Natural Mantra


Leave a comment

May #GanpatiBappa remove all obstacles to a cleaner, greener & more #EnvironmentFriendly world!

The #EcoSensitivity of #IndianHeritage

Harking back to ancient Vedic times, the sculpting of a Ganesha idol from Shaadu(natural clay) at home , worshiping it and then immersing it is an age-old practice that incorporates the wisdom of eco-sensitive practices – – a #SustainableLiving practice. This is still followed in parts of South India, notably in Tamil Nadu.

Row of ganeshas

DIY ecofriendly clay ganesha

The #EnvironmentalPollution of the Festival

Today, it is a practice that needs to be followed widely because we can see the environmental pollution that is caused by Ganesh Chaturthi festival through:

  • Plaster of Paris Ganesh idols. Plaster of Paris (POP) contains gypsum, sulphur, phosphorus and magnesium. The idols take several months to dissolve in water and in the process poison the waters of lake, ponds, rives and seas.
  • #ChemicalPollution.The chemical paints used on the idols contain mercury, lead, cadmium and carbon and this increases the acidity and heavy metal content in the water.
  • Waste generated by the non-biodegradable accessories – thermocole, plastic flowers, cloth, incense, camphor, etc. used during the worship.
  • #NoisePollution
  • #Traffic congestion

There are many negative effects on the environment:

  • The polluted water causes several diseases including skin diseases.
  • The pollution from the idols also damages the #Ecosystem, kills fishes and water plants. Often, the same #PollutedWater gets pumped into homes.

A Central Pollution Control Board Study on the impact of immersion of Ganesh idols on the lakes revealed the following:

  • The acid content in the waters increased.
  • The TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) increased by a 100%
  • The heavy metal content sampling showed an increase in metals such as iron which increased nearly 10 times and the content of copper in the sediments increased by 200 to 300 %.

How do we prevent this Environmental Damage?

  • Use eco-friendly clay idols painted with natural colors.
  • Use permanent idols made of stone and perform a symbolic immersion and reuse the idol each year.
  •  Avoid public water bodies to immerse the idols, instead immerse idol in bucket or tub.

Natural Mantra offers you a #SustainableLiving alternative: A Natural Clay Ganesha Home kit with all the necessary tools, #EnvironmentFriendly jewelry & embellishments and a step-by-step video guide. You can also use a ready-made idol made of coconut from the site to re-create this tradition in your own home. Let us ensure the sanctity of our traditions and the purity of our Earth. Happy Ganesha!

GanpatiBappa

row of ecofriendly ganeshas

 

 


1 Comment

DIY Eco-friendly Ideas: Recycle Wedding Invitations

Top 5 craft ideas with wedding invitations you’d otherwise throw

Wedding season has added some inches to my waistline and my decorative paper collection is growing bigger and better every weekend. Instead of throwing away those invites that bride’s and groom’s family spend a fortune on, make good use of those gorgeous patterned and prettily designed papers to entertain yourself and the kids.

Here’s what I did with a few wedding invites.

1. A bookmark
2. A photo frame
3. A wall-hanging
4. Gift cards with a difference
5. Handwritten notes

Here’s how you can make them from wedding invites instead of spending a bomb on buying craft paper from the stationary store. It is “reuse and recycle” made chic and pretty.

1. Bookmarks

Wedding invites come in envelopes. The closing flap is usually not glued. Cut off the closing flap, trim its edges. You can make it a regular rectangle, a rectangle with the edges cut in curves or a hexagon.

What I do to personalise my bookmark is write a quote or a sentence from the book or a small poem that means something to me. It can be funny, witty, and philosophical or anything that appeals to my mind. A nice site to give you an idea of the kind of thoughts I write:

www.grouchyrabbit.com or for great inspirational or situational quotations, visit www.thinkexist.com.

“If you are gifting a book to anyone on any occasion, this is a great way to personalise it. Write a thoughtful line about the person you are gifting a book to on their personalised bookmark.”

Handy Tip: Sometimes bookmarks are shorter than the book. And while you can locate it, it’s easier to ensure that it’s visible at all times. You can cut along the lines shown in the illustration and make a hook for the bookmark to stay in place so it’s clearly visible.  If that’s too much to do for a simple bookmark, just punch a hole in the centre of the top one centimetre and tie a used ribbon or a piece of coloured twine! And it’s ready!

