Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Anselm Kiefer

Standing among the houses are two precarious-looking concrete towers along with a third, “Dashed Hope,” which has collapsed and symbolizes Mr. Kiefer’s belief that everything is continually changing.

“What interests me is the transformation, not the monument,” he explained. “I don’t construct ruins, but I feel ruins are moments when things show themselves. A ruin is not a catastrophe. It is the moment when things can start again.”

It is through this very process that Mr. Kiefer seemingly finds relief from the pessimism and melancholy that permeate much of his art.

“What you see is despair,” he said. “ I am completely desperate because I cannot explain why I am here. It’s more than mourning, it’s despair.”

He paused, then added, “But to survive, you build, you create illusions.”

Eye for PEACE

by Marguerita,created for Alain Mikli in 2003,as a protest against the threats on the preamble of the Bush attack on mankind.
In America,we desperately need a health care system.
Its is shocking and a frightening truth.
The young people and most are quite alienated.No sense of desire,passion,an empty horizon,life is not valued at all,rampant cynicism.Walking robots with no pleasure within their minds or bodies,while violence and blood is being spilled in an invaded country .
My mother's words keep crossing my mind non stop,the comments she made about her thoughts,when she was a prisoner in Auschwitz." In America they were dancing,and making movies in Hollywood,while we were bombed,uprooted,murdered,tortured and robbed."- " Arbeit Macht Frei " ?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

My punk

my boys and I in Vivienne Westwood cow tights at Ronnybrook farm

Vivienne Westwood MANIFESTO

Active resistance to propaganda

Vivienne Westwood
Saturday May 12, 2007
Guardian Unlimited

Vivienne Westwood's manifesto logo
I make the great claim for my manifesto, that it penetrates to the root of the human predicament and offers the underlying solution. We have a choice: to become more cultivated, and therefore more human - or by not choosing, to be the destructive and self-destroying animal, the victim of our own cleverness (To be or not to be).

We shall begin with a search for art, show that art gives culture and that culture is the antidote to propaganda.

Dear Friends, we all love art and some of you claim to be artists. Without judges there is no art. She only exists when we know her. Does she exist? The answer to this question is of vital importance because if Art is alive the world will change. No art, no progress.

We must find out; go in search of her. But wait! Who is this with fire-cracking smouldering pigtails, gold teeth and a brace of flintlocks in his belt? He is a pirate. And what does his T-shirt say? I love crap. (Pirate hands Vivienne Westwood an Hawaiian garland of plastic flowers.)

Pirate: "Leave everything to me. I plunder for you. Stick with me and you might get a share of the bounty. My name is Progress."

But you have stolen imagination. There is hardly anyone left now who believes in a better world. What is the future of unlimited profit in a finite world?

Pirate Progress: "I like you artistic lot. But, trust me or not, I'll take you with me if I go down. We'll all burn together." (Film clip, close up: the pigtails burst into flames and with a "Ha-haagh!" the pirate disappears in a pall of smoke followed by black night.)

(Still dark) He is not Progress. He must have stolen the name. (The defiant face of Pirate Progress appears and disappears like the Cheshire Cat. Light returns). True progress, as the Greeks thought of it is without limit. How can things get better and better if there is a limit?

Beautiful Slavegirl: "Everything must have an end. And to progress or advance in any way you must know where you are going. An end cannot be something you choose for the sake of something else. For example, money is not an end but a means to an end. And for this reason, I shall be set free.

"I am so happy! I am the famous Rhodopis (Rosycheeks). My master made a fortune from selling my body but now my lover will pay a vast ransom, even more than my future earnings could be. Oh, Liberty! I thought you were my end, but now, I see you are just a beginning. Can I be happy when the other slaves don't have a beginning? The only true End must be Happiness - but not just for one person. I see now that progress can be an end without limit for there is always a better way of living. And though we may progress towards greater happiness, as an end it will always escape us, and a good thing too, because if we ever reach Paradise we'll all be dead."

Child Slaveboy: "A slave is not a person but a thing. A thing can be something like a car, or a hammer, as well as a slave. Soul-destroying, to put it in a nutshell. But my mother told me how to survive. I must try to understand the world and that way I don't lose my soul, I know who I am. When she said, goodbye, she said, 'Love Liberty, but forget the key, for the key turns only once. I love you.'"

Alice: "She was your mirror. Her love showed you Yourself. She believed in you."

- A work of art may show us ourself - who we are and our place in the world. It is a mirror which imitates life.

Alice: "Those round convex mirrors are very good - you see a lot, but concentrated down - you see big and small at the same time - you need to fit all the things into a microcosm but it has to reflect as well," and turning to the Art Lovers, "I was just explaining this to Pinocchio".

Pinocchio: "Now that I have become a boy, I want to be a freedom-fighter."

- Action! Nothing is possible without art. Come with us. To find if Art is alive, we must first know who she is. To the Lyceum!

