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Soil and soul connect with Sanskrit at Melkote[continued]

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Approaches to the source:

Lakshmi Thathachar's view of Sanskrit's nature may be paraphrased as follows: All modern languages have etymological roots in classical languages. And some say all Indo-European languages are rooted in Sanskrit, but let us not get lost in that debate. Words in Sanskrit are instances of pre-defined classes, a concept that drives object oriented programming [OOP] today. For example, in English 'cow' is a just a sound assigned to mean a particular animal. But if you drill down the word 'gau' --Sanskrit for 'cow'-- you will arrive at a broad class 'gam' which means 'to move. From these derive 'gamanam', 'gatih' etc which are variations of 'movement'. All words have this OOP approach, except that defined classes in Sanskrit are so exhaustive that they cover the material and abstract --indeed cosmic-- experiences known to man. So in Sanskrit the connection is more than etymological.

It was Panini who formalised Sanskrit's grammer and usage about 2500 years ago. No new 'classes' have needed to be added to it since then. "Panini should be thought of as the forerunner of the modern formal language theory used to specify computer languages," say J J O'Connor and E F Robertson. Their article also quotes: "Sanskrit's potential for scientific use was greatly enhanced as a result of the thorough systemisation of its grammar by Panini. ... On the basis of just under 4000 sutras [rules expressed as aphorisms ], he built virtually the whole structure of the Sanskrit language, whose general 'shape' hardly changed for the next two thousand years."

Every 'philosophy' in Sanskrit is in fact a 'theory of everything'. [The many strands are synthesised in Vedanta --Veda + anta--, which means the 'last word in Vedas'.] Mimamsa, which is a part of the Vedas, even ignores the God idea. The reality as we know was not created by anyone --it always was--, but may be shaped by everyone out of free will. Which is a way of saying --in OOP terms-- that you may not touch the mother or core classes but may create any variety of instances of them. It is significant that no new 'classes' have had to be created. Thathachar believes it is not a 'language' as we know the term but the only front-end to a huge, interlinked, analogue knowledge base. The current time in human history is ripe, he feels for India's young techno wizards to turn to researching Mimamsa and developing the ultimate programming language around it; nay, an operating system itself.

Professor's wish-list
1-- Funds are always short for running the Academy and creating new facilities. The Professor spends most of his time running around to raise the required funds and is beginning to tire of this non-creative work. He seeks generous well-wishers to come forward to relieve him of this chore. A detailed proposal for potential donors is available which lists requirement of funds for capital and recurring costs. You may email the Professor directly to receive the document.
2-- Academy's website is somewhat dated and requires a facelift. Professor readily admits the Acdemy does not have in-house skills to build a contemporary site to showcase its works. He seeks enthusiastic youngsters to redesign, host and maintain the website. It would of course mean that volunteers would have an interest in the work of the Academy and are willing to set aside regular time for running the site and also raise the required money for hosting it.
3-- The Professor yearns for young post doctoral computer science researchers at the cutting edge to spend extended periods at the Academy to explore ways of developing natural language computing based on Sanskrit. Modest, comfortable accommodation can be provided though the Academy is not in a position pay any stipends. Better than emailing, it is better to talk over the phone or best, pay a visit after making an appointment.
4--The Professor's greatest dream is to create a Gurukulam at a five acre piece of land available near teh Academy. He would like it to be his final endeavour to show that Sanskrit-learning can lead to viable, contemporarily relevant careers. For something like about Rs. 10 lakhs a new educational system can be pioneered. Prospective donors can also particiapte in developing the curriculum. Please write to the Professor

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