Sudharma, Sanskrit Newspaper: Sid Harth
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2009-09-06 11:47:05 UTC

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Film dialogues to popularise Sanskrit!

Updated on Sunday, September 06, 2009, 16:13 IST Ahmedabad: A city-
based academy has hit upon a novel idea to popularise country`s oldest
language and has taken the help of Indians` biggest passion--Hindi

A Sanskrit-teaching academy here has taken up the mantle to bust the
popular notion that the language is hard to learn and of little use.

Eklavya Sanskrit Academy (ESA) is using dialogues from Bollywood super
hits like Sholay and Deewar, and is translating them in Sanskrit to
popularise the ancient language among the youth and general public.

"There is a myth prevailing among people that Sanskrit is a difficult
language. They also think of it as a language which has no use," Mihir
Upadhyay, director of the academy, told reporters.

"But, the language has immense potential. Even the advertising world
quotes Sanskrit shlokas and many manuscripts hold great knowledge. We
want to create awareness about Sanskrit and promote research," he

"We also want to show people that Sanskrit is an easy and interesting
language. To popularise it, we recently did an experiment by using
dialogues of around 17 superhit Hindi films to attract people, mainly
youths," Upadhyay said.

For example, the famous dialogue by Amjad Khan (Gabbar) in film
Sholay, "Ab tera Kya Hoga Kalia? (What will happen to you Kalia), will
become "Kaalia, tav ki bhavisyasi?" in Sanskrit.

Bureau Report

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-06 11:52:55 UTC

The politics of language

A new kind of politics on language is evolving and VP’s denial to
follow the Supreme Court’s decision may have a very bad socio-
political implication.

By Surendra R Devkota

Vice president Paramananada Jha is acting as one of the most
polarising political figures in contemporary politics. He has not only
defied the Supreme Court’s July 24th decision regarding to retake his
oath in Nepali language but has also ignored an appeal of both the
president and the council of ministers. Why the VP is so adamant on
challenging the rule of land? Commoners are just wondering why VP Jha
loves Hindi more than his mother tongue? After more than two decades
of service in judiciary, how come he forgot all Nepali scripts? Why
some leaders from Terai parties are politicising this issue and would
like to keep VP as their ideal?

Had the VP taken oath in his mother tongue, people would have excused
it. There won’t be any moral question about it. Then, it would have
been the best if he had repeated his oath in Nepali – so far the only
official language. Unfortunately, he tried to gain cheap popularity
and become a messiah of Hindi language in Nepal as his party had
instructed him earlier. So the question arises: is he a VP of his
party or Nepal?

Hindi is a very resourceful language in India, but its introduction in
Nepal can mainly be credited to Bollywood movies and music. Whether
people in Nepal know Hindi in toto is doubtful. Nepalis are indeed
fond of Hindi movies and listen to Hindi music, which is for pure
entertainment. But, to say that all the people in Nepal understand
Hindi is a illogical.

Further, based on Hindi movie watchers’ inspiration and aspirations,
advocacy for Hindi to keep as the next official language could be
morally wrong and unfaithful to the majority of Terai based people’s
mother tongues. In Terai, as 2001 Census shows, 12.3 percent
population speaks Maithili, as mother language, whereas Bhojpuri is
spoken by 7.53%, Tharu by 5.86%, Awadhi by 2.47%, Urdu 0.77%, and
Rajbanshi is the mother tongue of 0.57 %. Hindi as native language
scores at the lowest -- 0.47%. Now, why is this big fuss about Hindi?
Wouldn’t it be good idea to enhance one’s mother language?

Being honest to the past, language discrimination has been a fact in
Nepal. For example, since the Panchayati days the then political as
well as religious leaders had tried to uphold Sanskrit – the oldest
language, but ended up narrowing it down to a tool of priesthood. They
failed to integrate Sanskrit into the society. Consequently, some
people initiated a campaign to hate it as dead language, in spite of
Sanskrit being taught at top rated US and European universities. A
politics of hate against Sanskrit was widespread among different
ethnic communities as if it were the only factor to inhibit the
prosperity of other languages. Like Nepali, Sanskrit is also the
mother of Hindi, so how folks would digest Hindi and hate both Nepali
and Sanskrit, if present rule of street is to be followed?

As of now a new kind of politics on language is evolving and VP’s
denial to follow the Supreme Court’s decision may have a very bad
socio-political implication. Politics on language and ethnicity may
serve few people, but in the long run it will harm the society and the
country. That has been proven in India, Russia, Africa and old Europe.
By knowing all the failures, why politicians in Nepal are gearing up
to a head to head collision in the name language and ethnicity? Do
they want to become tribal leaders of their region(s) by weakening the
central government?

It is very surprising to note that the leftist ideologues, self-
declared social transforming agents in Nepal, seem pleased to play
such a dirty politics on Nepal’s ethno-language diversity. For
example, leftists in Nepal seem in favor of delineation of federal
lines on ethno-lingual basis. But will it deliver social justice to
majority of the population is doubtful because of Nepal’s multi-
ethnical social structure and not a single ethno-lingual community has
absolute majority in any local governmental jurisdiction. If one has
to be fair to all languages, then country’s lingual federal lines
could be more than 116 as outlined by Paul Lewis (http://
www.ethnologue.com/show_map.asp?name=NP). Will federalism exclusively
based on languages and or ethnicity herald social justice in Nepal?
Who can guarantee that future will be without any sort of ethno-
lingual conflict? Are left politicians ready to take on this?

Languages and dialects reflect social indentify and Nepal is proud to
have huge diversity in social identity in spite of historical setbacks
to many of them. By realising the past mistakes, it is the
responsibility of the Constitution to keep alive all ethno-linguistics
intact. Again, mind it if politicians agree to set up a high level
commission, that’s another political gimmick which won’t address the
real need of the country. Say for example, wouldn’t it be nice step to
set up a university of ethnic languages so that it would pave a
scientific way of studying Nepal’s ethnography! They need to be
explored, preserved, and sustained without any biasness. To sustain
ethno-lingual diversity, we need have a vision for future citizens:
all students graduating from high school in future ought to have
working knowledge of at least three languages: first mother tongue,
second national, and third international language so that future
citizens would be globally competent as well as won’t miss their
social identity locally. Let’s make the state and local governments
responsible to draft such mandatory provisions.

Language does not limit to only medium of communication. It is a part
of social life and a major system of socio-cultural function.
Politicians’ missteps of short run use of language and ethnicity as
polarizing figures may hamper country’s prosperity and sovereignty in
long run. The way VP’s flip-flopping to defy the rule of land is
simply inexcusable. It is being very difficult to digest further
political irrationality. Enough is enough!

(Author’s email: ***@gmail.com This e-mail address is being
protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

3.26 Copyright (C) 2008 Compojoom.com / Copyright (C) 2007 Alain
Georgette / Copyright (C) 2006 Frantisek Hliva. All rights reserved."
Sid Harth
2009-09-07 20:16:00 UTC

Sanskrit Literature
Bringing Sanskrit literature to a wider global audience

Verse for the week 5th September

Illustrating the Meghaduta
Published September 7, 2009 art

Sanskrit poets dedicate much time to describing nature – often an
idealised nature – in all her glory. For many readers, even for those
in India, it can be hard to picture the description of a luxuriant
forest grove or a tree-lined seascape full of flora with beautiful but
foreign names. If you do not know that the malati jasmine is white
and the ashoka tree’s flowers red (as in the picture above), you will
find it difficult to appreciate their comparison to the pink lips and
bright teeth of a woman’s smile.

Tomomi Sato, a student at Australian National University, has created
an illustrated catalogue of the plants and trees of Kalidasa’s
Meghaduta. The online site presents Tomomi’s watercolour paintings of
the 26 plants, from the japa (at bottom of page) to the yuthika
(below), found in the poem, along with the verses in which they
appear. Tomomi referred to photos and descriptions in botanical
catalogues to paint each as faithfully as possible. The result is a
series of colour-rich illustrations, simple and vibrant – perfect, in
short, for Kalidasa’s elegant verse.

The site also has English and Japanese translation and an audio
recording for each verse, all done by Tomomi. Tomomi explains that
her linguistics background helped her to master the pronounciation –
by understanding the “logic behind the sounds” she was able to learn
how to voice them – although she admits she did struggle with the
aspirated consonants. For her, the Japanese translation did of
course come far more naturally but she doesn’t attribute this solely
to the fact it is her mother tongue. “As Japanese is a SOV [subject-
object-verb as opposed to subject-verb-object – English is the latter;
Sanskrit the former] language, which often drops the subject, I think
it’s actually closer to Sanskrit, grammar-wise.”

Tomomi was only able to find one other translation of the Meghaduta
into Japanese, published in 1962, and says that the poem is barely
known in Japan where most Sanskrit interest revolves around Buddhism.
A kavya-enthusiast, she hopes to try a few more translations into
Japanese in the future.

The only disappointment in this project is that the artist didn’t
attempt a description of the legendary ‘kalpa-vrksha’ – the wish
giving tree – which, as she quotes, “produces anything one would
desire, and hence anything celestial beings need, such as clothes,
ornaments, and foods, would spring out of the trees”. This must be
left to the reader’s imagination.

Venetia Ansell
Sid Harth
2009-09-07 20:23:53 UTC

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-08 00:28:41 UTC

Monday, September 7, 2009
salutations to krishna - गोविन्दाय नमो नमः

for kRiShNa, for the son of vasudeva, and for the [source of] joy of
for the boy of the cowherd [chief] nanda, for the benefactor of cattle
(cows), salutations.

कृष्णाय वासुदेवाय, देवकी-नन्दनाय च ।
नंद-गोप-कुमाराय, गोविन्दाय नमो नमः ॥

kRiShNAya vAsudevAya, devakI-nandanAya cha |
nanda-gopa-kumArAya, govindAya namo namaH ||

it seems like lot of you like devotional, bhakti mantras rather than
the worldly wise neeti sutra. so let me pick some devotional bhakti
mantras for simple sanskrit, starting with one of the most favorite of
kRiShNa mantra.

while it is impossible, for a mere mortal like me, to dwell on all the
details of the most intricate character of kRiShNa, let me touch on
the language aspects of the words.

kRiShNa has many many names. viShNu has even sahasra-nAma i.e. 1000
names, mainly describing the attributes, or mnemonic for stories and
incidents from his life and leelAs.

e.g. dAmodara = dAmA (rope) + udara (belly, wasit) = reminds of the
story when he was tied to the grain-pounder with rope by yashodA.
vArShNeya = of the dynasty of vRiShNi
madhusUdana = slayer of madhu, an dAnava.
giridhara = giri (mountain) + dhara (holder) = one who held the
mountain (on his little finger)

kRiShNa means black, e.g. in kRiShNa-pakSha and shukla-pakSha - the
two fortnights in a lunar month. or kRiShNa-phalakaM = black-board.

to mean "black", there are other names as well, "shyAma", as in
shyAma-paTa = black-board.
'ghana-shyAma" i.e. dark as the rain-bearing clouds.

a deeper meaning emerges when we look at the word root.

the root of kRiShNa is "kRiSh" which means to plough (plow) the land,
to tear, pull, pull apart, drag. other words -
kRiShi = ploughing the land, where land is literally pulled apart.
karShaNa - pulling, tearing.
AkarShaNa - attraction, pulling towards oneself.
ut_karSha = joy (uplifting)

while rAma is the senior avatAra, he is more idealism, draws respect
and awe. he is for people who are already on the path of perfection.
(of course bhakti as well). rAma first touches your intellect.

but kRiShNa is one, who even if you don't believe in, when you hear
the stories, the leelAs, you start getting attracted towards his
character. he first touches your heart, not intellect. he is one who
draws you to him, as if you have no control on yourselves.

kRiShNAya = for kRiShNa (-Aya suffix for masculine a-ending words)

what about vAsudeva?

vasu = wealth, opulence, prosperity, treasures.
vasu_dhA = earth, the giver of all material treasures (literally)
vasudeva = the lord of wealth
vAsudeva = (note the vA- instead of va-) of vasudeva.

so vAsudeva signifies that he is the son of vasudeva.

vAsudevAya = for vAsudeva.

devakI-nandana = one who brings joy to devakI, his biological mother.
from nanda = joy.

he was brought up by foster parents - nanda the cowherd chief and his
wife yashodA (giver of yasha = fame).
nanda-gopa = nanda the cowherd [chief]
kumAra = youth, son (when used as suffix).

govinda = the multiplier, enhancer, nourisher of cows (cattle).
go-vardhana = one who increases the (health and/or number) of cows/
cattle - the mountain near braj.

from an agrarian society standpoint, kRiShNa's role is immense - the
protector, nourisher, benefactor of cattle, which was the true wealth
in every sense in those days. today too, we owe everything to this
land, though we have machines and do not have direct, alive connection
with the land. it is only dead connection - road, buildings, malls on
the earth. the urban is not connected much to the land.

the real power of sanskrit comes, when we realize that as feminine
'go' means cow or cattle. (even the word 'cow' in english comes from
'go' or 'gau' in sanskrit). but as masculine it means among other
things 'senses'.

hence "go-swAmI tulasIdAsa" - the author of rAma-charita-mAnasa, the
vernacular retelling of vAlmIki's forever classic 'rAmAyana' - doesn't
mean "cowherd tulasIdAsa" but "master-of-senses tulasIdAsa". his story
of rebuke from wife and subsequent renunciation is famous, after which
he was called go-swAmI, one who is the master (and not slave) of his

so kRiShNa's name govinda also means one who enhances the senses,
fills each sense to its maximum, nourishes them. why? maybe he wants
us to take to him as a starting point, from something we know - the

moksha, liberation, renunciation is easier if we go through kAma,
enjoy the senses and get over them. else, we may all along wonder what
we missed. so, rAma may inspire in us an austere resolve. we keep it
for some time, and then give in. it is difficult for most people to
ignore the senses.

but what if we are told, ok, enjoy the senses (reasonably) and get
over it. that is the kRiShNa path. it fills over senses with its pull.
the path of mokSha becomes easier if we have gone through kAma, if we
can grow up and get over it. if we can't, then like yayAti, we run
after them for thousands of years and still can't get over the senses.

namaH = salutations, bow.

language learning = if the word is masculine and ends in 'a', then -
Aya suffix makes it "for xyz". e.g kRiShNAya, vAsudevAya, nandanAya,
kumArAya, govindAya!

i already ask forgiveness for any error of any kind in the post, which
is inevitable for a topic like kRiShNa. but the intention is good and
to introduce some more simple sanskrit.

(c) shashikant joshi । शशिकांत जोशी । ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः ।
Practical Sanskrit. All rights reserved.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-08 00:41:10 UTC

Jesuit heads Sanskrit Conference’s religion sectionPublished :
September 07 2009

A senior Jesuit priest has been chosen to head a section of the 14
World Sanskrit Conference that concluded in Japan’s Kyoto University
on Sept. 4

Jesuit Father Noel Sheth, former president of Pune-based Jnana-Deep
Vidyapeeth seminary, chaired the History of Religion section of the

His colleagues and students in Pune said his election is significant
to the Church in India as he was the only Catholic priest and the only
Indian to hold the post.

The University of Kyoto hosted the World Sanskrit Conference, where
some 500 scholars of Sanskrit and Prakrit languages presented research
papers in 15 subject sections.

The Conference operated in 15 sections, with upto six sessions running
concurrently, each chaired by scholars specializing in the particular
field. Some 20 experts from India attended the conference that began

In India Sanskrit and Prakrit languages are the preserve of Hindus,
Buddhists and Jains. “Christians in India are often considered as
foreigners, who are not in the mainstream of Indian life and culture,”
said Father Sheth.

In such as context his selection as a chairperson of the conference “s
witness to that fact that the Catholic Church is very much in the
mainstream of Indian life,” he said.

The scholar priest said that Christians in India were not only
interested in Indian culture and religions, but were also
authoritative scholars in these areas.

The selection underlines his scholarship and repute in Sanskrit and
Pali, a Prakrit language, his colleagues and students in Pune said.

The emeritus professor of Indian Religions in Pune-based Jnana-Deep
Vidyapeeth, did his Ph.D in Sanskrit from Harward University on

He is a member of the governing council of Pune-based Bhadarkar
Oriental Research Institute, where scholars study ancient scripts of
Hindu religion and tradition.

His book The Divinity of Krishna is mentioned in the Encyclopedia of
Religion. He has given India’s University Grants Commission sponsored
lectures on Hinduism to Sanskrit professors.

Courtesy : CathNewsIndia

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 01:00:57 UTC

Raghunath Library -storehouse of rare manuscripts

Category » Editorial Posted On Thursday, September 10, 2009

The National Manuscripts Mission, set up by the Centre in 2003, has
since been scouting around the country for old manuscripts. It has
hitherto been successful in documenting over 58 lakh of the over five
million estimated manuscripts so far. Of these, it would be a
worthwhile exercise to throw light on the rich treasure trove of old
Sanskrit manuscripts in the Raghunath Maha Pustakalaya, in Jammu.

Vedic Samhitas, Brahmanas, rituals and other related works form a very
representative collection in this library. These belong to the shruti
(what is heard) portion of the Vedas and derive additional value from
the fact that a large number of these texts are of old date. This
important storehouse of significant ancient Indian literature was the
result of yeoman's job done by Jammu and Kashmir Maharaja Ranbir Singh
(1857-1885), who was known for his literary and art tendencies and had
even been hailed by some historians as Akbar (Emperor) of J&K.

Singh's father Maharaja Pratap Singh had commissioned renowned
Indologist, Auriel Stein, to prepare a comprehensive library catalogue
in early 90's. But, it was Ranbir Singh's desire to revive the study
of vedic texts, which in his dominion as well as in neighbouring
Punjab had practically ceased for centuries. Thus special schools were
instituted for the purpose of imparting knowledge of the correct
pronunciation of the several samhitas and of teaching the various
systems of rituals.
Outlining the genesis of the Raghunath Maha Pustakalaya, Stein had
underlined, "The troubled times through which Dogra country (J&K then
being ruled by Dogra dynasty) together with the Punjab had passed
during the days of Sikh ascendancy (in Punjab) had not been favourable
to Sanskrit learning and had little opening for the formation of
libraries on the part of the few Pandits of which Jammu could boast
during the preceding reign. It was then that Maharaja Ranbir Singh
resolved upon the formation of the Raghuanth Temple Library, the
scholars entrusted with the task of acquiring manuscripts had to turn
their attention chiefly to purchases from other parts of India."

Interestingly, originally the Maharaja had started his library as a
part of unique education complex, which also comprised stately
Raghunath Temple cluster (also set up by him) and a Sanskrit teaching
institute --Raghunath Mahavidyalaya-- in it "as recommended by
Dharamshastras, among other religious endowments for all of which he
provided liberal funds."
Competent Pandits were drawn to the Sanskrit institute (which some
years back had been taken over by the Central Government) from
different parts of the country. However, among them not a few could
lay claim to the real distinction in several shastras, wrote Stein. He
pointed out that in the first place the library was intended to meet
the needs of the teachers and pupils in the Sanskrit institute and the
collection of manuscripts began at the start of Maharaja's rule in
However, the library gradually transcended its original limited
purposes and through the zeal with which the Maharaja had devoted
himself to the collection of manuscript, it has today become
indispensable for any researcher in Indology.

As observed by Stein himself, this library contains a "considerable
number of works which had been hitherto unknown or only partially
accessible or mentioned only in shlokas or mentioned by some other
renowned European Indologists, such as Dr. Fits Edward in the
"Contribution towards an index to the bibliography of the Indian
philosophical system".
Little wonder then what Stein had observed about Maharaja Ranbir
Singh: "Both the Raghunath Temple and the library contained in it,
stand forth as solid monuments of two main qualities of his remarkable
character -- Pious regard for the inherited religious traditions and
enlightened interests in Indian learning."

When Stein took over the Raghunath Maha Pustakalaya, the material was
all helter- skelter and his foremost job was to properly arrange the
thousands of manuscripts. He did a splendid job in cataloguing them
along with a very elaborate annotation, thanks to his erudition in
Indology, extensive knowledge of other renowned Indologists and their
works, and other Sanskrit collections elsewhere. Besides, he was able
to make an in-depth comparison and place the manuscripts in a proper

Other than the wide spectrum of ancient Sanskrit literature, dealing
with Vedic texts the library offers scientific and technical
literature, grammar, lexicology, prosody, music, rhetoric's,
dramatics, law both religious and civil, Vedanta, yoga, astronomy,
astrology, architecture, medicines, epics, puranas, and tantra, etc.
However, Stein was particularly attracted by the Vedic treasurers of
the manuscripts, which included Samhitas, Brahmanas and related works,
vedic rituals and Upanishads.

About the works on vedic rituals, writes Stein, "one finds a
considerable collection of manuscripts, which either contain original
of individual schools and exegetical texts connected with them or
independent treatises and manuals on particular ceremonies." The
number of vedic texts on different subjects is about 716, second only
to tantra works which number 1059. However, perhaps quality-wise, this
section of dharamshastra "is unmistakably the strongest in the
library, on account of the particular interest of the Maharaja for the
spread of its study".

Stein had also noted that among the numerous manuscripts of the
Atharvaveda Samhits in this library, the pippalada recension is
perhaps "the most valuable of all the existing Bhurja volumes". Recall
that in February last year, the German Ambassador in India, Hieme
Richter, had presented a digital copy "the greater treasure of Indian
civilization, the Kashmirian Pippalada recession of the Atharvaveda"
to Late L.M. Singhvi, President of the Indira Gandhi Centre for the
Arts (IGNCA). The original manuscript is in the possession of the
University of Tubingen, Germany.

While narrating the manuscript's journey from India to Germany, he
pointed out that it was the first Sharda script manuscript to reach
his country in 1870's and many scholars had learnt the script from it.
It was further stated that the manuscript had been obtained from
Maharaja Ranbir Singh by the German Indologist Rudolf Van Roth, who
upon his death gave it to the library of the Tubingen University. It
was said to be one of the only two surviving recensions of the nine
known recensions of Atharvaveda, the other being "Shaunka recension".
Clearly, the Maharaja and his Pustakalaya have helped pass on the
treasure of ancient literature to the outside world.


...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 01:33:24 UTC

Lauding Japan for Sanskrit conference, Hindus ask for restoring
Sanskrit to its rightful place
Las Vegas Herald

Tuesday 8th September, 2009

Nevada (US), Sep.8 : Hindus have applauded Japan's Kyoto University
for hosting prestigious World Sanskrit Conference, which concluded on
September five.

Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA)
today, while lauding Kyoto University, strongly criticized India
Government for not doing enough for Sanskrit promotion. Sanskrit
should be restored to its rightful place and needed to be brought to
the mainstream and hidden scientific truths in ancient Sanskrit
literature should be brought to light, Zed pointed out.

Jointly organized by International Association of Sanskrit Studies,
Kyoto University, Association for the Study of the History of Indian
Thought, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Mitsubishi
Foundation, etc.; this five-day 14th World Sanskrit Conference covered
a wide variety of topics, including:

Vedas, linguistics, epics and Puranas, Agamas and Tantras, vyakarana,
scientific literature, ritual studies, yoga, Parsi Sanskrit, Sanskrit
law, Mahabharata, Yogin versus Vedantin, Sanskrit riddles, Sa?khya
thought, dharma, Kashmir Saivism, Solar and lunar lines in the
Sanskrit epics, miscarriage in ayurvedic literature, relationship
between God and the world, etc. Muneo Tokunaga chaired the organizing
committee, while renowned Sanskrit scholars from all over the world
participated, including:

Masato Fujii, Jared Klein, James Fitzgerald, Shingo Einoo, George
Cardona, Yigal Bronner, Takanobu Takahashi, Dominik Wujastyk, Karin
Preisendanz, Akira Saito, Nalini Balbir, Mark Siderits, Noel Sheth,
Yasuke Ikari, Hans Bakker, Patrick Olivelle, Axel Michaels, Masaaki
Hattori, etc. Previous such conferences were held in Edinburg (United
Kingdom, 2006), Helsinki (Finland, 2003), Torino (Italy, 2000).

Zed, who is president or Universal Society of Hinduism, asked India
Government to do much more for the development, propagation,
encouragement and promotion of Sanskrit in India and the world, which
was essential for the development of India and preservation of its
cultural heritage. Sanskrit also provided the theoretical foundation
of ancient sciences.

Rajan Zed stressed that India Government should establish a world-
level national library of Sanskrit besides Sanskrit libraries in each
state; make Sanskrit available as a subject in all secondary, under-
graduate, graduate, and doctoral schools in India; provide Sanskrit
teachers' training courses in all the states; enrich manuscripts
collections; publish rare manuscripts; provide easily accessible
distance learning courses for learners world over; coordinate the
Sanskrit research done around the globe; frequently organize world
level research conferences; provide generous funding for research
projects; etc.

Besides Hindu scriptures, a vast amount of Buddhist and Jain
scriptures were also written in Sanskrit, which is known as "the
language of the gods". According to tradition, self-born God created
Sanskrit, which is everlasting and divine. Sanskrit has a close
relationship with other classical languages like Latin, Greek, French,
German, etc.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 13:27:18 UTC

On a mission to bring Greek, Latin to India
Express News Service

First Published : 10 Sep 2009 12:43:00 AM IST

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: If all goes well, you might be able to learn
ancient European languages in college, thanks to the efforts by a
professor of history at the University of Rome, Federico De Romanis.
This historian-cum-linguist is working on developing collaborations
between Indian universities and Italian universities, whereby students
in both the countries can expand their knowledge of ancient languages,
including Sanskrit, Greek and Latin.

“Greek is not a difficult language. It is spoken by the common man and
to learn all the grammar it takes just one year. But you can learn the
script and basic rules of Greek grammar in a very short time,’’ says
Federico De Romanis, who came down all the way from Italy to
Thiruvananthapuram on an invitation from the Kerala Council for
Historical Research (KCHR) to teach a short-term course on ancient
European languages.

Federico says he had absolutely no idea about the number or nature of
students whom he was supposed to teach Greek and Latin.“I had expected
some archaeologists and probably some ancient historians, but to my
surprise I found engineers, teachers and even paediatricians. It was
quite an unexpected group,’’ he says.

“Nonetheless, they were very serious in their commitment. Some of them
even expressed their desire to continue, which has left me quite
satisfied. I am happy and am proud of them,’’ Federico adds.

The genuine interest shown by his students, whose age ranged from 20s
to 70s, was enough to convince Romanis that it would be worthwhile to
start some collaborative programmes.

KCHR Director P.J. Cherian looks at it from a different point of

“Familiarity with Greek and Latin would enable us to study historical
documents on Indo-European trade and history, originally written in
those languages. It is very important to have an Indian perspective
and understand the relevant text related to the history of Kerala,’’
he says.

Federico hopes that this collaboration will help the University of
Rome, which already has a chair in Sanskrit, to get some scholars in
Sanskrit from India.“The ancient languages do have some common
features. We cannot study the grammar of Greek and Latin in depth
without referring to Sanskrit. Some details may be explained only by
referring to Sanskrit,’’ he says.

This historian believes that language reflects the psychology of the
society and understanding how a language changes explains how a
society changes as well.“When an archaeologist excavates, he finds
layers of soil corresponding with particular periods of time. Same is
the case with language, it has layers corresponding with time. Some
words are more ancient than others. And sometimes some of these layers
correspond with layers of other languages,’’ explains Federico, about
the connection between ancient languages.

“There are some key words that are very similar in Latin and Sanskrit
and research into the very remote past may provide the best
explanation. There are words that can be explained by a common origin
and there are words that might have derived out of trade contacts. It
is pretty complex,’’ he says.

But there is one thing that Romanis is sure about - he is definitely
coming back next July to teach Greek and Latin to the next batch of
students and also to those who want to expand their knowledge of the


...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 13:37:12 UTC

Sanskrit newspaper turns 40
Express News Service

First Published : 20 Jul 2009 07:55:10 AM IST
Last Updated : 20 Jul 2009 09:50:13 AM IST

MYSORE: Sudharma, the world's only Sanskrit daily, published from
Mysore celebrated its 40th year on Sunday.

A special anniversary issue was brought out to mark the occasion.

The newspaper's readership comprises mainly of Sanskrit scholars and

Sudharma has a daily circulation of about 2,000 copies and is mostly
circulated through post. The paper, which strives to revive Sanskrit
as a spoken language, has subscribers in countries like Japan and USA.
"According to popular perception, Sanskrit, like Latin, is not spoken
outside academia," said Ramchandra, a resident of Mysore," This is not
true." The newspaper was launched by Kalale Nadadur Varadaraja
Iyengar, a Sankrit scholar, in 1970. The purpose of the paper was to
revive the Sanskrit language.

On its launch, many believed that the endeavour would fail. However,
it did not. KV, Sampath Kumar, son of Varadaraja Iyengar, is the
current editor of the paper.

Former chief justice of India MN Venkatachaliah, released the special

In his address, Venkatachallaiah called for increased efforts to
revive the language and aid its growth on par with the progress of
science and technology. He said that the promotion of Sanskri would
help protect Indian culture and tradition.

"Science and technology is constantly evolving. The Indian culture and
tradition is under threat by the growth of Information technology and

There is an urgent need to protect our culture and tradition for
posterity and learning the Sankrit language would help," he said.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 13:40:27 UTC

Scholarship to study Sanskrit? Rs 4 per month

Mathang Seshagiri

First Published : 21 Nov 2008 08:48:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 21 Nov 2008 09:20:50 AM IST

BANGALORE: What's the scholarship the government pays to thousands of
Sanskrit students studying in 235 colleges and patashalas in
Karnataka? Rs 4 a month! For over two decades, this is the sum the
department of public instruction has been awarding a month to every
student studying Prathama in Shastra and Veda sections; the highest
scholarship amount paid is a mere Rs 20 a month to Vidwath Uttama
scholars in government and aided Sanskrit colleges and pathashalas.

According to the March 1987 order, the government pays Rs 4 to
students in Prathama (three-year basic course), Rs 6 for Kavya
(intermediate course of two years) and Rs 10 for those studying
Sahitya (three-year advanced course). Vidwath Madhyama and Uttama
scholars (equivalent to BA and MA respectively) get Rs 15 and Rs 20
every month.

The scheme was introduced to encourage students to study Sanskrit, one
of the first languages to be accorded classical language status.

Under the scheme, students get scholarship for 10 months a year. There
are 26,000 students taking Prathama and over 8,000 are students Kayva.

“Though conventional government school children are given free
uniforms, textbooks, mid-day meals, exam fee waivers and even
bicycles, those in Sanskrit colleges and pathashalas do not get any
benefits. The argument is that these students are given
scholarships.What they pay is pittance.What can a student buy with Rs
4 in a month?” asked an angry head master of a Sanskrit Pathashala.

Upset by the amount, Primary and Secondary Education Minister
Vishweshwara Hedge Kageri has asked the commissioner of public
instruction to revise the scholarship. “Paying such a low amount is an
insult to the language.When I heard about this, I was ashamed,” the
Minister said.

The government is planning a hike in the fee — from Rs 4 to Rs 100 a
month. Vidhwath Uttama scholars will get Rs 250 a month —up from Rs

While all the 700-odd Vidhwath scholars will be eligible for the
scheme, only 50 per cent of the Prathama students can avail of the
benefits, as per the quota fixed by the department. Sixty per cent of
Kavya students and 70 per cent of Sahitya students will get Rs 1,250
and Rs 1,750 a year respectively.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 13:43:07 UTC

National award for scholar

Express News Service

First Published : 24 Aug 2009 03:21:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 24 Aug 2009 09:15:12 AM IST

PARADIP: Sashibhusan Mishra, Sanskrit lecturer of Mundalo village
under Naugaon tahasil of Jagatsinghpur district, has been selected to
receive the prestigious ‘Maharshi Badrayan Vyas Samman‘ from the

The President gives away the award to young Sanskrit scholars for
outstanding contribution in the field. The President declared names of
five scholars, who will receive the award, on the Independence Day on
August 15. The President will felicitate the five scholars, including
Mishra, at a special function on January 26 next year. The young
Sanskrit scholar’s selection has brought joy to the entire district.

Born in Mundalo village in Nugaon, Mishra completed HSC from Alanahat
High School and took bachelors degree from S.V.M College,
Jagatsinghpur. He completed his masters in Sanskrit from Pune
University and took Ph.D in Sanskrit grammar from Sri Jagannath
Sanskrit Viswavidyalaya, Puri, under the guidance of Prof Kishore
Chandra Padhi. After completing his studies, he decided to pay back to
the language which gave him recognition. Mishra says Sanskrit
strengthens our culture and civilization for being the oldest
language. To promote the language, he has written 10 books on Sanskrit
language and grammar. His two other books are awaiting release. His
works like ‘Mamasanskrutam volume 1 to 4’, ‘Stutiralankar’,
‘Siddhantakaumudi’ , ‘Laghusiddhantakaumudi’ and ‘Paniniyavyakar
Anasya Bhasa Tatiwk Adhyanyam’ are highly appreciated by students of
Sanskrit. He has also attended many State and national seminars and
conferences where he presented papers and delivered lectures on
Sanskrit literature. He has also been awarded by different
organisations and institutions for his outstanding contribution to
Sanskrit literature. Now he is serving as lecturer and head of
department of Grammar, at Sri Sitaram Vaidic Adarasha Sanskrit
Mahavidyalaya in Kolkata.

His father Prafulla Kumar Mishra, a school headmaster who has been
awarded by the Governor, expressed his joy for his son’s selection for
the prestigious award. He said a Vedic language like Sanskrit is
facing the onslaught of English so he encouraged his son to make a
career in Sanskrit literature.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-11 13:49:18 UTC

By Anil Srinivasan
16 Jan 2009 03:58:16 PM IST

Melody amid the honking horns Don’t ignore a cul-de-sac while roaming
in some city — urban spaces are unpredictable. Branching out from a
wide-open roadway, it’s that narrow passageway between two asymmetric
buildings that can lead into a clearing that hosts an interesting
piece of sculpture, what’s more, a romantic history. And yet the
teeming converse conduits of human and vehicular traffic underscore
certain important features of the urban ethos. For instance, the
triumph of structure over sentimentality and fluid shapelessness. Or
the ability of the urban landscape to contemporise traditional arts
and crafts while inventing new grammars to keep apace with

The notion of relevance is particularly poignant when you note the
number of institu­tions that have disappeared with time. Where great
movements and transformations in thought occurred, we only encounter
silent whispers behind musty windows, gazing serenely at smarter
contemporaries who understood the ability to adapt and stay rele­vant.
Like, in Chennai, we had a venue that frequently used to host western
classical ensembles — till 50 years ago. While vestiges of that
tradition continue in the form of chamber performances once in a while
or with church choral traditions, the earlier grand orchestral set-ups
seem to be a rarity now.