Alice - to Pinocchio: "We are going to see Aristotle. His analysis of Greek tragedy is such an objective breakdown that it serves to define art in general and in all its forms - what it is and what it isn't," then finding themselves alone, "We must go back and find the others".

Pinocchio: "There's a bloke here who lives in a barrel."

Diogenes: "I shit and wank in front of people in the street like a dog: I am the Cynic. The Great Alexander made a point of coming to see me and asked if he could do me a favour. Nobody's better than me. I told him to step out of my light. I am famous because I've got the balls to do what I want. And I don't want much."

Pinocchio: "Cool, I've found art! I could be Diogenes II. I'll call myself a piss artist and make lots of money."

- Come on children. Alice we're waiting for you to introduce us to Aristotle. And Pinocchio, you're just being silly. Though Diogenes is obsessed by himself he doesn't believe in anything, let alone himself. That's why he's a cynic. This self-promotion, and doing what you want is a sham philosophy of life. No, no, it's not self-indulgence but self-discipline that makes the individual. And you, especially, need self-discipline if you're going to be a freedom-fighter.

Pinocchio: "You are right. Diogenes seemed kind of happy, but he's a poser. Too boring, I couldn't keep it up. Ha, ha, keep it up! I could sell canned sperm. Great marketing opportunities."

Alice (sarcastic): "Oh how lewd!"

Aristotle, a Greek gentleman, impeccably dressed, - in contrast to Diogenes - stands centre stage. Alice moves to his side.

Alice: "Aristotle refers to the writer of tragedy as 'the poet'. Greek tragedy was expressed in verse but this is not the important thing. What defines the poet is that he is an imitator - just like a painter or any other maker of images. If a historian were to write up his whole history in verse this would not make him a poet; for he tells of things that have happened in real life and this is not imitation. Imitation is the work of the imagination. The poet's role is to tell of things that might happen, things that are possible. Aristotle adds that the poet may imitate life not as it is, but as it ought to be.

"The way Aristotle describes tragedy is very much the idea of taking the microcosm and fitting things into it."

Aristotle: "For tragedy is not an imitation of individual men but of actions and of life. It is in action that happiness and unhappiness are found, and the end we aim at is a kind of activity, not a quality; in accordance with their characters men are of such and such a quality, in accordance with their actions they are fortunate or the reverse. Consequently, it is not for the purpose of presenting their characters that the agents engage in action, but rather it is for the sake of their actions that they take on the characters they have. Thus, what happens - that is, the plot - is the end for which a tragedy exists, and the end or purpose is the most important thing of all."

Alice: "Dear Aristotle thank you for stating the links between character, action and fortune. I remember you once said that character is a person's habit of moral choice. But please now tell us what you mean when you describe a work of imitation - in this case tragedy - as 'the Whole'."

Aristotle: "The events which are the parts of the plot must be so organised that if any of them is displaced or taken away, the whole will be shaken and put out of joint; for if the presence or absence of a thing makes no discernible difference, that thing is not part of the whole." (Aristotle retires)

Alice: "That's how I feel about Velasquez. That exhibition was the most powerful thing I've ever seen; yet his work is so minimal and reduced. The people in the paintings were so real that I sometime thought they weren't there, especially in the split second before you turned to look again. - The paint was so thin! I was so stunned, I just wanted to melt into a pool on the floor."

- One can begin to grasp something of the obsession people have had with the idea of the circle as a perfect form. A work of art then, is an imitation reduced to its essentials, thereby forming a whole - as in a microcosm.

Thus art gives objectivity - a perspective, an overview. We define objectivity as seeing things as they are.

Real life is not objective - we can never get the complete picture. It is chaotic and continuous - a jumble of particulars in which events are engulfed in the flux of circumstance. How can the artist be objective when he, himself is part of the change? He needs a fixed fact to stand on - a standard, a measure, a model.

Alice: "Tell me all about it! If there is nothing fixed in the world then you find yourself in Wonderland where everything changes - including yourself. - And you try to play a game of croquet with a flamingo for a mallet and the ball is a hedgehog who runs away.'

- A hedgehog must understand the world from a hedgehog point of view, and we must understand it from a human point of view.

We do have a fixed standard - timeless, universal, recognizable. We refer to it as Representative Human Nature (RHN). It is the key to this manifesto:

You or I - as individuals - we change. But there is something typical about us which does not change. When we say, "Man is the measure of all things", we mean the unchanging part: Man, both in his general nature and according to his various types: this is RHN.

Aristotle takes this for granted when he says: "In accordance with their character men are of such and such a quality ... it is for the sake of their actions that the actors take on the characters they have." He also says that the best characters in a play are people with whom we can empathise - 'someone like ourselves'.

For example, Chaucer's characters are as alive to us today as when he first invented them: Timeless - outside of time, they speak to us of the human genius - what it is to be human. Each detail illuminates the type and is what we call the universal in the particular - "someone like ourselves".

