Mahabharata Tag


Posted On April 20, 2016By SandeepIn Commentary

Ego and Death: The Story of a Scientist

The following should count as one of the most revealing answers appearing in Mahabharata’s Yaksha Prashna episode that occurs between Yudhishtira and Yaksha (a celestial being): Yaksha: What is the most surprising thing in this world? Yudhishtira: The most surprising thing in this world is that although a person sees animals and other people dying everyday, he thinks that he alone is immortal. This should count as one of the profoundest lessons in Human ego, a feature unique perhaps among all of creation. There is no greater feeling or expressionRead More

Posted On April 19, 2016By SandeepIn Indian Philosophy

The Indian Conception of History

Do Indians have a sense of history? No is pretty much the received wisdom even today in major sections of the academia, media and the rest. If you as much as question the sources, the roots of this received wisdom, you are branded with the choicest of Leftist labels but that’s the least of our concerns. Before looking at a “sense of history” or “historical sense,” we need to look at how history is defined. Commonly accepted definitions include: A study of the human past. A field of research whichRead More

Posted On January 21, 2013By SandeepIn Commentary

The Rape of Our Epics: Conclusion

Read the previous parts: 1, 2, 3, and 4. Why shouldn’t we be outraged, why shouldn’t millions be outraged, when a woman writes a piece that’s based on factual errors, falsification, and selective reading about women that millions of Indians regard as role models? What exactly gives Nilanjana Roy the right to insult the icons and role models of other people based on her worldview of how women should be? If Nilanjana Roy for example, calls Surpanakha a wronged woman based on convenient and/or selective readings, I can in theRead More

Posted On January 18, 2013By SandeepIn Commentary

The Rape of Our Epics: Part 4

Read the previous parts: 1, 2, and 3. So where were we? Popular discussion? Niyoga? No…well, yes, we were at the three princesses: Amba, Ambika and Ambalika. Pardon my confusion. I mean, confusion happens when Nilanjana Roy mixes up timelines. Imagine my plight: she begins with Sita, then moves to Draupadi. Correct: from Treta Yuga to Dwapara Yuga. Then she spends some time in Dwapara Yuga. Suddenly she reverts to Treta Yuga, she reverts to Shurpanakha. But does she stop there? No. Without warning, she drags in Hidimbi.   ThatRead More

Posted On January 16, 2013By SandeepIn Commentary

The Rape of Our Epics: Part 3

Read Parts 1 and 2. After trying to force-fit Draupadi into the feminist mould, Nilanjana Roy sets her sights on Amba, Ambika and Ambalika in yet another extremely revealing paragraph. Amba is, again, silenced in popular discussion, and yet her story remains both remarkable and disquieting — the woman who will even become a man in order to wreak revenge on the man who first abducts and then rejects her. There is nothing easy about her story, as anyone who has tried to rewrite the Mahabharata knows; or about theRead More

Posted On January 14, 2013By SandeepIn Commentary

The Rape of Our Epics: Part 2

Is Draupadi Rarely Referenced? After failing to show how Sita’s abduction by Ravana and her abandonment by Rama qualify as “rape” and/or “sexual assault,” Nilanjana Roy turns to Draupadi whom she characterizes as follows: Draupadi’s story is rarely referenced, though it is powerfully told in the Mahabharata. Draupadi’s reaction, after Krishna rescues her from Dushasana’s assault while her husbands and clan elders sit by in passive silence, is not meek gratitude. She berates the men for their complicity and their refusal to defend her; instead of the shame visited onRead More
I know, I know. The title of this post will only rile up Salil Tripathi further because he’s big on things like “tone,” and “civility,” which he cites are the reasons he doesn’t engage with me. Isn’t that a jolly way to wriggle out of an open invitation for debate? And poor me, despite being snubbed thus repeatedly, offered to take him up on his terms: of politeness, civility, and even asked him to set the terms of the debate. The constantly-travelling Londoner responded to this offer with…silence. There. SnubbedRead More

Posted On September 10, 2011By SandeepIn Commentary

What Krishna Would Do

The consistently brilliant Atanu Dey asks What would Gandhi do and at the end of his answer, says: “Why does it matter what would Gandhi do? What matters is what we should do,” I said. “Actually that’s why I ask what would Gandhi do,” CJ said. “I want to figure out what Gandhi would do and do exactly the opposite. It’s like this. Remember in some crime stories the detective asks himself what he would do if he were the criminal? Something like that. “Sometimes I ask myself what wouldRead More