Apollo And The Fall Of Phaeton( A Greek Myth)

Apollo was one of the greatest gods of ancient Greek mythology. One of the stories about him concerns his human son Phaeton. Each morning Phaeton’s mother, Clymene would point out to the boy the rising of the sun and it’s passing through the sky. This was his father Apollo riding a chariot through the sky. However so magnificent were Clymene’s descriptions of Apollo that Phaeton became very conceited, boasting loudly and often of his divine parentage.

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Sir Peter Paul Rubens (artist)
Flemish, 1577 – 1640
The Fall of Phaeton, c. 1604/1605, probably reworked c. 1606/1608
oil on canvas

Tired of these boasts Phaeton’s playmates urged him to provide proof. Stung by their insults Phaeton learned from his mother how to find Apollo and then set out after the god. When he finally encountered Apollo he timidly entered his presence, and, encouraged by Apollo, poured out his story. As soon as he finished Apollo swore a solemn oath that he would grant his son any proof he wished. He had but to ask.

And ask Phaeton did. He asked permission to drive the sun chariot that very day, sure that his friends would see him and be convinced that Apollo was his father. Apollo was dismayed. Patiently he explained to Phaeton that the four fiery steeds would be beyond Phaeton’s control, that he would kill himself if he tried to drive the chariot. He begged Phaeton to select another proof.

But Phaeton refused to budge from his original request. He wanted to drive the sun chariot, and because Apollo had sworn an oath he could not deny the boy. The hour came when the fiery steeds were ready to go forth. Apollo anointed his son with a cooling oil to protect him from the suns harsh rays, gave him directions, and urged him to watch the steeds with the greatest care, especially to use the whip sparingly as the horses were inclined to be very restive.

Phaeton impatiently listened then leaped into the chariot. For an hour or two he paid heed to his father’s advice and all went well. But, growing overconfident and reckless he drove the horses faster and faster and lost his way. In getting back to course he drove too close to the earth, with disastrous results. The plants shrivelled up, the fountains and rivers went dry, the earth was blackened, and even the people in the land over which he drove were blackened.

Terrified at what he’d done Phaeton drove so far away that all the vegetation which had survived the scorching died on account of the sudden cold.

The people of earth cried out so loudly that the supreme god, Jupiter, was aroused form his sleep. Surveying what had been done he grew furious, took a lightning bolt and hurled it at the conceited Phaeton, killing him instantly.

Phaeton demonstrates the way of foolishness. Refusing to listen to the wiser counsel of others, fools rush headlong on their way, giving little thought to the possible consequences and so often finding themselves stranded in disaster.

Source: Reported in Guerber, The Myths of Greece and Rome

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” Masks”

Don’t be fooled by the face I wear, for I wear a
thousand masks, And none of them are me.
Don’t be fooled, for goodness sake, don’t be fooled.

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I give you the impression that I’m secure, that
confidence is my name and coolness is my game,
And that I need no one.
But don’t believe me.

Beneath dwells the real me in confusion, in
aloneness, in fear. That’s why I create a mask to
hide behind, to shield me from the glance that
knows,
But such a glance is precisely my salvation.

That is, if it’s followed by acceptance, if it’s
followed by love. It’s the only thing that can
liberate me from my own self-built prison walls.
I’m afraid that deep down I’m nothing and that
I’m just no good, And that you will reject me.

And so begins the parade of masks. I idly chatter
to you. I tell you everything that’s really nothing
and
Nothing of what’s everything, of what’s crying
within me.

Please listen carefully and try to hear what I’m not
saying. I’d really like to be genuine and
spontaneous, and me.
But you’ve got to help me. You’ve got to hold out
your hand.

Each time you’re kind and gentle, and
encouraging, Each time you try to understand
because you really care,
My heart begins to grow wings, feeble wings, but
wings.

With your sensitivity and sympathy, and your
power of understanding,
You alone can release me from my shallow world
of uncertainty.

It will not be easy for you. The nearer you
approach me, The blinder I may strike back.
But I’m told that Love is stronger than strong walls,
And in this lies my only hope.

Please try to beat down these walls with firm
hands,
But gentle hands, for a child is very sensitive.

Who am I, you wonder. I am every man you meet,
and also every woman that you meet,
And I am you, also.

-Author Unknown

Finally at madamsabiblog.com

Finally, friends..we have moved. We tried to export all our luggage and furnitures ( laughing) but it was an herculean task .So we thought of providing a link from this wordpress account to our http://www.madamsabiblog.com. The decision, I love it because am about to still read all the lovely blog posts on wordpress as I will no longer be deleting this blog! The idea came over the night and I was excited.

Yes, to everyone am following, I will still be looking over your shoulders reading and mingling! ( really excited).

We have created a link here and also all around this blog so you can move around at will..

Plenty love. Thanks for being there.

On Moving To My New Domain : www.madamsabiblog.com

It has been a challenging time I must admit, trying to migrate to my own domain. http://www.madamsabiblog.com. it is not exactly a thing for the faint hearted especially if you are a green horn when it comes to tech issues!

