A brief biography[to be expanded]
Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo
In 1997, the Sri Aurobindo Ashram* began to publish the Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo in a uniform library edition of 37 volumes. All the 36 text volumes have been issued. The remaining reference volume, with an index and glossary, is being prepared. The Complete Works contains all the writings published earlier in the 30-volume Sri Aurobindo Birth Centenary Library, as well as around 4000 pages of new texts.* his works became open domain in 2010 and thus are published here at YM.
Early essays and other prose writings on literature, education, art and other cultural subjects.
The volume includes The Harmony of Virtue, Bankim Chandra Chatterji, essays on Kalidasa and the Mahabharata, The National Value of Art, Conversations of the Dead, the "Chandernagore Manuscript", book reviews, "Epistles from Abroad", Bankim - Tilak - Dayananda, and Baroda speeches and reports. Most of these pieces were written between 1890 and 1910, a few between 1910 and 1920. (Much of this material was formerly published under the title The Harmony of Virtue.)
All short poems and narrative poems in English.
This volume consists of sonnets, lyrical poems, narrative poems, and metrical experiments in various forms. All such poems published by Sri Aurobindo during his lifetime are included here, as well as poems found among his manuscripts after his passing. Sri Aurobindo worked on these poems over the course of seven decades. The first one was published in 1883 when he was ten; a number of poems were written or revised more than sixty years later, in the late 1940s.
All original dramatic works and works of prose fiction.
Volume 1: The Viziers of Bassora, Rodogune, and Perseus the Deliverer. Volume II: Eric and Vasavadutta; seven incomplete or fragmentary plays; and six stories, two of them complete.
All translations from Sanskrit, Bengali, Tamil, Greek and Latin into English, with the exception of translations of Vedic and Upanishadic literature.
The volume includes translations from Sanskrit of parts of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata and works of Kalidasa and Bhartrihari; translations from Bengali of Vaishnava devotional poetry and works of Bankim Chandra Chatterji, Chittaranjan Das and others; translations from Tamil of poems of Andal, Nammalwar, Kulesekhara Alwar and Tiruvalluvar; and translations from Greek and Latin. Sri Aurobindo made most of these translations while living in Baroda and Bengal; some were done later in Pondicherry.
All surviving political writings and speeches from 1890 to 1908.
The two volumes consist primarily of 353 articles originally published in the nationalist newspaper Bande Mataram between August 1906 and May 1908. Also included are political articles written by Sri Aurobindo before the start of Bande Mataram, speeches delivered by him between 1907 and 1908, articles from his manuscripts of that period that were not published in his lifetime, and an interview of 1908.
All surviving political writings and speeches of 1909 and 1910.
This volume consists primarily of articles originally published in the nationalist newspaper Karmayogin between June 1909 and February 1910. It also includes speeches delivered by Sri Aurobindo in 1909.
All writings in Bengali and Sanskrit.
Most of the pieces in Bengali were written by Sri Aurobindo in 1909 and 1910 for Dharma, a Calcutta weekly he edited at that time; the material consists chiefly of brief political, social and cultural works. His reminiscences of detention in Alipore Jail for one year ("Tales of Prison Life") are also included. There is also some correspondence with Bengali disciples living in his ashram. The Sanskrit works deal largely with philosophical and cultural themes. (This volume will be available both in the original languages and in a separate volume of English translations.)
Sri Aurobindo's diary of his yogic practice between 1909 and 1927.
This two-volume record of sadhana contains fairly regular entries between 1912 and 1920 and a few entries in 1909, 1911 and 1927. It also contains related materials Sri Aurobindo wrote about his practice of yoga during this period, including descriptions of the seven "chatusthayas" (groups of four elements), which are the basis of the yoga of the Record.
Short prose pieces written between 1910 and 1950, but not published during Sri Aurobindo's lifetime.
