IKS-OLA – March 2020

Open Learning for All (OLA) is a free webinar series on Indian Knowledge systems by Dean of CVV, Dr. Gauri Mahulikar. It is held every Thursday evening.

There were only three sessions in March, the fourth having been cancelled due to COVID19 precautions implemented on the campus.

OLA 8 (5th March) on Women from the Ramayana

The Ramayana is a historical epic to which various women from different communities have contributed. This webinar discussed Ahalya, the outcast wife of sage Gautama, Shurpanakha, sister of the demon king Ravana, Kaikeyi who sent Rama to exile and Sita, the heroine of the epic. The etymological approach and feminist perspective made this talk a befitting lecture, it being International Women’s Day.

OLA 9 (12th March) on Multifaceted Goddesses

Goddess or Shakti is basically the manifestation of Power or Energy. It could be benevolent as well as malevolent. The Vedic Usha, early dawn; Ratri, the star-lit night; Aranyani, the forest goddess; were some of the ancient facets of Shakti. In the post Vedic literature, it’s mainly the trinity of Lakshmi, Sarasvati and Parvati. Parvati has three-fold facets; namely Annapurna, Durga and Kali. The Vedic, as well as the Puranic goddesses, were compared with the Roman and Greek goddesses.

OLA 10 (19th March) on Concepts of Avatara and Vishnu from Vedas to Puranas

Avatara of the One God descends, taking some physical form for the protection of Dharma and the eradication of Adharma. The talk started with explaining the rationale behind the concept of avatara from the Vedic to the Puranic period. It then concentrated on the popular incarnations of Vishnu. Out of the ten incarnations, five can be easily traced to Vedic literature. Some of these were ascribed to Prajapati in Vedic literature, which eventually transferred to Puranic Vishnu.

The complete playlist of the past webinars is available here.

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