Category Archives: perceptions

Animal Rights



When I was in Delhi in India, once, on my way to my place of work, I saw a big monkey or ape ( I am not sure) tied below a cart full of goods. The monkey was roped to the cart in such a way that the entire weight of the goods was on the poor monkey. I couldn’t forget the horrible sight for a long time and it kept disturbing me.
In the early days of evolution on this planet, when man was struggling for mere survival, the horse, the donkey , the elephant , the cow, and the sheep were considered godsends by him,but not any longer. For, if he continued to do so, he would not be meting out such harsh injustice to them. The horse would carry him uphill on its back; the donkey would carry his load of clothes to the riverside and back…

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The right words spoken with the right intention have the power to heal. The right words are those which match with a good intention. But we are human beings and we are generally more sensitive to the effect of others’ words on us than to that of our words on others. We generally read our own meaning of what the other person says…we get carried away by giving too much importance to the words as such We are not aware that two people may make the same remark but the intention behind each remark and the circumstances in which the remark was made, and most of all the state of mind of the person who makes the remark and the one who he mentions it to,makes all the difference.

For example, if A says toB & C, “Many of us don’t say what we mean and we don’t mean what…

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Many a time, in spite of your deliberation to maintain your sanity amidst chaos around you, you may give way to stress,suppressed anger, frustration and all negative paraphernalia that are sure to take their toll on your physical and mental health.
You may be regular with your spiritual practices; you may be standing upside down to set things right, but do what you may, the people around you and the situation created by them may not change. It may not be due to lack of effort from your side. The others may be totally in a negative mode at that time. So , you can’t do anything about it. You have to just struggle through it and survive it, somehow.
Of course, other than the spiritual practices, there is another way to let go off ‘steam’. It is the simplest and one of the oldest and tried methods of removing…

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In most cases, those who have acquired wealth the easy way don’t realise its value.

On the other hand,those who have earned wealth the hard way realise its value.

Looking at this fact from a different perspective, one experiences great  joy in buying something by saving from hard-earned money .

On the other hand, one who can just buy things as and when one wants, without thinking about expenses, loan-payment etc. does not have any joy in spending it. Whether buying peanuts or a high-end property, it’s the same to the one who wields the power of wealth.

I have come to this conclusion by indirect experience through contacts in my social circle. Quite a few of those who were born ‘stinking rich’ are now living as any of the middle-income group, striving for survival and small comforts in life. They had the resource earlier but did not have the know how to handle it well. For, neither did they  know how to sustain it by re-investing some of it for future returns, nor did they have the power of discrimination to know who were their true friends and well-wishers and who were there with them just for their wealth. It’s been rightly said “when money is in plenty, friends are in twenty;when your purse is empty, there is not one in twenty.” This is the plight of some of them I know. And the pity of it is that they are very good human beings who have done a lot of good for the less fortunate in their golden days.

Given The power of money which can buy many luxuries of this world, one needs to have the maturity not to be a slave to it, for, then,without it, one cannot be happy. In fact, many who have the power of wealth don’t lead a stress-free and happy life due to which they don’t enjoy good health. Similarly, many of the middle-income group ,who don’t have enough money to save for the future,live day to day in stress, worrying about their children , their post-retirement life etc.

in contrast, the laborer,who earns on a daily basis, is less stress-free for he experiences the stark reality- the struggle for survival day-to-day ,and has hardly any time to worry about the future. He works for his family’s next meal!

Everyone, who works hard,would like to earn a lot of money….fine! But the only thing we need to remind ourselves is that one cannot be happy just by having a lot of money… In that case,all those,who are wealthy, must be happy, which, most are not. In fact, it can be otherwise also. I recollect my Master’swords , “Many lose their  good health to earn wealth and spend half of their wealth to earn back good health!” By this He must be meaning that we should not be desperate or feverish for wealth. It’s okay to have wealth to live well in this world, but one should be satisfied at some point in life for whatever one has been blessed with. This can happen only if one looks at those who are less fortunate than oneself. If one looks at those who are more fortunate in life, one may feel unhappy and disappointed, unless one takes them as inspirations or examples to progress in life, which is the right attitude.

