The Project of History of Indian Philosophy, Science and Culture - Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

Hon’ble Minister of Human Resource Development, Professor Murli Manohar Joshi ji, Professor Chattopadhyaya ji, Dr. Venkatasubramaniam ji, Professor Pande ji, Dr. Subbarayappa, Dr. Panchamukhi, Dr. Chaudhari, Professor Bhuvan Chandel, Professor Pradhan, distinguished scholars and friends;

To produce this great Project within five minutes is an impossible task. One can only provide a snapshot, one brief glimpse.

The Project of History of Indian Philosophy, Science and Culture, when it was first mooted by Professor Chattopadhyaya ji, had received a wide range resistance; it was only the inner faith and the strength of vision of Professor Chattopadhyaya ji that surmounted that resistance. The story of this history is a story of an adventure; it is by itself a kind of an epic.

This Project is unprecedented. There have been histories of culture, there have been histories of science, and histories of philosophies; but there is none which have combined all the three as one interconnected thread. There has been the famous project of Needham; the famous project of Sarton; and there have been laudable projects of Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan, Ramakrishna Mission and others. But Professor Chattopadhyaya’s concept right from the beginning was to discover the soul of India, which is integral in character and which has soared up to Himalayan heights and has dived into oceanic depths even while spreading its wings with the breath of wind gods, shinning Maruts of the Vedic system of knowledge. Professor Chattopadhyaya, deeply modest as he is, knew that this task cannot be done except by the collaboration of the best historians, best philosophers, best scientists, and best leaders of Indian ethos and Indian culture. One of his singular achievements is that he sought and obtained collaboration of all these leaders of thought and vision, including one of the tallest, Professor Pande ji, who is with us today and whose two volumes are to be released by our Hon’ble Minister.

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

India has attempted a synthesis of Spirit and Matter, and this seeking is evident in the very first dawn of our history, which Professor Pande ji has described as the dawn of Indian civilisation, and where he has given an authentic and account of the great Rishis of India who discovered the secret of life and discovered also the secret of immortality. For the first time in India this account of the dawn of Indian civilisation has now been presented to us in all its complexity, its richness, its subtlety and its widest sweep. As one reads this great account of the Rishis, one is compelled to conclude that the author of this account is himself a Rishi. Today is a great moment when two volumes which have been edited by the great Rishi of our time, will be released and will be available, and I am confident that this account will be found relevant for centuries to come.

India’s quest for the Spirit supported the quest of Matter under the impulsion of the realisation that Matter too is Brahman, annam brahma. That is why in India there was no quarrel between spiritual quest and scientific quest, and India’s scientific quest was so great and amazing that it anticipated discoveries and revelations that came to be acquired much later in Europe and elsewhere. History of Indian science, when seen with underlying currents of spirituality, philosophy, and cultural efflorescence is truly an inspiring and astonishing story. Dr. Subbarayappa who is with us today and who is one of the eminent scientists of our country has given us a lucid and interconnected account in his two volumes which are also to be released today. In these volumes, he has explained India’s glorious history of chemistry, and its techniques, as also life sciences and medicine, and I am sure that a study of these two volumes will provide not only to scholars but even to teachers and students a new sense of pride and a new sense of possession which will foster undying admiration and love for our country and love for knowledge that is universal.

The entire Project is 78 volume project, along with these four which are being released today; 20 other volumes have already been brought out, six more volumes will be published by the month of March. It is envisaged that by 2010 all the 78 volumes will be brought out. This is a Herculean task, and Professor Chattopadhyaya is more than equal to the task.

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

And fortunately, we have for this Project an unprecedented support of our Hon’ble Minister for Human Resource Development. He himself combines in his own personality India’s great quest of the Spirit and India’s quest of scientific knowledge of Matter. He is at once spiritual and scientific, a philosopher-statesman, an eminent scientist who is also an eminent educationist, a visionary, who has dexterity of efficient administration and art of practical achievement. He has stood firmly behind this great Project, and provided impetus to this Project that has been crucial and for which all of us in the Project are intensely grateful.

Professor Murli Manohar Joshi ji has promised us his full support for the completion of the Project, and our idea is to bring out translation of these 78 volumes in various languages of India considering that India’s story should come to our students in their own mother tongue. This also poses before us a great challenge; and I am sure that all of us who are present here today and many others in our country will come forward to help us in our task.

On this occasion, on behalf of Indian Council of Philosophical Research which stood as a source of this Project and which feels proud at this juncture of the great achievements that this Project has registered, I wish to extend gratefulness to Professor Chattopadhyaya ji, to all those great scholars who have collaborated in this Project, to all the members of Ministry of Education and to our beloved Professor Murli Manohar Joshi ji, for his constant support and inspiration.

Transcript of Speech - 7 September 2002

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