Savitri Era of those who adore, Om Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.

Saturday, February 07, 2015

I am an epitome of opposites

In our intellectually egoistic moments we pretend that we have actually transcended these narrow black and white dichotomies and that we don't put people into one or the other category. We like to think that we actually see and appreciate the various grays of the world. We like to tell ourselves (and whoever else will listen) that we don't judge the intention of someone just because the person says or writes something that is ideologically or politically completely opposite to our preferred ideology or politics. 
But that is not generally the truth of ourselves. And the true truth is that we know it. Deep down we know it. We know that we haven't really stopped judging or categorizing people. We know that we still divide the world into black or white. We know that despite all the complex intellectual postmodernism we have consumed we are inwardly still highly fond of simplistic modernistic binaries that are perhaps demonstrative of a deeper truth of the nature of mind, the rough and unrefined instrument we are given to make sense of the world as it exists in its un-evolved existence. 
The mind in its natural state can essentially "accept" only one side of the truth. In order to truly accept all the other possible sides of the truth as equally true, it needs a light from the regions above itself. It needs the assistance of faculties higher than mind. But our un-refined mind refuses to even accept that such light, such faculties are even possible. - See more at:

Be happy,
Remain quiet,
Do your work as well as you can,
Keep yourself always open towards me –
This is all that is asked from you.

Students' Prayer: "Make of us the hero warriors we aspire to become. May we fight successfully the great battle of the future that is to be born, against the past that seeks to endure; so that the new things may manifest and we may be ready and receive them."

Sri Aurobindo: A Contemporary Reader Edited by Sachidananda Mohanty, Routledge India, 2008

Reading Hegel: The Introductions by G.W.F. Hegel (Edited and introduced by Aakash Singh and Rimina Mohapatra), 2008

Indian Political Thought: A Reader Edited by Aakash Singh and Silika Mohapatra (Routledge, June 2010)

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Masculinity, emotions, and memory

The Atlantic- Conventional scientific wisdom recognizes six "classic" emotions: ... For example, both anger and disgust share a wrinkled nose, and both ... The study has challenged a commonly-held belief that there are six basic emotions of happiness, sadness, fear, anger, surprise and disgus 
"We show that 'basic' facial expression signals are perceptually segmented across time and follow an evolving hierarchy of signals over time - from the biologically-rooted basic signals to more complex socially-specific signals."

She added: "Over time, and as humans migrated across the globe, socioecological diversity probably further specialised once-common facial expressions, altering the number, variety and form of signals across cultures."

The researchers intend to develop their study by looking at facial expressions of different cultures.

They said East Asian populations interpreted some of the six classical emotions differently - placing more emphasis on eye signals than mouth movements compared to Westerners.

DNA Our memory plays tricks on us and it is far from accurate if compared with a video camera, reveals a study. The memory plucks fragments of the present and inserts them into the past, add researchers from Illinois-based Northwestern Medicine. It rewrites the past with current information, updating your recollections with new experiences.

"When you think back to when you met your current partner, you may recall this feeling of love and euphoria," said lead author Donna Jo Bridge, a postdoctoral fellow in medical social sciences at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine. "But you may actually be projecting your current feelings back to the original encounter with this person."

This is the first study to show specifically how memory is faulty. It shows the exact point in time when that incorrectly recalled information gets implanted into an existing memory. To help us survive, Bridge said, our memories adapt to an ever-changing environment and help us deal with what's important now. "The memory is not like a video camera. It reframes and edits events to create a story to fit your current world. It's built to be current," explained Bridge.

All that editing happens in the hippocampus, the study found. The hippocampus, in this function, is the memory's equivalent of a film editor and special effects team. "The notion of a perfect memory is a myth," said Joel Voss, assistant professor of neurology at Feinberg. "The memory is designed to help us make good decisions in the moment and, therefore, memory has to stay up-to-date," Voss added.

There is a grain of truth in what feminist Camille Paglia stridently wrote: “The way gender is being taught in the universities – in a very anti-male way, it’s all about neutralisation of maleness.” 

