Will humanity survive? Many people have lost hope. There are many doomsday prophets in environmental movements. But Jane Goodall gives us hope and also reasons for hope. She should know for she had seen the worst kind of cruelty humanity can inflict on our fellow evolutionary cousins - the chimps and she had also seen how attitudes can be changed and hearts won over when knowledge brings expansion of heart. So our newsletter that reaches you this new year brings you rightly her message of hope.


Azolla is spreading throughout Andhra Pradesh. Dr. Kamalasannan Pillai of VK-nardep has done wonderful work for the livestock farmers. This newsletter brings you the news about his work in Andhra and also how media in AP has extensively reported on this green technology. Along with that we also bring other reports of our activiies including seminar on traditional medical knowledge, Shakti Surabhi -Bio Methanation plant seminars etc. In our book section we introduce our new publication that documents for the first time the indigenous medical systems involved in venom-poison treatment.

In the wisdom section we have Mother, Sri Aurobindo and J.Krishnamurthi  - all enlighten us on how we can make our lives more beautiful and useful and meaningful. Let us hope on the whole you will find our newsletter an enrichening experience. Please download it here.

Earth functions as one super-organism : Gaia Hypothesis has made the planet earth an emotional and scientific symbol for ecologists worldwide. Lynn Margulis was one of the co-originators of this revolutionary concept. In this month newsletter VK-nardep pays homage to Lynn Margulis, who passed away this November. We have her lecture excerpts which explain her system approach to planet as a unitive life phenomenon.

At VK-nardep we have vermi-compost workshop, farmers and students study tour. RuTAG - Rural Technology group of IIT Chennai had a workshop at Vivekananda Kendra wherein the RuTAG officials met representatives from various organizations, institutions and colleges and discussed what technical inputs can be given for sustainable rural development. We also reinforced the technology integration with farmers at Sevayoor.


We have a new book on Shakti Surabhi the Bio-Methanation plant and we also are releasing a new book on Visha Vaidhya System - an important step in preserving the indigenous medical wisdom.

How can evolving a planetary consciousness be both scientific as well as an inner spiritual awakening? A bio-physicist, a deep ecologist and a Zen nun discuss it in the wisdom section of our newsletter. Gaia is not only science she is also the face of evolving planetary consciousness.

You can have it all by downloading the newsletter here.

We are going to release siddha parampariya visha vaidya chikichaimuraikal on 13 th dec (a practical siddha traditional hand remedy book for poisonus bites. This is perhaps the first time that the traditional indigenous wisdom of  this aspect of Siddha tradition is being documented this extensively. This is the result of the field work by Dr.V.Ganapathi and his team. They went and met many traditional physicians and collected the data. There was also a workshop and seminar conducted at the state level by Siddha physicians on this topic.

விவேகானந்த கேந்திர இயற்கை வள அபிவிருத்தி திட்டத்தின் சித்த வைத்திய பாரம்பரியத்தின் விஷக்கடி முறிவு சிகிச்சை குறித்த நூல் 13 டிசம்பர் அன்று வெளியிடப்படுகிறது,

Vivekananda Kendra Nardep has published a new multi-coloured introduction as well as instruction manual on Bio-Methanation plant. The book has two parts. the first part provides a detailed introduction to Shakti Surabhi plant. It explains the principle of Bio-Methanation. It also gives detailed data on how to increase the working efficiency and obtain optimum results. The special features of the plant as well as key indicators of the plant health are also given. The Second part deals with the fixed plant as well as scaling up operations. It provides a brief on biogas for electricity generation and also scaling up of the plant. There is a section on frequently asked questions and also a section on general terms. The book provides both an introduction to the technology and also user-gudelines to the user. The experiences of various users are shared with the reader in the form of attractive box items. The book also provides good detailed illustrations in colour. This is a welcome addition to the library of books on sustainable development technologies.

Dr.A.R.Shukla , Adviser (Bio-Energy), Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, GOI, in his forward to the book states that 'the book provides the layman an introduction to use of the technology and for those who are using it already, this book makes them efficient users. A sustainable techology has to be integrated with the society and its socio-cultural heart beat to make the technology people's technology. This book has come out as an important catalyst in that transformation".

Handbook on Bio-Methanation: Shakti Surabhi

Author: Er. Ramakrishnan, Pages: 60

We wish every reader a very happy festival season of light and seek the blessings of Goddess Earth!

In this newsletter we pay tribute to one of the greatest daughters of Mother Earth - Wangari Maathai! This African Nobel Laureate led a people's movement towards the greening of Kenya and inspired women across Africa and entire planet to reclaim their right over the natural resources so that the planet will not be exploited by the greed of humanity. This brave woman died this September after a prolonged battle with cancer. VK-nardep humbly dedicates this newsletter to her memory and work. We have in this newsletter her eco-fable of a solitary humming bird that fights to save the forest fire.


This newsletter also brings to you our series on the work VK-nardep has done on the revival of traditional water harvesting structures. As a prelude we have in this issue the civilizational wisdom that goes into the creation of temple tanks and Oornis. Azolla technology has been taken to Andra by Dr.Kamalasanan Pillai. Dr. Ganapathi has given a series of lectures on the need to conserve traditional medical knowledge systems. Gramodaya for Right living - the sustainable technologies exhibition housed at Vivekananda Kendra Kanyakumari has gone to Italy. All these you will learn about in this newsletter.

Wisdom knows no boundaries and heart does matter. We have three savants in our 'Visions of Wisdom'. An African eco-feminist, Swami Vivekananda and an economist. They all talk about the need to have heart and dedicate our lives for healing the wounds of the poor and downtrodden. Wangari Maathai says "... the people at the bottom sometimes can make themselves extremely heavy. You try to lift them out and constantly they go back to the same depth. So we need to commit ourselves to raise them, to not give up." What she states is the echo of the clarion call Swami Vivekananda gave to the youth of India, " Feel, my children, feel; feel for the poor, the ignorant, the downtrodden; feel till the heart stops and the brain reels and you think you will go mad --then pour the soul out at the feet of the Lord, and then will come power, help, and indomitable energy." Even our technology and economy should re-orient towards the poor and downtrodden says E.F.Schumacher, "What the poor need most of all is simple things—building materials,clothing, household goods,agricultural implements—and a better return for their agricultural products." Such a convergence of savants in different fields and different climes and times, shows that the eternal wisdom is the wisdom of the heart!

You can read them all in this newsletter! You can download the newsletter here.

You can also download an attractive books catalogue from our website by clicking here

A very Happy Deepavali!