«Matsya, the fish incarnation of Vishnu, symbolizes the forming of protoplasm and invertebrates.»
In Hinduism, an Introduction, by Dharam Vir Singh
The Waters of Life
1 «Waters, you are the ones who bring us the life force. Help us to find nourishment so that we may look upon great joy.
2 Let us share in the most delicious sap that you have, as if you were loving mothers.
3 Let us go straight to the house of the one for whom you waters give life and give us birth.
4 For our wellbeing let the goddesses be an aid to us, the waters be for us to drink. Let them cause wellbeing and health to flow over us.
5 Mistresses of all the things that are chosen, rulers over all peoples, the waters are the ones I beg for a cure.
6 Soma has told me that within the waters are all cures and Agni who is salutary to all.
7 Waters, yield your cure as an armour for my body, so that I may see the Sun for a long time.
8 Waters, carry far away all of this that has gone bad in me, either what I have done in malicious deceit or whatever lie I have sworn to.
9 I have sought the waters today; we have joined with their sap. O Agni full of moisture, come and flood me with splendour.»
In The Rig Veda, translated by Wendy Doniger.
New Delhi. Roshan is studying to become an actor and he sings. It is March 2018. We are together in Counnaught place. His song echoes the gentle growth of plants under the soil where there is moist.
«The most important plants that yield indigo are those of the genus Indigofera belonging to the natural order of Leguminose.
The process of extraction of indigo from the indigo plant is of a simple character and consists mostly of three stages, (a) steeping of the plants in water (fermentation) followed by (b) separation of the aqueous extract and oxidation of the solution with air and then (c) the final treatment of precipitating and separating the colour and preparation of the dye cake or powder.
A good quality of indigo has a deep violet blue colour; it acquires a coppery luster when rubbed with the fingernail.»
In Natural Dyeing Processes of India by B.C. Mohanty, K.V. Chandramouli, H.D. Naik.
«Dhanishta is the twenty-third nakshatra (constellation) in Hindu astronomy. It is also known as Avittam. In Jyotisa, Dhanishta is ruled by Mangala (the planet Mars). Dhanishta is classified as a movable nakshatra, meaning that, under astrological beliefs, it is best to begin activities like travel when the moon is in Dhanishta
The symbol most commonly used to represent Dhanishta is the drum known as mridanga.»
In Vedic Encyclopedia
«Between the world and the waters another element slips in, an element in which water and world flow together and mingle: consciousness, the raw sensation of whoever is awake and know himself alive.
Kaśyapa said: 'In what are you experts?' They asked us. In the sensation of being alive. We are wakeful – or, if you like, we vegetate. Vajra, the lightning flower, the ultimate weapon of the gods, is connected with vegeo, 'to be wakeful, vigilant', from which we have wacker, wach, and wake, 'awake'. The lightning is the lightning flash of wakefulness. 'Vegetation' and 'wakefulness' share the same root.»
In Ka, Stories of the Mind and the Gods of India by Roberto Calasso.
I would like to thank all my friends in Jaipur, Bagru, New Delhi, Goa and Kerala for making this India life-changing experience so very fruitful and meaningful. I am grateful to the Sethia family and the Printers, Dyers and Artisans of Bagru for teaching me the processes of natural dyeing and hand block printing, I thank Ashu Singh and his family for hosting me like I was part of the family in Jaipur at the Jwala Niketan Guest House. I thank Tali Artheau for her presence and for teaching me the basics of Ayurveda. I thank Thomas Kavoor from Studio Sukriti in Jaipur for being my uncle, welcoming me in his studio amongst his friends. I thank Suresh Pillai for his precious friendship, vision and knowledge; I thank Subodh Kerkar, Yadhu and Aditi Rakhe for hosting at the MOG in Goa. I thank Sofia Batalha and Harpreet Aurora from Instituto Camões in New Delhi for curating the exhibition «Hasta» at the National Handicrafts and Handlooms Museum. I thank Sethu Das from Design&People and Friends of Tibet Association for his generosity and for hosting me in Kochi and Allaphuza and introducing me to the Tibetan medicine practice and practitioners. I thank Carlos Piñeros for his presence in New Delhi and beyond.