MahaShivarathri – The day I looked out of the well…

This day seven years ago I received a phone call from my friend, Bharath and it was close to midnight. Luckily I was awake and on my way home from second shift.
“Switch on the TV and watch Aastha Channel”
A devotional channel in the night? I asked “Whyy?”
“Its Mahashivarathri and there is live music and its great” quipped my friend.
I switched the TV on and here was some anonymous drummers performing live.
I was just drawn in and there is no looking back.

It was the day(night) I looked out of the well and was really beautiful…
I owe it to my friend for remembering me and giving me a call while he was in the midst of such an energetic space.

From then on, yoga has been part of my life and I wait eagerly for MahaShivarathri – The night of nameless ecstasies
This year its on Feb 24th 2017. A night-long Celebration happens at Isha Yoga center Coimbatore with Discourses by Sadhguru, Powerful Meditations and some great music to keep you awake. The live web-stream can be watched at
http://mahashivarathri.org/live/ or on TV.

to know about the significance of Mahashivarathri click the link below
http://mahashivarathri.org/significance-mahashivarathri/

The Greek Party

A boy named Greece was invited to a party. He was a simple boy and was excited about going to the party hosted by EU.
He naively asked, “Do I have bring any presents?”.
“No, you just come and enjoy”, replied Germany

The boy was welcomed to a grand opening. There was so much food, different varieties of cakes – chocolate, vanilla, French, German.  “Can I have everything, Do I have to pay anything?” asked the boy.
“Yes, what you can have is unlimited, its free” replied France.
Greece had eaten enough for a week, he was so happy. He wished there was a party once every week.EU said, “Its pleasure having you here, you can come daily”,
“Daily!!”, the boy was dumbstruck.
He went to the party daily, he stopped cooking at home and sold his cookware, Spent his money in buying rich German cars, French jets, Korean TVs.

Life was a dream until one day, he was not allowed into the party.
“The party was free for only a week, You need to pay for rest of the parties.”, said IMF, the party organizer.
“But the invitation did not say anything. See, its here, written in Greek” bemoaned the boy.
IMF showed the little note at the corner, *CONDITIONS APPLY.
“Its not written in Greek!”
“You could have asked or found a translator” quipped EU.
“You cannot do this, I forgot how to cook, I do not have equipment to cook, I will go hungry.”
“You got a week to pay off your arrears, or you will be expelled”

If Greece does not meet Tuesday night deadline, it will be the first developed nation to default on debt payment.
The Free Trade agreements, to boost the flow of goods more freely are faulty and exploitative.  The goods are just moving in one direction and some nations are losing their work force, industries. Greek yoghurt is famous but I won’t be surprised if they do not make it in Greece anymore, they may be just importing from behind the Alps!


source:Telegraph.co.uk

The so called Free Trade Agreements(FTAs) have destroyed corn farming in Mexico (Mexico receives corn, it send drugs back!), shut many industries in eastern Europe,  FTAs are beautiful thing if they do not destroy the local industries and agriculture. They have to complimentary to existing livelihood.

The free money that is available world over to boost the economies around the world is destroying some. You will lose money in switzerland, if you invest in bonds, as there is enough free cash!
There is no limit to the money we can print, but there are limits to resources available. you cannot print water, oil, air!

ISIS, new global terrorist organization, has taken a leaf from globalization. They have  diverse fighters sourced from the banks of all world rivers. Britishers need not go and die in Tunisia if ISIS had stuck to its territory in Syria. Instead they are forging Free Terror Agreements ( FTAs) with different regions of the world. The way, the world has one factory in CHINA, ISIS(now you cannot blame it to be communist) wants to be the world’s Terror factory!

Greece has recognized that the party has come to an end the hard way. And now ISIS has to recognize that they cannot get weapons from its patrons forever, the Greek Party will come to an end one day, and also the world too should know it…..

A Good Friday

Today we commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, the beloved son of God. Jesus let his blood spill for the sake of the masses. And now 2015 years later, are we living up to him?
We have achieved tremendous progress all aspects of life. We have all the comforts, one can dream of. We landed on Moon, and sent messengers to Mars. But are we living up to Jesus?

