In S. Varkhedi & G. Mahulikar (eds.), New Frontiers in Sanskrit and Indic Knowledge. New Delhi: New Bharatiya Book Corporation. pp. 106-121 (2019)
Indian Philosophy has reached across the globe. It is popular for its
practical way towards life. Study of Indian philosophy should be part
of all streams of education.
Film is effective tool of communication. It attracts all generations and
makes strong impression in the mind. Film is always considered as an
effective tool in Pedagogy. Philosophy deals with abstract concepts,
their correlation and logical reasoning. It deals with the complex
problem of reality. People have notion that philosophy is a dry and
Students can understand complex philosophical ideas if they are
demonstrated through films. There are films based on biographies of
philosophers, life picture of great people, incidences in life of
philosophers. But it can attract only limited number of audience.
Some popular Hollywood films have amalgamation of science fiction,
super natural elements, fantastic story guided by some philosophical
principles. Such films attract audience from different strata. Viewer
is totally captivated by extra ordinary super natural and fictional
elements in the film. As a result, certain philosophical principles are
taught to audience without their conscious effort. (Kantāsammita
upadeśa) Teaching philosophy with the means of such films can be
definitely effective tool in Pedagogy.
Such practise will not only create liking for Indian Philosophy but
will result in effective understanding of complex ideas. It can create
awareness that Indian Philosophy is embraced across the globe, there
are no boundaries for philosophical deliberations and there are certain
common threads in different philosophical schools.
Paper will take example of popular movie ‘Matrix’ to explain the
principles of Advaita Vedānta. The Matrix is a 1999 science fiction
film written and directed by The Wachowskis, starring Keanu Reeves,
Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, and Joe
Pantoliano. It states the journey of hero of the film ‘Neo’ who is
aspiring for reality. He is struggling between illusory world and the
real world which is presented through the means of science fiction.
This paper will analyse Matrix from the perspective of Advaita
Vedānta. Māyā projects the illusory world (vikṣepa) in place of
Brahman (āvaraṇa). Film portrays digital world as illusory world.
One sees this world as real due to limitations of body, mind and
intellect. Neo goes to the real world and realises his true nature. True
reality is beyond senses and sense objects (atindrīya). Concepts of
Advaita Vedānta can be explained with this film. Such movies can be
shown to students along with Vedanta discourses. Paper will explore
‘Film and Philosophy’ as an effective pedagogical model.