Category Archives: Reflections

SUCCESS

What is more slippery – Success or The Eel?

Only a courageous person can aim for and achieve his or her goal – be it that of a mountaineer to climb the Himalayas, or, be it that of a young ambitious individual to reach the top in his or her hobby or profession, or, even, be it to reach the highest n spiritual pursuits.


And any ordinary human being can reach there by his or her hard work and perseverence.

A success story is not one of comparative study and analysis. Every individual has his or her own track to run on, with his or her start and finishing line . For example, a drug-addict who works on himself or herself, and gets out of his compulsive hobbit that might kill him or her, has a story of success to tell us. A lady, who is from the financially weak class, and, is a single parent, who has toiled to give good education for her children and been an instrument for their welfare and prosperity today, is another story of success. So also, is that of the son of a business magnate, who takes over the reins from his father and makes his own niche as an entrepreneur. There is no ground for comparison with one another here.

Many of the success stories are those of playing ‘hide-and-seek’ with success. One is on a search for success , finds it, but loses it again in the sense that one comes down a few or many steps from where one reaches after such hard work, and sometimes, even comes all the way down ‘to start from scratch’ again!

What can be the reason for this I wonder!


Is it that one’s perseverance to the goal was ‘conditioned’ to gain name, fame, prosperity, as a result of which one starts taking one’s success for granted and becomes complacent about it?

Or, is it that what one thinks to be one’s highest goal remains as such no longer as such after one achieves it, and then, one starts looking for, setting and working towards another goal?

Or can it be a combination of both these factors?

The story of true and lasting lasting success is a double-faced one of survival and sustenance. It’s a struggle for survival through circumstances that are a test of one’s endurance and coming out and purer and more ‘shining’ like gold taken out of fire, and more important, sustaining oneself there . The degree of success depends, not only on how long one can sustain oneself there, but also on adherence to the same values as one upheld earlier. According to me, as regards success, the means are as important as the end itself!

On further ruminations on success, I believe that the greatest story of success is not that of one which is worked towards and achieved to be used as a tool for name, fame and prosperity. It is one of a spontaneous, instinctive and passionate urge to pursue a certain path.

It is a story of progress on one’s path for its own sake and the focus is on every step one takes. In such a state of consciousness, no worldly terms of success comes to the mind. This story if success is born out of a sense of fulfilment in the present moment and the courage of conviction that what one wants to do in life is in response to an ‘an inner call’ that never fails to guide one in life. And this bursts forth as tremendous mental, intellectual, and consequently, physical energy to work tirelessly towards progress on the path one chooses in life! How can such a life-story be not one of success, though not as necessarily may be, by worldly standards!

HUMAN LIFE & MAN’S JOURNEY BACK HOME (A Reverie)

A story of The Realised Souls who lived and those who still live on this Earth

Theme or Idea, Prologue, Plot, Script , Characters, Dialogues, Stagecraft, Audience, the Epilogue – All by God Himself ). ONE-in-All & All-in-ONE! The universe and all

THE PROLOGUE

Creation must have been the result of just a bubble of thought rising in the Primordial State of Consciousness. All the world is a stage and human life a play.

The God-Child was resting in heaven in a dreamy state after creating the mystical universe of many planets. He had created many living beings, inanimate and animate. A picture flashed before his Eye of two lumps of clay being moulded with His invisible Hands into two images of His Own, and these two multiplying to many of His image. He woke up with a start. He went to His playpen and took out his. clay-set and started his work. He thought, ‘It’s no fun creating it all Myself. Let me hand it over to my Images, Let them multiply my images. Ultimately, It’s I only, as the Consciousness in them , who will empower them with a matter-body, mind, the five senses, intellect, emotions and feelings, to enact the play I have thought of plotted, scripted, and now, I will just direct it. The strings are in my hands; they are my puppets. Let me give them some ‘loose rope’ as they will be the most evolved of all living beings on Earth. It will be fun to watch them. I will intervene as and when required, other than to start the play and to end it.”

He created the Earth. Then he created mountains, Oceans, rivers, flora and fauna and blew the Five Elements into it. Then he created Man and Woman , his own image in Purusha, to manifest as Man, and, in Prakriti, to manifest as woman, each retaining a part of the other.

NOW THE CURTAIN ROSE…..(on THE PLAY)

God breathed life to man and woman and the story of human life and man’s journey back home started. God downloaded his Energy in the human body to the seven levels of the Consciousness, in the seven chakras in the physical body, which mark the journey back home, of Man, from the current stage of evolution to His Highest Seat of Consciousness i.e. God?

Man and Woman fell in love, had sex and brought children into this world. They grew up , and repeated the same story and thus His World multiplied and still keeps multiplying. The Human Being started moving away from God or His own Nature as it had been when he was created by God. His intelligence worked beyond its orbit to convince Him that He was the doer and he had the power to do anything in his life. He got addicted to all the pleasures that God had given him as gifts and He ran after wealth, name, fame, success, and, to get these, he took countless lifetimes as he died a mortal death in every body that he took, but took his unfulfilled desires, his subtle ego-body of earthly, transient, feelings and emotions of transient joy and sorrow, love and hate in attachment ,along with him to take another lifetime in another mortal body.

He drifted away from Nature so much so that he traded with all that is actually what he is , by Nature– harmless, blissful, peaceful, and, grateful – to fulfil his earthly goals. Thus he experienced extreme pleasures as well as excruciating pain. He instilled fear in all other species of Creation and pushed them to a fight for their survival. Man fought for his vested interests or in offence whereas the other species fought in defence. He started misusing his powers by unconsciously and consciously harming all flora and fauna and even his own species.

