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Educational trip

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Educational trip

  1. 1. EDUCATIONAL TRIP REPORT •Chennai •Mhabalipuram •Auroville •Pondicherry •Coorg
  2. 2. Santhome Church:There are three places in chennai that stand out as monuments ofhonour, speaking aloud about the presence, activity and themartyrdom of St. Thomas, the Apostle of india.They are 1. Little Mount, 2. St Thomas Mount, 3. San ThomeCathedral Basilica. St Thomas built a church at San Thome.After his martyrdom, his body was buried in the Church built byhim. A pot containing earth, moistened by his blood and the lancewith which he was pierced were both buried in his tomb.
  3. 3. From his many followers, Jesus chosetwelve to be his close collaborators andgave them power to preach and to heal.These twelve are called “Apostles”. St.Thomas is one of them. He is mentionedfour times in the New Testament of theBible (Gospel according to St. John). Ofthese accounts, the most quoted is theone of Jesus’ apparition to the othereleven after His Resurrection, when St.Thomas was absent, St. Thomas refusedto believe that Jesus had appeared tothem. He insisted: “Unless I see themarks of the nails in his hands, and putmy hand into the wound in his side, I willnot believe.” During his next apparition,Jesus called St. Thomas to him andinvited him to check his wounds. St.Thomas burst into an act of faith, “MyLord and My God!”
  4. 4. This is holy ground – one which contains the tomb ofSt. Thomas, one of the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ.He came to India in the year 52 AD, preached on theWest Coast and Chennai(formerly Madras), died in thiscity in 72 AD, and was buried in Santhome, ThisShrine, stands over his tomb.In fact, the Basilica is so constructed that the smallerof its two towers stands exactly over the tomb of St.Thomas. This is also the shrine where the next mostfamous missionary to India, St. Francis Xavier (whosebody is venerated in Goa), spent four months in theyear 1545, and used to pray before the statue of “OurLady of Mylapore”.Thousand of pilgrims and visitors have been cominghere for nearly two thousand years. That groupincludes history-makers like Marco Polo (thirteenthcentury) and millions of ordinary men and women fromaround the world
  5. 5. The tomb itself was officially opened four times, according to written records: (1) As St. Gregory of Tour mentions in his book, De Miraculis Sancti Thomae, itwas opened the first time to cure the son of a certain king, Raja Mahadevan.(2) The second opening took place between 1222 and 1225, when most of theSaint’s relics were removed from Madras to Ortona in Italy, where they arepreserved even today.(3) The tomb was opened a third time in 1523 by the Portugese, when they rebuitthe ruined church.(4) In 1729, Dom Jose Pinharno, then Bishop of Mylapore, opened the tomb todistribute to pilgrims the earth from the tomb. On that occasion, a bright light is said to have emanated from the tomb.
  6. 6. This magnificent edifice owed much to thecompetent and free services of Captain J.A.Power, a retired officer of the Royal Engineersand a parishioner of Santhome. The structure iswhat is known as “Gothic,” like the most famousCathedrals of Europe .The Gothic churches are known for their tallspires. The nave is 112 feet long and 33 feetwide. The steeple is 155 feet high.The sanctuary (the most important part of achurch, where the altar is kept and divineservices are conducted) is 62 feet long and 33feet wide.The ceiling is 36.1/2 feet high over the nave and41.1/2 feet high over the sanctuary.
  7. 7. The nave has 36 windows.The arches are 36 feet high.Around the arches we see vine leavescarved in high relief. These were designedand executed by Captain Power.
  8. 8. SHORE TEMPLE The temple is a combination of three shrines. The main shrine is dedicated to Shiva as is the smaller second shrine. A small third shrine, between the two, is dedicated to a reclining Vishnu and may have had water channeled into the temple, entering the Vishnu shrine. The outer wall of the shrine to Vishnu and the inner side of the boundary wall are extensively sculptured and topped by large sculptures of Nandi.
