Thursday, May 10, 2007

But this remark of yours is a sign of idealising Aurobindo’s poetry terribly

Marko Says: May 8th, 2007 at 1:39 pm Tusar said: “For his poem Savitri, he ranks along with Dante, Milton, and Goethe.”
I have a lot of respect for and interest in Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga Tusar, but this remark of yours is a sign of idealising Aurobindo’s poetry terribly, I think. If you would have read Goethe in German or Dante in Old Italian there is no way you can maintain this. To take Dante’s Divine Comedy as an example. It’s 1000 pages are so beautiful poetry whith so many internal rhymes and double or more meanings and all of it is written within a strict rhyme scheme with every sentence composed of exacly 11 syllables. To quote Wikipedia:
“The Divine Comedy is composed of three canticas (or “cantiche”) — Inferno (Hell), Purgatorio (Purgatory), and Paradiso (Paradise) — composed each of 33 cantos (or “canti”). The very first canto serves as an introduction to the poem and is generally not considered to be part of the first cantica, bringing the total number of cantos to 100. The first cantica, Inferno, is by far the most famous of the three, and is often published separately under the title Dante’s Inferno. As a part of the whole literary work, the first canto serves as an introduction to the entire Divine Comedy, making each of the cantiche 33 canti long. The number 3 is prominent in the work, represented here by the length of each cantica. The verse scheme used, terza rima, is the hendecasyllable (line of eleven syllables), with the lines composing tercets according to the rhyme scheme ABA BCB CDC . . . YZY Z.”
I have read parts of Savriti and it is absolutely not in the same league as the Divine Comedy. Not even close. Savriti is poetry written by a human. The Divine Comedy is poetry that you don’t believe is possible to have been written by a human. To give you a taste, from Canto 33 from Paradiso:
O luce etterna che sola in te sidi,
sola t’intendi, e da te intellettae
intendente te ami e arridi!
Eternal Light, You only dwell within
Yourself, and only You know You; Self-knowing,
Self-known, You love and smile upon Yourself!
(Of course there is always a part of the meaning lost in the translation)
See for the whole Divina Commedia:
anonymous Says: May 10th, 2007 at 4:13 am Marko, re: your remarks on Savitri, I think we have to keep in mind that of the three transcendentals, the Good, the True and the Beautiful, the last one is the most subjective, and depends on a lot of factors. For me, reading Savitri has been transformative — it has actually induced spiritually transformative experiences. This may not have been the case for you, so naturally you would not find Savitri to be as “divine” as I have found it to be. Meanwhile, Dante’s The Divine Comedy has not inspired me anywhere near as much as Savitri has. That doesn’t mean that it’s not divine poetry, just that at the moment I do not resonate with it much. There is a reason why they say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
(From Evening Talks with Sri Aurobindo)
Disciple : What is meant by saying that the Supreme is the True, the Good and the Beautiful ’satyam-sivam-sundaram?’
Sri Aurobindo : That is a different thing. The “True” can be the mental form of the Supreme Truth, the “Good” has a relation to morality. Whereas “Beauty” is different with different men, there is no one standard of beauty.
There are certain things, however, which all people consider beautiful: for instance, the rose.
Disciple : What did Christ look like ? Were the Rishis beautiful ?
Sri Aurobindo : None can say, because there is no record.
Disciple : On what does the creation of beauty depend ?
Sri Aurobindo : True beauty is a creation from the Ananda plane.
Disciple : But some people say there is beauty in everything.
Sri Aurobindo : Yes. There is a stage in which everything has its beauty. For a perfect creation of beauty three elements are needed:
1. The fundamental element of beauty which is present in everything.
2. The pervading quality or Guna.
3. The expression or form.
Where these three are in agreement then there is the perfect expression of the Ananda.

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