INTRODUCTION All spiritual greatness is a surpassing of the normal human consciousness and an embrace of the universal and transcendent. It is …
Sri Aurobindo’s love of man and earth is a love of God in man and earth, or rather of God as man and earth. That he did not develop it but was born with it, will be amply illustrated and confirmed by his writings, prose and poetical. No greater lover of man has ever been born, – of the entire being of man, and not only of his soul; and no greater prophet of man’s divine destiny.
A dizzy height of lyrical magnificence is reached in the ‘Rose of God’, the crest-jewel of Sri Aurobindo’s shorter mystical poems, the iridescent Mantra of supra-mental transformation. His love of man and earth attains here a depth and concentrated intensity of expression which makes the poem at once an invocation and a revelation, a prayer, a prophecy and a promise.
Sri Aurobindo’s love for man and earth is not humanism, idealistic or realistic; it is not an outcome of an emotional or imaginative idealism, nor an overflow from the widened heart of Spirit-touched sainthood. It is more than compassion and more than even the spiritual emotion born of inner identity. It is a beatific blossom of a complete and constant identification with the Divine who is everywhere, in Matter and Life as much as in the silent Spirit; and it is this union and identification that makes Sri Aurobindo declare in the inspired strain of the Vedic Rishis, “Matter is Brahman”
This special issue is dedicated to invoking several of the names and forms of Shakti – from Aditi, the Divine Mother to Mother India, the Bharat Shakti; from Mahashakti and Her Four Great Powers to Woman as Shakti, Nāri Shakti. It is an expression of our adoration of the Divine Mother because Hers indeed is the force that moves all and acts in all, the universal Energy, the Conscious-Power.
We feature a reflective look at selected insights from Nolini Kanta Gupta’s book with a focus on the issues of equality, freedom and education for girls and women. The timeless truths that a yogi reveals in a deep examination of a social phenomenon must be kept in consideration when addressing contemporary issues.
The author here eloquently speaks of the significant place leading women from Indian itihasa-s hold in collective Indian psyche. She gives examples of various literary creations in which she feels the portrayals of our ‘epic heroines’ continue to inspire and enlighten the Indian women to this day and show them the path to truly becoming strong and powerful making their choices.
India needs Shakti alone, said Sri Aurobindo once. What can help Indians, and especially the youth of India grow in Shakti? What factors hold us back? What is necessary to infuse our knowledge with courage? What needs to be done to strengthen our society from within? These and other related questions were explored in this conversation with Sandeep Balakrishna, presented here in three parts.
In this concluding part of the 15-part series, the author summarises the inner evolution of Indian national consciousness of which the political idea of nationalism is only a small part. He reminds us that the future course of Indian nationhood lies in spiritualising all the outer aims and activities including science, art, literature, politics and socio-economic organisation.
This issue is all about Space, or should we say, Spaces. Spaces within and without, inner and outer and in between. Spaces in their stillness and immensity, in their emptiness and richness. Spaces that are sacred and that are made sacred. Spaces that are infinitely vast and intimately personal. Along with spaces come in memories and experiences – historical, cultural, personal, psychological, spiritual. These and other related themes are explored in the diversity of pieces selected for this issue.