Sunday, 21 October 2007

Self-portrait & Profile

Tentacles: Self-portrait by Remigius de Souza
Profile: Remigius de Souza

Remigius de Souza doesn’t prefer to identify himself with any occupation or profession, trade or creed, place or people, class or caste; and considers his name is only an address.

Born in Konkan, nursery school was his homestead, where grasses, bushes, woods were in abundance, where rich wild life moved sang danced freely, where he sucked honey drops from the Adulasa flowers.

At formative years he grew up on paddy farms. While learning by working – experiencing organic farming, spinning cotton and handloom weaving, adobe–abode building and its maintenance, side by side, he pursued literacy in vernacular at the public school at his native village, free i.e. at public cost.

He completed his architectural education at Mumbai in due course, but walked away from the qualifying exams on the first day, only to return after nine years to finish it successfully.

Meanwhile he worked in architects’ offices in Mumbai and Ahmedabad. For seven years he worked on the Development Plan, Town Planning Schemes and Urban Designs for the City of Vadodara (Baroda).

He then moved to Mumbai, and has been self-employed practicing architecture, mostly for institutions and NGOs in Gujarat and Maharashtra.

For about a decade he had been a visiting faculty and theses/ dissertation guide in the colleges of architecture in Mumbai. During this time he did some experiments in education and conducted workshops.

He researches and writes on education, architecture, housing, planning, environment, and conservation etc., reviews events and books, and compiles compositions in ‘verse-like’ format that is generally called poetry, which are occasionally published. He has also presented papers at conferences.

Time to time, over decades, he has been moving, living and/or working in villages, cities, towns, deserts, forests, ravines and ruins.

His major education comes from the countrywide open classroom. He spent one-half life in rural India and one-half in urban areas.

He believes, Environment, Ecology and Energy are closely interrelated and should not be put in separate compartments.

Remigius believes:
"Srishtiyoga" -- Way of Nature – is an ancient unwritten law
long before the birth of civilization.
Civilizations have been following
a number of Yoga practices, from Jnan Yoga – Vijnan Yog
to Karma Yoga – Bhakti Yoga to Hatha Yoga – Tantra Yoga.
People in the Vedic times or in the Garden of Eden
were perhaps blessed with plentiful of water and fruits.
It is only our wishful thinking that we sing
“Sujalam, Sufalam” - abundant water, abundant fruits
– that falls short of action.
It is time now for ‘Srishtiyoga’ – Reunion with Nature.
Remigius de Souza

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