Monday, December 11, 2017

1138. Wise, Stupid, Clever or Corrupt.....!

We are all not the same always, sometimes we are wise sometimes we act foolish. We could be clever and cunning, stupid and intelligent, corrupt and transparent too. According to the situations we use the traits not sticking to one all the time. If this is the case why is it that we brand some as wise, clever, stupid or corrupt. Before going into details of it let us know what these traits are.

Dritharashtra asked Vidura, “How to identify a wise man?” Vidura  answered. “There are many qualities in a person which makes him wise. A wise man knows what he is capable of doing, never attempts something he is incapable of. He is not upset by danger nor bothered of mockery and he is not taken in by flattery. Whatever he has studied he conveys boldly, fearing none but is not arrogant on account of his learning. His decisions are never made in haste and always get the opinion of others. Views from others are vital while taking a decision as others may detect a problem from a different dimension and their perspective could help. Education and knowledge does not necessarily make a man wise. It is how he adopts the knowledge which makes him wise. Wise man is never selfish and works for benefit of others.

A Clever person has imaginative quality with which he can work in a difficult situation where other would not. He is not deterred to use a lie, or cheat, or twist and spin his word or deed to find a solution to that difficult situation. For him solution is important whether it is achieved by hook or crook. He concentrates more on others than himself. He does not rely on his strength but tries to manipulate other people’s weakness. Honesty takes the backseat when it comes to success, but he makes it sure that the breach of honesty does not affect others. A clever person too fumbles but he is very quick to learn from them. He listens to other people’s views but never makes it known. He could be a narcissist who wish not be noted or branded as one. He could be selfish at times and is not particularly keen on working for the benefit of other.   

A stupid person lack intelligence and imagination. He makes decisions that is illogical and sometimes with no common sense. He will not try to think of the consequence and always in haste. Unlike the clever he doesn’t correct himself from the previous mistakes. Amazingly a stupid person thinks he is smart. He is never manipulative like a clever person but is always clumsy and confused. While making any decision, he will neither ask others for their views nor will he listen to anyone who volunteered to advise him. It will be very difficult to change his mind-set as he is fixed in it, come what may.

Corrupt is one who misuses his entrusted power for personal gains. He is very selfish and is not afraid of anything including law and unconcerned about the welfare of society.

A wise thought which has a tinge of cleverness will benefit others. If a clever thought join hands with corrupt then it will benefit personally. A wise with a stupid thought is a loss to person. If a stupid thought gets support from a corrupt thought then it is loss to others.

Friday, December 8, 2017

1137. Who is Neech???

Neecha is a word which indicates “Low”. Same as “Uccha” which mean high this word Neecha indicates the opposite of high, in other words it indicates a level. 

In the Nine Prameyas, Srimad Madhva points out “Neechochcha Bhavangatah” (Hierarchy of Emotional Values). Every human is different and that difference is not in his appearance, his educational qualification, his knowledge level or his financial status. The difference lies in what kind of Vicharadhara (Ideology) he nurtures. 
As I understand from the verses of Bhagavad Gita (Chapter 14 verse 18) where Sri Krishna says, “Those situated in the mode of goodness rise high; those in the mode of passion stay in the middle; and those in the mode of ignorance go low”.

The Mode of Goodness is Sattva Guna, Mode of Passion is Rajo Guna and Mode of Ignorance is Tamo Guna. This High, Middle and Low are in the thoughts as it is the Trigunas which propel the thoughts. The thoughts then go on to be Vichaar (Ideas) which in a continuous flow become Vicharadhara (Ideology).

This Vicharadhara is visible in a person when his intentions are unveiled. The intentions can be in the thinking that is either Uccha (High level) or Neecha (Low level). Low level thinking can cause a thought that lead to an infinite number of random uncontrollable thoughts which inflate only to pamper the Ego. While High level thinking is where thinking happens in such a way that thinking stops and an understanding starts. High level thinking is that in which there is end of thinking and beginning of understanding. Hence a thought that has sprouted from High level thinking does not remain for a long time, it sublimates into a silent understanding. Low level thinking is an untamed thought which goes on and on expanding madly destroying everything and will never subdue.

Those who nurture the Neecha thinking will always criticize other and look for flaws in others. The criticism can be for no reason at all, like how Shishupala criticized Sri Krishna in the Kuru Sabha. Criticism is an indication that people like the work pursued. If those criticisms are taken positively there is always a chance of betterment in the quality of work to be done in the future. Criticism can demotivate if taken to the heart, instead if it goes to the head one can analyse if there is any truth in those critics. If an iota of slip-down is found to have happened one can try to correct that slip-down in future. Criticism should never let to lower the confidence level; if it is a deliberate criticism then ignoring it is the better option.  

Purandaradasa one of the prominent composer and contributor to Dasa Sahitya in Kannada literature during the 16th century, writes in one of his compositions thus:

Nindakarirabeku samajadali nindakarirabeku
sandigondigalalli handigaliruvanthe nindakarirabeku.....

Meaning: Critics have to be there in the society just like a sounder of pigs that are present in the by lanes.....

The pigs live and thrive on muck, faeces and dirt. They are known to be the best scavengers that exist. In olden days the houses in villages did not have toilets and the villagers excreted in the open air. Very often excreta were cleared by these pigs and the village was kept clean. Saint Purandaradasa compares our faults to the filth and critics to pigs which clean them. 

So now, who is Neecha???

