Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Part IV: Auroville Builders Trashed the Divine Measure

[This is Part IV of The Chronicles of the Inner Chamber; readers of this series may first want to read the blog's 'Introduction' and the Matrimandir Action Committee's 'Manifesto',  Part I - PrefacePart II or Part III before continuing.]

The Horizontal plane

‘…The outside…I did not see the outside,
I did not see it at all. I saw only the inside.’
The Matrimandir Talks, 3.1.1970

          This is a clear statement. If a client were to make such a statement to his/her architect, with the explicit request for a room of 24m diameter, there would be no difficulty for the professional to implement it faithfully. Moreover, it would be incongruous for the architect to assume that his client included in this request the circumscribing walls with their then unknown thickness and would have desired the room of 24m to include those walls within the diameter of the room, especially since the client had already stated, ‘I have only seen the inside’. 
          With this brief introduction we can begin to explore the most disheartening part of the drama to have the Mother’s Vision reinstated as the plan for the Inner Chamber, which involved precisely the Chamber’s diameter that should have been self-evident. In no uncertain terms and if for no other reason than logic, the Mother wanted the 24 metres ‘to end at the walls’. But since on this measurement the fate of the Mother’s Vision hinged, as the pioneering example of the new sacred art, given the downright bad will that pervaded the Auroville atmosphere, this was the feature of the Vision that was most staunchly opposed. It was a determined opposition that flew in the face of all logic. Mental contortions were engaged in to make sure that this crucial 24m diameter would not come into being in the construction. Nothing was finalised at this level in 1974 when the problem involving this measurement surfaced. There was every possibility of correcting the error Udar Pinto made in his drawing for the Mother.
          Yes, this error, along with several others, crept into the hastily prepared drawing by the Ashram engineer. But to safeguard the design and wishes of the Mother, Providence made sure that the Mother’s own words would correct this mistake in the subsequent recorded discussions. That should have sufficed.
          It did not. Here is an example of those mental acrobatics to justify the architect and Matrimandir workers’ refusal to honour the Mother’s wishes: 

     ‘Matrimandir – and here may lie the key – is not being built in the third dimension but in the fourth. There one has to enter, there one must understand, there one should measure, and then all the measurements are inverted. Everything flips inside out…
     ‘…How could one indicate symbolically, but still very concretely, this turning inside out of a ball? Well, for instance, by measuring from outside to outside. Now, who ever measures the inside of a hall from the outside of the walls? She! [the Mother] For those reversed measurements are in fact a precise symbol of the reversed, inside-out consciousness. They clearly indicate that here one enters a space which has been planned and – by means of our human clumsiness and mistakes – executed in the fourth dimension. Unwilling cooperators, we, of the great Plan, which is always certain to fall ultimately square on its feet…. So…that twenty-four meter measurement is correct, exact, most precise. Only – your tape measure must be able to span the fourth dimension.’     
These are excerpts from a book entitled, ‘A House for the Third Millennium’, by Ruud Lohman, a Roman Catholic priest who established himself at the site of the construction from the day of the Matrimandir’s inauguration in 1971 and never left until his death in the 1980s. We would not bother reproducing this gibberish if it were not for the fact that Lohman was a key influential figure in everything that transpired regarding the measurements and implementation of the Mother’s plan. He opposed any idea of measurements and ‘astrology’ as having any significance other than what his own limited consciousness could grasp; and was, from the beginning a staunch opponent of the tradition in these matters.
          Coming from the West, and conditioned heavily by his Catholic upbringing and priesthood, it is not surprising that he should have adopted the attitude that he did. But what is extraordinary is that such people were able to rule the day and convince every Indian involved in those early moments of the Chamber’s life, that his vision, his conclusions (see above specimen) were right. This was surely the ‘sense’ the Mother intended of the outside measurement, a flip-flop consciousness! With this sort of flippant attitude, is it any wonder that the crystal in the Auroville Matrimandir reflects the surroundings upside-down! For isn’t that topsy-turvy display just what Lohman would need to justify his theory of inside-outside/upside-down? Isn’t it the exact symbol of this sort of twaddle? Indeed, everything is ‘perfect’ in the Auroville Matrimandir.
          The disheartening part was that no one listened to the Mother herself. When she asked for precision and specific measurements, was she talking gibberish? And what would the Lohmans of this world say when confronted with the sacred Mahamaya that states, ‘…If the measurement of the temple is in every way perfect, there is perfection in the universe as well’ (XXII, 92.)?
          We know what Ruud Lohman thought of such matters and we can quote the same text when he describes his friend William’s conflict, after he ‘fell into the hands of an astrologer, also living in the Ashram’ (ibid): 

