[AI] Film documents blind teens climbing Himalayan peak

Divyanshu Ganatra dnganatra at gmail.com
Wed Apr 9 05:54:21 EDT 2008


pardon my ignorance, but what does USIS.

 stand for?

On 4/8/08, Subramani L <lsubramani at deccanherald.co.in> wrote:
> Perhaps can try with USIS.
>
> Subramani
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in
> [mailto:accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in] On Behalf Of Divyanshu
> Ganatra
> Sent: Monday, April 07, 2008 11:14 AM
> To: accessindia at accessindia.org.in
> Subject: Re: [AI] Film documents blind teens climbing Himalayan peak
>
> does anyone know how to get this documentary?
> divyanshu
>
> On 4/4/08, pamnani <kanchanpamnani at hotmail.com> wrote:
> > CNN
> > Subject: Film documents blind teens climbing Himalayan peak
> >
> >
> > Film documents blind teens climbing Himalayan peak
> >
> > NEW YORK (AP) -- Erik Weihenmayer, the first blind man to reach the
> > 29,035-foot summit of Mount Everest and climb the seven summits of the
> > world, took on
> > a different challenge in 2004: He guided six blind Tibetan teenagers
> toward
> > the 23,000-foot summit of Lhakpa Ri, the peak next to Everest.
> >
> > Weihenmayer had received an e-mail from Sabriye Tenberken, a 2005
> Nobel
> > Peace Prize nominee and co-founder of Braille Without Borders, a
> school for
> > the
> > blind in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa. The students at her school had
> been
> > inspired by Weihenmayer and wanted to meet him.
> >
> > He had a different idea.
> >
> > "If these kids can climb their own Everest, what a statement that
> would make
> > in the world," Weihenmayer said.
> >
> > The resulting three-week journey, its hazards, successes and failures
> > unravel in "Blindsight," a documentary by Lucy Walker playing in
> limited
> > release around
> > the nation. With the magnificent Himalayas as a backdrop, the film
> touches
> > on the challenges faced by six blind teens in their daily lives and on
> this
> > journey. It casts a lens on Tibet, a region now mired in chaos, and
> invites
> > audiences to see the climbing region now closed to the world as the
> Beijing
> > Olympics approach.
> >
> > "We are blind, but our heart is not blind. Normal people's hearts are
> > blind," Tenzin, one of the Tibetan teens, said.
> >
> > Tenzin, who's 17 years old in the film and whose name means "keeper of
> > Buddha's teachings," made the climb with five other Tibetans from his
> > school: Dachung,
> > Kyila, Sonam Bhumtso, Gyenshen and Tashi.
> >
> > Sonam Bhumtso, called the climb a "golden chance." She, like Kyila,
> comes
> > from a loving home, but said she worried her family wouldn't take care
> of
> > her
> > for much longer.
> >
> > Kyila, on the other hand, had to help take care of her two blind
> brothers
> > and her blind father after her mother died. Dachung lived only with
> his
> > father,
> > who has since died.
> >
> > The 19-year-old Tashi, whose name means "lucky," becomes the
> unofficial star
> > who faces the most physical and mental adversity on the climb. Born in
> > China,
> > he said his parents sold him to a couple who brought him to Lhasa to
> beg.
> > When he couldn't collect enough money, he said they beat him, so he
> ran
> > away.
> > He lived on the streets for years before a Tibetan woman took him to
> Braille
> > Without Borders.
> >
> > Tashi is reunited with his father and mother during the film in a
> wrenching
> > scene. Despite his hardships, Tashi told director Walker: "The best
> thing
> > about
> > being blind is that I'm forced to look on the brighter side of
> things."
> >
> > Gyenshen, 17 years old in the film, became blind at 9 and spent four
> years
> > locked in his house, since his parents were ashamed of his condition.
> >
> > "He was the smartest boy around, now he's turned into this,"
> Gyenshen's
> > mother says in the film. "The cleverest child has gone to waste.
> Without
> > eyes a
> > man in not complete."
> >
> > Such beliefs are common among Tibetans.
> >
> > "It's because of bad deeds in my past life that I am blind in this
> one,"
> > Tenzin said.
> >
> > Because of high altitude and exposure to ultraviolet rays, Tibet has
> high
> > rates of blindness and eye disease. The incidence of cataract
> blindness in
> > Tibet
> > is about six times that found elsewhere in China, according to UNESCO.
> > Despite this, Buddhist pilgrims and nomads in Tibet believe that blind
> > people are
> > possessed by demons or that they have done something wrong in a past
> life.
> >
> > In the film, two blind teens walk through town and someone calls to
> them,
> > "You deserve to eat your father's corpse."
> >
> > "These superstitions can be overcome," Tenberken told the Associated
> Press.
> >
> > She is living proof, and is slowly changing the face of blindness in
> Tibet
> > and around the world.
> >
> > Born in Germany, Tenberken became blind by 13. When she later traveled
> to
> > Tibet, she was startled by the Tibetans' treatment of their blind. She
> also
> > found
> > that they had no Braille system, so she created one. She met her
> partner,
> > Paul Kronenberg, while in Tibet and they opened the school to pass on
> the
> > techniques
> > she had learned to live successfully as a blind person.
> >
> > Open for 10 years now, the preparatory school hosts 30 to 35 students
> who
> > stay for two to three years, Tenberken said. After learning techniques
> and
> > studying
> > English, Chinese and Tibetan among other subjects, the students
> integrate
> > themselves into regular schools and return home, often to work and
> thrive.
> >
> > "I think the climb was one in many accomplishments for the students,"
> > Tenberken said. "It's good to find your own borders and figure out
> methods
> > to get
> > around them."
> >
> > During the expedition, the top became an impossibility for at least
> three of
> > the climbers, who were sent back after suffering headaches and
> altitude
> > sickness.
> >
> > "Part of me felt like a failure," Weihenmayer said. "In some ways,
> having to
> > send those kids down, I wanted to make them feel special and I thought
> maybe
> > they felt the opposite."
> >
> > The remaining group stayed below the summit of Lhakpa Ri for five more
> days,
> > and though they never made it to the top they found a summit of their
> own.
> >
> > "Everyone created their own meaning from the trip," Weihenmayer said.
> "The
> > changes in the kids are mostly all Sabriye's influence, but the climb
> was
> > extra
> > fuel."
> >
> > The six young adults have been able to travel for the film's release,
> and
> > Gyenshen attended the Tokyo premiere alone to head a
> question-and-answer
> > session.
> > He now runs the only Braille publishing company in Tibet.
> >
> > Dachung now studies at Braille Without Borders vocational school.
> Sohnam
> > Bhumtso attends a regular school and is the head of her class.
> >
> > Tashi and Tenzin opened the largest medical massage clinic in Lhasa.
> Kyila
> > went to the U.K. to study English and returned to Tibet to help run
> Braille
> > Without
> > Borders.
> >
> > And Weihenmayer started a program in Colorado called Global Explorers,
> in
> > which he climbs with blind children in the U.S.
> >
> > Copyright 2008 The
> > Associated Press.
> > All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast,
> > rewritten, or redistributed.
> >
> > Find this article at:
> >
> http://edition.cnn.com/2008/SHOWBIZ/Movies/04/02/film.climbingblind.ap/i
> ndex.html
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