Muslim students in Kerala are studying important parts of Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads, Mahabharata, Ramayana in Sanskrit language. Not only this, these students also sing ‘Guru Brahma Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo Maheshwara, Guru Sakshat Parabrahma, Tasmai Sri Guruve Namah’ in a rhythm. This news is from Thrissur district of the state. Where an Islamic institution has set a different example, students dressed in long white robes and headscarf are reciting fluent Sanskrit shlokas and mantras under the supervision of their Hindu gurus. A teacher in the institute asks the students to read “Guru Brahma Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo Maheshwara, Guru Sakshat Parabrahma, Tasmai Sri Guruve Namah” and the students do the same. When another student has finished reciting various verses, his teacher says to him in Sanskrit, ‘Uttamam’. In the classroom, all conversations between students and teachers take place in Sanskrit.
Muhammad Faizi’s Initiative
Onampilli Muhammad Faizi, Principal, Academy of Sharia and Advanced Studies (ASAS), run by Malik Dinar Islamic Complex (MIC), said that the aim of teaching Sanskrit, Upanishads, Puranas etc. is to create knowledge and awareness among students about other religions. Another reason for teaching Sanskrit to students at MIC ASAS is Faizi’s own educational background as he has studied Shankara philosophy. He told PTI-Bhasha, “I felt that students should know about other religions and their customs and practices. But in-depth study of ‘Upanishads’, ‘Shastras’, ‘Vedas’ along with Sanskrit will not be possible during the study period of eight years.
Urdu and Hindi are also taught here
Faizi said that the aim is to impart basic knowledge to these students and create awareness among them about other religions. He said that important parts of Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads, Mahabharata, Ramayana are taught to the students in Sanskrit over a period of eight years after passing the tenth standard. Selective teaching of these texts is being provided because the institution is primarily a Sharia college. This institute is affiliated to the University of Calicut and Urdu and Hindi are also taught here.
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