The deep ocean, vast sky and the gigantic mountains: all have a great possession in bringing about a harmonious balance for man-kind. For years, man was truly connected to nature, perceptibly with the flow of energy from the universe. Most of our ancestors connected to it, experienced it and transferred it, a huge knowledge that remained deep within one’s self called self realisation. Somewhere deep in the mountains of Japan, here is a man that experienced this energy flow called REIKI (REI: Universal consciousness and KEI: Life energy). Dr. Mikao Usui brought it to the forefront of this simple universal energy healing, which today has millions of followers around the globe.

So how does Reiki work? We have Aura surrounding us, the proof of which has been the images captured by Kirilian cameras. The main component of this aura is the energy body. Reiki works by healing this energy body, which in turn heals the emotion or physical body. Therefore it can be used to heal physical or emotional issues like chronic pain, allergies, depression, and anxiety. The whole universe can also be seen as many different variations of energy. The emotions, situations, dreams, spaces all of them are energy equations. This factor gives reiki a certain edge. It can be used for cleaning, healing, energizing and protecting spaces, relationships, situations and much more.

Today, Reiki has become a way of life. It being a powerful technique, Reiki has been used and accepted by many, yet being a simple to practice. Being centred in a non-religious perspective, it works for all those who has the intention to heal self, others and also for those looking forward to a joyous positive life. The universe is ready with its intention; it’s time to start this new journey towards holistic healing.

Doctorate in alternate medicine (Hypnotherapy)
Masters in Applied Psycology
Reiki Master (William Lee Rand School)
Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Past Life Therapist, Tarot & Angel Card Reader.
Crystal & Chakra Healer.

206-A, Road Number 4.
Trimurthy Colony, Mahendra Hills.
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Web: http://swabhaavam.com
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Today is TEACHERS DAY ie 5th September. Teachers Day is a cherished occasion for the teacher as well as for the students. It is celebrated by students all across the country, by honoring their teachers. One may not be fond of all teachers, but there are surely a few who leave an indelible impression in our life’s. The Guru-Shisya tradition denotes a succession of teachers and disciples in traditional Indian culture. It is the tradition of spiritual relationship and mentoring in traditional Indian culture where teaching is transmitted from a GURU to a disciple. It is considered that this relationship, based on the genuineness of the GURU, and the respect, commitment, devotion and obedience of the student, is the best way for subtle or advanced knowledge to be conveyed. The student eventually masters the knowledge that the GURU embodies.

In today’s context who is an IDEAL GURU? Do we have the same relationship between GURU and SHISHYA as it was earlier or has changed? We have in our Indian culture Guru’s like Vasishta and Dronacharya. Unfortunately, today all are in the mad race of competition for better marks; teachers in a school classroom are given less importance than the teachers appointed for private tuition.

Today Teachers Day is celebrated in great style in many schools, but many students meaninglessly give flowers and “thank you” cards merely as a formality. There are very few students who have a genuine respect for their teachers.

Which part or who is responsible for this situation. I being a teacher accept that it’s most on the part of the teacher itself which brought the GURU-SHISHYA relationship from its pious meaning to something else which is hard to describe. Now it’s the sole responsibility of a teacher that how he is going to maintain the GURU-SHISHYA relationship. If the teacher is positive in his efforts then definitely he can establish a good relationship with his students. The unique and foremost trait of a teacher should be total dedication on his/her part in the field of teaching. A true teacher is rich without money. His wealth is to be reckoned not in terms of bank balance, but in the bounteous love and loyalty he has evoked in pupils. He is an emperor whose empire is carved in the grateful minds of his pupils, which no power on earth can shake, no atom bomb can destroy. A teacher must play the role of lamps that shatter darkness, become the lighthouse that guides the wandering ships to their right destination.

A teacher has to fulfill three levels of responsibility to maintain a healthy GURU-SHISYA relationship.
The first is fulfillment of the prerequisite of getting to know his students individually, to probe the innermost depths of their hearts as well as examining the outer details of their lives. As the teacher’s familiarity grows, so the potency of his advice deepens proportionately.
Secondly the teacher must express love and affection towards his students. It is the affection and love that dissolves the student’s natural tendency to resist and the advice can penetrate more easily and effectively.
Finally, the teacher must take time to reflect upon his students progress, highlight their strengths and label them, refining and adjusting his vision to forward in a positive and meaningful way.

