International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan
In late 1998, hundreds of scholars and devotees of the pan-Indian god Murukan or Skanda convened in Chennai to exchange findings about the complex god and his cult from earliest times down to the present. The First International Conference Seminar on Skanda-Murukan was remarkable both for the sheer size of the conference and for the broad range of research topics and expertise of scholars and devotees. At the conclusion of the Conference, participants voted overwhelmingly to create a formal institution to promote the study of Murukan or Skanda worldwide. The International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan was born.
Since late Vedic times in the Sanskrit tradition and possibly far earlier among the proto-Dravidian and tribal peoples of the South, the vigorous and complex deity Skanda or Murukan has exerted a powerful influence upon Indian literature and religious thought. Even today, his cult continues to command the allegiance of millions in South India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and wherever there are expatriate Tamil communities.
Conference participants unanimously recognized the need for greater dialogue among scholars of Skanda-Murukan and the community of informed devotees. An international association or center that brings scholars and learned Murukan bhaktas together could achieve wonders in promoting Kaumara studies worldwide. Affiliated scholars including informed bhaktas from across South India, Sri Lanka, and worldwide may collaborate in research projects and participate in seminars in an environment conducive to vigorous intellectual exchange.
For scholars and devotee alike, the founding of the International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan as the first and only international body of its kind in the worldrepresents a watershed in Kaumara studies. For this reason alone, the First International Conference Seminar on Skanda-Murukan will long be remembered as a watershed in the study of one of the world's great religious and literary traditions.
Scope of the Centre's Activities
The International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan undertakes activities concerning the cult of Skanda-Murukan from earliest times down to the present as considered from such disciplinary perspectives as:
ICSSM activities include:
Forthcoming ICSSM projects include:
Multimedia projects include the production of video documentaries, CD-ROMs and digital resource areas on the Internet. The Centre also sponsors artistic performances like Murukan Tiruvilaiyatal and Valli Tirumanam in the Bharata Natyam genre and Tiruppukazh recitals in India and abroad.
The Centre's Website is updated regularly to keep up with developments, such as:
The objectives of the International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan are:
How you can support Centre activities
The International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan is incorporated as a non-profit limited liability company under Section 25 of the Indian Companies Registration Act. As a non-profit company it is empowered to accept tax-exempt donations and to raise funds for projects by offering shares in the Centre for purchase by investors.
The success of the International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan depends upon generous financial support from a variety of sources including share purchases and outright donations. If you would like to contribute to the success of the International Centre for the Study of Skanda-Murukan, or if you know of an individual, company, or agency that might, please consider purchasing shares in the Centre and its wide range of activities.
For more information about the Centre, e-mail your enquiry.