Interview With Dr.V.George Mathew

 

The Background

The Preparation, the Team and the Journey

The Holigrative Walk

The Interview Proper

After the Interview

 

The Background

We have been thinking of updating psychology4all.com with new content and thought it would have been great if we could include interviews of Psychologists(Clinical Psychologists, General Psychologists, Para Psychologists, Social/Community Psychologists etc.), Sociologists and other experts from related fields. But the problem was that none of us have any experience in interviewing experts. However, we decided to take it as a challenge and resolved to start with Dr.V.George Mathew (VGM) because he was easily approachable and he & I have been meeting often.

 

The Preparation, the Team and the Journey

An interview with an expert is good only to the extend of the depth of the interviewer(s) also, as an interview can be considered as a joint production of the interviewer(s) and expert being interviewed. This posed a problem for us because none of us have the depth to interview Dr.V.George Mathew, who is a well known Para Psychologist and the Originator of Holigrative Psychology. So I thought that the Interview Team should have at least of two persons-- one with subject knowledge and another a lay person with deep interest in the subject. Thus we constituted a team consisting of myself and Mr.Vinod, an Engineering graduate and also an Online Share Trader who is deeply interested in Psychology, Spiritualism and Para Psychology. We prepared the questions separately so that our perspectives do not mix up. Each of us were free to discuss with others, if necessary. Then we edited the questions and structured them into five heads—Personal, General, Academic/Professional, Art/Hobbies, and Parapsychological/Spiritual. Then we got appointment and when we were about to start towards Dr.V.George Mathew’s residence, my twelve year old daughter Ajeena also wanted to come with us because she said she got some interesting questions to ask. I thought it would be interesting and three of us started from my residence at Perunguzhi to Mathew sir’s residence.

It was a half an our journey. We rode towards the south and cut across the Kerala University Campus and reached the other end called Thripadagiri (literally, the hill at the feet of the holy one). We reached "Leyam" (meaning sanskrit languor of the mind; the unison of dance and music etc.), VGM’s residence, exactly seven minutes before the appointment time. (In a way, the house name was meaningful. You can see in Mathew sir a Psychologist, Musician and Spiritualist united into a single person). The gate was locked from outside and we waited for him thinking that he might have gone out for lunch. The compound was surrounded by a compound wall and bougain villa were creeping out at both the left and right sides of the gate. Exactly at the scheduled time he came and we entered the one acre area inhabited with plenty of flowering plants, bushes and trees, almost looking like a thick forest. There was a path of about 50 feet leading to the centre of the compound. At the beginning of the path, on the left was a ----tree and at the end was a large fig tree on the left of which was an artificial pond which was covered with asola and other weeds and in which inhabited various kinds of fishes. The path ended in front of a three storied building, with walls decorated with climbers like what is commonly called "money plant" and natural designs engraved by the climate.

He welcomed us silently with a natural smile to the sit-out on the second floor of the building. I introduced the team to him. He was interested in Vinod’s Day Trading via the internet and asked him about it for some time. Then he suggested we start with what he calls the Holigrative Walk. We agreed and came downstairs with him.

 

The Holigrative Walk

We started at the right end of the gate inside the compound. It was like stepping into a new world. Each of us had a different experience. There was a one-feet wide earthen path which was made without at all disturbing the natural beauty. For example, pale yellowish coconut leaves of a nearby small coconut tree was allowed to encroach our way. We had to wave it away with our hands to move forward. My memories went back to my childhood days when I was at my ancestral house. I let loose myself, picking up the seeds of a climber called kunni & plucking balsam flowers for my daughter, plucking chrysanthus fruits and gave all to eat etc. The compound was occupied by arrow-roots plants, cashew trees, coconut trees, mango trees, papaya and a lot of other plants big and small most which I was unfamiliar with. Ajeena seemed to enjoy the walk each and every minute because it was her first experience with such a place of natural beauty. To Vinod, it was refreshing and relieving tension. I do not know how Mathew sir felt as he has been doing the same for years. But he moved a little quicker that he used to be. After two or three minutes we reached a plantain garden at one end of which stood 4 half-cone shaped cement seats with old car tyres used as its base. This was the end of the first half of the walk. Ajeena sat on one of the seats just to see how it felt. But we did not wait there for long. On our way back we came across two or three varieties of cactus and a few climbers. Mathew sir showed us a climber used as an alternative of soma latha by ancient Aryans who lived in India, to make soma juice for yagas etc. After that, the walk ended at the left side of the gate. Then we came back to the sit-out again.

Vinod and I sat facing the south; Mathew sir sat facing us; and Ajeena sat a little away and she plunged herself into a children’s magazine she took with her. She said she would ask her doubts when we finish. Although the room was messy with a lot of periodicals, books, papers, journals etc, we felt very relaxed because of the natural environment around us and of course due to the simplicity and authenticity of the person with us. The sight from there was also very relaxing – we could see very far from there. Mathew sir had once told me that such sights would make us feel calm because our ancient ancestors were relaxed at such sights because they could see enemies approaching them from a long distance then. Mathew sir prepared tea for us and we had it together. It was one of the best teas I ever had. This reminded me almost like the Buddhist tea ceremony. He offered us fresh ripe plantain fruits which he said he brought up in his compound using only organic manure. After the tea, as planned, I switched on the cassette recorder to record the interview and started the interview with personal questions. The environment was calm and I felt the melodious chirping of birds which I felt as the natural background music for the interview.

  

The Interview

 

After the Interview

After the interview, Ajeena sang a song as suggested by Mathew sir. He assumed a different posture and I felt as if he has geared into a different state of his mind – that of a musician or of appreciation.

Before returning, we asked him how we performed our first interview. He said it was OK.

Now, it is your turn, dear visitor, how do you feel it?

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