A collage of MEMORIES

A collage of MEMORIES
A collage of MEMORIES

Sunday, 7 September 2014


             It was a bright day at Pondicherry. We got up early and after finishing our breakfast headed to Sri Aurobindo Ashram, the famous spiritual community established in the Indian territory of Pondicherry (now Puducherry ) by Sri Aurobindo on 24th November, 1926. At that time there were a few disciples staying with Sri Aurobindo. Aurobindo subsequently decided to withdraw from public view for continuing his spiritual work and handed over the responsibility of the sadhakas (spiritual aspirants) and the ashram to his spiritual collaborator, "The Mother", earlier known as Mirra Alfassa.  


                     In the early history of the ashram, there was a regular routine. At 6am everyday, the Mother appeared on the ashram balcony to initiate the day with her blessings. Sadhakas (spiritual aspirants), would have woken up very early and completed a good portion of the day's work including meditation and then assembled under the balcony to recieve her blessings. 
                     As the ashram grew, many departments came up and were looked after by the Sadhakas (spiritual aspirants) as a part of their sadhana (worship): the offices, library, dining room, book/paragraph painting, workshops, sports/playground, art gallery, dispensary/nursing home, farms, dairies, flower gardens, guest houses, laundry, bakery etc. The heads of the departments met the Mother and took her blessings and orders. She would meet the Sadhakas individually again at 10am and in the evening at 5:30pm, she would conduct meditation and meet the Sadhakas.

                    In addition, four times a year Sri Aurobindo and the Mother used to give public Darshans (spirirtual gatherings where Guru bestows blessings) to thousands of devotees gathered to receive grace.

                           Today, Pondicherry has become an important  destination for spiritual seekers as well as tourists. Thousands of visitors from all over the world come to the ashram. When we entered, it was as if we had entered in another world, where peace prevails, where one can immerse all the sorrow and re-awake. Not only the Indians but huge number of foreign tourists were sitting on the mosaic-marble floor, deeply engrossed in spiritual books, pamphlets, some in deep thought or meditating with eyes closed.  A sanctum was nearby, with a small water body --flower petals scattered over. What a neat, tidy, peaceful, serene ashram it was! We saw the marble statue of Mother and Sri Aurobindo, in front of which, the devotees were sitting and meditating. The rooms were clean, calm and so was the library. None talked loud, people checked books, pictures, pamphlets, subscription forms etc.

                    The visiting hours for the visitors are from 8am to 12noon and then again from 2pm to 6pm. The ashram has no branch, the only one is at Pondicherry. Here is the address for your convenience : Marine St. , White Town, Puducherry 605002.  Contact no. - 0413 223 3604

                    Camera is not allowed inside or near the Ashram, so I could not click pictures. Pondicherry is anyway a very picturesque town with Portuguese buildings and beautiful lanes. After visiting the Ashram, we went to the beach beside, stayed there standing and enjoying the salty wind and sound of mild waves....then headed towards Chennai. 

                        The VGP Golden Beach is located on the Bay of Bengal in Chennai, Tamil NaduIndia. It is a major tourist attraction in Chennai. It is situated in the East Coast Road from Chennai to Cuddalore via Pondicherry. 

                      One of the most endearing attractions is the surging Bay of Bengal --a private, velvety beach with silvery sands --on the Marina, the world's second longest beach. You would hardly find any where else, an amusement park that has an enchanting sea at the backdrop.

                    The breaking of the waves and the whistling of the winds are music to the ears. It's also a safe beach where one can go for a bath or a short swim, come ashore and have a fresh water shower to cleanse. Adequate services are provided to help people enjoy.

1 comment:

  1. Lovely blog post. Amongst attractions in Pondicherry, some must visit places are the lovely beach front promenade, Auroville, Gingee Fort, Gokilambal Temple and the Government Museum. For accommodation, click here to know about hotels in Pondicherry.