Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Mesmerizing Varikasseri Mana!


A sense of  finding true love in unexpected places.This  post tells how simple places get attracted by mind:)-I can sit far away, miles away and picture myself in these places,where mind's eye can take you to a dream world.

I never thought one  needs to go to exotic locations,some places near the home,usher so much grandness and elegance that you feel one with them.


Any average Keralite  who has spent and lived his life in Kerala would have been enamoured by the malayalam movies and its heroes and the places where the movies have been shot.
Kerala known for its picturesque locations like paddy fields,backwaters,beaches and old traditional homes have been backdrops for movies shot here.From childhood,we have been enamoured by this home which has been backdrop for several hit movies.


Yes,i get attracted to these kind of beauties,is it the movies that has given us so much thrust to the backdrops or the backdrops that gave the story a life,i keep wondering always:)-vivid memories from the childhood is of the forest kind of landscapes,the monsoons,the old stone buildings,and lush landscapes.

This is my kind of aesthetic appeal,which gives a sense of warmth,the light that has to give a different story each time it enters and leaves the window.

This house leaves me mesmerized each time i am there:)-I always stand in absolute reverence to the beauty and grandeur and the persons who were behind this beautiful place.a terrible kind of beauty as i stand and look up!



This is an old traditional house of the Namboodiri clan. Named Varikkasseri Mana  is one of the oldest traditional aristocratic Namboothiri's Houses (illam). It is also known as Varikkumanchery Mana. 

It is located at Manissery, a village about four kilometers west from Ottapalam,  Kerala,South India.

Varikkassey Mana is situated on about four Acres.The Varikkasseri family has a history of over 1000 years. Varikkasseri  has the sovereign position among Namboothiri "Ashta griha" families. The Mana was built by Varikkassery  Ravi Namboothirippad in the early twentieth century.I do sincerely hope it remains for centuries for people to love!




























Images by Lakshmi Arvind,(Please ask permission before using the images,copyrighted)

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Mesmerizing Olappamana Mana!

Some chapters,Some episodes,Some moments are always frozen and doesn't fade a bit in the coming years..

Visiting some fragrant age-old culturally and historically rich homes are always considered an experience for a life time.

Visits to the home town is peppered with local visits, visits to the temples, visits to the cultural fairs and some historical visits that makes the travel worthy.

Last year's summer visits saw us travel from the southern most tip of our home town to the extreme north where it rains always, where the Nila flows in its simplicity, the land of Namboodiri Illams, snake temples and kathakali. Being  with Nila that filled my childhood memories. It's said Nila stirs creativity, makes a person a romantic and ignites passion and love. It  makes me the happiest person. It still infuses a wave of calmness in me and I can gaze at for days:)- 

Having spent many years in the Malabar region the love for Nila would always be there. Vivid memories of passing the Nila when travelling in train to the Malabar along with parents, memories of the river swell in rains and trickle in summer :)- all part of growing up :)- and lovely childhood memories.


Playing on its shallow banks ,having a walk on the sands,visiting temples on its banks...it felt as if i could touch those memories.. alas if only one could go back in time:)-

A short break at Shoranur and then on to the village of Vellinezhi. As planned a stay was not possible at the Mana since the host Mr Damodaran  was not in town and so we wait for another opportunity to spend some quality time at the place. But nevertheless we spent a lot of time watching and getting bowed down by the architectural marvel of the Illam...


A travel to the village of Vellinezhi was worth every inch. It is a small but culturally crucial village located in Palakkad district of Kerala in northern India. The sylvan, rugged land is located on the banks of the Kunti, a slender rivulet that forms tributary to the broad, west-flowing Bharatapuzha that criss-crosses central Kerala in southern India.




Vellinezhi is home to Olappamanna Mana, one of the centuries-old feudal Namboothiri (Kerala Brahmin) mansions Illam. The residence of the  late poet Mahakavi Subrahmanian Nambudiripad (simply Olappamanna, his pen name) and author-scholar Dr O.M. Anujan. the 20th century, It was in Olappamanna Mana that the legendary Pattikkamthodi Ravunni Menon redefined the aesthetics of the Kalluvazhi tradition of Kathakali.



Vellinezhi has grown in stature as the homestead of a few classical Kerala art forms. Primary among them is the dance-drama, Kathakali, the technical precision and aethetic quality of which rose to great heights during the life and times of Pattikkamthodi Ravunni Menon who polished and made the Kalluvazhi style of the art artfully elaborate. It is his set of disciples, along with the playback musicians, percussionists, make-up (chutti), costumes (petti) artistes that he groomed who later made Vellinezhi proud. The village, critically, has a house named Kothavil that has specialised in the craft of designing and making Kathakali 



The place is mesmerizing,enchanting, preserving and protecting the treasures of the  precious traditions. A devotional commitment from the noble couple, Sri. Damodaran and wife Sreedevi. With my humble Pranamam.I still feel I am still wandering somewhere there:)-
























Information on  Vellinezhi and Olappamanna Mana courtesy Wikipedia.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Diwali days!

festivals come and go:)-
Those are the days when we dream the sunlight paints us gold!
Magic of these intoxicating rituals,getting imbibed and soaked:)-
Prayers as deep as breath for the gratitude of being life itself!
Our lives comes from our rituals (Esther hicks)













Images conceived and photographed :Lakshmi Arvind.
Please ask permission for use.



Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Prayer Boats for Deepavali !

Celebrate Diwali in Thailand Style!
 Make Krathongs or lotus shaped ecofriendly boats made of banana leaves:)-

‘Krathongs’, are small lotus-shaped boats made of banana leaves and banana tree, or environmentally insensitive Styrofoam. These these rafts are entrusted with candles, incense, flowers, and coins before they are floated down rivers, into lakes, or simply atop a still backyard pond.Bread raft was introduced to protect the environment because of the fact that having numerous rafts can lead to a huge water pollution problem. As a result, the bread raft was ingeniously created not only for the user, but eventually, the raft will become food for the fishes and other animals living in the river. 

All forms of rafts are decorated with uniquely folded banana leaves, candles, flowers and incense sticks, among others.The krathong are both signs of respect to the goddess of the water, and apologies to the River Goddess for polluting her waters during the year .Loy Krathong is celebrated during the full moon of the 12th month in the Thai lunar calendar and usually falls in November in western Gregorian calendar.
I remember the similarity these boats have to the flower boats we float in Rishikesh and Haridwar! 
Its beautiful to think about the similarity in  thoughts and the rituals:)- all over the world..

















All images courtesy:Pinterest and here
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