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In my last post 186, I didn't comment on the coloured pattern in the foreground. Well, Lakshmi1949, who is from Karnataka, told me about RANGOLI, which taught me about this tradition I had noticed during my stay ; but I hadn't quite understood its meaning.

Thanks to Angshu's comment, I now know that this is not really RANGOLI, but KOLAM, because it's not done with different colours. "RANG" means "colour". You can dee a rangoli on my previous pict 186.
This is a KOLAM.

Here is a condensed version of Lakshmi's explanations : " These are a must in Hindu families of Southern India. Rangolis are drawn on door steps, by the women every morning before sunrise. The front of the house is cleaned with water, and the kolam or rangoli is drawn using dry rice flour while the ground is still wet. Rangoli are the coloured patterns, like in my pic 186, rang meaning : colour. (Explanation given to me by Angshu.)
In olden days, kolam used to be drawn in coarse rice flour or grains in order to feed small creatures like ants, birds etc...thus inviting other beings into one's home : A daily tribute to harmonious coexistence.
It is a sign of inviting all into the home, not the least of whom is Goddess Lakshmi, the Goddess of Prosperity...
The lines of the pattern should be completed in order to stop evil spirits from entering into the home. "

I took this picture early one morning, as we were going down to the river to watch the people's and sacred elephant's early bath.
The lady had only just started her kolam, before opening her shop. The dots are first drawn as locating marks for creating the design.
The patterns have been passed on from mother to daughter through generations.

Something else that has been passed on from mother to daughter, is their postures as they go about their daily routines. A lot imply bending down, but whatever their postures, they always keep their back absolutely straight. Consequently, despite their hard-working business, they do not suffer from back problems, like we occidentals do. We can admire this straight back posture on this picture.

I have added two WS of kolam that had attracted my attention, as we first arrived in Bangalore on Sunday February 12th.

And HERE, May I advise you to watch a short video which will show the interesting skill of the women.



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Additional Photos by MarieLouise Davies (maloutim) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1813 W: 332 N: 3191] (10617)
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