SATVIDHYA February 2014
1. Intelligence - What’s a Horse Got to Do with It?
2. Kailasanatha Temple
3. Dr. Pillai's Birthday Wish to Beneﬁt an Island of Widows and Children
4. Understanding Your Children - Q & A
5. SatVidhya Photo Contest Results
6. From My Bookshelf
7. HoPE Hero Award 2013
8. Celebration of Uniqueness
9. Think Before You Eat
10. Millionaire Yoga Seminar 11. Inbox - From the Readers
12. Words of Wisdom
13. Saint Valentine’s Day 14. From YouTube
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Intelligence - What’s a Horse Got to Do with It?
What’s a Horse Got to Do with It?Lalitha Devi
What is intelligence? Or more precisely, what is higher intelligence? According to many scientists and psychologists from the last two or three centuries, intelligence was connected with a prevalently rational, mostly secular and deeply logical mind. Widespread proof of this can be seen during the so-called Age of Enlightenment, the Scientific Revolution and their remains in today’s world cultures. Since then, we have gradually seen the decline of prayer and a general lack of religious images in schools and public places. Also, critiquing, skepticism and empirical experiments have become the main modalities for exploring the world. Naturally, in this scenario, inspiration and faith have taken the back seat. Any so-called ‘magical thinking’ is widely ridiculed by entire branches of science and psychology. And, we are supposed to rely on empirical evidence for the understanding of reality. But, now in the infancy of the Golden Age, we are now learning from Dr. Pillai, quantum physics that an empirical experiment run by a believer in a certain outcome will produce different results from the same test run by a skeptical scientist. Even the ancient seers of India taught about an “observer reality”. In other words, what we see in our surroundings is not outside of us, but it’s rather an expression of our inner reality manifested outwardly. “It’s what you project from the inside out”, said Dr. Pillai about this process. “If it is poverty that you see, it comes from within. If you see prosperity around you, it’s because that is what you want to see”. 02
Intelligence - What’s a Horse Got to Do with It?
In the Golden Age, explained Dr. Pillai, we will be going from materialism to spiritualism. Not through a form of asceticism en masse, but primarily through a new type of intelligence, a new human brain and a new human body that will guarantee that all our material needs will be met, effortlessly. Also according to Dr. Pillai, Hayagreeva - the equine-headed celestial being, epitome of higher intelligence – will facilitate the dawning of a new form of intelligence on our planet. This divine horse archetype will bring new understanding and reforms in our educational systems. Global shifts in consciousness will follow. Due to the relatively low speed of our current science, we need a new intelligence that will contribute to the creation of a new human – an evolved man or woman possessing an expanded awareness. The new, more evolved consciousness is a must if we need to solve widespread pollution and poverty and find new energy sources.
As we raise our consciousness, we will witness the effects of Hayagreeva’s omniscience in all areas of our lives. We might even try some so-called “magical thinking”. Except that it won’t be called “magical” at all, but rather it will be understood as another set of scientific phenomena. The ancient seers, too, were scientists at the core. The Rishis, the Siddhas and the sages of India explained these same phenomena and left precise guidelines for our human evolution. They also described multitudes of celestial beings who live on other subtle planes of existence. “These archetypes are related to your consciousness. Without your consciousness they can't even exist. There is a relationship between your consciousness and the Gods. Monotheism has destroyed man's possibilities”, said Dr. Pillai. Hayagreeva -- a form of Vishnu, the preserver of the universe – isn’t the only divine horse in the Indian, archetypal pantheon. 03
Intelligence - What’s a Horse Got to Do with It?
The twins Aswini Kumars, for example, are two horse-headed, divine physicians much celebrated in the Rig Veda. Many hymns describe their divine capacities to heal even the Gods. The well-known Swiss psychologist and psychoanalyst Carl Jung observed through his studies that the horse was a universal symbol for the unconscious. In his subjects’ psyche, the horse owned both human and supernatural powers. And in his “Man and His Symbols” (1964), he listed the ‘enduring horse’ that never gives up. Remarkably, starting from January 31st, in the astrological Chinese system, 2014 will be the “Year of the Horse”, when people will travel fast, will be more independent and will attain speedy success. Coincidence? Dr. Pillai says that everything happens for a reason. We can then infer that the same divine design that causes this new cycle called ‘Sathya Yuga’ (or Golden Age) is now pushing the horse archetype and its inherent characteristics of speed, intelligence and cleverness to the forefront of our consciousness. Even the ancient Chinese people called a capable, skilled person a “Qianli Ma”, meaning a horse that can cover 5,000 miles (about 8,000 kilometers) in just one day. The horse embodies strength, energy, grace, kindness and intelligence. Another example of horse’s talents can be seen in “I and Though”, the work of a prominent thinker and philosopher of the last century – Martin Buber, who in 1923, wrote about his own expansion of consciousness and psychological growth during a childhood episode involving his own horse. So, over and over again throughout human history, the horse archetype precipitates extraordinary events based on its higher powers. Those who can tap those powers, may soon reshape their minds, their conceptions of the universe and how they view themselves.
