Kritya—why?


The word ‘kritya’ means "shabd shakti" or "the power of words".
Ever since I learnt the power of imagination, the word ‘kritya’ has been a dormant yet haunting seed of a thought waiting to be awakened by my dreams. Dreams, like words, have been my constant companions. They have never betrayed or deserted me. My fists were never empty, as there were usually a few dreams stuck to my wet palm. These were always fascinatingly coloured and spoke to me in a language I clearly understood. Thus words became an integral part of my dream repertoire in colours. I do not know when exactly ‘words’ started to hypnotize me; perhaps it was when I learnt the art of joining the letters of the alphabet and reading them as words and sentences. They came with a host of meanings. Reading soon became my life and a happy get-away into the wonderland of words.
So, while reading the Vedas, I discovered that the word ‘kritya’ was "negative word power”. Most of the explanations describe ‘kritya’ as a "spell". Again, in mythology ‘kritya’, had a negative connotation ascribed to it. Here, the word was synonymous to "Demon or Rakshasi. However, in Buddhism the direction of the meaning of ‘kritya’ stands altered, but it still meant word power.
I do not accept this. Because my friendship with words assures me that the word ‘kritya’ could never be negative. We only use  a negative approach I resolved to claim for ‘kritya’ its original, positive status. ‘Kritya’, the journal, is a manifestation of my obsession with the word. It is that close to my heart and spirit.
Now why the web journal? Why wouldn’t I remain satisfied by writing alone? Why wouldn’t I put my energy in some personal creation? My journey in the world is not straight forward. The time and space around me was not so kind and my society was never generous to a woman with lots of dreams. Dreams were the stuff of my ambitions and to fulfill them has been nothing less than a miracle for me. It is a dream again to have a journal like Kritya under such a demanding circumstance. I can say that there are few reasons behind a web journal- Firstly, I love poetry. Secondly, I felt that the world of poetry is shrinking and dividing into different groups, especially in India. Thirdly, a web journal can reach out to a wider spectrum of readers without much expenditure as compared to a print journal. There may be more reasons, but it is better to stick to these three.


