Kriya: Part I: Bharatanatyam and Babies
Kriyā is a Sanskrit term, derived from the Sanskrit root, kri,. Kriyā means "action, deed, effort"
What do babies do? What do parents of babies do?
How do babies and parents/caregivers communicate?
In this series of posts on kriya, we look at how parent-child intereactions unfold during development, and the insights from Bharatanatyam for nurturing child development.
A typical pattern of communication in babies and young children with limited language is:
- Baby notices something of interest
- Baby gestures with hand to explore object
- Baby communicates interest with facial expressions
- Parents respond to the invitation and explore with the baby
Seeing, pointing, and facial expressions are an integral part of communication with babies. These communication patterns evolve over time as language is acquired.
At a recent workshop for parents organized by Kamakshi Hospital, Professor Mohanan narrated this verse while presenting Bharatanatyam. I am still awed by how beautifully these four lines capture the essence of parent-child communication!
“Yatho hasta thatho drishti,
Yatho drishti thatho manah
Yatho manah thatho Bhaava,
Yatho Bhaava thatho Rasa.”
A promising starting point for using Bharatanatyam for nurturing development of babies and young children!
I requested Professor Mohanan to narrate these lines with meaning.
The meaning rendered in more detail in the video:
Where the hands(hasta) are, follow the eyes (drishti); Where the eyes are, goes the mind (manah); Where the mind goes, the expression comes (bhaava) and where there is bhaava, a mood (rasa) is evoked.