What is Sri Aurobindo Society (SAS)?
Sri Aurobindo Society (SAS) seeks to bring a dynamic spirituality into material life and all its activities, so that the global problems can find a true solution, and the dreams of humanity, through the ages, can be realized.
The Society is a non-profit NGO, working throughout the world for individual perfection, social transformation, and human unity in diversity. It invites participation from all who want to work together for a better tomorrow, with no distinction of nationality, religion, caste or gender.
The Society was founded in 1960 by the Mother
“To make known to the members and people in general the aims and ideals of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, their system of Integral Yoga and to work for its fulfillment in all possible ways and for the attainment of a spiritualized society as envisaged by Sri Aurobindo.”
What is SAFIM?
Stands for Sri Aurobindo Foundation for Integral Management (SAFIM)
Strives to help managers develop and fully express their inner potential, to realise that the root causes of all problems lie within, and only a change in attitudes, values and consciousness can bring about a lasting solution.
SAFIM carries out research in the field of business management. With spiritual philosophy and psychology as a base, it aims to develop, demonstrate and validate new and alternative systems of transforming attitudes and values. Striving to be a centre of excellence for an integral approach to management, SAFIM is building a network of experienced trainers, from both academia and industry, who are strongly oriented towards a deeper vision while being fully responsive to present day industry needs.
SAFIM organises conferences, seminars, workshops and training programmes, and publishes books and journals on the future evolution of management. It is also working on modules for e-learning and training.
What is SARVAM?
It stands for Sri Aurobindo Rural & Village Action & Movement (SARVAM)
Since about 700 million people in India’s villages live below the poverty line, there is a dire need and urgency to develop, uplift and enable them to become a dynamic part of the nation’s evolution and growth.
SARVAM is developing a progressive village community model that is sustainable, replicable and scalable.
SARVAM started its work with two villages in the Villupuram district of Tamil Nadu. A dedicated and active group of people have been organised in each village to work with the rest of the community in every field of life.
SARVAM’s role is primarily that of a catalyst and facilitator, motivating and helping the community to contribute and take responsibility for creating change in their own lives. The rural development programme aims to:
- help the entire village become a model village
- inspire the village community to take charge of their own destiny and future
- make a genuine difference to their way of living, thinking and being
- research new and creative ideas to develop a sustainable, scalable and replicable model
- create an International Centre for Rural Development and Training based on a holistic approach, which will reach out to other villages, NGOs and Government agencies
The programme covers a wide range of activities, integrating all aspects of life such as physical and economic development which uses local material and technology; empowerment of women and harmonious relationships within the family; cultural and aesthetic development; a new approach to housing, technology, water and waste management, renewable energy, sanitation and hygiene, suited to local conditions, and a new model of local governance.
What is Aravind Hospital?
Aravind Eye Care Hospital is an ophthalmological hospital with several locations in India. It was founded by Dr. Govindappa Venkataswamy (referred to Mr V) in 1976. Since then it has grown into a network of eye hospitals that have seen a total of nearly 32 million patients in 36 years and performed nearly 4 million eye surgeries, majority of them being very cheap or free. The model of Aravind Eye Care hospitals has been applauded all over the world and has become a subject for numerous case studies.
Initially, Dr V attempted to raise funds and planned to start Aravind as a free-for-all hospital catering to the poorest section of the society, who could not afford to pay for eye surgeries. After he was unsuccessful in his efforts, he decided to start with the Hybrid model.
Dr V’s vision was to eradicate blindness of the poor. He was a spiritual person who ‘translated’ his life essence into (normal) values for his staff and management. He developed a business model whereby eye care is free for the poor. This is financed by paying patients – the decision whether to pay or not is left to each and every patient. The quality of treatment is the same for both patient groups (the difference is in accommodation). Financial sustainability is ensured through high volumes of patients and revolutionary, non-convential processes maximising knowledge and expertise at each touch point of a patient’s ‘journey’ through treatment to gain the highest of efficiencies.
What is SHARANAM?
One of the most prestigious projects of Sri Aurobindo Society, Sharanam—Rural Development Centre, was started in Puducherry in south India in 2007. The main purpose of this project is to build a modern, cost-effective building, using sustainable materials and appropriate techniques, and employing local unskilled workers by encompassing the ecological, climatic, cultural, technological, environmental and socio-economic dimensions. SHARANAM aspires to be a model institute, not only for rural development, but also where spirit and form of human development exist in perfect harmony to give rise to a space which would be the architectural self-expression of its core idea.
Sharanam, a 5-acre plot selected for building an inspirational centre for the Integral Village Development Programme, aims to be instrumental in nurturing the aspiration of an integrated approach towards village development in India. In order to bolster the rather lofty ideal, a great amount of research has gone into to designing and building a centre which could offer a wide range of flexible spaces adapted for different functional requirements such as tutorials and classes, seminars, workshops, gatherings, etc.