  9. 9. Durga lion with small carved shrine
  11. 11. SHORE TEMPLE The Shore Temple (built in 700-728 AD) is so named because it overlooks the shore of the Bay of Bengal. It is a structural temple, built with blocks of granite, dating from the 8th century AD. It was built on a promontory sticking out into the Bay of Bengal at Mahabalipuram, a village south of Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu in India. It is one of the oldest structural (versus rock-cut) stone temples of South India.
  12. 12. ARCHITECTURE The Shore Temple is a five-storeyed structural Hindu temple rather than rock-cut as are the other monuments at the site. It is the earliest important structural temple in Southern India. Its pyramidal structure is 60 ft high and sits on a 50 ft square platform. There is a small temple in front which was the original porch. It is made out of finely cut local granite. The shore temple is also one of the most popular temples
  13. 13. AurovilleTHE CITY OF DAWN
  14. 14. INTRODUCTION Auroville (City of Dawn) is an "experimental" township in Viluppuram district in the state of Tamil Nadu, India, near Puducherry in South India. It was founded in 1968 by Mirra Alfassa (also known as "The Mother") and designed by architect Roger Anger. As stated in Alfassas first public message about the township, "Auroville is meant to be a universal town where men and women of all countries are able to live in peace and progressive harmony, above all creeds, all politics and all nationalities. The purpose of Auroville is to realize human unity."
  15. 15. HISTORY Auroville was founded as a project of the Sri Aurobindo Society on Wednesday 28 February 1968 by Mirra Alfassa, "The Mother". She was spiritual collaborator of Sri Aurobindo, who believed that "man is a transitional being". Mother expected that this experimental "universal township" would contribute significantly in the "progress of humanity towards its splendid future by bringing together people of goodwill and aspiration for a better world. The Government of India endorsed the township, and in 1966, UNESCO also endorsed it inviting the member-states to participate in the development of Auroville. UNESCO re-endorsed Auroville four times more in the course of the last 40 years
  16. 16.  In the inauguration ceremony attended by delegates of 124 nations on 28 February 1968, Mother gave Auroville its 4- point Charter setting forth her vision of Integral living: Auroville belongs to nobody in particular. Auroville belongs to humanity as a whole. But to live in Auroville, one must be the willing servitor of the Divine Consciousness. Auroville will be the place of an unending education, of constant progress, and a youth that never ages. Auroville wants to be the bridge between the past and the future. Taking advantage of all discoveries from without and from within, Auroville will boldly spring towards future realisations. Auroville will be a site of material and spiritual researches for a living embodiment of an actual Human Unity.
  17. 17. THE MATRI MANDIR In the middle of the town is the Matrimandir , which has been acclaimed as "an outstanding and original architectural achievement“. It was conceived by "The Mother" as "a symbol of the Divines answer to mans inspiration for perfection". Silence is maintained inside the Matri mandir to ensure the tranquility of the space and entire area surrounding the Matri mandir is called Peace area. Inside the Matri mandir, a spiraling ramp leads upwards to an air-conditioned chamber of polished white marble referred to as "a place to find ones consciousness".
  18. 18.  The surface of the dome has 56 kg of Gold, which was sandwiched between as thin sheets. At its centre is a 70 cm crystal ball in a gold mount which glows with a single ray of sunlight that is directed on the globe from the top of the structure. According to Mother, this represents "a symbol of future realisation." Matrimandir is equipped with a solar power plant and is surrounded by manicured gardens. When there is no sun or after the sunset, the sunray on the globe is replaced by a beam from a solar powered light. Radiating from this center are four "zones" of the City Area: the "Residential Zone", "Industrial Zone", "Cultural (& Educational) Zone" and "International Zone". Around the City or the urban area, lies a Green Belt which is an environment research and resource area and includes farms and forestries, a botanical garden, seed bank, medicinal and herbal plants, water catchment bunds, and some communities.