Thus he started upsetting the balance of Nature so much so that God heard the soulful cry of the exploited, the cry of the oppressed – the cry for deliverance. All sort of diseases – physical, mental and emotional – plagued Man and he fought against them. God decided it was time to intervene.

He showered “His Grace” on a few of His images who still remembered their former state in Heaven and they got enlightened. They became the Ancient Sages and they made the Scriptures, the Vedas as tools of wisdom for Man to remember God and to get back to his original state of mind – His Nature.

Slowly but surely, Man , by the path shown to him by the life and teachings of the divine souls, started evolving from a rat race for pleasure and the evanescent joys and sorrows of this world to a search for that which is Eternal. He realised that his mind had separated itself from its Source. He prayed , he sang, he wrote, he cried – in remembrance of His God and in intense love and longing for Him. God relented.

He came down to Earth, to lead Man back all the way HOME, himself. Yes! He downloaded Himself in the form of ‘PURE ENERGY’ in the nervous system of man to lead him from one chakra or state of consciousness to another starting with the Mooladhara or the entry-gate, to the exit gate – the Sahasrara?

At last Man found Eternal Love, Peace and Bliss, within Himself, for the Lord, who had enthroned Himself within the innermost petal of his lotus heart.

Life in the matter-body goes on, but in celebration. Everyone every situation, every moment, reflects God’s mysterious and mystical and ETERNAL LOVE for Man.

Man experiences fulfilment of life’s purpose. He realises that life and death of the matter-body and his rebirth, if any, doesn’t mean anything to him – just a Play of the Divine – a puppet-play, where, he is also one of the puppets on the strings, held in little hands, and, given a tug here and there, time and again, to make Man laugh, cry, sing, dance, stamp the feet in anger, clap hands in glee, etc.to fulfil His whims and fancies.

Life in the matter-body goes on. Shiv, the primordial state of Consciousness (Purusha) and Shakthi the dynamic active pulsating state of consciousness (Prakriti) unite to indicate that God has almost finished scripting, directing one of the plays of HIS CREATION.

But he still continues to play in single , dual and multiple roles, but now, his puppet is consciously, voluntarily ‘being’ the tool for the God-child’s entertainment. .

And, the human being in the matter-body, the Infinite in the finite , nay, the Infinite carrying the finite, has attained fulfilment . The play on the world-stage has come to its end, now the curtain is drawn on the stage-play, to rise again for

THE EPILOGUE (The death of the matter-body)

The sudden squeal of my grandson startled me out of my reverie, and I gave a big smile to Myself and went about worldly my chores, rejuvenated, IN WONDER and GRATITUDE for all that God has given man in this life, whichever way it is, as a package, no longer doubting, even for a moment, about HIS LOVE, HIS PERFECT PLAN FOR MAN.

THE “GENERATION GAP”

“OLD IS GOLD, NEW IS BURNISHED GOLD & FUSION OF BOTH IS PLATINUM?”

Nowadays, a phrase is very often overheard in social circles, either as part of a plaintive or captious comment, sometimes, by the older generation i.e. septuagenarians and above, and, at other times, a caustic remark, by one of the younger generation.

Is the above a natural phenomenon that is part and parcel of the natural process of age-ing and maturity that brings a considerable change of mindset, life style and priorities in life ?

And if it is the latter, what can be the main ‘bones of contention’ that can create this gap? Let us look into this.

I know that there have been frequent instances of estranged relationships due to this ‘generation gap’, leave alone the other factors as may be.

Hence my reflections on this. ( It may be a bit too lengthy, but, please read through it; it is just a perspective and not a judgement; so no one, young or old, may take it personally please, as I am just ‘thinking aloud’ with all, with the simplest of intentions to be a mirroring-technique for all, including me. So please feel free to share your perceptions , and not judgements).

A general tendency of the older generation is to be consciously or unconsciously obsessed with ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ based on religious beliefs and practices of yore that have come down, as believed to have, from our ancestors – beliefs that have come as part of religion, for example, idol worship, and many such practices which, we expect the younger generation to follow, with unquestioned belief. So, it indicates our explicit or implicit conviction that whatever we do in terms of the above, is right, and any contradictory point of view of the youngsters, generally, is wrong.

And, the younger lot, as have been exposed to more of different cultures , and as having been brought up in a liberal environment from a very early age , either in our country with different cultures, or, as having been residents or citizens in different countries and different cultures, may have naturally taken to the life-styles and belief systems of their social circles, work circles, etc.

And they are more critical, may be in the right way, in adopting certain practices, that may have come down to them in the name of tradition. The spirit of enquiry, which every generation has had, is their birthright as well. So, they are not ready to accept and follow anything and everything their elders want them to follow, without a logical explanation.

But, there are many things, which, we have absorbed in our culture in the name of tradition, which, most of us cannot explain to them, for we have just, may be, blindly, adopted them, because our parents passed it on to us.

And, to add to it, admittedly, we, as elders, may directly or indirectly, consciously or unconsciously, tend to be a bit or too ‘preachy’ about everything that our youngsters disagree with us on. I mean, we may not be preachy in words, but may be in our meta-communication ,which can rub them on the wrong side. I think many a time, what we say, may be, at least, earnestly listened to by them , if we become aware of ‘how’ we put it across, and when to put it across. This is where, may be many of our generation may be lacking, in my view.

And, in the name of religion, we have integrated so many customs and religious rites in our culture, which give a stench of a biased, male chauvinistic society , where , the right to equality of women and girls, have been either totally suppressed or undermined by a community .

