The highest education is that which does not merely give us information but makes our life in harmony with all existence.
– Rabindranath Tagore
Creativity and Values
April, May and June are academically critical months. The responsibility of teachers are increasing day by day. In this technologically driven age, how will they educate the younger ones who are veering towards electronic devices and have lost their creative skills and human values? Values and creativity are the two pillars of developmental learning. This article examines how to incorporate these two vital factors in our systems of learning.
Lights on Life
Pulses of truth that clears up life’s pathway and makes it a joyful and confident journey
Questions and Answers
Our ordinary life is fraught with doubts, confusions and questions on its various aspects. Our Questions and Answers section is a compilation of questions on multiple subjects, asked by aspirants to Sri Aurobindo and The Mother and the answers given by Them. Please visit - an answer may be awaiting you, even if you do not have a question.
Make a firm resolution to overcome your weaknesses and you will see that it is not so difficult as it seems. – The Mother
On life’s journey, we are sometimes struck by a distressing obstacle in our path, numbing our strength and capacities to move ahead. Or it could also be a strong aspiration that blindly seeks an expression. At these times, if we concentrate and sincerely search for an inner guidance, it does somehow reach us through some means and a path opens up, almost like miracle! If you are in a situation like this, try our Guidance section and see if it helps. Do share your experience with us.
Events and Announcements
Glimpses of recent activities at SAS
BalSamskriti: Towards Creativity & Integral Development
This two-day workshopfocuses on the integral development of children with a special emphasis on nurturing skills through various activities, including Storytelling, Craft, Theatre, Art, Music, Culture, Meditation, Group discussion, Team building and lots of fun. This workshop will also focus on teacher-parent relationships with the objective to explore the real secret of a child’s happy learning. Register and hop in to Society House @ 11, St. Martin Street, Pondicherry from 17 to 19 May 2023 and make this summer worthwhile.
Practical Parenting with Nitasha Sharma
This four-day online workshop from 2 to 5 May 2023 facilitated by Nitasha Sharma will align us with the endless opportunities that come to us as parents, which often appear disguised as challenges or uncertainties. Let us re-discover the world over these days through the child’s eye, and we might find out something about ourselves as well as our children. These sessions aim to make an imprint. In this journey, let us learn and grow together!
Palm Leaf Crafts
Svarnim Puducherry brought in a time machine at AuroVanam on 17 and 18 April 2023.With the help of this machine, this workshop’s participants were taken back to yester-years where crafts made out of palm leaves were at their peak. Shri Manoj Kumar from Thaaipanai taught a wide variety of craft items to the enthusiastic participants which brought back lots of memories. This is one of our initiatives to revive the dying arts.
SARVAM this Fortnight
A workshop on theatre skills was conducted for AuroSakhis. It is believed that this workshop will help AuroSakhis to interact with the children and the elderly with more confidence and patience. On April 22, the students were taught the significance of environmental protection for human survival by observing Earth Day. Around 100 students took part in this programme and pledged to save Earth. Meanwhile, around 35 adolescent students and 10 mothers participated in an online workshop organized by SARVAM in association with Shanti Ashram, Coimbatore. They were educated on the nutritional needs and care to be given for HIV patients.
Seeds of Light
Seeds of Light is an artistically produced booklet containing 101 inspiring thoughts compiled from the writings of the Mother. As an offering on her 145th Birth Anniversary, AuroMedia has taken the initiative of converting this print media into visual media. You are invited to watch the sixth video of this series. Stay with us to watch the other videos which will be shared in the future.
Sri Aurobindo: A New Dawn
An inspirational animation film ‘Sri Aurobindo: A New Dawn’ is being made by Sri Aurobindo Society for the youth of India and the world, on Sri Aurobindo’s life, as an offering for the 150th birth anniversary of Sri Aurobindo.
In order to see the progress of the Animation Film and appreciate the process behind the Film-making, the Project Team from Puducherry visited Studio Eeksaurus in Mumbai.
Join hands to make this inspirational film!
AuroPublications, the publications division of the Sri Aurobindo Society, publishes spiritually themed books and creates multimedia and audio-visual products with deep insights and values. There is a special focus on Integral Yoga and the vision of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother.
The Mother – A Short Biography (Audiobook)
On the auspicious day of 24 April, when the Mother arrived for the final time in Pondicherry in 1920, AuroPublications is glad to launch its first audiobook, The Mother – A Short Biography, rendered beautifully by Malcolm Boyer.
Pick your audiobook at: https://auraexperiencestore.com/products/the-mother-a-short-biography-audiobook
Visit AuroPublications: https://auropublications.org
The Readers’ Column
A regular reader, Sushmita Mukherjee is back with her next contribution to AuroNews. Welcome back, Sushmita!
This, that we call “Life”, seems to be, of the unnumbered things and aspects, formed of ‘ends’ and ‘turns’ as well… grossly, as also subtly, the Subtle subtly governing and guiding the gross, staying behind the scene, successfully keeping us quite engrossed in the gross…
[read] till the Director decides to shed, even if a wee bit, the veil and comes to the front — at the same time, staying ever rooted in place behind the scene. After all, the Director is all over the place, and where and when and how He chooses to appear, He does… never leaving the rest unoccupied by Him, knowing well that we cannot behold and bear the Whole of Him at once and all together.
