Evenings with Sraddhalu part 2 subtitles in EnglishRussian

Welcome to our continuing series Evenings with Sraddhalu Last week We had you for the first time we're blessed to have you again. Namaste We began with India and we should continue I feel with India, especially the youth today 100 years from SriAurobindo wrote What about India's new youth today and the influence of the West On these young people? Sri Aurobindo has some interesting observations about The present transition of the age you know he speaks of the cycles of Ages and the Rationale behind the cycles and the immediate passage that humanity has been going through he calls the age of individualism and reason and It's characterized by the individuality asserting Where earlier all over the world it was a collectivism which was stronger the group identity family, community, religion sometimes Tended to suppress the individual development and the individual was always somehow Deprecated with the development of the rational mind and particularly with the development of the intellect as the prominent theme of Evolution all over the world the individuality also begins to assert itself and breaks away from the group the very interesting observations Sri Aurobindo makes about this this passage and One of the things which he points out in regard to India Is that the passage the transition into individualism in India has been through largely from an influence from the West Because India was under colonial rule in Europe the transition was made first To what they described in Europe as Age of Enlightenment where the reason came forward setting aside religion and so on with it a strong individuality But it was in the mould of the Greek and Roman influences and so individuality had a particular flavor and in a large part and external superficial individuality Whereas that kind of individuality is not in sync with the temerament of the Indian collective evolution But because India was in the colonial rule and that passage could not be made on its own terms It is the European influence which triggered off the age of individualism and reason in India and so it's a kind of an artificial externally imposed development a lot of this connects to what we discussed last time about some of the difficulties in the transition particularly after India Became free from colonial rule They attempted to replicate all that came from Europe To try to improve upon it by doing it better but in the line in the mold of Europe, which obviously has to fail and Then a patchwork to make up for the failures That has to give way at some point to the innate sense of individuality And so there has not been enough time for that to be Developed sufficiently in India. It has begun and a lot of it was an initial indigestion We see something of this in what we may call the millennial generation as they call it today We see an individuality developing sometimes strongly with an influence from the West Sometimes coming up from an own internal journey What is most interesting to observe is the people from India who have lived in the West especially IT technology People have been exposed to that culture, exposed to that space where individuality is valued free from the oppression of the past influence in India They are the ones on return who are able to best put forward their individuality although still in a mixed space In time though, what is happening in India is the pressure of the collectivism is Has reduced immensely and that's allowing the generation today to grow into a freer formed individuality which Is more Innately Indian. Okay. So this transition is very interesting to observe and I am surprised at how quickly it takes place. Of course, there has been along gestational period of the indigestion what I call But what's happening now is happening quite rapidly and I find in a lot of young people the individuality forming But it's still struggling against the pressure of let's say family and other things and The critical part is: the values which have come from the West generally European values really mostly European, but exaggerated from the American influence those values and Values they have received from their own past are as if being somehow integrated better And it's important to recognize what comes from where and what is it that is in conflict See, large part of the Development which we have comes from our educational system Some part comes from the parental influence in values but because children spend most of the day in school and much less time with their parents and parents are also working increasingly the cities it's like that at least That the educational influence is much stronger and the European education, which the British brought Came with two distortions: first is that in the form in which it developed in Europe it was What I call industrial education meaning the current educational system in Europe developed in the Industrial Age so the whole industrial thinking is shot through in the educational system and the mindset of society being industrial they look upon this purpose of the school as manufacturing workers for the factories and In this mindset the school itself is a factory Children are the raw material Teachers are machines which are going to chop and twist and shape the raw material to create pre-designed cogwheels doctor, engineer IT okay, etc pre-designed wheels Predefined in a very narrow boundary, trained just for that function and fit it into society which is itself a giant machine So even there