Category Archives: Culture

जनैपूर्णिमा (Janai Purnima)

फोटो : trekkingmart

प्रत्येक वर्ष श्रावण शुक्ल पूर्णिमाका दिनमा मनाइने ऋषितर्पणी, रक्षाबन्धन एवम् जनै पूर्णिमा बिहिबार मनाइँदैछ ।

सत्ययुगमा दानवद्वारा लखेटिएका देवगणलाई गुरु बृहस्पतिले रक्षा विधान तयार गरी जेले गर्दा अत्यन्त बलशाली दानवराज बली बाँधिए, त्यसैले म तिमीलाई बाँध्छु, यसले तिमी सुरक्षित बन, विचलित नहोऊ भनी डोरो बाँधेर जोगाएका थिए भन्ने पौराणिक मान्यताका आधारमा चलेकोे रक्षाबन्धनको परम्परा आज पनि प्रचलित छ ।

यसैकारण रक्षाबन्धन गर्ने बेलामा गुरु पुरोहितहरुले ‘येन बद्धो बलिराजा दानवेन्द्रो महाबल तेन त्वां प्रतिबध्नामी रक्षेमा चलमाचल’ भनी रक्षासूत्र, रक्षाबन्धन अथवा डोरो बाँध्ने वैदिक परम्परा रहको नेपाल पञ्चाङ्ग निर्णायक समितिका अध्यक्ष प्रा डा रामचन्द्र गौतमले बताए ।

मानव रक्षाका लागि जप, तप र पूजा गरी मन्त्रिएको रक्षाबन्धन अर्थात् डोरो वैदिक परम्पराको मन्त्रोच्चारण गर्दै ब्राह्मण पुरोहितहरुले यजमानको नाडीमा बाँधिदिने गरिन्छ ।

आजकै दिन तागाधारीहरुले आफ्नो जनै (यज्ञोपवित) फेर्छन् । यसका लागि बुधबारदेखिनै कपाल मुण्डन गरी एक छाकमात्र खाएर चोखोनीतो गरी बसिन्छ । यसरी व्रत बसेका तागाधारीहरुले आज बिहानै पोखरी, ताल, तलाउ, नदी र कुण्डमा गई गाईको गोबर, खरानी, दत्तिउन र सप्तमृत्तिका लगाएर स्नान गर्दछन् ।

स्नानपछि जौ तिल र कुशद्वारा ऋषिहरुलाई तर्पण गरी वैदिक रुद्राभिषेक पद्धतिबाट मन्त्रिएको नयाँ जनै (यज्ञोपवित) फेरिन्छ । ऋषिलाई तर्पण गर्ने भएकाले आजको दिनलाई ऋषितर्पणी पनि भन्ने गरिएको छ । आजै मन्त्रिएको जनै फेर्ने गरिएकाले नै श्रावण शुक्ल पूर्णिमालाई जनैपूर्णिमा पनि भनिन्छ ।

वैदिक गुरु परम्पराअनुसार यज्ञोपवित अर्थात् जनैलाई ब्रह्मसूत्र अथवा ज्ञानको धागोसमेत भनिन्छ ।

जनैका दुई शिखामध्ये एउटा शिखामा रहने तीन डोरालाई ब्रह्मा, विष्णु र महेश्वरको प्रतीकका रुपमा पुजिन्छ । अर्को डोराको तीनवटा शिखालाई भने कर्म, उपासना र ज्ञानको त्रियोगका रुपमा मानिन्छ ।

यस किसिमको महत्व भएकाले नै आज बिहानै यजमानहरु आफ्ना गुरु पुरोहितकहाँ गई यज्ञोपवित मन्त्रने गर्दछन् । आजकै दिन मन्त्रेको जनै वर्षभरिका धार्मिक कर्ममा प्रयोग गरिनुका साथै फेर्नलाई समेत उपयोग गरिन्छ । कुनै पनि धार्मिक कर्म गर्दा र जुठो, सूतकबाट चोखिँदा आजकै दिन मन्त्रिएको यज्ञोपवित फेरेर शुद्ध भइन्छ भन्ने वैदिक मान्यता छ ।

