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Published on 17 Mar 2007
Kalaripayattu - The Orient's treasure trove, a gift to the modern world and the mother of all martial arts. Legend traces the 3000-year-old art form to Sage Parasurama- the master of all martial art forms and credited to be the re-claimer of Kerala from the Arabian Sea. Kalaripayattu originated in ancient South India. Kung- fu, popularized by the monks of the Shoaling Temple traces its ancestry to Bodhi Dharma - an Indian Buddhist monk and Kalaripayattu master.
Crafted in ancient South India drawing inspiration from the raw power and sinuous strength of the majestic animal forms - Lion, Tiger, Elephant, Wild Boar, Snake, and Crocodile ........ Kalaripayattu laid down the combat code of the Cholas, the Cheras and the Pandyas. Shrouded in deep mystery and mists of secrecy Kalaripayattu was taught by the masters in total isolation, away from prying eyes.
Following the collapse of the princely states and the advent of free India - Kalaripayattu has lost its significance as a mortal combat code. In a Phoenix-like resurrection, Kalaripayattu is today emerging in a new avatar - an ancient art form - a source of inspiration for self-expression in dance forms - both traditional and contemporary, in theatre, in fitness and in movies too.