Saturday, July 22, 2017

1060. If what I deserve is already destined......!

We in Hinduism believe in Karma Siddhanta  and all the Shad Dharshanas (Six Insights) namely Samkya (Rationalism), Yoga (Union), Nyaya (Logic), Vaisheshika (Distinctionism), Mimamsa (Exegesis), Vedanta (Upanishad) have all in one sense or the other reflected on Karma. Sri Krishna tells in Bhagavad-Gita, “Gahanaa Karmano Gatih” (hard to know the pace of Karma). It is hard but not impossible to know and learn about the intricacies of the theory of Karma.

Superficially the interpretation of this theory does say that what I deserve in this birth is an outcome of the merits I accumulated over the past births. In other words one may conclude that the efforts I put into the present work may not bear direct relevance to its success. And, thus, if I believe in this theory of Karma from this perception, then I would prefer to do nothing in this birth giving the reason that what I deserve is not influenced by my efforts on the work I have taken up now? This is pure nonsense to think so. 

In this virtual world this is what is happening if we observe. Most of us, work for monthly wages. The money I spend on sustaining myself on any given day would be the outcome of my effort in the previous month. The efforts I put in during that month yielded me nothing to help me in that month, but has influenced my salary slip of this month. 

If I don't work this month then what would happen to my salary next month? Well, if I truly believed that there would be a next month in my life and I would need to sustain myself in that month, I would need to work this month, 

Now a new question arises if the above logic is considered then those who believe that they had a few past births that got them what they deserve in this birth, from where would they get the deserved fortune for the next birth if they are to come back by taking another birth. Would they not do something to secure the fortune for the next  birth?

This precisely seem to be the problem either there is carelessness in doing something or there is fear of doing nothing.  These situation arises out of a belief in the past births without a conviction about the future ones. If one believed in both, one would still continue to work. But, then, it is customary for the 'rational' human beings to cherry-pick their beliefs to suit what they want to do, isn't it? 

So, I believe that my work in my past births will take care of me in this birth but I do not believe that there is a future birth for which I need to do something in this birth to take care of the things I deserve then. 

As far as I am concern I do not indulge in reasons for my inaction. And as far as the fruit for the action done in this birth I do not care. If anyone ask me if this is Karma Sanyasa I do not know but I feel so. 

The purusharthas (pursuit of life) too indicate the purpose if life has to be spontaneous and not to be planned and done by calculating the loss and gain......Am I right???

Thursday, July 20, 2017

1059. The Mystery behind tying the Cat....!

The year was 1924 and a group of young men from Madras Province decided to visit Muktinath temple in Nepal. This temple on the banks of river Gandaki is one among the 108 Divya Desams (sacred place).
The group reaches the Muktinath temple and in the group there was a young man who while swimming in the river Gandaki stumbled upon a fist size “Salagrama Sila” this Sila is considered auspicious among all Vaishnavites and the one who takes it home has to give a milk ablution to it daily as per tradition. Now he has brought the Sila he purchases a cow so that daily he can milk the cow and use the milk for ablution. It so happened that every morning he got up early and milked the cow and went to take bath and there was this cat in his house which would drink all the milk. Fed up with the cat he decides to tie the cat before milking the cow and after the ablution program was over he would let the cat free.

This became the procedure daily. He got married and the procedure was the same, and he had son and the procedure was same but it was not the same cat and the cow but it was their offspring. His son becomes young man and the procedure did not change. Now this person had become old so lets his son do the ablution and the procedure of tying the cat continued. The old man died in the year 1975 and his son who worked for a company was given a quarters and he shifted the entire family to the quarters. As he could not accommodate the cow he sells it but fortunately since cats and dog do not need much accommodation he takes the cat.

The milk to be used for ablution was brought from the nearby dairy and the ablution to the Salagrama Sila was done uninterrupted, but the cat was tied to avoid it drinking the milk kept for ablution. He got married and the procedure remained the same and he had son and the procedure was same but it was not the same cat but it was its offspring. His son becomes young man and the procedure was not changed. This person also gets old and his son who now works for an IT company has no time to do ablution to the Salagrama Sila hence he donates it to the temple but ritual of tying the cat early morning continued.

This person also passes away in 2000 and the IT son gets married and the new bride asks the mother-in-law why the cat is always tied early in the morning. The mother-in-law does not know but she does not want to say “I do not know” and display her ignorance, so she intelligently tells her daughter-in-law that it is a tradition which is been honoured for more than 200 years in the family and even she has to continue doing so. And the cat is tied early in the morning for some time and let loose, even when the milk is stored in the refrigerator. 