आजकै दिन शरीर शुद्ध गरी देवता, सप्तऋषि र पितृलाई पनि तर्पण गरिने भएकाले नै ऋषि तर्पणीसमेत भन्ने गरिएको हो । आजको दिन सप्तऋषिहरु काश्यप, अत्रि, भारद्वाज, गौतम, जमदग्नि, वशिष्ठ र विश्वमित्रलाई तर्पण दिने गरिन्छ ।

आजका दिन एघारथरिका गेडागुडी मिसाई भिजाएर टुसा उमारेर क्वाँटी बनाई खाइन्छ । यसरी क्वाँटी बनाई खानाले शरीरमा रोग नलाग्ने, पेट सफा हुने र वर्षायामभर खेतीपातीको काम गर्दा शरीरमा लागेको चिसो निकाली भित्रदेखि नै तापको सञ्चार गर्छ भन्ने मान्यता छ ।

नेपालको तराई क्षेत्रमा भने आजकै दिन दिदीबहिनीले दाजुभाइलाई राखी बाँधेर मनाइन्छ । यसबाट दिदीबहिनी र दाजुभाइका बीचमा प्रेम सम्बन्ध बढ्छ भन्ने सामाजिक मान्यता छ ।

आजको दिन काठमाडाँैको पशुपति र मणिचूड, रसुवाको गोसाइँकुण्ड, ललितपुरको कुम्भेश्वर, सिन्धुपाल्चोकको पाँचपोखरी, धनुषाको जनकपुरधाम, धनुषसागर र गङ्गासागर, जुम्लाको दानसाधु एवम् नवलपरासीको त्रिवेणीधामलगायतका ताल, पोखरी र कुण्डमा मेला लाग्छ ।

नेवारी समुदायले भने श्रावण शुक्ल पूर्णिमालाई गुँपुन्ही भनी मनाउने गर्दछन् । विशेषगरी क्वाँटी खाने परम्परा नेवारी समुदायको यसै पर्वबाट आएको हो भन्ने तर्क पनि एकथरि संस्कृतिविद्को छ । आजका दिन नेवारी समुदायका मानिसले घण्टाकर्ण राक्षसलाई समाप्त पार्न योगदान गरी मानवीयतालाई बचाउन सहयोग गरेको विश्वासमा भ्यागुतालाई पूजा गर्छन् ।

बौद्ध दर्शनलाई अँगाल्ने बौद्ध धर्मावलम्बीले भने आजको दिनलाई भगवान् गौतमबुद्धले कामशक्तिमाथि विजय प्राप्त गरेको सम्झनाको दिनका रुपमा मनाउने गर्दछन् । बौद्ध धर्मग्रन्थ ललितविस्तरमा यससम्बन्धी विस्तृत रुपमा व्याख्या गरिएको छ । यसैका कारण आज स्वयम्भूमा पनि विशेष मेला लाग्ने गर्दछ । रासस

Source: आज जनैपूर्णिमा, यसरी सुरु भयो रक्षाबन्धनको परम्परा

Live Sustainably Everyday- Make Everyday an Environment Day

World Environment Day is just around the corner. While different organisations, educational institutions and community groups are undertaking various activities to mark this day, why don’t we take this as an opportunity to reflect upon our own lifestyles and see the impact of our actions to the environment as well as our well-being.

Waste is one of the biggest problems the world is facing at the moment and there has never been a better time to think and rethink about our consumption pattern and disposal
behaviour. According to the World Bank’s report What a Waste: A Global Review of Solid Waste Management ,globally we are producing1.3 billion tonnes of municipal solid waste every year and are expected to increase to approximately 2.2 billion tonnes per year by 2025. Similarly according to a recent report by UNEP and the World Resources Institute (WRI), about one-third of all food produced worldwide, worth around US$1 trillion, gets lost or wasted in food production and consumption systems.

Australians are the second biggest producer of waste and needless to say hundreds of tonnes of waste are dumped into landfill sites every year. In addition, most people these days think that landfill is the ultimate destination for most of the waste we produce, where as it should only be taken as a last resort.

The modern lifestyle and technological advancement is leading to not only increase in volume of waste we produce but also producing different composition of waste which is making the waste issue more big and challenging than ever. Disposal of different types of waste ranging from green waste, hazardous waste, e- waste and other household waste in the landfill is not only taking up bigger chunk of our valuable land which could have alternatively been used for other productive causes, but it is also causing severe and irreversible impacts in the environment, socio-economy and health. Wastes dumped in the landfill accounts for air pollution, water pollution and land quality at the same time methane gas produced during the decomposition of organic waste is one of the potent green house gas which is 23 times stronger than carbon dioxide.

