Kathasaritsar!

1. I began reading the new book in Hindi. It was written about 900 years ago! Author is unknown but it seems to be either Somdev or some contemporary. Who Somdev is…is a matter of investigation at present.

2. Stories are intriguing. They’ve magic, reincarnation and many classes of beings including gods, demigods, goblins, ghosts and humans.

3. Stories have references to Shiva, his consort Parvati and their son Kartikeya along with references to Kubera: the lord of wealth in Hindu mythology and others.

4. The very first story goes like this:

Parvati is fond of listening stories from Shiva. Once, upon his demand Shiva tells her a story about reincarnations. She gets bored and asks to tell her a fresh one. Then Shiva considering them valuable, asks his mount Nandi to guard the door.

As he begins to recite; one of his attendants named Pushpadanta reaches there. Nandi halts his advances. Then Pushpa using yogic powers enters surreptitiously into the citation hall.

Later he tells these stories to two ladies. These two ladies, unable to keep these gems of stories as secret tell about them to Parvati when they visit her.

This makes her furious. She first interrogates her husband about why he told her tales which were already known to many. Using his Samadhi Shiva comes to know about Pushpadanta : he is summoned. Parvati curses Pushpadanta and the two ladies to be born as goblins.

They beseech for her pardon. She melts but unable to completely undo her curse tells them about alleviation.

The next story is based on their births.

5. As might be clear to you by now: emphasis on importance of stories, morality and storytelling is apparent right from the beginning of this book.

It can be compared to Arabian Nights in this regard. The preface tells us that storytelling first evolved in India and then was taken to Persia and the rest of the world. The Sanskrit literature is rich with such stories. This book has been translated from Sanskrit to Hindi. I would try to share some stories here.

#book-recommendation, #books, #kathasaritsar, #stories

Ghatotkacha and Bheema

1. Completed reading one play by Bhaas. It’s named ‘Madhyam Vyayoga.’ It was written in Sanskrit. The name of the play is an implication about the word ‘madhyama’ or ‘the middle.’ The son who is neither the eldest nor youngest among Brahmin’s sons was called by him as it was to be sacrificed to the demon Ghatotkacha but middle one among Pandavas who had gone out for exercise (Vyayama/vyayoga) heard the call and appeared. The Hindi translation was done by Shri Sushil. It is a short play. The language is flowery in the portrayal of protagonists: Ghatotkacha and Bheema but kind of rushed in the story. I recall another story I read in my early childhood: Rustum and Sohrab. Sohrab was son of Rustum and these two were fighting from Iraq and Iran. They didn’t know about their relationship. In that story the son is killed by the father. In this one: the son Ghatotkacha arrests his father Bheema and takes him to his mother Hidimba who immediately recognises him and makes her son apologize to his father for impudence.

2. Played six vocabulary jams on vocabulary.com. My ID is 01. I invite you to play with me.

Ranks: 123414

On an average 7-8 players played.

Honorable mentions: Stephen.

3. Registered 15 books in library after burning some garbage besides the banyan tree near Nadep post.

#bheema, #book-recommendation, #logos, #play

Aditi and Other Deities By M. P. Pandit!

1. I am reading ‘Aditi and other deities in Veda’ by M. P. Pandit. It was first published in April, 1958 by Sri Aurobindo Press Pondicherry.

2. The book has 185 pages. I have completed reading 10 pages. It has underlines from my previous reading in 2018. I came across this book then but couldn’t read it peacefully. Now I have the leisure to read it in peace. I am grateful for this freedom. The revised book number is 3573 in the library register of Gandhi Smarak Bhavan. The library has more than 5000 books.

3. The book was priced 4 rupees. Revised price in our library register is 40 rupees.

4. I recommend this book to all my readers. If you’re interested: please comment and recommend some books here or share a link to your blog where you recommend them. Thanks!

Aditi and other deities in Veda by M. P. Pandit

#aditi, #book-recommendation, #dancinglightofgrace, #gandhi-library, #gandhi-smarak-nidhi, #logos

A Journey of Self Discovery Preview Review Tour of East-A Novel by Peri Hoskins

I recently signed up to be part of this blog tour with Ruisha Book Promotions. I’m a beta reader and I love it I have authors and publishers that give me a copy of their books for me to read and give and honest review. It’s a win/win for us both as I get to read authors I might not have discovered and the authors find new readers through my reviews.