As He chooses, so He loses Himself in Ignorance, hides in limitations… knowing well that there can be and is but one result: Victory!
So, these ‘ends’ and ‘turns’… in Life, from which the Words and Meanings too cannot escape, being a very important part of our transactions, within and without… being an integral part of our interactions and intra-actions, leading to and through the experiences and realisations, – and expressions, – bit by bit. He only knows, of course, towards what end He drives and turns each and all, and thus the how and when and why, all along turning towards just one End: Himself, Itself, Herself… the Endless.
It is all along a ‘Return Journey’, this Life, which is in plural… ‘Lives’, of which, we, ordinary human beings are not conscious, having our hands full and overflowing with the current of all the ‘current’ and recurrent complexities and perplexities of our Nature, and paradoxically more so when we start becoming conscious of what a ‘Composition’ we are of the Divine…
Now, returning to this Return Journey, and the Words and the part they play: how can they too escape the necessity of expansion and evolution? How can they too not demand attention and a more conscious usage and application?
It goes back to those days… when we were being ‘brought up’ in and by the culture of ‘our birth’…
We were taught never to look for and at the price tag when someone gifted something. The practice was also to remove the price tag when gifting something. And then, almost as a commandment: never try to give, at least not immediately, something in return. The teaching was, basically: Never to have this movement, of this ‘disrespectful’ intent, of even trying, to return ‘materially’ someone’s feelings and love behind the gifting and the gift.
Then, came as a shock, this concept of “return gift”.… Was thought to be kind-of audacious and audacity! Of course, this concept and the tradition (sort of, though cannot be generalised), that has been set in motion, probably or in all likelihood has come into being well-meaningly. But to us, being rooted in the taught, however correct yet relative, our way seemed absolute and this, something deplorable…
Such is the play, and whatever may be the correct way, it is the Director, the Divine, ever holding the sway, giving that ever so gentle push, and of course not always so gentle… to return to the Truth, to Re-turn to the Truth, be it of the Being or of the Words, both and all Single-Sourced. The Eternal, leaves no stone unturned, to make this ‘Re-turn’ happen…, as He lives in the stones too!
Words are redefined, as are refined…: expand and enlarge, showing their limitlessness even in their limitation… Meanings change, end and turn new leaf. ‘Returns’ change, when sought are not returns… sought only to acknowledge and accept humbly the Gift and Re-turn the Gift to the One from Whom the Gift comes, that He may Fulfil it for which He has Given it.
“O Divine Master, grant that today may bring to us a completer consecration to Thy Will, a more integral gift of ourselves to Thy work, a more total forgetfulness of self, a greater illumination, a purer love. Grant that in a communion growing ever deeper, more constant and entire, we may be united always more and more closely to Thee and become Thy servitors worthy of Thee. Remove from us all egoism, root out all petty vanity, greed and obscurity. May we be all ablaze with Thy divine Love; make us Thy torches in the world.” (1)
Who else can? And who else knows for what the Gift has been given? It is the Giver who is the Fulfiller, all Rights His… all Might His…
“Our tasks are given, we are but instruments;
Nothing is all our own that we create:
The Power that acts in us is not our force.
The genius too receives from some high fount
Concealed in a supernal secrecy
The work that gives him an immortal name.
The word, the form, the charm, the glory and grace
Are missioned sparks from a stupendous Fire;
A sample from the laboratory of God
Of which he holds the patent upon earth,
Comes to him wrapped in golden coverings;
He listens for Inspiration’s postman knock
And takes delivery of the priceless gift
A little spoilt by the receiver mind
Or mixed with the manufacture of his brain;
When least defaced, then is it most divine.
Although his ego claims the world for its use,
Man is a dynamo for the cosmic work;
Nature does most in him, God the high rest:
Only his soul’s acceptance is his own.”
(1) The Mother. Prayers and Meditations, p. 37. This Part, of Prayers and Meditations of November 28, 1913, was translated by Sri Aurobindo or revised and published under his guidance.
(2) Sri Aurobindo. Savitri, p. 542.
Dose of Sunshine
(…is all we need to embrace life with a smile!)
Did you hear about the mathematician who’s afraid of negative numbers?
He’ll stop at nothing to avoid them.
Why did the tomato turn red?
Because it saw the salad dressing!
What do you call an alligator in a vest?
Why did the scarecrow win an award?
Because he was outstanding in his field!
Why couldn’t the bicycle stand up by itself?
Because it was two-tired!
Courtesy: Many sources
A Capsule of Good News
India’s First Lady Train Driver
Sometimes it is very hard to move on, but once you move on, you realize it was the best decision, this holds good with SurekhaYadav, India’s first woman train driver with 30 years of experience. Hailing from an agricultural family, she feels proud to have excelled in this so-called male-dominated industry. She emphasizes that gender should not be used as a trump card, when the end results produced by men and women are the same.