Jai Ho, Mysuru Literature Festival and Manoranjan!-2
Abracadabra By K. B. Ganapathy, Columns

Jai Ho, Mysuru Literature Festival and Manoranjan!-2

July 26, 2022

[Continued from yesterday]

Later during the tea break I met Geetan- jali Shree at the writers’ lounge. I asked her what exactly the title of the book meant or suggested. Yes, she was queried about the title at the session and she had answered in English but interspersing it with Hindi. I did not really comprehend what she said. But, ever since I read a review of her book in English newspaper, this question has been nagging my mind.

According to a report published in Deccan Herald this was what she had said: “I do not agree with the translation of the title of the book ‘Ret Samadhi’ into ‘Tomb of Sand’. All that goes into Samadhi improves there and re-emerges after some time. Some people think that they can kill some thoughts or ideologies and can change the course of history. But it is only temporary.”

After reading this I was further pushed into a grey area about the connotation of the word ‘Samadhi’. I asked her if the word Samadhi meant ‘Nirvana’? She said, ‘No. Samadhi is different from the English word Tomb. If you want to know what it means, then read the book,’ and walked away, apparently she was in a hurry.

Geetanjali Shree (right) and moderator Sita Bhaskar

As I sat sipping the hot  coffee with its cerebral aroma, I remembered two persons — Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, the Saint and Dr. U.R. Ananthamurthy, the intellectual. I have read that Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to go into Samadhi for some time all of a sudden and re-emerge to the world before the congregation of his devotees. So also Ramana Maharishi.

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In English this state of ‘Samadhi’ is translated as ‘Trance’. It means a sleeplike state without response to stimuli; half-conscious state; ecstasy. Well, then the English translation of the title of the book should be ‘Sand Trance’ not ‘Sand Tomb’!!

It may suggest the transient nature of our life like the ‘Samadhi’ of a saint. And ‘Samadhi’ also means the place where a dead person is buried. Therefore, if it is buried with sand what is buried will soon re-emerge, as the grains of sand cannot bind together to hold what is buried.

Now let me come to our own Dr. U.R. Ananthamurthy who had said about the problems faced while translating works from one language to English or any other language. He says:

Yamini Muthanna speaking on yoga for children.

“For us in India, it should never matter what is translatable in English and what would be acceptable to the literary ethos of the West. If we begin to think that what is good is what is eminently translatable into modern ethos, we cannot be forgiven.” So, according to him, get translated, does not matter how well it is done.

But the question with ‘Tomb of Sand’ is whether we can reduce the philosophical to the literal. No. That means ‘Samadhi’ is not ‘Tomb’. If so there is a word in English ‘Trance’. After all, as I mentioned, the word ‘Samadhi’ has many connotations.

The sessions in Kannada and English in two separate venues held simultaneously seemed to cause the problem of choice for the people. And the programmes on 24th seemed to be of too short a duration of half-an-hour in quick succession. There was even a Yakshagana! Grammy Award Winner Ricky Kej on the evening of the first day, 23rd, was a great hit.

Sufi music by Aparyaaptha.

And then how can I forget that great cricketer Krishnamachari Srikkanth’s inspirational talk walking across the stage with a baritone voice packed with humour. It was like a stand-up comedy show.

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The organisers did not forget our children. There were four programmes — Yoga for youths by Yamini Muthanna who has brought out a very useful book for children on yoga; Snake Shyam to talk about animal empathy and the need to love nature. Preceding this session, there was a beautiful Sufi music rendered by youngsters.

And finally, three hurrahs for the Mysuru Literature Festival-2022. Mysuru’s cultural and literary tradition was further enhanced. Thanks to the new torch-bearers.

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ONE COMMENT ON THIS POST To “Jai Ho, Mysuru Literature Festival and Manoranjan!-2”

  1. Howdy, Modi! says:

    Mr Ganapathy talks tosh. Cricket has never been the sport of British Royalty at all. It has always been horse racing in the legendary grounds like Ascot. Horse-based sport like the Polo.
    Mr Ganapthy does not even realise that cricket is a boring sport created in its test version of lunch and tea breaks was most suited to India and other colonies like Australia and West Indies. Except India, this boring sport- even in its limited over version has been a minority sport in Britain, where the football (club based ) thrives with famous football clubs and its richest premiere leagues of 20 clubs in England. In countries like Australia, am, New Zealand and South Africa, Rugby is the number 1 sport. The west Indians are into athletics and baseball. Only in this third world dump, cricket is still worshipped. The world has become football mad.
    India , a democracy? Corruption at every level in politics has destroyed this so called democratic country. There is not even one honest politician here.
    Mr Gapathy’s reports have been narratives of delusion. He lives in a parallel universe. That film Slum Dog Millionaire , had this ridiculous ‘Jay Ho’ tune, which was created by that Muslim-converted Hindu music director, was the idea of Danny Boyle, the socialist director, to show how worse are India’s slums, and the only way, these poor souls in this filth, next to rich people abodes can , have deliverance, is if they win a lottery. Hollywood awarded Oscars to this film, which showed this third world country mired in poverty. Satyagit Ray, won kudos, every time, he showed poverty in Calcutta to the Western countries.
    Keep worshipping this colonial sport called cricket which not many countries play, and finally, when the football completes its sweep across the world, only India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, will be playing this boring game!

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