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Tamil Heritage Centre (THC)

The Tamil Heritage Centre, planned to be built in Bharat Nivas, will be a place to honour the Tamil culture both on a local level in Auroville and Tamil Nadu as well as throughout the world, -including Tamil-speaking cultures in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, Mauritius, the Fiji Islands, South Africa, the Caribbean, the UK, and the USA.

Focus

The Centre will focus and communicate on many aspects of Tamil culture (arts, philosophy, architecture, spirituality, everyday life, etc.). It will certainly also be beneficial for young Tamil Aurovilians growing up in the township, some of whom may have lost touch with significant aspects of their own culture.

Plans

The Bharat Nivas group has decided that the THC is a priority for funding. Aurovilian architects Anupama and Dharmesh will be coordinating the site plans, initial architectural drawings, and landscaping, together with Meenakshi and other members of the growing team. A traditional kolam and sacred grove are planned, along with a mandapam and small reception area. Ideally speaking there would also be a student dormitory for young people who come to the Centre to study, and a 'Tamil Heritage Collection' series of books is also planned, for which UNESCO support is sought.

Programmes that took place in 2001 - 2 in the context of THC:

  • 'Nila Mutram', full moon gathering to share Tamil poetry and visits to historically important places every month

  • Classical dance performance on the 'Six abodes of lord Muruga' in Ilaignarkal's new building

  • Presentation of Kamba Ramayanam to school children

  • Weekly Tamil classes at AV's Deepanam school to introduce Tamil culture & heritage by Meenakshi and team

  • Poosam festival in Irumbai temple. Classical Bharata Natyam dance performed in the temple courtyard by Auroville artists. Ancient Tamil Hymns were rendered

  • Monthly newsletter published by Ilaignarkal with regular features on Tamil heritage & culture

  • Dr. Balasubramaniyam, from Chidambaram who has been given a fellowship by the Centre for Indian Studies at Auroville conducted a workshop to prepare spoken Tamil material. Teachers from Auroville's New Creation, Ilaignarkal & Isaimbalam schools attended the session. Dr. Ramasamy from the Central Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore, lead the session

  • Ilaignarkal school holds Bharata Natyam and Classical music classes for the school children as well as Aurovilians, guests and visitors

  • Marti & Auroville Press are working together to publish Tamil Heritage series. 'UNESCO' may fund the project. The issue 'Kolam' is ready as also 'Temples of Tamil Nadu'

  • Poppo's excavations; an archaeological study is under way

 

For more detailed information, please visit: www.bharatnivas.org
 

Contact: tamil@auroville.org.in 

              marti@auroville.org.in

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