So how does one go about staying “in the frame” in today’s changing
urban art milieu? Who is a truly ‘urban’ artiste? Here, I chronicle
two great artist-scholars, and gather less­ons for the modern urbanite
from their ardour. Two specific traits seem apparent in the study of
these scholars. The primary of these is an ability to understand
multiple disciplines, and deeply so. In an urban setup, this seems to
be a mandatory requirement towards any form of accomplishment. The
second is the fearless pursuit of the obscure supernal, a ceaseless
quest to redefine and re-present the mysterious and the relatively
less-known domains, and in so doing, contribute to the resurgence of
ageless traditions for a contemporary audience. They essay lifetimes
in contrarian thinking, seeking incess­antly and permanently breaking
open many myths and mysteries. Most of all, these indivi­duals seem to
shape the urban lexicon, emerging as communicators par excellence.

The first of these was a great Sanskrit scholar and visionary. Dr V
Raghavan was a polymath, specialising in several fields, most notably
in the study of Sanskrit and music. His centenary was celebrated in
2008, and the sheer stature of the luminaries present bears testimony
to his immense contribution. Very much a product of our urban
complexity, Dr Raghavan’s mastery over sanskrit, his commit­ment to
Indology and his ability to traverse disciplines earned him a Padma­
Bhushan and the highest levels of appreciat­ion from

experts from as far afield as Harvard. He composed in Sanskrit,
resuscitating a lang­uage not heavily in vogue in a changing urban
landscape, becoming the pillar of the Madras University’s Sanskrit
department and retiring as its head in 1968. His ability to
communicate to different audiences — the intellectual and the everyman
— is evident in his flair for academic speeches as well as for
dramaturgy and popular narrative. He was an indomitable force behind
the development of the Music Academy’s intellectual treasury. Indeed,
his musical compositions are a testament to his mastery over multiple

And yet the urban character manifests itself in all descriptions of Dr
Raghavan. The fondest memories centre around his ability to
communicate and his pliability with people of different walks of
society. He seems to have lived for the promulgation of ideas, and
this perhaps explains the endurance of his contribution. Most of all,
he seems to have been one of the best teachers his students knew.

The mridangam wizard Padma Bhushan Umayalpuram K Sivaraman represents
another important force in the shaping of the modern musical lexicon.
Once again, an important representative of the contemporary urban
ethos of our city, he represents the best of the changing faces of our
fragile landscape — the classical/traditional and the ultra-modern.
His recent accomplishment, the release of a 22-hour DVD on the art of
the mridangam (Mridanga Chintamanih) is a marvel, and an extraordinary
feat considering that it was recorded almost continuously by a living
legend who is now into his 63rd year of performing! No description of
Sivaraman will adequately express his mastery over his instrument. His
accompaniments of nearly every known legend in classical music, from
Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar down to the youngest singer to emerge in
the current crop of performers has seen his mere presence on stage
pulling in record audiences.

His presence has ranged from the Hindustani (his jugalbandi with Pt
Shanta Prasad still gets talked about, nearly 40 years after it
concluded!) to the film and contemporary social performance style.

The DVD set, with seven distinctive perfor­mance styles of the
mridangam teaches the viewer more than percussive art. It once again
provides important insights for modern day living for the urbanite.
The performer gains credibility first as a communicator and second as
a musician — a point that Sivaraman always lays emphasis on.

Once again, we find the evidence of multi­ple layers of consciousness
shaping his approach towards his chosen expression. He is a
structuralist, understanding the chaos and clutter of modern-day music
enough to know where to draw the line. He journeys into the near-
forgotten origin of sound, and conclusively charts out the definitions
of rhythm, one beat at a time. This is a magician’s handiwork, and the
din of city traffic seems to subside to the sound of his instrument.

Indeed, an “urban” artist needs to be a great teacher, cultivating his
audience to appreciate his work. He needs to be a great time manager,
using every minute to assimilate as many influences as his settings
could provide, using the learnings from diff­erent aspects of his life
and work like plasticine and shape his artistic expression. No man,
artist or otherwise, can exist on an island in today’s urban context.
The life and works of these legends bear testimony to this.

© Copyright 2008 ExpressBuzz

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-14 21:51:19 UTC

Home > 2009 Issues > September 20, 2009


Revive Sanskrit to save Hinduism
By JG Arora

Till a few centuries ago, Hindu religion, culture and philosophy
stretched from Gandhar (modern day Afghanistan) to Indonesia. And
Sanskrit language was the instrument for this glory. But repeated
Muslim invasions of Indian subcontinent destroyed many centres of
classical learning leading to decline of Sanskrit.

There is an apt adage admiring Sanskrit: "Bhashasu mukhya madhura
divya geervaan bharati" (Among all the languages, Sanskrit is the
best, sweetest and divine language). Literally meaning "refined and
cultured", Sanskrit is the divine language revealed through the sages
(Sanskritam naam daivi vaak anavyakhyata maharshibhihi). Excepting
Tirukkural which is in Tamil, almost all ancient Hindu scriptures like
Vedas, Upanishads, Ramayan, Mahabharat are in Sanskrit.

Sanskrit is the symbol, the heart and the most precious possession of
Bharat. As per Sir Monier Monier-Williams (1819-1899), famous for his
Sanskrit-English dictionary, "India’s national character is cast in a
Sanskrit mould and in Sanskrit language. Its literature is a key to
its vast religious system. Sanskrit is one medium of approach to the
hearts of Indians." Many Sanskrit literary works give identity and
unity to Hindu civilisation and Bharat.

Sanskrit is a scientific and systematic language with a perfect
grammar. It is the vast ocean of wisdom and knowledge. Besides, it is
computer compatible.

As per Sir William Jones (1746-1794), Sanskrit is "more perfect than
Greek, more copious than Latin, and more exquisitely refined than
either". Sanskrit is an independent language, and is not derived from
any other language. Sanskrit explains complex thoughts in a simple
manner. The single theme of ‘sublime’ permeates Sanskrit literature.

Besides being rich in words (for instance, Sanskrit has got over a
hundred synonyms for ‘water’), as per NASA, Sanskrit is "the only
unambiguous language on earth". Even translated Sanskrit works have
won admiration of scholars the world over.

Till a few centuries ago, Hindu religion, culture and philosophy
stretched from Gandhar (modern day Afghanistan) to Indonesia. And
Sanskrit language was the instrument for this glory. But repeated
Muslim invasions of Indian subcontinent destroyed many centres of
classical learning leading to decline of Sanskrit.

Macaulayan Education

Sadly, Sanskrit has been driven out of Indian schools and colleges by
Missionary-oriented colonial education (commonly known as Macaulay’s
education) introduced in India in 1835 by Lord Thomas Babington
Macaulay (1800-1859), a British national. Macaulayan education
downgraded Indian languages including Sanskrit and replaced them with
English. Macaulay’s education has no place for Sanskrit, for Hindu
scriptures, Hindu heritage and Hindu history. This education was
introduced to de-Hinduise Hindus; and to make them respect British
rule over India. Macaulay had contempt for India’s native Hindu
religion and culture as is evident in Macaulay’s following letter
dated October 12, 1836 to his evangelist father,

"Our English schools are flourishing wonderfully; we find it difficult
to provide instruction to all. The effect of this education on Hindus
is prodigious. No Hindu who has received an English education ever
remains sincerely attached to his religion. It is my firm belief that
if our plans of education are followed up, there will not be a single
idolater among the respected classes 30 years hence. And this will be
effected without our efforts to proselytise; I heartily rejoice in the

Since Macaulayan education has no place either for Sanskrit or for
Hindu scriptures like Vedas, Ramayan, Mahabharat, Tirukkural etc., it
has de-Hinduised most of the Hindus and transformed them into brown
English clones ignorant of Hindu religion, Hindu heritage and Hindu
history. Accordingly, most of Hindus are self-alienated and
indifferent to attacks being made on Hinduism by anti-Hindu forces.

India was expected to re-assert itself and to discard Macaulay-ism
after the British left in 1947. In 1949, Dr BR Ambedkar even sponsored
an amendment making Sanskrit as the official language of India. But
the said amendment was defeated in the Constituent Assembly. However,
Sanskrit was included in the Eighth Schedule of Indian Constitution.

Shockingly, Macaulay’s education and neglect of Sanskrit continue to
de-shape India’s destiny even now decades after the British left
Indian shores. After banishing Sanskrit from Indian schools and
colleges, Macaulayists call Sanskrit ‘the dead language’. It shows
their attitude towards Hinduism.

Sublime thoughts in sublime language

Sanskrit contains sublime thoughts in sublime words. All the Vedas,
Upanishads, Aadi Kavi Maharishi Valamiki’s Aadi kavyam Ramayan with
24,000 stanzas, Mahabharat, the longest poem in the world with over
1,00,000 stanzas and several other holy books are all written in
Sanskrit. Mahabharat also contains Bhagavad Gita. A verse of
Mahabharat proclaims that what is found in Mahabharat may appear
elsewhere but what is not in Mahabharat would be found nowhere.

To understand Vedas, Sanskrit provides six Vedangs: Shikhsha
(phonetics), Vyakarna (grammar), Chhanda (metre), Nirukta (etymology),
Kalpa (religious practice) and Jyotish (astronomy).

Mention is made here of a few Vedic gems.

Mata bhumih putro aham prithivyaha (earth is our mother and we are its
children); kevalagho kevalaadi (one who eats alone, eats sin);
apritito jayati sama dhanani (only the forward march achieves
success); tasya bhasa sarvam idam vibhati (His radiance pervades
entire universe); satyam vad dharmam char (speak the truth, be
righteous); Sarve janah sukhino bhavantu (may every one be happy). And
the list is endless.

Timeless literature

Sanskrit has the oldest and richest literature in the world.

First Mantra of Rig Veda is the first known poem in the world. English
language has just one Shakespeare. But Sanskrit has got thousands of
Shakespeares. It is pitiable that the so-called ‘educated’ Indian
knows nothing about them or about Sanskrit.

Sanskrit contains both sacred and temporal writings. After Vedas,
Upanishads, Ramayan and Mahabharat, Sanskrit magnificence continued
through Bhasa, Kalidas, Bharavi, Magh, Bana, Kalhana, Chanakya, Adi
Shankracharya, and many others like Bhartirihari and his famous
Shatkas. Bharat’s Natyashastra and timeless Sanskrit dramas also adorn
Sanskrit firmament. Vishnu Prabhakar’s didactic fable Panch Tantra
guides humans to this day. Panini’s Ashtadhyayi is a timeless treatise
of Sanskrit Grammar.

Sanskrit contains vast knowledge also about astronomy, astrology and
mathematics. And Aryabhatt’s Aryabhattiyam can be cited in this
regard. Sanskrit also has Ayurveda (medical science) and Dhanur Veda
(martial arts).

And philosophy began with the hymns of Rig Veda. Sanskrit explains all
the six traditional systems of philosophy viz. Nyayah, Vaisheshikam,
Sankhyam, Yogah, Mimansa and Vedant. Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras are still
acting as the lodestar for many travellers of life. These Yoga Sutras
describe eight steps to achieve victory of mind over matter. And they
are: Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayam, Pratyahar, Dharana, Dhyan and

Sanskrit also describes modern scientific tools discovered by Indian
scholars thousands of years ago. Concepts of shoonya (zero), of earth
revolving around the sun, of gravity, gyaamiti (geometry), triknomiti
(trignometry), infinity, concept of time ranging from Krati (one
34,000th of a second) to kalpa (1000 maha yugas i.e. billions of
years), decimal system: All this knowledge, and much more, is written
in Sanskrit.

Bharat's glory

Ignorance of Sanskrit has made Hindus ignorant of their Sanskriti
(culture), their religion, their heritage and their identity.

The language which has all along sustained us cannot be allowed to
fade away. Sanskrit must be revived and taught in schools and colleges
since its survival is a must for survival of Hinduism. Revival of
Sanskrit will Hinduise the self-alienated Hindus, de-colonise their
mind, and impart them self-knowledge and self-worth.

As per eminent historian Will Durant (1885-1981), "Civilization is not
something inborn or imperishable; it must be acquired anew by every
generation, and any serious interruption in its financing or its
transmission may bring it to an end."

Mere ritual celebration of ‘Sanskrit Day’ on Shravani Poornima every
year cannot revive Sanskrit’s lost glory. And since survival of
Sanskrit is a must for survival of Hindu religion, Hindu heritage and
Hindu civilisation, all pro-Hindu individuals and organisations must
make relentless efforts to ensure that sweet symphony of Sanskrit
pervades all over Bharat once again. And such efforts will certainly
fructify as Mantra number 7.52.8 of Atharva Veda proclaims, "Kritam
may dakhshine haste, jayo may savya aahitah" (effort is in my right
hand, and victory in my left).

(The writer is the former Chief Commissioner of Income Tax and can be
contacted at ***@gmail.com)

...and I am Sid Harth
Sid Harth
2009-09-17 11:36:12 UTC
































Mantras of the Transcendental Meditation Technique
admin Spirituality Articles

These days we hear a lot of talk about the mantras used for
meditation. Some people say a random word is best, others recommend
the universal sound Aum or Om. But what about the mantras used in the
Transcendental Meditation technique? Are they generic or special?
Secular or religious? Useless or effective? And where do they come
from? These are important questions so let’s find an answer for them.

The Transcendental Meditation technique is an effortless mental
procedure whereby an individual experiences increasingly quieter
levels of thinking, leading to the experience of total silence; the
source of thought, at the deepest level the mind. The technique of
Transcendental Meditation has many unique features and one of them is
the mantra. As part of personal instruction each student receives a
suitable thought/sound or mantra for their meditation practice. These
mantras are meaningless sounds which serve as the delicate vehicle on
which the mind glides through deeper, more silent levels of the
thinking process.

For maximum effectiveness students are encouraged to refrain from
speaking or writing down their mantra as this has a damaging and
dulling effect on this highly delicate and refined meditation tool.
Also, there is a limited pool of mantras that each Transcendental
Meditation teacher draws upon to select the appropriate sound for each
student. So it’s entirely possible that some students could have the
same mantra.

The mantra is selected by the Transcendental Meditation teacher based
on the suitability and harmonious effect it will create for each
student when properly used. Also, the technique of how to use the
mantra is just as crucial as the proper selection of the mantra/sound

It’s important to note that the mantras are used for their sound
quality only and have no assigned meaning. These two important
aspects, suitability and meaninglessness, allow the mind to be lively
but undirected at the same time, so it can sink deep within,
‘transcend’ thought and experience its own silent, inner nature. This
is the process called ‘transcending’ which takes place during the
Transcendental Meditation technique.

To understand this principle more clearly lets examine the word
‘flower’. A word has two aspects: the sound value and the English
meaning. When we say or think the word ‘flower’ we automatically
consider the word’s meaning, its qualities and context. We might think
of the color, the smell, the quantity, the location and so on and
these thoughts about the flower engage and hold the mind on the
surface, conscious thinking level and do not allow the mind to fathom
its inner nature.

Therefore by intention and by design, the mantra used in the
Transcendental Meditation technique is a sound that has no meaning
attributed to it either by the teacher or their student. At the same
time it should be clear, that if a science, religion or cultural group
were to assign a meaning to a mantra, in the past or future, it would
still have no bearing on the use of that mantra in the instruction or
practice of the Transcendental Meditation technique.

For centuries “google” has been a delightful, nonsensical sound,
uttered by babies. More recently however it has been attributed a
meaning; the name of a worldwide, Internet search engine. However this
new adult meaning has no bearing on a baby’s use of that same sound.
Likewise mantras are sounds that are meaningless both to the
Transcendental Meditation teacher and the student even though other
people, cultures or religions may or may not have assigned a meaning
to them.

To further illustrate this point let’s consider the word “flat”. In
the USA this sound has a meaning associated with the shape of an
object. In England however, “flat” also refers to an apartment.
Therefore, each respective culture utilizes sound and assigns meanings
for their own localized purpose. Other languages, cultures and people
who also use that same sound or word, are completely indifferent to
the meaning assigned to that sound/word by other countries or
cultures. The same is true with respect to the Transcendental
Mediation technique. It utilizes specific mantras/sounds completely
irrespective of their intended meaning in other languages or cultural

The Transcendental Meditation technique and the mantras/sounds it
utilizes have their origin in the ancient Vedic tradition which
predates all religions and cultures including the Hindu religion. The
Vedic tradition is a universal body of complete and timeless knowledge
encompassing the total field of natural law, or underlying
intelligence, that governs the universe. Because the Vedas and the
Vedic tradition are ancient and universal, many of its sounds, names
and principals are found in many countries, cultures and religions
around the world.

The ancient Vedic tradition of India is the oldest continuous
tradition of knowledge on earth. In 2003 the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) proclaimed
the Vedic tradition (specifically the recitation of the Vedic hymns) a
“masterpiece of intangible heritage to humanity”.

The TM technique and its mantras are derived from this same Vedic
tradition. Over thousands of years, the technique of Transcendental
Meditation contained in the Vedas had been misinterpreted and
therefore lost its effectiveness. It was then revived in the 1950’s,
to its original and highly effective form, by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
who was the custodian and representative of the Vedic tradition in our

So we conclude therefore, that the mantras used in the Transcendental
Meditation technique not only have their roots in a timeless tradition
of knowledge but that they are also simple and powerful, ancient and
unique, meaningful and meaningless, all at the same time!

®Transcendental Meditation and TM are registered trademarks of
Maharishi Vedic Education Development Corporation, a non-profit
educational organization.





Dr. Keith DeBoer has been a Certified Teacher of the Transcendental
Meditation technique since 1976. He has studied with Maharishi Mahesh
Yogi (TM’s founder) in the USA, Europe and in India. He has also
appeared on numerous radio and TV shows to discuss the unique benefits
and scientific research associated with the TM technique and its
application to health, education and business. He has a doctorate in
World Peace Studies from Maharishi European Research University
located in The Netherlands (Holland). Currently he works as a
freelance writer, consultant and teacher of the Transcendental
Meditation technique.

Article Source:http://www.articlesbase.com/meditation-articles/the-



















Mantra and Consciousness
admin Spirituality Articles

A mantra is a combination of psychically potent sound syllables that
are capable of influencing the human system. It works on different
levels of being (from gross to the subtlest)

Mantras as it is defined, is that tool which liberates the mind from
bondage, here bondage means ‘the state of identification of the gross
mind’. Mind is always identified with the world of idea name, form and
objects. At the energetic level the identification leads to
dissipation of energy (vikshepa), mind is tied down to the plane of
gross sensorial world creating the spectrum of experiences colored by
the polar opposites of pains–pleasures, heat-cold, depression-elation
etc. Here in these conditions mantras helps to tune the vibrations of
mind to the subtler frequencies of mantras and hence helps to
internalize it.

According to tantra this whole creation (including the body-mind
complex) is the result of spandan (Vibration). When we analyze the
structure and dynamics of mind we find that mind is the subtle
instrument which is found with vrittis (modification of mind), kleshas
(inherent causes of afflictions) and samskaras and vasanas (subtle
impressions/tendencies). These subtle factors of the mind are
responsible for determining the nature of the manifest contents of the
mind, such as thought, feelings, emotions attitudes etc. Different
thoughts, feelings and emotions which appear or disappear from the
surface of the mind, are the expression of energy. The psychic energy
when manifests as thoughts or feelings it could be felt or heard
internally. In this light, if we study the mind we find that our mind
is composed of the different vibratory patterns of energy, always
echoing inside the subtle body some times its contents would be heard
or perceived in the form of thoughts or feelings and some times major
chunk of it remains in the state of unexpressed state of potentiality
in the form of kleshas or samskara. In order to attune the awareness
to that subtle dimension of psychic realm one has to have a vehicle,
here the mantra or the sound vibrations are used as the vehicle to
transport the consciousness and to alter the vibratory patterns
existing in the subtle realm of the psyche. Because of this reason
sound vibrations are supposed to have the potentialities to transform
the mind. Once the subtle vibrations of the mental body are fully
attuned to the vibrations of mantras, it can be transformed easily and
this takes place when the mind resonates with the vibrations of
mantra. In this state of resonance the vibratory patterns of mind
takes the shape of the patterns of vibrations of mantras resulting in
the manifestation of altogether different mental state. When this
state is achieved, the mental energies become more synchronous and
harmonious. The person at his feeling tone, experiences inner
tranquility and the state of homogeneous awareness. At this time one
experiences a state of tension free alertness and one-pointed
awareness. The tension producing annoying thoughts and emotions cease
to exist and mind is taken over by the subtle purifying energies of
mantra. In yoga the state of health is the state of synchronicity of
physical, vital, mental and psychic energies with the energies of the
external environment. When this synchronous field of energy is created
within; one experiences the state of harmony and health.

In science we study that the energy and the matter are
interconvertible and in the realm of quantum field of energy there is
continuous interpermutations of energy particles. Since matter is also
an expression of energy (which is gross form of energy or in other
word as state of compressed energy), therefore it could be influenced
by the other forms of energy, on this principle the phenomenon of mind
over matter would be explained. Through mental energy mantras can
affect the different levels of being. The sound vibration of mantra
filters down the energies of mind and body, until they are completely
shaped into the vibrational patterns of mantra and by altering the
field of mental energy the gross body is affected.
Psychic dimension of mantra.

Mantras, we know are not the creation of the intellect rather they
were experienced by the yogis in their higher state of consciousness.
Experiences of the subtle vibrations in higher state were when chanted
by them, created mantras, putting it another way the origin of mantras
is divine or transcendental. The rishis only heard them as richas,
sound frequencies in an organized form. Because they were the result
of the experience of the higher consciousness, may transport any one;
who practices them to the same space from which they originated.
Therefore each mantra in tantra is considered as the embodiment of
consciousness (Vigyana rupa) and when mantra is perfected it fully
enlivens the samskaras, accumulated experiences of past lives in the
form of subtle traces or patterns, and the meaning of the mantra
appear to the mind in the form of experiences carried by the mantra.
Therefore, the purpose of mantra is to transcend the mind by purifying
the mala, (impurities in the form of thoughts, desires and destructive
emotion) and vitalize the thoughts and emotions with the positive
energies of the mantra. Different mantras affect the energies of the
body-mind complex differently. Each mantra affects a specific
energetic centre of the body and through the corresponding centre the
associated energy patterns are brought forth or awakened in the body.
Once the mantra is awakened in the body, the vibrations generated by
the mantra can cleanse the entire energetic network in the body by
removing the blockages present in path of the energetic flow (nadi).
The purification which takes place at the deeper energetic plane which
is the substratum of the body-mind functioning, helps to enhance the
efficiency of the different physiological systems and the mental
processes. Mantra chanting makes the mind calm and tranquil. Mantra
chanting along with the breath awareness develops the ability to
control the emotions and develop one-pointed ness. The breath which
flows with the vibrations of the mantra is charged with the positive
energy of the mantra. The breath with the chanting becomes rhythmic
and harmonious, as a result of which the functioning of the physical
and the mental systems become harmonized. Emotionally one becomes
stable and relaxed. The breath is considered as an important tool to
mobilize the energies of the body, therefore when the feelings and the
emotions move in the body, they change the patterns/nature of the
breath and the converse is also true. From one mental and emotional
state to other the patterns of breathing also change and this changes
the nature of the flow of energies in the body.

Voice is another important aspect in the mantra chanting which plays
an important role in altering the states of the feelings and the moods
of the person. Voice is also associated with the state of the mind.
The tone of the voice is affected by the mental state of the person.
In one of the techniques of the psychotherapy (primal therapy) the
individual is treated by releasing the tensions through the voice and
the breath. While chanting a mantra, the emotions express themselves
in the breath and the voice. Every time the breath is uneven it means
the emotions are involved and we are out of balance. Chanting helps us
to achieve this stillness by bringing the breath and the emotions
under control. As the mantra is chanted moods will in time be brought
under control and awareness in the here and will grow attention and
therefore energy will be withdrawn from the old thought patterns which
like tapes on a tape recorder play over and over. These mental
background noises keep us tied to the past and future, to fearful
imagining and senseless fantasies which cause self created suffering.
This energy will now be channelized and mutated for the higher

Components of mantra

Based on the immediate aims the different mantras may have different
effects but all the different mantras have these important components.
1. Pronunciation 2. Melody, tune or modulation of voice, 3. Beats

Through these three aspects, mantra creates a definite pattern of the
sound vibration. The presence of the above factors creates a suitable
environment to alter the consciousness.

Different tones which are produced during the course of chanting
utilize the different areas of the body hence affect the energies of
the corresponding parts of the body. Specific tones in conjunction
with certain tunes or modulations of sound mobilize the energies of
specific region of the body. Although, the seat of sound is the vocal
cord, but the different tones are produced in conjunction with
abdominal, heart or upper parts of the body. The aim of mantra is to
harmonize the energies of the body with the energies of the nature.

The practice of mantra chanting is a potent means to initiate the
process of pratyahara, by withdrawing the mind from the sensorial
dimension to the more subtle dimension of the internal environment and
ultimately can lead to the state of transcendental consciousness
through the stages of dharana and dhyana. In this state of
consciousness, mind reverberates with the timeless or eternal
vibrations of the soul. At the psychological level, the chanting of
mantra results in diluting the force of attachment of the mind for the
senses. It tunes the mind to the patterns of the sound vibrations of
mantras as mentioned earlier, hence reducing the pulling tendency of
the mind for the senses. Through the chanting, the mind could easily
be programmed to become still and steady. The beat cycle which is
inherent in the rhythmic pattern of mantra can change the state of
consciousness. The beat cycle of mantra affects the state of emotions,
mind and at the physical level the beat of heart and respiration. To
work better, each mantra is chanted in a particular beat/rhythm. That
is the reason why different forms of chanting, with specifically
distinct beats and rhythm could affect the energies of the individual
differently, inducing a specific mood, feeling or state of mind.
Mantra chanting increases will power, the power of concentration and
positive emotions. Because of the effects of mantra on creating a
positive and uplifting field of energy within, it becomes a powerful
fool to stop the dissipation of mental emotional energies and to make
the mind one-pointed and relaxed.

I started yoga teaching 10 years ago after completing my Post
Graduation in Yoga Psychology from Bihar Yoga Bharati (Deemed
University). After completing the study there I started sharing my
learning with yoga aspirants, in the same university as Lecturer in
the Dept. Of Yoga Psychology. The field of yoga has been an awakening
and life transforming experience for me. It opened a completely new
perspective to see the reality and participate in the flow of life!
And I do believe that every particle in the UNIVERSE is participating
and contributing to the eternal flow of life..

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-18 07:38:44 UTC

Thursday, September 17, 2009
IIGRS Programe announced

Finally the full programme is online! There are twenty lectures plus
few special ones:

Inaugural Lecture:The Hidden Collections: The Possibility for a Census
of Indic manuscripts in the U.K. by Professor Christopher Minkowski,
Boden Professor of Sanskrit, University of Oxford;

Workshop: How to find the date of Indic texts and manuscripts by
Professor Christopher Minkowski, Boden Professor of Sanskrit,
University of Oxford;
Key-note Lecture by Professor Alexis Sanderson, Spalding Professor of
Eastern Religions and Ethics, All Souls College, University of Oxford.

Posted by adiere at 11:22 AM


April 10th, 2009 . Posted in Uncategorized |

Welcome to the website for the International Indology Graduate
Research Symposium (IIGRS)!

We are pleased to announce that the first symposium will be held at
the University of Oxford from 28th-29th September 2009. Please find
all the information you need regarding how to apply and submit papers
throughout these pages.


Thor bu - Curiosia Indo-Tibetica

Textual and visual odds and ends from India, Tibet, and around.

About Me

Name: PDSz Location: Kolozsvár/Cluj, Budapest, Oxford, ibi ubi
View my complete profile

Who links to me?
Tuesday, August 04, 2009
Christian Aiśa

Seen on on Manakula Vinayagar Covill Street, Pondicherry.
Labels: bzhad gad, engrish, Pondicherry

posted by PDSz | 2:55 PM | 1 comments

Sunday, July 26, 2009
Who's your daddy?

aiśvaryamadamatto 'si mām avajñāya vartase|
upasthiteṣu bauddheṣu madadhīnā tava sthitiḥ||
(Udayana, Nyāyakusumāñjali)

posted by PDSz | 7:45 AM | 2 comments

Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Yet another Mañjuśriyamūlakalpa?

I did not have the time to follow up this one, but perhaps there are
some of you out there who are interested. Today I picked up by chance
D. K. Kanjilal & K. Kanjilal, Sanskrit and Allied Manuscripts in
Europe (Sanskrit Pustak Bhandar, Calcutta), apparently a recent
acquisition of the Bodleian. The book is a long list of pretty
confused notes about various manuscript libraries the authors had the
chance to visit in the U.K. and the continent (and there is no
index... and there are many typos... but let's forget about all that,
it seems like a very useful book).

The author reports a list of Nepalese mss. at the Chester Betty [sic!]
Library in Dublin. It's mostly Pañcarakṣās and dhāraṇīs, but one item
- he says - is a Mañjuśrīmūlakalpa. Although he says that the ms. is
'very old', he also gives the 17th century as an estimated date. Does
anyone happen to know more about this? It sounds like a false lead to
me, but you can never know for certain.
Labels: kriyātantra, manuscripts, Mañjuśriyamūlakalpa, tantric studies

posted by PDSz | 7:21 PM | 8 comments

Wednesday, June 10, 2009
An inscription from Spu hreng

Sam of earlytibet fame posted a very interesting article recently. In
the comments thereon I suggested that the text was defaced in order to
'recycle' the text. Today however this interesting little inscription
came to my attention which should perhaps be added to the argument,
although this defacement (if it is one) is of an entirely different

It has been some years that Precious Deposits has been published and
shame on me for not browsing through its five volumes earlier. Volume
one (amongst many other fascinating things) has a picture of this
Avalokiteśvara statue (p. 173, sorry about the quality; I could not
take out the book from the library so a bad photocopy-scan will have
to do). According to the caption the statue was found in Zhi bde
village in Spu hreng county.

Then there is this dedicatory inscription (p. 172) with all kinds of
good wishes from the donor. I will not transcribe it since it is quite
legible in the book.

But here is the interesting part: who is the donor? The right side
says Seng ge zhang chen po 'Bro(?) khri(?) brtsan sgra||(!) mgon po
rgyal, (?) meaning that you can barely make out the letters. The other
side has a slight variant for the name: zhang 'Bro(?) khri(?) brtsan
sgra mgon po rgyal. Notice how the clan name 'Bro and the khri are
almost illegible in both cases. Furthermore, is khri some kind of
pretense of royalty (at any rate, is that what the vandal thought)?
But then why is he calling himself zhang and zhang chen po?

Below you will find the names. I might just be paranoid, but it is
highly unlikely that someone vandalizes two sides of an inscription in
exactly the same places where the donor identifies his clan and
possibly arrogates to himself the royal khri. Quite clearly, this guy
had a problem with the 'Bros. And who would those be? Well, who did
not have a problem with them?

Suggestions/comments are highly welcome.

Labels: 'Bro clan, Avalokiteśvara, epigraphy, imperial period, tibetan

posted by PDSz | 6:11 PM | 7 comments

Tuesday, June 09, 2009
evam āryamiśrān vijñāpayāmi

The moment we have all been waiting for is here: the hilarious, the
scandalous, the outrageous... Quartet of Causeries is here. Read some
of the excerpts. Here is what our critics say:

"I knew these guys, but I thought they were just joking around at the
pub. It's actually not bad poetry." [Kālidāsa, notoriously elusive

"The Caturbhāṇī taught me everything I know. Never leave home without
it." [Dāmodaragupta, award winning author of A Courtesan's Confession]

"When I'm down and need a good kick I read the
Pādatāḍitaka." [Kṣemendra, acclaimed author of The Idiot's Guide to
Making Fun of Bengalis]

"The Dhūrtaviṭasaṃvāda brings back into public awareness the topic of
the pimping subaltern other. It is ruthless against Sanskritic society
and the greatest thing about it is that it's done with the enemy's
weapon: brilliant Sanskrit. Not as if I could read Sanskrit, only
colonialists can and do." [very famous post-colonialist, name

"The Dhūrtaviṭasaṃvāda coaxes from out of the shadows the subject of
the subaltern as the "Pimp". It is excoriating in its critique against
Sanskritic society while at the same time formulating its diatribe
with the favored weapon of the oppressive literary minority: erudite
Sanskrit. As Foucault points out: "Power is not an institution, and
not a structure; neither is it a certain strength we are endowed with;
it is the name that one attributes to a complex strategical situation
in a particular society." (What's with all the gibberish that is
printed on the left side? Surely this is a colonialist expropriation
of the Other's voice. Hold on... the Other here is the oppressive
literary minority! I'm confused.) [very famous post-colonialist's
student, name withheld]

posted by PDSz | 11:19 PM | 1 comments

Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Bsam yas rdo ring

The attractive new coating. I guess it makes it a little bit more
legible but they should have used some pink and neon green I feel.
Labels: Bsam yas, epigraphy, imperial period, tibetan studies

posted by PDSz | 8:42 PM | 6 comments

Friday, May 29, 2009
A note on Dharmasvāmin's travels

As most of you will have observed I am not quite up to date with
secondary literature (nor with primary literature for that matter), so
whatever I say here may have been discovered already. Jinajik tells me
that there is an annotated Japanese translation of the first part of
Chag lo the younger's priceless rnam thar. This is unavailable to me
and I do not read Japanese (unfortunately).

