Monday, December 27, 2010

Once upon a time ...

Long Long ago, very long ago, o one knows how long ago....
Once upon a time in a far off land...

These are ways we were told the stories we bear it in our mind even today. I recall sitting with my sister, next to the reclining chair of our grandfather, who would come back from work, have his dinner and then over a chew of betel leaves and nuts, would start telling us a tale every night we were with him, during the summer holidays. Those stories never leave our minds. Is that what is called the art of story telling. I still can recollect his versions of hare and tortoise tale, the Indian adaptation of Cinderella, the story of Sahasramalla the thief, and many more, which were narrate to me. Come to think of it, I would be able to remember each one of them, as we never stop thinking about a fittingly told tale. It is the animated ways those stories were told to us.

Shouldn’t the same rule be applied in movie making? Why is it that we forget even the plot of a movie as soon as we leave the cinema halls in certain cases and some movies linger and travel in your minds till you breathe your last? For a moment I am amazed at the ways some of the movie makers make their movies these days. Each one will have so many experiences and events in their life, which can be told through celluloid. But are they aware of a technique or the way of telling a story, I doubt. Be it the fairy tales, parables and stories from holy books or events from life, the more interesting is made by the story teller, the more the audience will remember it for a longer period of time.

The next few blogs I would want you also to think with me about the movies which have been with you for a long time. I would share a few movies which are close to my heart too. Two of the movie I would be sharing with you, are recent ones, which I am sure that would be with me for a very long time. More about the movies and my experiences in my forthcoming blog…

- vaazhka bhaaratham -

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

HELP = Hard to get, Easy to Forget, Lame to expect, People need it.

In our day to day existence we come across a lot of people who aid others or some seek other’s help. But the twinge in helping a person need not be properly reciprocated by the recipient of the favor in the same way. This might upset us a lot and I am sure you would have come across at least one situation in your life.

I remember my uncle who wanted to prove his philanthropy saw a man without legs begging before a temple. His heart melted as it usually does and came forward with an initiative. He went to him and offered help. He gifted him a tricycle and from a lottery agency got him tickets to sell so that he can live on his own without begging. Few days passed, the kind hearted uncle came back from the temple premises heartbroken. We asked what is that was ailing him. Even to our surprise my uncle unraveled the mystery. The person who got the tricycle and the sales agency of lottery tickets had leased it out to somebody and still begging in front of the temple. In his terms that would get him more money.

In thirukkural it is said:
Nantri marappathu nantrantru nantrallathu
antre marappathu nantru

If somebody helps you, you should never forget and should have the gratitude forever. But if someone does bad to you, its better to forget the same at that instant.

Does this rule apply these days???

Let’s look at the meaning of the word “HELP

To furnish with strength or means for the successful performance of any action or the attainment of any object; to aid; to assist;
To furnish with relief, as in pain or disease; to be of avail against; sometimes with of before a word designating the pain or disease, and sometimes having such a word for the direct object.
To change for the better; to remedy.
To prevent; to hinder; as, the evil approaches.
To forbear; to avoid.
To wait upon, as the guests at table, by carving and passing food.

But when it comes to our lives, I have realized something very important, however trivial it might appear to others. The only person who can help you is only you. Others are sure to have a reason behind it - be it good or bad. Some of the help offered would not suit us as was the case with my benevolent uncle’s futile efforts. The best person to understand your pain and find a solution and act on it is none other than you. Some of the helps offered to you could also mean that you will have to respond in a way which could hurt even your existence.

Abraham Lincoln says:
He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.

But what befalls you, when you start helping. For the want of visa, for the want of money, for the want of work, for the want of manpower, for the want of ideas, for the want of what not people will call us. We might say “Yes” when we know we should have said “No”. Some of us have still not learnt the art of saying "No".

There is a very good book that everyone should read, which covers the topic in the blog in its title itself -"Dont say yes when you want to say no" by Herbert Fensterheim. It has changed the lives of a lot of people, but the change needs to come in some more people in us. Being assertive is nothing wrong in life; it just helps us to move forward and upward in life. But at the same time, I do not mean to make the world a thankless and rude one. Would like to bring to your notice one of the quotes by Dalai Lama

Our prime purpose in this life is to help others.
And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them.

