Monthly Archives: April 2017

Quora: “What is the harshest Indian language?”

Today I was just scrolling my screen on quora page. I just saw a question asking “What is the harshest Indian language?” and a person to whom I follow “Gopalkrishna Vishwanath” , I respect him, have answered this question. His answer was as follows in his own words.

“My vote for the harshest language and also the worst tongue twisters, making it most difficult to pronounce correctly, would go to Sanskrit.

Of course, no disrespect to this great language is intended. I revere this language.

In my opinion if you can intone Sanskrit Shlokas correctly, there is no Indian language you will not be able to pronounce”

After some readers have taken this as negative to the great language he further added.

“Some readers have taken exception to my terming Sanskrit as a “harsh” language.

I have already mentioned in my second last line that I revere this great language and mean no disrespect.  The word ‘harsh’ has different meanings. I did not mean it in any negative way.

I meant to use ‘harsh’ to mean ‘stern’, ‘strict’ ‘severe’ ‘stringent’ ‘firm’ ‘rigorous’ ‘uncompromising’ ‘inflexible’, ‘unrelenting’ ‘hard to learn’

I did not mean to say “grating’ ‘jarring’ ‘rasping’ ‘strident’ ‘raucous’ ‘brassy’ ‘ear-piercing’ ‘discordant’, ‘disagreeable’ ‘unmelodious’ ‘cacophonous’

Thanks to the thesaurus for help in making this clarification.”

Although I was in one on them to take a stand that Sanskrit is not most harsh language .

I have written a reply to him. Have a look !

“Dear Sir, I do not know whether you have ever learn this great language or ever studied in your school or college. As I have studied this great language , I consider it is the most melodious language which can give a kind of feeling of peace and calmness. Respectfully, I was shocked by your response sir ! but somehow your clarification works. It has perfect grammar, easy to learn, easy to speak , if you know the sandhi -vichhed, samaas and other tools of the language. Have a look on this shloka sir! This one is from Madhurastakam (Sung for Lord Krishna)

अधरं मधुरं वदनं मधुरं नयनं मधुरं हसितं मधुरम् ।
हृदयं मधुरं गमनं मधुरं मधुराधिपतेरखिलं मधुरम् ॥

adharaḿ madhuraḿ vadanaḿ madhuraḿ

nayanaḿ madhuraḿ hasitaḿ madhuraḿ

hṛdayaḿ madhuraḿ gamanaḿ madhuraḿ

madhurādhi-pater akhilaḿ madhuraḿ.

Try to pronounce it, sir! Amazing? yeah It is.

Having said this , If you are referring to Vedic literature then of course it is not easy to learn and to speak, but when someone recites any Richa ( shloka ) of Veda , the sound just goes in our heart through our ears. This is the sweetness and melodiness and simplicity of Sanskrit , the language of God itself- Dev Vani. Although I do not agree with you on this answer but I respect you Sir!

I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

Evelyn Beatrice Hall ( In his book The Friends of Voltaire) ”

What you all think about it?

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