication may be at least modified if not stalled, PH, on his own has assured me that he shall try, within the limits and constraints as they exist, to modify where possible some of the passages. According to him, he didn’t imagine that the response to his work among a certain group of people would be so violent and expressed his regrets for being the “cause”.

But, such assurances are turning un-true, day by day, in letter and spirit.

One Dr. Manasi Pahwa, a Ph.D. Scholar of the of Department of Psychology, University of Delhi, ND, wrote you a letter with detailed analysis on the falsity of claim qua objectivity of PH; his childish-depth knowledge in the subject, named Psychology, as PH made an alleged psycho-analysis of Sri Aurobindo; obscurity of so called scientific approach and vindictive attitude towards Sri Aurobindo and Indian Spiritualism. Instead of replying to her of that letter , the same was forwarded to PH by trustees , and thereupon PH put a reply to that letter to her.

In the contents of the reply of PH, his intensions have become more apparent and obvious. And intentions of Trustees are also become crystal clear – as gathered from the fact of forwarding the letter to PH while you did not reply to her, who wrote to you a letter apprising her feeling based on authentic and most scientific analysis, and also for remedies thereof, for Sri Aurobindo, for Ashram, for all devotees throughout the world.

Respected Trustees, Dr. Manasi Pahwa is a Doctorate Scholar of Psychology from a recognised University of the world – not like PH, who has no formal education, and that too in a subject like Psychology, which is a specialised critical subject, not a common or casual subject . There can not be any iota of doubt that in the field of Psychology, PH is a layman, scientifically and objectively speaking – while you allowed such an ill-motivated layman to make psycho-analysis of Sri Aurobindo, and did not bother to reply to an established authenticate person who made such psycho-analysis done by PH, a nullity.

From your conduct on record it is established that you do not want to accept the analysis of Dr. Manasi Pahwa but that of Peter Heehs.

And the irony is this, you have no answer either to write to Dr. Manasi Pahwa. In legal parlance, it is called – admission by non-traverse.

It is further the clinching, unavoidable , unrepeatable fact - established through this fact in particular, that the Trustees were all along having full knowledge of all intentions of PH and for that reason , not only they did not expel PH but protect him all along – in every manner, since 1985. In legal parlance , there is a maxim : animus ad omne jus ducit: It is the intention that all law applies, Law always regards the intention.

In rejoinder to the letter of Dr. Manasi Pahwa , PH wrote on 21.09.08:

Another way for you to give expression to your scholarly views about my book would be to review it in a Delhi periodical, say The Book Review or The Indian Historical Review. I am in contact with the editors of both these journals, and would be happy to send a copy of the Indian edition to one of them with a recommendation that you review the book in his or her journal.

Now PH has completed all steps to make review of his book, through different agencies which are the steady steps to gradually inter into the Indian market, while MDG wanted to palliate the situation assuring Pranab that PH himself had assured that there would be no Indian publication of this book, so that everybody in ashram maintains a ‘dignified silence’ to perpetuate the journey of PH, alongwith Jeffrey Kripal, Michel Murphy, Richard Hartz, Sudhir Kakar – who are the inheritors of Macaulay , Max Muller, Wlliam Archer.

Let me quote Macaulay’s address to the British Parliament on 02.02.1835:

I have traveled across the length and breadth of India and I have not seen one person who is a beggar, who is a thief, such wealth I have seen in this country, such high moral values, people of such caliber, that I do not think we would over backbone of this nation, which is her spiritual and cultural heritage, and, thereof, I propose that we replace her old and ancient education system, her culture, for if the Indians think that all that is foreign and English is good and greater than their own, they will lose their self-esteem, their native culture and they will become what we want them, a truly dominated nation.

And, Max Mullar, as quoted at pg. 17 in the famous book - “The Invasion That Never Was” by Michel Danino/ Sujata Nahar:
Even the celebrated Max Muller (whose research work, interestingly, was commissioned and generously paid for by the East Indian Company after he had been engaged by Macaulay), wrote to his wife:

“This edition of mine and the translation of the Veda, will hereafter tell to a great extent on the fate of India and on the growth of millions of souls in that country. It is the root of their religion and to show them what the root is, I feel sure, is the only way of uprooting all that has sprung from it during the last three thousand years.”

Five years back, I offered a rare book in ashram main Library, namely, MAX MULLER - A LIFELONG MASQUERADE by Brahm Datt Bharti, if none has yet motivatedly removed it, the book should be there. Interested persons may read.

Pranab has imposed the most prayed for ban on PH on 30.10.08 - the Director of Physical Education Department (PED in short) issued the Notice, apprised all the concerned authorities that “Peter Heehs is no longer a member of PED of the Ashram”, and put it in the Notice Board of Ashram and PED as well. No doubt this is a rarest of the rare actions. And I need not to quote, as everybody of you knows much better than us that The Mother said repeatedly :

Who is not a member of PED , he has no place in Ashram.

Pranab is Mother’s action.

Not only the inmates who signed the mass protest petition dtd. 02.10.08 - others too ( who did not gather courage to sign for the dictatorial fear doctrine ) – all reportedly celebrated the Day, in silence and incense. We too join now.

Thus it is established beyond any iota of doubt that Peter has no place in Sri Aurobindo Ashram, a persona non grata.

With regards
{bijan ghosh }



By writing the book “The Lives of Sri Aurobindo” , Peter Heehs has brought Sri Aurobindo down to a very low level. This has hurt the feelings and sentiments of disciples, devotees, admirers and well-wishers of Sri Aurobindo all over the world and calls for the following corrective measures :

1. The distribution and sale of this book must be stopped. Attempts must be made to procure and destroy all existing copies of this book, and to stop all future editions and re-prints.
2. The Ashram should ensure that with immediate effect, Peter Heehs returns all the materials belonging to the Ashram Archives that are in his possession.
3. The Ashram must then sever all contact with Peter Heehs.


editorial notes: Please do note the chronology of the three dates:
# On 02.10.08, the mass protest petition, Pranab being the first signatory was submitted to Ashram authority
# On 05.10.08, in reply to that mass protest petition, Manjo DG gave a missive (informal communiqué) to Pranab
# On 10.10.08 , Pranab gave the reply to that missive of Manoj DG which he named , “Pranab’s Proposal” and put that PROPOSAL in notice board

But till date there is in no compliance of that proposal, though Manoj wrote in his letter dtd. 05.10.08 to Pranab that:

“It is on the strength of this relationship that I would have expected that if ever you found me failing in my duty or going astray, you would have called me in person and as an elder brother to a younger brother asked me for an explanation of my conduct.”

The path-breaking-prayed-for ban has been imposed upon Peter Heehs by the PED , vide an order was passed , which was accordingly apprised to all concerned that :

Peter Heehs is no more a member of PED of the Ashram.

Pranab Kumar Bhattacherje
Physical Education Department

Ed. Note: Prof. Anand Reddy (he is a doctorate on Aurobindian philosophy) is the Chairman of Sri Aurobindo Centre for Advance Research (SACAR in short), at Pondicherry. This Institution is in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) for reciprocation and co-ordination of studies on Sri Aurobindo. Prof. Reddy is an acclaimed authority on Aurobindian philosophy. He is the first person among the ashram community who raised the voice of protest against the offending book authored by Peter Heehs.

from bijan ghosh <> cc "Tusar N. Mohapatra" <> date 2 November 2008 08:39 subject read & circulate Sri Aurobindo Ashram ought to expel Peter ... All of you all along knew all about this ... 4:20 PM 7:48 PM October 17, 2008