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By Peri Hoskions
@PeriHoskins
Preorder Now

Amazon Link

End of August Release

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It’s 1994. Junior lawyer, Vince Osbourne, leaves behind a small, mean and viciously circular life in the city representing petty criminals and takes to the road. He’s lived 30 years. The wide continent of Australia is out in front. He’s almost young. Where will the road lead?

East takes in sunsets; rain in the desert; a five-year-old girl on a bike; a battered former thief and jockey; old-timers; young lovers; beautiful women, and aboriginals in public bars. The open road connects many vignettes making a rich tapestry of human encounters.

East is poignant, gritty, funny, sad and above all: human. Hoskins’ laconic prose captures the harsh, arid country in all its big, empty beauty along with quirky exchanges with strangers, travel buddies, shop assistants, workmates, and friends old and new. A journey without and within, East taps into the spiritual realm that lies beneath this land and its people.

(#travel & Adventure, #Travel, #Aus, #RPBP, #preorder, #ebook, #NewRelease)

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This intriguing book is based on the author’s personal memoirs and although it is described as fiction it feels very, very real.
Vince has reached a stage at 30 when he wants to break free from a life that seems to be suffocating him. He has been working as a junior lawyer but needs to do something different and this book tells of his travels towards the East of Australia.
His journey draws you along with him as he discovers himself and realises that he can achieve so much more than he previously thought possible. He settles in places with people from his past that he sees in a new light, along with their prejudices.
Then there are the long and testing journeys across the deserts of Australia, meeting a fascinating mix of people along the way. Vince’s observations on the Aboriginal people, being of Maori origin himself, are extremely revealing. The back breaking work he takes on in a mine, to earn some extra money, couldn’t be further removed from his previous work as a lawyer.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys travel writing and journeys of self-discovery. ~Robert Fear 8.10.16

My book review for East-A Novel

East is a book in the style of Jack Kerouac On the Road. I read this one in my twenties and was excited to take an adventure like he did. With Peri’s book the main character Vince is a lawyer living a unhappy life in his chosen career. Through his clients he sees corruption, bitterness, revenge, and negativity. At 30 years of age he embarks on a cross country journey that takes him across Australia and east towards his birthplace.

On Vince’s adventures he meets and befriends many different wanderers like himself at each hostel he stays at. Each character adds something colourful to his life. With their personalities, ethnicities, culture, and perspective on life as they know it. Each persons aura vibrates and helps give Vince this gift of sight as each one reveals a story to him. I loved how Vince discovered more about himself and why he left that life of a lawyer behind and all its preconceptions.

I love with each little township that Vince encounters he finds a piece of his soul that he had long forgotten about. Where the locals are either warm and inviting or hostile and distrusting. He finds a kinship with the hard working, colourful, gold miners and sympathizes with the struggles of the local Aboriginals. Each day he scribbled away in his journal intending to write his novel of his travel soul searching journey.

One thing I recommend is that you have a dictionary nearby as this novel takes place in Australia so there’s a lot of Australian and British slang I wasn’t aware of. It was refreshing to read in Peri’s conversational style of writing and learn some new language I hadn’t encountered before being Canadian.

I really enjoyed this book with it’s Ray to read chapters when I had hungry kids to feed and it was hard to put the book down. I wanted to see how Vince would handle each situation he encountered. Especially the racial tensions between the white and black populations. The language is raw and blunt so I would recommend an 18 + reader. As I’m a truckers daughter it didn’t surprise or offend me with the blue collar characters language.

I really cared about the main character Vince and some of the supporting characters he meets along the way. I was invested in his journey towards east as I had recently had an international trip to South Africa. That has left me eager to explore more parts of the world, and awaiting my return to the beauty of Africa again one day. What Vince realizes as he heads east is there’s really no place like home and rediscovering his family’s roots in his Irish and Maori heritage.

Here for your enjoyment is an excerpt to East Chapter 1-Leaving by Peri Hoskins

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~Enjoy Chapter One From East~
Leaving

The bonnet in front of me is big and white. Rain on the windscreen – the wipers sweep it away. The clouds are grey, the road is grey, the suburbs are grey and I am leaving. There is joy in that. I’m leaving it behind – a life – small, petty, viciously circular. Out in front is the road and I don’t know where it will end. I am free. I’m almost young.

