MEGHADHOOTAM.

Finding divinity has been a major focus of human life.  According to shilpa shastra

In sound through music

In body through dance

In words through poetry

In space through architecture

In form through sculpture

In thought through mathematics

A person can experience divinity.

Meghaduta by Kalidasa blends three of these forms directly and two indirectly. We deal with poetry, music and and dance. The usage of space and form is inspired by the sculpture; we then have the thala the rhythmic beats.

To me meghaduta is the story of the cloud, and a document of life, living and art of a generation that lived. It their experience that we are reminding you through the story. The major components being,

The story of a Yaksha who is exiled and his pangs of love when he is separated from his spouse. The story unfolds as Purva megha the path of the cloud to Alkapuri, and uttara megha when the cloud reaches alkapuri.

The world of magical creatures, the yaksha’s and Yakshini. Nature and Yaksha,

Yaksha in Hindu mythology are the demi gods the keepers of the wealth of the world. They live in the mythical land of Alkapuri. They are plump, pleasure loving and are water bodies. They are guardians of the north

Megha: the clouds themselves. These clouds are associated with rains, so we look at Parjanya or the god of rains. This is disputed territory, we can either opt for Indra, with his vajra, or airavata. Or we can look at Varuna God of all waters. We can use varied movements for the cloud depending on what state it is.

There are scholars who claim Meghasandesham or Meghadootam was inspired by Hanuma sandesham from Valmiki Ramayana, but Hanumasandesha does not romanticise the journey, nor do we see the detailed aesthetics of the travel.

The scholar V.Raghavan claims Kalidasa was inspired by a story in Ramayana where a Gandharva named Tumburu, transforms to a Yaksha name Vidhara who is banished from Alkapuri by Kubera as he neglected his duty in his love for Rambha.

whatever the source of inspiration might be Ramayana, or Ujjain and Kalidasa’s own separation from his wife, the journey is truly beautiful. From the  clear breeze of amarakant where the journey begins, the romance builds to the catharsis at the final rains at Alkapuri.

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