Learning Through the Indian Scriptures : Banaras Hindu University (BHU) to Offer Lessons on Ancient Indian Texts and Literature

The essence of the BAK programme lies in the fact that students are unaware of ancient Indian texts that still hold relevance.

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BAK by Banaras Hindu University
The Bharat Adhyayan Kendra (BAK) under Banaras Hindu University (BHU) was set up to study, preserve and promote ancient knowledge. Wikimedia
  • The Bharat Adhyayan Kendra (BAK) was founded one and a half years for the study, preservation and promotion of ancient Indian texts
  • BAK plans to educate students and teachers about Vidur Neeti, Chanakya Neeti, and the Vedic sciences, skills and techniques
  • Students can attend discussions and seminars by research scholars and further awareness and inculcate understanding of ancient Indian arts and knowledge 

Varanasi, August 19, 2017: Chanakya authored the ancient Indian political treatise Arthashastra, and imparted invaluable lessons on self-regulation of human conduct in his Chanakya Neeti. Do these texts sound alien to you? Do you know about Vidur Neeti or sage Kamandak’s treatise on warfare management? To delve deep into such ancient Indian treasures, the  Bharat Adhyayan Kendra (BAK) of the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) in Varanasi is set to impart lessons about ancient Indian texts in scriptures and  literature.

On the initiative of BHU Vice Chancellor Prof. Girish Chandra Tripathi, the Bharat Adhyayan Kendra (BAK) was set up to study, preserve and promote ancient knowledge.

With an underlying aim of the promotion of Sanskrit and the sanskriti (culture), the BAK now plans to inform and educate students and teachers about Vidur Neeti, Chanakya Neeti, and the Vedic sciences, skills and techniques.

For the same, BAK has also appointed three centenary chair professors that include Prof. Kamlesh Dutt Tripathi, Prof. Yugal Kishore Mishra, and Prof. Rakesh Upadhyaya. Apart from them, five centenary research fellows have also been appointed to carry out researches in the ancient disciplines.

The organisation also plans to include foreign scholars to be involved in the research work in the future.

The centre plans to invite students of various departments to spread awareness and inculcate understanding of ancient Indian arts and knowledge by conducting seminars and lectures. The initiative by Banaras Hindu University aims to,

  • To preserve knowledge pertaining to ancient India by introducing students, professors and research scholars to ideas of state management and polity mentioned in the Chanakya Neeti and Vidur Neeti.
  • Promote multi-disciplinary studies and researches on subjects that are written about in the ancient Indian scriptures and are relevant for Indian studies.
  • To form pulsating research groups by encouraging teachers, scholars and students to delve deep into the rich Indian past that is largely ignored and rediscover lost treasures.

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According to a report by Hindustan Times, the academic programme will cover Vedic studies, Vedanga (including Jyotish, Dharmashastra and Puranas), 64 kalas (art forms) and 18 vidyas (skills or techniques).

It will also focus on six schools of Indian philosophy, Ayurveda (ancient medical science), arthshastra (economics), rajshastra (polity) apart from emphasizing on arts and aesthetics, and culture and civilizations.

As mentioned in the report by Hindustan Times, Prof. Sadashiv Dwivedi, coordinator, BAK said “Research on 64 kalas and 18 vidyas have already been completed. We will inform the students and professors about its importance in present times by holding a conference in the near future” where papers prepared by scholars will be presented and discussed in detail.

The centre has also planned to invite foreign students at various facilities of the BHU to these seminars and lectures by scholars to receive in-depth knowledge of the subject matter.

Each lecture is set to cover one topic.

According to Prof Dwivedi students and professors of management, political science, Vedic sciences, military sciences will be invited to various programmes for a discussion on ancient topics. “We will inform them why Sanskrit and ‘Bharatiya Sanskriti’ are equally important and complimentary to each other. One who knows Sanskrit will understand the essence of ancient texts,” he added.

The essence of the programme lies in the fact that students are unaware of ancient Indian texts that still hold relevance. Sage Kamandak gave Kamandak Neeti on warfare techniques and management however, not many people are aware of it. Thus, regular programmes at BAK will help and aim at generating interest among student and professors alike.

Professor Dwivedi also believes that the Sanskrit language lies at the centre of this initiative with students and scholars at BAK attempting to study and preserve ancient texts that have been written in Sanskrit while also promoting the language. “If the language flourishes, Indian culture will be further consolidated,” he believes.


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