Friday, October 31, 2008

19 September 2008 - 48th Anniversary of Sri Aurobindo Society

News from Puducherry (formerly Pondicherry) Upcoming Events
Annual Seminar of the Women's Council - November 2008: "Organisation of Action in Life"
Organisation of action is the key to success in life. Life covers the whole gamut of our ideas and aims, our aspirations and endeavours, and our day-to-day physical activities and dealings. It is very essential to bring clarity and cohesiveness in our mind, a rhythm of harmony in our feelings and emotions and a flow of grace and beauty in our body's movements.
All who are interested are invited to attend Sri Aurobindo Society's Women's Council annual seminar on "Organisation of Action in Life" to be held on 21, 22, 23 November 2008, at the Society's Beach Office hall, [revised address] No.9, Saint Martin Street, Puducherry - 605 001.
For further information, accommodation etc., write to The Secretary Women's Council Sri Aurobindo Society Puducherry - 605 002. E-mail:
Recent Events at Beach Office19 September 2008 - 48th Anniversary of Sri Aurobindo Society
The 48th anniversary of Sri Aurobindo Society was celebrated at the Beach Office of the Society on 19 September. At 10:30 am the staff of Sri Aurobindo Society gathered in Beach office Hall, and the Mother's music was played. This was followed by the recorded readings by the Mother from Sri Aurobindo's poem "Rishi". The programme ended with collective meditation with Sunil da's music.
Some Special Days in October 2008
30 September to 9 October 2008 - Navaraatri and Vijaya Dashami / Dashehra
The Universal Mother in Her aspect of Durga
The Festival of Nine Nights (nava-raatri) this year began on 30 September. During the festival, the Supreme Mother in three of her prominent forms is worshipped: on the first three days Durga, Goddess of protection and valour, on the next three days Lakshmi, Goddess of inner and outer harmony and prosperity, and on the final three days Saraswati, Goddess of knowledge and perfection. The tenth day, which falls on 9th October, is the "Victory Day", Vijaya Dashami or Dashehra. This day is regarded as the day of Sri Rama's final victory over the Asura king Ravana.
Another legend has it that on this day Goddess Durga slew the buffalo-headed demon Mahishasura in a battle and became victorious. In Mysore, South India, Dushehra is a royal celebration. The demon Mahishasura is believed to have come from the city of Mysore and therefore it is the most affected by this event. A regal procession of decorated elephants, courtiers and court symbols wends its circuitous way to the Durga temple at the Chamundi Hill, decorated splendidly for the festival. On reaching the temple, prayers are offered to the goddess.
It is a time for the devotees to engage in various spiritual practices to make the entire ten days a period of deep inner growth.
Here is what the Mother says about the Victory Day:
Durga… who every year has to destroy her asura; and always she is compelled to begin again. It goes on in this way till the end of the reign allotted to the titans. When they will be banished from this world, it will not be thus any longer. But till then, that is as long as they are useful for intensifying the aspiration, clarifying the consciousness, for putting to the test the sincerity of people, they will be there. The day the test will not be needed, the day the sincerity will be pure and self-existent they will disappear. Then that day, Durga will no longer need to begin her battle over again every year.
Sri Aurobindo has said:
Durga is the Mother's Power of Protection. The lion is the attribute of Goddess. Durga, the conquering and protecting aspect of the Universal Mother.
Sri Aurobindo has also written a powerful and inspiring invocation to Mother Durga in Bengali. We present this time its English translation along with excerpts from its audio rendering.
Full English translation of Hymn to Durga Download excerpts of the recitation
27 & 28 October 2008 - Deepavali / Diwali
Deepavali - the Festival of Lights
27 & 28 October 2008 will be celebrated as Deepavali, the Festival of Lights, more popularly known as Diwali, all over India. It comes 21days after Dushehra and Celebrates the return of Lord Rama to Ayodhya after his 14-year exile. To celebrate this event, people of Ayodhya are believed to have lit up their houses with lamps. According to another legend, it is on this day that Lakshmi emerged from the ocean during the samudra-manthan, the churning of the ocean. Goddess Lakshmi is the Goddess of prosperity and wealth and it is believed that she visits everyone's house during Diwali and brings peace and prosperity to all. In South India it is celebrated on 27th October, a day before the Diwali day in North India.
In West Bengal, Kali Puja is performed on Diwali as it is believed that on this day Kali killed the wicked demon Raktavija. In South India, Diwali is celebrated signifies the killing of the evil Narakaasura by Sri Krishna. Another Southern legend associates Diwali with the killing of the demon king Hiranyakashipu by Lord Vishnu during his incarnation as the man-lion Narasimha.
During the festival, the houses are lit with rows of lamps symbolising the kindling of the inner light that drives away from our lives the darkness of falsehood and ignorance. Exchange of traditional sweets with relatives, neighbours and friends forms an important part of the celebrations.
News from Branches and Centres
News from India
Noida (U.P.) - September 2008 Programmes
Special Programmes: 13 September 2008: A talk on 'Atma-bodh' by Shri P.M. Saxena, Managing Trustee, Sri Aurobindo Yog Mandir Nyas, Lucknow (former Dy. Commissioner - Trade Tax), in the context of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother was organised at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan on Saturday, the 13th September 2008. About 40 devotees and their families participated in the programmme.
