25 February, 2008

Meditation- Needlework

The last three days were quite busy with attending a workshop for teachers (on Reading)on Saturday to attending a very sick chid(my younger one)at home. Today,I learned about meditation techniques on the T.V.(Podhigai Channel.The presenter is renowned for conducting personality development workshops.He spoke on
1).Shabda Meditation:-We close our eyes concenterating on the sounds we aere hearing.Later we focus on only on sound.
2).Vipasana Meditation:- We concenterate on the sound of our breathing only.
3).Zen Meditation:- We count our breaths (inhaling & exhaling is considered as one cycle)to a predetermined number say 25.Then, we count backwards to 1.
I was thinking how handwork/needlework is meditation in a way.We have to focus on what we are doing with our hands.That kind of focus leads to a calmness of mind;speaking of which,ironically ,I have to admit that I am not at all in a calm state now.
{I just had a shouting match with my 15 year old daughter over her jumping in to take over my seat(literally).We have one computer for the four of us.I could only get to blog/google when I have done atleast a part of my housework(which I find is a never ending one)and My daughter is so avid scrapbooker/chat-erthat she sits at the net whenever she gets the chance,especially when someoneelse has openned the net.Somedays I couldn't even come near the computer;so my frustration levels hit an all time high when I find someone purloining my time,especially when I am writing a post.}
Another thing which contributes to my frustration with the net is the frequent current/electricity cuts that we have here in Coimbatore.It makes me wish that I was back in Kalpakkam.As talking about Kalpakkam would fill up a whole page or more I will save it for later.
I will write another post ,soon,on how I think needle work is like meditation or Yoga

21 February, 2008

Things great and small

I learnt how to upload pictures,Made sopme pikcles &a fair amount of housework today.I posted the picture on my other site for which I wrote my first post today.I also got ideas about how i wanted to keep my work for the TIFC together.I must next learn atleast some rudiments of typewriting so that I can do this more easily,atleast without this pain in my neck(literally).I also want to be able to do that again(adding pictures to my documents,i mean).This is the picture I had uploaded .It is a picture of Sri Ganesha,the Lord of Beginnings.He is my personal God,to whom I offer all my prayers and actions.I feel/know he is always with me.We hindus start everything,great or small with prayers to Him.He is considered as the Lord of obstacles(Vignesha)too.

19 February, 2008

Changes in Traditions

It has been a while since what I am going to say here stewed in my head.Many things prevented me from putting it down;but I dont want to talk about that.I want to discuss what Sharon had written on change in her blog ,In A Minute Ago,on the February TIF challenge ."Change is the only Constant"said Prof.K.G.Rama when taking class for us,the '89-'91 batch of S.W. students at Stella Maris College,Madras/Chennai.She was quoting someone whose name I dont remember ,but this aphorism stuck to my mind and kept playing whenever I had to face a change,both mild and/or drastic.Change happens everywhere-within ourselves,and outside,in our surroundings.Some are Changes that are sought while others creep on us,taking us unawares.I believe the ability to deal with the change gives one success.
The most visible change nowadays in our life is ,as Sharon Said ,is theway our lives revolve around the internet/cellphone& lso the way we celebrate Festivals
The one that I find funny is the way Valentine's day is celebrated in our country.I first heard/read about Valentine's day in a Dennis the Menace Comic as a child.I did not know why it was celebrated or what it stood for.But,today even a toddler knows when itis celebrated ,for what,etc.(It is called Lovers' Day in my native tamil).Earlier Shiva Rathri and Vasantha Panchami were the only festivity associated with February.Vasantha Panchami heralds the Spring season,is mostly celebrated as a North Idian festival and Shiva Rathri is an allnight vigil spent worshipping Shiva.Generally,it is considered that winter is over after Shiva Rathri(i.e. the raise in the mercury level is marked).Today this is observed only by the pious/believing Hindus&quite forgotten by the others.
Another change happened today,now infact;I learnt to "link" and "italicise" and "boldise" thru the relevanticons that have mysteriously(to me,atleast)appeared on my posting site. <