had this thinking: we have a shortfall of doctors We need to boost that we need more engineers. We need more managers. And so the thinking is also in terms of wheels fixed predesigned. And the system of the education itself is shaping you and Testing you at each step is like an assembly line: grade one - assembly line - test Grade two - test grade three - tests...And each test is not to help you overcome It's to eliminate those who do not pass You're thrown out of the system if you do not fit into it So the primary driver of motivation in this educational system is fear The whole thing is built around: I am afraid I will not pass and in not passing society will not respect me I will be ostracized So the first primary driver of this whole training system is fear and this was imprinted into India under colonial rule It's very different from the Indic indigenous educational system which is based entirely on love and the concept of swabhava and swadharma that is innate to you is your soul's alignment and aspiration and your alignment of nature and You are meant to grow in that way unique to yourself and each child is unique And so the educational framework was designed to allow each one to become truly What they are or what they aspire to be. And so here was this mass system flattening out society uniform You see here when they make you wear a school uniform Which is like the factory uniform He was school bell, which is like the factory Bell. So you're tuned into a factory worker mode and flattened out still today Still standing still continuing. It's grown a little worse because of the Way the system works inmate to it because it's an exam based system Not only a child's performance is measured but also schools performance so this school has higher pass marks and So this parents rush to put their children in this school, and how did the school ensure that you get higher marks By filtering you right at the beginning so they have an entrance exam to check whether you are going to fit into their system and So it seeps back each school is putting entrance exam earlier in earlier until this was about ten years ago in Bombay One of the elite schools had an entrance exam for kindergarten one of the questions they asked was Repeat all the numbers, repeat the alphabet repeat, your parents names and address and one of the questions was what is the name the object rotating at the top of a helicopter The thing which is In case you don't know it's called a rotor At the kindergarten entry At the age of three you're supposed to know that It's just one of those eliminating devices. You know, you knock out children who are not going to fit into this predetermined machine factory system It numbs you, numbs you early or kills your creativity Now, this is the first distortion when it came in on India. The second distortion came because of the colonial objectives and The British found early on that people would revolt unless You could convince their minds Not to revolt so they realized that to keep the colonial control it was not so much military strength But it was the brainwashing as we use it in the terminology of today's brainwashing Just to convince the mind that you're only worthy of being ruled and you are Incompetent to rule yourself and that's why five thounsands can rule millions exactly exactly but that was done very skillfully, they developed a whole technology a large part of it is what we know is divide and rule. Pit groups against each other and then you come as the People who will keep the balance and no part is allowed to grow without something else opposing it and So there is this Phrase we use "the Indian crab mentality" Now it's not really indeed indigenous to India. It applies to any people who have been ruled for too long And the crab mentality is this: you put crabs in a little bucket. You don't need to cover the bucket. They won't escape Do you know why? Every time a crab tries to climb out the other crabs will grab it and pull it down They say that in criticism of Indians, okay a few decades ago perhaps but still the point is you make people grow with that mentality a Kind of a desperation to survive which prevents you from being able to grow into your innate individuality so this colonial objective came in and it was designed and Lord Macaulay declared that his goal was to make India a nation of clerks and clerks means you are paper pushers You are not allowed to think independently only obey the hierarchy and he was very successful in that So we are undoing These two different distortions which came and the large part is through the educational system of late we have the distortions coming also through the media So the Indian media as a developed was quite remarkable Bollywood as they call it today Was heavily influenced from the West from initially the influences which came with the American What do they call it when the sing in the movies? It's it's a style where, you know You break out into song in the middle of Drama musicals musicals yeah. And it fitted with certain narrative styles of the Indian drama Because the India is the only country Which has a text of dramatics Going back 5,000 years Okay, there is the whole text of theater Which teaches you the skill and the art of drama of music of dance generally of art and You read the text and you will find it still applies today In fact, it exceeds the current norm of standards and values It tells you the deeper psychology and even the spiritual component of all these approaches Intended to elevate