Silver is considered auspicious; esteemed for its health benefits, affordability and sophisticated charm. The royal tradition of using silver dinnerware and cutlery continues to be cherished by the discerning. The science of separating silver from lead has been practiced as long ago as 3000 BC. Advances in technology and analytical methods, through centuries of research and development, have vastly enhanced our understanding and applications of silver-both, as a metal and an element.
Silver is said to be the most powerful natural defensive against several diseases. It safely eradicates unwanted germs, bacteria, allergens or pathogens in your body and returns you to a healthy state. It increases strength and stamina. Silver is useful in treating fever, general weakness and internal inflammation, especially conditions of the intestines and gallbladder. Silver is known to be a liver and spleen detoxifier. It is incorporated into wound dressings to treat external infections, and used as an antiseptic and disinfectant in medical appliances.
The Three Medicinal Properties of Silver
• Fights infection - assists in successfully boosting and magnifying the body’s own immune system
• Enhances tissue healing - Accelerates re-growth of body cells and healing of damaged skin, soft tissue, bone and muscle
• Provides bio-electrical stimulation- assists the body to regain health
Jewellery beyond beauty
Silver Jewellery is not only elegant, but also very healthy. When you wear silver bracelets, the silver is absorbed through the skin and provides pain-relief. It’s not an urban legend - this belief is based on medical information obtained, especially from oriental countries. Magnetic silver jewellery is known to increase blood circulation and reduce muscular pain. People suffering from arthritis are often seen wearing these bracelets. Silver has always held a special value, beyond material and economic considerations. Gifts of silver jewellery signify trust, truth, excellence, wisdom
Silver and Spirituality
In Roman and Greek Mythology, the First Age was called Golden, the second Silver. Apollo, god of truth and light, teacher of medicine, carried a silver
bow. His twin sister Artemis lost a hand in a battle and later was given a silver replacement by the Irish god of healing. In the shamanic religion of
Bon-Po, a special river filled with silver sands is said to make anyone who drinks the water lovely asa peacock.
Islamic alchemy gives silver an important place physically and conceptually. Silver is also attributed in the ancient chakra system - a system of seven sacred energy centers of the body. Silver is associated with the sixth chakra, often referred to as the "third-eye".
Any event, however momentous, once relegated to memory, is likely to deteriorate into a vague impression and lost to posterity. However, lofty ideals and efforts associated with a significant venture ought to be enshrined as a perennial source of motivation for future generations.
“Memoirs of a Silvermaster,” brought out on the 150th Anniversary of Bartons is a chronicle of inspirational values and monumental efforts of pioneers who made this historical milestone possible.
Anything that evokes an emotional response is very subjective, as perceptions and reactions vary from person to person. If we were to succeed in our endeavour to acknowledge the creditable contributions of the Founder and subsequent Managing Directors, it made sense for us to go to as many
individuals, who had something unique to say, so that the collective compilation of these could give a comprehensive and inspiring account of their virtues, qualities and nobility.
The most authentic source of information was available with the descendants of the Founder, Mr. Thomas Barton, who established the business in 1861. We were lucky to be in touch with his great grand son, Dr. Andrew Orr, whom I had the privilege to meet about 10 years ago, when he came to
Bangalore. I clung to this association. When we approached our 150th Anniversary, Dr. Orr was gracious enough to research and collect bits of information from records, relatives, photos etc., and put the whole lot together as an informative article.
An interesting feature of the history of the business was that for almost half a century, Bartons were referred to as “Silversmiths to the Defence Forces,” predominantly the Indian Army. This unique honour prompted me to request Maj. Gen. Ram Naidu to write the Foreword to this book.
He has been of great help to me, in advising and suggesting ideas while preparing ourselves for this event.
Apart from this, I relied on my Father’s friends, Mr. TPG Nambiar and Mr. AS Lakshmanan, who were kind enough to contribute to this book by way of articles detailing their interaction with my Father.
At the next level were my sisters, Geeta and Arti, then my children Amreeta and Aashish, my wife Nayna, my daughter-in-law Aashima, my son-in-law Premal, my brother-in-law Prakash, my nephew Neelan, my cousin Pankaj, my Father’s secretary Mrs.Matthews - who have all written very moving accounts of their fond recollections about Bartons and how my Father did his business as its MD.
This work would not have been complete, if I had not approached some of our well known customers, requesting them to share their experiences in dealing with our Company. All this put together, along with pictures of well known personalities associated with Bartons, scanned images from 100 year old brochures, product
photographs, testimonials, buildings that housed the business, Letters of Appointment from the erstwhile Royalty, all arranged chronologically, presents a vivid and pulsating account of the evolution of Bartons, Bangalore as a reputed institution spanning 150 years.
I sometimes wonder if I would like to retire. But when I ask myself “retire from what,” I am clueless. Bartons had become an integral part of my life even before I actually came to work in 1970. It has made me what I am. It has taught me more than all my formal education put together. It has given me recognition, beyond blood relationships. It has given me a certain status in society. I am tempted to say that Mehta is synonymous with Bartons, and this prompts me to wonder if I was born in England in my last birth!
I do not consider Bartons just as a family business - it’s rather as a sacred platform that has given me insights into business morals, ethics and a spiritual outlook.