Tuesday, December 22, 2015

764. Happiness: Can Anyone tell me where I can find it???????

http://www.speakingtree.in/spiritual-blogs/seekers/self-improvement/happiness-can-anyone-tell-me-where-i-can-find-it


Suppose it is a hot summer day with scorching heat and you are walking in a city which is very new to you and you feel very thirsty. There are no shops for you to get a chill mineral bottle just then an old friend confronts you and offers you a refreshing cold glass of lemonade. How do you feel when you see the glass? What will be your feeling then, do you term it as happiness or pleasure? Some say pleasure while other says they are happy. Though there is a link between these two feelings, there is a subtle difference between them. Sometime one stir up the other, but they are never the same.

Pleasure is feeling which dependents on our five senses and mind, while happiness is independent of the five senses and mind. Happiness is ingrained in our Self.

Many a times we get confused between pleasure and happiness. Pleasure is a good feeling that is felt when our senses are sated, to make our sense satisfied we have to depend on circumstances, objects, events and people. Happiness is not so, we need not depend on anything to attain it and also it is not something far away and unattainable. It is ingrained and an inseparable part of our Self which is veiled by our thoughts, desires and worries.  The understanding of adepts down the ages has been that happiness is inherent in our Self and not something to be gained anew. All that is necessary for us to do is to realize it.

How???

By just being indifferent to it…The story below might help understand better.

Once there was learned soul who had arrived from Himalayas. The citizens of the place mostly peasants gathered around him seek his blessings and listen to his sermon. But the learned soul would not open his eye and come out of the seat of silence for the people to shoot their questions for him to answer. Day passed by he was so very much to himself that the people thought that this learned man knew too very much and that started regarding him to be their savior and interestingly to so happened that things began to fall at place and everyone were find solace since this learned man came to that place. The news of the learned man reached the king of that province and the king came to meet the learned soul. The bowed to the learned man with reverence and asked, “O Enlightened Soul, I often wonder what happiness really is. Can you please disclose to me the secrets of happiness?”

The Learned man who rarely talked just gave merciful glance upon the King and said, “O King, happiness is like a butterfly.” The King was confused by the obscure answer. “I did not understand” said the King. The Learned Soul smiled, “Very soon, O King, it will be revealed to you.” The sage then closed his eyes and went back to his seat of silence, leaving the King perplexed about the mysterious wisdom he just heard.

A few days passed by and the King was taking a stroll along with his queen in the royal garden. His eyes fell on a beautiful vibrant colored butterfly which was resting on a leaf. As soon as he spotted the butterfly the words of the learned soul echoed to him, “happiness is like a butterfly” he went near the leaf carefully to catch the butterfly. As soon as was about to catch it the butterfly it flew away and sat on another plant. The King did not give up he was determined to catch it he followed the butterfly. Amazingly for him each time he was near to it the insect flew away and sat on another leaf, flower or a plant.

The King now took it up as a prestige issue and did not want to accept the inability to catch a butterfly that too in front of his queen.  An hour passed by, the king frustrated by his unsuccessful attempts, reconciled and sat on the bench in the garden exhausted. As he closed his eyes to relax, he felt a slender itch on his arm. Slowly he opened his eyes, the same butterfly which was all the time dodging him was now rested on his arm. King was amazed to look at the creature on his arm and just then a unique realization surged forth in his mind, “Yes the Learned Soul was indeed right. Happiness is like a butterfly, for when I intensely go after it, it eludes me and when I least expect it, it comes to me and hugs me and caresses me playfully.”

Thursday, December 17, 2015

763.This is my HEART…….. Spiritual one!!!


Heart, the most important organ of my body is where the source of my existence flourishes on. Anatomically it is a blood pumping device to supply oxygen and nutrients to tissues and help remove carbon dioxide from my body. It is observed that my heart has electromagnetic field 5,000 times stronger than that of my brain. 

Is my heart just an organ like any other in my body???

No, feelings are my heart based experiences. Feelings are the union of my thoughts and my emotions. My heart is the epicentre for love, care, appreciation and compassion. Feelings of love, care, appreciation and compassion enhance the secretion of DHEA hormone in the adrenal glands. This hormone induces the “Josh” (Zeal) in me. Just a few moments of these feelings bring good health to me for the whole day. This good health keeps the rhythm of life called “Heart Beat” stable.  

The Electromagnetic field generated by every single heart beat communicates with that of my brain. When they both get coupled there is mental clarity and I receive more divine intuitions. This divine intuition induces “Hosh” (Awareness) in me. By intentionally engaging sincere heart feelings like love, care, appreciation and compassion, I do generate a clear heart beat rhythm pattern. The clearer the pattern is, the more receptive I become to this intuitions.

Divine intuition is a bridge that provides the transfer of knowledge and wisdom from what is to how I perceive. This is called “Living by the Spiritual Heart” by the dwellers of Himalayas. The moment I start living by the spiritual heart I am more assessable to intuitions and I am in a position to make better choice and take great decisions in life.  


These intuitions get clearer when I listen deeply to my heart. That unstuck sound vibrates each time the electromagnetic field is created. This helps me interpret messages I receive from the heart so that I can gain the deep perception needed to effectively manage my emotions. There are occasions where I fall prey to reactive emotions when I fail to get guided by the heart instead take the decision from my brain. And even so know that is also a driving force for me to see that I do not ignore my heart the next time. After all my heart was formed before my brain came into existence.  