As in the media, academics too easily fall into the trap of depicting men as“damaged and damage doing”. Even if there’s acceptance of multiple ways of being masculine, dominant descriptions by academics commonly caricaturise men as emotionally constipated risk takers with no interest in their own well-being or in seeking help. 

But depending on the circumstances, men can be very interested in wellness, being intimate with others and in consulting with professionals like counsellors. And the dominant ideals of masculinity are not as toxic as is so often fantasised. 

All the world is a stage, and masculinity is defined by the way that men perform in public, and so what is considered masculine can change. At one extreme, in a South African prison, men who had been raped were considered by other inmates to have been de-masculinised even if the encounter was non-concensual. But in some other societies (including by heterosexual men in the west), where homosexuality was once viewed as unmasculine, its increasing acceptance shows that concepts of masculinity can be flexible. 

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Karwar in Karnataka - Sauvik Chakraverti

there is a huge amount of natural beauty - and the weather is very pleasant all year round. There are forests, beaches, a river and mountains, too. Someone once told me that Karwar was the prettiest place she had ever seen in India. And I assure you that Gokarna's Om Beach, a short drive away, is surely one of the prettiest beaches in the world.

Architecture - undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places in India - and one of the most beautiful places in the world. Here, the beach meets the mountain and the river meets the sea- and there are verdant jungles all around. Green - from ANTIDOTE -
Oct 27, 2014 - It is with a very heavy heart that we share with you the sad news of passing away of Sauvik Chakraverti, our good friend and ex-colleague.

Rajesh Singh: Sauvik Chakraverti - an antidote to life - Rest In Peace.
Nov 3, 2014 - There has to be something as compelling as this to get back to facebook,Sauvik chakraverti is no more, well not on earth as a physical being at ...

Liberty News Central: Discovering Sauvik Chakraverti
Sep 14, 2009 - I met Sauvik Chakraverti many years ago when I was more closely involved with the Liberty Institute, one of the few pro-liberty organizations in ...

Hayek Order: Sauvik Chakraverti, The Editor, The Economic Times!
Jun 22, 2009 - After reading Mr.Khushwant Singh's great article in the Hindustan Times published on last Saturday I immediately thought of Sauvik particularly ...

  1. Bandit Hero

    Times of India-Sep 16, 2006
    It is useful, when considering political rulers of ages past, to make a clear distinction between "roving bandits" and "stationary bandits".
  1. On capitalism and the State

    Livemint-Dec 1, 2009
    Sauvik Chakraverti is an author and columnist. He blogs at Comments are welcome at

Friday, November 11, 2011

Boita Bandana celebration 2011

Bal Jagruti Association celebrating Boita Bandana Utsav for the 8th time in Delhi on 10th November 2011 at India Gate

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Pain & Pleasure

In Sri Aurobindo's epic Savitri a question was asked by Savitri's mother to the heavenly sage Narad as to why there is pain in this God's world. "Is it thy God who made this cruel law?" focusedly she raises the issue of pain in this world of ours. This may be a wrong question, but that is how we frame it. The question should have been, how has pain entered into the scheme here. Narad gives a detailed answer. [Savitri, Book Six Canto Two] If things are to remain as they are, then there is no pain. But if they have to suffer change then both pain and joy play a distinct role in the process. Pain is the hammer of the gods, tells Narad, to break a dread resistance in the mortal's heart.

Pleasure Principle Kept Us Going… | SpeakingTree By : Mukul Sharma on Jul 30, 2011 ...because by wanting more than we could enjoy, we beefed up our chances of survival, writes Mukul Sharma
According to a study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, mammalian brains appear to have more mechanisms for desire than they do for pleasure. That is, most mammals including humans, experience feelings of irresistible longing — be it for food, sex or whatever — that can be followed by those almost magical moments of bliss if the desire is met. 
But the researchers also found that because of the way the brain’s circuitry has developed over millions of years, we’re far more likely to be left wanting rather than satisfied since wanting and liking are separate urges in the brain that are controlled by different circuits. When they occur together, there’s no problem and the impact on the brain is stupendous. But there’s a catch: the study results suggest that we are all inherently susceptible to wanting more than we’re actually capable of enjoying. […]
Since those early days, though, things have changed and we’ve been increasingly inundated with all kinds of over-stimulation whereas the basic brain circuitry has remained the same. Thus we’re not equipped to cope with the loud signals coming from the subconscious mammalian brain which always thinks more indulgence is better. Researchers believe this leads to addictions with drugs, sex, food and gambling. 
And this is the crazy crux of the problem — desiring more without necessarily liking it more. It’s a formula for instant suffering due to the sheer helplessness of the human condition which constantly craves but cannot consummate. It might seem like a hopeless situation, being caught in a biological double bind of greed and lack of knowledge. 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Family, country, money, & monkey mind

