The nature camps for children and the meditation camps for adults are continuing with an average of twenty to thirty people. At Ananda Dhara in Taichung we have re-started our once a month nature days for parents and kids. We had about thirty people in March, and the beauty of these programs is that children and parents explore nature in a carefree and joyful manner.
KAHIRA and BERLIN SECTORS
News from Centru Tbexbix
By Sulekha Vargas
As a Neohumanist Education project, working with children with difficult family backgrounds and the elderly, gardening has been one of the projects/activities our participants have been enjoying and benefiting from a lot lately.
The purpose of this project is not only to have people benefit from it, but also to raise awareness about ecology and sustainable living.
Children come to us after school. They get very excited to see the vegetables they’ve planted. They enjoy a lot watering, pruning, cleaning, repotting and labelling our vegetables. When it is time for harvesting, they come and collect.
The elderly have learned that we can also regrow vegetables at home. They have learned to like plants and flowers and to give love and care to the “flora” world too. They have been enjoying and asking for more.
Update on Sælukot Preschool Reykjavik Iceland
By Didi Ananda Kaostubha
Sælukot Preschool, a project of the AM Women’s Welfare Department, is based on the Neohumanist Education system and teaching methods. Over the past 6 months, October 2020- March 2021, organizational development was significant. The new office room has been built and set up successfully at our Saelukot premises.
We had 4 staff training days over the past 6 months where useful training like language and communication skills with children were provided. Parents meetings were conducted twice to give a brief description of how their children were adjusting and getting involved in their daily activities and routines.
The practice of neohumanist learning gave joy and happiness to our children by having different themes which kept changing for every two weeks.
People around us in the universe
Love and god
Fire and stars
Stones, rocks and mountains
Birds and Easter preparations
We sang a lot of rhymes during the morning circle related to the theme of the week. During group activities we created a lot of art work related to the theme. Children learned a lot of new things, for example: the importance of water, the importance of air, and how we use them on a day to day basis. The children created musical instruments out of the natural raw materials around them. For the stones theme they created a shaker by putting stones in a bottle and the whole week they sang songs in the morning circle by shaking the bottle. We organized Christmas celebrations during the month of December 2020. One of our staff members dressed up as Santa Claus and distributed presents to all our children. We created an Instagram page and all our daily and weekly group activities were uploaded.
NEW YORK SECTOR
New Songs for Quiet Time Update
From Progressive School of Long Island
Eric Jacobson, the Director of the Progressive School, has been writing songs for Quiet Time for over 25 years. These songs are used to teach philosophy and inspire young people. The songs are sung collectively and lead into Baba Nam Kevalam meditation. Afterwards their meaning is discussed.
Mahatma Gandhi said, ‘Be the change you want to see in the world!’ It means if we want to build a Neohumanist world, then first we have to transform ourselves into Neohumanists. What have we done in our Vietnam community to achieve this goal?
Overcoming geo-sentiment, socio-sentiment and political sentiment to extend love to all living beings through volunteer services and donations rendered not only within but also without the country to Neohumanist schools in India, Romania, Sweden, Ghana etc. Furthermore, Meditation Steps has launched the Vietnam Channel on YouTube with Vietnamese subtitles on its English broadcasts, a step to recognize Vietnam in its global activities.
Attending online Neohumanist global conferences, courses and activities to expand our understanding of Neohumanism, including Planetary Kiirtan, Planetary Leadership Training May – Aug. 2020, the Prout Convention July 2020 followed by follow-up forums, Tools to Change The World Study Circle hosted by the Australian Prout Group Aug 2020, Gurukul – Neohumanist Solutions for a World in Crisis Dec. 2020, Rawa International Award Jan. 2021, Applying Neohumanist Decision Making Process to Covid Vaccination Feb. 2021, Global Meditation Circles & Retreats in America, Global Prabhat Samgiita Workshop March 2021, Susan Perrow’s international book launch of ‘Stories to Light the Night’ – March 2021 etc.
Propagating Neohumanist ideals in our locality through fora, workshops, permaculture in the Master Units etc. to increase the awareness of what Neohumanism is and the will power for how it should be done.
We hope these concrete actions will contribute to building a brighter future!