However, globalisation has brought about a welcome change in the mindsets of many of the old and the young alike, and expanded our horizon. Multiculturalism is the trend nowadays, which is indeed very good. Our society has become liberal and more broad-minded to a great extent, but, there are still some, who continue with these practices ,which infringe on human rights.

But it is really unfortunate that because of these factors, many of the younger generation have taken an extreme tendency to totally defy all our cultural practices as ‘ blind faith’ or a story of exploitation of naïve souls for vested interests by a biased society.

Some of the younger generation don’t even know many of the teachings for life that have come in the form of shlokas, mythological stories or stories about life of those who lived on this Earth like Lord Rama and Lord Krishna, which are put across to children in the form of attractive picture stories like Amar Chitra Katha.
Neither are they keen to know about them nor are they keen to retell these stories to their children. Superman, Aquaman and Batman are all wonderful creations but they don’t have to displace Rama, Krishna, Bal Hanuman, Ganesha to take their place in the young minds. Why can’t they co-exist?

I think because youngsters are fed up with how, for generations, many of us had been , and, may be, are, even now, ‘breathing down their necks’ with uncalled-for sermons of right and wrong, in the name of religion.

And earlier, all these stories of Rama, Krishna, Ganesha etc. were put across to the youngsters as a religious lesson. May be, the youngsters nowadays are very sceptical about anything and everything that comes in the name of religion. And spirituality and religion have been so mixed up, unawares, or, conveniently and consciously, may be, so, anything that comes in the name of spirituality , is outright branded by them as ‘bullshit’ in ‘trendy language’.

Those of the older generation tend to be a bit too finicky and too serious about their regimen of early to bed and early to rise, timely meals, and the type of food they eat. On the other hand, the youngsters have hectic work schedules.Their biological clock sets it own alarm for food, sleep and work etc. The younger generation are rather too flexible, or rather, negligent as to the above , and hence many of them land up with serious chronic health issues at too early an age.

I regret to say that this cultural upheaval is happening more or less only in the Hindu culture, may, be, because, it is the most ancient and so varied in belief systems and practices with due or undue importance, as may perceived, given to many Forms and Names , may be, too many rites and rituals and hence tend to be tedious, and too time-consuming.

In fact our generation, being on the threshold of transition, are, ourselves, sceptical about a few beliefs, as we are not sure, if all have come down from the Sages of Wisdom, or, some have been incorporated as part of it, conveniently, by different communities, at different times, as called for.

So neither the older generation or the younger generation are to blame for this.

In India, we, of the older generation , may be too expressive for others’ comfort, especially with children. We express our emotions too much. We meet people in restaurants, shopping malls, trains and flights, we become very friendly and we express it with hugs, especially with children. It is not a welcome practice in many other cultures. . I have learnt that we need to keep a restraint on our over-expression of emotions . We tend to encroach on others’ personal physical, mental and emotional space, which is not a good habit. It can alienate others instead of bringing them closer to us. I used to be too expressive earlier, but now, I am so, but only exclusively and consciously, with those who are similarly so.

It is okay if we greet children and talk to them and make friends with them in our environment, but, when we go to other countries, we need to be aware that we don’t do the same thing by over-expression. While in Rome be a Roman – rightly said, I mean – to an extent as needs to be for efficacious communication. Sobriety is the secret of effective communication in relationships with all, especially strangers.

Well, according to me, the above are all issues , which can, to a great extent be settled by , firstly, the awareness that, neither the older generation nor the younger ones are solely responsible for this ‘unnatural gap’. We are victims of the transition from an exclusive ‘Mass Consciousness’ to an. all-inclusive one, i.e. no culture will be recognised as an entity in itself; its all ONE WORLD ONE CULTURE – a matter of what needs to be absorbed into it and what should be done away with, rather than whose culture is it and why it is so!

Hence a major shift needs to happen, in the mindsets of the older generation, and, by a little more sensitivity on the part of the youngsters to the exclusive cultural roots which their elders, who had already crossed their prime before globalisation and multiculturalism brought in global cultural trends, and hence, had grown up and had got rooted in, may be, a strictly traditionally conservative society.

This is strictly applicable only to those of our generation, who had not been exposed to other cultures by travelling around and settling in and being citizens of other countries and other cultures. Some of us, have lived our lives only in one town, one state , all our lives and hence, may not have been exposed to the diverse cultural practices of our country.

The others are as unconventional, as inclusive as, or, may be, a little less than, the younger generation, due to the natural age-ing and experience factors.

I would also like to mention here that believing in and accepting all that the older generation says is another issue, but, it is unwarranted for youngsters to ridicule or disrespect the belief systems and practices that the older generation have grown up in , and, vice versa. I hope and pray that the younger generation doesn’t undermine our old cultural values and traditional practices altogether, as many of them may be doing now ( they may sift and sieve, which is fine) by branding them all as ‘nonsense’ with the same incredible speed and impatience with which they absorb the beliefs and practices of other cultures.

As I said earlier, this gap is the widest in the Hindu culture as it being the most ancient of all, may be, and , as it has been passed on, for, time immemorial.

But there is a ray of light.

All the spiritual organizations of India and all the Spiritual Masters are reaching out , not only to the youth in our country, but also to those in other countries. And, it gives us great hope when we witness the response of youth from across the globe to our spiritual practices such as yoga, pranayama and Sudarshan Kriya. This will not only help in building up a New India but go a long way to lay the foundations for a New Earth – people of all nations, all cultures, all FAITHS, living together bonded in multiculturalism and living in one identity as ONE WORLD, ONE FAMILY – VASUDEVA KUDUMBAKAM

The young call the age-ing , too old and outdated’ – the same young will become aged when their children grow up to call them and brand them, and both generations together, may continue to experience or create wider GAPS? I wonder.