Italian born Lalitha Devi (Donatella Riback) is a yogini and writer. Since 1993, she has been learning Vedic Sciences, furthering her studies while living in India for ﬁve years. After resigning in 2003 from an executive level position in PR, she has been teaching yoga and Ayurveda. Lalitha is a certiﬁed yoga teacher and Reiki master. She has studied Ayurveda with Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. David Simon and Dr. Vasant Lad.
Lalitha is also a certiﬁed Vedic astrologer from the American Academy of Vedic Arts and Sciences (AAVAS) and her Jyotish gurus include: Sam Sadasiva Geppi, founder of AAVAS, Dr. Pillai, founder of AstroVed, Dr. K S Charak, and AstroVed astrologer Valli Wells. 04
KAILASANATHA TEMPLE Dr. Chitra Madhavan
Kanchipuram, the historic capital of the Pallava dynasty and one of the most sacred cities of India is home to many temples for various deities. The Kailasanatha temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, located in the south-west corner on the outskirts of Kanchipuram, is one of the oldest temples in this town. This very elegant shrine was built in the eighth century A.D. during the reign of the Pallava king Narasimhavarman II (691-728 A.D.) more famously known as Rajasimha and this temple was originally called Rajasimheshwara, after this ruler. The main sanctum-sanctorum of this temple faces east and inside is a large sixteen-sided Siva-linga made of polished granite which is about eight feet high. On the rear wall of the sanctum is a Somaskanda sculpture (Lord Shiva and his consort Uma with their son Muruga in the center) always seen in Shiva temples of the Pallava age. There is a very narrow, winding circumambulatory (pradakshina) passage around the sanctum which most devotees find difficult to enter and exit. The main shrine is built almost fully of sandstone with only some parts like the foundation built in solid granite to bear the weight of the superstucture. In front of the sanctum is a rectangular pillared mahamandapa (great hall). The architectural features of this structure such as the pillars and other sculptural details reveal that it is a Pallava structure, constructed at the same time as the central shrine. Linking the central shrine with the mahamandapa, which were originally unconnected, is the ardhamandapa (entrance porch), which was built in Vijayanagara times as revealed by the two rows of pillars which bear architectural features of this age. On the east, is the main entrance to this temple over which is a small superstructure or gopura. It is small in size. This tiny gopura is one of the earliest in Tamil Nadu. Immediately in front of the main entranceway to this temple and blocking the view of the main sanctum is a
small shrine built by a son of Rajasimha, Mahendravarman III, and named after him as Mahendravarmeshwaragriham. The sanctum also houses a linga and a Somaskanda panel on the rear wall. There is an inscription in Sanskrit consisting of four verses in Grantha script on the basement of this shrine recording the name of this temple and in praise of it. A very impressive feature of this temple is the row of fifty-eight miniature shrines on all four sides of the courtyard of this temple-complex. These shrines, square in shape are all constructed of sandstone like the main shrine. There are sculptures of lions at the base of the pillars of every shrine, very characteristic of the Pallava age. These shrines are adorned with beautiful sculptures and some of them bear the Somaskanda panel on the inside. To the right of this entrance, facing outwards are two small shrines and to the left of it are six more. They resemble the sub-shrines found in the inner courtyard. Inside each of these is a linga and on the rear wall is a Somaskanda panel. The exteriors are studded with exquisite sculptures depicting the various aspects and manifestations of Shiva and also other deities. The inscriptions here state that two of these shrines were constructed by queens of Rajasimha, one of whom was called Rangapataka, a talented dancer and his favourite queen. She probably assisted him in the stupendous task of constructing this elaborate edifice. A short distance to the east of this temple is a large stone image of Nandi, the bull-mount of Lord Shiva on a square platform. The huge Nandi is approximately six or seven feet in length and faces the main temple. Although this sculpture is very weatherworn, beautiful carvings such as bells and jewels are seen adorning it. SCULPTURES - There are numerous beautiful sculptures chiseled out of sandstone found around the main sanctum, on the walls of the Mahendravarmeshwara shrine and in the miniature shrines. They mostly depict the various manifestations of Lord Shiva and make this temple a veritable treasure-house of Saiva iconography. These sculptures, although very weatherworn, reveal the exquisite workmanship of the sculptors of the Pallava period. There are several sculptures of Dakshinamurti such as Yoga-Dakshinamurti and Vinadhara Dakshinamurti, Kiratarjunamurti (Shiva fighting with Arjuna), Gajasamharamurti, Tripurasamharamurti, Ravananugrahamurti, Chandeshanugrahamurti and Umasahitamurti. There are four representations in this temple of Bikshatana (Shivaâ€™s manifestation as a mendicant), two of Lingodhbhavamurti, and several representations of Gangadharamurti (Shiva receiving river Ganga on His head).
