Sanskrit (संस्कृत)

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Sanskrit was once the most influential literary language in India, and texts written in the language could be understood by millions of people throughout the South Asian world. These texts contain profound meditations on every point on the spectrum of human concern: existence, reality, God, love, duty, marriage, war, sex, death, violence, laughter, beauty, perception, nature, anatomy, urbanity, ritual, desire, food, purpose, meaning, and language, among hundreds of others. Moreover, Sanskrit texts are the repository of non-modern modes of thought, and they present distinct conceptions of the world that are often at odds with the understanding we have today. By learning how people used to think, we better understand both ourselves and the world we have inherited.