Once we all understand that we can help ourselves, better than anyone else, our problems seem to have vanished. Take a pledge that from today our lives change and we move to an assertive mode where when we get an opportunity and know that we have understood the situation as much as the person need has, then if possible help him, or else pray for him. Always it boils down to one divine revelation

God helps those who help themselves – as the god exists in us according to the Advaitha Vedantha by Aadi Shankara.

Brahma satyaṃ jagat mithya,
jivo brahmaiva naparah

Brahman is the only truth, the world is an illusion, and there is ultimately no difference between Brahman and individual self. Here the word brahman refers to the eternal, unchanging, infinite, immanent, and transcendentreality which is the Divine Ground of all matter, energy, time, space, being, and everything beyond in this Universe.

-Vaazhka Bhaaratham-

Monday, November 29, 2010

Knowledge - Formal Education or an Attitude

A few days back I happened to visit one of the desert camps owned by one of my friends, about whom I had mentioned in one of my previous blogs, Mr. Asif Siddiqui. He had made me appreciate the value of time and about giving time - time. The visit also gave me an insight which, I am sure, most of you would agree with. 

We, as a group of five, reached the pickup point from where the journey has to be in a four wheel, driven by specially skilled drivers who could maneuver in the desert. The four wheel came and parked safely near us and the person driving the land cruiser stepped out, extended a warm welcome to us and shook my hands and said his name was Az-har. The stress with which he gave his name gave out the amount of respect he has for his name. Many of us would not even realize what the meaning of our name is. The name Azhar stands for Famous, Luminous, Brilliant, Clear, Evident. The respect to the name became evident very soon.

During our drive to the camp he was showing us the way and the camel breeding sites on the way. He reached the camp and thanked us and also gave us the right information we needed. Then came the twist in the tale. He started talking to another tourist in the vicinity in fluent Chinese and the way they communicated surprised me. He was also attending calls in Hindi, Urdu, Chinese and English. His only concern was that he could not pick up Malayalam in all these time. I told myself in my heart, at least he has the will and wish to learn.

Then rushed the question in my mind
What is knowledge; is it got through formal education or is it an attitude to learn?

Let’s first look into the meaning of these words which we use so often but when it comes to explaining, we might falter. 

Education in a broad sense is any act or experience that has a influential effect on the mind, character or physical ability of an individual. In its technical sense, education is the process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills and values from one generation to another. The word education is derived from educare (Latin) "bring up", which is related to educere "bring out", "bring forth what is within", "bring out potential" and ducere, "to lead" 

Learning is acquiring new knowledge, behaviors, skills, values, or preferences and may involve synthesizing different types of information. The ability to learn is possessed by humans, animals and some machines. Progress over time tends to follow learning curves. 

An attitude is a hypothetical construct that represents an individual's degree of like or dislike for an item.

Once we know this then let’s look at the question again. Do we know what we know today through a formal bring up or the state of mind which allows us to acquire new behaviors, skills or values. So it need not be the formal education which gives us the knowledge. Let me cite another example which might elucidate the matter.

One of my tutor's Mr. Suresh in India, who is currently a journalist with a local newspaper in Kerala, had introduced me to one of his friends. He had studied only till the fourth standard. STOP. Don’t conceive ideas now. He is one of the most popular guides in Kovalam(a tourist attraction, beach), who is so fluent in German and French, that he can stand against any professor teaching in a college. He had acquired the language from the tourists who came there. He never had a formal training in the same. Though there may be shortcoming like the inability to read the foreign language, his acquired skill in using the language would be better than a formally educated person. 

Take the case of K. Kamaraj. He set an example to all those who look up to politics as the way to reform a land. He was an Indian politician from Tamizh Nadu widely acknowledged as the "Kingmaker" in Indian politics during the 1960s. He was the chief minister of Tamizh Nadu during 1954-1963 and a Member of Parliament during 1952-1954 and 1969-1975. 

