Thursday, January 22, 2015

The Integral Advaitism of Sri Aurobindo

The Integral Advaitism of Sri Aurobindo 

Have you investigated Sloterdijk at all on these questions? He generally cites Heiner M├╝hlmann’s ‘The Nature of Cultures’ when he wants to talk about cultures as entities. Sloterdijk’s mixing of this kind of socio-biology and grand, sweeping Spenglerian history makes me a little uneasy but it is interesting. Understanding cultures as tensegretic structures (i.e. as holding together in relations of tension) makes a lot of sense. Although, of course, the temptation is to understand culture as cultivation, as care, as enriching and enlivening. In this sense culture could be understood as a kind of surplus that arrives when beings achieve more complex modes of being than simple Darwinian selection (Elizabeth Grosz makes more or less this argument).
A kind of froth of irreducibility that rises up from natural selection without ever leaving it to form some sort of other plane (the froth is nothing without constant up-frothing). Culture is ‘what makes life worth living’ for beings self-aware enough to *need* a ‘life worth living.’ It is not what transcends life but what mediates the deadly contradiction of consciousness (something to which we could easily grant various animals to greater or lesser degrees).

The Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry, July 2014 - Enlightenment Orientalism: Resisting the Rise of the Novel, Srinivas Aravamudan
A conspiracy is afoot. Though you may not have noticed it until now, after reading Enlightenment Orientalism, it will be difficult for you to pick up another piece of literary criticism on the novel without the suspicion that a high degree of pre-selection has taken place to cover a heterogeneous and wild mass of texts that call to you with magic lamps and delirious trips to the moon and other planets. I overstate, of course, but this is the distinct sense that one is left with after working through the spirited polemic that unmasks what is shown to be a nationalist chauvinist bias in favor of the sober realist novel.
Sunil Agnani is Associate Professor of English and History, University of Illinois at Chicago, and author of Hating Empire Properly: The Two Indies and Limits of Enlightenment Anticolonialism (Fordham Press, 2013), which received the Harry Levin Prize for Best First Book from the American Comparative Literature Association. 

Unearthing cosmopolitanism Times of India-Jan 25, 2015
Rabindranath Tagore, Ananda Coomaraswamy, Sri Aurobindo, Mirra Alfassa, James Cousins, Paul Richard, Dilip Kumar Roy and Taraknath Das. ... important in their own times" is what Sachidananda Mohanty's book, Cosmopolitan Modernity in the Early 20th Century, sets out to achieve.

Who Represents the Ashram? – The Hornet’s Sting The other day, while having lunch in the Dining Room, someone asked me if I have done right in going against the Ashram. I was completely taken aback at su...

PCC Forum - Debashish Banerji - Gandhi, Tagore, Aurobindo: Postmodern Legacies: via @YouTube

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