The story of India

The story of India
THE STORY OF INDIA: THE POWER OF IDEAS Sunday, 05 April 2009 07:30PM

British historian Michael Wood continues his epic journey uncovering India's dramatic history and achievements. The theme of this episode is the power of ideas in Indian history.

The Story of India: The Power of Ideas covers the last centuries BC - the age of the Buddha, the coming of the Greeks and the rule of the emperor Ashoka, one of the greatest figures in world history.

Beginning with incredible images of a Jain festival that takes place once every 12 years, Michael Wood sees the Buddha as India's first protestor, follows the invasion of India by Alexander the Great and ends with the birth of the first great Indian empire.

Among the people Michael meets is HH the Dalai Lama, who explains why Buddhism is still relevant today.

Michael travels by rail to the famous sites of the Ganges plain: Benares, Sarnath and Bodhgaya; by helicopter and army convoy through northern Iraq to the site of the greatest battle in the ancient world; by truck up the Khyber Pass; then by river to the first great Indian capital, Patna.

Using archaeology, living traditions, legends, and 'India's Rosetta stone', Michael tells the story of the first great Indian state, 'the forerunner to today's India'.