hindu articles

Category: Articles — at 5:06 pm on Thursday, May 28, 2009

Worship of the Sun

The Sun is none other than Mahavishnu Himself. He is the God manifest before our eyes. He is known as Aditya. Aditya also means the son of Aditi. Who is the son of Aditi? Vamana is the son of Aditi. And who is Vamana, but an avatar of Mahavishnu? So the Sun is indeed Mahavishnu Himself, said Trichy Kalyanaraman. That is why we worship the early morning Sun as Vamana. Worship of the Sun in the morning gets rid of our lethargy and laziness, and fills us with energy. Azhvars have extolled the Vamana avatara. Andal celebrates this avatara of the Lord, where He grew in size, and measured the worlds.

Thriuvalluvar in kural 610, says a king should be like Vamana in conquering the three worlds. Thiruvalluvar says that if a king were to shed his lethargy, then he can conquer the three worlds that the Lord did. The words ‘Adi Alandaan’, in this verse, refer to the Vamana avatar. And since the Sun is none other than the Lord who took the Vamana avatar, worship of the Sun will help us achieve what seems impossible.

The Sun is the most important among the navagrahas. All planets are controlled by the Sun. The celestial beings, namely the Devas, and all the planets revolve around the Sun. It is important to rise early in the morning and to have one’s bath early too. The Sun is to be remembered through prayer both in the morning and in the evening. In the evening, we worship the Sun as a manifestation of Varuna, or the rain god.

As part of the questions that Yama in the guise of a Yaksha puts to Yudhishtra, there are questions on the Sun too. The Yaksha asks, “Who makes the Sun rise?” Yudhishtra answers that it is Brahmam, the Supreme One, who makes the Sun rise. What makes the Sun set? It is dharma which makes the Sun set. The Sun is anchored in Truth. What is a daily occurrence, asks the Yaksha. Yudhistra replies that the illusory world may be seen as a vessel, covered with the sky as a lid. Day and night are the firewood, and the fire that lights this firewood is the Sun. Months and seasons constitute the ladle. With this ladle, Time stirs the contents in the vessel, which include all movable and immovable things, and this is a daily occurrence, replies Yudhishtra.

Negating influences

Those who believe in astrology, sometimes take fright when inauspicious predictions about their future are made. They begin to wonder how they will face the onslaught of planets that do not look favourably upon them. They forget that the best way to overcome fear and difficulty is to worship God, to meditate upon Him.

When the sun shines brightly, can any other light match it in brilliance? In the same way can a planet have the power of God? With God on our side, do we need to fear planetary influences? For those who fear that one or the other of the navagrahas, could harm them, the Kolaru Padhigam of Gnanasambandar is reassuring, said R. Narayanan. The story goes that Sambandar made the locked door of the temple at Vedaranyam open with just one verse. When Kulachirai Nayanar, the minister of Koon Pandian, the Pandia King, heard of this, he requested Sambandar to come to Madurai, to convert the King to Saivism. Tirunavukkarasar protested that the planets were not in an auspicious formation. The aim of Tirunavukkarasar must have been to prompt Sambandar to sing of the greatness of Lord Shiva vis-a-vis the planets. And that is when Sambandar sang the Kolaru Padhigam. It is easy to recite, and the theme that runs through the verses is that the devotees of Lord Shiva will not be harmed by the planets. For those who are unable to recite all of it, recitation of the first verse at least would be enough. The verse says that if Uma Devi’s consort, Lord Shiva, who plays the veena, and wears the faultless Moon and the Ganga on His head, resides in a person’s heart, the planets cannot harm that person. A similar sentiment is expressed in Arunagirinathar’s Kandar Alankaram, except that the deity invoked here is Lord Muruga. In the 38th verse, the poet asks what harm the planets can do to him. The answer is that they can do nothing, for in his heart resides Lord Muruga, the one who wears different kinds of ornaments on his feet, who has six heads and 12 arms. It is interesting to note that Arunagirinathar mentions the two feet, six ornaments, six faces, a flower garland, and 12 arms, all adding up to 27, the total number of planets.

Advent of Kali

The cause of human suffering continues to remain enigmatic and scriptures and sacred texts have discussed it from many angles. Parikshit’s righteous rule saw the end of Dwapara Yuga and the beginning of Kali Yuga and the entry of Kali Yuga is described in a symbolic manner in the Bhagavata Purana, pointed out Sri Venkatesa Sarma in a lecture. When Parikshit heard that there were signs of Kali’s attempts to enter the domain of his jurisdiction, he decided to confront the situation in the true nature of a warrior. One of his expeditions brought him to the banks of the Saraswati river and there he saw a person in the disguise of king harassing a bull and a cow and there was none to protect them. It was a strange sight of a bull (representing Dharma) that stood on one leg with a sorrowful cow (Mother Earth) beside it.

Parikshit wanted to know the cause of such suffering. Dharma spoke with deference and said that it would not be able to pinpoint the cause of human suffering and that there were many viewpoints put forth by different people. For instance, some believe that one suffers because of one’s actions, while others attribute it to supernatural causes. Some others believe that accepting outside authorities is the cause and that, on the whole, this subject defies comprehension. Dharma concludes that it is left to the king’s power of judgment to decide the cause.

Seeing Kali trying to destroy the remaining leg of Dharma, Parikshit understood that he was trying to usher in a reign of Adharma and thus cause distress to earth. He threatened Kali for his cruel behaviour and wanted to destroy him. Then Kali sought surrender at the king’s feet and the noble Parikshit did not kill him. He merely asked him to flee from his kingdom since Kali was in allegiance with all that is deceitful and unrighteous. Kali pleaded with Parikshit to grant him some place to stay. So Parikshit gave Kali permission to live in places wherever the sinful activities of gambling, drinking, prostitution and animal slaughter were taking place. Further pleas of Kali gave him gold as a dwelling place in addition since passion for gold brings in intoxication, lust and enmity.

Victim of circumstances

Queer are the ways of the world and strange the behaviour of people. The Mahabharata reflects these nuances of human nature and highlights the need to uphold the essential values of life and to practise the ordained code of conduct. That one who is innately good and hails from a distinguished family can easily go astray if caught in the grip of bad company is amply illustrated through the character of Karna, said Dr. Sudha Seshaiyan in a lecture.

Karna was befriended by Duryodhana who saw in his valour and honour a match for Arjuna’s and had calculated the benefits of having him as his ally. He offered Karna the kingdom of Anga at the right moment to save him from humiliation. Karna believed that this wealth and status could alleviate the sense of insecurity that was plaguing him always. Karna gains our sympathy because he was deserted by those who mattered to him much — his own mother Kunti who left him at birth and his preceptor Parasurama who rejected him when he learnt he was Kshatriya. Though Karna exemplifies the quality of magnanimity even to a fault, the epic captures the extent of psychological trauma that he experienced though being a victim of circumstances.