Aug 8, 2009 6:26 AM True family and True country by Sandeep
When the goal of life changes, the people we associate with also change. Traditional family life between individuals is bound by a certain level of comfort, attachment, fulfillment of the desire for security and the satisfaction of egoistic demands. When the search for the Truth becomes an all-consuming passion, these traditional bonds of comfort are discarded and replaced by bonds of wisdom that tie us to a new set of people. The Mother calls this the True family. Continue reading 

Mar 5, 2011 11:55 PM Are Indians more spiritual? by Sandeep
The short answer to the question "Are Indians more spiritual" is "no, certainly not". If you look at the hoi polloi, they can be as materialistic as people in other countries - spending their leisure hours shopping in malls and merrily wining and dining their way through life. But the long answer is a little more complicated since it requires some occult perception of the cultural and subconscious atmosphere which pervades in every country. Continue reading 

Mar 7, 2009 5:08 AM True intent of the caste system by Sandeep
The caste system in India has been a subject of much controversy. It was supposed to be an identification of man's inbuilt inclinations and capacities, but gradually this truth was lost and it morphed into a mechanical system for slotting people into various social categories based on their birth in a certain family. It thus became a vehicle for stigma and discrimination. In the following selections from various works, Sri Aurobindo points out the true origin of the caste system - how the four castes are actually four latent powers (caturvyuha) within Man which must be perfected by every person on the spiritual path. The Brahmin represents the faculty of knowledge, the Kshatriya represents valour, the Vaishya represents commerce and relationship of harmony, while the Shudra represents perfection in work. Continue reading »

Mar 7, 2009 5:15 AM Right attitude towards money by Sandeep
Money is the visible sign of a universal force, and this force in its manifestation on earth works on the vital and physical planes and is indispensable to the fullness of the outer life. In its origin and its true action it belongs to the Divine. But like other powers of the Divine it is delegated here and in the ignorance of the lower Nature can be usurped for the uses of the ego or held by Asuric influences and perverted to their purpose. This is indeed one of the three forces ― power, wealth, sex ― that have the strongest attraction for the human ego and the Asura and are most generally misheld and misused by those who retain them. Continue reading 

Dec 12, 2009 12:10 AM Taming the monkey mind by Sandeep
As anyone who practises meditation will attest, it is not easy to suspend the thought process. Even if thoughts regarding the external objects are switched off, our internal memory (Chitta) keeps feeding thoughts about past events to our mind and these do not die down easily. Any attempt to control or force the mind to stop always ends in failure. What is required are some supports on which the mind can rest before it glides off into effortless flight. These are observations on a few aids which might help in quieting the thought process. Continue reading

Oct 18, 2009 5:06 AM Self-control over speech by Sandeep
During meditation, our consciousness gains contact with the Superconscient realms and becomes filled with calmness and power. This power acquired through meditation must be retained as much as possible in order to successfully transform our consciousness. The power dissipates into the external world if we engage in fruitless conversation. Economy of speech is a sine qua non for success on the spiritual path. Continue reading 

Dec 6, 2009 4:35 AM Ill-effects of television on Yoga by Sandeep
The television, a relatively recent 20th century invention, is a powerful form of entertainment and escape from the travails of life. By identifying with someone else's life, we momentarily forget the ennui of our own life. TV also provides excitement in the form of sports programs or crime dramas (not to mention the absurd reality shows). But watching TV also has some subtle negative consequences on the consciousness of the spiritual aspirant which are seldom mentioned. In his poem Savitri (all of which was composed before 1950), Sri Aurobindo seems to have anticipated some of these ill-effects. He wrote in his poem... Continue reading 

