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Monthly Archives: August 2015

  • LIGHT IT UP WITH LAMPS

    Lighting plays an important role in setting a mood. Sufficient and suitable illumination is essential to the art of interior decoration and ambience. A combination of different kinds of lighting; such as general lighting, accent lighting or task lighting is both a tricky yet important thing to add beauty to a space.

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    Lamps play an important role in adding brightness as well as in setting moods. There are a variety of lamps available in the market. Table lamps, study lamps, spot lamps, floor lamps, etc. Each type of lamp plays a different function as far as its utility is concerned.

    Lamps play both functional as well as decorative roles. These are available in various sizes, shapes, styles, colors and materials, often varying from traditional to modern in their designs. Simple and sleek lamps are considered contemporary.

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    Lamps are available in various sizes; howeverone must choose as per ones need and requirement, keeping in mind the main purpose that the lamp would serve. The size of the lamp should be taken care of while deciding upon the place where it has to be placed. For example, a small table will require a small lamp, while a big room will require a taller lamp. Lamps are available in sizes ranging from 15 inches to 27 inches.

    Interesting lamp shades add to the beauty of the lamp. Ideally, the size of the shade should be one half to three fourth the size of the base of the lamp and also that the bulb holder should not be visible, when it is put up. As for the shape of the lamp shade, it should complement the shape of the lamp that is to say that for a square shaped lamp, the shade should also be square or rectangular in shape. A round shaped shade will look good on a lamp with a round base, while a conical shade will look befitting on tall floor lamps.

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    In order to add general light to the room, one can use overhead lamps. Then there are floor lamps which shine up at the ceiling giving a reflected and touchier illumination. It provides an indirect dispersed light; which gives the room a blessed feel. Lamps giving out yellow dimmed light provide a romantic feel to the room.

    When it comes to lamps, one cannot overlook the beautiful and eye catching brass lamps fromPoompuhar. These lamps are used for pooja purpose as well as for decoration purposes and are available in various sizes and shapes. These are made out of copper and zinc along with high quality of brass.

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    These works of handicraft come under the government of Tamil Nadu’s undertaking i.e. the Tamil Nadu Handicraft Development Corporation Limited. A variety of lamps such as Ganesha lamps, Brass annam lamps, Lakshmi lamps, Prabai lamps, Kerala lamps, Balaji lamps, annam hanging lamps, Balaji branch lamps are available. Besides these, there are mangaladeepam, panchanlingadeepam, agalvilakku, kuberadeepam, Ashtalakshmi and Kamatchi lamps and also Jesus Cross lamps. These lamps vary from one foot to six feet in their size. Their weight also varies from 200 gm to 80 kgs. The best thing about them is thatthey can be dismantled, which makes them easy to pack and carry.  Even the prices vary from Rs 65 to Rs 64,000.

    Exhibitions are organized to display these traditional lamps so that the wonderful works of art of the artisans can attract the attention of visitors with their ingenious depiction of the cultural heritage of Tamil Nadu. There are more than 500 varieties of lamps available here which are of different sizes and shapes. These works of art are promoted by Poompuhar throughPoompuhar Sales Showrooms.

  • Buddha – The enlightened one

    Once upon a time there was a small prince calledSiddharthawho was troubled by the same questions that children of today are. Why did my aunt die? Why do new births occur? Why my wishes are not coming true? They wonder about nature, happiness and the very existence of living beings.And so on….

    The prince was born around 566 BC, in a small kingdom called Kapilavastuto King Suddhodana and Queen Maya.Soon after he was born, the wise men predicted that the young prince would become a 'renouncer,' someone who transcends the earthly life. When the king heard this, he was deeply disturbed, for like any other father he wanted his son to become a mighty ruler of his kingdom. Hence, he told Queen Maya, "I will make life in the palace so pleasant that our son would never want to leave."

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    At the age of sixteen, Prince Siddhartha married a beautiful princess, Yasodhara and soon had a son. The king built them three palaces, one for each season, and lavished them with luxuries and all amenities. The Prince passed his days in enjoyment and never thought about life outside the palace.

    Even though prospered with all available luxuries and amenities, the prince became disheartened with the palace life and always wanted to see the outside world.He made four trips outside the palace and saw four things that changed his life. On the first three trips, he saw sickness, old age worries, and death. He saw people in poverty, bound by sufferings. Soon he realized that the outside world was totally different from what he had been experiencing in his palace within the walls. He asked himself, "How can I enjoy a life of pleasure when there is so much suffering in the world?” On his fourth trip, he saw a monk who had given up all his worldly pleasures to seek an end to his sufferings. "I shall be like him" thought prince Siddhartha.

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    Many questions like “Why people undergo suffering?”“Why they weren’talways happy?”“Why do birth and death occur?”“What causes our happiness and sadness?”kept bothering him. The prince became eager to find answers for all these questions as they troubled him every day hence forth.Siddhartha became conscious then that his very purpose of existence was to seek relief for these sufferings.

    The calling to find the answer to the suffering in the world was so strong that he left his wife, son, wealth and kingdom behind and moved on to follow this calling.

    Siddhartha became a traveling monk. He visited many places. He even cut off his hair and wore ragged robesto show that he had renounced the worldly lifestyle. He called himself Gautama andwandered from place to place. In his search for truth, he studied with the wisest teachers of his day. None of them knew how to end suffering, so he continued the search on his own.

    Forthe next six years he practiced severe self-discipline thinking this would lead him to enlightenment. He sat in meditation and ate only roots, leaves, and fruit. He avoided any kind of luxuries and, pleasures offered to him. He worked hard for his food. At times he ate nothing. He could endure more hardships than anyone else, but this did not take him anywhere.He thought, "Neither my life of luxury in the palace nor my life as an ascetic in the forest is the way to freedom. Overdoing things can not lead to happiness. He began to eat nourishing food again and regained his strength.

