march 2011 programmes 




For more details:




10:00 AM TO 12:30 PM

2 TO 3.30 PM

4 TO 5.30 PM

6:30 TO 9:00 PM









The Goddesses of the Indian Pantheon Organized by Nilima Chitgopekar

Empowering the Yogini Shakti
by Yogini Shambhavi

1. Manas Ghata
The worship of the snake Goddess

2. ‘Amma Deivam'  The Mother Goddess an illustrated talk by Balan Nambiar (at Lecture Room)


1. Maibi - The First Goddess a Manipuri dance recital by Maibi Jagoi  

2. 'Shekhinah' The Hebrew Goddess - A Collaborative musical performance with Shye Ben-Tzur, Fernando Perez and Rajasthan rhythms



Chinese, Japanese & Central Asian Goddesses
Organized by Dr Lokesh Chandra

The Feminine Principle in Buddhism
by Khandro Thrinlay Chodon

1. Divinity deified Sholapith of West Bengal

2. Mata ni pachedi  the ritual painting of Gujarat a talk by Bishakha Shome

1. ‘The Mystic Force of Devi’ a Carnatic vocal recital by Ranjani and Gayatri

2. ‘Saraka’ – Sacrifice
Traditional Griot and Kora  songs and dancing of West Africa by Dafra Accoustics of Burkina Faso




Greek, Roman and European Goddesses
Organized by Dr. Bharat Gupt
Ganga, the Celestial Goddess  by Sri Ma Amodini Saraswati

1. Dhokra
 Tribal Metalcasting for 5000 years

2. Tangkha Painting  Manifestation of the Divine

3. Madhubani - The folk art of Mithila



1.‘Bhagavathy, the Devi of Kerala’ a Mohiniattam performance by Neena Prasad

2.'Tara Goddess of Compassion’ ancient songs & hymns from Tibet by Ani Choying Drolma






Ancient Civilizations


This Series of 12 lectures on the ancient civilizations of the world will be held at the National Archives over a 12 month period in collaboration with National Archives and UNESCO.


Eminent Indian and foreign scholars will cover aspects of ancient India and the Greek, Roman, Egyptian, Mesopotamian and other ancient cultures.


In the last 20 years many developments have taken place in the study of ancient civilizations. DNA, carbon dating and linguistic as well as reinterpretation of existing evidence by a new generation of scholars have overturned our dearly held beliefs of Aryan invasions and/or immigrations and point to a much older, indigenous civilization than previously thought.


The Vedic Tradition probably influenced Egypt and Mesopotamia, the spread of Buddhism influenced cultural developments in S.E Asia, Tibet, China and Japan. Vedic Sanskrit still influences the Indo European cultures all over the world.


This series introduces the views of newer scholars in the field with thought provoking, sometimes revolutionary ideas on our common past.



Friday 18th march

6.00 pm Ancient Civilization Series at The National Archives
‘The Lost Sarasvati, from River to Goddess’ an illustrated talk by Michel Danino

In the Rig-Veda, the Sarasvati is both a goddess and a river—a “mighty” river “flowing from the mountain to the sea”, and the only one to be deified in the Vedic hymns. Yet it disappeared in the post-Vedic era—the only major river to do so in northwest India. As it did, Sarasvati, the goddess of speech, knowledge and the arts, grew in stature and became in many ways the fountainhead of India’s classical civilization. 

But there is another side to the story, which began with the rediscovery of the river’s dry bed in the nineteenth century: later, archaeological explorations initiated by Marc Aurel Stein eventually unearthed hundreds of Harappan sites in the Sarasvati’s basin. As it turned out, the lost river has provided an unexpected bridge between the Vedic world and the Indus-Sarasvati civilization, calling for a fresh look at old models. 

French-born Michel Danino has been living in India since 1977. A long-time student of India’s protohistory, he authored in 1996 The Invasion That Never Was, a first study of the Aryan problem. He has given numerous lectures in cultural and educational institutions all over India about the Indus-Sarasvati civilization, the Aryan problem, India’s scientific and ecological heritage, India’s contributions to world culture, and challenges faced by Indian culture today. He has in particular contributed original research on the mathematics of Harappan town-planning (with a focus on Dholavira), with significant results in the field of metrology. In 2006, Michel Danino’s study of the Aryan problem gave rise to a French book, L’Inde et l’invasion de nulle part; (The Dawn of Indian Civilization and the Elusive Aryans).  

In 2001, Michel Danino convened the International Forum for India’s Heritage with 160 eminent founder members, whose mission is to promote the essential values of India’s heritage, especially in the educational field. He now lives in a rural area near Coimbatore and is a guest lecturer in cultural education at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Coimbatore and Amritapuri 

His latest works are The Lost River: On the Trail of the Sarasvati (Penguin Books India, 2010) and Indian Culture and India’s Future (DK Printworld, 2011).