There are several beautiful sculptures of Mahishasura Mardhini (Durga) in this temple. The one of the northern wall of the garbhagriha (sanctum sanctorum) is Durga with twelve hands with her left leg placed on her lion and her right leg placed on the ground. In her hands are a trisula (trident), chakra (wheel), parasu (axe), a long bow and other emblems. There are also beautifully sculptured figures of Lakshmi (Goddess of wealth) and Saraswathi (Goddess of learning) in this temple. There are some very beautiful sculptures of Lord Shiva in various dance-poses. There are also some sculptures depicting a few incarnations (avataras) of Lord Vishnu. One of these is of a six-armed Narasimha vanquishing Hiranyakashipu with a figure of Prahlada by the side. Another shows the Trivikrama avatara with eight hands and the left leg upraised. PAINTINGS - Traces of paintings are found in some of the sub-shrines inside the Kailasanatha temple. There is a painting of Somaskanda on the back wall of one of these shrines. Another painting shows Shiva seated with Parvathi flanked by Vishnu and Brahma. Only the head of Shiva can be seen clearly, but the full figure of Vishnu is visible. A fragment of a painting depicting a kinnara and kinnari (celestial beings with human body and head of a horse) depicted as musicians is seen in a small shrine in the northern prakara. INSCRIPTIONS - One of the most interesting aspects of this temple are the inscriptions of the Pallava times etched on its walls, most of them belonging to the reign of Rajasimha. There are approximately three hundred titles (birudus) of this king found on the sub-shrines inside the enclosure of this temple. Each title is written in the Nagari script as well as in three different types of the Pallava-Grantha script. They have been written in beautiful calligraphy. These titles reveal that Rajasimha was a Shiva bhakta (devotee), had a lot of interest in poetry, music, training of elephants, etc.
This temple is a protected monument under the care of the Archaeological Survey of India.
Dr. Chitra Madhavan is an M.A., M.Phil. from Department of Indian History, University of Madras and her Ph.D. is from the Dept. of Ancient History and Archaeology, University of Mysore. Recipient of post doctoral fellowships from Dept. of Culture, Govt. of India and Indian Council of Historical Research, New Delhi, Dr. Chitra is the author of ďŹ ve books, notable among them are the series of Vishnu Temples of South India. She is a regular contributor to reputed newspapers and magazines and gives power point presentations in several venues on temple architecture and allied subjects, attracting a large audience.
Dr. Chitra Madhavan
1 Time in Mumbai!
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Dr. Pillai's Birthday Wish to Beneﬁt an Island of Widows and Children
Dr. Pillai's Birthday Wish to Benefit an Island of Widows and Children Elizabeth Osborne
Dr. Baskaran Pillai believes that one of the greatest acts that a person can do is to change the destiny of a soul with education or share a meal with someone who is hungry. In 1989, he created Tripura Foundation USA as a vehicle to share his science-based, innovative transformational tools and programs with people around the world. In 1999, he launched Tripura Foundation India to feed starving people in slums near Chennai. Since then, he has asked for so little but given so much. He has put food in the mouths of the most destitute people while feeding the souls of the most affluent by allowing them opportunities to do the same. His birthday has become an occasion for this to happen en masse. On February 10, 2013, 70 donors and sponsors of HoPE Learning Centers from around the globe came to India to celebrate Dr. Pillai’s birthday on his birthstar day by sharing heart to heart connections with 40 HoPE Heroes (special bright children who won awards for leadership, acts of compassion, overall improvements and personal transformations). This was the first time that those poor rural children left their remote villages, experienced a city and visited a 4-star hotel! Yet, their light shone brightly as they received candles of light and love from donors, offered hand-made flower bouquets, shared happy feelings of their new lives, performed skits and danced to a heart-warming song called “You Have Made A Difference”. Dr. Pillai was delighted like a child himself when he witnessed the brightness and boldness of these shiny, happy children at this event. It is almost time to celebrate his birthday once again. This time, his wish is for his loyal supporters to help people on the island of Rameshwaram (Tamil Nadu, India), his birthplace. 09
Dr. Pillai's Birthday Wish to Beneﬁt an Island of Widows and Children
In Rameshwaram, many fishermen are being killed in territorial disputes. So, hundreds of widows are left without skills to feed and support their hungry children. A one time gift of $365 or registering to pay $30 per month will help Dr. Pillai: • Inaugurate a ﬂagship HoPE Learning Center for hundreds of children • Empower the widowed women with skills to support their families • Provide food and clothing to all in honor of Dr. Pillai Dr. Pillai has a vision that if everyone gives a dollar a day, we could feed everyone in the world. Let's start by giving a dollar a day to give Dr. Pillai the greatest Birthday gift ever -
http://www.tripurafoundation.org/HoPEForAnIslandofWidowsChildren.html Like many of her team mates, Elizabeth Osborne came upon her professional role at Tripura Foundation through a series of meaningful synchronicities linked to Dr. Pillai’s teachings. She found the Tripura Family with a solid background experience, including 15 years of communication, 9 years of fund development and 8 years of non-proﬁt management, with skills in digital design, videography and creative writing.
