Question: Don’t we feel a panic feeling whenever we think about our old parents? Is not it necessary to take care of parents in their old-age? What is your idea about births and deaths?

 QuestionDon’t we feel a panic feeling whenever we think about our old parents? Is not it necessary to take care of parents in their old-age? What is your idea about births and deaths?

old parents

Affirmative, all of us should be concerned about our well-wishers and when the question is about the wellness of our parents, we have to be  extra-cautious and  all the more concerned. Naturally, we panic for their well-being as and when our thoughts go to them. It is as a result of our emotional bond which we possess since we are part of them and also we are due to them. But the word ‘panic seems to me a little hollow sort of   a feeling of an offspring for their parents.

Our parents look after us from the time we are conceived and then born, The mother withstands so much pain not merely on the birth of a child but also looks after while closing her eyes to all personal comforts. The parents bring us up by meeting our requirements. These needs may be with regards to providing care and protection during childhood period, transferring of value system/traditional modes of behaviour, meet our food and clothing requirements, our schooling/educational needs, meeting all our legitimate needs within their control. For the fructification of our needs, they not only spend the energies but also their earnings collected over a period of time.

Essentially, while our parents have nothing (neither health and money nor other resources), they need our care and protection in their old-age. We, as their progenies, have to provide them care and protection. in their old-age.  Given that they have grown old and infirm with not much finances left but everything they had has been spent on us only. Now it is our time as grown up offspring to pay back.

There are parents whose progenies are constrained to leave their homes and hearths because of their employment to eke out a living for their families. If the employment is within the country where parents are living, then the offspring are required to take their old parents along so that their needs could be met as and when these arise. The old parents not only require constant attention but also want love of their children. This is especially so when one of the spouse has died. The things could get compounded or spiral out of control when the employment is in the foreign lands and where due to VISA restrictions, the parents cannot be taken along or if allowed could stay only for a limited period of time as per rules and regulations of the countries concerned.

In this sort of a scenario, the following could be of help – not holistically but to a limited degree to ameliorate the predicament of the progeny outside the country:-

the relatonship

  • Contact should be established with the parents on regular basis without any break, preferably. on Skype or any other modes of internet connectivity.

 

  • A close relative or a trustworthy friend could be requested to visit the parents on daily basis to look after their daily needs.

 

  • The parents should have financial security in their old-age. A fixed deposit of corpus of fund should be opened for them which may facilitate and help them in medical emergencies and other contingencies t=which may arise from time to time.

 

  • A female maid should be employed for the parents to take care of their needs. This should be done after thorough checking her antecedents through police.

 

  • The parents could plan their visit for a limited period of time as permitted by the countries concerned as per the rules and regulations of that country in which the offspring is staying for employment purposes.

 

  • The employed children could pay a visit as and when leave is granted by the organization. Every employee is entitled/authorized to get some holidays in a year. This could be planned in such a manner that periodical meeting with the parents is made possible. But this could be done taking into account the schooling etc of their own children too.
  • If one of the spouses could be spared for meeting the parents, it should be done on a periodical basis.

 

  • The festivals are the occasions which call for meeting of all the relatives and well-wishers. Therefore, important festivals should be celebrated with the parents so that they also participate in the celebrations with their children and grand-children. What a treat it would be for the old-parents.

 

  • For the offspring’s’ who is serving in foreign countries; in the event of a single spouse; male or female, the problems such as sadness or depression related to loneliness or solitude may set in. In such situations, if it is possible to take the single parent to the place of employment in the foreign land then it should be done, the quicker it is done the better.Given that the lucrative jobs cannot be acquired with ease, it is also a fact that our parents cannot be acquired again, if they are left to fend for themselves. Or otherwise, if need be, the offspring should leave the employment and seek an appropriate employment in his native country. This is the most convenient step which should be pursued   especially for our parents due to which we are here on this beautiful earth. Care for old and ailing parents overrides everything else should never be forgotten.  

 

  • It is unfortunate travesty of fact that some of the offspring, leave their old parents or single surviving parent to the care of old-age homes even though it may be by payment of monthly expense? Riding rough shot to our own parents is worst to say the least.

 

  • They should set aside some holidays to cater for unforeseen contingencies, severe illness of the parents or any other emergent situation if and when created.

 

  • Instructions should be conveyed to keep a health-check of the parents, periodical basis so that the medical aspects of the parents are not ignored. Ensure that medical report is communication to the children concerned to be updated about the parents health state.

 

  • The parents should be able to speak to their grand-sons or grand-daughters preferably on daily basis. This helps in bestowing a modicum of positivism in the parents.   

 

  • Finally, it is a fact that no one amonst us have seen God, therefore, God for us are our parents. Therefore, they should not be ignored. Those who do not love their parents cannot love God at all. Also, God will never forgive such offspring who ignore their parents.

While having or thinking about this ‘panic’, we should take into account the philosophy of life.

The one who is born on the earth

has to leave this beautiful earth

after his/her time of leaving comes

In fact not the proficient doctor

Or a expert Guru

Can change the course of births and deaths

It may be our closest friends

Ours most sworn enemies

Or even our parents

Due to blessings of those two

We’re here on this planet

We all have our own lives to live

And also different dates to die

Except for accidental deaths

We all have our different destinies

Hence different ‘time-lines’

To live on this earth

And depart from this earth so beautiful

That person may be me, you or everyone around us

The dye is cast already

To live and die

Then why

Care how, why and when!

This death may visit us

While still in the womb of our mother

Or after we are born

Or in any stage of journey of our life

A young offspring could lose his life

Before the parents, so old

This is all destined

And for it all

We’ve got no control at all

If still you’re having ‘panic’ attack

For your parents, the dearest ones

Just do not have this pain of panic———————–

Because this panic will become

A hurdle for further movement

For the smooth journey ahead

Impacting the future of loving parents too.

Therefore, be near them always, because it is our responsibility to render a helping hand when they require us the most. We should not ignore them at their old-age since they had not ignored us while they looked after us when we needed the same the most.

As far as I am concerned, I reckon that both births and deaths should be given the same credence since after our deaths only, we shall be getting new births. It is just like shedding our old clothes to put on the new ones. But grieving over the deaths of parents is a natural phenomenon since we cannot do anything about it because  it is so ordained. But looking after our parents while they live is our duty. It should never be forgotten. We have not seen God due to whom everything has been created but we know due to whom we are here on this earth, therefore, it is our bounden duty to respect them and care them while they need it the most. 

