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Goethals Indian Library & Research Society, Kolkata
Vol. VII No. 1 Bulletin January - March 2004
News Update | Articles | Researchers
New Arrivals | Mails & Emails
Dr. Sanjay Paswan, Central Minister of State for HRD (Education) paid a visit to
the Goethals Library and Research Society on February 14. He appreciated the
good collection of books, plates and journals. In an informal chat later, with a
group of 15 Jesuits and professors of the College, he shared about some of the
new ventures of the government in the field of education and answered questions
from the floor.
GILRS has completed the two projects on "Oriental Scenery" by Daniells and
"Calcutta Views" by William Wood and James Fraser. Preparations are on for an
exhibition of all the 144 plates of Daniells’ and 52 of Wood and Fraser on April
2, 2004 at SXC. His Excellency the Governor of West Bengal has kindly accepted
to inaugurate the renovated library and the Exhibition.
The library thanks Mr. Sidhartha Dudhoria for the book "Medieval Goldsmith’s
Work", which he has donated.
The library thanks Mr. M.M. Rahman (Bangladesh) for his gift of 5 books.
The library thanks Sri Ganganarayan Prabhu of ISKCON for the gift of the "Bhagavad
Gita As it is", in 3 languages. The books were given to the Director by Mr.
Saurav Agrawal, B. Com, IInd Year, St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata.
We thank Mr. & Mrs. P. K. Mukherji of Kolkata for the book of poems, "The young
Magician & other poems," by their (late) son Mr. Arijit Mukherji (1962-2000).
Arijit studied in St. Xavier’s from 1968-1983. From 1990 he was on the Faculty
of Accounting, Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota and was an
Associate Professor at the time of his death in October, 2000.
The library wishes to thank Fr. Jerome Francis SJ, Provincial, for the
presentation of the book by Fr. Yves de Steenhault, SJ. on the History of the
Jesuits in West Bengal, Pt. II 1948-1985.
Researchers at Goethals
Dr. Indrajit Bose of Presidency College, Kolkata is continuing his research on
"One Hundred years of British itinerants in India, 1757-1857."
Fr. Francis A.V., SJ, from Loyola College of Education, Sikkim visited the
library to do research on the Socio-Economic impact of Catholic Missionaries on
Fr. R. Mary John from the Department of Christian Studies, University of Madras
did research on Nationalism and Catholic Christianity in India.
M.A. 2nd year English students from Calcutta University who visited the library
to do research on Jesuit Education in Bengal were Mantra Roy, Deepti Joseph,
Bipasha Biswas and Medha Roy.
Mr. Partha Sarathi Banerjee of the Debts Recovery Tribunal did research on Law,
Government Administration, Anthropology. Religion and History.
Mr. Shankar Mukhopadhyay, a retired project engineer of the port of Montreal,
visited the library along with his wife Christel Mukhopadhyay, of the Forest
Engineering Institute of Canada, to do research on the History of West Bengal
St. Xavier’s College, B. Com, 2nd year Student Saurav Agrawal visited the
library to do research on Indian Religions and Philosophy.
The Young Magician
Will that door open and the other and the other?
will you now put that ghost of a hand
(shadowlike under the frills)
upon the door knob instead of the arm chair handle
or my hand
and give it a little tap
while the garden swims into view?
It is merely innocuous speculation
She has made up her mind she has made up her mind
and the bridge is ready.
All she must do is march across.
She has crossed the threshold and has entered
the dark yet doorless room of someone else’s eyes
leaving the draw bridge of the castle of your mind
"And don’t forget to ask him how she is!"
How did the magician forget his spell
Now that he cannot arrest her as she strides
Towards that door?
"Don’t close someone else’s door!
How did the magician forget his spell
and lose control?
- From "The Young Magician & Other Poems" by (Late) Arijit Mukherji. Writers
Workshop. Kolkata. 2003. pp 97.
Nalanda became famous for its ‘Schools of Discussion’: indeed, they harked back
to a more ancient and established tradition of monastic education - to the
Kathas, an institution of primitive monasteries as we have seen. The Schools
attracted learners not only from all over India. but also from the Far East and
later from Tibet. "Learning and discussing," says Yuan Chwang, "they find the
day too short." The uninhibited scope and freedom of these discussions at
Nalanda and also at all other, monastic universities must be counted as a great
contributory factor in that process of fusion of Brahmanical and Buddhistic
thought and culture which makes it so intriguing a feature of the final period
of the history of ancient Indian culture.
Traditional legends of the vast manuscript wealth of Nalanda’s libraries come
from Tibetan sources, from Lama Taranatha and other Tibetan writers on the
history of Buddhism, belonging to the 17th and 18th centuries. A whole area of
the campus was, according to the Tibetan writers, set apart for the libraries
and was covered with huge, many-storeyed library buildings, three of which had
the fancy names of Ratnodadhi (Sea of Jewels), Ratnasagara (Ocean of Jewels) and
Ratnaranjaka (Jewel-adorned), the first named edifice being nine-storeyed. The
Tibetan legend is that these great libraries were reduced to ashes by the
deliberate act of an infuriated incendiary, a Turuska (Turk).
Architecturally, Nalanda was probably the grandest and most magnificent of all
monastic establishments in the 17th century A.D. in India.
- An extract from "2500 years of Buddhism" by P.V. Bapat (editor). Publication
division, Govt. of India. pp 166-167. Book No: 35/128.
The Planter Padre Mudnabati
June 15, 1794-January 10, 1800
CAREY’s first business was to get acquainted with his new industry. He was just
in time to learn the art. Mr. Udny arranged for him to visit the best indigo
concerns of Malda and Goamalti, that he might see the whole process for himself.