Looking Back
Kritya- A Journey of a Dream --


In the beginning, I was all alone with my dream. I talked to the so called well wishers about the web journal but support was not forthcoming. May be in India, it was not considered a popular medium of journalism at that time or maybe people could never visualize my dream. My medium of writing is mostly Hindi, but I wanted Kritya to be a bilingual journal in English and Hindi, as I felt that it should reach out to more and more readers. English and Hindi are again popular mediums of literature and my aim was to bring out poetry of as many languages of the world as possible under one banner through translation. It is an ambitious project and I have my limitations.
Starting a web journal was not an easy task for me, as there were a number of obstacles to be surmounted. First of all there was lack of support. I had to go around in search of different kinds of help. I personally talked and met a few writers for support, but a firm answer was always elusive. Perhaps they did not want to spend their energy on someone else’s dream. Getting technical help was also not easy. Finally I signed up with a company hiring them for technical support for a huge price. By then, I had already left my job and was dependent on my provident funds. Things were getting difficult.
My idea of the journal was different. I wanted Kritya to have the feel of a magazine. Most of the web journals have the look of a newspaper. I wanted art to be a significant part of Kritya. While making the web pages, I got help from one of the best artists, B.D Dattan to make logos, that also, without any payment. A young artist Vijendra Vij from Delhi helped me in writing the title. And of course the great Malyalam poet Ayyappa Paniker gave me moral support and encouragement.
As work began, I ran into major problems. Firstly there was no solution for the font to be used in the web for the Hindi section-  as I live in South India, where the official and public languages do not include Hindi. By now I was working day and night. Talking to people, reading, typing etc… Getting good material was the most difficult part of this journalism. Hindi writers, especially hesitated to give me their best work. I do not know from where I got the energy to continue despite all odds. All I knew was that my ideas about Kritya were crystal clear.
Kritya touches on five main points in arts- It provides for a selection of the best that is available in terms of contemporary world poetry. At the same time, another section, Our masters – acknowledges the contribution of the great poets. A third section, the editor’s choice explains Kritya’s position on poetry. It denotes the taste of Kritya. The type of poetry Kritya promotes is thus evident in this section. Poetry needs prose too, to talk about herself. Kritya’s-in the name of poetry fulfills this need by its incisive and enlightening commentaries. The section - my voice – is the editorial. Thus – an issue could take a ride from the past to the present, from prose to poetry. Poetry exists not only in words; pictures also talk like poetry, so paintings and visuals are an important part of Kritya.
Bringing our first issue was not so simple. I burnt a good deal of midnight oil, before the issue saw daylight. It was a surprising shock for most of the poets in India, as a woman who lives far from literature GURUS, had brought out a journal, that was both bilingual and purely literary, for the first time in India without any kind of help. It was unbelievable for many. So response from known people was negative. But, poets from outside the country responded positively. Some envied while some thought, “Let us see how long this woman goes all alone”.
With Kritya, a number of dreams spread wings. A few literature lovers chose to join my journey. Jayasree Ramakrishnan Nair, a freelance editor and translator, Senior Associate Editor, Samyukta - A Journal of Women's Studies offered her services for language correction in the English section. Then Suma VS from Seattle joined us. In the Hindi Section Ajey from Kelang (Himachal Pradesh), Agnishekhar from Jammu & Kashmir came forward and supported us with good material..
Every issue is a new challenge for me—with every step I felt my feet as heavy as muddy boots. In the third month, my technical team left me after taking the full amount in advance. This hurt me a lot, but the hurdle gave me fresh energy and I started learning web designing myself. From the fourth month, I became my own technical help…and then I was very busy, yet I made time to use my imagination for the artistic development of Kritya. Every hurdle gives you new power, that’s what I learnt in this long, arduous but fulfilling journey.
All my hurdles and pain disappear into thin air with every issue of Kritya.
Achievements of Kritya-
The greatest challenge for Kritya has been to stick to deadlines and release it on time. In the last two years, Kritya has never been late; Moreover, Kritya could bring together poetry from different languages of the world.
We have had five special issues-


1- Special issue for Telugu poetry
2- Special issue for Dogri poetry
3- Spacial issue for Australian poetry
4- Special issue for Italian poetry
5- In Memoriam Ayyappa Paniker (1930-2006)

We made a number of friends. Kritya is not only just a journal, but a mission – a mission to achieve cultural and linguistic harmony. Poetry is only its weapon. We know Kritya has not achieved every thing, it wanted to achieve. But the struggle has certainly, been worthwhile. Kritya now exists as a fusion of peaceful literary and cultural pluralities in the minds of all its readers.

Kritya as a foundation for arts, literature and culture:-

Kritya is a foundation established to widen the scope and reach of global literature, arts and culture. It seeks to be accessible through translation, publication, performance, interaction and exchange of literary ideas among various languages and cultures. Kritya was formally registered as a trust in January 2007

 

Our Trustees are-

1.
Dr. Rati Saxena
specialized in the study of the Vedas, especially Atharva Veda, and secured a Ph.D. Degree in Sanskrit from the University of Rajasthan, Jaipur She has published Four collections of her own poems in Hindi. One in Malayalam, two in English and a critical work in Hindi on the renowned Malayalam poet Balamani Amma (Sahitya Akedemy). Her recent work is research on Atharvaveda –“The seeds of mind” a fresh approach to study of Atharvaveda with the fellowship of Indira Gandhi National Center for Arts. She has translated about ten Malayalam works, both prose and poetry, into Hindi and has participated in several national seminars and published articles in a number of journals. She is the recipient of Kendriya Sahitya Akedemy award for translation in year-2000  She is the chief editor of  www.kritya.in , managing trustee  of Kritya foundation and director of poetry festival.

