Friday, April 28, 2006

Do you use glass paint only for glass painting?


Well, I discovered sometime back that glass paint looks good on almost any surface. Just remember to test how well the paint spreads on the surface and all that. Most importantly, check to see if the lead paint or glass liner that you use for the border binds well.

A few months back I tried painting on a bamboo plate with glass paint. I loved the effect. Today I tried making a few greeting cards (all in an hour's work) using chart paper, glass liner and glass paint. Again I liked it. I love the glossy, glassy, shiny finish that glass paint gives.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Kadalai paruppu kosmalli - a sweet salad

This is a sweet salad made with Bengal gram (chana) dal and grated coconut. A complete traditional Tamil Brahmin meal will definitely include this.




Preparation Time – ½ hr. Cooking Time – 15 min. Serves 4.

Ingredients:

1 cup Bengal gram (channa) dal - soaked in water for around 20 minutes
1 cup grated coconut
¾ or 1 cup sugar
1 tsp cardamom powder

Method:

  1. Cook the channa dal such that they are separate and not overcooked. Drain excess water and allow to cool.
  2. Once the channa dal is cooled, mix all the ingredients and serve immediately, otherwise it will become watery.
Note: The amount of sugar and coconut in this recipe can be varied according to taste.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Zap your problems, and zip to success with ZeNLP

Is it possible for one to achieve personal and professional milestones by reciting mantras; meditating; planting, watering and watching a tree grow; maintaining a strict vegan diet; auto-suggestion; and creative visualisation? Yes, it is, says Murli Menon in his book “ZeNLP: The Power to Succeed”.

While returning from a New Year party in 1995, Murli Menon was hit by a truck, resulting in severe brain haemorrhage, paralysing the left side of his body. While even doctors could not predict his return to normalcy, Menon was confident that he could win over his bodily ailments with mind power, through combined practice of Zen meditation and Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP).

He recovered full use of both his limbs in June 1995, and has since then helped many such disabled people to return to normalcy. Through his Ahmedabad-based firm phenoMenon Consultants Inc., he has been conducting numerous workshops on goal setting and achievement, stress management, team-building and motivation, based on his theory of ZeNLP, which combines the principles of NLP and Zen meditation.

The human body is comprised of cells. Cells contain molecules of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen etc. These molecules in turn break up into atoms; atoms into electrons, protons and neutrons; and neutrons into neutrinos, till we reach the tiniest particles called quarks, which are nothing but quantum energy. The human body then is nothing by a bundle of energy or cosmic consciousness, the author explains. And the exploration of this energy within us and others is possible through ZeNLP and its various methods such as planting of trees and observing nature, meditation, adoption of a vegan diet, reinforcing a positive thought by constantly repeating it to ourselves, recitation of mantras, and so on.

These methods helps us to discover and harness the infinite power of the mind, to understand our position in the divine plan, and to get in touch with ourselves, thereby making it possible to improve conceptual understanding, memory power and concentration, intuitive ability and strategising skills, and more.

The book is well-written, with a generous sprinkling of Zen parables or metaphors. The author is right in believing that a person will understand and register a message better when it is delivered through a story, instead of as a sermon. The few dozen stories in the book themselves make the book worth its price.

The flip side is that the author’s presentation of thoughts seems disconnected. Although each individual idea is presented well, it is quite difficult for us to weave the various chapters into a cohesive whole. Another deterrent is that ZeNLP, quite understandably, needs to be practised for a reasonable period of time (sometimes a matter of years), before it yields results. Therefore, it is not possible for me to test it before publishing this review. Yet, judging by the success stories mentioned in the book, it seems to be worth trying. After all, nothing ventured, nothing gained.