Collected Works of Ananda K Coomaraswamy Series
HINDUISM and BUDDHISMISBN : 81-7304-227-6Edited By :Keshavaram N. Iengar and Rama P. Coomaraswamy
(1999, xxiii+87pp., notes, index)
Originally published in 1943, the two essays are authoritative expositions of the teachings of these religions as understood by those who practised them rather than as understood by scholars and comparative religionists who studied and viewed them from without…Read MoreCoomaraswamy assumes that even the oldest forms of Hinduism were neither polytheistic nor pantheistic and that there is no doctrine of reincarnation, other than that of the immanent God “who never becomes anyone”. Hinduism is the oldest of the surviving mystery religions whose formulations are essentially the same as those of Platonism, Christianity, Taoism and other traditional doctrines.
Buddhism is treated in a similar manner. The life of the pseudo-historical founder, the conqueror of death, repeats the original myth of the archetypal dragon slayer. His doctrine as he asserts very forcibly is not his own but the re-opening of the “ancient path”. Buddhism is thus not a “new” religion, but rather a reiteration, with different emphases, of the same teachings that are to be found in the Ancient Vedas.
PERCEPTION OF THE VEDASISBN : 81-7304-254-3Edited By :Vidya Nivas Mishra
In 1933, Coomaraswamy published A New Approach to the Vedas, and thereafter he regularly brought out longer and shorter studies of the Vedas and Upani ads till the year 1947. These works were published in a variety of American, European and Indian journals. These essays have been arranged here in this volume in relation to some aspects or the other of Vedic text as one integrated perception…..Read More
The author has tried to make accurate, evocative translations of Vedic and Upani adic texts through the use of scholastic language and archaic or composite words. These translations are followed by copious notes covering related passages from other texts and translations in order to bring out a fuller meaning of the process of emanation of manifest from the unmanifest It is hoped that this volume will open up a new vista of interpreting the Vedic lore so that we can reintegrate our own fuller being with the fuller manifestations of the cosmic order in which resides the truth of truths..
SELECTED LETTERS OF ANANDA K. COOMARASWAMYISBN : 19-562306-1Edited By :ALVIN MOORE, JR. and RAMA POONAMBULAM COOMARASWAMY
(1988, xxxiii+479 pp. App., bibl., indexes)
Ananda K Commaraswamy’s contributions in the field of art and literature are stupendous. But little is known about the man himself. The letters included in this volume, published for the first time, reveal the being of this uncompromising man, who believed in no theories…Read Moreof ideologies, political or philosophic isms. Combining scientific precision acquired through his training as a geologist, with his own great sensitivity, Coomaraswamy addresses himself to the disciplines of history, philosophy, religion, arts and crafts. The letters show incredible range of his mind which cuts across civilizations, cultures, languages, arts and crafts, encompassing the whole.
SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY AND TEMPORAL POWERISBN : 0-19-5631-43-9Edited By :केशवराम एन. लेंगर और राम पी. कुमारस्वामी
The Indian theory of government is expounded in this work on the basis of the textual sources, mainly of the Brāhmaṇas and te Ṛgveda. The mantra from the Aitareya Brāhmaṇa (VIII.27) by which the priest addresses the king,…Read Morespells out the relation between the spiritual and the temporal power. This “marriage formula” has its analogous applications in the cosmic, political, family and individual spheres of operation, in each by the conjunction of complementary agencies.
The welfare of the community in each case depends upon a succession of obediences and loyalties; that of the subjects to the dual control of king and priest, that of the king to the priest, and
that of all to the principle of an eternal law (dharma) as king of kings.
The revised edition, one of Coomaraswamy’s most significant writings, incorporates his own additions to the printed first edition of 1942.
THE TRANSFORMATION OF NATURE IN ARTISBN : 81-207-1643-4Edited By :Kapila VatsyayanRs.350.00
In the Present work of Coomaraswamy attempts to explain the theory behind medieval European and Asian art, especially art in India. He further supplements the Indian theorywith that of the Chinese. The first principle of his theories is that art does not exist for its own sake;…Read Moreit exists as means to some religious conditions or experience. The comparison with medieval European art in this respect is extremely illuminating. He further shows that both differ radically from the post-Renaissance European Art.
Coomaraswamy discusses the theory of art in Asia in the first chapter and contends that the Indian artist did not seek an illusion of Nature, rather he tried to create a truthful suggestion of the character of the subject. He examines, in the second chapter, the medieval European aesthetics in terms of the fourteenth century German mystic, Meister Eckhart. Following chapters investigate through Indian texts the psychology of the Indian view of art. And finally, the origin and use of images in India are discussed in the last chapter.
Available at: IGNCA, New Delhi.
