Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Elements in balance...at CROCUS 2011

In Urdu, one of India's many languages, there is a couplet-

Tanha hi chala tha main janib-e-manzil magar
Log milte gaye kafila banta gaya
(I set out alone for my destination but
people kept joining on the way, and we became a multitude!)
Saffrontree turns five this year. What began as an embryo of an idea, is growing up to be a strong tree, showing a lot of promise for the future. It has been a long and interesting journey, begun by Prabha Ram, the others joining enroute. The kafila now includes our family of fifteen, our guest reviewers, who add richly to the eclectic mix of posts, and most importantly you, our readers who visit us regularly and encourage us on our bibliophilic journey.

CROCUS 2011 celebrates our journey so far, the graduation out of babyhood. A delectable spread is promised. Nothing can showcase it as well as our banner, already unveiled by the Mad Momma.. Made by our own artist-in-residence, Lavanya Karthik.


Fittingly, our theme for Saffrontree's fifth birthday is the five elements.

Earth, solid, and the basest, can be heard, felt, seen, tasted, smelled. Water, fluid in nature, can be heard, felt, seen, tasted. Fire, very elusive, can be heard, felt, and seen. Air, fluid like water and ephemereal like fire, can be heard and felt. Space, there, and yet not quite there, is just a medium for light and sound.

All ancient civilisations have spoken about the five elements. Everything we know, or know of is essentially made up of these. Everything material. Or not. Even the abstract...imagination, ideas, stories...all of it can be surmised to belong to the realm of Space.

Each of the elements has to be in a balance vis-a-vis the others, for harmony to exist. Balance within each living being- as an imbalance could lead to dis-ease or even death. Balance between all living and non-living things- for a harmonious ecosystem. Balance between consumerism and conservation.  Balance in our lives, the activities we indulge in. Work-life balance. A balanced diet. An inner balance. If any one element becomes dominant it will throw the whole system into chaos.

Any one element getting out of line can create disorder, disharmony, disease, distress. Tornadoes and cyclones. Earthquakes and landslides. Floods and tsunamis. Volanoes and wildfires. Black holes. Epidemics. Spectacular, yes. Desirable, no.

Balance- we bring you this balance even in our festival. A balanced spread of reviews of books, each of which showcases the power of, beauty of, exploration of, or activity by one particular element. A balanced choice of interviews showcasing the work of worthies associated with these elements, all of who will also bring home to us the importance of this balance in our lives. All this is counterbalanced with art and craft activities that children can participate in. A competition- yes, we have our Crocusword too- a crossword with a difference. Prizes? Of course. How can we have a festival like this without goodies that can be won?

What about you, our readers? Go on, spread the word. On blogs, social networking sites, your local school...wherever you can. Feel free to use our banner. More power to our kafila!

So, get ready for the countdown. Three days to go. Visit us here as often as possible from 23rd Oct - 30th Oct. Buckle up and enjoy the ride!

Crossposted.

12 comments:

ranjani.sathish said...

It is a beautifully written piece Sandhya !

Arundhati said...

I second that, beautifully written

Looking forward to CROCUS!

artnavy said...

Fantastic S

B o o. said...

YAY! Crocus is here! Wow at the banner! It is wonderful! Lavanya - please take a bow.

and this time you guys better make me the Crocusword winner or else!!!!

Choxbox said...

Awesomeness S.

Glad to be part of the kafila too and for having grabbed you to join along :)
(yeah I will keep bragging away about this one!)

Praba said...

As always, love your lucid style of writing. And wow how profoundly sensible each time!! ST is so lucky to have you in our midst, Sandhya! Thanks! :)

We're all very excited. Thanks, Arundhati!

Boo - Yes, we will have to honor you in some way...just for the plain and simple fact that your blog name carries three-fourth of what we all collectively care about here! :) Lemme tell u the name Boo is not one bit scary.. .. and that's even when Halloween is in the air! We love you, Boo! Been dying to share this with you for five years now! Thanks for stopping by! :)

Meera Sriram said...

Beautiful S, especially the essence of it.

Tharini said...

That was just beautiful. I loved what you wrote about the 5 senses, and correlating them to the 5 elements. Its amazing how everything is so interlinked.

Vibha said...

Enjoyed reading the wonderful post on balance of five elements. Very well worded thoughts Sandhya :)

sandhya said...

Thanks, all!

And now waiting with bated breath for the fun to begin!

the mad momma said...

Lovely post, Sandhya :)

sandhya said...

Thanks, TMM!

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