It may not happen, for, they may not live together.

For, it happens generally only when we occupy one another’s personal space. Other than spouses and may be, live-in relationships as may be more in numbers, there may not be any example of a joint family or three generations living together under one roof.

The children will move away as soon as they come of age ( it is already happening) and live their own lives. The older lot will, either live in comfortable retirement homes ‘at home’ with their peers, or else, in a few cases , continue to live with their children, with both the generations still able to live happily under one roof.

I don’t think there are any ‘shoulds’ and ‘should nots’ vis-à-vis the older lot living their lives the way they want to, with those of the same age who they can interact with more, as they may have most interests in common.

I feel it is a deluded understanding of many of our older lot that all those old people who live in old age homes are unfortunate and have been neglected by their children, and that, all those who live with their children under one roof are very happy. Both these need not necessarily be inter-related. It can be a happy, comfortable mutual arrangement and it can be an equally good life for the older lot, may be, even better. It will be family ties and bonds and not family relationships and BONDAGE to create a GENERATION GAP.

May He guide us in bridging ‘the unnatural gap’ , the ‘mutually created gap’.

GOD AS THE FORMLESS & AS THE FORMS AND NAMES

If God is ONE and is FORMLESS why has man created so many forms and names of God, in this world?

A child is borne by a woman in her womb for nine months. During this time, she is not aware of his or her form and gender. But she can come to know the gender by scan,as is done nowadays to check the baby’s progress. . Then she gives birth to it and sees her creation in form. She has mixed feelings of love and wonder. An instinctive love for it pulls her to him or her every moment , to talk to him or her, and, to utter meaningless expressions of love, which, neither mother or child understands, and, which is beyond what can be expressed in words . But, still, she calls the child by whatever name as comes from her heart, and, the name may change every time she picks up the child to love it. The name may have a meaning in one or more of the languages of the world that man communicates in, with others. Or, it may not. Or, she may give it a meaning as may dawn in her in the same consciousness in which a name dawned in her.


Did all the Gods and Goddesses get their name the same way ? An intense longing and love for the Supreme must have been experienced but without name and form – in the Formless and the Nameless, in the consciousness of an embodied soul. These may have been the Rishi or ancient sages of yore or devotees who experienced an ineffable Power Within . Then they must have created the form of Radha and Krishna or Shiv and Shakthi or any of the other gods and goddesses – each name and form dawning in them corresponding to a a different colour of quality that emerged from the whiteness . And, then it must have passed down from one generation to another, for centuries, yugas !

I think a human being can experience God and connect to Him i.e. to the SELF deep within him or her, only through Name and Form (given exceptions ).

‘अहं’ से ‘अहंकार’ तक और विपर्ययेण

पलक झपकने की देरी मे ही इनसान का मन मायाजाल मे फस जाता है और ‘अहं’ ‘अहंकार’ मे बदल जाता है। फिर वह बारंबार विरोधात्मक अनुभव से गुज़रता है जैसे कि राग और द्वेष, खुशी और मायूसी।

पर यह इनसान का स्वभाव या कसूर नही है।

वह अहंकार से भ्रमित हो जाता है कि वह सही है और प्रभु ही उसके साथ खिलवाड़ कर रहे हैं। इसलिए जब तक उसका अहंकार बना रहता है वह चाहते हुए भी न खुद की मदद कर पाता है और ना ही दूसरों की।

पर जब प्रभु की महर बरसने लगती है उसपर तब वह जाग्रृत होता है। वह खुद को बदलना चाहता है पर यह समझ जाता है कि बुद्धि से की हुई कोई भी चेष्टा व्यर्थ होगा।

वह रोज़ प्रातःकाल साबुन से अपने शरीर का मैल धो डालने के पश्चात योग, ध्यान और सुदर्शन क्रिया से अपने मन का मैल भी धो डालता है।

सही वक्त आने पर वह धीरे धीरे अहंकार की मायाजाल से निकलने लगता है।

जब वह पूर्ण रूप से मुक्त हो जाता है तब उसका जीवन प्रभु के बाँसुरी से निकली वैणुगान बनकर रह जाता है।

प्रभु की क्रृपा मे देर हो सकती है। अंधेर नहीं।

(गलतियां माफ़ करें)

A JOURNEY TO AN UNKNOWN DESTINATION (An allegory)

I am a ‘sailor’ out at ‘sea’ – all alone, on my sailboat. If I were to judge myself, I would say I am a ‘seasoned sailor’, but, still an aficionado at it, as I have never taken sailing for granted, nor has my passion for it reduced even a wee little bit.
Hence, on this solo adventure at sea , I am all eager – to brave the storms , if any, that may come, while out at sea; to confront any ‘lurking’ dangers in the unfathomable, yet unexplored and unconquered realms, as may be, in the ‘deep’ .
I am ‘all set’ to cross the seas to the other side – to an unknown destination, with the ‘Power of the Unknown’ as my sole shipmate, friend, guide and philosopher.
I have come a long, long way from my land. I have travelled leagues and leagues on this sailboat of mine. I once even got ‘swept away’ in a storm and was stranded on a deserted ‘island’, for a few days. But my sailboat had survived the storm and I set out again on my Nature-intervened voyage towards my destination.
My lifeboat is as good as new, for, it is strong and sturdy, to float with or against strong currents of inevitable storms. For, this boat of mine has been ‘redone’ and made as good as new by the ‘Invisible power hands of GRACE’.
There are three ‘masts’ in my boat – the ‘masts’ of Seva, Sadhna and Satsang,, which stand strong as pillars of support and add power to the ‘sails’ of ‘Sudarshan Kriya’ rhythms, which propel the boat, and keep it moving with the tide.

