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Wander & enjoy the diversity...it feeds your soul “What is more miraculous than the moment?” Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hanh

Monsoon in Auroville

INDIA | Wednesday, 19 December 2007 | Views [2657]

Tibetan Pavilion

Tibetan Pavilion

12/14 – 12/19 Auroville (near Pondicherry) – Monsoon (typhoon?) in Auroville http://www.auroville.org/thecity/americas/usa_pavilion_starts_off.htm

Chuck & I had heard about this 'largest intentional community' in the world several years ago and had always wanted to visit!  One of Kirsten's friends arranged for us to stay at the Tibetan Pavilion (http://www.auroville.org/thecity/tibet_pavilion/archive.htm), which was perfect, as we had just spent the last 5 weeks working with Tibetans in McLeod Ganj, Dharmsala.  The people here were wonderful and the Pavilion was comfortable! 

We visited the "Matrimandir" which is the gold golfball-looking object in the middle of Auroville.  It is said to be the 'soul of the city.'  It is situated in a large open area called 'Peace,' from where the future township will radiate outwards. The atmosphere is quiet and the area beautiful.  The Matrimandir emerges as a large golden sphere which seems to be rising out of the earth, symbolising the birth of a new consciousness seeking to manifest.  http://www.auroville.org/thecity/matrimandir/mm_main.htm

The Tibetan Pavilion was a GREAT place to stay - with breakfast & some dinner meals (great momos from a nearby Tibetan restaurant) provided.  We also walked around the rural countryside and visited some other great restaurants and shops where the Aurovilians make and sell quality clothes, perfumes, candles, etc. 

The Tibetan Pavilion and the American Pavilion also house US college students studying on a "term-abroad."  They were just finishing their 3-month course - we were invited to eat a celebratory meal with them and their instructors!  We also stayed at the American Pavilion where we got to be intimate with their "compost" toilets & bucket showers.  They had cold showers, but if I wanted to have warm water, I had to fill up a bucket at the end of the building and carry it to the shower in our room.  Then I stood in the bucket & poured the water over me – careful to do my hair with fresh water first!  What fun!

We also encountered a monsoons, which some called a "typhoon," because of the wind & water coming in sideways through the openings in the walls near the roof.  When it is not raining, the open area at the top is nice for the warm breezes, but at night I had to put an umbrella near my head in bed, so I wouldn't get so wet.  Our clothes were damp and the beds were really damp!  When walking back & forth between pavilions & around the area, we had to slop through water up to our ankles!  Oh…the joys of traveling!

Taken from the Auroville web site (http://www.auroville.org/), Auroville is a universal township in the making for a population of up to 50,000 people from around the world.  The concept of Auroville - an ideal township devoted to an experiment in human unity.  In the mid 1960s the Sri Aurobindo Society in Pondicherry proposed that such a township should be started.  In 1966 UNESCO passed a unanimous resolution commending it as a project of importance to the future of humanity, thereby giving their full encouragement.

"The purpose of Auroville is to realize human unity – in diversity."  Today Auroville is recognized as the first and only internationally endorsed ongoing experiment in human unity.  They provide opportunities for research into sustainable living and the future cultural, environmental, social and spiritual needs of mankind.  It started in February 1968 where 5,000 people assembled for an inauguration ceremony attended by representatives of 124 nations, including all the States of India.

Auroville is located in south India, mostly in the State of Tamil Nadu (some parts are in the State of Pondicherry), a few kilometres inland from the Coromandel Coast, approx 160 kms south of Chennai (previously Madras) and 10 kms north of the town of Pondicherry.  'Aurovilians' come from some 35 nations, all age groups (infancy to over eighty, averaging around 30), all social classes, backgrounds and cultures, representing humanity as a whole.

Tags: Culture

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