I return back to one of my favorite genres of fictional history though in this case it is more of history and more of non-fiction based on archeology, astronomy and study of various myths, monuments and cultures around the world. “Fingerprints of the Gods”, questions the established history of the world and tries to prove that some highly advanced civilization existed more than 10000 years ago that perished due to natural calamities but they have left part of their knowledge in various myths, monuments and cultures throughout the world.
The style of author Graham Hancock is really thought-provoking and very similar to Jared Diamond who had written “Guns, Germs and Steel”, but the subject matter is quite different. He has done extensive research on the archeological evidence found in Mexico, Peru and Egypt and asks several questions about unexplained mysteries if we were to believe in the currently established history. There are several references to Indian mythology as well and his thoughts are that these are not really myths and such civilization was in existence at that time and we may find the proof of such civilization if we dig deep in the ice sheets of Antarctica.
He has dealt with the Pyramids of Egypt in great detail and the main question is that none of these Pyramids were built to protect the dead bodies of Pharaohs, but their purpose was entirely different. The scientific precision and alignment to stars that is used in making of these Pyramids points to a different purpose and probably they were built to preserve the scientific knowledge of the past. I was also thinking that maybe these Pyramids were the Noah’s Ark and were meant to indicate when the next catastrophe will take place and then to protect the civilization at that time.
The problems with these theories is that you can never tell for sure whether they are just stories or have facts in them. But it is definitely worth considering them since they might affect our future.
I was looking at this book “The Immortals of Meluha” in a store while passing my time and thinking that I should go back and buy it from my favorite bookstore where I would have got it at discount and within a week I actually got this book as a gift. The subject is fictional history which is one of my favorite genres but the way of writing is something beyond my imagination. I was actually laughing at the author at many places where he has reduced the conversation between Indian mythology characters and Gods to ridiculously simplistic and modern western dialog writing. I hate him for doing this but at the same time I was hooked to the book and actually finished it very fast and very quickly started on the sequel but the story of sequel some other time.
Amish Tripathi’s premise is that all the Indian mythological Gods were simple human beings and became our Gods through the deeds that they had performed during their life time. In this series, he has taken up the example of Shiva who is a leader of nomadic tribe living near Mansarovar and comes to the kingdom of Meluha at their invitation. Here he is recognized as their fabled savior due to his blue throat and they consider him their Lord Neelkanth. He helps them in their fight against neighboring kingdom but then begins to realize that his fight is not against evil and he needs to search for real evil.
In a way it is a really good way to simplify mythology and history with fiction while keeping the gist of message. What I really do not understand is his attempt to trivialize the conversations between his main characters. At the same time, I do not know how people were communicating in those times and probably their conversations were as playful as mentioned here. I guess I will continue to have a love hate relationship with this kind of writing.
I was wondering whether to include stories from Indian mythology and religion here or not but my writings will not be complete if I do not do so. These stories have had very profound impact on me from childhood. But I would want to write about them here as stories without considering them as acts performed by the God.
The story of Ram and Ravan is something that I have heard, read and watched right from my childhood. The story is depicted as fight between good and evil and how in the end it is always the victory of good over evil. The other characters of the story are very natural and have their own strengths and weaknesses whether it is Ram’s father Dashrath or his friend monkey king Sugriv. All of them have made mistakes in the past and the story goes on to show that they pay for their mistakes in the same life.
It is the character of Ram and Ravan that influences the most. Ram is shown as the image of goodness, obedient child, very good student, dutiful husband and a great fighter. He cannot do anything wrong, does not have any weakness, does not have deceit or corruption in thought or actions. On the other hand, Ravan is shown the opposite. He is also very intelligent and powerful but he has anger and arrogance and believes that nobody can defeat him. Power goes to his mind and corrupts him completely.
The characterization of good and bad is so distinct that it sometimes look unreal. Ram gets all friends and Ravan keeps on loosing them. In the end Ram defeats Ravan in the battle with the help of his friends and restores peace in his kingdom. The story to me is an extremely moralistic one when you want to tell your children about good and evil and teach them all the good things in life. Ram is everything to aspire for and Ravan is everything to run away from. But at the same time life of Ram is not easy. To be a Ram you should be ready to let go of everything, you will suffer a lot but in the end you will win.