Trysts by night in art and poetry

The painting above, by one of the great Indian artists of the late eighteenth century, Nainsukh, depicts such a scene.  Our paramour sneaks away from her home by night to a spot in the forest where she has arranged to meet her lover during the night, and she must be back before anyone awakes and misses her in the morning.

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T.S. Eliot, the Vedas and the Concept of Time

The concept of time seems to have been a preoccupation for many leading figures of this generation across a variety of fields, stimulated perhaps in part by the linking of hitherto distant regions through railway and telegraphy during the nineteenth century, and likely also by the impact of Einstein’s work.  Such figures might include Henri Bergson, Martin Heidegger, Marcel Proust, Salvador Dali and many others.

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T.S. Eliot and Indian Philosophy

T.S. Eliot — Wikimedia Commons (Octave.H) It is well-known that T.S. Eliot engaged deeply with Indian philosophy in ways which significantly influenced his worldview and his poetry. In fact,Eliot was a student of the eminent Sanskrit scholar Professor Charles Rockwell Lanman at Harvard University, and in fact Eliot’s PhD supervisor there, Josiah Royce, had also earlier learnt […]

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The Setubandha of Pravarasena

Monkey Army building a stone bridge to cross sea on way to Lanka — Wikimedia Commons (Ms Sarah Welch) The Prakrit languages have a very rich and complex literary history dating back to at least the early centuries AD. As Prof. Andrew Ollett explains – “Like Sanskrit, [Prakrit] was a language of literary intellectual culture, and cut across […]

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Śakuntalā’s poem

Dushyanta and Shakuntala in a Landscape — LACMA The play Abhijnāna-Śakuntalam is one of the most well-known and frequently-performed works by the renowned Indian poet Kālidāsa. The play is based on the famous story found in the Mahābhārata about the romance of Śakuntalā and Duṣyanta. However, Kālidāsa uses his own creative imagination to add some additional twists […]

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