I have grown up hearing Soundarya Lahri recited by my mother. But hardly did I grasp the essence and seldom did I make an effort to. A translation of the same to either my mother tongue or English is something that I have been looking forward to. Soundarya Lahri translated from Sanskrit by Mani Rao is a boon for someone who finds it difficult to grasp the essence of Sanskrit Verses.
‘A joyful rendition of an iconic text’ – Arundhathi Subramaniam
Saundarya Lahari is a popular Sanskrit hymn celebrating the power and beauty of Sakti, the primordial goddess. In one hundred verses, it underlines the centrality of the feminine principle in Indian thought.
Attributed to Adi Sankaracarya, Saundarya Lahari is a valuable source for understanding tantric ideas. Every verse is associated with yantras and encoded mantras for tantric rituals, and specific verses in the hymn are considered potent for acquiring good health, lovers, and even poetic skills.
Mani Rao’s Saundarya Lahari is an inspired, lyrical translation that renders the esoteric immediate and the distant near.
Saundarya Lahari is a Sanskrit work attributed to Adi Shankara which tells about the tantra method of devotion. It is all about the union of Shiva and Shakti which translates to the activation of Kundalini.
The English translation of the book is a one-liner translation of the wonderful book. Much need not be written about the original as it is the best and it has been there for centuries.
Speaking about the translation, the author has rightfully made it simple without many embellishments and add-ons. This makes the book all the more endearing because the author did not impose his perspective and put the book up there for the readers to understand.
I am reading the book one line/page or a few lines/pages per day, slowly and imbing the essence because I need the space and the book gives the comfort.