Monday, December 22, 2014

The Interhouse Logical Intelligence Competition 2014-15

The theory of multiple intelligences was given by Howard Gardner in 1983. Gardner originally gave seven criteria for a behaviour to be considered intelligence and Logical Intelligence is one them. Logical intelligence is the ability to quantify, carry out complete mathematical operations, analyse and rationally approach a given problem. Individuals who have good logical intelligence are interested in patterns, arithmetic problems, games, puzzles and experiments and would thrive in careers as mathematicians, scientists or detectives among many more. To encourage students to further develop their logical skills, an inter house competition was held in Atmiya Vidya Mandir on 20th December 2014.

For the competition, students were divided into four groups as per their age. Following is a brief description of the group wise events:
Group 1: (Std. 1 to 3)
The participants from Std. 1, 2 and 3 were dressed up in three different colours, to form different patterns. Each colour was given one alphabet, so accordingly they were supposed to make a pattern. For instance, the colour green was for A and orange for B, white was for C. Calling for the round of pattern like - AACBB, students were supposed to stand as per the called pattern.

This competition was further followed by arranging note-books, long books, pencil boxes and plates, spoons, bowls in different patterns.

To add music to this competition, Jal Tarang was asked to be played again in a given pattern.

Group 2: (Std. 4 to 6)
Standard 4 to 6 participants had to attempt 20 questions based on number patterns, geometrical patterns, colour patterns and sequences on

Group 3: (Std. 7 & 8)
Students from this group had to solve an online quiz based on logical reasoning.

Group 4: (Std. 9 & 10)
For standard 9 and 10, the competition was held in the Mathematics lab. There were five rounds in which the participants solved number puzzles, matchsticks puzzles, tangram puzzles and logical puzzles racing against the set time limit.

The participating students showed a great amount of zeal and curiosity in solving the questions presented to them and worked quite well in teams to put their respective houses in as much a winning position as possible.

The overall result of the competition is given below:

Submitted by: Prabhumagna Sir

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Success comes with responsibility: Sundaram House assemblies on the outstanding companies of the world

At AVM, flourishing with their inherent talent and growing with clarity of destination and vision for future, students aspire and strive to become entrepreneurs, industrialists and business giants of tomorrow. Quite considerately, these young aspirants (students) are being taught to live up to their dreams. Up against the fact that the high-tech entrepreneurial world is living through a time of high temptation and ethical morass, Sundaram House was all set to explain the students that integrity, values, trust and social responsibility comprised the much needed ethical bedrock of a successful company.

By presenting the success stories of outstanding companies of the world, Sundaram House members traced the small steps of these companies which led them to greater heights. The week started with exploring the secrets of success of the world’s fastest growing company: Google. Purvesh Sir explained the students that great organizations like Google are comprised of people who have a passion for what they are doing. Students were explained that thrill and challenge lead to success and merely putting in time to collect a pay cheque leads nowhere. Students learnt in this day’s assembly that people who made this company successful are excited, driven, and they believe that their work and efforts can make a difference.

On Tuesday, Mukesh Sir told the success story of Amul, the company which is the largest producer of milk in the world. Root to wings, the flying success of Amul brought the insight to students that in a world where temptation and competition are the driving forces, for a company like Amul, professional ethics and standards are of greater importance in establishing the necessary trust and integrity in the delivery of its services.

Wednesday brought yet another learning lesson from another big business giant of the world – Amazon. It was interesting for the students to know how good ethical behaviour reflects smart business practices and the secret of success of Inc. Through the illustrations of Amazon’s success story, these young students were made to believe that people who rise above the crowd should be morally, ethically and socially accountable.

Yet another business giant, which is better known for ethics, integrity and trust is the Indian conglomerate – the Tata Group. Students learnt from the success story of this company that persistence should be tied to passion and a belief even when results are not in match with expectations.

In the junior assemblies, young tiny tots learnt about the values, ethics and quality-based output of companies like Mapro and Balaji. Though these assemblies were much fun filled, yet presentations and speeches and other activities brought many learning lessons for these tiny tots.

Thus, these assemblies of Sundaram House instilled the very quality of social responsibility in students where students find themselves accountable for fulfilling their civic duty while living onto their dreams. Students were encouraged to be innovative and foster a habit of thinking “out of the box”. Students learnt from these outstanding companies that safe paths never helps to grow and prosper.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Interhouse Football Competition 2014-15

The most nail-biting and fantastic football inter-house competition kick started on 15th Dec 2014 as the “football fever” took over the students of AVM. One could clearly see the enthusiasm and excitement in the eyes and body language of all students.

In the Sub Junior group (Std 4th, Std 5th & Std 6th), the first match was played between Satyam House and Sundaram House. It turned out to be a thrilling match and ended with penalty shootouts. But it was Satyam House who won the match by 4 goals against Sundaram House. The latter managed to score only 1 goal. The second match was played between Shivam House and Suhradam House. Aarinbhai scored the goal for Shivam House in the first half. In the second half, Suhradam House could not score any goal. Thus, Satyam House and Shivam House made it to the finals.

Sundaram House and Suhradam House competed for the third place. There were no goals in the first and second half. The match was then taken to the penalty shootouts, which to everyone’s surprise, also ended in a draw. The decision then remained hung upon the golden penalty! Suhradam House eventually won the nail-biting match.

The final match was played between Satyam House and Shivam House. Satyam House won the match with Anandbhai scoring the only goal of this very competitive and nerve catching final.