the human spirit, so we had our own temperamental forms of these Dramatics the musicals matched closely to that so it can deform this peculiar format of Bollywood But suddenly we find the last 15 or 20 years there was an attempt to imitate which was what was coming through Hollywood a kind of a coarse vital excitement and It is Intended to stimulate and provoke almost sexual in a stimulation stopping short of being explicit But it excites passions and by excitement it draws the crowds and it's like hitting the lowest common denominator This influence has come up strongly Recently in the last one generation let's say So these are three things which have been influences from the West What they have brought and I will look at briefly some notes I had made recently for a lecture The first thing which I'd mentioned was fear because the whole driver of the industrial education is To make you afraid and on the other side if you do manage to pass your exams reward you with so many people who have passed or who our First class and then you have second class and the rest which don't matter. There's a an interesting statement we have From the CBSE which is central board of secondary education It's a group of about I believe who used to be seven people who used to determine the whole CBSE framework One of them in a public interview was asked How can you explain this Forty to fifty percent to dropout rate in India? That means by the time a student hits The age of twelve forty percent of the children have dropped out of the school system And his comment in public was: they don't count The ones who get through it the one only ones that matter. this thinking is there in the very Administrative structures of the school. So it's a fear and reward as the prime motivation What happens is if till the age of twenty even twenty five You have been driven by this fear reward mechanism? Your entire life is molded by the type of fear and reward Everything you do for the rest of your life is following in the same groove. I fear for my future therefore I will do this. I fear that I might not be accepted by therefore I do this or the variation of it the high performance for the reward, for the appreciation For the tokens, you know medals and little things which you hang around on your walls Which don't change you at all. It often those were the highest marks first class pass our failures in life Because The school didn't prepare you for life It prepared you to pass exams and life is not about exams life It's about is about fulfilling yourself. And you were never taught that. You were never helped to develop that So this is the first major distortion which comes in the educational system and the second being this reward Which makes your prime driver to be greed to want more and this is further exaggerated by the system of the media and advertisements You will see about 15 years ago when many of the foreign brands entered India It was fascinating to watch: they targeted children They were thinking twenty years ahead these children if once they accept this brand They are going to buy for life that's the kind of thinking and evoke greed there and Target the children and say: don't you have it? ask your parents! So through the children the pressure is put on their parents to buy that brand It's very interesting to see that and what is it doing it's teaching children to have greed and I noticed at the same time I would see children in the school one boy showing off that brand name Maybe his shoes, maybe some box, maybe a pencil and he show off the brand name The other fellow doesn't have it because it's more expensive. So only the expensive parents... The richer parents would have it others cannot afford and the other children would Become sad This guy is showing off. Oh your parents you see the whole thing was creating the competition and the drive of greed For what reason? What's the difference both are equally functional. It doesn't matter So you've been taught, you have been programmed to chase after rewards, this is the second distortion that comes with education this industrial education the third is the concept of competition and this goes a little deeper it can it it has its roots in the framework of modern science's understanding of evolution Darwinian evolution as it's called. We don't have to blame Darwin it's how we have packaged the whole except and the packaging as we are taught today is Evolution is the result of survival of the fittest and the fittest survival means 1% will survive 99% will fail so that one person can survive. It is a destructive competition, which is the prime driver of evolution This is the idea we are given so recently in a international conference When I was disputing this idea, and I said that this is a falsehood Somebody in the audience a very senior member got up in anger and he said: Are you questioning evolution? Are you preaching creationism? To me it was interesting to see how Evolution is identified with destructive competition in other words if you are not in a scramble to destroy others so that you may survive that's not evolution and it's the Identification is so deep in our mindset in our consciousness. And this is one of the perversions which came largely from the way science framed the evolutionary struggle it influenced the whole of European development in the last 200 years and it was the basis for the whole colonial rule by Europe of the rest of the world Because the idea was: if I am superior and if I am stronger and the other is weaker