He was known for his straightforwardness and honesty. He was involved in the Indian independence movement. As a high ranking office bearer of the Indian National Congress, he was instrumental in bringing to power two Prime Ministers, Lal Bahadur Shastri in 1964 and Indira Gandhi in 1966. 

In Tamizh Nadu, his home state, he is still remembered for bringing school education to millions of the rural poor by introducing free education and the free Mid-day Meal Scheme during his tenure as chief minister. He was awarded India's highest civilian honor, the Bharat Ratna, posthumously in 1976. 

The domestic terminal of the Chennai airport is named "Kamaraj Terminal" in his honor and the Madurai Kamaraj University has been renamed after him. 

While he was the Chief Minister of Tamizh Nadu he also handled the portfolios of Public and Police in the Home Department. In his second and third cabinet other than being the chief minister he handled Public affairs, Planning and Development, and National Extension Scheme.

His father Kumarasamy Nadar, was a coconut merchant. Kamaraj was initially enrolled in the Enadhy Nayanar Vidyalaya elementary school, and later in high school Kshatriya Vidyalaya. Kamaraj's father died when he was six years old and his mother was forced to support her family by selling her jewellery. In 1914, Kamaraj dropped out of school to support his family. But the lack of formal education never had stopped him. The knowledge and life experience he had gained through his hard work led him forward. Kamaraj gave a simple advice to his ministers, "Face the problem. Don't evade it. Find a solution, however small. People will be satisfied if you do something." 

Na Chora Haaryam Na Cha Raja Haaryam, 
Na Bhraturbhajyam Na Cha Bhaarakaari
Vyaye Krute Vardhta Eva Nityam, 
Vidyaa Dhanam Sarva Dhanam Pradhaanam.”

Knowledge is such that a thief can not steal, king or government can not snatch, 
Siblings can not ask for a share,Its never a burden 
And it only increases after spending it; 
therefore the wealth of knowledge is the foremost of all other wealthy possessions.

So instill in the minds of all those whom you know that never look forward to a formal education to gain knowledge. We learn everyday and keep learning throughout our lives. Each event in our lives teaches us something. Let’s imbibe the knowledge from them. Pass the light forward and realize the importance of gaining knowledge and not degrees.

Maataa Shatroo Pitaa Vairi Yen Balo Na Paathitaa 
Na Shobhate Sabhaa Madhye Hansa Madhye kako Yathaa.

Mother and Father who do not encourage their child’s education are his enemies indeed; 
An illiterate among educated one is the same as,
In a group of Swans the Crow is neither wanted nor admired.

Think about it, then talk about it as well as act upon it for a bright future.

- vaazhka bharatham-

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Nov 23, 2010 - Log 6 - Two Sides of a coin

A simple expression - there are two sides to a coin - is the most thoughtful idiom I can think of at this instant. As a very straight forward look at this expression would mean there are two angles to look at a particular point. 

A hero for some could be a villain for another. So does it mean that any hero could be a villain and any thief could be a hero. Think about it. There are some remarks we make on certain people believing what you sense or heard about the person is factual. Is there a permanent truth in this world - dubious. Believers might say God is the universal truth and permanent. What about everything else. 

I would like you to think about some important events in the times gone by. Here, let me suggest some of them. 

Let’s think about the Kargil war. In India those who fought in the wars are heroes, but people in Pakistan they were the reason for the bereavement of many of their family members. For us when we look at our side of the coin it is right. Isn’t there another side of the coin for the same. So, one point you would agree with me is that hostilities is not good for any country or its people - that would be a truth. But does it stop the warfare in the world. Think of the armaments manufactured around the world. It promotes war, so one side of the coin is that such industries would lead to the bad of mankind. But does it not feed the thousands of families who work in the industry. But that does not justify the industries motives, but still there exists a side of the coin for that too.