Shri P.M. Saxena giving a talk on 'Atmabodh'. Shri Gulshan Dutta, Chairing the Session A view of the audience
Education at Sri Aurobindo Shiksha Niketan: 5 September 2008: Students of Sri Aurobindo Shiksha Niketan, Noida, celebrated the Teacher's Day. On this occasion, Dr. B. Singh, Principal Education Officer, Mglobal Trust, and Dr. Puneesh Taneja briefed the students about 'Ideal Teacher' and 'Ideal Child' as brought out in the booklet by Sri Aurobindo Society (Hindi Zone). Thereafter, children were told about Sri Maa and Sri Aurobindo and all of them paid tributes at the Holy Relics.
Hindi Day: On 15th September 2008, Members of the Lioness Club came to Sri Aurobindo Shiksha Niketan, Noida, and organised talks on 'Hindi' and its importance to each one of us. It was brought out that to achieve true progress, we must recognise our respective mother tongues and respect our national language - Hindi.
6th, 13th, 20th and 27th September 2008: Dr. Puneesh Taneja and Sh. S.K. Puri came on these days to Sri Aurobindo Bhavan and interacted for two hours with the children of Sri Aurobindo Shiksha Niketan. Poems, Stories, importance of good manners and discipline were explained to the children.
Health: Treatment by Homeopathy: Homeopathy Dispensary for two hours daily from Monday to Saturday by Dr. Ajay Srivastava at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan is going on well.
Treatment by Acupressure Therapy: Acupressure Treatment for two hours daily from Monday to Friday by Mrs. Sudha Kesharwani at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan is going on well. While giving treatment, she is also using the relevant quotations of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and the persons coming for acupressure treatment are evincing keen interest in them. Free Eye Check-up/Consultation on every Sunday at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan: Free Eye Check-up/Consultation is being organised on every Sunday, for two hours from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm by Dr. P.S. Chauhan, Eye Specialist and Project Director, National Blindness Control Programme, Govt. of India, at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan, Noida.
Development of Women: Sewing & Tailoring Classes: Sewing & Tailoring Classes are being conducted daily from Monday to Friday at Sri Aurobindo Bhavan by Smt. Jaishree Nigam and about twenty ladies are learning the same.
Other Activities: Besides the above, regular activities of Meditation with the Mother's music daily in the morning and evening, Library, Playing of spiritual audio/video CDs etc. are held.
Delhi Branch: Celebration of Sri Aurobindo's Birth Anniversary
To celebrate the 136th birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo, Delhi Branch of Sri Aurobindo Society organised an Inter-college talk on 15 August 2008 on different aspects of Sri Aurobindo's yoga, under the following topics:
a. Sri Aurobindo's vision of independent India. b. Role of Youth as envisaged by Sri Aurobindo c. Philosophy of Sri Aurobindo and the Power of Collective Action.
More than thirty students from various colleges from Delhi University spoke on the selected topics. Dr. Kavita Sharma, Principal of Hindu College, Ms. Ameeta Mehra, Chairperson of Gnostic Centre, Ms. Rani Jethmalani and Mr. Ranjit Puri were the judges.
Navakriti School, Delhi
a. A week long programme to find Krishna in play became the Janmashtami theme for Navakriti. All children and teachers were dressed as Krishna and the morning started with a walk to look for Krishna in the whole campus followed by song, arati, meditation and prasad. Bharatanatyam recital by one parent dressed as Yashodha churning butter and calling Krishna was performed. Navakriti children put up plays followed by a play by parents and teachers which showed scenes from the life of Lord Krishna.
b. Parents and teachers of Navakriti came together to celebrate the mango festival on 26 July, 2008 as a symbol of abundance in nature. A core group of 15 parents brought all parents and teachers together to celebrate the occasion.
Tenali (Andhra Pradesh)
1. Sri Aurobindo's birth anniversary and India's Independence Day were celebrated by the Tenali Branch on 15 August 2008. The function started with a collective meditation and march past. The school children presented a welcome dance to Sri Aurobindo.
2. Shri K. Bhaskara Rao, gave a talk from All India Radio, Vijayawada, about Sri Aurobindo's Independence Day Message.
Hanamkonda (Andhra Pradesh)
As a part of the celebrations of the birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo the Hanamkonda Branch of the Society conducted essay writing and elocution competition of High school students. The topics chosen for the essay writing and elocution competition were 'Education in view of Sri Aurobindo' and 'Role of Sri Aurobindo in the Indian History' respectively.
Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh)
The Tirupati Branch celebrated the 9th anniversary of Sri Aurobindo's Relics enshrinement on 12 September 2008. The function was presided over by Shri M. Balarama Reddy, Chairman of the Tirupati Branch. Shri B. Venkatramaiah, Chairman of the Andhra Pradesh State Committee, spoke on the importance of the sacred Relics of Sri Aurobindo. The Chief Guest was Shri V. Seshadri, IAS, Joint Executive Officer, Tirumala Tirupati Devastanam. The children of Sri Aurobindo Vidyalaya rendered the Radha's Prayer and the Bhagavad Gita, 3rd chapter, with Sri Aurobindo's English translation.
