Free education to poor students

on Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dear All,
              If you have come across any bright students hailing from poor financial background(orphans are also allowed) who have finished their 10th/12th standard this year and who are eager in pursuing their higher studies, please ask them to contact Sri Ramakrishna Mission polytechnic college. Ramakrishna Mission polytechnic college offers Food,Hostel and Education, completely free of charge for poor/orphan students(details attached below).

Please pass this valuable information to all our friends and relatives in an effort to eradicate illiteracy and poverty in India.

In China, a rediscovery of Sanskrit

on Wednesday, May 18, 2011

 (A class in session at Peking University with renowned Indian Sanskrit scholar Satyavrat Shastri teaching Chinese graduate students.

The Sanskrit programme at Peking University has a long history, set up in the 1960s and subsequently expanded by renowned Indologist Ji Xianlin, who translated dozens of works 

Almost two millennia after the language first came to China through Buddhist scriptures, renewed interest in Buddhist studies and recent discoveries of long-forgotten manuscripts in Tibet have sparked a revival of the study of the ancient language among Chinese scholars. 

Beijing’s Peking University has now launched an ambitious programme to train more than 60 Chinese students in Sanskrit, with the hope of creating a team of researchers to help translate hundreds of manuscripts containing scriptures that have been found in Tibet and other centres of Buddhism, such as Hangzhou in China’s east. 

There is a rich manuscript collection in Tibet, particularly. Many of the originals have not been recovered, and are only available in Chinese and Tibetan, so it is important for us to find a way to render them back into Sanskrit,said Satyavrat Shastri, a renowned New Delhi-based Sanskrit scholar and poet, who is in Beijing this week as a visiting lecturer to meet and advise students and teachers here

What they are trying to do here is invaluable, and they are making great progress,” Mr. Shastri said, adding that he was pleasantly surprised by the students’ technical level. 

I was struck by the interest, of both teachers and scholars, in little details, such as getting the pronunciation perfect. They recited the Bhagavad Gita with me, and it was a unique experience. The pronunciation, the metre [of reciting the verses], was remarkable.

The Sanskrit programme at Peking University has a long history, set up in the 1960s and subsequently expanded by renowned Indologist Ji Xianlin, who translated dozens of works and is seen by many here as single-handedly introducing classical Indian culture to a whole generation of Chinese. 

Today, the programme hopes to carry forward the legacy of Ji, who died in 2009. 

The university’s efforts received a boost in 2005, when it was given support by the Ministry of Education to expand admissions, part of an effort to boost manuscript research.
Now, for the first time, the programme has a regular annual intake of students at both undergraduate and post-graduate levels, currently training between 50 and 60 students. 

We want to continue what Ji Xianlin started,” said Duan Qing, a professor in Sanskrit and Pali who once trained under Ji. “Our programme is quite mature now, and is the only complete Sanskrit programme in China.

She attributed the recent boost in funding to increasing government support for the humanities, ignored during the People’s Republic’s first three decades when the country’s focus was on development alone.
Sanskrit research is being viewed with importance now,” she said. “India and China were culturally connected. I don’t think there’s another country in the world where so many Sanskrit works were translated into another language, and this has been going on for more 1,000 years.

Ms. Duan heads the Research Institute of Sanskrit Manuscripts and Buddhist Literature at Peking University, which is working with regional governments and hoping to create an archive for lost manuscripts and palm-leaves. Graduate students will work with the institute to help translate scriptures. 

Yu Huaijin, a PhD student who is studying Kalidasa’s Kumarasambhava, said she joined the programme because she believed it was playing the role ofa bridge between two cultures.” 

India and China are neighbours, but they know little about each other, especially the younger generation. It is a big objective for me to introduce Indian culture and literature to a Chinese audience,” she said.
Few Chinese students are interested in Indian culture, with much greater interest in Western literature. Ms. Yu, too, was first a student of Western literature — until she happened to read a translation of the Mahabharata by Ji Xianlin. “It was a different world,” she said. “And one that few Chinese are aware of.
Peking University has also begun working with Sanskrit programmes in universities in the West, particularly in Germany, to improve both teaching methods and archiving practices. 