The passage we are concerned here is from the second chapter of
Dharmasvāmin's life (let's keep the re-Sanskritized name, although it
is thoroughly unjustified in my view). When he - through his disciple
- speaks of Thaṃ vihāra, he states:
"Further, in Nepāla there is a Vihāra called Thaṃ, also called the
"First Vihāra" [note 10: ka pa'i gtsug lag khang], or the "Upper
Vihāra" [note 11: Gong gi lha khang]." (p. 55 in Roerich's
You will find the Tibetan on p. 6.:
yang Bal yul na Thaṃ bi ha ra Ka pa'i gtsug lag khang ngam Gong gi lha
khang zer|
As far as I can tell Roerich read the ms. correctly here, but the
translation is problematic. I know of no tradition that would call the
Thaṃ bahi (or Vikramaśīla mahāvihāra if you prefer the Sanskrit) the
'first' or the 'upper' monastery.

It is not difficult to see the Newari Kwāpā dyaḥ behind ka pa'i gtsug
lag khang. It should then follow that the expression gong gi gtsug lag
khang is a corruption of *ā gaṃ [/gi] gtsug lag khang, rendering
Newari āgaṃ dyaḥ. I am not quite sure how this might have happenned if
it is indeed a corruption. Chances are that 'gong' or 'gi' originally
read *gaṃ and the *dang a (instead of 'dang ā') was somehow misread '-
ng ngam'. All this can happen quite easily in dbu med and one can play
further with adding or deducting a few strokes. But the syntax is
still unsatisfactory. zer does indeed seem to suggest that we are
dealing with alternative names here. Perhaps Chos dar did not quite
understand what his master was trying to explain?

Labels: Dharmasvāmin, gnas yig, Kathmandu, Thaṃ bahi


Daniel Stender's blog on (Buddhist) Sanskrit philology and associated
issues (LaTeX, textual criticism etc.) RSS FeedComments

Home Epic and Purāṇic Bibliography online
August 7, 2009 by danstender · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Site report
The extreme comprehensive Epic and Purāṇic Bibliography (EPB) is now
available online here at the Indology in Göttingen. The database
contains even more entries than the original printed version which was
compiled in Tübingen (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz 1992). The datasets
include title descriptions resp. summaries, records of reviews, a
quoted passages index and even some library signatures. The quoted
passages are searchable which makes this tool even more useful.

The LaTeX Notebook 1-3 (repost)
July 16, 2009 by danstender · Leave a Comment
Filed under: LaTeX
Document classes
The KOMA script (3.0) document classes and packets developed by Markus
Kohm and Jens-Uwe Morawski are replacements for the standard LaTeX
classes and are widely used and very rich in features. A basic
attribute is that in difference to the standard classes of LaTeX they
implement typical European typestting defaults like the principle of
the Golden Section (Der goldene Schnitt) following the highly
influential 20th century typographer legend Jan Tschichold. The
developers run a special page for documentation, the documentation is
here, and a short reference is to be found here. Read the Practex 3
(2006) article Replacing LaTeX2e standard classes with KOMA-Scipt.

Confproc (0.4f) is a document class for conference proceedings created
for the DAFx-06 (9th International Conference on Digital Audio Effects
Montréal). A packet like this demonstrates the power of a macro based
typesetting system like LaTeX. It features an own BibTeX style and is
mend to produce Pdf, so it makes full integrated use of the Hyperref
packet. The documentation is here, there is a Report on the making of
the DAFX-06 proceedings and finally here are the proceedings. A broad
use of tools like this might help speeding up the publishing of
conference proceedings in the future. Cf. Vefaille’s A new package for
conference proceedings [Confproc] {PracTeX Journal 2007,4}.

Wordlike (1.2b) simply manipulates the standard LaTeX layout in a way
that the output looks like made with Word. For whatever reason (being
spoiled or the fact that in certain situations something else would be
considered as behind), with Wordlike you are able to look like Word
but you can use everything else which comes with LateX. Product of the
year! The documentation (here) selfevidently is written in Wordlike.

Papertex (1.2a) is a highly customizable class for creating little
newspapers, newsletters etc. The developers say that “it is possible
to change the aspect of (almost) everything”. There are special
environments for news, shortnews etc. Very interesting. Package
documentation, example newspaper page here. It seems that the Vidūṣaka
was also made with Papertex. Cf. Tortosa/Bleda’s PaperTeX: Creating
newspapers using LaTeX 2e {Tugboat 28 (2007), 20-23}.

Exam (2.3) is a class for easy typesetting of exam scripts
(Klausuren). There are environments for apropriate headers and
footers, fields for student’s name, multiple choice questions
environments, answer fields for the master copy etc. etc. Might be
very useful for teachers (there are alternative packets Examdesign and
Exams. Documentation here.

Refman (2.0e) provides report and article-style classes for classy
(technical) references and manuals with the main feature of a wide
left margin for notes, inspired by manuals of Adobe (but a wide right
margin would be useful, too). There is a demo document Changing the
layout with LaTeX, the package documentation is here.

Some minor hacks
⚫ Setting section titles and description label the same font like the


⚫ Let every new section begin on a fresh page, this can be done with


⚫ No reset of the footnote counter at a new chapter (book and report
classes) is possible with Remreset:


⚫ \pagestyle{empty} for multi-page toc:


⚫ Prevent footnotes to be broken to the next page (a standard hack):


⚫ Proposal for custom footnotes:


⚫ Continuing (”paragraphed”) footnotes could be done with the Fnpara
packet, but the same code is also part of the more versatile Footmisc
(option “para”). Multiple levels of footnotes could be realized with
the Manyfoot packet (part of the Ncctools bundle by Alexander
Rozhenko), but both functions and other features like per page
numbering are also provided by the comparatively new Bigfoot packet by
David Kastrup. So it’s a good idea to choose Bigfoot until you need
even a much more fancier functionality provided only by special much
complex critical edition packets like Ledmac (a post on that coming
up). For Bigfoot cf. (if available) Kastrup’s Benefits, care and
feeding of the bigfoot package {TugBoat 29 (2008), 181 ff.}.

⚫ A useful collection of footnote related packets (usually treated
together with endnotes and marginnotes) could be found here

Sloppy typesetting and hack ressources
When typing a lot of Sanskrit LaTeX usually has to deal with
comparatively long text blocks while often the system is not able to
locate hyphenation spots within an English or German or other non-
Sanskrit environments (no to mention that proper hyphenation patterns
for romanized Sanskrit are still a desideratum). For this it’s
widespread to turn the spacing tolerance to \sloppy even if to turn to
sloppypar somewhere and in the preamble in particular is considered to
be inappropriate (c.f. Trettin/Fenn – Obsolete commands and packages,
1.8: Should I use \sloppy? ). But there are compromising solutions
around slightly changing several linebreaking and spacing parameters
in a balanced way to to loose up the normally very strict
specifications of LaTeX like the hack invented by Axel Reichert:

\tolerance 1414
\hbadness 1414
\emergencystretch 1.5em
\hfuzz 0.3pt
\vfuzz \hfuzz

I’ve found that hack on Texnik.de which is generally a very good
ressource for hacks resp. workarounds. Another very useful ressource
for solutions like this or for finding the right packet is the Tex-faq
by the German usergroup DANTE. I also recommend Anselm Lingnau’s LaTeX
Hacks (O’Reilly 2007, ISBN 978-3-89721-477-4, also German) and a title
can’t be missed is certainly Frank Mittelbach/Michel Goossens’ LaTeX
Companion (2nd ed. Addison-Wesley 2004, ISBN 0-201-36299-6).

Parallel typesetting
The parallel typesetting of different texts esp. of text and its
translation is common and in Indology there are the famous editions
made by Ernst Waldschmidt (1897-1985) for example. There are different
packets for LaTeX to deal with parallel typesetting of text streams,
basically that means providing and aligning custom boxes.

Parrun by M. Dominci (1.1) provides two environments fframe and
sframe, which makes the usage a little bit complicated I think. It
seems unless not invoked with the option multicol the packet is mend
for vertical parallel typesetting (not tested).

Parcolumns (1.2) is part of the sophisticated Sauerj bundle by J.
Sauer. The packet provides an environment parcolumns in which the
columns are generated with the command \colchunk. Even more than 2
columns are possible on the same page, it’s possible to customize
colwidth and distance, it’s possible to leave out column fills … works

The ‘classic’ for parallel typesetting is Parallel (beta 4) by M.
Eckermann. That one has basically the same basic usage using an
environment Parallel with subcommands ParallelLText and ParallelRText
while only two columns are possible. The names are displeasing to type
and even for auto 50/50 width there must be empty braces invoking the
environment (\begin{Parallel}{}{}). A nice feature is that it’s
possible to arrange the columns on different (odd/even) pages. C.f.
Mittelbach/Goossens, LaTeX Companion {2nd ed., Addison-Wesley 2004},
p. 3.5 seq. (3.5.2: parallel – Two text streams aligned).

Generally there are some conspicuities dealing with footnotes in the
tested packets. Parcolumns withdraw footnotes as far as I can see it
completely (a workaround is the use of the packet Footnote (1.13)
being a part of the fabulous Mdwtools by M. Wooding: the command
\makesavenoteenv which makes footnotes emerge even in traping
environments like tabular [!] and parcolumns or one can wrap the
environment savenotes around). Parallel generates an own layer of
footnotes and places them immediately after the environment ends (if
demanded or not) but employs an option SeparatedFootnotes for
columnwise handling of its footnotes.

Another solution is Ledpar (03b patch 0.4) by P.R. Wilson which
belongs to the Ledmac package for critical editions. Ledmac is one of
the most versatile LaTeX packets for textediting available and will be
the issue in this series in the future. If one uses Ledmac and wants
additional parallel typesetting support surely Ledpar is going to be
the choice because it’s somewhat guaranteed to be compatible. Ledpar
runs nested environments for the columns (\begin{pairs} \begin
{Leftside} \end{Leftside} \begin{Rightside} \end{Rightside} \end
{pairs}) and I think that could be improved in the future, but there
are a lot of options incl. setting on facing pages, line enumeration,
verse typesetting etc. which makes the packet interesting for users
which are interested in parallel typesetting but have demands going
beyond what is provided by the other ones described above.

When typesetting poetry resp. verses an ordinary tabular might be just
enough because there are always comparatively short single
corresponding lines and not text streams which have to be aligned.
Custom linewidth wide cells could be done for example with the
tabular* environment like:

Test test test & Test test test \\
Test test test & Test test test

To use a tabular for typesetting parallel verses is a highly
customizeable method.

On the Bodhicaryāvatārapañjikā at the Asiatic Society of Bengal
June 21, 2009 by danstender · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Bodhicaryāvatāra, Footnotes
There are three manuscripts of Prajñākaramati’s Bodhicaryāvatāra-
pañjikā listed in the Descriptive Catalogue of Sanscrit Manuscripts in
the Government Collection of the Royal Asiatic Society of Bengal of
1917 [1], cf. pp. 49 seq.:

■“49. 3830. bodhicaryyāvatāra pañjikā. [...] Substance, palm-leaf.
Character: Newari. Date, N.S. 198 = 1078 A.D. In good state of
preservation. With the first leaf and 26 others missing. Colophon: –
bodhicaryyāvatāre prajñāpāramitāparicchedaṭīkā samāptā | …”
■“50. 9979. bodhicaryyāvatāra. Bodhicaryāvatāra and the Pañjikā
commentary. [...] Four seasoned palm-leaves. 20 x 2. Written in old
Newari Character. I. Bodhicaryāvatāra with six lines on a page, faded,
containing the colophon: – bodhicaryyāvatāre dhyānapāramitā ‘ṣṭamaḥ
paricchedaḥ | …”

■“51. 3829. bodhicaryāvatāraṭīkā. [...] Substance, palm-leaf, 12 x 2
inches. Folio, 109. Lines, 6 on a page. Extend in slokas, 2725.
Character, Bengali of the 12th century. Appearance, fresh but worm-
eaten in places. Complete. Written in a neat and small hand. Colophon:
bodhicaryyāvatāre prajñāpāramitāparicchedaṭīkā samāptā | …”

But I think the entries could be more precise. Considering the
colophon line it seems that item no. 49 is another manuscript of the
ninth chapter of Prajñākaramati’s commentary which seems to be
transmitted independently carrying the title Bca-ṭīkā just like item
no. 51 (Vaidya claims that the Ṭīkā was composed before as an
independent text, cf. [2], p. ix. This is a tempting theory because it
would explain why Prajñākaramati doesn’t commented on the tenth
chapter of the Bca). So therefore there were resp. there are two
witnesses of the commentary on the ninth chapter – the Ṭīkā, and one
manuscript of chapters 1-8. The lacunae in La Vallée Poussin’s
original edition ([3], 3,22-4,45 & 8,109-186 [end of 8th chapter])
also suggest that there wasn’t another text instance.

In the eleventh volume of the Notices on Sanskrit manuscripts [4]
Haraprasāda Śāstrī reports in 1895 about two manuscripts of
Prajñākaramati’s commentary that he has aquired that time (p. 7). He
writes that one Nepalese item carries the whole text and another
Maithilī manuscript carries the ninth chapter only (the confusion
between Maithilī and Bengalī suggest that the script of this
manuscript is Old Bengalī which Roth called “Proto-Bengali-Cum-Proto-
Maithili”, cf. [5], pp. 32 seq.). The Nepalese manuscript he had
described in the same way before in his article On a new find of old
Nepalese manuscripts [6], and it is stated in the catalogue that the
record was taken from this article because the piece was still
borrowed away to La Vallée Poussin.

The information on the regarded material given by La Vallée Poussin in
both editions, the one of the whole text and also his previous edition
of the Ṭīkā of 1889 ([7], p. 233), is very meagre, but in both works
he points to Haraprasāda Śāstri’s Notices concerning the regarded
material. So my solution for this puzzle would be to assume that what
is no. 50 in the catalogue was bundled together with no. 49 the time
it was discovered and separated later, and so is recognized for
carrying the whole text of Prajñākaramati’s commentary. That would
also mean that the script of both pieces not differs significant.

By the way, the item numbers of the pieces (9979 in comparison with
3829 and 3830) are in line with that. Funny: the line iti
prajñākaramativiracitāyāṃ bodhicaryāvatārapañjikāyāṃ
prajñāpāramitāparicchedo navamaḥ in Vaidya’s edition ([2], p.282)
couldn’t be found nowhere in the manuscripts – shame, shame shame!


[1] Hara Prasad Shāstri (Comp.): A descriptive catalogue of Sanscrit
manuscripts under the care of the Asiatic Society of Bengal. 1:
Buddhist manusripts. Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press 1917

[2] P[araśurām] L[akṣman] Vaidya (Ed.): Bodhicaryāvatāra of Śāntideva
with the commentary Pañjikā of Prajñākaramati. Bombay: Mithila
Institute of Post-Graduate Studies and Research in Sanskrit Learning
Darbhanga 1960 (Buddhist Sanskrit Texts 12)

[3] Louis de La Vallée Poussin (Ed.): Bodhicaryāvatārapañjikā.
Prajñākaramati’s commentary on the Bodhicaryāvatāra of Çāntideva.
Calcutta: Baptist Mission Press 1901-14 (Bibliotheca Indica 150, fasc.
983, 1031, 1090, 1126, 1139, 1305, 1399)

[4] Haraprasád Sástri: Notices of Sanskrit mss 11. Calcutta: Baptist
Mission Press 1895

[5] Dragomir Dimitrov: Tables of Old Bengali script. In: D.Dimitrov,
U.Roesler, R.Steiner (Eds.): Indian and Tibetan Studies. Wien 2002
(Wiener Studien 53), pp. 27-78

[6] Hara Prasád Shástri: On a new find of old Nepalese manuscripts.
In: Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, Part 3: Anthropology 3
(1893), pp. 245-49

[7] Louis de La Vallée Poussin (Ed.): Bouddhisme. Études et Matériaux.
Ādikarmapradīpa. Bodhicaryāvatāraṭīkā. London: Luzac & Co. 1898 [Bca-
ṭīkā pp. 233-388]

LaTeX reloaded: Lua(La)TeX is coming up
June 11, 2009 by danstender · 2 Comments
Filed under: LaTeX

LuaTeX is an ambitious TeX project which combines the TeX engine with
the highly versatile scripting language Lua through embedding a Lua
interpreter into it. Like its somewhat cognate XeTeX it is a
replacement for pdfTeX and produces Pdf documents from the TeX source
directly. LuaTeX is natively Unicode capable and makes use of up-to-
date OpenType font technology. But the most advantage this TeX engine
is getting from embedding Lua. It’s not only working as extension to
the typesetting engine but also as extension to the macro language
itself. So LuaTeX packages could consist of only one line calling a
Lua source code file to the document and it’s also possible to run Lua
code directly from the document. In the not so far away future this
could mean to have dream LaTeX applications like a postprocessor-free
Sanskrit sorting order index module or other very fancy things like
this. It’s definitely a development to watch!

The first beta (0.10) was released at the TUG 2007 conference,
currently 0.25.4 is included in TeX Live 2008, 0.40 came out recently
(BachoTeX 2009 release) and is going to be part of Tex Live 2009, 0.50
and 0.60 are announced still for this year (see the roadmap on the
project homepage). It is sponsored by the Oriental TeX project at the
Colorado State University (cf. I.S. Hamid: OrientalTeX. A new
direction in scholarly complex-script typesetting {TUGboat 28,1
(2007), 11). Developing it means also to make more and more of the TeX
internals available to the Lua interpreter. Currently LuaTeX is
primarily working as an engine for TeX and TeX formats like ConTeXt,
but recently there are the first basic LuaLaTeX packages available.

A set of rudimentary LuaLaTeX packages providedby Manuel Pégourié-
Gonnard are now available at his GitHub account (Git is a version
control system – you can download them manually but the best way is to
use a Git client software). The packets are also to be found on CTAN,
directory macros/luatex.The packet luatextra includes low-level macros
and an inputenc. And there is also a fontspec module. That’s enough to
get a LuaLaTeX document rolling but unfortunately it came out that it
is not so easy to get a running LuaLaTeX distribution right now. My
Linux (Debian Squeeze/Testing) employs an independent LuaTeX 0.40
(here), which is really up-to-date but comes without compiled LuaLaTeX
format files, which are no that easy to hand-make. I don’t know how
the situation is going to be on other OSs. Anyway, I’ve been told that
TeX Live 2009 is going to include the format files and so that is
going to be the next big toy.

Further readings/watchings:

Towards LuaTeX: H. Hagen: Introduction to the LuaTeX project {talk at
TUG 2007 conference}; Where does TeX end, Lua start and vice-versa
{talk at TUG 2008 conference}; LuaTeX. Howling to the moon {TUGboat
26,2 (2006), 152-57}; The TeX-Lua mix {TUGboat 29,3 (2008), 383-91};
T. Hoekwater: LuaTeX: what has been done, and what will be done {talk
at TUG 2008 conference}, LuaTeX {TUGboat 28,3 (2007), 312-13};
OpenType fonts in LuaTeX {TUGboat 29,1 (2008), 34-35}

Towards Lua: R. Ierusalimschy: About Lua {talk TUG 2007}; K. Jung / A.
Brown: Beginning Lua programming. Wiley 2007. ISBN 978-0-470-06917-2;
Lua 5.1 Reference Manual; bookshelf at the project page

A collection of some online available* journals
June 3, 2009 by danstender · 2 Comments
Filed under: Bibliography
*Includes “partly online available” and “online available depending if
subscribed to (individually or by your library)“

eJournal of Indian medicine (eJIM)

Indologica Taurinensia (IT, ISSN 1023-3881)

Journal asiatique (JA, ISSN 0021-762x)

Journal of the International Association of Tibetan Studies (JIATS,
ISSN 1550-6363)

Journal of Buddhist Ethics (JBE, ISSN 1076-9005)

Indo-Iranian Journal (IIJ, ISSN (online ed.) 1572-8563, available
through JSTOR)

Journal of South Asian Linguistics (JSAL)

Journal of Indian Philosophy (JIP, ISSN (online ed.) 1573-0395,
available through JSTOR).

Journal of the American Oriental Society (JAOS, ISSN 0003-0279,
available through JSTOR)

Journal of Indian and Buddhist Studies / Indogaku Bukkyōgaku Kenkyū
(JIBS, ISSN 0019-4344)

Internation Journal of Tantric Studies (IJTS, ISSN 1084-7553)

Electronic Journal of Vedic Studies (EJVS, ISSN 1084-7561)

Journal of South Asia Women Studies (JSAWS, ISSN 1084-7478)

Annual Report of the Internation Research Institute for Advanced
Buddhology at Soka University (ARIRIAB, ISSN 1343-8980)

Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft (ZDMG, ISSN

Wiener Zeitschrift für die Kunde Südasiens (WZKS, ISSN (online ed.)

There are a lot of other journals available at the THDL. If you didn’t
already knew, an outstanding tool for bibiographing relevant journal
articles is SARDS 2. Keep up with E-Toc-Alert in Heidelberg. Peter
Wyzlic runs reviews @ Indologica.de (”Zeitschriftenschau”).

This posting is open for additions, please don’t hesitate to drop an
addition. Thanks in advance!

Some scans of IASWR manuscript photographies
May 28, 2009 by danstender · 2 Comments
Filed under: Manuscriptology
There are some scans of the items of the IASWR MBB microfiche
manuscript photography collection available now. I’ve uploaded them @
www.danielstender.com/iaswr. There is also the title list. The scans
have been made in Bonn at the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. Thanks to them
(esp. Irmgard Bartel) for making their microscanner available. The
files are going to stay for a couple of weeks. The digitizing of the
rest of this unique, precious collection is an desideratum, but lacks
the proper funding by now. Rare material like this should be available
on the net. Please enjoy! The photographies on the microfiches are of
different quality, and their scans represent that. Djvu software is
available here.

(taken from mbb-ii-229 “buddhacitrasamgrāha”)

Comments on some items (posted partially previously on blog
predecessor, thanks for Adrian Cîrstei for saving it):

I-20 (”Pīṭhatantra” according to title list) has been identified by
Péter-Daniel Szántó (Oxford) as Caryāvratipada’s
Catuṣpīṭhamaṇḍalopāyikā, describing the initiation ritual of the
Catuṣpīṭha cult, c.f. Antiquarian enquiries into the initiation
manuals of the Catuṣpīṭha {NGMCP Newsletter 6 (2008), 2-12}.

I-41 “Catuḥpīṭhamahātantrarāja”, I-42 “Prajñāvataraṇayoga” and I-43
“Catuḥpīṭhavivṛti” have been identified as the collection owner’s copy
of NAK [National Archives Kathmandu] 5-37 [= NGMPP A 138/10] plus NAK
5-38 [= NGMPP B 112/4]. These mss contains fragments of Āryadeva’s
Catuṣpīṭhamaṇḍalopāyikā, c.f. Szánto, op.cit, fn. 37.

I-83 suggests to be a very rare manuscript of Asaṅga Maitreyanātha’s
Yogācāra classic Mahāyānasūtrālaṅkāra. But during it’s exmination by
Kamaleswar Bhattacarya (CNRS Paris) it came out that this is indeed
just a transcript of Sylvain Lévi’s edition (Paris 1907, c.f.
Observations sur l’édition du Mahāyānasūtrālaṃkāra par Sylvain Lévi
{L. Bansat-Boudon / R. Lardinios (Ed.): Sylvain Lévi (1863-1935).
Études indiennes, histoire sociale. Actes du colloque tenu à Paris les
8-10 octobre 2003. Turnhout: Brepols 2007, 71 ff.}), because the text
carries the same typical readings (for a list of emendations c.f. For
a new edition of the Mahāyānasūtrālaṃkāra {Journal of the Nepal
Research Center 12 (2001), 5-14}), besides this “manuscript” also
looks very imitating a printed edition. So this item plays only a very
minor if even a single role in the criticism of that text. For this
reason I’ve scanned only a representative portion of this item.

II-11 identified as disparate folios of a Abhidhānottara palm-leaf
manuscript, the longest explanatory tantra of the Śamvara cult.

II-117 and no. I-62 of this collection are precious manuscripts of
Candrakīrti’s Prasannapadā, the important commentary on Nāgarjuna’s
Māhayāna philosophy ground work Mūlamadhyamakakārikā. Althought these
two items play only a subordinated role in the criticism of that text
(c.f. J.W. de Jong, Textcritical notes on the Prasannapadā {Indo-
Iranian Journal 20 (1978), 26-59 & 217-52}, 26; A. MacDonald, The
Prasannapadā: more manuscripts from Nepal {Wiener Zeitschrift für die
Kunde Südasiens 44 (2000), 165-81}, 167), and I think it’s an
advantage to have it available.

III-5 (”Catuḥpiṭhabṛhatmahātantra”) was identified by P.D. Szántó and
Adrian Cîrstei as Jagadānandajīvabhadra’s Yogāmbarasādhana.

The seasons turn … Granthinām stays!
May 27, 2009 by danstender · 1 Comment

Hi friends. Granthinām is back on the net. I’ve got some problems with
the server and the remote backup software and accidentially the whole
blog (Granthinām 2) was shaved away in an instant. … I’m sorry? Yes …
no, I didn’t got another backup of the database. So this is the third
restart and in the future there will be all the necessary precautions.
By the way, thanks for the appreciation which has been given to me
during the last months.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-18 20:07:50 UTC

Last updated - Fri, 18 Sep 2009 11:30 pm IST

‘I study other religions to understand mine’

Catholic priest from city was India’s only representative at Sanskrit
even in Japan; is an authority on Sanskrit literature

By Arundhati Ranade
Posted On Saturday, September 19, 2009 at 12:18:40 AM

It’s necessary to study the original language of the land if you want
to have in-depth knowledge of the culture of the soil. By studying
other religions, I understand my religion better.”

— Father Noel Sheth

He was the only Indian to serve as chief convenor of a section at the
re-cently concluded 14th World Sanskrit Conference in Kyoto, Japan.
The sixty-year-old is also a Puneite and a catholic priest.

Father Noel Sheth is a professor of Indian Philosophies and Religions
and a scholar of Sanskrit language. His topic of study is ‘Krishna in
Ancient Religious Sanskrit Literature’.

Talking about the conference, he said, “About 500 scholars from 37
countries participated in the event through 15 different sections. I
was a chief chairperson of the section called ‘History of Religion’.”

Father Noel has a doctorate in Sanskrit from Harvard University and is
a senior Sanskrit scholar in the country.

He was a student of Fergusson College and had topped the college at
graduation level and the University of Pune for MA in Sanskrit.

“People used to be surprised after hearing that I’m a practising
Catholic and still pursuing Sanskrit. Even my classmates were
initially surprised. But later, we developed a very cordial
relationship,” he said.

“I got appreciation from all sectors during the World Sanskrit
Conference. Such conferences are for thinking beyond the geographical
barriers of languages.

The motto of this conference is ‘Vasudhaiv utumbakam’ [meaning the
world is one family],” Father Noel said. Father Noel has also authored
a book titled The Divinity of Krishna in which he has studied three
sanskrit texts namely Harivansh, Vishnu Pu-ran and Bhagwat Puran.

“In all these three texts that belong to different eras, Krishna’s
life story has been told, but the way of narration and the approach is
different in all the three.

In Bhagwat Puran, which is a recent one as compared to the other two,
Krishna’s character is interpreted mystically.

In an early era Krishna’s immoral image was not that clear. My study
was to understand the development in Krishna’s divinity.”

“I was brought up in a family where there was openness about other
religions. I used to learn Bhagwad Geeta as a child,” he said, adding,
“It’s necessary to study the original language of the land if you want
to have in-depth knowledge of the culture of the soil.

By studying other religions, I understand my religion better,” he
explains the thought behind his study and research.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-19 22:35:02 UTC

Opening a printed copy of the international standard ISO 15919
Transliteration of Devanagari and related Indic scripts into Latin
characters, available from National Standards Bodies, it might seem to
be rather complicated because of the amount of information, the
choices to be made for a transliteration, and the number of tables.
This site will guide you through all stages of the process of
transliterating a text.

This site also provides further information on the transliteration of
Indic scripts, some of which is not given in ISO 15919 (such as the
relation to Unicode).

Please note that the transliteration system of ISO 15919 is defined by
means of options and recommendations, tables and (on this site) Notes,
and not just by tables. Details are in I, II below. All Notes need to
be used, but not all are referred to in the tables.

Conformance to the standard is to be stated in terms of which options
and recommendations are followed.

Some of the pages on this site open in new windows, which may then be
resized, if desired. Feedback on errors, problems, possible
improvements, etc, are welcome by email.

N.B. The terms surface structure, deep structure, slot in are not used
in ISO 15919.
Nothing on this site is a standards document. While every effort has
been made to ensure accuracy, the material comes without warranty.

List of abbreviations used.

Transliteration of Indic scripts: the process

I. Selecting Options and Recommendations (with clarification of 7-
bit option, 3 September 2009)

II. Transliteration Tables and Notes

Main Table - Explanation
Main Table - 1 (Tamil au CORRECTED June 12, 2003)
Main Table - 2
Main Table - 3

Table A. Vedic accents
Table B. Schemes of modified Indic characters for P-A.


Transliteration of Indic scripts: additional explanations

Characters, glyphs, and elements of an Indic script: what is
to be

Bindi, Tippi, and Adhak

Relation of ISO 15919 to Unicode/ ISO 10646 (Not in ISO

CORRECTED 21 January, 2002.

Note on ISCII:1991 and ISO 15919

Chart of equivalent Indic characters

Other sites

Fonts. Transliteration and Devanagari fonts for Sanskrit.
CSX+ fonts, with Latin diacritics.
ISO site

Last updated: 3 September 2009




Assamese script
Bengali script
Devanagari script
Gujarati script
Gurmukhi script
Kannada script
Latin script


Malayalam script
Oriya script
Sinhala script
Tamil script
Telugu script

Last updated: 10 June 2002


Indic transliteration
I. Selecting options and recommendations

1. Select

Either the diacritic option: diacritical marks are used.

Or the limited character set option: only 7-bit ASCII characters will
be used. Apply the conversion table at the end of the transliteration
process, and at any earlier stage if desired. (Table clarified 3
September 2009)
2. Next, select

Either the simplified nasalization option, as given in the Main Table
of Section II, subject to Note 6.

Or the strict nasalization option: agrees with the Main Table of
Section II (with Note 6) except as follows:

ALL SCRIPTS - Anusvara before a class consonant is transliterated
as the class nasal, unless it arises from sandhi of final m in
languages other than modern vernaculars.

used for modern vowel nasalization are transliterated by a tilde ~
above the nasalised vowel (above the second vowel of ai, au).

MODERN PANJABI - Gur. Bindi and Tippi with the vowels a, i, u
before a class consonant are translated by the class nasal; and
elsewhere they are transliterated .
3. If the Indic text is not written continuously, continue at 4. If
the text is written continuously, it is recommended that
transliterated words are written separately, provided they do not
share a common character.

4. If Malayalam language, Nepali language, and the Vedic accent
Anudatta are not involved, continue at 5.

4a. For Malayalam language only: Select

Either the Malayalam alveolar option:
Or the uniform alveolar option: not using .

4b. For Nepali language only: Select

Either the two-way urpha option suitable for reverse
transliteration, .
Or the one-way urpha option where reverse transliteration will not
be needed, .

4c. For the Vedic accent Anudatta, it is recommended that it be
transliterated as a line under the vowel (under both of ai, au).
5. If the scripts Ass., Ben., Dev., Guj., Gur., and Ori. are not
involved, continue at 6.

5a. For these scripts: Select

Either the uniform vowel option: the vowels 'e', 'o' will be
marked long, uniform with the transliteration of scripts having both
long and short 'e', 'o'.
Or the non-uniform vowel option: the vowels 'e', 'o' will not be
marked long, as usual for scripts not having short 'e', 'o'.
6. There is one more recommendation, connected with sets of up to 15
Indic characters sometimes used to represent certain P-A. characters
in Urdu, Persian, or Arabic words. There are several such schemes, in
which some characters have diacritical marks added, while some may
not. It is recommended that such schemes should be transliterated
according the details given along with Table B of II.

Note that the last six rows of Main Table - 3, which occur again as
part of Table B, are part of the standard and are not a mere

Last updated: 3 September 2009

Loading Image...


Indic transliteration
Explanation of Main Table
The Main Table corresponds to selecting the following options:
diacritic option
simplified nasalization option
uniform alveolar option (but also shows the Latin character for the
Malayalam alveolar option)
two-way urpha option
uniform vowel option

A dotted circle represents an arbitrary, but appropriate, character.

Round brackets enclose characters which belong to older forms of the
script, or are extensions of the basic script, or (under Ben.) are
Assamese characters.
Last updated: 10 June 2002




Loading Image...


Table B. Schemes of modified Indic characters for P-A.
In general, an Indic character in a scheme for representing P-A.
characters is transliterated as shown in Table B, according to the
'original P-A. character'.
E.g. in the Dev. example scheme:
Indic characters in brackets are not so transliterated, because:
unmodified Indic characters are transliterated as in the Main Table of
Section II.
Indic characters used for more than one P-A. character are given the
'dominant' transliteration as shown in the Table B.
E.g. If the Dev. example scheme is used in a text, then is
transliterated at every occurrence.
The corresponding 7-bit transliteration is also a recommendation

N.B. Table B is not for transliterating P-A. characters, but for
transliterating modified Indic characters occurring in schemes for
representing certain P-A.characters, and only when these Indic
characters occur in such schemes.

E.g. When is used outside of these schemes, it may have other
meanings, not covered by the transliteration standard.


Indic transliteration
The transliterations are case-insensitive.

The inherent vowel a is always transliterated.

Latin punctuation and Hindu-Arabic numerals are retained unchanged.

Numbers in Indic scripts are converted into Hindu-Arabic form.

Mal. final in a word is transliterated , except for single letters
such as , k.

Mal. Anusvara final in a word is always transliterated m.

With a vowel, come after the vowel, but with a semi-vowel comes
before the semi-vowel.

Tel. half-nasal used for modern nasalization in Hindi, etc., is always
transliterated by a tilde above the vowel, as in the strict
nasalization option.

For Pali the transliterated half-nasal is replaced by the full nasal.

Mal. combined with a consonant is transliterated r. When final in a
word it is transliterated in Malayalam words, but either way as
appropriate for other languages.

The transliteration y is used after a consonant, except after
itself: .