     ‘…After the visions of the Mater Divina [the Mother] and the niggling humana, a third element entered: the cosmos, the planets, the interpretations of the great rhythms of creation. And what did the inspirations say? It was wrong with the Matrimandir, wrong, wrong, wrong! Stop, stop! The builders, according to the stars, did not follow the measurements given by the Mother, and all the calculations couldn’t stand up any more. Or rather, the calculations stood, but Matrimandir didn’t. One ‘mistake’ especially was stressed a lot: the twenty-four meters from wall to wall. On the original drawing, the Mother had drawn just one little line for the thickness of the wall. The execution was left to the engineers, and when the calculations for the Matrimandir were fed into a computer in Madras in 1970, the walls became forty centimetres thick, and the twenty-four meters ran from the outside of the wall to the outside of the opposite wall. So the Chamber is twenty-four minus the twice-forty centimetres of the walls.
     ‘Well, that was for the astrologer the reason for all the crises, wars, disasters of the world today, for when one cosmic clock is off it throws everything else off, too. And she fulminated and wrote books and pamphlets and tried desperately to stop the work, but it went on and the Room is there, twenty-four meters minus the thickness of the walls.’ (Ibid.) 

It is at this point in his story that Lohman introduces his theories of the fourth dimension and the Mother’s real intention which the Matrimandir architect and builders faithfully carried out: Inside is outside and outside in when you are ‘measuring in the fourth dimension’. Therefore, everything is all right with the Chamber. ‘The great Plan’, will always ‘fall ultimately square on its feet’, regardless of any mistakes Auroville might make.
          But the Mother’s Vision is not to be trampled upon so lightly and so amateurishly. There are indeed ‘cosmic laws’ involved, which these Chronicles will establish. And it is a fact that every attempt was made to stop the construction before it reached the point of no return so that this critical diameter measurement would be incorporated, just as the Mother wanted. But the Lohmans of this world have proven to have the stronger voice, even in India, a civilisation that should know better.
          But we do not have to retreat to the 1970s to discover the consciousness that rules Auroville. We have the words of a prominent Auroville researcher, Paulette, in her recent document to MAC, when it was pointed out that the Mother was then nearing 92 and her eyesight was poor: ‘…Who do you think the Mother is? Handing over wrong plans with wrong measures because her eyes could not detect the mistakes, as you pretend?’
          Again, the implication is that Auroville is always right: if the Mother gave the builders a plan with ‘mistakes’, that too was right and it was correct for them to incorporate those mistakes, because, as we had been told then, ‘she blessed that plan’ so it must be right, poor eyesight not withstanding.
          But there were other mistakes in Udar Pinto’s drawing. Yet these were all corrected. No such argument was proffered to justify guarding them zealously, unlike the incorrect floor diameter.
       Could it be that they were accepted and corrected without bringing in the Mother’s higher consciousness beyond physical eyes, or her fourth dimension vision where inside is outside, simply because they were not crucial to the fate of her Vision?
          They were items that could always be added at a later date (or subtracted). One such mistake was that Pinto drew only eleven columns instead of the specified twelve. The unbiased reader must consider this: If that drawing’s 24m outside wall measurement was sacrosanct, though it was so obviously a mistake, why have the twelve columns been installed and not eleven, as Udar’s plan indicates (not to speak of the 15-step ascending entrance)? And why has Sri Aurobindo’s old symbol not been used for the ‘stand’, again as erroneously given in Pinto’s drawing? If these errors were all corrected without any argument, naturally we must draw the conclusion that, given the fact that the diameter is crucial in sacred geometry, and insofar as the builders chose the Troika formula of exaltation of the builders’ consciousness over any considerations of sacred architecture, it was a deliberate refusal, premeditated, obstinate. The intent was to stamp out any higher content from the Chamber.
          Indeed, this was our experience at the time. And it was this refusal to grant the Mother just this one meter more of ‘inner space’ that for all times the Auroville Matrimandir has been eliminated from the annals of great sacred art.
          Is this what everyone wanted? Why should any of us have accepted, without protest, that Auroville somehow had and has an unassailable sanction from the Divine to carry out such acts of desecration? Has anyone seriously, deeply pondered over what this attitude has engendered? Is it surprising then that a cover-up has been engaged in since then? Because how is history going to view this aberration? When future seekers read the Mother’s own words on the 24-meter diameter, how can the Auroville justifications be taken for anything other than what they were: a determination to remove her Vision from the annals of the great achievements in the field of sacred geometry?
          Here is just one clear explanation from the Mother to Satprem and Paolo on the question of the 24m diameter. Judge for yourselves, bearing in mind that when these transcripts were circulated the floor diameter had not been set in place; and in the words of the executing architect himself, ‘It would take just ten minutes [at the drawing board] to change the diameter.’       
17 January 1970
There is also the question of measurement. According to the plan you have given 24 metres – 12 metres from each side of the globe. But can we keep a little extra distance on each side for the passage? The plan shows 24 metres in diameter and 15.20m for the height.
The Mother: Ah? 