When he assumed the position of the chief of the Kaurava army, he was determined to defeat Arjuna and was sure he could do so if he too had an equally skilled charioteer like Lord Krishna and asked Duryodhana to seek the expertise of the Salya king for this purpose. The Salya king, Madri’s brother, had been inducted into Duryodhana’s side through guile earlier. At the behest of Duryodhana, he agreed to be the charioteer for Karna; but when he gave sane advice to Karna, the latter did not heed and met with his downfall.

His skills on the battlefield remain unquestioned and his bravery, courageous spirit, and honour are exemplary. Lord Krishna, Kunti and Indra sought from him those promises and assets that would have protected his invincibility to ensure victory for the Pandavas. His tragic flaw was his sense of pride in his accomplishments and this can devalue one’s integrity.

Transcendental power

It is believed that Sage Vyasa wrote the Bhagavata Purana with the intention of its being a synoptic version of all Vedic literature and philosophy. It is stated that this text continues to attract people because its primary focus is on the process of Bhakti Yoga, by which one aspires for union with God through devotion for Him. When Suka was instructed by his father Sage Vyasa on the Bhagavata Purana it was clear that it would be handed down to humanity at some point of time, said Sri Venkatesa Sarma in a lecture.

This text begins with the final part of the Mahabharata. Aswathama, Drona’s son, who survived the war, nursed a grouse against the Pandavas who had tricked and killed his father. He wanted to take revenge on them and destroy all of them. He waged a war at night and managed to kill all the sons of the Pandavas. He then aimed the powerful Brahmastra at them but could not subdue it. Even Arjuna could not stop it. The weapon hit Arjuna’s grandchild through Abhimanyu growing in Uthara’s womb. Lord Krishna had to use His discus to shield the embryo and protect their progeny. Only the strength of Lord Vishnu could neutralise the effects of this powerful weapon.

Kunti’s words of gratitude to Lord Krishna, when he was about to depart to Dwaraka after the war, reflect her innate Jnana that saw Lord Krishna as the very transcendent Godhead. She extolled His omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence, but also showed how His greatness is covered by His Maya. Only those who are able to differentiate between the subtle and the gross aspects of creation are able to see His greatness present everywhere. Kunti recalled the many instances when Lord Krishna had rescued the Pandavas from many dangers. It was not only from poison, a great fire, man-eaters, a vicious assembly, etc, but also during their exile in the forest and against the deadly weapons during the war. Now He had protected them against Aswathama’s assault. She wished they faced more calamities for this meant they would have more opportunities to see Lord Krishna.

A realised soul

The glory of the Supreme Brahman is present everywhere but also remains hidden behind the veil of Maya. Only realised souls who meditate on the Supreme Being at all times are able to recognise His presence. Time not spent in such meditation is considered as time lost and wasted. When the Lord incarnated as Lord Krishna, some were able to realise Him as the Supreme Being, but many others were unable to do so. Bhishma is one such realised soul who recognised the Supreme nature behind the person of Lord Krishna and the Lord blessed him with the truth of inner knowledge and wealth of wisdom for the benefit of posterity, pointed out Sri P. Venkatesa Sarma in a lecture.

During the war, Bhishma had watched the movements of Lord Krishna as a charioteer and admired His commitment to the task on hand, His deft manoeuvring abilities with the chariot and above all His efforts to save Arjuna and the Pandavas from the menacing attacks of the Kauravas. When Bhishma became the army chief, he was determined to make the Lord break His vow and take arms to establish his allegiance to the Kauravas and hence waged a really fierce battle that the Pandava army found difficult to withstand. He started attacking Lord Krishna and then the Lord got out of the chariot and began to hurl the discus at Bhishma. But when Bhishma saw the Lord rushing thus towards him, he was overwhelmed with devotion and extolled the Lord’s compassion that made Him forego His vow to make true the vow of His devotee. After the war, Lord Krishna urged the restless and confused Yudhishtira to seek valuable instruction from Bhishma. Bhishma was once again overwhelmed when he saw Lord Krishna beside him during his last moments. Bhishma taught Yudhishtira the ethical codes of practical living and asserted the supremacy of the Lord. He pointed out that all the upheavals in the lives of the Pandavas (great warriors and followers of Dharma) were due to compelling effect of Time. Even when they had Lord Krishna as their ally they were subject to misfortunes and challenges. Bhishma then surrendered his entire self to the Lord.  

610.

மடியிலா மன்னவன் எய்தும் அடியளந்தான்
தாஅய தெல்லாம் ஒருங்கு.

– 38 –

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Iyya Comments:

Why fear when God is our charioteer?


faith and sincerity

Category: Articles — at 11:22 am on Tuesday, May 12, 2009

“For me policing is not punitive. It always stood for social welfare. But tough welfare. Where I could command welfare, I demand welfare, and I could produce welfare.” Kiran Bedi

She joined the Indian Police Service (IPS) because “of my urge to be outstanding”. And Kiran Bedi made everyone take note. She was popularly known as Crane Bedi, because the story goes that during her early years with the Delhi Traffic Police, she was tough and used a crane to remove wrongly parked vehicles - including that of the former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. When asked recently about this, in her blog, she said, “a crane removes obstacles - something I have tried to do all my life.” As a police officer, she went on to make a mark in the areas of narcotics control, traffic management, and reforms at the Tihar Jail, Delhi. She won the President’s Gallantry Award (1979), the 1994 Ramon Magsaysay Award, was Civilian Police Advisor in the United Nations and is the subject of an Australian film called “Yes, Madam Sir”.

Caring for others

Category: Articles — at 11:18 am on Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Reverence for God, caring for guests and servants are all essential parts of worship, said Trichy Kalyanaraman. If a guest turns up on your doorstep, you do not have to cook a lavish feast for him. It is enough if you share with him, what you are going to eat. Avvaiyar praises Adhiyaman for his quality of sharing with others what he had.

Valluvar says that those who care for their guests will be blessed by Goddess Mahalakshmi. It is not just caring for guests, but indeed caring for anyone in need that is of importance.

We even have a duty to perform the last rites for those who are childless and those whose children are not around to carry out the rites.

While we are willing to join in celebrations, we are unwilling to share a person’s sorrow. Relatives promptly honour invitations to weddings, but keep away should there be a death in the family. Sometimes the argument given by people is that the dead person was lacking in good qualities.

One should ponder the unacceptability of such a statement on two grounds. If we accuse a relative of being wicked, then would that not mean that we, who share blood ties with that person, have also probably the same bad qualities we complain about?

Moreover, who is perfect in this world? If every person who does not have a flawless character alone is entitled to last rites, then no one in this world will be found deserving.

No one is too insignificant as not to merit the performance of last rites for him/her. And one does not have to be a relative to perform last rites. Was Jatayu related to Rama? And yet, did not Rama perform the last rites for the bird? When Ravana is killed by Rama, Vibhishana refuses to perform the last rites for his brother, because of Ravana’s wickedness.

Rama persuades Vibhishana to do his duty, and not let Ravana’s deeds stand in the way of what every human being, however wicked he might have been, is entitled to.

The modern tendency is to celebrate birthdays and wedding anniversaries, but when it comes to honouring the dead, no one seems to have the inclination to do so.

