Philosophy and Yoga of Sri Aurobindo and other Essays

VEDIC KNOWLEDGE AND SUPERMIND

IN THE LIGHT OF SRI AUROBINDO

Sri Aurobindo made a very important statement in The Foundations of Indian Culture, in which he spoke of the immediate work of India. He said that there were three tasks that India had to accomplish.

The first task is to recover the ancient spiritual knowledge in its fullness, in its amplitude — this is the first task. And this means of course, basically, the recovery of the Veda, Upanishads, the Gita, the Puranas and Tantras. This is, one might say, the basic stuff of what can be called the ancient spiritual knowledge of India. I underline the word "knowledge" because, usually, though this knowledge is contained in what are called Scriptures, Scriptures are sometimes regarded as revelations which were made once for all and have to be accepted unquestioningly. Therefore, philosophers do not accept them as bodies of knowledge. The Vedas are Scriptures; the Upanishads, the Gita, Tantra, Puranas are Scriptures; but they must still be considered as books of knowledge, because India does not regard them as revelations made for all times which cannot be repeated or which cannot be verified. According to the Vedic tradition, the faculty of revelation can be so developed that one can have a constant stream of revelations. Therefore, it is not something which comes once and for all: one can have repeated revelations, and revelations can be verified by revelations, and they can be experimented upon. What is more, they can be enlarged as in scientific knowledge — you can

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