 

 

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KARVA CHAUTH – A FESTIVAL FOR CONSOLIDATION OF LOVE BETWEEN HUSBANDS AND WIVES – HEARTIEST FELICITATIONS FOR THIS HOLY DAY

KARVA CHAUTH – A FESTIVAL FOR CONSOLIDATION OF LOVE BETWEEN HUSBAND AND WIVES – HEARTIEST FELICITATION FOR THIS HOLY DAY

relationship

Karva means earthen pot (mainly a spherical earthen pot and paint the same with different colours so as to beautify it) and Chauth means fourth day – a festival which falls on the fourth day of  fortnight or Krisha Paksh of the fourth day of Kartik (Full Moon – Poornima) according to Hindu Calendar. In some parts in India, wheat is kept in the Karva (pot) because it is wheat sowing season (Rabi crop cycle).

ORIGIN OF THE FESTIVAL

On this festival is observed in Northern Part of India. It is believed that the grown up menfolk used to go for military campaigns leaving their families at home. Their wives pray for their husbands for their return safely.

Stories abound about observance of fast. There was a queen names Veervati. While she was married was at her parents’ house. She observed fast. Due to strict observance of fast, she felt it very hard to be without water. Her seven brothers felt for the life of their sister and created an artificial moon. She took water due to which her husband died. She offered prayers to Lord Shiva and Parvati. With their grace, her husband’s life was restored. They appeared to her and advised her to observe fast very strictly.

Then there is also a legend connected with Arjuna and Draupti of Epic Mahabharta. While Arjuna had gone to the forests for his strict penance, Draupti observed strict fast due to which Arjuna’s task was achieved without much difficulty. 

There was a woman named Karva. This woman was devoted to her husband. During bath, her husband was caught by crocodile. Karva bound the crocodile with a cotton yarn prayed the lord of death Yama to spare her husband and send the Yama to hell for his misdeed. She was so much so devoted to her husband that the Lord of Death had to agreed to her entreaties.

The story of Satyavan Savitri is well known. While she was married to a poor leper by his king father. When Lord Yama came to get Satyavan’s soul, Savitri requested him to spare his husband life. He refused doing so. She kept strict fast. While he was taking the soul of her husband, she followed him. Finally, Lord Yama asked her for a boon. She asked for nothing but the life of her husband.

The wheat is kept in the earthen pot which coincide with the prayer for good wheat crops.

OBSERVANCE OF STRICT FAST

The married women observe strict fast from the early morning hours, without taking anything including water. They take fenis (Made of wheat floor) along with some eatable water in the early morning (before sun rise) and subsequently observe fast for the complete day. The sargi is prepared by the mother-in-law. They pray for the safety of their husbands. They wait for till seeing the moon. They see their husband first before seeing the moon through a sieve. Then the husbands help their wives to take some water. The wives pray to the Moon God for the safety of their husbands and pray for their lives and also that they may shine like the Moon. My wife has been observing this festival for the last 40 years and I know how much love and affection we two along with my love ones are having while following all these rituals from morning till late evening. Beya or gift is also given to mother-in-law by the wife and both of them (husband and wife) pray for her long life. 

FESTIVAL FOR CONSOLIDATION OF RELATIONSHIP

BETWEEN HUSBAND AND WIFE

This festival symbolizes the consolidation of relationship between husband and wife and also with others in the family. Not only in the family, the married women consolidate their bond of friendship with other women in the neighbourhood by making the sahelis of friends with whom they exchange their beautification materials such as bangles, bindis, sandoor pot, ribbons etc. This shows the bond of friendship of feminine with with not only their husbands but also other members in the household including the neighborhood.

Now-a-days, even the fiances are observing fasts for their would-be-husbands for the safety and progress.

EXCHANGE OF MAKE-UP MATERIALS BETWEEN MARRIED WOMEN

The women in the evening hours collect in the courtyard and sing the praises of the deity for the safety and prosperity of their husbands. They also exchange gifts mainly the beautification materials or make-up materials(shringar)  and other home- made sweets. All the women observing this fast put on their best dresses specially made for this festivals.

CONGREGATION TO RELATE THE OLD-TIMES STORIES CONCERNING THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS DAY

The married women sit in a circular form, exchange their thalis in which contain puja materials and make-up materials along with a earthen lighted wick etc are kept in that thali to be exchanged with the women in the group. The married women also exchange their views on the taboos which are strictly observed during this festival as this festival relates to the strict observance of fast lest something bad may happen to their husbands. They  relate old-times stories concerning the importance of this festival in the form of songs.The stories highlighting this festival and also the stories of the unfortunate wives who could not observe the fast strictly.  In other words, this festival signifies the importance of love of husbands and wives – a festival for fostering bond of love between spouses. The women folks pray for their safety and prosperity of their husbands. The songs in the praise of Lord Shiva-Parvati and Ganesh are sung with traditional fervor and devotion.

MY PRAYER FOR THE SAFETY, PROSPERITY OF BOTH HUSBANDS AND WIVES ALONG WITH THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GREATNESS WITHOUT FAME NOTHINGNESS WITH EVERYTHING

 

GREATNESS IN WORDS & DEEDS

 mountains

There are men with attitude so strange

There are ones who aspire to realize

Their inner potentials with ease and peace

By observing self-discipline with utmost patience

Work is their worship and penance

By regulating every bit of acts that comes their way

For smooth tiding over a situation

If any hurdle befall perchance

They seek ways and means for a solution

They never befriend procrastination

But aspire for application of heart and mind

By loyally sticking to self-improvement

With course correction if and when there is requirement

Nurturing no ill-will against anyone

Rendering helping hand to everyone!

Only thing which is dear to such person

Is the honesty of purpose

They aspire for no greatness at all

Greatness comes to them anyhow

By their Karmic deeds – indeed so amiable

Making alterations according to changed situation

Observing the dharma of righteous conduct  

They need not showcase these deeds

Rather their deeds speak louder

They always stand silently behind every show

But their fragrance spreads

To every nook and corner

From where they stand

They are not praise seekers

Rather they are joy givers

Take sound advice from every quarter

For adding to knowledge

And to remove ignorance from within

Not for  self-glorification

But for self- realization

And to take out every shred of darkness dormant

Lure of any sort can’t distract him

From the purpose so intended

For body, mind and soul purification

Purpose of their life is to seek connectivity

With God Almighty

Since our Soul has link with Him

Being the Super Soul  Himself.