Ambiguity is resolved by inserting a colon : between two
transliterated characters having an unexpected meaning, or before one
such character. This colon is never placed at the end of a word.

Other ambiguities are treated in the same way.

Different glyphs belonging to the same Indic character have the same
If an Indic character in any script is equivalent to a character
covered by the standard, their transliterations are the same. (This
may be called 'slotting in'.) E.g. Avagraha in Gur. older
orthography gives .

Last updated: 10 June 2002


Characters, glyphs, and elements of an Indic script:
what is to be transliterated?
In general terms, a character is an abstract component of a script,
with no visible form, while a glyph is a visible component of a
script. For example, a, a are two glyphs both corresponding to the
character 'lower case a' in the Latin script. Similar glyphs found in
different fonts also correspond to this character.

An element of a script will be defined as an abstract unit of
linguistic meaning. A script may be analyzed into a minimal set of
elements (vowels, consonants, etc.), such that the linguistic meaning
of any text using the script is expressible in terms of these

For example, in older English spelling the vowels e, æ are contrasting
elements of Latin script, but for recent English spelling e, æ are
equivalent orthography and æ is not needed as an element.

Unicode characters
The Unicode meaning of character (i.e. a character encoded in Unicode)
is best understood by noting that the following are included as
Unicode characters in Indic scripts (it is helpful to remember that
Unicode is geared to presentation). (See The Unicode Standard /
Version 3.0. Addison-Wesley, 2000)

Indic Unicode characters

Full vowels.
Matras (vowel forms for combination with consonants).
The second parts of two-part matras.
Nasalisation signs.
Bases for Gur. vowel signs.
Two Vedic accents.

Consonants in general.

Signs affecting the meaning of consonantal characters (e.g. Virama,
and Gur. Adhak).
A few consonantal clusters (most are formed as combinations of
Formatting characters forming special combinations of consonants (e.g.
for Nepali Urpha).
Combining diacritics.
Characters with diacritics for use in various languages.
Numerical and currency characters.
Punctuation and similar signs.
Typographical symbols representing words.

Glyphs and characters

The rules for rendering strings of Unicode characters as glyphs may be
shown using the following notation: a Unicode character is denoted by
square brackets around a representative glyph of the character; for
reference, a non-Unicode character is denoted by curly brackets around
a glyph.

The formatting character [ZWJ] is 'zero width joiner', and [ZWNJ] is
'zero width non-joiner'. The following list of basic rendering rules
also shows a few non-Unicode characters:

In Indic scripts, most glyphs of consonant clusters correspond to
several combined Unicode characters, and not to a separate Unicode

A few glyphs with nuqtas are also Unicode characters. Thus:

Because of the existence of different fonts and styles, and also
because of alternative glyphs, the glyphs shown above are not unique.
This may be indicated schematically by:

Elements and transliteration

Glyphs cannot be the basis of transliteration, because some are merely
alternatives and others are two or more combined consonants.
Characters are also unsuitable: formatting characters, characters
which are diacritics or part of a matra, and every instance of the
Unicode character Virama, are not suitable for transliteration, nor
would it be proper to have a special transliteration for each non-
Unicode character for combined consonants.

In a specimen of text, the string of glyphs corresponds to the surface
structure of the script. The meaning of the glyphs corresponds to the
deep structure of the script. The deep structure is therefore
expressible using a minimal set of script elements. Transliteration is
best applied to this set, or a subset of it.

Example: a minimal set of script elements for traditional Dev. used
for Sanskrit may be taken to be:

vowels a, ..., au
consonants k, kh, ..., s
nasalizations Anusvara, Candrabindu
breathings h, Visarga, Vedic Visargas, Jihvamuliya, Upadhmaniya
Vedic accents (various)
numerals 0 - 9
punctuation (various)

The same classes of elements, with the addition of currency signs,
apply to Indic scripts in general. (Here we regard typographical
symbols as out of scope for a transliteration scheme.)

Last updated: 10 June 2002


Bindi, Tippi, and Adhak

Gur. Bindi and Tippi in modern Panjabi are used according to the
following rule:

The initial forms of short and long 'u' take Bindi;
Short and long 'u' after a consonant take Tippi;
All other short vowels take Tippi;
All other long vowels take Bindi.

Gur. Adhak simply doubles the following consonant, or puts the
unaspirated consonant before an aspirated one: . Before a vowel,
Adhak is treated by resolution of ambiguity (see Note 12).

Last updated: 10 June 2002

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-19 22:50:24 UTC





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Footnotes to the Unicode names in U1:

a. Gur. BINDI
b. Tam. also Aytham (the correct name)
c. Tam., Tel., Kan., Mal. E
d. Gur., Tam., Tel., Kan., Mal. EE
e. Tam., Tel., Kan., Mal. O
f. Gur., Tam., Tel., Kan., Mal. OO
g. Ben., Gur., Ori. RRA. This is different from the other characters
h. Kan. 'a mistake for LLLA'
Footnotes (fn.) to the transliteration in U1:

Tel. applies only for modern nasalisation in Hindi, etc.
Tel. old half nasal.
Meaningful only in combination.

Out of scope.

This glyph has no one-to-one mapping to the transliteration. Vedic
accents are complicated (cf. Wikner on accents) and controversial (cf.
Gardner). Table A shows the transliteration of Vedic accents when they
are identified. As characters, the accents Udatta, Anudatta in Table A
are identical with the corresponding Unicode characters. Their
transliterations are not given in the mapping table because of the
complications. (Unicode 3.0 (2000), Sec.2.2, p.13, specifies that
characters and glyphs need not be one-to-one.)
Seems to be a Latin accent.
Ass. character.
Tam. numerals (see Note 4).
Footnotes to the Sinhala mapping U2:

For Pali the first element in this compound consonant is the full
Compound consonant.
Meaningful only in combination.
Out of scope.

Last updated: 10 June 2002


Mapping of some composite Unicode characters to Latin

1. Indic characters with diacritics for other languages
The pattern is shown in the next table.

(a) Recommendation for original P-A. characters not already covered,
ocurring in a scheme as in Table B, and using any of the following:


DOT ABOVE U+02D9 (follows a character)
COMBINING DIAERESIS U+0308 (with a spacing character if necessary)

(b) Some Indic characters with diacritics used for other scripts.

3. Pure Indic consonants

There are special glyphs for the pure consonants Ben. t, Mal. k, , n,
y, r, l, . These behave as ordinary characters. Unicode v.3.0 gives no
rendering rule, but where the generic Indic character [XA] has the
pure form [X] with glyph X, one may suggest:

[XA] + [ZWJ] + [VIRAMA] --> X final,

[XA] + [ZWJ] + [VIRAMA] + [ZWNJ] --> X medially
where [ZWNJ] is U+200C.

Last updated: 2 July 2002


Some Indic characters omitted in ISO 15919 and/or Unicode

1. Some Indic characters not in Unicode, covered in ISO 15919
Slot in (as defined in Note 13):

Tam. SHA
Sin. numerals.

Ori. WA
Use of a triangle of three dots above a glyph in P-A. schemes
Independent Svarita
Special Vedic anusvaras
Indic scripts' Jihvamuliya
Indic scripts' Upadhmaniya

2. Some Indic characters in Unicode, not covered in ISO 15919
Slot in: Tam. ANUSVARA

Unicode composite characters:
Extra Bodo vowel (Ben. 0985 + 09D7)
Ori. nuqta ca (0B1A + 0B3C)
Dev. nuqta va (0935 + 093C, other than for P-A.)

3. Some Indic characters in neither ISO 15919 nor Unicode
Slot in:
Gur. avagraha

Out of scope:
Dev. short ai, short au (used by Grierson, Linguistic Survey of India,
for some languages)
Further Vedic accents

Last updated: 10 June 2002

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Chart of equivalent Indic characters
A chart of linguistically equivalent characters across the various
Indic scripts is provided by the Main Table of II, under the following

- Gur. Bindi is not exactly equivalent to Anusvara (Dev., etc. ).
- Gur. Tippi () has some relationship to Anusvara.
- Mal. represents an ancient phonological distinction from ,
apparently not made in other scripts.
- Some obviously non-equivalent characters are included.
- Some rare equivalent characters may have been omitted.

Last updated: 10 June 2002


Sanskrit Web
A. Sanskrit Fonts

1. Transliteration and Devanagari Fonts for Sanskrit
2. Fonts and Technical Manuals for Itranslator

B. Sanskrit Texts

1. Rigveda (Devanagari edition with svara marks)
2. Yajurveda (Devanagari texts with svara marks)
3. Samaveda (Devanagari texts with svara marks)
4. Other Sanskrit Documents (Reverse Dictionaries, etc.)
5. Sanskritweb für Deutsche (Sanskritweb for Germans)

C. Various Topics

1. Apple II Plus Nostalgia (Peeker Magazine Disk Files)
2. James Hadley Chase (Bibliography of Chase Books)
3. Font Forging Industry (Reports for Legal Authorities)
4. Bücher über das Verlagswesen (Buchkalkulation u.a.)
This is a private website maintained by Ulrich Stiehl. For email
address see Imprint.

The files from this site must not be offered for download elsewhere on
the internet.




The following are among those who contributed to a greater or lesser
extent to the development of this standard, either in technical
contributions, editorial matters, consultation, networking, or
formalities. No-one listed here has any responsibilty for any
shortcoming in the standard.

Nandu Abhyankar, James E. Agenbroad, Joginder S. Ahluwalia, Abur Jar
M. Akkas, Ashok Aklujkar, Patrick Andries, Maa. Angiah, Randall Barry,
E. Bashir, George Baumann, Samir K. Bhattacharya, Alain LaBonté George
Cardona, Rod Chalmers, Avinash Chopde, John Clews, Probal Dasgupta,
J.B. Disanayaka, Raymond Doctor, Ketaki Dyson, Herbert Elbrecht,
Michael Everson, Jean Fezas, Cyril Firth, Christopher Fynn, John R.
Gardner, Arun Kumar Gupta, Prasenjit R. Gupta, Aileen Hagen, Cynthia
Hale, Joyce Harding, Sid Harth, Jeroen Hellingman, Donald Hudson,
Michael Hutt, Cibu C.J., Camillus Jayewardena, B. Philip Jonsson,
Ramana Juvvadi, Amrit Kalsi, Birgit Kellner, Bh. Krishnamurti, Harsh
Kumar, Shree Devi Kumar, Klaus Lagally, John B. Lowe, Rick McGowan,
Evangelos Melagrakis, Das Menon, Bikkhu Mettavihari, G.K. Modhi,
Chandra Mohan, M.W. Meir, Ross Moore, Malcolm Nazareth, Anshuman
Pandey, Reg Parker, Sreenivas Paruchuri, John Phillips, Hubert Pitts,
Mervyn Popplestone, Jaap Pranger, Narayan Prasad, Glyndwr Prosser,
'Puneet', William Radice, Hakim B. Singh Rahi, P. Ramanujan, Ellen M.
Raven, Jeff Rollins, Fiona Ross, Hugh McG. Ross, Kumaran Santhanam,
Avinash Sathaye, Shashi Sathaye, Anupam Saurabh, Ruth Laila Schmidt,
Claude Setzer, Christopher Shackle, Anurag Shankar, Gyan Krishna
Shreshta, Hemant Shukla, Guentcho Skordev, Robin Sleigh, John D.
Smith, Shivamurthy Swamiji, Alan Thrasher, Udom Warotamasikkhadit,
David Wells, Chlodwig H. Werba, Kenneth Whistler, Ray Whitfield,
Carole Whitmee, Charles Wikner, Michael Witzel, Konstantin Woebking,
Dominik Wujastyk.

(With apologies for any errors or omissions.)

Last updated: 21 June 2003

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-19 22:55:14 UTC

The Four Kinds of sutra in Indian Sutra texts

and why they are of interest for modern documents

If the rules of your favourite Club or Society seem confusing, take a
look at this list of different kinds of rules (sutras) from ancient
India. Only four different kinds are needed. These sutras are short
statements. When they are put together to form a string (sutra) of
statements, the resulting text is called "So-and-so Sutra", in
Sanksrit. In English, the text is often called "The So-and-so Sutras".
Here are the four kinds.

Definition. This is especially needed when words are used in a
technical sense. Sometimes a word is invented for a special purpose.

Rule. This is for rules proper.

Context. This sets the context for a following sutra or group of

Explanation. This includes sutras giving instructions for applying
some of the rules.

I find this list helpful. A definition may not tell us what to do, but
it may be essential for the rest of the document. In modern documents,
of course, the context may be set by simply using a sub-heading. It
can still be thought of as a useful rule, bringing clarity. Similarly
for explanations.

Up to India page.


Copyright (C) Anthony P. Stone 2008. This material may be freely used,
provided the author is acknowledged.

Last updated: 29 July 2008

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-19 23:05:09 UTC

Visits to two Indian Publishers

Think of a large, old building in an former industrial area of Bombay
city. No windows were visible on the ground floor. An old doorman sat
in a little porch leading to an elaborately carved wooden door. After
managing to get him to call somebody, I was taken inside and conducted

My purpose was to look for Sanskrit works helpful to my researches in
the history of Indian astrology. Upstairs everything was quiet. The
windows were shuttered against the sun. There was a wooden table and
chairs, of the familiar office style. Several men in business suits
quietly gathered.

The man in charge explained that one could not simply browse. (For one
thing, their publications are often in the form of loose sheets which
come wrapped in thin brown paper.) When I requested a catalogue,
someone was sent to fetch one.

I had seen the catalogue in Delhi, and had obtained all I wanted from
it already.

I walk briskly down the crowded Pune street and find the archway set
back from the busy shops. Passing through the entrance seems to take
one into a different world. The place is a cross between an ashram and
a printing press. Trees grow in the courtyard, which is surrounded by
various buildings. Sitting cross-legged on the grass is a man
collating the sheets of a book.

The man in charge is very friendly. The book I ask for is 'out of
print', but as we talk, he mentions that he wants to send his
catalogue to Sanskrit Departments of overseas universities. I
volunteer to send him a list of names and addresses, which I know is
available from a book in the library of St Stephen's College, Delhi,
where I am teaching at that time.

He gives me a cup of tea, and disappears. He returns with a copy of
the book I need (the Taittirîya Brâhmana), the paper slightly brittle
with age, but still very serviceable.

On my return to Delhi I promptly send him the list, and quickly
receive an acknowledgment.

Copyright (C) Anthony P. Stone 1996. This material may be freely used,
provided the author is acknowledged.

Last updated: 8 March 2008

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-21 07:59:46 UTC

September 27, 2009


The use of Samskrit in modern world
By Chamu Krishna Shastry

More than 60 per cent of the vocabulary of most of the Indian
languages is derived from Samskrit. Their underlying grammar too has
its source in Samskrit. India’s Constitution mentions that the
vocabulary of the official language of India should mainly be drawn
from Samskrit. Hence Samskrit is complementary to all Indian
languages. Samskrit can help in preserving the regional languages of
India in their undiluted form.

Samskrit has been the vehicle of our culture and thought from time
immemorial. Samskrit is the fountainhead of the Dharma, Sanskriti and
Darshan of the land that is Bharat. Culture and language are
inseparable. They go together. Hence, reviving Samskrit is
rejuvenating our culture, rejuvenating our culture is reviving the
Samskrit language. Other Indian languages are also cultural languages,
but Samskrit is the common cultural language of the common man of
India. Since other Indian languages are regional in nature, Samskrit
is the Pan-Indian cultural language of India. Bringing Samskrit back
to everyday life is just like bringing culture back to everyday life.
Samskrit is inevitable to pass on-or transmit, communicate, or give-
our cultural heritage to our next generation, and to ensure its
continued passage from generation to generation. People say that they
need rice, not paddy. Good. But if the husk is removed, then the paddy
will not last long and it cannot be reproduced. Rice is culture, and
the husk is Samskrit. Samskrit is the husk that protects and enables
our culture to grow and nourish itself. Milk cannot be served without
a cup. Culture is like milk, and Samskrit is the cup.

We need Samskrit today more than ever before to preserve our cultural
moorings, to stay connected to our roots. It is the ‘anti-virus
software’ to protect our ‘systems’ from external attacks/soft-threats.
Samskrit is the best tool to engender the cultural renaissance of

Samskrit is very much essential to understand the essence of our
culture. Without Samskrit, we cannot understand the very meanings of
the names given to our people, our practices, our Gods, our
philosophical concepts, etc. There are no equivalents in English for
words such as Punya, Abhishekam, Teertham, Naivedyam, Prasada, Dharma,

Translation can rarely communicate the original meaning. Translation
is translation. For example, the phrase ‘Herculean Task’ will be
understood only by those who have studied English literature. The
phrase can be explained, but it cannot be translated. In the same way,
the translation of Bhima Parakram, Govardhanagiridhari, Pitambaradasa
in English will not be effective at all. Leave alone the unpublished
works of Samskrit, not even 1 per cent of the published Samskrit
literature has been translated into other languages. Mantra Shakti is
the power of the Samskrit language, and translation cannot possess
that Shakti.

Opportunity for new knowledge creation/dissemination

Samskrit literature is a phenomenal repository of knowledge. It
contains hundreds and thousands of ancient works pertaining to every
branch of knowledge. Teaching the Samskrit language is like providing
the key to the treasure house of knowledge. Every individual strives
for three things - Knowledge, Prosperity and Happiness. Samskrit is
the ideal instrument to access them all.

The word-generating power of Samskrit is unparalleled. It can create/
coin an infinite number of words by using about 2,000 roots, 22
prefixes and about 200 suffixes. No other language in the world offers
such phenomenal versatility.

It is estimated that there are at least five million manuscripts-most
of them in Samskrit-are lying neglected and unattended all over India
and in several corners of the world. Knowledge retrieval from them is
impossible without Samskrit.

Yoga, Ayur Veda, Gita, Vedanta, Vaastu, Jyotisha, etc. are making a
comeback all over the world today. People who are initiated into these
subjects are not satisfied by reading the translated texts of these
subjects. They want to read the original works, and in their original
language. Hence they have started studying Samskrit. Samskrit is the
gateway to the heritage of scientific knowledge in ancient India. A
good basis in Samskrit will ensure that one gets independent and
direct access to the primary sources of that knowledge.

Today, in the context of such terms as the ‘knowledge society,’
‘knowledge economy,’ ‘knowledge industry,’ ‘knowledge-driven globe,’
etc., it is important to understand the meaning of the Samskrit word
‘Bhaaratam’. Bhaa means light, knowledge; ratam means immersed. A
person or a society, immersed in knowledge is Bhaaratam. Until today,
Samskrit literature was mostly considered as religious and spiritual
literature, which is partially true. But if the Vedas, Shastras and
other works in Samskrit are studied from the science point of view as
well, if science-and technology-related Samskrit texts are studied,
and if they are properly decoded, then there would be nothing short of
a "knowledge explosion."

Knowledge of Samskrit will enable people to understand the prayers
they perform in Samskrit. Samskrit would also go a long way in
revitalising Hinduism and Hindu temples.

One of the reasons for the decline of Ayur Veda is the neglect of the
Samskrit language. Today, even though Ayur Vedic medicine is becoming
increasingly popular, the Ayur Veda Shastra itself is not growing. In
the same way, the neglect of Samskrit is being reflected in the scant
attention paid to the Yoga Shastra, the Vedanta Shastra, etc.

While Samskrit allows us to access an infinite fountain of knowledge
and wisdom, it is nevertheless important to ask the question: "What
can we do to maintain and nourish such a language?"

Vehicle for social harmony
Samskrit has been the great unifying factor of India. Prayers like
Gange ca yamune caiva, godavari sarasvati, narmade sindhu kaveri,
jalesmin sannidhim kuru, and masterpieces such as the Ramayana,
Mahabharata, and Gita, in Samskrit have bonded India together. Down
the ages, Samskrit literature has always projected and depicted all of
Bharat as one nation. It has never promoted regional or sectarian
feelings, unlike some other languages.

Self-esteem is essential for the development of an individual or of a
society. Self-esteem comes by understanding our past achievements and
inheritance. Providing Samskrit to our younger generation is like
empowering them with the much-wanted self-esteem and pride.

Samskrit literature promotes and propagates an All-Inclusive Ideology-
on the lines of "Unity in diversity", Ekam sat, Viprah Bahudha
Vadanti, Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, etc.-which could constitute the
foundation for global peace and harmony. Samskrit is the torch-bearer
of Vishwa Dharma, a concept that represents far more than it’s usually
accepted meaning of "Universal Code of Ethics".

Samskrit is an effective instrument of social harmony in India. The
dalits and other neglected sections of Hindu society have long been
deprived of learning Samskrit. As Swami Vivekananda put it, the
knowledge of Samskrit can give them the power and prestige, and it can
elevate them culturally. Samskrit can be a major tool for social
transformation, given its ability to eradicate differences of caste,
sect, gender and region.

Means of understanding our national heritage

More than 60 per cent of the vocabulary of most of the Indian
languages is derived from Samskrit. Their underlying grammar too has
its source in Samskrit. India’s Constitution mentions that the
vocabulary of the official language of India should mainly be drawn
from Samskrit. Hence Samskrit is complementary to all Indian
languages. Samskrit can help in preserving the regional languages of
India in their undiluted form.

Samskrit is not just a language. It is a Jeevan Darshan. It reminds us
of a great tradition of both spiritual and material wealth. Learning
and speaking Samskrit gives you a sense of belonging to a great
heritage. It gives you power and confidence.

The knowledge of Samskrit alone can lead to a complete and authentic
study of Indian art, sculpture, music, science, history, political
science, etc.

As Mahatma Gandhi rightly said, "Without the knowledge of Samskrit,
the education of every Indian is incomplete."

Experience shows that while most of the Hindus living abroad are
usually divided by the Indian regional languages, Samskrit is the
language which brings them together and instills in them the sense of
unity and harmony.

Learning Samskrit is our duty-our national duty.

Opening up new dimensions

We must enrich, empower, enlighten and elevate ourselves through
Samskrit. We must empower our younger generation with the most
superior tools of self-management.

Samskrit language is considered to be the only suitable natural
language for computers. Software is being developed for the machine
translation of Indian languages with Samskrit as the intermediate

A research article titled "Sanskrit and Brain Function" by Dr. Travis,
showing that the physiological effects of reading Sanskrit are similar
to those experienced during the transcendental meditation technique,
has recently been published in the International Journal of

(The writer is General Secretary Samskrit Bharati and can be contacted
at ***@hotmail.com)

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-28 10:17:00 UTC

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-28 13:32:08 UTC

Sanskrit-iz-ed Words

Sunday, September 27, 2009
Amnesty - a-manas-taya, a-manas-sya-ti

Amnesty (from the Greek amnestia, oblivion)is to overlook and forgive
and FORGET crimes done.


a - neagtive

manas - to think, to mind

taya - 'ness', 'tion' kind of suffix to make something into adjective.
"s" usually conjoins "t" as part of Sandhi rules (Euophonics Rules),
and suffix 'ya" carries the sense of English Adverb carried by suffix
'y'. Sanskrit Adverbs are almost missing except for some suffixes and
gerunds. This is not that simple as in Sanskrit 'y' is a very
overloaded letter with many rules. "tavya" is for Potential Participle
(besides 'y'), "tvaa" is for Gerund (besides 'y'), and "tva" is for
"ness". "tya" is also used as Aggregative Noun as part of Numeral
Adverbs. So here this may refelect a collective process, which is
Amnesty more about.

a-manas-taya - the act of making something unthinkable - made into

a-manas-sya-ti - that shall be thought not - made unconsidered.

a-manas-taya - not to think

Posted by Common World Lineage at 11:25 AM

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-28 13:36:00 UTC

Sanskrit-iz-ed Words

Saturday, June 7, 2008
More corruptions of the word "Ram"

In continuation of the series on the word "Ram", and trying to see how
ancient and how common the word spread, and what was the basis and the
reason for this phenomenon, like one would find the names "Christ" ,
"Christy", "Chris", "Christian", "Krity", "Kris",
"Kristian", and so on.

Same with Mohammad, Mohammat, Mahamat, Mahamad, etc. Please, 'Mat' in
Sanskrit means "opinionated" as well as it is a suffix for converting
verbs into Active Present Participles, with "Maan", for Singular,
"Maant" for other variations with stronger inflections, and "Mat" for
the weaker ones. Reverend Mohammad Saahib was Quereshi, same as
Kureshi, or Chureshi, Shureshi, and Sureshi, which means 'Sun God
Worshiper', and was from a clan of priests who were also Sun

He was boycotted by his clan because he challenged their authority
when he saw the superstition and corruption prevailing on both sides,
on people side as well as on the priest side. So it could also mean
"Great Opinionated", besides "The One Who Becomes Great".

He had his vision of Divinity when he was meditating in a cave when he
was following the fast of Ramaa-adaan - before he started his struggle
in Kaaba, before he was kicked out by the clan and there were series
of military battles and strifes over many years, and it eventually led
to his victory, return to Kaaba and the starting of Islam. He had a
nephew whose wife was called "Hinduja" which is a Sindhi last name. He
was boycotted by his clan because he challenged their authority when
he saw the superstition and corruption prevailing on both sides, on
people side as well as on the priest side. So it could also mean
"Great Opinionated", besides "The One Who Becomes Great". I just
wanted to make sure people understand the significance of the
corruptions of the words going on here.

Anyway, coming back to the original topic, Inti Raymi has another
connection is with the "Solar God". Also note that "Inti" is nothing
but "Indi", which is "Hindu" and "Sindhu" corruptions. "S" -> "Sh" ->
"H" -> "A" -> " " and joins with the vowel sound of the next vowel. So
Sindhu -> Shindu -> Hindu -> Indu -> Indu-ia (as adjective where
Hindus live) -> India. "H" is a soft Aspirate sound and can become
"A". I have given a lot of references in the previous postings. "S"
and "Sh" are Dental and Palatal Sibilant "S" sounds.

Also, other variations are, Ramesys, Ramesy, Ramsey, Ramsy, Ramse,
Ramey, and Rame. Hopefully this should close this subject for a
Posted by Common World Lineage at 9:37 AM

....and I am Sid Harth
2009-09-30 22:54:38 UTC

The meeting of the ‘twain’


A collection of papers that focusses on the relationship between Tamil
and Sanskrit.

PASSAGES - Relationships between Tamil and Sanskrit: Edited by M.
Kannan and Jennifer Clare, Published by the French Institute of
Pondicherry, 11, St. Louis Street, P.B. 33, Pondicherry-605001; Price
not mentioned.

For the last few decades, the running slogan in the political scene of
the academic roadshow of Tamil Nadu has been — one could say, taking
liberties with what Rudyard Kipling had said in a different context, —
“Tamil is Tamil, and Sanskrit is Sanskrit, and never the twain shall
meet.” But two ‘strong forces’, one from the East (The French
Institute of Pondicherry) and the other from the West (The Department
of South and Southeast Asian studies, University of Berkley,
California) have come together to facilitate a meeting between ‘the
twain’, and the outcome of such a friendly dialogue is this book, a
collection of papers by specialists, focussing on this issue of

M. Kannan, one of the two editors of this volume (the other is
Jennifer Clare, who has elegantly portrayed the confrontation between
‘the siblings’, Sanskrit and Tamil, for the last 150 years in her
‘Foreword’), has spelt out in the ‘Introduction’ the difficulties he
faced in organising the dialogue. He says they could identify only a
few scholars who could do comparative research competently in two or
more languages.

To quote Kannan: “We discovered that it was not just difficult but
next to impossible to find anyone amongst the younger generation of
Indian scholars doing, or even willing to take up, the comparative
work involved in this field. The only young scholars of this
orientation whom we could find were from Europe or from the United
States of America.”

As George Hart succinctly puts it in his ‘Preface’: “The history of
South Asia is in a large measure the story of the interaction of the
Dravidian and Indo-Aryan languages and their cultures.”

He associates the Dravidian culture with the Megalithic civilisation,
which existed in South India, primarily the Deccan plateau, in the
first millennium before the common era. The Satavahana empire extended
from modern Andhra Pradesh to Mahratrashtra, which meant it included
the regions of Dravidian and Aryan tongues.

Poems in ‘Sattasai’

‘Gatasaptasati’, also known as ‘Sattasai’, a famous collection of love-
poems attributed to Hala and written in Maharastri Prakrit, predated
the classical and sophisticated literature in Sanskrit that was
heralded by Kalidasa during the Gupta period, a few centuries after
the common era. There are many poems in ‘Sattasai’ that bear close
resemblance to the love-poetry found in the Sangam ‘aham’ tradition.
Hart contends that the ‘Sattasai’ verses could have been influenced by
the Dravidian literary heritage of the Sangam era not only because of
the geographical proximity of these two languages, Tamil and
Maharashtri Prakrit, but also for the reason that the literary
conventions of the Sangam ‘aham’ tradition are speculated to have been
set up much earlier.

Kalidasa, who could not have been unaware of the ‘Sattasai’ anthology
(he himself had composed a verse in Maharashtri in
Abhijnanasakuntulam), did not hesitate to adopt this genre for
composing his own romantic poems in Sanskrit and, thereby, unknowingly
appropriated some of the Sangam thematic conventions of the ‘aham’
classification. That the pre-Sanskritic linguistic substratum of South
Asia can now be seen only through the Dravidian Tamil and the Indo-
Aryan Prakrit dialects also appears to be a fit subject for further

Iravatham Mahadevan says that the 90 inscriptions dating from the 2nd
century BCE to the 4th century CE found in the Tamil region were in
Tamil and in Tamil-Brahmi script with a free admixture of Prakrit
words, and all of them related to the donations made to the Jain monks
and nuns.

In the ‘Confluences’ section, several issues are discussed, the focus
being religion in the context of the relationship between Sanskrit and
Tamil, especially during the bhakti and medieval periods.

Stephen Hopkins and Prema Nandakumar have dealt with the Vaishnava
poetry in the background of the literary traditions that obtained both
in Sanskrit and Tamil.

From A.A. Manavalan’s paper on ‘Mahabharata,’ it is evident that there
has been continuous attention and response to this great epic from the
Sangam age up to the modern era, when Mahakavi Bharati wrote his
magnum opus, “Paanchaali Sabatham” in 1912.

Indira Viswanathan Peterson’s paper, with insightful comments, on
“Mapping Madras in ‘Sarvadevavilasa,’” a Sanskritic work by an
anonymous brahman in the form of a dialogue between two brahman bards
looking for patrons in the new emerging colonial city, makes an
interesting reading.

The urban space, populated by totally different economic and social
classes of wealth and power is picturesquely portrayed. The old order
of the blue-blooded dynastic royalties having collapsed, the poor
brahmans reconcile themselves to seeing divinity in the Vellala
Dubasies (the ancient Tamil grammar Tolkappiyam would classify this
theme as ‘poovainilai’) who, thanks to their active collaboration with
the colonial masters, are in the central stage of social attention,
during this period.

The book is appropriately divided into three sections — ‘the stepping
stones’, ‘history,’ and ‘confluences’ — having in all 22 papers that
are at once immensely readable and insightful.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-01 23:44:48 UTC

October 1, 2009, Spirituality

Om Sweet Om Chanting has been a universal soother for thousands of

The act of chanting -- repeating words or phrases over and over,
usually to a melody -- has been a mode of worship and a feature of
spiritual practice in many faiths around the world for thousands of
years. The ancient Greeks chanted deities' names at festivals, rituals
and parades. Buddhist sutras, childhood rhyming games, and football
cheers are all chants of a sort. They're so universal and so popular
because their power to soothe, bond, entrain and transport goes very
deep. Professional singer and chant leader Francesca Genco, whom I
interviewed this week, believes that the sounds and vibrations
produced by chanting can heal the chanter's body and mind.

"Most chants are repetitive, and there's a purpose to that. The
syllables themselves have power," says Genco, a longtime yoga teacher
whose CD, Numinous River, features her lilting contralto performing
chants in Sanskrit. "The names hold a power that evokes certain
qualities in the body," she explains. "A field is created in the body
and mind. It's an ancient technology, really." As the repetition and
the sound resonate through brain, bones, organs and skin, "the
resonance sets up a frequency and holds that frequency. When I chant,
it definitely changes my brainwaves and puts me into a place where I
feel more spacious energetically, spiritually, and physically. I
experience this as an opening and a widening of myself."

While practicing Zen Buddhism, she came to appreciate the
transformative effect of intoned sutras. And having studied yoga, she
became familiar with Sanskrit, the ancient language in which all Hindu
and many Buddhist scriptures were originally written. Yogis believe
that Sanskrit's fifty different sounds vibrate in a unique way that
purifies and energizes the chakras, those seven vortices that they
believe are positioned vertically along the human body from groin to
crown. While traditional Indian kirtan chanting is call-and-response,
Genco prefers a group effort.

"I'm interested in giving people the opportunity to find their own
expression through chanting. We co-create the sound. Yes, I'm leading.
But I'm also responding. That's the beauty of it," she marvels. "They
come up with things I could never think of."

In her circles, participants offer words, phrases, rhythms, and tunes
from their own backgrounds and imaginations. After all, no culture
holds an exclusive claim on chanting. Genco remembers her mother
playing Gregorian-chant records every morning when she was growing up:
"She would light all these candles and that's what I came downstairs
to. I thought it was a little kooky but I loved it."

Sometimes she co-leads circles with a didgeridoo player and a
clarinetist. Sometimes they spread what they call a "healing blanket"
in front of the musicians, inviting participants to spread out on the
blanket. "It's really nice," Genco says, "just to lie down and receive
a sound."

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-01 23:47:32 UTC

March 2, 2009, Personality

Hindu Personality Types Travel West Hindu Influences on the Myers
Briggs Type Indicator?

If you have ever taken the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), a
widely-used psychological test, then you may know that it divides
people into 16 types based on their personalities.

The 16 types are based on the sorts of mental functions that are key
to an individual's personality: whether, for example, a person
responds more strongly with feeling or with thinking, or whether a
person prefers to get information by sensing through sight, sound,
taste, etc., or by using intuition.

The Myers-Briggs typology was based, in part, on the psychological
writings of the Swiss physician Carl Jung. Jung's theories, in turn,
were greatly influenced by Hindu thinking, as well as by yogis who
practiced Buddhism and other Eastern schools of thought. Early in his
career, Carl Jung wrote:

In India since ancient times they have the custom that practically
everybody of a certain education, at least, has a guru, a spiritual
leader who teaches you and you alone what you ought to know. Not
everybody needs to know the same thing and this kind of knowledge can
never be taught in the same way.