I have a ‘gut feeling’ that the shore of the unknown destination is not far now. Well, on second thoughts, is it really the gut feeling, which is almost always right, or, is it the seasoned sailor’s ‘paradigm mindset’ that makes me feel so? I wonder!

I may miss my familiar land and my people; I may miss my shipmates, who are not with me in this voyage.

But when the call from within comes, there is no going back. The boat, the mast and the sails, all, together, manoeuvre the boat , towards its predestined shores.

I want to let my shipmates and the people of my land know that, when we sailed together on some expeditions, we might have had ‘rough weather’ , and, like any sailor might catch on the ‘roughness’ and unprecedented nature of the storms he may have to brave, I must also have been rough and capricious, sometimes, during our voyages together at sea. I don’t bode any ill will or evil in my heart . I hope my shipmates of yore will forgive me for any such harm I might have done to them, unintentionally, mostly, but, may be , intentionally, a few times.
These voyages together have surely made us all the braver, the humbler, and the richer for it . Now that I look back, I find it was all were part of the preparation to take the next voyage for all of us.

Only good memories remain with me now, every moment. I hope it is the same experience for my shipmates and the people of my land.

Hopefully, I will continue to sail on the same boat, which, I am sure will be my sailboat for every expedition I may take, and, for as long as I sail out at sea. I hope that all of you make sure your boat, your masts and sail are all intact, else, please get then redone – you may like to get it done in the same place where I got it done and by the same ‘GRACE’. Of course, if you are sure your boat is as strong and sturdy as can be ( no comparisons) well and good.

So we look back just to learn and be more efficacious in our future expeditions, whether each by himself or herself or together, by being proactive and move ahead joyfully, gratefully, singing the merry sailors’ song while steering the ship, while braving dangers, all the way. Our song will resound in the roar of the waves, in the flow of the tides, in the throat of the seagull , to be carried by the winds to our native land, to our other shipmates, as memories to cherish, and , as ‘the dauntless eternal spirit of the sailor’ to be passed on from one to another, and to another, to make it a wonderful journey. In fact, I hope our song would be a lesson to learn for others on the voyage and those yet to start to make it smoother, with less traumatic experience of the ‘storm’ in their boats ( the storm may blow outside ) and more enjoyable for all.
I am EXPECTANT, EXULTANT. But I am in no undue haste to reach across, nor am I tired and sick of the sea. At the same time, my eyes open wide with wonder when I think of new lands to explore, new people to meet and live with, new shipmates as well as many old ones, may be, to sail with, and, one more anecdote to add to my history of expeditions to new lands, to leave behind, as a sailor’s journal to my sailor mates, and all my people in my native land,

Now, when I stand at the deck and gaze at the vast expanse of the sea, its different moods and the tides that rise and ebb in it, at the life-force that is vibrant in it, with lifeforms that it sustains as many flora and fauna, with wealth such as mother-of-pearl and corals embedded in its rock-bottom , I wonder at the beautiful balance of Nature that happens in it, with resources for survival for all that live in it – creation, preservation and destruction, happening, Nature’s Way. How mysterious and mystical – just like my voyages, so also, may be, the voyages of other sailors like me.

Now, every moment the boat is anew, the masts are anew, the sails are anew. No ‘wear and tear’ of the sails, no rust and moss in the boat, no leakages or holes in the boat, no broken masts – all in good shape.

The journey continues………..
“Born Voyage’ to all who have set sail with me on their sailboats and also to Myself! Godspeed!

AM I A ‘FAN’ OF MY MASTER?


The other day I happened to be called by someone ‘ a fan’ of my Beloved Master His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. It amused me to hear it , but at the same time, kindled my ‘spirit of enquiry’ about ‘who is a ‘FAN’ of someone? So here follow my reflections on the same:

Well, as we all know, the title ‘FAN’ given to someone, can mean anything, for there are many meanings of ‘Fan’ and some of them mean exactly opposite to what the others mean.

Let me explain. The simplest meaning of the word ‘FAN’ is a fervent follower, or admirer . In this sense, I may be, but I don’t judge myself and it doesn’t matter to me, anyway.

Well, if, to be a fan is to run after the one who one is a fan of, for an autograph, or, if, it is to feel incomplete without seeing the form everyday, either in person or through the media, or audio-visuals, I am not a Fan.

I see Guruji once or twice in a year as one among the hundreds who throng for his darshan. I also see Him from far away, mostly on the projectors, when I go during one of the days of Navratri. But still I feel complete though I am not too much into obsessively watching his videos, reading his books, or, learning his words of wisdom, by rote. For, all the former can create a concept, it can touch one intellectually, but experientially, it can be only by doing regular practice of Sudarshan kriya and meditation. Nothing can be a substitute for it .- not even seeing Guruji in physical form everyday can be a substitute for the Sudarshan Kriya, according to me.

‘FAN’ is also used to refer to fanatics, bigots, extremists , separatists, which, according to me, mean that, you follow someone exclusively i.e. to negate all and other spiritual leaders as unworthy of following . In this sense, I am not. For I believe in and respect the teachings of many other Enlightened Masters of the Past and the Present.

There may be many roads to the Abode of God, but you need to use only one road at a time, and, you don’t keep changing your road time and again, unless, is is called for , which will be, when that road comes to ‘a dead end’. Mine has not – so far – so I started on this road, which, I was led to, by the ‘Unknown Powers’.