We ought to emulate the example of mountains s

So steadfast and strong

Always heavenwards looking

not at all bowing 

Withstanding blizzards, heavy storms and everything

That fall without any warning

Asking in  return at all nothing 

In return nothing but only giving

As much which it can give

It is in fact nothing in everything.
 

This fellow does not aspire for personal fame

Since this fellow knows fully well

The importance of being great

Without losing sight of humility

Through clear thoughts through words and deed indeed.

GREATNESS WITHOUT FAME

NOTHINGNESS WITH EVERYTHING

IMG-20170521-WA0008

Why would someone pursue greatness without fame?

In essence, the word greatness implies prominence; how best this is attained is not taken into account –  which gives out some negative feel connected with ego-centric tendencies. The main purpose is to attain magnanimity or goodness after having fulfilled the purpose of life. Here, it is worthwhile to mention that this magnanimity is attained when we obtain everything by dint of our sincere/honest hard work along with dedication and devotion to the job at hand – sticking to the work ethics along with observance of moral values, etc. On the other hand, there are the ones who aspire to get greatness by adopting any means (dishonest/insincere). This so called ‘greatness’ is counterproductive ultimately.

A person who has greatness, will always come to the succor of the hapless persons. He does not dissociate from the goodness in any situation – good or bad. In Bible it has been said: He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.

REQUIREMENTS OF OUR BODY

Essentially, there are certain requirements inbuilt in our body mechanism without which we cannot normally function. This internal organ satisfaction has to be satiated by us. Therefore, for obtaining a stage of ‘nothingness’, we have to discipline ourselves, to rise above the basic needs of our body mechanism. The basic needs cannot be ordinarily suppressed.  But efforts could be made to reduce this ‘thirst’ by self-developed mechanism by ourselves to act as a shield to ward off any need in the absence of which we can live without much difficulty. This could be done through self-regulation so as to obtain satiety within ourselves.  If we create a situation through self-suppression of our needs of our body, then, it may have adverse effect on our body and mind because it is beyond the body mechanism.  This nothingness could be obtained through rigorous practice and patience. 

Bhagwad Gita), try sharing your something with others but without much publicity or fanfare – our left hand should not know what our right hand is doing should be our motto. If you publicize, then whole of this exercise will be an exercise with fructification at all. You have not to have any attachment with the fruits of our action.

REQUIREMENT OF OUR MIND

While our mind is under the control of our senses, we tend to be swayed by it, we become mental loafer. Those whose mind is not in control, they remain comparing themselves with others around them  and allurement of more power, more worldly possessions etc. remain pestering for ‘more’ and for this ‘more’ they may adopt any means even corrupt practices.

This question has been an enigma for humans. We have the tendency to be swayed by our emotions. We get perturbed whenever we are face to face with some undesirable incident or while seeing somebody’s plight or while we are witness to some accident.

The position that a person gets by the sweat of one’s brows makes a person self-confident and corollary for all this is positive orientation in life. This also helps in attaining self-confidence to transact any job that that person takes in hand. Besides, self-realization/self-awareness/self-consciousness not only bestows the qualities of self-assertiveness but also affords opportunities to know our potentials and weak areas. This also gives the person concerned the traits of maintaining humility without being getting swayed by self-attained , self-awareness and the benefits thereof. 

We can make concerted efforts to remove our weakness and attain prominence along with spiritualistic oriented life. After having attained some semblance of holistic growth, we shall have humbleness without being egocentric tendencies. That is the greatness we should pursue.

The effort of a person to get fame or celebrity character is the effort which we make to attain or to get reputation for ourselves. The condition of acquired greatness is so much that it goes to the head of the person concerned and further that person flaunts his greatness. This reputation could bring about negative traits or egocentric tendencies in us. This could also bring about disrepute/notoriety to the persons concerned which is contrary to pursing self-righteousness.

The recent incident in one of reputed hotels in Delhi, a few days back, is an indication what this conceitedness can result. This ill-mannered and ill-tempered   person, in an inebriated condition, drew out the loaded pistol and threatened to shoot the other person with whom he was having arguments besides hurling the choicest abuses and that too in full glare of by-standers.  This sordid and disreputable incident hogged the limelight in the social media too. This is the indication of the fact how a person, brought up in unsuitable environment, could prove to be – just devastating to say the least.   

A person who acquires greatness without being influenced by the false pride is in fact a great man. This sort of  a person does not lose his moorings or composure and believes in the Song of Bhagwad Gita: What we have acquired presently has been obtained here on this earth. We had not brought anything while we had taken birth and will not take anything while we die. When we get something, or lose something, it hardly matters. It should not disappoint us.

Thus, it is beneficial to acquire greatness without aspiring for fame which is short-lived. We may lose the power as it comes since it has been said that the wheels of fortune does not stay indefinitely.

Sometimes the wheel of fortune may go up and at other times, it may be at the lowest ebb. Therefore, an acquired greatness, by any means,  could be a burden on us if we show-off and showcase our greatness.  The moral lesson from the last words of Alexander the Great are eye opener for us all.

Bury my body, do not build any monument, keep my hands outside so that the world knows the person who won the world had nothing in his hands when dying. He was the greatest of all  the warriors that this world has ever seen. He realized his folly of being ‘greatest warrior of all times’ but it was too late since he could not enjoy all that he acquired through his battle-skill by adopting all the stratagems at his command.  This proves that greatness which bestows us the traits of humbleness despite availability of everything  at our beck  and call. One who aspires for reputation or fame without quality of head and heart; compassion/empathy is real greatness.

It should always be remembered that our Creator is only One who is great and perfect. In Guru Granth Sahib it has been rightly mentioned: One Universal Creator God. The Name Is Truth. Creative Being Personified. No Fear. No Hatred. Image Of The Undying, Beyond Birth, Self-Existent. By Guru’s Grace. One who considers himself great (without understanding the real meaning of greatness).  