We are not saying that art has to be confined to the direct portrayal of human beings: We do say that art must be representational - for it is in imitation that objectivity lies. In practice, through his medium of RHN the artist gains direct imaginative insight into the general nature of things; his view extends from the model.

Consider the Chinese master, the painter of bamboo: we have a shared object - the non-ego, RHN. And he reaches out beyond the model and grasps the very cypher and nature of bamboo. And we see through his eyes, his own particular poem of life.

Consider the divine music of Bach: Bach is pure objectivity, the most representative of men because the least egotistical in front of his talent.

Music has not yet been conceptualised by the art mafia, though they are trying. We do not accept a symphony composed on the remaining three keys of a broken piano, accompanied by the random throwing of marbles at a urinal. Yet its equivalent is the latest thing in the visual arts. (Aren'tya OD'd on the latest thing?) Items selected from real life and set up as art do not represent a view of life. The famous urinal is still a urinal whatever you do with it. (OK! Visual semantics and presentation skills - not art, not a musical instrument.) It is imitation that reveals the whole view.

And abstract art? An abstract that represents no object! And revels in subjectivity. Academic, it's all in the mind - the painter's mind. Unfortunately we are not all mind readers, and the work gives us no clue. He may think he's discovered the secret of the universe! He will take it to his grave. There is no common ground on which artist and art lover can come together, because there is no objectivity - no control of the imagination.

Alice: "Oh hello, Mr. White Rabbit! Please stop a moment! The artist has just produced a giant hole in the wall. Perhaps he thought it was a 'Whole'. I'm sure you have an interesting observation on holes."

White Rabbit: 'Negative,' (rushing off).

Artist's Agent: 'Superb intellectual irony. Right on!'

Mad Hatter: "What do you mean, we're not mind readers? We've all got a hole in the head and we can fill it with whatever 'Whole' we want." (changes price-tag on hat from 10/6d to £10m)

Pinocchio: "I'm going to be a real painter and a freedom fighter. I've been drawing in secret. To see the world as it ought to be - that can't be bad for a freedom-fighter. Hard work though."

Talking Cricket: "Pinocchio, you know that there are two sides to people, the donkey and the boy - the self who wants to live in Toyland versus the self who wants to grow up. It is the inner struggle between doing what you want and being true to your Best Self, that humanise a puppet."

Pinocchio: "Dear little Cricket, I still get around - have a laugh! But, yeah this inner voice is always having a go, 'Pinocchio, don't be an arsehole! I am your human genius. Listen to me!'"

- Pinocchio, the whole future of art is at stake and depends on you and others controlling your imagination and listening to your best self - your human genius.

Imagination is the driving force in human nature. But it is likely to run wild and escape into the chaos of endless desire, unfulfilled longing and alienation.

Pinocchio: "Alienation! Hell! Those donkey's ears. What a terrible price to pay. Poor Candlewick!" (Pinocchio's friend in Toyland, who became a donkey and was worked to death by a cruel master.)

- The way we control the imagination is through the imagination itself - or rather, through its 'best self' - the ethical part.

The Ethical Imagination is an inner check, which prefers to see things as they are. It questions art: is it probable? possible? Could it be otherwise?

- The classicists of the seventeenth century objected to Corneille's play, Le Cid, that it was not possible - because not normal or "natural", that the heroine might be allowed to marry her father's murderer, that this was bizarre, extreme and therefore unethical. This would seem a clear example for criticism to decide, yet it provoked a battle of opinion.

There are no rules - each person must decide. (Yet we are not completely at sea, we have a reference in RHN).

To the great artist the ethical imagination is absolute, he never ceases to explore and cultivate it. To the art lover, we possess it in differing degrees, all may cultivate it. It is intuitive, you get at the truth through insight and you get better at it with practice, through comparison - between works of art and with real life. You need the stamina of a lifetime.

In general: the true artist is always true to his art; the impostor is self-conscious, demonstrating his idea, projecting his theory, his ego, and e.g. the figures of the painter are not borrowed ideas who demonstrate themselves talking, dying, dreaming - they do it. They are of themselves and they LIVE! - and the flowers are not showing us how pretty they are, or how weird - they are what they are - Etc.! No invention for the sake of invention! Invention must serve the purpose of art.

Art is alive to the extent that we control our imagination; we miss everything if we let it run wild. The aim of art is objectivity - she comes to life when we are objective - when we see her as she is. Without judges there is no art.

Neither is there culture, - for art gives culture - because objectivity in art is a centralising and unifying experience:

1. The artist, taking RHN as his model presents an imitation of life. We aspire to the image. The image may be beautiful or ugly. We see our human face and we ask - could it be otherwise?
2. Thus RHN is the authority on which culture rests. Culture must rest on something abiding, an authority, a belief. But our authority is not the dogma of outer authority (no need for God to supply social cement or fill the spiritual vacuum) but the authority of a consensus, - of shared experience.
3. Through culture we are moving towards a centre which is infinite. It is more human, and alive and open to improvement, because it is dependent on the private judgement of every one of us - which is our third factor, the inner check - the ethical imagination.