Srirangam, Trichy (Tamil Nadu)
On 15 August 2008 Sri Aurobindo Society, Srirangam Branch celebrated the birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo and the first anniversary of the enshrinement of Sri Aurobindo's Relics. Dr. Prema Nandakumar spoke on "The Simplicity of Poorna Yoga". The Branch organized an exhibition of the photographs of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. An exhibition of flowers and their spiritual significances was also organized. Around 250 devotees participated in the celebrations.
Trichy (Tamil Nadu)
The Trichy Centre organized a lecture series by Dr. Prema Nandakumar on the book "The Mother" from 20 July to 10 August 2008. At the end of the session i.e. on 10 August there was a question & answer session. An average of 70 people attended the whole session.
Kuttappalayam (Tamil Nadu)
The Kuttappalayam Branch celebrated Sri Aurobindo's birth anniversary and the Independence Day on 15 August 2008. Devotees and students participated in the collective meditation followed by speeches, dance and recitation of "Savitri". A photo exhibition of flowers and their spiritual significance and history of the Ashram was held.
Chennai (Tamil Nadu)
The Chennai Branch organised the following talks during the months of July and August 2008.
Date Speaker Topic01.07.2008 Shri M.K. Ramaswamy "Hostile Forces"06.07.2008 Shri Janakan "Word war with God of Death"13.07.2008 Shri S. Rangarajan "Samrat - Swarat - Virat"20.07.2008 Shri M.K. Ramaswamy "Greatness of Mantras"27.07.2008 Shri M.K. Ramaswamy "Savitri - 375th page"01.08.2008 Shri M.K. Ramaswamy "Six Forms of Grace"03.08.2008 Shri Janakan "Jeers and Cheers" in Sri Aurobindo's Savitri10.08.2008 Shri M.K. Ramaswamy "Ideal Worker"17.08.2008 Shri Keelambur "On Sri Aurobindo"24.08.2008 Dr. Tiruppur Krishnan "Krishna Darshan"31.08.2008 Mrs.Kanthalakshmi Chandramouli "I Need Thee Only"
Sultanpur (Uttar Pradesh)
1. Dr. J.P. Singh, Chairman of the Sultanpur Branch, gave a lecture on 13 August 2008 at Ram Deo Intermediate College, Kamtaganj, Sultanpur, on the lives of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and the concept of Supermind. Small booklets were distributed.
2. On 15 August 2008 Dr. J.P. Singh spoke on "Five Visions of Sri Aurobindo and their expression in present time" at a seminar organized at Ram Raji Intermediate College, Sultanpur. Sri Aurobindo's '15th August Message' was distributed to all the participants of the seminar.
3. On 24 August 2008 Dr. J.P. Singh spoke on "Adhyatma Yoga and the Concept of Supermind" at a seminar organized at Orai, Dist. Jalaun, U.P. The other speakers were Shri Yogy Dutta and Dr. Ashok Agrawal. About 100 persons attended the seminar. Books were distributed amongst the participants.
Shamli (Uttar Pradesh)
The Shamli Centre celebrated the birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo. Shri Suresh Panwar, Chairman of the Centre, delivered a lecture highlighting the role of Sri Aurobindo in Indian freedom movement. About 50 persons were present.
Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh)
The Varanasi Centre organised a symposium on "Different aspects of Cultural Conciousness as envisioned by Sri Aurobindo", in the Dr. Radhakrishna hall of Kashi Hindu University on 31 August 2008.
Dr. Brij Bala Singh, convener, welcomed the guests. The first session was chaired by Prof. D. P. Singh, Vice-chancellor, Kashi Hindu University. The chief-guest, Shri Avadh Ram, Vice-Chancellor of Kashi Vidya Peeth, said that Sri Aurobindo was the champion of Indian culture.
Prof. S.N. Pandey spoke that Sri Aurobindo was the epoch-maker and he compared His literature with the Vedas. Dr. J.P. Singh of Sri Aurobindo Society, Sultanpur threw light on the aims and objectives of Sri Aurobindo Society.Gulbarga (Karnataka)
On 15 August 2008 the Gulbarga Branch celebrated the birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo, anniversary of the Gulbarga Branch and the Independence Day. Shri Laxman Soudi, Hon'ble Cooperative Minister, Govt. of Karnataka, was the chief guest. Shri Khamarul Islam, MLA also participated. The chief guest appreciated the work done and the service rendered by Sri Aurobindo Society, Gulbarga Branch. The function was presided over by Shri Trembak Rao Ghantoji. More than 150 members participated.Nowgong (Madhya Pradesh)
The Nowgong Centre organized a Yoga Shivir from 1 to 15 September 2008. Besides yogasanas and health tips general information on Sri Aurobindo and the Mother were given to the participants. 35 men and 25 women participated in the shivir. On 14 and 15 Sept. Dr. Rajiv Dixit spoke on 'Remain healthy without doctors and medicines'.

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