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TODAY IS THE BIRTHDAY OF SAGE VALMIKI (A GREAT SANT WHO PENNED DOWN THE GREAT EPIC RAMAYANA)  

 

TODAY IS THE BIRTHDAY OF SAGE VALMIKI (A GREAT SANT WHO PENNED DOWN THE GREAT EPIC RAMAYANA)

 VALMIKI

Sage Valmiki – a great Sant/Rishi, who changed himself from a robber and a hunter of animals to a Maharishi of repute. This example should serve as a great lesson to us that if we resolve to leave the path of sin and adopt a path which leads to level-headedness and wisdom, we can. It also give us a lesson that humans have an inner potential to change, if he/she determines impediments and other constraints notwithstanding. The life of Sage Valmiki, to say the least, offer us the following lessons:-

  • Circumstance may be any, if we want to change our attitude, we can. Even the hardened criminal can be refined if that particular individual wills.

 

  • We have to suffer the pangs of our Karmic deeds or misdeeds. Nobody will share that suffering when Judgment Day comes – not even our very closest kins.

 

  • We should hear the voice of reason as Ratnakra listened to Sage Narda and changed himself. But one thing stands out, the change we want comes by abandonment of many comforts of which we are habituated – to the lifestyle and the habits and attitude we have imbibed over a period of time.

 

  • For a man who wants to have change, nothing can stop that individual to have change for the better but again for becoming good, we are constrained to surpass some impediments since the sins we have already committed will not wash away so easily. For these to be washed, we have to cleanse our body, mind and the soul. It requires huge effort.

 

  • We should always listen to our inner voice as Ratnakara had listened and learned lesson after meeting Sage Narda.

 

  • Great works of Rishis, Sages, Sants, Sadh Gurus, Great Masters (Like Sant Kirpal Singh and other renowned personages who helped in enlightening the lives of multitudes) are great motivators and bestow us the opportunity of removing our ignorance and show us the path of enlightenment and liberation (Moksha).

 

  • All the great works of Rishis give us enlightenment.. There is no credence or relevance to to which Religions, castes, creeds, colour etc they belonged. What they preached us through their works should be of relevance to us.

The words of Sant Kabir are enlightening irrespective of religion or caste to which we belong.

It is needless to ask of a Sant the caste to which he belongs
For the priest, the warrior. the tradesman, and all the thirty-six castes, alike are seeking for God.

It is but folly to ask what the caste of a saint may be;
The barber has sought God, the washerwoman, and the carpenter.

I am not a Hindu,
Nor a Muslim am I!
I am this body, a play
Of five elements; a drama
Of the spirit dancing
With joy and sorrow

  • Everything is possible, if we have strong determination to refine ourselves and follow a course which is spiritually oriented and we can be remembered for our deeds if we resolve.

 

  • Fact remains, if we want to change from Ratnakara to Sage Valmiki, we have to wash off the dross that is existing in our system and having done that the path ahead is clear for us FOR SELF REALIZATION.

 

  • A self-realized person can be a great inspiration and a source of motivation for other humans whose past life has been dismal failure – meaning what we do today counts and if you want to bring forth refinement in our character and attitude it will go a long way in shaping our destiny.

 

  • Then the lessons from his great epic Ramyana are:-

 

(I)   We should not commit the sin of looking at others’ wives with lust or commit any sin of abduction which may tarnish our image and we should be earning KARMIC DEBIT for this.

(ii) We should always fulfil the promise we make to others and not renege on the same. Lord Rama stood for Dharma and Karma as the two pillars of strength of a person.

(iii) Ram Rajya stood for equality for everybody – all the subjects in Ram Rajya were treated equally. He did not spare even his spouse and sent her to the forest when he heard an ordinary washerman uttering something against Sita Maa.

 

LIFE HISTORY OF SAGE VALMIKI (MEANING ANT HILL)

Sage Valmiki lived in Treta Yuga. During that time, there were forests on the banks of Ganges and were infested with wild animals. His original name Ratnakara and  was the son of a sage named Prachatasa who had his hermitage on the banks of river. Ganga.

In his childhood, he used to wonder in the forest. Unfortunately, one day he lost his way. Despite his best efforts, he could not locate the hermitage of his father. At nightfall, he started weeping for fear of his life since he knew that the forest was full of wild animals.

As ill-luck would have it, a hunter passed that way. This hunter eked out his living by hunting the animals He also made search for the hermitage so that the child could be sent to his parents but in vain. . He pacified the child and took him to his home. As he was having any child, he adopted Ratnakara. It has been said, ‘time’ is a great healer, the child too forgot his parents and considered the foster parents as his own.

In his adopted home, he learned hunting from his foster father. He killed birds and animals for a living. When Ratnakra grew up, his foster father married him off to a beautiful girl. Thereafter, he had his own children to look after. As time went on, his foster parents grew old. Now he had a huge responsibility towards his parents, wife and children. For their sustenance, he was constrained to rob the villagers who traveled to other villages for meeting their daily needs. After sometime, he even started killing the victims who resisted his attempts to rob.

One day, a strange thing happened. A sage named Narda passed through that path. Ratnakara, as usual, stopped him and ordered him to hand over everything he had. Sage Narda, very coolly and with serenity at his command told him that he had only one Veena and his tattered clothes. He can part with those things. Seeing the composure of Sage Narda Ratnakara was surprised. His mind melted. There was no problem at all. Sage Narda is known for his travels from heaven to earth and acted as a trouble-shooter in many cases which require Divine intervention.

In the meanwhile, Sage Narda, sung a sweet song in the praise of Almighty God. Ratnakara was obviously moved by the grace and poise of the Sage.

Then Sage posed a question to Ratnakara. You earn a living by robbing people and hunting the animals and birds. Stealing and killing animals and birds is a sin.

This way, you commit sin – meaning you are a sinner. Will your parents, your wife and the children partake this sin with you? Saged asked the robber and hunter to pose this question to all your family members.

Subsequently, Ratnakara went to his home. He first of all, went to his foster parents, posed them the question; whether they will partake the sin of robbing and even killing his victims. They retorted that being their son, it was his responsibility to look after them in their old-age. Therefore, they will not share the sin which he committed. He will himself suffer the pangs of his Karmic Deeds.

Then he went to his wife. She too said that as a husband, it was his duty to feed her and his children, she will partake the booty which he brought but not partake the sins which he committed. Ratnakara was obviously moved by the turn of events. He was surprised that everybody wanted his booty but nobody wanted to partake his sin.