Jul 20, 2009 5:55 AM How to eat like a Yogi by Sandeep
The desire to eat is a very difficult desire to control. Overeating is a deformation of the desire for self-love. We want to be full and happy but unfortunately, we end up filling ourselves with food and end up contracting all kinds of diseases. Desire for love gets deformed into desire for satiety. Continue reading 

May 28, 2009 4:51 AM Man shall not live by bread alone by Sandeep
The words of Christ: “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4) have deep meaning to those who practice Yoga. The “word of God” here indicates that …Continue reading 

Mar 24, 2010 8:28 PM How to rise above the ordinary life? by Sandeep
It is question we may ask ourselves at times "Why don't we progress spiritually faster?" Because we may meditate for fifteen minutes but, psychologically, the rest of our life remains untransformed. The way we eat, the way we talk, the friends we keep, the desires we nurture - none of these really change. As long as life does not deliver any adversities which throw us off-track, we let things continue and allow ourselves to languish. These are a couple of conversations by the Mother Mirra Alfassa on how to rise above the ordinary life that we find ourselves in. Continue reading 

Sep 24, 2010 5:26 AM How to act in an unstable world by Sandeep
It is a commonly observed amongst those who have awakened to the spiritual path that once they have ceased to be selfish, they start thinking of ways to uplift the rest of the world. One may feel despondent at the chaos in society and seek some semblance of stability or some foothold on which a better future can be built. When we grapple with this intractable problem, we find ourselves psychologically evolving through successive stages of inner growth and along with us, the solution to our dilemma also evolves. Continue reading 

Sep 2, 2010 3:04 AM Disrupting the routines of life by Sandeep
Human beings are creatures of habit. We seek refuge in an uncertain world by indulging in all kinds of humdrum routines - big and small. We impart stability and coherence to our life by staying plugged into some social network, eating at regular hours, engaging in small-talk with loved ones or even strangers, meticulously scheduling daily chores - all in the desperate desire to fill that void within. One of the object lessons that we gain from Castaneda's books is the necessity of giving up attachment to such routines. That doesn't necessarily imply that one must become erratic in conduct; it's just that one must stop being an automaton. Continue reading 

Oftentimes in life, one hits a fork in the road where one is faced with a life-changing decision and has to make a choice without knowing all the facts. In such situations, one must understand that there are alternate futures. Those who want to grow spiritually should know that the inner motive with which one makes the choice is more important than the choice itself. One must examine one's thoughts and ask, "what is the underlying motive on which my choice is based?" Is the choice driven by money, comfort, desire for social status, religious law, despair, anger, cruelty or the inability to admit mistakes ? Can one live with the decision in the future...? One must look for signs of uneasiness in the heart. Looking back later in life, it is quite possible that one realizes that the choice one made then was pre-destined! Continue reading 

Most people in the initial stages of the spiritual path attain what may be called a "passive calm". The glow on their face lasts only as long as they are surrounded by kind and gentle people like themselves. Faced with a protracted conflict, they either shrink from it in revulsion or unexpectedly lose their composure in exasperation. One must strive to attain an "active calm" which doesn't dissipate even in the midst of conflict. The ability to handle vicissitudes in the hustle and bustle of daily life has to be developed. It is in the darkest hour, when circumstances are the opposite of one's spiritual ideals, that one must be able to survive solely by the power of the inner lamp. Continue reading 

Apr 22, 2011 9:39 PM Rising above ennui or boredom by Sandeep
Boredom is a dullness of the consciousness; and if you seek the cure within yourself, you will see that it immediately dissolves. Most people, when they feel bored, instead of making an effort to rise one step higher in their consciousness, come down one step lower; they come down even lower than they were before and do stupid things, they make themselves vulgar in the hope of amusing themselves. That is why men intoxicate themselves, spoil their health, deaden their brains. If they had risen instead of falling, they would have made use of this opportunity to progress. Continue reading 