A beginning. Renewal pulses in my blood, pumping out from my heart, through my veins, feeding me, making me new again, a keenly conscious being reaching out to the uncertainty. This road will lead me to places that I have not seen – to people I have not met. There’s no place I have to be and no time I have to be there.

I drive on and on leaving the city far behind. The rain clears. Sunlight glints on wet grass and trees. I see farmhouses, fences and cows. The gnawing in my belly eases as I’m gently enveloped by the freedom of the great mystery now upon me. The shackles of the old life fall away, for I’m shedding a skin – dry, worn, old and scaly. I found the courage to step into the dream. And the dream has become real.

The life of a suburban lawyer is behind me. Small decisions. Small repetitions. Which tie to wear today. Pay the electricity bill. Sunday – iron five shirts for the week ahead. See the same people. Say the same things. Hear the same things said. In that life I wondered whether I had it better than the petty criminals I represented in court. Some had no job and no home. They pleaded guilty and I said what I could say, for something had to be said. And then the court, that street-sweeper of humanity, tidied them away. For there must be a place – there must be somewhere for them to go: a prison, a halfway house, a drug rehab centre. There must be a place for everyone – somewhere. These people had fallen through cracks and become untidy. Did they envy my tidy life, those that I helped to tidy away? Did they see my life as I saw it – not a tidy life, but a tidy prison?

Tidiness. I had been taught to lead a tidy life. What was it they had said – the teachers, the headmasters? Work hard at school. Get a good job. Be a good employee. Pay your taxes. Mow your lawns. Be a good neighbour. Be a good citizen. Lead a tidy life. Not a full life, a varied life, a great life – no, a tidy life of small neat circles. I have lived thirty years.

As the trees and houses and petrol stations whistle by, the reasons for leaving once again crowd my mind. At thirty, life no longer stretches out before me like an uncharted great ocean. If I live to be eighty, more than one third of my life is spent. Where am I? At a time of life when I’m supposed to be somewhere – I’m nowhere I ever wanted to be. I’ll taste the last drops of youth before the cup passes from my lips, forever. The familiar yearning claws at my insides again – but it’s different now – it’s happy knowing I have been true to it – finally.

The yearning … a murmur in a corner of my soul … that’s how it started … a couple of years ago … I pushed it away. I was busy; there were things to do. It kept coming back, stronger and stronger: a growing gnawing that would not be denied. The day I turned thirty, I came to know what it was, finally. It was the feeling of having missed my destiny. At one of life’s important junctures, I don’t know when or where, I’d taken the wrong turn.

So maybe that’s what it is: a journey back down life’s highway to try and find the turn I missed. A journey to reconnect with who I am and what I should be doing here – in this life. Did I ever really want to be a lawyer? Maybe I did it because my father didn’t finish law school. Maybe I did it for him, and not for me. Didn’t have the courage to find my destiny and follow it … settled for safety and caution. And the small repetitions of the safe life had closed in and were suffocating me. Don’t know if that’s what it is … I had to go – I know that much … it was the most honest thing I could do. And now it’s real: this journey with no end and no decided route. It’s a big country. Yeah, I’ll head east … And in my travels maybe I’ll find something of the soul of this land and its people …

I have been at the wheel for four hours. The muscular movements needed to keep the car on course have become automatic. My thoughts drift freely now, first to the future – new, pregnant with possibility – before anchoring in my childhood. I recall a long-buried idea – from a time of wonder at a world full of possibilities. As a child I thought I could see into people, a kind of second sight.

Memories flow into my mind – sharp, clear, focused. I see things now as I saw things then. I am a small boy sitting in the passenger seat of a car. My father is driving. We approach an intersection. A policeman is standing in the middle directing traffic. He signals the car in front to stop. The policeman fascinates me – his neat blue uniform, high black boots, long white gloves – his precise hand signals. He makes cars stop and go by moving his hands like the man who made the puppets move at the fairground. The gloved hands move and the cars obey, crossing the intersection, slowly and respectfully passing the uniformed man.