Saturday, December 12, 2015

762. Never lonely…… always connected!!!



The moment I came out of my mother’s womb I have been with people. My parents and sister when I was kid, teachers and friends at school and college, business associates, clients, vendors at workplace and the list goes on and on. Yet there is lonely feel which is felt time and again. There is none who can say they have never felt lonely at all. Some might have experienced it for a long period of time while some are in such mood occasionally.

Long lasting loneliness could breed depression at times making everything meaningless and everyone distant and it is then life becomes bland. We are so used to having people around by living in a society that we have lost sight of our individual and independent nature of bliss. It is a regular effort in most of us to substitute the inner void created by loneliness with external experiences like watching T.V or interacting on social media sites or shopping. Is it the right way??? These substitute activities drain us out; they make us forget about ourselves. Forgetting about ourselves is the same as ignoring ourselves. Ignoring our self is forgetting about the inner voice in us which is our real self.

It is this real self which make us to love and accept ourselves providing a sense of self-esteem and self-acceptance. We start to get in touch with our self, our talents and capabilities. With that we begin to get comfortable with our self and as that happens, the fear of loneliness disappears just as the morning mist dewdrops vanish as sun shines.

I am never lonely to myself when I gain a certain ease with my real self and then the need for external experience or the urge to be in touch with someone always diminishes. When I am not dependent on the external traits everything looks beautiful and there is a feel of fullness. I am not disconnected to anything at all.      

Once a rich man from city visited Himalayas and asked a Sadhu there how he could stay alone?

The Sadhu Maharaj replied, “I like being alone, but I am not lonely. Even if you are with people around you feel lonely, isn’t it?”  

“But, the place you live is too far.” said the rich man.


“Far from where?Asked Sadhu Maharaj.

“Far from city. said the Rich Man.

“Far, near, here and there are all relative words. To you city is far from here and Himalayas is far from there. Nothing is far to a person who basks in the bliss of solitude.” Said the Sadhu Maharaj.

Monday, December 7, 2015

761. Desire: from countless to ONE……..



It is quite natural for a human to desire what he is lacking. Human desire is unending, some say, looking at the countless desire one possess. Desire could be categorised as many, for example if one has to sate his hunger or quench his thirst it is taking care of the physical desire. To have a cosy companion is due to the emotional desire. Curious to know about unknown is owing to intellectual desire. If one tries to resist the physical, emotional and intellectual desire then his life cease to exist.

Sometimes a desire to have something would be resonating for the others people’s desire to be fulfilled. A farmer may desire to grow paddy though for financial gains but in a way he could be fulfilling the desire of many to feed on. Our culture in general and economy in particular thrive on desire of those things which we do not have. Kama, the desire which is one of the four Purusharthas (objectives of living) constitutes the true wealth of humanity. Sanatana Dharma has never considered desire a taboo, though it has cautioned the seeker to be aware of the consequences of the results obtained of that desire.     
                
Majority of us are born with countless desires. These countless desires are too many to pursue with conviction or dedication. While some ventures are successful because of the convictions there are few task undertaken without conviction. Any work done without dedication does not yield success in any field. So the expected result often swings from positive to negative making our life emotionally unstable. The emotions go up and down making us upset easily and calming us down quickly. None of these emotional situations stay very long, however; one of the great advantages of this is that we are never upset for very long because the things that upset us are not important. But neither are our satisfactions important nor enduring. Nothing lasts long, because nothing matters much. It is just living a living for the sake of living.

Further there are some people who are born with few desires. They are the one who lead what is considered successful and meaningful lives. No matter what field of endeavour they choose, they manage to accomplish at least modest goals, because they are able to focus on only some desires very passionately. They are not distracted with too many desires and are not upset as they take up one desire at a time to fulfil. They are not encompassed by the time frame for their desires to be fulfilled.  

Finally there are a fortunate few individuals who have only one desire. They go on to be called geniuses like we see many proficient scientists, great musicians and mesmerising poets and adorable public leaders. They have one and only one desire to ride on and they stamp their mark in whatever fields they are committed to with devotion.


To sum it up we have to move from having countless desires to few and from there to having one. This movement is transcending from emotion to passion to devotion. The journey from emotion to devotion will let us discover who we really are, and what really matters to us…….Am I right???

Saturday, December 5, 2015

760. Is Greed Good?????



“Greed is Good” says Michael Douglas while playing the role of Gordon Gekko in the movie Wall Street. This thought is widely welcomed by those who appreciate capitalism. Here whoever put up thumbs up sign for the statement look at it from Self-Interest point of view.  Some say that this thought is better than having a selfish attitude. But we have observed that which starts as Self-Interest due to need will make an individual to be Selfish due to greed. This is the harsh reality which every one of us has to accept.

Greed is greed whether it is for need or otherwise. Some of us accept and agree to “Need based Greed” as a supportive catalyst to Self-Interest drive but start to hate when it grows and become “Greed based Need.” Greed is not good immaterial of need or otherwise as it hurts the basic fabric of the society called Wellness. Greed is seeking butter at the expense of others persons bread. Capitalism is based on this theory called Self Interest.   