The most delirious group was the Junior group (Std 7th and 8th Std). Players in this age group played some of the most arousing matches at the football ground. This exciting experience started with the first match itself: Satyam House v/s Sundaram House. Satyam House had an advantage of an experienced goalkeeper but Sundaram House had the best defence and a powerful attack. Satyam House won the match in the end. The second match took place between Shivam House and Suhradam House. The match was very breath taking and Suhradam House took the lead 2-1, with a spectacular goal from Karanbhai and won the match.

The third place match was played between Shivam House and Sundaram House. The match was evenly set until the Shivam House defence faltered, crowning the victory to Sundaram House. The finals was the main event: ‘Sundaram v/s Suhradam’. There were many heart throbbing moments, which increased the excitement and thrill of the audience. In the end, Suhradam House, which put up a very tough fight and sealed the victory with 1-0.

In the Senior group (Std 9th, Std 10th and Std 11th), the first match was played between Shivam House and Suhradam House. The first half was very tough hence it ended with no goals. But the second half favoured Suhradam House, they scored 3 goals and won the match. The second match was played between Satyam House and Sundaram House. In both the halfs, both the teams made many attempts but the match ended to the penalty shootouts. They were exciting moments for everyone, but Sundaram House made it to the finals by scoring 5 goals to Satyam House’s 3 goals.

Now, it was time for third place. The match was played between Satyam House and Shivam House. In the first half, it was Jilbhai who managed to score a goal on behalf of Satyam House, which was equalised by Manhilbhai of Shivam House. With both the teams scoring 1 goal each, it was the time for penalty shoot outs. Shivam House scored 3 goals against Satyam House’s 2 goals to secure the third place. And then it was time for the most exciting and electrifying match, ‘Sundaram v/s Suhradam’ for the finals. A huge round of applause and loud cheering followed the entry of both the teams on the ground. The match stood at a balance with Arpitbhai from Sundaram House and Deepbhai from Suhradam House scoring one goal each by the half time. But it was Sagarbhai from Suhradam House who scored a wonderful goal in the second half. Ultimately, it was Suhradam House, which won the first place in the group.

The overall results were as follows:
  • Pleasantly surprising, there was no one finishing fourth.
  • At the third place, we had Shivam House and Sundaram House with 14 points each.
  • At the second place, we had Satyam House with 18 points.
  • And the first place was secured by Suhradam House with 26 points.
This exciting football competition was organized by a very hard working team of Dhiren Sir, Tejas Sir, Ritesh Sir and Tarun sir. All the volunteers also worked very hard on field to make the competition so enjoyable and successful. Last but not the least, the electrifying, yet disciplined audience, which was cheering and motivating the teams all the time and boosting their team’s confidence, had filled the ground with a lot of thrill and excitement.
Reported by: Sports Team

Saturday, December 13, 2014

આત્મીય યુવા મહોત્સવના તેડાં

न गुरु: अधिकं तत्वं, न गुरु: अधिकं तप:।
न गुरु: अधिकं ज्ञानं, तस्मै श्रीगुरुवे नम:।।

અર્થાત્: ગુરુથી કોઈ શ્રેષ્ઠ તત્વ નથી, ગુરુથી અધિક કોઈ તપ નથી; ગુરુથી વિશેષ કોઈ જ્ઞાન નથી એવા શ્રી ગુરુદેવને નમસ્કાર.

પરમ પૂજ્ય ગુરુહરિ હરિપ્રસાદ સ્વામીજી આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરના ભૂલકાંઓને આશીર્વચન આપવા અવારનવાર આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરમાં પધારે છે. જ્યારે જ્યારે સ્વામીજી આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરમાં પધારતા હોય છે તે દિવસનું વાતાવરણ દિવ્ય, અનેરું તથા અલૌકિક જોવા મળે છે. તેમાં આ વખતે ભૂલકાંઓને તથા આત્મીય પરિવાર જનોને આત્મીય યુવા મહોત્સવનું આમંત્રણ આપવા તારીખ 12/12/2014ને શુક્રવારના રોજ સ્વામીજી પોતે પધાર્યા હતા. 

આંગણીયે શુકનવંતા પગલે લાગણીઓ પથરાય જાય છે,
આવા અવસર ઉજવવા માટે ચોઘડીયા ભૂલાય જાય છે.

આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરમાં પણ સ્વામીશ્રીના આગમનથી ભૂલકાંઓ તથા હરિભક્તોના મનમાં આવીજ કંઈક લાગણી જન્મી હતી તથા તેઓ સ્વામીજીના અમૃત વચનોની આતુરતાથી રાહ જોઈ રહ્યા હતા અને આવા ભક્તિમય વાતાવરણમાં સભાની શરૂઆત થઈ.

