शुक्रवार, 30 दिसंबर 2011

In the Search of Peace and Freedom…………………

“If they are not getting peace and freedom home, they cannot achieve it in any part of the world”, says the caretaker of Krishnamurti Foundation, Rajghat, Varanasi. Krishnamurti foundation shows people the way to get the ultimate peace and freedom. The peace and freedom which always remain in them but they have been searching it in all over the world probably since their birth.

The Study Centre of Krishnamurti Foundation, at Varanasi, is situated at Rajghat. It is running many schools and colleges in the city, including Vasanta Mahila Mahavidyalaya, Rajghat, Varanasi. The study centre is located in the house, in which Krishnamurti lived during his annual visits. Set on a high prominence overlooking the Ganga, the campus has a guest house and a few cottages attached to the study centre/retreat. The study centre consists of a library and a mini-archive. Apart from offering the usual facilities of a Krishnamurti study centre, it has a translations and publications cell, where its Hindi, Bengali, and Urdu translations are available. 

Stepping in from the main gate of the Krishnamurti Foundation at Rajghat, we observed the peace and the sense of freedom which we never feel in this competitive and cacophonic life of the city side. The well constructed garden greened with trees and plants never give someone a chance to think about the outside world. The people from all over the world come here in the search of peace and freedom, and probably they get it.

“Need not to go anywhere in the search of peace and freedom, which remain inside us. Need is to search it in our own”, the caretaker adds.

गुरुवार, 29 दिसंबर 2011

Observing the Observatory

The Manmandir Observatory, situated at Manmandir ghat of the river Ganga in Varanasi, looks as big and old as the other buildings of the ancient Varanasi. This observatory was constructed by the remarkable monarch of Jaipur Maharaja Sewai Jai Singh. He was the person behind the foundation of many cities, including Jaipur, in the country.

Entering inside the gate, there are stairs to get upside. There is a corridor giving the experience of a palace of the Mughal era. The paining depicted on the walls of the corridor are the finest examples of Mughal-era painting. The building is constituted with many corridors, yards, and stairs. 

Major attraction of the building is the well constructed solar watch on the roof of the observatory. It man-made clock works by nature. This watch is based in the sun. By watching the shadow made on it, we can easily estimate the time. The solar time-set is very accurate.

From the balconies of the observatory, we see both the banks of the river Ganga. This one is the most eye-catching view from here. From this height, seeing boats in the river and people roaming here and there on the ghat is another wonderful experiences. 

This observatory is one of the beautiful examples of the ancient Varanasi. It is a well-maintained building and is very efficiently taken care of by the caretakers. The experience gathered at such a beautiful ancient place rejuvenates one’s mind, body and soul.

मंगलवार, 27 दिसंबर 2011

Sarnath to meet Akhata Village!

A team of students led by Prof Mridula Jaiswal of Archaeology Department, Banaras Hindu University, is excavating in Aktha village to disclose its relation with Sarnath. She may have been excavating for the few days but has been researching on this relation for a long time.

“It is intuition but logical one, which makes you confident about the place to be excavated”, Jaiswal asserts. 

She shows two places in the village, which are being excavated by her team consisting of her students with herself. Having excavated for a plenty of metres, she got several evidences to prove her intuition as logical one. Pottery of different periods, which is got from the burial, proves to be the a thing that is all time favourite and all time necessity of the people. It is in red colour but in various shapes. Some coins of various designs have also been found from the soil. They themselves tell the story of their periods.

The layers on the walls of the excavated area are also a measure of chronological order. Different layers mark out different periods of time. The red coloured bricks demonstrate a periods of time rather different than black ones. It means, red colour bricks were used in a different period and black colour bricks were used in a different one.

“The age of stones are determined by carbon-14”, Jaiswal adds. She is quite confident about the 'soil-relation' of Sarnath with Akhata village. If she becomes successful in searching the facts of Buddha period from the soil, she would like to go ahead with some more metres of excavation so that she could be acquainted with some more past centuries sleeping in the historical soil.

सोमवार, 26 दिसंबर 2011

The Legend’s Place: Lamhi

Lamhi, the village which became the witness of the birth of the legendary Hindi author Munsi Prem Chand. The village looks just like an ordinary Indian village but became extraordinary due to the name of Premchand who was born here on 31st July, 1880. He died in 1936 and his wife lived here till her death in 1976. 

Premchand’s house in Lamhi is a three storied small but well constructed building. It is opened for demonstration to people who are curious about the life of the noted writer. In the front-side of the airy house, there are two doors and several windows. These were the windows against which Premchand used to sit and see the outside world when he was terribly ill in his last days. The houses are now maintained by the government authorities. A gallery of Premchand’s creations is situated, just a stone throw from the house. Several portraits, demonstrating the biography of the great author with pictorial representation of his stories, are depicted on the wall of the gallery. 

“Many freedom fighters afford their lives for the freedom of the country, and Premchand’s first novel made sacrifice for the noble cause”, says the caretaker of Premchand’s legacy at Lamhi.

The ‘Soz-e-Watan’, Premchand’s first novel was burnt by the Britishers. Premchand died before completing his last novel the ‘Mangalsutra’. His fate did not give him a chance to complete the last creation. His world famous novel the ‘Gaban’ is now the part of a research to find out the reasons of its popularity.

“This is all the work of Premchand, which gave him popularity, and me livelihood”, adds the caretaker, and becomes emotional due to his attachment with his favourite author.

In the legend's memory, the government has sanctioned a huge amount of money to construct a pond near this house. Almost half of the work is completed, and the rest is awaiting some more money from the government. 

The ‘Lamhi’ and the ‘Pousa Ki Raat’, the two novels of Premchand, are based on the same village.