He remembered the Sage’s words and rushed for the forest to the place he had fastened him with the tree lest he escapes. He fell into the feet of the Sage and begged for his assistance in his salvation as he was a sinner. Meaning, there was a complete change in him. He, very respectfully, asked the Sage for his mercy and asked for his deliverance. The sage took mercy on him and advised him to chant RAM NAAM and went away. Ratnakara sat under the tree and started chanting the name of RAMA with complete belief and focus. There were change of climates, sunny days changed to dark nights and vice versa etc. but Ratnakara’s penance remained unaffected by these natural changes – withstood everything that came his way.

Then after some period of time, an ANT HILL was made around his body.  One day, Sage Narda passed that path and saw the Ant Hill formed. He was knowing the exact cause. He very carefully cleared the anthill and chanted RAM NAAM near the ears of Ratnakara. Hearing this, he opened his eyes and saw the Sage. The Sage re-named from Ratnakara to Valmiki (meaning Anthill). Thus the saga of Maharishi Valmiki starts.

Rest all is known to us that he penned down the great Epic Ramyana before it actually transpired – from the birth of Lord Rama to his exile to his journey to Demon King Ravana to bring back Sita Maa from Lanka, his battle with demon king along with Sugriv and Lord Hanuman besides his monkey warriors.

Subsequently, after the exile of Lord Rama, Sita Maa’s event of proving her chastity by walking on the fire to her exile to the forests after Lord Rama heard a washerman’s terse and offending comments that he cannot forgive the faults of his wife (infidelity) as done by Lord Rama.  She remained in the hermitage of Rishi Valmiki. Sita Maa gave birth to two sons Luva and Kusha. These two princes were brought up under the care of the Rishi. They were experts in the archery and other arts including all the mannerism which the princes should imbibe. 

Subsequently, there was meeting (Milap) between Lord Rama, Sita Maa and his two sons Luva and Kusha. He wanted that Sita should accompany him to his palace. But Sita Maa wanted liberation from this world.

As she was born from the Mother Earth, she very reverentially asked Mother Earth to open her bosom and in that she got absorbed. Then afterwards, Luva and Kusha ruled their respective kingdoms. As they were brought up in very congenial atmosphere, and they were the sons of Lord Rama and Sita Maa, they too proved to be the best kings to their subject  on the principles – RAGUKUL REET SADHA CHALI AAEE PRAN JAYE PAR BACHAN NO JAYE. (It is the tradition of the Ragukul to be exterminated rather than reneging  from the promise which Is made.

 

Conclusively, we can say with complete belief that if we determine we also can be like RISHI VALMIKI, the past life is no hindrance in this endeavour.

 

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GANGAJI – ONE OF THE MOST SACRED RIVERS

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GANGAJI – ONE OF THE MOST SACRED RIVERS

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(PHOTO TAKEN AT 6:30 AM ON 20T8 OCT 2018 – WATER SO SERENE)

It is a appalling that Gangaji Maa

Who takes care of all our problems that befall on us

But we are not paying gratitude due to Her

By keeping her Holy Water purer

By not throwing refuse from our houses and factories

Or by throwing old and dirty clothes and plastic bags into this holy river

And make its sacred water polluted 

By our own actions most unethical

Without thinking that impure Ganga water

It traverses mystically from the Gangotri glacier from Himalaya

Covering more than 2500 Kms to Sunderban Delta in Bangladesh

It benefits the millions of people living on both its banks

Will certainly adversely affect directly and indirectly

If we do not care to keep this sacred river pollution free

Those who disrespect the Ganga Maa by throwing refuse willfully

Into the river considered the Holy One by all of us

The Holy Maa who is helping us in many ways

From birth to our final journey

O Mother who cares us from birth till death

We bow to Thee with our folded hands

To keep bestowing us Thy bounties

As Thee is doing so from times immemorial

By forgiving us for making Thy water polluted

Without thinking that impure water is harmful for us

When we take it as or use it in Holy rituals

Its pollution not only affects the humans

But also adversely affects the fish species

And also other amphibian species.

India is a land where Mother Nature

And all that it contains in it are revered

These may be mountains or rivers

All  have religious and cultural significance

It may be Goverdhan Parvat (Mountain)

 Of Lord Krishna fame

Or Yamuna which majestically flows

From majestic Himalayas

The mention of it all are contained in Vedic Age of Rigveda

Which are not of a man but original by impersonal authorities

Revealed to ancient sages after their intense meditations

The Indus and the Sarasvati are rivers are the most sacred

Thence Four Vedas gave top place to Ganges, the most sacred one

It is here on the Gangetic plains

That Mauriya & Mughal empires ruled supreme

And gave birth to Ganga-Yamuni civilization.

Where many a races have lived

 And met their natural deaths

And many a races have flourished

Meghasthenes mentions about the rivers flowing

From the northern mountain ranges

And flowing into the southern plains.

Which helps enhance agriculture produce of farmers

Factually speaking it is the lifeline of multitudes

Besides absorbing people’s filth which resides at its banks

Which pollutes this sacred river

By throwing the garbage from their houses and factories

Threatening the not only the populace

And multiple varieties of fishes and other water living species.  

Like a mother who brings up and feeds a small child

Looks after it from birth to the last day of her existence

Wipes their tears and suffers

The Ganges too looks after the people

During their lifetime like a passionate & caring mother

And finally after death absorbs even their ashes

The last remains into its vast bosom

Without any demure.

Thus paying homage to their departed souls

She is the embodiment of sacredness.

Ganga Aarti which is offered daily

At the Har-Ki-Poudi

Mesmerizing the committed devout

Every prayer chanted – touches pilgrims intensely

Connecting them to Mother Gangaji

Offer flowers and lighted wicks

After taking sacred baths

At the end of the pilgrimage

The devout take water – Ganga Jal

To their respective homes with utter love

For using the same in their religious rituals

To make any ritual at home the sacred one

According to Hindu Mythology

A dip into the sacred river water at any places

Where Maa Gaga flows

From Gangotri in Himalayan Hills

Haridwar or or Prayag or Varanasi

Washes off their sins – which is their firm belief

Since its sacred water washes our sins

Why not to keep and maintain a promise

To keep its holy water pollution free

And help authorities that be

To render a helping hand to play our part

And make Ganga Maa’s water pollution-free.