An MA in literature and writing studies and unbridled passion for eradicating poverty, Elizabeth infuses her daily duties with broad background capability and raw heartfelt enthusiasm. 10
Understanding Your Children - Q & A
Understanding Your Children - Q&A Shanthi Durga Pai
Q1. Parents always tell their children, ‘what not to do’, rather than ‘what to do’. Can you give any astrological justification as to how this will impact the confidence levels of the children? Definitely, this is not the effective way to grow a child. Constant advice of ‘don’t dos’ reduce the self-confidence of a child. The child either shrinks within or becomes rebellious. It is a negative phrase and if used continuously it becomes very discouraging. The child thinks that whatever he/she does is disapproved and hence loses self-confidence. Especially in a case, where what needs to be done is not conveyed, the child becomes hesitant, confused and slowly becomes an introvert. If the birth chart shows the Ascendant Lord devoid of strength, especially Moon, continuous criticism might lead to depression and even self-destruction. Assuming the child has a negatively strong Mars, the child might become adamant, keen on doing what has been told not to do. This might further lead to aggressiveness and resort to violence. Q2. How to understand the attitude and behavior of my child through astrological analysis? The Ascendant indicates the sum total of one’s personality, including the childhood, health, physical appearance, optimistic tendency, basic characteristics and approach.
Understanding Your Children - Q & A
The Moon Sign is equally important since it shows the emotional strength, thought pattern and the psychological make-up of the person. Moon rules over the basic intelligence. She also signifies the mother who is the first teacher and mentor of the child. The 2nd House indicates the family atmosphere, oratory gift, and the willingness towards utilization of resources etc. The 3rd House rules intellect among other aspects. But primarily it shows the level of efforts that one is expected to putforth. This is also the indicator of communication. From the Student AstrologyÂŽ Research perspective, the examination that the student writes is communicative of his receptive and retention capabilities, his logic in choosing the right questions in a multiple choice question paper, his articulation and communication skills, this House is of great importance. This House also represents arms or hands. The 4th House primarily denotes education and also regular attendance in school, interruption in studies, discontinuity, grasping power, ability to acquire, family atmosphere and comforts. The planets Mercury and Jupiter rule over intellect and knowledge respectively. The fundamentals of a childâ€™s attitude, approach and behavior is formed based on the inputs the child receives from its parents, the immediate family members and also the extent of the social contacts. When the childâ€™s birth chart is analyzed by knowledgeable and competent astrologer, all these aspects and much more could be revealed.
Understanding Your Children - Q & A
Q3. My son wants to become an actor; but I met one astrologer who told that he cannot become one. Who will I trust? Astrologer or my son’s passion? Firstly, if your son wants to become an actor, not out of fancy, but has real passion for it, it will be clearly depicted in his birth chart and any learned astrologer can find it. Secondly, how much will he be successful in his chosen field could be expressed through astrology. This is very important. There is the legendary Fire fighter, Paul Neal "Red" Adair who always wanted to own an oil company. He made it three times and all three times there was a fire accident and he was totally wiped out. These experiences turned him to be an oil fire fighter, the most renowned one ever, not to mention the money he made in this business. The child might have a passion for something and yet might not be able to do it well, but a little refocus will make the child highly successful. Q4. I am always hearing constant complaints from my child’s teacher that he is the last person to finish in the class. He is dreamy in the class. I am motivating and speaking to him but he just doesn’t seem to understand. How should I make him interested in studies? How do I help him? If that is the nature of your child by birth, then first thing you should do is to accept him that way. It is important to check if he has pain or any other sickness that is preventing him to concentrate or write his lessons. Do not compare him with other children. This will demotivate him further. Most importantly, talk to his teacher and tell her not to make comparative remarks or make comments about the child in the class, especially in front of his peers. Observe whether he is slow in all activities or only with his lessons. Sit with him when he is writing. Estimate a time that is required for completing a writing exercise or reading a lesson and encourage him to finish within the time. He might fail, but encourage him. Appreciate his efforts and motivate saying he will do it right the next time. According to his age, he can be taught yoga and meditation which will improve his focus and concentration. Maybe, he is under the strong influence of Saturn and Moon. With appropriate remedies and prayers it could be set right.
Mrs. Shanthi Durga Pai is a Mathematics graduate from the University of Madras and heads the R&D group at AstroVed.com. She started learning Vedic Astrology from the Panickers of Kerala who regularly conducted Ashtamangalam for the Clients of AstroVed. She has personally worked on the Student Astrology project involving analysis, observations and ﬁndings based on the principles of Vedic Astrology.
