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Monday, April 23, 2012

Sri Aurobindo Study Circle, Bangalore devotees incensed over Heehs

Letter to the Trustees from Sri Aurobindo Study Circle, Bangalore From: Sri Aurobindo Study Circle 17th April 2012
We must regretfully admit that our faith and confidence has been shattered in the incumbent establishment as the preserver and protector of the living memory of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. Although we may not claim to be the anointed custodians of the well being of the Ashram, it cannot be denied that as devotees we too have a certain responsibility in respect of preserving and fostering this sacred institution and protecting its sanctity and dignity. It is in this larger indirect role that we wish to make the following suggestions for due consideration of the Trustees in earnest hope that they will not be misunderstood as an encroachment on their authority but will be welcomed instead in the right spirit as issuing from fellow Sadhaks on important matters of common concern. Measures requested:
1. Not to permit Peter Heehs to stay in the premises of any part of Sri Aurobindo Ashram or of its connected institutions.
2. He must be disowned forthwith by the Ashram Authorities and its other institutions in writing followed by public endorsement through the media.
3. To get in touch immediately with the foreign Publishers of Peter’s Book and contain the damage even if it means initiating necessary legal action in this regard. 
4. To convey effectively to the Publisher the rage and resentment that the book has evoked among the Devotees and admirers worldwide so that they desist from
5. reprinting the same or publishing modified or abridged versions of it in any form in the future. 
6. To take careful stock of pilferage, misuse etc. of documents in any form in the Archives and elsewhere by Peter Heehs and make efforts at retrieval 
7. The Managing Trustee to issue an unequivocal statement through the media and in writing that the contents of the book are distorted and are entirely the personal views of Peter Heehs and certainly do not reflect the views of the Ashram.
8. As a matter of official policy from now on, the Trustees may invariably consider the following people as Invitees to broaden participation in the collective decision making process:
Representatives of Sri Aurobindo Society
Heads of Departments within the Ashram
By rotation, (once in two/three years), a few senior Sadhaks within the Ashram and also a few representatives from the various Branches of Sri Aurobindo Society all over India. Thanking You, Sincerely yours, for SRI AUROBINDO STUDY CIRCLE Dr. G. N. Narayana Reddy
cc : For the kind information of His Excellency The Lt. Governor of Pondicherry,
Raj Nivas, Pondicherry – 605001. Signatures of Members of Sri Aurobindo Study Circle [367]

M R Venkatesh, Deccan Herald Blasphemy tag strains Aurobindo Ashram Pondicherry, April 21 2012
Any ban on the book would not only be against the basic freedom of expression, but will militate against Aurobindo’s free spirit, many felt.

If allegations in a publication or proposed publication are true, or the author believes them to be true, they are entitled to be published. A publication may be defamatory, but it is entitled to be published as long as it is true or a defence of truth or of a privilege is made out. 

Parameters of privacy - Indian Express Soli J. Sorabjee : Sun Apr 22 2012
Privacy is distinct from defamation. If the facts stated about a person are false, then the person responsible may be sued for libel. Privacy is invaded when without consent there is disclosure of information about a person’s private life, which is true, but causes the person embarrassment and distress. Truth is no defence to breach of privacy. Right to privacy is not absolute. 

another call for major media not to provide a platform for trolls from Object-Oriented Philosophy - Apr 21, 2012  by doctorzamalek (Graham Harman)
Freedom of speech means that you can’t face judicial punishment for what you say. It doesn’t mean you won’t become a social outcast for saying certain things.

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