સભાની શરૂઆતમાં તરૂણ સરે શાળામાં થતી વિવિધ પ્રવૃત્તિઓનો અહેવાલ સ્વામીશ્રી આગળ ટૂંકમાં રજૂ કર્યો તથા ધોરણ 12 ના સમગ્ર ભૂલકાંઓ વતી તન્મયભાઈ, પાર્થભાઈ અને સચીનભાઈએ પૂજ્ય સ્વામીજી સમક્ષ પોતાની પ્રાર્થના રજૂ કરી આશીર્વાદ પામ્યા. પોતાને દેહે કરીને ઘણી તકલીફો હોવા છતાં તથા તેમના અત્યંત વ્યસ્ત કાર્યક્રમો વચ્ચે પણ સ્વામીજી આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરનાં ભૂલકાંઓને મળવા આવ્યા હતા. આ દિવસે સ્વામીજીની આનંદમય અમૃતવાણીમાં ભૂલકાંઓ અને ભક્તો ભાવભીના થઈ ગયા હતા. સ્વામીશ્રીએ વિવિધ પ્રસંગો દ્વારા ભલકાંઓને સમજાવ્યું કે આપણી પાંચેય ઇન્દ્નિયોને પૉઝિટિવ રાખવી. તેઓએ સંત સમાગમનું મહાત્મ્ય પણ સમજાવ્યું તથા જીવનમાં સ્વધર્મ પાળવાનું વિશેષ જ્ઞાન આપ્યું. 

કોઈકે સાચું જ કહ્યું છે કે....,
જે કાંઇ થઇ શકે તે કરી લે આ જનમમાં,
આનાથી રૂડો બીજો અવસર નહીં મળે.

આ વાતને સમર્થન આપતા સ્વામીશ્રીએ તેમની પરાવાણીના અંતમાં સૌને આત્મીય યુવા મહોત્સવનું ભાવભીનું આમંત્રણ પાઠવ્યું.
- ગૌતમ સર

Monday, December 8, 2014

Wisdom and Teachings of Gunatitanand Swami ni Vaatu

“Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed and some few to be chewed and digested.” said Francis Bacon.

Books are our best friends, but according to the above quotation only a few books show us the true north and become the guide of our spiritual life because we are not human beings having a spiritual experience but we are spiritual beings having a human experience. Books like Gunatitanand Swami ni Vaatu, Shikshapatri, Shreemad Bhagvat Geeta, Ramayan, Ram Charit Manas, Purushottam Bolya Prite and Vachnamrut are the kinds of books that one should chew and digest. Life is full of challenges and in the midst of these challenges we seem to lose track many a times. However the people who have made these books their constant companions are the ones who smile their way through adversities and remain happy.
So, with a desire to introduce to our students with one such companion for life, Suhradam House celebrated the teachings and wisdom of the book Gunatitanand Swami ni Vaatu in the very first week of the month of December. During the week, Suhradam House teachers shared various vaatu in order to help students understand the glory of God, how to gain spiritual knowledge and how to attain peace and happiness.

To simplify the meaning of vaatu for students and to help them relate these gems in their life through a real life example, Suhradam House presented a drama on Saturday in the morning assembly: "જો બકા! આપણે દેહ નથી, આત્મા છીએ.". The drama was inspired by a true incident from respected Vijay Sir’s life, the Principal of Atmiya Vidya Mandir. Vijay sir has been a voracious reader of Vaatu since childhood. He has chewed and digested the book in true sense. Students have been learning from him about vaats from time to time in his assembly talks.

The drama narrated a challenging situation from his life and how Swami ni Vaatu helped him overcome his challenges despite extreme adversity. The incident was taken from the time when Vijay Sir was doing his PhD in Physics at Stony Brook University New York and he was working on making a micro-chip in the one of its kind state of the art lab. He had worked tirelessly on this invention for 3 months and was successful in making it. However, on the day after he made it, he broke it accidentally. He saw all his hard work done in vain. At that time, he was invited by Param Pujya Swamiji to attend a shibir in India. He had two choices – to immediately start working on his life time achievement and get the chip done again or go to India to attend the shibir and meet Swamishree. In such a time of difficulty he remembered Swamiji’s word to seek solution from Swami ni vaatu, so, with a prayer in his heart, he took help of Swami ni vaatu. He came across two teachings from the books:
  1. The unwavering faith in God enables a person to remain stable in any adverse situation. The faith is to believe that whatever happens, is the wish of God and God never does anything wrong to His child.
  2. Whenever one faces any perplexing situation and when it seems difficult to take decision, one should do bhajan – take the name of God and pray to Him to show the way.
These vaats helped him decide to go to India and he found peace in his heart being in the divine company of Swamiji and he forgot all his worries. After coming back to US, to his greatest astonishment, he found the chip in working condition. This experience strengthened his faith in God and in vaats. Gunatitanand Swami ni Vaatu is his favorite book and his constant companion.

After enacting, seeing and understanding this incident of the person who is a role model for all at Atmiya Vidya Mandir, students got a very convincing insight about the need to regularly read such scriptures as Swami ni Vaatu. Our former Head Boy, Sachinbhai Verlekar, now in grade 12, shared his favourite Swami ni vaat in the assembly: the one who wants to study, should never expect any pleasures or conveniences. Not only him, but the entire batch of class 12 students live this vaat day in and day out. They work close to 15-16 hours a day and sometimes more than that, without getting tired and they do it rather happily. Such is the impact of practicing Swami ni vaatu in their lives.

It’s a matter of great pride and honour for the students and teachers alike, to have such an accomplished and yet humble individual in Vijay Sir, as a School Principal, whose invention of making the fastest chip in the world has still not been made better by anyone.

Suhradam House was further honoured to have had this humble opportunity in attempting to learn lessons for life from a great book Gunatitanand Swami ni vaatu and help students lead a happy life without worries.
Written by: Nirali Ma'am

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Inter House Table Tennis Competition 2014-15

After a long journey of practice, finally the stage was set for the school’s inter house table tennis competition from 25th to 29th November 2014. The very enthusiastic efforts of the school table tennis coach and sports teachers and the perseverance of students helped build great anticipation for this competition.