The tradition of tying the cat early morning continues and hence the family gets the name “Pillikattu” family meaning the family which tie the cat  (Pilli in Telugu is cat).

This is how we blindly follow some routine procedures giving it the name traditions, The real essence of why it is been done none of us know and none of us care to know also. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

1058. Life is like the game of dice.....!

Yudhisthira was an ace player of Game of Dice. He was an expert in moving the pawns very tactfully and winning the game. The opponents could not read his moves. What made Yudhisthira lose his magic touch on that fateful day??? Not once but twice??? In the first occasion he lost all his brothers and his wife as the stake in the game. The second time he lost the entire kingdom kingdowas expanded by performing the Rajasuya Yagna. A human makes mistake once, but here is the wisest of all men succumbing twice. How was it possible???

Sahadeva, the son of Madri and the youngest of the Pandavas was an expert astrologer. Duryodhana knew very well about it and he approached Sahadeva to fix an auspicious time to offer “Kaalabali” (a ritualistic sacrifice performed before war to ensure victory). Sahadeva following the path of Dharma treated Duryodhana as a Parsnuvi (Patron) and told him, “The appropriate time to offer the sacrifice would be on the day when Surya and Chandra are in the same house, that is on “Amavasya” (New Moon). Duryodhana had to wait for another ten days for teg auspicious day. He did offer “Kaalabali” on the new moon day, yet the outcome of the war did not turn out to be as he had expected. 

What happened??? 

We all are familiar with the Bhagavad-Gita quotes which are labelled as “Gita Saar” and published as calendars and pocket books. 

The first quote in it says:
“Whatever has happened is happened for good. 
Whatever is happening is happening for good. 
Whatever will happen will happen for good.”
Though Sri Krishna did not tell Arjuna in exactly the same words as in the quote, but I presume that this quote is reflecting on the verse 33 of chapter 11 in which Sri Krishna explains Arjuna about the predestined play at work in the material world and remind Arjuna that he is just an instrument. 

Now coming to the subject why did the astrology of Sahadeva fail and how did Yudhisthira, the ace player of game of dice lose the game???

Yudhisthira was skilful in the Game of Dice agreed but Shakuni used the dice made out of the bones of his brothers. Thus he had command over dice so that he could manipulate the fall of numbers. Yudhisthira who was very tactful in handling his pawns was crippled by the voodoo tricks of Shakuni. Pandavas had to lose the game and that was predestined.   

Let us see the second incidence.

When Sahadeva told Duryodhana about Amavasya, Sri Krishna became alert and the next day which was not new moon day he performed “Tarpana” (a ritual of offering to ancestors). Tarpana is performed on new moon according to the scriptures. Looking at this rare gesture by the Lord, Surya and Chandra were shocked and they came down to Hastinapura to ask Sri Krishna about it. Immediately Sri Krishna asked Yudhisthira to perform “Kaalabali.” The trick here was that Yudhisthira became the first to do the “Kaalabali.” ritual ahead of Duryodhana and as far as Amavasya is concern, we all know that the new moon happens when Surya and Chandra are in one house. There they were both together standing side by side. Sri Krishna made it happen.

Whatever has to happen will happen .......just be a part of it and enjoy the turn of events.

He is there to see it happen so just be a instrument in His hands....then you too will enjoy the play .

1057. “I” the bitter enemy.....!

There are two words in Sanskrit “Ahamkara” (Ego) and “Asmitha” (“I”ness). We often confuse these two words as in the English translation we tend to interchange them to convey our thought. As I understand “Ahamkara” is one among the four Anthahkarna (Inner Conscience) along with Manas (Mind), Buddhi (Intellect) and Chitta (Memory). 

Ahamkara refers to a sense of self that is somewhat self-existent and though it is shaped up by the information received from the external resource it does not depend on it to obtain a place in my conscience.   

Asmitha is one of the four afflictions of mind along with Avidhya (Ignorance), Raga (Attraction), Dwesha (Aversion) and Abhinivesha (clinging to live). It is just a sense of “I”ness without Ego coming into play. It is just the identification of the perceiver with the reflection of the perception. From this identification there is a feel of “I” see, “I” hear etc. This “I”ness is felt as soon as one is awake in the morning. So Asmitha rely on its association to outward appearance for its place in my conscience.   

In simple words, Ahamkara is sense of self that is related to internal experiences while Asmitha is more self worth when it is related to external experience, hence we compare ourselves and feel that we are better or worse than others.

