Mama, Papa…. there is nothing in my bag today!

This rabbit does not eat carrot! …. how come?

Today I did my math and science,

I toasted bread,

I halved and quartered,

I counted, measured, used my eyes,

and ears and head.

I added and subtracted on the way,

I used a magnet, blocks and memory tray,

I learnt about a rainbow and how to weigh.

So please. don’t say, anything in your bag today?

How to paint my fence!

You see I am sharing as I play,

I learned to listen and speak clearly when I talk,

to wait my turn, and when inside, to walk.

To put my thoughts into a phrase,

to guide a crayon through a maze,

To find my name and write it down,

to do it with a smile and not a frown.

To put my painting brush away,

so please don’t say, what, nothing in your bag today?

What fun building my own home!

I have learnt about a snail and a worm,

remembering how to take my turn,

Helped a friend when he was stuck,

learnt that water runs off a duck,

I looked at words from left to right,

agreed to differ, not to fight.

So please don’t say, did you only play today?

 – Anonymous

Advertisements

वन्दे मातरम् : Vande Mataram – Mother sweet, I bow to thee !

On the occasion of the republic day, our father, Sri D. Ramakrishnan who is a scholar in Sanskrit too,  forwarded a mail that had these lines. The National Song and National Anthem have always been very energizing and bonding towards the notion of Mother India. In the popularly sung version a couple of verses do not appear and I found difficult relating to it. I did a little bit of research on the web and thought will blog for my own self for the future, as well as for those who wish to go through. Also included the original version from Anand Matt.

वन्दे मातरम्     वन्दे मातरम्

सुजलां सुफलां मलयजशीतलाम्

  शस्य श्यामलां मातरम्

वन्दे मातरम् 

शुभ्र ज्योत्स्नां पुलकित यामिनीम्

फुल्ल कुसुमित द्रुमदलशोभिनीम्

सुहासिनीं

सुमधुरभाषिणीम् 

सुखदां वरदां मातरम् 

वन्दे मातरम्  वन्दे मातरम्

सप्त कोटि कण्ठ कलकल निनाद कराले

द्विसप्त कोटि भुजैर्धृत खरकरवाले

अबलाकेनुमा एतबले

बहुबलधारिणीं रिपुदलवारिणीम्

नमामि तारिणीं मातरम् 

सुजलां सुफलां मलयजशीतलाम्

शस्य श्यामलां मातरम् 

तुमि विद्या तुमि धर्म

तुमि ह्रदि तुमि मर्म

त्वं हि प्राणाः शरीरे

बाहुते तुमि माँ शक्ति

हृदये तुमि माँ भक्ति

तोमारै प्रतिमा गडि मन्दिरे 

त्वं हि दुर्गा

दशप्रहरणधारिणीम्

कमला कमलदल विहारिणीम्

वाणी विद्यादायिनी नमामि त्वाम्

नमामि कमलां अमलां अतुलाम्

सुजलां सुफलां मातरम् 

श्यामलां सरलां सुस्मितां भूषिताम् 

धरणीं भरणीं मातरम् 

वन्दे मातरम्

वन्दे मातरम्

वन्दे मातरम् 

 –  बंकिमचन्द्र चट्टोपाध्याय 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Mother, I venerate you.

Rich with your rushing streams,

Bright with orchard gleams,

Cool with thy winds of delight,

Green fields waving Mother of might, Mother free. 

Glory of moonlight dreams,

Over thy branches and lordly streams,

Clad in thy blossoming trees,

Mother, giver of ease

Laughing low and sweet!

Mother I kiss thy feet,

Speaker sweet and low!

Mother, to thee I bow. 

Who hath said thou art weak in thy lands

When swords flash out in seventy million hands

And seventy million voices roar

Thy dreadful name from shore to shore?

With many strengths who art mighty and stored,

To thee I call Mother and Lord!

Thou who saves, arise and save!

To her I cry who ever her foe drove

Back from plain and sea And shook herself free. 

Thou art wisdom, thou art law,

Thou art heart, our soul, our breath

Though art love divine, the awe

In our hearts that conquers death.

Thine the strength that nerves the arm,

Thine the beauty, thine the charm.

Every image made divine

In our temples is but thine. 

Thou art Durga, Lady and Queen,

With her hands that strike and her swords of sheen,

Thou art Lakshmi lotus-throned,

And the Muse a hundred-toned,

Pure and perfect without peer,

Mother lend thine ear,

Rich with thy hurrying streams,

Bright with thy orchard gleams,

Dark of hue O candid-fair 

In thy soul, with jeweled hair

And thy glorious smile divine,

Loveliest of all earthly lands,

Showering wealth from well-stored hands!

Mother, mother mine!

Mother sweet, I bow to thee,

Mother great and free! 

