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the Blog 3 by Michèle Beguin

The monsoon ...The Life and The Arts.

It is because every year while in Paris in summer, I am hearing nonsense about the monsoon that I decided to counteract these readymade ideas well rooted in western minds with novels like "the monsoon" of L Bromfield and news given by the Medias.
My aim is to show the cultural and artistic richness that the rainy season has participated to create. Would be interesting to learn about the "history" of the monsoon in the past centuries and commerce but one has to dig out information from numerous documents.
Anyhow, the farmers are making a lots of painful works to plough their fields up to seven times to move the earth so finely that the rain will be absorbed totally. Everybody in India since always does tries to save water and stock it . Water farming is well developed.
The rainy season has powerfully inspired all the arts of India. Poetry, Mother of all arts in the country, is rich about the rains. The miniatures and mural paintings based on the season, and also music have produced treasures about the monsoon.
The architecture has also been influenced by the season and as an example the Monsoon Palace of Udaipur and the fountains of some gardens. The monsoon has modified the art of living and dressing in tune with the season and brought up creations of different textiles patterns and palettes of colours for men and women as well as typical perfumes, like "mitti ittar" which recreates the smell of the first rain on the burning hot earth.
Along with these arts of living, the Ayurveda plays a very important role for people who look for regeneration through massages but also with a special food diet. It is the season to observe a different treatment and behaviour for one's soul and body. After the monsoon "one is a another man" as the proverb goes in Kerala.
The Monsoon brings some special events in India like fishing on the Kerala coast when fishermen try to make a fortune overnight in what they call the "chagara". They are hundreds waiting with their long black boats to take the sea for a night in hope of getting rich. Finally the rains are over from South to North, the Gods have come back on Earth as it is said, closing the wet season and its numerous festivals to enter the dry cooler season with the most known Dasshera and Deepavali festivals.

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A Propos de Michèle Béguin

CNIL:1050096 2004 © Michèle Béguin