  19. 19. The columnsThe columns arrived at Matrimandir in the beginning of January 1990.They were 24-inch diameter,galvanised, seamless steel pipes, 8.65 meter long, weighing 830 kg each. The painting job appearedstraightforward and the first two were done completely in a couple of months. A dedicated team startedputting in extra time, a few infra-red lights appeared to help the drying, and then even an electricpolishing machine arrived to speed up the work. There are an average of 15 coats of paint on eachcolumn with finer and finer sanding between coats after which the final polishing was done.Air conditioningMuch research was done on the air conditioning plant which has been installed under the eastern edge ofthe Amphitheatre. Various types of systems were rejected in favour of what is called the Freon R-22 system.Chilled water is transported by underground pipes to the Matrimandir and up the north and south pillars toair cooling coils near the Chamber.The cooled air is blown into the Chamber through four grilles located in the ceiling, and will leave theChamber through slots at floor level, into ducts leading to the north and south pillars where the air-handlingunit will return the filtered air mixed with some outside air. It will then pass through the chilled water coil tobe re-cooled and dehumidified and eventually be sent back to the grilles by two fans.
  20. 20. THE CARPET•The carpet in the meditation chamber was woven in Agra using ablend of the finest Merino wool imported from New Zealand.•This project was completed under the skillful guidance of Mr.Meattle of India Carpets and Furnishing Company, one of Indias topcarpet makers.•It took 6 months to weave the twelve sections (and two sparepieces) which cover the entire floor area of the Chamber.•The manufacturing was done on a specially designed handloomusing the Wilton weaving system.•This system gives a carpet all the good qualities of a machine-made carpet as well as the special qualities of a handmade one.
  21. 21. THE CRYSTAL GLOBE The crystal for the Matrimandir arrived in Auroville on 26-4-91 at 10.15 p.m. It wasmoved into the Matrimandirs Inner Chamber the very next day at 09.45 a.m. The size of 70 cm diameter was marked on the original plan that Mother had drawn forthe central object in the Chamber. In July 1983, the searchlight fell on the firm of Schott inMainz, and somewhat later on Zeiss in Oberkochen, both in Germany. These firms proposed the type of crystal - optically perfect glass - with the name of BohrKron 7. On the 8th of June 1984, Zeiss presented the study, and gave the estimate: approx.230,000 German Marks. On May 12 1987, Schott wrote to Zeiss that the cast has been done, and that the mouldwas being cooled. When two months later a visit to Zeiss was made, it appeared that thiscasting was the second one, - the first one having failed for unpublished reasons.
  22. 22. THE CRYSTAL GLOBE•The casting at Schotts in Mainz lasted 15 hours, and was done in aspecial form of refractory stone, held together by seven metal bands,which was placed on top of a platform built of iron and steel. During thecasting process the glass in the form was kept at a constant temperature.After 15 hours the rough casting in the form of a massive dome with adiameter of 80 to 85 cm and a weight of 1100 kg was finished, after whichit was cooled down extremely slowly (to avoid tension) in an annealingfurnace for a period of 5 weeks. The rough form had to be polished on twosides, in order to test the quality of the glass. Finally, at the beginning of1991, it became clear that the process to deliver the globe could bestarted, and in April of the same year it reached its destination, theChamber.
  23. 23. THE HELIOSTAT AND LENS The heliostat is controlled by acomputer program, which moves a mirroracross the suns path every day. Thismirror projects sunlight into a lens, thatprojects the single sun ray down on thecrystal. To make sure that the ray strikesthe crystal exactly in the centre, a photosensor is installed in the path of the rayitself and relays the data on the raysposition to the computer, which in turnwill adjust the ray to the correct positionif necessary.