Once there was a sculptor who got his training done under Devashilpi Vishwakarma, the divine architect. His sculptures look very much real. He was so perfect that it was impossible for anyone to differentiate between the statue and a real human. Vishwakarma was very pleased with his Shishya for the dedication and the efforts of learning the art to perfection. He wished to reward him appropriately he said, “I am overwhelmed by the interest you have on learning the art, I wish to grant you a boon for your sincerity in learning.”

The sculptor said, “Oh! Deva, let me know in advance the date and time of my death.”

Vishwakarma was surprised by the request but yet granted it.

Years passed on and finally the time came for the sculptor to face death. A few month before the appropriate time of death the sculptor designed nine statues which looked exactly like him. No one could make out the difference between him and the nine statues he had made. On the day of his death he placed all the nine statues in a row and stood as the tenth so that he could dodge God of Death.

When God of Death arrived, he was amazed to see ten sculptors. He was in a dilemma as to who was real. He immediately rushed to the Creator and informed him of the situation. The Creator smiled and whispered something in his ears. God of Death grinned and left. Then the God of Death stood in front of those statues and said “Oh! Marvelous, so well and perfectly designed even the Creator cannot make something like this. No one has ever created like this before nor can be done in future. But I feel there is a slight defect in one of the statues.”

Hearing the word “defect” the sculptor jumped out and asked “Where is the mistake?” God of Death immediately threw the Pasha (Noose) on the sculptor and said “This is the mistake. If you had remained silent and stood as one among the statues maybe you could have won over death. But those thoughts like, “I” am perfect; “I” cannot make mistake, which has engulfed you has exposed you to me. Now everything is over, Dear”.

The sculptor had to follow the God of Death without arguing further......! 

Monday, July 17, 2017

1056. Why dearth in words?

Communication is very important in this civilised society. We have to talk and interact with others to express our feeling and also to know their feelings. One important observation is that the interactions which we do with many will not be in the same wavelength. The interaction will be best and fruitful only if the wavelength matches. Also we would want to interact with some avoid, while we some, a few we love to only listen to and we have some with whom we end up being upset.  There is so many difference in the way we interact, now why is this difference?
There are different people who will take the word in a different ways. And at the same time the words can also be presented in the way it suites the person who we are presenting it. We have a different ways while talking to a friend and the boss. A friend can take any kind of word but a boss is very particular about the word flow from you. 

There is a story of a young man who completes his education under an eminent astrologer. The young man starts his journey of life.  He was good at predictions and soon became famous. His fame reached the King who wished to show him his horoscope.  

The young man looked at the horoscope and told the king, “I have never seen such a horoscope in my life.  You will lose your sons and grandsons. Your enemies will take away your kingdom.  Though you get the kingdom back it will be when you are old.” 

Hearing this, the King was annoyed and ordered the guards to put the young man into the prison.  Meanwhile the Guru of the young man came to know about the incidence, he came to see the King. Though the King was reluctant to see another astrologer, his minister convinced him to listen to the astrologer. 
Guru saw the horoscope and came to know his shishya was correct in analysing the horoscope, he said, “Oh! King, I have never seen such a horoscope all my life. I say you are very fortunate to live longer than your sons and grandsons. Your enemies take away your kingdom but even in your ripe age you fight and get it back. You rule your kingdom till your death.” 

The King was very happy to hear the prediction from the Guru. He was so happy that he wanted to reward the Guru. Guru told him to release the young man.  Once his student was released from the prison, the Guru took him away and taught him the last lesson:

Priyavakya pradaanena sarve tushyanti jantavaha 
tasmaat tadeva vaktavyam, vachane kaa daridrataa?

Every individual is happy with pleasant words.  Hence use only such words.  Why dearth in words?  

What the young man and his Guru told the King was the same in intent but the content was presented differently.  One version was palatable and the other was not.

Vachane kaa daridrata?

Why dearth in words?

1055. Atma Linga

Ravana once went to meet Maharudradeva in Mount Kailasa. He was stopped at the foot of the mount by Nandi as the Lord was Maa Parvathi  privacy. Feeling insulted Ravana tried to lift the mount. Maharudradeva pressed the ground with his big toe and the mighty Ravana was stuck beneath the huge mount. 

Now humiliated Ravana wanted to please his Lord who was fond of music. He ripped opened his belly pulled out his intestine and started to play it as Veena. Nandi who was witnessing this was shocked to see the height of devotion.

Maharudradeva who is the darling of his devotees came down and was generous enough to grant him a boon. Seizing the opportunity Ravana asked Maharudradeva to give him the Atma Linga.

Atma Linga is an ovaloid of the supreme self having the center everywhere and the circumference nowhere. It is the source of Shakti, the power. 

