This is the first month of the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda. VK-nardep has planned to create a series on how ecological thoughts are integral and implicit in Swami Vivekananda's worldview. So this month we present how Swami Vivekananda views the entire existence as one grand organic whole. His concepts of 'Akasha' and 'Prana' are vital to his idea of cosmic inter-connectivity. It is this which connects the individual organically and vitally with every other human being at the social level and every other organism at the ecological level. So we do hope you will enjoy reading these aspects of Swami Vivekananda's views.


In our happenings apart from Azolla training, Bio-methanation plant training and installation of biogas plants, we have also conducted this month an "“in-plant training in Green Construction Technologies” for college students. It is very essential that eco-awareness is taken to the generation. Also important this month is the news aboutthe participation and contribution of Sis.Saraswathi is providing inputs regarding the pros and cons of eco-tourism in the Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve. The workshop on traditional Indigenous medical systems has also attracted different generations. Clearly need for the conservation of indigenous knowledge is a  great leveler of generational gaps.In our publications sections this month, we present one of our earlier and a very innovative attempt. This is a publication of folk-tune based multi-lingual eco-themes with attractive posters and both transliteration as well as translation in Hindi and English. It brings to children (and adults) also both eco-awareness and also national integration. The book also presents musical notations which makes the teacher or instructor provide an approximately correct version of the multilingual songs. This innovative effort at eco-education needs to be revived.


In our wisdom section we have three passages: one from Stephen Jay Gould on how ecology is changing our perspective and laying emphasis on interconnectedness. Then we have a passage of Sri Ramana Maharishi who speaks about the self - an inner-connectedness and then we have Sri Aurobindo who discovers in natural processes an indepth-connectedness with all life.

So as the year celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda begins, we wish all our readers a very happy new year - 2013.

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A very warm Deepavali Greetings to all of you.

On the day of the festival of light, we bring you this newsletter that speaks of life as  'One Grand Organic Whole'. The article explains how science of unity of life as it gradually evolved started describing Gaia in a language of consilience that both scientists, poets, artists and religious thinkers can understand. It is science nevertheless it is poetry and mysticism. It is also an odyssey of the evolution of systems thinking in bio-sciences from Wallace to Lynn Margulis & James Lovelock.We are sure you will enjoy this special excerpt that explains how the science of Gaia changes the way we look at ourselves and our environment.

We also bring you the happening at VK-nardep where the training camps on Azolla technology and Bio-methanation plant technology are held. We provide you a glimpse of work that is happening at the green health home of VK-nardep.


In our publications, we bring you an excerpt from Akshaya Vikas. It explains the philosophy and general theory behind sustainable development through three birds, an ostrich, a parrot and a swan. Ostrich symbolizes classical Newtonian reductionist science that refuses to see beyond. Parrot simply repeats mindlessly the western model of development and the swan symbolizes wisdom that can discriminate and integrate the values and wisdom of ancient civilization with the holistic science. We are sure you will enjoy this conversation.

In our wisdom section, we bring you the perspective of Mahatma Gandhi on Truth, an eco-sociologist on Goodness and an ecologist on Beauty : which is in Indian tradition considered the trinity of Satyam, Shivam and Sundaram.

On the whole we wish you a happy reading experience: You can download the newsletter by clicking here.

Once again a Very Happy festival of Light!

How to design an Eco-Education? Is that merely scientific facts and methods or something else along with all these?  In an excerpt from his article on the problem Prof. Christopher Uhl ponders over the problem: What do these students—indeed, what do all of us need to know to become environmentally literate and know to become more ecologically conscious?" And proceeds to answer. Read about designing a course in eco-education in this excerpt presented in the newsletter.

Azolla is getting a coverage in Andhra Pradesh. A leading Tamil TV channel has also given good coverage to this technology. Varma workshop has been conducted this month. SHG members from a neighboring district came to VK-nardep to learn sustainable technologies... these are just some of the happenings reported in our newsletter this month. We are presenting the book 'Beneficial Herbs' which are actually herbal plants  that usher in health. This book is a good introduction to beginner as well as professional as to how to use common plants for common household ailments. This book has been in great demand since its publications. Good pictures, crisp narrative and practically useful information - all that explain the popularity of the book. This is also the first death anniversary of Wangari Mathai - a great African eco-feminist. We remember her in this newsletter

In the wisdom section we share how a scientist, seer and a mystic view the planet, evolution and nature.Joan Maloof the ecologist sees the planet as conscious. Swami VIvekananda sees the evolutionary process as having involuted consciousness expanding back into consciousness and  Mother of Sri Aurobindo Ashram sees the entire nature as conscious.

You can download and read all these in our newsletter HERE