then I deserve to survive they don't and They deserve to be subjugated. This was the basis of the colonization and it was then further filled in with religious authority when the Pope declared that The blacks in Africa were not human. They didn't have souls so they could be treated as cattle effectively So it's the combination of the science and religion which basically made for that phase but I am questioning this whole concept that evolution is driven by competitive or destructive competition The realities: look at nature Everywhere you see in the forest everything is nourishing everything else The prime driver of evolution and life is collaborative It is not destructive. It is helping each other. The weakest, the most fragile is nourished by everyone else The science is beginning to realize this In fact, even Darwin makes this observation that there is a whole collaborative process But that is in later part of his life by them entrenched in the collective Scientific evolution was this idea of destructive competition And this is continuing and has somehow seeped into the mindset of the Indian people Now our focus is India right now so I am pointing to this as one of the things which is causing internal conflict and indigestion and As well as a breakdown of society itself because of this We start cutting ourselves off. So one of the results of this is isolation Separation and Exaggeration of this Isolation you are cut off from your own family and society you are cut off from nature You never experienced unity with nature. How many children in the conventional educational system have ever experienced? Embracing a tree or just embracing the forest with their heart? For you that's so normal you look at a tree and you treat it as another being But it isn't the attachment to families still very strong? Or is it breaking? Its breaking very quickly in the cities. It's very quick in the villages. It is still somewhat intact. And the problem is this that breaking of the family is Taking place at the same time as the development of the intellect So it's almost as if you cannot separate these two things Now you can. The reality is they are two separate things but in the way It has worked out. Because in the cities where the maximum focus on the intellectual development and independent thinking is taking place There is the pressure on the family to break first because you can only live in small flat. You don't have houses You can't have as in traditionally in India it was three generations of family living together Grandparents looked after little children, even if the parents were busy with other things. You don't have that So today either parents are busy working and both are working. So children are alone no grandparents Or they are watching TV Which is just as bad because they are drinking in at an early age all the influences which come the coarsening influences Which are coming through television It's a huge problem. I don't think we have an easy solution right now In our school in the ashram we're trying to develop means It's a big challenge Mother had forbidden our ashram schoolchildren from going to restaurants in cinemas Precisely to protect them from these coarsening influences What has happened is eventually Technology has caught up and we have not adjusted that isolation So through television the cinema has come into your homes: it switched on several hours and here So what she had tried to do has become irrelevant Because we did not follow up it isolating from television. And anything is available in the Internet. And Internet is the next, yes. I have a children at the age of 10 in my class Describing things they have seen on the internet which were extremely vulgar and coarse It's all available. And if one child sees that he's going to show it to someone else. You cannot prevent it The result is this complete cutting off and isolation and as a result you're also sad What you see in the West as a pattern in America: 50% of the marriages end in divorce and Typically, the stable marriages are the third or fourth marriages Not even the second and this is because by the time you have grown mature enough Old enough or pretty much you've given up trying to look for whatever it is that you were chasing after And the same pattern is creeping into India again starting with the cities where marriages have become unstable now There's a whole thing we can discuss on another occasion Mother actually said the institution of marriage is obsolete Yes, and it will break out break away break down completely And she wanted no marriage in Auroville, She was very clear There's a whole discussion around that what that actually means and it does not mean there is no commitment or there's not the lasting relationship but maybe we can keep that for another time, but the idea being that These are things which were inevitable The form of it though is happening through in a way. That is not healthy and It's by a breakdown of society and not by an awakening of something deeper and truer That these forms are breaking. So I'm just making this as a passing comment The next thing which is coming from the educational system is the idea that you can reduce a person to a number Where one child has passed with 94.5% marks and the next child is 94.4. Now a point one difference of marks you eliminate the children It's ridiculous. What do those marks actually measure? Only your memory What about your creativity? What about your Capacity to execute, your ability to work in a team, your