Update from Neohumanist Academy
By Dada Mahaprajinananda
It’s been a true blessing to be involved in this project. AMNHA is one of the few NHE schools in Africa that is managed by local people, without the continuous or regular presence of an Ananda Marga whole time worker. Since our doors opened in September, 2016, the school has continued to flourish in so many ways. The physical and material development of the school is proceeding apace. With generous support three more classrooms were added in late 2020 and early 2021, one additional ground floor room and two on our new second story. This is a very significant milestone in the school’s development.
Additionally, the financial situation is stable, in that recurring costs are managed locally. Enrollments are steadily increasing, and the parents and staff are positive. However, the school has become too small to take proper care of our more than 200 children. The parents’ demand and expectation is that their children continue with us into higher classes and there is a waiting list for preschool. So we need to build more classrooms!
We currently offer crèche, nursery 1 & 2, KG 1 & 2, and primary 1 & 2. Future plans include establishing a full primary school and eventually junior high classes on the two acres of land (which is possible to double or even triple in size) outside the city. The vision is to create a model ecological design that itself becomes a demonstration educational project.
My main role has been that of fundraiser, specifically for construction of the building, and as done in late 2019, to acquire land on which to expand. Our deep gratitude goes to Didi Ananda Devapriya for her invaluable guidance with our fundraising efforts as an even greater challenge defines our next phase: the construction of two more and larger classrooms, a staff room, more toilets and a store room, plus another staircase to these new second story facilities. And this is the longer side of our L shaped building! The budget is minimum US$ 80,000. https://www.gofundme.com/f/GhanaKindergarten
Updates are also shared at: https://www.facebook.com/AnandaMargaNeoHumanistAcademyHo
Other than funds for continued expansion, our greatest need is more and better training of our teaching staff. Their knowledge of NHE is minimal though they are receptive to learn more. If you or anyone you know can come for at least one month (simple accommodation and food will be provided), or assist long distance, please let us know:
Acárya Shambhushivananda Avadhuta gave a keynote speech at the 2021 RAWA IKON Awards Celebration event held at Ranchi. He spoke on “The New Renaissance and Youth” in the presence of several invited dignitaries. A set of two new publications titled “New Renaissance Part 1-2″ was also released at a special ceremony.
Renaissance Universal Club of Bhubaneshvar also hosted their annual event on February 13,2021. The Presidential address was given by Dr. Shambhushivananda. He spelled out the challenges facing humanity and how to move towards a new renaissance based on neohumanism.
Dr. Dada Shambhushivananda made several presentations at online conferences, webinars and podcasts during the past six months. Among them were a podcast hosted by Asian Futures and Foresight Forum (Australia) and posted on January 31, 2021, Towards a Brigher Future ; a talk on “The Path of Intuition” hosted by Spiritual Forum in Mexico; Renaissance Universal Lecture Series hosted by Acarya Divyacentananda in cooperation with Asian Institute of Advanced Studies (Shimla) and a special presentation at the 2nd International Prabhat Samgiita Festival hosted globally from Brazil and Malaysia.
Dr. Shambhushivananda also gave classes to over a hundred participants of the ETC (Education Training Camps) on the theme of “Neohumanist Education in the Post-Pandemic Era”.
A neuro-therapy clinic was opened at the International Neohumanist Centre in Chandigarh and during the pandemic, a COVID19 testing service was also being coordinated at this Centre in cooperation with local authorities.
Inner and Outer Harmony – NHE Online Summer Camp 2021
A global Neohumanist Education Online Summer Camp was conducted for children aged 5 to 10 years with teachers Reetu Singh and Pranav Kumar and Ruger Tamminga (story teller for the camp). It was open to all and had children from India, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, totaling 44 in numbers. The program extended from 24th April to 30th May on weekends. The program was organized around the theme of moving together as a part of bigger family, our planet earth; on speaking truth; on thinking good; sharing and caring and other topics based on moral intelligence. The mode of teaching was through games, songs, stories, crafts, experiments, etc.
There has been an overwhelming response from all participants and their parents. Some of their responses are as follows: Ashriya Ahmed: “I am so moved by your moral teaching session that I want to join and be part of your organization.” Saraswati Singh: “Thanks for organizing, the kids are learning values”.
Sumitra R Rao: “Classes are very well structured and going well, nice to be part of NHE program.”