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Pavilion of Tibetan Culture Auroville
Patron: His Holiness the Dalai Lama

January, 2003

Construction of the Pavilion
Due to a shortage of funds, the construction of the Pavilion has practically ceased since the past six months. However, we have been able to complete most of the ground floor (except the kitchen which remains to become functional). Two guest rooms and the main Conference room on the first floor will also have to be completed.
The completion work undertaken since our last Newsletter was mainly done thanks to a grant from the Ministry of Culture, Government of India for which we are very grateful.
We pray that during 2003 some generous supporters will help us to complete the rest of the building.
The first priority is now to build the water recycling plant and the other guest rooms.

International Zone of Auroville
The working group dealing with the International Zone of Auroville International Township has requested us to use one room of the Pavilion for their weekly meetings and their office work. As it was needed on a temporary basis (until the completion of the nearby Unity Pavilion), we happily agreed, keeping in mind that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has constantly spoken about the importance of Universal Responsibility. The coordination work of the International Zone group is certainly the best activity to concretely put this concept into practice.
In December, a full day Workshop on the concept of the International Zone in Auroville was held in the Pavilion. All the delegates took stock of the progress of each national project.

The Art of Healing
The exhibition hall as well as the Doctor’s room is regularly used by activities. Since our last Newsletter, we have been particularly happy to host on September 21 & 22, 2002, an exhibition on the Tibetan system of Medicine. This was entitled ‘The Art of Healing’ and was organized in collaboration with the Tibetan Medical & Astro. Institute, Dharamsala (TMAI).

The Lt Governor of Pondicherry, Shri K.R. Malkani graced the inaugural function with Prof Kireet Joshi, Chairman of the Auroville Foundation and the Maharaja and Maharani of Puri. The event was well covered in the local press.
During the two day event, visitors could not only get free medical consultations, but also a brief reading of their horoscope by a senior Astrologer of the TMAI.

Folk Dances from Tibet
On December 28, a group of 65 students from Madras who had earlier participated in a Peace March from Madras to Pondicherry gave a very refreshing performance of Tibetan folk dances at the Sri Aurobindo Auditorium, Bharat Nivas near the Pavilion. The Chief Guest for the function was Monsieur Michel Séguy, Consul General of France in Pondicherry and Chennai. The dances organized by the Tibetan Student’s Association, Madras were extremely well received by the Chief Guest and the very large audience who were surprised by the quality of the voices and the choreography, especially as young amateurs.
We should mention that we experienced what the Americans call a ‘collateral’ when they win a war. While the young students certainly won the hearts of the Auroville public, during the next two days when they began practicing scooter driving in the compound of the Pavilion and the Bharat Nivas, they had a large number of causalities. At the end of their stay, we counted no less than 35 injured Tibetans. By the grace of the Gods, nothing was very serious, but the First Aid had to work non-stop. The consolation is that the driving skills of the Tibetan community have greatly improved after the Students’ visit to Auroville and it was certainly better to have experienced these accidents on the soft roads of Auroville than on Madras’ streets.

2003 Light Mandala
Like every 31 December since 1997 when we began the construction of the Pavilion, Aurovilians and guests of Auroville met at the Pavilion to celebrate the coming New Year and pray for Peace in the world for 2003. We lit more than 2000 oil lamps on the Pavilion and more than one thousand people watched the flickering flames while listening to Tibetan mantric music.

(photo Light Mandala courtesy Ireno)

This year, we were graced by the presence of Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, Union Minister for Human Resource Development, Science & Technology. He had visited Auroville earlier in the afternoon and attended for a four-day Seminar on "The Sense of Infinity" organised in collaboration with the Institute of Advanced Studies, Simla.
Many distinguished Indian scholars who had come to Auroville for the Seminar, as well as visitors from Pondicherry also attended the meditation. Till late at night, people remained peacefully enjoying the last instants of the passing year.

Future Programs
We are very happy to inform you that we will be organizing an exhibition of one hundred
Rare Ancient Thankas (Scrolled Paintings) of Ladakh between February 6 and 15, 2003
at the Pavilion.
This exhibition is sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Department
of Culture, Government of India and in collaboration with the Central Institute of
Buddhist Studies, Leh, Ladakh.
The exhibition will inaugurated by Thiru N. Rangasami, the Hon'ble Chief Minister of Pondicherry on February 6.

For further information or contribution, contact

Claude Arpi, The Coordinator
Pavilion of Tibetan Culture
Auroville, 605101, TN India
Tel: 91-413-622172/622136 Fax: 622062
Email: tibpav@satyam.net.in

Past issues

January 2003
April 2002
October 2001

April 2001
January 2001

July 2000
February 2000
November 1999

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