Research library located in Bharat Nivas, near PostOffice. Open: Mon – Sat 9am-12 & Mon-Fri 2.30-4.30pm. Focused on the vision and work of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and many related subjects: New Physics, New Biology, New Dimensions, Body consciousness, Health, etc.
“Taking advantage of all discoveries from without and from within, Auroville will boldly spring towards future realisations.”
Creation and Purpose of the Unit
The research unit known as the “Laboratory of Evolution” was started in 1984 in one of the available spaces at Bharat Nivas, as a temporary location. In 1985, the LOE has become the LOE-CHU, thanks to the addition of a twin research unit, the Centre for Human Unity. The overall purpose of the joint unit is to be a centre of documentation and training, a dynamic focus for stimulating research done in Auroville and elsewhere concerning the further evolution of our human species, which Sri Aurobindo and The Mother have not only announced, but have opened the way for.
Through the unit’s name, people also have a constant reminder that the whole earth is a “laboratory of evolution”.
The unit’s most visible aspect until now has been its specialised library, covering the numerous topics related to the study of evolution, past and future, seen both from a scientific and a spiritual point of view in the light of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother’s evolutionary vision and work. The unit is welcoming people new to Auroville (especially students), who come with many questions about Auroville itself and about Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. In the LOE-CHU they can find the complete works of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, plus Satprem and many other “disciples”. They can also find all the books written by Aurovilians themselves, and many other books and documents about Auroville. Besides what concerns those specific topics, Aurovilians, Newcomers and guests can find in the LOE-CHU multi-media library a whole range of books, magazines and cassettes in many languages about evolution and related topics, with the possibility of obtaining further information and advice if requested.
The research aspect of the unit has developed steadily over the years, and the various expressions of that research are attracting more and more interest, from outsiders as well as from Aurovilians. On an ongoing basis the unit is engaged in the following research work:
- Integral Yoga and its confluence with the
emerging new scientific paradigms in physics, biology, medicine, history, etc.
- An Index of Mother’s Agenda, the 13
volume record of Mother’s pioneering steps towards a conscious and transformed
body, the future body which evolution is already now preparing for a
transformed human species.
- The secret consciousness in our body
cells and how to awaken and develop it (a book is currently being written on
this topic, and a number of workshops have been held).
- Messages and other texts by The Mother
about Auroville. These have all been put together into one large compilation,
which individuals or working groups in Auroville can photocopy for their own
use. Others just ask orally for what they need.
- Development since many years of an
innovative board game, “Gayatri”: evolution played as “the adventure of
consciousness and joy” (Sri Aurobindo, Savitri).
- Flowers and consciousness.
- Awakening of body consciousness through hatha
yoga and martial arts.
- Research on chakras.
Some years ago the unit put up an exhibition on the ancient idealistic city created more than 3,000 years ago in Egypt by the Pharaoh Akhenaton on the present site of Amarna. The exhibition was prepared and presented by one of the members of LOE/CHU, based on research started by another member and greatly enlarged by this member. This research, which has been published as a beautiful bilingual small book with many remarkable pictures, shows a deep similarity on many points between the ideals of that ancient city and those of Auroville.
On-going interviews of various Aurovilians are being collected in volume after volume of a research project called ‘Auroville Agenda’, which aims at documenting as much as possible of Auroville’s collective inner development through that of its individual participants. One important area of research envisioned also from the start needs to be added to what is already being done: the kind of scientific research which a “laboratory of evolution” ought also to do. For example, to experiment with the diverse biofeedback instruments which show the physiological effects that the various states of consciousness have on the human body. With the help of such devices, even children could learn (to a certain extent) how to be, at will, in a specific state of consciousness, and how to communicate more consciously with their body. Sri Aurobindo and Mother underlined how helpful it would be to add the scientific approach to the purely inner, spiritual approach in our evaluative endeavour: this would be one way to follow their advice on this point.
All the aspects of the work encompassed by the vast scope of the unit are presented to the outside world through a big website/blog, which keeps being improved and made ever more supple, easy to access and to explore.