Wednesday, 15 September 2021
'We are all worms, but I do believe I am a glow-worm.'
- Winston Churchill
Philip Goldberg in his much-acclaimed book "American Veda' termed him 'The Olympian Guru'. Born as Chinmoy Kumar Ghose in 1931, Sri Chinmoy was orphaned at 11 and spent next 20 years in the ashram of Sri Aurobindo in Pondicherry, South India. Set his foot on New York in 1964 and worked as a clerk at the Indian Consulate before known to the world as Sri Chinmoy, the leader of a spiritual community in Queens.
Compare to other Gurus of his generation, it is said that Sri Chinmoy had relatively few disciples. He is such a prolific writer with more than 1,500 books, 115,000 poems and 20,000 songs. His core philosophy says that a sound body may lead to higher elevation in spiritual life which can be emanated from the fact that he used to participate in marathons and ultra-distance races. All through his works, he taught the Vedantic message of oneness.
Though his childhood is full of rough weather as his parents had passed away in much younger age, but something positive in life was in store for young Chinmoy who took shelter in Sri Aurobindo ashram, Pondicherry that changed his destiny. His following verse inspires me a lot:
"Our goal is to go from bright to brighter to brightest, from high to higher to highest. And even in the highest, there is no end to our progress, for God Himself is inside each of us and God at every moment is transcending His own Reality."
After a fruitful life of 76 years, Sri Chinmoy attained Samadhi on 11th October 2007 in New York city.
Tuesday, 14 September 2021
Monday, 13 September 2021
- Isaac Newton
Sunday, 12 September 2021
The other day I along with my colleague went for tea at our office cafeteria. I couldn't forecast that I had to return with a sad note.
Thursday, 9 September 2021
It is said in Ayurveda that you should take food as medicine, otherwise you are perforce take medicine as food.
In my childhood days, my mother put us on fasting every Monday in Kartik maas (November - as per Indian calendar ) and myself and sisters used to take circles around the kitchen during those hungry hours when sumptuous food is served after evening puja. To endure the pangs of hunger, she used to advise us to immerse in our regular activity rather thinking food every moment. It is a tradition laced with potential health benefits.
Now after three decades, I am back to fasting with rekindled enthusiasm after I was convinced enough of its immense health benefits.
In fact, fasting is a cleansing process which takes out the toxic substances from your body. Spiritual luminary Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev says Once in every 11 to 14 days, you may not feel like eating. On that day, you should not eat. You know, even dogs and cats have this awareness? At least every 14 days, you could go without food. If you are unable to go without food, if your activity levels are such and you don’t have the necessary sadhana to support you, then you could go on a fruit diet. Just observe your own system, and you may notice that on certain days, you do not really need to eat. Forcing food on those days is not a good thing to do.
Fitness guru Rujuta Diwekar in her best seller " Don't lose your mind, Lose your weight' says Fasting is a powerful tool as a spiritual practice, but nowadays it is used mainly as a weight loss tool by 'experts'.
All most all religions have fasting embedded in their cultures. If you remain on fasting, your decision-making faculties would excel and it helps you gain more self-control.
Never talk about the faults of others, no matter how bad they may be. Nothing is ever gained by that. You never help one by talking about his faults; you do him an injury, and injure yourself as well.
- Swami Vivekananda
Most of us indulge in gossip and dwell at length on the faults of others, forgetting our own. But the wisdom masters say that this trait will put you in deep trouble and rob your own inner serenity.
When you talk ill of others, the toxic emotions are bound to destabilize your own emotional balance. That's why you must concentrate your energies more on your own conduct than onlookers.
Some months back I wrote this wonderful quote of Dalai Lama in my journal which I come back and forth to remind myself of the truth:
If someone remains in a peaceful and tranquil state of mind, external surroundings can cause them only a limited disturbance.quo
If you are in a situation which you can't tolerate, better to walk out politely instead of silently enduring the ordeal. Suppose if the situation doesn't permit you to leave, be prepared to endure with full acceptance. You get more inner strength by reading this famous quote of American novelist and short story writer James Lane Allen:
Man is buffeted by circumstances so long as he believes himself to be the creature of outside conditions, but when he realizes that he is a creative power and that he may command the hidden soil and seeds of his being out of which circumstances grow, he then becomes the rightful master of himself.
Monday, 6 September 2021
Indian wisdom tradition says that senses are outward bound and the more you indulge, the worst would be your condition. Hence, moderation is the key. Make it a habit to continuously judge yourself rather than others. This helps to shine your own inner life.
Make it a rule not to abuse anybody by impulse. Before such toxic emotion runs you, consciously pass it through a filter of your intellect. Observe your reaction before you react. This sounds easy but very difficult to act upon. But with constant practice, it becomes easy.
You must understand other person's emotional cues from the web of your own experiences and respond positively so that you could take your relationships to next level.
Noted Indian philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti in his book "Freedom from known' says that :
> Relationship between human beings is based on the image-forming, defensive mechanism.
> In our relationships each one of us builds an image about the other and these two images have relationship, not the human beings themselves.
> The actual relationship between two human beings or between many human beings completely ends when there is the formation of images.
> Relationship based on these images can obviously never bring peace in the relationship, because the images are fictitious and one can not live in an abstraction.
While talking on comparison mania, Krishnamurti says that :
> Why do you compare yourself with another? This comparison has been taught from childhood. In every school A is compared with B, and A destroys himself in order to be like B.