In Hinduism, yogis must recognize and distinguish among four types of
students - four personalities. One kind of student does well learning
things and can pursue knowledge to connect to divinity by following
Jnana yoga, which emphasizes the intellect. A second student prefers
working and can pursue divinity through Karma yoga, which emphasizes
work. A third type of student is gifted in loving, and seeks the
divine through devotion and friendship using Bhakti yoga. Finally,
some students are empiricists and hope to test Hindu religious ideas
in a series of steps involving meditation and specific mental
exercises, using Raja yoga.

"...Carl Jung built his typology on the Indian model", observed the
religious scholar Huston Smith, "while modifying it in certain
respects...". Jung noted in his 1921 book on personality types:

I have found from experience that the basic psychological
functions...prove to be thinking, feeling, sensation, and intuition.
If one of these functions habitually predominates, a corresponding
type results. I therefore distinguish a thinking, a feeling, a
sensation, and an intuitive type. Each of these types may moreover be
either introverted or extraverted...

Jung's typology was disseminated in the United States and elsewhere in
the West in large part by Katherine Cook Briggs, and her daughter
Isabel Briggs Myers, through their test, the Myers-Briggs Type
Indicator. Katherine Cook Briggs had read Jung's work on psychological
type; it resonated with her and she began work on a test to measure
the types. Her daughter, Isabel Myers, learned about test construction
and built the Type Indicator itself.

Part of the Hindu philosophical spirit of helping healthy students to
develop was reborn in the work of Myers and Briggs. The two women very
carefully wrote out the test feedback to reflect the psychological
strengths of the test-takers. Myers wanted to discuss high-functioning
people; she believed that feedback descriptions ought, "to apply to
each type at its best, as exemplified by normal, well-balanced, well-
adjusted, happy, and effective people." Although each personality type
was different, none was better than another. Despite its modest
measurement properties, the test became widely employed.

Today, the MBTI is widely used in management training, education, and
counseling. (See the Myers & Briggs Foundation).

The detached, non-judgmental quality of MBTI feedback communicates the
sense of equality among learning styles. It is deeply embedded in
Hindu thought, from which some of the key concepts originated. The
care with which the test's feedback was created may be one of the
reasons that the MBTI has become so widely used.

* * *

Click here for information about the Personality Analyst including
schedules, earlier series, and policies.

Click here for earlier posts in this series.


Jung's quote "In India since ancient times..." comes from p. 47 of
Coward, H. (1985). Jung and eastern thought. Albany, NY: State
University of New York Press. "...Carl Jung built his typology on the
Indian model..." comes from p. 28 of Smith, H. (1991). The world's
religions. San Francisco: Harper Collins. Jung's quote, "I have found
from experience..." is from p. 6 of Jung, C. G. (1971). The collected
works of C. G. Jung (Volume 6). Read, H., Fordham, M., Adler, G., &
McGuire, W. (Eds) & R. F. C. Hull & H. G. Baynes (Trans.). Princeton,
NJ: Princeton University Press. The quote from Myers, "to apply to
each type at its best..." is from p. 112 of Paul, A. M. (2004). The
Cult of Personality. New York: Simon & Schuster; that book has further
detailed descriptions of the history of the test's development.

Copyright (c) 2009 John D. Mayer

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-01 23:50:07 UTC

February 22, 2009, Personality

Judging a Student to Help her Learn (More on Hindu Judgments)
Personality types in Hinduism

Teachers today often speak of adjusting their techniques to a
student's learning style. Howard Gardner, for example, suggested that
some students learn through their bodies (kinesthetic intelligence),
others through music and rhythms (musical intelligence), and many
others through traditional academic means such as using logical
symbols and equations (logical-mathematical intelligence).

The idea that students learn in different ways dates back to ancient
times. Teachers of Hinduism, Confucianism, Judaism, and Christianity
all evaluated their students' personalities, with an eye as to how to
best teach them.

In earlier posts, I have examined how Hinduism regards judgments of
personality (see parts one and two). For example, Hindu thought
suggests that the wise person judges others with detachment and peace
(as opposed to over-involvement, annoyance, or condescension). (For a
general overview of this discussion, click here).

In Hinduism, the role of the yogi, or teacher, evolved to assist those
who sought enlightenment to learn about their essential ätman (real
inner self). The word yoga means to unite together, and to place under
disciplined training.

Accomplished yogis distinguish among different types of students so as
to provide each student with practices that will best guide him or her
on the path to enlightenment.

Consider, for example, a student who would be best guided with Jnana
yoga. This individual possesses a reflective nature, a capacity for
intuition, a living in one's head. This student is a philosopher who
might be perceived as having her "head in the clouds". To accomodate
such a student, a yogi might emphasize the study of the sages,
scriptures, and treatises of Hinduism first. Next would be a course of
prolonged, intensive reflection on one's inner ätman (God within),
until the ätman changes from conjecture or hypothesis to realization.
"If the yogi is able and diligent, such reflections will eventually
induce a lively sense of the infinite Self that underlies one's
transient, finite self."

A second type of student is far more loving, emotional, and devotional
in nature than interested in knowledge. For this individual there is
Bhakti yoga. In Bhakti yoga, the student is advised that the ätman is
different from one's personality. The student will strive to adore the
divine ätman with every element of her being, singing to and seeking a
personal union with the divine other. The relationship to the divine
becomes a kind of friendship of the most loyal and sensitive sort.

A third type of student hopes for empirical demonstrations of the
divine. For him, Raja yoga involves personal -- though empirical --
tests of Hindu religious ideas in a series of steps. The earliest
steps involve abstaining from such desires as to quench one's thirst
or to feel envy toward someone. In the middle steps, the student first
learns to sit in a lotus position, letting go of the pain until the
position becomes comfortable. The mind is trained in regular breathing
so as to free the yogi to contemplate the world. The last steps of the
practice involve turning inward and becoming alone in one's mind to
experience a placid serenity. This is most challenging because left
alone, Hindu practitioners sometimes analogize, the mind is like a
"drunken crazed monkey...just...stung by a wasp". Ultimately, dreams,
imaginings, anxieties and the like must drop out; the sense of self
disappears until the person is able to reach a synthesis with the
divine (samadhi).

Yet another kind of student prefers to approach divinity through work
and for him there is Karma yoga. The student who wishes to attain
union through work must develop a particular view of his endeavors.
According to the Bhagavad Gita:

Who dares to see action in inaction, and inaction in action,
he is wise, he is a yogi,
he is the man who knows what is work.
And if he works selflessly,
if his actions are made pure in the fire of knowledge,
he will be called wise by the learned.

He abandons greed; he is content;
he is self-sufficient;
he works, yet such a man cannot be said to work.
If he forsakes hope, restrains his mind, and relinquishes reward -
he works yet he does not work.

So, judgments of personality are made in Hinduism. Yogis recognize
different personalities when it comes to those who wish to learn.
Among the personalities are those who wish to think, to love, to
experience, and to work. Each of these types are valued; each pursues
knowledge of the divine, but in his own way. No person is exclusively
one type or another, and a disciple may need to try different paths
until it is clear which best fosters her learning. Still, the better
the yogi identifies the student's correct path, the more successful
the student's learning may be.

More broadly, Hinduism says that the wise person judges with
detachment and love, but one who is wise will judge so as to
distinguish among different kinds of spiritual types: the knowing,
loving, empirical, and working. Judging people -- particularly
sorting them into types -- is helpful, but it must be done carefully
and with understanding that some people may be of more than one

Such Hindu thought has a long reach. There exists an intellectual
lineage from Hindu teachings through the theories of Carl Jung on
personality types, up to the corporate training programs of today.
More on that in an upcoming post.

* * *

Click here for information about the Personality Analyst including
schedules, earlier series, and policies.

Click here for earlier posts in this series.


The roots of the word "yoga" are discussed on p. 27, and a description
of the four Hindu types can be found on p. 28 of Smith, H. (1991). The
world's religions. San Francisco: Harper Collins. The quote "If the
yogi is able and diligent" is from the same source, p. 31. The four
types of yoga are described by Smith, pp. 29-50. The bhakta is
described on pp. 34-35; the mind described as "drunken crazed
monkey...just...stung by a wasp" is from p. 48 of Smith. The
selections from the Bhagavad-Gita are from Lal, P. (Trans) (1965). The
Bhagavad Gita. Lake Gardens, Calcutta: P. Lal. "Who dares to see
action in inaction, and inaction in action," - Chapter 4, pp. 18-19.

(c) Copyright 2009 John D. Mayer

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-03 13:28:08 UTC

Carl Jung's Red Book to be displayed for first time

Share Print E-mail Comment[ - ] Text [ + ]STAFF WRITER 15:43 HRS IST
New York, Oct 3 (AP) The Red Book, an intricate 16-year record of Carl
Jung's journey into his unconscious that has never been seen publicly,
is going on display in an exhibit at a New York museum that coincides
with publication of the volume, rendered in the Swiss psychoanalyst's
elaborate calligraphy and richly hued paintings.

The tome's existence had always been known, but scholars and the
public have never seen it. After Jung's death in 1961, it was left in
his Zurich home until it was moved to a bank safe deposit box sometime
in the late 1980s.

Jung's descendants resisted historians' requests over the years to
have the Red Book published. But after two partial typed draft
manuscripts surfaced, they allowed a London historian of psychology,
Sonu Shamdasani, who first approached them in 1997, to translate the
work from the original.
2009-10-03 13:33:22 UTC

Pondering Carl Jung's Red Book
October 01, 2009 by Teresa Cie
Teresa Cie Published Content: 27 Total Views: 511

A Preamble to Carl Jung's Secretative Volume of Work

Carl Jung's Red Book is scheduled to be released to the public after
approximately 100 years
of secrecy.

In my youth, one or two of my high school teachers and college
professors mentioned Jung in a tongue in cheek way. (You know - making
a reference to Jungian whatever while wearing a smirk knowing their
young students were oblivious to their reference.)

Granted, I am a complete novice when it comes to Carl Jung and all
things Jungian. I am in no way any flavor of a Jung expert.

As the years have passed and I have encountered a variety of different
personality types, my curiosity about people has grown...as have my
reading choices.

When I read about this mysterious, secret Red Book - one that Jung
left no instructions to his survivors regarding whether or not he ever
wished it published, my curiosity was peeked.

Before I delve into anything that has sparked as much conversation as
this particular tome, I always research the author. Knowing a bit
about the author seems to help me (in some way) absorb and even
understand the authors' work. It serves as a virtual place setting for
the meal my eyes and mind are about to consume.

From the various information published about Jung, it appears that his
mother experienced bouts of depression. Jung's mother allegedly
encountered spirits that visited her on a regular basis. It was even
stated that her mental and emotional acuity even became more
exacerbated at night. Jung himself is said to have once witnessed an
apparition-like figure emanating from her rooms.

As a child, Jung is also said to have been acutely aware of at least
two separate personalities that existed within himself. What I found
most intriguing is that Jung later realized that, as a child, it
seemed he had pre-existing knowledge of various cultural customs that
there is no conceivable way he could have had.

In later years, Jung was said to have known and befriended Sigmund
Freud; a friendship that ultimately became strained.

All of this served as an interesting back-drop that helps me
understand the mind of one of psychiatry's trail blazers.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-03 13:46:26 UTC

Carl Jung's Red Book Being Published: New Blueprint to Enhance

September 28, 2009 by Greg Brian (Gregoriancant)

Published Content: 1,029 Total Views: 693,552 Fans: 96

One of the most obscure yet anticipated book releases of this year
isn't a book by Dan Brown or Stefanie Meyer, soon to be made into a
movie. It's actually an extremely deep-reaching diary by Carl Jung and
one of his works he may not have wanted to be seen by all eyes let
alone made into an adaptation for the big screen. Yet through his
"Liber Novus" (or the Americanized title of Red Book), we see a
disturbing exploration of Jung visiting his unconscious mind where not
only all of his ideas in psychology were created, but also where the
essence of creativity lies in every living human being. It's a shame
then that the printings of this astounding book seen by only a couple
dozen people in nearly 100 years will be limited to only thousands.

If the publishers would have it in their hearts, they'd make this book
available to the masses to not only prove how the mentally ill can
find the roots of their illness in their unconscious mind, but also to
confirm to the world creativity hasn't died. With creativity in
entertainment increasingly becoming as extinct as actual movie-making
right in Hollywood, it's clear that a new road map needs to be
designed to get it reignited before mediocrity becomes accepted by the
current and future generations.

How then would someone use Jung's Red Book to inspire such a
renaissance? As Jung did himself in making the Red Book even exist,
someone has to make a conscious effort to tap into the collective
unconscious, no matter how disturbing it might be once you process it
in reality.

Jung's Diary Exploring His Collective Subconscious Could Help
Hollywood Rekindle Their Imaginations
For those not familiar with Jung's Red Book, the first thing you
should know is that it was thought to be rumor for the last eight
decades. The reason why is because of the disturbing world Jung
managed to explore in his unconscious mind that he and his later
family thought would be misunderstood by his adherents. Reading about
one of the founding fathers of modern psychology exploring his inner
world where he enacted cannibalism on the heart of a child (as just
one disturbing action out of a litany of others) isn't going to bring
an instant thought of respect. Nevertheless, Jung believed the minute
he exited this dark and fantastical realm that he'd been enlightened
about his soul and be able to tame it from then on.

When those able to obtain a copy of the Red Book give it an absorbing
read, they'll discover not only one of the most vivid journeys into
the subconscious but also the wellspring of all creativity. The world
Jung created in his own coined collective unconscious was filled with
more fantasy and international symbolism than The Lord of the Rings
books and movies ever dreamed of having. You can also create the logic
in thinking Jung's inner mind could make an epic and literate fantasy

No, don't count that out completely.

Irony would be too painful, however, to see it made into a movie when
every head of a studio and screenwriter in mainstream Hollywood should
explore the usefulness of this Communist-free Red Book.

Every indication was there that Carl Jung was a truly mentally ill man
before he went exploring in his mind. All historical record has him
writing about hearing strange voices in his head and having the
general feelings of a schizophrenic. Debates have raged for decades,
though, due to the argument that a mentally ill person may not be
consciously aware they have something wrong with them. Considering
Jung worked with Freud prior to this, it's more than plausible he was
able to have a psychosis problem and be consciously aware of it so
repair could be done through his own volition.

Whether you agree or not with Jung's ideas in how our mind works, his
exploration of his metaphorical jungle brought a proven way to temper
some mental problems on one's own or assisted with the help of a
professional mental therapist. It's the journey to the building blocks
of creativity, however, that somehow became lost in the shuffle as the
mental illness side prevailed into the modern day. In the meantime, a
million other methods for enhancing creativity have been created in
decades since--right on down to alternative medicine.

The reasons why creativity dried up in Hollywood and general
entertainment might border close to mental illness on its own. Blame
the overuse of drugs during the 70's and 80's for perhaps diluting
cognitive functions over time. Or the alternate blame goes merely
toward the evolutionary step of mediocrity becoming accepted by the
masses and Hollywood making more of the same because it guarantees
profits. More obviously, it's a combination of the two.

This isn't to say that screenwriters in America have suddenly lost
their ability to tap into the deep creative wellspring. It has all to
do with Hollywood tapping into an underwhelming screenwriting pool
that can get the mediocre job done. The way they work will stay that
way unless someone astute enough within this inner circle makes an
effort to obtain a copy of Jung's Red Book and takes weeks off to
study it voraciously. What they'll discover is a way to take a
prolonged vacation into our disturbed unconscious where an infinite
array of stories and characters can be extracted later onto the
written page.

Documenting those visits would guarantee a stockpile of original
stories to last for several careers. Of course, the only thing
blocking such a thing from happening is the creative individual not
taking the extra time to mentally explore. It took Jung years to
document all of the symbolic characters and worlds he found residing
deep in his mind. Also, the journey is about as strenuous as anything
tantamount to being in the throes of battle in wartime. A lot of
disturbing things will be found there by a creative person--perhaps
even worse than what Jung experienced.

The fear of such an endeavor shouldn't preclude setting aside time to
take it on. Jung recommended the concept to all and it could be
considered an extensive creative conference right in one's own room.

And if there's an added fear that visiting such disturbing inner
worlds would bring out more disturbing screenplays, then there's a
lack of understanding about how much peaceful balance this mental
journey can bring. If anything, writers in Hollywood would find more
humanity in their screenplays rather than having dulled yet disturbing
thoughts transferred to the big screen as a misguided therapy

You and Hollywood can pre-order Jung's Red Book here:


By Ben Fry |

Published 5/1/2009Related information

Comments 1 - 6 of 6 Comments

Julia Beirut

Fascinating analysis of this possibly distubing book!

Posted on 09/28/2009 at 7:09:11 PM

Julie Darleen

:) Posted on 09/28/2009 at 7:09:57 PM

L. Kunsthure

I don't even want to know what is in my unconscious, despite the fact
that it certainly would make a great screenplay. I like how you used
the book as a starting point for suggesting a change in Hollywood
screenwriting. Once again your unique take on things comes through.

Posted on 09/28/2009 at 6:09:51 PM

David A. Reinstein, LCSW

I suspect that were he still living, Jung wouldn't have very much good
to say about what he had written that long ago. In his last recorded
interview (with the BBCs John Peterson) when asked what he thought
about 'Jungians', Carl said . "I am glad to be Jung and not a
Jungian." Ideas grow and change... as do people who choose to. I am
certainthat had he lived longer, his thinking would have continue to
grow and evolve in different directions. Thanks for the provocative

Posted on 09/28/2009 at 3:09:50 PM

Jan Corn

I think this is an excellent suggestion for Hollywood (but then, I'm
sick of banal remakes). Children's book writers know that the
subconscious is perfect for tapping and often make the best books,
ones which children love!
Posted on 09/28/2009 at 3:09:09 PM

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-03 13:50:57 UTC

Collective Unconsciousness: Carl Jung Theories Contemplated - Body,
Mind, Heart, Soul, Spirit, the Next Level of Race
July 19, 2008 by Keisha Merchant

Published Content: 136 Total Views: 3,427 Fans: 2

The ideas are too intense, that the unconsciousness is automatically
working on behalf of the conscious mind, but we are ignoring the facts
before us that we can change and evolve to higher selves within this
life time and not excuse it to the next life time. Our notions, that
the conscious mind is the mind that is revealed daily the information,
knowledge, common sense, and daily activities are our interaction with
matter, we live according to the laws of reality. The notion of the
unconscious mind that is the unrevealed information that we collect
without knowledge, interpretation, translation of information given
collectively to our mind that is stored within the unconscious. The
theory that we have not been able to bring the unconscious mind to the
forefront is an expression of what we think is not reality could
possibly be a figment of our imagination so therefore the unconscious
mind is that fiction. In collaboration of the unconscious mind and the
conscious mind, I am gathering that we could possibly become a whole
man or whole woman with extraordinary gifts. Carl Jung touched on the
ideas of the collective unconsciousness working on mental disorders,
but to take this theory to the next step.

What if we addressed the issues that the mind can work on a
comprehensive development through illness and health? It is evident
that we are not receiving the understanding of our brain's activities
in its entirety at this point of the game. We are still struggling
with how we can best use our God selves and human selves as one self.
It is an inner world and external world that we face the notions that
we live in two worlds. We bridge into one world usually under illness
rather health. We are faced with the dilemma of nervous breakdowns,
criminal behavior and finally insanity or aging and decay of our

In my study, I am beginning a life work to journey into the concept
that we as a collective unconsciousness can become whole and healthy
in a wellness system of translation and formulation of consciousness
and unconsciousness using the right mediums to aid us into development
and ultimately the next stages of evolution of social dynamics and
civil dynamics of earth and heaven or universe. We can bridge the gap
of these two universes within several tools of translation and
interpretation. The concept of information and development of
information will create the platform for the two sides of thinking to
progress. Within the scope of understanding and expansion of
understanding, we can delve into the realization of using the
unconsciousness to develop the consciousness, and therefore, bridge
the gap of healing and mystery of healing in regeneration and
restoration of body, mind, heart and spirit.

I think that we can use these theories as a foundation as well as the
spiritual leaders of Jesus theories, and so forth, as puzzle pieces in
translation. Some may call it learning how to code and encode the
message or mediums of tools to aid the God man/woman and human/woman
into one being. As a marriage, we are reaching a point of climax in
our social and economy of wealth and wholeness. It is the season to
continue in the research of expanding the life of man/woman. The
opportunities to for humanity to evolve as civil beings working
together as a unit and expanding the years of perseverance in age and
maturity will rely on our breakthrough of the collective
unconsciousness and consciousness of humanity and society.

In all layers of consciousness, if we could tap into the collective
unconsciousness without losing our mind, we could develop the cure to
disease, the resolution to crime and war, and finally develop the
eliminating process of death and decay within us, the body and spirit.
It is evident that this research is far fetch, and some will ignore
the claim that we can evolve to the next level of consciousness within
the collective unconsciousness of information already given to update
our progression within our lifetime. It is evident that if we ignore a
concept as this, we leave ourselves without opportunity and
progression into an idea of paradise, wholeness, health and
opportunity for security, safety and wealth for everyone. This is not
a utopia idea, but an opportunity that can become a possibility within
our lifetime of opportunities in a technical age.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-03 13:59:20 UTC

Carl Jung and the Collective Unconscious
December 15, 2008 by Tierney Oberhammer

Published Content: 7 Total Views: 1,338 Fans: 0


Jung provides theorists and critics with a source for the myths and
plots common across various literary traditions. He does this with his
concept of the universal symbol. For Jung a symbol is an imitation of
a meaning beyond our levels of articulation. It is the representation
of an idea inherent in man's mind which must be represented because it
is beyond man's means of explanation. It is the expression of
something unspeakable. Symbols (or archetypes) make up the collective

The collective unconscious is a part of every human mind. It is that
part of the human mind common among all people; it unites humanity.
This collective unconscious contains all shared, transcendent ideas,
or archetypes. Archetypes include figures, concepts, myths, events and
symbols that repeat throughout human history because they are
ingrained in the human psyche.

Although mankind is unaware of this collective unconscious (hence
"unconscious"), archetypes arise from it in the art than mankind
produces. (This art includes literature.) According to Jung, art is
the product of man, but that doesn't mean that art reveals the
characteristics of any one individual. Instead, art presents
archetypes that men unconsciously reveal through it. These archetypes
exist underneath the surface of a person's awareness.

Man produces art in one of two ways. The first process Jung calls
"introverted." Within this type the artist controls the meaning behind
his art. He fully realizes his creation, and his intentions present
themselves in the work. Jung paid more attention, however, to the
second process, which he labeled "extroverted." It describes the
phenomena of divine inspiration. This artistic process acts on the
artist and he becomes a "reacting subject." Ideas from the collective
unconscious emerge through the unknowing and sometimes reluctant
individual in creative forms.

The extroverted mode of creativity implies that the artist creates his
work because of some divine will. It is a romantic notion, the product
of which is work with symbols that are, at the time, obscure.
Societies often discover the meanings of these works of art much
later, when those meanings become relevant.

It is within this second artistic process that the intentional fallacy
occurs. Because the artist is unconscious of the meaning behind his
art, his art means more than he ever intended. When society
rediscovers an artist's work to find that it is laden with overlooked
meaning, it is because society has caught up with some universal idea
that emerged through the artist. When this occurs, society has
surpassed former levels of comprehension and discovered a previously
unrealized archetype. That archetype is new to society consciously,
but it existed in the collective unconscious all along.

Using the above ideas, Jung explains how art benefits humanity. He
says it provides societies with a familiar archetype when they need
one. Humans don't always realize when archetypes present themselves
because these archetypes are second nature to them, even though they
don't know it. (You can't seem the "big picture" when you are a part
of the "big picture.") Still, the familiarity and unification that
archetypes in art provide ease humanity's strife.

Jung's views regarding psychology and art provide critics with both a
reason for the source of art and an explanation of how art aids
humanity. With this explanation the critic can explore archetypes in
art and analyze why specific archetypes spring from the unconscious at
certain times and in certain places. For example, they can investigate
why a novel like Dracula emerged at the turn of the century in Europe.
They can discover what the archetypes found in the book imply about
society in that place at that time.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-03 14:17:13 UTC

Jung's Red Book Publication Date Announced
Written by Sean Fitzpatrick
Wednesday, 29 April 2009

The Philemon Foundation is proud to announce that The Red Book will be
published on October 7, 2009 by W.W. Norton and Co. The publication
will coincide with The Red Book of C.G. Jung: Creation of a New
Cosmology, an exhibition of Jung's original text at the Rubin Museum
of Art in New York, October 7, 2009 - January 25, 2010.



On Reading Jung
Written by Dolores E. Brien
Thursday, 10 May 2007

Dolores E. Brien relfects on the nature of Carl Jung's literary
On Reading Jung
by Dolores E. Brien, Ph.D.

Editorial Archive March 1998

Without Jung's memoir, Memories, Dreams, and Reflections, and the
popular Man and His Symbols, I wonder how many of us would have been
drawn to Jungian psychology? Or having once been hooked, how many of
us have gone on to read Jung's own works or have relied instead on
secondary works? We know that Jung is notoriously difficult to read.
How many have started Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious (or
Aion, or the Mysterium Coniunctionis, or any other of his major works)
and never to finish it? I once took part in a study group on
Psychology and Alchemy. We did finish reading the book, and we had
some interesting discussions, but at the end, one participant said,
"Well, I could read this book all over again and it would be as if I
had never read it before."

And yet, in attempting to read even the most "difficult" of Jung's
works, one comes upon those inspired, luminous passages which make it
all worthwhile and which motivate us to plow on with the reading. What
we thought we had grasped, we now see in a different and better light.
Jung may contradict himself, but what goes around with Jung, comes
around. Little by little his ideas begin to fall in place for us. For
a time, at any rate, it all makes perfect sense until a new reading
dislodges us from that place where we thought we understood something,
and so we begin again. It is the elusiveness which also attracts us
to Jung because we sense there is always more there than we can take
in during a reading or even many readings.

Recently, I borrowed from a college library (probably the only place
you will find them) the two volumes of Jung's seminars on Nietzsche's
Zarathustra which, together, comprise 1544 pages, not including the
index. The seminar ran from 8 to 10 weeks in the spring, autumn and
winter months from 1934 to 1939 which explains the length. Princeton
has since published an abridged edition, one third the size. I was
looking for a particular reference but found myself reading more than
I had expected to, or had time for, or wanted, but I was hooked. No, I
did not read the entire two volumes—nowhere near that. Maybe I will
some day because having searched through it to some extent, I know
that I will find it as entertaining and vastly more interesting than
an epic film or novel which are the genre to which I tend to compare
it, if incongruously, in my own mind.

In this seminar, Jung is at his extemporaneous best--and worst--even
more so, I’ll wager, than with the Dreams and Visions seminars which
preceded this one. As a result there is much in it that we find
"offensive" today, his remarks about women, for instance. "The natural
mind of a woman consists chiefly in weaving plots." This is from a
long passage in which he discusses differences between Logos and Eros--
a distinction orthodox Jungians are wary of making today, and some
reject entirely. In fact, there is more than enough material here to
embarrass loyalists, never mind to satisfy his enemies.

But there is also the earthy Jung which somehow, always surfaces, to
rescue me, just at the moment when I feel like I am drowning in
alchemical stews. In discussing psychological issues, he can be
downright practical, knowing when a situation calls for the
commonsensical rather than the archetypal. He is also a great story
teller, a parablist. But it is his learning which is astonishing, its
breadth and depth. It seems he retained everything and recalled it on
command. I think that is what we miss today, and it is a great loss,
for whom, among our contemporaries, can we point to as being
comparably learned? And finally, there is his extraordinary,
incomparable psychological acumen without which the rest would be
empty of meaning. Of course, we are familiar with this many-sidedness
of Jung in all his works, but in this extemporaneous setting it is all
the more impressive.

The reference I needed to look up was the well known quote about "You
can't individuate on Mt Everest." Mt. Everest wasn't cited in the
index, so I went looking for it and found not one, but three
references to it. Each time Jung is explaining in a slightly different
way that you need relationships if you want to come to wholeness. I
realized, in the process, that in the Nietzsche seminar Jung is
constantly exploring the idea of the self. He returns to it again and
again, and each time I stumbled on it, I came away with a little more
light on the subject than I had before. This is but one example of the
riches to be found in this seminar and, by the same token, in much of
Jung's work that is not generally read.

It takes perseverance and some fortitude to take up a volume by Jung
to read and not some interpreter, good as she/he might be. But in the
end, the best source for understanding Jung is Jung himself even if he
doesn't make it very easy.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-04 14:01:37 UTC

Anshumanbiswal's Weblog

When The Going Gets Tough,Tough Gets Going…« Gayatri Mantra & Meaning
by swami vivekanand
Yoga for inner balance »Buddhist Chant – Heart Sutra (Sanskrit) by
Imee Ooi,shiva gayatri and ganesh mantra

October 2, 2009

For books written by Pandit Shri Ram Sharma Acharyaji you can contact
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Posted in Study Materials | Tagged Buddhist Chant - Heart Sutra
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[...] Buddhist Chant – Heart Sutra (Sanskrit) by Imee Ooi
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by links to some good videos « Anshumanbiswal's Weblog October 2,
2009 at 21:57

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-04 23:04:22 UTC

The Quartet of Causeries

By Śyāmilaka, Vararuci, Śūdraka & Īśvaradatta
Translated by Csaba Dezső & Somadeva Vasudeva

Download Excerpts

“The Quartet of Causeries” date to the Gupta era, the time of
Kali·dasa, but nothing certain is known about their four authors.
Though stylistically divergent, they share a common plot: the hero is
an inept, bungling procurer, who mismanages his client’s love-affairs
to an unexpectedly successful completion. A wide and comic spectrum of
India’s urban society is scandalized. The verse below illustrates the
popular Sanskrit style of punning, that is the deliberate fusion of
two senses in one phrase. Such single phrases demand two parallel

Whoever sees me,

hangs around flees elsewhere
entertains polite chitchat shuts up
even if in hurry even if there is no hurry.
Even in a congestion if there is a danger of injury

happily their hair standing on end
gives way tramples onwards.
Nobody detains me for long Within no time someone
harasses me,
fearing that they may obstruct my affairs no matter
how rudely.
Widely travelled men Those who are familiar with its

the fame of this best of cities to be alleged fame of this
worst of cities
well-deserved a mystery.

508 pp. | ISBN-13: 978-0-8147-1978-7 | ISBN-10: 0-8147-1978-3 |
Co-published by New York University Press and JJC Foundation

About the Translator

Csaba Dezső is Senior Lecturer in Sanskrit in the Department of Indo-
European Linguistics at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. He has
also translated Much Ado About Religion for the CSL.

Somadeva Vasudeva is Assistant Professor in Sanskrit at Columbia
University, New York. His translations for the CSL include Three
Satires and The Recognition of Shakúntala.

Published Aug 2009

Garland of the Buddha’s Past Lives (volume two of two)
Málavika and Agni·mitra
Maha·bhárata VII: Drona (volume two of four)
Maha·bhárata X-XI: Dead of Night & The Women
Princess Kadámbari (volume one of three)
The Rise of Wisdom Moon
Seven Hundred Elegant Verses

Published 2009

Please select a volume

Bhatti’s Poem: The Death of Rávana“Bouquet of Rasa” and “River of
Rasa”Garland of the Buddha’s Past Lives
(volume one of two)

Gita·govínda: Love Songs of Radha and KrishnaHow Úrvashi Was Won“How
the Nagas Were Pleased” and “The Shattered Thighs”The Little Clay
CartMaha·bhárata VI: Bhishma (volume two of two)

Maha·bhárata XII: Peace: “The Book of Liberation” (volume three of

The Ocean of the Rivers of Story (volume two of seven)

The Quartet of Causeries“Self-Surrender,” “Peace,” “Compassion,” and
“The Mission of the Goose”: Poems and Prayers from South India

Published 2008

Please select a volume

Life of the BuddhaMaha·bhárata V: Preparations for War
(volume one of two)

Maha·bhárata V: Preparations for War
(volume two of two)

Maha·bhárata VI: Bhishma
(volume one of two)

Including the “Bhagavad Gita” in ContextMaha·bhárata VIII: Karna
(volume two of two)

Published 2007

Please select a volume

“Friendly Advice” and “King Víkrama’s Adventures”Handsome Nanda“The
Lady of the Jewel Necklace” and “The Lady Who Shows Her
Love”Maha·bhárata IV: VirátaMaha·bhárata VIII: Karna
(volume one of two)

Maha·bhárata IX: Shalya
(volume two of two)

The Ocean of the Rivers of Story
(volume one of seven)

Rama’s Last Act

Published 2006

Please select a volume

The Epitome of Queen Lilávati
(volume two)

Five Discourses on Worldly WisdomMaha·bhárata II: The Great
HallMaha·bhárata VII: Drona
(volume one of four)

Messenger PoemsRamáyana III: The ForestRamáyana V: SúndaraRama Beyond
PriceThe Recognition of Shakúntala

Published 2005

Please select a volume

The Birth of KumáraThe Emperor of the Sorcerers
(volume one)

The Emperor of the Sorcerers
(volume two)

The Epitome of Queen Lilávati
(volume one)

Heavenly Exploits (Buddhist Biographies from the Dívyavadána)Love
LyricsMaha·bhárata III: The Forest
(volume four of four)

Maha·bhárata IX: Shalya
(volume one of two)

Much Ado About Religion
Rákshasa’s Ring
Ramáyana I: Boyhood
Ramáyana II:
AyódhyaRamáyana IV:
Three Satires
What Ten Young Men Did

© 2005-2009 The Clay Sanskrit Library.
Co-published by New York University Press and the JJC Foundation.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-04 23:12:07 UTC

Much Ado About Religion

By Bhaṭṭa Jayanta
Translated by Csaba Dezső

Translator’s Insights
Download Excerpts Download Extras

The play satirizes various religions in Kashmir and their place in the
politics of King Shánkara·varman (883-902). Jayánta’s strategy is to
take a characteristic figure of the target religion and show that he
is a rogue, using reasoning or some fundamental ideas connected with
the doctrines of that very religion. This way he makes a laughingstock
of both its followers and their tenets. The leading character,
Sankárshana, is a young and dynamic orthodox graduate of Vedic
studies, whose career starts as a glorious campaign against the
heretic Buddhists, Jains and other antisocial sects. By the end of the
play he realizes that the interests of the monarch do not encourage
such inquisitional rigor and the story ends in a great festival of
tolerance and compromise.

