Showing posts from October, 2010

In the Manner of Thinking...

Have you ever been there? When your mind is in panic and your thoughts are washing over you in one negative wave after another, when it seems as if the world is suffocating you, when every breathe is like a coiled snake around your chest, and that very chest will burst, explode with grief and pain? If you have, then I understand you and so read on... If you have not, then to understand read on... At these moments of pain and anger, or pain and despair, get out. Go out of the house, put some distance between you and that which is causing this reaction in you. and take yourself to a....bookshop... Yes a bookshop... Browse, look around, then pick up the first book that catches your attention, flip through it, stop at a page, read it... In all probability you will find the answer you are looking for... simple? sceptical? Try it. This is not the first time I have done it...but I must confess this is the first time I have noticed how I reach to books for solace. I notic

Who is not a Storyteller?

* Storytelling is a human universal , and common themes appear in tales throughout history and all over the the world. * These characteristics of stories, and our natural affinity toward them, reveal clues about our evolutionary history and the roots of emotion and empathy in the mind. * By studying narrative’s power to influence beliefs, researchers are discovering how we analyze information and accept new ideas. I have reached a stage in life when I run from definitions and formulae. Do I want to define anything? Do I have formulas for anything? What does this have to do with the link and the points I have copied above? On the surface they may not be related, but to me while I run away from such boundaries and lines, I am still searching internally for a common thread that binds my scientific side to my irrational side. That's where I find storytelling. I find when we tell stories we can f

A story~~The Treasure we Hold~~

Thich Nhat Hahn A beautiful book called A pebble for my Pocket by Thich Nhat Hahn. It holds some valuable thoughts and stories that we can share with our children. In fact it is meant to be read by kids. As it explores mindfulness and meditation. It also helps children observe the world around them and experience the gift that nature bestows on us. I picked out a story from this book, for our Ladies club event( a farewell once again!). A rich man is in despair with his lazy son. He tries to tell him to change his ways and also tells him to hone a talent to help him in his life. Yet the son does not heed his father's word. The father is not one to let things rest, after much thought he calls his tailor and asks him to stitch a coat lined with fur for his son. Once ready, he hands this coat to his son and says that whatever is lost or taken away from him the son should ensure that he does not loose nor give away this coat. The son is amused but accepts his father's reques

Salut le Raconteur!

    Went to meet this very warm and prolific story teller at a library called Hippocampus . What was memorable for me was the way she shared her involvement with story telling. Most tellers are passionate about what they do. Yet developing a unique technique and style is also the toughest part. This French Storyteller spoke with such ease in a language that she does Not use for story telling; English! That fascinated me. The other was the fact that she feels comfortable telling stories of Caucasian origin, from Russia. Yet she has no connection with this country. She also went on to say that when she first landed in Russia ( I dont remember which city she mentioned), she felt she knew the place before. That is the connection and identification that goes with story telling. One can travel to so many different worlds through a story. Isn't it amazing?! Her prolific collection of stories are gathered from every part of the world. The stories themselves published in French are

Story Time

            Here is my reason for not bringing you stories of my Navarathri. I was telling them!! Got to do both the stories this Navarathri at the same activity centre. Mahishasuramardini, this time was accompanied by some music and a cute introduction with my friend and favourite puppet; Sukhi. You know that makes me wonder why I have never told you about my pal Sukhi...I will surely dedicate one post to out for it! But the craziness was in preparing a story in 2 days. I had to plan and make my visuals(props) for Ramayana in that time. I tell you it was crazy. Where to begin, and how to make it worth listening to? Most Indian children have all the facts of the story, so I knew it has to be something different and interactive and fun. So we made a bridge! The Vanara Sena or Monkey brigade with their monkey masks( yes I made that too from scratch!), made stones and boulders with newspaper and then constructed a bridge on the ocean( a blue Dupatta), and fina

Sequel-Navrathri 2010

        Here is my sequel. 3 steps as usual, with a small display on the side. The story U selected was so spontaneously done that I was quite impressed with her. It is the story of Narada, and his little pride! Narada asks Lord Vishnu to point out the most truthful devotee, expecting the Lord to acknowledge him as one. But Lord Vishnu points out a hard working and poor farmer, who takes the lord's name every morning and night. Narada is offended, as he believes he utters the Lord's name every second! Lord Vishnu then asks Narada to carry a cup of oil around the world without spilling a drop. Narada does so and is proud to return with not a drop spilt. Yet, when the Lord asks him, how many times he took His name, Narada was then able to see the truth behind His words! The farmer, in spite of all his troubles and worries could think of the Lord, but when employed in a similar manner Narada completely forgot to take His name. For me this story is significant,

Navrathri 2010

    Ok! folks! Its on! I know. Its time for Golu, Sundal, Sweets, Vethilai, Paaku, Gifts, Kumkum, Girls in pretty Pavadais, Maami's in Kanjeevaram silks,Diamonds and gold, Heaven on earth Jasmine, Agarbathis and Dhoop, Dolls and Stories, Creativity and Kolams, Carnatic music and Gossip, and not to miss out Wry faced husbands who find their pockets emptying fast!! I wonder how my mother and before her, my paternal grandmother and my maternal grandmother had the enthusiasm to do this year after year with unflagging happiness and joi de vivre?! Mine is almost non existent, blame it on the transfer I say! How long am I going to use this excuse....till new year I guess. From August onwards, Hindus take a nose dive into functions/festivals and general happiness. Starting from Ganesh Chathurthi till it hits Karthigai (karthik poornima)in the month of December, we are constantly challenging ourselves in the cullinary way, and every other way! Trying not to give up on age old

Bangalore Green Walk

  Sunday Morning: Imagine lazing in bed...time just rolls by...breakfast merges into lunch..... Cut... Sunday Morning: Alarm blasts into your ears. You spring up with a smile on your face, brush and bathe. Not to beat your pace, even the kids are all excited. Brushed and bathed, jackets,walking shoes and water bottles ready. Yes, I decided to go on the Bangalore Walk with the family last Sunday. Luckily and Happily, my family too shares the same enthusiasm that I have to soak in flora and fauna early morning! We reached the huge megalithic rock that dominates Lal Bagh, to meet Mr.V. History, dates and facts poured out of him and we lapped it up like kittens. The megalithic stone is estimated to be at least half the age of the earth! Hyder Ali who started the Spruce and Cypress garden here, did so on an arid, barren land. Tipu Sultan was instrumental in importing many new species from all over the world. The diverse species of trees and plants grow here with no special inter


Vaguely having heard of this word, Dastangoi, and with a faint idea that it was related to story telling and oral tradition, I booked myself for the show at Chowdiah Memorial Hall. For those who have not lived in Bangalore, this hall at Malleswaram, Bangalore was and is the cultural hub of traditional art forms. Shaped like a violin, it is named after the erstwhile doyen of violin music, Sangeetha Kalanidhi Mysore T.Chowdiah. I’ll let you in on a secret. I went alone. Feeling quite liberated! This has nothing to do with any hang ups about traveling alone or going out at night alone…none at all. This is all what I had been doing before marriage. Yet there is that childish need to share every thing with the spouse, do things together….well other than watching TV (News /HBO) or having dinner/lunch together, my partner would never budge!! What I expected was storytellers and telling of course, so it was a moment of sheepishness when I realized I was going to spend the evening in th