My take on Steve!

I just finished a phone conversation with a good friend of mine and I was talking to him about a lot of recent developments. The most important among them being the fact that a lot has been written about Steve Jobs accomplishment, but the most important aspect has been left out.

Most of us work and take leave when we are sick. We are accustomed to taking a leave of absence and not taking calls when we are on sick leave. Forget that, some of us do not take calls on holidays because we want to relax. We are familiar with physical discomfort as part of general illness. How many times have we heard people troubled by headache and back pain. We are all so used to complaining.

But here we have a man, who was diagnosed with a fatal illness and lived through it for more than 5 years. Now the illness was such that we can assume years of painful chemotherapy and more importantly mentally sapping periods of frustration. Frustration because he had just started doing some marvelous things. Everybody needs his attention. Family, children, employees, pressmen and so on. And what did he do?

He must have pulled on some enormous amounts of mental energy in putting everything aside and focussing entirely on what mattered to him. This is nothing short of brilliance. So what is new? Imagine having headache,…now multiply that 10 times over. Imagine having to have an injection. Now imagine that you need that injection every alternate day. Imagine feeling tired after a long day’s work. Now multiply that 10 times over.

Now add up all that you have imagined and you probably have Steve Jobs spending the last few years of his life.

How much he must be enjoying what he was doing to have pulled on. How many of us can love what we are doing the way he did??!!

 

Monday morning

The strangest Monday morning. Tapping away on my phone amidst a deluge of impending tasks. Am definitely in a talkative mood. But I am not able to figure out the topic. Not about work or family or anything to do with my friends.

Yes, I can talk about Yoga. 9 years since I started and have come a long way. It has ceased to be an item in my daily routine. It is now a part of me. I am shedding my coloured glasses one by one. I can see more clearly now. I can understand better. All the lines that are said and those unsaid, in seriousness and otherwise. Intentionally & otherwise. Directly & otherwise. The next knot was being judgemental & opinionated. Am working on it.

Where is my paper?

Meditation diaries

As days have moved past me, I am spending increasingly more time understanding the nuances of Kundalini Gnanam. I have broken away from addressing my practises as mere Yoga or Kundalini Yoga. It is definitely because it is not so. While Yoga lends itself to a lot of interpretations, Kundalini lends it a lot of character and the word Gnanam is in a similar vein.

The difference lies in Kundalini being a more particular description of the science and the word Gnanam being even more descriptive. Let me first start off with the word Kundalini. While Yoga is considered to be strongly related to ‘Asanas’, the word Kundalini gives it a more subtle sense. Kundalini talks about the subtle energy which keeps the whole world, me inclusive, going. The word Gnanam is descriptive of the highest sense of understanding, the pinnacle of Yogic achievement, as explained by my Guru.

Have started exploring various books in English and Tamil to collect my thoughts, experiment and understand the science. More to relate to what has been already been written. The fact that I have studied anatomy during my graduation has helped to a great degree. What is challenging in this initiative is the fact that so much has been written on this subject by so many Masters. All I can do is add my 2 pence to it.

Let me see.

Meditation diaries – Guru Bhakthi

I have been practicing a science called ‘Kundalini Gnanam’ for the past 8 years and it never ceases to amaze. What is thought as relevant yesterday lies in tatters today. What I thought was right is no longer right. Right is not relevant anymore.

Recently I had the chance to visit my Guru for 3 uninterrupted days and that helped me clear a lot of air. First and foremost I was increasingly losing my sense of direction in the last couple of months. My sense of discipline and my understanding of what I should do were both suffering. Days in and days out, I was increasingly getting frustrated that I was not doing what I wanted to do and I was getting further perturbed by the course of events. It was a negative loop and I suffered further due to my habit of not speaking to my Guru in such phases. Then it happened.

Arun, one of my buddies, called me out of the blue and told me that he was done with it (metaphorically and meaning of ‘it’ does not matter) and he had made up his mind to visit our Guru for a whole week. He wanted to meet and asked me to plan. Cutting a long story short, I was there for 3 days with my Guru. All kinds of things happened in those 3 days.

First and foremost, I understood the importance of Guru – Bhakthi. While in popular parlance, it would mean thinking about the Guru and worshiping him, for me it took on a deeper dimension. For me it meant understanding what he wants his students and disciples to do. A Guru wants nothing less than all of his students becoming a Guru themselves. This is a unique aspect of ‘knowledge’. It is one of the few assets, which makes the one who possesses it, want to share with as many people as possible. If one has to become a Guru then one must want to teach. For one who wants to teach, one must possess knowledge. To possess knowledge, one must research. The word research is beautiful isn’t it?