Source: The Hindu dated May 12, 2009

MAN - BODY = GOD

Category: Articles — at 2:11 pm on Wednesday, May 6, 2009

vazhndhu kaatanum

Category: Articles — at 4:14 pm on Sunday, April 19, 2009

3 kurals belows:

அகர முதல எழுத்தெல்லாம் ஆதி
பகவன் முதற்றே உலகு.

கற்றதனால் ஆய பயனென்கொல் வாலறிவன்
நற்றாள் தொழாஅர் எனின்.

மலர்மிசை ஏகினான் மாணடி சேர்ந்தார்
நிலமிசை நீடுவாழ் வார்.

indha moonu kural podhum. namma 3rd kural madhiri vazhundhu kaatanum….

apdi irundhal, edhanlum baadhika pada vendhiyadhu illai

இருள்சேர் இருவினையும் சேரா இறைவன்
பொருள்சேர் புகழ்புரிந்தார் மாட்டு.


Divine incarnation

Category: Articles — at 12:37 pm on Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Lord assumed many forms, known as avataras, to establish Dharma in this world. While there are many avataras, only ten are well known. Even among these the Rama avatara is the most significant, said Gomatam Madhavachariar. It is an avatara in which He gave us a sloka about surrender- a charama sloka. But that alone does not make the avatara the most significant. After all He also gave charama slokas in the Varaha and Krishna avataras. But in no other avatara, did His consort play so significant a part, as in the Rama avatara.

Moreover, the importance of Saranagati is brought out so well in this avatara, that the Ramayana is referred to as the Saranagati Sastra. Saranagati is the essence of Visishtadvaita, and it is the Ramayana, more than any other body of literature that enunciates the Saranagati concept with so many examples.

Since it is not possible to read the whole of the Ramayana on a daily basis, it is suggested that at least the Sundara Kandam may be read everyday, for it contains the essence of the Ramayana. Similarly, in the case of the Mahabharata, it is the Gita that is considered the essence. So, it is enough if one reads the Gita.

For those who cannot read the whole of the Gita everyday, it is suggested that they recite the Vishnu Sahasranamam, which is the essence of the Gita. But there may still be people for whom even this may be a difficult task. So, what should they do? They should recite the name of Rama, for after all Lord Siva himself tells Parvati of the significance of the name of Rama.

So, the Gita is the essence of the Mahabharata, the Vishnu Sahasranamam is the essence of the Gita, and the name of Rama is the essence of the Vishnu Sahasranamam. From this it follows that the essence of the Mahabharata too is the name of Rama! This shows the greatness of the Rama avatara among all avataras of the Lord.

Rama is a forgiving hero, one who is ready to embrace us, and give us succour, if we seek His pardon. Wasn’t Kakasuran let off with a mild punishment although his crime was heinous? He had hurt Sita, but his life was spared, when he realised the power of Rama, and fell at His feet, craving pardon.

Source: The Hindu Dated Apr 16, 2009

seedless seed

Category: Words of Wisdom — at 5:06 pm on Monday, March 30, 2009

what is there inside a seed? whatever is required for the tree is inside that. when a baby is formed, who keeps it eyes and ears?

GOD.

namma undaakaromnu nenaikarom. ellame kadavul undaakaradhu thaan.


kural

Category: Articles — at 2:50 pm on Friday, March 20, 2009

 kural280


Mastering the mind

Category: Articles — at 12:00 pm on Monday, March 9, 2009

One who is privileged to be born as a human being must learn to think. For this it is essential to differentiate between thoughts and thinking as they are different. They can be compared to owning a car and knowing how to drive it. In life we are given education which involves imbibing a lot of thoughts, but unfortunately in the case of religion thoughts are imposed. The first step in spiritual life is learning to think for oneself just as one learns to drive when one is given a car.

In his discourse, Swami Suddhananda said the body and the mind were given to every individual and a beginning could be made by learning to see them as they were. If one considers how the body functions it will become apparent that it is ‘innocent’ and unafraid of the infirmities that it is subjected to like disease, old age and death. When one extends this to the entire creation one can see that this vast universe is absolutely ‘innocent’ for there is no fear or sorrow in it. It is the “I” which is affected by problems, fears and sorrows.

Just as when the body is not well one goes to a doctor for treating it, so also should the mind and emotions be set right whenever necessary.

The transformation that happens to the body can be discerned in six phases: existence, birth, growth, changes, decay and death. But the body does not resist this natural process. So also is the universe continuously changing but it is not possible to ‘hear’ the passage of the footsteps of time.

The human body is an instrument and the gateway to the universe. It has no demands on its own. For instance, its hunger can be appeased by any food. It is the person who has craving for particular dishes and indulges his fancies.

It is not possible to fix the problems in the world without fixing those of the individual first. Both have to be set right, each in its own sphere. Taking care of the body is paramount because it is the instrument for doing Sadhana (spiritual practice) to evolve spiritually. But one should not consider it to be the end and become a body worshipper. The mind must be similarly mastered instead of allowing oneself to become a slave to its dictates.

Source: The Hindu

Leadership is a state, not a status

Category: Articles — at 11:58 am on Monday, March 9, 2009

LEADERSHIP is not a quality. It is an experience that an individual who has undergone personal growth and transformation radiates.
   This is the simple truth. There are so many books these days about leadership and how it is an important part of making an organisation successful. There are so many leadership gurus who teach and train people in organisations to ‘develop’ leadership. Yet when we look at all organisations, be it businesses, government services or in the area of social services, true leaders are rare. A true leader is a person who is ready to take responsibility consciously. He is ready to handle life consciously and he is not constantly dependent on the past. A true leader is a person who is able to respond spontaneously to situations. He is fresh in his ideas and continuously keeps himself alive.
   A small story: There was once a great war between two countries. On a hot afternoon, a man in civilian clothes was riding past a small group of tired soldiers digging a huge pit, doing a seemingly impossible task. The group leader was shouting orders and threatening punishment if the work was not completed within the hour.
   The man riding the horse stopped and asked, ‘Sir, why can’t you help them yourself?’ The group leader replied, ’I am the leader. The men do as I tell them. If you feel so strongly, go help them!’ The man worked with the soldiers till the job was finished! Before leaving, he congratulated the soldiers for their work, and approaching the group leader said, ‘The next time your status prevents you from supporting your people, inform your higher authorities and I will provide a more permanent solution.’
   The group leader was completely surprised. Only now he realised that the man was in fact the army general!
   Most of us achieve the status of a leader, but not the state. State is totally different from status. Status comes from society. When I use the word ‘state’ I mean our inner space. Our inner space should be mature enough to handle the responsibility, which we assume.
   Each one of us is a potential leader. The quality of leadership arises from one’s ability to take responsibility for a particular organisation, a situation or a particular group with tremendous awareness and maturity.
   Leadership is simply a conscious choice made by an individual to act out of deep sensitivity and awareness to one’s situation and surrounding. Then automatically, the inner space will start transforming and send out the right words and actions.

PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA

Source: The Economic Times

Accept things, no matter how they’re

Category: Articles — at 11:56 am on Monday, March 9, 2009

IN The Drunkard’s Walk, his meditation on the role randomness plays in our lives, physicist Leonard Mlodinow talks about chanciness. As a teenager, he watched the flames of the Sabbath candles flickering randomly. Could their shapes be predicted with the right kind of equation, he wondered. His father disagreed, citing his experience in the Buchenwald Nazi camp which illustrated life’s fundamental unpredictability.
Arrested by the Gestapo and send to the death camp during World War II, he starved for days on end, and stole a single loaf from the bakery inside the death camp. The baker got the prison guards to round up all those he thought might have taken the loaf and had the suspects lined up. Since no one confessed, the baker asked the guards to shoot them one by one until all were dead, or someone confessed.
That’s when Mlodinow Senior stepped forward to spare other inmates. But it wasn’t anything heroic, he clarified. He simply expected to be shot any way. But not only was his life spared, to his amazement the baker who looked like a villain moments ago, awarded a plum job in the bakery to the youth. That ensured his eventual survival. If that hadn’t happened, the father told the son, “You would never have been born!”
Of course, this does not diminish the awful horror of the Holocaust: Mlodinow Senior’s first wife and their two young children had been shot dead by the Germans. This explains how the young man immigrated to the US, and started afresh with another survivor. But for all the horrors he’d suffered, Mlodinow Senior was reticent about his experiences. It wasn’t denial but rather because he wanted to pass on a larger lesson. War was an extreme event, but the role of chance in our lives did not revolve around only such extreme events. “The outline of our lives is continuously coaxed in new directions by a variety of random events that, along with our responses to them, determine our fate,” he writes. “As a result, life is both hard to predict and hard to interpret.”
This insight is also echoed by the Gita: One does not create karma, nor induce others or create its fruit. Nature however manifests. Which also means “nobody is evil, even if they do evil things”, as rational emotive behavioural therapists say. Accept things, no matter how they are. This vibes well with the samatvam philosophy of the Gita: Don’t get stuck in the mud of the past, rise above it like a lotus.

VITHAL C NADKARNI

Source: The Economic Times

Is flatlining a way to freedom?

Category: Articles — at 10:57 am on Friday, February 20, 2009

A13-YEARDutch study on near-death-experience (NDE) published in the reputed medical journal Lancet in 2001 questions some basic assumptions of general medicine and neurology. An NDE refers to the broad range of personal experiences associated with impending death, involving sensations of detachment from the body, going through a tunnel, feeling total serenity, the presence of a being of light, getting an instant and complete life review, blah blah blah and, ultimately, a return to the body. Naturally, some see NDEs as a paranormal and spiritual glimpse into the afterlife while others view it as a physiological reaction of the dying brain caused by drugs, oxygen starvation or depersonalisation.
The paradigm problem, however, arises because such cases are usually reported after an individual has been pronounced clinically dead. In the Dutch study, for instance, several of the subjects exhibited a total lack of electrical activity in the cortex of the brain and their EEGs were flat. Yet, when resuscitated, about 18% of the patients who reported having an NDE during the period did so with clear consciousness in which cognitive functioning, emotion, sense of identity and even memories from early childhood was possible. How could such lucidity of consciousness be experienced at the moment that the brain was no longer functioning in any normal sense?
The medical model so far has been that the brain is the basis of all mental activity and that self awareness, consciousness or mind when it does arise — say, in the case of humans (and perhaps apes and dolphins) — is merely a function of the complexity of the brain. In other words it’s only an epiphenomenon, and the mainstream scientific view is that without an operational brain, the mind cannot exist. Therefore death has to signify the complete disintegration of personality.
Conversely, NDEs could signify that the brain, rather than being the originator and keeper of mental processes, is actually only a facilitator — a receiver and transmitter — of such faculties which exist independent of any physical substrate. Meaning, consciousness can be experienced without our conventional body-linked concept of time and space. No wonder the authors of the Dutch study mention in the Lancet report that “the theory and background of transcendence should be included as a part of an explanatory framework for these experiences.”

MUKUL SHARMA

Source: The Economic Times

Our body begs for attention

Category: Articles — at 10:57 am on Friday, February 20, 2009

WE SHOULD understand one secret: attention is energy. That is why we feel so good when somebody attends to us. When we are attended to; when somebody takes time to attend to us; when somebody serves, we feel so good. We even feel elated.
We can see that politicians seem to be always, continuously energetic. Do you know why? Everywhere they are attended to. Thousands and thousands of people listen to their speech. We can see that if the crowd is more, the volume of their voice will go up. It goes up because the attention creates energy.
If we are attended to well, we feel energetic. We feel alive. Attention is energy. When we don’t live inside our body, when we don’t attend to our body, we will feel our body has shrunk. Our body really contracts, it shrinks. It just begs you, ‘please give me your attention.’ This begging of our body is called pain. Pain is nothing but the begging of our own body asking for our attention; asking for our presence. Our body wants us to attend to it.
Why does our body do that? We continuously live outside our body. Our body is here; but we are somewhere else. Our body is in the house; but in our mind, we are already in the office. When we are in the office our body is in the house. If we continuously live outside the body, our body will go without any attention.
I tell people that when they are in the beachside resort thinking about what they should be doing at work, they call it vacation. When they are at work fantasising about a cruise, they call it work. Both cause suffering. This suffering is the way our body creates attention to itself. This pain of suffering is the way our body calls for attention when we don’t attend to it properly. We need to understand one thing: pain is nothing but the unawareness.
If we don’t live now, here, our body will not be attended to. Our body will not have the attention of our being. When we give our attention, we will see that the suffering simply disappears. When we do not live the real life, we will be only living with the reasons. Our mind will be one way; our body will be in another way. And if we don’t live truthfully, we create a new energy field around us called pain body.
Understand that if we continuously live in the past or live in the future, we are not present inside our system. When we are not present, the energy flow inside our system never happens totally and properly. Be in the present, be pain free and blissful. This is enlightened state.

• PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA

Source: The Economic Times

Respect food, waste it!

