While Auroville is renowned for its unique architecture, sustainable living, and spiritual pursuits, there’s one aspect that stands out as the very essence of this community – the spirit of sharing.
Sharing, in Auroville, isn’t merely a concept; it’s a way of life. It’s about giving without expectations, sharing resources, knowledge, and love unconditionally. In this article, we explore how Auroville’s culture of sharing forms the backbone of this remarkable community, fostering unity and human connection.
The Origins of Auroville: A Vision of Unity
Auroville’s inception can be traced back to the vision of Mirra Alfassa, known as The Mother, and Sri Aurobindo, prominent spiritual leaders. They envisioned a place where people from all over the world could come together, transcending the boundaries of nationality, religion, and individualism. At the heart of their vision was the idea of human unity.
As Auroville’s founding charter declares, “Auroville belongs to nobody in particular. Auroville belongs to humanity as a whole.” This profound statement underscores the spirit of sharing that permeates the community.
Auroville’s Unique Economic System: The Spirit of Sharing in Action
One of the most distinctive features of Auroville is its economic system, which aligns perfectly with the spirit of sharing. Instead of personal ownership, Auroville operates on a system of collective resources. Residents contribute their skills, time, and labor, while the community provides for their basic needs such as food, shelter, and healthcare. In Auroville, personal wealth or possessions take a back seat to the collective welfare.
This collective approach to resources and services ensures that no one goes without, and everyone receives what they need. It’s a powerful demonstration of the spirit of sharing in action, providing a safety net for all community members.
The Joy of Voluntary Service: Sharing Skills and Labor
In Auroville, you’ll find a plethora of skilled individuals dedicated to various crafts, be it organic farming, sustainable building, art, or healing practices. The willingness to share these skills is a fundamental part of the Auroville ethos. Aurovilians gladly offer workshops and training to fellow residents, as well as visitors, making knowledge and expertise easily accessible.
For instance, if someone wants to learn about eco-friendly construction techniques, there’s an Aurovilian who is more than happy to share their expertise. This commitment to teaching and learning creates an environment where knowledge flourishes, and the spirit of sharing is evident in every skill exchange.
Resource Sharing for Sustainability: Auroville’s Co-Operative Ventures
Resource-sharing practices extend to various co-operative ventures within the community. These initiatives involve everything from organic farming to renewable energy projects. Auroville’s commitment to sustainability is made possible through the collective pooling of resources.
Sadhana Forest, an environmental project aimed at reforestation and biodiversity conservation, stands as a testament to the power of collective effort. Willing servitors, Auroville’s dedicated residents, work alongside volunteers from around the world, nurturing the land back to life. The spirit of sharing is evident not only in the resources provided but in the collaboration and shared commitment to the project’s success.
The Role of Communal Dining: Breaking Bread Together
Food is another aspect where Auroville’s spirit of sharing shines brightly. The community gathers for communal dining experiences that go beyond the act of eating. Preparing and sharing meals together fosters a sense of togetherness. The dining table becomes a place for conversations, laughter, and bonding.
Auroville’s dietary choices often reflect the values of sustainability and mindful living. The community’s commitment to vegetarian and organic diets aligns with the spirit of sharing resources responsibly, ensuring there’s enough for everyone.
Supporting the Less Fortunate: Sharing Beyond the Community
Auroville’s spirit of sharing isn’t confined within its boundaries. The community actively engages in outreach programs, supporting neighboring villages and the less fortunate. Whether it’s offering healthcare services, educational support, or vocational training, Auroville extends its hand beyond its borders.
One of the initiatives is Auroville Village Action Group (AVAG), which has been working for rural development in the nearby villages. This exemplifies the community’s commitment to sharing the resources and knowledge it has accumulated over the years.
Auroville’s Educational Philosophy: Sharing the Joy of Learning
Education is a vital part of Auroville’s culture, emphasizing not just the acquisition of knowledge but the joy of learning and the spirit of sharing. Auroville’s educational institutions prioritize holistic and experiential learning over conventional classroom methods. Students and teachers collaboratively engage in the process of knowledge sharing, fostering a sense of shared growth.
Celebrating Unity in Festivals: Auroville’s Annual Events
Auroville celebrates its spirit of sharing and unity through various annual events and festivals. The likes of the Auroville Film Festival, Auroville Marathon, and the Auroville Retreat provide platforms for both residents and visitors to come together, celebrate life, and share their experiences. These events serve as a reminder that Auroville’s values are not limited to the daily routine but extend to its cultural and festive aspects.
Conclusion: Auroville’s Shared Vision
Auroville is more than a township; it’s a shared vision of humanity coming together in unity, transcending personal boundaries and embracing the spirit of sharing. It’s a place where resources, knowledge, and love flow unconditionally, creating an environment that reflects the profound idea that we are all interconnected. In Auroville, the spirit of sharing is not just a practice but a way of life, celebrating the essence of human connection and collective unity.