  24. 24. Technical information about the lensFocal length, first lens :- 30 m, diameter, 45 cmFocal length, second lens :- 5 m, diam. 25 cmDiameter of sun-spot on the globe :- 180 mm
  25. 25. The gold discsDisc frame: - Stainless steel tubesDisc material: - stainless steel sheetGold leaf: - 28 gram of gold per 1000 leavesLeaf size: - 85 x 85 mmTotal number of discs: - 1415Small convex discs: - 954Large concave discs: - 461Average diam. (large discs): - 2.3 meterAverage diam. (small discs): - 1.5 meter
  26. 26. The Banyan Tree By late 1965, time had come to define thecentre of Auroville. Roger Anger, the Frencharchitect to whom the Mother had asked todesign the future town, brought to her a map ofthe area north of Pondicherry. She was in herroom at the Ashram and had probably never setfoot in that area for at that time there was nomotor able road leading to it. She concentratedand pointed to a particular area on the map.The architect took a jeep and drove to the areashe had pointed at and found there a solitarybanyan tree in an almost totally barren plateauoverlooking the Bay of Bengal. The Mother wasvery happy about the presence of a banyan tree, The Banyan tree soon after thea tree regarded as sacred in India, and decided Inauguration Ceremonyto make it Auroville‟s geographical centre. Lone tree in a totally barren landscape
  27. 27. This Banyan Tree (Ficus Benghalensis) belongs to the Ficus (fig tree) family and is now probably a little more than hundred years old. Banyans have the peculiarity of producing „aerial roots‟ which grow down from branches towards the ground and take root to become new trunks. (The diameter of this banyan is now kept at approximately fifty metres so that it remains in proportionBanyan Tree with some of its aerial roots with its surroundings.)
  28. 28. EARTH INSTITUTE From the early days of Auroville, in the 1970‟s, different experiments have been made with earth building, with mixed results. The creation of the Auroville Earth Institute in 1989, the construction of the Visitors‟ Centre from 1989 to 1992 and the development of Vikas Community from 1992 to 1998, started a new era in earthen architecture in Auroville.
  29. 29.  This Visitors‟ Centre of 1200 m² was granted the “Hassan Fathy Award for Architecture for the Poor” in 1992. Built of compressed stabilised earth blocks, it demonstrated the potential of stabilised earth as a quality building material. Vikas Community was a finalist for the “World Habitat Award 2000: and its 3rd building was built on 4 floors. Since then, the value of earth as a building material has been acknowledged for its economic advantage, as well as its comfort and quality, which promotes indigenous and sustainable development. Today, Auroville can show a wide variety of earthen projects: public buildings, schools, apartments and individual houses.
  31. 31. Most of the projects are built with compressed stabilised earth blocks (CSEB), as thistechnology benefits of more than half a century of research and developmentworldwide. Stabilised rammed earth is also used extensively for foundations and to alesser extent for walls. In Auroville, CSEB present several advantages compared to thelocal country fired bricks:• Walls made of CSEB and stabilised rammed earth are always cheaper than firedbricks.• The initial embodied energy of CSEB produced on site with 5 % cement is ~ 4 timesless than the local country fired bricks.• The strength of these blocks is most of the time higher than the local country firedbricks.There are also three other earth techniques used in Auroville. These techniques arevery marginally used as only about 10 buildings have been built with them:• Raw rammed earth• Adobe blocks, the traditional sun dried mud brick• Wattle and daub which is mud plastered on a wattle made of split bamboo orpalmyra tree
  33. 33.  Savitri Bhavan is a centre dedicated to fostering a living sense of Human Unity through spiritual education based on the vision and teachings of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. The central focus is Sri Aurobindo‟s mantric epic Savitri – a legend and a symbol, which the Mother has called „The supreme revelation of Sri Aurobindo‟s vision‟. Savitri Bhavan aims to gather and create, to house and make available all kinds of materials and activities that will foster a deeper appreciation of Savitri, of the lives.
  34. 34.  Auroville‟s urban centre consists of a sequence of public spaces and institutional buildings, referred to as „the Crown‟, which forms a circle around the Matrimandir with a radius of about 700 meters. On the inner side of the Crown, where its western part passes through the International Zone, Savitri Bhavan is located next to the Mahasaraswati Park. The building complex is arranged in such a way as to create space and a backdrop for the bronze statue of Sri Aurobindo, placed in the middle of a lotus-pond in the centre of a stepped plaza, which looks towards the “Sri Aurobindo Plaza” one day to be realised on the outer side of the Crown
  35. 35.  These entrances are situated on a split level on top of an artificial hill, which not only gives an elevated appearance to the complex but also allows the arrangement of a much- needed basement on ground level, thus avoiding flooding problems during the monsoon. At the foot of this hill it is intended to create a pond to catch rainwater from the roof areas of the buildings and contribute to the landscaped beauty of the entrance garden space.
