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“An Open Letter to My Countrymen”

Karmayogin - An Open Letter to My Countrymen.jpg
PDF (11 pages)

(Sri Aurobindo letter to the editor of the Bengalee, 14 May 1909:)
         Will you kindly allow me to express through your columns my deep sense of gratitude to all who have helped me in my hour of trial? Of the innumerable friends known and unknown, who have contributed each his mite to swell my defence fund, it is impossible for me now even to learn the names, and I must ask them to accept this public expression of my feeling in place of private gratitude; since my acquittal many telegrams and letters have reached me and they are too numerous to reply to individually. The love which my countrymen have heaped upon me in return for the little I have been able to do for them, amply repays any apparent trouble or misfortune my public activity may have brought upon me. I attribute my escape to no human agency, but first of all to the protection of the Mother of us all who has never been absent from me but always held me in Her arms and shielded me from grief and disaster, and secondarily to the prayers of thousands which have been going up to Her on my behalf ever since I was arrested. If it is the love of my country which led me into danger, it is also the love of my countrymen which has brought me safe through it.

Aurobindo Ghose”[1]

(A. B. Purani, The Life of Sri Aurobindo:) “On 30 May 1909 Sri Aurobindo delivered the historic Uttarpara speech. It was Amarendranath Chatterji who went to Calcutta from Uttarpara to fetch Sri Aurobindo to speak to the Dharma Rakshini Sabha. He knew Sri Aurobindo through the secret society organisation and because of his previous initiation by him. Amar went to the Sanjivani office to fetch Sri Aurobindo. He found him absolutely quiet, as if in meditation, so he did not speak long with him. They went by train to Uttarpara. Many of the audience also went by the same train. They arrived at Uttarpara at three o'clock. The meeting was to be held at five. The zamindar of Uttarpara, Raja Piyari Mohan, and his son Michhari Babu came to the station to receive Sri Aurobindo. After taking a little rest and tea at the house of Surendranath Chattopadhyaya, a procession was organised. The meeting was held in the open courtyard on the eastern side of the library, on the west bank of the Ganges. Sri Aurobindo was the only speaker. There were about ten thousand people in the audience. Sri Aurobindo's voice was not voluminous and so the audience kept pin-drop silence in order to be able to hear him, for there were no loudspeakers in those days.”[2]

Uttarpara Speech

Karmayogin - Uttarpara Speech.jpg
PDF (10 pages)

(A. B. Purani, The Life of Sri Aurobindo:) “The reception Sri Aurobindo got at Uttarpara was extraordinary. A heap of garlands, most of them of jasmine flowers, was on the table. One of them had been specially prepared by Michhari Babu and reached to the feet. When the lecture was over, Sri Aurobindo, as was usual with him, left the heap of garlands on the table and went away.”[3]

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  1. A. B. Purani, The Life of Sri Aurobindo, p.115
  2. Ibid., p.116
  3. Ibid., p.123

See also

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