The graduate and his disciple spy on a breakfast in a Buddhist

Boy: Look, here are buxom maids ready to serve the food and catching
the eyes of the monks with their flirtatious glances. And there some
kind of drink is being served in a spotless jar.

Graduate: There is wine here, masquerading as ‘fruit juice,’ and meat
allegedly fit for vegetarians. Oh, how painful this asceticism is!

320 pp. | ISBN-13: 978-0-8147-1979-4 | ISBN-10: 0-8147-1979-1 |
Co-published by New York University Press and JJC Foundation

About the Translator

Csaba Dezső is Senior Lecturer in Sanskrit in the Department of Indo-
European Linguistics at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. He has
also translated The Quartet of Causeries together with Somadeva

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-04 23:15:52 UTC

The Recognition of Shakúntala

By Kālidāsa
Translated by Somadeva Vasudeva

Download Excerpts

The play Shakúntala was one of the first examples of Indian literature
to be seen in Europe, first translated into English, and then into
German. It attracted considerable attention (from Goethe, among
others) and, indeed, pained surprise that such a sophisticated art
form could have developed without the rest of the world noticing. A
good deal of that surprise will be revived by the hitherto
untranslated Kashmirian recension. Shakúntala’s story is a leitmotiv
that recurs in many works of Indian literature, from the Maha·bhárata
to Buddhist narratives of the Buddha’s previous births as the
bodhi·sattva, and culminating in the master Kali·dasa’s drama for the
stage. Again and again, the virtuous lady is forgotten by her
betrothed, the king Dushyánta, his memory having been erased through a
curse, only to be refound thanks to a distinguishing signet ring
discovered by a fisherman in the belly of one of his catch. The final
act distills the essence of human forgiveness, in Shakúntala’s
gracious release of her husband from his guilt. Already in the
Maha·bhárata it is Bhárata, the son of the king and his queen, whose
rule gives India its Sanskrit name: Bhárata.

Buffoon: (acting fatigue, sighing) I’ve had it! I’m sick of being a
side-kick to this hunt-mad king... (Laughs with malice) And now, a
pimple crowns the boil. Just yesterday, as I lagged behind, his
majesty, chasing some antelope or other, entered a hermitage and was,
by my ill fate, shown some ascetic’s daughter called Shakúntala.

419 pp. | ISBN-13: 978-0-8147-8815-8 | ISBN-10: 0-8147-8815-7 |
Co-published by New York University Press and JJC Foundation

About the Translator

Somadeva Vasudeva is Assistant Professor in Sanskrit at Columbia
University, New York. He has also translated Three Satires and The
Quartet of Causeries (together with Csaba Dezső) for the CSL.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-04 23:20:01 UTC

Foreword to “Ramáyana I: Boyhood” by Amartya Sen. Now
Available.Welcome to the Clay Sanskrit Library

In the late 1990's, when John Clay started to work on the concepts for
the Clay Sanskrit Library ("CSL"), his key objective was to produce
fifty titles. After ten years of progress, the list of volumes set for
publication encompasses well over fifty works, as shown at

This summer (Year 2009), the current programme of development of
additional texts is being brought to a close. Published volumes may be
purchased through the distribution sources listed at

John Clay would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who
helped to ensure the success of this pioneering publishing programme.

John Clay's vision came to life in the late 1990's, when he began to
put the people and resources together for what would become the Clay
Sanskrit Library. Since the publication of the first volume in 2005,
forty-nine volumes have been published, including twelve new volumes
in 2009, and another seven titles are scheduled to be released in
August 2009. The selection represents the richness and wide variety of
Sanskrit literature, covering works of drama, poetry, satire and
novels, as well as the two famous epics, the Maha·bhárata and the

The Clay Sanskrit Library is a series of books covering a wide
spectrum of Classical Sanskrit literature spanning two millennia.
Bound in the convenient pocket size (4.5" x 6.5") in an elegant
design, each work features the original Sanskrit text in
transliterated Roman letters on the left-hand page with its English
translation on the facing page.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-05 14:35:35 UTC

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Telephone Sanskrit?

Whitby and Toronto Sanskrit class participants can now phone into to a
teleclass every Sunday at 7pm. If you are interested, you can still
participate by emailing me at

speaksamskrit at yahoo dot com

There is a small registration fee of under a $1 per class for 40
classes throughout the year. Pretty good deal! The class is 1 hour


Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Haryana announces incentives to promote Sanskrit

http://www.hindusta ntimes.com/ StoryPage/ Print.aspx? Id=274bd2eb-
1168-4a41- b29b-74162cc9ded 7

Sanskrit is all set to get a major boost in Haryana. The state
government has announced various grants for gurukuls (traditional
residential schools) to promote the ancient language.

Announcing the incentives Friday, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder
Singh Hooda said gurukul culture would be promoted in the state to
encourage teaching of Sanskrit.

Hooda announced that gurukuls having 100 students would be given a
grant of Rs 150,000 annually while those having 200 students would get
a grant of Rs 250,000 per annum. Those having over 300 students would
be given a grant of Rs 350,000, he added.

The number of students would be counted on the basis of those who take
the examination finally, officials said.

The government has also announced new qualifications for recruitment
of Sanskrit teachers.


latha vidyaranya said...
thats a great heart warming move taken by the haryana government. i
wish other states follow suit.

January 17, 2009 12:42 AM
Post a Comment


Thursday, December 4, 2008
Samskrit Website Links
Learn Samskrit

http://www.taralabalu.org/panini/greetings.htm [Grammar]
http://www.warnemyr.com/skrgram/ [Grammar]
http://www.sanskrit-lexicon.uni-koeln.de/ [Dictionary]
Samskrit Resources

Samskrit Literatures - http://www.vedamu.org/Sankrit/sankritmain.asp
Sacred Texts - http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/index.htm
Upanishads - http://www.gatewayforindia.com/upanishad/upanishads.htm
Vedic Resources - http://is1.mum.edu/vedicreserve/
Resources - http://www.mywhatever.com/sanskrit/index.html

News - http://sudharma.epapertoday.com/
AIR Samskrit News - http://girvanavani.googlepages.com/newsheadlines



latha vidyaranya said...
thanks for providing so many useful links to sanskrit lovers.

January 17, 2009 12:43 AM
Post a Comment


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Sanskrit speaking village in Madhya Pradesh
by Aditya Ghosh, Hindustan Times

Prem Narayan Chauhan pats his oxen, pushing them to go a little
faster. Ziighrataram, ziighrataram chalanti, he urges them. The
animals respond to their master's call, picking up pace on the muddy
path that leads to his 10-acre cornfield. Chauhan, 35, dropped out of
school early, after Class II. He does not consider it remarkable that
he speaks what is considered a dying language (or that his oxen
respond to it).

For him, Sanskrit is not a devabhasha, the language of the gods, but
one rooted in the commonplace, in the ebb and flow of everyday life in
Jhiri, the remote hamlet in Madhya Pradesh, where he lives. Mutterings
under banyan trees, chit-chat in verandahs, pleasantries on village
paths, disputes in the panchayat — in Jhiri, it's all in Sanskrit.

And then, a cellphone rings. The moment of contemporary reality is
fleeting. Anachronism and Amar Chitra Katha take over as the
conversation begins: "Namo, namah. Tvam kutra asi?" (Greetings. Where
are you?) A lost world rediscoveredJhiri is India's own Jurassic Park.
A lost world that has been recreated carefully and painstakingly, but
lives a precarious existence, cut off from the compelling realities of
the world outside.

The 1,000-odd residents of this hamlet, 150 km north of Indore, hardly
speak the local dialect, Malwi, any longer. Ten years have been enough
for the Sanskritisation of life here. Minus the Brahminical pride
historically associated with the language — Jhiri has just one Brahmin
family. The much-admired 24-year-old Vimla Panna who teaches Sanskrit
in the local school belongs to the Oraon tribe, which is spread over
Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand. And the village is an eclectic mix of
Kshatriyas, Thakurs, Sondhias, Sutars and the tribal Bhils. Panna has
been key in popularising Sanskrit with the women of Jhiri. With
mothers speaking the language, the children naturally follow. Take 16-
year-old unlettered Seema Chauhan. She speaks Sanskrit as fluently as
Panna, who studied the language for seven years for her Master's

Chauhan is a livewire, humouring and abusing the village girls in
Sanskrit. "I just listened to Vimla didi," she says. "In fact, I'm
often at a loss for words in Malwi." Just married to a man from a
neighbouring village, she says confidently, "My children will speak in
Sanskrit because I will talk to them in it." As eight-year-old Pinky
Chauhan joins us, she greets me politely: "Namo namaha. Bhavaan kim
karoti?" (What brings you here?) Her father Chander Singh Chauhan
laughs and says, "My wife started speaking to me in this language, so
I learnt it to figure out what she was saying behind my back." Let's
get official Mukesh Jain, CEO, Janpad Panchayat, Sarangpur tehsil
(which includes Jhiri), recalls, "I could not believe it when I first
came here. It can get difficult during official interactions, but we
encourage them." All kinds of logistical problems crop up in Jhiri.

This year, 250 students did their school-leaving exams in Sanskrit. "A
Sanskrit teacher had to work along with all the examiners of other
subjects," says Jain.

But there are some positive offshoots too. Thanks to Sanskrit, Jhiri
has re-discovered some lost technologies of irrigation, conservation
and agriculture from the old scriptures.

A siphon system of water recharging, for instance, resulted in
uninterrupted water supply through the year in the fields. Small check-
dams, wells and irrigation facilities followed. "It is matter of pride
for us to retrieve these old techniques from the scriptures. With no
help from the government and without using any artificial systems,
we've reaped great benefits," says Uday Singh Chauhan, president of
the Vidya Gram Vikash Samity, which runs development programmes in the
village. But Jhiri's pride stops at Sanskrit. The first doctor,
engineer, economist, scientist or linguist is yet to walk out from it.
After finishing school, most village youth join a political party.
Electricity is a matter of luxury, so is sanitation. Even the school
does not have a toilet, which is the single biggest reason for girls
dropping out at the senior secondary level. The average age of
marriage for women is 14. Even Panna, who was thinking of doing her
PhD, had to give in to the wishes of the wise men of Jhiri who got her
married to the other schoolteacher, Balaprasad Tiwari.

There is no public transport; an Internet connection is unimaginable.
Jhiri desperately needs to connect to the rest of the world, to
explore its infinite possibilities, to grow. But Jhiri is still a
success story, especially when you consider that a similar experiment,
started a couple of decades ago in Muttur village of Karnataka's
Shimoga district, failed, because of the caste factor — it remained
caged with Brahmin patrons. "About 80 per cent people of the village
are Brahmins who know Sanskrit but won't speak it. This is because the
carpenters and blacksmiths would not respond to it," says Dr Mathur
Krishnaswami, head of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Bangalore, who was
involved with the movement. "No language in the world can survive
until the common man starts speaking it," he points out. Muttur
failed. Jurassic Park destroyed itself. Jhiri must not.


Friday, October 31, 2008
Kalam on why Sanskrit is important


Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad February 01, 2007 17:14 IST

President A P J Abdul Kalam on Thursday termed Guru Raghavendraswamy
of Mantralayam as a 'divine soul' and recalled the rich cultural
heritage of Sanskrit in Indian history.

Dr Kalam interacted with the students of Sree Guru Sarvabhouma
Sanskrit Vidyapeetam at Mantralayam in Kurnool district. Reciting the
Moola Mantram of Raghavendraswamigal, he said "We worship Guru
Raghavendraswamy, the divine soul who practiced and taught truth and
dharma (the right conduct). We chant his name as Kalpavrisha (the
giver of limitless material wealth) and bow before him as Kamadenu
(the giver of spiritual knowledge)."

"Though I am not an expert in Sanskrit, I have many friends who are
proficient in Sanskrit. Sanskrit is a beautiful language. It has
enriched our society from time immemorial. Today many nations are
trying to research Sanskrit writings which are there in our ancient
scriptures. I understand that there is a wealth of knowledge available
in Sanskrit which scientists and technologists are finding today," he

"There is a need to carry out research on our Vedas, particularly
Atharvana Veda, for eliciting valuable information in science and
technology relating to medicine, flight sciences, material sciences
and many other related fields. Cryptology is another area where
Sanskrit language is liberally used," he added.

He suggested that the Sanskrit Vidyapeetam, apart from their academic
activity, should take up the task of locating missing literature in
Sanskrit available on palm leaves spread in different parts of the
country so that these could be documented and preserved. He suggested
that they should avail the help of digital technology for documenting
those scriptures both in audio and video form which can be preserved
as long term wealth for use by many generations.

He asked the Sanskrit Vidyapeetam to should go into details of lives
of great scholars, poets, epic creators like Valmiki, Veda Vyasa,
Kalidasa and Panini. He wanted the Vidyapeetam to invite well-known
Sanskrit scholars so that they can stay and interact with the students
for a certain period. "This will provide an opportunity for students
to interact and get enriched in Sanskrit and Vedas," he noted.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Samskrit and Technical Age


by Vyaas Houston, M.A.

The mentality of mankind and the language of mankind created each
other. If we like to assume the rise of language as a given fact, then
it is not going too far to say that the souls of men are the gift from
language to mankind. The account of the sixth day should be written:

He gave them speech, and they became souls.
— Alfred North Whitehead, Modes of Thought

The quote of Whitehead may have created in the readers as many
different responses as there are readers. One may perceive it as a
noble and inspiring truth. Another may react to the notion that a
"soul" could depend on language. Still another may be completely in
the dark about what Whitehead is saying.

The quote will actually take on meaning according to context. And the
context is largely determined by the meanings we attribute to words,
especially in this quote the word "soul". "Soul", according to Webster
can mean "the immortal part of human being" or "the seat of emotional
sentiment and aspiration" or simply "a human being."

In addition to or apart from these definitions, each of us may bring
our own religious or philosophical beliefs or experiences into the
context, "the soul is this", or "the soul is that."

The point is this: wherever we go in our interpretation of Whitehead,
we use language. So the question arises "where does the soul exist
other than in language?"

Suppose we were to continue to challenge Whitehead in his implication
that only human beings, by having speech, became souls. We say
"animals have souls." But again the question occurs, where does the
animal's soul exist other than in our describing it with language?
Even if we were to have a vision of the soul of an animal, still we
would have to return to language to report what we saw. The soul of
the animal would continue to exist for us in memory as language.
Through language we could even recreate a picture of the animal's

Perhaps we should recreate North's recreation of creation and say "He
gave speech, and they became souls, and in turn some of them gave
souls to all creatures, to all life."

All of this is not to in any way invalidate the sanctity and
perfection of creation but only to point out that we have greatly
underestimated the sacred power of language. When the power of
language to create and discover life is recognized, language becomes
sacred. In ancient times, language was held in this regard. Nowhere
was this more so than in ancient India. It is evident that the ancient
scientists of language were acutely aware of the function of language
as a tool for exploring and understanding life, and in the process of
using language with greater and greater rigor discovered Sanskrit or
the "perfected" language.

This along with the example of Whitehead's quote points out what is
perhaps the most important distinction we can make in the fulfillment
of our lives: either language uses us or we use language. Either we
think that Whitehead is right or wrong based on what our already
established definition of "soul" is or we discover the relation of his
use of words, to our own use of words. This opens the possibility of
seeing something that lies beyond both. Only in the latter do we
actually communicate, free from the domination of unconscious memory
dictating meaning.

In ancient India the intention to discover truth was so consuming,
that in the process, they discovered perhaps the most perfect tool for
fulfilling such a search that the world has ever known — the Sanskrit

Of all the discoveries that have occurred and developed in the course
of human history, language is the most significant and probably the
most taken for granted. Without language, civilization could obviously
not exist. On the other hand, to the degree that language becomes
sophisticated and accurate in describing the subtlety and complexity
of human life, we gain power and effectiveness in meeting its
challenges. The access to modern technology which has been designed to
give ease, efficiency and enjoyment in meeting our daily needs did not
exist at the beginning of the century. It was made possible by
accelerated advancement in the field of mathematics, a "language"
which has helped us to discover the interrelationship of energy and
matter with a high degree of precision. The resulting technology is
evidence of the tremendous power that is unleashed simply by being
able to make the finer and finer distinction that a language like
mathematics affords.

At the same time humankind has fallen far behind the advancements in
technology. The precarious state of political and ecological imbalance
that we are now experiencing is an obvious sign of the power of
technology far exceeding the power of human beings to be in control of
it. It could easily be argued that we have fallen far behind the
advancements in technology, simply because the languages we use for
daily communication do not help us to make the distinctions required
to be in balance with the technology that has taken over our lives.

Relevant to this, there has recently been an astounding discovery made
at the NASA research center. The following quote is from an article
which appeared in AI Magazine (Artificial Intelligence) in Spring of
1985 written NASA researcher, Rick Briggs:

In the past twenty years, much time, effort, and money has been
expended on designing an unambiguous representation of natural
languages to make them accessible to computer processing. These
efforts have centered around creating schemata designed to parallel
logical relations with relations expressed by the syntax and semantics
of natural languages, which are clearly cumbersome and ambiguous in
their function as vehicles for the transmission of logical data.
Understandably, there is a widespread belief that natural languages
are unsuitable for the transmission of many ideas that artificial
languages can render with great precision and mathematical rigor.

But this dichotomy, which has served as a premise underlying much work
in the areas of linguistics and artificial intelligence, is a false
one. There is at least one language, Sanskrit, which for the duration
of almost 1000 years was a living spoken language with a considerable
literature of its own. Besides works of literary value, there was a
long philosophical and grammatical tradition that has continued to
exist with undiminished vigor until the present century. Among the
accomplishments of the grammarians can be reckoned a method for
paraphrasing Sanskrit in a manner that is identical not only in
essence but in form with current work in Artificial Intelligence. This
article demonstrates that a natural language can serve as an
artificial language also, and that much work in AI has been
reinventing a wheel millennia old.

The discovery is of monumental significance. It is mind-boggling to
consider that we have available to us a language which has been spoken
for 4000 - 7000 years that appears to be in every respect a perfect
language designed for enlightened communication. But the most stunning
aspect of the discovery is this: NASA, the most advanced research
center in the world for cutting edge technology, has discovered that
Sanskrit, the world's oldest spiritual language, is the only
unambiguous spoken language on the planet.

In early AI research it was discovered that in order to clear up the
inherent ambiguity of natural languages for computer comprehension, it
was necessary to utilize semantic net systems to encode the actual
meaning of the sentence. Briggs gives the example of how a simple
sentence would be represented in a semantic net:

John gave the ball to Mary.
give, agent, John
give, object, ball
give, recipient, Mary
give, time, past
He further comments, "The degree to which a semantic net (or any
unambiguous nonsyntactic representation) is cumbersome and odd-
sounding in a natural language is the degree to which that language is
'natural' and deviates from the precise or 'artificial.' As we shall
see, there was a language (Sanskrit) spoken among an ancient
scientific community that has a deviation of zero."

Considering Sanskrit's status as a spiritual language, a further
implication of this discovery is that the age old dichotomy between
religion and science is an entirely unjustified one.

It is also relevant to note that in the last decade physicists have
begun to comment on the striking similarities between their own
discoveries and the discoveries made thousands of years ago in India
which went on to form the basis of most Eastern religions.

Because of the high level of collaboration required in uncovering the
nature of energy and matter, it is inconceivable that it ever could
have taken place without a common language, namely mathematics. This
is a perfect example of using a language for discovering and designing
life. The language of mathematics, being inherently unambiguous,
minimizes personal interpretation and therefore maximizes opportunity
for exploration and discovery. The result of this is a worldwide
community of scientists working together with extraordinary vitality
and excitement about uncovering the unknown.

It can also be inferred that the discoveries that occurred in India in
the first millennia B.C. were also the result of collaboration and
inquiry by a community of spiritual scientists utilizing a common
scientific language, Sanskrit. The truth of this is further accented
by the fact that throughout the history and development of Indian
thought, the science of grammar and linguistics was attributed a
status equal to that of mathematics in the context of modern
scientific investigation. In deference to the thoroughness and depth
with which the ancient grammatical scientists established the science
of language, modern linguistic researchers in Russia have concluded
about Sanskrit, "The time has come to continue the tradition of the
ancient grammarians on the basis of the modern ideas in general

Sanskrit is the most ancient member of the European family of
languages. It is an elder sister of Latin and Greek from which most of
the modern European languages have been derived. The oldest preserved
form of Sanskrit is referred to as Vedic. The oldest extant example of
the literature of the Vedic period is the Rig-Veda. Being strictly in
verse, the Rig-Veda does not give us a record of the contemporary
spoken language.

The very name Sanskrit meant "language brought to formal perfection"
in contrast to the common languages, Prakrits or "natural" languages.

The form of Sanskrit which has been used for the last 2500 years is
known today as Classical Sanskrit. The norms of classical Sanskrit
were established by the ancient grammarians. Although no records are
available of their work, their efforts reached a climax in the 5th
century B.C. in the great grammatical treatise of Panini, which became
the standard for correct speech with such comprehensive authority that
it has remained so, with little alteration until present times.

Based on what the grammarians themselves have stated, we may conclude
that the Sanskrit grammar was an attempt to discipline and explain a
spoken language.

The NASA article corroborates this in saying that Indian grammatical
analysis "probably has to do with an age old Indo-Aryan preoccupation
to discover the nature of reality behind the impressions we human
beings receive through the operation of our senses."

Until 1100 A.D., Sanskrit was without interruption the official
language of the whole of India. The dominance of Sanskrit is indicated
by a wealth of literature of widely diverse genres including religious
and philosophical; fiction (short story, fable, novels, and plays);
scientific literature including linguistics, mathematics, astronomy,
and medicine; as well as law and politics.

With the Muslim invasions from 1100 A.D. onwards, Sanskrit gradually
became displaced by common languages patronized by the Muslim kings as
a tactic to suppress Indian cultural and religious tradition and
supplant it with their own beliefs. But they could not eliminate the
literary and spiritual-ritual use of Sanskrit.

Even today in India, there is a strong movement to return Sanskrit to
the status of "national language of India." Sanskrit being a language
derived from simple monosyllabic verbal roots through the addition of
appropriate prefixes and suffixes according to precise grammatical
laws has an infinite capacity to grow, adapt and expand according to
the requirements of change in a rapidly evolving world.

Even in the last two centuries, due to the rapid advances in
technology and science, a literature abundant with new and improvised
vocabulary has come into existence. Although such additions are based
on the grammatical principles of Sanskrit, and mostly composed of
Sanskrit roots, still contributions from Hindi and other national and
international languages have been assimilated. For example: The word
for television, duuradarshanam, meaning "that which provides a vision
of what is far away " is derived purely from Sanskrit.

Furthermore, there are at least a dozen periodicals published in
Sanskrit, all-India radio news broadcast in Sanskrit, television shows
and feature movies produced in Sanskrit, one village of 3000
inhabitants who communicate through Sanskrit alone, not to mention
countless smaller intellectual communities throughout India, schools,
as well as families where Sanskrit is fostered. Contemporary Sanskrit
is alive and well.

The discussion until now has been about Sanskrit, the language of
mathematical precision, the world's only unambiguous spoken language.
But the linguistic perfection of Sanskrit offers only a partial
explanation for its sustained presence in the world for at least 3000
years. High precision in and of itself is of limited scope. Generally
it excites the brain but not the heart. Sanskrit is indeed a perfect
language in the same sense as mathematics, but Sanskrit is also a
perfect language in the sense that, like music, it has the power to
uplift the heart.

It's conceivable that for a few rare and inspired geniuses,
mathematics can reach the point of becoming music or music becoming
mathematics. The extraordinary thing about Sanskrit is that it offers
direct accessibility by anyone to that elevated plane where the two,
mathematics and music, brain and heart, analytical and intuitive,
scientific and spiritual become one. This is fertile ground for
revelation. Great discoveries occur, whether through mathematics or
music or Sanskrit, not by the calculations or manipulations of the
human mind, but where the living language is expressed and heard in a
state of joy and communion with the natural laws of existence.

Why has Sanskrit endured? Fundamentally it generates clarity and
inspiration. And that clarity and inspiration is directly responsible
for a brilliance of creative expression such as the world has rarely
seen. No one has expressed this more eloquently than Sri Aurobindo,
the 20th century poet philosopher:

The Ancient and classical creations of the Sanskrit tongue both in
quality and in body and abundance of excellence, in their potent
originality and force and beauty, in their substance and art and
structure, in grandeur and justice and charm of speech and in the
height and width of the reach of their spirit stand very evidently in
the front rank among the world's great literatures. The language
itself, as has been universally recognized by those competent to form
a judgment, is one of the most magnificent, the most perfect and
wonderfully sufficient literary instruments developed by the human
mind, at once majestic and sweet and flexible, strong and clearly-
formed and full and vibrant and subtle, and its quality and character
would be of itself a sufficient evidence of the character and quality
of the race whose mind it expressed and the culture of which it was
the reflecting medium.

Sanskrit after all is the language of mantra — words of power that are
subtly attuned to the unseen harmonies of the matrix of creation, the
world as yet unformed. The possibility of such a finely attuned
language is only conceivable by drawing upon sounds so inherently pure
in combinations so harmoniously blended that the result is as
refreshing and pure as the energy of creation forming into mountain
streams and lakes and the flawless crystal structures of natural gems,
while at the same time wielding the power of nebulae and galaxies
expanding into the infinitude of space.

But from the perception of Rishis, the source of language transcends
such conceptions. In Sanskrit, vaak, speech, the "word" of Genesis,
incorporates both the sense of "voice" and "word". It has four forms
of expression. The first, paraa, represents cosmic ideation arising
from the original and absolute divine presence. The second, pashyantii
(literally "seeing") is vaak as subject "seeing," which creates the
object of madhyamaavaak, the third and subtle form of speech before it
manifests as vaikhariivaak, the gross production of letters in spoken

Sanskrit is a language whose harmonic subtlety, mysteriously sources
the successive phases of creation all the way to origination. This
implies the possibility of having speech oriented to a direct living
truth which transcends individual preoccupation with the limited
information available through the senses. Spoken words as such are
creative living things of power. They penetrate to the essence of what
they describe. They give birth to meaning which reflects the profound
interrelatedness of life.

It is a tantalizing proposition to consider speaking a language whose
sounds are so pure and euphonically combined. The mere listening or
speaking inspires and produces joy and clarity. And yet it has been
precisely the tendency of humanity as a whole to merely be tantalized
by happiness, but not actually to choose it. It's as though we had
been offered the most precious gem and we answered, "No, I'd rather be
poor." The only possible background for such a choice is the
unconscious belief that, "I can't have it. I can't be that."

Interestingly enough, this is exactly what is triggered in people who
are faced with the opportunity to learn Sanskrit. The basic attitude
towards learning Sanskrit in India today is, "It's too difficult."
Actually Sanskrit is not difficult. On the contrary, there are few
greater enjoyments. The first stage, experiencing the individual power
of each of the 49 basic sounds of the Sanskrit alphabet is pure
discovery, especially for Westerners who have never paid attention to
the unique distinctions of individual letters such as location of
resonance and tongue position. The complete alphabet must have been
worked out by learned grammarians on phonetic principles by long
before it was codified by Panini around 500 B.C. It is arranged on a
thoroughly scientific method, the simple vowels (short and long)
coming first, then the complex vowels (dipthongs), followed by the
consonants in uniform groups according to the organs of speech with
which they are pronounced.

The unique organization of the Sanskrit alphabet serves to focus one's
attention on qualities and patterns of articulated sound in a way that
occurs in no other language. By paying continuous attention to the
point of location, degree of resonance and effort of breath, one's
awareness becomes more and more consumed by the direct experience of
articulated sound. This in itself produces and unprecedented clarity
of mind and revelry in the joy of language. Every combination of sound
in Sanskrit follows strict laws which essentially make possible an
uninterrupted flow of the most perfect euphonic blending of letters
into words and verse.

The script used to depict written Sanskrit is known as Devanaagari or
that "spoken by the Gods." Suitably for Sanskrit, it is a perfect
system of phonetic representation. According to linguists, the
phonetic accuracy of the Devanaagari compares well with that of the
modern phonetic transcriptions.

Because of its inherent logic, systematic presentation and adherence
to only the most clear and most pure sounds, the Sanskrit alphabet in
its spoken form, is perhaps the easiest in the world to learn and
recall. Once the alphabet is learned, there is just one major step to
take in gaining access to the Sanskrit language: learning the case and
tense endings. The endings are what make Sanskrit a language of math-
like precision. By the endings added onto nouns or verbs, there is an
obvious determination of the precise interrelationship of words
describing activity of persons and things in time and space,
regardless of word order. Essentially, the endings constitute the
software or basic program of the Sanskrit language.

The rigor of learning the case endings is precisely the reason why
many stop in their pursuit of Sanskrit. Yet by an effective immersion
method, fluent reading of the Devanagari script, accurate
pronunciation, and the inputting of the case and tense endings can
easily be accomplished. Such a method must take advantage of the fact
that Sanskrit grammar is structured by precise patterns, and once a
pattern has been noted it is a simple exercise to recognize all the
individual instances that fit the pattern; rather than see the pattern
after all the individual instances have been learned. Color coding
provides a tremendous support in this regard.

Learning the case endings through the chanting of basic pure sound
combinations in musical and rhythmic sequences is a way to overcome
learning inhibitions, attune to the root power of the Sanskrit
language and access the natural computer efficiency, speed and clarity
of the mind.

Although learning Sanskrit in some ways presents challenges similar to
those of learning calculus or music, it also induces a lubrication and
acceleration of mental function that actually makes such a process
exciting and enjoyable. Perhaps the greatest immediate benefit of
learning Sanskrit by this method is that it requires participants to
relinquish control, abandon prior learning structures and come into a
direct experience of the language.

The actual simplicity and enjoyment of the sounds of Sanskrit provides
everyone with an opportunity to learn a subject which is technically
precise with fluidity and ease. This tends to produce a complete
reversal of the inhibiting competitive environment in which most life
education traditionally took place, by creating an atmosphere in which
mutual support generates personal breakthrough and vice-versa.

One thing is certain, Sanskrit will only become the planetary language
when it is taught in a way which is exciting and enjoyable.
Furthermore it must address individual learning inhibitions with
clarity and compassion in a setting which encourages everyone to step
forth, take risks, make mistakes and learn. Already we have
outstanding examples of this approach in the work of teachers such as
Jaime Escalante, whose remarkable achievements in teaching advanced
calculus to underprivileged high school students in East Los Angeles
were featured in the Academy Award nominated movie, "Stand and

Another hope for the return of Sanskrit lies in computers. Sanskrit
and computers are a perfect fit. The precision play of Sanskrit with
computer tools will awaken the capacity in human beings to utilize
their innate higher mental faculty with a momentum that would
inevitably transform the world. In fact the mere learning of Sanskrit
by large numbers of people in itself represents a quantum leap in
consciousness, not to mention the rich endowment it will provide in
the arena of future communication.

Sanskrit has always inspired the hearts, mind and souls of wise
people. The great German scholar Max Muller, who did more than anyone
to introduce Sanskrit to the West in the latter part of the 19th
century, contended that without a knowledge of the language
(Sanskrit), literature, art, religion and philosophy of India, a
liberal education could hardly be complete — India being the
intellectual and spiritual ancestor of the race, historically and
through Sanskrit.

Max Muller also pointed out that Sanskrit provides perfect examples of
the unity and foundation it offers to the Celtic, Teutonic, Slavonic,
Germanic and Anglo-Saxon languages, not to mention its influence on
Asian languages. The transmission of Buddhism to Asia can be
attributed largely to the appeal to Sanskrit. Even in translation the
works of Sanskrit evoked the supreme admiration of Western poets and
philosophers like Emerson, Whitman, Thoreau, Melville, Goethe,
Schlegel and Schopenhauer.

The fact is that Sanskrit is more deeply interwoven into the fabric of
the collective world consciousness than anyone perhaps knows. After
many thousands of years, Sanskrit still lives with a vitality that can
breathe life, restore unity and inspire peace on our tired and
troubled planet. It is a sacred gift, an opportunity. The future could
be very bright.


The Mother on Sanskrit, by Sri Aurobindo Society, Pondicherry, India.
A History of Sanskrit Literature, by Arthur A. MacDonnell, M.A.,
Ph.D., Motilal Banarsidas, Delhi, 1962.
A Short History of Sanskrit Literature, by H. R. Aggarwal, M.A.,
P.E.S., R.D.E., Munshi Ram Manohar Lal, Delhi, 1963.
A Companion to Contemporary Sanskrit, by Hajime Nakamura, Motilal
Banarsidas, Delhi, 1973.
Sanskrit, V. V. Ivanov and V. N. Toporov, Nauka Publishing House,
Moscow, 1968.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Rellevance of Sanskrit in Contemporary Society
by B Mahadevan

[B Mahadevan is a professor at the Indian Institute of Management
Bangalore. This write-up is an edited transcript of the lecture
delivered by Professor Mahadevan at the Indian Institute of World
Culture, Bangalore during August 10, 2003 at the invitation of Sri
Thirunarayana Trust Bangalore.
This is the first draft of the write-up and is likely to undergo
further refinements and corrections. Comments and suggestions are


I have chosen to talk about the relevance of Sanskrit in today's
society. In fact I have been thinking about this often, for the last
10 years. To tell you the truth, until I was doing my PhD, I was
learning, writing examinations and talking about Sanskrit using
several other languages such as Tamil, English and Hindi. That is what
most of us do when it comes to Sanskrit. Yet we pass judgments about
Sanskrit, we discuss about how important Sanskrit is, we discuss as to
what is good in Sanskrit and what is not good in Sanskrit – everything
in some other language, usually in one's own 'Matrubhasha' and
predominantly in English. I was also doing that.