I am walking along the road; my focus is only on the next step and I am not so tired( in fact, not tired at all!) as to feel that I have walked a long way, and, to doubt that , may be, it doesn’t lead anywhere, may be, a dead end! In fact every step that I take makes me stronger within and rejuvenates me; so I feel every step is just the first step! This mindset of following any one set of teachings but respecting all that one is drawn to from ‘within’ – brings a simile to my mind. To the seeker who has a living or otherwise Guru, the latter is to him or her just like the mother who bore you in her womb for nine months and gave birth to you, but you can see, feel, and experience the mother in many other women as well. I practise the Sudarshan Kriya regularly and follow My Master’s techniques just as Arjuna had his gaze fixed on the center of the pupil of the fish’s eye before taking aim with his arrow. I see and experience my Guru in all those I believe in and respect, and, vice versa. I am aware that there may be more forms, living and of the Past , and more paths that lead to the same destination ( i.e. Communing with the Self, to find oneself, so that one may understand what one truly wants in this lifetime and work towards it?) So, in this sense, I am not a fan.

Now, without getting embroiled in polemics on the meanings and interpretations of ‘FAN’, without labelling myself as ‘ I am’ and ‘I am not’, I would like to share with you all about why I follow My Master. This is also just my understanding; I cannot be sure of it – only the ‘unknown Powers’ know it.

Long before my Guru came into my life, I had started searching ( unconsciously first, later consciously)for ‘something’ more lasting than the mind-stuff of joys and sorrows, pleasure and pain in life and relationships. I had already been rooted in this quest, by the Powers Unknown. But I would like to attribute some part of it to my parents – it is a legacy from them, for, they were spiritually-tuned. Mom believed in all forms of Hindu Gods and Goddesses and different kinds of worship as had come down through generations before her. She also loved going to temples.

It was unquestioned belief – I won’t call it ‘blind’. My father believed in Vedic Science and hence used to teach us, and chant himself, Vedic hymns .He performed all those rites as per Shashtras. He believed in all those forms of God as depicted through the Holy books, but, he was never very keen on going to temples or doing too much ritualistic worship other than what he learnt from the Vedic scholars. He was, in spirit, more like Swami Vivekananda. He used to read all the volumes of Swami Vivekananda, and so, I also used to read them. Appa also used to be a subscriber for the Bhavan’s Journal, which I used to enjoy reading. Thus my parents stood by each other to inculcate the cultural values in us. So we used to chant shlokas everyday. At a very early age, I learnt the Vishnu Sahasranama, the Shyamala Dandakam and other shlokas from my parents. My dad was a member of the Swatantra party. So Rajaji Thaathaa (Sri C.Rajagopalachari) used to visit us often and during his visits, he used to stay with us for a day or two. Encouraged by appa, we used to chant Sitarama Stotram, Bhaja Govindam etc. for Rajaji Thaathaa. I must have been about ten years old then.Dad used to quote Rajaji Thaathaa, who told him, when he came after dad had lost all his wealth, “ When money is in plenty, friends are in twenty. When your purse is empty, there is not one in twenty.” My parents set me off on this path in this lifetime, by the kind of ‘cultural roots’ and the environment they gave me.

But Time brings all sort of changes in minds and relationships. My parents were going through great turmoil in their lives during my early teens. I started feeling insecure and ‘lost’. My conscious search for spiritual guidance started then, I think. It was during this phase of my life that my maternal grandfather came into picture as the next in line to be my Guru. I used to sit with him and read for him all those books of Sri Ramana Maharshi, Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Babuji ( Sri Ramachandraji of Sahaj Marg) of Shahjahanpur. I loved listening to Him when he retold the parables of Sri Ramakrishna; afterwards I read them , too.

Along with this deep-rooted experience of Hindu culture, I had my own personal experience of other forms that were not a part of my parents’ life. The form of Jesus , that of the Prophet, that of the Buddha, that of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, that of Sri Guru Nanak Dev – all have appealed to me.

I used to feel the ‘Presence’ of an unknown Power that pulled me when I used to see Lord Jesus or when I used to sit in the prayer-meetings in the schools that I worked in. While walking to my school as a teenager, I used to come to a ‘standstill’ mentally, for a fraction of a second if I happened to hear the Namaz. It used to touch me ‘deep within’. I have felt a ‘tug’ in my heart and in my soul whenever I have heard the Qawalis of Ajmer Shariff, the Shabad kirtans,and, the songs of Jesus sung by the school choir.’

So, to me, it has always been an experience of the Formless which led me to the Forms and the teachings thereof, which were gifted to me, as if, by reinforcement of my personal experience, by the Power Supreme. May be, because, I always used to talk to my God i.e. my innermost Self, and tell him that I would like to experience Him,for, I don’t believe anyone can every know or understand God. This was , may be, a result of all that that I came across, in life – that most of us preach God and go to temples, do worship etc., but hardly any of us are able to translate it into life and relationships to qualify life, which is the goal of all spirituality, according to me. We cannot qualify what is beyond life – that is ‘the unknown’ for us; but we can qualify our life , for, how we live in different life-situations, is under our control. – to be like the lotus in the pond.

Apart from all the above, one of my aunts, and so also, my husband’s sister-in-law and one of my husband’s sisters, and a few of my cousins and very close friends, have been role-models for me in the sense of how they have been examples of how to live happily in all life-situations , how to adapt oneself to a new family after marriage, how to manage all the new relationships and accept all pluses and minuses and move ahead, taking it all as a ‘package’.