leadership quality? none of that is taken into account. And you're eliminating children just because that's your cutoff mark and Somewhere deep inside you a child is damaged in the association with the number I failed because of a point one and I failed. Label is a failure and it chases you in life whereas the other fellow who came through and won the award he is: I am superior - that's his labeling of himself and He keeps his elitism not realizing that it has no value in dear life To this reduction to a number chases the mindset of the adult everywhere. It's a global phenomenon We do not think of people as multi-dimensional beings We tend always to reduce it to one number black and white. What do you think about this, are you for or against? Such a reductionism. Do you what about that person, good or bad? You're always reducing to a flat thing so if somebody asked me a question like that, I may come to question by saying: In which way do you mean? And generally they're flummoxed. They don't reply anymore. What? I never thought of it like that which way Because everybody is... you can find a hundred different facets and on each you may have a judgment that's a different question But how do you combine them all? you cannot You cannot. And this is the beauty of the way if you see the way Mother and the ashram She saw in each person the best She knew their weaknesses and limitations She put them in where their best could be maximized For the larger collective growth. And what limitations they had She would balance it with somebody else who had a strength there who would fit in to neutralize that This ability to see a person multi-dimensionally allows you then to fit people In a very organic way, it can even be quite fluid but in a way that the whole together becomes Actually more than the sum of the parts. And it you have to be trained to think this way And Finally there is the result of this whole kind of an imposed education and false external values is the end result in hypocrisy And you see this obviously everywhere in the world especially in India Those who have gone through the drilling industrial education You will see in their eyes Hypocrisy They talk to you you cannot see what they think what they feel, their eyes concealed You go to the villages Often the school dropouts or the uneducated, you look in their eyes, you can see what they think what they feel. They are transparent This hypocrisy is being inculcated and The acme of it is in the elite schools of India strangely sadly Because they are often the most developed intellectually or in other skills of competence, but they also the most hypocritical disconnected from their souls influence This is the sad part the most competent in skills are the most disconnected from their soul and Those who are aligned with their soul have not been given the opportunity to flower out in that alignment now this is in brief The impact of the influence from the West. And it's not to blame the West the West had already suffered these consequences India is catching up with the errors of the West The question is and this is the point ySri Aurobindo made a hundred years ago whether the world will follow the values of the West or the values of the East and in that choice will be the future of humanity and What are the values of these? this is where we have to really look at and I see this Gradually because it's still intact in India in the less educated In those where the family influence was stronger than the educational influence It is still intact and that's why I see the hope in India much more than elsewhere Society has not been flattened by this damaging influence The characteristics which are and specifically in India which Sri Aurobindo points to is that the Indian mind is differently formed A major distinction he points to: the European mind is very skillful in going into details It is able to align, analyse and organize with the details very effectively The Indian mind tends to want to go behind the form to feel the essential behind the form and At that point the details of the form tend to blur it wants to see the larger picture it wants to see the common essential principle behind which unites all the pieces and then get into the details and the result is: if you put the European mind in an Indian mind's description the European mind blinks and cannot adjust if you put the Indian mind in the context of the description or the priority of the European mind the Indian mind gets out of Out of its waters and the two are almost opposite in the way they function Now the best would be: if the best of these two approaches can be integrated in a single mind That would be the complete development Of Course in practice one begins with what is your strength? So unfortunately the whole European education brought in with the opposite priority and the Indian mind is trying to warp itself to fit those values and where I see people having done that successfully that's when they also lost their link with their intuition Those who have not been too successful in that are the ones we have retained something of their innate So Sri Aurobindo points to this: the Indian mind is much more familiar with the intuitive approach Rather than the hard Materialistic reductionist rationalism, and it wants to look at the big picture. It wants to look behind and from inside out And second thing he points to is that it has an innate sense of the infinite and the eternal. And both of these are also elements which come from the imprint of the spirituality of the civilization and its values. So when we look for example in the values of the common people in India There is... you will find people just being able to sit, be quiet and feel the kind of a peace or silence of the environment, something of the merging in a selfless infinite This tendency is they're quite strong it was a Professor Aravinda Basu who was a very close friend and teacher Who had shade this when I was a student He gave us the lecture and at the time I think he was a visiting professor in Oxford? - Durham.