Human Unity - A Dream
.....An excerpt from Book 1 Chapter 3 What Game are we Playing?
Human unity is not a collective ordering of human life, although it may be enabled by laws and cultural norms. The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UNUDHR) is a document originally drafted in 1948 that outlines the basic rights all people shall be entitled to, and the overarching laws that should be sustained around the world. The U.S. Constitution is like the UNUDHR with respect to content, but its scope is limited to the United States. As Sri Aurobindo and the Aurovilian farmer I interviewed pointed out, unless the community’s actions are aligned with the ideals of human unity in all its aspects, there can be no unity. Even in Auroville, laws and socio-political norms cannot enforce an ideal human unity. Human and national unities are aspirations intertwined within the laws provided but are contextually insufficient to establish human unity within the hearts, minds, and acts of the people. For this, man must engage the vitality of his intrapersonal will to know, honor, and connect deeply with his own humanity; learn how to connect with others on the sole basis of common humanity; understand what is important and critical for humanity to thrive and evolve as a collective species.
Mirra Alfassa’s The Dream is a spiritually pragmatic foundation for communal life that benefits every individual collectively. This document along with Auroville’s Charter and the presence of Matrimandir (pictured in this post), Auroville’s spiritual center, guide the people of Auroville toward a progressive state of human unity. For Alfassa, the realization of human unity is prerequisite for the next iteration of human evolution to take place. Aurobindo and Alfassa taught and believed that the present human condition and physical body are insufficient to ascend and receive the descent of the supramental consciousness. The union of man with the supramental consciousness will create a new species of human being that will render the current state of mankind as far removed as is currently from prehistoric man.
A Dream - Mirra Alfassa - Written August 1954
There should be somewhere on earth a place which no nation could claim as its own, where all human beings of goodwill who have a sincere aspiration could live freely as citizens of the world and obey one single authority, that of the supreme truth; a place of peace, concord, and harmony where all the fighting instincts of man would be used exclusively to conquer the causes of his sufferings and miseries, to surmount his weaknesses and ignorance, to triumph over his limitations and incapacities; a place where the needs of the spirit and the concern for progress would take precedence over the satisfaction of desires and passions, the search for pleasure and material enjoyment.
In this place, children would be able to grow and develop integrally without losing contact with their souls; education would be given not for passing examinations or obtaining certificates and posts but to enrich existing faculties and bring forth new ones. In this place, titles and positions would be replaced by opportunities to serve and organise. The bodily needs of each one would be equally provided for, and intellectual, moral, and spiritual superiority would be expressed in the general organizaion not by an increase in the pleasures and powers of life but by increased duties and responsibilities.
Beauty in all its artistic forms, painting, scultpure, music, literature, would be equally accessible to all, the ability to share in the joy it brings would be limited only by the capacities of each one and not by social or financial position. For in this ideal place money would no longer be the sovereign lord; individual worth would have a far greater importance than that of material wealth and social standing. There, work would not be a way to earn one's living but a way to express oneself and to develop one's capacities and possibilities while being of service to the community as a whole, which, for its own part, would provide for each individual's subsistence and sphere of action. In short, it would be a place where human relationships which are normally based almost exclusively on competition and strife, would be replaced by relationships of emulatuion in doing well, of collaboration and real brotherhood.
The earth is certainly not ready to realize such an ideal, for mankind does not yet possess sufficient knpwedge to understand and adopt it nor the conscious force that is indispensable in order to execute it; that is why I call it a dream.
And yet,this dream is in the course of becoming a reality; that is what we are striving for in Sri Aurobindo's Ashram; on a very small scale, in proportion to our limited means. The realization is certainly far from perfect, but it is progressive; little by little we are advancing towards our goal which we hope we may one day be able to present to the world as a practial and effective way to emerge from the present chaos, to be born into a new life that is more harmonious and true.
Moment of Reflection: A reflective practice based upon A Dream will be made available when In a Perfect World: Man in Relationship with Self, lands in bookstores. Please visit my blog and website regularly for publication updates.