Only when I was doing my PhD I happened to acquire some knowledge in
Sanskrit, and ever since then, after I finished my PhD, the first
question that naturally came to my mind was – 'why do we need
Sanskrit?' I personally liked it; I personally enjoyed whatever little
I have understood. I am not a Sanskrit scholar – let me clarify. But
whatever little I have understood and have gone through in the last
10-12 years – there was one question that was ringing in my mind all
the time, 'Do we need Sanskrit? And, if we need Sanskrit, what do we
need it for?'

So it is only natural that I broached the subject with anybody who was
willing to talk about it. What I am presenting today is, in some
sense, an accumulation of my thoughts arising out of these
discussions. I have discussed these issues with my students; I have
discussed these in my house;

I have discussed these with my colleagues in the Indian Institute of
Management; I have discussed these with professionals belonging to
different areas like management consultants, software and so on. In
some sense what I am going to present today represents a certain
evolution of my thought in this subject. I would think that it
continuously evolves in my mind. I personally don't think that I have
reached any substantive conclusion or opinion on this particular
issue, but what I would like to share with you is what appears to be a
reasonable way of putting the pros and cons of the subject in the
society and it being so, what does it mean, and what do we do? So that
is going to be the broad context in which I intend to spend the next
45 - 50 minutes, or one hour, depending on the interest.

[For full article, please visit http://www.iimb.ernet.in/~mahadev/samskrit_why.pdf]


Friday, October 17, 2008
Facts making people to think of learning Samskruta

1) The best language to be used in the computers -
ref:Forbes 1987 magzine

2) The best type of calendar being used is hindu calendar(as the new
year starts with the geological change of the solar system) -
ref: German State University

3) The most usefull languge for medication i.e persons by talking
Samskruta will be healthy and free from disease like
bp,diabities,cholestrol etc.. as talking in Samskruta makes activate
the nervous system of the human body so that the persons body gets
activated with positive charges
ref:American Hindu University
(after constant study)

4) The language which contains most advanced technology in it in their
books called Vedas, Upanishads, Shruti, Smruti, Puranas, Mahabhaarath,
Ramayana etc...
ref: Russian State University, NASA etc..(NASA contains 60,000
manscripts of palm leaf with them which they are using to study)
(unverified reports say that the Russians, Germans, Japanese,
Americans are actively researhing new things from our sacred books and
are producing them back to the world by their name on it.17 countries
in the world have a university or more to study about Samskruta and
gain new technology but there is not a single university dedicated to
Samskruta for its real study in INDIA (BHAARATH).

5) Mother of all languages of the world - all the languages(97%)
have been directly or indirectly influenced by this language. -
ref: UNO

6) There is a report by a NASA Scientist that America is creating a
6th and 7th generation super computers based on the Samskruta language
for the use of super computers to their maximum extent.project
deadline is 2025(6th generation) 2034(7th generation) after this there
will be a language revolution all over the world to learn Samskruta.

7) The best language availabe in the world for translation purpose -
ref: forbes 1985 magzine

8) The language presently being used in advanced kirlian photography
techniques.(advanced kirlian photography techniques are present only
in Russia and USA presently.INDIA does not posses even the simple
kirlian photography techniques today.)

9) US, Russia, Sweden, Germany, UK, France, Japan, Austria are
presently researching about the significance of Bharatanatyam and the
Nataraja (the cosmic dance of Shiva.There is a statue of Shiva or
Nataraja in front of the UN office in Geneva.)

10) The UK is presently researching on a Defence system based on our
Shri Chakra.

Aren't these facts making people to think of learning samskruta ?

Learn Samskruta which was our mother tongue in the past, which
contains many things in it. For our country to survive and hit
the world back we need to study Samskruta.

For further information, contact <***@gmail.com>

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Why Study Sanskrit?



The study of languages is always fascinating. For this reason alone,
one can study or learn Sanskrit. The members of the Samskritapriyah
group are more than fascinated by this language. They come from
different disciplines and have had a long lasting association with
Sanskrit. This group, comprising scientists, linguistic scholars,
computer scientists, Indologists and above all, well respected
Sanskrit scholars, feels convinced that there are aspects to Sanskrit
not yet seen or observed in other languages.

While the lessons are the primary means to learning the language, the
information presented alongside will more than arouse the curiosity of
the reader. It must be emphasized that the views expressed here are
not intended to start a big debate on the language itself. The group
has carefully studied the information presented here, for validity,
correctness and authenticity. As a consequence, the information should
appeal to the scientific mind.

Sanskrit, earliest of the ancient languages.

There is sufficient evidence available today to say that Sanskrit is
the oldest language of the world.
Among the current languages which possess a hoary antiquity like Latin
or Greek, Sanskrit is the only language which has retained its
pristine purity. It has maintained its structure and vocabulary even
today as it was in the past.

The oldest literature of the world, the Vedas, the Puranas and the
Ithihasas which relate to the Indian subcontinent, are still available
in the same form as they were known from the very beginning. There are
many many scholars in India who can interpret them today, much the
same way great scholars of India did years ago. Such interpretation
comes not by merely studying earlier known interpretations but through
a steady process of assimilation of knowledge linking a variety of
disciplines via Sanskrit.

Sanskrit is as modern as any language can be

Sanskrit is very much a spoken language today. Even now, as we enter
the twenty first century, Sanskrit is spoken by an increasing number
of people, thankfully many of them young. Among the learned in India,
it continues to be a bridge across different states where people, in
spite of their own mother tongue, use it to exchange scholarly and
even general information relating to the traditions of the country.
The News service offered by the Government of India through television
and radio continues to feature daily Sanskrit program catering to
local as well as international news.

The grammar of Sanskrit has attracted scholars world over. It is very
precise and upto date and remains well defined even today. Of late,
several persons have expressed the opinion that Sanskrit is the best
language for use with computers. The Samskritapriyah group does not
subscribe to this view however.

Sanskrit is a Scientist's paradise

Sanskrit, the vocabulary of which is derived from root syllables, is
ideal for coining new scientific and technological terms. The need to
borrow words or special scientific terms does not arise.

From the very beginning, scientific principles have been hidden in the
verses found in the Vedas, Upanishads and the great epics of India.
Concepts and principles seen in present day mathematics and astronomy,
are all hidden in the compositions and treatises of many early
scholars of the country. Some of these principles and concepts will be
shown in the information section that will accompany the lessons.


The precise and extremely well defined structure of Sanskrit, coupled
with its antiquity offers a number of areas in linguistics research
including Computational Linguistics. Also, Sanskrit distinguishes
itself in that it is the only known language which has a built-in
scheme for pronunciation, word formation and grammar.

Sanskrit, a language for Humanity

Sanskrit is a language for humanity and not merely a means for
communication within a society. The oldest surviving literature of the
world, viz. the Vedas, encompass knowledge in virtually every sphere
of human activity. The fact that many profound principles relating to
human existence were given expression through Sanskrit, continue to
amaze those who study Sanskrit. A Sanskrit Scholar understands the
world better than most others.

Sanskrit perfectly depicted (and continues to depict) the social order
of the day and offers clues to historical developments within the
Society. The language has been used effectively to describe the
virtuous and the not so virtuous qualities of great men, women, kings
and queens, the philosophers and Saints of the country.

Philosophy, Theology and Sanskrit

Sanskrit abounds in Philosophy and Theology related issues. There are
so many words one encounters within Sanskrit that convey subtly
differing meanings of a concept that admits of only one interpretation
when studied with other languages. The language thus has the ability
to offer links between concepts using just the words.
Sanskrit for your emotions

The connoisseurs of the Sanskrit language know that it is the language
of the heart. Whatever be the emotion one wishes to display, be it
devotion, love, affection, fear, threat, anger, compassion,
benevolence, admiration, surprise and the like, the most appropriate
words of Sanskrit can flow like a gushing stream.

Some Unique Characteristics of the language

Sanskrit is co-original with the Vedas.. The vedas cannot be studied
without the Vedangas, which are six in number. The first three deal
with the spoken aspects of the language. The first of these three,
namely Siksha, tells us how to pronounce the letters of the aksharas.
Siksha divides the letters into three classes- Swaras, Vyanjanas and
Oushmanas. Depending on the effort (Prayatna), place of origin in the
body (Sthana), the force used (Bala) and the duration of time (Kala),
the letters differ from each other in their auditory quality and
Vyakarna, known as the grammar of Sanskrit, is the second Vedanga
which describes meaningful word formations. This is usually referred
to as Sphota or meaningful sound.

The third Vedanga, Niruktam, describes certain fundamental root words
used in the Vedas. Classification of words into groups of synonyms is
an example. For instance, approximately a hundred and twenty synonyms
for water are given in Niruktam.

The fourth Vedanga, Chandas, describes the formation of sentences in
metrical form. Unlike English which used a very limited number of
metres (basically four), Sanskrit offers about two dozen Vedic metres
and innumerable conventional metres.

The remaining two Vedangas, Kalpa and Jyothisha deal with space and

The letters of Sanskrit

Sanskrit comprises fifty one letters or aksharas. In other languages,
we refer to the letters of the alphabet of the language. We know that
the word alphabet is derived from the names of the first two letters
of Greek. The term alphabet has no other meaning except to denote the
set of letters in the language.

In contrast, the word "akshara" in Sanskrit denotes something
fundamental and significant. One of the direct meanings of the word is
that it denotes the set of letters of Sanskrit from the first to the
last. The word also means that the sound of the letter does not ever
get destroyed and thus signifies the eternal quality of the sound of
the letters. The consequence of this meaning is that the sound of a
word is essentially the sounds of the aksharas in the word, a concept
which will help simplify text to speech applications with computers.

There are two aspects of non destruction in the above explanation. The
first one refers to the phonetic characteristics of the language,
i.e., in any word, the aksharas retain their sound. The second aspect
of non destruction, amazingly, is that the aksharas retain their
individual meanings as well! To give an example, the word "guru"
consisting of the aksharas "gu" and "ru" stands for a teacher- one who
dispels darkness (ignorance) of the the mind (person). "gu" means
darkness and "ru" means the act of removal.

Now, aren't we beginning to see something very interesting?

The popular Sanskrit language is based on root syllables and words.
Unlike the other languages of the world, every word in Sanskrit is
derived from a root. It is a well accepted fact that all Indo-European
languages have a common origin. On the basis of the above mentioned
fact that all the words of Sanskrit are traceable to specific roots, a
feature not seen in other languages, one can presume that Sanskrit is
most certainly the origin.

Massive, yet precise

One can learn Sanskrit purely for the sake of the great epics of
India. The Ramayana has 24,000 verses fully in metre and the
Mahabharata qualifies as the world's largest epic with 100,000 verses.
The Mahabharata says, "what is here may be elsewhere, what is not here
is nowhere." The precision with which the verses convey information on
so many different aspects of life in a society, is a factor one must
reckon as the ultimate in composition.


Friday, October 10, 2008
The Origin of Sanskrit


The one which is introduced or produced in its perfect form is called
Sanskrit. The word Sanskrit is formed from "sam + krit" where (sam)
prefix means (samyak) 'entirely' or 'wholly' or 'perfectly,' and krit
means 'done.' Sanskrit was first introduced by Brahma to the Sages of
the celestial abodes and it is still the language of the celestial
abode, so it is also called the Dev Vani.

Sanskrit was introduced on the earth planet, by the eternal Sages of
Sanatan Dharm along with the Divine scriptures such as the Vedas, the
Upnishads and the Puranas. A famous verse in Sage Panini's Ashtadhyayi
tells that the Panini grammar that is in use now is directly Graced by
God Shiv.

Once, at the end of His Divine ecstatic dance induced by the
enthralling effects of Krishn love, God Shiv played on His damru (the
mini hand-drum which God Shiv holds in His hand). Fourteen very
distinct sounds came out of it. Sage Panini conceived them in his
Divine mind and on the basis of those Divine sounds, reestablished the
science of Sanskrit grammar which already eternally existed.

Since the start of human civilization on the earth, people and the
Sages both spoke pure Sanskrit language. The historical records
indicate that three public programs of the recitation of the Bhagwatam
and the discourses on Krishn leelas had happened in Sanskrit language
in 3072 BC, 2872 BC and 2842 BC in which Saints and the devotees
participated. Later on when the population increased, the prakrit form
of speech with partly mispronounced words (called apbhranshas) was
developed in the less educated society and became popular.

The Manu Smriti says that the ambitious chatriyas of Bharatvarsh went
abroad to the neighboring countries to establish their new kingdoms
and, as they were cut off from the mainstream of the Bhartiya
civilization and culture, they developed their own language and
civilization as time went on. Natural calamities (such as ice ages)
totally shattered their civilizations but still the survivors, in the
spoken form of their primitive languages, held many apbhransh words of
the original Sanskrit language which their remote ancestors had
retained in their memory. As a result of this affiliation with
Bhartiya culture and the Sanskrit language, Sanskrit became the origin
of the growth of the literary development in other languages of the

The phonology (the speech sound) and morphology (the science of word
formation) of the Sanskrit language is entirely different from all of
the languages of the world. Some of the unique features of Sanskrit
1. The sound of each of the 36 consonants and the 16 vowels of
Sanskrit are fixed and precise since the very beginning. They were
never changed, altered, improved or modified. All the words of the
Sanskrit language always had the same pronunciation as they have
today. There was no 'sound shift,' no change in the vowel system, and
no addition was ever made in the grammar of the Sanskrit in relation
to the formation of the words. The reason is its absolute perfection
by its own nature and formation, because it was the first language of
the world.
2. The morphology of word formation is unique and of its own kind
where a word is formed from a tiny seed root (called dhatu) in a
precise grammatical order which has been the same since the very
beginning. Any number of desired words could be created through its
root words and the prefix and suffix system as detailed in the
Ashtadhyayi of Panini. Furthermore, 90 forms of each verb and 21 forms
of each noun or pronoun could be formed that could be used in any
3. There has never been any kind, class or nature of change in the
science of Sanskrit grammar as seen in other languages of the world as
they passed through one stage to another.
4. The perfect form of the Vedic Sanskrit language had already
existed thousands of years earlier even before the infancy of the
earliest prime languages of the world like Greek, Hebrew and Latin
5. When a language is spoken by unqualified people the pronunciation
of the word changes to some extent; and when these words travel by
word of mouth to another region of the land, with the gap of some
generations, it permanently changes its form and shape to some extent.
Just like the Sanskrit word matri, with a long 'a' and soft 't,'
became mater in Greek and mother in English. The last two words are
called the 'apbhransh' of the original Sanskrit word 'matri.' Such
apbhranshas of Sanskrit words are found in all the languages of the
world and this situation itself proves that Sanskrit was the mother
language of the world.
Considering all the five points as explained above, it is quite
evident that Sanskrit is the source of all the languages of the world
and not a derivation of any language. As such, Sanskrit is the Divine
mother language of the world.

A Glimpse of the Perfection of Sanskrit Grammar

Sage Panini conceived fourteen very distinct sounds from God Shiv's
damru (small hand-drum which God Shiv holds in His hand) and created
the entire Sanskrit grammar called Ashtadhyayi. Those Divine sounds

There are total of 52 letters (16 vowels and 36 consonants). The
vowels are:
The consonants are:

A glimpse of the perfection of Sanskrit grammar can be seen by the
extensiveness of its grammatical tenses. There are ten tenses: one
form for the present tense, three forms for the past tense and two
forms for the future tense. There is also imperative mood, potential
mood, benedictive mood (called asheerling, which is used for
indicating a blessing), and conditional. Each tense has three separate
words for each of the three grammatical persons (first person, second
person and third person), and it further distinguishes if it's
referring to one, two, or more than two people (called eakvachan,
dvivachan and bahuvachan). Then there are three categories of the
verbs called atmanepadi, parasmaipadi and ubhaipadi. These forms
indicate whether the outcome of the action is related to the doer or
the other person or both. In this way there are ninety forms of one
single verb.

Sanskrit words are formed of a root word called dhatu. For instance:
kri root word means 'to do,' gam root word means 'to go.' So, there
are ninety forms of each of these verbs like, karoti, kurutah,
kurvanti, and gachchati, gachchatah,

gachchanti etc. In English language there are only a few words like:
do, doing and done, or go, gone, going and went; then some more words
have to be added to express the variations of the tense like: is, was,
will, has been, had, had had, etc. But in the Sanskrit language there
are ready-made single words for all kinds of uses and situations.
This is elucidated with an example of kri-dhatu (parasmaipadi).

As far as nouns and pronouns are concerned, there are words for all
the three genders and each word has twenty-one forms of its own which
covers every situation. Then there is a very elaborate and precise
system of composing, phrasing, making a sentence, joining two words
and coining any number of words according to the need.

Regarding Sanskrit vocabulary, there is a dictionary of the root words
and prefixes and suffixes called dhatu path at the end of Ashtadhyayi.
It has an abundance of words and furthermore, Sanskrit grammar has the
capacity for creating any number of new words for a new situation or
concept or thing.

There is a detailed system of every aspect of the grammar. All the
aspects of the Sanskrit grammar along with the dictionary were
received as one packet from the very beginning along with the Vedas.
Moreover, from the historical and logical point of view, since the
very first day the linguists have learned about the existence of the
Sanskrit language, they have seen it in the same perfect form. No
'sound shift,' no change in the vowel system, and no addition was ever
made in the grammar of the Sanskrit in relation to the formation of
the words.

In the last 5,000 years, since the Sumerians uttered the communicating
words in a very limited scope and their wedge-shaped cuneiform writing
came into existence, there has been no such genius born who could
produce a grammar as perfect as Sanskrit.

All the languages of the world started in a primitive form with
incomplete alphabet and vowels, having only a few words in the
beginning which were just enough for the people to communicate with
each other. Even the advanced international language of today, the
English language, when it took its roots from West Germanic around 800
AD, was in an absolutely primitive form. As it developed, it
assimilated about 30% of its words from Latin and numerous words from
French and Greek. Slowly developing and improving its vocabulary, the
style of writing and the grammar from Old English (which had only two
tenses) to Middle English, to Early Modern English, and then to Modern
English, took a very long time.
As late as the beginning of the 17th century when its first dictionary
was published in London in 1604, there were only 3,000 words. The
title of the dictionary was, "A Table Alphabetical, conteyning and
teaching the true writing and understanding of hard unusual English
wordes, borrowed from the Hebrew, Greeke, Latine or French & c."
Somewhat similar is the story of all the ancient and modern languages
which started from a very primitive stage of their literal
representation with no regular grammar. Proper grammar was introduced
at a much later date as their society reached a significant level of

From the exacting nature of the pronunciation of its 52 letters to the
science of word formation, there has never been any kind, class or
nature of change in the science of Sanskrit grammar. Sanskrit has been
in its perfect form since the very beginning.

Six Unmatched Features of Sanskrit

The perfection of the pronunciation (of the consonants and the vowels)
and the uniqueness of the grammar that stays the same in all the ages
from the very beginning of human civilization and up till today are
such features which prove that Sanskrit is not manmade; it is a Divine
gift to the people of this world. The following six examples
demonstrate some of the unique features of Sanskrit that distinguishes
it from other languages of the world.

1. The vowel-consonant pronunciation of the alphabet

The most striking feature of the Sanskrit language is the vowel-
consonant pronunciation of the alphabet and the uniqueness of every
consonant (or its combination) as a complete syllabic unit when it is
joined with a vowel. For example: Its 16 vowels are the actual 'voice
pattern' of the sound and 36 consonants are only the 'form' of the
'voice pattern' of the sound. So a consonant ( ) alone cannot be
pronounced as it is only a 'form' of the 'voice pattern' until it is
attached to a vowel. Thus, a vowel, which itself is a 'voice pattern,'
can be pronounced alone (like,) or it can be modulated by adding a
consonant to it (like,).This system was not adopted in the languages
of the world. Thus, their syllables have no uniformity. For example,
in come and coma 'co' has two different pronunciations, and in come
and kind or kiss, the letter 'c' and 'k' both have the same

In Sanskrit, the basic structure of its vowel-consonant pronunciation
is the unique foundation of the language that precisely stabilizes the
word pronunciation where each letter (or a combination of consonants
with a vowel) is a syllable.

2. Formation of the Sanskrit words

The second unmatched feature is the formation of the Sanskrit words.
Since the beginning there was a complete dictionary of root words
called dhatu that could create any number of words based on the
requirement by adding a proper prefix and suffix described in detail
in the Sanskrit grammar. There are 90 forms (conjugations) for every
verb to be used in the 10 tenses and 21 forms for other words. The
formation, modulation and creation of words have been originally the
same, in an absolutely perfect state since the beginning, as they are

3. The uniqueness of the grammar

The most impressive uniqueness of the Sanskrit grammar is that, along
with the Sanskrit language, it is unchanged in every age because it is
a Divinely produced grammar. Its conjugation system, word formation
and the style of poetry formation are all unique, unchanged and
perfectly detailed since it appeared on the earth planet through the
descended Saints. Take a line of the Yajurved,

There is a noun janah (people), and verb gachcòhanti (to go into)
which is formed of gam dhatu (to go), like, gachcòhati, gachcòhatah,
gachcòhanti. All the 90 conjugations of the verb gaccòh (to go) and
all the 21 forms of the noun jan (people) are used in the same way
without any change in the Vedas, in the Puranas and in other Sanskrit
literature as well, because they are ever perfect without any sound
shift. The Sanskrit language represents the literal form of the
Divinity on the earth planet.

4. The style of literary presentation

The three styles of Sanskrit are: (a) the Vedas (sanhita), (b) the
Upnishads and (c) the Puranas. All of them were reproduced during the
same period before 3102 BC. But their literature has its own style.
The difference in the style and the uses of words in all the three
kinds of scriptures does not mean any evolution or improvement in the

Vedic verses do not use the full range of words as is used in the
Puranas because the Vedic verses are mainly the invocation mantras for
the celestial gods and that too for ritualistic purposes, not for the
devotion to supreme God. So they don't need too many words to relate a
mantra. The language of the Bhagwat Mahapuran is very scholarly,
poetic and rich as it explains the richest philosophy of God, God's
love and God realization along with its other affiliated theories. The
language of the other 17 Puranas is less rich. The language of the
Upnishads sometimes leans towards the Vedic sanhita side. The peculiar
characteristic of the Vedas can be observed in the tenth canto,
chapter 87, of the Bhagwat Mahapuran where the Vedas themselves are
offering their homage to supreme God Krishn.

The whole chapter is like this, grammatically perfect, but it is a
kind of twisted and uncharming style of language. This is the style
and the character of the Vedas (the sanhita). All the chapters of the
Bhagwatam, before and after this particular chapter, have elegant
literary presentation but this particular chapter, which is in the
style of the language of the Vedas, stands out with its own
peculiarity. The difference in the literary presentation of the Vedic
sanhita and the Puranas has their own nature and style and do not
relate to their seniority or juniority.

5. The apbhransh

In every society there are many classes of people. Some are educated,
some are less educated and some are much less educated. Accordingly,
the quality of their speech differs. Thus, during the time of Ved
Vyas, when Sanskrit was the spoken language of India, there may have
been some people who spoke a localized form of less perfect Sanskrit.
As time went on a new language developed in the Bihar area of North
India which was a combination of the localized dialect with the
apbhransh words of Sanskrit. The pronunciation of the Sanskrit word
changes when it is spoken by the people who are less educated or not
educated in the Sanskrit language, and then such words permanently
enter into their locally spoken language. These, partly mispronounced
words, are called the apbhransh. Just like the words teen and sat are
the apbhransh of the Sanskrit words trai and sapt which mean three and
seven. It was called the Pali language in which the teachings of
Gautam Buddh were written around 1800 BC. Still, Sanskrit remained the
spoken language of the literary class of India at least up to the time
of Shankaracharya.

When Shankaracharya went to have an audience with Mandan Mishra he
found two parrots in two cages that were hung in front of his house.
They were happily uttering Sanskrit phrases, which they had memorized
by listening to the scriptural discussions that were usually happening
in the house. All over India Shankaracharya debated in Sanskrit
language wherever he went. It was around 500 BC.

That was the time when the Greek and Latin languages were in the
course of their development. Trade communications between India,
Persia, Mesopotamia, Syria and Greece were already well established.
The stories of the Puranas and the Bhagwatam had already reached, in a
broken form, into those countries which they then adopted in their
society and incorporated into their religious mythology. The Iliad and
the Odyssey in their earliest and incomplete forms were composed
around 600 BC, and later on certain Sanskrit apbhransh words were
added in the Greek and Latin languages.

6. Sanskrit, the scriptural language up till today

Sanskrit is the language of Bhartiya scriptures. It is also the
language of the Divine abodes. The word 'language' is termed as bhasha
in Sanskrit. Thus, the bhasha of Vaikunth abode in its original form
descended on the earth planet through Brahma in the form of the Vedas
and the Puranas and all of its affiliates and branches along with its
grammar. First it was called the bhasha as it was the only language of
India, literary and spoken both. Later on, when its offshoots
developed, it began to be called the Sanskrit bhasha (Sanskrit
language) to distinguish it from the other local languages that used
the apbhransh words of Sanskrit mixed with their locally spoken
tongue. For convenience, these local languages were called the
'prakrit' languages by the history writers.

Sanskrit maintained the glory of eternal Bhartiya scriptures in its
perfect linguistic representation since its appearance on the earth
planet. If someone's conscience fails to comprehend the eternal
authenticity of the Sanskrit language for some reason, then at least,
according to the above descriptions, one can surely understand its
unparalleled perfection that had the capacity of introducing hundreds
of thousands of words according to its root system since the very
beginning, when even the earliest known cursive writing systems of the
world (Greek and Hebrew etc.) were at their infancy and were
struggling to standardize the pronunciation and to improve their

Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Geopolitics and Sanskrit Phobia


Rajiv Malhotra

This paper discusses the historical and contemporary relationship
between geopolitics and Sanskrit, and consists of the following

I. Sanskrit is more than a language. Like all languages, its
structures and categories contain a built-in framework for
representing specific worldviews. Sanskriti is the name of the culture
and civilization that embodies this framework. One may say that
Sanskriti is the term for what has recently become known as Indic
Civilization, a civilization that goes well beyond the borders of
modern India to encompass South Asia and much of Southeast Asia. At
one time, it included much of Asia.

II. Interactions among different regions of Asia helped to develop and
exchange this pan-Asian Sanskriti. Numerous examples involving India,
Southeast Asia and China are given.

III. Sanskrit started to decline after the West Asian invasions of the
Indian subcontinent. This had a devastating impact on Sanskriti, as
many world-famous centers of learning were destroyed, and no single
major university was built for many centuries by the conquerors.

IV. Besides Asia, Sanskrit and Sanskriti influenced Europe's
modernity, and Sanskrit Studies became a large-scale formal activity
in most European universities. These influences shaped many
intellectual disciplines that are (falsely) classified as "Western".
But the "discovery" of Sanskrit by Europe also had the negative
influence of fueling European racism since the 19th century.

V. Meanwhile, in colonial India, the education system was de-
Sanskritized and replaced by an English based education. This served
to train clerks and low level employees to administer the Empire, and
to start the process of self-denigration among Indians, a trend that
continues today. Many prominent Indians achieved fame and success as
middlemen serving the Empire, and Gandhi's famous 1908 monograph,
"Hind Swaraj," discusses this phenomenon.

VI. After India's independence, there was a broad based Nehruvian love
affair with Sanskrit as an important nation-building vehicle. However,
successive generations of Indian intellectuals have replaced this with
what this paper terms "Sanskrit Phobia," i.e. a body of beliefs now
widely disseminated according to which Sanskrit and Sanskriti are
blamed for all sorts of social, economic and political problems facing
India's underprivileged classes. This section illustrates such phobia
among prominent Western Indologists and among trendy Indians involved
in South Asian Studies who learn about Sanskrit and Sanskriti
according to Western frameworks and biases.

VII. The clash of civilizations among the West, China and Islam is
used as a lens to discuss the future of Sanskriti across South and
Southeast Asia.

VIII. Some concrete suggestions are made for further consideration to
revitalize Sanskrit as a living language that has potential for future
knowledge development and empowerment of humanity.

I. Sanskrit and the Multicultural Sanskriti (Indic Civilization)

In modern Westernized universities, Sanskrit is taught primarily as a
language only and that too in connection with Indo-European philology.
On the other hand, other major languages such as English, Arabic and
Mandarin are treated as containers of their respective unique
civilizational worldviews; the same approach is not accorded to
Sanskrit. In fact, the word itself has a wider, more general meaning
in the sense of civilization. Etymologically, Sanskrit means
"elaborated," "refined," "cultured," or "civilized," implying
wholeness of expression. Employed by the refined and educated as a
language and a means of communication, Sanskrit has also been a
vehicle of civilizational transmission and evolution.

The role of Sanskrit was not merely as a language but also as a
distinct cultural system and way of experiencing the world. Thus, to
the wider population, Sanskrit is experienced through the civilization
named Sanskriti, which is built on it.

Sanskriti is the repository of human sciences, art, architecture,
music, theatre, literature, pilgrimage, rituals and spirituality,
which embody pan-Indic cultural traits. Sanskriti incorporates all
branches of science and technology - medical, veterinary, plant
sciences, mathematics, engineering, architecture, dietetics, etc.
Pannini's grammar, a meta-language with such clarity, flexibility and
logic that certain pioneers in computer science are turning to it for
ideas is one of the stunning achievements of the human mind and is a
part of this Sanskriti.

From at least the beginning of the common era until about the
thirteenth century, Sanskrit was the paramount linguistic and cultural
medium for the ruling and administrative circles, from Purushapura
(Peshawar) in Gandhara (Afghanistan) to as far east as Pandurang in
Annam (South Vietnam) and Prambanam in Central Java. Sanskrit
facilitated a cosmopolis of cultural and aesthetic expressions that
encompassed much of Asia for over a thousand years, and this was not
constituted by imperial power nor sustained by any organized church.
Sanskriti, thus, has been both the result and cause of a cultural
consciousness shared by most South and Southeast Asians regardless of
their religion, class or gender and expressed in essential
similarities of mental and spiritual outlook and ethos.

Even after Sanskrit as a language faded explicitly in most of Asia,
the Sanskriti based on it persists and underpins the civilizations of
South and Southeast Asia today. What Monier-Williams wrote of India
applies equally to Southeast Asia as well: "India's national character
is cast in a Sanskrit mould and in Sanskrit language. Its literature
is a key to its vast religious system. Sanskrit is one medium of
approach to the hearts of the Indians, however unlearned, or however
disunited by the various circumstances of country, caste, and
creed" (Gombrich 1978, 16).

Sanskrit unites the great and little traditions:

A bi-directional process facilitated the spread of Sanskriti in South
and Southeast Asia. The top-down meta-structure of Sanskrit was
transmitted into common spoken languages; simultaneously, there was a
bottom-up assimilation of local culture and language into Sanskrit's
open architecture. This is analogous to Microsoft (top down) and Linux
(bottom up) rolled into one. Such a culture grows without breaking
down, as it can evolve from within to remain continually
contemporaneous and advanced.

Pan-Indic civilization emerged in its present composite form through
the intercourse between these two cultural streams, which have been
called the "great" and "little" traditions, respectively. The streams
and flows between them were interconnected by various processes, such
as festivals and rituals, and scholars have used these "tracers" to
understand the reciprocal influences between Sanskrit and local

Marriott has delineated the twin processes: (i) the "downward" spread
of cultural elements that are contained in Sanskrit into localized
cultural units represented by local languages, and (ii), the "upward"
spread from local cultural elements into Sanskrit. Therefore, Sanskrit
served as a meta-language and framework for the vast range of
languages across Asia. While the high culture of the sophisticated
urbane population (known as "great tradition" in anthropology)
provides Sanskriti with refinement and comprehensiveness, cultural
input produced by the rural masses ("little tradition") gives it
popularity, vitality and pan-Indian outlook.

Once information about local or regional cultural traits is recorded
and encoded in Sanskrit, they become part of Sanskriti. On the other
hand, when elements of Sanskriti are localized and given local
flavour, they acquire a distinct regional cultural identity and
colour. Just as local cultural elements become incorporated into
Sanskriti, elements of Sanskriti are similarly assimilated and
multiply into a plurality of regional cultural units.

Sanskriti includes the lore and repository of popular song, dance,
play, sculpture, painting, and religious narratives. Dimock (1963,
1-5) has suggested that the diversity to be found in the Indic region
(i.e. South and Southeast Asia) is permeated by patterns that recur
throughout the country, so that each region, despite its differences
from other regions, expresses the patterns - the structural
paradigmatic aspects - of the whole. Each regional culture is
therefore to be seen as a structural microcosm of the full system.

Sanskrit served two purposes: (1) spiritual, artistic, scientific and
ritual lingua franca across vast regions of Asia, and (2) a useful
vehicle of communication among speakers of local languages, much as
English is employed today.

Early Buddhist scriptures were composed and preserved in Pali and
other Prakrit (local) languages, but later started to also be composed
in what is known as "hybrid Sanskrit." There was a trend using
elegant, Paninian Sanskrit for both verbal and written communication.
Tibetan was developed based on Sanskrit and is virtually a mirror
image of it.

By the time of Kalidasa (600 C.E.) Sanskrit was mastered diligently by
the literati and was, therefore, never a dead language. It is living,
as Michael Coulson points out, because people chose it to formulate
their ideas in preference to some other language. It flourished as a
living language of inter-regional communication and understanding
before becoming eclipsed first by Persian and then by English after
the military and political conquest of India.

Refuting the habit of dividing the Prakrit languages of India into two
structurally separate "North" and "South" independent families,
Stephen Tyler explains that "[M]odern Indo-Aryan languages are more
similar to Dravidian languages than they are to other Indo-European
languages" (Tyler 1973: 18-20).

There is synergy between Sanskrit and Prakrit: A tinge of Prakrit
added to Sanskrit brought Sanskrit closer to the language of the home,
while a judicious Sanskritization made Prakrit into a language of a
higher cultural status. Both of these processes were simultaneous and
worked at conscious as well as subconscious levels (Deshpande 1993,
35). As an example of this symbiosis, one may point to various
Sanskrit texts in medieval India which were instruction manuals for
spoken or conversational Sanskrit by the general public (Deshpande
1993; Salomon 1982; Wezler 1996).

