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Hitopadesa of Sri Narayana Pandita

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One of the most popular books on ethics and polity

Hitopadesa, or “Good instructions”, is famous for its wisdom and is one of the most popular books on ethics and polity from niti-sastra. Many verses can be traced to the Puranas and Itihasas. It uses the story-within-a-story-format, with animals as the main characters. The first book, Mitralabha, or Acquisition of friends, defines the characteristics of real friends and shows the importance of having them. It is the most relevant in this present age, Kaliyuga, where shams thrive in the guise of love and good-will.


Translator / Commentator: Satyanarayana Dasa
Satyanarayana Dasa, born in 1954, was drawn to the spiritual traditions of his home country India since his childhood. After receiving a postgraduate degree in 1978 from IIT Delhi and working in the United States for four years, he returned to India. There he studied the formal systems of Indian philosophy known as Ṣaḍ-darśana under the direct guidance of his guru Śrī Haridāsa Śāstrī Mahārāja and Swami Syama Saraṇa Maharaja.
This education was taken up in the traditional manner for more than 25 years, while he dedicated himself as a practitioner of bhakti yoga. In 1991 he accepted the traditional Vaiṣṇava order of renounced life, bābājī-veṣa. His main focus has been with the works of Jiva Gosvami, particularly on translating the Ṣaṭ Sandarbhas, into English and commenting on them. He also earned four śāstric degrees, and received both a law degree and a PhD in Sanskrit from Agra University.
Satyanarayana Dasa is the director of the Jiva Institute of Vaishnava Studies in Vrindavan, India. He is a visiting professor at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. In 2013 he was honored by the president of India, Pranab Mukherjee, for his extraordinary contribution in presenting Vedic culture and philosophy, both nationally and internationally.

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Cover: Hardbound
Language: English
Page count: 272
Publication date: 1997



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