We define culture as: The exploration and cultivation of humanity through art.

Points still to be made.

1) Whistler: The artist has no responsibility but to his work. There is no Progress in Art.
2) Symposium on Culture - nobody knows what it is.
3) Culture will overcome Propaganda, the nature of Propaganda.
4) We discover Progress.

End of the journey.

· Italics are author's own

Monday, May 28, 2007

Eliziario Goulart Rocha - book signing


Gostaria de contar com sua presença no coquetel de lançamento e sessão de autógrafos de meu novo romance,

Os Lentos Anos de Santinha na Companhia de Emiliana, na quinta-feira 31 de maio, às 19h30, na Livraria Cultura (Shopping Bourbon Country).

Espero você lá.



The Infanta's ..(Oscar Wilde)

details from Chimera -painting by marguerita

krakow -on mymind

While Kazimierz still evokes its Jewish past, it is estimated that fewer than 200 Jews are living in the whole of Krakow today. The Nazis had corralled some 17,000 of its residents into a nearby ghetto before shipping most of them off to Auschwitz and Birkenau, about 40 miles west of the city. About seven synagogues remain, but they serve more as cultural attractions than houses of worship.

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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Bob Marley - Is This Love

bob marley - no woman no cry

The green matter

Why is that obsession about money?
Life has so much more to on the horizon,deep in the sea and up in space.....and all I can hear is that preoccupation of cash,and evaluating people and our existence by cash??????
This is so pathetic and morbid.
No wonder so many are on anxiety medication.
Maybe if there would be a humanitarian concern,a real one,not the charity circuit hoopla that is only a masquerade of sorts and as useless ,if not for the directly involved and a show off of their ....wait a moment,I forgot the word,that Diana Vreeland would call teeth,choppers?
I bet that if there would be some soul searching,with a good dose of sense of humor and a realization of what life is really about,we all on this planet would be able to co exist in harmony and enjoy our one way ticket for the time alloted to us,when we come out from the womb.
N'est ce pas?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


(sometimes also Mamuna) in the Slavic mythology was a wild female spirit of the forest or the mountains. She resembled such nature goddesses as Artemis and is said to lead one down the wrong path, literally and figuratively.She was a servant of goddess Dziewona.Dziewona (or Dziewanna in Polish, Devana in Czech, Diiwica in Serbian) is the Slavic equivalent of the Roman Goddess Diana, whose name is said to appear very late in Slavic history. However, all her names that derive from Slavic language translate to "The Maiden." She is more widespread in Slavic countries, whereas in other cultures she is a minor deity. In Polish mythology, she is the virginal Goddess who is the huntress of the forest, (in some legends, said to run through the Carpathians and in others with a pack of dogs) and is associated with the Moon, spring, agriculture and weather.

Currently, the word mamona is used figuratively and derogatory in the Polish language as a synonym to money. This, however, has biblical origins, see Mammon.

In Portuguese, the word mamona is the name for the seed of the castor oil plant.

source Wikipedia

About 50 years ago,my father,Dr.Stefan Felix Bornstein , who was a Chemical and Textile Engineer, conducting a research and experiments with oil from the Mamona tree,a typical plant from the northeast of Brazil,for the purpose of creating another source of synthetic rubber and other uses.His ideas and work was patented by

Monday, May 21, 2007

the wonder of you

From “The Deep: The Extraordinary Creatures of the Abyss” by Claire Nouvian

Submarines Dumbo octopus from the Monterey Bay’s floor.

The Deep

On dry land, most organisms are confined to the surface, or at most to altitudes of a hundred meters—the height of the tallest trees. In the oceans, though, living space has both vertical and horizontal dimensions: with an average depth of 3800 meters, the oceans offer 99% of the space on Earth where life can develop. And the deep sea, which has been immersed in total darkness since the dawn of time, occupies 85% of ocean space, forming the planet’s largest habitat. Yet these depths abound with mystery. The deep sea is mostly uncharted—only about 5 percent of the seafloor has been mapped with any reasonable degree of detail—and we know very little about the creatures that call it home. Current estimates about the number of species yet to be found vary between ten and thirty million.

The deep sea no longer has anything to prove; it is without doubt Earth’s largest reservoir of life. Combining the latest scientific discoveries with astonishing color imagery, The Deep takes readers on a voyage into the darkest realms of the ocean. Revealing nature’s oddest and most mesmerizing creatures in crystalline detail, The Deep features more than two hundred color photographs of terrifying sea monsters, living fossils, and ethereal bioluminescent creatures, many of which are photographed here for the first time. Accompanying these breathtaking photographs are contributions from some of the world’s most respected researchers that examine the biology of these deep-sea organisms, the ecology of their habitats, and the history of deep-sea exploration. An unforgettable tour of the teeming abyss, The Deep celebrates the incredible diversity of life on Earth and will captivate anyone intrigued by the unseen—and unimaginable—creatures of the deep sea.

