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RASA or knowledge of the self Essays on Indian Aesthetics and Selected Sanskrit Studies by René Daumal, Cool Grove Press

RASA or knowledge of the self 

Essays on Indian Aesthetics and Selected Sanskrit Studies 

by René Daumal,

Cool Grove Press

The book release party for the 3rd edition of Rasa took place on Sun the 21st, at Torn Page, an intimate salon in Chelsea.  In the house,  poet-musician Louise Landes Levi (LLL) and translator of Rasa, accompanied actor Tony Torn’s recitation of the Natya Shasta with tambura, sarangi, voice and bells). The reader’s dramatic delivery, scintillated by Louise’s sonics, was 15 minutes of virtual transport. Lee Ann Brown, publisher of Tender Buttons Press and her partner Tony Torn (son of actors Geraldine Page and Rip Torn) were our gracious hosts. 

Besides the first chapter of Natya Shastra, a Hindu epic pot boiler combining theater with social engineering, there is so much more in Rasa that Daumal reveals in piercing essays with titles such as 

Buddhism, Its Doctrines and Methods, Two Tibetan Texts on the Conversion of the Birds, Hymns and Prayer of the Veda, The Utility of Poetry, The Essence of Poetry, The Savor and more.

In his essays resides the skillfully distilled nectar or ‘juice’ (rasa) of meaning, and now again available to read in English, through Louise’s essential translation.  She reminds us that in Rasa or Knowlege of the Self, Daumal is offering us immediate entrance into a sacred world through words.

Please order it at your local book store to induce the flow. You will find it is a gift that keeps giving.

—Tej Hazarika