Devdutt Pattanaik (Odia: ଦେବଦତ୍ତ ପଟ୍ଟନାୟକ Devanagari: देवदत्त पट्टनायक) is an Indian author known for his work in mythology and interpretations of ancient Indian scriptures, stories, symbols and rituals.
- The Sanskrit word ‘maya’ refers to all things that can be measured. Human understanding of the world is limited, hence measurable, hence maya. To believe this maya is truth is delusion. Beyond maya, beyond human values and human judgements, beyond the current understanding of the world, is a limitless reality which makes room for everyone and everything. That reality is God.
- The Goddess is Maya, embodiment of all delusions. She is Shakti, personification of energy. She is Adi, primal, as ancient and boundless as the soul...The embodiment of Adi- Maya-Shakti – Durga is the invincible one. She is at once bride and warrior. The one establishes home, provides pleasure, produces children and offers food.
- Devdutt Pattanaik, in "Myth = Mithya (2008)", p. 146-147.
- The Tantrik approach to self-realization is different from the Vedic approach. The former looks upon the Goddess as Shakti, energy, to be experienced while the latter looks upon the Goddess as Maya, delusion, to be transcended. The former is more sensory, the latter less so.
- Devdutt Pattanaik, in "Myth = Mithya (2008)", p. 200.
- Though in Bengal and Orissa, some say, Alakshmi is visualized as an owl seated beside Lakshmi, Alakshmi is a secret goddess, invisible to all. The only way to see her is to have Saraswati, goddess of knowledge and good sense by your side. But Lakshmi will never let Saraswati stay in the same house as her. She will go wherever there is Saraswati and kick her out, making room for Alakshmi. Why does she do that, one wonders. But then one is told that Lakshmi is a whimsical goddess, she does not like to stay in one place too long. By kicking Saraswati out and by getting Alakshmi in, she ensures there is a fight in the house and when there is a fight, wealth invariably moves out of a house.
The Book of Ram
Devdutt Pattanaik The Book of Ram, Penguin UK, 21 October 2008
- Ram's calm repose in the face of all adversity, so evident in the Ramayan, has made him worthy of veneration, adoration and worship. Ram's story has reached the masses not through erudite Sanskrit texts but through theatre song and dance performed in local languages. All of these retellings of Ramayan have their own turns and twists, their own symbolic outpouring, each one valid in their respective contexts.
- In: p. vii
- The Ramayan, one of the most revered texts in Hinduism, tells the story of a prince called Ram. Dashrath, king of Ayodhya, had three wives but no children. So he conducted a yagna and invoked the gods who gave him a magic potion that was divided among his three queens. In time the queens gave birth to four sons. Ram was the eldest, born of the chief queen, Kaushalya, Bharat was the second born to Dasharath’s favourite queen Kaikeyi. Lakshman and Shatrughna were the twin sons of the third queen Sumitra.
- In: p. 3
- The twentieth century saw Ram on celluloid with films like Bharat Milap (1942), Ram Rajya (1943 film) andSati Sulochana (1961). Ramanand Sagar's television serial Ramayan, with Arun Govil starring as Ram, made history in the late 1980s.
- In: p. 124
- The Ramayan also happens to be part of the Mahabharata, dated between 300 BCE and 300 CE, where it is called the Ramopakhyan. When the Pandavas bemoaned their thirteen years of forest exile, Rishi Markandeya retorted by telling them how Ram suffered for fourteen years and while the Pandavas deserved their punishment for gambling away their kingdom, Ram did not deserve his fate – he was simply obesing his father.
- In: p. 183