Shanthi Durga Pai
Prior to joining AstroVed, Mrs. Pai was working on the faculty at NIIT and later as its Regional Quality Systems Coordinator. 13
SatVidhya Photo Contest Winner
Caption: Crowds flocking to shrines in Batu Caves for Thaipusam festival. Photo by Hemamalini
d/o Veerasingam Country : Selangor, Malaysia.
Photo by Jyoti Maya Photo by Dinesh Babu Manavalan 14
From My BookShelf
From My BookShelf The Secret of Leadership by Prakash Iyer – Penguin Books India.
In the midst of numerous books on the subject of management by American and British authors, this book written by an Indian writer is different in many ways. The foreword is by none other than India’s star cricketer, Rahul Dravid. The author’s narration is simple. He quotes real life incidents to carry his ideas through, in each chapter. The style is not preachy. It attracts the reader’s interest by simple and convincing anecdotes, unlike the ones that do not fit in the Indian contexts. All the chapters are short and crisp with lessons that reveal the success of the protagonists. The chapters have been divided between four simple headings – The Leader Within, The Leader’s Mindset, The Leader’s Way and Leading Teams. The essence of each chapter is given in a nutshell at the end. “Leaders are like teabags. Only when you put them in hot water, do you know how strong they really are”, says Prakash Iyer. He begins the leadership lessons from the ordinary teabag. “What counts is inside the teabag”, he says and “the real flavor comes through only when the teabag gets into hot water.” True enough, teabags love hot water and do not run away from it. What should be the quality of the teabag? It should be porous. “Teabags work, never mind where they are in the cup”, asserts the author. But, “sometimes you need to add some sugar and milk”. Ultimately, “it is about how good the tea is and not the teabag!” The author sums up that as the true flavor of a teabag comes through only when it is dipped in hot water, the true character of a leader shines only when he is under pressure and faces adversity. The author’s emphasis is on just three words – passion, hungry and discipline, to attain greatness. If one has these three qualities, he is certain to achieve his goal and would become great. According to the author, early lessons we learn forms part of our habit and stand us in good stead. Even if one falls hard, he should pick himself up fast and get back on his feet, he notes.
One significant advice the author gives to the reader is that what you learn in class room would not be of help in the real world outside. Like the expert car driver knows thoroughly about the automobile he drives, the leader is expected to learn the technology or the manufacturing process, for his successful career. Another important advice is to find happiness in what you do and not to worry about the missed chances. Knowing our own weakness would limit our achievements while changing our beliefs would lead us to success, says the author in focusing on the mindset of leaders. Where does the difference lie between winners and losers? Bemoaning ‘this is bad’, the mind gets conditioned to look for difficulty in opportunity, while saying ‘this is good’ the mind looks for opportunity in difficulty. The author’s choice of words for driving his ideas through the reader’s mind is original and reveals his creative thinking. 15
From My BookShelf
Prakash Iyer is very clear that mental strength is the right weapon to succeed in life and not the talent and physicality. Here I would recall a dialogue from the film ‘King of Kings’, in which Jesus tells the lame man to get up and walk. The man is not confident and says he cannot. Then Jesus tells him, “Your faith is weaker than your legs”. On hearing this, the man gets up and begins to walk. One has to believe in himself. It is often said that treat others as you treat yourself. When we face a trust issue, we tend to think that the problem is with the other party. It is not always true. “Instead of waiting for good things to happen, you have got to make things happen”, says the author. Another important lesson the author conveys is that one should learn to forgive. Although the author gives a lot of examples of real life stories to emphasize his points on leadership, the one about Abraham Lincoln is indeed remarkable. He met several failures and ended a bankrupt. He lost his job. He lost elections several times. He was, however, steadfast in achieving his goal and succeeded in becoming the President of the nation. The author cites the success of incredible cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, for another example. “We all can have his work ethics”, stresses the author. It is not enough if you write down the things to be done that day but do them, insists the author. In the chapter on leading teams, his ideas are a whiff of fresh air. Good leaders spot the right talent, he says. According to the author, setting goals in life is important. If you do not have goals you do not work to achieve it. The example of VVS Laxman who batted at number six with tail-enders showed his trust in his team mates and had paid dividends. “Challenge your team mates, inspire them, guide them, push them – but trust them”, says the author.
There are many blurbs on the front cover and back but one quote is succinct by the MD and CEO of Hindustan Unilever: “Powerful lessons on leadership and life, simply told. Thoroughly enjoyable”. Self improvement books should inspire the reader. The book under review does just that.
Charukesi is a freelance journalist based in Chennai. He has served a multinational pharma company in various capacities, in diﬀerent locations. He has translated books of Sudha Murty, Gurcharan Das, Devdutt Patnaik, R. Gopalakrishnan, R. Kannan, Peter Gonsalves and other writers into Tamil.