Category: Articles — at 12:18 pm on Saturday, February 14, 2009

OVEREATING is a modern disease. People think that it is better to eat more vegetarian food. Let us be clear here. Overeating any food is bad. Be it vegetarian or meat. It creates a lot of problems for us. We have never learnt to eat only what we need. We should be firm on eating only what we require and how much we need. Overeating is an expression of greed. We overeat as a substitute to fulfil other unattainable wants.
Often, we have no idea of what we eat. When we eat we talk, we read, we watch TV and we do many other things. We do everything except focus on the food we eat. We have little respect for the food we eat. Then we wonder why we accumulate fat. Vegetarian food is the best for people interested in spiritual practices. It digests easily and promotes good energy in our body. It helps in gentle energy flow connecting all the chakras or energy points in our body. The compassion of Buddha led to the wide acceptance of vegetarian food.
A further refinement of vegetarian food is dining on what is called as satvic food. People on satvic vegetarian diet avoid jalapeno peppers, onion and garlic. These vegetables contain steroids. They are all right as medicines and ingested in small quantities once in a while. Regular intake of these vegetables interferes with the energy flow in the chakras. Overeating has the same effect as eating jalapeno peppers, onion, and garlic. When we overeat, we stuff food and make our body a trash bin. Added to it, we will waste a lot of our body’s resources in processing it.
My devotees consider it a privilege to feed me. They pile my plate with many varieties of food. They expect me to eat it up! They advice me not to waste it! They expect me to clean up the plate!
Be clear: wasting food outside is better. It is better to leave the food outside our body than getting the food inside our body and wasting us from with in.
When we decline the food on the plate or in the dish, food remains outside. We are only wasting excess food. It can be fed to others. But, if we stuff ourselves with food, we are serving ourselves a double harm. The excess food is wasted in the body. Our body has no use of it even as it sits in our body. We are exhausting our body’s resources in processing it. If we overeat, food becomes a waste. Food can become a poison.
It is better to decline excess food than to consume it. Be aware of what and how much you eat! If you respect food, your body will respond by being respectful to you!

• PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA

Source: The Economic Times

When standing up is not an option

Category: Articles — at 12:18 pm on Saturday, February 14, 2009

HE’S a motivational speaker and, like thousands of his kind, he goes from place to place along the length and breadth of the country he was born in and lectures focusing on the topics that today’s people face. He regularly travels internationally too to speak to religious congregations, schools, colleges and corporate bodies. So far, he’s spoken to over two million people in 12 countries on four continents. One of his standard lines of patter goes something like this:
“Along the way you might fall down. So what do you do when you fall down? Get back up because everybody knows how to get back up. But there are some times in life when you fall down and you feel you don’t have the strength to get back up. Do you think you have any hope left then? If I try a hundred times to get back up and I fail a hundred times and give up, do you think I will ever be able to get up? No. But what if I fail and try again? And again, and again, and again? I just want you to know that it’s not the end. It matters how you’re going to finish. Are you going to finish strong? That’s when you’ll find that strength to get back up.”
Then, as if to drive the point home as dramatically as possible, he deliberately falls down full on his stomach onstage.
The audience gasps because Nick Vujicic, who was born with the extremely rare tetra amelia syndrome, a disorder which is characterised by the absence of all four limbs, has no arms or legs at all. And as they see his stump of a body — just a truncated little torso really — topple forward face down, the tired clichés the cheery man’s been expounding so long suddenly take on a whole new meaning. Yet the first thing that races through their minds is how’s he going to get back up?
As the first of our cave dwelling ancestors quickly discovered out when they began making spears to use on hunts, arms and legs are not only parts of the body but also extensions of the head. Like the tail dropped by a lizard which can only wiggle by itself for a while before becoming inert, left to themselves our limbs can achieve nothing either.
Nick positions his forehead on the floor and uses it to curve the spine inwards to its maximum and then leverages his body back into an upright position. So can he comb and clean and feed himself too? Chances are he can’t. But then how many of us who can, end up finishing strong like him?

MUKUL SHARMA
Source: The Economic Times

State of equanimity

Category: Articles — at 12:16 pm on Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Bhagavad Gita’s greatest gift to mankind is the knowledge that helps to cultivate discrimination with regard to what is of utmost importance to an individual. Lord Krishna explains at great length the primary distinction between the body and the Self and how it is very easy to forget this and imagine the body to be the Self and thereby allow ourselves to be subject to sorrow and pain. Lord Krishna confers the highest acclaim — Dheera (strong willed) or Sthitaprajna (man of wisdom) — to one who is able to maintain equanimity at all times, pointed out Sri M. V. Anantapadmanabhachariar in a lecture.

Life is a mix of joy and sorrow and one should learn to treat both alike. This is possible only when one knows the true nature of the Self as immortal and as the very embodiment of consciousness and bliss and identifies oneself with it. Then it becomes natural to perceive joy and sorrow as affecting the body alone since the body is the result of one’s past deeds. Such a state of mind is attained only by determined and untiring effort. Lord Rama’s exemplary demeanour (both when the kingdom was offered and later when taken away) that typifies this quality of mind, serves as an inspiration to all those wishing to cultivate this trait.

Much depends on one’s mind that is difficult to keep under control. When Ravana fell in the battlefield, Mandodari wailed at his plight — he who had performed severe penance with perfect control over his senses and secured invincibility as a boon had become a victim to them. The senses had taken their revenge in full when he longed for Sita and brought forth his downfall, not Lord Rama. The Katopanishad also speaks of the powerful sway of the senses that distract man from pursuing the goal of salvation.

The two major sections in the Vedas — the Karma Kanda and the Jnana Kanda — deal with the material (wealth, progeny, learning) and spiritual aspirations of individuals respectively. When materialistic concerns find means of fulfilment in the Vedas, an individual develops faith in the scriptures. But in due course, the impermanent nature of the worldly attractions drives the individual to search for everlasting peace in earnest.

Source: The Hindu dated Feb 13 2009

Iyya Comments:

Calmness of mind.

Fulfilment in relationships

Category: Articles — at 6:28 am on Saturday, February 7, 2009

PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA

WE CANNOT differentiate between love and lust today. Our lives are completely taken over by the fantasy and mental picture that lust creates in us. Our love, or the emotion that we call love, is tainted by greed and fear. All our love is conditional. We can only love someone as long as that person does what we say and obeys us. Control is a precondition to love.
In ancient days, people had the capacity to enjoy their marital pleasures completely without fantasies. They lived out their desires and were ready to give up the life of householders by the age of 40. Vedic scriptures prescribe four stages of life to attain the ultimate spiritual goal of enlightenment. These four stages of life are appropriate for each phase of one’s life. The four stages in life are: Brahmacharya, a student; Grihastha, a householder; Vanaprastha, a householder spending his time in reflection, after having fulfilled his duties as a husband and father; and finally Sanyasi, the ascetic, when the householder retires to be alone, in search of enlightenment.
Man and wife lived their lives fully till they were about forty. They then disengaged from physical relationship and focused on their spiritual development. In this stage, called Vanaprastha, they moved away from day-to-day life. They could either continue as such the rest of their lives or they could move to the next and final stage of renouncing all worldly possessions as sanyasi, ascetics.
Each stage of life was taken seriously and fulfilled. These days everything is half-hearted. Very few couples today understand the sacred verses chanted during their marriage rites. Only the purohits, the officiating priests, get married these days! The couples are disengaged from the beauty of the entire process of the ritual that leads to a meaningful relationship.
The beautiful rite performed in front of the fire in traditional Hindu weddings is called saptapati, the seven steps. There is deep significance when a married couple take the steps together. The couple vows to each other seven times, with fire as their witness, that they will be intimate and develop a deep love for each other.
The Vedic culture did not have the concept of divorce. In Sanskrit no words exist to describe marital separation. Marriage was a wonderful relationship that couples shared without fear and greed, with unconditional acceptance of one another. This relationship extended to all other aspects of their lives.