So who has not been my Guru – I wonder!

My husband and my kids have been teachers of life for me in many ways . I am their FAN for sure.

There have been many of them, and they have all led me to my Guru, whose techniques of Sudarshan Kriya , Sahaj and other meditations I was formally initiated into, thorough his preceptors.

So am I a fan of His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar? I don’t know. May be, anyone labelling me as one, may know why he or she says so.

YES! I HAVE BEEN INCREDIBLY INEFFABLY MIRACULOUSLY HEALED BY SUDARSHAN KRIYA AND SAHAJ AND OTHER TECHNIQUES I LEARNT AND HAVE BEEN PRACTISING REGULARLY. IT TOOK ME ALMOST TWENTY THREE YEARS UNDER THE ART OF LIVING – TO REACH THIS MOMENT ON THE SPIRITUAL PATH . It is, still, a miracle. For, only I and I alone, and the Guru, who represents God for me, know how life would have been, otherwise. May be, I would not have been alive, today, if not for My Master.

Thus, I can say I am a FAN in the sense that I wonder at His Power of Love to be accessible to each and everyone of his devotees/believers/followers/f- ans or whatever, in every moment of a devotee’s life.

If we have a problem that we cannot solve, a worry ,anxiety and depression that gives sleepless nights, we waver in FAITH and are assailed by disillusionment, doubts, despair, negativities, and, all that affect physical and mental health . But, in every ‘season’ of the devotee’s mind-journey, the Master is present, be it in love, be it in hatred, anger, jealousy, doubt, confusion, guilt, fear and all that that mar progress on the path – through it all – He is there with us – sometimes leading, sometimes walking by our side, sometimes patting, sometimes chiding, sometimes behind , and sometimes carrying us in His arms ….” Something like that – I don’t remember the exact words.

He is, HERE & NOW , with me and with millions of other ‘fans’ of His who may see Him only once in a year or once in this lifetime, but, who can feel His Presence and experience His Grace every day, every moment, every fraction of a second. This is sure to be an experience – but, may be, only of those ‘fans’ who have been initiated into Sudarshan Kripa through the preceptors, and, who practise it, with Meditation, everyday.

Gratitude to my parents , my maternal grandfather, , my aunt, my husband’s sister-in-law,and all those kith and kin, who have been instrumental in creating life-situations that have led me to this moment.

Gratitude to all those Spiritual Masters who have paved the way and led me to My Master of lifetimes – His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

I am WONDERSTRUCK at this fact that millions of youth are inspired by Him, and , I have no doubt, by the other Enlightened Masters, as well.

I am WONDERSTRUCK at how all these Masters as have been torch bearers for me, as well, in life, are able to reach out to millions and millions of seekers, across the globe, without being there in Form.

They are available in ‘spirit’, which is all-inclusive – doesn’t sift and seive – except to know who truly is CRYING for spiritual Guidance. They are available to ALL – every moment a seeker calls from the ‘heart centre’ – No queues, no enclosures, no barriers, no stampedes, no tickets for darshan –Wow! Aren’t all these Spiritual Masters the greatest legacy handed down to us by our ancestors?

So, Am I a “FAN’ of SRI SRI? I don’t know nor do I want to know. I just wonder!

THE SELF-ECLIPSE

‘THE SELF’ is ‘THE SUN’ THAT SHINES FOR EVER”

The human mind is , I have heard and experienced to some extent, connected to the Moon. Just like in a solar eclipse, the Moon comes between the Sun and the Earth, and, a shadow of it falls on the Earth to obscure it from sunlight, in life, many a time ‘The Self’ is eclipsed by the human mind I. e. it obscures the world-experiences or maya from the ‘Self’. It is during these times that the human being ‘swallows’ the ‘bait’ offered by the world-consciousness – of the senses, the limited ego, the clouded intellect, and the gross feelings and emotions – ‘hook, line and sinker’, and gets caught in the ‘net’ of maya or illusion.

Just like sunlight falls on the Earth sooner or later after the Solar Eclipse, this mental eclipse also will not last for ever. It may be for a moment, may be for years, or for lifetimes.

But, to a sadhak or spiritual practitioner, life doesn’t end with this body. Once one is on the path, it is carried on from one lifetime to another. And in any one lifetime, with the regular practice of the Sudarshan Kriya and meditation , the human mind ‘wakes up’ as the ‘witness-consciousness’. It just serves as a mirror that reflects whatever is projected by the Self as world-experiences – back to the Self.
It may, or,may not be -. a moment’s happening. It can be a slow process, where the mind slowly gets cleansed and it reflects the world-experiences to the extent that it is clean. In some places, it may not be, in which case, the world-experiences may stick to it and ‘stain’ it, though not permanently.

When total healing happens over a period of time with the Sudarshan kriya, the mind is sure to become a ‘spotless’ , stain-free mirror that reflects back to The Self- in toto – whatever it experiences as a ‘witness’- in this world. There is then no longer a curtain between the mind and the Self. Both are ONE…i.e. perception is synonymous with reality, or perception is just ‘a term of reference’. This is possible in a seeker’s life, but, solely by Grace. This I presume, must be the state of consciousness of the Enlightened Ones. Their mind (ONE MIND), I am sure, is a non-entity as part of the Infinite within the Finite matter-body with its paraphernalia – just a wave in the Ocean!

