Madhu Bazaz Wangu | Blog
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Jade Leone Blackwater’s Interview with Madhu Bazaz Wangu

Jade Leone Blackwater is a writer, artist, and brand consultant from the Pacific Northwest. She's the owner of the Brainripples studio, specializing in branding, marketing, and content strategy for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Her writing appears in Wild River Review, Line Zero, The Monongahela Review, as well as technical, trade, and scientific resources for popular audiences. https://www.brainripples.com/2017/01/feature-writer-interview-journeying-with-madhu-bazaz-wangu/  ...

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Happy New Year, 2017!

Wishing the Mindful Writers, Facebook friends and family members a year filled with health, inner happiness and gratitude. May you take an inward journey in 2017 that reveals your deepest desire, helps you discover your authentic self and indestructible inner treasures. Here are photos of this year’s Navreh Thals, New Year Plates. They include our Thal and our daughters’ Thals. A cornucopia of symbolic items, the plate is placed in the kitchen to be carefully looked at the first thing in the morning of January 1 and internalize its message. Each plate is filled with grains of uncooked rice symbolizing sustenance and abundance. Two small bowls, nestled in the rice, are filled with milk and yogurt. The transformation from milk to yogurt symbolizes technique, time and patience it takes, like making yogurt,...

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An Evening with Art and Inspiration International

A few weeks ego, William Rock organized an evening of creativity and ideas at the Shaler North Hills Library. William is a prolific painter and sculptor who presided at the event. Known as Art and Inspiration International the Thursday evening’s affair is attended by interested and articulate audience. Musicians, artists and writers offer imaginative and creative presentations. On November 3, Kathryn Bashaar (The Saint’s Mistress) and I were the presenters. Kathryn discussed her debut novel, The Saint’s Mistress, the story that breathes life into the previously untold story of Saint Augustine’s beloved mistress Leona, a North African peasant. I talked about my debut novel The Immigrant Wife: Her spiritual Journey, the story of Shanti Bamzai, a young woman who dares to follow her heart and fulfill her dream of becoming an artist. Here...

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SHANGRI LA: THE REMOTEST VALLEY ON EARTH

Our plane landed in Lhasa, Tibet, the “roof of the world.” Kelsang our guide, and Tensing the driver drove us to Hotel Shangri La; the name James Hilton gave Tibet in his 1933 novel, Lost Horizon. We drove over Lhasa River, through the heart of the capital city as sky-touching-mountain-peaks came to sight. Tibet shares Mt. Everest and the towering peaks with Nepal. Below, Lhasa River was flowing lazily under late morning sun. Over the bridge, rainbow-colored flags fluttered in the breeze. Kelsang suggested we take it easy on the first day lest we suffer altitude sickness. (Altitude of Lhasa 11, 450’) We had planned to walk through the town! Once in our hotel room we became aware of slight dizziness, heart thumping and trouble breathing. Each time we stood up or...

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Shanghai: 21st Century Metropolis

Our hotel in Shanghai faced the Bund overlooking Yang Tse River and the mesmerizing mega tall skyscrapers of its famous skyline. What a view! Many of these structures rank among the tallest in the world: Oriental Pearl Radio and TV Tower, Shanghai World Financial Center (with an observation deck 1,555 feet above ground level), The Shanghai Tower (second tallest in the world at 2, 073 ft. like tail of a dragon touching the sky) and Jin Mao Tower (literally ‘Golden Prosperity Building)’ with its tiered pagoda like structure. Our guide, Tao Lin (Tracey) said Shanghai was the most populous city in the world but it didn’t feel that crowded. It was hard to believe that some fifty years ego the Pudong area, on which the city is build, was mostly populated...

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Chengdu: Home of Panda Bears

Xiaoli Wan (Kitty), our guide in Chengdu, checked us in to St. Regis Hotel. From the expansive window in our room we had a view of the recently constructed skyscrapers. She waited for us in the lobby to freshen up and drove us for a hot-pot dinner. At the restaurant, a waiter brought a container with two gravy sections, one pepper hot the other milky. She lit the lights underneath the rectangular cooker/server. When the liquids started to boil Xiaoli dropped vegetables and meats in batches. It took just a few minutes for slices of lotus root, mushrooms, and pieces of beef, chicken, and shrimps to cook. The Sichuan gravy was flaming hot but the milder gravy complemented it. Our next stop was Chengdu Opera. The time was dusk. From the...

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Xi’an: Two Hours Flight From Beijing

Two hours flight from Beijing brought us to Xi'an, Shaanxi province in northwest China. I had studied about Banpo Neolithic settlement and Terracotta Army but seeing these in person was an awesome experience. There I was, on my birthday, looking at the remains of 6,500-year-old Banpo village and the life size army of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China, buried underground!   A day before, our guide Mr. Cheng drove us directly from the airport to the fourteenth century fortification of the ancient city of Xi’an. The enclosed city, 14 square miles, has seen the rise and fall of...

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Three Nights in Beijing

Two scholars who introduced me to the deeply stirring Chinese philosophy and its inspiring landscape painting were professor Wing-Tsit Chan (Chatham College now Chatham University) and professor Katheryn M. Linduff (University of Pittsburgh), respectively. What they taught me resurfaced from the depths as I travelled in China. Treading the yellow earth I wanted to feel the essence of Lao Tzu’s teachings: “Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” I wanted to witness Confucian teachings about order, harmony and wisdom. “By three methods we may learn wisdom: by reflection which is noblest; by imitation which is easiest; and by experience which is bitterest.” And Chuang Tzu, “Happiness is the absence of...

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Travels Through China and Tibet

Dear Readers, Manoj and I traveled through China/Tibet this year. We simply loved their culture, cuisine and customs! Before going to China, out of all the countries we have visited, Spain was our favorite. But now it is China and Tibet! Soon I'll be blogging about the four metropolis, Shanghai, Chengdu, Xi'an, Beijing and, Dalai Lama's birthplace, Lhasa. For now, here are a few photos. ...

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