The competition was held in a group wise manner as per below:
  • Sub Junior Group (Classes 4th to 6th)
  • Junior Group (Classes 7th & 8th)
  • Senior Group (Classes 9th to 11th)
For each group in the competition, there were four participants from each house.

There were two events as part of the competition:
  1. Team 
  2. Individual
During the matches, one witnessed the sub-junior players brimming with confidence, the contagious energy of juniors and the support and encouragement of the seniors.

The competition would have almost ended with a tie for the first place but to the credit of the Shivam House players, they managed to take a tiny and yet significant leap against the Satyam House team and ended up as champions of the competition.

The final score card was as below:

Reported by: Devang Sir

Monday, December 1, 2014

Interpersonal Intelligence Competition 2014-15

"It's not how smart you are that matters, what really counts is how you are smart." 
-by Howard Gardner

We all are supreme creation of GOD and HE has gifted all of us with the skills we cannot even imagine. So it doesn’t really matter to know how much smart we are. But it is important to unleash our potential and to introspect and find out how we are smart, what is that one or few skills which we have that make us different and successful than others. That is what really matters. This concept is very well explained by Howard Gardner in his theory of multiple intelligences. So in continuation with the school’s theme of developing multiple intelligences in the students of various age groups, the Interpersonal Intelligence Interhouse Competition 2014-15 was held on 29th November at Atmiya Vidya Mandir.

Interpersonal skill is one very important skill required in this day and age. We are social animals, we have to interact with other fellow members. So, the main motive of this competition was to make participants work as a team and to make them realize the importance of developing interpersonal intelligence.

For the competition, students were divided into four groups as per their age. Following is a brief description of the group wise events:

Group 1: (Std. 1 to 3)
The participants from Std. 1, 2 and 3 had to solve the jigsaw puzzle in a team of four. For teachers, it was a memorable event to see their youngest rising stars to work in a team and solve the puzzle.

Group 2: (Std. 4 to 6)
The participants from Std. 4, 5 & 6 had to work in a team to think & design a logo for their respective houses and explain its meaning.

Group 3: (Std. 7 & 8)
For Std. 7 & 8, there was a poster making competition on the theme of “Recipe of Success: Hard work + Earnest Prayers + Company of Good Friends”. Participants, in groups of 4, had to work as a team and make a poster. All the participants (total: 16) demonstrated a good ability to work in teams and also showed their creativity by making very nice posters that were rich in content.

Group 4: (Std. 9 & 10)
There was a dialogue writing competition for the participants from Std. 9 & 10. They had to work in a team of four and come up with the dialogues for given situations like conversation between father and son, husband and wife, two friends, teacher and student, and guru and disciple.

All the participants and non-participating students enjoyed the competition and mesmerized their friends and teachers with their teamwork and creativity.

The overall result of the competition is given below:

Written by: Priyavadan Sir

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Real Intelligence: Vachanamrut Pratham 18

Among all the species in the history of evolution, humans are at the top of the evolution chart. We are able to think, understand, communicate and perform various tasks and activities, which the other species are unable. This is possible because humans have a gift that no other species have. That is a programmable brain. Real Intelligence lies in programming or training our brain to avoid or bypass all the distractions, conserve our energy and focus on the task at hand. If one is able to do so effectively then the phrase ‘Nothing is impossible!’ is not far from reality.

Shivam House was privileged with the opportunity to ponder upon the topic and share thoughts and experiences everyone in the last week of November 2014.

Taking reference from the holy scripture Vachanamrut and excerpts from the blessings of Param Pujya Hariprasad Swamiji, the following was conveyed in the assemblies throughout the week:

  • If we speak inappropriately, we fill ourselves with negativity via our tongue. Negative or inappropriate words take away our energy and decreases our ability to perform our daily tasks. When we eat inappropriately, that negativity is reflected out when we crave to taste a particular food item that we bind ourselves with and that leads to frustration when we don’t get it. It also lures us to overeat and makes us lazy.

    But if we speak appropriately and only about relevant things and also do not allow our sense of taste to defeat us, we will remain enthusiastic and energetic, and experience positivity in ourselves.
  • If we listen to irrelevant or inappropriate words or music, it fills us with negativity. On the other hand, wise and positive words, good books, appropriate songs or bhajans increases the positivity in us. Relating to the daily experiences of students, it was highlighted that sometimes when we sit down to study or try to think about something new, we hear in our head, some music or song that we may have heard in the past. That actually divides our focus and ends up wasting our time.
  • Our eyes are also remarkably capable of experiencing the world around us. Most of the times, we are not even aware of what we are seeing. If we allow our eyes to watch the negative of others or irrelevant things or inappropriate movies or shows, we will actually harm our own self. However, if we just see positive in others or allow our eyes only to see relevant and appropriate things, we shall experience an increase in energy and enthusiasm in our own self. Children also understood that memories of inappropriate movie scenes or irrelevant scenes or looking at the negative aspects of others or negativity in different situations, causes us to lose our concentration and even leads us to anxiety, anger and frustration.

    And the same is the case for our sense of smell and touch.
  • Further it was made clear that our brain is like a sponge. It absorbs everything through the five senses. Anything we see, hear, taste, feel and smell will get stored in our brain. As a result, this will ignite emotions based on the quality it possesses.

    If the input is positive then it will help us to conserve our energy, keep us enthusiastic, motivated and bring eternal bliss.