Source: The Economic Times

Eschew extremes in ordinary life

Category: Articles — at 6:26 am on Saturday, February 7, 2009

WHAT is good for the goose is not necessarily so for the gander. So while size zero might look smashing on Bollywood’s Bebo, on her beau it might be a big no-no. Having the right (or is it ruddy?) size does matter, especially when this is associated with fiduciary health of corporations. The effect of founder-chairman Steve Jobs’ rapidly shrinking waistline, for example, showed up in Apple Computer’s diminishing share price. (One wonders how someone like the late Wallis Simpson might have reacted to that situation. The American divorcee, who once caused the King of England to abdicate, is supposed to have said: “One could never be too rich or too thin.”) Notwithstanding Ms Simpson’s bon mot, it’s a good idea to eschew extremes in ordinary life. Nothing illustrates this as effectively as the statue of the Buddha as starving Sakyamuni done up in the Gandhara style. During his quest for eternal truth, the Buddha is said to have mortified his body with extreme asceticism. He eventually reduced his food intake to a single grain of rice. But when he became so weak as to be near death, the Master realised that the way to enlightenment did not lie in extremes. The Buddha also is said to have thought about the benefits of moderation and the Middle Way when he saw a ballet being performed by a group of temple dancers. In his poem on Buddha’s life The Light of Asia, Sir Edwin Arnold evoked the key insight with the metaphor of the tuning of a lute’s strings: “The string overstretched breaks, and the music flies/the string overslack is dumb, and the music dies.” One should therefore tune one’s sitar “neither too low, nor too high” for “fair goes the dance (of life) when the sitar is tuned (right)”. A psycho-therapeutic approach based on the Buddhist Middle Way has also been found to be effective against mood swings. The model based on Nagarjuna’s Madhyamikainsights uses a technique called analytic meditation. It begins by examining the simplistic polarities that tend to cripple people’s emotional lives. The ultimate goal is to coax attention away from categorical thinking to a mental space beyond words and labels. This may be akin to the state of the ‘unwavering lamp’ that Sri Krishna talks about in the sixth chapter of his discourse to Arjuna: “As a lamp in a windless place does not waver, so the transcendentalist whose mind is controlled, remains always steady” to win the battle.

Source : The Economic Times

Moving beyond our wants

Category: Articles — at 7:46 am on Monday, February 2, 2009
Moving beyond our wants



PARAMAHAMSA SRI NITHYANANDA


   WHYare you running after one thing or another? Let me tell you that you are running away from yourself, your inner being, when you do that. Running after desires, pursuing possessions and acquisitions, and the relentless chase of things that you do not even know why you are chasing, all these move you from your centre to your periphery. You will say, Master, ‘I have no desires. I only have needs that I need to fulfill. I have commitments that I cannot ignore.’
   Let me be clear. There is a big difference between desire and need. How to differentiate between the two? Listen to what various spiritual masters have said about needs.
   Mahavira, the founder of the Jainism religion, said that each being that takes birth in this world comes into this world with whatever is needed for its living already provided by the Universe. The Universe never denies a basic need.
   Ramana Maharishi, an enlightened master of the 20th century says: This universe has enough to fulfill the needs of every single being who occupies it; however it can not fulfill the wants of even one being. Yet, we want. Not only do we want, we are also in a hurry to get it. We are always comparing ourselves with our neighbours, colleagues, siblings, and friends. We grab everything in our path —attention, time, energy, and still we aren’t satisfied. We grab all the time. It has become a deeply ingrained habit that we are no longer conscious of doing it. It’s not because we need it but because we want, out of greed, jealousy, and lust. We grab, horde, acquire, possess, out of our fear.
   Believe that the universe will provide for you. Trust the energy and intelligence of the universe. All that the world gives has to go. That is the fate of everyone. Nobody is spared of this.
   A small story: Towards the end of his life Albert Einstein was very depressed. He had turned to spirituality after his discoveries were put to destructive uses. One of his assistants asked him what he would do if he were to live his life all over again.
   Einstein said: I would like to become a plumber.
   Shocked, the assistant asked, why, you have been so very successful as a scientist, why would you want to be a plumber?
   Einstein said, all my life I have worked for what ever I thought I wanted, but at the end I understand that my life is a big lie. It was wasted. From childhood I have always wanted to be a plumber, and I have been denied the joy of doing what I wanted. That’s why I want to be a plumber, when I am reborn to be what my Being wants to be.
Source: The Economic Times

think about thinking

Category: Articles — at 8:55 pm on Tuesday, January 20, 2009
நிலையாமை

ஒருபொழுதும் வாழ்வது அறியார் கருதுப
கோடியும் அல்ல பல.

 kural-337

Live in now. Think about thinking….


An unknown shared existence

Category: Articles — at 8:45 pm on Tuesday, January 20, 2009

According to a statement by The Centre for the Study of Science and Religion, sciences respond to a felt need to understand the world, and religions respond to a felt need for the world to have meaning.

From these different starting points, one issue emerges at the junction of any science and any religion — namely, are these felt needs commensurate? That is, is the universe a moral place, so that the natural order is relevant to human lives and values? Do faith and family, love and charity mirror any larger meaning than the meanings we give to them?

Today, to a first approximation, the answer to these questions from any religion is Yes, and the answer from any science is No.

There it is then: the absolute inalienable divide between belief and knowledge where faith, family, love and charity turn out to have nothing in common with facts, formulae, laws and chance. However, if we were to consider the quintessence of the entire above statement as the embedded question: “Is the universe a moral place?” and replace it with: “Is reality a knowable occurrence?” they could start sharing something after all.

Two areas of human endeavour — micro and macro studies — serve this purpose well because while one deals with the deep inside, the other delves into the deep outside.

The deep inside goes deeper than just molecules and atoms; it reaches subatomic distances, then entities that make up subatomic particles and finally those that make them up till even the vanishingly small is breached at Planck length which some physicists sometimes humorously refer to as “God’s unit” since it remains independent of human existence, measurement or scaling and is defined as the smallest distance or size about which anything can be known.

The deep outside goes beyond the solar system, galaxy, galactic superclusters, dark matter, the universe and out of the entire known cosmos into an ultimate unknown order comprising extra dimensions, many worlds and multiverses of which, again, nothing can ever be known.

This leads to the conclusion that belief and knowledge — religion and science — occupy a fragile middle zone of the knowable where things like time, causation, identity and free will make temporary sense. Yet science and religion both say their systems do or can transcend even the unknowable. Perhaps, only this sharing of hubris or ignorance can some day be their common salvation.

-Mukul Sharma

Source: The Economic Times

Iyya Comments:

In reality, there is nothing-its all imagination. “andhathil ulladhi pindhathil ulladhu”. go deep inside, what can you search outside?

An iron hand - but in a velvet glove

Category: Articles — at 10:14 am on Tuesday, January 13, 2009

On the importance of being steadfast in one’s pursuit and progress, not being wavered by factors within or without, three highly powerful quotes 
from The Bible are very relevant. While one cautions (Luke – 9,62) against looking back after putting the “hand to the plough”, the other (James 1,6) observes, “He that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed”. The Book also cautions (James 1,8) that always, “a double minded man is unstable in all his ways”.

