All posts tagged: Epics

Women And Politics In The Epics – A Conversation

Were women empowered in ancient India? It is a big ‘Yes’! The phrase ‘women empowerment’ will transport you to a terrain of mixed views; the weight will shift more to what we perceive with our eyes and what the media infuses us with! And there is no dearth of literature in the digital world. Just a click or a touch with your fingertip and there you are, surrounded by an ocean of both positive and negative news and information. In this conversation blogger and author Manoshi Sinha interviews well known author of women centric books Kavita Kane on women and politics in Indic Epics. Women in ancient India enjoyed equal status with men. They were educated by choice. They were trained in the art of warfare by choice. The Rigveda finds mention about a warrior queen Vishpala, who was trained in the art of warfare. She lost a leg in battle; an iron leg revived her spirit and she resumed her battlefield exploits. Look at the world around you – that women is empowered is …

In Search Of India’s Lost Epic

The beginnings of Western scholarship on the Sanskrit epic, the Mahābhārata, are marked by a great puzzlement at the work. The text does not fit Western canons of literature—too heterogeneous its contents, too abstract its ideas that Western scholars can make sense of it.1 The “confusion” of fact and fantasy—a cosmological narrative that begins with Brahmā, the Creator, and descends through the repeated names of obscure dynastic kings to connect with present-day “history”—violates all Western expectations of narrative consistency and reality. In contrast to the Vedas, considered the earliest documents of “Indo-European” civilization, the Mahābhārata appears a corrupted work, and German scholars are quick to identify the culprits: the “aboriginal” population of India, those from “the darker side” (Garbe). In the German scholars’ view, the aboriginal influence can be seen in features such as the emphasis on gift-giving to the Brahmans, the belief in karma and rebirth, and the “repugnant” cults of Viṣṇu, Śiva, and the Devī—features they consider inimical to the “Aryan” inheritance of ancient India.2 The task of scholarship can only be to …

Veda Vyasa Endowment for Mahabharata Studies

Agnyaana Timiraandhasya Gnyaana Anjana Shalaakayaa Chakshuhu Unmeelitam Yenam Tasmai Sri Gurave Namaha. A Guru can save us from the pangs of ignorance (darkness) by applying to us the balm of knowledge or awareness of the Supreme, I salute such a Guru. Guru Poornima , the full moon day of month of Ashadh,  has a special auspicious significance in Indic culture. Particularly disciples on this day worship their Guru with an unconditional devotion, love and surrender. Guru Poornima holds a special place in the heart of the disciple as they are able to express their full gratitude towards their Guru who dispels darkness and ignorance and creates the path to being a realised soul for the disciple.  Lord Bhagvan Shri Krishna in 34th verse of 4th chapter of Bhagawad Gita says “attain this knowledge by all means, if you prostate yourself at the feet of wise, render them all forms of services and question then a guileless heart again and again, those wise souls of truth will unfold that wisdom to you.” Sri Aurobindo says ” The Teacher of the …