Understanding this leads us to a vital insight about Sanskriti: Given
this relationship between Sanskrit and local languages, and that
Sanskriti is the common cultural container, it is not necessary for
everyone to know Sanskrit in order to absorb and develop an inner
experience of the embedded values and categories of meaning it
carries. Similarly, a knower of the local languages would have access
to the ideas, values and categories embodied in Sanskriti.

Unlike the cultural genocides of natives by Arabic, Mandarin and
English speaking conquerors and colonizers, Sanskrit had a mutually
symbiotic relationship with the popular local languages, and this
remained one of reciprocal reinforcement rather than forced adoption
through coercion or conquest.

This deeply embedded cultural dynamism could be the real key to a
phenomenon that is often superficially misattributed to the British
English: how modern India despite its vast economic disadvantages is
able to produce adaptive and world-class individuals in virtually all
fields of endeavour. This dynamism makes the assimilation of "modern"
and "progressive" ideologies and thought patterns easier in India than
in many other developing countries. In fact, it facilitates
incorporating "modern" innovations into the tradition. It allows India
to achieve its own kind of "modernity" in which it would also remain
"Indian," just as Western modernity is built on distinctly European
structures despite their claim of universality. This is why Indians
are adaptive and able to compete globally compared to other non-
Western traditions today.

[For full article, please visit

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-13 06:19:04 UTC


Decline of indology in the West
By Dr NS Rajaram
October18, 2009

Much of the literature in indology carries this politico-social
baggage including colonial attitudes and stereotypes. The end of the
Second World War saw also the end of European colonialism, beginning
with India. Indology however was slow to change, and with minor
modifications like seemingly dissociating itself from its racial
legacy, the same theories and conclusions continued to be presented by
western indologists.

Even for learning Sanskrit, there are now innovative programmes like
those offered by Samskrit Bharati that teach in ten intensive yet
lively sessions more than what students learn in a semester of dry

Jones was a linguist with scholarly inclinations but his job was to
interpret Indian law and customs to his employer—the British East
India Company in its task of administering its growing Indian
territories. In fact, this led to his study of Sanskrit and its

Indology may be defined as the study of Indian culture and history
from a Western, particularly European perspective. The earliest
Westerner to show an interest in India was the Greek historian
Herodotus, followed by his successors like Megasthenes, Arrian, Strabo
and others. This was followed by missionaries, traders and diplomats,
often one and the same. With the beginning of European colonialism,
indology underwent a qualitative change, with what was primarily of
trade and missionary interest to becoming a political and
administrative tool. Some of the early indologists like William Jones,
H.T. Colebrook and others were employed by the East India Company, and
later the British Government. Even academics like F Max Müller were
dependent on colonial governments and the support of missionaries.
From the second half of the 19th century to the end of the Second
World War, German nationalism played a major role in the shaping of
indological scholarship.

Much of the literature in indology carries this politico-social
baggage including colonial attitudes and stereotypes. The end of the
Second World War saw also the end of European colonialism, beginning
with India. Indology however was slow to change, and with minor
modifications like seemingly dissociating itself from its racial
legacy, the same theories and conclusions continued to be presented by
western indologists. Towards the close of the twentieth century, first
science and then globalisation dealt serious blows to the discipline
and its offshoots like Indo-European Studies. This is reflected in the
closure of established indology programmes in the West and the rise of
new programmes within and without academic centers driven mainly by
science and primary literature.

The article will trace the origins, evolution and the devolution of
indology and the main contribution of the field and some of its key

Background: Historiography
One of the striking features of the first decade of the present
century (and millennium) is the precipitous decline of indology and
the associated field of Indo-European Studies. Within the last three
years, the Sanskrit Department at Cambridge University and the Berlin
Institute of Indology, two of the oldest and most prestigious indology
centers in the West, have shut down. The reason cited is lack of
interest. At Cambridge, not a single student had enrolled for its
Sanskrit or Hindi course.

Other universities in Europe and America are facing similar problems.
The Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium, long a leader in
Oriental Studies, is drastically cutting down on its programs. Even
the Sanskrit Department at Harvard, one of the oldest and most
prestigious in America, shut down its summer programme of teaching
Sanskrit to foreign students. It may be a harbinger of things to come
that Francis X Clooney and Anne E Monius, both theologians with the
Harvard Divinity School, are teaching undergraduate and graduate
courses in the Sanskrit Department. More seriously, they are also
advising doctoral candidates.

Does this mean that the Harvard Sanskrit Department may eventually be
absorbed into the Divinity School and lose its secular character? In
striking contrast, the Classics Department which teaches Greek and
Latin has no association with the Divinity School, despite the fact
that Biblical studies can hardly exist without Greek and Latin. It
serves to highlight the fact that Sanskrit is not and can never be as
central to the Western Canon as Greek and Latin. It also means that
Sanskrit Studies, or Indology, or whatever one may call it must seek
an identity that is free of its colonial trappings. It was this
colonial patronage in the nineteenth and the twentieth centuries that
sustained these programs. Their slide into the fringes of academia is
a reflection of the changed conditions following the end of

Coming at a time when worldwide interest in India is the highest in
memory, it points to structural problems in indology and related
fields like Indo-European Studies. Also, the magnitude of the crisis
suggests that the problems are fundamental and just not a transient
phenomenon. What is striking is the contrast between this gloomy
academic scene and the outside world. During my lecture tours in
Europe, Australia and the United States, I found no lack of interest,
especially among the youth. Only they are getting what they want from
programmes outside academic departments, in cultural centers like the
Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, temples, and short courses and seminars
conducted by visiting lecturers (like this writer).

This means the demand is there, but academic departments are being
bypassed. Even for learning Sanskrit, there are now innovative
programs like those offered by Samskrita Bharati that teach in ten
intensive yet lively sessions more than what students learn in a
semester of dry lectures. The same is true of other topics related to
India—history, yoga, philosophy and others. And this interest is by no
means limited to persons of Indian origin. What has gone wrong with
academic indology, and can it be reversed?

To understand the problem today it is necessary to visit its peculiar
origins. Modern Indology began with Sir William Jones’s observation in
1784 that Sanskrit and European languages were related. Jones was a
useful linguist but his main job was to interpret Indian law and
customs to his employers, the British East India Company. This dual
role of indologists as scholars as well as interpreters of India
continued well into the twentieth century. Many indologists, including
such eminent figures as HH Wilson and F Max Müller sought and enjoyed
the patronage of the ruling powers.

Indologists’ role as interpreters of India ended with independence in
1947, but many indologists, especially in the West failed to see the
writing on the wall. They continued to get students from India, which
seems to have lulled them into believing that it would be business as
usual. But today, six decades later, Indian immigrants and persons of
Indian origin occupy influential positions in business, industry and
now the government in the United States and Britain. They are now part
of the establishment in their adopted lands. No one in the West today
looks to indology departments for advice on matters relating to India
when they can get it from their next door neighbour or an office
colleague. In this era of globalisation, India and Indians are not the
exotic creatures they were once seen to be.

This means the indologist’s position as interpreter of India to the
West, and sometimes even to Indians, is gone for good. But this alone
cannot explain why their Sanskrit and related programmes are also
folding. To understand this we need to look further and recognise that
new scientific discoveries are impacting indology in ways that could
not be imagined even twenty years ago. This is nothing new. For more
than a century, the foundation of Indology had been linguistics,
particularly Sanskrit and Indo-European languages. While
archaeological discoveries of the Harappan civilisation forced
indologists to take this hard data also into their discipline, they
continued to use their linguistic theories in interpreting new data.
In effect, empirical data became subordinate to theory, the exact
reverse of the scientific approach.

These often forced interpretations of hard data from archaeology and
even literature were far from convincing and undermined the whole
field including linguistics of which Sanskrit studies was seen as a
part. The following examples highlight the mismatch between their
theories and data. Scholars ignored obvious Vedic symbols like: Svasti
and the Om sign found in Harappan archaeology; the clear match between
descriptions of flora and fauna in the Vedic literature and their
depictions in Harappan iconography; and also clear references to
maritime activity and the oceans in the Vedic literature while their
theories claimed that the Vedic people who composed the literature
were from a land-locked region and totally ignorant of the ocean. Such
glaring contradictions between their theories and empirical data could
not but undermine the credibility of the whole field.

All this didn’t happen overnight: Harappan archaeology posed
challenges to colonial indological model of ancient India, built
around the Aryan invasion model nearly a century ago. But the
challenge was ignored because the political authority that supported
Western indologists and their theories did not disappear until 1950,
while its academic influence lingered on for several more decades. It
is only now, long after the disappearance of colonial rule that
academic departments in the West are beginning to feel the heat.

Colonial Indology
Modern indology may be said to have begun with Sir William Jones, a
Calcutta judge in the service of the East India Company. One can
almost date the birth of indology to February 12, 1784, the day on
which Jones observed:

The Sanskrit language, whatever be its antiquity, is of wonderful
structure; more perfect than Greek, more copious than Latin, and more
exquisitely refined than either, yet bearing to both of them a
stronger affinity, both in the roots of the verbs and the forms of
grammar, than could possibly have been produced by accident; so
strong, indeed, that no philologer could examine them all three
without believing them to have sprung from some common source…

With this superficial, yet influential observation, Jones launched two
fields of study in Western academics— philology (comparative
linguistics) and Indo-European Studies including Indology. The ‘common
source,’ variously called Indo-European, Proto Indo-European, Indo-
Germanische and so forth has been the Holy Grail of philologists. The
search for the common source has occupied philologists for the greater
part of two hundred years, but the goal has remained elusive, more of
which later.

Jones was a linguist with scholarly inclinations but his job was to
interpret Indian law and customs to his employer—the British East
India Company in its task of administering its growing Indian
territories. In fact, this led to his study of Sanskrit and its
classics. This dual role of indologists as scholars as well as
official interpreters of India to the ruling authorities continued
well into the twentieth century. Many indologists, including such
highly regarded figures as HH Wilson and F Max Müller enjoyed the
support and sponsorship of the ruling powers. It was their means of
livelihood and they had to ensure that their masters were kept happy.

Though Jones was the pioneer, the dominant figure of colonial indology
was Max Müller, an impoverished German who found fame and fortune in
England. While a scholar of great if undisciplined imagination, his
lasting legacy has been the confusion he created by conflating race
with language. He created the mythical Aryans that indologists have
been fighting over ever since. Scientists repeatedly denounced it, but
indologists were, and some still are, loathe to let go of it. As far
back as 1939, Sir Julian Huxley, one of the great biologists of the
twentieth century summed up the situation from a scientific point of

In England and America the phrase ‘Aryan race’ has quite ceased to be
used by writers with scientific knowledge, though it appears
occasionally in political and propagandist literature… In Germany, the
idea of the ‘Aryan race’ received no more scientific support than in
England. Nevertheless, it found able and very persistent literary
advocates who made it appear very flattering to local vanity. It
therefore steadily spread, fostered by special conditions. (Emphasis

These ‘special conditions’ were the rise of Nazism in Germany and
British imperial interests in India. Its perversion in Germany leading
eventually to Nazi horrors is well known. The less known fact is how
the British turned it into a political and propaganda tool to make
Indians accept British rule. A recent BBC report acknowledged as much
(October 6, 2005):

It [Aryan invasion theory] gave a historical precedent to justify the
role and status of the British Raj, who could argue that they were
transforming India for the better in the same way that the Aryans had
done thousands of years earlier.

That is to say, the British presented themselves as ‘new and improved
Aryans’ that were in India only to complete the work left undone by
their ancestors in the hoary past. This is how the British Prime
Minister Stanley Baldwin put it in the House of Commons in 1929:

Now, after ages, …the two branches of the great Aryan ancestry have
again been brought together by Providence… By establishing British
rule in India, God said to the British, “I have brought you and the
Indians together after a long separation, …it is your duty to raise
them to their own level as quickly as possible …brothers as you are…”

Baldwin was only borrowing a page from the Jesuit missionary Robert de
Nobili (1577 - 1656) who presented Christianity as a purer form of the
Vedic religion to attract Hindu converts. Now, 300 years later,
Baldwin and the British were telling Indians: “We are both Aryans but
you have fallen from your high state, and we, the British are here to
lift you from your fallen condition.” It is surprising that few
historians seem to have noticed the obvious similarity.

(To be concluded)

(The writer can be contacted at ***@bgl.vsnl.net.in)

...and I am Sid Harth
Sid Harth
2009-10-13 17:23:45 UTC

To unlock Indian literature, Burdwan varsity plans Anglicised Sanskrit
Shiv Sahay Singh

Posted: Monday , Oct 12, 2009 at 0306 hrs

Glad I didn't become a Pilot Yoga-Garbh SanskarTourism in kerala at
stake? Tourism in kerala at stake? With an aim to open the vast
repository of Sanskrit literature to the world, the Sanskrit
department in the University of Burdwan plans to come up with the an
encyclopedia on Sanskrit literary works.

Funded by the University Grants Commission under the Departmental
Research Support scheme, the Rs 31 lakh-worth project is aimed at
making the works, published in the 3,500-year-old language, accessible
to the vast pool of English speaking people across the globe.

Researchers say that with the completion of the book titled —
Encyclopedia of Sanskrit Literary Works up to 12 Century AD (published
work) — all classical Indian literature, including Mahabharata,
Ramayana , Gita Govind of Jaidev and Meghadoot of Kalidasa, will be
available in English in an abridged form.

Biswanth Mukherjee, co-ordinator of the project, said that 10
professors and a number of research students are working on the
subject. “We will come up with five printed volumes of the
encyclopedia along with the digitised work by 2012,” said Mukherjee.

The literary works have been categorised into poetry, prose and drama,
of which, the department claims, the compilation of poetry works is
almost complete.

“There are a number of scholars around the world who are interested in
the various works here but face the problem of language barrier,” said
Bhaswarjyoti Ghosal, a reader from the department working on the

“Once the barrier is bridged, the acceptance of the language and its
literature will increase across the world,” Ghosal added.

The encyclopedia has generated enthusiasm in the academic circles with
Sanskrit language experts from a number of states universities —
Calcutta University, Jadavpur University, Rabindra Bharati University,
Vishwabharati University and university like Tirupati University and
Lalbahadur Shastri — expressing interest in working for the project.

“Exponents like Ramaranjan Mukherjee, former vice-chancellor of
Burdwan University and Rabindra Bharati University, and Dilip Kumar
Kanjilal, former principal of Sanskrit College, are keen to extend
guidance and support in the matter,” said a researcher involved in the

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-15 16:06:22 UTC

Ancient Sanskrit Pictograph near Sedona, Arizona?
Copyright 2-18-2002 by Jack Andrews ***@gci-net.com

Over the years I have made several trips from our home outside Tucson
to the Sedona, Arizona area with my wife and family. On one of our
recent trips, my wife and I decided to visit a cliff dwelling site
south of Sedona: Palatki ruin, noted for a large display of ancient
pictographs and some petroglpyhs. For the uninitiated reader,
pictographs are ancient symbols and images painted on the rocks and
petroglyphs are ancient symbols, and images scratched or incised into
the rock surface.

Palatki ruin and rock art site sits several miles away from a highway
that connects Sedona to Cottonwood. The drive from Sedona takes you
down the slope of the Verde Valley, and the turnoff to Palatki guides
you through open red dirt desert on an unpaved road back to a group of
spectacular Sedona red cliffs. The actual ruin site is in a secluded
cove hidden by trees, above a small riparian area created by a ribbon-
like waterfall that flows down seasonally from the overhanging cliff
above the ancient living quarters.

When we arrived at Palatki, we spent a few minutes appreciating the
incredible beauty of the site before making our way to the small
ranger station and visitor center, located in an early Western
farmer's house under the shade of some large trees. The whole area has
a park like quality, and is a very special place.

The U.S. Forest Service brochure on Palatki states:

Palatki and its sister site of Honanki at Loy Butte are the two
largest cliff dwellings in the Sedona Red Rocks area. Honanki
represents one of the largest population centers in the Verde Valley;
this period in Southern Sinagua prehistory is called the "Honanki
Phase" and is named after this impressive cliff dwelling. Many of the
cliff dwellings in the Red Rock/Secret Mountain Wilderness area were
occupied during the "Honanki Phase". The actual occupation of Honanki
was probably between AD 1130-1280, based upon a tree-ring date of
1271, for a wooden window lintel in the upper ruin, as well as pottery
shards. Palatki habitation is dated as AD 1100-1300ÖThe pictographs
you see here have not yet been scientifically studied. What little we
know about them suggests they were created over a long period of time
and include several design styles. The earliest may date to the
Archaic period (3000-8000 years ago), before the cliff dwellings were

We then started up the rocky trail leading to the picture writings,
which are under a protective overhanging cliff, mostly on vertical
walls in a series of shallow alcoves or grottoes. I expected to see
some very interesting and mystical pictographs, but I never expected
to see a particularly amazing written symbol that was actually
waiting, painted on the rock, sitting unrecognized over the centuries,
hidden in front of the eyes of countless visitors. As we approached
the first grotto, this ancient image was directly in front of my eyes
and stood out among the other paintings like a flashing sign. As a
lifelong artist I have spent many years using artists tools and
paintbrushes and I immediately recognized the red markings applied to
the rock here as brush strokes. They taper off at the end of each
stroke as clearly as brush strokes in calligraphy.
I motioned to my wife Susan to come over and take a look. What does
that look like to you? I asked her. Wow! she exclaimed, It looks
Tibetan! This coincided exactly with my first impression. I think it
looks Chinese, or Tibetan too, I blurted out, excited at the
discovery. We immediately took several photos of the symbol for future
reference. I have included a few of the photos in this article.

2002 Photo © by Jack Andrews

In my photographs of the symbol you can see two views of what appear
to be Chinese or Asian characters painted as pictographs. When I first
saw this image I was stunned by the incredible resemblance to some
Asian characters. In Ancient American vol 6, no. 41, I wrote an
analysis of a small book written in 1913, which translates ancient
Chinese text describing visits to Arizona and the Grand Canyon by
ancient Asian travelers, so it was quite exciting to discover this
symbol unexpectedly, here in Arizona, less than a day's drive from the
Grand Canyon.

In another excellent book, Pale Ink: Two Ancient Records of Chinese
Exploration in America, Henrietta Mertz had covered the subject of two
visits to Arizona, one in 500 A. C. E. by a Buddhist Priest Hwui Shan
and another account compiled by the great Yu for the Emperor Shun
around 2250 B.C.E.

The red pictographs-like the example I photographed at Palatki-are
estimated to be between 3,000 and 6,000 years old. As it was explained
to me by a ranger at the site, the pigment is thought to be either
iron oxide pigments mixed with blood, red ochre, or iron oxide
pigments alone. If we take the Henrietta Mertz date of the 2250 B.C.E.
visit above and add it to 2002 (our present date) we come up with a
possible visit some 4,252 years ago to Arizona and maybe here at
Palatki by ancient Asian travelers!

We then look at the 3,000 to 6,000 year old age attributed to the
Palatki pictograph and it becomes evident that the ancient symbol
painted on the rock, so long ago, can take on a whole new meaning. As
far as I know, this is the first time anyone has suggested a possible
Asian or Sanskrit origin of this particular pictograph at Palatki. Was
there an ancient Asian visitor or group of visitors to Arizona, who
may have painted this very symbol on the rock at Palatki?

I have the photograph of this symbol (as in this article) posted on my
web site (Lost Civilizations and Hidden Mysteries) with a brief
description of why I think this symbol might be Chinese in origin.

Gene Matlock who has written books and articles on the possibility of
an ancient Indian presence in the Americas, visited my web site and
was amazed at the resemblance of the pictograph to characters in
ancient Indian Sanskrit literature. He too saw these red markings as
eastern symbols. And in correspondence, Gene points to a possible
Sanskrit origin of this pictograph.

Although its exact birth date is controversial, many scholars agree
that Sanskrit may be one of the oldest languages and systems of
writing on earth. Even if we consider the later date attributed to
classical Sanskrit (1000 B.C.E.) it becomes apparent that the dating
of Sanskrit or its Indo-Aryan predecessor language could possibly
coincide with the appearance of the Sanskrit look-alike pictograph at
Palatki. If Sanskrit is actually much older, then the written language
may have been established in the world before the appearance of the
pictograph at Palatki. Either way, a traveler from the Indian
subcontinent who may have made his/her way to Arizona and Palatki,
could have had an awareness or knowledge of Sanskrit or pre-Sanskrit
symbols. Native peoples who established contact with such visitors may
then have acquired knowledge of-or at least familiarity with-Sanskrit
spiritual symbols such as this, the AUM represented at Palatki.
Perhaps they would have included these symbols in pictographs at a
spiritually important site such as Palatki as they would other
powerful symbols. Or perhaps this symbol was contributed by the
ancient visitors themselves.

I have decided to include some of the most relevant email
correspondences, as they occurred, between Gene Matlock, Jayendra
Upadhye and myself, since they relate the interesting speculation on
this symbol in the manner it unfolded to us:

Sunday, January 13, 2002
from: Gene Matlock


when I saw that inscription, supposedly written in Chinese, I knew for
sure that it was Sanskrit, and as the writer says, it is the Sanskrit
"Om" turned upside down. To make sure, I sent the picture to a Hindu
friend in Singapore. Jayendra Upadhye person who speaks a close
Sanskrit derivative: Aprabraunsha.

Aprabraunsha is a group of languages deriving directly from Sanskrit
and that, combining his facility with Aprabraunsha (Prakrit, and
others), with what he does know of Sanskrit, gives him an excellent
intuitive background.


Sunday, January 13, 2002
from: Jayendra Upadhye

The letter if at all sanskrit is actually the sanskrit "AUM"
pronounced as "Om". But the tripple syllable has been turned
anticlockwise by 90 degrees.

Sanskrit om or aum symbol in your jpg, [The photo in this article] the
"half moon and dot in the top part of the "om" have become straight
lines. but the hooked features are still visible, though turned 90 deg

Pictograph cropped photo turned counter clockwise 90 degrees.

Photo © 2002 by Jack Andrews

Do the people that wrote this use words like "OM", "AM""AMEN" "AMIN"

The Arabic "AMIN is same as the latin "Amen" is the same as the indian
root sanskrit word "Om" which was considered as the "word of god" the
shabda-brahma" or "all encompassing word as it represented the hindu
holy trinity A for brahma the creator, U for vishnu the preserver and
M for Mahesh the destroyer. Pronounced together, Aum sounds like Om
but "is different a bit in that the "m" is to be pronounced nasally
without closing the lips as one would so when pronouncing

- Jayen.

Tuesday, January 15, 2002
from: Gene Matlock

by now quite a few Hindus have seen the picture of the strange
painting at Palatki I sent them. They are really excited, and with
good reason. First, the word "Palatki," (assuming that the Amerindians
named it), in itself explains in Sanskrit the reason for the painting
being there: Palayat (protection (divine) + G (mystical syllable,
utterance, etc.). I sent the picture to three learned men. By now,
they've sent it to many others.

There is only one reason for the reason why this syllable "OM" is not
written in the correct position. It was probably written on an amulet
or talisman. Since not one Hindu in a thousand could read or write in
those days, an illiterate person put it there, knowing only that it
meant "Om."

- Gene

Thursday, January 17, 2002
from: Jayendra Upadhye

I had reached the same conclusion that the person using the "om" was
either illiterate or had been a descendant of a person introduced to
sanskrit long before he was born. There is a possibility that the "om"
was painted by a man who thought of it as a pictogram, and thus
thought nothing of turning it around by 90 deg in any direction.
secondly if om is painted on a hide amulet and worn on the biceps (as
was practice in india ..not regarding om but of tying amulets on the
biceps),,then the reader would see the on turned sideways, and may be
over time associate a sideways written trisyllable as the "real" om.
These were my thoughts after seeing the painting.


Gene also says that dictionary entries in Cologne Sanskrit Lexicon,
show that name Palat-ki really derives from the Sanskrit Palayat-gi.
Note that the last syllable can be either "gi" or "gir." Even if the
last syllable were "Ki," you would still be on solid ground because
the homes of the ancient North India Hopis, those of Khiva, were
called "KI-VA" : Ant Hill Residence. So, it is possible that a great
Kiva was once located at Palatki.

The Palatki ruin, and the Sedona region, along with the Verde Valley
have a long history and prehistory of human habitation. I have visited
other significant ancient sites in the area, such as Montezuma Well
and its associated cliff dwelling. Many of these ruins are along
creeks, rivers, and watercourses and there are indications that
ancient travelers could have migrated along such watercourses, which
could have supplied an abundance of wild game and in many cases
cultivated foods. Was there an even more ancient group of travelers
from the Indian subcontinent who sailed across the oceans and managed
to make their way to the interior of the North American continent
along such watercourses and on to Arizona, leaving a painted Sanskrit
symbol on the red rock cliff face of Palatki?

The striking nature of this pictograph at Palatki demands further
investigation and study. This spring Gene Matlock, my wife, Susan
Anway and I will return to the Palatki site and search for more
evidence of possible Sanskrit writings. There are many questions to
ask in relation to such a strange symbol appearing at Palatki. If the
symbol was written by someone who had knowledge of Sanskrit, how did
this knowledge make its way to Arizona, or was the individual who
painted this symbol actually from India? Do the First Peoples of the
area have stories of such a visitor or visitors? Was the symbol
painted by a Native American of the period who had contact with Indian
influences, and if so where and how did such contact occur?

What was the writer of the symbol at Palatki trying to communicate?
Parts of the symbol resemble the sacred Om symbol. Was this writer
designating Palatki as a spiritual center as Gene Matlock suggests it
was (great kiva) ? Palatki certainly is a beautiful place that puts
one in a meditative mood. Om or Aum is a symbol of the essence of
Hinduism. It can mean: Oneness with the Supreme, and a merging of the
physical being with the spiritual. There is a spiritual "doorway" in
the rock wall near the end of the trail to the picture writings at
Palatki, a large vertical rectangular slab of rock is slightly
separated from the cliff. Certain Native American elders believe this
dark shadowy separated space defines a door where the spirits of the
mountain journey between their world and ours. This certainly hints at
the spiritual importance of the site and refers back to the meaning of
the Om symbol, painted on the same rock face as that doorway between
the physical and the spiritual, just a short distance away.

Palatki has many strange mystical symbols painted on the rocks over
the centuries by visitors and inhabitants of the area. Certain Native
American tribes still use the location for spiritual ceremonies. Did
an ancient travelers from India visit Palatki and meet with native
inhabitants, experiencing the sacred nature of this special location,
becoming so enthralled that they left this potent and powerful eastern
spiritual symbol in red iron oxide pigment as a remembrance to the
future, or a gift of spiritual awareness to the site in pictographic

The possible importance of this discovery is best stated by Gene
Matlock: Jack, Now, this is the first time in history, that I know of,
that Sanskrit (pictographs) have been found in the Americas. Possibly
the person who wrote this was either neither illiterate or had
accustomed himself to writing Sanskrit in the wrong direction. You
really have something meaningful here. I personally think that this
"Om" syllable is a big discovery, every bit as big as the Decalogue
Stone in Los Lunas, New Mexico

From the U.S. Forest Service handout for the Palatki/Honanki sites,
south of Sedona, Arizona

In 1980, after successfully completing the genealogy of his Matlock
family line, Gene D. Matlock, then a high school teacher in Azusa, Ca,
became ambitious. He said to himself, "If I can find my Matlocks, I
can find anything and anybody!" This hyper-confident attitude
engendered the following books: Jesus and Moses Are Buried in India,
Birthplace of Abraham and the Hebrews; Yishvara 2000 - The Hindu
Ancestor of Judaism Speaks to This Millennium; India Once Ruled the
Americas; The Last Atlantis Book Youíll Ever Have to Read; From Khyber
(Kheever) Pass to Gran Quivira (Kheevira), NM and Baboquivari, AZ -
When India Ruled the World. He is now preparing a serialized online
book for the Hindu website, www.vandemataram.com, entitled India Once
Ruled the World. Besides these books, he has written articles dealing
with India as progenitor of all nations for Viewzone Magazine
(www.viewzone.com), Vandemataram, and others. Gene, who has studied
Hindu mythology since childhood, received his undergraduate degree
from Mexico City College (now University of the Americas), in 1951.
Because of his knowledge of Hindu mythology and traditions, he smelled
a strong odor of "curry 'n rice" in Mexico, from the moment he first
crossed the border in 1948. - by Gene Matlock

Jayendra Upadhye clarifies his use of the word hide as follows: There
is a custom in India of wearing amulets on the neck, biceps etc, but
not as painted hides, but on paper in enclosed in small metal
capsules. Native amerindians might have used hide instead as paper was
not in plentiful supply as far as I know, but hide was.

The name Palatki is attributed to archaeologist Jesse Walter Fewkes,
who named the site in 1895. The name is Hopi, which Fewkes interpreted
as meaning Red House. The Fewkes translation of Palatki may be

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-28 21:49:21 UTC

Nov 01, 2009
Sangh Samachar

State level workers meeting of Samskrit Bharati
Right time to propagate Sanskrit in the world-Chamu Krishna Shastry

State level workers of Samskrit Bharati gathered at Parmarth Aashram
in Rishikesh for a three-day annual meeting beginning from October 2.
Speaking on the occasion national general secretary Shri Chamu Krishna
Shastry described the positive atmosphere in the world as right time
for propagation of Sanskrit in the world. He called upon the workers
to achieve this goal.

A total of 211 delegates from different parts of the country discussed
how to protect the Vedas and the Shastras. To revive this situation,
the Samskrit Bharati has opened a new dimension to its work by making
Madhav Kelkar from Pune as incharge of the project," said Shri
Shreeshdev Pujari, Akhil Bharatiya Prakalp Pramukh of Samskrit

He said the work of Samskrit Bharati has spread world over. It has got
a major base in USA. At least 1000 workers of Samskrit Bharati can
talk fluently and teach in Sanskrit medium. A total of 15 countries
including Canada, England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, UAE,
Qatar, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Fiji, Guyana, Trinidad, etc.
have Samskrit Bharati organisation. Sambhashan Shibirs have been
conducted in 19 countries so far. Sambhashan Sandesh, a monthly
magazine of the organisation, has subscribers in nine countries.

Presently, the Samskrit Bharati has branches in 36 of the total 37
states. There are 707 work places, 1342 Sampark Sthan and 205 weekly
meetings. There are regular meetings at 168 places. A total of 320
Grihastha workers tour for the organisation and there are 105 full
timers and 60 vistaraks.

Samskrit Bharati is working on a new Sanskrit-to-Sanskrit dictionary
in which there will be over one lakh words and roots whose status in
Sanskit will be defined by Panini Sutras. At least 40 Vyakaranas are
working on it. The incharge of the project is Shree Janardan Hegde who
was also present in the meeting.

Samskrit Bharati will conduct Shalaka Pariksha, an old system of
examination, in Ahmedabad this year. In this examination the Granthas
are fixed before one year for examination and all aacharyas throughout
Bharat are informed. The students learn the Granthas and take the
examination in which every student has to answer any question
regarding that book. There is no criterion for obtaining 33 per cent
marks for passing the examination.

Samskrit Bharati has decided to spread its work in downtrodden class
of the society. Sanskrit is a very good medium for assimilation of the
society. It has already conducted thousands of 10-day spoken Sanskrit
classes in rural areas.

Three books Katha Lahari by Shri HV Nagraj Rao, Mrutyu Chandramasah, a
scientific novel and Sawadhana Syam by Shri Chamu Krishna Shastry,
were also released at the meeting.

...and I am Sid Harth
2009-10-28 21:49:21 UTC

Nov 01, 2009
Sangh Samachar

State level workers meeting of Samskrit Bharati
Right time to propagate Sanskrit in the world-Chamu Krishna Shastry

State level workers of Samskrit Bharati gathered at Parmarth Aashram
in Rishikesh for a three-day annual meeting beginning from October 2.
Speaking on the occasion national general secretary Shri Chamu Krishna
Shastry described the positive atmosphere in the world as right time
for propagation of Sanskrit in the world. He called upon the workers
to achieve this goal.

A total of 211 delegates from different parts of the country discussed
how to protect the Vedas and the Shastras. To revive this situation,
the Samskrit Bharati has opened a new dimension to its work by making
Madhav Kelkar from Pune as incharge of the project," said Shri
Shreeshdev Pujari, Akhil Bharatiya Prakalp Pramukh of Samskrit

He said the work of Samskrit Bharati has spread world over. It has got
a major base in USA. At least 1000 workers of Samskrit Bharati can
talk fluently and teach in Sanskrit medium. A total of 15 countries
including Canada, England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, UAE,
Qatar, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Fiji, Guyana, Trinidad, etc.
have Samskrit Bharati organisation. Sambhashan Shibirs have been
conducted in 19 countries so far. Sambhashan Sandesh, a monthly
magazine of the organisation, has subscribers in nine countries.

Presently, the Samskrit Bharati has branches in 36 of the total 37
states. There are 707 work places, 1342 Sampark Sthan and 205 weekly
meetings. There are regular meetings at 168 places. A total of 320
Grihastha workers tour for the organisation and there are 105 full
timers and 60 vistaraks.

Samskrit Bharati is working on a new Sanskrit-to-Sanskrit dictionary
in which there will be over one lakh words and roots whose status in
Sanskit will be defined by Panini Sutras. At least 40 Vyakaranas are
working on it. The incharge of the project is Shree Janardan Hegde who
was also present in the meeting.

Samskrit Bharati will conduct Shalaka Pariksha, an old system of
examination, in Ahmedabad this year. In this examination the Granthas
are fixed before one year for examination and all aacharyas throughout
Bharat are informed. The students learn the Granthas and take the
examination in which every student has to answer any question
regarding that book. There is no criterion for obtaining 33 per cent
marks for passing the examination.

Samskrit Bharati has decided to spread its work in downtrodden class
of the society. Sanskrit is a very good medium for assimilation of the
society. It has already conducted thousands of 10-day spoken Sanskrit
classes in rural areas.

Three books Katha Lahari by Shri HV Nagraj Rao, Mrutyu Chandramasah, a
scientific novel and Sawadhana Syam by Shri Chamu Krishna Shastry,
were also released at the meeting.

...and I am Sid Harth

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