21 February 2010

Great Personalities - Mother Pondicherry

The Mother - Pondicherry – Birth Anniversary - 21 February

"I belong to no nation, no civilization, no society, no race, but to the Divine.
I obey no master, no rules, no law, no social convention, but the Divine.
To Him I have surrendered all, will, life and self; for Him I am ready to give all my blood, drop by drop, if such is His will, with complete joy, and nothing in his service can be sacrifice, for all is perfect delight." - The Mother

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Originally named Mirra Alfassa, the Mother was born in Paris on 21 February 1878. She was the daughter of Maurice Alfassa, a banker (born in Adrianople, Turkey in 1843) and Mathidle Ismaloun (born in Alexandria, Egypt in 1857). Maurice, his wife and his son, Matteo (born in Alexandria in 1876), emigrated from Egypt to France in 1877, one year before Mirra's birth. Her early education was given at home. Around 1892 she attended a studio to learn drawing and painting, and later studied at the Paris Salon.

Concerning her early spiritual life, the Mother has written: "Between 11 and 13 a series of psychic and spiritual experiences revealed to me not only the existence of God but man's possibility of uniting with Him, of realizing Him integrally in consciousness and action, of manifesting Him upon earth in a life divine." In her late twenties the Mother voyaged to Tlemcen, Algeria, where she studied occultism for two years with a Polish adept, Max Theon, and his wife. Returning to Paris in 1906, she founded her first group of spiritual seekers. She gave many talks to various groups in Paris between 1911 and 1913.

At the age of thirty-six the Mother journeyed to Pondicherry, India, to meet Sri Aurobindo. She saw him on 29 March 1914 and at once recognized him as the one who for many years had inwardly been guiding her spiritual development. Staying for eleven months, she was obliged to return to France because of the First World War. She lived in France for about a year and then in Japan for almost four years. On 24 April 1920 she returned to Pondicherry to resume her collaboration with Sri Aurobindo, and remained here for the rest of her life.

At that time a small group of disciples had gathered around Sri Aurobindo. The increase of disciples led to the founding of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram on the 24th Nov, 1926. From the beginning Sri Aurobindo entrusted the Mother with full material and spiritual charge of the Ashram. After almost 50 years of work at every level, the Mother left her body on 17th Nov. 1973, at the age of ninety five.

The Mother and Aurobindo
On the 7th of March 1914, Mother met Sri Aurobindo with her
husband Paul Richard. She later related that, on seeing Sri Aurobindo Her mind flung into a depth of peace with an imposing silence without the interruption of thoughts. Mother and Paul had to leave from Pondicherry for Paris in 1915 on account of the First World War. They then migrated to Japan where they spent the next four years. It was there Mother was said to have met Rabindranath Tagore. However in 1920 Mother returned to Pondicherry with Paul and worked with Sri Aurobindo on bringing down the Supramental power to be established in the earthly life.
Mother also engaged in regular evening talks and group meditation. With the increasing number of participants a need to develop an ashram was considered. The Aurobindo Ashran was founded on 24th November 1926. Sri Aurobindo soon chose to retire from the public view announcing that Mother would hence forth be the caretaker of the ashram. He further identified Mother with 'Sakti'. In His letter's and instructions to His disciples, Sri Aurobindo asked them to take to the path of spiritual surrender unto Mother.
Mother also considered flowers of possessing spiritual significance. She gave spiritual names to over 800 varieties of flowers. Flowers are considered as carriers of Her blessings and Grace. It is a common sight to find Mother's devotees worshipping Her with colorful flowers.

Auroville is the materialization of Mother's dream to have a common place for spiritual aspirants without the difficulty for food and shelter. Auroville or 'City Of Dawn' houses above 2000 people at present .The Matrimandir in Auroville has in its centre a meditation hall. It is constructed in such a way that sun light from a small hole in the roof entered the place. A newly added lens facilitates in having the light focused on a crystal in the central chamber. The dream city was inaugurated by Mother and the soil from all the independent nations of that period, 1960s, was mixed and placed in a lotus shaped urn to signify unity and brotherhood.
The Mother was an embodiment of spirituality guiding all those who took refuge under Her until she
shed her body on 17th Nov 1973. Numerous are the miracles performed by Mother in the lives of Her devotees, be it spiritual or material. It is a continuing story of Her grace manifesting itself in different aspects of Her devotees' life.

Club News

Philex Kolkata - 2010

A National Level Philatelic Dealers Bourse and Meet named as “ Philex Kolkatta 2010” is being organized at Kolkatta on 12 and 13th of March 2010 after 3 years with twenty booths for the dealers from India and Abroad ( Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Thailand) and arrangements for other good number of visiting dealers. This show will give opportunity to the collectors to dispose off their spare material and of course to procure material they require as the show promises some thing for every philatelist. The details and highlights are as under :

1. Only 20 stalls to be distributed among the dealers as per First Come First Serve basis.
2. Venue in the heart of the city and easily accessible
3. Good and cheap accommodation and food available nearby
4. Pleasant weather condition in Kolkatta those days
5. A golden opportunity to for the philatelists

Exhibition Venue : Rotary Sadan(Between Birla Planetarium & Nandan Auditorium), Kolkatta
Exhibition Dates : 12th & 13th March, 2010, Friday & Saturday
Exhibition Time : from 9 A.M. to 9 P.M.

For more details please contact the following:
1. Arun Bhattacharya, E-Mail: filatalie_cal@hotmail.com Ph- 98304-12286.
2. P.C.Jaiswal, E-Mail: philcent@rediffmail.com Ph- 98315-98560.
3. Tapan Dhang, Ph: (033) 2627-0129/2229-5634.
4. Tanmoy Chatterjee, Ph: 98311-10028.
5.Naresh Kumar, E-Mail: nareshkumar1992@yahoo.co.in
-Arun Bhattacharya, Kolkata

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