Whenever there is a social disturbance the law enforcement try to control it and save the lives of people, but in the process there are losses. Be it loss of life or money riots are not good for the society. But those who loose their lives by the hands of the police will create a lacuna in their families. That also doesn’t justify the demonstrations nor does it proves that the police force is wrong in doing so. Hence here also we see two sides of a coin.

Lets take the recent elections in Bihar, India. Laloo Prasad Yadav. The first impression you get when you look at him would be of an illiterate from a backward state. But how many know he is a law graduate and that he is capable of training the management students in premier management institutions, both in India and overseas. Or how many would believe that Bihar had shown exponential growth in many fields in the past few years when compared to many states in India. Lalooji had proved his mettle as a person who made Indian Railways a profitable entity was not influential. Does that mean he is a failure. The answer could be negative. 

Now in a different outlook when we look at the two sides of the coin in management, a look into the importance of the organization as a whole. Who is important - the top management, or the employees – white collar and blue collar. The discussion will go on and on. But it should the right blend of both for a successful and growing organization. 

Now we can arrive at a consensus that every coin should have two sides to it and has to be seen together or it won’t have its value.

All these examples are to make you think about just one thing. When someone criticizes you or mocks at you, it does not mean that you are not good or that you are terrible. It just means that the person who did it to you has not seen the other side of the coin. Just as the medicine for snake bite is cultured from the snake venom itself, the vaccines are the same as he disease causing organisms, the verbal assault and abuses thrown at you should be the source of energy for you to move forward. People would throw stones only at a tree with fruits (an old saying in South India). 

So whenever you take a coin in your hand the next time, smile and look at the two sides of it. Also think twice before you comment on someone or something. An unbiased comment can be reached at by looking at both sides of the coin. Wont you do so?

- vaazhka bhaaratham  -

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nov 23, 2010 - Log 5 - Brand "YOU" - Just cant ask for more

Life - A gift to remember God

Few words in the tag line explains so much about life, doesn't it. You might have come across many of these till date. As the definition:

"A tag line is a variant of a branding slogan typically used in marketing materials and advertising"

While I was talking to Rajesh, a friend of mine, who is in the media marketing industry, he mentioned something which did ring a bell. Why use branded products, as if I am wearing an Armani suit, I will not be Armani . I felt it is so true, that I was thinking of those lines for so many days. I am a brand in total; the dress I choose to wear makes my brand. You can remember Gandhi with the white Khadi, which was not branded but made from the yarn he had spun. You can remember a Hitler in his uniform, which was never branded. MF Hussein does not wear shoes, or wears a Gucci . He is not identified by Louis Vuitton or some branded hide. Let’s try and make a brand in ourselves.

Think of the most comfortable attire you would love to be in. That’s your brand and not the brand which the tag says. Make yourself feel like a star, as you are the best person to look at yourself. What others say is their viewpoint. Let the simple exercise begin with the name you are identified with. Write your name in a piece of paper and look at it. Think you are looking at the best brand God made. Give it a smile and think of a tag line to it. A few words to describe yourself. Or think about what your friends relate you with. That could turn out to be your tag line. Try and be "yourself" as "everyone" else is taken.

With the name and the tag line you have set a standard to yourself. Think from your childhood till date, think of the best moments in life. If you have done something wrong which you can correct, strive towards it as you have to save the brand name of yours. Once you have identified yourself with the brand "YOU" half the work is done. IF you don’t mind write to me with your name and tag line. I am sure each person has a different tag line to their name. 

When you walk out on the streets know that you are a brand and your tag line which you gave yourself is the best in the world as we all know one thing for sure
"Life - A gift to remember God"

Also as it is said in brihadaranyakopanishad (A part of Yajur Veda):

kaamamaya evaayam purusha ithi 
sa yathaakaamo bhavathi thatkrathur bhavathi
yatkratur bhavathi tath karma kuruthe 
yat karma kurute tad abhisampadyate ||


You are what your deep, driving desire is
As your desire is, so is your will
As your will is, so is your deed
As your deed is, so is your destiny

Be the brand and smile with pride.

- vaazhka bhaaratham -

Monday, November 22, 2010

Nov 22, 2010 - Log 4 - The ninety minutes of ecstasy

What would be the finest way to forget the world around you? 