Once there a salesman who travelled from one locality to other selling his product. He used to take rest under a tree everyday one day while he was sitting under the tree he saw a gentleman with hand held power hacksaw. He saw him cut the tree and the next day there was a shelter made with the wood cut from the tree. When the salesman wanted to sit under the shelter, the man who constructed it demands money. Now let’s analyse at this scenario. The salesman was taking shelter under the tree for free and a capitalist person cuts off the tree and uses the wood to build a shelter and puts a price tag for the cool shade. This is how a capitalist mind works. Yes it was the self-interest of the person who constructed the shelter but then was not the cool shade available free for the salesman before the shelter came into existence???

Further this self-interest attitude of the capitalist has made them think one needs to make hay when sun shines. This making of hay while sun shines is also taken to the extreme. Unfortunately the extremity is experienced by those who become a victim of the situation, while for others it seems to be an act of Self-Interest. The recent havoc caused by rain across the city of Chennai some sold the essential commodities like milk and water at exorbitant prices. One litre packet of milk was sold for Rs.100 in some places while vegetables like tomato and beans were being sold at Rs.80 to Rs.90 per kg. The price of mineral water also hit the roof with a 20 litre bottle being sold for Rs.150 per bottle.

While a large section of the society is contributing liberally for the devastation and help pouring in from all parts of the country a few have taken this situation to fan their Self-Interest. How right is it to rob a brother by branding it as Self-Interest is the question? If Self-Interest is to be given prominence then are those who contributing liberally for the cause fools??? ……..just think…..what are we humans up to??? 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

759. My makeshift home……….



Every living being has to build home for shelter or at least while breeding. Home is a place where one feels safe and secure. While all living thing except humans have a temporary living place, majority of us own a place to live while some of us live in rented temporary accommodation. Further one can observe that those who live in rented temporary homes thrive to make them more comfortable whereas those who own a home spend much more effort in maintaining and developing this property. Either way there is a constant up gradation on the place of accommodation.

We are to realize that our Sthula Deha (Gross Body) is also a temporary abode for our Sukshma Deha (Subtle Body). The Karana Deha (Casual Body) the threshold of Higher Consciousness arrives from the Eternal Abode to live in numerous bodies over many lifetimes. That is our permanent dwelling.

A Seeker has to know that the Gross Body is perishable and Subtle Body has no permanent abode and the Causal Body is the map template and sole cause of illumination for the Gross and Subtle Body. By understanding thus we spend less time on assets such as experiences, memories, knowledge, evolution and karma which belong to the Subtle and Gross Body combination.

Moveable and Immovable Property, Bank Balance, Relationships, Name and Fame are something that belongs to this combination and are left behind when we they both part. Just as we keep our home clean and comfortable it is better to maintain the Gross Body which is the temporary home so that the Subtle Body can accommodate well in it. However it is not wise to give total attention to the temporary home at the cost of our permanent dwelling. That is what spiritual practice is about -- first understanding ourselves and then giving priority to our permanent dwelling.

Whatever is earned here in the name of assets has to be regarded as a temporary convenience or means for excel only. Giving prominence to assets than they deserve is bound to lead to disappointment in much the same way as it happens if a tenant makes large investments on a rented property only to find that he has to leave it behind eventually.


Puranadara Dasaru one of the prominent patron of Kannada Dasa Sahitya has penned a song “Allide nammane illiruvudu summane” meaning: My “home” is “there”; I have come here only for namesake. The poet says what is “here”, in this world, is just an appearance, or my being here is just an appearance. That is what this write up is all about, it is to strengthening our permanent assets while not ignoring the temporary ones. Looking for improvements in this makeshift arrangement called “Earth” in a way that does not compromise the Self. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

758. When the Deity in the Sanctum turned towards a Devotee!!!

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/when-the-deity-in-the-sanctum-turned-towards-a-devotee


Kanakadasa was contemporary to Purandaradasa and both have dedicated many of their compositions to Dasa Sahitya. He was disciple of Sri Vyasarajaru of Dvaita tradition. He was a Kuruba Gowda (warrior community) by birth, well trained and proficient in war fare. Once he lost a war even after fight courageously but miraculously escaped being killed in the war. That incident made him disillusioned with the worldly matters. From then on he caught the path of spirituality and started adoring Lord Adi Kesava and requesting Him for wisdom and enlightenment. He went to Sri Vyasarajaru and requested him to accept him as hid disciple.

Once his guru Vyasarajaru advised him to perform a pilgrimage to the famous Udupi temple which enshrined Lord Krishna in the form of a small kid, holding the butter milk churning stick. Udupi is the Karma Bhoomi of Sriman Madhva, the chief proponent of the Dvaita philosophy. According to legend, Sriman Madhva rescued a ship in distress near the coast of Udupi. He signaled the ship to safety by waving a lamp. Convinced that it was through the grace of Sriman Madhva that the ship was saved, the captain wished to offer him a gift and requested Sriman Madhva to take whatever he needed from the ship. Madhva chose a clay (gopi-chandana) lump from the lot that is used for the ship’s ballast. Upon washing the clay, Sriman Madhva discovered a beautiful Idol of Sri Krishna, which He personally carried to Udupi and consecrated it in a temple and began worshipping.  

Kanakadasa on the advice of his guru came to Udupi, a few casteist Brahmin priests and attendants did not allow him to enter the main temple, and turned him back. Dejected and sad that he could not have the darshana of Lord; Kanakadasa sat behind the temple and started singing songs in praise of the Lord Sri Krishna. He was completely lost singing the glory of Lord and pleading Him to shower His mercy and bless him with a vision of His beautiful face. He did not ask for any material or worldly pleasures, all he wanted was just to have darshana of the Lord.

Suddenly the earth trembled and the western outer wall crumbled and the slabs of stone in the inner wall of the sanctum sanctorum cracked open. The idol of Sri Krishna which was originally facing east turned around and faced Kanakadasa, who was sitting behind the temple. Tears tumbled down the eyes of Kanakadasa as he beheld the idol of his Lord Sri Krishna, seemingly beaming at him. The casteist Brahmin priests and attendants who had denied entry to this great soul came and fell at his feet and asked for his forgiveness. Lord Krishna did not speak even a word, but yet demonstrated through this event that devotion alone is supreme than caste and creed.

Even today, the idol in the sanctum faces west. The crack that appeared on the wall of the sanctum sanctorum has been replaced with a window which is called “Kanakana Kindi” and every devotee who visits the temple; behold the beautiful idol through this window. In the place where Kanakadasa sat and sang his beautiful songs in praise of the Lord now stands a towering Gopura called “Kanaka Gopura” and offers a direct view of the Lord's idol inside the sanctum. Devotees visit this place in memory of this great saint and witness the icon of the Sri Krishna, who had turned around away from the priests blinded by distinctions of caste. His beautiful image is visible to all His dear devotees who have nothing but pure unadulterated love and devotion for Him.

Today on Kartika Masa Krishna Paksha, Trutiya is the appearance day of the great soul, Kanakadasa.







Wednesday, November 25, 2015

757. Can Puranas, Parables be termed as just Cock & Bull stories!

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/can-puranas-parables-be-termed-as-just-cock-bull-stories



An open-minded person will neither deny nor admit that Puranas and Parables are mere Cock and Bull stories. For he will have understood that they provide solace to the question asked by the young minds. He is bright enough to know that these stories satisfy the queries of the young minds for the time being, and would not provide them the Truth. He also knows that the young minds would keep inquiring deeper and deeper to find out the Truth by themselves. And if those puranas and parables failed to give them a valid reply, they change their dimension of thinking. Hence, those puranas and parables have flooded with many different stories for the young minds to understand at different stages of evolution. At one stage after listening to those puranas and parables the young mind is no longer interested in them and tries to venture into knowing the Truth by contemplation. Rational thinking comes naturally as the young mind start to attempt to think out of the box. But before that emotional resilience has to be induced in the young minds and puranas and parables are handy for that. 

A civilized person might find these stories a little stupid a child's mind would relish them. As a child when there was loud thunder in the sky my granny would say that Lord Krishna is set out on his chariot taking Arjuna hence the sound. She would advise me to chant “Krishna Krishna” probably at that age and with the limited thinking capacity I had, that was enough to satisfy my doubt on the sound that I heard from the sky. And as I grew up and I noticed that the before I heard the sound of thunder there was a bright light that struck in the sky. When I questioned about it my granny told me it was Indra welding his weapon called Vajayudha. Then she told me the story of the fight between Indra and Krishna from the “Tulasi Mahatmya” episode and in that story I came to know the difference between Rukmini’s devotion and Sathyabhama’s obsession, and how a small Tulasi leaf offered to Lord with devotion is more than the pomp and show we generally display at festivals.    

After some years I stopped asking for the answers and by that time I had the inputs from all the puranas and parables. That was the time when I started thinking that Sri Rama or Lord Krishna were not only powerful enough to kill demons in the world outside, but instead those stories were meant for me to kill the demons inside me. The transition from enjoying the stories to understanding the significance of them set in. Every story in the puranas and parables has something to say if I am willing to listen to them, instead of just pushing them off as mere cock and bull stories. For me it was stories from puranas and then the iconography and from there it was way of life which put me on the path in that order. At one stage I would admire the heroics of all the Gods in the puranas and they were my idols with so many great characters they possessed, but as the time passed I came to know that Absolute is the one who has surpassed the word character and is beyond Factor, Fame, Form and Name.     

If my granny had talked about how the positive ions and negative ions attract and repel each other to build up electrical charge and become the cause for lightning and thunder maybe I would not have understood at that age. Well on the lighter vein, I will not say so with the kids of the younger generation as they know very well how scientifically things happen!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

756. I love my Motherland. I live here till I die....


My Motherland a pious land called Bharatavarsha was ruled by Sultans from 1206 AD to 1526 AD. After defeating Ibraham Lodhi of the Lodhi dynasty, Babur established the Mughal Empire in 1526 AD. This Mughal Empire ended officially with Bahadur Shah Zafar in 1857 as a revolt against the East India Company. And in 1947 we got to have independence and had our own constitution.

By the time my Motherland was independent She had seen extreme atrocities and hardships imposed on by rulers on Her inhabitants. Every ruler enforced his own religion which included a particular way of living and follow the rules of living. Her inhabitants then had the choice of multiple faiths and the philosophies. Although subjected to diversity the amazing quality of Her inhabitants in “acceptance” is, was and will be commendable. The strength of my Motherland is in its “acceptance” of anything and everything as a way of life. My Motherland displays a true live and let live society making Her robust.

However, the ancient form of one way to achieve the God set of ways to be accepted as religious, social, cultural rituals that included various laws and eating habits. These new ways of living encouraged a uniquely peculiar ways to convert natives to “new faith” by force or by lure of better life, and even this was accepted with open arms. The inhabitants of my Motherland would not differentiate the Absoulte from the thought of the other who believe. Her inhabitants accepted every name and form a human thought would project about THAT SUPREME ABSOLUTE

Off late few of Her inhabitants and their wives have found that there is “intolerance” and want to leave Her. Those who have felt so could have not noticed what is happening across the world in the name of religion. My Motherland has tolerated many invaders who have looted Her. I am a fractional part of Her inhabitants and feel that there is no other place on this entire earth plane where I can be safe as am here. I have friends from all religion and we share our thoughts. We never have questioned which faith is superior or inferior since we have never compared but related to each other to excel Spiritually.

Yes, I agree the world outside my Motherland is enchanting and I wish to visit Her sisters as a tourist. I as a inhabitant of my Motherland will never wish to leave Her and settle outside how much ever it is enchanting.

Ultimately it is my Motherland which makes me feel a true Bharathvaasi. Every true big hearted inhabitant can feel the same in this land also I know.......

“API SWARNAMAYI LANKA NA MAY LAKSHMANA ROCHATHI JANANI JANMABHOOMISCHA SWARGADAPI GARIYASI”.

Meaning: 

“Lakshmana, even this golden Lanka does not appeal to me; Mother and Motherland are higher than even heaven.”

After the Lanka war Vibhishana requested Sri Rama to stay back in Lanka. Lanka which was called Swarna Lanka and designed by Vishwakarma on the behest of Lord Shiva to gift it to His beloved did not enchant Sri Rama hence He uttered so to His brother Lakshman.

I love my Motherland and live here it I die…….



Monday, November 23, 2015

755. Understanding is a two way path.......!



It is highly impossible to carry the same emotions always; one can be experiencing different emotion depending on the situations around. Quite interestingly it is due to the people around us rather than the things around that we get more emotional to. Things around are inert and do not have the capacity to change our emotions, it’s only when we lose them we get emotional.  So there is less to understand about things around us unlike the relationship we develop among humans in society.

At times it can be hard to understand others but this is necessary to build a better relationship. The great advantage is that it helps in building great relationships with family and friends. As I said understanding others is hard but it is not impossible. Let’s understand how and why it is better to understand others.

Our human body is an amalgamation of Pancha Bhutas (Five eternal elements) namely Akasha (Ether), Vayu (Air), Aapa (Water), Agni (Fire), and Prithvi (Earth). These five elements are never in balance and there is always one element which is predominant. Depending on which element is predominant the individual display his emotions.    

When the Prithvi (Earth) element is dominating the individual is very expressive and thrive to express his thought with lots of excitement.  He communicates by telling stories about someone or something in detail. When dealing with such an individual it is important to put yourself in his shoes and focus on how to relate to him and allow him to be the centre of attention. He is down to earth person.

When the Agni (Fire) element is dominating the individual desires control and thrive to make decisions. He is very interested in getting things done in a jiffy come what may. When dealing with such an individual it better to let him take control and get things done as achieving results is important. He consumes all like fire.

When the Aapa (Water) element is dominating the individual is a great analyst. He desires caution, restraint and is best at going into details with deep thinking. When dealing with such an individual it better to let go the “take it for grant” attitude. He purifies all.

When the Vayu (Air) element is dominating the individual is a great observer. He normally will not show his emotions openly. It very tough to understand as he say nothing and wish to stay out of trouble. When dealing with such an individual it better to be very cautious about what we utter about him. His emotions are invisible like air.

When the Akasha (Ether) element is dominating the individual is a steadfast person. He is neither interested in others understanding him not does he tries to understand others. He has no complaints what-so-ever about what others think about him. He is aloof to society and always to himself. When dealing with such an individual it better to learn from him that beyond understanding there is love and compassion, which needs no understanding at all. He is vast as space.

Understanding is a two way path, they say.......but then there is always a pathless path too.

Friday, November 13, 2015

754. Are We Burdening Ourselves a Lot and Failing to Enjoy Life?

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/are-we-burdening-ourselves-a-lot-and-failing-to-enjoy-life


The overloading of egoistic thoughts with sense of doer ship has become a hindrance for progress to mankind. The attitude of doer ship is fine until the work done yields a successful result, if there is failure this sense is such a that it takes the cheer out of the individual and makes him look gloomy. The worst part in it is that if the individual has taken the deed to be as a challenge owing to the doer ship he tends to commit suicide if the deed is a failure. When the mind is full of thoughts like “I need to do this or I have to finish that work by today evening” automatically we are burdened with the sense of doer ship. This should not be the way to start the day; the day should start with smile and end with smile. How can one smile when we are doing a serious job or handling a huge organization? Planning the day in advance and having a light heart to feel the day’s job to be a delight and acts of amusement does help a lot. One has to be mature enough to know that all the attempts of doing a work will never result in success; there may be failures also which the part of the play is. 

We are very eager and aspiring to look for success in every work we do and our intentions could be flawless also. Yet despite of all the sincere efforts sometime we are unable to achieve the best results expected. In such times we have this tendency of blaming our fate or Absolute. One thing that we should understand in life is that, if we are pigeon one day chances are that we can be statue in other days.

There is a story about an old villager who was travelling in the train for the first time. At the ticket counter he was told that he would be allowed to carry 20kgs of luggage. But he was on his way to meet his daughter in the town and he had with him 30kgs. What did he do? He weight his luggage to 20kgs, took up his seat in the compartment and he kept the 20kgs load on the floor. The balance he put it on his head and sat.

The train started to move and his co passengers were surprised to see this poor fellow carrying a load on his head. After some time, the travelling ticket examiner entered the compartment. Even he was surprised to find the old man carrying the load on his head.

The officer asked him the reason for doing so, the old man replied, “Sir! I was told I would be allowed to take only 20kgs of luggage, so I have placed my 20kgs luggage on the floor, the remaining 10kgs I am carrying on my head myself!” The officer was amused to hear the old man. He said to him, “Don’t you know that your entire luggage along with you is being pulled by the engine of the train? Whether you keep the luggage on the floor or carry it on your head, the burden is ultimately pulled by the engine. You will have to pay for the extra 10kgs of luggage!”

We may laugh at the act of the old man but if we look seriously we are doing exactly same. In our daily life, many of us behave like the old man. We imagine that we are the one who are shouldering the burdens in our life but we are just the players all we have to do is just play, it is the Absolute who is the captain of the team he has the entire burden, the entire burden of the universe.

Lord Krishna tells Arjuna in Bhagavad-Gita, “Yogakshemam Vahamyaham”  “I shall take care of the welfare of my devotees!”  If the mankind does the work aiming at the welfare of the society with the confidence that Absolute will take care, then one can have the mindset of abundance which is an excellent mentality to have.

“Work hard and direct all your concerns towards the Absolute! Toss all your burdens at His Lotus-feet. And feel relieved to enjoy the Joy of Life!”

Friday, November 6, 2015

753. Oh Mind, Silence Plzzzzzz......



A few months back one of my friends asked me if I can remain silent for just half an hour. I am too very talkative and all my friends know that I love talking a lot rather than listening. It was just a challenge thrown at me and it was not the friend who wanted me to remain silent alone who was interested but the whole bunch of friends around wanted to see if I can shut my mouth for at least half an hour. 

The stop clock was on and my time to sew my lips started. Knowing my nature a few had already decided that I cannot stop myself from talking for more than 5 min, but it was a successful 30 minutes of silence amidst some alluring topics discussed. When my friend who had challenged flagged the 30 min deadline, I was wondering if I had been silent for half an hour.

In fact I was not, there was a monologue running in my mind. One thought was firm about remaining non-verbal while the other was sceptical and was not so optimistic like the other. What if I could not remain silent was the big thought in the mind. There was lot of noise due to that. Silence that Zen masters talk about is not just keeping the mouth shut alone; it is about silencing the mind. Silence is not scribbling on a chalk board or using hand signs instead of talking to communicate. It is the total and lack of creating mind pollution.

At a monastery four Monks were asked by their Master to remain in the seat of silence for a week. On the first nightfall the oil lamp which was burning in the corner started to flicker and after a few minutes it went off.

The first Monk said, “Oh, no! The light in the room is out.”

The second Monk said, “We are not supposed to talk you idiot?”

The third Monk said, “You two broke the silence fools?”

The fourth Monk smiled to himself and thought, “Ha! I'm the only one who remained silent as ordered by the master.”

While the first three of them thought the fourth had abided to the conditions the Master had put, but the fourth was also not silent.

Is it really possible to silence the mind???

No, mind is never silent. We can reduce the number of thoughts and with continuous practice we can limit the flip flop of thoughts and concentrate on a single thought. Sage Patanjali terms it as “Dharana.” Further Sage Patanjali explains that while Asana helps an individual to have control on his body, Pranayama on his breath and Pratyahara on his senses, Dharana teaches him to control his mind. With the Body, Breath, Senses and Mind in control Dhyana becomes simpler. 

Now what is Dhyana, is it just sitting in seat of silence???

Dhyana is continuous flow of consciousness toward an object of concentration.  Let’s not confuse Dharana with Dhyana. In concentration, there is a subject and an object. I, the subject, can concentrate on a burning lamp or an image of God, or chant the bija mantra which are objects of concentration to me. In Dhyana, the object disappears and so also the subject that is me. There is oneness as all becomes one. Rather than focusing on a mantra, I and the mantra become one and hence all borders, boundaries, and separation between me and the universe begin to disappear. I begin to realize the inherent oneness of all beings and all of creation. When even that realization goes one tread to Samadhi. 


Each time my mind runs here and there I need to bring it back it is called Dharana. Concentration is trying to fix the mind on one thing. Dhyana is when I have tried and have been successful. And the threshold to Dharana is Inner Silence……….Oh Mind, Silence Plzzzzzz…….!!!!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

752. Truth always Eludes but a Sincere Seeker will find It....!

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/truth-always-eludes-but-a-sincere-seeker-will-find-it



There is truth in Vedas, Gita, Bible, Quran, Guru Granth Shahib, and many more holy texts. But we fail to notice them as we spend most of our time and energy in finding flaws in them which are irrelevant for us. Even when the truth stares at us in the face at all times, we are unable to see it as we are always engaged in exploring that which are fictitious.