> Trying to become like somebody else, or like your ideal, is one of the main causes of contradiction, confusion and conflict.
Generally, we make snap judgements on roadside unknown people or people with whom we are envious or those with whom we don't have harmony or love and affection.
In fact to judge others is an evolutionary impulse to save ourselves from life threats. But, we the humans need to tackle this situation with what Dalai Lama's model of intimacy which is based on a willingness to open ourselves to many others, to family, friends, and even strangers, forming genuine and deep bonds based on our common humanity.
When you connect others with warmth, there is no question to think ill of him or her!
Study the face of nature and you will never be bored.
- Ruskin Bond
We easily get bored with the objects and people if the indulgence exceeds a threshold limit. But the same is not the case with Nature. It gives a novelty at every moment.
Health experts advise that we must spend quality time with Nature daily. It stirs you into creativity. A day spent in the lush green patch would give more joy than a day spent in a five-star restaurant as outdoors open your own inner doors of creativity.
Rabindranath Tagore used to spend large chunks of his time in the gardens due to which great writings happened from him. Eminent philosopher of 20th century Jiddu Krishnamurti says that intelligence implies that you see the beauty of the earth, the beauty of the tree, the beauty of the skies, the lovely sunset, the stars, the beauty of subtlety.
The great Indian Writer Khushwant Singh used to spend his mornings and evenings in the park nearby his home. In his much acclaimed book : "Khushwantnama - The Lessons of My Life' he says that "My Nature watching has been mostly restricted to the back garden of my house in Sujan Singh Park, but how much that little garden has taught me !"
Your body is made up of five Primordial Elements and that's why your connection with Nature is eternal. So make it a habit to immerse yourself with Nature on daily basis.
Sunday, 5 September 2021
Your routine of the day decides the quality of life you live. If it is not in consonance with nature's cycle, progress in any area of life can't be achieved. This is the pragmatic wisdom and the sooner you realize, the better it would be.
Deepak Chopra, the famous American Indian medical doctor and the champion of health cause on American soil is the right blend of science and philosophy. He suggests that the ideal day should have the following components:
- Sleep Time
- Play Time
- Exercise Time
- Focused Work Time
- Relationship Time
- Down Time - Out of action
- Meditation Time.
Deepak further suggests to draw a Soul Profile by self-questioning the following:
- Who am I?
- What do I want?
- What is my purpose in this life?
- What sort of contribution do I want to make?
- What are my unique skills?
- Who are my heroes?
- What is a meaningful relationship
- What do I expect from one, and what do I give?
These are the questions that take you to the higher level of wisdom in life!
Why do you need to pray? The best answer comes from none other than Stephen R. Covey, the famous author of '7 Habits of Highly Effective People'. He says that there are parts to human nature that can not be reached by either legislation or education but require the power of God to deal with. I believe that as human beings, we can not perfect ourselves. To the degree to which we align ourselves with correct principles, divine endowments will be released within our nature in enabling us to fulfill the measure of our creation.
Covey further says that We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey.
The following are the best bunch of prayers for a contemplative mind :
May I have the serenity to accept the things I can not change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
- American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr
Deep within man dwell those slumbering powers;
Powers that would astonish him,
that he never dreamed of possessing;
forces that would revolutionize his life
if aroused and put into action.
- Orison Swett Marden
Learning gives creativity;
Creativity leads to thinking.
Thing provides knowledge
Knowledge makes you great.
- Dr APJ Abdul Kalam
Your decision-making ability is directly linked to the wisdom you accumulate in life. Age is not a barometer rather it is your intensity of effort to learn.
Having too much bookish knowledge is of no avail to you. Unless you are pragmatic with your self- knowledge, it will not elevate you. Generally, we judge others constantly, and if such energies are diverted inward, life exuberates with joy.
Wisdom means feeling blessed all the times both in happy and sorrow moments. Each of us is unique and it is better not to fall into comparison mania especially on material aspects.
Wisdom means standing at a correct vantage point where there is no superior or inferior. It is simply respecting life in whatever form it is.
Saturday, 4 September 2021
The Bing Bang theory says that the origin of this Universe is 13.8 billion years ago (source: Wikipedia). Joel Primack in his much-acclaimed work The View from the Centre of the Universe says that the visible universe is only 4 %. Dark matter is of 26% and dark energy 70% and their characteristics are that they would be detected only through gravitational effects. They don't emit electro-magnetic radiation. Why they are like that is not fully understood.
Deepak Chopra, the American - Indian doctor who spent a considerable amount of his life time studying the science and religious texts says that the essential stuff of the universe is non-stuff. He further says that matter is made up of molecules - atoms moving around in huge empty space with lightning speed.
The more you study the science, the deeper would be the mystery. Deepak says that the cosmic horizon is about 47 billion light years which is continuously expanding. He also says that there are roughly about 500 billion galaxies in the universe. To understand the arithmetic of the universe at this grand scale is very difficult.
We have so many intricacies in the present theories. Scientists when they started calculating time backwards, they faced utter difficulty to go beyond 10-43 seconds which is known as Plank epoch. The reason is that their theories and calculations would stop working at that stage, because natural laws stop working beyond that point and the state of the universe before that point of time might be a thick quantum soup.
Not only that we are shrouded with so many mysteries within our own bodies. In the midst of all these unknowns, if the man earnestly tries to make a self-search, he may find answers and this wisdom is not transferable and it must be earned only through ‘self-experience’.