Kalamukhas - The Saivaite mystics of medieval Karnataka.

SrImatrailOkyavaMdasya lakuLISasya SAsanaM jayatyanugatAtmEShTa dRShTAdRShTa phalapradaM yO dharMALinaTIM SAsti vEdadaMDadharO naTaH tachchhAsanaM jayatyEtatriLOkI maMgaLapradaM ||

Victory to the inscription of lakuliSa that bears deserving fruits to those dear to it. Victory to him - he who holds the staff that is the vEda and who directs the steps of the danseuse that is dharma.

Brief ethnographic & epigraphic notes on Bangalore

Early History (AD 400 - 1000)

The earliest epigraphical records that have been found in Bangalore dist are that of the Gangas. This dynasty ruled across regions of present kongu districts of Tamizh Nadu, Mysore, Chamarajanagar, Mandya and Kolar - comprising of what was known as gangavADi 96000, the number indicating the count of villages in the province. The oldest of Ganga inscriptions corresponds to the time of mAdhava tandangala konganivarma (459 AD) - whose copper plates were retrieved in mallohaLLi of doddabaLLApur tAluk. The plates describe the lineage of the said ruler & record his victory over the bANas and detail the grant made to a kADaswAmi, a brahmaNa of tippUr village in marugere rAShtra [1].

A second plate found in Bangalore dist itself dates to 485 AD, details the lineage of the early Ganga rulers and their marital ties with the Kadambas of banavAsi. Another grant found in mallohaLLi dates to AD 517 - to the times of avinita. Beyond this point is a curious paucity of inscriptions & plates (at least in so far as what has been founded & recorded) for the next two centuries, perhaps due to pallava-noLamba annexation of the region.

Talikote and the Vijayanagara apocalypse

Lately, war history has become a bit of a pet subject.

Specifically so, Talikote. This war is about an empire that is very close to my heart and culture. Backed with some assorted readings of Robert Sewell, Krishnaswamy Iyengar and Jadunath Sarkar, I present some thoughts, questions and answers of my own on the battle that changed the history of the south.

The Vina maker of Gandhi Bazaar

Sometime through the late 2000s, I worked on a consulting engagement for a friend’s company in Basavanagudi. Amongst the multitude of places I’ve hated making work visits to, this was a grand exception for an unlikely reason. Firstly - the generous choice of junk and non junk food (there I digress), and then - just across street on HB Samaja road - Veena works, a cottage workshop filled with beautiful musical instruments.