    If the input is negative and we keep or dwelling upon it again and again the effect of it will be brutal. It will be like taking an intoxicant, a drug that will take control of our thinking ability and not allow us to think appropriately and hence we will feel anxiety, anger, frustration etc… It will also be a waste of lot of energy and time.
  • In Pratham 18, Shreeji Maharaj has also showed the way to keep our senses positive i.e. being with positive people, having darshan of Thakorji or saints, or watching appropriate documentaries or movies, can inspire us greatly.
Hence, Pratham 18 acts as an eye opener in our life. One who is aware of the ill-effects of dwelling on the negative things and puts consistent effort to maintain the positive inputs through one’s senses is a real intelligent person. Such a person will be able to conserve, nurture and utilize his energy to do productive tasks and will be able to achieve all his goals.

Children were also made aware that Shreeji Maharaj, towards the end in this Vachanamrut, says that “If you do so, I shall consider it to be equivalent to you having served Me in EVERY WAY. I will also bless all of you and be EXTREMELY PLEASED with you.”

Thus throughout the week we understood that
  1. Senses are the precious gift of God to humans. Moreover, capability to think is like icing on cake.
  2. We must be clear of what we want to do with our life. Have a goal, a destination to achieve.
  3. Keep the company of people who are positive, who aim high and who persevere to achieve their destination and goal.
  4. Perform daily religious and spiritual rituals like aarti, prayers, pooja and swadhyay.
  5. Have complete faith in God.
  6. Keep the company of God realised saint to get constant motivation and guidance.
Thus, it was understood that by keeping our senses positive, we are actually serving God and, that is the true service of our soul and hence, of God. A real intelligent person realises that there is no limit to the bliss of God. He understands that he is different from his body, he is aatma and his birth here is mainly to purify his aatma and attain higher bliss of God.
Written by: Shivam House Team

Monday, November 24, 2014

Nilkanth Charitra

After Suhradam House celebrated the remarkable value of Grit and a very joyful celebration of Anand Divas on 14th November, it was the privilege of Satyam House to celebrate the life and message of Nilkanth Varni. Regular daily assemblies were designed to give the essence of Nilkanth’s spiritual journey through the chosen episodes in a cultural set up of its original style and speech. It would start with Thakorji’s poojan and would follow with elucidation of two episodes a day, wherein, a student in traditional attire would read the episodes and the other would present the visuals on screen for the same. The reading and explanation was done in the form of ‘parayan’, a typical cultural way of narrating God’s acts. By the end of assembly, a video clip from the movie ‘Mystic India’ was shown to aid better understanding of Nilkanth’s journey and its purpose. This series ended on Friday with special a parayan by respected Pushpak Sir.

The week was concluded with a heart touching creative assembly on Saturday, “નીલકંઠ વર્ણી ની કલ્યાણ યાત્રા”. Bal Ghanshyam left His home at the age of 11 and was later known as Nilkanth Varni during His spiritual journey. He travelled to various places of pilgrimage across the length and breadth of India for more than seven years. During His penance, He undertook several austerities. Many interesting anecdotes found in the various accounts of Nilkanth’s life, which may awaken the varied interest of the students were highlighted to inspire them to higher spiritual endeavour. Few of its glimpses are as follow.

A young and innocent boy of age 11 has gone through a very tough journey, bare foot, facing extremely difficult situations where temperature is 40° C; which makes it almost impossible to survive for any human being. He also faced severe heat, rain and hailstones. Many a times He went without food and water. He lived between poisonous reptiles, insects and wild animals. He passed through the forests, over the mountains and through deep valleys. Barefooted, Nilkanth toured all the way without any conveniences.

Why had this boy gone to harsh forests? What was the purpose of His journey? How come He moved so fearlessly? Answering these, Nilkanth says “My journey is for the kalyan (the ultimate liberation) of countless lives”.

Nilkanth travelled across India and parts of Nepal in search of a true master and a true spiritual abode. In order to find such a pure and pious place, Nilkanth Varni would ask five the most mystic questions – What is Jiva? What is Ishwara? What is Maya? What is Brahma? What is Parabrahma? And in 1799, after seven years of journey, in the village of Loj in Saurashtra (Gujarat), Nilkanth Varni met Muktanand Swami, who was a senior disciple of Ramanand Swami. Muktanand Swami answered the five questions to Nilkanth’s satisfaction and He then decided to stay for the opportunity to meet Ramanand Swami. He eventually met Ramanand Swami after a few months, after which he decided to stay there itself and hence completed His journey.

The play not only inspired the students to fight against the hardships of life but also sparked an insight for faith and belief in the purpose of Supreme. Satyam House with all the students, didis and teachers tried to contribute their best to justify the several aspects of Nilkanth’s Kalyan Yatra.

Written by: Kshitij Sir

Friday, November 21, 2014

Music Intelligence Competition 2014-15

“ગાજે અતિશેય ઘેરો અંતર નાદ અનેરો
દાસાનું દાસ તેરો અંતર નાદ અનેરો”

‘સત્યમ્’ વાદનથી આત્મીય ભૂલકુંનાં ‘શિવરૂપી’ અંતર નૃત્યથી તથા ‘સુહ્લદ’ ભાવથી કરેલી “નાદ બ્રહ્મ” ઉપાસનાની ‘સુંદર’ પ્રસ્તુતી થઈ હતી. આ પ્રસ્તુતીથી આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરના વાતાવરણમાં એક અનાહદ નાદ બ્રહ્મ ઉત્પન થયો હતો. અને એ “નાદ બ્રહ્મથી” એક અનોખી કલાની ઝાંખી થઈ હતી. અને ભૂલકુંનાં “નાદ બ્રહ્મથી” સમસ્ત આત્મીય પરિવારને મંત્રમુગ્ધ કર્યું હતું.

