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Sri Aurobindo

Letters of Sri Aurobindo


Fragment ID: 8671

(this fragment is largest or earliest found passage)

Sri Aurobindo — Unknown addressee


Tibetan Yoga [2]

Evans-Wentz writes: “According to the Buddha, the belief that the soul (Skt. ātmā), as an eternally individualized, unchanging, and indissoluble spiritual essence, is immortal, even though its preexistence logically be admitted, mentally fetters man and keeps him enslaved to the incessant round of births and deaths. Not until man transcends this belief, in virtue of Right Knowledge, can there come Liberation” [p. 4]. If belief in the soul fetters man, what about the idea that the world is full of misery and that karma bandhana keeps man bound to the idea of misery and pain?

According to both Buddha and Shankara liberation means laya of the individual in some transcendent Permanence that is not individualised – so logically a belief in the individual soul must prevent liberation while the sense of misery in the world leads to the attempt to escape.

This implies that those who believed in “Soul” never achieved liberation. Was there no liberation before Buddha?

Buddha said he was repeating an ancient knowledge that had existed before him and restoring its true form, so he evades this objection.

Current publication:

[Largest or earliest found passage: ] Sri Aurobindo. Letters on Himself and the Ashram // CWSA.- Volume 35. (≈ 26 vol. of SABCL).- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2011.- 658 p.

Other publications:

Sri Aurobindo. Letters on Yoga // SABCL.- Volume 22. (≈ 28 vol. of CWSA).- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 1971.- 502 p.

Sri Aurobindo. Letters on Yoga. II // CWSA.- Volume 29. (≈ 22-24 vol. of SABCL).- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2013.- 522 p.