Claire Nouvian a journalist, producer, and film director who has traveled the world for more than ten years, shooting wildlife for French and international television. She has worked on more than sixteen films, among them Expedition to the Abyss (Science Channel, 2004), which won the Best Adventure Documentary prize at the Amazonas World Film Festival in Manaus, Brazil, 2005.

Friday, May 18, 2007

If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.

By Oscar Wilde.

Bernard Kouchner: Voila , an inspiration! Nice to realize that Humanity can produce people like Bernard Kouchner....although I disagree with him about invading Iraq.

Acai berries- a study in progress

acai palm
Superfood No. 1: Açaí

Nature's Energy Fruit

It may seem odd to start this list of superfoods with one you’ve likely never even heard of. But studies have shown that this little berry is one of the most nutritious and powerful foods in the world! Açaí (ah-sigh-ee) is the high-energy berry of a special Amazon palm tree. Harvested in the rainforests of Brazil, açaí tastes like a vibrant blend of berries and chocolate. Hidden within its royal purple pigment is the magic that makes it nature's perfect energy fruit. Açaí is packed full of antioxidants, amino acids and essential fatty acids. Although açaí may not be available in your local supermarket, you can find it in several health food and gourmet stores (often in juice form). A new product featuring the unsweetened pulp is now also available, and I highly recommend that you choose this form of açaí.

Açaí pulp contains:

A remarkable concentration of antioxidants that help combat premature aging, with 10 times more antioxidants than red grapes and 10 to 30 times the anthocyanins of red wine.
A synergy of monounsaturated (healthy) fats, dietary fiber and phytosterols to help promote cardiovascular and digestive health.
An almost perfect essential amino acid complex in conjunction with valuable trace minerals, vital to proper muscle contraction and regeneration.

The fatty acid content in açaí resembles that of olive oil, and is rich in monounsaturated oleic acid. Oleic acid is important for a number of reasons. It helps omega-3 fish oils penetrate the cell membrane; together they help make cell membranes more supple. By keeping the cell membrane supple, all hormones, neurotransmitter and insulin receptors function more efficiently. This is particularly important because high insulin levels create an inflammatory state, and we know, inflammation causes aging.


photos by marguerita - from our travels to Spain,years ago.

Alhambra - Granada

Granada - Parador

The Pomegranate (Punica granatum) is a fruit-bearing deciduous shrub or small tree growing to 5–8 m tall. The pomegranate is native from Iran to the Himalayas in northern India and has been cultivated and naturalized over the whole Mediterranean region including Armenia since ancient times. It is widely cultivated throughout Iran, India and the drier parts of southeast Asia, Malaya, the East Indies and tropical Africa. Introduced into California by Spanish settlers in 1769, pomegranate is now cultivated mainly in the drier parts of California and Arizona for its fruits exploited commercially as juice products gaining in popularity since 2001[2][3]. In the global functional food industry, pomegranate is often mentioned among a novel category of exotic plant sources called "superfruits"

granatus ("seeded"). This has influenced the common name for pomegranate in many languages (e.g. German Granatapfel, seeded apple). The genus name Punica is named for the Phoenicians, who were active in broadening its cultivation, partly for religious reasons; consequently in classical Latin the fruit's name was malum punicum or malum granatum, where "malum" was broadly applied to many apple-like fruits. A separate, widespread root for "pomegranate" is the Egyptian and Semitic rmn. Attested in Ancient Egyptian, in Hebrew rimmôn, and in Arabic rummân, this root was brought by Arabic to a number of languages, including Portuguese (romã)[2], and Kabyle rrumman and Maltese "rumen".

According to the OED, the weapon grenade derived its name, attested in 1532, from the French name for the fruit, which is la grenade (from which also comes the name applied to a kind of syrup, originally pomegranate syrup, widely used in cocktails and grenadine).

Even though this fruit does not originate from China, one common nickname is "Chinese apple"

Pomegranate leaves

Pomegranate tree

The pomegranate originated from Persia (Iran) and has been cultivated in Central Asia, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and the Mediterranean region for several millennia.[3]

In Georgia, and Armenia to the east of the Black Sea, there are wild pomegranate groves outside of ancient abandoned settlements. The cultivation of the pomegranate has a long history in Armenia; decayed remains of pomegranates dating back to 1000 BC have been found in the country.[4]

Carbonized exocarp of the fruit has been identified in Early Bronze Age levels of Jericho, as well as Late Bronze Age levels of Hala Sultan Tekke on Cyprus and Tiryns[citation needed]. A large, dry pomegranate was found in the tomb of Djehuty, the butler of Queen Hatshepsut; Mesopotamian cuneiform records mention pomegranates from the mid-Third millennium BC onwards.[5] It is also extensively grown in South China and in Southeast Asia, whether originally spread along the route of the Silk Road or brought by sea traders.

