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Monday, December 15, 2008

How cleverly the whole thing has been made clumsy

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A Chapter from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs
by RY Deshpande on Mon 15 Dec 2008 05:30 AM IST Permanent Link Cosmos

A Letter dated 6 October 2008
I’ve just gone through the chapter entitled The Ascent to Supermind: Pondicherry 1915-1926, the first of Part Five: Guide, of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs, and find it rather hastily written. It is also crude and easily popularistic-journalistic in its approach and attitude when seen in the context of the grand theme it purports to present, its plentiful inadequacies very glaring, its spiritual perceptions wanting in their penetration, in insight as much as in substance. The decidedly selective handling of the researched material much amounts to insensitive and blundering representation of Sri Aurobindo’s yogic siddhis, his realisations and his remarkable achievements. In fact the biography is doing enormous injustice to the spiritual things we value so deeply, so observantly and feelingly, injustice in more than one way. I may touch upon a few of them here.

Actually the title of the chapter itself is awfully misleading: the period 1915-1926 cannot be called “Ascent to Supermind”...

In my view, apart from such technicalities, the greatest defect of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo is the general absence of spiritual ambience in it; it is somewhat missing, in fact it is not there. From that perspective the biography is just trash. It might be claimed that it is meant for an academic audience, but then when the yogic-spiritual Sri Aurobindo is gone what will be left will be a false image of him. In that case it will be ironic if we should fail to recognize this aspect, fail to take appropriate action to dissolve this falsification. It is necessary that steps are taken towards this and also towards correcting the system to have the Archives documents available to the serious researchers studying the Mother and the Master’s works. This is the expectation and due consideration should be given to it, and given to it promptly.
RY Deshpande Mirror of Tomorrow

A Few Comments Apropos of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo
by RY Deshpande on Sun 14 Dec 2008 06:10 AM IST Permanent Link Cosmos

While here these few stray comments have been summarised only briefly, a more thorough and detailed examination is necessary, in fact not only necessary but is obligatory also. Yet it is felt that this material, forming sort of chapters of a larger work, will provide the essential background for the purposes of appreciating the many dimensions that are present in the issue. This need be seen from several yogic-spiritual perspectives. We look into Sri Aurobindo’s life, if at all that is possible, not as an aspect of mere academic or university or historical study, but essentially for living more and more in it, to enlighten and ennoble our souls, that which will bring fulfilment closer to us. These are the kind of intuitions we would wish to gather from it. If a biography fails to give us this, then that itself is its failure.
RY Deshpande

Re: A Few Comments Apropos of The Lives of Sri Aurobindo
by RY Deshpande on Mon 15 Dec 2008 06:05 AM IST Profile Permanent Link

Thanks. The reference is to The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs. You can also see how cleverly the whole thing has been made clumsy, with phrases picked up from all sorts of places! RYD Reply 9:41 AM

Re: A Chapter from The Lives of Sri Aurobindo by Peter Heehs
by RY Deshpande on Mon 15 Dec 2008 11:37 AM IST Profile Permanent Link

Are these "documentary evidences" a private property of Heehs, that he is "preserving" them for future use? RYD Reply

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