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Book Launch: “Vacanāmṛtam: Nectar of Sayings” by Dr. Chiranjiv Singh and Prof. Dr. S. Chandrashekar Shetty

Book Launch: "Vacanāmṛtam: Nectar of Sayings" by Dr. Chiranjiv Singh and Prof. Dr. S. Chandrashekar ShettyBangalore, 08th July 2024: The Forum of Former Vice Chancellors of Karnataka (FVCK) and Manipal Universal Press (MUP) proudly launched “Vacanāmṛtam: Nectar of Sayings,” translated by Dr. Mangesh Venkatesh Nadkarni, Former Vice Chancellor, Gulbarga University. The launch event took place today at the FVCK premises in Bangalore.

Dr. Chiranjiv Singh, IAS, Former Additional Chief Secretary, Government of Karnataka, graced the occasion as the Chief Guest. He remarked, “This book is a significant contribution to preserving and promoting the rich heritage of Vacana Sahitya. By bringing these timeless sayings to a broader audience, it offers profound insights into social issues that are still relevant today. The Vacanas’ wisdom on matters like caste discrimination, women’s dignity, and the importance of work and charity continues to resonate, underscoring the enduring relevance of these medieval texts.”

The event was presided over by Prof. Dr. S Chandrashekar Shetty, President of FVCK. He stated, “Vacanāmṛtam bridges the gap between Kannada literature and the English-speaking world. It is a valuable resource for understanding the depth and wisdom of the Śiva Śaraṇas. Through this translation, Dr. Nadkarni has made it possible for a wider audience to appreciate the philosophical and cultural richness of these sayings, which have shaped the social and spiritual fabric of Karnataka for centuries.”

Prof. Sangmesh D Saundattimath, Emeritus Professor at Karnataka University and one of the Guests of Honour, shared his thoughts: “The translation of ‘Vacanāmṛtam’ retains the essence and beauty of the original Vacanas, making these profound sayings accessible to a much broader audience. This is a commendable effort by Dr. Mangesh Venkatesh Nadkarni, Former Vice Chancellor of Gulbarga University. His meticulous work in translating these texts ensures that the wisdom and cultural significance of the Śiva Śaraṇas are preserved and appreciated by readers who might not be familiar with Kannada. Dr. Nadkarni’s scholarly dedication has truly brought these medieval texts to life in a new language.”

Prof. Neeta Inamdar, Chief Editor, Manipal Universal Press, MAHE, Manipal, another Guest of Honour, expressed her views: “Manipal Universal Press is dedicated to bringing important Kannada texts to the global audience. ‘Vacanāmṛtam’ is a testament to our commitment to cultural preservation and literary excellence.”

“Vacanāmṛtam” presents 320 carefully selected Vacanas, or “Sayings,” from the extensive collection of over 20,000 left by the Śiva Śaraṇas of medieval Karnataka. These Vacanas, addressing important social issues such as caste discrimination, women’s dignity, the importance of work, charity, and devotion to Śiva, have been translated with great care from the original Kannada. This book aims to reach both non-Kannada speakers and Kannadigas, providing valuable insights into these significant texts in one accessible volume.

Manipal Universal Press continues its mission to make Vacana Sahitya available to the English-speaking audience, following their previous publication, “Akka Mahadevi: The Questioning Poet-Saint,” which delves into the life of the 12th Century Kannada poet, Akka Mahadevi.

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