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

1136. Maturity to use Plastic....!

I remember when I was young, my Amma would fetch groceries from Tharagupet once in a month. Those groceries were packed in cones made of old newspaper. Every grocery shop had a guy who was to do the “Patnna” (the old newspaper rolled in the form of a cone) and the groceries packet was secured by tying it with “Sutli Dhara” (Jute Twine). In those times they were not so conscious about environment, as they never breached the code of harmonious living. Now with loads of information on the environment and its hazard we are least bothered to look for means to protect.         

All of a sudden, one day, we chose plastics carry bags. It did not take long to shift from the old newspaper “patnna” to plastic bags. The convenience was to be blamed. It is not only the urban belt but in the rural areas too we see them littered everywhere. These plastics come in all forms sachets, tubes, packets, polythene, etc. It is everywhere on the roads, in the field, floating in the lakes, every lane and every neighbourhood almost every landscape is littered with shining plastic. We are now unaware of what has to be done with them. They have become invincible and remain the same as they are not degradable. They are turning the fertile soil into toxic land; blocking the rain water streams and drainage flooding the metropolis during rains.

Plastic packets are consumed with the leftover food by the animals which eat them. Added to this we have packed water bottles and plates and cups which land up on the street. They are littered everywhere my entire country is become a grand garbage dump of plastic. We are producing tons of plastic and they have nowhere to go but to adore our landscapes. With this rate of producing plastic soon it may be difficult to find a place free from plastic litter.

At our homes gone are those days when we would have wooden or steel chairs for the guests to sit on. We have replaced them with plastic chairs, yes for aesthetic look. According to me, if I sit on a plastic chair I feel slippery and they create weird sounds when I move. I have a friend who has an eatery here in Bengaluru, earlier the joint was serving in steel plates but now they are using plastic plates and plastic spoons. When I questioned my friend about it, he says it is working out cheap and he does not have to bother on the helpers to clean the plates nor has he got to spend on the dishwasher detergents and water supply bills.    
We consider ourselves fortunate to have savoured the fruits of modern technology, without having to undergo any pain to gain it. Technology has been always imposed on us gradually we inherit it, and than we assume that without it we cannot live. Technology is not the only answer to better our comfort levels, it has its own by-products which could be unpleasant too. Also sometimes the advantages of modern technology depend on how we use it. To be in a position to use it appropriately, we need to be a mature country.

Plastic is the result of modern technology and is very useful. Equally enough they pose a great threat to our environment. It requires maturity to handle it and dispose it. While we have inherited these fruits, we haven’t got a chance to inherit the maturity. I wonder if maturity could also be bought as the groceries my Amma would fetch from Tharagupet.

Our celebrities are busy concerned about Padmavathi than Plastic....! 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

1135. Collective Efforts, Inclusive Growth.....!

While advising Yudhisthira the responsibilities of a King, Pitamaha Bhishma says, “Be a garland maker, O King, not a charcoal burner.”  This appears in the Rajadharmanushasana Parva in Shanti Parva of Mahabharata. Here Bhishma wants Yudhisthira to preserve and protect diversity. The metaphor is that a garland maker will go around the garden picking flowers from various varieties of flowering plant and then will thread them together to make a beautiful garland. A charcoal burner goes on cutting trees to collect wood chunks to burn them in low oxygen environment to make Lump Charcoal. Though the by-product is of use in cooking the contrast used here is that the charcoal burner burns down all kinds of wood, reducing diversity to a homogeneous matter called “Charcoal”. Superficially to the world a charcoal burner is reductionist who has destroyed the diversity that the wood had, whereas the garland maker celebrates the diversity of the flowers and retains them in the “Garland”.

Pitamaha Bhishma was a seasoned campaigner in the socio-political scenario. He knew that the King will be doing justice only if he is taking the entire subjects into confidence and rule. The idea of appeasement of one section of the society never has and never will do any good to the administration. “Social Justice to All” is the ideology which reflects pluralism and in pluralism there is an array of diverse thoughts. The society develops only when all are treated in the same lines. A few decades back an order was passed by the government that the “Tiller would be the Owner of the Land” in a view to bring in social justice between the haves and have nots. What happened in reality was that poverty was distributed equally among the haves and have nots. Many Hindu temples which had hectares of land donated by the Kings, lost the land and were rendered so poor that even today the Archakas (Priests) in many of the ancient temples request the devotees to contribute oil for the Nanda Deepa (Perpetual Lamp).  

My country had Kings who followed Dharma and took care of every citizen irrespective of which community or tribe he belonged. Everyone irrespective of whether they were rich or poor, skilled or unskilled were living under Rajashraya (protection of King). It was the responsibility of the administration to see that everyone is provided with the basic social amenities in life. The Raja Purohit (Royal Priest) and Mahamantri (Chief Minister) would take the responsibility of providing the work and thereby remunerations. When the King was back from the war the Raja Purohit would advise the King to build temples to wipe of the sin accumulated due to the number of deaths in the battle. The King would sanction the project and the skilled and unskilled labour would have work for more than a decade. This was how the society would benefit and we are fortunate to have some wonderful architectural marvels now.

Subka Saath, Subka Vikas (Collective Efforts, Inclusive Growth) should be the mantra for the society to grow uniformly. It is unfortunate that we see in a few states that the administration is appeasing one section of the society which is very dangerous affair.

Sir Winston Churchill said, “An appeaser is a fool who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last”.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

1134. Application of Prana....!

Prana Vayu, the vital breath is regarded as the element of air at a material level. In Vedas it is mentioned that Vayu includes the concept of Aakasha (Space). Space in motion is Air, while air at rest it is Ether. These are the two sides of Vayu, which is the unity of air and ether. Ether is the field in which Vayu as a force operates. Vayu is the power through which everything comes into manifestation and into which everything eventually returns. Hence it has in it the entire energy present in the universe.

Whichever that has life is a manifestation of Prana. It is through Prana we are able to hear, feel, taste, see and smell. Everything that we observe and regard in this Prapancha (World) is an expression of Prana. The mellow harmony of music, the commanding talk of an orator or the charming words of the beloved is relished due to Prana. It is Prana which pumps the blood from the heart into every cell in the body. 

Prana is an evolutionary energy which carries out the survival and sustenance by coordinating involuntary process like digestion, excretion and secretion without the intervention of Manas (Mind). Our ancient Rishis have taught us the techniques to make our Mind Jagratha (Awake) of the “Wisdom of Prana” so that the evolutionary energy level is elevated. This is called “Pranotthana” the elevation of Pranic force within the body. For this “Prana Vidya” is a must.

Prana Vidya is “Knowledge of the Vital Breath” Just as electricity powers mechanical machine like motor; Prana empowers the Deha (Body) and Manas (Mind). The supply of the Prana can be amplified, just as the voltage of the electricity is increased. In Electrical field we use Transformers to Step Down the capacity to make a small bulb to glow as bed lamps and Step Up to increase the power to operate huge machinery. Prana too can use the psychic energy which is like the Electricity to get distributed through definite Pranic channels in the body to produces huge amounts of Prana Shakti. Prana Shakti is the primordial cosmic energy that governs all physical functions. 

Prana Dhyana is a part of Prana Vidya where the individual observes the moment of air which takes place while inhaling and exhaling. This gradually develops awareness of the governance over the arena of Prana. This in turn brings about a realization of that boundless potential which lies latent within the depths of one’s being. This is Prana Dharshana, the visualisation of the Prana Shakti.  

Knowing about Prana and then concentrating on its movements and from there getting to know how it governs the body is important. Manas (Mind) and Prana (Breath) are like two planks on a See-Saw thus interconnected and pivoted at Chaitanya (Consciousness). It can be observed when we are agitated or nervous our breath pattern is altered. Manas is very volatile and hard to control so Prana can be trained and this restrain of Prana is in the method called Pranayama. 

We know that it is difficult to calmed down an agitated mind, it is easy to try and calm it down by altering our breathing. If it is hard to get one See-Saw plank down use the other so that the tough one automatically is under control. Pranayama is a unique way of Mind Control. A hare breaths very rapidly and a tortoise has low respiratory rate. If the respiratory rate decreases the heart need not work hard to pump blood throughout the body and our nervous system too calms down. Application of the technique of Prana Dhyana to control Mind is “Prana Anusandhana”  

Prana connects the astral and physical body by what is called “Sutratma” (Silver Chord). When this delicate thread link of Prana is severed, the Sukshma Deha (Subtle Body) disconnects from the Stula Deha (Physical Body) and Mruthyu (Death) takes place. 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

1133. The First Meeting....!

In Karnataka Hanuman Jayanthi is celebrated on Margashirshamaasa Shukla Paksha Trayodashi. According to Maharshi Valmiki, the author of Srimad Ramayana Hanuman was born on Chaitramaasa Poornima. 

Then what is the relevance of this day???

Jnanis say that it was on this day Hanuman met Shri Rama and Lakshmana on the Rishyamukha Parvata (Mountain) in Kishkindha. At that time Hanuman was the Sachiva (Minister) of Vaanara King Sugriva. King got the information that two youngsters, armed with bows and arrows were proceeding towards the mountain. Curious and anxious with the thought that his brother Vaali might has sent them to spy upon him, Sugriva requested Hanuman to go and enquire. Hanuman disguised himself as a Sadhu and approached them. 

Maharishi Valmiki has captured the excellent conversation that takes place and noted it in Srimad Ramayana. The conversation is as follows:

Hanuman said “You both look like Rajarshis and Taapasvis but you are armed with bow and arrows. Animals in this jungle are frightened in your presence. Your eyes resembles petals of lotus and you have broad shoulder with vast chest. You seem to be unbeatable in a fight but yet look like saviour of many lives. You seem to be like divinity in guise of a human. These contradictory observations bewilder me a lot. I am Hanuman, Sachiva (Minister) to Sugriva. Sugriva is the Vaanara King banished by Vaali, the King of Kishkindha. He is also the elder brother of Sugriva. My King Sugriva is a righteous person and wishes to seek your friendship. I want to hear a reply from you.”

Shri Rama after listening to Hanuman, said to Lakshmana, “Lakshmana, Did you observe how articulate Hanuma spoke! There is nothing impossible to a King who has a Sachiva (Minister) like him. Even a foe who has come with an intention to kill will fails to act after listening to Hanuma. A King is so lucky to have a minister like him. By analysing his words he seem to be well versed in Rigveda, Yajurveda, Samaveda, Vyakarana (Grammar) and Upanishads. One can never talk like this without the gaining knowledge from those granthas (Literature). His eyebrows and forehead didn’t move unnecessarily. His voice was neither too loud nor like whisper. He started, continued and completed his words in a single tone. He particularly knows how to spell each and every syllable. Sugriva is very lucky to have Hanuma under him. Lakshmana, convey him our purpose and the circumstances of our presence in this forest.”

Lakshmana then explained Hanuman their whereabouts and about missing Sitadevi.

After knowing that the two princes he was talking with were none other than his beloved Shri Rama and his brother Lakshmana from Ayodhya, Hanuman was overwhelmed with joy! He immediately revealed his identity and prostrated before Shri Rama’s feet. This day was so important in the life of Hanuman that an immortal bond generated between the Danni (Master) and his Daasa (Servant). This day engulfed so much in his life that it became his new birth. Hence Margashirsha Shukla Triyodashi is the Janma thithi of Hanuman.

We have heard that after Vaali was killed and the Kingdom of Kishkindha was restored to Sugriva. Varsha Ritu (Rainy Season) started and only after the rain receded did the Sita Anveshana (Search for Sitadevi) take place. Our Hanuman was the most important member of that anveshana.  

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

1132. Hoarding of unsold inventories by real estate developers....!

In a bid to curb hoarding of unsold inventories by real estate developers, the Income-Tax department is set to tax unsold flats that have been lying with developers for more than a year.

It is a very good move, considering the fact that the unsold flats could increase the property rates in view of the demand and supply ratio. The builder will never sell the property less than his demanded rate and the buyers find it exorbitant. The builder who is normally affluent is not bothered if the property is sold. And the property joins the list of unsold inventories.

With the unsold inventories piling up the demand and supply gap widens and the scarcity will increase the property price even more. Also with the exorbitant asking rate for the property, the land rates and the cost of the building materials will also go sky rocketing. There was a time when an ordinary citizen would save money from his salary and purchase a site and at the time of retirement with his Provident Fund (P.F), Gratuity and a minimal bank loan, he could build a small house. Now the land rates and building material cost in Bengaluru has made everyone feel that purchasing an apartment is better.

The Builder very manipulatively bypass the building Bye Laws and construct more than the permitted carpet area and also adds more floors to increase the number of apartments. Amazingly though the cost of each apartment will be less than the land cost in terms of Square feet value, the builder would be making heavy gains with the number of apartments on the same site dimensions. Suppose the site area is 2400 Sq ft. and the cost is Rs. 5000 per Sq ft. the builder will construct 8 apartments of 960 Sq ft, 2 in each floor with 4 floors.

Now the calculations, according to the architects in Bangalore the cost of residential construction here is Rs. 1300 per Sq ft, so for 8 X 960 Sq ft apartments it will be Rs. 1,00,00,000 + the land cost of Rs. 1,20,00,000 which will add up to Rs. 2,20,00,000. So the builder’s investment will be around Rs. 2.5 Cr. With each apartment being sold at 45 lacs the builder is making Rs. 3.6 Cr. The profit margin of more than 70%.      

Builders can afford to wait for more than a year with such a cushioning profit margin. However the apartment cost too will also be increasing as months pass by due to the widened gap between the demand and supply created by these blood sucking builders. The catch is that with an apartment for Rs. 45-50 lacs a site owner feels it lucrative to sell his plot and buy an apartment and save money to furnish the apartment. This is how these shrewd builders have made the Bengalureans tilt towards apartment culture. 

Mostly a domicile Bengalurean do not fall prey to these builders, it is the migrants from the North India who are the clients. Look at this scenario; a person from Andheri can sell his flat of 550 Sq ft. at Rs. 1 Cr and purchase an apartment in Bengaluru with only half of the sale amount he got. He can get his kids admitted to an esteemed educational institution and invests in business with the other half.

A few months back raids were conducted on the onion traders in Lasalgaon and Pimpalgaon as a drive to clamp down on hoarding and black marketing. When hoarding of onions to create gap between demand and supply is against law even these builder have to be booked for hoarding of unsold inventories. I have noticed many of the builders as well as private owners display “For Rent” “To-let” they levy heavy rent and wait for more than a year for a tenant. They are so comfortable that the loss of rent does not matter much to them.

This looks like a teaser before the release of the movie "Crack down on benami properties".

Monday, November 27, 2017

1131. ....... with His inspiration!!!

The Haridasa Sahitya is a jewellery casket filled with literature pertaining to Bhakti. “Haridasa” is Servant of Sri Hari. In Karnataka Haridasa Sahitya was started by Sri Narahari Thirtharu but it was Sri Sripadarajaru who brought in to practice which was followed by Sri Vyasarajaru and Sri Vadirajaru. Not to leave behind Purandaradasaru, Kanakadasaru, Vijaydasaru, Gopaladasaru, Jagannathadasaru, Mohanadasaru and many many more contributing to it which has built a strong foundation in the hearts of Sri Hari Bhakthas.
I have a collection of 800 Dasara Padagalu which are real gems. In particular I am floored by the way Sri Vijayadasaru who was the disciple of Sri Purandaradasaru has composed some of the Krithis. There is a subtle message as we see in the famous composition “Kailasavasa Gowreesha Eesha” which is song by renowned Hindustani Classical singer Pandit Sri. Bhimsen Joshi. In the Charana of this krithi Sri Vijayadasaru writes, “Manasu Kaaranavalla Paapa Punyakkella, Analaaksha Ninna Preraneyillade” it means “Mind is not the cause of the sins and virtues, without the inspiration from you Oh, Analaaksha (Maharudradeva).” 
This stanza had confused me a lot until I got to know the subtlety in it. The mystery of circumstances made me turn into a fatalist while my pampered ego and my flinching determination stopped me from turning into one. But later on with Haridasa Sahitya I understood that to get away from being a “Fatalist” pampered Ego alone was not the means but “Prapatti” (Surrender) too is a way.
Have we not heard, experienced and said “Tenavina Trinamapi na Chalati” (Without Him, not even a single grass can move). There are two ways of looking at this statement one as relinquishment of responsibility and running away from performing duty or doing the duty and surrendering to Him wishing Him to take up the responsibility. Sri Vijayadasaru was in fact referring to the second one. Now the most important question that arises is “Does our every act has the inspiration from Him???” 

Sri Vijayadasaru here mentioned “Analaaksha” (one who has fiery eyes) which obviously is Maharudradeva. Sriman Madhva in Tarathamya (Divine hierarchy of Deities) has mentioned Maharudradeva to be “Manoabhimani Devatha” (Controller of Mind). So every thought that appears in our mind has the consent of Maharudradeva. 

If so, the immediate question is “Is Crime too an inspiration of Maharudradeva???”

Prior to any act there is an Internal Monologue, also known as Inner Voice that happens in our mind. There are two entities while one is for the other is against, irrespective of whether it is the far or against that is supporting for the good cause. If the far or against is supporting for the good cause then the “Buddhi” (Intellect) which is propelled by the Dhi Shakti (Intuition) is inspired by Maharudradeva. If it is supporting a selfish cause then it has surpassed the “Voice of God” as it is inspired by Ego. Apart from these two there is one more situation where the decision taken though for a good cause can turn out to be unpleasant. This is what Sri Vijayadasaru wants to emphases on in that stanza.   

Give a thought to this situation; in a village a father of a minor girl who wants to study further in a college decides to marry her off. The retired school teacher advice the father not to, but father is adamant. The teacher informs the police and action is taken. The father of the girl commits suicide and the teacher is the target now. The point here is one need not do anything wrong to be targeted. Unless you have belief in karma (rebirth), many of the circumstances in life be it good or bad, particularly the latter make for no rational explanation of their meaning.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

1130. When the Two Trains Collide...!

A Young man nearing 30 years had applied for the post of Train Gateman. There were a lot of applicants along with him as he entered the Railway Recruitment Board building to attend an interview. He was prepared to answer the question asked at the interview. Some of his friends had shortlisted a few probable questions like: What do you do if you are employed as a Train Gateman? What makes your comforts about a Train Gateman position? What encouragement preparation would you demand being capable to do this Train Gateman job? What is most significant to you in an Executive Train Gateman position? What are the potentials of an elegant Train Gateman? What pertinent Train Gateman skills do you possess? Do you believe you are confident to obtain the position of Train Gateman?  
A little nervous he waited for his turn the clerk called out his name. Taking a deep breath he got up from his seat and walked into the room. There was a gentleman and a lady sitting across the table. The gentleman took the documents file from him and gestured him to sit on the chair. After asking the name and qualification the gentleman asked, “Suppose you are selected for the job and posted to manually operated level crossing. There is a single track and one train is halted just a few yards before the level crossing for technical snag and there is another train scheduled to come from opposite direction, what are you going to do?”   
The enthusiast young man replied, “I will contact the Station Master and report about the halting train. And ask him to stop the oncoming train in the station itself.”

“What if the train has already left the station???” asked the interviewer.

“In that case I will volunteer to stop the oncoming train.” said the young man.

“How???” asked the interviewer giving a naughty glance and smiling at the lady sitting next to him. 

“I will carry the red flag and run towards the train.”

“What if you do not have the red flag???”

“I will remove my shirt and run waving it towards the train.”

“Suppose it is night time and you nor your shirt is visible to the engine driver, now what?”

“I will set fire to the removed shirt and indicate the engine driver to stop.”

 “Think it is raining cats and dogs and you are unable to ignite your shirt, Then???”

 “I will use my torch.”

“And what if the battery of the torch is dead???”

“I will use the kerosene lantern.”

“Suppose the kerosene in the lantern is exhausted???”

“Sir, in that case I will run home and bring my wife who will be doing her chores at home.”

Now, the interviewer was curious to know how the Train Gateman’s wife can handle such a situation. Probing further he asked, “How will your wife avert a possible accident???”

The young man replied, “No sir, my wife is from a village and she is just 6th pass, I love her a lot. She does not know a thing about this train gateman job. I got married to her two years ago. I have provided everything to her in those past two years and taken her to city to show the Mela (Fair) and Nautanki (Folk Theater), as far as possible I want her to experience everything in life; she has never seen two trains collide in her life. I would not let her miss this opportunity.”

There was silence in the room for a few minutes. The young man had indeed given a befitting answer to the questions from a Thale Harate (Headlong) interviewer who wanted to show his smartness in front of his female colleague.  

Thursday, November 23, 2017

1129. History a Mirror to the Past….!

History should not be altered it should not enhance the heroism of a historical character nor should it demean anyone. It has to be like a mirror to the past. Every individual be it a King, Queen, General or a Citizen will have a mixed sequence of events in life which could make them good or not so good. History has to just showcase that sequence of events without being judgemental or branding them.

Now some might ask, what is the necessity of history???

There can never be a person who can answer this question as none of us can remain mortal to know how history has abetted society. History is human studies; it is not the same as Chemistry, Physics or Athematic. The works of historians may not be “scientific” as works of other subjects. History has a lot to do with the role of the chronicler; not the rule of a formula. If we can understand it this way, this subject though least precise is the most precious of all human studies.

History is quest to learn about events of the past by studying the inscriptions, relics and artefact’s, etc. This study aids in imbibing the noble qualities that our ancestors had and also help us to be aware of those blunders they committed so that we do not repeat them in our lives.

Why has history become thorn in the flesh in recent days???

Interpretation of history on the lines of majority and minority is dividing the society. If history is understood this way it is like sowing the seed of poison. For example: when we can know from history that Mohammad Gazni and Aurangzeb ransacked temples looted them and also built mosques in the place of an existing temple, why should the minority of this country get offended and think of Gazni Mohammed and Aurangzeb as their own people and heroes??? Here if we look at these two characters of the past from the religion angle, the problem starts. This idea of looking at the history from the religion angle is for political benefits and this trend will not last long. With the advent of social networking the information of events from the past history is available. Yes, the authenticity though is debatable. 

There is a Shubhashita, “Vade Vade Jayate Tattvabodha” (Through continuous debate alone does one arrive at the Truth). Whether they are minority or majority, if they do not have the magnanimity to debate with emotional maturity and analyse then, such information is meaningless and also dangerous.

Historians are not new to us but their ways of projecting the events of history in recent times has made us deter from history. Suta Puranika was the first historian who kept tab of all the events that happened and recited it to Rishi Saunaka which later on were compiled by Bhagavan Vyasadeva and called it Puranas. Even in those literatures  there were “Suras” and “Asuras” but we never had problem with those characters we even recite the “Shiva Thandava Stotra” composed by Ravana. It is only in the recent times that we have people who have started adoring Ravana, Karna, Mahishasura and Mahabali. It is not the question of who adores whom but the concern is distorting the history. 

Let us take the example of “Maveli” (Onapattu) by Sahodaran Ayyappan, the social reformer, thinker, rationalist, journalist and politician from Kerala. For more than centuries the people from the “God Own Country” had revered Maha Bali for his able administration and welcome him with festivity every year on Onam day. I do not understand why the rationalist Sahodaran Ayyappan (normally rationalists do not approve Hindu puranas) had to write a song praising the King Bali and call him a Buddhist??? How can Maha Bali be a Buddhist when Buddha Avatara was after Vamana??? Was it to intimidate the Brahmins over Vamana’s Brahmanattva???  

This is what is called Distorting History with an hidden agenda behind it. 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

1128. Natural, Herbal, Organic.....!

In Rig Veda there is Mantra “Ano Bhadrah Krathavo Yanthu Vishwathaha” (May all the good and auspicious beset me from all sides of the Universe). This wonderful Sukta (“Su” meaning “Good” Ukta meaning “Saying”) is the 89th in the First Ashtaka of the First Mandala.  

We are a pluralistic society and hence since ages we are advised to take all the good and auspicious pouring from every direction. The Sukta tells the seeker not to have Sankuchita Bhava (Narrow Mind) which could hamper growth. Instead if the seeker has Vishala Manobhava (Open Mind) he will consider new ideas and try to remodel himself for better. But this Mantra do not say that everything that we receive as new ideas are admirable, it only advice to test the validity of whatever is obtained. Sometimes because of the Vishala Manobhava we possess, we are taken for a royal ride. There is no need to entertain any new ideas which fail to improvise the already existing one. Unfortunately today we are infused with few new ideas which not only have the ability to improvise but vanquish the existing one. the only satisfaction though is that only a few fall prey to it.   

A few years back Kellogg’s entered India. Kellogg’s introduced Corn flakes, a packaged cereal product formed from small toasted flakes of corn, usually served cold with milk and sugar. It wanted Indians who relished Idly-Vaada, Puri-Bhaaji, Dosas, Pesarattu, Thalipeeth, Parathas, Pohas and the very humble Dal Khichdi (Pongal) for their breakfast to change to corn flakes. Yes, it was a new idea but it could not improve on the nutrition value nor score on the taste buds. 

Initially when it made the grand entry into the market we Indians made “Curious Buying” which the company misread the initial trends and the initial spike in sales. Also the middle class and the lower middle class did give the brand a chance, but the chances did not repeat. Our mothers in India do feel happy cooking and serving delicious breakfast even if it is tedious. They never prefer corn flakes with milk unless they are working women.

I am not so incline towards Ayurvedic products, but look at how an Indian FMGC company which came up in the year 2006 has shaken up the old players. It has its products themed around “Ancient Tradition” and “Indianness” which has made the already existing MNC companies to recheck thier flow chart. 

The Salt, Neem and Charcoal in toothpaste to now “Vedshakti” in the paste. The indian market was flooded with the “Chemical Formula” Fluoride while we Indians were using Salt, Neem twigs and Charcoal powder for oral care. Also these MNC’s have a nice way to market their products in India they use words like Natural, Herbal, Organic and Vedic or crown one of our many beautiful charming young girls as “Miss World” and make her the brand ambassador to their products.

Maybe it could work with Higher Class society but our Middle Class and Lower Middle Class retain their loyalty to the “Indianness” always. We go by the knowledge passed on to generations through tradition. The culture and tradition has somehow safeguarded the uniqueness of the natural product recipes which was once in every household and is returning back now with a brand name tagged.     

Monday, November 20, 2017

1127. ...... Real Conversion!!!

King Bittideva of Hoysala Kingdom was a follower of Jainism. During his rule Srimad Ramanuja stayed in Saligrama, he had a disciple Vaduga Nambi who informed about the political situations there. The daughter of Bittideva was suffering from an illness which none were able to cure her. When Srimad Ramanuja was in Kanchipuram he had cure the illness of daughter of King Veera Rajendra.  Bittideva was informed about Srimad Ramanuja being in his kingdom and the above incident. The King request Srimad Ramanuja for help and the princess was cured of her illness, with the help of “Narasimha Danda” from Yoga Narasimha temple atop the hill at Melukote. This act prompted King Bittideva become a disciple of Srimad Ramanuja and started following Vaishnavism. He was given the name Vishnuvardhana by Srimad Ramanuja. They say Bittideva who was a Jaina was converted to Hinduism by Srimad Ramanuja, which is not true.

