Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Have you ever come to Sikkim - India?

Sikkim is simply enchanting. Whether you're gazing upon the white-gold peaks of mighty Khangchendzong (the world's third highest mountain) or responding to the shy smile of a Lepcha tea stall owner, it's not hard to understand why Buddhism, the gentle faith, remains rooted in this hard, but tranquil land. The Buddha is everywhere, in the exhilarating purity of the mountain air, the blue-green waters of the Teesta River and the dignified friendliness of Sikkim's people.

Crows Lake in North Sikkim
 Coming here, you will be welcomed by friendly local people.

 Nepali festival is one of the interesting festivals in Sikkim. Maghe Sankranti (January): It corresponds to the Indian festival of Makara 
Sankranti and is marked by people bathing in holy rivers.

Dasain (September-October):
This is the Nepali version of the nine-day long Durga Puja. The first day of festival, called Ghatasthapana, sees the installation of the kalash or sacred vassel in the family Puja room. Prayers are chanted to invoke the Goddess Durga and persuade her to alight on the rim of the kalash, even if it be for as long as a mustard seed can balance on the horn of cow.

Tihar (November): A five-day festival, its third day corresponds to the Indian festival of Diwali. The first day is celebrated as kag tihar or the festival of crows, when delicacies are prepared and fed to the crows; then comes kukoor tihar or the festival of dogs; then gai tihar, whose evening is devoted to the celebration of the Goddess Lakshmi and houses are decorated with lights; the following day is goru (ox) tihar. The last day is Bhai Tika, when sisters mark their brothers foreheads with tikas 

Momos are the most popular dishes that have made it big outside Sikkim. Today, you will get a Momo in any part of the country, at any eating joint. They are flour dough in the shape of dumblings and are stuffed generally with minced meat. Though there are varieties in which vegetables or cheese used as a filling. They flour dough is steamed for 30 minutes in a peculiar utensil which has three compartments. In the lowest compartment, soup is boiled. The steam which rises from the soup, cooks the dumblings. Momos are eaten hot with the soup, chilly sauce or tomato pickle.

Thukpa - the delicious food in Sikkim
 Red panda is the state animal of Sikkim, it is also the mascot of the International Tea Festival in Darjeeling. They are mostly herbivorous mammals, specialised as bamboo-feeders; they cannot digest cellulose as their guts are not specialised to handle plant matter like that of cows, horses and other herbivorous mammals. They eat berries, fruit, mushrooms, roots, acorns, lichen, grass and are known to supplement their with the occasional young birds, fish, eggs, small rodents and insects when the weather is warm enough. In captivity they will readily eat meat.

Red panda

Source: Internet

It's not goodbye!

It's so hard to be strong when you've been missing somebody so long....


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Holi Festival of Color - one of the most intersting festival in India

Holi is one of the big festivals with people in India and other countries with large Hindu populations. Holi is called the Festival of Color because it is celebrated by playing with vibrant color. People smear on each other face and playfully plash colorful paint with colored powder and water during the celebration. The festival is known for the generous use of colors, which are produced both naturally and artificially. Gulal is the main color in this festival and people also use variety color such as pink, red, green, yellow...etc

Dry Holi colors known as 'Gulal' and wet colors or 'Rang' were originally prepared naturally from the flowers and other products that had dyeing properties. However, with time, in the quest of more long-lasting and strong colors, chemically enhanced and artificial colors have come in vogue. The harmful effects of these chemicals on our body and eyes have forced us to do a turn-about to the natural colors. However, you certainly don't need to disappoint as one can create beautiful reds, greens, blues, saffron, yellows and magentas at home, and that too naturally. 

Some amazing pictures about Holi Festival of Color...
People smear colored powder on each other during Holi celebrations in the northern Indian city of Amritsar
Revellers take part in Holi celebrations in the northern Indian city of Allahabad
Colored powder is thrown on a girl during Holi celebrations in the southern Indian city of Chennai, India
Students smear each other with colored powder during the celebrations of Holi, in Kolkata, India
Purple-colored water is sprayed on revellers during Holi celebrations in the northeastern Indian city of Guwahati 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Top six scents to improve your health

Discover the healing powers of different smells.
The complete holistic medicine, aromatherapy utilises the power of smell to help one heal emotionally, physically and spiritually.

Peppermint (Mentha piperita)

One of the most uplifting fragrances, Peppermint instills confidence and helps to clarify thoughts and emotions.  Physically, peppermint has the quirky talent of being both warming and cooling, which makes it the perfect digestive remedy, helping to quell nausea, indigestion and bloating. Drink peppermint tea.  Also good for sinus congestion, asthma and bronchitis, add peppermint oil to a steam vaporizer.


Rose (Rosa damascena)

Think love.  Think compassion.  Rose is the most sensual, not sexual of the essential oils.  Fabulously aromatic and fantastically expensive, only a couple of drops are needed to work it’s magic.  Massage over the heart chakra with rose oil will help mend a broken heart and provide harmony and strength through tough times.  Rose is used in cosmetic preparations to reduce redness and improve dry skin.


Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)

Derived from the Latin word ‘lavare’ – to wash, lavender is commonly used in soaps, bath oils and detergents.  A calming, soothing fragrance, lavender is the perfect stress buster.  Studies have shown that the smell of lavender can even lover blood pressure.  A drop of lavender oil massaged onto the temples and scalp can treat a headache.  Lavender is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, perfect for insect bites and rashes.


Tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)

The first aid kit in a bottle, Tea tree is an Australian indigenous medicine.  Studies have shown it to be amazingly effective against a host of infectious agents including fungi, bacteria and viruses. It is added to soaps, toothpastes, deodorants, disinfectants and even douches.  Often used for athletes foot, jock itch and thrush.  Tea tree oil is capable of increasing cell growth in damaged tissue, so it is helpful in a diluted wash or cream to treat mild burns, wounds and even acne.


Sandalwood (Santalum album)

The oldest perfume of all, used for at least 4,000 years, Sandalwood is a deeply spiritual essence.  Often incorporated into incense, sandalwood sets the scene for meditation and travelling deeper into self, helping one to attain inner calm.  In addition to this aspect, Ayurvedic medicine uses sandalwood to help treat urinary tract infections, skin and respiratory tract infections and as an aphrodisiac.


Chamomile (Matricaria recutita)

Chamomile is a soothing remedy for digestive problems, tension headaches, sleeplessness and even for babies' colic and teething. Drink as a tea, or add a few drops to a bath or on a flannel and apply to the body part as a warm compress. Chamomile is also calming emotionally, helping one cope during a stressful time.
For home use essential oils should not be taken internally, as they can be toxic.

Massage oil - 10 drops essential oil to 100mls of base oil (eg almond oil, olive oil)

Cream – 15 drops essential oil to 100g of vitamin E base cream (from pharmacy)

Bath – 10-15 drops essential oil to bathwater

Steam vaporizer – 5-10 drops

Essential oil burner - 5-10 drops in water