Songs from the Soul by Anilbaran Roy

Songs from the Soul

A collection of meditations and mystic poems by Anilbaran Roy. Anilbaran Roy was a professor of philosophy for seven years in Bengal. Subsequently he felt a call for national work and actively participated in the Non-cooperation Movement. He became profoundly impressed by the teachings of Sri Aurobindo and in June 1926 he joined the Ashram. Anilbaran was a prolific writer and has written books in three languages, English, Bengali and Hindi.

Sri Aurobindo translated his poem and wrote in November 1935 of his translation (which he has apparently just completed): “Anilbaran’s song is best rendered by an Elizabethan simplicity and intensity with as little artifice of metre and diction as possible. I have tried to do it in that way.”

The Mother made selection from Anilbaran’s prayers offered to her. She termed the collection a “Spiritual Dictionary”. They were published as part of this book “Songs from the Soul”

The following quotation from “The Mother” by Sri Aurobindo was chosen by Anilbaran to open the book:

“Follow your soul and not your mind, your soul that answers to the Truth, not your mind that leaps at appearances; trust the Divine Power and she will free the godlike elements in you and shape all into an expression of Divine Nature.”


Book Details

Author: Anilbaran Roy
Print Length: 116
Publisher: Sandhanam Printing Works
Contributor: Website Visitor
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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Wu Wei (Laotzu’s Tao) by Henri Borel

Wu Wei (Laotzu’s Tao)

Laotzu was more than likely the first scholar to have a vision of spiritual reality, somewhere around the 6th century B.C. At that time, his visions were a source of ridicule, misunderstanding and ostracism. Included in this volume are the explanation of Tao, according to Laotzu; and a study of his Wu Wei. A short history of Laotzu can be found within as well.

From the autor: The present study on Lao Tse’s ‘Wu Wei’ should not be considered in any way as a translation, even free, of that philosopher’s work. I have simply tried to render the essence of his wisdom in all its purity: I have here and there given a direct translation of the truths enunciated by him, but most of this work is the development, in a form elaborated by me, of some principles to which he confined himself for formulation.

Lao Tse’s is a tiny book and extremely simple at that: the author’s thought is condensed in a few words taken in their pure primitive sense, sometimes a very different sense than the one assumed in other works, in the works of Confucius for example, but those few words are the Gospel. Lao Tse’s work is not a philosophical treatise; it simply exposes the truths to which Lao Tse was led by his philosophy: only the quintessence of that philosophy is there, not the development of his system.

This small work is wholly penetrated by that essence, but is not a translation of Lao Tse. In his book there is none of the comparisons drawn by me from the landscape, the sea and the clouds; nowhere has he spoken of Art, also he has not specially dealt with Love. In dealing with these subjects, I have expressed the ideas and feelings deducing instinctively from Lao Tse’s profound philosophy, for one who has been long penetrated by it. It may be then that my study contains much more of myself than I imagine, but in that case also, it will be the expression of the thoughts and feelings awakened in me by the words of Lao Tse.


Book Details

Author: Henri Borel (Translated by Shyam Sunder Jhunjhunwala)
Print Length: 46
Publisher: Auro e-Books
Contributor: Krishna
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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The English of Savitri Volume 5

The English of Savitri
volume 5

This is the fifth volume of the English of Savitri series based on transcripts of classes led by the author at Savitri Bhavan, in this case from 6 January to 11 August 2011. The transcripts have been carefully revised and edited for conciseness and clarity, while aiming to preserve the informal atmosphere of the course. This volume contains detailed explanations of the first four Cantos of Book Two, The Book of the Traveller of the Worlds. Each sentence is examined closely and explanations are given about vocabulary, sentence structure and imagery. The aim is to assist a deeper understanding and appreciation of the poem which the Mother has characterised as ‘the supreme revelation of Sri Aurobindo’s vision’.

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Captive of Her Love by Janina Stroka

Longings for the Mother

This book is a collection of letters, poems and paintings by Janina Stroka, a Polish disciple of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother and a member of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry, India, from 1957 until her passing in 1964. It is a truly fascinating book that should interest readers of many backgrounds and persuasions. Employing a primarily epistolary mode, through the use of letters, it combines several interesting categories as well: spiritual travelogue, quest narrative, period history and East-West encounter. Above all, it bridges the gap between the falsity of public image vis a vis the reality of our private self.