In our daily life, we perform many actions without complete cognitive control. You may drive the car while lost deep in thought and later exclaim that you can’t recall the route you traveled. Or you have the nagging feeling that you have forgotten to lock the door but after checking you discover that you had indeed locked it. The 19th century American psychologist William James describes the case of a person who went to the bedroom to change clothes, but instead ended up going directly to bed. This article examines the basis of such phenomena from the standpoint of cognitive psychology, neuroscience and integral psychology. Continue reading 

Nov 29, 2010 7:04 AM Walking with eyes unfocused by Sandeep
“I’ve told you that the internal dialogue is what grounds us. The world is such and such or so and so, only because we talk to ourselves about its being such and such or so and so....Walking in that specific manner saturates the tonal. It floods it. You see, the attention of the tonal has to be placed on its creations. In fact, it is that attention that creates the order of the world in the first place; so, the tonal must be attentive to the elements of its world in order to maintain it, and must, above all, uphold the view of the world as internal dialogue.”Continue reading 

Dec 16, 2010 11:41 PM Sleep disorders : somnambulism and somniloquy by Sandeep
In this article, we discuss sleep disorders such as somnambulism and somniloquy from an occult perspective. There are supposed to be five concentric sheaths in our consciousness and during sleep, the subtle sheaths eject themselves from the gross physical sheath to travel in their corresponding subtle realms, as was discussed in an earlier article on Explaining out-of-body and near-death experiences. Some sleep disorders can be attributed to the irregularity in the manner in which these sheaths interact with each other during sleep. Continue reading 

Oct 24, 2010 10:13 PM Towards more conscious sleep and dreams by Sandeep
As the consciousness becomes purified through regular practice of Yoga, one finds that sleep becomes more active and more real. Dreams no longer seem to be phantasmagoric illusions but become excursions into the occult worlds. We truly possess one unbroken stream of consciousness, which during the day dwells in the physical world and at night interacts with the occult worlds and consequently, the experiences we have in dreams are inextricably linked to the events in the physical world. In this article, we discuss various ways to make sleep more conscious. Continue reading 

Jul 15, 2011 4:35 AM Why do we forget our vivid dreams? by Sandeep
In the May 2011 issue of the Scientific American Mind magazine, a reader asked the question "Why do memories of vivid dreams disappear soon after waking up?". According to current science, clarity of dreams depends on neurochemical conditions in the brain. In this article, we will examine this question based on the Integral Psychology of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. Continue reading 

In the Ask Brains Column of the Nov 2010 issue of the Scientific American Mind magazine, a reader asked the question, "How we can "see" in our dreams when our eyes are closed (since the retina is inactive)?"[1]. The answer given over there was that these dream visions originate either in the visual centers within the brain or in the latent memories residing in the brain which in turn stimulate the visual cortex. You can read the question and the response over here. That answer is based on current model of the brain in neuroscience; it assumes that the brain is equivalent to the mind and that consciousness is the result of brain activity. In this post, we present the answer from the perspective of "yoga psychology". Continue reading 

The worlds that we sojourn into during our dreams are as real as the physical world and nothing substantiates this fact better than the bone-chilling reports of physical body marks found on people who reported of having been attacked in their dreams. Here are three such incidents. Continue reading 

There have been perplexing reports of organ transplant receivers claiming that they seem to have inherited the memory, experiences and emotions of their deceased donors, causing quirky changes in their personality. We will present a few cases and then discuss a possible explanation in the light of the occult insights of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Mirra Alfassa. Continue reading 

Oct 2, 2010 3:22 AM On being truthful in speech by Sandeep
As children, many of us are told to speak the truth as we see it but as we grow up, we realize that the forthright manner of asserting the truth can have undesirable consequences, as it may impede some higher ideals that need to be upheld or perhaps because there are conflicting ideals which may call for exercising discretion. In the spiritual path, one gradually becomes conscious that behind the objective affectation of truth stands a Higher Truth which needs to be understood and manifested in speech. Continue reading 

Jul 14, 2010 2:13 AM Why are artists irregular in their conduct? by Sandeep
It is one of the contradictions of life that great personalities who are revered for their achievements also tend to be coarse in private life during periods of relaxation. In these couple of dialogues, the Mother Mirra Alfassa expatiates on the reason behind this anomaly. Continue reading 