The material is arranged in four parts: (1) "Essays Divine and Human", complete essays on yoga and related subjects, (2) "From Man to Superman: Notes and Fragments on Philosophy, Psychology and Yoga"; (3) "Notes and Fragments on Various Subjects", and (4) Thoughts and Aphorisms. (Some of this material was formally published under the title The Hour of God and Other Writings)
Short works in prose written between 1909 and 1950 and published during Sri Aurobindo's lifetime.
Most of these short works are concerned with aspects of spiritual philosopy, yoga, and related subjects. The material includes: (1) essays from the Karmayogin, (2) The Yoga and Its Objects, (3) writings from the Arya, such as On Ideals and Progress, The Superman, Evolution, Thoughts and Glimpses, The Problem of Rebirth, and (4) The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth. (Most of these works were formerly published together under the title The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth and Other Writings.)
Writings on the Veda and philology, and translations of Vedic hymns to gods other than Agni not published during Sri Aurobindo's lifetime.
The material includes (1) drafts for The Secret of the Veda, (2) translations (simple translations and analytical and discursive ones) of hymns to gods other than Agni, (3) notes on the Veda, (4) essays and notes on philology, and (5) some texts that Sri Aurobindo called "Writings in Different Languages". Most of this material was written between 1912 and 1914 and is published here for the first time in a book.
Essays on the Rig Veda and its mystic symbolism, with translations of selected hymns.
These writings on and translations of the Rig Veda were published in the monthly review Arya between 1914 and 1920. Most of them appeared there under three headings: The Secret of the Veda, "Selected Hymns" and "Hymns of the Atris". Other translations that did not appear under any of these headings make up the final part of the volume.
All translations of Vedic hymns to Agni; and related writings.
The material includes all the contents of Hymns to the Mystic Fire (translations of hymns to Agni from the Rig Veda, with a Foreword by Sri Aurobindo) as well as translations of many other hymns to Agni, some of which are published here for the first time.
Translations of and commentaries on the Isha Upanishad.
The volume is divided into two parts: (1) Sri Aurobindo's final translation and analysis of the Isha Upanishad. This small work contains his definitive interpretation of the Upanishad. It is the only writing in this volume published during his lifetime; (2) ten incomplete commentaries on the Isha. Ranging from a few pages to more than a hundred, these commentaries show the development of his interpretation of this Upanishad from around 1900 to the middle of 1914.
Translations of and commentaries on Upanishads other than the Isha Upanishad.
The volume is divided into two parts: (1) translations of and commentaries on the Kena, Katha and Mundaka Upanishads and some "Readings in the Taittiriya Upanishad"; (2) early translations of the Prashna, Mandukya, Aitareya and Taittariya Upanishads; incomplete translations of and commentaries on other Upanishads and Vedantic texts; and incomplete and fragmentary writings on the Upanishads and Vedanta in general. The writings in the first part were published by Sir Aurobindo during his lifetime; those in the second part were transcribed from his manuscripts after his passing.
Essays on the philosophy and method of self-discipline presented in the Bhagavad Gita.
These essays were first published in the monthly review Arya between 1916 and 1920 and revised in the 1920s by Sri Aurobindo for publication as a book.
Essays on the value of Indian civilisation and culture.
This volume consists of three series of essays and one single essay: (1) "The Renaissance in India", (2) "Indian Culture and External Influence", (3) "Is India Civilised?" and (4) "Defence of Indian Culture". They were first published in the monthly review Arya between 1918 and 1921. In 1953, they first appeared in a book under the title The Foundations of Indian Culture.
Sri Aurobindo's principal work of philosophy.
In this book, Sri Aurobindo presents a theory of spiritual evolution and suggests that the present crisis of humanity will lead to a spiritual transformation of the human being and the advent of a divine life upon earth. The material first appeared as a series of essays published in the monthly review Arya between 1914 and 1919. They were revised by Sri Aurobindo in 1939 and 1940 for publication as a book.
Sri Aurobindo's principal work on yoga.