Mother sweet, I bow to thee

Mother sweet, I bow to thee

Mother sweet, I bow to thee 

– Bankimchandra Chattopadhyay 

– English translation by Aurobindo

Wake up India! we have so much to do…. Happy Self-Realization Day!

Happy Republic Day to every Indian; May this dawn usher in more responsibility/ accountability among each one of us, especially politicians!

– Giving women at home respect and empowering them, to empower the family, home, society and the nation : I always felt and experienced that a home progresses only when the women at home are respected and empowered. Every generation owes a lot to mother, predominantly, where it takes off from and where it reaches..

– Helping every individual around us to be self-reliant, thereby making nation bereft of poverty : Can I really touch and enable people and their families, who are in touch with us every day. Can I educate every child around me and make the environment exciting for learning thereby making every human being be judicious and take decisions for one self.

– Being honest in every thing I do. Enabling every human being to be honest and empathize with the fellow being. I humbly try to do this. Yes, still a long way to go. I need more patience and more empathy to invest more time.

– Being more disciplined, in my life – at home, my work, and more importantly whenever I am stepping out of home and do things that has impact on happenings around me – on the road, public behavior, taking care of the surroundings…. the list is endless

– Last but not the least, standing up and being upright, not paying bribe and not letting one take bribe. making the nation corruption free..

Happy Self-realization day !  Awakening the self !

Love… mmmch.

An evening with Inspiring M S Sathyu

Thanks to my dear friend, Astha Dixit, the choreographer and lead dancer of the play Dara Shikoh, I was accorded two seats in Stein, for me and my better half, Indira. We reached the audi a couple of hours before the play commenced and I went straight to the green room to capture the candids at the back-stage. I had a wonderful time doing my captures, while listening to the interesting banters, especially in the green room of the ladies!

Dara Shikoh with his advisor

In the empty hall, an elderly gentleman, was quickly going around taking stock of the stage and then sitting in different seats on different rows at different corners of the audi checking the visibility of the stage from various directions before he headed to his place in the lights and sound room upstairs.

The play commenced and the action began with a dance sequence and quickly the entire elite audience got engrossed into the proceedings and I was deep into my clicking penance. The play was crisp as it traversed a couple of decades in the storyline before the curtains came down. The actors assembled on stage and were introducing the cast. They called the name of the Director, M S Sathyu. He was not to be seen and everyone was wondering where he was. The announcer realized that Sathyu was doing his duty today at lights, helping the apprentice. A few minutes later, the very same gentleman who took stock of the empty audi, walked in to the audi with a jhola in his hand and slowly yet surely, moved towards the stage and stood there for a couple of seconds to the grand acknowledgement with no emotions on his face. Then he walked into the audience space, took a seat by the side of an aisle and started gazing into the ceiling. That was M S Sathyu.

M S Sathyu at Stein, after the performance of Dara Shikoh

Meanwhile the audience went about congratulating the cast and shaking hands with the fellow audience. Also asking a question, ‘did you understand the dialogues completely?’  A couple of them asked me too.  The Urdu in the play made it difficult for the audience to follow the dialogues, leaving them a tad disappointed. It might not have had any impact on either the director or the producer, because they are passionate about their work..

“Dara Shikoh”, the modern classic is directed by M.S. Sathyu and written by Danish Iqbal, which encapsulates the play’s portrayal of the young Mughal prince and heir apparent to Shah Jahan. The play, being performed after three years, is once again being directed by the eminent director, stage designer and art director M.S. Sathyu and presented by Impressario Asia.

Danish Iqbal, the playwright, talking to the Hindu, attributes his knowledge about writing and stage skills to Sathyu. “He’s a grand old man of Indian theatre. He has a terrific sense of aesthetics. He makes sketches of every scene before the performance, to work out how the stage characters, headgear, beards, dresses, everything would look. He’s a very meticulous person. It’s a pleasure working with him. His art work is tremendously beautiful.” Iqbal adds that while he has indeed provided the dialogues, characters and content of the play, they’ve been given shape by Sathyu.

I slowly went and sat next to Sathyu ji, at his feet on the aisle, and started talking to him. This young man of 84 is brimming with enthusiasm, talking about his flight today to Mumbai to work with the cast from IPTA for the play scheduled on Feb 5th, at Prithvi, and then heading to Bangalore to take Dara Shikoh, on an eight town tour including Bangalore, Davengere, Bellary, Mysore etc, all in the month of Feb. He was very delighted to share that the play will be staged in a school of theatre set up by an ashram in Davengere. I also gathered that he designed around eight new arenas for theatre in Bangalore including Rang Shankara where Dara Shikoh will have three shows. His enthusiasm is infectious.