સૌ પ્રથમ તો સંગીતની ઉપાસનાથી થતા ફાયદા વિશે જાણીએ. સંગીતના માધ્યમથી ઈશ્વરપ્રાપ્તિ થાય છે. એ વાત તો સત્ય છે જ, પરંતુ સંગીતના માધ્યમથી અનેક જીવલેણ રોગ પણ દૂર થાય છે. આવો, એના વિશે થોડું જાણીએ.

અનેક વિદ્ધાનોના વૈજ્ઞાનિક સંશોધનો રૂપી જાણવા મડ્યું છે કે રાગ-રાગીણી ગાવા તથા સાંભળવાથી અનેક નાના-મોટા તથા જીવલેણ ગંભીર રોગોમાંથી અચૂક છુટકારો મળે છે. આવો જાણીએ એવા સિદ્ધ રાગ-રાગિણી વિશે,
  • રાગ આશાવરી: આ રાગથી લોહીનું એક સમાન ગતિમાં પરિભ્રમણ કરે છે.
  • રાગ દિપક: આ રાગથી પાચનક્રિયા અને પેટના રોગો દૂર થાય છે.
  • રાગ તોડિ, રાગ અહિરભૈરવ, રાગ પુરીઆ: આ રાગથી કબજીયાત, ગેસ તથા તાવ દૂર થાય છે.
  • રાગ દરબારી, રાગ કાનડા, રાગ જૈજૈવંતી, રાગ સોહની: આ રાગોથી માથાનો દુખાવો તથા ગંભીર રોગો દૂર થાય છે.
  • રાગ જૌરવી: આ રાગથી અસ્થમા, શરદી, કફ તથા ટી.બી અને સાઈનોસાઈટીઝ દૂર થાય છે.
  • રાગ હિંડોળ: આ રાગથી સ્મરણશક્તિ અને એકાગ્રતા આવે છે.
  • રાગ પુરીઆ: આ રાગથી અનિંદ્રા દૂર થાય છે.
આ છે આપણા ભારતીય શાસ્ત્રીય ગાયન તથા વાદનથી થતા ફાયદા અને શાસ્ત્રીય સંગીતને જાગ્રત રાખવા તથા વેગ આપવા આપણા આત્મીય ભૂલકાંઓએ કરેલી સાધના વિશે જાણીએ.

કક્ષા 1 થી 3: 1 થી 3 નાં ભૂલકુંઓને તેમનાં ગુરૂ દ્વારા ઈલેક્ટ્રોનિક વાદ્ય (ઓર્ગન) તથા હારમોનિયમ પર સુંદર ભજનની ધૂન ઓળખીને તે ભજન શબ્દો તથા તેનો અંતરો ગાઈ બતાવાનો હતો ને આ નાના નાના ભૂલકુંઓએ ફક્ત 8 સેકન્ડમાં વાગતાની સાથે સુંદર રીતે ઓળખી બતાવ્યો હતો અને ભજન મનથી નહિ પરંતુ હ્લદયથી તેને હ્લદયમાં વસાવે છે તે સાબિત થયું હતું.

કક્ષા 4 થી 6: આ ભૂલકુંઓએ હિન્દુસ્તાની શાસ્ત્રીય સંગીતના ઊચ્ચ કોટીના કલાકારો ધ્વારા વાદન થતી શરણાઈ, વાંસળી, તબલા, ઓક્ટોપેડ, પખાવજ, જલતરંગ, સંતૂર, વાયોલીન, રુદ્રવીણા, સરોદ, ડ્રમસેટ, સારંગી જેવા વાધ્યોનું વાદન કોમ્પ્યુટર ધ્વારા તેમને સંભળાવવામાં આવ્યું હતું અને તે સાંભળી ફ્યુજનમાં કે તેમનાં એકાંકિ વાદનમાં કયા વાધ્યનું વાદન થાય છે તથા તે જણાવવાનું હતું. આ સુંદર પ્રસ્તુતિમાં દરેક ભૂલકુંએ ખૂબ જ સુંદરતાથી વાધ્ય તથા વાદનકારને ઓળખી હિન્દુસ્તાની સંગીતને જીવંત રાખવાનું તથા તેને વેગ આપવાનું કાર્ય કર્યું હતું.

કક્ષા 7 અને 8: આ ભૂલકુંઓએ તેમના ગુરુ ધ્વારા 4 લાઈનના સુંદર આધ્યાત્મિક શબ્દોને સંગીત રૂપી નવું રૂપ રંગ આપવાનું હતું એટલે કે કોઈપણ રાગમાં કે કોઈપણ સ્વરમાં તેને કંપોઝ કરી પ્રસ્તુત કરવાનું હતું. આ પ્રસ્તુતિમાં ભૂલકુંઓએ શીખ્યા વગર પોતાની સૂઝ અને સમજ પ્રમાણે આધ્યાત્મિક શબ્દોને કંપોઝ કરી સુંદર પ્રસ્તુતી કરી હતી.

