ABHIMANYU’S DEATH

In the name of Krishna, whose devotee he was, guru Drona had promised the suppliant that he would give her whatever she wanted from him. The stranger asked him for Abhimanyu’s head. He was shell shocked. When he recovered, he was furious. He condemned her and threatened to curse her. The one without equal, Bhishma, …

"Language Matters"

My book "Language Matters" (132 pages) was published last month (by Dhauli Books, Bhubaneswar). It's a collection of 32 short essays (only a few contain more than 2000 words) on various topics: communication, language and its study, language in education, football, books (including Sarala Mahabharata), haunted houses, etc. These are "personal essays", written in a …

DIVYA CHAKSU

In Vyasa Mahabharata, Sanjaya had divya chaksu – divine (“special, extraordinary” in this context) vision – bestowed on him by the great sage, Vyasa. Sitting with King Dhritarashtra, away from the battlefield, he could see the many battles being fought on the different battlefields of Kurukshetra and narrate them to the King. The blind Kuru …

THE STORY OF BABANA BHUTA

(This story is remarkable in that it connects the loka katha  (folk literature) with the classical in a fascinating and non-intrusive manner.)Our ancients created a colourful and delightful universe in which there were cognitive existences other than the humans: devas(gods), asuras (demons), gandharvas, kinnaras, apsaras and bhutas (ghosts), among others. In popular talk in Odisha …