Music would be one of the preferences. Then too it depends on the person's liking. Everyone need not like the same kind of music. Music for some could also turn out to be noise for someone else. Hence today’s blog does not say this is the only way to ecstatic moments but relates to the ninety minutes where I forgot where I was and was in seventh heaven - a world of music. It all started with a buzz in my wife's phone which revealed a message from UAE Exchange with an invite to see "The Sarod Duo" perform live. I was so excited, more like having got a free ticket to the seventh heaven.

(Photo courtesy: K Murali Kumar for The Hindu )

I want to share my feelings through the soul stirring concert I enjoyed - the Sarod duo of Amaan Ali Khan and Ayaan Ali Khan of the Bangash family. I happened to listen to Sarod for the first time when I was in college - The Government Arts College, Trivandrum. SPIC MACAY (Society for Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth) had organized a Shehnai recital by Ustad Bismillah Khan Saheb when I was attending to my first year in the pre degree course and the next year was Sarod Recital by Ustad Amjad Ali Khan Saheb. Those short programs had an impact on me for sure. Now after so many years I get a chance to enjoy the performance by the latter's blessed children and disciples Amaan & Ayaan Ali Khan.

The celebrated Sarod players Amaan Ali Khan and Ayaan Ali Khan, along with Ustad Rashid Mohammed on Tabla gave a chance to the audience to comprehend a fact that music is beyond languages and cultures. The concert started with an alaap in Desh Raag. What a way to start a concert by taking you back to your Desh (country) with the raag itself. The raga is to be sung during the first quarter of the night and so it was done. The traditions kept and to the fullest. There are many melodious tunes in Desh like Vande Mataram and baje sargam, done by Bharathbala Productions for doordarshan. The alaap moved to a faster pace in the vilambit bandish (a slow melodious start which moves to a faster pace) when it created a mood as if it was raining music notes inside the auditorium.

The show then moved to a performance in Raag Charukeshi, a fairly fresh introduce into Hindustani music from the South Indian - Carnatic parampara. The concert as it usually would have been would require 16 to 32 artistes on stage, but the trio encompassed the spectators with an aura of music which is unmatched. Sadly all good things have to come to an end and so did the concert too. 

Concluded with Bhatiali. These are folk songs in Bangla usually composed and sung by boatmen of East Bengal, reminding that Bengal is the land of rivers. The influence of rabindra sangeeth in Bangla folk music was also heard when you could hear the nature singing “ekla chalo re” along with the duo on sitar.

While reading about the origin of the instrument which also resembles the Oud in Arabia I stumbled on a few interesting facts which I would like to share with you.

The sarod is believed by some to have descended from the Afghan rubab, 
a similar instrument originating in Central Asia and Afghanistan. 
The name Sarod roughly translates to "beautiful sound" or "melody" in Persian. 
Sarod could be considered an amalgamation of the ancient chitra veena, 
the medieval rebab and modern sursingar. 
There is also a speculation that the oud may be the origin of the sarod.

One of the stories about Sarod's origin is as follows:

Amjad Ali Khan’s ancestor Mohammad Hashmi Khan Bangash, a musician and horse trader, came to India with the Afghan rabab in the mid-18th century and became a court musician to the Maharajah of Rewa (now in Madhya Pradesh). It was his descendants—notably his grandson Ghulam Ali Khan Bangash who became a court musician in Gwalior -- who gradually adapted the rabab into the sarod we know today.

Ayaan, who has won an MTV Lycra award in 2006 for the most stylish musician, was so humble when I stole a few moments for myself with the trio. As the name suggest Ayaan is truly a gift of god and Amaan, the protected one for future. My wife was clicking pictures when I got a chance to be with them for a short but sweet time – truly a memorable one. I was thinking how I could limit myself with words to explain the event to you so that I share the joy with you. Then as you know – what has to be done has to be done. I take pride in saying that I am from the land which gave birth to maestros like them.  

