Archive for April, 2020

Idazh thandha varigal 

April 23, 2020

A book of letters between Ku. Azhagirisami and Sundara Ramasami. An interesting read! I did not know that the song “Odugira thanniyile…” is a folk song.  I always thought that it was a movie song. The book is also very nicely done with fascimile pieces of letters! In any case, the book makes you look for boos by both Azhagirisami and Sundara Ramasami as well as some other writers. Recommended for those interested in Tamil novels and books!!

Reba Som’s Margot: Sister Nivedita of Vivekananda

April 5, 2020

A very interesting book; I have just started reading. As is his wont, Vivekananda is always full of surprises. Here is, for example, his opinion on narrow parochialism clothed as patriotism:

‘Really patriotism like yours is sin! All that I want you to see is that most people’s actions are the expression of self-interest and you constantly oppose to this idea that that a certain race are all angels. Ignorance so determined is wickedness!’

Here is another quote from the book indicating that Swamiji can never be straight-jacketed:

A highlight during the halt at Nainital was Swamiji’s meeting with a Muslim, Mohammed Sarfaraz Hussain, who was an Advaita Vedantist at heart and considered himself one of his disciples under the name Mohammedananda. From Almora a month later, Swamiji was to write to him a letter (…). “…For our own motherland a junction of the two great systems, Hinduism and Islam — Vedanta brain and Islam body — is the only hope”.

In any case, an interesting read so far and expect it to be so for the rest of the book too! From what I have seen in the first thirty odd pages, certainly recommended!