‘Alienating from past has distanced us from nature’

Jnanpith awardee Chandrashekar Kambar speaks at the inauguration of a two-day national seminar on ‘Ecology and Literature’ organised as a part of the Aloysius Literature Festival at St Aloysius College in Mangaluru on Monday.

Jnanpith awardee and Kendra Sahitya Akademi Chairman Chandrashekar Kambar said that the process of alienating ourselves from the past has distanced us from nature.

He was speaking at the inauguration of a two-day national seminar on 'Ecology and Literature', organised by the Department of Postgraduate Studies and Research in English, as part of Aloysius Literature Festival at St Aloysius College on Monday.

Kambar said Macaulay Education System has detached people from their own tradition, culture and rituals. “By alienating ourselves from the past, we are aping the West, by forgetting our own roots," he expressed concern. 

He said most of the Indian folk stories are connected with nature. The people in villages still have intimate relations with the nature surrounding them. “The introduction of English made us the slaves of the system without developing an attitude to question the system. The study on agriculture starts with what Aristotle had spoken on farming, without actually understanding how our ancestors were practising farming in the country,” he rued.

Kambar said globalisation has taken away the value system. "We are living in an era where politics lacks wisdom, values and the need has now come to protect the nature, inculcate values and wisdom in our life," he remarked. 

St Aloysius College Principal Fr Praveen Martis said Kambar’s works bring out the flavour of the rustic life.

“Conservation of environment is our responsibility at a time when the modernity has taken away nature in the name of development,” he said.

He said creating awareness, catering to the social justice and conservation of culture of the land are the part and parcel of educational institutions. “We have a lot to learn from nature. It is not restless and it does not feel lonely unlike human beings,” he said

St Aloysius Institutions Rector Fr Dionysius Vaz presided over the programme.

Prof Pramod K Nayar from the University of Hyderabad delivered the keynote address.

'Amrutha Ghalige', a play written by Kannada Department head Dr Saraswati, was released on the occasion.

As part of the Aloysius Literature Festival, a theatre and art appreciation workshop titled ‘Playing the World: Intuition, Inquiry, Insight: A Workshop in Cultural Studies and Critical Thinking’ will be conducted by poet, playwright and stage director Raghunandana on February 13, 14 and 15.

Cartoonist Satish Acharya will conduct a workshop on ‘creating editorial cartoons’ on February 16.

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