- Ok, Durham So in UK? - Yes. So he said in one of the lectures there he was asked by somebody: What's the difference In India and here in the UK? So professor Basu asked that man: Can you sit silent for five minutes? It was his style very blunt. And the man was surprised, he said: no. And then professor Basu said: any Indian can sit for five minutes without doing anything And The point he made was: it has something to do with a kind of an inner awareness where we are not sucked out into activity and constant movement of thoughts, emotions, Agitation of the surface of the personality, but you can come to rest in a deeper dimension deeper layer and we satisfied and rest in that And somehow this is the impact of that whole civilizational imprint Where you tend to think in the long term, we were taught as children That you have to be grateful. There's a ritual even if once every year and when you offer your gratitude to your ancestors Going back seven generations. Now, why 7? There's a whole rationale to it but you are taught that that seven generations of your ancestors' efforts are here in you and all the best that you have is a result of their efforts, be grateful to them and Equally on the other side: what you are doing every thought, feeling, an action you do, every action in the world Has its impact going down seven generations Be conscious of it! Just that one idea. If you start thinking about it, and you become conscious Your whole perspective of time changes A variation to this is the principle that comes from the idea of rebirth which unfortunately Was lost in Europe,in the West generally. It used to be present earlier But at 500 AD... Yes, and then it was removed first by the religion and then later by science the result though was: you are thinking in the short term, you're thinking only of this one life and Science made it a little worse by telling you that your life is itself by chance How did you come to be? Well a few molecules fell into place by chance, and the cell was born and you have been in the world by chance Remember, all the evolution is by survival of the fittest by chance and All the mutations are by chance. So what's the point of your life? By chance - well, fulfill your desires of the moment. There is no other purpose no intention. No purpose. Nothing higher to which to look forward to And so it's just a mad scramble for each one to fulfill their moments' desire Whereas right from the beginning you're taught Your problems today, in India they tell you, your problems are the result of what you did in your past lives You're just suffering the consequences. Straightaway you're thinking long term But then on the other side what you do now will stay with you across lives The growth you have now is permanent and you will come back again and again You will face the consequences of your actions now when you come back the next time so just this one idea, it's a very simple idea but It immediately opens to you the continuum of time From a distant past into the distant future and you are part of it. You're never living in a tiny piece Does not this bring fear also? Well, unfortunately parents use it yes to evoke fear but you know, it's a principle which you can use both ways You can equally assert your individuality by saying: you determine your fate This is what Sri Aurobindo does. He points out that the principle of karma Is not so much about suffering the past But about forming your future. Doesn't matter what you did in the past or what the consequences are because there are also collective karmas Wherever you are now, what you do now determines your future in the collective future. It's a liberating principle, it gives you the power to form your own fate And separate from these Is this again the exhortation that The Divine is everywhere and you are one with the Divine Just this one idea changes everything. With it comes the insight that within you is all potential. There is nothing that you cannot do And the fulfillment of your potential is your life journey Now these are very simple principles They are not taught as a philosophy they are taught to children through stories, through narrations, through examples, through historical and mythological stories and in India history and mythology blur At least in these stories Because it is the deeper truth of the history, which is what is brought out in the mythology, the spiritual component often Symbolically. And so if you follow this kind of education in this kind of development and the values it brings these are universal values and They are also eternal If these values in whatever form - does not have to be in the form as it is done in India - if these could be brought all over the world the destiny of humanity would change and it is this which Sri Aurobindo was pointing to as The future what will determine the future of India So we have had a phase in India where we imitated the West, we tried to follow those values and have failed fortunately and the failures