Indira and Astha with M S Sathyu

Indira interacted with Sathyu about his films as she has been a fan of his work from the days of the film “Garam Hawa.” Sathyu shared about directing Habib Tanvir and Safdar Hashmi in a play and  the discussion about his works went on…

Sathyu who started his journey as an art director, went on to design sets, lights for productions and then directing plays and finally films. In films, he has worked as an art director, camera-man, screenwriter, producer and director. His filmography includes over 15 documentaries and 8 feature films in Hindi, Urdu and Kannada.

It was an inspiring evening with M S Sathyu. as active and energetic as ever, brimming with ideas and enthusiasm even at 84. Indira and I will treasure this interaction for life time. Looking forward to meeting Sathyu again, very soon.

Sreeni’s humble journey – In Media, Books, publications, collaborations

I feel very elated and humbled at the same time, looking back at my journey as an edupreneur (educationist + entrepreneur) in the last eighteen years. This journey took me to many countries in the world, met many inspiring personalities, gave opportunity to create new businesses, initiate new endeavours that would facilitate thousands of children and youth realize their dreams, yet the most important thing has been that of discovering many more dimensions of my own journey of infinity (discovering the infinite potential within).

Ever since I returned to Delhi in 2008 after a five year stint abroad and then setting up schools in Hyderabad and Indore, I seriously started working on my passions – performing arts, fine arts, introspecting and writing, facilitating passionate artists who need support, apart from motivating youth to excel and young parents on parenting, creating exciting learning environments. I am inspired by all near and dear who have changed their gears in multiple-areas – brothers, Satya in Urdu poetry and lyrics, Param in holistic healing; My colleagues at Career Launcher : Shivku, GP, Nikhil, Sujit have been role models in many ways for their steadfastness in the endeavours they espouse; My friends who have created their own enterprises, eminent personalities and artists who are excelling in their passions have also been prodding me unbeknown to them. When I was taking stock of the outcome of these endeavours, I feel really charged and motivated to change the gears to do so much more.

The outcomes of this passionate journey has been varied, unexpectedly – publishing of my work in media, books magazines, online portals; invitations to programs, workshops on various media; eminent personalities co-opting me in their work and so on. I thought of showcasing it as a way of keeping myself motivated, apart from being a source of inspiration for many more who wish to excel. This reiterates my thought that, “If I am passionate about my work and dedicatedly persevere then the world will conspire to make it much more meaningful; and take me to places that I have never known.”

The most unexpected of the outcomes has been featuring in a book, “Young Leaders Success Code,” published by National HRD network and IMI. This chapter, dedicated to my leadership style, traces my journey from childhood to 2011…


Book - Young leaders Success Code - features R.SreenivasanBook - Young leaders Success Code - features R.SreenivasanBook - Young leaders Success Code - features R.SreenivasanBook - Young leaders Success Code - features R.SreenivasanBook - Young leaders Success Code - features R.Sreenivasan

Media – Both electronic and print have been kind enough to co-opt me, invite me to be a speaker or panelist on various programmes that address the needs of youth : Education, Careers, Parenting; Also covering my motivational tours and workshops – ‘Dream It, Do It’; ‘Think Big, Start Small’

Sreeni on GeNext on DD, April 30, 2011, 1:30pmSreeni in DD News Charcha mein Sept 03, 2011Find the leader and winner in your child - Motivational sessionEarly Childhood Education - School Leadership Conference2013 posters of Dream It, Do It! tour across the country

As I kept traveling around the world, my constant companion ‘the camera’ did enable me to capture India and the world in its kaleidoscopic spirit and colors; These splendid captures have attracted many publishers to embellish their works across the media – books, magazines, online-works etc from adorning their covers to centre-spreads!

– coffee table book by Ministry of External affairs – “The India Idea” dedicated to Indian Innovation spirit
– Three coffee table travel books published by Parragon on Jaisalmer, Rajasthan and golden triangle
– The cover of a book by Cambridge University Press
– Special issues of Femina; IIMB Alumni magazine
– Penguin’s best five – ‘India – A portrait through your lens’
– Overseas : Online magazines and their offline publications in Singapore (STORM); French publication – Linternaute; Las Vegas city guide

The India Idea – BookThe India Idea – BookThe Golden Triangle - Travel Guide features Sreeni's imagesJaisalmerRajasthan, the land of colors - Travel guidCambridge university press features Sreeni's photo on the cover of the book Devotion and Dissent in Indian HistoryLiving in Two Worlds - Femina Anniversary Issue 2011Living in Two Worlds - Femina Anniversary Issue 2011IIMB Alumni Magazine covers SPANDANIIMB Alumni Magazine covers SPANDANFrench website features my holi photos - LinternautePenguin India : 'India: A Portrait Through Your Lens' - Best 5

My passionate pursuit of performing arts – in front of and also behind the camera – yielded such a rich collection that, in 2013, I initiated my own dance photography exhibition and world dance festival, SPANDAN, that coincides with world dance day; and my annual SPANDAN calendar of Dance – a tribute to Indian dance forms emerged… glad to see the second year taking off in a very auspicious note. I owe my sincere gratitude to India Habitat Centre for being my hospitality partner for my annual exhibition and dance festival. My humble salutations to every artist who has allowed me, encouraged me to capture their performances and participated in my dance endeavours.