From above I hear the noise of a plane. In the eye of my mind as a child I see the silver wings and fuselage. The policeman’s eyes turn skyward to the plane I see clearly in the window of my imagination. The officer’s long-gloved hands slowly fall to rest at his heavy belt. Cars bank up at the intersection. The driver in front looks at him for directions but he gives none. Unconscious of the traffic, his attention is focused in the sky above. The face of the policeman loses form and I see into him. First I feel his discomfort in the hot uniform, the dryness in his throat and the tiredness behind his eyes. Gradually my perception deepens. I sense the numbed heart, the thwarted ambitions – the hopes and dreams unrealized and gone awry. He doesn’t want to be here, directing traffic. The past has cheated him. He is disconnected from the present and fearful of the future.

A car horn honks from behind. A driver doesn’t know why the traffic is not moving. The policeman’s eyes return to the traffic, his arms snapping up with military precision. As he waves us on, the look of purpose clothes his face once again and the moment of seeing into him has passed.

The second sight would come to me without warning and always just for a fleeting moment or two. I would see my mother trying to hide an emotion or catch my father unguarded, looking into the distance. In the moment of second sight the physical would melt – the body become transparent and amorphous. Instead of seeing the person I would see into the person – reach inside to the heart, sense the fears, touch the dreams – see the humanity, raw and struggling.

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Peri Hoskins is the author of ‘Millennium – A Memoir’, a travelogue memoir that has received many five star reader reviews.
Christopher Moore of the New Zealand Listener had this to say about ‘Millennium – A Memoir’:
‘Written with perhaps the merest of bows to Joseph Conrad and Robert Louis Stevenson, the book’s colourful cast of characters come together to greet the dawn of the 21st century. It’s a vigorously written sly-humoured account of human encounters in a small place lapped by the tides of change…It’s a genial well observed book that insinuates itself into the affections.’
~Christopher Moore, New Zealand Listener, 2 August 2014.

​Peri Hoskins was born in Wellington, New Zealand. He is the second son of a family of five children, four boys and a girl. He is of mixed Maori and Anglo-Celtic ancestry. Peri grew up in Whangarei, Northland, New Zealand, a provincial city then home to about 30,000 people. He was educated at WhangareiBoys’ High School where he twice won a national essay competition. After completing high school and winning the school prizes for English, History and Geography, Peri went to Auckland University where he studied law and the humanities, including history and English literature.

Peri was substantially based in Australia between 1985 and 2005. He completed his study of law and the humanities at the University of Sydney including several courses in philosophy. He worked as a lawyer in New South Wales before embarking on a 1994 five-month road trip all around Australia. This road trip comprises the material for his soon to be published second book, East. Peri subsequently worked as a lawyer in both New South Wales and Queensland, and developed his current specialisation in legal work – civil litigation. In December 1999 Peri travelled to the Kingdom of Tonga to be in the first country in the world to see in the new millennium. The diary of his three weeks in Tonga has become his first book, Millennium – A Memoir. In 2004 Peri completed a post graduate diploma in film and television production at Queensland University of Technology.
Peri now lives, writes and works as a barrister (being a self-employed lawyer) in Northland, New Zealand.

You can connect With Peri Hoskins here:
Website / Facebook / Twitter / Linkedin / Pinterest / Amazon Author Page

Read an interview with author Peri Hoskins here:
Meet The Author

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~Special Offer From Peri Hoskins~

the Millennium ebook FREE
Just enter your email address and you’ll get instant access to download Millennium absolutely FREE.
I hope you enjoy it. If you do, I’d really appreciate you sharing your thoughts about Millennium: A Memoir with a brief review and rating on Amazon, Goodreads, or your favourite place to talk about books.
Get Your Download Today

This special offers comes to an end on August 31, 2016

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#book-recommendation, #book-reviews, #reading, #reviews

Krystal Blue book review-by Destiny Hawkins

It’s been a little while since I’ve done a book review. That is where my heart lies in reading and writing so I became a beta reader for the author Destiny Hawkins. Now this woman can spin a great story, and quickly too. As soon as I finish up a book she’s loading up my Kindle app with another! Not that I’m complaining though I really get wrapped up in her characters as she writes so vividly of their lives, loves, and stories.

Amazon link Continue reading

#book-recommendation, #book-reviews, #books, #reading