A hand that helps, they say, is holier than lips that pray.
The drivers of all human progress, our hands have been our most important tool right from the time someone rubbed two stones to create fire to this date when we use our hands on the keyboard and everything in between.
Hands, they also say, are the visible part of a person’s mind. Could that be a reason why you often get to know a lot about the other person by simply shaking hands? And could that be the reason why people shook hands as early as 5th Century BC when language was not so sophisticated?
A mother’s touch is instantly soothing. A friends touch quickly affirms. A beloved’s touch conveys warmth and love. Different expressions using the same tools – our hands.
“When the hand is at rest, the face is at rest; but a lively hand is the product of a lively mind.” – John Napier
These thoughts and more came to me when I visited the Open Hand Monument – a 26 meters tall structure with an open hand designed by French architect Le Corbusier who also designed the city of Chandigarh. It is believed that the open hand monument represents and open exchange of peace and reconciliation. Mountains in the backdrop, large open green space and surrounding wilderness made this a wonderful visit.
Located in the Capitol Complex, Open hand monument is an architectural wonder with beautiful landscaping and a very organic expression of one of the most powerful tools we possess – our hands. Talk about integrating the nature with architecture!
God has given us two hands, one to receive with and the other to give with. – Billy Graham
It was a gorgeous setting. Good design is powerful because it makes you think and I believe that the sole purpose of any art is to move us to a better place. My visit to this place left me mesmerized. Peacocks in the surrounding wilderness, bluish mountains at a distant, large green spaces and sun setting on the West. I couldn’t have asked for more.
I was trying to take a silhouette shot when the setting Sun said a hello from the open square in the structure. I quickly changed the camera settings to acknowledge and reciprocate.
I then proceeded to take the silhouette shot anyway.
“Success is a ladder that cannot be climbed with your hands in your pocket.” – Anon
It is with our hands that we weave our lives, relationships and possibly fill meaning in our lives. The meaning we weave depends on how much we use our hands to lift others up, offer help and graciously receive the help when we need it. Just like this open hand, we need to open our minds, be receptive of opportunities to make a difference and then, use our hands to make that difference.
“Only an open heart can catch a dream.”
To me, that is the message of the Open Hand Monument.