In this book Sri Aurobindo examines the traditional systems of yoga and provides an explanation of certain components of his own system of integral yoga. There is an Introduction, "The Conditions of the Synthesis", and four parts: "The Yoga of Divine Works", "The Yoga of Integral Knowledge", "The Yoga of Divine Love" and "The Yoga of Self-Perfection". The material was first published serially in the monthly review Arya between 1914 and 1921; the introduction and first two parts were later revised by Sri Aurobindo for publication.
Three works of social and political philosophy.
In The Human Cycle, Sri Aurobindo traces the evolution of human society and suggests where it is headed. In The Ideal of Human Unity, he examines the possibility of the unification of the human race. In War and Self-Determination, he discusses the sovereignty of nations in the aftermath of the First World War. These works were first serialised in the monthly review Arya between 1915 and 1920; later Sri Aurobindo revised them for publication.
Sri Aurobindo's principal work of literary criticism.
In this work, Sri Aurobindo outlines the history of English poetry and explores the possibility of a spiritual poetry in the future. It was first published in a series of essays between 1917 and 1920; parts were later revised for publication as a book.
Letters on poetry and other forms of literature, on painting and the other arts, on beauty and aesthetics, and on their relation to the practice of yoga.
Most of these letters were written by Sri Aurobindo in the 1930 and 1940s to members of his ashram. Around one sixth of them were published during his lifetime; the rest were transcribed from his manuscripts after his passing. Many are being published for the first time in this volume.
Four volumes of letters on the integral yoga, other spiritual paths, the problems of spiritual life, and related subjects.
In these letters, Sri Aurobindo explains the foundations of his integral yoga, its fundamentals, its characteristic experiences and realisations, and its method of practice. He also discusses other spiritual paths and the difficulties of spiritual life. Related subjects include the place of human relationships in yoga; sadhana through meditation, work and devotion; reason, science, religion, morality, idealism and yoga; spiritual and occult knowledge; occult forces, beings and powers; destiny, karma, rebirth and survival. Sri Aurobindo wrote most of these letters in the 1930s to disciples living in his ashram. A considerable number of them are being published for the first time.
This volume opens with Sri Aurobindo's small book The Mother, in which he describes the nature, character and role of the Divine Mother.
The rest of the volume consists primarily of letters on the Mother - on the Divine Mother and on Sri Aurobindo's collaborator, the Mother, who was the head of his ashram. He wrote most of these letters in the 1930s to disciples living in the ashram.
Sri Aurobindo's major poetic work, an epic in blank verse.
In Savitri, a legend from the Mahabharata becomes the symbol of the human soul's spiritual destiny. In poetic language, Sri Aurobindo describes his vision of existence and explores the reason for ignorance, darkness, suffering and pain, the purpose of life on earth and the prospect of a glorious future for humanity. The writing of the epic extended over much of the later part of his life.
Sri Aurobindo's letters between 1927 and 1950 on his life, his path of yoga and the practice of yoga in his ashram.
In these letters, Sri Aurobindo writes about his life as a student in England, a teacher in Baroda, a political leader in Bengal, and a writer and yogi in Pondicherry. He also comments on his formative spiritual experiences and the development of his yoga. In the latter part of the volume, he discusses the life and discipline followed in his ashram and offers advice to the disciples living and working in it. Sri Aurobindo wrote these letters between 1927 and 1950 - most of them in the 1930s.
Sri Aurobindo's writings on himself (excluding the letters in volume 35, Letters on Himself and the Ashram) and other material of historical importance.
The volume is divided into four parts: (1) brief life sketches, autobiographical notes, and corrections of statements made by others in biographies and other publications; (2) letters of historical interest to family, friends, political and professional associates, public figures, etc; also letters on yoga and spiritual life to disciples and others; (3) public statements and other communications on Indian and world events; (4) public statements and notices concerning Sri Aurobindo's ashram and yoga. Much of the material is being published here for the first time in a book.