are compelling us to introspect and draw out deeper values How those values will emerge, in what way the innate mind of India will bridge the imposed training which comes from the European mind - that is the challenge of the present. I can say this: the problem is not yet solved It's still a churning going on. But I see individuals in whom the balance is tilted where the Indian mind is coming forward seizing upon the best of the European training and aligning these two in a way that I can say: Ah here is somebody who will do something worthwhile It doesn't have to be famous. But what he will do will be worthwhile in that sense so I have great hope for things to emerge in India, but we are just at the beginning of this Emergence. Can we touch just for a moment on the very youngest children? and some of your experiences woth them? Ahead in the school in the ashram school when I was teaching there would be one child who would See me from far and rush and 'Sraddhalu da!' he would say. And then he will say: I wanted to tell you something very intense and I said: What? Hi will think: I don't remember... Not once dozens of times From far you would see: rush sometimes hug. 'I had to tell you something! I don't remember". And then one day he said to me: "Why is the world like this? I didn't think it would be like this when I came." Wow, and I don't think he realized what he had just said So when he was a little older I explained to him I said You know some of us We belong to the future, to the new consciousness, which is manifesting. It's the new world we belong there But some of us have come as forerunners To kind of scout and prepare the way for the full Emergence of this future. And so we are stuck in in the old world But our values belong to the new world. And so there is this struggle in this conflict He was pensive for a long time and I said: "I understand, but I don't understand" How old was he? I think when I had this conversation, he must have been about 20 but when he was doing this remembering Approaching, he was about 12. I give this as an example, but I have seen this in various ways in a lot of children, but it doesn't last And for this we refer back to the discussion we had last time about what Sri Aurobindo has called the asuric education Of which we have spoken now. It's extremely corrosive from outside, coarsening, hardening, evoking doubt, skepticism, training you to cut off from your innate Soul's aspiration and faith. And is extremely destructive So even in our ashram school, we're struggling with those influences because of all the reasons which I gave but elsewhere is far worse and if somebody survives through it, it's in a large part because of a strong healthy family influence or a strong innate soul influence, which is asserting itself in spite of all this But even then in the mind there are conflicts and doubts And one has to pass through a kind of a unlearning process and re-aligning of one's personality To the inner being and the soul's aspiration to undo this damage So you look at the children, and I'm sure you had similar statements 20 years ago About children then. Oh, there's so much hope, there is so much this and that, they're so conscious Well, what happened to them 20 years later? In most cases it's gone or it's hidden, covered up And it be the same with these children if we do not assist in Helping that deeper thing come forward And it needs to be done I'm actually very surprised and Unhappy about this that even in the ashram school and in Auroville We do not make them aware of these values and these principles which Sri Aurobindo has spoken of and the Mother have spoken of We have had children passing through the entire educational system of in Auroville who know nothing about Mother and Sri Aurobindo There were children passing through a school and one of the senior members of the school even made this comment Saying that the great thing about our school is that you can pass right through it and know nothing about Sri Aurobindo without reading anything of him. And he said it's a great thing and I said was the most ridiculous statement That's not why the Mother started this school It was meant to precisely put these truths and principles which Sri Aurobindo has articulated given life to To bring them into these young children. That's how Mother brought them up She spent every week with the classes with the children. And she started with the classes seeing: I'm doing these classes because I want to help you train and develop your capacity for conscious evolution, yoga by other names. But whatever name you give to it to consciously grow in alignment with the divine consciousness and your divine potential and your soul's aspiration She did this with the children and five years down interestingly one of them asked: Mother you had promised us that you would take us through this program When will you start that? And Mother says: That's what I've been doing So in fact when the Second World War started and then the refugees came, they had very strict rules of who could come to the ashram and Mother said we had to perforce accept the children and their parents which diluted that ashram's atmosphere immensely It even postponed the potential of the work which would have been done. It spoiled the work in a certain way by diluting A s a result SriAurobindo had to leave his body and so on. But the point is: Mother said: We didn't have a choice She explained that There were two options For the evolution in the ashram: one was a small