Ravana was very careful to take it to Lanka. The uniqueness of it was thwasif placed on the ground the Atma Linga would stay fixed. Ravana was a Asura (Demon) and the legend says that the one who worshiped Atma Linga would become immortal. The Suras (Demi-Gods) requested Maha Vishnu to foil the attempt of Ravana to take the Atma Linga to Lanka.

Maha Vishnu asked Ganesha to approach Ravana in the guise of a young Brahmin and using his Sudarshana veiled the sun. Thinking it to be twilight Ravana thought of performing the Sandhyavandana (Sun worship). He could not place the Atma Linga down. He saw the young  Brahmin and gave it to him asking him not to let Atma Linga down.

The Brahmin boy agreed on one condition that he would call  out trice and if Ravana did not come  he would place the Atma Linga on the ground. Ravana had  started his Sandhyavandana when the Brahmin called out three times and placed the Atma Linga on the ground.

Ravana came back and tried to lift the Atma Linga but all his efforts went futile. The Atma Linga got fixed to the earth. Frustrated Ravana used all his strength and pushed it into the earth further, so that only a little tip was visible. That little tip resembled the ear of the cow. Gokarna is the place and the Atma Linga is Sri Mahaballeshwara. The
Temple is in the costal region of Karnataka.  

Atma Linga is two word i.e. is Atma and Linga.
Atma is the main source of Power. Atma is the creator, destroyer or maintainer of the world. Linga  is that which gives identity in this materialistic world.

Every individual has Atma Linga within which aid to contemplate on and experience the eternal bliss.

Har Har Mahadeva!!!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

1054. I am a Patriot....!

On the 16th day of May month of the year 2014 there was political change in my country. Though everyone expected that there would be an ideological change as well, I personally felt if there is an ideological change then my country would only be pulled many years back. Saffronisation, the cow slaughter issue, imposing of uniform civil code, moral policing by right-wing activists and so on would only hinder the growth of my country. 

Yes, as an individual who wish to see the country move ahead of the other developed and developing countries it is appropriate to oppose these ideological changes. Having such views according to some is “patriotism” Amazingly there are some who oppose the ideological imposing in a different way and call themselves “Nationalist”.

Now I am really confused if I am a Patriot or a Nationalist???

My confusion in this issue does not cloud my thinking process to call those who raise the slogan like “Bharat ki barbadi tak jang rahegi jang rahegi” and those who bad-mouth the Indian Armed Force as traitors. Astonishingly by calling them traitors I become intolerant. 

If I express my displeasure on Pakistan flag being hoisted in Kashmir, Kerala or West Bengal, I am termed Bhakt.

If I credit Bhakti Movement as the foundation for Indian Freedom Struggle, I am accused of projecting Hindutva, I would be termed Hindu Fundamentalist.

If I quote a verse from a Hindu scriptures to give clarification on the prevailing affairs, I am considered Manuvadi and automatically I am Anti-Dalit.

In other words I am not a Nationalist.

If prerequisite qualities are necessary to be to be a Nationalist it is not my cup of coffee. 

Let us not get confused with patriotism here. “Saare Jahan Se Accha, Hindustan Hamara”  is the patriotic zeal in us but now we need another slogan which does not limit us, the slogan should be “Sarve jana sukhino bhavanthu.”

We Indians need to shed the ideals of nationalism, embrace an ideology based purely on morality, re-affirm our faith in the diversity of our great land and allow the ideology of non-violent protests. After all, that is how we got Independence. There was no category as Hindu, Muslim, Sikh or Christian while we fought the British, we stood united. The British while leaving this country cunningly infused the divide policy and we adopted it and ironically we are using it even today. Will not the nations sharing border with us take advantage of our infighting???

I remember here an incidence in Mahabharata when Duryodhana was held captive by Chitraratha, a Gandharva King. Yudhisthira commanded Arjuna and Bhima to fight with the Gandharvas and rescue Duryodhana. When Yudhisthira was questioned about his decision to help his arch rival the Kaurava prince, he said:

Paraih paribhave prapte vayam panchotaram shatam,
Paraspara virodhetu vayam panchaiva, te shatam!  

Meaning: In a conflict with outsiders, we are 105. In the dispute between ourselves, we are 5 and they are 100.

We need patriots who think in that order. Thus we can work to better the morals of our citizens and in the process, create a better World, not just a Great Nation. We need patriots who can, without fear, ask the Indian state any question they wish. We need patriots who feel proud when the state does good, feel ashamed when the state does bad and feel angry when the state oppresses. Yet when it comes to the dignity of the state, we need stand united and fight the external menace. 