THIRTY SONGS FROM THE PUNJAB AND KASHMIRISBN : 81-207-16639Edited By :PREMLATA SHARMA
(1994 xvi+177pp. int., notations, notes)
The songs published here were recorded by Mrs. Alice Coomaraswamy, who used the Indian name Ratan Devi professionally, with introduction and translation by Ananda Coomaraswamy and a foreword by Rabindranath Tagore.
Ratan Devi transcribed, with music and words, some of the songs -both classical and folk -she had learnt from her guru Ustad Abdul Rahim of Kapurthala…Read MoreThe thirty songs documented by her in staff notations are compositions of genres like dhrupad, khayāl, Ṭhumrī and dādrā, as well as folk-songs in Punjabi, Dogri, Kashmiri, etc., also Sūfi songs in Urdu, Persian and Kashmiri.
The present volume reproducing the above compilation as parts I and II contains a transcription of the staff notations into sā ri gā mā in Devanagari, a Hindi translation of the non-Hindi texts of songs and notes in Hindi and English on rāga, tāla and the text.
Available at:IGNCA, New Delhi.
VIDYAPATI PADAVALIISBN : 81-8-5120-50-1Edited By :Ananda K. Coomaraswamy and Arun Sen
(1994, 360 pp)
Vidyāpati Ṭhākur, one of the most renowned medieval Maithilī poets, composed the wreath of songs, the theme of which is the same as that of Gītagovinda the courtship of God and the soul, under the names of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa. The story of love told in the poems is an allegorical representation of the yearning of the human soul for the Divine…Read More
The poetry of Vidyāpati arrested Coomaraswamy’s attention for translation, although translation was otherwise least of his callings. Perhaps he felt the need to convey through the English language the multi-layered symbolism of these seemingly simple verses revolving round the loves of Rādhā and Kṛṣṇa
WHAT IS CIVILISATIONISBN : 019-562373-8
(1989, xi+193 pp)
The twenty essays constituting this volume raise fundamental questions, which are both piercing and incisive, in Coomaraswamy’s inimitable style. The first essay delves into Greek and Sanskrit roots of the word “civilization”, its meaning and context. In one unbroken sweep…Read Morea vast spectrum of the Western and Eastern civilizations is covered. Coomaraswamy’s quest for philosophia perennis, was an unceasing commitment. The essay on the “Pertinence of Philosophy” unfolds the diverse meanings of philosophy with the touch stone of his credo. The exploration of the nature of myth and symbol was another preoccupation. Four essays, in this volume- “Mind and Myth”, “Symbols”, “Interpretation of Symbols” and “Symbolism of Archery” – reflect the autumnal ripeness of Coomaraswamy’s mind journey as an art historian.
Writings on Geology and Mineralogy: Scientific Papers and CommentISBN : 81-7304-373-6Edited By :A. RANGANATHAN and K. SRINIVASA RAO
This volume deals with Ananda K. Coomaraswamy’s contribution to the geology and mineralogy of Ceylon (Sri Lanka). The material in the volume has been arranged in three sections: the first contains his articles on geology and mineralogy of Ceylon published in scientific journals; the second includes the classic Ceylon Administrative Reports which he wrote in 1903-06;…Read Moreand the final section is mainly concerned with several comments on Coomaraswamy’s work which highlight his reputation as mainstream geologist.
His greatest contribution to geology was his discovery of the mineral Thorianite in 1904. It was characteristic of Coomaraswamy’s self-effacement and scientific modesty that instead of immortalizing his own name, he preferred to name it Thorianite. It is hoped that this volume on Coomaraswamy’s contribution to the earth sciences, quite different from his undoubted greatness as an exponent of the Perennial Philosophy, will be of great interest to his innumerable admirers.
Yaksas: Essays in the Water CosmologyISBN : 019-563385-7Edited By :Paul Schroeder (ed.)
(1993, xviii+339 pp. b&w Plates, index)
Yakṣas was originally published by the Freer Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution in two parts (1928 and 1931). Subsequently, Ananda Coomaraswamy re-thought his topic and collected
a great deal of iconographic and literary material that permitted him to reconstitute a pre-Vedic cosmology with which the Yakṣas, a whole series of pre-vedic and non-Vedic divinities, were intimately associated…Read More
In part I, Coomaraswamy examined the origin of Yakṣas in the context of Vedic, Brāhmanical and Upani adic literature. His thorough revisions of the early chapters of part I are incorporated in this edition. Coomaraswamy dealt with the interpretative levels of the artistic motif in part II. He delved deeper to unfold the water cosmology underlying what may appear on surface as either a minor deity or tutelary god, or only an ornamental motif.
Coomaraswamy did not restrict himself to the Indian literature on water cosmology but drew attention to many ancient cultures, especially those of Egypt and Iran.