Wednesday, May 6, 2009

No News 17th edition - Crossing the Barriers

No News 17th edition - Crossing the Barriers

Dear Friends,

Welcome to read the 17th issue of No News. Watching the ongoing IPL 2009 series on television gives me opportunities to do interesting analysis of team building and man-management skills. A “Kissed” (keeping it short sweet entertaining daily) event which is definitely going to take the game to many more grounds across the world, giving viewers a management lesson or two each time it happens. It was boring till the Super over match which Rajasthan Royals won where Kamran Khan and Yousuf Pathan wrote history by match winning performances. Spin bowling is going to be the mantra for future matches as it gives preparedness and alertness to the un-expected twists and turns which those slow bowlers extract out there from nowhere. This makes the IPL matches an exhibition of strong characters and a sense of ownership from individuals to achieve success. After all, life is like that too, and those who react to situations which comes on their way and succeed it in the coolest form wins.

I was happy to watch the performance of a small group of children learning the art of playing mrudangam, a South Indian percussion instrument, online and then performing on stage for the first time. Impressed beyond words, I took an effort to meet the master who taught them. It was none other than Vikraman Nampoothiri, son of the legend late Sri Korambu Subramanyan Nampoothiri. Watching the performance of those little children on video brought back memories of my childhood when the late Sri Subramanyan Nampoothiri himself came to our home and taught us lessons with devotion and dedication despite having severe difficulties in life to meet the daily chores from his meagre earnings obtained from the local temple. His student’s used to gather at each other’s house and vie each other for the perfectly tuned mrudangam to get to play on it rather than on the practise instrument, which was heavier and not finely tuned. Those were the days when every rupee mattered and the extra additional amount spent on art form was taken seriously with utmost diligence for repayment in terms of productive participation and creative performance. Luckily it was not also a time when art forms where taught in capsule forms for performing abruptly in school festivals or reality shows. Till the basics were perfected, no guru dared to display his student’s talent. Those days are gone and now art forms, whatever it may be, are taught on matter of fact basis for event specific purpose.

Many times when talent in children are explored, the question of valuable time required for learning and the efforts of parents to support and nurture them grow comes in to prominence. Very few parents stands out from this and observe their children and guide them and carry them along to practise an art form to perfection which may assist their child to master later in his life the art of man management. Participation of children in performing and non-performing art forms are therefore very important for a child’s character formation and personality development. It is due to this reason that Talent Share support those initiatives which promote the value of Sharing Knowledge without profit. Imagine, you being master of a spin bowling trick, which you mastered with several years of dedicated practise and which gave you name and fame. Everyone will praise you for what you do when you continue to do it. However, if you held on that art of yourself without sharing it with others, after some period, no one will remember about it including yourself. Whereas, if you make an attempt to share the tricks of it with someone who you feel benefit from it, he may develop it further and create it’s way into the history books of achievements and achievers.

A few months ago I had the opportunity to attend a religious function organised here. The ceremonial proceedings of it were lengthy and continued throughout the day from early morning start till mid afternoon and followed by sumptuous lunch. This required huge effort in terms of organisation, decoration and arrangements. As this was an annual event, I used to participate in all aspects of it, including the final arrangements on the previous night, working without sleep. The involvement, team work and co-ordinated effort combined with a unique objective made sure that none of the volunteers felt any signs of tiredness or lack of enthusiasm till it finished. As I was watching the proceedings this year from the extreme end of the auditorium, a young man came near and stood by me. He was not knowing that I was observing him. He was one of the volunteers who worked all night long to make the event happen that morning. He called his friends, who had come to attend and was explaining to them how they did all the arrangements before the early morning start. Listening to them silently, I told myself, no one is indispensable in this world. A few years ago, I was one amongst the volunteer group doing all the things he was talking about.

The value of knowledge one holds with him get prominence only when it is shared with his fellow human being who have not had the same opportunity to achieve it. Various objectives of Team 1 blogs like Talent Share and cbseplus are purely oriented towards promoting knowledge and talent sharing. cbseplus initiative is slowly gaining momentum in terms of valuable contents and guidance with focus on forming an e-assistance to children opting for higher studies. Continuing the progress, we are now approaching educational institutions in this region that does not have web sites for their schools. With a team of dedicated members, and with absolutely no commercial interest, Team 1 and cbseplus blogs will help to create informative web sites for schools to disseminate valuable information to parents and children and also to initiate easier interactions between school authorities, teachers and students. Administrators of schools, who are reading this newsletter, may contact for further information and express their interest for participation if any.

In the game of pole vault, the higher you achieve the height, the higher the bar is raised for the contestant to attempt for a win. We all know well it is difficult to cross the barriers. It requires enormous amount of good will, support, hard work and dedication to move even an inch forward. I reiterate my request to all my readers to participate without inhibition and prejudice in cbseplus and Talent Share initiatives for the benefit of several talented and knowledge seeking children. A Talent or knowledge within you is to be shared – let that be our mantra.

God Bless and have a great week ahead.

Ramesh Menon
06052009/ e-mail:


  1. Dear Ramesh,

    I always enjoy reading the "No News Editions". Couple of things that came to my mind while reading were (post your thoughts if you have any):

    1) art/craft/music was always under appreciated due to various reasons in our society. E.g. classical music was unreachable for talented folks from lower caste. I have heard that Neyyattinkara Vasudevan Nair was not given stage for a very long time (please correct me if I am wrong). Similarly, crafts were dedicated as a low-caste affair -- thanks to our caste system. Looking back, we should compare this against Italy where artists and craftsmen were considered highly sophisticated skills.

    2) Sharing -- Were not Ayurvedic principle or specialized treatment techniques kept a secret from one another. People who had great knowledge of the system kept it only in their families and as a result, Ayurveda never flourished. As a result, no one bothered to analyze it scientifically.

    Thank you

    Varghese Devassy

  2. Just now only completed the No News!
    As usual a brilliant effort.!
    The cover page is really good and the example of Pole vault to your theme of crossing the barriers is very apt. ( Also you can say "Continuous improvement"..... from the TQM philosophy!)
    The lesson learnt from the young boy standing in front of you narrating the pride and joy of arranging everything could have been also a positive one! Instead of "no one is indispensable which is slightly negative, you can put it as say.. it was very heartening to observe in olympics, the torch is passing hands and the spirit(light) moves on.. something like that...!!
    Just an observation

    warm regards and al the best to your cbseplus and Talent share efforts..
    Happy week end1


  3. Wow! This was another excellent piece of writing. It was very useful too.

    I totally agree with you when you mentioned about how the Gurus used
    to contain their disciples from performing their talents at stage
    until they reach the stage of perfection. Today, it has become more business like where Gurus advertise themselves that they can make children expose their talents on stage. This form cannot be blamed either since today's parents want to see quick results.

    I can't agree more on your concept 'share your knowledge'. But there are legends who have not left behing any disciples. Take the case of M.S. Subbu Lakshmi. Do you know of any disciples of her? The fear of people over performing them mars their growth and they get stagnated at the same level. That is what happens when knowledge is not shared.
    Your mind is broad enough in dedicating a web page exclusively for the purpose of children and their career growth. It is undoubtedly useful. I am happy that the younger generation would be greatly benefitted by this noble service of yours.