Aurobindo Ashram

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Timings : 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM

Time Required : 2-3 hours

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Aurobindo Ashram, Vadodara Overview

The Aurobindo Ashram, also known as Arvind Ashram or Auro Nivas, is the ashram that was the dwelling place of Aurobindo Ghosh during his stay in Baroda in the years 1894 to 1906. Located at Dandia Bazar in the city of Vadodara in Gujarat, this was the first ever ashram to gain immense popularity and respect in the southern areas of the state.

The Aurobindo Ashram, which contains 23 rooms in all, houses a library, a study room and a sales emporium. Relics of Sri Aurobindo and all rare books that have been written by or about him can also be found here. The ashram is open to any and every person who is interested in meditation, spirituality or The Mother. The Mother, who was originally known as Mirra Alfassa, was a disciple and collaborator of Sri Aurobindo. Shri Aurobindo believed her to be the incarnation of Mother Divine and hence named her The Mother. The Arvind Ashram serves as a national memorial which was visited by many prominent personalities during those times. The peace prevailing in the meditation halls and the campus, in general, is appreciated by all visitors.

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History of Aurobindo Ashram

During his service as the private secretary to HH Sayajirao Gaekwad III, the Maharaja of Baroda; Aurobindo Ghosh stayed at this ashram. In these years, he was also the Professor of English and vice-principal of Baroda College. Gradually, he became more and more famous as a philosopher, social and political thinker, freedom fighter, and as a yogi named Sri Aurobindo. The bungalow was visited by reputed people like Lokmanya Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, Sister Nivedita and Sakharam Ganesh Dueskar during this time. Frequent visitors also included his wife Mrinalini Devi, sister Sarojini Devi and younger brother Barindar Kumar Ghose, who was a famous freedom fighter.

The Sri Aurobindo Society in Baroda which was actively working for propagating and spreading the teachings of Sri Aurobindo requested the state government to hand over the bungalow to them so that they could develop it as a memorial. After careful thought and analysis, the bungalow was finally handed over to them by the Government of Gujarat on 29 September in 1971. Following this, the bungalow was developed as a permanent memorial to Sri Aurobindo.

The bungalow was refurbished into a beautiful and spacious ashram, with a library, study room and sales emporium. The ashram is now open to all for meditation and has 23 big and small rooms with surrounding open land of about 55,000 square feet. During the birth centenary celebration of Sri Aurobindo, The Divine Mother blessed all devotees by granting them the holy relics of Sri Aurobindo. These relics are now enshrined on the open land of the building. Yoga and meditation classes are conducted here regularly to offer an opportunity to people to spend time in serenity and peace.

Architecture of Aurobindo Ashram

The Aurobindo Ashram is a large red-brick structure that is nestled among beautiful gardens. Complete with tall towers and wooden white windows, the place has the charm and charisma of an old English bungalow. The premises of the ashram are extremely well maintained and clean. The ground floor has a library, the main ashram office, an exhibition hall and a shop that sells natural products. Soaps, honey, fragrance oils, medicines, incense sticks and books can be found at this store.

On the first floor of the Arvind Ashram is the meditation hall. The meditation hall is a not a single large room; rather it is a maze of numerous small and large rooms that are inter-connected. Even though it is really noisy outside due to the heavy traffic, nothing but silence exists in the halls. People can be found meditating here, oblivious to the surroundings.

Shri Aurobindo Jeevan Darshan

To commemorate the Centenary Year of Sri Aurobindo's homecoming, a permanent photo exhibition was set up in 1993 in the main building of the Aurobindo Ashram. The exhibition depicts his life events and selected writings and is visited by a large number of people every day. In fact, people from far and near drop by at the memorial to pay homage to Sri Aurobindo.

How To Reach Aurobindo Ashram

The Aurobindo Ashram is located in the Dandia Bazar. You can hire an auto rickshaw or taxi from any part of Vadodara to reach the ashram. Alternatively, you can also opt for the local buses. 

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