Audio medium helps stir one's imagination: Devdutt

Audio medium helps stir one's imagination: Devdutt
Image source: Google

New Delhi: Author Devdutt Pattanaik, who has come out with a story of Lord Krishna on Audible, says the audio medium helps stir one's imagination and Indians have a natural attraction towards it.

In "Krishna 360 Degree", Pattanaik tells the story of Vishnu's avatar on earth, who balances village life, as well as city life.

"His village life is surrounded by women, as described in the Bhagavada. His city life is surrounded by kings and politics, as described in the Mahabharata," the author says.

So, why was the title "Krishna 360 Degree" chosen?

"We wanted to appreciate Krishna from every angle, as a child, as a musician, dancer, wrestler, cowherd, strategist, soldier. Hence, it's titled 'Krishna 360 Degree' on Audible," Pattanaik, who has come out with several interpretations of ancient Indian scriptures, told PTI.

He says the greatest achievement of Krishna is his ability to recognise how wealth and power make people foolish and they forget the important things in life, like love, affection and generosity.

"If we can, like Krishna, recognise that wealth and power are only useful when it makes us kind and generous, we will learn a lot," he says.

Pattanaik, who has also presented "Revisiting Mahabharata" on Audible, says the audio medium has a powerful, primal draw.

"I have been giving lectures for a very long time to live audiences. I have always found the audio medium to be very powerful. Perhaps because it connects us with our old oral tradition. Humanity was telling stories orally long before it started writing and reading stories," he says.

He also feels Indians have a natural attraction towards the audio medium because it's part of the country's age-old tradition and culture.

"Even today, we like to listen to stories more than read stories. But unlike a visual medium, the audio medium helps stir one's imagination. That is what is attracting the people today," he argues.

On how he has adapted himself to this format, Pattanaik says, "In an audio format, you try to be less formal and more informal. You try to talk to people as if you're talking to a friend. You have to imagine the person sitting in front of you is your friend, child, or your student and accordingly, you balance yourself. You also have to do a lot of exercises to rest your vocal cord."

He goes on to add: "You can't do more than half an hour or forty minutes of recording per day. I've been lucky, I've done a lot of podcasts, and I've done a lot of interviews. I have been advised by sound engineers who've been very kind and generous with their advice on how to use my voice."

Asked to compare between physical books and the audio medium, he says; "I think audio is very popular among those people who travel in trains or cars on the same routes daily. It is also used by people on the go, like those taking their morning walks. They love the audio medium. So, they can do two things at the same time.

"Reading a book is a solitary activity. You need to sit down and enjoy reading - and reading has a very different audience. These are people who do not want to do two things simultaneously. They wish to sit down and relax."

He then adds, "One must admit that more details can be provided in a book which an audio medium does not allow for. For instance, visuals can be put in a book which an audio medium cannot provide - a map or a table or a symbol needs a book. But with the audio medium, one can communicate emotions much better than the written word.