The ancient city of Granada in Spain was renamed after the fruit during the Moorish period. Spanish colonists later introduced the fruit to the Caribbean and Latin America, but in the English colonies it was less at home: "Don't use the pomegranate inhospitably, a stranger that has come so far to pay his respects to thee" the English Quaker Peter Collinson wrote to the botanizing John Bartram in Philadelphia, 1762. "Plant it against the side of thy house, nail it close to the wall. In this manner it thrives wonderfully with us, and flowers beautifully, and bears fruit this hot year. I have twenty-four on one tree... Doctor Fothergill says, of all trees this is most salutiferous to mankind."[6] The pomegranate had been introduced as an exotic to England the previous century, by John Tradescant the elder, but the disappointment that it did not set fruit there led to its repeated introduction to the American colonies, even New England. It succeeded in the South: Bartram received a barrel of pomegranates and oranges from a correspondent in Charleston, South Carolina, 1764. Thomas Jefferson planted pomegranates at Monticello in 1771: he had them from George Wythe of Williamsburg.[7]

[edit] Culinary use

Pomegranate fruit, opened

Pomegranate seeds

After opening the pomegranate by scoring it with a knife and breaking it open, the arils (seed casings) are separated from the skin (peel) and internal white supporting structures (pith and carpellary membrane). Separating the red arils can be simplified by performing this task in a bowl of water, whereby the arils will sink and the white structures will float to the top. The entire seed is consumed raw, though the fleshy outer portion of the seed is the part that is desired. The taste differs depending on the variety of pomegranate and its state of ripeness. It can be very sweet or it can be very sour or tangy, but most fruits lie somewhere in between, which is the characteristic taste, laced with notes of its tannin.

Pomegranate juice is a popular drink in the Middle East, and is also used in Iranian and Indian cuisine; it began to be widely marketed in the US in 2004[citation needed]. Pomegranate concentrate is used in Syrian cuisine. Grenadine syrup is thickened and sweetened pomegranate juice; it is used in cocktail mixing. Before the tomato arrived in the Middle East, grenadine was widely used in many Persian foods; it can still be found in traditional recipes such as fesenjan (a thick sauce made from pomegranate juice and ground walnuts, usually spooned over duck or other poultry and rice) and ash-e anar (pomegranate soup).[5]

Wild pomegranate seeds are sometimes used as a spice, known as anardana (which literally means pomegranate (anar) seeds (dana) in Persian), most notably in Indian and Pakistani cuisine but also as a replacement for pomegranate syrup in Persian and Middle Eastern cuisine. As a result of this, the dried whole seeds can often be obtained in ethnic markets. The seeds are separated from the flesh, dried for 10–15 days and used as an acidic agent for chutney and curry production. The seeds may also be ground in order to avoid seeds becoming stuck in the teeth when eating dishes prepared with them. The seeds of the wild pomegranate daru from the Himalayas is considered the highest quality source for this spice.

In Turkey, Armenia and Azerbaijan, pomegranate (Turkish: nar; Azerbaijani: nar; Armenian: nur) is used in a variety of ways, notably as pomegranate juice. In Turkey pomegranate sauce, (Turkish: nar ekşisi) is used as a salad dressing, to marinate meat, or simply to drink straight. Pomegranate seeds are also used in salads, in Muhammara (Turkish Walnut Garlic Spread) and in Güllaç, a famous Turkish dessert. In Azerbaijan and Armenia, pomegranate is also used to make high-quality wine which is successfully exported to other countries.

In Greece, pomegranate (Greek: ροδι, rodi) is used in many recipes; such as kollivozoumi, a creamy broth made from boiled wheat, pomegranates and raisins; legume salad with wheat and pomegranate; traditional Middle Eastern lamb kabobs with pomegranate glaze; pomegranate eggplant relish; avocado and pomegranate dip; are just some of the dishes it is used in culinary. Pomegranate is also made into a liqueur and popular fruit confectionery that can be used as ice cream topping, or mixed with yogurt, and even spread as jams over toast for breakfast.

[edit] Health benefits

Providing 40% of an adult's daily vitamin C requirement per 100 ml serving, pomegranate juice is also a good source of folic acid and antioxidant polyphenols. The most abundant polyphenols in pomegranate juice are the hydrolyzable tannins punicalagins shown in 38 peer-reviewed research publications over 1990-2007 to have potent free-radical scavenging ability[6].

Many food and dietary supplement makers have found the advantages of using pomegranate extracts (which have no sugar, calories, or additives), instead of the juice, as healthy ingredients in their products. Many pomegranate extracts are essentially ellagic acid, which may only be absorbed into the body after consumption of punicalagins [8].