Janina’s account of her life in Pondicherry in this book is divided into three parts. The main part of the text consists of extracts from letters written to a Dutch friend with whom Janina lived first in Palestine and later in Germany, from December 1957 to June 1958. The letters in the next section were written between 1960 and 1963 to a young Bengali, a writer and social worker. Next, the book contains selected poems and paintings by Janina and concludes with a comment by the Mother on Janina’s passing.

All of these provide an invaluable glimpse into Janina’s inner life in the Ashram, no less than her observation of the details of the seemingly trivial but no less significant aspects of the day to day life in the Ashram and Pondicherry during the late fifties and early sixties. We find, for instance, a perceptive description of meal-time atmosphere in the Dining Room. Those who habitually crib against the Dining Room food would do well to see Janina’s sense of reverence towards this food (“We always get two bananas and a wonderful yoghurt, just a dream!”). She talks memorably of a number of events and impressions of the supramental force spread over Pondicherry, vis a vis the ubiquitous presence of the town’s dirt, filth and squalour; about “bad people in the Ashram”; regarding the problem with maid-servants, their perpetual intrigues and the need to constantly humour them in order to extract work out of their reluctant selves and so on. She also records her encounters with Pavitrada, Nolinida and Medhananda and the quota of luscious mangoes from Bombay that she receives from X, a friend: “What a pity that I do not have a husband” she observes with self-deprecating humour.

Janina reveals in her engrossing accounts that despite their rootedness in reason, science and rationality, (or perhaps because of it!) a dedicated westerner, drawn powerfully to spirituality, is likely to blossom more fully vis a vis his/her eastern counterparts. Her life — full of ordeals, hardships and agony — is testimony to the indomitable human spirit forever in search of the deepest meaning of life. Her narrative offers us a lesson in humility.

(from book review by Dr Sachidananda Mohanty)


Book Details

Author: Janina Stroka
Print Length: 106
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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Longings for the Mother by Indra Sen

Longings for the Mother

I learned of the Mother’s passing on the morning of the 18th November, 1973 at Sri Aurobindo Yoga Mandir, Jwalapur (Hardwar), where my normal work lies as given by the Mother in 1958. The impulse that arose within me was to go deep within and be with the Mother to the best of my capacity. I reduced my external preoccupations to the minimum and began to live in that manner and it was profoundly satisfying. In this experience, there were occasional moments of shock and grief too but, on the whole, there was a feeling of inner assurance and a sense of contact and conversation with the Mother. On the morning of the 27th November, as I sat in this contemplation, a move arose to concretise the inner thought and feeling and I wrote out “Our Mother, who is no more, who is ever more.” Soon all the ten topics ending with “Mother, we read again Your ‘Notes on the Way’” came along. And I read these again and again and enjoyed doing so. I began to do this day after day. I felt that this tended to deepen my inner contact. The next three pieces were written on the following three days, a piece per day. Then I had to go on a short journey and, for about a fortnight, there was no writing. About the middle of December, the writing was resumed and the remaining six pieces were written out. The entire writing was done, on the whole, with ease and simplicity.

To me, all this served to clarify and strengthen an inner contact with the Mother. Many friends, who have read these pieces in typescript, have felt deeply moved and found in varying degrees a greater inner contact.


Book Details

Author: Indra Sen
Print Length: 43
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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The Sacred Thread: Hinduism in Its Continuity and Diversity by J. L. Brockington

The Sacred Thread

Hinduism in Its Continuity and Diversity

In a single book, which examines the history and development of Hindu religious experience and thought from its earliest records to modern times, it is inevitable that much has been left out in order to make the broad outlines clearer. What has been passed over in silence is just as much part of the rich fabric of Hinduism. For Hinduism has never been a unitary phenomenon. In particular, there has always been a fascinating interplay between its more religious and more speculative elements. As a religion Hinduism tends towards the philosophical in its emphasis on the importance of knowledge, while Hindu philosophy sees that knowledge as having essentially a religious purpose in the achievement of the goal.

