Journey to Supermind: Sri Aurobindo Reading & Practice Groups — Overview, Schedule, Guidelines and Resources

Journey to Supermind is a series of reading/writing and creative/spiritual practice group events dedicated to the philosopher, poet, integral yogi, and spiritual revolutionary Sri Aurobindo.

We are reading his magnum opus of evolutionary metaphysics, The Life Divine, while creating a field for exploring his poetic and literary works (e.g., Savitri); political and historical thought (e.g., The Human Cycle); and practical teachings on human transformation, or Integral Yoga (e.g., The Synthesis of Yoga).

Our main event is a weekly conversation/practice session every Thursday at 6 p.m. Mountain Time, running from June through November of this year. Participants are also welcome to propose their own creative experiments, spiritual explorations, and discourse events in the #metapsychosis:aurobindo channel of the Infinite Conversations forum at any time.

How to Participate

Specific instructions for each event will be included with its dedicated topic in the forum, but in general here’s how to begin your journey with us:

  1. Sign up with the Readers Underground.
  2. Create an account here on the Infinite Conversations forum and follow the #metapsychosis:aurobindo channel.
  3. Introduce yourself in the topic thread for the event you’d like to join.
    (You are also welcome to say more about yourself here: Personal Introductions (forum-wide) .)

Our Life Divine sessions will begin each time with a mic-check, announcements, and logistics; then move into a brief period (~5 mins) of silent meditation before the conversation begins.

We are practicing rotating leadership, which means that for each session a different participant will lead off the discussion in whatever way they choose. This could include a summary (or expression of one’s understanding) of the assigned text for the week, along with seed questions or discussion prompts—but doesn’t necessarily have to be set up in an academic, intellectual, or purely conceptual manner.

While we are aiming for a close reading, interpretation, and understanding of the text—which could include the use of comparative, critical, and synthetic philosophical tools—we are especially interested in experiential attempts to enact the ideas contained in the text through participatory dialogue. How can we activate the potentials in the communicative field itself? How can we actualize in ourselves the transformations which Aurobindo writes about?

Let us nurture an intersubjective environment where it is ‘safe to fail,’ even (and especially) as we pursue our highest aspirations. Let us seize the opportunity of our dynamic collective presence to amplify our consciousness on the way to Supermind! As Aurobindo writes in his epic poem, Savitri:

For doom is not a close, a mystic seal.
Arisen from the tragic crash of life,
Arisen from the body’s torture and death,
The spirit rises mightier by defeat;
Its godlike wings grow wider with each fall.
Its splendid failures sum to victory.

—from Book VI, Canto II

Technical Details

To join a conversation event, you must first download the Zoom video conference app to you computer, tablet, or smartphone. This is a free download and just takes a minute to set up.

Then click this link to join the event: Launch Meeting - ZoomBOOKMARK ME

When you initially join the conference, you will be on mute. Just click the “unmute” button when you’re ready to speak. It is a good idea to test your microphone and set-up ahead of time, which you can do here: Join a Test Meeting - Zoom

See the Zoom getting started guide for more information. Or message @mindful_ai for support.

:warning: Important note: In order to create a healthy container for the deep work we will be doing together, the video conference line will be closed after the opening meditation. If you expect to be late, please let @mindful_ai (our tech support guru) know ahead of time, and we will let you in during a natural transition in the conversation. If you get bumped off the line, or arrive late unexpectedly, a chat channel [COMING SOON] will be open to let us know, and we’ll let you into the conference as soon as possible.

Conversation Guidelines

By default, we will be practicing a form of ‘generative dialogue’ designed to heighten the inter-intelligence of the space itself, or in other words, for “invoking intersubjective Supramental nonduality.” Here are some simple instructions (held lightly) which we can follow to help with that:

  1. Draw everyone’s attention to moments of shared silence, rather than people instinctively filling or obscuring the silence, which amplifies group awareness of ‘prior unity’;
  2. Encourage participants to ‘follow the thread’ of the conversation, building on and deepening what was said before rather than interjecting egoic non sequiturs;
  3. Ensure that everyone participates and doesn’t hold back (self-contract), no matter how shy (active, engaged listening can count as a minimum baseline).

Please note that these are just guidelines, not hard and fast rules. Indeed, as we practice and learn together, we may want to add to or modify our own (indvidual and collective) approach. Please feel free to go meta and add your own insights, observations, and suggestions regarding the group process.

The Life Divine – Reading Schedule

Our tentative goal is to read the entire book by the end of the year, before the holiday season (so ending in mid-November). Our pacing may shift as we get into the reading and experience a few sessions. (A group check-in at the end of each sessions will determine our initially indeterminate next moves.)

But, we are starting off with an average of 50 pages of ‘assigned’ reading each week, with the following as our provisional syllabus:

Week 1 | Introductory (no reading)

Book One

Omnipresent Reality and the Universe

Starting Friday, June 8, 2018 12:00 AM (in your time zone)

Week 2 | Chs. 1–5 
Week 3 | Chs. 6–11
Week 4 | Chs. 12–16
Week 5 | Chs. 17–20
Week 6 | Chs. 21–24
Week 7 | Chs. 25–28

(One-week break)

Book Two

The Knowledge and the Ignorance—The Spiritual Evolution

Part 1 – The Infinite Consciousness and the Ignorance

Starting July 26

Week 8 | Chs. 1–2
Week 9 | Chs. 3–4
Week 10 | Chs. 5-6
Week 11 | Chs. 7–9
Week 12 | Chs. 10–12
Week 13 | Chs. 13–14

(One-week, end-of-summer [in the Northern Hemisphere] break)

Part 2: The Knowledge and the Spiritual Evolution

Starting September 13

Week 14 (9/13) | Chs. 15–16
Week 15 (9/20) | Chs. 17–19
Week 16 (9/27) | Chs. 20–21
Week 17 (10/4) | Chs. 22–23
Week 18 (10/11) | Ch.  24
Week 19 (10/18) | Ch. 25 
Week 20 (10/25) | Ch. 26
Week 21 (11/1) | Ch. 27 
* Week 22 (11/7) | Ch. 28

(* Week added to break up Chs. 25 and 26 together previously)

Resources/Referenced Material

Study Guides/Introductory Material
Books References During Recorded Sessions
Audio Recordings Of Life Divine

Supporting Our Work

This series is sponsored and organized by the editors of It is being offered on a gift economy basis. If you value our creative productions, and would like to see us continue our collaborative work, please consider supporting our Open Collective with a monthly or one-time donation.

:pray: :prayer_beads: Thank you! :sparkling_heart:: :pray:


To this practice in TLD, Chapter 1 “The Human Aspiration” that Nature seeks harmony and the greater the apparent disorder, the stronger the evolutionary spur, including the apparent disharmony our inherited admixed planes of consciousness, I would like to add a supporting and classic quote from “Savitri” Book VI, Canto II, The Way of Fate and the Problem of Pain:

Pain is the hammer of the Gods to break
A dead resistance in the mortal’s heart,
His slow inertia as of living stone.
If the heart were not forced to want and weep,
His soul would have lain down content, at ease,
And never thought to exceed the human start
And never learned to climb towards the Sun.