TSW Theatre
Mahabharata website
Tang Shu-wing Theatre Studio will be showcasing a performance of the Indian epic Mahabharata in June 2023. In order to familiarize the public with the piece, a thematic website has been specially created to present this classic through a simple but insightful online exhibition.

About the Mahabharata
The Mahabharata is one of the two main Sanskrit epics of ancient India (the other being the Ramayana). Its main chapters were compiled between the 3rd century BC to the 3rd century AD, with the oldest part of the text tracing back to as early as 4th century BC. It is said that it was written by Lord Ganesha, as told to him by Veda Vyasa. The core of the story revolves around two brothers who fought over their kingdom’s land and who ultimately came out on top. As the story was preserved through word-of-mouth, the original story in its entirety cannot be known. The contents of the story were enriched over time and evolved into a massive 18 volume work with nearly 100,000 verses in around 1.8 million words, and is considered the longest epic in the world.

In Ancient India, oral chants spread by word-of-mouth were known as “Veda” which means “wisdom”, and the Mahabharata is known as the fifth Veda. There are four ancient Vedas –  the Rigveda, the Samaveda, the Yajurveda,  and the Atharvaveda. Each Veda has four subdivisions –  the Samhitas, the Brahmanas, the Aranyakas, and the Upanishads. The majority of Vedas are about worship and rituals except for the Upanishads. The Upanishads represent the essence of Vedic philosophy, presenting important concepts such as the unification of the Brahman and the self, Karma and reincarnation, and the four goals of life (Dharma meaning righteousness, Artha meaning prosperity, Kama meaning pleasure, and Moksha meaning liberation). Such concepts are further elaborated in the Bhagavad Gita, the sixth chapter of the Mahabharata, which also proposes the four major branches of yoga through which to attain liberation.

For thousands of years, the Mahabharata has heavily influenced the lives, beliefs and values of Indians. Its influence has been widespread and has inspired countless works of music, theatre, dance, film, sculpture, painting and so on in the East and the West. It can be said to be a treasure trove of culture throughout history.

Website linkwww.mahabharata.hk