Kerala was once ruled by Mahabali, who was an asura (Demon). Now being a demon, evil and sinful practices were expected of him, but he was completely the opposite. Mahabali was a mighty king who worked for the prosperity of his people. During his reign, everybody was happy and prosperous. But the Devas (Gods) were jealous and felt that he may surpass them and so they urged Lord Vishnu to help them. Mahabali was about to perform a ritual and he had announced that he would fulfill everyone’s wishes. Vishnu decided to use this opportunity and disguised himself as a dwarf, poor Brahmin called Vamana and went to Mahabali. He asked Mahabali to give him a piece of land which he could measure with three footsteps. Generous Mahabali granted his wish. But everybody was in for a shock when the tiny Vamana grew into a giant. He then took his first step and covered all land, and in his second step he occupied the whole of the sky. He then asked Mahabali where should he keep the third step. Unable to find any more land, the noble king then asked Vamana to keep the third step on his head. Lord Vishnu was pleased with Mahabali’s dedication and so he granted him a wish. Mahabali, who unconditionally loved his people, asked for permission to visit his people once a year. And so Onam is celebrated in his honor and people believe their Mahabali visits them on the day.
You remember railway book stalls as being there since eternity. Being in the business of making arduous train journeys a pleasant affair in the company of books and newspapers. It’d be easy to assume a well-meaning civic body put them up. But as far as India goes, the country and its people owe their reading on trains to Emile Edouard Moreau, a European businessman.
For five years now, RAXA Collective has called the state of Kerala, India, its home. Over the years, the ‘three magic words’ – community, collaboration, conservation – have guided our work here. And every story in these three spaces has us glad for finding another believer. Now we’ve found a believer who puts his thoughts into action in the Cochin International Airport. Welcome to our land and the world’s first solar-powered, power-neutral airport.
For most of August Xandari has been operating at full capacity. Since this past weekend the hotel has had fewer guests as families prepare for the new school year in Europe and the United States. In a way, it’s a relief, not only for me and my unrestrained desire to sing when I’m alone, but also for the auditory senses of the guests. I no longer bump into hikers during my treks along the waterfall trails and I avoid the embarrassment of having to “justify” my discordant singing. All in all, at least for a few days, no one has to put up with my singing…except maybe for an unexpected creature I found at “river view 2.”
The Marudam School in Thiruvannamalai in Tamil Nadu. For starters, it’s run by an NGO – The Forest Way – a registered charitable trust involved in education, afforestation, environmental education, organic farming and more. Also, it receives no funding from the government. The school, set in an organic farm and powered by renewable energy, teaches its students about conscious living that respects the environment.
Chickadees have one of the most unique and varied vocal repertoires. Few backyard birds are as beloved as the Black-capped Chickadee. The boldly patterned chickadee is perky, trusting – and it seems to introduce itself by calling its name – chick-a-dee. But when a chickadee voices its namesake call – using a host of variations – it’s most likely maintaining contact with its mate, scolding a predator, or announcing a food source. These chickadee calls, distinct from songs, are uttered by both sexes and may be voiced year-round. What do they communicate?
The adoption of the World Programme for Action concerning Disabled Persons in 1982 laid the foundation for a new approach to disability, with the goals of full participation and equalization of opportunities for persons with disabilities. The World Programme of Action has time and again reinforced the role of persons with disabilities as both agents and beneficiaries of development. The onus is on taking action so that persons with disability do not end up being referred to as a “vulnerable group” but rather, that disability itself will be considered as a cross-cutting theme in any emerging goals on sustainable development. In Madhya Pradesh, India, a unique experiment with organic farming is mainstreaming people with disabilities.
Watermelon may be the best picnic dessert nature ever created with its sweet juice cleverly bound inside that spongy red (sometimes yellow) matrix, and fully protected by psychedelic green rind. And no matter how you slice it, this green cannonball of nutrition is attracting scientific attention as an elixir that reduces muscle pain after workouts and a whole lot more. And the myriad ways it lends itself beautifully in the kitchen. But what about its history? Read more…
Quotes on travel abound. And chances are you’ve read this some time: The world is a book and those who do not travel read only page. St. Augustine immortalized those words and now, AirBnB has literally taken it to heart. Always believed in the many worlds that exist between two ends of a book? Then, imagine a library. One that you run for a week. Or maybe two, too.
When is the last time you looked at a map? No, we’re not talking GPS-powered imagery and guidelines but a physical entity. Like a globe. Like the collectibles Peter Bellerby and his company painstakingly churn out. In fact, they are one of the only two workshops in the world still in the business of handcrafting globes. And in the business of preserving a dying craft.
In Mumbai, India—a city of nearly 19 million people—over 50,000 taxis pick up at least 25 to 30 people every day. For the majority of Mumbaikars, the iconic black and yellow taxis are the most convenient form of transportation in the city. And now a new vehicle of design, dialogue, and a sense of belonging – thanks to the Taxi Fabric project.
If you live in Berkeley, Oakland, and Emeryville, often find yourself complaining about high pricing of groceries, this is for you. Above bring fruits and vegetables to you at economical rates, this start-up is concerned with the noble business of minimizing food waste. How they do it – by collecting rejected asymmetrical farm produce and shipping 10-14 pounds of oddball deliciousness to your doorstep, and it’ll only cost $12.