Introducing Academy of Sanskrit Research (fwd)

Dominik Wujastyk ucgadkw at UCL.AC.UK
Fri Feb 27 12:45:52 UTC 1998

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 24 Feb 1998 13:50:30 +0530 (IST)
From: Academy of Sanskrit Research <asrbng at>
Subject: Introducing Academy of Sanskrit Research

Academy of Sanskrit Research 
Melkote - 571 431
Karnataka, India Tel:(0821)38741,38781(O) 38742®

	Around 60 kilometers north-east of Mysore city in the State of 
Karnataka is to be found a hilly tract comprising some of the oldest rock 
formations on the earths crust. Nestling in the heart of these hills lies 
the temple town of Melkote. The origins of the town ae lost in antiquity, 
but it rose to cultural and religious importance in the 12th AD when the 
great South Indian philosopher and teacher, Sri Ramanuja lived in the 
town for twelve years.

	Today life in Melkote revolves around the Cheluvanarayanaswamy 
temple within the township and the Yoganarasimhaswamy temple on the hill 
overlooking Melkote. These temples are repositories of Melkotes living 
tradition as well as storehouses of academic knowledge of our culture. 
Thus, as part of the temple precincts is the oldest Sanskrit Pathashala 
in India, dating back to 1853, imparting regular instruction in Sanskrit 
and Indian philosophy.

	One of the best-preserved towns, Melkote is unique in that it has 
retained its traditional character over the centuries. Historical studies 
have shown relatively little change in the plan of the town, the type and 
character of dwellings and its cultural this sense, a visit 
to Melkote or Tirunarayanapuram (as it is also called) is a unique 
experience of our own cultural heritage in its living form.

	The essence of Indian philosophical as well as religious thought 
comes alive in the temples of Melkote where the temple rituals and 
festivals involve many, if not most of the towns population. Some of the 
more important annual festivals such as the Vairamudi Utsava, Teppotsava 
and the birthday or Tirunakshatram celebrations of importand saints are 
occasions which bring all the people of the town together. Indeed Melkote 
is unique in that certain fold festivals such as the Angamani festival 
have been integrated into the temple rituals, thus making them meaningful 
to the common man.

	It is a matter of general serious concern in India that with the 
rapid pace of social and economic change, our ancient wisdom and culture 
is in danger of being lost.

	The increasing impact of the mass media as the main source of 
knowledge and entertainment is likely to further contribute to this and 
the next generation may well lose contact completely with the well 
springs of our past.

	The Academy of Sanskrit Research was set up in Melkote in 1978 
with the specific aim of promoting serious acholarship in Indian 
philosophy, particularly the Vedantic systems, by seeking to blend modern 
research methods with the traditional approach to these subjects. As an 
additional aim, the Academy also intends to embark on a systematic 
programme for making specific areas of Indian philosophy more accessible 
to the layman and in general promoting a serious awareness of our culture 
to all those whoa may be interested in it, but lack guidance in this 
respect. Thus the Academy intends to link the invaluable knowledge 
contained in our ancient texts to the contexts of modern living and also 
use this as a foundation for suggesting ways and means of meeting the 
social dominate societies of the futute.

	Set in a beautiful, sylvan campus of 14 acres at the Southern end 
of Melkote town, the Academy has re-created a gurukula like atmosphere 
for its 20 full-time traditional and modern research scholars who are 
also training 22 external students of the Academy. A library with over 
2f2,000 volumes is a part of the facilities. Palm-leaf manuscripts are 
being collected, listed and scientifically preserved. Research work 
includes the kriya project where, in a fully equipped computer lab, work 
is being done on developing Sanskrit as a natural language for semantic 
processing. The Academy has aslo published several works on Upanisad 
Bhasyas, Sutra Bhasyas and conducts several seminars each year on topics 
covering a wide range of Vedantic thought and their applications to 
modern living.

	The Academy intends to shortly embark on a programme where it 
will serve as a source point of Indian culture and philosophy to all 
persons who may desire such a service. To this end, the Academy will 
guide people to the appropriate publications in their specific areas of 
interest, assist in procuring these works if required, and bring our 
popular works written by eminent persons on various aspects of Indian 
philosophy for the layman. Also on the anvil are services designed to 
provide interested persons with audio and video recordings of important 
religious festivals and traditional oral works complete with descriptive 
commentaries which will serve as important archival materials for 
universities, while at the same time representing a very valuable 
educative tool for the interested lay person.

	In order to proceed with these tasks, the Academy requires funds. 
The current financial grants from governmental bodies are handy 
sufficient to even maintain the existing work of the Academy. Any 
expansion of its activity to carry out the vital tasks describedc above 
will need financial support from the community of donors and from 
philanthropic institutions. We have devised schemes (described below) for 
accepting contributions from individuals like you, who share our concern 
for the necessity of such work, as undertaken by the Academy. In all 
cases as you can see, the Academy, in return, intends providing you with 
certain useful services.

1. Patrons:		Persons and organisations who donate 
Rs.10,00,000/- or more.
2. Donors:		Persons and organisations who pay Rs. 2,00,000/- 
or more.
3. Life Members:	Persons and organisations who pay Rs.1,00,000/- 
or more.
(a) Individuals:
1. Rs 5,000/-per year for 5 years or US $ 200 per year for 5 years if not 
a Indian resident.
2. Rs 4,000/-per year for 5 years or US $ 150 per year for 5 years if not 
a Indian resident.
3. Rs 3,000/-per year for 5 years or US $ 100 per year for 5 years if not 
a Indian resident.
4. Rs 2,000/-per year for 5 years or US $ 75 per year for 5 years if not 
a Indian resident.
5. Rs 1,000/-per year for 5 years or US $ 50 per year for 5 years if not 
a Indian resident.
(b) Organisations:
1. Rs 15,000/- per year for 5 years or $ 500 per year for 5 years if a 
foreign institution 


	Assistance for visiting students and research scholars by way of 
academic teaching, access to library and hostel facilities at the 
Academy, in addition to providing the services listed below for all 
1. Regular mailing of Academy Newsletter.
2. Sourcing of books of special interest to the contributor.
3. Listing popular publications on Indian thought and philosophy and 
mailing updates to contributors regularly.
4. All printed as well as audio and video publicatons of the Academy ot 
be made available to contributors at subsidised prices.
5. Knowledge imparted by way of special workshops to contributors or 
their nominees on aspects of philosophy.

	The above is a very partial list of services, the scope of which 
is beyond this rather brief introduction. We would request you to kindly 
write to us immediately with your acceptance of any of the schemes above, 
and we will respond very soon with a complete listing of our services. 
Please also indicate in your letter your special areas of interest in 
Indian philosophy and culture. This information of your interest areas 
will be recorded by us in our contrubutor database at the Academy, thus 
allowing us provide our services to you with your preferences in mind.

	Your values support is more necessary than ever to help the 
Academy carry out it s important mission. All contributions to the 
Academy may kindly be made our by cheque or bank draft in fvour of the 
Director, Academy of Sanskrit Research, Melkote.please also note that 
such contributins are exempt from Income Tax under Section 35(1)(iii) of 
the Income Tax Act,1961.

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