The Guiding force of Narayanashrama Tapovanam &
Center for Inner Resources Development

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Enrich the greatness and sweetness of Malayalam!

29 January 2014
[On the 5th day of the Aatma Tattva Sameeksha Discourse Series
based on Ashtavakra Samhita in Thrissur, Kerala
Each and every Malayalee, each and every Keralite, has the obligation and onus to  nourish and embellish the mother tongue Malayalam and make it more relishing. This should be reflected more in speech than in Literature. However when the usage of Language becomes greater and greater there may occur a decrease in norms of usage. Constant vigilance against this tendency must be shown.
Clarity of the spoken word must be ensured. For instance the Malayalam word ‘Irinjaalakuda’ becoming ‘IrinjaalakuDa’ results in loss of melodic sweetness. So also it must be ensured that sounds such as (ka,Ta, ta,pa); (kha ccha THa, tha pha); (gha Dha dha bha) are emphasized correctly with appropriate force and resound and practiced. Only when one is able to look and write as also listen and write, will the usage of language become meaningful. There should never arise a need to ask if the word Daśaratha has ‘tha’ () or () dha in it! These distinctions and nuances must be mastered well.
Such a practice calls for close attention to speech  and regulation of the organs of speech. Regulation of the senses and sensory organs are of utmost importance in Spirituality.
We often find the word ‘bhayankara’ (Malayalam) being used indiscriminately. This word which should mean ‘fearful’ is now being liberally used by Malayalees to express just the opposite emotion – namely high appreciation of anything. Such oxymoronic usage of words create confusion of meaning and intention in Malayalam, apart from insulting the language itself.
Similar is the error in usage of soft and hard consonants combinations which often result in total distortion of pronunciation. For example the Malayalam word for Lotus is Padmam. This is seen to be corrupted as ‘Palmam’ which carries no meaning really speaking. In the same way Valmiki cannot be written as Vatmiki as is being done even by the News papers. Valmiki originated from Ratnakara being reborn from anthill called Valmeekam in Sanskrit.
It is said in the Mahabharata that even before 5152 years, the people of Kerala had acquired the nature and stature of ‘Arya-hood’. When considering classical status for Malayalam this fact was not taken into account it seems. How can such a slur on Malayalam be allowed in this State which claims 100% literacy and excellence in education?
We should not delay anymore in employing words according to their pronunciation.
Teachers alone can with love for the language and close attention raise the language from its downfall. It is the learning done in the first four classes of a child’s schooling that determines its language skills. The authorities and teachers should wake up to this fact. The parents can do little in this matter.
The audio-visual media too must take great acre to ensure purity of the usage of language. These may need a separate regulatory mechanism. Constant vigilance is called for in media broadcasts.

* * *

No comments:

Post a Comment