Seldom in history has one individual had so much influence on a nation's history, its civilization and religion. Jagadguru Sri Adi Shankaracharya, the exponent of the Advaita School of deliberation, is believed to be one such person.
His doctrine of Sanathana Dharma is considered as one of India's biggest contributions to the world.
His works have been translated into different languages and his thoughts have takers the world over.
However, while his achievements remained eternal, the life history of this legend had slipped into oblivion over time- till the rediscovery of Kalady exactly a century back.
It was this episode of rediscovery that spirited the Sri Shankara Advaita Research Centre, an institution associated with the Sri Sharada Peetham at Sringeri, to visually document what the life of Adi Shankara may have been like.
The documentary ‘Kalady, The Triumph of Faith Over Time' was released in Kalady on May 18, 2010.
It narrates how Kalady- the birth place of Adi Shankara was discovered by the 33 rd Jagadguru of Sringeri Sri Sharada Peetham and gives a description on the rich legacy of this picturesque sleepy town on the banks of river Periyar as a centre of Vedic learning and culture.
According to Rajesh Krishnan, one of its co-directors, “the film is essentially a visual depiction of the entire things that happened during his brief life of 32 years. We have taken every effort to bring out an authentic account by researching into the scripts related with Adi Shankara and gathering information by speaking to various experts on the topic.”
The 80 minute film takes one on a visual journey through Kalady. The movie also interweaves relevant portions of a Sanskrit speech of the presiding chief of Sringeri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji with English subtitles, enlightening the viewers about the life of Sri Shankaracharya and the discovery of Kalady.
Conceived by V. R. Gowrishankar, the CEO and Administrator of Sri Sharada Peetham, the movie is a combination of visuals, narration and animation - along the style of a National Geographic Channel documentary.
It has been professionally narrated by Harish Bhimani and has musical contributions from many eminent musicians including the renowned violinist L. Subramaniam, mandolin Srinivas and the Sringeri sisters.