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Sri Aurobindo Life and Times of the Mahayogi (The Pre-Pondicherry Phase)

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Item Code: UAI852
Author: Manoj Das
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education
Language: English
Edition: 2020
ISBN: 9789352102280
Pages: 716 (Throughout B/W Illustrations)
Other Details 10.00 X 7.00 inch
Weight 1.37 kg

Book Description

Back of the Book
"He is the most dangerous man we have to deal with." repeatedly wrote Lord Minto, the Governor General of India in his bid to persuade Lord Morley, the Secretary of State for India, to deport Sri Aurobindo, while Rabindranath Tagore hailed him as "Voice Incarnate of India's soul" and Ramsay MacDonald, the Labour M.P. and the future Prime Minister of Great Britain asserted in the House of Commons, in the first ever long debate and probably the last on any individual Indian leader, that "Sri Aurobindo is the one guarantee that there shall be no violence in India!"

And the earliest historian of the freedom struggle, Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya, affirmed (1938), "Sri Aurobindo shone for years as the brightest star on the Indian firma ment... His genius shot up like a meteor... He flooded the land from Cape to Mount with the effulgence of his light."

Have the subsequent records and comments done justice to such momentous observations of that early phase of our freedom struggle? This work may enliven that question.

About the Book
"The most extraordinary Indian to come to King's College was Sri Aurobindo Ghose (1890). His career is all the more remarkable for its abrupt changes. His father, a M.D. of Edinburgh University, wanted him to be brought up in the best British tradition. The son (then known as Arvinda Ackroyd Ghose) was sent over at the age of seven, went to school later at St. Paul's, and won a classical scholarship to King's in 1890. He got a First in his Tripos... The tutor Prothero gave him a glorious testimonial; -Besides his classical scholarship he possessed a knowledge of English literature far beyond the average for undergraduates, and wrote a much better English style than most young Englishmen... He passed into the I.C.S., for which he had worked simultaneously, with record marks in classics; but disliking horses he omitted to take the obligatory riding test, so he became instead Professor of English, Lecturer in French and Vice Principal at the Baroda College under an enlightened Maharaja."

About the Author
Manoj Das (1934), born in a village on the sea in Odisha, was a youth. leader with radical ideals. Events in that eventful phase of his life included a term of incarceration and participating in the Afro-Asian Students Conference at Bandung. However, before long he was drawn to Sri Aurobindo and joined the Ashram in 1963. He taught English literature at the Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education.

He is a creative writer in Odia and English and through his essays and tales, has been an interpreter of problems and events from a spiritual light. The accolades he has received include D.Litt. (Honori Causa) from five universities, along with Padma Shri followed by Padma Bhushan.

The list of national and regional awards he has received from all parts of India include the Sahitya Akademi Award followed by the Akademi's highest honour "Fellowship" and the Saraswati Samman instituted by K. K.. Birla Foundation.

Sri Aurobindo: Life and Times of the Mahayogi is a development over a much smaller work, Sri Aurobindo in the First Decade of the Century, published in 1972, its reprint in 2003 bearing the title Sri Aurobindo in the First Decade of the 20th Century. Incorporating a few changes, I reproduce the Preface to the said reprint entitled 'Looking Back':

In January 1971 I wrote a series of three articles in The Illustrated Weekly of India, then the foremost news-cum-literary journal in the country. The series narrated the saga of a heroic battle fought by the legendary revolutionary Jatindranath Mukhopadhyay (1879-1915), famous as Bagha Jatin (because while in his teens he had killed a tiger singlehanded in a village), with a well-armed huge police force, on the outskirts of Balasore (Baleswar) town, the headquarters of my home district in Odisha.

I had substantiated my facts by the help of some rare documents and photographs in the possession of Shri Tejendranath Mukhopadhyay, Bagha Jatin's son who was an inmate of Sri Aurobindo Ashram. The thrilling account of the fight which ended only when the Bagha and his brave lieutenants exhausted their ammunition and were severely wounded, received warm appre ciation from the Weekly's readers. One day I received a note from the editor, Shri Khushwant Singh, enclosing a letter addressed to him by the Press Secretary of Shri Ghanashyam Das Birla. Shri Singh advised me to reply to Shri Birla.

Shri Birla, who read my series with great interest, had pointed out what he thought to be an error about the identity of the British officer leading the police force. I wrote to Shri Birla's secretary asserting that there was no error in my report. The response to my letter came from Shri Birla who in his exemplary humility, admitted to my being right.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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