SPANDAN in FIRST CITYCalendars 2014 - Spandan and AIDSSpandan Calendar of Dance  - A tribute to Indian Dance Forms 2014Spandan Calendar of Dance  - A tribute to Indian Dance Forms 2014Blogged select captures

I am indebted to many eminent critiques and writers, movements like SPIC MACAY, SRISTI for co-opting me to capture their work and contribute to their cause, and also for embellishing their work in dailies and magazines…

Celebrating selfless service - THE HINDU - June 28, Three photosMedia : SPIC MACAY Coverages feature my photosSPIC MACAY 25th National Convention, in MediaSPIC MACAY 25th National Convention, in MediaMedia : SPIC MACAY Coverages feature my photos
Media : SPIC MACAY Coverages feature my photosSPIC MACAY - 27th National Convention, NITK SurathkalSPIC MACAY - 27th National Convention, NITK SurathkalSPIC MACAY - 27th National Convention, NITK SurathkalSPIC MACAY - 27th National Convention, NITK SurathkalSPIC MACAY - 27th National Convention, NITK Surathkal

Books, publications and Media, a set on Flickr.

In offing, in early 2014 : A couple of books on Indian Classical Dance forms, embellished with my photo-captures, by

a. An eminent dance critique of our country, who is a SNA Awardee and regular columnist,
b. A brilliant young dancer, SNA Yuva puraskar awardee, with an eminent culture ambassador.
c. SPANDAN dance festival and photography exhibition in April

Third in the series : Travel guide on Rajasthan, the land of colors captured by sreeni

This book is third in the series of Travel guides of this year that feature quite a few images from my vast captures of colorful Rajasthan. Here is the link on FLICKR to The collection of my captures from the length and breadth of Rajasthan

Rajasthan, the land of colors - Travel guid

This book is a handy tool to convince your friends that Rajasthan is one of the most beautiful and exotic travel destinations ever. It’s not all about camels, though there are camel safaris and camel fairs galore. Rajasthan, the land of kings; an arid land tamed by a valorous people. It is the land of Rajputs, a people quick to take offence and generous with forgiveness. Their annals are written in blood and fire and every grain of sand has been drenched in blood at least once. The people are attired in all colours and hues of a rainbow, fluorescent colours being favoured for turbans. Their ghagra-cholis have beautiful applique patterns, a flash of glass here, a bead there. Jewellery and tattoos are sported by men and women alike. Most men take pride in their lustrous moustaches and beards, combed with great care. It is the sturdy forts, airy palaces, lavish havelis and the vitality of the people that still attract tourists by the hordes.

If you happen to be in a book store, just pick this up and browse; you will love the vivid, colorful spreads…

Sreeni’s resplendent captures in the Travel Book : Jaisalmer, the golden city

Jaisalmer, the golden city

This book, by parragon publishing, is meant for armchair traveller and globetrotter alike. Stunning pictures transport you to the Golden Fort. It stands high upon a hill, painstakingly built and fought over by Bhati Rajputs. It has the distinction of being one of the few living forts in the world.

Within the Fort stands the palace of the erstwhile rulers and a number of Jain and Hindu temples with extensively carved interiors. The narrow lanes within the Fort throb with life, young artists dancing with castanets; ravanhattas laid against the golden wall accompanied by an artist playing some long lost tune; roof top cafes promising an amazing view of the city, and myriad handicrafts displayed on the walls; all awaiting a tourist’s eye.

In the burgeoning city outside are the havelis of old with overhanging balconies and extensively carved facades. Within, all is plush and leisurely, evidence of a prosperity derived from businesses overseas.

——————-

Jaisalmer, the “Golden City”, is located on the westernmost frontier of India in the state of Rajasthan. Close to the border with Pakistan, the city is known for its proximity to the Thar Desert.

Desert Safari in the sand dunes of Jaisalmer is an unforgettable experience.

The city is dominated by the Jaisalmer Fort. Unlike most forts in India, the Jaisalmer Fort is a living fort. There are shops, hotels, age old havelis (homes) inside the fort area.

This set on my FLICKR covers extensively the ships of desert, Camel safaris, the life inside the fort and Havelis. I am sure you too will love it.

—————

Incredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful Jaisalmer
Incredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful Jaisalmer
Incredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful Jaisalmer
Incredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful JaisalmerIncredible India! - Royale Rajasthan : Joyful Jaisalmer
%d bloggers like this: