How Asur writer Gaurav Shukla married science to religion and mythology to create a forensic thriller
Gaurav Shukla, writer of the acclaimed crime mystery Asur, talks to Firstpost about the various facets of the show that examines the conflict between science and religion, and everything beyond.
Mythology For The Millennial: On the elaborate adventures of Indian Cupid Kamadeva, and his enterprising wife, Rati
Since we are so conveniently placed between Valentine's Day and Holi, it would be a good time to talk about Kamadeva, the Indian Cupid, god of love and desire, or his enterprising wife, the goddess Rati, who also rules over sex and sexy feelings, but like many happy marriages, her story is entangled deeply with his.
Mythology for the Millennial: On the origins of Kali Yuga and the vindictive gandharva who led us into a dark age
Some of the trademarks of the Kali Yuga are that rulers will become a danger to the world, humans will be angry with each other and that there will be climate change. Kali, the cause of this age of darkness, pops up every now and then and causes trouble by possessing someone or the other. He's the colour of soot and has a long tongue
Mythology for the Millennial: From feisty goddess to earthly river, navigating the rich lore of Ganga
Ganga came into our universe thanks to that little meddler, Vamana, who we last saw torturing Mahabali and making him give up his entire kingdom and die because the gods couldn't handle his success. While the Vamana was counting his steps across the sky, his toenail poked the edge of the world and a hole appeared in the universe, causing a divine ocean to flow out and become Ganga as soon as it reached our atmosphere. The river, not yet a person, stays in heaven until an enterprising guy called Bhagirath asks for it — now her — to come down to earth and wash away people's sins and what not.
Mythology for the Millennial: On the absurdity around karwa chauth, and blaming women for every wrong
Karwa chauth is sanctioned romance, a way for a woman to be the centre of attention in a way that she is not on every other day of her life.
Mythology for the Millennial: On Mahabali's fate, and the politics at play behind the story on the origins of Onam
The gods in Indian mythology frequently show up as more human than human. In the case of King Mahabali, son of Virochana, grandson of Prahlad, yes, that Prahlad, the same one who invented Holi basically, he was, unfortch, also an asura.
On Shakuntala, the heroine of perhaps one of the best-known love stories in Hindu mythology.
Mythology for the Millennial: How Lakshmi, a fierce, Beyonce-esque creature, was transformed into a 'good wife and mother'
Lakshmi was the first Indian woman to be exploited by men — in one of her creation stories, she emerges from the creator god, Prajapati, only to dazzle all the other gods by her beauty and power, who immediately want to murder her and appropriate all her gifts.
In an interview with Firstpost, Amish Tripathi talks about the liberal nature of ancient tradition, clarifies misconceptions and discusses the function of philosophy and stories
Writer Volga on re-imagining the Buddha's wife Yashodhara and why she is drawn to women from mythology
Sahitya Akademi winner Volga says that in resurrecting Yashodhara, she wanted to resurrect the intellectual and spiritual history of women. In this conversation with Firstpost, she speaks about what it means to call herself a feminist writer, the future of fiction in regional languages and why re-imagining mythology from different perspectives is important
Mythology for the Millennial: Narada may be a trickster, but he deserved better than a life of illusions
While the Norsemen have Loki as their trickster, Hindu mythology has its very own Narada, not a god, but a sage hobnobbing with the who's who of the divine world.
Kalank is steeped in references to the Ramayana as it puts its principal characters through the same moral dilemma that Rama faced when Sita returned from Lanka.
Mythology for the Millennial: Why Kaikeyi, the Cersei Lannister of Ramayana, is the epic's most interesting character
Kaikeyi is a flawed woman, the most human of all the characters you encounter in the Ramayana.
Mythology for the Millennial: From vetalas to chudails, terrifying supernatural creatures abound in Indian lore
I love a good scary story — and I think this is universal, because mythology is full of random supernatural beings who are legit terrifying. I took a closer look at some of the more spooky ones, because apparently, I'm a sucker for punishment and now I might never sleep again. Here's my list of the most horrific creatures in Hinduism:
Mythology for the Millennial: This Holi, it's time to re-examine the story of the seemingly villainous Holika
The myths around Holi have a lot more to do with hubris than with evil women, and yet the festival is named after a wicked aunt whose only crime was to help her brother get what he wanted.
Mythology for the Millennial: The image of 'angry Hanuman' does a disservice to his vast and varied mythology
You can't divorce Hanuman's simian nature from his godliness. In fact, the very thing that makes him such a perfect ally to Ram in the Ramayana is his monkeyness; his long tail, his ability to leap great distances.
Mythology for the Millennial: The rise and fall of Sarama, dog of the gods, or why you should feed your neighbourhood stray
Sarama rose to fame when a gang of robbers called the Panis, stole Indra's cow herd, and she helped him get them back.
Her character was shaped on the anvil of dharma by kings and rishis, executed by lesser men, honed by desire, and cheated by her own
Mythology for the Millennial: Anasuya's story deserves to be told, not forgotten in the margins of myths
Anasuya is one of the Chaste Women of Hindu mythology — so pious, she became kind of magical in her own right.
Contemporary literature's feminist transformation: Women from history are finding better representation
Historical and mythological literature have swerved towards female protagonists, with authors giving them interesting twists and disrupting beliefs both traditional and religious, and sometimes, even historically documented facts