If we really want to make our impact in reducing the waste or managing it, we need to reduce the production of waste at source. One of the successful and practical mantra that we have been hearing and to some extent practicing is 3 R Principle- Reduce Reuse and Re cycle.

Reduce mean avoiding the production of waste at source. Avoid the things that we can do without. Reuse is about using items over and over for a longer period.
Recycling is re-processing the item into a new raw material so that
it can be used in a new product–for example grinding up plastic bottles to make fibre. While recycling is helping us in a great way by keeping our waste from going to landfill; a huge quantity of waste could be reduced and reused before it goes to recycling.

What are the benefits of reducing and reusing waste?

1. Keeps materials out of landfill.
2. Helps to preserve the “embodied energy” that was originally used to manufacture
an item.
3. Reduces the pressure on raw material, energy and water.
4. Creates less air and water pollution than making a new item or recycling one.
5. Reduces overall production of waste.
6. Reuse often creates an affordability of goods that are often of better quality .

So what can we do to reduce waste going to landfill?

Here are 10 different ways that will help to reduce and reuse waste:
1. Change consumption pattern: Ask your self do you need or want that product. Only buy what you need
2. Buy quality products what would last long
3. Burrow thing from neighbours, friends and family
4. Rent it rather than buying if you are using for a short term
5. Covert your food waste into rich fertiliser though composting or wormfarming
6. Donate your unwanted items to charity organisation or give away to your friend and family
7. Buy and sell second-hand at flea markets and garage sales.
8. Maintain your goods, it will last longer
9. Repair the items such as electronics or furniture
10.Upcycle the items you don’t want and expand the life of your preloved goods

These simple actions can easily be incorporated in our everyday life at a no or vey low cost. All we need is a little bit of passion and commitment to change ourselves and create change. Every single action multiplied by thousands will certainly make a difference. So why don’t we start from ourselves and from today. And make every day an environment day.

A very happy environment day 2016 to all of you!

My Weekly Small Pleasures #7

Sometimes it is very difficult to manage time to do things that you really like due to family commitments and especially when you are working full time at the same time. That’s what I feel is happening to me right now. I may not be able to update my weekly pleasures on time, but I am still experiencing lovely moments and enjoying every small pleasures that comes by. Here are my small pleasures for the week.

weekly pleasure #7

1. I resumed my work after 6 months of maternity leave. It was a tough call but I survived. Leaving my five and half months old at home (with my In-laws) and getting back to work was definitely not a fun thing to do. But there is also a  pleasure of being connected to people outside home and getting oneself updated with what is happening in the world outside than your world. Most importantly I enjoy my work and love what do. Well. how much I miss my little angel  is a different story altogether.

2. I believe in fate and this has been justified  so many times. I got an opportunity to travel to ISKCON operated Hare Krishna Temple in Hunter Valley  which is three hours drive from Sydney. A day trip was organised by the local community organisations which I  am also a part of . Though the trip was only for senior citizens i.e especially parents, I got opportunity to join as a carer and I absolutely enjoyed visiting the beautiful place and spend some time for religious purpose. Touched my soul!

3. My visit to the Hare Krishna Temple and Gokuala farm got the whole new meaning when I witnessed the beautiful environment surrounding the temple,  green lustre farm and the cows grazing freely in the farm plus many other sustainability living practices being adopted in the farm and the temple. Totally a beautiful experience altogether.

4. Attended a birthday party of my cousin’s two year old daughter. There is no happiness than to see the smiles on those little faces. And   also attended a baby shower of a friend. Babies make life beautiful, don’t they?

what are your weekly small pleasures.. would love to hear!

Also see My Weekly Small Pleasures #6                                                                                                        My Weekly Small Pleasures #5                                                                                                       My Weekly Small Pleasures #4                                                                                                       My Weekly Small Pleasures #3                                                                                                       My Weekly Small Pleasures #2                                                                                                       My Weekly Small Pleasures #1

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I came across this blog event ( Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event) a while ago. I found it quite interesting and have been thinking of sharing my weekly small pleasures too, which I have not been able to start due to one or the other reason. As we enter the brand new week of the brand new year, I think this is the perfect time to begin this journey.