He asks if the proportion can change. To keep 24m for the base of the carpet, but with the possibility, for example, of keeping 2 or 3 metres on each side for free movement.
Then where would the walls come?

They would be there [the disciple points to the passage in Paolo’s drawing]. 

It is the wall which must be at 24 metres. 

He says that if there are to be these passages then 24 metres would be a little short.
The disciple insists several times on a ‘passage’ beyond the 24 metre diameter (‘…24 metres for the total width or for the carpet?’), but the Mother stresses the inner measurement, inside wall to inside wall.            

…There would even be this possibility – to have a space between the outermost wall [of the entire temple] and the inner wall. To make a space. That is to be seen. 

That means in addition to the 24 metres.           

Yes, it is understood. The 24 metres end at the walls. 

And further, 

So a passage outside. 

The passage outside. 

This makes it abundantly clear that nothing was to interfere with the diameter measurement of the Chamber. There was no doubt at all what needed to be done since Udar had made a mistake in his hastily drawn plan but which was clarified by the Mother’s explicit instructions. Like the other mistakes this one too had to be corrected. That it was not, that this became the rallying point for opposition to sacred geometry and ‘astrology’ tells a tale of its own. By refusing to grant the Mother this simple one metre of space, the Auroville Matrimandir cannot lay any claim to be ‘the Mother’s original’, as has been the case over the years, a false position that is being exposed by these Chronicles. It cannot hold itself as the centre of the new Age where the ancient traditions would find their place and serve as the foundation for renewal and renaissance. That renewal, that reestablishment of the Dharma has to rely on the printed word alone now. Auroville forfeited its claim. But let us see how it continues to fool the public; and we must question why it does so? If centimetres have no meaning, then why has the room’s diameter been conveyed as 24 metres in all Auroville publications?
          Fund-raising pamphlets and cards have been issued where the impression is given that all the measurements are ‘faithful to the original’ (see Chronicle 3 and the executing architect’s statement). In this material a drawing of the temple is presented with measurements listed alongside, in such a way that the truth is obscured. Not only has the room’s true diameter been left undefined, but the entrances through the walls as well. From this drawing we would have to assume that the visitor simply MATERIALISES in the room, since no entrance has been indicated connected to the spiralling ramps.
          For if by chance someone had heard of the controversy regarding the chamber’s diameter and entrance from below, all concerns would be allayed by this and similar official publications. Is this not deliberate obfuscation?

The question to be asked is why, if ‘astrology’ and ‘measurements’ have been purposely subtracted from the Mother’s Vision, does Auroville continue to hide the truth? We know the answer. The public now has the right to know.