He has won prizes for his short stories in competitions held by Tamil periodicals Kalki, Kumudam and Kanayazhi. Author of over a score of books on self-improvement, biography and travelogue, Charukesi has been writing for Economic Times Town Talk column on Sundays a decade ago. Currently, he writes articles and music & book reviews in The Hindu’s Friday Review column. 16
HoPE Hero Award 2013
HoPE Hero Award 2013
From Left: Vishalani, Archana and Mythin Rajan
Archana, a 6th class student from Idayapatti village in Madurai District, was declared as the ‘HoPE Hero of 2013’ in an award ceremony organized by the non-profit Tripura Foundation. Archana, who aspires to be a teacher, won the most number of votes in an online poll conducted by Tripura Foundation among its donors in December 2013. Archana was one of the three children nominated, the other two being Mythin and Vishalani, for inspiring acts of compassion within their communities. They were chosen from among the 3000+ children at 86 HoPE Learning Centers, Tripura Foundation’s after-school educational initiative for impoverished children in Tamil Nadu, Goa and Andhra Pradesh. Archana was recognized for looking after Periyandi, a 100-year old lady who is without any relatives to take care of her. Every day, before going to school, Archana visits her and brings two pots of water for her to drink and bathe. In the evening, on the way home after school, she buys tea for Periyandi. “I want to help the people of my village”, said Archana, which sums up her spirit. Mythin, a 7th class student from Pannimadi village in Coimbatore, stepped up when his friend Ajith dropped out of school after 9th class, as Ajith’s parents wanted Ajith to work. Mythin persevered against odds and succeeded in having Ajith return to school. Vishalani, an 8th class student from Thiruvallur, displayed selflessness and courage when she rescued an infant who was playing in the field, unmindful of two cobras fighting nearby. For more information, visit: www.TripuraFoundation.org 17
Celebration of Uniqueness
Celebration of Uniqueness
Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik
These thoughts rambled through my mind as the same voice sold me noodles, cement, tourism and charity. These thoughts rambled through my mind as I saw aging superstars cling on to their taut skins and lost youth. In prakriti (nature), everything matters. Every living creature is unique. This uniqueness is celebrated. There is a place for everything and everything has a place. Depending on an animalâ€™s physical characteristic, hierarchies come into being: food chains of predators and prey, and pecking orders with alpha dominating and omegas submitting. The strong matters as it will survive; the weak matters because it enables others to survive. That being so, no animal is natureâ€™s favorite. No one is given special treatment. If the predator runs fast it catches the prey; if the prey runs fast it survives to live another day. The day the alpha becomes weak, the beta challenges and overthrows him. Natureâ€™s hierarchies are not permanent. There is a constant flux where nothing is ever guaranteed. The human eye qualifies the dominant alpha as privileged. It is a cultural qualification, not a natural one. The human gaze sees nature as unfair as it favors the strong over the weak. Culture seeks to create a fairer world where the weak are favoured too. But sanskriti (cultural/social reality) cannot control brahmanda (individual imagined reality).
Celebration of Uniqueness
Every individual is a Brahma who wants to feel special. Even if he does not wish to dominate anyone else, he wishes to be recognized for his difference. He may be qualitatively different from another or simply quantitatively; the difference may be objectively measurable or existing only in his imagination. But these differences matter. That is why in Hinduism there are many deities: each with different characteristics. One is constantly told that all gods are the same, that they are different manifestations of the same truth, yet each deity has very specific offerings: a particular kind of leaf and a specific kind of food: Shiva is offered bilva leaves, raw milk and uncooked food, while Krishna is offered tulsi leaves, butter and food prepared with jaggery and ghee. It is not efficient but it is very effective as the deityâ€™s uniqueness is acknowledged. That no deity can exist without an ecosystem of consorts, children, servants, assistants, friends, plants, animals and minerals is a reminder that nothing exists in isolation. We are part of a web, and depending on the context, one deity becomes more important than the other, more significant then others, but only until the context lasts. Eventually all gods have to go away, thrown into the water at the end of the puja, a ritual known as visarjan, until they are needed once again. While the idea of being acknowledged for who we are appeals to us, the idea of being valued only as long as a context lasts disturbs us. We Brahmas want to feel more significant than others, at all times, forever. That is why we establish society and culture. That is why we do business, or refuse to retire finding fabulous rational reasons to defend our decisions, or work hard at films that ensure we are superstar number 1, who can still, despite geriatric progression, rake in much more than 100 crores over one weekend.
(Reprinted from Devdutt.com with the permission of the author)
Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik writes and lectures extensively on the relevance of mythology in matters related to leadership, entrepreneurship, branding, management and governance. His columns on management and culture appear in Economic Times, while his shows are popular on CNBC and CNBC Awaaz. He has written over 25 books and 400 articles on mythology for people of all age groups.
Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik
Think Before You Eat
Dr. Kavitha Barath
Eating is not merely an action to pacify hunger. It is a vital process that everyone must relish to obtain the whole benefit of food. Ayurveda strongly insists that food is the fuel for internal fire (gastric juice that transforms food in to life giving particles) and this fire is the chief support of the body that provides nourishment to the successive body tissues. Ayurveda categorizes human body into seven tissues such as Rasa (essence of food), Rakta (Blood),Mamsa (Muscle), Meda (fat), Asthi (Bone), Majja (Bone marrow) and Sukra (reproductive tissue). It provides growth, nourishment, intelligence and good health. So, everyone should take food after considering the seven important aspects related to food.