In preliminary laboratory research and human pilot studies, juice of the pomegranate has been found effective in reducing heart disease risk factors, including LDL oxidation, macrophage oxidative status, and foam cell formation[7][8][9], all of which are steps in atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. Tannins such as punicalagins have been identified as the primary components responsible for the reduction of oxidative stress which led to these risk factors.[10] Pomegranate has been shown to reduce systolic blood pressure by inhibiting serum angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)[9].

Research suggests that pomegranate juice may be effective against prostate cancer[10][11] and osteoarthritis.[12]. In 2007, six clinical trials in the United States, Israel and Norway have been approved to examine the effects of pomegranate juice consumption on parameters of prostate cancer or prostatic hyperplasia, diabetes or lymphoma[11].

The juice may also have antiviral[12] and antibacterial effects against dental plaque[13].

Pomegranates and symbolism

  • Exodus chapter 28:33–34 directed that images of pomegranates be woven onto the borders of Hebrew priestly robes. 1 Kings chapter 7:13–22 describes pomegranates depicted in the temple King Solomon built in Jerusalem. Jewish tradition teaches that the pomegranate is a symbol for righteousness, because it is said to have 613 seeds which corresponds with the 613 mitzvot or commandments of the Torah. For this reason and others many Jews eat pomegranates on Rosh Hashanah.
  • The wild pomegranate did not grow natively in the Aegean area in Neolithic times. It originated in the Iranian east and came to the Aegean world along the same cultural pathways that brought the goddess whom the Anatolians worshipped as Cybele and the Mesopotamias as Ishtar.
  • The myth of Persephone, the dark goddess of the Underworld, also prominently features the pomegranate. In one version of Greek mythology, Persephone was kidnapped by Hades and taken off to live in the underworld as his wife. Her mother, Demeter (goddess of the Harvest), went into mourning for her lost daughter and thus all green things ceased to grow. Zeus, the highest ranking of the Greek gods, could not leave the Earth to die, so he commanded Hades to return Persephone. It was the rule of the Fates that anyone who consumed food or drink in the Underworld was doomed to spend eternity there. Persephone had no food, but Hades tricked her into eating four pomegranate seeds while she was still his prisoner and so, because of this, she was condemned to spend four months in the Underworld every year. During these four months, when Persephone is sitting on the throne of the Underworld next to her husband Hades, her mother Demeter mourns and no longer gives fertility to the earth. This became an ancient Greek explanation for the seasons.
It should be noted that the number of seeds that Persephone ate is varied, depending on which version of the story is told. The number of seeds she is said to have eaten ranges from three to seven, which accounts for just one barren season if it is just three or four seeds, or two barren seasons (half the year) if she ate six or seven seeds. There is no set number.
  • The pomegranate also evoked the presence of the Aegean Triple Goddess who evolved into the Olympian Hera, who is sometimes represented offering the pomegranate, as in the Polykleitos' cult image of the Argive Heraion (see below). According to Carl A. P. Ruck and Danny Staples, the chambered pomegranate is also a surrogate for the poppy's narcotic capsule, with its comparable shape and chambered interior.[13] On a Mycenaean seal illustrated in Joseph Campbell's Occidental Mythology 1964, figure 19, the seated Goddess of the double-headed axe (the labrys) offers three poppy pods in her right hand and supports her breast with her left. She embodies both aspects of the dual goddess, life-giving and death-dealing at once. The Titan Orion was represented as "marrying" Side, a name that in Boeotia means "pomegranate", thus consecrating the primal hunter to the Goddess. Other Greek dialects call the pomegranate rhoa; its possible connection with the name of the earth goddess Rhea, inexplicable in Greek, proved suggestive for the mythographer Karl Kerenyi, who suggested that the consonance might ultimately derive from a deeper, pre-Indo-European language layer.

Pomegranate — opened up
  • In the sixth century BCE, Polykleitos took ivory and gold to sculpt the seated Argive Hera in her temple. She held a scepter in one hand and offered a pomegranate, like a royal orb, in the other. "About the pomegranate I must say nothing," whispered the traveller Pausanias in the second century AD, "for its story is something of a mystery." Indeed, in the Orion story we hear that Hera cast pomegranate-Side into dim Erebus — "for daring to rival Hera's beauty", which forms the probable point of connection with the older Osiris/Isis story. Since the ancient Egyptians identified the Orion constellation in the sky as Sah the "soul of Osiris", the identification of this section of the myth seems relatively complete. Hera wears, not a wreath nor a tiara nor a diadem, but clearly the calyx of the pomegranate that has become her serrated crown.[14] In some artistic depictions, the pomegranate is found in the hand of Mary, mother of Jesus.
  • In modern times the pomegranate still holds strong symbolic meanings for the Greeks. On important days in the Greek Orthodox calendar, such as the Presentation of the Virgin Mary and on Christmas Day, it is traditional to have at the dinner table "polysporia", also known by their ancient name "panspermia" in some regions of Greece. In ancient times they were offered to Demeter[citation needed] and to the other gods for fertile land, for the spirits of the dead and in honor of compassionate Dionysus. In modern times the symbolic meaning is assumed by Jesus and his mother Mary. Pomegranates are also prominent at Greek weddings and funerals. When Greeks commemorate their dead, they make "kollyva" as offerings that consist of boiled wheat, mixed with sugar and decorated with pomegranate. It is also traditional in Greece to break a pomegranate on the ground at weddings, on New Years and when one buys a new home for a house guest to bring as a first gift a pomegranate which is placed under/near the ikonostasi, (home altar), of the house, as it is a symbol of abundance, fertility and good luck. Pomegranate decorations for the home are very common in Greece and sold in most homegoods stores. [14]

