Report on ICPR Sponsored One-Day Regional Seminar on “Reconsidering Classical Indian Thoughts’'
held on 27th November, 2010
Department of Sanskrit and Philosophy of Post Graduate Govt. College for Girls, Sector-11, Chandigarh, organised a Regional Seminar on the theme “Reconsidering Classical Indian Thoughts”. The seminar was sponsored by Indian Council for Philosophical Research, New Delhi, to commemorate the birth anniversary of Socrates declared by UNESCO as World Philosophy Day. The detail report of the seminar is given below:
Inaugural Session, Prof. Ramakant Angiras (Ex. Professor of Kalidass Chair, Panjab University, Chandigarh) was the Chief Guest on this occasion. Prof. Dharmendra Goel (Professor Emeritus, Department of Philosophy, Panjab University, Chandigarh) was Invited as Guest of Honour, Prof. K.K.Sharma ( Former Pro-Vice-Chancellor, NEHU, Shillong and Director, Centre for Sri Aurobindo Studies, Sohan Lal DAV College of Education, Ambala City) delivered his Key-Note address on the theme “Growing Influence on Classical Indian Philosophy”.
Dr. Sham Lata, Vice-Principal and Programme Convener, welcomed the distinguished speakers, guests and also introduced the theme of the Seminar. She pointed out that every person has his own philosophy, ethics and thoughts of life but the Classical Indian Thoughts teach us how to practice them correctly. In the key-note address, Prof. K.K.Sharma emphasized that the Philosophy of a country is the essence of its culture and civilization which springs from ideas that prevail in its atmosphere and bears its unconscious stamp. However, there is a need to redefine and reinterpret them keeping in mind the changing environment. He also raised some fundamental questions related to classical Indian thought which should be the issue of concentration by our present academic and non-academic scholars.
While speaking on the occasion, the Chief guest Prof. Ramakant Angiras, stressed upon the fact that for over 3000 years there has been an uninterrupted Indian culture projected in Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagwad Gita, Mahabharata, Ramayana and in the poetical philosophy of Vedanta. But there is an urgent need today not only to reconsider Indian Classical thoughts but we must also rediscover and reconstruct them for leading a better life.
Prof. Dharmendra Goel pointed out that man is responsible for shaping his own life. Quoting Lenin he clarified that a person should work for his liberation. He suggested that the best way of learning philosophy is to come in contact with the minds of the great philosophers. Socrates did not claim that he knew everything; on the contrary, he admitted his ignorance before discussing anything. His method and attitude was quite different. By means of skillful questioning he would lead his pupils to realize their ignorance and errors of thinking. The questions which Socrates asked were concerned with the nature and meaning of justice, truth, goodness and beauty. Knowledge, in Socrates’ view is essential for good conduct.
Mrs. Achila Dogra, Principal of the College also glorified the rich culture and heritage of India, which has a lot of depth to teach and share with young generation. She pointed out that the present seminar is a significant step as it recognizes the potentials of classical Indian tradition and its vast wisdom to contribute in all realms of life.
The seminar had two sessions with ten papers. In the first session, chaired by Prof. K.K.Sharma, following five papers were presented on different topics:
1. Dr. Shankarji Jha (Chairperson, Department of Sanskrit, Panjab University, Chandigarh) : Vachaspati’s View on Indian Syllogism (Anumiti-prakriya)
2. Dr. Lakhvir (Head, Deptt. of Sanskrit, PGGCG-42, Chandigarh) : Mosquito Science in Athravaveda
3. Dr. Shivani Sharma (Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Panjab University, Chandigarh) : Bhartiya Chintan Mein Kavya-Savrup: Ek Anveshan
4. Dr. Ramandeep Kaur (Assistant Professor, Deptt. of Sanskrit, PGGC-46, Chandigarh) : Bhartiya Chintan Ki Vikas Yatra
5. Mohammad Abdullah (Student B.A.Final (Philosophy), PGGC-46, Chandigarh) : Indian Value System with special reference to the Holy Quran
In the second session, chaired by Prof. Shankarji Jha, the following five papers were presented on different topics:
1. Dr. Manoj Kumar (Assistant Professor, P.G. Department of Sociology, PGGCG-11, Chandigarh) : Contradictions in Indian Values
2. Dr. Kamal Krishan (Assistant Professor, Department of Hindi, PGGCG-11, Chandigarh) : Srimad Bhagvad Gita Mein Samaj Kalyan ki Bhawna: Aadhunik Pripekshya Mein
3. Ms. Rajinder Kaur (Vice-President, Society for Positive Philosophy and Interdisciplinary Studies (SPPIS), Haryana) : Prachin Bhartiya Chintan Mein Bhoutiktavada Ka Vikas
4. Ms. Poonama Verma (Secretary, SPPIS, Haryana & Research Scholar, Department of Philosophy, Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra) : The Concept of Dharma in Mahabharata
5. Ms. Garima ( Student, USOL, Panjab University, Chandigarh): Mahabharata Ki Naitik Shiksha
A fruitful discussion occurred with the questions asked by the students and participants. It made both sessions fully interdisciplinary in nature and source of knowledge. Teachers from Depts of Punjabi, Hindi, English, French, Public Administration, Psychology, Home Science and students of Depts. of Sanskrit and Philosophy joined the seminar and made their active participation.
Prof. Vikram Kumar , Head, Dayanand Chair of Indic Studies, Panjab University, Chandigarh presided over the valedictory session. He appreciated the efforts of Departments of Sanskrit and Philosophy for organizing seminar on such a relevant issue to emphasize Indian value system and its continuity. He stressed upon the importance of the theme of the present seminar with reference to all sub-themes. Dr. Desh Raj Sirswal, Organizing Secretary, presented the report of the seminar and thanked all dignitaries, paper presenters and participants.
Link to Programme Photographs:
(Dr. Desh Raj Sirswal)
Deptt. of Philosophy,
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