So, to put it in a nutshell, man’s happiness or unhappiness has nothing to do with money. It depends on his outlook in life, and his attitude towards money is one of the main criteria that can affect his happiness.

Money!Money!Money! It is a blessing like any other of this world like beauty, status, fame, etc. But it depends on man to keep it so or not to make it a curse!

The greatest wealth is to have peace and contentment in life which should be the forerunner to acquire anything,be it of this world, or, be it beyond! If one’s peace and contentment is conditional I.e. if it depends on one’s possession of the assets of this world, one can never be peaceful and truly happy.

Another truth which comes to light about man’s struggle in running after health is that he does it, to a certain extent, to fulfill his needs, after which,it becomes a way of getting recognition in the family circle, in the workplace, in his social circles. This is so because only those who have the power of wealth are recognized and respected in our society. The power of money brings, name, fame, social status… everything with it. But we need to bear in mind that this respect and recognition is not for him but for his money, and hence, is not true, and hence, not lasting. If he stops bothering about such false standards of respect, and just respects himself, he will be peaceful and contented with what he has and still do his best to progress in life
When one is peaceful and content and not greedy, the Higher Force sees to it that one doesn’t have dearth of anything one needs in life. Before the need for something arises, it is taken care of. That has been my experience in life, many a time.

O Lord! May all those, who toil for survival, be blessed with enough to fulfill their needs!
May not Greed for more and more destroy man’s peace of mind!
May not wealth and its power bring strife among men!
May it not widen the gap between the haves and the have-nots!
May it not corrupt the human minds
To lead to degeneration of lasting values And society thereof!
May it not be man’s priority
That he lives life in vanity
And loses his sanity!

Hero and villain

The other day, I happened to watch a Bollywood movie, in which an actor who had been playing only a hero’s role, has acted in a villain’s role. And, believe me, he has acted as well as he has done in a hero’s role.

This triggered a thought in me…When it comes to acting, which would be easier…acting the role of a hero or that of a villain?

Well, generally, I mean,ruling out exceptions, I would say that acting the role of a hero would be an easier task than acting the role of a villain.

I feel it is so because everyone has aspired to be a hero many a time in life and has become so, at least in his drama, if not in real life. This is so because by nature,  no one wants to be a villain…to be violent and commit some crime or other…may be robbery, may be murder, may be rape.

Hence it is more challenging to do a villain’s role for any actor. For, I am sure, no one in his right mind would dream of killing anyone or committing any other crime. For, these crimes are committed on an impulse.. .a sudden rush of unprecedented fury. Most of the criminals commit a crime in a dis-balanced state of the mind plagued by a rush of negative emotions and fury which comes like a tornado to engulf them and take them away in dangerous twists, turns and whirls to destruction. All that come in the path of this fury is destroyed.

When it comes to real life….No one is born a criminal…I mean no one is born evil, wanting to harm others….It is the circumstances  not conducive to growth, not nurturing the mind, the emotions and the intellect, in fact leading to an imbalance in all these levels, that lead to an individual’s negative reaction to such circumstances. A repetition of these or a constant exposure to such circumstances at an age, when the mind, the emotions and the intellect are yet to mature fully, change the individual from a peace-loving, ordinary, sociable, positive person to a lonely, confused, cynical, bitter, disillusioned person, who can commit any crime at any time in an outburst of any strong emotion.

And, no one is born a hero. It’s the play of circumstances that are conducive to bringing out the latent gifts in an individual that go a long way in making him a hero, at least in his own eyes. This is becoming the hero the easy way or the natural way.

Another class of heroes are those who have walked on thorns all their life , but have taken every hurdle on their path as a challenge and persistently , relentlessly, pushed themselves in life, to live life the best way possible. This class of heroes are the ones ,who not only reach the top, but stay there!

So, it all boils down to this fact that a villain or a criminal has in all possibility gone through a lot of pain, rejection and disappointment in life . The only difference of the two classes of criminals is that the former succumb to their circumstances and become victims of these ,to bring harm to others , and , most of all, to themselves, whereas, the latter refuse to be victimized by their circumstances,and cross every hurdle on their way to come out stronger, mentally, emotionally, and, with a much-tested,and hence sharper intellect. They are just like gold, that, when taken through fire, becomes purer and shines more!

