Articles

On Intents and History (19-01-2008)

Methodical enquiry has shown that, for a given incident, ten witnesses may well give ten different accounts; that is, instead of being ten recordings from ten vantage points each complementing the others, these may well be ten mismatched renderings of whatever has actually happened.

Sheer bafflement at the unreliability of our testimonies is of little use, for, how could it be otherwise?
Our physical consciousness is constitutionally biased and, besides, each of us carries constantly a unique set of transmitted, received or acquired intents, expectations, fears and imprints of experience, and this is how we meet every single moment.

It is therefore with great circumspection that one must approach the recording of history.
And, as intelligent researchers, we might consider the soundness of always presenting different accounts of the same events, so as to provide at least a sense of the forces at play.

The difficulty is compounded, however, when intrudes into the field of observation the deliberate attempt to remould history so as to fit a particular ideology; there are known techniques to achieve this end.

The equality and neutrality advocated by spiritual masters as a condition to be freed from the blindness of our biased perspective is a positive step, which is not to be confused with the passivity and complacent absenteeism we in Auroville seem to have fallen prey to.
While the former may enable us to develop a clean discernment, the latter merely turns our collective pool of experience into an amorphous canvas on which, stroke by stroke, motivated militantism may paint a picture of history more favorable to its designs – and for instance make us in the end believe that the trees we planted and caringly watched growing into their splendid and generous (but erroneous) pride, were actually never there, and our experience was not only illegitimate, but has actually never taken place in this world, in this Auroville…

The view here is that, were our collective atmosphere more open to the ever-increasing and transforming demands of truthfulness, such practices would not be condoned, and our sharing of the adventure would be more substantial.

Divakar