core group which would rise together very high and bring down that highest consciousness and then widen out into humanity and The second option was a larger community rising slowly like a slope, you know a core which is high and then the whole gradation around And She said: In the coming of the refugees in their children Nature chose the second option So the result on one side was this dilution, but She said many problems which we would have had to face later have to be faced earlier and She took it as an opportunity: here were children were very young unsullied by society and She said: here's a chance to bring up a whole new humanity on these new values. That's how she started the ashram school And one of the things she said there she wanted the children to be isolated from their parents who came with the old, past, wrong, even contrary values And so she preferred them to be in the boardings than with the parents. And then She makes an interesting comment After a few years you see we never had vacations We had school all year long, every day, every morning and evening. Ok, unlike other schools until Parents put pressure and the pressure built up: We want our children to come to us in some other city. You see, some time at least in the year you have to have holidays Eventually, the pressure was so much Mother gave in, against her wishes She gave in. And so one and a half months in the year were given, November 1st to December 15th for vacations Now initially a few children went to their parents Mother discouraged them from going. Eventually more and more today, I think the bulk of them travel out, very few stay and the Mother commented about that, She said Every time the children go out and Come back All the work that I have done for the whole year is washed away and I have to begin from scratch all over again And then the question was asked Mother: But then, Mother, why do you continue? And Mother said: You do not know the limits of my patience If you think about what that means Should think about what we are intended to do, think about all that Needs to be done still for these children and they're all special children. They are all conscious souls that are coming here and They are coming here because they're conscious and sometimes they bring the parents with them And the parents are often the ones who do not see. I know of so many cases where children were meant to be here Their souls had chosen, brought the parents, the parents applied to put their children in the school They got the entry and then the parents backed out on some silly ground So many cases like that. And I will say the parents committed treachery to the children But Irrespective with the opportunity that is available which is possible and with parents who are more conscious There's so much that needs to be done and we have to begin This is why speaking about it is so important: at least we become conscious of All that needs to be done and how much needs to be undone and I will say the bigger problem is not allowing the perverse influences Allowing the positive influences to grow is the easier thing because those things are innate to us. We don't have to do much We just have to allow the children to be and provide that environment which is nourishing. And that's what Mother created Actually the work is easy Thank you Well, I'll just end with this observation. The Mother is helping us as She did then when She sat with the children and took the classes She's still present She is still helping What is necessary is for us to take a brief moment to remember Her and ask ourselves What is the best expression we can make to our children and in our lives which will be in alignment to the example She has said or what She would want right now? It's a very simple question and the answer is also very simple if we feel deep inside ourselves There's this very interesting statement Sri Aurobindo gave Which used to be put up in the dining room It went like this Always behave as if the Mother was looking at you Because She is indeed always present And somebody wrote back to Sri Aurobindo about the grammar, you see: 'As if' you should say 'it were' And Sri Aurobindo writes 'as if she was present' An he said: No, it should be 'she were'. And Sri Aurobindo, master grammarian. Counters the other person and says: You say 'it were' When you don't... when it is not true Always behave as if it were raining Always behave as if it were sunny It's not actually so but behave as if. Then you say 'it were'. But when it is so then you say 'always behave as if She was' present because She is Very simple guidelines and if as parents And even as children if we can make this conscious Brief attunement before we begin anything before we deal with our children We have a problem with the child or with some issue relating even to our own life Take a brief moment to think What would Mother want me to do in this situation? Okay one may be Imposing one's own fixed idea. The idea is not that. The idea is to feel deep inside you What would you do that you feel is in alignment? And then the way is very easy And the future is bright in spite of the appearances Because the world new world is here already. It's just pushing its way through The cracks, the breakdown is only the old breaking and the new creeping in So on some level I even say it's good if systems break down. It's a good thing Because you're forced now to change and to shift to a higher newer value Thank you. Namaste.

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