There is this comedy sequence from Telugu movie “IDIOT” which I watched a decade back. The sequence starts with a few policemen with a SI watching the check post at the state border. They have information that smugglers are using that very highway to sneak goods across the neighboring state without paying sales tax. Security is beefed up and a thorough checking around the clock is conducted. All the truck leaving the state is checked and the invoices of the goods in trucks are verified. 

A man pass by the check-post one day, he is on a bike and on the rear seat he has a huge sack fastened. The officer stops his bike and inquires about the sack which is strapped behind. The man claims that the sack contained sand used for construction purpose. Curiously officer inspects the sack and to his surprise finds only sand in the sack as the man had told. He allows the man to go. The same procedure happens the next day also. Again the officers check the sack and find only sand in it. Then the following day also the procedure is same and only sand is found in the sack. After several times of thorough checking and finding the claims of sand in sack true, the police officers stopped checking his vehicle after a few days. They did not have any proof to find any illegal activity in this man's daily routine. Once a new officer wanted a body search done, again after stripping him to his underwear they did not find anything on his person which was illegal. 

After seeing the man ferrying the sand across the border for about twenty times, the SI takes the man aside and question him thus, “I know you are into something illegal, my instincts says so every time I see you crossing the check post. Unfortunately even after a through search we could not find anything on you so that we can nail you for the crime. I some how feel you are smarter than us. Just between you and me can you tell me what is it that you are taking across the border? I promise that I will never divulge to anyone.”

The biker looks at the SI and decides to tell him the truth as he had accomplished his task. He says, “Sir, your instinct is right. I was taking something out of the border other than the sack of sand; you policemen are all too smart. But you could not guess what it was.” 

SI looks at his face with interest expecting the biker to tell him the truth.

The biker said, “As you rightly suspected I was not ferrying the sack of sand across the border on the back seat of the bike. You people might not have observed that I used a different bike every day, in fact I was taking the stolen bike across the border!”

Like the policemen in the movie sequence we are always after the obvious and miss the essence. We are able to look at only a part of this enormous treasure of knowledge and with our half baked facts we try to be a judge and give prejudice remarks.  Truth is there right beneath our noses but it is hidden under a thick cover of ego.

Never should one make a negative judgement regarding any of the holy texts. To understand a philosophy or get the essence of what it has to offer a casual look at a few lines of the holy text from a blog post is too very little. Some philosophies require many years of deep immense study to arrive at a true, deep and coherent understanding.

If there are faults it has to be in the seekers who do not follow the message of the holy text. Those who claim to have read the holy text but do not practice the message are the ones who give the followers of other philosophies a chance to talk bad and find fault. Seekers and to some extent Masters of almost all philosophies are weak at putting in the effort required to properly understanding the message contained in their holy texts. Bashing of Scriptures has now become a new trend and fashion. It is like criticising the stairs after reaching the podium safely or standing below unable to climb.

Holy texts are never a failure but a flippant seeker sure is.......

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

751. Does developing Hatred towards our own Ego help??

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/does-developing-hatred-towards-our-own-ego-help



Reading so many spiritual scriptures and listening to so many discourses has left me to think if I can really starting hating my ego. Since almost all the scriptures have in a way stated the cause of misery, conflict and negative states of my mind is due to my inflated ego-personality. And to go with it even I have many a times felt within myself and have clearly noticed that it is the cause for peace of mind and subsequently the reason for my unhappiness.
 
Now that I know the cause for the unhappiness in me is my Ego and hence I try to get rid of it. How? Just by simply becoming aware of its impact on my mind, but this method does not work always, as my senses are at that very time blinded. I can understand the impact and consequences of my ego only after the event has passes on creating enough damage. The other simple way is to let my mind understand that ego is not all that bad and let it operate in its limits. It is like a farmer yearning for rain when there is no rain he want it and if it rains too much he is unhappy with it. As the farmer is unable to decide and say beyond doubt that the rain is bad, good or neutral. The truth is the rain just is and it is my very mind that makes it good, bad or neutral depending on how it suits my situations. It’s completely a section of chance and mostly an unpredictable process. If by chance I accept the rain because the rain just is, it won’t mentally trouble me any more.
 
The same thing happens with my ego. I have detected it within me several times and I became aware that it is the cause of my suffering and now I have concluded it to be a bad thing. Why did I conclude it to be bad? Who said so? It was me who said it. Just as the rain, the ego just is. It is the same rain that is need by the farmer and it is the same ego in me which pushes me to move ahead. Could the farmer say that it should not rain if there had been heavy rain the preceding year? He needs it that year to water his farm. I cannot hate my ego and say I should not have it hence forth.
 
So moderate ego can never be bad. It is just the stage of evolution which I need to experience. Just like when a awful thing happened to me I hate it and resist it, but later if I look back I realize that it seemed to be awful because I thought so, while the truth was it was actually what needed to happen for me to experience and to grow and evolve. So it is with a little ego. I need it. At the same time if I let this moderate Ego to swell it will be harming my humility.
Ego is like a pickle which adds the taste to the bland life at times.
 
Note: pickle can never be a main dish.

Monday, October 12, 2015

750. Seven Legendary Immortals.....!

http://www.speakingtree.in/blog/seven-legendary-immortals


The English word for long lived is immortal but in Sanskrit there are three words Ananta,  Amara and Chiranjeevi  which are used almost like synonyms; there is in fact a slight difference. The word Chiranjeevi is a combination of Chira (long) and Jeevi (lived) This word is often confused with Amarattva (Immortal) and Anatattva (Infinitity).

