Guiding Light of The Month

Like a flame that burns in silence, like a perfume that rises straight upward without wavering, my love goes to Thee; and like the child who does not reason and has no care, I trust myself to Thee that Thy Will may be done, that Thy Light may manifest, Thy Peace radiate, Thy Love cover the world. - The Mother

Along the Way… December 2015 Morning Walk – A Review

The walk started on 6th Dec 2015, 8.30am at the Fort Canning Park Located at the junction of Canning Rise and Fort Canning Road in Singapore's Central Business District, it is only slightly more than 60 metres high but has a long history intertwined with the city-state, not least due to its location as the highest elevation within walking distance of the civic district.

I would like to share a few lines about the History of that place. Fort Canning Hill, originally known as Bukit Larangan (or "Forbidden Hill" in Malay) has been a local landmark in the city since Singapore's earliest recorded history. It has been the exclusive address of many of Singapore's rulers and colonial leaders dating back to the 14th century when it was the site for the palatial resort of former Majapahit kings, then in colonial times became the location for the residence of colonial governors starting with Sir Stamford Raffles.

The hill was renamed Fort Canning Park with the planting of a fruit tree by the then-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew on 1 November 1981.Today, Fort Canning Park is a venue for celebrations. Its expansive, sprawling lawns play host to concerts, theatre productions and festivals such as Shakespeare in the Park and Ballet under the Stars.

We had a group of 10 persons for the walk. It was pleasant morning with a cool weather. We enjoyed the beauty of nature in the garden. The heritage rain tree marks the start of the walk. The rain tree, a native of Central America, is planted in Singapore for its large, shady, umbrella-shaped crown. Its trunk and branches host beautiful ferns and orchids, and its leaves often fold up at dusk or before impending rain.

We walked on the side of the tall banyan trees that looked older than a century. The fresh air, green plantation and tall trees and their communion with our souls go beyond words to express.  On the way of the walk we saw a man who was practising his vocal skill building with a loud voice. 

We were walking down the steps that pave the way through the spice garden. This Spice Garden is a small replica of the original garden Sir Stamford Raffles established in 1822 as the first experimental and botanical garden in Singapore. We had an opportunity to see some varieties of plant species like Artemisia Scoparia (Redstem wormwood). This plant has strongly aromatic foliage with a hint of lemon.

I cannot end this walk review without sharing a few words about the Archaeological dig and exhibition area. We experienced the fascinating connection between the landscape and historical journey back to the 14th century. Going round the bend and following the path leads you to the archaeological dig and exhibition area, one of the biggest attractions on this trail. On display are several 14th century artefacts uncovered by researchers at the site. These artefacts provide evidence that way before the arrival of the British in 1819, Chinese merchants were already travelling to this part of the world to engage in trade.

Finally the walk finished at the Aurobindo Centre with a Delicious food served by Mr. Prabhu Deva Basappa & Family. They took care of each and every one and they served us with delicious fruits on the way back to home.                           

- N.Manikandan

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