The history of Hinduism stretches over a vast time-span, during most of which the existing political boundaries of the Indian sub-continent did not exist. Accordingly the term India is used in this book in a geographical sense as referring to the whole sub-continent, except in those parts of the last two chapters where recent political events are referred to. The names of areas are generally those of the modern states of the Indian Republic, which in many cases have reverted to older names (e.g. Tamilnad for Madras State and Karnataka for Mysore).


Book Details

Author: J. L. Brockington
Print Length: 232
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Book format: Pdf
Language: English
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To Thee Our Infinite Gratitude (Writings on the Passing of Sri Aurobindo)

To Thee Our Infinite Gratitude

Writings on the Passing of Sri Aurobindo

A series of essays written in commemoration of Sri Aurobindo’s passing. The words of Amal Kiran, Udar and K.R.S.Iyengar give us a vast spiritual, psychological and factual perspective of the event, greatly helping us to understand several aspects of the Yoga of Sri Aurobindo, the young American scholar Rhoda P. Le Cocq’s account of the last Darshan of the Master and the Mother unveils that aspect of the power of Grace which so smoothly and silently demolishes the wall of scepticism one had maintained around oneself for long. The compilation brings us a serene calm and an intense feeling of gratitude, and reminds us that:

Death is a stair, a door, a stumbling stride
The soul must take to cross from birth to birth,
A grey defeat pregnant with victory,
A whip to lash us towards our deathless state.

Savitri


Book Details

Author: Nirodbaran, Dr. Prabhat Sanyal, Amal Kiran, Udar Pinto, Pavitra, K.R.S. Iyengar, Rhoda P. Le Cocq
Print Length: 100
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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The Mother Abides – Final Reflections

The Mother Abides
Final Reflections (1973–1983)

by Nolini Kanta Gupta

These thoughts and reminiscences of Nolini Kanta Gupta were written or spoken during the final decade of his life — from the time of the Mother’s passing in November 1973 until shortly before his own passing in February 1984. During that period they served as a source of guidance and consolation to the Ashram community, and they still seem relevant today.

Many of these writings and talks were first presented to the students, young and old, of Nolini-da’s classes. Later they were published in The Advent, a quarterly journal he edited, or in his Collected Works. Details about their publication and a life-sketch of the author are given at the end of the book.


Book Details

Author: Nolini Kanta Gupta
Print Length: 77
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor

The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor

This work is a scholarly investigation of the origins and activities of The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor. Of particular interest to the followers and admirers of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother is the light this work brings to the life and activities of the mysterious Max Theon, an occultist who had a great influence on The Mother in her early years.  The following was taken from the book’s preface:

The Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor was an order of practical occultism, active in the last decades of the 19th century. It taught its members how to lead a way of life most favorable to spiritual development, and gave them detailed instructions in how to cultivate occult powers by working on their own. It differed from contemporary movements such as the Theosophical Society (founded 1875), whose teachings (at least after its earliest phase) were philosophical rather than practical, and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (founded 1888), whose activities were social and ceremonial.

The “H. B. of L.” (as it was always known) succeeded in enrolling a surprising number of influential people, who carried forward its training and its doctrines into many other esoteric movements of the 20th century. Its private and individual nature, and the mystery that still partially surrounds its Grand Master Max Theon, are among the reasons why it has remained so obscure. Writers on the history of the Theosophical movement dismiss the H. B. of L.; Golden Dawn scholars ignore it. Most of the information available up to now comes from inadequate or untrustworthy sources.

We hope to have remedied the situation with this dossier, which has been compiled from a scholarly point of view and in the interests of intellectual history. Part 1 gives an account of the H. B. of L., its principal characters, its relationship to other groups, and its doctrines. Part 2 presents (where available) the original English texts of the manuscript instructions that were circulated to the membership. Part 3 is a historical dossier, comprising some fifty items that illustrate the changing fortunes of the Brotherhood, its internal affairs, and especially its conflict with the Theosophical Society. With this material now made available, the importance of the H. B. of L. will no longer be in question, and future studies of it can be conducted on a firm documentary basis.


Book Details

Author: Joscelyn Godwin, Christian Chanel, John P. Deveney
Print Length: 478
Publisher: Samuel Weiser, Inc.
Original source: http://www.kheper.net/topics/Hermeticism/HBoL.html
Contributor: Blindshiva
Book format: Pdf, ePub, Mobi
Language: English
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