The following classification of beings will make this clear:

1. Martya (Mortals) – Who undergo separation of Subtle Body and Gross Body. All beings on this earth plane Humans, Animals, Birds, Reptiles, Amphibians etc.  Also you and me.

2. Chiranjeevi (one who lives long) – Who live a very long life in the minds of humans and make them feel that they live for eternity. It’s not that the Gross Body of that individual is not separated from Subtle body but they received the boon /curse of eternity. Anyone can become mortal by good deeds etc., but cannot become Amara. Puranas cite many as chiranjeevis of who seven are discussed below.

3. Amara (Immortal) -- Who never experience death at all. This includes Devas, Apsaras, Gandharvas. Even in war when they are wounded, they recover and continue to live. Puranas give credit to the ambrosia for Amarattva.

4. Ananta (Infinite) – Who live forever.  All the above three mentioned get dissolved at the time of Pralaya (deluge), including its secondary creator Brahma. The only real Eternal is Maha Vishnu and the four Vedas.  Vedas are considered Eternal in that they do NOT get destroyed at the end of time its talks about way of Life which applies to any aeon.

While those born on this earth plane face the uncertainty and finite span of human life, every being yearn for some form of immortality. If not immortality at least they wish to live a little longer in a hope to gain an indirect continuity of their existence to have the glimpse of their great grand kids wedding. While many live a life where they are mortal only through the period of their physical existence, very few aim to remain mortal by means of their achievements in their field through fame in the memories of future generations. In fact this is called Chiranjeevi (Immortal) status.

In our ancient culture there are stories about immortal beings and methods to manifest immortality. Hindu mythology mentions seven Chiranjeevis who have achieved indefinite prolongation of life along with a deed that they have performed which stays as long as sun and moon exists.

Asvattama Bali Vyasohanuma cha Vibhishana: |
Krupa Parasursmascha Saptaite Chiranjivinah: |

They are the Ashwatthama (the son of Dronacharya), Mahabali (the saintly demon King), Vyasa (the composer of Mahabharata and Puranas), Hanuman (the ardent devotee of Sri Rama), Vibheeshana (the brother of Ravana), Kripacharya (the Vidya Guru of Pandavas and Kauravas) and Parashurama (the slayer of immoral kings).

Lets us know what were the deeds performed by those seven individuals to be conferred with the status of Immortality.

Ashwatthama is the only one among the seven who attain the so called Chiranjeevattva not due to any noble deed. It was a curse from Sri Krishna after he killed all the sons of Pandavas with his Brahmastra and trying to kill Parikshit, the only inheritor of Pandavas who was in the womb of Uttara the wife of Abhimanyu. He was overpowered and destined to live for ever with festering wounds all over the body. This was a warning to generations ahead of a great personality living without virtue and good conduct which amounts to eternal suffering. In a sense a karmic reckoning which is a harsh reminder of the consequences of immoral behaviour. It is believed that even today some have seen Ashwatthama wandering near Asirgadh fort in Madhya Pradesh asking for butter to apply on his wounds.

Mahabali is a Chiranjeevi because of his surrender to Lord wherein he does not daunt to offer his own head as the pedestal when Maha Vishnu asks him a place to keep his third step. It is believed that Mahabali visits his subjects now in modern Kerela on Onam day.

Vyasa, the great scholar and author of Mahabharata and Srimad Bhagavatam is an immortal and radiating flare of wisdom. A weaver of mysterious stories in mythology he is a depiction of the creativity that even now some great scholars and writers exhibit. He is immortal as long as the great epic Mahabharata is told and retold. It is believed that Vyasadev is still residing in Badarikashrama on the Himalayas.

Hanuman is just the reflection of modesty, selflessness, valour, devotion, power, might and virtues. He stands tall amidst all the characters in Ramayana. It was Sitadevi who bestowed on him the boon of remaining ever-youthful, energetic and immortal. There is a belief that Hanuman is still the caves near Manasarovar.

Vibheeshana is immortal for his steadfast conviction in what he believed. He was a great analyst of righteousness; he would listen only to his inner voice and never succumbed to the praise of his sycophants. He was conferred the immortal status by Lord Rama.  There are people in Kelaneeya, Sri Lanka who believe he is alive even to this day and there is a Vibheeshana temple there.

Kripacharya stands as an example of being impartial to Pandavas and Kauravas. He was Vidya Guru for both the families. He was a strict follower of ethics and standards which many would forgo citing the reasons of rules changing from location and generation. Rules may change but ethics and standards should not.

Parashurama the Guru of martial arts and the knower of all Astras (weapons), Sastras (weapons with program) and tactics of warfare. Though he was such a great warrior he never wished to be an emperor instead used all his strength to eliminate unlawful kshatriyas around the globe. It is believed that he is still alive on Mahendragiri in Kerala.

The six of the seven immortals except Ashwatthama epitomize certain basic truths, laws and standards of ethical behaviour which transcend Time, Space and Causation. They are eternal and universal therefore it should not be considered as mere deathlessness. It echoes their attitude to remain constant on the divine principles even at the time of hardship and stress.


I have to specially thank Shri B. K. Jagadish for putting a seed in my mind for the blog to sprout. Thank you Sir......!