    One summer, on a full-moon day, he sat under the Bodhi tree in deep meditation and said. "I will not leave this spot until I find an end to suffering." During the night, he was visited by Mara, the demon, who tried to divert him from his virtuous pursuit of finding the truth. First he sent his beautiful daughters to trap Gautama into pleasure. Next he sent bolts of lightning, wind, and heavy rain. Lastly he sent his evil armies with weapons and flaming rocks. One by one, Gautama met the armies and defeated them all with his virtue.

    As the struggle ended, he realized the origin of suffering and how to eliminate it. He had gained the most extreme wisdom and understood the things as they truly were. At the age of 35, he became “the Buddha”. The word Buddha is a loose translation of the Sanskrit word for “Enlightenment”.  Gautama became 'The Awakened One'. From then on, he was called as Shakyamuni Buddha.

    For the next forty-five years after the enlightenment Buddha and his disciples were travelledall over the Indiaand spread the good deeds and his teachings.His teachings spread to places and reached more people. Their kindness knew no bounds; they helped everyone along the way, beggars, kings, and slave girls. At night, they would sleep where they were; when hungry they would ask for a little food.

    Wherever the Buddha went, he won the hearts of the people because he dealt with their true feelings. He advised them not to accept his words on blind faith, but to decide for themselves whether his teachings are right or wrong, then follow them. He encouraged everyone to have compassion for each other and develop their own virtue, "You should do your own work, for I can teach only the way."

    He never became angry or impatient or spoke harshly to anyone, not even to those who opposed him. He always taught in such a way that everyone could easily understand. Each person thought the Buddha was speaking especially for him. The Buddha told people to help each other on the way.

    Once, the Buddha met a monk who was suffering from aninfectious disease. The poor man lay in a mess with no one looking after him. The Buddha himself washed the sick monk and placed him on a new bed. Afterwards, he admonished the other monks. "Monks, you have neither mother nor father to look after you. If you do not look after each other, who will look after you? Whoever serves the sick and suffering, serves me."

    Buddha departed this world at the age of eighty, however his compassion and love remains. From then Buddhism isone of the major religions in the world.

    The teachingsof Buddha goround the world like a wheel that never stops, leading to the central point of the wheel, the only point which is fixed Nirvana. The eight rods on the wheel signify the eight parts of the Noble Eightfold Path.

    1. Right Viewwith wisdom and compassion.
    2. Right Thought as clear and kind thoughts builds good and strong personality.
    3. Right Speech. By kind and helpful words, we are respected and trusted by everyone.
    4. Right Conduct. Others know us from the way we behave. Before we criticize others, we should first analyze ourselves.
    5. Right Livelihood. The Buddha said, "Do not earn your living by harming others. Do not seek happiness by making others unhappy."
    6. Right Effort. Doing our best at all times and having good will toward others without harming ourselves and others.
    7. Right Mindfulness. Being aware of what we think, speak, and do.
    8. Right Concentration. Focus on one thought or object at a time. By doing this, we can be quiet and attain true peace of mind.

    Buddha said “The mind is the ground and thoughts are seeds”. Actions are ways in which one cares for the garden. Our faults are weeds. Pulling them out is like weeding a garden. The harvest is real and lasting happiness.

    Buddha's Four Noble Truths of life are:

    1. Life is suffering
    2. Suffering is caused by craving
    3. Suffering has an end
    4. There is a path to awakening

    Buddhism is much more than just a religion. It is a way of life, which everyone on earth should be aware of. And the teachings of Buddha are common and relevant to all human beings irrespective of their belief and religion.

  • Presenting motifs of Mahabalipuram in pictures

    Poompuhar has come out with a sketchbook to give a sense of the heritage value of temples and monuments childrens arts http://bit.ly/1Je8dUy

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  • Special Independence Day Handicrafts from Poompuhar

    It is that time of the year when we come together irrespective of caste, creed, gender, region or religion, to celebrate being an Indian. Yes, Independence Day is here and we will be completing the 68th year since India became a free democratic nation. Indian skies will be dotted with pretty little kites in the tricolors of saffron, white and green and there will be happiness and celebration everywhere. To be part of the fervor, our artisans have meticulously crafted special handicraft items depicting the nationality and freedom struggle of our country.

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    What better way to show your love for the country than by having our very national Emblem and pillar at home? The Ashoka Pillar has four lions joined back to back, symbolizing equal importance of power, courage, pride, and confidence.

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    Peacock is our national bird as it is indigenous to our continent and represents the unity of vibrant colors. This wooden wall hanging has been created to symbolize the very ‘unity in diversity’ that the national bird stands for.

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    It would be incomplete to talk about Independence Day without commemorating the struggle for freedom. Our brave soldiers and freedom fighters laid down their lives so that we could live in a free India. This black metal statue of a soldier will stand as a reminder of their gift to us. Let us take a moment to salute them.

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    When great stories are told, often the silent struggles get lost within the pages of history. Perhaps that must have been the case of the womenfolk, who may not always have fought shoulder to shoulder with men, but were certainly as much a part of the freedom struggle as them. This statue, specially crafted for Independence Day, is a reminder and acknowledgment of the countless mothers, wives, daughters and sisters who became the pillar of strength for the men of their household.

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    What distinguishes us Indians from many nations of the world is our rich culture – we are a land prolific with history, art, music, dance and what not. The Veena is a representative of our richness and originality. It is an instrument which originated in our great country and is used extensively in classical Carnatic and Hindustani music. Show off your pride of being an heir of the Indian culture with this miniature Veena. A must buy for lovers of music.

    Poompuhar wishes you a very Happy Independence Day!

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