3 years

Unreasonable

The Second Sanskrit Commission

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For proposing Sanskrit labs for research on ancient myths
The second Sanskrit Commission, headed by Satya Vrat Shastri, has reportedly suggested a host of measures for the revival of Sanskrit, and one of these is the establishment of special laboratories where scientists and scholars can work together to corroborate ancient beliefs such as the power of Vedic sacrifices to induce rainfall and the healing qualities of sacrificial ashes. An article in a news daily, which got its hands on the draft report, also says that the commission wants ancient scientific achievements taught to students, the introduction of a mandatory Sanskrit paper at all science and technology institutes and the inclusion of Sanskrit teachers in their faculties.

There is a fine line between paying homage to our heritage and being a hostage to it and India seems to be increasingly leaning towards the latter. Sanskrit went out of vogue as a language several centuries ago. To believe that sacrifices can lead to rainfall takes us back to the very beginning of civilisation when humans were utterly ignorant of the forces that drove nature and were petrified of it. Is that the golden age we want to return to? Or should we just let science be studied in the language that will be the most effective for its wide dissemination?