Ziva is slavic pagan goddess – a mythical character who represents life and fertility.
Ziva was often depicted naked, holding apples in one hand (like Eve from the Abrahamic myths), and grapes or strawberries or wheat in another. The apples she possessed, were said to shine a brilliant gold.
Živa was above all the goddess of water. In the consciousness of people she represented the concept of life, personified by water. She was their first “goddess”, even before mother Earth, who rules when the spread of agriculture follows.
Interestingly, there are lot of research to explore the connection between shiva, the Hindu God and ziva.
Yana is for Y – the Czech model who turned into an Indian actress – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yana_Gupta
Am not a fan of Yana, though she being a vegetarian is a good factor to impress me. Being in show business, she has done well as an author of the health book. For a women of her age, she has managed her life and career well.
She has been on many modelling assignments with impressive labels like Calvin Klein, Sony, Lakme, Honda, Toyota, etc.
She is probably one of the few (or the only one?) Western Caucasian women to get into India film industry.
Xena is for X – the warrior princess http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xena
While Xena, the warrior princess was a fiction character in the TV shows and movies, the entire theme of evil turning to good where Xena goes through her path of redemption is impressive. Ofcourse, the LGBT undertones brought in spice to the Xena character. The reason i added Xena to the list is two fold –
- While there were too many heroes for the little boys to idolize, there were hardly women characters for the little girls – Xena fills in the gap as a female action hero.
- And i do not have any women impressive enough with their name starting with alphabet Z :)
Winne is for W – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winnie-the-Pooh
While Winnie is a fictions cartoon character, the morals and philosophy which she teaches to the children of the world is impressive. I enjoyed reading Winnie as a Disney character who was extremely committed to friendship. Winnie always highlighted the importance of small niceties in life over any such materialistic attitudes and ambitions.
It was one of the great characters to read out to children in their young age. Look at the sample here
Vidya and Venus are the two for V in #atozchallenge
- Venus – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_%28mythology%29
- Vidya – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vidy%C4%81
Both are mythical women goddess from different cultures and religions – Venus is that beautiful Roman goddess who embodies love and beauty and fertility. Vidya is that serene Hindu goddess who embodies the art of learning and knowledge.
Venus appears in multiple works of art in the different periods of art – sculptures and paintaings. So, is Vidya – there are so many ancient temples with her sculpture and the famous painter Ravi varma did beautiful paintings of Vidya. While Venus is equalized to Aphrodite, Vidya in Indian culture is associated very closely with knowledge.
Both the women goddess still have lot of influence across humanity. Romance and Knowledge are still the most sought after in any community!
U is for Uma in #atozchallenge
The most powerful incarnation of energy in Hinduism is in the female deity – the goddess called by many names – If you understand the language of Sanskrit, then “Lalitha Sahasra nama” is the one which lists all her 1000 names…..just a simple sample of what kind of powerful goddess we are referring to here.
See the list of 1000 names in the alphabetical order with the English meanings here
Uma is one of her 1000 names. Being born in a Hindu family, I am completely captivated by the mythological stories of Sakthi, her different forms and the thousands of temples. Trying to cover her in this short post is crazy – but if you need to learn more, there are multiple great web pages all over the internet. Couple of them are here
Teresa, Mother Teresa is for T of atozchallenge
When I was at middle school, the non-detailed studies were mandated as part of English language courses – looking back, i realize how it helped me a lot to get a glimpse of wide world than I could imagine – Mother Teresa’s stories was one of the non-detailed study as part of my curriculum in middle school – while there is no real grades attached to non-detailed studies, my dad was encouraging us to read them during the summer vacation even before the school started. In the era of no internet, books were the best bet to entertain us during vacations.
That is how i read about Mother Teresa and then started dreaming that I may also get enlightened one day like her if i continue to do the good deeds she recommends – ok, that is a cliche!! but that is what i thought when I was in middle school – I was obsessing on being a good soul and fancying secretly the greatness of being a christian missionary nun – I anyways already had a great impression about the christian nuns in their pure white habits – this is a result of going to a Christian convent for my junior school. Ofcourse, later when i read more about multiple religions, this fancy fad faded when I realized every religion is a framework with its own styles helping the humanity to attain the final goal of self realization!
So, here goes my memory on one of the greatest soul who was of an Albanian descendant but made a sea change to the people of India and then the world. More about Mother in the below links
Subbulakshmi is for S of #atozchallenge
If you have visited Hindu temples, you have listened to MS Subbulakshmi’s songs without fail – the captivating voice is something which is unique even after so many years of her passing. Again, if you think it is good enough to be wowed by her voice and beauty, you are in for a surprise.
Subbulakshmi persevered her life through various ups and downs and consistently kept her focus on music – she dedicated her life for music and in turn music let her conquer it.
I have to share this short note about one of her habits. MS Subbulakshi used to get lot of silk sarees (Indian traditional women’s dress) as gifts whenever she is on music concerts. She had a great method to maintain her simplicity. She always had only 10 sarees – if she gets a new saree presented to her, she immediately will gift one of the existing sarees to one of her mailds. This way, she ensured that she only had 10 sarees at any time !!
it was not only she was the queen of music, she seem to be a queen in her life with her passion and empathy towards others.
MS amma – Queen of music!!!!
R is for Rosa Parks for atozchallenge
African American women have done extremely well for themselves – while i am of Asian lineage, and it is very natural to look at Asian women as role models, I am equally surprised by the wide diversity of area in which the African American excel well.
Probably Rosa Parks is one of those first few women who stood up for themselves and in turn for the society. When she was subjected to a situation which she felt was wrong, she stood for the right – the right to be free and speak about it and do something about it – She had the courage to do what she thought was right and that in turn laid the foundation of a big change in the American history. If you want to pick up one person who taught that women can be fearless anytime, then you have to read more about Rosa Parks – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosa_Parks
It is the irresistible Queen of Sheba who is for Q of #atozchallenge.
I first knew “Queen of Sheba” as a game which is played when you are in a group. A game which requires some intelligence to do what the queen is asking the participants to do. And then came the mythical character of Queen of Sheba in Bible, in jewish scriptures and also in Islam. One more instance of a strong powerful women who is known for her beauty, and more so for her intelligence. The story is that Sheba traveled to meet King Solomon of Israel to check his knowledge through her riddles. It is a very interesting story where Sheba is finally tricked by King Solomon and they have a son together – who becomes an important mythical character in ensuring the Ark (container of the sacred ten commandments ) is brought into Ethiopia. Lot of interesting stuff to read about mythology and Queen of Sheeba is one of those interesting characters.
This is for those history buffs for a weekend read on Sheeba – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ancient/cultures/sheba_01.shtml