2.
DR. V.P. MOHAMMED KUNJU METTARU  i
s a Professor and Former Dean, Faculty of Oriental Studies, Former Member, Syndicate, University of Kerala knows several languages - Malayalam, Hindi, Urdu, English, Practical knowledge of Sanskrit, Arabic and Dutch. More than 300 papers in standard Journals in Hindi, Malayalam and English.. He has a  number of books to his credit. Adhunik Hindi Ka Srot: Naya Chintan, Published by the Author, TVM, 1986. Dakhini Hindi Ka Sufi Sahitya, Lok Bharti Prakashan, Allahabad, 1988, Masnavi Kadam Rao Padam Rao, Arya Prakashan Mandal, Delhi-31, 1990..Dakhini Hindi Bhasha Aur Sahitya, Lok Bharti Prakashan, Allahabad, 1994,Shantivahak Nabi, Lok Bharti Prakashan, Allahabad, 1994.Adhunik Hindi Ka Srot; Nav Chintan (Revised and enlarged edition) Alekh Prakashan, Delhi 32, 2002.Irshadnama, Alekh Prakashan, Delhi-32, 2002.He got a number of awards for his literary works. some of them are-Rashtra Bhasha Parishad Award, Govt. of Bihar, Patna, 1982.Hindi Writers Awards, Central Hindi Directorate, Govt. of India, New Delhi, 1987.Acharya Ramachandra Sukla Award, U.P. Hindi Sansthan, Govt. of U.P. 1996.Sammelan Samman, Hindi Sahitya Sammelan, Prayag, 2002.Rajbhasha Gaurav Samman, Dehradun, 2003 & 2004.
Dr. Mohammaed Kunju Mettaru is General Secretary of Kritya foundation

3.
K. G. Balakrishna Pillai is a Gandhian cultural and educational activist, writer, translator and journalist. Actively associated with Gandhian thoughts especially with regards to illiteracy eradication and propagation of Hindi at national and international level .An author of several articles, features and books and booklets in Malayalam and also in Hindi /English. He has edited a literary journal in Hindi -Keraljyothi for about 30 years. He has severed in several Hindi advisory committees of government of India.
 

 


4
Thomas Mathew is the technical adviser to Kritya. An engineer by profession, he is an expert in the I.T and I.T . Enabled Services. His professional responsibilities include managing three Software companies (Sanmath Technologies-Software Development, Righters-Support Systems and Solutions for Health care, Atticlabs-web based software applications development), Technical Consultant to I.T and I.T.E.S companies( Redwebsolutions,U.K, Insoft Websolutions, Quicktrans Solutions, Finesse technologies). He is one of the directors of CRUST (Centre for Rural and Urban Studies and Training), an NGO closely associated with central and state government projects, dedicated to the utilization and spread of IT services including GIS (Geographical Information Systems) in the rural and urban developments.
 

 

5
Shalbha is a young artist, singer and sportsperson. She is an architect pursuing her masters in advanced construction management . She is creative, responsible and has good organization and leadership skills

 

 


 

Indian consultant for language

Shyamala Nair is Currently working as reader in Lady Amritbai Daga College for Women, (L.A.D.) Nagpur. Areas of academic and teaching interest include Modern poetry, Critical Theory, Women’s Studies, Shakespeare studies… Was member of Larkin Society and The Poetry Society of India besides others…. Published articles and Poetry selected by Imtiaz Dharker and Kamala Das in Femina, Quest, The Journal of the Poetry society of India, The Journal of the Nagpur University English Teachers’ Organisation, Horizon…A collection of Poems ‘A Side of the Sun’ Writers’ Workshop, Calcutta, 1997.

Kritya-Print -

Joneve McCormick, who hosts Soul to Soul, lives in Manhattan. Her poems, short stories and articles have appeared in various journals, periodicals, anthologies, and on websites such as World Poems, thanal online and on The Argonauts' Boat, with some of her photographs. She recently edited the anthology World's Strand for publication, and Goldfish Press is bringing out a collection with poet Koon Kau Woon in 2007. Joneve offers online services which include writing poems for loved ones and special occasions, research and writing, ghost writing, promotional writing, consulting, editing and tutoring.

Christina Pacosz has been publishing in little magazines and small presses since the 1970's and has several books of poetry, the most recent, Greatest Hits, 1975-2001,Pudding House, 2002. She is teaching urban youth in Kansas City, Missouri
 


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