We need patriots whose driving principles are strong morals that never get swayed by race, religion, caste and nationality. We don’t need nationalists and hence, I proudly declare myself a Patriot not a Nationalist.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

1053. Sri Jayathirtha.

There are numerous personalities in Dvaitha Siddhantha after the founder Sriman Madhva who have lite the path or life with their torch of thoughts. The sixth pontiff after the Paramacharya in the linage was Sri Jayathirtha. He belonged to Aristocrat Brahmin family before the encounter with the fifth pontiff and his Guru Akshobhya Tirtha. The young man who was riding a horse felt thirsty, in an acrobatic style he tried to drink water from the River Kagini without alighting the horse. seeing this the Guru asked him, "which animal were you in your previous life?" 

This question made the young man contemplate on who he was? The dormant truth of his previous life flashed before him. He was Basava, the bull in his previous life and in the life before that he was Arjuna, the ace archer of Mahabharata. The pervious birth flashbacks made him realize the purpose of his birth in this life span. 

Under the efficient Guru the young man got transformed into a very proficient student of Dvaitha philosophy. 

Sri Jayathirtha brilliantly captured the pithy statements of his Paraguay Sriman Madhva in a lucid and simple language. It is universally admitted in the Dvaita Sampradaya (Tradition) that the depth and insight of the philosophical ocean of Tatvavaada (Doctrine of Truth) can only be appreciated with the help of the Nyaya Sudha.

Nyaya Sudha is considered to be the eye opener to the seeker who wish to know the Brahma Sutras of Bhagvan Vyasadeva. It is a commentary done on Anuvakhyana of Sriman Madhva which in turn was the commentary to Brahma Sutras. The word "teeka" in Sanskrit is used for commentary. For writing down commentary for many scriptures this scholarly pontiff was fondly called Teekacharya by his followers.

Jayathirtha used to sit alone in Yeragola cave and write commentaries with great sincerity, patience and knowledge. The flow of wisdom was due to the Aparoksha Jnana (Perceptible Knowledge). The swift flow of his words drifted like Dancing Ganga. The clarity he possesses was like how a fullmoon would look in the dark sky. The precise and aptness of each and every word came with a poetic precision. The power and strength  of his logic flashes like thounderbolt on a stormy night. The eloquence of his speech can just be sensed and can never be fully comprehended. Analysis, arguments and his absolute insight need only to be experienced. Ultimately, undoubtedly, he becomes the personification of Sriman Madhwa’s unfathomable heart.

On this day which markes the 629th aradhana Mahotsava of Sri Jayathirth I bow to his Medha Shakti.

Prathamo Arjuno nama, Dvitiyo Vrushabha eva cha, Teekacharya thritiyosthu Hanumat karya saadhaka.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

1052. And that is Love ......!

His daughter was the apple of his eye she was in 7th standard. She was intelligent but made a ruckus to eat food. Her mother was fed up feeding her. As soon as Sanjeev came home it was his duty to make the little kid eat her dinner. Sanjeev had to use all his academic as well as analytical knowledge to see that his daughter is through with her dinner. 
Today was no different as he came out of the rest room he heard his wife shouting from kitchen, “Will you come here and make your darling daughter eat her food fast?”

The little girl was sitting at the dining table, her eyes welled up with tears. It was not so favourite dish in her plate. Sanjeev cleared his throat picked up the plate and said, “Chinnu putta, why don’t you take a morsel in my name and toss it into your mouth?”  He could sense his wife’s scowl from behind. Sanjeev’s words softened the little kid a bit. She wiped the tears and said, “Ok, Appa, I will eat, will you give me whatever I ask for?”

There is a saying in Kannada, “Beeso Donne Tappisi Kondare Saavira Varusha Aayassu” (
If you escape from the stick being waved at you, you will live a thousand years). It is to indicate that sometimes situation so demands that escaping from a current problem is most important and a feeling that everything else can be handled if this single issue is resolved. Hence our hero agrees to the demand of his daughter.

Slowly and painfully the little kid finished the dinner. After the ordeal was over, she came up to her father and said, “Appa, I want you to take me to the parlour this Sunday and have my head shaved off.”

Sanjeev and his wife could not believe what they heard. “Have you gone mad” shouted her mother.

“Why don’t you ask for something else? You look odd without hair on you head” said Sanjeev.

“This is all due to your lenience and that idiot box; she is trying to ape that stylish bald singer.” yelled her mother.

“No, Appa I do not want anything else. And you have made a promise. Now if you go back on your words then the story you told me about Raja Sanjeevchandra has no meaning.”

This was the googly Sanjeev was not expecting.

“I will keep up my promise and would not demean the great King your wish will be fulfilled,” he told.