Tree of the white pomegranate.
  • Pomegranate is one of the symbols of Armenia, representing fertility, abundance and marriage.
  • It is the official logo of many cities in Turkey.
  • The Immortals, an elite infantry unit in ancient Persia had spears with pomegranate-shaped counterweights at the butt made of gold (for officers) and silver (for regular infantry). In modern Iran the fruit is still believed to give long and healthy life.
  • The Qur'an mentions pomegranates three times (6:99, 6:141, 55:068) — twice as examples of the good things God creates, once as a fruit found in the Garden of Paradise.
  • Pomegranate juice stains clothing permanently unless it is washed out immediately with water — only bleach can remove stains.
  • Pomegranate juice is used for natural dyeing of non-synthetic fabrics.
  • Pomegranate juice is sold in the USA under several labels, and is available in health food stores and supermarkets across the country.
  • Pomegranate juice will turn blue when subjected to basic (ie alkaline) conditions (similar to litmus paper).
  • Although not native to China, Korea or Japan, the pomegranate is widely grown there and many cultivars have been developed. It is widely used for bonsai, because of its flowers and for the unusual twisted bark that older specimens can attain.
  • The pomegranate also gave its name to the hand grenade from its shape and size (and the resemblance of a pomegranate's seeds to a grenade's fragments), and to the garnet from its colour. In many languages (including Belarusian, Spanish, French, Polish, and Hebrew) the words are exactly the same.
  • Balaustines are the red rose-like flowers of the pomegranate, which are very bitter to the taste. In medicine, its dried form has been used as an astringent.[15] (The term "balaustine" (Latin: balaustinus) is also used for a pomegranate-red colour.[16])
  • The pomegranate was the personal emblem of the Holy Roman Emperor, Maximilian I.
  • With the rise in popularity of the pomegranate in American markets, Starbucks introduced a pomegranate frappuccino in the summer of 2006.
  • In the Northern hemisphere, the fruit is typically in season from September to January. In the Southern hemisphere, it is in season from March to May.
  • The pomegranate is a divine symbol in Pinto Ricardo's series, The Stone Dance of the Chameleon.
  • The pomegranate is one of the symbols of Hera.
  • The pomegranate is also called the Food of the Dead.
  • In Orthodox Christian memorial services pomegranate seeds will often be put in the koliva which is blessed after the service and eaten by all of the mourners.

  1. ^ How many seeds does a pomegranate have? (statistical analysis), demonstrating parietal placentation.
  2. ^ Habeeb Salloum Arabian Memories in Portugal
  3. ^ S. D. Doijode, Seed Storage of Horticultural Crops, p. 77
  4. ^ The pomegranate in mythology
  5. ^ Daniel Zohary and Maria Hopf, Domestication of plants in the Old World, third edition (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), p. 171.
  6. ^ Quoted in Ann Leighton, American Gardens in the Eighteenth Century: "For Use or for Delight", (University of Massachusetts, 1986), p. 242.
  7. ^ Leighton, American Gardens, p. 272.
  8. ^ Mertens-Talcott S.U. et al. Absorption, metabolism, and antioxidant effects of pomegranate (Punica granatum l.) polyphenols after ingestion of a standardized extract in healthy human volunteers J Agric Food Chem. 2006 Nov 15;54(23):8956–61
  9. ^ Aviram M, Dornfeld L. Pomegranate juice consumption inhibits serum angiotensin converting enzyme activity and reduces systolic blood pressure Atherosclerosis 2001 Sep;158(1):195–8
  10. ^ Can pomegranates prevent prostate cancer? A new study offers promise 26 September 2005
  11. ^ BBC Juice 'can slow prostate cancer' 1 July 2006
  12. ^ Pomegranate Fruit Shown To Slow Cartilage Deterioration In Osteoarthritis
  13. ^ Ruck and Staples, The World of Classical Myth, 1994.
  14. ^ The pomegranate has a calyx shaped like a crown. In Jewish tradition it has been seen as the original "design" for the proper crown. [1]
  15. ^ History of Science: Cyclopædia, or, An universal dictionary of arts and sciences…
  16. ^ Pavey, Don and Roy Osborne. 2003. On Colours 1528: A Translation from Latin. ISBN 1-58112-580-1

in Unani medicine it has been used has major ingredient for gastro intestinal and hepatic problems

Source : Wikipedia