No Sanskrit please! Come on!

‘No Sanskrit, mom’, said a young girl to her mom. ‘Are you crazy?’

‘Learn something like French or still better German, but Sanskrit why?? Who does that???’

My friend shared with me the agony of her daughter when she announced her preparation for retirement.

‘You see’, said my friend, ‘I would like to be knowledgeable in the real sense. I mean my grand father was a well-known Sanskrit scholar. I want to continue his legacy. Moreover I have always been fascinated by the language and literature of the past.’

She smiled confidently looking into her future and perhaps picturing herself narrating Sanskrit stories and proudly holding the beacon of knowledge in her hand.

I nodded enthusiastically in support of her statement, as it struck a chord in me, this vision for sustainable sixties, ohk, may be not the vibhuthi and all, just some literature, a few poems, some shlokas and great company, yes, with everything else as well, if you know what I mean!

I don’t intend to go for a ‘vanavas’ as yet, not in another 30 years, i.e. if the battery lasts that long!

Sanskrit has always fascinated me. I enjoy reciting the shlokas by Sankaracharya for its innate rhyme and rhythm. My mother is learning to recite Sanskrit shlokas herself. When my daughter had a choice of going for Sanskrit, German or French in her 5th standard, she had picked Sanskrit much to my amusement.

When queried,she pontificated, ‘first learn your culture and language, no, before you go on to learn others!’…hmm heavy stuff for a little girl to utter but made sense somehow.

Retirement or not, there are enough reasons to pick up something new to learn, after all, it is said to keep you young.

I have a few new things lined up this coming year, like learning to speak Kannada, learn a few more shlokas in Sanskrit or join a dance class or re-start Yoga big time and well, the list is rather long….

But what are you picking up new this coming year?

Baking maybe or cycling or writing? Do share.

5 thoughts on “No Sanskrit please! Come on!”

  1. I’m picking up my feet. (I’ll be 80 in a few days.)
    Also, I want to keep picking up after myself, so Mary Anne–dear life long companion–doesn’t have to.
    I’d like to pick up speed in talking with my grandchildren. Speed in listening too, so I don’t keep saying, “What was that you said?”
    I wish I could pick up a better attitude toward modern cultural trends.
    About writing, I hope I can pick up where I left off a week or so ago. Inspiration comes more slowly now, but when it comes, it’s fun to pursue it.

    P.S. i was a teacher of Latin, along with English. I can relate to your friend’s interest in old ways of thinking and speaking. (Last night I was reading Augustine’s “”Confessiones.”) I was greatly pleased to hear about your daughter’s choice of a language to study. Come to think of it, I’ve always wondered about Sanskrit. Maybe ther’s still time for me to pick that up. Just a little.

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    1. How adorably well you write! I am sure Mary Anne is a blessed soul like yourself. I have read about Saint Augustine’s Confessiones, never read it myself. There is so much to do,sometimes I don’t know where to start. But I must assure you that there is enough time for all of us to pick up all that we want. The universe in her kindness sees to it just right! It must have been fun to teach Latin…there is a charm about old languages….When I visit an old temple sometimes I try to visualize how people century ago would have moved about there… it is fun to do that.


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