The coming Sunday the kid had her head shaved. With her head clean-shaven to go with a round-face and beautiful eyes she looked even more charming.

The next morning Sanjeev dropped her at her school. He was feeling very unease watching his hairless child walking in the school. She turned around and waved at him with a beaming smile.  He waved back; just then a boy alighted from a car and called out her name.

He too had hairless head.

“What’s happening” Sanjeev wondered.

“Sir, your daughter has a big heart indeed; the boy you see with your daughter is my son. He is fighting Leukemia last month he had undergone chemotherapy as a result he lost all his hair. He was reluctant to attended classes fearing that he will be teased. Your daughter said she will take care of the teasing matter. But, I never imagined she would sacrifice her lovely hair for the sake of my son! Sir, you and your wife are blessed to have such a noble child as your daughter” said a lady who did not introduce herself.

Sanjeev did not know what to say tears started dripping on his cheeks. “Chinnu Putta, will you grant me a boon? Should there be another birth for me, will you be my mother, and teach me what Love is........!!!?” he said to himself in a low voice.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

1051. Kaiyendhi Bhavan Zindabad....!

Yesterday I saw a video on Facebook shared by one of my friends. The video was about a frustrated man holding a hotel bill and complaining about the cost of the Masala Dosa. He had the audacity to accuse my Prime Minister for the price. He was not only arrogant but also ignorant person. He was talking about the G.S.T of Rs. 11.63 charged for the Masala Dosa which was priced at Rs. 60 by the restaurant, which amounted to Rs. 73.63. He was seen abusing the government for the price rise and displayed his dissatisfaction about the newly introduced G.S.T. It looked like G.S.T was Ghost &  Spirit  Torture to that poor fellow. 

I was wondering why this fellow had not complained about the price of the Masala Dosa itself?  Even today best of Masala Dosa can be relished for Rs. 30 in Bengaluru.  Also there are a few “Kaiyendhi Bhavan” (Handheld Eateries) where one can order a steamy Masala Dosa for as less as 15-20 Rs. 

As for the taste is concerned there is no difference, in fact the one which is sold on road side is better.  This Kaiyendhi Bhavan is a boon to all those auto rickshaw and cab drivers in my city. They get satisfactory stomach full of breakfast at very nominal rates. Those who run these eateries are also happy at the end of the day; it is a win-win situation for both. When we are introduced to the road side eateries of the countries abroad on the food channels and appreciate their food, I think we need to be proud of the vendors who can provide tasty food here too.  Who can forget the world famous Food Street in V. V Puram, Bengaluru.  

The one who wish to give more importance to ambience and vanity have to spill out some extra amount. My city Bengaluru caters to all, we have expensive cool joints as well as Kaiyendhi Bhavan the choice is purely on us and not on the P.M or government. The one who wish to have a Masala Dosa in a better ambience will go to the expensive joint who will charge extra amount for making him feel comfortable. As far as the taste is concern my personal take is that the road side vendors make a better Masala Dosa than the one in those jittery joints. The extra amount which one pays than the worth of the Masala Dosa will be for the extravaganza of the joint. That is fair enough. We have one restaurant in Malleshwaram which charges Rs. 1000 per Masala Dosa. I am not bluffing, the creator of that Masala Dosa claim that each Dosa is garnished with 0.1 gm pure gold foil and only olive oil is used.  Now if that gentleman who was shouting about the price rise had to pay G.S.T to this gold Masala Dosa then what would happen I wonder?        
My Amma used to tell me that the hot dish which the Maharajahs of Mysore savoured would be cover with a foil of Gold which would melt over the dish. She told that she had heard from her grandmother that the gold had some Ayurvedic properties which would increase the vigour and strength of the blue blood clan. We do have many with that blue blood clan mindset among us today, isn’t it? Anyways it is good to have a golden Masala Dosa once in a while without cribbing at the G.S.T.  With all these cry over the introduction of the new tax policy it is interesting to find some of the restaurants hiking the price in the menu. They very cleverly made it appear as if the price has shot up because of the G.S.T

The hotels which were under the cumulative tax policy are now finding it difficult to adjust.  We have had some economist morons who are talking about sanitary napkin price too.......let us give some time to the G.S.T to settle and then judge if it has really helping our economy or not.....What say???

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

1050. Preaching??? No, I share my experience....!

There are side effects for posting a write up on values these days. I have noticed that a few who read the post do agree with the thought, while a few who have differed tried to correct me. Apart from these two categories I have been fortunate to have another lot who neither agree nor disagree but express their ambiguity by asking me if what is written could be followed or in the other sense their question is “do you practice what you preach?”

