Samskrita Dinam (Day) is a cultural celebration that takes place in many parts of India and abroad that seeks to spread awareness of the language of Samskritam.
On the 19th of August, the Isha Samskriti students celebrated Samskrita Dinam at the Isha Yoga Center with an enthusiastic ensemble of music, dance and a variety of skits and drama performances ranging from comical to melodramatic, to the delight of the audience of ashram residents and brahmacharies.
The evening began with an introduction in Samskritam, followed by a series of skits and dance numbers by the junior and senior students. Contrary to what the general opinion of the Samskritam language may be – that it is something ancient and inapplicable to modern lifestyle, a language reserved for shlokas and scholars of complicated texts – the skits and performances by the Samskriti students displayed how the language can be used to articulate just about any experience in one’s life, even the most comical and mundane.
Watching the performances, which were written and directed largely by the students themselves and delivered entirely in the Samskritam language, the audience was quite impressed with the fluent way in which the dialogues were delivered. Though we may not have understood every detail of what was spoken, the fervor, playfulness and involvement with which it was presented had us glued to our seats and captivated throughout.
Probably the most comical of all the skits was a spoof on the famous Tamil movie, “Thiruvilayadal.” The fast-paced, humorous dialogues, in full semblance to the original movie, had the audience rolling with laughter!
The evening culminated with an absolutely breathtaking sketch of the life of Karna, the famed tragic character from Mahabharat. Inspired by what Sadhguru spoke about this enigmatic figure during the Mahabharat program conducted at the Isha Yoga Center in February 2012, the students brought to life the many emotions and situations faced by Karna, from his birth to his death. Interspersed with larger-than-life battle scenes using a play of shadows and light as well as an enthralling live musical soundtrack that set the tempo throughout, this rich yet down-to-earth portrayal of the story left the audience longing for more.
But alas, the evening had to come to a close. Many audience members arrived at the venue not knowing what to expect, but without a doubt, one and all left with an inspiration to learn more about this ancient but living language. As one of the Samskriti students poignantly shared, Samskritam is not just a language to her; it is something more than a language. She shared that she often feels that she can articulate herself much more accurately and directly in Samskritam than in her mother tongue.
As Sadhguru has said, “Sanskrit language is not a made up language; we say it is a discovered language. It is one language where the form and the sound are connected. Today we know that if you feed any sound into an oscilloscope, a sound-measuring instrument, every sound has a form attached to it. Similarly, every form has a sound attached to it. When you realize what is the sound attached to a particular form, you give that sound as the name for that form. Now, the sound and the form are connected. If you utter the sound you are relating to the form not just psychologically or in your understanding – but existentially you are connecting with the form. If you have mastery over the sound you have mastery over the form also. So Sanskrit language is like a blueprint to the existence.”