One who boldly scorns temptations, allurements and also pressures from all over is the one who obtains final fulfilment to his quest. The dictates of Vivekananda to “detach yourself from everything, however much the soul might yearn for it” and that of Ayn Rand to “live up to your highest vision of yourself no matter what the circumstances you might encounter” — these are guidelines to the earnest aspirant to ensure that his heart does not overpower his head.

In his Moon and Sixpence, Somerset Maugham portrays the character of Charles Strickland who, in his single-minded pursuit, learns not merely to sacrifice his own sinecure living, but also “to sacrifice others”! The enlightened, though brutal indifference to the shallow, is epitomised by the reply of a highly evolved character, in Ayn Rand’s Fountainhead, who on a charlatan’s asking eagerly, “What do you think of me?” replies casually, “I don’t think of you”! The need for clarity is expressed fully in the Bhagawad Gita concepts (2-55,56 and 3-17) of sthira dhee munih and also sthithaprajna meaning, “the seeker of steadfast mind and one who is stable in wisdom”.

In his pursuit, the true aspirant would always be guided in a manner that he does not ever lose his human qualities, becoming unfeeling or cruel to others just to obtain his objective. Only he, who pursues an unclear or a sinful objective, would cause harm through his obstinacy or selfishness. When clarity reigns and the end is always sublime, prompted by self knowledge and inner discovery, there would always prevail a strength of character generating that genuinely professional approach, which would also be marked by concern for others around, as long as they too are genuine and worthy.

Such a noble approach may appear, at first sight, to be ruthless. But a closer understanding would reveal the wisdom and sense of precision within. This verily is the practical working of the well known concept, “iron hand in a velvet glove”. This also, indeed, is practical wisdom! 

-K Vijayaraghavan

Source: The Economic Times dated Jan 12 2009

Iyya Comments:

Everything came from one single thing - if this understanding dawns to one, he is brahman. Single point unwavering mind=amaidhiya irunga, whatever which you dont like, how it came, it will go off in the same way…


amaidhi

Category: Assorted — at 1:57 pm on Wednesday, November 12, 2008

மலர்மிசை ஏகினான் மாணடி சேர்ந்தார்
நிலமிசை நீடுவாழ் வார்.

 manadhil ulla iravanai serndhavarghal , avargalum amaidhiyagi matravargallukkum amaidhi tharuvarghal.


Lotus eating and too much activity

Category: Articles — at 10:52 am on Wednesday, November 12, 2008

In his poem, Choric Song, in which lies much food for thought, Alfred Lord Tennyson talks of the feelings that pass the minds of the warriors of Ulys
ses (Odysseus).

On arriving at an island, they eat the lotus which grows there and soon fall under its spell, becoming lethargic, losing all desire for further voyages or adventures, desiring only for the peace to fall upon them like the “sweet music that softer falls than petals from blown roses on the grass.”

In this state, Ulysses’s men compare lives of humans, “weighed upon with heaviness” with those of all other creations God, who always have “rest from weariness”. They ask themselves why man, who is “the first of things…. the roof and crown of things” should only toil, when “death is the end of life”. Wondering “why should life all labour be”, they long for “long rest or death, dark death or dreamful ease.”

Losing all interest in going back to their families, they take shelter under the excuse that their loved ones would no more welcome them as things, back at home, would have changed completely. They also convince themselves, “Let what is broken, so remain”, finally declaring, “O rest ye, brother mariners, we will not wander more.” They look forward to lying reclined “in the hallow lotus land…. careless of mankind”.

While this description of Tennyson may just have been a spontaneous flow of his poetic imagination, there also lies inherent in this, a philosophy for meaningful life and living. Even Ulysses’s men, known for their ceaseless exploits, adventures and voyages, feel the need for “rest from weariness.”

Similarly, as applied to modern man, imbued with the spirit of dynamism and zeal, there also arises the need to ponder at least once in a while, over the enquiry that would often arise from within, Quo Vadis? (Whither goest thou?).

This soul searching is the food for the spirit, needing continual moments of reflection, meditation, introspection and contemplation — ‘lotus eating’, in the positive sense.

A golden mean between too much of such ‘lotus eating’ and too many activities would ensure that life is not marked merely by frenzied activities, which often lead nowhere.

Oases of meaningful time spent in this manner, with oneself in solitude in what is otherwise a vast desert sand of catering to the need to make a living in this materialistic world, would lend meaning and fulfilment to life. In this manner, even ill-regulated activities could eventually be channelled to creative action.
10 Nov, 2008, 0221 hrs IST,K Vijayaraghavan, ET Bureau


Worthwhile living: Faith with works

Category: Articles — at 3:41 pm on Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Summing up various issues on worthwhile living, as dealt with in greater detail earlier in these columns, certain particular aspects would emerge. The quest for effectiveness and meaning in life commences with the realisation on “how much more there is to living…there is a reason to life”. Doubtless, human intellect can obtain real fulfilment only when the powers of head and heart are channelled to creative work.

Indeed, “man shall not live by bread alone”! Evolution of the needed system of physical activities and exercises, rooted in joy, peace and grace would incorporate the spirit of stipulations on yama, niyama, asana and pranayama. Indeed, right observances and physical activities, which are under our direct control, can healthfully impact our mental formations, which are not.

Healthy attitude, besides enduring relaxation would confer that “altered state of perception”, whereby one could also begin to love what he had formerly condemned. This also is the working of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). Truly, “there is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so”.

Consistency and “sacred, substantial, never-fading bliss” would guard against the ‘single slip’ or the ‘leaking pot’, that drain the benefits, accumulated assiduously. Endearing and enduring gains, inspired by abiding curiosity and wish power, work through the three Ps, which mark all genius — perseverance, persistence and patience. Aiding this process would be the prayers: “May noble thoughts come from all over;” and asato ma sat gamaya, tamaso ma jyotir gamaya, mrityo ma amritam gamaya.

Resolutely facing up to discouragement, insinuations or even inner doubts, “not getting caught” and cultivating where necessary, an enlightened indifference (upekshana), going ahead “no matter what the circumstances” — these would ensure that the clock is never put back.

It is in this manner that exposures in the form of all education, transactions and study of great writings undergo the needed analysis within to bring about a meaningful synthesis, whereby the benefits of these exposures reveal themselves in all aspects of life and living — the concept of “faith and works”.

This also is the manner of putting into practice the exhortation that knowledge should be backed by the experience too, as noted by Mr Pattabhiram, the moving force behind the Bangalore yoga institute, Sadhana Sangama. Indeed, this, verily, is skill in action (karmasu koushalam)!

