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Monday, May 9, 2011

The next step is Fascism


Comment on Issues of inclusion v exclusion in Auroville
by Rod
Last Updated: May 5, 2011

One of the main problems, it seems to me, is many people's inability to think properly and to use language properly, and also a lack of training in subjects such as sociology and political science. 
For example, if we look at the principles for decision making published by the AV Council (N&N 9 April), we read: "There is no exchange of money, or as little as possible. Work is not performed for earning one's living but to serve and to progress." When an ideal like this is made a rule against which people are judged it automaticaly sets up a principle of exclusion. It is well known that at least a third of Aurovilians work to support themselves and do not take "maintenance". That group would be automatically excluded and at any point could be judged negatively against the principle. In practice, the principle would probably be used selectively to discriminate against some person or group for their behavior. 
Another example from the same source: "Aurovilians do not belong to any ideology, race, group, religion or nationality and therefore cannot represent any of those..." This of course directly contradicts the Mother's idea of the International Zone as well as the fundamental nature of everyone and every group of human beings. It is also a statement of ideology in itself. And it can easily (and falsely) be used to exclude Koreans, Tamils, French, or anyone else, for just about any reason.
It is exactly this kind of behavior that I have pointed out with the GB decision that our school isn't in conformity with the Charter. In this example, the Charter is held up as a principle for judging and excluding something about which it in fact says nothing. It is just someone's delusional state of mind that finds a talisman for conveniently excluding others.
The next step is Fascism.
Back to Vrinda Estela Pujals 's Comment
Comment on Issues of inclusion v exclusion in Auroville
by Rod  in reply to Vrinda Estela Pujals
Last Updated: May 8, 2011
In response to one of your earlier questions, I think that Sanjukta Gupta is one of the best interpreters of Hinduism working in academia, and in the US today Robert Thurman in Buddhism. In India, academics are seriously lagging behind the West. I have given lectures in several universities recently and I have not found the general response to be very challenging. Auroville has practically no intellectual dimension, although that would change if it actually developed into an international city. But there aren't any signs of that happening at present. Many are actually against it.

As for your question of yoga on some collective level, it seems from a closer of reading of Sri Aurobindo that everything really depends on the individual effort, and divine grace. A collctivity of yogis can't be artificially created. I have commented on the paradox implied for Auroville in my presentation at the conference on Spirituality Beyond Religion held here last year. The integral yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother enters into the field of evolution. It aims for spirituality to become an evolutionary pathway. That means leaving behind all the religious trappings and making life a sacrifice, not just for a new consciousness, but for a new species. This is what it means, however little it is understood as yet. There is definitely scope for bringing this discussion into the academic arena through philosophy and religion as well as through psychology and the other human sciences. But to do this requires quite a lot more than academic credentials.

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