A valuation of our culture by a foreigner from the standpoint of his own culture should be regarded by us as meant not for our immediate acceptance but for our critical examination. It should.be a fillip to which we should react.

At times, the above counsel by Professor Krishna Chandra Bhattacharya (1875–1949), arguably the greatest Indian philosopher of the last century, stands equally valid for certain evaluations of our culture and tradition offered by some of our own people, due to the standpoint from which they gaze at India and her civilization. It is with this conviction that I proceed…

Image courtesy: Hindustan Times

Now that enough blood has been shed,

Now that my earth has turned all red;

Will you not recall what Hari Singh did?

Will you unsee Banda Bahadur’s creed?

Will you still deny the enemy’s purpose -

Will you show pity, while they oppress us?

Will you not venture beyond condemnation?

Will you let them thus destroy a nation?

Will you now get your buried head out of sand,

Call a spade a spade, and secure this land?

Will you forget what the ancient masters said:

That an enemy’s debts are thro’ war best paid?

Give peace to those who for peace ever toil,

And war to the anarchist, who revel in turmoil.

ভাষার সংকোচন: জাতির নৈতিক অধঃপতনের একটি মূল্যবান সূচক

বহুদিন হ’ল লোকে বাংলা ভাষার অফুরন্ত শব্দরাজির ব্যবহার করা একরকম ছেড়েই দিয়েছে। আজকাল স্রেফ দু-চারটে বাঁধাধরা কথার মধ্যেই কথ্য এবং সাহিত্যের ভাষা (এমনকী গানেরও) ঘোরাঘুরি করে। এর সবচাইতে প্রকৃষ্ট উদাহরণ হচ্ছে: “আশা করি কিছু মনে করবেন না!” পরিচিতেরা তো বটেই, এমনকী অপরিচিত লোকেও আজকাল উদ্ভট প্রস্তাব রাখতে গিয়ে কিংবা খুব ব্যক্তিগত কিছু জিজ্ঞেস করবার আগে এই বাঁধা বুলিটি সতর্কীকরণ জারি করবার মতো ক’রে একবারটি আওড়ে নেয়। বলি, আশা করবেন কোন ভরসায়? আপনি মশায় আদৌ কতটা চেনেন-জানেন আমায় বলুন দেখি? এত আশা করেনই বা কেন — যত বেশি আশা করবেন আশাভঙ্গের সম্ভাবনাও যে…

An (almost) British rant at the “vulgarities” of Bholenath’s children.

Shri Amarnath Ji. Image Courtesy: India Pilgrim Tours

“Hush! Good gracious, such boisterous, vulgar noise! You’re polluting the bloody environment with your coarse cry, don’t you know that? But of course, you have not an inkling of that scientifically-established-objectively-proven piece of fact, for you wouldn’t be screaming at the top of your voice in the first place if you did. It may even cause avalanches and close this trek for good — the Lord forbid, if such a calamity should befall then how are we s’pposed to send our supplies to the Afghan front, uninterrupted? Have you any…

NGMA, New Delhi premises, view from outside the boundary fence. Image Courtesy: Sreejit Datta

Imposing bans on things — on anything — particularly those items which relate to food habit, fashion, books and entertainment has become a fad in Indian politics. Everyone from left to right in the political spectrum uses banning as a tool, sometime to repress and at other occasions to appease a definite pool of voters. While banning something can no doubt guarantee an easy and quick way to gain political success (or at least publicity via negative means) riding on the wings of sensationalism, it can cause a great hinder in the path of intellectual and spiritual progress, both at…

Sreejit Datta

Sreejit is a teacher, columnist, translator, poet and musician. He frequently writes on Indic subjects and drinks tea.

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