These January sessions are dedicated to itihāsa.
In India, the word for, “history” is, “itihāsa
” (iti hā āsa
, “it was indeed thus”). It also is used to specifically refer to the two monumentally influential epic poems of ancient India: the Mahābhāratam (which includes the Bhagavad Gītā) and the Rāmāyaṇa. The very fact that the word itihāsa
is used in a context where, in the West we might use “mythology”, “epic”, “story” or, “poem” can lead us into curious conversation. Is there a difference between history and a story that has been told for millennia? What exactly was documented in itihāsa
, and how does it differ from what we have come to understand as history in the West? What was significant or, indeed, memorable about a remembered “event” in India? Fred Smith
has been translating the last five (of eighteen) books of the unabridged Mahabharata for several years and is the chief editor of an international consortium of scholars undertaking this translation (to be published by Primus Books in Delhi). He joins Drs. Ramkumar and Claudia and Vedic Threads participants to talk about the role of ancient storytelling in modern life. This session is a prelude to –hopefully–a live Satsangam live storytelling event in May 2024 in New Mexico.
We welcome you to join us in heartfelt conversation on these themes, in our twice-monthly Vedic Threads membership-based course
. For USD/month you have access to two live 1.5-hour sessions/month with Drs. Ramkumar, Welch, world-class guest instructors, dedicated participants from all over the world, and more than 40 hours of content from previous sessions.