News from AVI International, the AVI Germany meeting
Beginning of May we had the biggest annual meeting in our history, themed "40 years of Auroville - past experience and outlook on the future" which more than 100 people attended including AVI-G members, Aurovilians, friends of Auroville and around 40 young people who either applied for voluntary service in Auroville or already had finished their service and wanted to stay in contact.
Our main speaker was Marc Luyckx who inspired our participants with his presentations on the "Paradigm shift towards the knowledge society".
Sraddhalu came from a seminar and several presentations he had given in other parts of Germany , unfortunately he could only stay for one night, so he gave a short speech, taking up the thread from Marc´s previous presentation, on the perspective of Integral Yoga in this dawning of a new age.
Marc generously offered the online version of his new book "The knowledge society" to all of us. In case any of you would be interested to get it I could forward it to you.
We had a great cultural program: a piano and clarinet concert "in memoriam" of Karlheinz Stockhausen, the famous contemporary composer and devotee of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo, by two of our members who are accomplished Stockhausen interpreters. Stockhausen, who was a member of our AVI Germany Advisory Council, passed away last year.
A second concert was given by Aurovilian Holger, Jetter playing the electric violin, a meditative presentation on the four aspects of the Divine Mother accompanied by a slide show of paintings and impressions by the Aurovilian photographer Leonard Simeon.
Mainly for our young participants but also well attended by the "youth that never ages", the EOTO ("EachOneTeachOne") HipHop crew from ' Bremerhaven gave a presentation and workshop on URBAN STREET art and the 3 elements of HipHop, Rapping, Breakdancing and DJing. The crew has visited Auroville 3 times, cooperating with the Mohanam Cultural Center and Future School , this year they were even invited to give a presentation at the Ashram School in Pondy, in the Hall of Harmony. They also stayed for 3 days in Chennai, invited by the German Cultural Institute Max Mueller Bhavan, to present their peace project. - I had to think of our dear Sonia opening her introductory speech in Cape Town with a rap when, during the workshop on the art of rapping, a long line of inspired mommies queued at the mike to present their own little rap. Final feedback from the EOTO crew: never before had they felt their work so well received and appreciated by the "adults”.
All in all the young people refreshed and enlivened the whole meeting. We were especially impressed by the feedback of the returned volunteers on their Auroville experience - very mature and reflective. One of their main concerns was that Auroville is not strong enough in self-reflection and also in self-appreciation. We have two more good news to share: just one day before our meeting we finally received the official okay from the German Ministry of Economic Relations and Development that we are recognized as a sending organization for its new program to support and fund young volunteers going abroad. So this year we will send altogether 17 volunteers to Auroville, both young women and men. Part of the funding is some financial support for their places of work. Second news: Two weeks ago we also received the final okay from the same Ministry for a second phase funding of the Auroville Industrial School AIS, the first phase having been already funded by the Ministry. With the sum of 130.000 Euros and an additional 20 Lakhs from ACDC funds as the required own contribution the school can now be extended by three more classrooms to meet the official Indian standards for certification.
Laura, on behalf of AVI International