Sanskrit teachign post in British secondary school

Dominik Wujastyk wujastyk at GMAIL.COM
Sat Oct 15 08:02:13 UTC 2011

The history of the SES is reasonably well documented on their own websites,
though perhaps with different emphases than we would put on matters.  Very
much condensed, the Scottish politician Andrew
Maclaren<>started the
groups that became the SES.  His son, the barrister Leon
Maclaren, inherited his father's passionate devotion to the causes of social
justice, and took over the SES discussion groups, extending the courses from
just economics to wider philosophical issues. The Wikipedia page (on 15 Oct
2011) on Leon Maclaren <>, says
most of what there is to be said from there on, I think.

In answer to your question, George, no, Leon Maclaren wasn't interested in
vedanta as a source of economic ideas.  His personal trajectory, or quest,
evolved from economics and social issues to soteriological matters, and he
was interested in vedanta in its own terms, as a source of spiritual ideas
that he taught in London, where the SES continued (and perhaps continues?)
to teach economics alongside the more soteriological materials that they
call "practical philosophy."  They advertise quite widely in the tube and
elsewhere in London (like
which is from Dublin).

The SES took up Krishna Tirthaji Maharaj's book, Vedic Mathematics, in a big
way, many years ago, taking it completely at face value as a vedic
revelation.  Largely as a result of the SES's championing this material in
their schools, a mini industry has grown of books for kids teaching these
methods of mental arithmetic, and this has been very well received and
extended in India (though there is also a literature of opposition and
debunking).  Motilal Banarsidas' shop in Delhi has a couple of shelves of
"vedic maths" books.


On 14 October 2011 22:51, George Thompson <gthomgt at> wrote:

> Hello Dominik,
> It puzzles me that a School of Economic Science would have been
> influenced by such sources.  Is there evidence that these sources had
> any interest in economic science?  I'm not very well informed about
> them. I'm just curious.
> Thanks for passing this on.
> George
> On Tue, Oct 11, 2011 at 4:05 PM, Dominik Wujastyk <wujastyk at>
> wrote:
> >
> > It may bear noting, for those not familiar with the London Sanskrit
> scene,
> > that the St James school was founded by members of, and with
> organisational
> > backing from the School of Economic Science (not the London School of
> > Economics).  The SES has roots in the thinking of Henry George and G. I.
> > Ouspensky, but was influenced from the 1960s by  Śāntānanda Sarasvatī,
> > Śaṅkarācārya of Jyotirmath.  Hence the Sanskrit.  See the historical
> sketch
> > on the SES's website and the SES's own statement in answer to some of its
> > critics.  In 2005, the St James school was the subject of a formal
> enquiry
> > relating to its disciplinary practices.
> >
> > Best,
> > Dominik
> >
> >
> >
> > On 11 October 2011 23:11, Whitney Cox <wc3 at> wrote:
> >>
> >> Dear all,
> >>
> >> I am forwarding this on behalf of the school's head of Sanskrit; please
> >> follow the link for more information,
> >>
> >> best,
> >>
> >> Whitney Cox
> >>
> >> St James Senior Boys’ School in Ashford, to the west of London, UK, are
> >> advertising a position for a Sanskrit teacher.  Applications can be made
> >> directly through the TES
> >> website:
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >> --
> >>
> >>
> >> Dr. Whitney Cox
> >> Senior Lecturer in Sanskrit
> >> Department of the Languages and Cultures of South Asia,
> >> School of Oriental and African Studies
> >> Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square
> >> London WC1H 0XG
> >
> >
> >

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