2. A Photo Frame 🙂

The card on which the invite is printed is usually a longish rectangle. Some invites have two cards – one for the wedding ceremony and another one for the reception. You can turn this into a photo frame. Put a nice picture and gift it to someone or just keep it by your bedside, your child’s study table or pin it to the soft board at your office desk. If there is no card in the invite, you can trim the envelope and use the unprinted side of the envelope (where the flap closes). However, remember, since we are re-using a size that’s predetermined, you may have to trim the photograph. Or get a smaller size developed.

Follow the steps given below to make a photo frame:

  1. Trim Card 1 at a distance of 2 centimetres from its outer border
  2. Stick Card 2 overleaf Card 1. You will have an extra two centimetres sticking out. Cut three of the corners along the lines shown in the diagram.

3.  Paste three of the folds on Card one. The fold with the corners still intact is to help you slide the photo in.

4. Fold the corners of the fourth in a way as to be able to glue them to the reverse of the display.

5. Once glued, cut a slit on this side so that the photo can be inserted or changed.

6.  Fold a wooden ice-cream spoon or even a doubled-up piece of scrap paper from the wedding invite to use as a support stand.

7.  Voilà! Your reused paper photoframe with a custom design from the wedding invite paper is ready to store a precious memory!

3. A wall-hanging

This is easy to make once you have the photo frame base ready. One wall-hanging that I have is of the poem “Desiderata” by Max Ehrmann and another one of Rudyard Kipling’s “If”. I tend to write something in calligraphy because I am terrible at drawing and colouring. But I have attempted some oriental designs like the simple ones one sees in Haiku books.

The easiest thing after painting little cherry blossoms is Warli art. It has stick figures drawn with only triangles and circles using only white paint. Make up your own story and tell it in pictures.

  1. Leave a distance of one centimetre from the side you want to be at the top.
  2. Punch a single hole or double holes according to your preference for placing it a certain way on your wall.
  3. Use a ribbon or coloured twine that’s quadrupled to give it more strength.
  4. And voila! Your wall-hanging is ready.

4. Gift cards with a difference

I have sent and received several gifts that have been wrapped in a shop and then presented with a tacky card that says “Best wishes, Best compliments from”… I finally decided to make my own gift cards that were personalised and recycled.

 

5. Hand-written notes

These are my replacements for “post-it” notes. Use a card or paper from the invite that can be cut into the approximate dimensions of 5 X 7 centimetres or 7 X 10 centimetres.

If it is dark coloured paper, write with a silver gel pen. Or a black ink pen if it is light coloured paper that you are using. You can also make it more attractive by adding a border to it with contrast colour trimmings from other parts of the invite. Or just draw a border with a colour pencil.

Working with paper de-stresses me immensely. From cutting it to size, folding it, coming up with some design to draw on it, and then gifting it to someone knowing that I’ve given it a touch of “me”, it’s a nice way to show that a person cares. Not just about the people in your life, but also about the environment.

So the next time, think of all the use they can be before you dump those vibrant and colourful invites into your raddiwalla’s possession!

 

About NaturalMantra.com

In our fast paced lives, a sustainable lifestyle shouldn’t be a struggle, but it sometimes is. Our mission is to provide the largest selection of  natural, organic and eco-friendly products making it accessible and affordable to all. At NaturalMantra.com you can choose from a wide selection of safe, healthy non-toxic products, all in one place delivered to your door!

Leave us a comment and connect with us here:

Post contributed by : Ankita Gujar ;

About the Author : Ankita Gujar 

Ankita is a graduate in Sociology and Political Science from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. The environmental movement has always interested her ever since she was introduced to the water cycle in the 3rd standard. She loves to travel and experience new cultures. At age 21, she first got a taste of “pristine” nature when she backpacked across the Scottish Highlands and she wants her kids to be able to experience that when they grow up to earn their trip across the world. She is also a teacher of languages – English and French. She hopes to make people aware of the advantages of adopting an eco-friendly lifestyle because she wants to be able to pet a tiger and swim with a dolphin when she gets the courage to pet the tiger and gets out of the house to exercise regularly at the pool in her locality and learns to swim…which is going to probably be around 5 decades from today. So help her to pet a tiger and swim with a dolphin. Go Green.