Where There be Dragons - Princton Bridge Year Programme

Super User 16 October 2017

The students of Princeton Bridge Year Programme with faculty from Where There be Dragons were with us from September 23 to October 4, 2017. The highlights of the programme were a 4 day trek, yoga, mindfulness training, Hindi lessons and contemplative learning on sustainability based on place based approach. Well rejuvenated, informed and oriented the students headed for their service learning immersion in the holy city of Varanasi after the programme.

 

NOLS Nature and Culture

Super User 23 August 2017

The NOLS India semester students were at FCN for the Nature & Culture section from April 1-13, 2017. This was the 6th year in a row for this programme and it evolves every time as per the student needs and requirements. 

 

Menlo School visit

Super User 14 August 2017

The students of the Global Leadership programme from Menlo School, San Francisco again visited this year from June 23 – 30, 2017.

FCN Expedition

Super User 30 November -0001

This summer trustees of FCN took an expedition to Shalang glacier along with some friends. It was a beautiful trek for 12 days from the road head near Munsiary town and back. Some magnificent view of the Nanda Devi from Martoli and an intricately handcrafted window in the village.  

Himalaya Culture Expedition 2017

Super User 14 August 2017

Himalaya Culture Expedition, NOLS group in 2017 : The 10 day residential programme on Nature and Culture was attended by the participants from 9 to 18 May 2017. This was the 3rd consecutive year for the programme and it is increasing in popularity.

 

Contemplation of Nature released in Spanish during Planeta Sostenible en FILSA 2016 event in Santiago, Chile

Super User 01 November 2016

The FCN organized a side event on Contemplation of Nature in COP 11 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in 2012. The approach and the practice resonated with delegations from many countries; including the delegation from Chile. FCN was invited by Juan Francisco Bascunan, Director, Planeta Sostenible to offer workshops in Chile in 2013. It was then decided to translate the work in Spanish and we are happy to announce the availability of the book, ‘La Contemplación De La  Naturaleza’ on Amazon. Please follow the link and enjoy the practice.

https://www.amazon.com/CONTEMPLACIÓN-NATURALEZA-Spanish-Ajay-Rastogi-ebook/dp/B01M2WDYW3/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1477944817&sr=8-1&keywords=la+contemplacion+de+la+naturaleza

 

When Life Turns Turtle

Super User 30 August 2016

FCN is proud to present recent work of one of the founding members, Raj Supe. 

Raj is able to accomplish a lot in this book, captivating story, fluent narrative and profound analysis of some fundamental predicaments in life through his beautifully chosen characters. Raj is a seeker and a prolific writer leading a simple and rich life on the banks of the river Ganga in the town of Rishikesh. His insights of life in Rishikesh, the place where major part of the story unfolds are vivid.  The main character, Indraneel a successful film maker from Mumbai arrives to seek solace in Rishikesh after an unsuccessful love affair. From an extremely busy show biz life, he suddenly finds himself in the slow and serene pace of life....the life goes turtle. Beauty and the sacredness of Ganga mesmerises him as he watches millions of ascetics, householders and overseas visitors frolicking from all over to its banks. The time for reflection amidst all this chaos, outside and inside; kick starts his journey of self inquiry. His meeting and budding friendship with Shamantak, owner of a bookshop takes him to some of the power haunts of the holy land both in places and people.

Indraneel continues to extend his stay in Rishikesh through the monsoon, the coming winter, spring and the whole year passes by. The changing hues of the sky and the river, the fast tempo of numerous events and discussions carries the reader on the roller coaster of constant curiosity. The biggest hook that sustains and deepens readers interest are several discussions ranging from the significance of several rituals, relevance of key messages from some cultural and spiritual texts of Hinduism, and the life of the ascetics living on the banks of Ganga. The big natural disaster of Kedarnath happens and the action shifts to Karma Yoga and its various dimensions. What keeps the reader breathlessly galloping through the 468 pages of book is this process of self discovery.

Only time will reveal how many lives are transformed by this brilliant work published by Platinum Press, an imprint of Leadstart Publishing in Spirituality-based fiction genre; and priced at Rupees 399.

Yoga day

Super User 22 June 2016

The Cantonment Board, Ranikhet in association with FCN organised a yoga session today. More than 70 people of all age groups attended this hour long session. The asana module was focused on the problems of the back, neck and shoulder regions as faced by many office goers today. It was received well.

Himalayan Culture Expedition 2016

Super User 28 May 2016

Between May 11th and 20th, we hosted 15 participants of the NOLS Himalaya Culture Expedition. They experienced nature and culture in the village. This is a part of FCN’s ‘pathways to sustainable development’ programme in association with Jagriti Women Self Help Group in Malli Riuni village. Two visitors per family not only share the space but also assist in the kitchen, homestead, cowshed and farming. Practical work is duly complemented with sharing of deeper insights and experience by experts through a series of presentations, talks and walks. There is a daily yoga practice offered by a certified teacher following Shivananda Yoga tradition. The programme finishes with Contemplation of nature workshop which ties in the various threads explored during the stay. The overall theme of ‘interconnectedness and interdependence’ for sustainability is thus explored in several ways.

 

 

 

Traditional Holi Baithak at FCN

Super User 28 March 2016

The festival of colours is celebrated in the Kumoan region for almost a month.  It’s a tradition in some areas to hold singing sessions referred to as Holi Baithaks. This year FCN organised a Holi Baithak on 22nd March where 4 prominent singers of the area took the stage one by one and sang. The songs in holi time mainly relate to Krishna and how he enjoyed holi with friends. More than 80 people came and enjoyed. The baithak was followed by holi milan and dinner for everyone.  