Srimad Ramanuja never asked Bittideva to become a Vaishnava, if so he could have converted Shantaladevi, the wife of Vishnuvardhana, her parents Marasingamayya & Manchikabbe and all the chieftains of Vishnuvardhana who were all Jains. Even though their King changed his faith from Jainism to Vaishnavism, they all continued to follow Jain Philososphy without fear.  

While Vishnuvardhana was building the Pancha Narayana Kshetras (Chaluvanarayana at Melukote, Nambinarayana at Tondanur,  Vijayanarayana at Beluru, Kirtinarayna at Talakad and finally Veeranarayana at Gadag) Shantaladevi who continued to follow Jainism was built Savati Gandhavarana Basadi. There was no forceful conversion by the King; he let her follow her faith. Even Srimad Ramanuja had no objection to it. This is how religious harmony thrived in my country until the advent of a few Mughal rulers who either had with them Shahs, Qalandars, Murshids, Marabouts, Shaikhs, Faqirs and Darweshs who insisted on spreading Islam by converting the citizens to Islam or those who called themselves Khalifas like Alauddin Khilji and Tippu Sultan who butchered people for not converting to Islam.  
Look at what the conversion has done, Constantinople has been converted from Christianity to Islam to become Istanbul. What happened to those Buddhists and Hindus in Afghanistan Pakistan and Baluchistan???

History says that in the year 680 A.D a battle took place between a small group of supporters of Hussain Ali, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad and a larger military detachment from the forces of Yazid I, the Umayyad Kalifa. When Muawiyah I died in 680, Hussain did not give allegiance to his son, Yazid I, who had been appointed as Umayyad Kalifa by Muawiyah; Hussain considered Yazid’s succession a breach of the Hasan–Muawiya treaty which was made by the 5th Kalifa of Sunni Islam Hasan Ali, cousin of Hussain Ali and the 1st Kalifa of Umayyad. The treaty was that no successor has to be named during the reign but let the Islamic world choose the successor thereafter. The successor was appointed and hence the battle of Karbala. In those times there was trade between Bharat and Baghdad; Rahab Singh Dutt of Mohyal Clan of Brahmin warriors sacrificed his seven sons supporting Hussain Ali in the battle. Learning about the battle and the sacrifice of seven sons, a large army from present Rajasthan was sent by King to assist Hussain Ali. By the time they arrived, however, the Hussain Ali had been slain and those Brahmin warriors later on settled there. The uniqueness is that those Hussaini Brahmins observe Muharram even to this day.

Look at the history none of our Kings have invaded any other country or none of our Philosophers tried to convert anyone……..Mera Bharat Mahan.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

1126. Hippocratic Oath and Healthcare Professionals....!

I always had considered Doctors to be second God along with Teachers. Importantly the healthcare providers get into their profession after taking the “Hippocratic Oath”. The oath rekindles the high ethical and moral prerequisite in them. Also a doctor should be fully committed to cure, care and being compassionate.

This medical profession is and should have been only for the altruists as it is since ages interpreted as a huge social mission and public service. It implies spacious mind, intellectual capacity, recognition, and support of colleagues, continuous practise and its implementation. Hence some doctors enjoy a special status in society for their professionalism, attitude towards patient, commitment, expertise, theoretical knowledge and practical skills.  

This profession is never for money minded as this profession is not a money-yielding-tree kind of a profession. The logic of fleecing patients is a lame excuse to get back the capitation fee they paid to get the medical degree. The problem is that the medical institutions are either owned by the influential politicians or they have substantial representation in the board of directors of the institutions either directly or through their kith and kin. These medical institutions sell the medical seats to unworthy candidates in large numbers while a few of them are for reservation candidates. These both candidates end up as money sucking leeches by insisting patients to purchase specified medicines which the medical representatives have exhorted to them, so that they would get a commission from the pharmaceutical companies. They do recommend a series of expensive tests and investigations to be done from a specific laboratory as they receive their cut from the receipts.     
Most payments to the doctors are made in cash and it is astonishing to find that even in the laboratories they insist on cash payment so that the payment cannot be traced. Hence, in the annual Income Tax returns most doctors or laboratories show only a minuscule percentage of their actual earnings. 

Unfortunately at this period of digital money even the patient or his relatives do not request for the card payment fearing the doctors spoil their cases in anger. For them at that crucial time money will never be prominent saving the life of the patient is the priority. This is the trump card for those money sucking leeches.

The doctors and the paramedical staff on strike in my state has affected many patients. The protest was to demand the government to drop the proposed bill to amend to the Karnataka Private Medical Establishments Act (KPMEA). The bill seeks to hike the penalties levied on doctors in case of errs in diagnosis and treatment to the extent of imprisonment. It is also aimed at regulating the amount of money charged in various private hospitals and to make the costing more transparent.

Personally I feel it is not the “Bill” but the “Will” of the healthcare professionals that matters more. The moment these professionals work with clear conscience then the relationship between the patient and the medic will flourish. There are a few regulations which need no enforcement by Law but by Love. 

Saturday, November 11, 2017

1125. Five Prominent Distinctions......!

Dvaita Philosophy of Sriman Madhva is based mainly on Pancha Bedha (Five Distinctions) hence this concept of triple classification of Jeevis (Individual) as “Nithya Muktha, Nithya Samsaari, Nithya Naraki” (Those who are forever free; forever involved in mundane world and forever going through the torments of hell) arise and that is Reality. This classification has a broader hypothesis to explain the human nature. We are but forced to accept that malicious trait is very much present in human beings. No amount of pious hopes can explain away the fact that human beings lay hands on others properties, mothers get raped before children, fathers’ rape their own daughters as the atrocities happening in society today.

