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the only truth I know is my own experience

Amazing affinity of Russian and Sanskrit August 18, 2013

The linguistically proven facts show the amazing affinity of Russian and Sanskrit languages, obviously pointing out that these two languages must have lived closed together in some periods of antiquity.

Dr. Weer Rajendra Rishi (1917 – 2002) was a well known Indian linguist. He was fluent in Russian and worked in the Indian Embassy in Moscow between 1950—1952. Dr. Rishi was the author of (1) Russian-Hindi Dictionary (foreword by the late Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru), (2) Russian Grammar in Hindi, (3) Russian Folklore in Hindi (4) Hindi translation of Pushkin’s poem ‘Gypsy‘, (5) Marriages of the Orient, (6) Roma—The Punjabi Emigrants in Europe, the USSR, the Americas etc. (7) Romani-Punjabi-English Conversation Book, (8) Romani-Punjabi-English Dictionary and (9) Multi-Lingual Romani Dictionary (Romani Hindi English French Russian).

One of his last works was a book India & Russia – Linguistic & Cultural Affinity. This book is now very rare and it is undeservingly forgotten so I would like to bring it back as a tribute to Dr. Weer Rajendra Rishi.

The book has XIII chapters but it is Chapter II Affinity in Language which is, in my view, the most interesting part of the book. These are some excerpts from this chapter:

“As mentioned in the preceding chapter both Russian and Sanskrit belong to the satem group of the Indo-European family of languages. This, however, creates one mis-understanding in one’s mind that the relation between Sanskrit and Russian is as distant one as that between Sanskrit and other Indo-European languages. As will be explained in this chapter, the relation between these two languages is very close and correspondence between these two languages is so minute that, to use Dr. Sidheshwar Varma’s words, it cannot be a mere chance*.

“In the sphere of vocabulary, there is such a large number of words which are common to these two languages that it has not been possible to mention all of them in this chapter. Only a list of basic words common to both these two languages has been given. Moreover, as explained in the succeeding paragraphs of this chapter many of the grammatical rules are common to both these languages and the number of words common to these two languages formed after the application of such common grammar rules could be further multiplied. This is not so when we compare Sanskrit with any other language belonging to the Indo-European group, leaving aside Iranian and Persian.“(p.14)

“That the melodiousness of the rhythm of the Russian folklore and the Sanskrit verse synchronises with each other is confirmed by a news item published in the Soviet Land (No. 2 of January 1968) published by the Information Services of the Embassy of the USSR in India, New Delhi. It is stated that the style of the verse of Russian folk legends and Puskin’s tales is closer to the rhythm of Sanskrit verse. Professor Smirnov (1892— 1967), the reputed Sanskritologist of the Soviet Union has translated Mahābhārata into Russian in this type of verse. Professor Smirnov had with him a recording of an extract from the Mahābhārata read in Sanskrit original by Professor Nirmal Chandra Maitra of India to the accompaniment of Indian instruments. When after playing the recording of the Sanskrit version, Professor Smirnov read his Russian translation, the enchanting melody of the rhythm was found to be very much like that of the Sanskrit original as read by Professor Nirmal Chandra Maitra and sounded in unison.“(p.16)

On the following pages Dr. Rishi gave some interesting comparisons of Russian and Sanskrit noun declension, verbs, prefixes and suffixes, prepositions concluding the chapter by an impressive list of Russian- Sanskrit common words. The full text of this chapter can be found here. 

The list of nouns here.

This interesting information I reposted from borissof blog.

The list of cognate verbs: (more…)

 

English is the language of Spirit August 10, 2009

English has never been my favourite language.

I have been in love with German since my childhood. Luckily I was moved to Austria by the hand of destiny and now, since many years live surrounded by German-speaking people. I learned Italian and love its melody and joy-giving nature, and yet it has not become my favourite. My native language – Russian – is neither my best. I appreciate its richness and flexibility, but I am still most comfortable with German.

Despite all that, when it comes to the spiritual matters, either it is blogging about my experiences or a prayer, I want to express myself in English. (more…)

 

Grammar is universal, languages are different August 8, 2008

 image by axinia

That study could not leave me indifferent not only because of its amazing results, but also becasue the subject of languages is so dear to me. Apart from that I love theories  – and their proof! – showing the unity, the general oneness of all human beings. The recent research at the University of Chicago gives a good illustration to that.

“Not surprisingly, speakers of different languages describe events using the word orders prescribed by their language. The surprise is that when the same speakers are asked to ‘speak’ with their hands and not their mouths, they ignore these orders – they all use exactly the same order when they gesture,” said Susan Goldin-Meadow, the Bearsdley Rum Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology.

For the study described in the paper, the team tested 40 speakers of four different languages: 10 English, 10 Mandarin Chinese, 10 Spanish and 10 Turkish speakers. They showed them simple video sequences of activities and asked them to describe the action first in speech and a second time using only gestures. (more…)

 

 
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