What was lost
There are two fundamental measurements in architecture of the sacred, the vertical and the horizontal. In the Mother’s design these are accurately provided and together with the entrance by 15 steps from below, the horizontal (room diameter) is essential. These were the two elements of the Mother’s original that had already been eliminated when Piero Cicionesi, the executing architect, made his false statements to the German Publisher, Fischer Verlag, in 1977-8.
          The Mother’s original Vision is like a timepiece. She has herself revealed this connection explicitly in the Matrimandir Talks (31.12.1969 – 17.1.1970). The Chamber provides all the measurements of our day and month and year. The Mother not only stated that the 12 facets of the room were the twelve months of the year; she also incorporated the day of 24 hours. With this simple specification the great secret of the Vision was revealed, that the Mother’s Vision provides humanity with the new Divine Maya, or the Golden Rod of western tradition. It is the measure of time in space. The 24m diameter holds the key.
          Without this accurate measurement the whole structure ‘falls apart’. We will demonstrate this by way of diagrams in future Chronicles. There may be cement and steel which are apparently indestructible. But these are perishable materials. They are not the substance of immortality. It is only Time that can render imperishable the perishable when it is an ally in the process of transformation, for it is the builder of Form.
          The talk of the Auroville Matrimandir being the seat of a ‘yoga of the cells’ is therefore to be seriously questioned. When Time and its indispensable precision are rubbished and the Divine Measure that utilises the new precision is trashed, what transformation of matter are we talking about? Time is the building mortar, the true cementing factor. Hence its secrets are coveted by all seekers in the quest for immortality. Without the allegiance of Time, all such quests are illusions. To deny measure is to deny time is to deny form. How then are we to transform matter? Have we any right to claim that we are doing so when we do not accept the terms matter imposes?
          Mayavada has permeated the yogic consciousness of India for far too long. Everything to do with material, cosmic manifestation is considered an illusion. This is what the spiritual authorities tell us. Indeed, this lies behind the rejection of measure and the precision the Mother demanded. The ‘new precision’ involves Time in the transformation as an ally and not a destroyer. Without this allegiance there can be no ‘yoga of the cells and matter’. The Mother’s original plan gave us this precious knowledge. It exists for those who SEE. It does not exist in the Auroville Matrimandir, in spite of the mental acrobatics of the non-believers (‘…One is not going to say it. To begin with, they would not believe me…’).
          For India the loss of the Vision has done incalculable damage. This will be explained in detail in future Chronicles. It is sufficient to state for the moment that the emphasis by the Mother on time and measure was a calculated divine strategy insofar as India lost the Divine Measure a number of centuries ago when the sidereal (Nirayana) zodiac was adopted in lieu of the Vedic tropical (Sayana) zodiac. It is only with the tropical zodiac that the Makar Sankranti, the shortest day of the year and entry into Capricorn, has any relevance both within India and connected to the rest of the world. This is the true VEDIC astrology, unlike what goes by that name today.
          The reasons for this aberration are intimately connected to Sri Aurobindo’s mission and explain his statement that Kalki comes ‘to correct the error of the Buddha’. The Mother’s Vision, with its ‘new precision’ involving time and measure, was a crucial piece in the correction process. Her Vision reinstates the tropical zodiac in all its details and provides India with the Divine Measure once again, - and with it the keys to her destiny and place within the new Supramental dispensation. There is no way in which India can fulfil that high destiny without this Divine Measure. Through these Chronicles, we shall prove the point.
          This is what ‘astrology’ says – and therefore every possible attempt was made to save her Vision in spite of the recalcitrant ignorance we encountered at every step of the way.
          And yet there is an irony. For the most successful ‘mental acrobat’ of them all in Auroville was right on the mark when he connected the Chamber to the fourth dimension. But he ended by destroying his own correct perception!
          In future Chronicles we will present diagrams that will prove how indispensable the 24m diameter was to the sacred function of the Inner Chamber. We will also provide further proof that a cover-up has been in progress to make the public believe that ‘all is as it should be’, everything is ‘all right’ with the Matrimandir.  For Ruud Lohman has said so, may his soul rest in peace. Amen.

Matrimandir Action Committee
15 March 2003

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