Now, the philosophical question is from where does these malicious thought originate???

We cannot believe it originated from Daiva (God) who is the source of all, nor can Vishaya (Matter), Desha (Space) or Kala (Time) be blamed. But it cannot come into existence all of a sudden without any Purvaja (Antecedent). Therefore, it has to be located in the Swarupa (Nature) of the Jeevi (Individual). This is a logical explanation for reality and also supported by scriptures. Sriman Madhva and the other two Acharyas Sri Sri Sankara and Srimad Ramanuja emphasise that Adyatma (Spirituality) is an inner activity of the Jeevi and he dives into it on his volition based how he perceives and contemplates. There is no reason to believe that a Jeevi is destined for Abhishasti (Damnation) alone. All the physical and mental tribulation he endures could be wearing off his Karmaphala (Resultant Fruits) of his past Karma (Actions). While at the same time he is designing his Agami Karma (Current Actions).

Irony is that despite all its philosophical strength the Dvaita school of thought which is most realistic has a few followers. Most of us are brain washed into believing Yang Ying of Zen philosophy which says opposite forces are complementary, interconnected, and interdependent and hence we have a little good and little evil in us. Then, why should we worry about the atrocities happening in the society??? If every individual is same then why do we have punishments and jails??? Or why is declining morality in society a concern to us??? False views do not inspire society. It is better to understand the reality, however unpalatable it is, and act accordingly than propagate falsehood for sake for imposing harmony.

As I understand that the value of currency note does not change even if it is soiled as Sri Sri Sankara feels, but the reality is that we prefer a crispy note to a soiled one which Sriman Madhva points to. There is Bedha and one has to accept it, see even our great Kannada novelist, poet, playwright, critic and progressive thinker Sri Kuppali Venkatappa Puttappa (Kuvempu) when composing “Jaya Bharata Jananiya Tanujate” purposefully left out Sriman Madhva. Every time this “Nada Geethe” (State Anthem) is sung there is an awkward fumbling when it comes to the line “...Shankara Ramanuja Vidyaranya, Basaveshwarariha divyaranya..” which omits  “Madhva” in that line, despite the great Acharya belonging to this region. 

Amazingly as explained by Sriman Madhva our Rashtrakavi (National Poet) Kuvempu who contributed a lot to “Vishwa Maanavataa Vaada (Universal Humanism) failed to display that trait in his thought, word & deed. By not including Sriman Madhva in the “Nada Geethe” (State Anthem) he proved that philosophy of Sriman Madhva is accurate and seem to have accepted that it is in the Swarupa (Nature) of an individual to incentivise discrimination while talking against it.

Philosophy is a dispassionate examination of questions about reality. Pramarthika Satya (Eternal Reality) cannot be modified or adopted to changing veracities of time. Dvaita is in accordance to Vedas which also deals with the nature of humans. Vyavaharika Satya (Mundane Reality) is the touchstone to determine the authenticity of Sriman Madhva’s works and not the changing political opinions of the day.

Friday, November 10, 2017

1124. Aham Brahmasmi...!

Maricha, the maternal uncle (Mama) of Ravana could see anxiety on the face of Ravana. There was something which was bothering the mighty Asura which was never seen or heard before. Ravana was walking anxious in his room Maricha approached him and asked, “What’s the matter something seems to be bothering you?”

Ravana looked at Maricha and said, “Sita, it is about Sita! I am not able to convince her to be my queen.”

Maricha replied. “That should not be a problem at all, tell her how powerful you are. Or force her to be your queen.”

Ravana said, “The curse of Vedavathi restricts me to touch her without her consent. Moreover one cannot win over a women heart by force.”

Maricha gave a thought to what Ravana said and suggested, “Don’t worry, you are expert in sorcery. Why don’t you use your power of disguise to cheat her to marry you? You can disguise as Rama and approach her; she will take you as Rama and will accept you as her King.

Looking even more bothered Ravana replied, “Mama, I have tried that too, but as soon as I disguised as Rama every women appear to me as my mother or sister. I do not understand why the moment I become Rama my mind too is changed.” 

Now this is what I understand is “Aham Brahmasmi.” The moment Ravana thinks he is Shri Rama, the true character of Shri Rama gets into him. 

Is it the trait of Rama or Ravana???

The one who has intense faith be it positive or negative will attain Him. For instance both Prahlada and his father Hiranyakashyapa were constantly thinking of Sri Hari. While Prahlada was remembering Him as the Lord of the Universe, Hiranyakashyapa considered Sri Hari to be his only enemy and was always after Him. Sri Hari emerged from the pillar for both. It was purely requital for Prahlada for his immense faith that his God is omnipresent. For Hiranyakashyapa it was going back home to guard the gates of Vaikunta. Immense faith is important with no place for skepticism.  

Devanahalli Venkataramanaiah Gundappa popularly known as DVG, a Kannada writer and philosopher has written thus in His Mankutimmana Kagga, “Hiranyakashapu did not believe in Him; but Prahlada did; both got liberated, one from Kamba (Pillar) and the other by Bimba (faith on Image): You try to disbelieve in your own beliefs and wriggle like a fly caught in jelly; Mankutimma.

Sometimes I find that my friends have had an over dose of me and my philosophical thinking. As for them I am a person with philosophy more than they can handle. Sometimes I too feel that may be I am too much of a philosophical person and then the next question in my mind is, Is there anything wrong with being philosophical? It is not easy to understand whatever we see and deal with it here, so I try to look for some more insight from the philosophical dimension. 

Amazingly with the grace of Sri Hari there is always a way to that understanding.