કક્ષા 9 અને 10: આ ભૂલકુંઓએ સૌ પ્રથમ વાધ્ય પર એટલે કે ડફ અને ટ્રીમ્બાલી પર 4 બીટ અને 8 બીટમાં વાદન કરવાનું હતું. તેમા એક સમાન લયને ધ્યાનમાં રાખી તેના જુદા જુદા પ્રકારો જુદી જુદી લયકારી અલગ અલગ તિહાઈઓ તથા તેમના ગુરુ ધ્વારા બોલવામાં આવેલા બોલને તેજ લયમાં તથા તેજ અંદાજમાં તેવાજ સમયે તથા તેવીજ લયકારી સાથે વાદનકરી એક સુંદર પ્રસ્તુતી કરી હતી અને ત્યારપછી કોઈ એક ભૂલકું ધ્વારા એક વાધ્ય પર અને બીજી બાજુ તેમના ગુરુ ધ્વારા એક વાધ્ય પર ગુરુ સાથે સંગતી કરી હતી. તે સંગીતમાં ભાંગડા, લાવણી, ટપ્યા, ગરબા, હિંડોળ, ઘુમ્મર, નાસિક ઢોલ આવી અનેક રીધમ અને જુદી જુદી લયકારી તેમના ગુરુ ધ્વારા વાદન કરવામાં આવી હતી. અને તેજ રીધમ તેજ લય સાથે અને તેવીજ લયકારી સાથે ભૂલકું ધ્વારા વાદન કરી સુંદર જુગલબંદિ જોવા મળી હતી. આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરમાં એક અનોખું બ્રહ્મનાદ ઉત્પન્ન કર્યું હતું. અને તેને નીહાળતા ભૂલકા તથા શિક્ષકગણ તથા સમસ્ત આત્મીય પરિવારે લય તથા તાલ સાથે સાથ આપી આનંદ માણ્યો હતો.

અંતરના આત્મીય નાદ સાથે આજે સુહ્લદભાવથી સત્યમ, શિવમ અને સુંદરમના સંગત સાથે આત્મીય વિદ્યા મંદિરના ભૂલકાઓ ધ્વારા ફરી એકવાર નાદબ્રહ્મ ધ્વારા સંગીતના માધ્યમથી ઈશ્વરની ઝાંખી જોવા મળી હતી.
લેખક: જૈમીન સર (સંગીત શિક્ષક)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

GRIT –‘Saying YES when your fear says NO’

“Success is the name of failure turned inside out,
The silver shade of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far;
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,
It’s when things seem worst,
That you must not quit”

NEVER QUIT, the message given by the imposing poem above reflects a very important value which the Suhradam House was privileged to celebrate: GRIT –‘Saying YES when your fear says NO’ from 10th to 15th Nov ‘14. The house members put in sincere efforts to help the students understand the core concept of a winning personality - GRIT.

On Monday, the value was introduced by respected Gautam Sir using a few illustrations about how grit helps in a student’s life. The message conveyed was that a student with grit is not the one who works really hard and eventually gives up after many trials he is the one that always stretches his limits and strives for improvement.

In addition to this, a few videos were shown about how all great achievers of the world had displayed that grit was the one of the most important characteristic responsible in helping them to achieve their goals.

Moreover, the interesting thing told to the students was that keeping grit is a choice. It’s an attitude. It’s not something that someone is born with, nor is it something that is given to them. In fact, grit can be developed through an optimistic mind set and coping with setbacks, disappointments and failures. This elucidation really strengthened the eagerness of students to attain GRIT.

On Tuesday, respected Anand Sir explicated the value Grit as “sticking with things or plans over a very long term until you master them”. To make this definition more meaningful, he provided students a real life example of Juliane Koepcke. She was a 17 years old girl when the aircraft in which she was travelling was destroyed by a storm and crashed in the jungle and she had fallen down about 10000 ft from the aircraft into the Amazon rain forests. Her struggle for survival really moved the students and it worked as a great motivational source for them due to the message and learning derived from the story.

On Wednesday, respected Archana Ma’am enlightened all about the value grit with the saying: “A smooth sea never made a skilful mariner.” She explained that winners always endure, they never quit. For instance, she said, “Athletes put in years of practice, and commitment for a few seconds or minutes of performance”. She also provided two highly inspiring incidents from the lives of Marvan Atapattu (Sri Lankan cricketer) and Chris Moon (a double amputee who has competed in a wide range of marathons and ultra-distance races). It helped the students really believe that “Characters cannot be developed in ease and quite. Only through trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved. Triumphs don’t come without effort.” It also left the students with a zealous heart full of desires to reach their goals.

Thursday brought its own charm in form of divine blessings from Param Pujya Swamishree, manifestation of GRIT Himself, when respected Prajval Sir helped students to learn the value from him. A video clip from one of his discourses at AVM was shown wherein He asked students to do three prayers whenever they visited the prayer hall:
  1. the ability to score above 70% marks in all the subjects,
  2. to have a company of good friends, and
  3. the ability to keep calm and never get angry in any situation.
Students were contented to get to know what to pray in order to achieve a very important value like grit and to become a fantastic performer in whatever they do in life.

With the fabulous celebration of the Children’s Day, the journey of learning grit began with the value instilled in their heart which will surely help them become great achievers, fighters and the makers of history one day.
Submitted by: Nirali Ma’am

Monday, November 17, 2014

Interhouse Kabaddi Competition 2014

Kabaddi is one of the popular games in south Asia, especially in India. The sport is believed to have originated in the southern part of India and still is a very popular sport in most parts of India. It is also a sport in which India has done remarkably well at the international level. India have won every single world cup and the Asian games title in the sport.