Bharat Sangh Rakshan Pratishtan

Super User 01 December 2015

As a part of the annual retreat of the Bharat Sangh Rakshan Pratishtan in Dehradun; college youth from several universities participated. Two founding members of the FCN participated as resoure persons. Raj Supe conducted a insightful session on Bhagwad Gita in the morning half and Ajay Rastogi offered the theory and practice of Contemplation of Nature in the afternoon.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/dehradun/Students-learn-about-calming-effect-of-nature/articleshow/49884103.cms

 

Traditional food processing

Super User 01 August 2015

The traditional food processing of our organic grains has begun. The rice pounded in this way retains the bran and thus rich in anti oxidants, E and B Vitamins and essential fatty acids. The other grains seen in the picture are finger millets and wheat. 

Guru Purnima

Super User 31 July 2015

A ficus has been planted on the Guru Purnima day, July 31. In a simple ceremony the seedling was planted by Dr S Ramesh, an ardent lover of nature, educated in Harvard and IIT; and a former bureaucrat. He served our town as Sub-divisional Magistrate in the 60s and is in love with the place since then. He lives here with his wife Brinda and together they have published a book on the History of our region.

Silent retreat

Super User 24 July 2015

The master trainer, Christoph Eberhard went into a 8 day silence retreat as a part of his visit to the Himalayas. He is visiting after almost a decade and would like to reconnect back. He used his living room in the cottage located in the FCN premises and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. He said the location as well as the food was divine and perfect for his long hours of meditation every day.  

Taiji Quan and Qi Chong workshop

Super User 24 July 2015

Taiji Quan and Qi Chong workshop in the Himalaya concluded successfully. Participants enjoyed the intense moments of learning as well as the relaxed sharing of experiences with each other. The organic food, spring water, cool breeze and peace of the of the oak forest also helped in the rejuvenation. Here you can watch an introduction to the technique.

Mother's self help group

Super User 24 July 2015

The Homestay Mothers Self Help Group (SHG) members attended a workshop on cooperative tourism organised by the Yes Bank at the Ranikhet Club. The participation of the SHG members was facilitated by the FCN. Ongoing collaboration of the SHG and the Foundation in improving local economy and enhancing visitor experience was shared in the conference with other delegates. 

New courtyard

Super User 24 July 2015

The courtyard with stone benches is now well laid for several activities and hang outs. Here we can see a group of students enjoying relaxed conversations with the Executive Director of the Pan Himalaya Grassroots Development Foundation. 

NOLS now offers Himalayan Culture Expedition

Super User 07 June 2015

Himalayan Culture Expedition (HCE) is a new offering by NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School, USA) started in the Spring 2015. Members of the expedition spend 5 weeks in the Indian Himalaya. FCN coordinated a 10 day module on nature and culture. They stayed in rural homes, helped with household work, learnt new skills in farming; improved communication skills overcoming language barriers; visited local cultural sites; critically reflected on several local and global issues around sustainable development; and had a lot of fun playing and dancing with the host families and children and youth in the village. Here are some pictures that reflect the activities, the setting and the mood.

Poornima

Super User 05 May 2015

Poornima (full moon day) of the month of Baisakh (May) marks the end of harvest of some of the most significant winter crops such as wheat, barley and oats. Oats are seen in the picture being dried in the premises of the Himalayan Center. This day is also also celebrated as Buddha Poornima - the day of the birth, enlightenment and mahasamadhi (death) of Buddha. It was celebrated on May 4th with an hour of silence at the feet of the stone buddha in the garden.

Taiji Quan and Qi Gong workshop

Super User 30 April 2015

An introduction to Taiiji Quan and Qi Gong with Christoph Eberhard: June 19th to 21st, 2015 at the Center.

Taiji Quan is an ancient Chinese martial art, focusing on health cultivation and harmonization of body and mind. Ba Duan Jin, or the Qi Gong of the eight pieces of Brocade. This Qi Gong that originated in the sacred Taoist mountains of Wudang is also one of the most wide spread Qi Gongs in the world. The eight movements constitute a good basis for harmonizing body and mind and for cultivating Qi (prana). The set also constitutes a good first introduction to Qi Gong, the Chinese practice of life nourishing.

Ceremony for the Buddha

Super User 15 April 2015

The Buddha statue, in earth witness pose at the Centre, is located in an open meditation area under trees. A function was held on March 8 and it was attended by close to 80 people. After the prayers and the prasadam, singing in traditional way to celebrate the festival of holi was organized which was followed by lunch for all.

The Buddha now has a place around him where people can sit comfortably and meditate. The priest did 1000 names of Vishnu prayer since we consider Buddha as one of the incarnations of Vishnu.

Teaching module for Protected Area Managers

Super User 12 April 2015

A module on connectedness to nature and ecological consciousness was presented in the training of the coastal and marine protected area managers held in February 2015 at the Indian Institute of Scuba Diving, Tarkarli.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Super User 11 April 2015

The event at the FAO HQ in Rome was to orient the staff with the approach of contemplation of nature. It was attended by more than 20 staff members. They provided extremely positive feedback, showed their inclination to use it in their work and personal lives and formed a group to meet periodically. 

Meeting with Prof. Arthur Zajonc

Super User 10 April 2015

Ajay Rastogi met Arthur Zajonc (left) in 2010 when he was Director of the Centre for Contemplative Mind in Society, besides being Professor of Physics at Amherst College. Arthur Zajonc is President of the Mind and Life Institute. He said that contemplative education was becoming extremely topical and huge efforts are being made in USA to mainstream it into education. He has been to India before for a dialogue with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

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