DIWALI – THE FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS

Diwali becomes a festival in its true sense ( in the true sense of any festival, for that matter) when the mind, illumined by ‘The Light From Within’ becomes a ‘prism’ and refracts
Whiteness ( the clean, totally transparent mind, which doesn’t absorb anything but just lets everything pass through it – may be, Meera can represent it?) through the seven chakras into a ‘rainbow of colours in life’- i.e. it gets translated into practical day-to-day life to bring about a beautiful balance of mind between apparent opposites . To explain, the mind(it can be called the mind or the consciousness at that stage, I think) learns to be, most of the time just a witness to one’s feelings and moods that may keep oscillating like a pendulum many time, and emotions that may uplift or pull one down, and intellect, that may reflect the crystal-clear mind or its clouded skies among apparent opposites in life….joys and sorrows, pain and pleasure, love and hatred, and the like.

VIBJYOR

Violet Stands for ‘VICTORY TO THE SELF’
Indigo stands for. ‘ EQUILIBRIUM’
Blue stands for ‘INFINITY’
Green stands for. ‘PEACE’
Yellow stands for. ‘PURITY’
Orange stands for. ‘SELF-EFFULGENCE’
Red stands for. ‘COURAGE’

These colours make life ‘A Celebration’ moment-to-moment. Every thought, every word, every action is ‘SWAYAMBHOO’ is what has always been there ‘within’ . They come from within and go back within ‘To the SOURCE’. All external triggers burst into the ‘infinite space’ of the Five Elements but as ‘damp squibs’. No more pollution ‘within and without’.

Lasting Joy, bliss, peace, contentment, fulfilment, gratitude – cannot be a a result of thought-word-action cycle of oneself and other embodied souls around. For, if these are a result of these, they won’t last long.

Unless, of course, if it comes from, may be, experiencing God in the Formless ( very, very rare) , through the forms of Mother Nature, or, more easily, for the common man, by coming into contact with and becoming ‘one of the chosen ones’ one of the Enlightened Masters, who becomes the launch-pad for the seeker of Truth to set off on his or her journey . During this journey, he or she may experience moments of real joy and bliss, and infinite peace and gratitude.


Realisation of this Truth marks DIWALI – the lighting of the ‘Akhanddeep’ ‘within’, that ‘dispels’ all ‘darkness’. The seeker opens his or her ‘inner eye’ like an infant who is born in the predestined time and place, and takes time to get used to the light and then opens his or her eyes and looks around, or, so, it seems, to the world outside. Those of us around him or her say “Look! He or she is smiling! The Goddess is showing him the Lotus’; “Look! He or she is iangry and impatient for his feed’. The latter are all our interpretations of his or her apparent behaviour but it may not be true.
Just like a newborn, I am just opening my ‘inner eyes’. I am feeling, sensing, experiencing the ‘Presence’ of the Divine Mother – while being nursed, cuddled, loved, made to sleep in meditation. My senses, my feelings, my emotions, my mind, thought, word and action – all seem to come from the world and go back to the world. Well, it is so, and , at the same time, it is not so! For, all these world-experiences are instruments that turn me inward and bring me back to ‘Myself’ – ‘The Source’.
“I AM NOTHING! I KNOW NOTHING! I DO NOTHING!”(courtesy HH ‘Sri Sri”& His “Sudarshan Kriya”) I am happy ‘HERE AND NOW’ – in this lifetime; in this world, in all relationships and situations around. There is plenty of time to grow up ( who wants to grow up?..not I, for sure!).
DIWALI – THE FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS
Light of GRACE OF THE GURU/THE MASTER/GOD
KNOWLEDGE
LOVE
PEACE
CONTENTMENT
FULFILMENT
GRATITUDE
HAPPY DIWALI

MOTHER NATURE

We are here today and till now, because
1) God willed it so
2) Our parents became the instruments to give us this life. ( whatever it is, and however it is, it is precious – a step forward in Man’s journey towards ‘the Final Destination’).
3) God has given Man Mother Nature . ( We were born to our parents, and, we are being nurtured and our lives are being sustained by Her bounteous Gifts.

Nature is the greatest of gifts given to man by The Maker.

All the Five Elements, The Sun, The Moon, The Stars, The Flora and Fauna – all of them orchestrate Nature’s Symphony.

But have you seen the Flora and Fauna ? The trees, flowers, the animals, the birds, their hunger for food or sex, their fear, their anger in self-defence alone – are all always in ‘the Present Moment’. So many bloom in summer or winter or all seasons,, many wither away when winter comes , many leaves turn yellow and fall in autumn – all Creation Preservation and Destruction Nature’s Way.

Now, what about Man? Is he with All Creation in honouring Nature and preserving its bounteous gifts? Not everyone, and, Not Always. Now- what I mean is that – all are not aware that – everything we claim to be honouring is just a convenience, For, I think , we honour something only as long as it gives us whatever we want, and, when we want. Have you noticed? In winter – we want the Sun to come out and give warmth and light; in peak summer, we shy away from the Sun’s heat and find comfort in the luxurious coziness of our air-conditioned houses.

When we honour Nature and preserve Her Purity, come what may, we are in tune with All Creation.
Nature will take Her own course of evolution .

But, when we dishonour Her and pollute the environment, she reacts in ways such as Earthquakes, floods, drastic shift in global climatic conditions and the like. These, if not checked immediately, may bring man to endless suffering; that will leave a mere ‘wasteland’ for our children and grandchildren and great grandchildren ( I don’t say ‘posterity’ here, for personalising the term may hit harder but faster), and, ultimately, I am afraid, The Earth will no longer be fit for man to live in.

Pure unpolluted land, sky and air , unadulterated food, non-acid rain, non-toxic fire will become HISTORY.

Let’s wake up and get back to our nature – Nature’s Way!