Indian universities, have however, appeared to show little interest in taking forward cooperation. Mr. Shastri, who is an honorary professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University, admitted there was “precious little” cooperation between the two countries. There was room for much more, he said, encouraged by the positive response to his teaching methods this past week. 

We want to learn Sanskrit through traditional methods,” one teacher told him. “Not from the West.

Influence of Swami Vivekananda on Anna Hazare

on Thursday, May 12, 2011

Anna Hazare was greatly influenced by Swami Vivekananda’s teachings. It was at that particular moment that Hazare took an oath to dedicate his life in the service of humanity, at the age of 26. He decided not not to let go of a life time by being involved merely in earning the daily bread for the family. That’s the reason why he pledged to be a bachelor.

At times, Hazare used to be frustrated with life and wondered about the very existence of human life. His mind yearned to look out for a solution to this simple and basic question. His frustration reached the peak level and at one particular moment, he also contemplated suicide. For this, he had also penned a two page essay on why he wants to live no more.

Fortunately for him, inspiration came from the most unexpected quarters ?at the book stall of the railway station of New Delhi, where he located then. He came across a book of Swami Vivekananda and he immediately bought it.
He was inspired by Vivekananda’s photograph on the cover. As he started reading the book, he found answers to all his questions, he says. The book revealed to him that the ultimate motive of human life should be service to humanity. Striving for the betterment of common people is equivalent to offering a prayer to the God, he realized.

Make Mahavira your ideal!

on Thursday, May 05, 2011

Disciple:-  What ideal should we follow now?

Swami Vivekananda:- You have now to make charachter of Mahavira your ideal. See how at the command of Ramachandra he crossed the ocean. He had no care for life or death! He was a perfect master of his senses and wonderfully sagacious. 

You have now to build your life on this great ideal of personal service. Through that, all other ideals will gradually manifest in life. Obedience to the Guru without questioning, and strict observance of Brahamacharya- this is the secret of success. 

As on the one hand Hanuman represent the ideal of service, so on the other hand he represents leonine courage, striking the whole world with awe. He has not the least hesitation in sacrificing his life for the good of Rama. A supreme indifference to everything except the service of Rama, even to the attainment of the status of Brahma and Shiva, the great World-Gods! Only the carrying out of Shri Rama's best is the one vow of his life! Such whole-hearted devotion is wanted. 

Playing on the Khol and Kartal and dancing in the frenzy of Kirtana has degenerated the whole people. They are, in the first place, a race of dyspeptics-and if in addition to this they dance and jump in that way, how can they bear the strain? In trying imitate the highest Sadhana, the preliminary qualification for which is absoulute purity, they have been swallowed in dire Tamas. 

In every distirct and village you may visit, you will find only the sound of the Khol and Kartal! Are not drums made in the country? Are not trumpets and kettle-drums available in India? make the boys hear the deep-toned sound of these instruments. Hearing from boyhood the sound of these effeminate forms of music and listening to kirtana, the country is well-nigh converted into a country of women. What more degradation can you expect? Even the poet's imagination fails to draw this picture! The Damaru (An hour-glass shaped drum,held in Shiva's hand) and horn have to be sounded, drums are to be beaten so as to raise the deep and martial notes, and with "Mahavira, Mahavira" on your lips and shouting "Hara,Hara,Vyom,Vyom", the quarters are to be reverbeated. 

The music which awakens only softer feelings of man is to be stopped now for some time. Stopping the light tunes such as Kheal and Tappa for some time, the people are to be accustomed to hear the Dhrupad music. Through the thunder-roll of the dignified Vedic hymns, life is to be brought back into the country. In everything the austere spirit of heroic manhood is to be revived.

In following such an ideal lies the good of the people and the country. If you can build your character after such an ideal, then thousand others will follow. But take care that you do not swerve an inch from the ideal. Never loose heart, in eating,dressing, or lying, in singing or playing, in enjoyment or disease, always manifest the highest moral courage. 

Then only will you attain the grace of Mahashakti, the Divine Mother.

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