- Language: English
- Binding: Paperback
- Publisher: Rupa Publications India
- Genre: History of Religion, Hinduism, Theology and Philosophy of Religion
- ISBN: 9789353332303, 9353332303
- Edition: 2018
- Language: English
- Binding: Paperback
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- ISBN: 9780143334637, 0143334638
- Edition: 2016
- Pages: 112
I always say this, India is a land of charming story tellers and we will never get tired of telling them. The beauty of this land is the assimilation of the different cultures in the respective retelling of the biggest and impactful epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata.
Devdutt Pattanaik comes again as a winner this time with the tale of Sita and how she chose five things for herself in her lifetime with Ram the prince of Ayodhya. It might have gone unnoticed why the story came about unless we think about it and see the reason around why Sita decided to go the forest with Ram and Lakshman, especially when she was just married and she has been the princess after all. She could have been sending off Ram to deliver the promise that his Dad made.
Again it was Sita during her days at the forest, who chose to cross the Lakshman Rekha, to give food to the ascetic who had come begging. It was a choice that had repercussions again simply because Lakshman had thought about it and drawn a line.
There are three more instances when she chose, get the book to read them and it is a delightful read the way it is presented. The story extends to the time of Luv and Khusha the twins of Sita when she is asked to leave the kingdom due to the way the gossip mongers have a field day.
The time she choses to make an entry into the fireplace is also a reminder of how the character has had an impact in terms of image being built around the royals vis a vis the rules and the fredom to choose.
Ofcourse the rishis and scriptures wanted us to see the characters in us as much as the story was told, here again the author has rekndled the efforts in us to reach out to the Ram, Sita and the Ravana inside us
Beautifully illustrated and narrated with short notes on the sidelines this is a wonderful book to introduce Sita as a woman who should be celebrated equal to Ram and Lakshman.
You will love this book to the core, enjoy it reading it loud to the kids too. Go ahead and take a plunge, there is subtlety in this and there is spiritual offering if in case you want to see it that way. Enjoyed reading this, and Devdutt Pattanaik has recreated the charm of introducing the characters with such conviction in story telling.
This is a part of Flipkart Sponsored Review Program. To buy your copies go here : The Girl Who Chose
|Book Type||Non Fiction Book|
|Number of Pages||270 Pages|
|Publication Year||2014 October|
Once again the master mythologist, comes up with a great story telling with facts and illustrations that support every word that he writes on.
The third in the series of 7 secrets – of Vishnu, Siva and now the Goddess, the author takes us through the historical evidence that suggests how the society had turned itself from matriarchy to patriarchy.
Add to that the influence of islam and Christianity the need to be seen as a patriarchal in the context of subservient women characters and other factors when the invasion happened.
Perhaps it’s the keen eye to detail and the ardous task of seeking our definitive evidences which make Devdutt Pattanaik the man he is as he revels in his unravelling the myths and making meaning out of them.
The structure of the book and the layout should make it easy for the reader to assimilate each idea and also appreciate the way how things have turned around and the interpretations have started happening.
Quite a few times it is the story lost in translation and quite a few times its interpretation that mattered according to the context and the times they were in.
The way how the once fierce and independent womanhood has now given way to a submissive and more enslavend being is very well captured and the best part is all how they got into these submissive overtones simply because its in the nature of human beings to be seen as controlling rather than be the likes of animals which have just their wants and need fulfilled to the extent they are required not a penny more or a penny less in financial terms.
The journey into the grama devi concept is worth remembering since they give a nice understanding of folk way of celebrating womanhood and they are going strong day by day.
I think this was a long overdue in the way that he has put things in perspective the ideal situation of stories being a mirror to the context and how it has to be interpreted and how it has long lost it to chanting tradition and more so people just chanting them even without knowing their meaning.
Apart from that he also has taken on the Western philosophers for their very minimalistic view of the Hinduism that they talk of and never having tried to read the real meaning of the rituals and festivals.
A lot of specifics on the southern traditions being discussed is welcome addition and the Mahabharata character of Draupadi being accorded an Amman Devi status is an interesting one.
A must read for everyone interested to know the significance of Goddesses in the Hindu tradition. The many stories of Brahma not being accorded the temple status is a revealing one. The relationships with the trinity and the devis are a great read.
My only addition if I could suggest would have been the pointers to look at the picture with a subscript when they are discussed in the opposite pages would have had a nice way to add to the flow, otherwise they pictures are read at my convenience and paragraph breaks.
As in all his works this will be read again and again for the insights that his subject revels on, and a one time reading of a topic is like the tip of an iceberg.