UMASAHASRAM: Sri Kavyakantha Ganapathimuni in Sanskrit; Pannala Radhakrishna Sarma Tr. in Telugu; Pub. by Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai-606603. Rs. 175.
THIS WORK of 1000 melodious verses in praise of Goddess Parvati, pregnant with allusive inner thrust, gently probes into the deeper significance of the super-energy (shakti) in relation to human consciousness. Ganapatimuni, a great Sanskrit scholar composed his first work Bhringa Sandesa on the lines of Kalidasa's Meghadootam, in his 14th year.
On a spiritual quest when he met brahmanaswami, at once accepted him as his preceptor and addressed him as Bhagawan. Ramana in turn bestowed his affection and called him Nayana. The present work is composed as a grateful offering to the goddess for blessing him with a teacher such as Ramana.
In this well-conceived edition each stanza is ably explained, preceded by word-to-word meaning and summary.
The translator Radhakrishna Sarma has availed Kapali Sastry's Sanskrit commentary for guidance in this work.
It is divided into 40 cantos of 25 verses each. More than a 100 verses describe the benign smile of the goddess. The poet in Ganapatimuni excels here with resplendent imagery. It has been revised by him several times.
Impressed by Ganapatimuni's exposition of social liberalism in Vedic tenets, he was invited to speak at the Kakinada session of Indian National Congress in 1923 on the rights of women.
At the 1924 Belgaum Congress he pointed out that untouchability could never be a dharma of true religion and it is anti-spiritual.
Pleasant-to-look at and easy-to-read typesetting makes this work a prized possession.
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