GANGAJI – THE MOST SACRED RIVER

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GANGA MAA TEMPLE

The river Ganges or Ganga Ji is one of  the most sacred rivers of India. Factually, it bestows salvation for the millions of the populace. If I say that it is the life-line for multitudes, it will not be any exaggeration. The Ganga Maa‘s water is considered sacred for its use for different rituals and even at the death bed, a few drops of Gangajali is put in the mouth of the person on the deathbed, which in fact is considered most appropriate for making the soul’s new journey facile and easy.

Hardware is an ancient religious and cultural town besides being a pilgrimage place. It is located on the foothill of Himalayas. This place is held in high esteem since times immemorial. The most famous Kumb Mela is held every 12 years here. That is really much awaited event by all devout. The famous ancient temples of Ganga Maa is also a place most venerated by all.

It is mentioned in religious texts of Hindus; Ramayana; Mahabharata besides Puranas that while Sage named Kapila was meditating, he was disturbed by sixty thousands son of king Sagara. Angered by this disturbance; Sage Kapila reduces them all to ashes with his power and sends their ashes into the netherwards. It was later found that these sons could get salvation if Ganga descends from the heaven and passes through the spot where the ashes were.

Subsequently a descendant of the sons; King Bhagiratha intensively did intense penance for the waters of Ganga. However it was difficult to withstand the surge and force of Ganga’s water current. Lord Shiva agreed to tame Ganga in His tangled locks. Bhagiratha then leads the Ganga waters to Haridwar plains and subsequently to the confluence of Yamuna and Saraswati at Prayaga and flows to Varanasi and finally to Ganga Sagar and lastly meets the ocean. In this way the sons of King Sagara were liberated. As it was due to the intense penance of Bhagiratha the source of the river Ganga is also termed as Bhagiratha.

In essence, Gangajali or Ganga’s water is used not only for irrigation purposes but also for cleansing the sins of the people who take a dip in the holy water of Ganga river. The Hindus immerse the ashes or last remains (Asthi) into the sacred water of Gangaji in other to pay their homage to their ancestors. Like other rivers like Godavari, Yamuna, Kaven etc are considered sacred just like Ganges. It flows from famous fivers like Gangotri, Haridwar, Alahabad, Varanasi, etc. On its path, the Ganges comes to the succor of the populace not merely during the lives of the devout but also on death even. Gangaji is neither fearsome nor destructive in nature. She was sent by Lord Shiva for the salvation of the masses.

Ganga is considered as the most venerated Goddess since She is part and parcel of the three deities. She partner of Lord Brahma (The helps in production) as she accompanies him in the form of water in the water-pot. Gangaji accompanied Lord Vishnu (who helps in evolution). Similar is the case with Lord Shiva (destruction for production again) who had kept her in His hair-knots just to regulate her flow.

A few days back,  I was fortunate enough to visit Hardware to take a dip in sacred river Ganga. I was also fortunate to visit Rishikesh and other prominent places besides visiting Eastern and Western banks of river Ganga between Ram Joola and Lakshman Joola. The main attractions there being the Yoga Ashrams being run by different proponents. These people are keeping the Yoga tradition vibrant amongst the common people. Even foreigners are flocking these Yoga centres for getting a peep of Indian tradition and culture.

Devout also perform Havan rituals with the chants of Veda Mantra which also is a huge attraction.

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HAVAN KUND ON THE BANKS OF RIVER GANGA

Har Ki Pauri is one of the most popular ghats where people a take sacred dip. This ghat was constructed by a famous King Vikramaditya in the fond memory of Bhartihari who came to Haridwar for mediation and died.


Sitting at night at the Ghat we can see the reflection of wicks and other lights falling on the water. 


The other places worth visiting around Haridwar are:-

  1. Mansa Devi Temple.
  2. Bharat Mata Temple.
  3. Maha Kali Temple.
  4. Maya Devi Temple.
  5. It is 28 Kms away from Hardware.
  6. The Daksh Mahadev Temple
  7. Sapt Rishi Temple.
  8. The Neelkanth Mahadev Temple
  9. Ancient Lakshman Temple.
  10. Lord Vishnu Temple.

I visited Haridwar a few days back, wherein I found that the cleanliness of the area was perceptively better than last time, I visited a few months back. It means the authorities concerned have taken care of the cleanliness of the area concerned. The Swachch Abhyan of the PM has really paid huge dividends. But need is to rope in general masses in this cleanliness drive. The following steps should be taken to keep the Hardwar city clean and then maintained as an example.

  • Mass Movement. The cleanliness drive should be made a mass movement – this could movement could catch-up and spread not only in Hardware but other cities too.
  • More Publicity Drive. It is in the fitness of things that more publicity by way of media (net – Facebook, Instagram, Words-app, ad bills etc) highlighting the historical perspective of Hardware, Har-Ki-Pauri and other areas which have special significance. It is in the fitness of things that there are impressive lines sung highlighting the need for cleanliness of the river, area covering the city etc. before the Evening Aarti.
  • Women Squads as Vigilante. People taking bath to be dissuaded not to throw old clothes, plastic bags, flowers, etc. which pollute the water. For the success of the campaign, it is important to rope in WOMEN SQUAD to monitor the ladies taking bath and throwing their clothes. I had personally seen some women throwing their clothes. If women vigilante is deployed there, they could conveniently tackle such women and advise against doing so because of pollution caused due to their action.
  • Refuse/filth from house and factories to be treated. It is in the fitness of things to firstly treat the affluence/filth  coming out of the houses and factories to be treated first and then allowed to fall into the water bodies to avoid the destructive effect.
  • Refuse to use plastic bags. I was very impressed that the shopkeepers are not giving their sold out goods to their customers in plastic bags. This campaign has really paid rich dividends. A silver lining indeed. I congratulate the authorities for making this as a success story. But, now need is to prohibit the people coming from other states to not to bring the plastic bags to Hardware for throwing it there and spoiling the movement.
  • Maa Mansa Temple and its area. During our visit to Maa Mansa Devi Temple, it was found that the shopkeepers should not throw their used paper plates down the hill but keep them in a bin to be disposed later on.
  • Control over monkey menace. It was found that the monkeys on the way to the temple scare the visitors especially the women and children. Some modicum of control is called for this.
  • Control over the two-wheeler movement. Movement of two-wheeler, carrying the visitors to the temple should take care of the security of the people they are carrying. Rash driving may lead to accidents.