7 Factors to be considered before eating
Eating manner Present climate Habitat of food Quantity of food Processing method of food
Mixture of food
Nature of food
Nature of food - Pick the food by its nature We should evaluate the digestive ability of food according to the status of appetite. If you feel strong appetite, you can take food that is hard to digest such as milk, big sized rice, oily foods and meat of animals. If your appetite is less, you can choose easily digestible foods like soups, boiled vegetables etc. Mixture of food - Combination makes a difference Additives such as coloring agents, flavoring agents, seasoning spices alters the quality of food. Consider the merits and demerits of additives before eating the food. Processing method of food - Watch out for the process of cooking Processing is a result of contact with water and fire. Check out the food how it is processed, whether it is baked / boiled /shallow fried/deep fried. Place of cooking, vessels used for cooking/preserving also plays an important role. For example sour foods like pickles should be preserved in glass/porcelain containers; if kept in a brass or copper container it becomes poisonous. 21
Think Before You Eat
Quantity of food - Mind the quantity Quantity of food is the most important criteria one should keep in mind of before eating. It is applicable to the total quantity of food as well as, each item taken separately. Habitat of food - Be careful about the origin of food It denotes the region in which the food article is grown and the region in which the user lives. Avoid foods grown from unknown places as it may not suit your body constitution. Present climate - Always eat food in a timely manner It refers to the season, as well as, the time of taking food. One should take food in proper fixed time because food taken long after the fixed time will cause misperistalisis (difficulty in passing food down into the gut) and digestion would become difficult. It makes the person weak and suppresses appetite. One should take food after the digestion of previous meal indicated by the hunger signal. Eating manner - Enjoy the eating ritual How you eat the food matters a lot in digestion. Food should be taken only after taking bath. After the bath, digestive fire gets aggravated and enables easy digestion. Food should contain oil/ghee, easily digestible and warm. Food should not be taken very slowly or very fastly. One should avoid talk or laugh while eating. Eating is also similar to meditation, as it nourishes your body and senses in the right way to get the essence from it. Donâ€™t swallow food in a hurry; first chew the food, enjoy the taste and then swallow it slowly. After eating, wash the mouth and gargle with water to remove coating, smell and remnants. Walk at least hundred steps after eating.
Dr. Kavitha Barath B.A.M.S. serves as Manager, Quality Control Department with Vopec Pharmaceuticals Pvt. Ltd. She graduated from Dr. MGR Medical University with an excellent academic track record. She has profound knowledge and experience in Ayurveda and Panchakarma Therapy, and has eďŹ€ectively treated various diseases during her tenure with Ayush Therapy Centre, Chennai. She is also an expert counselor in alleviating disease.
Dr. Kavitha Barath
During her professional career Dr.Barath has successfully treated many cases of Inter-vertebral disc prolapse, Sciatica, Arthritis and Psychological disorders. 22
Millionaire Yoga Seminar, Bangalore
Inbox - From The Readers We are grateful for the response to the previous issue of SatVidhya. We thank you wholeheartedly for your love and appreciation! Please
From The Readers Nic Roberts The January 2014 issue of SatVidhya e-Magazine is just great! I especially like the article by Lalitha Devi. She writes in a very cogent style. Consider me a fan.
Janet Wyatt Thank you for such a wonderful, informative and well set-out magazine. I will certainly forward this to some of my friends to allow them to subscribe personally. I found the contents very informative.
Rashida Aden Thank you for the interesting and informative articles. This e-Magazine is a refreshing change and I look forward to each installment.
First of all, it is a wonderful magazine to pull off. Hats off to you and your team. Wonderfully done! The content is extremely authentic and invaluable to the readers. Hoping to see an equally good version next month.
Words of Wisdom
Words of Wisdom Uma
Buddha says: â€œMeditation brings two things. It brings wisdom. It brings freedom. These two flowers grow out of meditation. When you become silent, utterly silent, beyond the mind, two flowers bloom in you. One is of wisdom: Where you know what is and what is not. And the other is of freedom: You know now there are no more limitations on you. Either of time or of space. You become liberated. Meditation is the key to liberation, to freedom, to wisdom.â€? These are the profound words of Buddha on meditation. Meditation is simply going deep into one`s own being. It is only when the process of thinking ceases does one know who one is. Essentially, it is an effort to create a state of no-mind. In a non-thinking state of consciousness, the self evident truth arises within as light, eternity and timelessness. It is in this state of consciousness that freedom and wisdom blossoms, according to Buddha. Under such circumstances, peace is born within and without.