Preaching requires thoughts and words whereas practicing requires thoughts and also action. Of course, it’s easier to say something than to do it.  But, there is a catch here. Preaching becomes easier and more convincing after practicing and it is also said, “If you want to learn something, try teaching it.” People are more likely to follow if one does what he says. Otherwise it puts a big question mark to the entire personality if words and action do not match. It questions ones integrity.

I do not believe in this old saying “practice what you preach”. My understanding and the general feel among those to whom I am interacting with my posts, I would say it has to be the other way round. I need to “preach what I have been practicing”. Also what I have practiced cannot be the yardstick for others and I cannot impose my way of practicing which depends on the situation I was in. All I can do is just share my thought, there are few times when I would have reacted in a different way which could be in contrast to what I had told at a different situation. It is the experiences that help me cope with the moment that arises and develop strategies for how to deal with the new experiences. I can say what I would do in various situations, but it isn’t until I go through it when I get to see how I would really respond.

I was put into introspection on whether I need to post my thoughts or not. The flip flop of should I share my emotions or should I not was dancing before my mind. Then I got thought which I always tell when my readers appreciate the post. I say, "Naham Kartha Hari Kartha Hari Kartha Hi Kevalam" (I am not the Doer Sri Hari alone is the Doer). So I do not get into the picture at all. Moreover it is absolutely His prerana (motivation) to share my experience so that it has a positive impact if not taken in a negative sense. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

1049. Indian Winnow and Sieve....!

The super markets and departmental stores off today offers us nicely packed cleaned and sorted cereals and grains. About two and half decades ago it wasn’t so. The women in the house would make a list of groceries to be purchased and wait for the salary day of their husbands and get the quota sanctioned to buy them. They would go to the mundy with the list and purchase the commodities. The grocer would have made a bulk buying from the threshing unit and the husk would not have been thoroughly checked. The grain got from the mill by the grocer would have been threshed. Threshing is a process of loosening the pulses from the scaly chaff that is surrounding the grain. The groceries thus got from the mundy would be “unclean”. No.. no do not get it wrong the word “unclean” is used when the cereals are not separated from the chaff, husk or a few little stones.
When I was young I used to witness this every month in the start of the second week. The winnow and sieve would be out and that was the time to know that the groceries have arrived from the mundy. The winnow is a small square tray made by wide and thin strips of bamboo sticks. Sieve is round with the rim of steel and mesh of either metal or nylon at the bottom. Winnow is used to separate the chaff or husk by allowing the air to do the separation. It is the simplest method which involves throwing the grains up into the air so that the wind blow the lighter chaff away from the winnow and the heavy grain falls back into the winnow.  

Sieve has many different plates. These sieve plates allow the fine flour particles to pass through the holes of the sieve and the bigger impurities like bran or crust remain in the sieve. The different sieve plates are used depending on the coarse or fine flour.    

If we observe the winnow discards the husk and chaff and retains only the best portion in it, while a sieve let go and allows the wanted portion to pass through its pores while retaining the waste things in it.  Winnow hold what is required and sieve retains the useless.  

It is better to be like a winnow and retain the positive things that life has to offer us rather than be a sieve which lets the wanted slip away through its pores. What remain in the winnow is used and what remain in the sieve is discarded.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

1048. Veena, the instrument with mellifluous music.

When I was going to primary school I remember my Amma used to play “Veena” the stringed instrument. This instrument has a large hollow wood resembling a pot at one end. It is the head of the instrument followed by a long stem of wood with ridges placed on the topside and then there is a neck with a carved head of a dragon at the other end. The neck of the dragon is supported by a hardened gourd shell. There are seven with four on the top and three in the side running from the head to the neck of the dragon.   

Amma used to sit with her legs crossed and place gourd shell end on her left lap. She would let her left arm go beneath the stem part of the instrument and meddle the 24 ridges while her right hand index finger plucked the string at the head end. This instrument can produce a divine enchanting hum like sound. This sound is so soothing to the mind.

I always wondered why there was a head of a dragon at the tail part of Veena. Though at that age I never had a chance get an answer to that, now I could read about it. There is an interesting story illustrating about the head of dragon. Once a fire spitting dragon disturbed the Yagna rituals of sages. Disapointed they went to Chaturmukha Brahma to complain. At that time Brahma was engrossed in the magic of the sonorous notes coming out of the Veena played by Maa Saraswathi. He suggested that Saraswathi could tame the beast with the enchanting music. Maa Saraswathi hid herself in the forest and started playing on the Veena. As anticipated the dragon was attracted and bewitched by the melodious music. It went in search of the source of the elusive melody. It failed to find the source of the melodious music which had made the dragon to relinquish its mayhem and became a connoisseur of the mellifluous music. Finally it requested the sages to let it know who was producing the music.