In the age of IPL, the Pro Kabaddi League, which is broadcast and sponsored by the leading sports network in India, Star Sports, gained new heights in terms of popularity among the youth. And AVM was not an exception! The awareness generated by the Pro Kabaddi League and the enthusiasm of the school coaches transpired into the students and several students were taken to the liking of the sport which laid foundation for a very successful inter-house competition.

The competition was divided in three categories:
  • Sub Junior (Std 4, 5 and 6)
  • Junior (Std 7, 8)
  • Senior (Std 9, 10, 11)
Even though the coaching for kabaddi is done throughout the year, a special, week-long, coaching and training program was kept preceding the competition to assist the participants give an even better performance.

After the initial rounds full of excitement, it was then time for the finals. In the Sub Junior category, Suhradam House in their match against Shivam House, showed remarkable spirit to stay in the match against a more fancied Shivam House team. But Shivam House won the final comprehensively with the score of 103–81.

In the Junior category, Satyam House played the competition favourites Sundaram House. Members from both the teams showed some exhilarating skills and temperament to make the finals very entertaining for the spectators. But in the end, Sundaram House won the final with the score of 116–62.

Finals in Senior category was more closer and intense as the participants from both Suhradam and Sundaram houses were determined to win the category to help their house win the competition. The match was also very high on skill and strategy. In a seesaw battle, both teams showed glimpses of why they were the finalists as they won over the amazed spectators as the end of the match beckoned. Eventually, Suhradam House team won the final against a very resilient Sundaram House team.

To grace the occasion of the finals and to present the inter-house trophy to the winners, Pujya Suhrad Swamiji and Vice Principal Respected Ashish Sir were present. Due to their superb performances across all the categories, Sundaram House became the inter-house Kabaddi champion for 2014-15.
The final points table is as follows:


The enthusiasm and increased participation in a very traditional sport like kabaddi amongst the urban kids itself is the greatest achievement of this Interhouse Kabaddi Competition. On behalf of Atmiya parivar, we congratulate Hemant Sir (School Kabaddi Coach), the entire sports team and the student players for putting up such a successful event.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

आनंद दिवस - The Children’s Day Celebration 2014

In AVM, the student-teacher relationship isn’t what usually runs around the globe. It is more of completing and complimenting one another, where our world is our teachers and more importantly, we are the world for the teachers. Our teachers live with us playing so many different roles such as mentor, friend, parent, guide and much more. At AVM, we all live together as a family and there’s not a moment when we are without their ever so friendly and warm company.

It will be not be an exaggeration, if 14th November, 2014 is considered a golden day , which will always hold a very significant importance in the history of AVM, because this day, adorably termed as ‘आनंद दिवस’ was a day of joy, surprise and excitement for all AVM students. This Children’s Day celebration was like never before.

The start of the schedule of the day itself was a great surprise. All of us were asked to wear home clothes, and after breakfast we all hit the play grounds with our counterparts of the day, our teachers. Our state of confusion immediately turned into a surge of excitement and joy as soon as we got to know that our dearest teachers had organized a series of games for all of us. Moreover, the much fun filled cricket matches, we all had been grouped into as many as 8 teams and the number of matches had been organized in such a way that each one of us got a chance to be the part of the game.

The atmosphere was completely fun-blended and the teachers demonstrated a new avatar with track pants, umpire hats and the ever reassuring love and affection from their gestures. The surmounting thrill and unbolted joy was flowing and gushing all over with the very presence of these ‘God sent angels’: our teachers, who seem to be descended from heaven for the day.

It became all the more fun when our teachers, housemasters and sports teachers joined us wholeheartedly in supporting us and cheering us up to make the day very eventful. We students could not but be amazed at the well-planned activities for the day. Their love and concern was much expressed. How engrossed they were with us playing all the games! We all enjoyed at the fullest!

It melted our hearts and made us wanting to hug them as we saw them doing different, little tasks for us. At one glance we could see our teachers noting down scores, giving a live commentary of the matches being played, at another glance we saw our teachers encouraging us, giving us useful tips, sharing jokes and many a times playing with us. That day, we had forgotten that they were our teachers, because their love towards us made us feel as if they were our best buddies.

At the same time, our junior friends were not being any less entertained. Our junior grade teachers had organized a series of cultural events, where they performed anchoring, dance, skits and acts. Our juniors could not hold themselves from yelling and roaring with laughter in joy throughout the programme which was organized specially for them in the school-auditorium. The teachers danced, enacted funny scenes, conversed in a funny and chatty manner and brought the stage to fire with all sorts of performances for their little angels: the students.

Anyone who observed the scene could never stop the feeling of joy and sweetness infecting everyone in the campus. Seeing the teachers and students enjoying in such unison with no age and experience barriers, we could not stop ourselves from thinking that we were blessed to have such wonderful teachers which made the day for us.

All of us had to admit that there’d never been a day as this where we enjoyed to the fullest.

And that is not all, fun-fiesta ended with super-delicious mouth-watering dishes like Canapés, all kinds of fancy dosa and ice creams, specially arranged for all of us. The day left its mark with much-enjoyed and enthralling part of the fun fair – the variety of games on different stalls. We laughed, played, ate and enjoyed like never before.

This day has been imprinted on the memory plates of our minds, forever, as the day of greatest joy – truly आनंद दिवस.
Submitted by: Yathansh Joshi (Class 9)