Jesus was killed for saying something different from the things that were in vogue. He was killed for trying to steer people away from ignorance, for showing them a better way to live. He was killed for showing people the way to reach the Kingdom of God, the permanent abode of everyone.

His crucifixion symbolizes how the Romans and people in power did not tolerate a different path of thinking, a new way of perceiving things around us. Are we any better today? We have the understanding of sub atomic particles, but are we willing to listen, accommodate a different way of thinking or life?

Jesus bore tremendous pain. He pardoned the soldiers who hit him, drove nails into him.
Are we today any forgiving and hold any love towards others? Do we as a society today any better than the Romans of that time?
we are still Cold, opportunistic, unforgiving, desperate for power.

There are wars in Ukraine, Syria, Iraq, Yemen. Daily gun battle in Mexican borders, Nigeria. It is a shame that someone should be at war in order to keep the defense industry from bankruptcy, someone has to take the bullet for food to reach other one’s plate, neighbors have to fight so as to keep the defense industry to show growth.

Come lets us all come together and resurrect the soul of human kind and be aware of our environment. Let us all be forgiving, compassionate and become self-conscious. Let us all immerse in the radiance of Jesus and adorn kingdom of God, that is this earth too.

Happy Easter.

An Hour that Strikes Twice

Come November and Daylight saving time (DST) ends in most of the countries close to north pole. You get an hour extra to sleep on the first Sunday of the month. Or you can watch a two-hour movie in one hour if you start it at 1AM (First one). Most of us wake up to find the cell phones and computers clocked back one hour while manual ones are ahead. You may be little confused unless it strikes you, not first time but at least the second time!

And this day the debate over its effectiveness comes alive. May be you hit 1, twice, the box opens. Personally I think advancing clock one hour in the summer helps in doing more activities. You may be going to bed early but you don’t want to see sun raising at 4 in the morning. At least you can console yourselves that Sun rise happens at 5am.
Kids can play longer outside until the mosquitoes wake up and get active, elders can work on their gardens or work out their bodies/mind. I don’t know how much electricity it saves but you have sunlight for the most of the time you are active.

Its Halloween

The way leading to the place we are all invited was dark. We neared the entrance, black robes were hanging down as if snakes waiting for the frogs. We entered and the place was gloomy, strange orange-colored creatures with big scary eyes and wide mouths were staring at us. One was really scary with mouth side open, showing all its teeth and chewing a head on one side of the mouth, spewing intestines. there was an old ping-pong table on one corner with cobweb engulfing from all sides. Immediately above the table there were skeletons hanging. There was a flashing light one side of the hall as if warning us to go away.

This was not scary at all but was refreshing as it broke the cycle of scary daily routine. The lunch room, decorated for the Halloween party was more welcoming than on any other normal day. There was a rabbit like creature running around the tables while two self-styled doubles champions at Seoul Olympics playing ping-pong over the cobwebbed table. A monster was chasing a roadie with fake tattoos over his hands while a single spectacle-d detective watching over is big mustache. And there was Joe.
There were the funny looking characters among the routinely dressed revelers. A few were tasting the chili while others munching the hot dogs they got from Mean Weenie. Somehow Weenie was not so mean today!
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pumpkin carving

It was a fun party, a nice break from the routine unless you are working with Troy (my colleague). Nice to see many participate in Pumpkin carving(many were first time carving the fat pumpkins) and Chili making a few appearing in Halloween costumes.

P.S.: The place was Henniges Automotive lunch room and occasion was Halloween party.

Capitalism or Communism – What Works Best?

Once upon a time, but not in distant past, there was a small village in the middle of dense forest. A river flowed through the village. River flowed from east. No one cared to know where the river was coming from as it flowed all round the river. Some said its source is in the mountains and it springs out the hair of Lord Shiva. Some said it springs out of a crater made by the Sword of a demon. No one cared to explore as they had plenty of fresh water to drink and water their fields.

The village had 300 families but the old man living under the tree said village was a single family like a tree with 300 branches with leaves and he was the oldest leaf ready to wither. Others do not think so. they say ” That leaf does not wither even in winter. – very stubborn leaf!” He told people all kinds of stories from the past and they all thought they were true as no one else is old enough to verify.

The village was self-sufficient in all ways. They grew their own food, made their own clothes, had a school with a school teacher who also doubled up as village doctor. They recycled their waste and made manure for the fields.

EXTRA MAN
Everything was going well until one day they find that there is an extra person in the village who does not have anything to do. There were no fields left where he can work. There was no other place he can lend a hand. The village council calls everyone for a meeting. The old man asked “How did this happen?” He was very worried but what happens to the village. He told the village council that, ” when similar thing happened 100 years ago, one of the elders went into the forest so as to not disturb the balance of the village. No one listened to him.

The Village Council created a resolution “This is a very serious situation which we never faced in our life time. We cannot have a non contributing member in our village, this will disturb the balance. We have two proposals
1. Everyone to contribute a share of their food and other essentials for the extra man.
2. Cut down part of the sacred forest to create an additional land to till.”

COMMUNISM or CAPITALISM
The village council was undecided and called for a referendum. This was the first time, the village had voting. The old man wanted to third choice added to the referendum – voluntarily allowing any one villager to decide if they wish to live in the forest. But the council was adamant. The village had to choose between Communism and Capitalism!

Voting day arrived and lot of the villagers are still confused what to choose and uncertain of the consequences. Voting finished and the results were out.

It was a tie with each getting 50% vote. The villagers got emotional about their choice and villagers were divided into two groups. One fine day there was a big fight between the two groups and many were injured. The women tried to stop it but to no avail. The village got divided into two with river being the border. Common resources were shared, relatives separated, friendships broken..

Seeing all these, the extra person went into the forest but the damage was done and here to stay.

WHAT WORKS BEST?
If we have enough food and space, the settlements are self-governing. They need protection from external elements.
If number of humans increase or their basic needs increase and there are limited resources to be shared, there arises the need for some system. With the system, there comes rules and responsibilities. The system to be successful needs full support of every member. Any kind of system works as long as it is fair and transparent.
The more the disparity between Demand and supply of material, emotional and other needs, more pressure on the system. There is no system that is perfectly suited for this as some section of the society will be unsatisfied and vulnerable for interpretation.

Source: ww.landryamps.com

Source: ww.landryamps.com

We have experienced what an imbalance can do in Germany before World War II. Did Herr Fuehrer Hitler brain wash people into embracing Nazism? He merely channelized the angst brewing in the people due to sky rocketing prices and food shortages. And many of us have experience through movies what horrible things Hitler made his followers do and what price the world had to pay for one man’s foolishness.

Arab Spring is another perfect example of an over strained society with either increasing needs of the people or growing population. It’s not the growing awareness or education or the internet that was the main cause but the growing unrest (numbers or needs) that was channelized into an uprising. But what they got after the uprising did not fulfill their needs. The terrorist organizations, the world over, are channeling this unrest into creating more. Now ISIS is mobilizing the disenchanted population of the whole world into committing atrocities against their fellow humans!

China, though successful in arresting rapid population growth, could not cap the growing needs of the people. Its economic growth is remarkable. USA, the largest consumer of goods and resources of the world, is a perfect example of the success of Capitalism in generating wealth and prosperity, but needs of the people keep growing and it’s not environmentally sustainable. The growth is limited by the availability of resources, climate change. The climate change deniers will refuse to acknowledge until the water wets their pants.

It’s hard to decrease our numbers rapidly but for turning this world into more peaceful, sustainable and environment friendly, human consciousness has to grow and they should become aware of needs of the planet to keep supporting life. That sounds so utopian but we cannot wait until nature takes corrective action!

If Socialism, Capitalism, Communism were born because of people’s longing for a better society, If Buddhism,  Confucianism, Zoroastrianism were born because of spiritual longing in us, If Terrorism, Maoism is born out of radical thoughts, Its time for PRAGMATISM and HUMAN-ISM.

And an update on the warring villages – The dam they constructed upstream to cater to their growing needs was breached during a flood and both the villages were wiped out and along with it, their differences too….