09 February, 2008

A Post,a Comment&a Response

Dear Mr.Nagata Shojiro,
I read your response to my comments on Kolam on Anil Menon's site,and thank you for the same.I appreciate your kindness in telling me of your work with Kolams.I am also glad you are using Kolams/Psykolo to help the visually impaired too.While kolam has been considered to be a woman's/female art ,it has always been scorned at by the men in the same society.One's Kolam skills will draw comment only when it is poor/nill.When I explained the benefits of kolam they were always surprised.It seems that it has gained some respect only in the past 5 or so years,especially by mathematicians.Mr.P.K. Srinivasan was the one to inform me of Kolam's significance in math.
Traditionally it has been held that Kolam drawing is a skill that shows the woman-artist's intelligence,diligence , manipulative/spatial intelligence,clarity of thinking,creativity&many more .I have personally found pre-occupation,&attention deficit invariably causes me to make mistakes in new/not-well-learnt kolams.At those times ,only the well learnt/practiced Kolams are easy to draw.So I use the Kolam ritual as a guage for my mental preparation for the day.I dont know if the posibilities of kolam in emotional intelligence has even been explored.
regarding Psykolo's use (yes i read the document authored by you &dr thangaraj;it is very good) for the LD children,It will bring far more benefits ,if it is done on paper/ slate/blackboard because it will give them practise of drawing the curved/straight lines that Kolam & handwriting(atleast English/indian languages)demand;Especially with dysgraphia !
Please let me know how I can help.I am talking mainly from my personal experience ,without the backing of any academic certification,except that sas a student of Psychology &a trained primary teacher.I suffer from dysgraphia,too :though I learnt of it Only when I did my teachers training.
with regards
I had read a post on Kolams a long time ago;on revisiting the site to check something I saw that there were responses to my comment on that site.Mr.Nagata had written to me asking me to contact him,but I could not as it was a mechanical reply ,it seems.I thought it might as well go to my blog as I felt it to be good ,and this being my area of work,informative too

08 February, 2008

Mistakes Galore!

The past few days have been very frustrating.I have been making a lot of mistakes in my blog( i had typed a blog on the theme of this months TIF challenge &tryied to link ,and SPOOF! the whole thing disappeared).I still haven't figured how to link.Now i am very wary where I put my finger on the keyboard.
That is not all.I opened my g.mail today to find 5 mail in my spam section. There were from people I didn't recognise (one persn called Pamela had sent more than one mail).I noticed another that said something erotic and I literally panicked and what do you think I did! I didnot open any of the mail and pressed the delete button impulsively thinking that there would be some virus if i opened any of the mail there. THen I wondered if it(the legit ones,I mean) might have been someone from one of the various blogs I had visited or from the response from someone who visited my site and left a comment or maybe even TIFC Fellows/Sisters.Irealised if you delete something you cannot get it back,and I felt very FOOLISH for reacting the way I did. I am very sorry Pamela I did not give you the benefit of doubt and read your mail.Now I know better.I now know it is alright to open the mail to findout if it is genuine or not.(this from my very net/computer savy daughter).

05 February, 2008

Then and Now

The next TIF challenge has been anounced.The theme is (as I understand it )is A view of the past -the things that have changed &your memories of them.I have A Real Lot to share,too.Reading In a minute ago brought back to me memories of my Holidays in our mothers native village of Mudikondan.This village is a fairly large one.The days were spent in removing the seeds from tamarind pods,rolling the blackgram & greengram on an inclined wooden plank(which doubles as a seat at other times)kept on my lap to remove the stones and other debris from the field,sitting amidst a group of farm labourers(women who also did house work in our houses)in the Open-to-sky quadrangle in the middle of our house(atleast a hundred years old).This was just one of the many that we did.I'll write about them in the subsequent blogs.
Now,of course the tamarind is still being deseeded in the same way there,but I am no more the carefree child who sat there talking to the women offering them some lighthearted occasions in which the tedium& the monotony of their tasks got relieved (I hope).My children refuse to do what we (my sister & I)willingly did.That is Change,Isuppose.
Ithought it would be easy to translate the memory these activities which are recorded in my head in my native Tamil idiom into English in which I have been trained to communicate.I find myself searching for the appropriate words that would describe the appliances/processes involved.
I find that this exercise has increased the value of my Language &Traditions in my eyes.

02 February, 2008

Its Feb already !

And I'm yet to finish my TIF challenge for Jan.