Devdutt Pattanaik at India Today Conclave East 2022: I would advise future politicians to go to acting schools
Devdutt Pattanaik, mythologist and author.
Mythologist author Devdutt Pattanaik said future politicians should take acting lessons because ‘Natya shashtra’ is given more prominence in the current political scenario than ‘Dharma shashtra’.
Pattanaik was speaking during a session at India Today Conclave East 2022 at Grand Oberoi in Kolkata on July 4. controversy and many other issues.
Here are excerpts from Devdutt Pattanaik’s session:
ON THE KAALI GODDESS CONTROVERSY
Speaking on the controversy surrounding Leena Manimekalai’s film, Devdutt Pattanaik said: “Anger is a political dividend. It’s a currency. If I get angry, I get votes. Bhagwan bhi leela krte hai Natya shastra is more important than dharma shashtra.”
For the uninitiated, Twitter was abuzz with tweets to arrest Madhurai-born, Toronto-based filmmaker Leena Manimekalai for a poster for her documentary, which showed Hindu goddess Kaali smoking a cigarette. The #ArrestLeenaManimekalai hashtag started trending on Twitter for the same.
“I would advise politicians to go to drama schools. It doesn’t really matter what you are really interested in. Mythology is someone’s truth. To study it, you have to accept someone’s truth. We will vote for you if you appeal to our emotions it doesn’t matter if you give us jobs,” Pattanaik added when speaking of the ongoing political turmoil around religion.
ON THE HINDI LANGUAGE CONTROVERSY:
On the controversy over the alleged rise of the Hindi language in the southern states, Devdutt Pattanaik said: “Fifty percent of the country lives in the plain of the Ganges, that is why all the gods are from the plain of the Ganges .No one cares about Kerala.The Hindu civilization in their mind is Hindi civilization.The gods are also from North India.We never talk about the rest of India.Why Hindi?Bhagwan toh Sanskrit bolte the. Shri Krishna toh braj bhasha bolte they. Not everything is Mughal, Rajputs.”
ON STORY-BASED FILMS
Asked about Akshay Kumar’s film Samrat Prithviraj, Devdutt Pattanaik also replied: “The whole country has seen it? I thought the cinemas were empty.”
ON HISTORY SERVING AS PROPAGANDA
Devdutt Pattanaik said that real history is propaganda and mythology is considered false history. This concept of sin and apocalypse is based on biblical structure, he said.
“Today, historians are considered writers of fiction. It’s an idea. You sincerely ask people not to believe scholars. They will believe fiction as history. Mythology does not care about facts or fiction. If you believe there is a Hindu Rashtra, then fine. Because that is your belief,” said Devdutt Pattanaik.
“The world of mythology does not value objectivity but subjectivity. The Ramayana was told as a Katha. Luv Kush told it as a Katha to their father Ram. The Mahabharata was also told. The stories are not not told for justice but to calm you down. That is the point. In Hinduism, God is infinity. Anant me hum sab shunya hai,” he added.