Maa Saraswathi then appeared before the dragon and played the Veena. The enchanted dragon pleaded for salvation and a permanent place near the music. Satisfied by the earnestness of the seeker, the Goddess agreed to the request of the dragon and placed it Veena so that it could remain an integral part of the Veena and thus get the opportunity to hear the music always.

I take this story as an analogy comparing the yagna to the work we do and the sages to be the proactive mind. The dragon is the restless mind which causes hindrances. Maa Sarawathi is the divine energy which aid us. The music from the Veena is the awareness. It is the awareness which can subdue the restless mind so that the proactive mind can take up constructive deed.

There are 24 frets created due to the ridges on the stem part of the Veena and this is responsible for the Swaras (Nodes) in the music. The ancients have compared the Veena to the Human vertebrae and we all know that there are 24 presacral vertebrae (7 cervical, 12 thoracic and 5 lumbar). Amazingly as in the anatomy of the spinal cord which has thicker vertebral body near the sacrum and goes on to become small at the cervical part, exactly the frets in the Veena are broad near the end and narrow at the head part.

There are many Vidwan in our country who have mastered playing Veena. They have felt that the Mandara Sthaayi Swara (Lower Octave nodes) starts from the sacrum part of human body (Muladhaara) as it is in Veena. From there it travels towards the cervical region (Sahasrara) where the Brahma Randhra (hole at the crown of the head) is situated as the pitch increases to Thara Sthaayi Swara (Higher Octave nodes). This is how the music from Veena and music of Life is experienced (one externally and the other internally).  

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

1047. Vision..... Future Consciousness!!!

A person who claims to be living for the moment also has a vision. Inevitably though we know that everything is destined we fill our lives with plans to mould our future. Humans have always done this and future thinking has expanded hugely in scope and substance. It has been since eons and will remain eons to come. This is called being Future-Conscious. It is an art to bring the evolutionary process under the purposeful control of the present.

Looking at the way we are living, future consciousness is to live a little more informed by getting the benefit from in the past. We have a series of new ways to upgrade our life, even as we update it quite often. We are better informed about the lives of everyone around us with more refined methods for delineating plausible events, and we can sketch not the future, but a range of possibilities which can better our existence. These personal decisions we make over the future are linked in a million small ways to a greater prospect. The fort of the future is built by granite rocks of personal decisions taken in the present.

In Mahabharata, Balarama the elder brother of Krishna was Guru to both Bhima and Duryodhana. He taught them both the art of using the mace (Gada Yuddha) and wrestling (Malla Yuddha). Duryodhana was a keen student who liked to master the skills of mace-warfare and secrets of catch and throw. Bhima was huge built compared to Duryodhana and hence he could just relay on his raw skills. The keenness in learning the art made Duryodhana favourite to Balarama.  

Balarama who was fond of Duryodhana decided that his sister Subhadra should marry him. He was not sure that the decision will be accepted by Subhadra or Krishna. Subhadra did not like the proposal right away and wanted Krishna to intervene. Krishna makes a plan; He talks to his elder brother saying that there was a Sanyasi (Hermit) serving whom the young girls will get married without hassles. As they say, “the dietitian prescribe the same as the patient was yearning for” Balarama quickly agreed to let Subhadra serve the Sanyasi. Arjuna in the guise of Sanyasi stepped into the Anthapura (Royal Harem) of Subhadra. Subhadra did not know it was Arjuna in the guise of Sanyasi and later Arjuna got her to elope with him. They got married and Abhimanyu was born.

Later after many years Balarama wanted his daughter Shashirekha to marry Lakshmana Kumara, the son of Duryodhana. Shashirekha who was in love with Abhimanyu refused. Krishna with the help of Ghatotkacha, the son of Bhima and Hidambi kidnapped her to help her wed Abhimanyu.

In both the instances Krishna did not want Yadavas to have any kind of conjugal ties with Kauravas. This decision was very important when the time came for the Yadavas to take side in the war. Yuyudhana and Satyaki of Vrishnis and Yadavas supported Pandavas, Nila of Mahishmati, Vrinda and Anuvrindha of Avanthi, Vidarbha, Nishada and Salva supported Kauravas. Krishna was non-combatant adviser to Pandavas while Balarama remained neutral.

Krishna’s plan to stop Duryodhana from marrying Subhadra and Shashirekha from wedding Lakshmana Kumar was the Future-Consciousness to what happened in Kurukshetra.