Saint Valentine’s Day - The Spiritual Day of Love
alentine’s Day is truly a magical day. It is not only a day of celebrating romance and love. It is a day for commemorating Saint Valentine and the greatest aspects of spirituality; creating the bonds of love and sharing deep love. The story of Valentines is an enigma. According to the Catholic Church, there could be two or three Saint Valentines that existed. The one that we are more familiar with is Bishop Valentine of Rome, who was a priest. On February 14, this Saint Valentine was buried on the Via Flaminia (ancient Rome road). We honor him on this day.
y t a n i a ’s D S ne i t n e al
It is believed that Saint Valentine performed secret marriages, because Emperor Claudius II had forbidden single men to get married. Emperor Claudius II felt that married men did not make good soldiers. Therefore; it was against the law for these men to get married. This disturbed Bishop Valentine. He believed in the sacredness of love and marriage. He performed secret marriages for these single men. Many people had heard of this wonderful thing that he was doing and he soon became quite well known throughout the land. Eventually, Bishop Valentine was sent to jail and sentenced to death. While in his jail cell, he fell in love with his lovely visitor who came to see him often. It is believed that she was the jailor’s daughter. Right before his death, he left a note to her signed “From Your Valentine”. That is how Saint Valentine’s Day began. It is so remarkable how this beautiful bishop became the Patron Saint of love, lovers, happy marriages, and young people. His beautiful spirit would lift all around him into a place of love. He was a true saint who touched other people’s lives through his loving actions and deeds. Saint Valentine’s Day helps to remind you to live through your spirit by honoring others with kindness and goodness. This glorious day guides you to see the connections and interconnections within relationships and how important it is to open your heart to others.
Saint Valentine’s Day - The Spiritual Day of Love
Here on earth living in unconditional love and emulating the purity of unconditional love is a spiritual priority. Saint Valentine’s Day assists you to recognize how significant it is to walk in your grace and highest levels of compassion, happiness, awareness, generosity, caring and sharing. These are powerful aspects on your spiritual road and Saint Valentine had proved us to take those steps into harmony and union. Saint Valentine gave so much beauty to our world and filled our world with overflowing joy. You have the ability to choose to live his ideals and share your heart with the world. You have the ability to follow his path, and dance through your day living each day as if it’s Saint Valentine’s Day. You actually have the responsibility to live those spiritual laws as well as the highest aspects of truth, hope, mercy, integrity, honesty, charity, while you support other’s spiritual journeys. As I was creating this article, it came to my mind that working with the mantra ‘Kleem’ (mantra for spiritual development) would attract those divine aspects of love into your life. This quantum sound calls upon Goddess Parvati to bring in all of the aspects that Saint Valentine lived his life by on this planet. Start today to write or chant this lovely sound, 108x each day and see what kinds of surprises come to you. Allow the energy of Saint Valentine to fill your world with miracles, give you energy and support through his tireless, and selfless being, help you live in a space of utter positivity and devotion as he blesses each moment of your life with divine love. Ask to live like Saint Valentine who portrayed the magnificence of strength, wisdom, and God’s radiance through every aspect of his essence. On Saint Valentine’s Day, take time to ponder how to live a life like this, in service to the divine, your highest potential and your light. “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy”. - Thich Nhat Hanh
May your Saint Valentine’s Day illuminate with joy and love.
Jacqueline's guides call her a Divine Illumination Encodement Counselor. She is a certiﬁed Faerie Healer and Angel Healing Practitioner, a Reiki Master, a Seraphim Blueprint Healing Practitioner, a Oneness Blessings Deeksha giver, a motivational storyteller, intuitive artist, author, musician, and a six sensory™ psychic certiﬁed with Sonia Choquette and oﬀers Blueprint Encodement Magic Activations.
She has an array of healing meditations and wonderful products as well. She is interested in spiritual activities and philanthropic activities.
Why are Innately Good People Susceptible to Guilt? Dr. Baskaran Pillai, Founder, AstroVed I want to talk about guilt. Many people live with guilt. Guilt comes from different sources – from your culture, your own family and from your ethical style. These systems can cause guilt in you. Who are susceptible by this guilt? The answer is people who are innately good and compassionate. They are afraid that they are not doing the right thing. They do not want to be selfish and want to take care about others. I have made a video specifically for those good people. Remember, the guilt is not in the present. Guilt was given to you by your own ethical outlook, by your own tradition. You have to be guilt-free. Only then, you can succeed. Guilt will always lock you up in a closet. There would not be any freedom at all.
The best way to get rid of the guilt is to live in the present. Everybody is responsible for his or her own actions. You are not responsible for other people’s sufferings. Everybody comes with a set of karma that he or she experiences in the lives. People are often subjected to the guilt-feeling; they think that they are responsible for everything which goes wrong. This is a wrong notion that you are not responsible if someone is suffering, when that person has to take the responsibility. You can help that person. Maybe, one can donate money but to live that person’s life is not the right way; because that will impede your progress as well. Guilt in the past is an outdated philosophy.