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I have not still being able to export all my luggage..It is lot easier to move things to another country that moving from one domain space to another.
For now, I think I will just keep writing on this and keep updating as I go.

Sorry, I have over 2,500 posts and that is a lot. But I have started the trip, I would not quit.

Thanks.

Time To Move Domain To Madamsabiblog.com!

Yeah! Hello, friends, it is with mixed feelings I write this. WordPress for me, has being home for close to 21 months. I have made friends, engaged with different people from different worlds. An opportunity I would probably not have gotten elsewhere on virtual ground.

Being able to follow and be followed by beautiful peoples, many with their varying issues ( divorce, illness, depression etc) but in all,  I appreciate everyone for making me see different sides of the multi facets called Life.

I have experienced so much by reading other blogs ( over 600). One thing stands out ,writing is balm for the soul and for me ,reading is travelling across continents, time and various worlds.

In the course of starting the blog, my main aim was to remind myself of what is most important in life. To ponder on my values, to look at different sizes of the dice. To appreciate the gifts God has given to me. Am a very old soul in a very young body and I like it that way. In the course of the personal therapy of daily reminders, I thank God, I have been able to impart some lives.

Time now has come to move to my domain because I have been getting a lot of references from search engines and I feel that if the articles I publish can impart one life a day, am blessed and if  I can have a higher ranking by having my own domain and reaching out to more people then am even more blessed.

I would like that by the time I get called home which I pray will be in very many earth years away , I want to be happy that I came and inspired someone else on the journey called life.

India’s Menstruation Man :The Sanitary Pad Genius

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Arunachalam Muruganantham with one of his machines for making sanitary pads: Aljazeera

Arunachalam Muruganantham was obsessed with making the perfect sanitary pad for his wife. After years of work, his invention has changed the lives of millions of women in India. Arunachalam Muruganantham’s invention came at a great personal cost – he nearly lost his family, his money and his place in society. But he kept his sense of humour.

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It all began in 1998, when Arunachalam Muruganantham, the son of poor handloom weavers in South India, realised that his wife was using old rags to deal with menstruation because she couldn’t afford sanitary pads. Muruga was shocked. But he also saw a chance to impress her. He decided to produce her sanitary pads himself. At first it seemed a simple task: he bought a roll of cotton wool and cut it into pieces, the same size as the pads sold in the shops, and then wrapped a thin layer of cotton around it. He presented this homemade prototype pad to his wife and asked her to test it. The feedback she gave him was devastating: his pad was useless and she would rather continue using old rags.

Where did he go wrong? What was the difference between his sanitary pads and those available at the shop? Muruga started experimenting with different materials, but was faced with another problem: he always had to wait a month before his wife could test each new prototype.

Muruganantham says that he was shocked to learn that women in rural areas don’t just use old rags, but other unhygienic substances such as sand, sawdust, leaves and even ash.

Women who do use cloths are often too embarrassed to dry them in the sun, which means they don’t get disinfected. Approximately 70% of all reproductive diseases in India are caused by poor menstrual hygiene – it can also affect maternal mortality.

Muruga needed volunteers and had an idea where he might find them. He asked medical students at a university close to his village. Some of them actually tested his pads but they were too shy to give him detailed feedback.

Left with no alternative, he decided to test the sanitary pads himself. He built a uterus using a rubber bladder, filled it with animal blood and fixed it to his hip. A tube led from the artificial uterus to the sanitary pad in his underpants. By pressing the bladder he simulated the menstrual flow.

Unfortunately he began to smell foul and his clothes were often stained with blood. His neighbours soon noticed this. It was clear to them that Muruga was either ill or perverted. After a while his wife couldn’t stand the constant gossip. She left him and went to live with her mother.

But Muruga didn’t give up. He knew why he was going through all this. During his research he had learned that only ten to twenty percent of all girls and women in India have access to proper menstrual hygiene products. This was no longer just about helping his wife. Muruga was on mission: to produce low-cost sanitary pads for all the girls and women in his country.

It was two years before he finally found the right material and another four years before he developed a way to process it. The result was an easy-to-use machine for producing low-cost sanitary pads. Imported machines cost over US$500,000. Muruga’s machine, by contrast, is priced at US$950.

Now women’s groups or schools can buy his machine, produce their own sanitary pads and sell the surplus. In this way, Muruga’s machine has created jobs for women in rural India. He has started a revolution in his own country, selling 1,300 machines to 27 states, and has recently begun exporting them to developing countries all over the world.

Today he is one of India’s most well-known social entrepreneurs and TIME magazine named him one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2014.

Several corporations have offered to buy his machine, but he has refused, instead preferring to sell to women’s self help groups.

Some Facts:
* 300 million: The number of women in India without access to safe menstrual hygiene products.

* 1 in 5: The number of girls in India who drop out of school due to menstruation.

Source: Al Jazeera