This blog event is simply about remembering and sharing those small things that made you happy during the week; things that made you smile, made you laugh, made you do a happy dance, made your heart silently smile, or they even made you cry for joy.

Weekly Small Pleasures

Know more about this blog event here Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event

My Weekly Small Pleasures #3

This week went by pretty quickly for me as I had few social events to be a part of.  Weekend, as usual was occupied by family activities. Here are some highlights from my last week 🙂
 Weekly Pleasure#3

1. Went for an outdoor movie with hubby and two kids. We basically went for our three years old son as it was  kids movie. However we all had a great time. Just a perfect activity for this summer.

2. Went out for dinner to satisfy my craving for a Nepalese delicacy called momo. Momo is a popular and traditional Nepalese dumpling-like cuisine with lots of  spices and herbs. We tried some four varieties of momos.

3.  I was invited to a Nepalese community program to  celebrate a cultural event and farewell  few of the community members. It was a mix of fun and emotional moment.

4. Went swimming for 3 days. Couldn’t do much cardio this week due to back pain. Glad to have done something which is definitely better than nothing. I badly need to shed few kilos gained from  pregnancy.

what are your weekly small pleasures.. would love to hear!

 

Also see  My Weekly Small Pleasures #2                                                                                                       My Weekly Small Pleasures #1

 

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I came across this blog event ( Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event) a while ago. I found it quite interesting and have been thinking of sharing my weekly small pleasures too, which I have not been able to start due to one or the other reason. As we enter the brand new week of the brand new year, I think this is the perfect time to begin this journey.

This blog event is simply about remembering and sharing those small things that made you happy during the week; things that made you smile, made you laugh, made you do a happy dance, made your heart silently smile, or they even made you cry for joy.

Weekly Small Pleasures

Know more about this blog event here Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event

Nepal’s Proposed Citizenship Requirement: To Have a Nepali Mother AND Father

Citizenship has always been a highly sensitive and debated issue in Nepal. Here is an interesting and thought- provoking analysis on the same from http://nepalilovestory.com/.

Citizenship has been something long debated in Nepal. It has always been difficult for all Nepalis to truly claim their citizenship rights. Not surprisingly, this has affected the most vulnerable of groups; woman, low castes and the poor.

View original post 741 more words

My Weekly Small Pleasures #1

Since it was festive season and holiday times, I got an opportunity to indulge myself in bit of travelling and other fun activities.

Here are my weekly small pleasures #1

weekly pleasures

1. Went to Melbourne with my family (hubby and two kids) for holidays. We spent 4 days  there and had a great time meeting friends, eating good food and visiting beautiful places.

2. Went on a long road trip (of that length) for the first time. We chose to drive from Sydney to Melbourne which is approximately 870 km. Even though it was supposed to be just 8 hours drive,  it took us 11 hours of pleasant driving with few survival breaks in between.

3. Went for a swim with my family and friends to kill the scorching heat in Sydney.

4. Went shopping  to grab some New Year sale. Got some stuffs for kids, hubby and myself as  a New Year gift. This was the best part of the holiday.

5. Hubby and I went to watch a Bollywood movie in the cinema (after more than a year), while my cousin babysit my three years old. The movie was completely entertaining and insightful. Hence worth a watch.

 

The Idea originated from

My Weekly Small Pleasures

I came across this blog event ( Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event) a while ago. I found it quite interesting and have been thinking of sharing my weekly small pleasures too, which I have not been able to start due to one or the other reason. As we enter the brand new week of the brand new year, I think this is the perfect time to begin this journey.

This blog event is simply about remembering and sharing those small things that made you happy during the week; things that made you smile, made you laugh, made you do a happy dance, made your heart silently smile, or they even made you cry for joy.

Weekly Small Pleasures

Know more about this blog event here Weekly Small Pleasures – Blog Event

 


 

An Introduction to Community Garden ‘A Place for Cultivating Healthy Food and Communities’

Community Garden Photo

Growing population and rapid urbanisation have increased demand for food in the urban areas which has led to the global issues of food safety, availability and affordability.  This demand has on the one hand been fulfilled by growth in industrial agriculture where as on other hand limited our connectedness with nature and detached ourselves form the pleasure of growing our own food. In addition, climate change, food miles and footprint are also becoming the major concerns. Hence currently, in the urban society, the community garden has emerged to bridge this gap and connect people with the nature not only to produce food but also to cultivate healthy community and enhance community harmony and resilience. Community gardens are gaining popularity all over the world as an alternate source of urban food.

