Back in 2004 I helped record and present a BBC Radio 4 programme called Chasing Hares for the Natural History Unit in Bristol with a gifted and versatile radio producer called Grant Sonnex. This programme which followed three intrepid hare researchers across Europe alerted me to the Three Hares symbol and the search for its hidden meaning. The programme was repeated several times and it proved that there was a worldwide interest in the subject as well as an intellectual path to be followed.
These essays are simply a continuation of that project and delve into some very interesting historical material. The symbol occurs in four major religions and even a Hindu Maharajah’s pleasure palace in Rajasthan. Also included are excerpts from interviews made with Buddhist monks and scholars in the Himalayan Kingdom of Ladakh and these give for the first time a cultural and very plausible meaning to the enigmatic symbol of the Three Hares.
I have decided to publish the essays on line so that the research material is not lost and is available for all those eager hare enthusiasts throughout the world to carry the research work forward.
Other hares, both three and four, are to be found the length and breadth of the Old Silk route connecting Europe with Central Asia, Mongolia, Afghanistan and China as well as ancient hares in Egypt, Syria, Persia and Armenia.