Report of Svādhyāya III: Work and Yoga

Workshop: Svādhyāya III: Work and Yoga

Dates: January 15, 2022 – March 26, 2022

The Mother once said that reading the words of Sri Aurobindo “opens the doors of the future to us” (CWM, 12: 214). She also advises – “It is not by books that Sri Aurobindo ought to be studied but by subjects — what he has said on the Divine, on Unity, on religion, on evolution, on education, on self-perfection, on supermind, etc., etc.” (CWM, 12: 208).

Keeping these words as our inspiration BhāratShakti and AuroYajna came together to start a series of Svādhyāya or study groups focused around a selected topic. So far, we have completed three rounds of Svādhyāya. Our first round started on September 11, 2021.

The aim of ‘Svādhyāya: Study, Reflect and Grow Within’ is to give interested seekers and participants an opportunity to experience the Living Force and Power of the Words of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother through a focused programme which involves self-study and a weekly shared reflection session which happens online.  Participants are informed of the selected readings a week in advance. To facilitate a deeper reflection on a specific topic, each Svādhyāya round lasts several weeks.

Svādhyāya III

Recording of a special session held in Svādhyāya Round 3 on Work and Yoga can be watched HERE.

We recently finished an 11-week-long Round 3 of Svādhyāya on the topic – Work and Yoga. For this study group, our primary readings were selected from various works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. These included selections from Sri Aurobindo’s Letters on Yoga, Essays on the Gita, Synthesis of Yoga, and Letters on The Mother, and from Volume 14 of Collected Works of the Mother.

A special WhatsApp group was created for this Svādhyāya, about 45 people signed up in the group. This group was used to share the assigned readings for every week and also some follow-up discussion and clarification after each reflection session on Saturdays. Additional passages from the Mother’s or Sri Aurobindo’s volumes were also shared in this group based on questions that came up in our reflection sessions.

Generally, about 25 to 28 people logged on for the online reflection sessions every Saturday morning for 11 weeks. Each session began with a brief silence. This was followed by Beloo Mehra reading a few lines from Savitri. To facilitate and motivate the participants to share their reflections, she also shared some brief comments about the week’s readings, highlighting some specific points. Participants were encouraged to share some of the points from the readings which resonated most deeply with them and why. Some very interesting questions also came up in the sessions especially concerning the challenges faced when practicing some of what we were reading. The safe environment in which people could share

A special session was organised on March 19, 2022 in which we had invited Dr. Larry Seidlitz for a discussion about his book titled “Integral Yoga at Work: A Study of Practitioners’ Experiences Working in Four Professional Fields.” Several members of the group had read this book for a few weeks before that.

After Dr. Seidlitz presented a brief summary of his book, the participants had an opportunity to ask relevant questions on some important aspects about Work and Sadhana and Work as Sadhana. Watch the recording of this session HERE.

The last session of the Svādhyāya Round III was held on March 26, 2022. Toward the end of the session, an idea was floated that may be some of the participants would like to offer their service for the Svādhyāya project. This could be an opportunity for them to practice working in the service of the Divine. A few members of the group are already discussing this further on the WhatsApp group and hopefully a small team of volunteers will be there to take the Svādhyāya project further. It was also suggested that the group members should periodically share some insights from how in their own lines of work they are applying and practicing suggestions about doing work in the spirit of yoga. The session concluded with a Shanti Path.

Here is some feedback from the participants of this Svādhyāya on ‘Work and Yoga’:


I was reflecting on this topic and how much I have learnt in my day-to-day life since starting this topic. Then I had a strange vision that Mother was carrying and surrounding her energy around this Svādhyāya group. There was much light, grace and peace and love.

I am sure we can all feel Her Love and Guidance for us as we end this chapter and embark on a new learning.


I am really grateful for this Svādhyāya journey in Work and Sadhana.

Unfortunately, I will miss this final session because of an offline commitment.

Thanks a lot again. Looking forward to future journeys.


Thank you very much for suggesting the book “Integral Yoga at Work” and arranging the interactive session. It was very helpful.


My key takeaways/insights from the book – Integral Yoga at Work by Larry Seidlitz

Insights that resonated with me. This is NOT a summary of the book.

Chapter 2: Applying Integral Yoga in Work

  • Service as a motivation in work
  • Difficulties in work seen as part of the Yoga

I have often struggled to find good motives to engage in the work that I am currently doing and I feel in some cases the spirit of service was missing.

Also seeing difficulties as part of the process, makes me feel the whole process as so much harmonious.

Chapter 3: Applying Integral Yoga in Management

  • Importance of Harmony in the team
  • Attention to the work
  • Money as an output and not as the primal focus point. Primary focus point is doing the work well

Chapter 4: Applying Integral Yoga in Education

  • Development of the consciousness of the teacher. It is not just about what is taught but who is the medium of transmission
  • Importance of freedom and encouraging self-expression for the students
  • Deep respect for the students. Understanding their needs and temperaments

Chapter 5: Applying Integral Yoga in Health

  • Rest and Stillness for healing
  • Harmony in all levels of consciousness
  • Self-reflection, spiritual and meditative practices

Chapter 6: Applying Integral Yoga in Arts

  • Expressing higher spiritual consciousness through art. True art comes from a higher consciousness
  • Discipline of Art is similar to the Discipline of Yoga – growing in consciousness.

For me personally, if I had to choose key insights for me. I would choose:

  • Service as a motivation in work
  • Difficulties in work seen as part of the Yoga
  • Expressing higher spiritual consciousness through art.

I want to consciously work on these three. And in addition, create more space in my life for rest and stillness.

– Report prepared by Beloo Mehra

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