“The Speaking Tree”….expanding horizons…

The biggest bonanza news of the last week was the launch of special edition of the speaking tree, a weekly newspaper that is started by TOI every Sunday. I was over the moon and my happiness knew no bounds on learning this news. A weekly article residing at the corner of the editorial page to whole weekly newspaper, this piece of literature has grown literally. Needless to say this weekend went amazingly with speaking tree in one hand and coffee in the other. It consisted of 8 full pages of articles that can made me to think, made me to act, at times made me to ponder, as to, am I really on the right track??? And at the same time, it showed the true face of society –full of dark lines, dark circles, patchy skin, acne, few glowing patches and pleasant dimples if any.

My connection with words and language had never stemmed from newspaper..!!!! I was always the one good at math and my brother was always the one good at languages especially English! He used to love reading, and reading and reading… and I used to get sick of reading, at times I even slept within moments of reading 10 lines. That was my way of honoring the writers –what with their writing putting me to sleep, there was no need of Restil (sleeping pill) ever! But one day my bro had got a book titled-“Maya” by Gayatri Prabhu. It was a story of an exceptional girl, who had only questions in her mind, and mind you questions which can baffle you and at times irritate you. Even I am awestruck as to how could I read that book completely??? It was the gripping piece of story-telling that fascinated me to the core. I felt an instant connect with Maya. It’s not that I question so much or I irritate people (at least I feel so that I don’t) but still, I felt the need to go till the end with every single page that I read of it… My brother kept on adding books to his collection and in process I went berserk reading them and wowing them.

Books one can still imagine but newspaper..??? “Gosh, so boring!!!” I used exclaim every time anyone made me to read it. My Mom tried, my dad kind of compelled but to no avail. And then one day I happened to come across an article in the editorial page of TOI and it was without any doubt “the speaking tree “article. There was an instant connect again…it left an indelible mark on my mind, body and soul. It didn’t preach religion, it didn’t ask me to believe in god … it just went on putting forth the ideas that were positive and true in any religion you may consider. It preached truth and differentiated the good from the bad.

And now after being a loyal speaking tree fan for so many years, I am totally thrilled to see speaking tree- speak out through so many different articles and authors with a weekly newspaper. It talks about the philosophies, beliefs and values of the past – and their relevance today. It encompasses reverence for a universal religion and love, and exhorts people to take refuge in spirituality to alleviate stress and resolve conflict in their lives. It is a step towards attaining purity of the mind, body and soul through introspection and through adopting traditional values. Complex, is it? Well… grab this newspaper and you shall see what simplicity I am talking about..!!!!

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