So no one is a criminal or a culprit. All are victims.

However, this fact should not be an excuse for anyone to commit a crime, when we become aware that we are overcome by circumstances, we can heal ourselves and remain in our nature. And such healing can happen by regular mediation, pranayama, and, Sudarshan Kriya. In course of time, we will get back to that natural balanced state of mind. And then no nightmarish experiences in life can victimize us.

We can survive it all as an individual , as a family, as a society,as a nation, as the world, if we can heal ourselves , heal others around, and, march forward .

Dealing with fear

Fear can be either your friend or your enemy.

Fear, whatever kind it may be, can affect man only in two ways.

It can lead to his failure, suppression,depression,a sense of non-fulfilment in life.

On the other hand, it can lead him to success and a sense of fulfilment in life.

Now, it depends on man alone to make the choice.

Most people compromise with their goals in life for fear of something or other, though, the degree may vary from person to person.

But, there are some ordinary men with an extraordinary skill in handling fear and turning it from a foe to a friend.

By ‘turning fear foe to friend’, I mean, they use fear as an obstacle to overcome – to reach where they want to.

Thus, they plunge headlong to do all that they fear . It may be a terrifying experience for sometime, after which it will be just an adventurous, thrilling experience.

If one doesn’t do the things one fears about, one can’t overcome fear and it will be a part of one’s life..a way of living. It can ‘cripple’ one’s personality.

Fear is synonymous with death even if such fear may keep one is the safe life of a coward.

And dauntless courage is synonymous with life even if one has to meet death while braving is the death of a brave man.

Why a Regimen in life?

Without a regimen in life, we tend to become inert physically and gradually, mentally, and, in the long run,we become static in life i.e. we don’t channelize all the energy we gain by food and other natural resources,in a constructive way . That same energy, which,when channelized, can open up new avenues for us in life and keep us dynamic, gets blocked, and, it affects our physical and mental health.  This energy can be physical, intellectual or mental, or, all of them . An obstruction in the flow of any of these three energies can create a respective dis-rhythm in the psycho-somatic level. The intellect will be dulled; emotional imbalance can set in; mental disturbances can storm into one’s life….if one does not use all the gifts given by God to man. It’s like this…a machine,which runs on electricity, will be in good condition as long as it runs, and, as long as it is maintained, with regular servicing like oiling, etc. If it is not used for sometime, it may get rusted and may become useless after a period of time.

Hence the need for making one’s regimen in life…can be physical exercises , yoga, meditation, Sudarshan Kriya, sports,fine arts, etc. In fact, all the traditional customs such as making rangoli early in the morning, going to the temple, praying together as a family in the morning and in the evening, doing puja,or, following some ritual, are not an end in themselves , but, are the means to this end…..of disciplining and tuning the body, mind, intellect and emotions to collectively aid man in living life to its full potential and live it Nature’s Way. The optimum alignment of mind, body and breath leads to good physical , mental and emotional health, sharp intellect, unclouded memory and a fulfilling life…. a blessing to oneself and to all around.

Man is not an island in himself…he is a social being…and his life is incomplete without sharing all he has with his family, kith and kin, friends, society, and the world , at large. Of course, he benefits if he lives his life in seclusion. But, ultimately, he will not be content…for, what is that life,which is of no use to  others? Hence . there is an innate, instinctive urge in man to share… and such sharing between men enriches the lives of all concerned…to bring happiness, positivity, bliss, peace and contentment wherever they go!

Even Nature manifests a regimen …her seasons coming in rotation, the blooming , withering and again blooming of flowers as per the seasons, the sequence of the low and the high times on the Sea, the sunrise and the sunset…all these phenomena of Nature are a lesson to man…to maintain a regimen in life…one that will benefit oneself and others as well!

Lessons in Life

No one can dictate to you how to live life for they have not gone through what you have gone through. But they can share with you what they have learnt from their life. If it appeals to you , take it, otherwise , leave it but still be thankful to them. For, many a time, we learn our lessons in life from others’ experiences. Open-mindedness is always a blessing.