For by the end of June the ryots were bringing to the factories the piled
bundles of the plant. He watched these steep and ferment in the upper vats, and
learned how nice a judgment was needed to know exactly when to let the dark
green water run into the vats below. In these he was amused to see it beaten and
aerated by instanding coolies with paddles, till it changed into an ultramarine
blue - the coolies as blue as itself. He was taught to tell when this ‘beating’
sufficed, and the liquid might rest, and the granulations settle, and the water
be presently drawn off. Then he watched the valuable sediment cleaned, boiled,
strained, pressed, slowly dried, and cut with much care into cubes, and packed
in boxes or casks for Calcutta. To one who had made long and loving study of
plants’ practical uses the process was of deep interest, and its needed
exactitude congenial to his scientific mind.
The Mahipal and Mudnabati ventures were new Outworks of George Udny’s, to take
advantage of the attractive concessions and prices the Honourable Company, was
offering to its indigo-planters, in its vigorous attempt to capture the British
indigo-market from America and Spain. The equipment of both Outworks was well
advanced, the two sahibs’ houses, the buttressed reservoirs, and, probably, the
vats being almost completed.
- An Extract from "William Carey D. D., Fellow of Linnaean Society" by S Pearce
Carey. Hodder & Stoughton. London. 1926 (Book No. 40A/129). pp. 156.
Agriculture & Irrigation
The rainfall of India, brought by the monsoon, besides being seasonal in
character, is very uncertain in its distribution. It is therefore natural that
from very early times men should have sought to find other ways of bringing
water to their fields. There are of course, parts of India with abundant
rainfall where there is no need for irrigation; there are parts which are always
so dry that no cultivation is possible without it; but in the greater parts of
the country the rainfall, though ordinarily sufficient for growing crops, is
liable to fail. Irrigation therefore serves two purposes; it acts as a
protection against failure of the rains, and it enables crops to be "grown where
they could not be grown otherwise."
The great development of irrigation works is one of the most remarkable
achievements of the British Raj; but tanks and wells, and even canals, were
constructed in India long centuries ago. The Grand Anicut (or weir) on the
Cauvery is said to have been built in the eleventh century.
The Persian wheel is one of the oldest forms of irrigation. It consists of an
endless band of small earthenware pots which raise the water from a well and
empty themselves into a hollowed-out piece of wood discharging into a channel in
the field. Some improved Persian wheels are now being used with metal pots and
metal receiving channels.
India is a land of contrasts, and side by side with the ancient methods just
described we find the most modern form of tube-wells and pumps installed in
certain areas, which tap subterranean water supplies often 250 feet below the
Then scattered all over the country are thousands of ‘tanks’ as they are called,
of which many are artificial reservoirs formed by building a dam or bund across
a water-course or a depression, and so collecting and storing the water draining
into it during the rainy season. Some of these are quite small and irrigate only
a few acres; others store up millions of cubic feet of water
- An extract from "Living India" by Lady Hartog. Blackie & Sons Ltd., London.
1936. pp. 104,105.
Archaelogical Excavations in Central India: Madhya Pradesh and Chattisgarh by
R.K. Sharma and O.P. Misra. Mittal Publications, New Delhi, 2003.
Bhagawad-Gita As It Is by Swami Prabhupada. Bhaktivedanta Book Trust. New Delhi,
Five books from Bangladesh. Four in Bengali and one in Urdu.
History of the Jesuits in West Bengal. Part II: 1947-1985, by Yves de Steenhault
SJ, Catholic Press. Ranchi. 2003.
Medieval Goldsmith’s Work by Isa Belli Barsali, Paul Hamlyn. London. 1969.
The Sikh World: An Encyclopaedic Survey of Sikh Religion and Culture edited by
R. C. Dogra and V. Dogra. UBSPD, New Delhi, 2003.
The Young Magician and other poems by (Late) Arijit Mukherjee, Published by
Writers Workshop, Kolkata, 2003.
Traditional Santal Story of creation and human development by Budhan Kisku.
Pragya Publications, Calcutta, 2002.
J Felix Raj, "Sentimental Bonds", The Statesman, 1 February, 2004, Kolkata;
"Indo-Bali Bond", The Indian Currents, 14 February 2004, New Delhi. These
articles are based on the paper presented by Fr. Felix Raj at the Bali
International Seminar on Development.
J Felix Raj & S. Chowdhury… "Grime Beneath the Shine", The Statesman, 15
February 2004, Kolkata. "India Shine" propaganda and "Feel Good" attitude of the
Central government is just a temporary phenomenon, unless the government shuns
populism and addresses serious problems of the economy.
Mails & Emails
I have seen your article on Teilhard de Chardin, on the web. My academic
background is in physics. As a layman, I have in the past, taken some courses on
Christology given by the Singapore Pastoral Institute. A few years ago a
Franciscan, Fr Roderick Payne gave a course on "Who is Jesus?" In this course
he discussed more on the human side of Jesus. He made references to Chardin and
the concept of the Cosmic Christ. Unfortunately Fr Payne died soon after the
I find that Catholics in Singapore, including the Jesuits, are not interested in
talking about Chardin or the concept of the Cosmic Christ. Would you be so kind
as to suggest some suitable sources that I can turn to, to satisfy my curiosity
about Teilhard de Chardin and about the idea of the Cosmic Christ.
Augustine Y J Chong
I am doing my M.A philosophy in Bhopal in a private institute and for my thesis
I have taken the topic "Ethics in Thirukkural." For my reference if you have
some material on Thirukkural, kindly help me.
Goethals Indian Library & Research Society, St. Xavier’s, 30 Mother Teresa
Sarani, Kolkata-700 016, India.
Tel: 0091-33-2280 1919; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Director: Fr. Felix Raj, SJ; Library Asst: Mr. Warren
Brown; Computer Asst: Mr. Sunil Mondol