Last but not the least should also thank Soorya Krishnamoorthy, founder of SOORYA Stage and Film Society the biggest cultural society of the World and also the Best run society in India, who conceived this event for us. Also a word of thanks to Shri BR Shetty and Shri Sudhir Shetty of UAE Exchange who thought of being with Sorrya to bring this event to Dubai.

Have a glimpse of what you missed
- vaazhkabharatham -

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nov 21, 2010 - Log 3 - Have you got the time?

Tik tock ....Tik tock ....Tik tock ....
Has this noise irritated you?
In our day to day life, we reach junctures where we wait for someone or something. Sometimes you are issued a token and you wait or in the holistic sense you wait for something in life impatiently.
Recently when I was waiting to see someone important, I was asked to sit in the waiting room. I was getting impatient as usual. I was looking at my watch as if by looking at it would change the status quo. I saw an elderly person sitting and waiting for the same person calmly. I am sure you would understand the state of mind when you see such a sight.
With a calm and composed smile he said to me
“What has to happen, will happen at its right time. Give time - time”
That was the moment my years of upbringing was questioned. we are all taught to run the race of life, but as Mr. Asif Siddiqui, the person who sat next to me and now my friend, explained the right philosophy in a few words. I remember having heard
"Nothing comes before its time and nothing stays after its time"
If that’s the truth then giving time some time will be the best way to deal things in life. Your philosophies in life however small it is, will be a great help to a someone who knows it but has not realized its importance till date. How many times have you pacified a worried man. Though we all have seen Munna Bhai MBBS and enjoyed the movie how many times have we volunteered to give a “jadoo ki jappi” to someone who needs it. The world has so much to offer us, but we should have the ability to look at what life is offering. In one of my tweets I said happiness is life an ice lolly and should be enjoyed well before it melts away. But enjoying a hot coffee need be done when it is warm enough to be drank or else you will burn your tongue. I guess many of you have burnt your tongue just as I have done, thinking there is no time.
Time and Tide waits for no man - it also means that man has to wait for the time and tide for his needs. Is it not misinterpreted to be a saying which explains the haste in life? Even Salvador Dali had a view about time and the wait in his painting "The persistence of memory" (1931). Think about situations where your waiting gave you a new insight to life, or you wished you had waited a little longer and the end result would have been different.
The wait for someone or something is an endless phase in everyone’s life. Wait for 29 days for a monthly salary. Wait for a promotion, wait for a raise, wait for recognition, wait for a child, wait for good times, wait for your turn in a queue and the list continues. I will be waiting for your feedback. I hope the wait is not too long as I am sure, your life also has seen the waits…
Santosha: paramo laabhah: sat-sangah paramaa gatih: |vichaarah: paramam jnaanam shamo hi paramam sukham ||
which means:
Contentment is the highest gain, Good Company the highest course,
Enquiry the highest wisdom, and Peace the highest enjoyment.
Also remember to give time - time...
“Vaazhka bhaaratham”

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Nov 20, 2010 - Log 2

Our culture points out the respect show in a subtle pattern unlike a deliberate statement.
Why a pattern is chosen and why should be a structure developed for respecting the elders in order? Have you given it a thought?

The oft quoted Sanskrit statement is the point of contention today. It is a verse from the Taittiriyopanishad, which is a part of the Yajur-Veda. This Upanishad is divided into three sections or vallis. The siksa valli deals with the phonetics of the chants, while the others, brahmananda valli and bhrgu valli deal with self-realization. Now to the statement from it:

"Mathrudevo Bhava, Pithrudevo Bhava, Acharyadevo Bhava"
Which means:
Honour your mother as god, Honour your father as god, Honour your teacher as god.

To explain the importance of this statement, I would like you to look at another excerpt from Indian Scriptures. In The Mahabharatha in Santhi Parva there is a discussion between Yudhistira and Bhishma. The question and answer are both interesting. Here is a small excerpt from it.