Jan 11, 2010 12:49 AM Art as an aid in Yoga by Sandeep
Any activity, if done with the right attitude, can elevate the consciousness and prepare the foundation for an integral union with the Divine. This was the rationale behind Sri Aurobindo's assertion "All life is Yoga". A previous post discussed how the study of science can aid in Yoga. In this post, we cover Sri Aurobindo & The Mother's thoughts on how artistic endeavours such as poetry, painting and music can aid in the Yogic effort. Continue reading 

Nov 6, 2010 9:25 PM Identifying the celestial quality in music by Sandeep
One sometimes chances upon those seemingly divine pieces of music which seem to mystically inundate the heart and transport the soul into a reverie. It is as if their vibrations were suffused with some enchanting je ne sais quoi. This can happen even if the song happens to be sung in some alien language. The reason this exaltation occurs, according to the Mother Mirra Alfassa, is that there are certain universal associations of sounds which, when present in any devotional music, can magically open the doorway to the soul. Continue reading 

Jul 26, 2010 3:17 AM The rationale behind vegetarianism by Sandeep
This post discusses the rationale behind vegetarianism based on the observations of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. On the question of diet, there is no generic answer possible in light of the fact that the world consists of people with varying genetic makeup who exist in different stages of evolution - most are inclined to worldly success while some are inclined to inner growth. Continue reading 

Jul 8, 2011 10:57 PM How to choose the right life partner by Sandeep
A disciple, Dilip Kumar Roy, wrote a letter in 1924 to Sri Aurobindo asking certain questions regarding marriage. The answer depends on many factors, as Sri Aurobindo indicates in the following text. He outlines the three kinds of bonds which usually form in a marital union: (a) vital or physical, (b) psychic and (c) spiritual. His insights must be read with the understanding that no cut and dried answers can be given to such intricate questions. Continue reading 

Jun 17, 2011 10:23 PM Why the future is veiled from us by Sandeep
Imagine for a moment that you knew the future. Doesn’t that seem a good thing? You could relax and work without getting stressed out; you could plan ahead and direct your energies only in those paths that you know would lead to success; you could avoid all those intransigent people who keep trapping you in some debilitating vortex of time. There would be no wastage of energy, no error, no agonizing in hindsight over missed opportunities. What a utopian world it would be! But counter-intuitive as it seems, Sri Aurobindo and the Mother Mirra Alfassa offered some legitimate reasons as to why the future is deliberately hidden from us. Continue reading 

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Indian ayurvedic massage by Pradeep Sharma

Pradeep Sharma
(Free Lancer Masseur) Phone - 0091-9336454941
Professional Experience: Yoga, Sports and Ayurvedic massage 
Sport Person & Worked as a Masseur at the Massage Center of the Best Western Hotel Hindustan International, Maldahiya, Varanasi U.P., India, from 15 August 2003 to Sep 2006 
Working as a Free Lancer Masseur in Varanasi from 4th April 2003
In special case/patient we can provide health services at any place!

Are u tired of your body? Do u want to get rid of your pain?
Do you want to be healthy without taking medicines? the remedy is here in indian ayurvedic massage. know about the great benefit of massage and help your body to fight the ravages of time. is it possible to stay young for a longer time? Is it possible to keep away a decaying old age? yes, it is possible. Indian ayurvedic massage can do this miracle.

massage controls time's journey. A person in his 70's looks to be in his 50's by the vigour and tremendous youthful freshness created by regular indian ayurvedic massage. 
the arteries and veins shrink and stiffen with advancing age.
Different acids leave sedip in them and the free flow of blood gets disturbed. The body becomes fatigued and limp. The youthful elasticity of the body is lost and this makes age overpower.
help your body with natural therapy to retain the power of youth for some more time. friction + contraction + relaxation are the base of indian ayurvedic massage. These steps do the entire overhauling of your body very quickly. the pace of improvement depends on the structure of your body. 
Indian ayurvedic massage helps in your effort to stay fit, live fit and look fit. You gain healthy complexion, endurance longevity, better skin texture and you lose pain, stress, strain, fatigue and stiffness. Our massage provides relaxation to the body and mind. It is highly refreshing.