Apart from this a teacher should be a constant motivator for his students. Motivation is not a force that can be supplied from outside. It has to be generated from within and it is a teacher, who is a true leader can inspire his students to grow overcoming every inability and obstacle. A teacher does not have to tell his students to improve, his charisma and actions bring transformation in students silently. Teachers should be a role model for their students. Respecting the interests of students assumes much importance. The teacher should help students understand their interests and strengths.

An ideal teacher builds an everlasting impression on the minds of his students and are always remembered and loved. He displays extreme simplicity inspite of his extra ordinary academic attainments, dedicates his whole life to the cause of education. He never allows his students to be idle or indisciplined. The vastness of his knowledge deeply impresses every student and is never proud of it. For a perfect teacher, all students are alike. He is never partial to any students and is always fair. He does not favor any student, treats each student equally.

The importance of teachers influence on a student should never be under estimated. The values learned at home are developed further at school under a teacher’s guidance. Our society needs teachers who understand the sanctity of the GURU- SHISHYA relationship and are able to inculcate the love of knowledge in their students. To conclude it is said that the teachers should imbibe in themselves the qualities of perseverance, integrity and dedication towards their noble profession realizing the fact that teaching is like planting tree; one should wait for a long time for the trees to finally mature.


Compiled by Bency Joy, ( PhD Scholar in Psychology)


Exactly a hundred years ago on 22 November 1909 Vedappan Solomon died at Rangoon, while on the way to India for treatment. His sojourn in the Andaman Nicobar Islands yielded great rewards for the Nicobari people, changing their lives forever. He succeeded where the Jesuits, the Moravians, the Danes and the Dutch had failed. What they could not achieve in 3 centuries he did, mainly through his earnestness, simplicity, humility and dedication to the service of God and humanity. 

The need for a missionary to cater to the needs of the aboriginal people was felt ever since the beginning of the settlement. With the establishment of the Andamanese Homes an officer was given the charge of taking care of the needs of the natives, both spiritual and temporal. Rev Corbyn and Rev Chard, the Chaplains at Port Blair, tried their best to work towards their spiritual upliftment. To the predominantly Andamanese orphanage some Nicobaris were also added. This was to educate them and bring them out of superstitions that plagued them due to the influence of the witch doctors. 

When the attempts of Rev. Corbyn, Rev. Chard, Mr. Homfray and Mr. MV Portman did not make much headway the then Chief Commissioner Col. Cadell felt that the Andamans needed a missionary “who is practical and will go to the jungle with them when required”. It was then the charge of the orphanage was placed in the hands of Mr. Vedappan Solomon, the Catechist. MV Portman describes him as an “earnest and intelligent man.” The orphanage was shifted to Haddo from Ross Island. By that time the Andamanese inmates have all died or gone away. Only the Nicobari boys were left. Among them was one named Ha Chev Ka. He was to become later the “Father of Modern Nicobar” and assume the name of John Richardson. As the boys felt homesick and longed to be back with their loved ones Mr. Solomon volunteered to go to Nicobar. Together with his wife, who ably assisted him in everything he shifted to Car Nicobar.

His landing on Car Nicobar on 15th March “Temple Villa”, the house where Vedappan Solomon stayed in Mus became the center for the evangelization of Nicobar as never before. 

In the early days on Car Nicobar Solomon was given many additional responsibilities like Government Agent, Port Officer, Meteorological Observer, school master, unofficial Magistrate and amateur doctor. In his official capacity he would board the vessels that called at the port and beg the captains and crews not to trade goods in exchange for ‘intoxicants’. Slowly and steadily the tireless efforts of the Solomons started changing the Nicobari society. Their faith became stronger and, along with it their society, which was at the mercy of unscrupulous traders for centuries. The use of cows for milk, cultivating fruits and vegetables and learning sewing and carpentry have been started by the Solomons. They introduced domestic pigeons. Mrs. Solomon taught the children in school and also ministered to their health needs.  

Suddenly tragedy struck when Mrs. Solomon died in January 1901 due to an apoplectic fit. Solomon was shattered but he did not leave his mission. He continued to work among the Nicobari brethren. His second wife Anboo Betsy proved to be an equally dedicated missionary wife. Solomon gave up his government jobs and started working as a full time missionary. Together they brought about a dramatic change in the society. All the superstitions and ignorance have disappeared. The transformation was so striking that a British visitor to Car Nicobar after the Second World War remarked, “In all my life I have never been so profoundly aware of the Divine power of goodness as I was during my visit to Car Nicobar…”. The same was the feeling of many who visited Car Nicobar after the deadly tsunami of 26 December 2004. The fortitude with which the Nicobaris bore the devastation of the calamity was the result of the strong Christian foundations laid more than a hundred years ago and nurtured by Bishop John Richardson. 