3 Nov, 2008, 0114 hrs IST,K Vijayaraghavan.

Source: The Economic Times


Create your oasis to escape burnout

Category: Articles — at 8:20 am on Friday, September 19, 2008
   THE first bolt of insight struck the seeker when he was struggling to relax into shavasana, or the yogic pose known as the corpse: the first step to be taken towards perfect relaxation was to stop struggling to be still. The second insight was not to be obsessed about the first one.
   For, the more one thought about the difficulty of becoming still, the deeper one got into a mental morass, as in the myth of the King of Elephants being dragged down by a crocodile in the story from Vishnu Purana. The pachyderm struggled against the reptile valiantly. But it began to tire after a while. Then it realised that sheer strength wasn’t going to work. Only the Lord could save its soul. That’s when it completely surrendered and sent out a cry from the heart, only to become free!
   So if you want to see elephants fly, you have to let go of everything, essentially your thoughts. That’s the third insight. Letting go of thoughts isn’t such a big deal. Your thinking makes it so. It’s not easy. But it could be managed by “accepting reality and staying positive” says the Dalai Lama in his new tome, The Leader’s Way, co-authored with Laurens van den Muyzenberg.
   “Buddhism stresses that the three concepts of cause and effect, interdependence, and impermanence must move beyond intellectual understanding,” he writes. “They must become ‘realisations’; they must be experienced at the level of feelings and become an integral part of the mind.
   “As long as we live in this world we are bound to encounter problems. If, at such times, we lose hope and feel discouraged, we diminish our ability to face difficulties.”
   His Holiness adds: “If, on the other hand, if we remember that it is not just ourselves but everyone who has to undergo suffering, this more realistic perspective will increase our determination and capacity to overcome hurdles. Indeed, with this attitude, each new obstacle can be seen as yet another valuable opportunity to improve the mind.”
   Thus, the seeker found that letting go was the ultimate protection against burnout. This does not have to mean ‘giving up’ or ‘quitting’. Instead, it entails acceptance, or what the votaries of Bhakticall surrender, which facilitates a profound sense of inner stillness. This was not a static state. Nor was it dynamic, but something that lay beyond labels and categories.
   It meant allowing a ‘space’ to occur within, a space that can become your oasis.
• VITHAL C NADKARNI
Source: The economic Times
Iyya Comments:
Only when you have space fr god inside, HE is there, if there is no space, how will god be there? Let Go and Create space for God.


Omni-anything can be very boring

Category: Assorted — at 10:24 am on Monday, September 15, 2008
A question which never itself usually comes up for querying is whether God has to necessarily be all-powerful, present everywhere and right about everything each time? If we can move past this seemingly difficult hurdle and answer it — say, in the negative — then a great deal of unresolved problems of theology, metaphysics and philosophy could at least begin to be addressed.

For example challenges like the existence of evil and suffering which have brought some of the greatest thinkers of all time to the point of hurling themselves off cliffs, could have less complicated answers than saying it’s the result of human sin, or to permit free will, or that He moves in mysterious ways.

Because if we look at it dispassionately there is, in fact, no real reason for imbuing a creator with attributes like omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence. It only exteriorises a childish yearning for what is perceived to be an ideal kind of eternal existence with infinite power over everything. Also, positing absolutes leads to paradoxes that can never be satisfactorily resolved. We’re immediately stuck with things like the simplistic “Can He make a stone so big that even He can’t lift it?” to the profound “What is the purpose of His existence?” (For if He does have one, then who gave it to Him and if not then how does He matter?)

But let’s see what happens when we conceive a God with an added power than what we’ve thought He possessed all along: the power to make mistakes or be fallible. Does the entire edifice of our belief system collapse immediately? Not really because it makes Him even more powerful than before. For one thing, instead of getting perfect results each time, He could — and probably does — experiment with all that’s there to create, sustain or destroy. It would also explain — as some faiths indicate — why He loses Himself in us from time to time and then, subsequently, has such a tough time getting back to His being. A perfect existence in all the time there is could never be creative otherwise.

It would explain why He either has the power to make a stone so big that He can’t lift it, or not be able to make any stone that He can never lift — but not both. Does this slight shift in the perception of God really change anything for a true believer — especially if both are, as they both believe, made in each other’s image?

Source: The Economic Times

Be bold, face the world squarely

Category: Articles — at 10:50 am on Wednesday, September 10, 2008

One may be highly motivated to rise above the ordinary, he may be prepared to put in much effort and may also be blessed with commendable talents. However, all these would be of no avail unless he also concomitantly faces up to intimidations, insinuations, subtle persuasions and appeals to the soft corners of his personality. If this is not done, he could end up living according to others’ priorities and not his own.

The concept of ‘enlightened selfishness’ has its expression also in Bhagavad Gita. In his pursuit of righteousness (dharma), Arjuna was left with no alternative but annihilation of his own brother, close relatives and preceptors. He breaks down, casting away his arms, whereupon Krishna exhorts him to rid himself of all vacillation and fear. Commencing with this glorious stanza (2,3), Gita also deals subsequently with various aspects of right, effective and bold living.

A healthy indifference to the sinful (upekshana) is also the art of right detachment. Noting that the essence of Gita is to “work constantly without being attached or being caught”, Vivekananda urges: “Reserve unto yourself the power of detaching yourself from everything, however beloved, however much the soul might yearn for it, however great the pangs of misery you feel if you are going to leave it; still reserve the power of leaving it whenever you want”.

In a strikingly similar tone, Ayn Rand, points out that one’s own happiness and achievements are most important. She declares, “Live up to your highest vision of yourself no matter what the circumstances you might encounter. An exalted view of self-esteem is a man’s most admirable quality.”

In this manner, the true aspirant, contributing also to harmony all over, also detaches himself from the mediocre, prosaic and the common place. He thus no longer needs involvement with shallow relationships and self-seeking assurances, which eventually and always are unreliable. Being truly authentic, he makes a statement through his deeds and living on how to dare and accomplish.

No wonder, Tagore commences his great poem dealing with sublime virtues, with these words:“Where the mind is without fear……”. Indeed, all seekers would discover (though tragically, in some cases, a bit too late) that this sad, mad, bad world is often just a paper tiger bully, whose true colours are exposed when challenged and whose frightful exterior has merely been a mask put on to scare away half-hearted adventurers! 

Source: The Economic Times

Iyya Comments:

Edhukku bayapadnum? Unmaiya pesunga, dhairiyama irunga….
 

3 more things

Category: Words of Wisdom — at 11:06 am on Friday, September 5, 2008

last week you saw 3 things, this week 3 more things to live a long life:

1. Breath deeply till your Naval
2. Sit straight, keep your spine straight
3. Dont let evil or unwanted thoughts  inside 

 

3 things to remember

Category: Words of Wisdom — at 10:24 am on Thursday, August 28, 2008

indha monnaiyum gnabagam vechukonga:
1. NALLAVANAGA IRUTHTHAL

2. DHRAMATHIN PADI UNMAIYAGA NADATHTHAL

3. MANATHAI ADAKUDHAL - AMAIDHIYA IRUTHAL

NIGHAL KALATHIL STHIRAMA IRUNDHAL EDHIR KALAM STHIRAMAGA VARUM

YOU MAKE YOUR TOMORROW TODAY


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