Sunday, March 18, 2012

Reducing religious belief to the ethical

[On the 14th of March 2012, Manoj Das Gupta (Managing Trustee of Sri Aurobindo Ashram) abruptly stopped Sudha Sinha’s Hindi classes. Sudha Sinha happens to be an eminent writer in Hindi. She has 24 books to her credit and was presented the National award for writers in 1967. She was also nominated the best writer in the State of Bihar in 1986/1987. Her translations of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother’s works into Hindi were greatly appreciated by the publication department of the Ashram until she became a petitioner in the case filed against the mismanagement of the Trustees in August 2010. After that, her translation of Volume 4 of the Mother’s Collected Works was cancelled at the stage of printing and she was told not to proceed with her translation of Sri Aurobindo’s Autobiographical Notes.
If the management had been less vindictive and thought of the larger benefit of her work to the Ashram, it certainly would not have acted in this manner. After all, who has lost more in this battle, Sudha Sinha or the Ashram? The Hindi speaking disciples and devotees of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother have been deprived of excellent translations and the students will no more have the privilege of being taught Hindi by a renowned writer. Sudha Sinha will now get more time to write and continue with her translation of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother’s works, whether the Trustees approve of it or not. We publish below the two letters which she wrote recently to Manoj Das Gupta.]

Working Committee statement on articles by Francois Gautier Home  
The Working Committee of the Residents' Assembly of the Auroville Foundation wishes to state that it is shocked that Auroville resident Mr. François Gauthier is publishing articles criticizing the Indian political establishment. In doing so, Mr. Gauthier acts against one of the basic principles of Auroville which is that residents of Auroville do not engage in politics.
The writings of Mr. Gauthier only express his own views and opinions and not that of any authority or of the Auroville residents. The community of Auroville take no responsibility and cannot be held liable for the contents of Mr. Gautier's articles and messages. Auroville, 10-12-2008

Govind - Mar 17, 2012 09:59 AM Here is the WC's "shock" at Francois Gautier's articles:
When it comes to an outspoken person who does not conform to the left/liberal political line then suddenly this group of two-faced Januses is keen to remind everybody that "residents of Auroville do not engage in politics". But in protecting one of their own gurus, this freedom loving bunch suddenly sees no problem in wading knee-deep into Ashram politics to suppress the freedom of others. Truly pathetic.

Govind - Mar 17, 2012 08:24 AM Here is a link to a web-page with more details on Togo Mukherjee:
He is a truly extraordinary individual.
Lynn Geri on From The Essence of Truth by Martin Heidegger November 1, 2011 I have been playing with the framework.

Thill - March 8th, 2012 on 9:12 am How can we make sense of W’s claim that in denying that he believes in the Last Judgment, he is not necessarily contradicting someone who believes in it?
It seems to me that we can make sense of these sorts of claims made by W. only in terms of ascribing to him the view that religious beliefs are not claims about reality, but express moral attitudes, evaluations or value judgments, and prescriptions or “rules of life”.
Thus, on W.’s account, a person who believes that God created the world is actually adopting certain moral attitudes, evaluations or value judgments, and prescriptions on how to relate to the world, rather than affirming any claims about how things are in reality. The meaning of a religious judgment is its role in forming and leading to the adoption of certain moral attitudes or dispositions, evaluations or value judgments, and prescriptions?
I think W would see this thesis as a descriptive claim about the meaning of religious belief. If it is a descriptive claim, then we can examine whether it is true or false…
If W. is maintaining the thesis I ascribe to him (The meaning of a religious judgment is its role in forming and leading to the adoption of certain moral attitudes or dispositions, evaluations or value judgments, and prescriptions), then he is reducing religious belief to the ethical. And this, I think, shows that the ethical occupies a central place in his outlook and thought. Reply

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