Vedic chants on the ether
THE ancients in India believed that the divine aphorisms of the Vedas, once uttered, remained for ever in the ether. The great seers were probably talking web before anyone conceived it. But the Vedas are now actually available in the ether, courtesy four "crazy" people who have put it on a web site. They are Satya Narayan'Das, Steven Rudolph, Rhishi Pal Chauhan and Pratap S Chauhan. They ar 'e now operating from their newly founded Jiva Institute of Vedic Arts, Science and Culture in Faridabad, Uttar Pradesh.
When the foursome first announced their plans last year, people thought they were talking about saffron-clad kids with laptops. But the two things they share mi common are the obsession to change educational patterns in the country, and the faith that the solutions for a lot of our modern-day problems lie in the Vedas. Their plan is to bring in a lot of indigenous medical solutions and health benefits and promote the wisdom of the Vedic way of life. And they laughed at the sceptics when the Vedas hit cyberspace late December last year.
Not just that, the Institute is already running a school of 150 students, 16 teachers and maintaining 24-hour link with Ernet (Educational Research Network, government of India), and thus became the first Indian school to take-classes on the-e-mail. The curriculum followed is that of the standard Central Board of Secondary Education; but the emphasis is on comprehension, not cramming.
The school charges a modest fee of Rs 125 per month from the students, and manages to sustain itself. Till not so long ago, the Institute sustained itself on the income from selling translations of Vedic literatukq, earnings of Pratap Chauhan's ayurvedic cyberclinic, and educational and instructional. software put on the internet by Rudolph.
It is not for nothing that most peo0le ft1t that the four needed mental care, not encouragement. Das, a graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology, threw up a lucrative career inthe us to work 'the Vedas. Rhishi Pal Chauhan is also a trained engineer; Rudolph, presently the educational director at Jiva, is an American who has renounced the materialistic culture to come and study the Vedas. He had seen the bad times of drugs and lack of spiritual meaning in his school days.
After completing his masters degree from Japan, Rudolph went in search of philosiophical ideals, and found it only in the Vedas when he came to India. "Here's a system that laid down the norms of learning and living in almost 'every field of life, from medicine to engineering," Rudolph says. Pratap Chauhan is the only one who has not really digressed: he was, and still is an ayurvedic practitioner. Only, now he operates on the ether like the deities Ashwini Kumar brothers in Indian mythology.
Rhishi Pal formally started the Institute in 1992, after the foursome got together. But now, their ware is finding global response. Three cheers!