The deadly climate that terminated the efforts of the earlier missionaries took its toll on Vedappan also. While going to Madras on leave he died at Rangoon on 22 November 1909. His death was deeply mourned in Car Nicobar. But he had already prepared a disciple to take on his mantle. Ha Chev Ka whom Vedappan baptized and christened as John Richardson became the greatest leader of the people of Nicobar. Solomon’s wife Betsy continued as school mistress at Car Nicobar for another six years after Vedappan’s death, teachingthe Nicobari girls to sewing, embroidery, cooking, housekeeping and many such things. She died at Port Blair on 23rd June 1921.  

This remarkable life of dedication made Bishop N.C. Sargant to say that Vedappan “became a true apostle to the Nicobar Islands,…”.

On the 100th anniversary of his death it is befitting to remember him and his wife for their life of great sacrifice.



World Expo 2010 at Shanghai is the occasion for China to bring the world at home, and for the world to feel at home in China. The theme of Expo 2010 is "Better City, Better Life," representing the common wish of the whole humankind for a better living in future urban environments.
 
I was fortunate to be a part of this event & was proud to see my country stand amidst all the other countries. 
 
The Indian pavilion is around 4,000 square meters. It has a crimson central dome, symbolizing the theme "Unity in Diversity". The pavilion showcases India's rich cultural heritage, its diversity of faith, culture and language, traditional and modern technological development and urban-rural interface. I managed to capture the lovely memories in my camera and bring them back to India, to share it with all.

The central dome is herb-roofed with the "Tree of Life" in copper.
 
                    
 
The entrance to the pavilion is through a vaulted portal with the "Tree of Life" carving. 
 
                   {mosimage} 
 
Inside the pavilion the 360-degree Holographic Projection depicts India's evolvement over its long history, from the ancient times of Mohan Jodaro and Harappa (dating back to 2000-3000 BC) through the medieval period to modern India.
 
360-degree Holographic Projection
 
                   {mosimage} 
 
Though I must admit that the Indian Pavilion lacked a focused theme unlike the pavilions of other countries. With so many showcase events happening, surely the lack of networking and feedback from the right people can hardly be cited as an excuse by India for not displaying its best at such events.
 
Napoleon Bonaparte once said "China is a sleeping giant. Just let him sleep, because if he awakes he'll stun the world…"  

Hope India awakes to world class standards before it’s too late. 
Pesticides and herbicides have created two major problems by persisting and accumulating in the environment and contaminating numerous plants and animals and secondly they affect human health directly or indirectly. Pesticides can pollute air, water and soil and can have harmful effects on plants and human beings. They can also be hazardous for all forms of aquatic life.

Most pesticides such as DDT, DDE, DDD, dieldrin and heptachlor epoxide and most herbicides such as 2,3,5_T( 245 trichlorophenoxy acetic acid ) dioxin have been extensively used for control of diseases and crop destroying insects. The most common fertilizers used are DAP, MOP, Urea and Rock phosphate. These fertilizers provide Nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium which are very vital to plant growth are being extensively used in the Andaman islands. This practice is leading to Eutrophication of nearby coastal area leading to degradation of coasts. These inputs are chemicals which are non biodegrable pollutants that do not degrade or degrade very slowly. Thus they contaminate the ecosystem and enter food chains. Since they become more concentrated at higher trophic levels causing bioaccumulation and biomagnifications. Certain pesticides have mutational effects on human DNA molecules. DDT which is commonly used is reported to have lethal effects in small doses. It is also suspected to be carcinogenic in human tissues.

There are 10,414 land holdings in the Islands. The average land each household has two acres of paddy land and two acres of hilly land. The utilization of land and water by the farmer is not efficient so farming becomes uneconomical. In the present agriculture practice greater use of chemical fertilizer is creating problems of salinity, affecting water table and day by fields per hectare are going down. Soils are being degraded due to soil erosion and leaching of plant nutrients. Agro forestry is a system which combines the benefits of forest ecosystem and agricultural practices which seems to be ideally suited to the islands.

Visualizing the damaging effects of pesticide and fertilizer pollution biofertilizer seems to be a good alternative. The concept of biofertilizer such as Vermicompost is gaining momentum and has the potential to reduce the environmental costs accrued to use of fertilizer and pesticides. Organically grown vegetables are also being explored by various multinationals and health conscious individuals. In South Andaman’s and Little Andaman’s about 800 organic vegetable gardens have been set up for tsunami affected women beneficiaries under the backyard Agro forestry promotion of ADRA India NGO. They also produce and use Vermicompost.