Studying the work of Sri Aurobindo

In the autumn issue of the Distinctions newsletter, James Flaherty takes up the topic of tuning into our inner guidance. To set the stage, he introduces the work of Sri Aurobindo. Here is an excerpt from the article, which includes a bit about this fascinating figure.

Sri Aurobindo was a philosopher and spiritual teacher in India during the 20th century. His works include The Life Divine and Integral Yoga (which began the worldwide interest in all things integral). He inspired many students and established intentional communities of practice, which are still in existence (see auroville.org).

Reading his books transmits his presence and wisdom directly to us, for example:

The surest way towards this integral fulfillment is to find the Master of the secret who dwells within us, open ourselves constantly to the divine Power which is also the divine Wisdom and Love and trust to it to affect the conversion. But it is difficult for the egoistic consciousness to do this at all at the beginning. And, if done at all, it is still difficult to do it perfectly and in every strand of our nature. It is difficult at first because of our egotistic habits of thought, of sensation, of feeling block up the avenues by which we can arrive at the perception that is needed. It is difficult afterwards because the faith, the surrender, the courage requisite in this path are not easy to the ego-clouded soul. The divine working is not the working which the egoistic mind desires or approves; for it uses error in order to arrive at truth, suffering in order to arrive at bliss, imperfection in order to arrive at perfection. The ego cannot see where it is being led; it revolts against the leading, loses confidence, loses courage.

The Synthesis of Yoga, pp. 63-64

Many months of fruitful study could be devoted to that one paragraph.

Look for the full article in this quarter’s Distinctions, due out later this week.

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