Taking into consideration the significance of the Holy River Gangaji, the devout should come forward and render a helping hand in making the cleanliness movement a roaring success. It is not only the Government job, but the job of all of us to render their assistance to make this campaign success.

HAPPY DUSSEHRA / VIJAYDASHAMI (18TH OCT 2018)

DUSSEHRA/VIJAYADASHAMI   

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There are festivals which give us an important

Lesson for us all

Besides celebrating the same with utmost enthusiasm

We reminisce

The day as a  grim reminder for us all

That if we forget being human

We would be suffering the pangs

And pains of our Karmic deeds

As we get the lesson

From the Great Epic Ramayana

How the misdeeds of most powerful demon King Ravana

Although a staunch worshipper of Lord Shiva

Yet, he committed a cardinal sin of abducting Sita Maa

And took her  to his kingdom Lanka

Kept her in  Ashok Vatika

Lord Rama with his younger brother Lakshmana

Along with Sugriv and Lord Hanumana

With all the monkey warriors

Before crossing the sea, Lord worshiped Lord Shive 

For His blessings for winning the battle with Demon King Ravana

As Lord Rama knew the power of King Ravana 

Being the Bhakta of Lord Shiva

There was a battle between the two armies

In which demon army were punished by Lord Rama

With death and destruction of the demons

Along with the entire family of King Ravana

Except for righteous brother of Ravana named Bavishana

Who did not want to be an accomplice in the idea

Of abduction of Sita Maa

Being a religious man himself shunned violence

The grim reminder for all of us though

That those who willfully commit misdeeds or Kukarma

Are not spared at all

Now or some other time may be

However powerful they may be

There is eternal lesson for all of us from this epic,

Remove the evil from our midst,

Burn it out, the sooner it is done the better for us,

As we burn the effigies of Ravana along with Kumbkarna and Meghnada.

With the chanting of the name of Lord Rama

We should also burn the existing sinful thoughts

Which bedevil us and spoil the chances of

Adding to our credit of Karmic Credit.

LIFE OF LORD RAMA

Lord Shri Ram, the embodiment of righteousness

With most adorable traits with immense prowess

A reservoir of humility with simplicity in abundance

Tolerance, harmony and elderly reverence

That an offspring should  profusely be having

For the parents the most adoring.

Lord Rama left for exile, leaving everything in Ayodhya,

When his father King Dashratha of Ayodhya

Is constrained to act on the promises made in the past

To his wife Kakai – mother of Shri Bharata

And step-mother of Lord Shri Rama

Who had saved Shri Dashratha’s life once,

By putting her own life in danger,

Consequently, extracting two promises for fulfilling  

At a time and occasion of her own choosing,

Manthra – the courtier of Kakai too showed her true color,

In making Queen Kakai realize the promises,

Crown for her son Shri Bharata

And 14 years in exile for Shri Rama.

Shri Ramji, as expected,  accepted exile for fourteen long years.

And that too without slightest demur,

He embraced the life simplest in the forest,

Subsisting on the fruits and herbs that existed there,

Truly speaking, that is the crux of a lesson for today’s younger generation,

Maa Sitaji the consort of Shri Rama

With brother Lakshmana too accompanied Shri Rama.

Who despite his knowledge of Vedas and being the fondest Bhaktas of Lord Shiva

Ruined his name and fame along with the knowledge he had had thus attained

Vijaydashmi should establish a kingdom of love,

Overflowing with peace, full of tolerance, a feeling of goodwill for all,

A kingdom of love for everybody, leaving none

For it is a celebration for destruction of evil

And a win for TRUTH an ultimate ONE

Happy-Dussehra-Quotes-2016 

Vijayadashami or Dushehra is one of the well-known Hindu festivals and is celebrated at the end of Navratri. It is an annual feature – on the 10th day of the Hindu month of Ashvin which falls in the month of September – October. Vijayadashami personifies victory of goodness righteousness over evil or wickedness. Vijay means victory and dashmi means falling on the tenth day.

Essentially, Dushara is derived from two syllables: Dus means evil or bad and hara means to destroy or to remove or to annihilate – by its combination, we deduce Dushara as a day which we observe as a sign of annihilation of evil from amongst us. There is, in fact, a lesson for us all – the forces representing evil will will meet their end ultimately.

REASONS FOR ITS CELEBRATION IN THE EASTERN AND NORTHERN STATES OF INDIA

  • Marks the end of Durga Puja wherein the devout remember Goddess Durga’s win and ultimately his death of Demon king Maheshasur thereby restoring the law of Dharma. Maheshasura wanted to establish the rule of demons; for this, he killed many sages/sadhus and even defiled their Yajna fires besides killing general masses for establishing his rule.
  • It also marks the end of Navratri, represented by Nine Devis with different traits.

RAMLILA -PLAYED BY DEVOTEES DEPICTING THE LIFE OF LORD RAMA

  • In many parts of India Ramlila is enacted wherein different artists play various roles (Lord Rama, Lakshman, Bharat, Shatrugun, Sita Maa, Demon King Ravana, brother Kumbhkarna and Babishna, son Meghnadh etc) from beginning i.e. births of Rama and his brothers, Sita Devi is described as the daughter of Prithvi (the Earth) because she was found in a pot by Mithla King Janaka while ploughing the fields. She was brought up by the king. Janaka. All the situations are enacted as though it was happening in real life till, of course, on a ninth day on the death of demon king Ravana who is symbolized as the personification of evil.  On the tenth day, the effigies of Ravana, his brother Kumbhkarna and son Meghnadh are burnt to showcase to the masses at large that the evil, however, powerful ends ultimately.

WORSHIP OF MOTHER DIVINE

  • People also take out processions, carrying the statues of Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha etc accompanied with the chants of songs and dances and immersed in the water. After immersion of statues, the devotees pray to Maa Durga for blessing them with her bounties for the entire year.

PEOPLE START PREPARATION FOR DIWALI

  • After Dusheshra people start preparation for DIWALI – another festival in connection with reception of Rama, Sita, and Lakshmana by the Ajodhya gentry. They illuminated their homes and street for welcoming their beloved Lord Rama.