What is community garden?

Community garden is a common area where people form diverse communities come together to grow their food, share skills and make new friends. The garden is managed by a group of like- minded people who shares the same passion for gardening. People living in apartments or units have limited space for gardening. However, the increased development of community garden in the urban society has left city dwellers with no choices but to connect with nature and grow the favourite fruits, vegetables and herbs.

The essence of community garden lies in more than being just a place to grow food and vegetables.  The community garden has successfully served as a place that enhances healthy lifestyles, reduces social isolation, improves local food security and develop new green spaces and open spaces for community to enjoy  and encourages strong community relationship through gardening and food production.

Community Garden Pic 2

Benefits of community garden

Community garden holds lots of benefits. Here are some of the benefits-

  • Provides access to land to grow fruits and vegetables
  • Provides access to fresh and nutritious food that helps to enhance health and wellbeing.  Gardening also provides a physical activity that provides positive impact on heath.
  • Enhances social life by increasing social cohesion and connectedness among people from different ethnic and cultural background.
  • Develop and use public space to increase the productivity. It also manages and protects the open space to add value to the land and increase the functional green space in urban area.
  • Provides an opportunity to learn and share new skills from each other. Community members also learn from various educational and capacity building programs in the garden such as sustainable gardening, horticulture, composting, healthy cooking etc.
  • Provides access to locally grown, nutritious food that reduces household cost on food.  Some gardens producing surplus are able to sell their produce to the nearby market thus helping earn extra income.
  • Encourages sustainable gardening which benefits environment on many ways. Organic farming, natural pest control, composting, using rainwater for irrigation etc. helps to maintain environmental sustainability.

Organic Gardening Pic 1

Different models of community garden

There is no one set rule for gardening and hence the garden model might differ according to its location and community needs and desires. The garden occupies both public and privately owned land. Some garden are based on allotment approach where as some might be shared and some might be the combination of both. In allotment approach the garden space is divided into plots that are assigned to each member to grow their own food where as in the shared garden all the members collectively contribute their effort and share the harvest. In general, the gardens have combination of both types and are more multifunctional.

The long term viability of the garden depends upon the motivation and commitment of the stakeholders involved, the type of gardening practices adopted and other environmental and social factors. Aligning with the objective of producing healthy and organic food, the community garden also focus on adopting environmental conservation and sustainability where applicable.

Permaculture system of agriculture is becoming popular among community garden. This is a low impact and resource intensive gardening system designed to be environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. Permaculture integrates the principle of caring for the earth, caring for the people and equitable share of the produce. It is a well-established system that is easy to understand and apply in the community garden. Community garden also holds diverse opportunities for social interaction and some include community education and capacity building programs that helps in holistic development of garden and gardeners.

Community Garden

Getting involved in community garden

One can get involved in community garden in different ways. Depending on who own the garden land and who manages the garden, the involvement of garden members might vary. Community gardens can be initiated and managed by the local community members or groups such as schools, churches, not for profit organisation etc. on a voluntary basis or managed or assisted by local council or might be run by a bigger community groups and have someone employed to look after the garden.  It would be appropriate to get in touch with your local council as they usually have the updated information, if you would like to have any information or get involved in the community garden in your area.

See the video below to learn more on community garden and identify different benefits community garden can provide

Community gardens are getting widely popular and successful in the area where people with low socio- economic background resides and where apartment and units are predominated. The garden also provides new migrants and disadvantaged group to get connected with the community and food that helps to enhance skills and knowledge and confidence. The idea of creating community gardens originated in the United Kingdom during the 18th century to fulfil the need of low income labourers to supplement their food sources.  The first community garden in Australia was established in 1977 in Nunawading, Victoria. Today the principles of community garden has been widely adopted in all the states of Australia and continue growing in numbers. Considering what it takes to develop one, there is no limit to what community garden can offer to the community and environment that has made it widely accepted in different parts of the world.

Please do share if you have any interesting stories on community garden..!!