Yudhishthira asks: 
The path of duty is long and has many branches. What, according to thee, are those duties that most deserve to be practiced? What acts, according to thee, are the most important among all duties, by the practice of which I may earn the highest merit both here and hereafter?
Bheeshma says: 
The worship of mother, father and preceptor (teacher) is most imperative according to me. The man, who attends to that duty here, succeeds in acquiring great fame and felicity (ecstasy). Worshipped with respect time and again with righteousness or if inconsistent, it should be done without a second thought, O Yudhishthira! One should never do what they forbid. Without doubt, that which they command should always be done. 
He then continues to explain how to respect them and treat them with heartfelt acts of reverence. 

Why the order, that still remains the question. Let’s think a little more rationally. Just taking it as a step or an order to respect is not easily comprehendible. If your look at the statement

"Mata, Pitah, Guru, Daivam" 

You see the order now to the hidden message in it. It is the path to God or it explains religion in the easiest point of view. "Matha" or mother is the only one who can pointedly say this man before you child is your father as she only will know it (With due respect to the norms of society). She points to man - "Pithah", who will take the next level of responsibility of the child’s upbringing. Once reached the right age to education and mental growth, it is the duty of the father to take the child to the right guru or the teacher. If you see till then there is no point or discussion of any religion or god. The "guru"/"acharya"/"teacher" has to help in the mental growth and maturity and shows the right path to reach the GOD Himself. So the names in order of respect also show the right path to God. Here the guru is the point where religion or god is mentioned or thought about. Hence whatever religion or faith you follow this statement stands true for everyone.

So not just a statement to explain the order of respect, the simple statement with four words mata pitah guru daivam is the right path or the route map to god and self realization. Let open our eyes to the light

Asathoma sathgamaya (lead me from unreal to reality)
Thamasoma jyothirgamaya (lead me from darkness of ignorance to the light of wisdom)
Mruthoyrma amruthangamaya (lead me from mortality to immortality) 

Om Shanthi Shanthi Shanthi hi (peace prevails)
(A prayer from Sama Veda)

The great Indian Culture and heritage teaches us to move from the unreal to reality, from ignorance to wisdom and from mortality to immortality and thus in the life peace prevails. The immortality has been achieved by Great writers through their works or classics, social reformers like Mother Teresa through their lives as we still remember them for their good deeds and acts of compassion. Let us rediscover the simplicity of them in our lives.

"Vaazhka Bhaaratham."

Be proud of India and Long live its culture and heritage...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Nov 19, 2010 - Log 1

How often have you thought why we consider some writings as classics and the others just as some writings?

The answer is simple the classics lived through ages and mean something to our daily lives. The Indian classics or be it the renaissance literary works. Each one of them is special in its own ways. I dedicate this day to the age old teachings of a person who still lives in the minds of a lot of people and said things which are applicable even after more than thousand years. Written during 4th Century AD by Thiruvalluvar the poet has 1330 couplets which can make a life of a person easy and teach him the essence of everyday life. It is beyond religion, but speaks of god. Its not a political treatise but teaches you governance. It is not philosophy but teaches you life. Of the 1330 couplets the first one for you all today.

"akara muthala ezhuththellam aadi 
bhagavan muthatrae ulaku"

These lines of seven words tell you a fact which you might not have thought. Like the alphabet of any language, the first letter or the sound first produced by a human is "a" or "aa" everything in this world starts with GOD (aadibhagavan). this couplet gives us the impetus to go forward in anything with God in front of us. "aadi" means the first and "bhagavan" literally means "possessing fortune, blessed, prosperous". So if at all you are an atheist then the first blessed or the first prosperous person in this world can mean worship of success through work. So whatever you might think of the existence or non existence of god this couplet stands true for everyone. So a piece of work which has stood the test of time since 4th Century AD and does not point to any religion is really a work which is supreme and classic.

We need to open our eyes to our culture. I read in a blog as well as forwarded videos that Lord Macaulay in 1835 had mentioned that India cannot be conquered unless we loose our respect towards our culture and heritage. Lets not close our eyes and think its dark. Lets respect our culture, literature, heritage and all that our land has given us. 

"vaazhka bhaaratham"

Be proud of India and Long live its culture and heritage...