  36. 36.  On the northern side, the hostel is separated from the main complex by a long closed wall, which points towards the Banyan Tree in the centre of Auroville. On the southern side the main building opens to the park, along which the multi-purpose hall, the amphitheatre and the Sangam Hall (yet to be realized). The split level arrangement also permits easy integration of the amphitheatre, which can easily be accessed from the raised main floor as well as from the ground level. A transversal curved wall is the connecting and harmonizing element of the diverse and contrasting forms of the composite structure. This curved wall - intersected by the tilted roof of the art gallery – generates the height development of the building compound.
  38. 38. ABOUT PONDICHERRY The Union Territory of Puducherry consists of four small unconnected districts: Pondicherry, Karaikal and Yanam on the Bay of Bengal and Mahé on the Arabian Sea. Pondicherry and Karaikal are the largest sections in terms of territory and population, both being enclaves of Tamil Nadu. Yanam and Mahé are enclaves of Andhra Pradesh and Kerala respectively. The territory has a total area of 492 km²: Pondicherry 293 km², Karaikal 160 km², Mahé 9 km² and Yanam 30 km². It has a total population of 1,244,464 inhabitants (2011). Pondicherry public buildings (government and institutional) are not outstanding edifices because they are recent, the best monumental structures of the Dupleix’s period having been destroyed by the British in 1761, but the town is noteworthy for its domestic architecture which shows the coexistence of two distinct styles – that of the French and that of the native Tamil.
  39. 39. FRENCH RULE IN PONDICHERRY The French rule in Pondicherry started in the 17th century when the French officer, Bellanger set up his residence in the Danish Lodge in the region of Pondicherry. The French had been invited to start trading units in Pondicherry by the ruler of Gingee. The invitation was forwarded to raise competition in trade between the French and the Dutch who had already settled in the region and set up their business unit. The first governor of Pondicherry was Francois Martin who assumed office in the year 1674. The efforts of the governor converted Pondicherry into an emerging port town from a small fishing village. The Dutch occupied the territory of Pondicherry in the year 1693 and fortressed the territory. The reign of the region returned to the French in the year 1699 after the countries Holland and France signed an alliance.The French rule in Pondicherry lasted till 1954 when the territory acceded to the Union of India.
  41. 41. DESIGN CONCEPT The city of Pondicherry was designed based on the French grid pattern and features neat sectors and perpendicular streets. The town is divided into two sections: the French Quarter (Ville Blanche or White town) and the Indian quarter (Ville Noire or Black Town.) Many streets still retain their French names, and French style villas are a common sight. In the French quarter, the buildings are typically colonial style with long compounds and stately walls. The Indian quarter consists of houses lined with verandas and houses with large doors and grills. These French and Indian style houses are identified and their architecture is preserved from destruction by an organization named INTACH. The use of the French language can still be seen and heard in Pondicherry.
  42. 42. FRENCH BUILDINGS In the ville blanche are still found an impressive number of colonial houses, mansion-type houses with courtyards behind ornate gateways, dating from the 19th century or from the beginning of the 20th century, which constitute a tropical adaptation of the private mansions of the 18th century with large terraces. Most of them were built on a rather similar ground plan with variations in size, orientation and details, i.e. a symmetrical plan with the principal façade usually opening on to the garden/court, perpendicular to the street and the high and solid enclosing wall and the elaborate gateway forming a clear limit between domestic and public space
  43. 43.  The ceilings are marked by heavy wooden beams and wooden joists supporting terrace roofing made of brick-on-edge masonry in lime mortar, called agamas in French and Madras roofing in English; the main building material for all masonry works was burnt bricks in lime mortar (the lime was made by burning sea shells from the local shore or lime stone quarried from Tutipet.