You have to re – search. The way I understand it is that you must probably abandon all that you hold true today and start from the beginning. The way I see it, religious people are not truly spiritual. Particularly the ones deeply embroiled in symbolic rituals and everyday ablutions. This has nothing to do with what they do and more to do with their outlook. They have accepted that this is it and have left it at that. The spiritual aspirant’s foremost quality would be to accept nothing as it is and question everything. Because they day one says this is it, he or she stops learning and is for all practical purposes, non-existent. Life is energy and energy that stagnates is more or less dead. As Vivekananda once said, the atheist is more religious than the Brahmin who unerringly performs pujas everyday.

So to me Guru – Bhakthi would also mean to tirelessly pursue the knowledge which will help me understand things better. The Spiritual Masters say that there is a knowledge which will be sweeter than forest honey. There is a knowledge which is ageless and timeless. There is a knowledge which will change the whole plane of existence. To me Guru – Bhakthi would mean to seek it with the same sense of urgency as a deer which just escaped from the hunter’s nest. It would mean to search it with the same emotions as the desert nomad who is thirsty and sees a mirage for the nth time.

This would take time and ceaseless effort. But like Lao Tse said – ‘The journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step’. Please start, my friend. Start today. Start now.

Nice week…

Lot of things happened in the week past. They have been really interesting from the perspective of priorities.

The first one was my visit to a premium motorcycle showroom and involved being turned out, metaphorically, by the guys there. I had a word with a good friend of mine and the conversation centred around me having a big head. So big that I could not put up with a little frustration. Whatever it was, I felt closer to my bullet. More importantly, I felt like a kid who was refused his lollipop. I now don’t care about that lollipop. I on the other hand felt closer to my friend.

The second one was a conversation with another friend of mine when we had met after a long time. I was having chicken after close to 2 months. This friend was going through an important stage in his life and that kind of is an introspective phase for him. So we were having food and we were discussing a lot of friends and stuff. I abruptly told him that most of these things are immaterial and we should rather enjoy th food. I did just that. While on the way back, I looked at my day to day routine and found out that we, or atleast I am losing track of time in my everyday routine. I feel that I amĀ  not enjoying the moment as much as I would want to. We all say that time flies, but what we actually mean is that we are wasting our time. We do not value time and the most important reason is because we are so packed in analyzing and dissecting things with our narrow minded priorities and petty politics that we let moments slip by us. We waste ourselves.

What priorities do I have today? To enjoy time. I don’t think there is any bigger priority for myself. Thanks to all my friends who taught me this.

Where is my paper?

Soft and mellow

It is interesting that I had made a draft a long while ago with just the name – ‘Soft and mellow’.

Now I login ages later to be able to relate to it like air. What else do I say when I talk about my moments these days. The swirl of incense in the mornings,..when I sit down to meditate is just like that. The waft of the morning mist and the wetness of dew is just like that. The words of my wife when she has just woken up,..is just like that. The sight of the morning bloom of roses in my balcony,..is just like that. The subtle taste of green tea, at any time of the day,..is just like that.

And yes, the sheer sight of my infant son,…at any time of the day,…any moment,..be it when he is sleeping or awake or when he is playing,….is bang on target – Soft and mellow.

I guess this feeling has less to do with the sights and sounds. It has more to do the inner draft. The incessant flow which sustains me. It is soft and mellow to start with. Everything else follows.

Meditation diaries

I had written a post sometime back, on a particular observation during practise of asanas and meditation. Interestingly I had a comment by a gentleman talking about the a very sweeping description of meditation.

It was a very good description and I would like to agree with him on a lot of aspects. But if I look back and pick up something which had left an impression on me, it was his statement which can be equated with logic.

‘A wise person is intelligent, but an intelligent person is not necessarily wise’

How true?

One thing which I have noticed as a change during the past few years spent in meditation is that there has been a change in my maturity level (a.k.a wisdom). I would strongly attribute this to that fact that I am able to move away from my selfish self. I take myself less seriously and even so others. Can this really be called maturity?

Somebody I know recently said,

‘Let me be myself’.

I asked,

‘What are you, that you want to be yourself? You are but a mixed bag, predominantly composed of your parents and close friends,….and bits and pieces of all the people that you have met since you were born.’

I reflect upon it and isn’t it true that we are all clowns, imitating other in everything starting from the language we speak, body language to everything else. We talk like others, eat like others, think like others. The society seems to be a collective bag of largely identical units walking and talking in a mundane symphony. It as even perfected the art of sustaining itself through generations?

So there is no you as such. So why take yourself so seriously?

My husband, my work, my life……

So much of tension because of these thougths that you are responsible for everything and it is your headache to turn things around.

Is it necessary?

You have no control over why your were born by the collective union of two specific individuals in this wide Cosmos. If you have no control over this fact then you have no control over all the parameters that have influenced you ever since. Everything from your first teacher to the icecream vendor on the street.

A thought like this helps you take yourself less seriously. Can this be called maturity? Can a thought which makes you ligther be called maturity?

Simon say ‘Yes, we can!’

Hah!