SIGN OF RESPECT FOR LORD RAMA  IN VARIOUS PARTS OF INDIA

  • In Northern India, Dashara (ten days) is celebrated to pay respects to Lord Rama. The plays based on the life of Lord Rama and his humble and benevolent rule too Is also depicted in the form of plays and dramas with light and sound accompanied by music and dance. Finally, the effigies of Ravana, Kumbkarna, and Meghnatha are burnt for depicting the end of evil and supremacy of the goodness. In Kullu Valley, there is a big fair and people come to witness this fair with gaiety and enthusiasm to enjoy it.
  • In South India (Karnataka) also Dashehra is celebrated with the worship of Durga Maa. In the south, the festival is dedicated to Lordess of Knowledge Saraswati and worship the books and musical instruments. Children are initiated to studies, it is considered auspicious to start new business ventures and new houses, cars and other properties are purchased.
  • In western regions (In Maharashtra, Rajasthan, and Gujarat), people install their deities and immerse the same on Vijaydashmi. Lord Rama and Goddess Durga are worshipped. The famous dandia dance known as Garba in traditional dresses is one of the wonderful attractions in Gujarat.
  • In eastern regions, the Durga Maa statues are immersed in rivers. Vijayadashami has special significance in West Bengal. Besides worshipping Maa Durga they have singing and dance competitions besides competitions on other literary features.

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OUR EMOTIONS

 

OUR EMOTIONS

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Our emotions are our companion in distress

Till such time we’re their masters

When these are excited beyond a certain extent

These may upset the apple-cart of our existence

Resulting in confusion and bewilderment

Because of our impaired judgment.

 

Whilst under the influence of heightened emotions

We’re not able to decide anything because of confusion

About what we should or should not do

Because our inner-guide being clouded

Since our intellect taking a big hit.

 

Then there may be prevalence of impiety

Since all our thoughts of reason has got a huge drubbing

And have fallen to the ground with a big bang.

 

Under the influence of heightened emotions

We may commit one mistake after other

Without realizing the consequence of our error

In the emotional upsurge.

 

In heightened emotions, we experience loss of memory

We do anything or everything

Contrary to what we should have done normally

Hence best course of action is good for us actually

Is to be master of our emotions

Remaining unruffled by any divergent situations

Taking charge of our emotions.

 

HEIGHTENED EMOTIONS

Essentially feeling emotionally strong can be made as a habit if we know ourselves fully. This could be done slowly but surely by remaining cool despite some external pulls and pressures. We are aware that all face adverse situations –undoubtedly everyone is having; difference is of degree. Need is to learn how to maintain self control or equanimity by reining in our mind and senses when crunch time visits us. If we are miserably swayed or swept by our emotions, we are in for trouble. Under the influence of heightened emotions, we would not be able to perform our job in hand efficiently, not behave rationally or reasonably since we would not be able to use our mental faculties fully due to non-focus. We may sometimes experience memory loss when under the heightened emotions.

The trigger for emotional upsurge may be on being affronted by somebody unfairly or when we are not given our due share by somebody intentionally just with the intention to pull us down.

In Bhagwat Gita it has rightly been said that when in heightened emotional-upsurge, or in anger or in bad mood, it leads to impairment of our judgment which results in loss of memory. It may also result in bewildered due to non-functioning of our intellect and we may ultimately get ruined. Especially, when our faculty of judgment gets busted we get negatively oriented. Any decision taken while under heightened emotions would be counter-productive.

 While Arjuna saw all his nears and dears including his Guru Dhrona Acharya etc arrayed in the battle field, the ones who taught him everything, he felt emotionally upsurge, his judgement got impaired and hence he did not want to use his Gandiv agaist his own near relatives. Lord Krishna reminded  Arjuna and advised him not to get swayed by his emotion and to see reason and fight since it was his duty as a Kshtriya and exterminate evil in the form of Kaurvas.

In fact, we are in for a huge trouble because emotional upsurge. It can lead us to problems of highest dimension. We also become prisoners of our own emotions – a situation wherein we want to come out but our emotions do not let us. This is because we have become obsessed with our emotions. Rather than maintaining balance despite uncontrolled situation, we go off the tangent in everything that we think or act,

I shall relate an incident of a few days itself. In an organisation where my friend is working, had their yearly raise/increment. My friend is proficient and conducts well in all the sphere of activities — the one who has total control over his emotions. Whenever there is problem in the organization, he comes with the solution and not making the problem still more confusing. Despite that my friend got less yearly raise than his colleagues reason may be any but it was too bad. What how my friend conducted himself that is the moot point.

Now, my friend could have three options:-

  1. Control over his emotions and conduct himself well under the circumstances.

 

  1. Request the authorities that be for adopting balanced or reasonable yardstick on the basis of merit and job performance during the preceding year under review.

 

  1. Get swayed by the emotions because of the provocation of his superior authorities with mala-fide intent and leave the organisation for which he had sweat to the maximum.

 

WHAT DO YOU THINK MY FRIEND MUST HAVE DONE?

I have mentioned that my friend is a man who has strong emotional control hence he opted for maintaining a balance and conducted himself with aplomb and with self-confidence or highest order as though nothing had happened and kept his cool knowing well that that was the only suitable option under the circumstances.

He did not react emotionally because of the consequence it would have entailed

An emotionally surcharged individual must have resigned from the post straight away but a strong willed like my friend acted just the opposite. Nobody has ever conducted with dignity when under the influence of emotional upsurge. The lesson that I garnered from such an episode was that when such a contingency arises keeping cool is the only option.

Controlling our emotions is easily said than done. It is possible by:-

  1. By exploiting our potential energy and learn how best to maintain calm despite provocation. This could be achieved with difficulty in the initial stages but slowly but surely we shall be able to be calm at all occasions. In all the contingencies, we shall be contributing something positive for others rather than being liability.

 

  1. Having self-control means we’ve control over our senses.These senses should serve us from time to time rather than controlling us.

 

  1. When in piquant situation, try to come out of the problem unscathed rather than being taken over by the fear psychosis – be the master of situation at all occasions. It should always be kept in mind that everybody has different problems but one thing is sure, a strong determination can deliver us.

  • Always keep in mind that ‘time’is a great healer – always bear in mind that today’s can be forgotten after sometime but the impairment that we cause to our body and mind cannot be retrieved easily.

 

  1. It should always be kept in mind that we are the controller of our own destiny and having control and being master of our mind is the first requirement.