(Can be reached at Rilanjana.email@example.com)
Samudra Manthan is an important mythological event in which Gods and Demons together churned the ocean to obtain the pure and invincible Amrit (nectar), the drink of life to save creation. Similarly, today the need of the hour is for another Manthan to churn out the purity of human values from our own folk tradition "Lok Manthan" to revive the lost heritage of unity and harmony amidst our diverse Bharatiya culture and tradition. "Lok Manthan" is a true effort to revive the cultural values and nothing better than folk can touch the hearts of the Homo Sapiens by ushering in the Golden Era of Bharatiya culture through this beautiful pedestal of "Lok Manthan".
Our beloved Rashtra is beautiful and there is no country like Bharat, quite as diverse, multi-lingual, and multi-cultural, yet bound together by the ancient bounds of shared traditions, culture and values. Such bonds need to be further strengthened through enhanced and continuous mutual interaction between people of varied regions and ways of life so that it encourages reciprocity and secures an enriched value system of unity amongst the people of different states in a culturally jewelled Nation like Bharat. Ornamented by its rich literature, art, talent, heritage, and culture it is the heavenly abode of unique diverse and multiple languages, ethnic groups, and festivals. Being Bharatiya is a feeling booming in the hearts of the people - who are all different, yet the same. In every way we are the most colourful Nation and the fundamental strength of Bharat is that we are the land of seekers – seekers of truth and liberation— and this spiritual thread is what keeps us together as a Nation.
Lokmanthan, the churn of the nation, is a journey embarked upon by Prajna Pravah to seek the cultural and traditional treasures hidden in the various corners of our country. Lokmanthan is that intended churn that provides a chance to all ethnic groups and communities to bring forth their traditional knowledge in various spheres which are entwined in their cultural practices. It is a platform for all thinkers and practitioners for whom the national interests are primary. This is an attempt to connect intellectuals and practitioners in connecting the present to the past and thus create a future which can secure and protect our cultural heritage.
The journey of Lokmanthan by Prajna Pravah started in the year 2016 in Bhopal with an evoking good public response under the theme "De-Colonizing Indian Minds" and in 2018 Lokamnthan was held in Ranchi with the theme "Bharatbodh: Jan-Gan-Man". And now it is our immense pleasure that the upcoming Lokmanthan 2022 is going to be held in Guwahati, Assam from 21st to 23rd September 2022 at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra organized by Prajna Pravah in collaboration with Intellectual Forum of North East (IFNE) under the theme "Lokparampara".
It is our pride and honour to host this prestigious event where there is unparallel ethnic diversity with approximately 270 ethnic groups and 185 linguistic groups etc., all having unique lifestyles, food habits, tradition, customs and their own way of life.
It is high time to showcase, conserve, and preserve our ethnic heritage. This is the land of esoteric and pure knowledge and from the beginning of Pauranic Bharat, the Northeast has been referred to as the "Ishan Kon" and the land of Maa Kamakhya the Skakta Tantric Goddess of Desire. It is this holy land of great Saint Srimanta Shankardev, Saint Madhav Dev, a land which was visited by Guru Gorakhnath, Sanit Basistha and others.
The Northeast region has been connected to the rest of India through the Siliguri corridor known as Chickens neck. The northeastern region has various ancient traditions of spiritualism that are followed by the indigenous people and are known as animism, syncretism, or ancestor worshipping – they believe in cosmic oneness where everything is considered to be one. While Bharat may be known for its affinity to spirituality and religious practices and festivals, not many know that the northeastern part of India is also a rich treasure trove of religious and spiritual practices that have been an important part of its culture for a long time. It doesn't matter what religion you follow, the land of eight sisters has something for all, even for those who worship nature. The region is home to multiple tribes and each tribal community follows their own culture and traditions. They speak different languages, have different religious practices, and wear clothes with distinct patterns. The religious demography of the northeastern region is diverse. From temples to monasteries, this region is a spiritual abode for travellers. The region of the eight sisters is known to be a holy land wherein every corner one can find beautiful shrines of different religions and faith.
Now the need of the hour is that we redefine the current Bharatiya context and rebuild paths and directions which shall lead us back to our time-tested values and traditions. We are very aware that Sanskrit, Pali and Prakrit are the base of Indian History. We all know how Bharatiya Itihas has been destroyed from 1780 to 1947 during the British raj and post-independent period by pseudo-secular liberals. And "Lokmanthan" is one of the largest platforms to share, brainstorm and perorate on contemporary issues of the country that not only influences home but also the world. And this is the platform through which the entire holy land and rich cultured Northeast will be once again connected to the rest of Bharat enhancing a further smooth transaction through all means and ways. Through Lok Parampara the oneness and the national integration will be established once again and through Lok Manthan, the churning of this esoteric knowledge of this particular land will be done which will definitely help us in extracting the nectar of Gyan Amrit. And through this may the cultural and spiritual heritage of Bharat which is the bedrock of this civilization gets urgent attention and preservation.
No Culture and Tradition on this planet have the variety of weaves that Bharat has — Sadhguru.