Category Archives: Sriram Speaks

Bhagavadgita Chapter 18 Moksha Sannyas Yoga Verse 31

Yayaa dharmamadharmam cha kaaryam chaakaaryameva cha; Ayathaavat prajaanaati buddhih saa paartha raajasee.

That by which one incorrectly understands Dharma and Adharma, and also what ought to be done and what ought not to be done—that intellect, O Arjuna, is Rajasic!

Interpretation

After talking about the sattwik intellect, Lord Krishna in this shloka is educating Arjuna about Rajasic intellect. He says that a Rajasic person can never interpret the difference between dharma and adharma correctly. He usually has a very different understanding of the concept of dharma and adharma. Not only that, unlike a sattwik person who has an understanding of what ought to be done and what not, a Rajasic person cannot differentiate what needs to be done and what is not required to be done. Such kind of intellect that cannot differentiate dharma and adharma and what needs to be done and what need not is stated as Rajasic intellect.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

Upanishads say that “ways of dharma are very subtle”, which means dharma doesn’t say very clearly what is one’s dharma and what is adharma. It has to be interpreted by a person depending on the situation that he is in.  Going to a temple or being a part of a religious ritual is considered to be a dharmic act. But not in all cases. Suppose if someone is a doctor and he is supposed to go to a hospital and perform a surgery but in return, he decides to take a leave from work for a religious ritual, then his act is considered to be adharma. A ritual conducted for the sake of money, enhancement of a person’s stature in the society are all considered to be adharmic. That means, if you perform a ritual at home or a temple for a promotion or a job or a success in education of children, they are all considered to be acts of adharma. 

A Rajasic person can never understand this. He has a very different understanding of the World and the concept of God. He thinks that God is a power who is the top most in the hierarchy. He starts to relate his power to the powers possessed by God. That means if he is heading an organization of  100 people, he tends to feel that God controls the entire population in this universe like the way he controls the 100 people in an organization. Unknowingly he thinks himself as a demigod and starts attributing his nature to God. Like the way he gets pleased with wealth and riches, he also feels that God gets pleased by the offerings made to him. This is an improper and adharmic way of looking at things, and this puts him in a situation where he ends up doing things which he is not supposed to do. 

Chapter 18 Moksha Sannyas Yoga Verse 24

Yattu kaamepsunaa karma saahankaarena vaa punah;
Kriyate bahulaayaasam tadraajasamudaahritam.

But that action which is done by one longing for the fulfilment of desires or gain, 
with egoism or with much effort—that is declared to be Rajasic.
Interpretation

This is the shloka that talks about the action coming from the trigger of the Rajasic nature of an individual. We talked about how action without love or hatred is qualified to be sattwik, now in this shloka we will see an action qualified to be Rajasic. Lord says that the action that a person performs and longing for fulfilment of desire or gain forms the basis of the Rajasic action. Added to that the action  also has an element of egoism in it and also it is done with a lot of effort from the doer’s end. Such kinds of actions are declared to be called as Rajasic actions, says Lord Krishna. 

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

Like the phrase “without love or hatred” in the previous shloka we need to look at “with egoism or with much effort”. Ego and effort always go hand in hand. What drives you tirelessly to work for something is always your ego. Your ego says that you should own and how much of it you should own, and your efforts are always directed in that direction. A person wants to become the head of an organization or a CEO of a company. What is the feeling that brings these two words “head” and “CEO”? It is the ego. Ego wants power, recognition, appreciation and wealth and that is possible only when you head an organization. But is it easy to achieve that?

Take an example of the Head of Tata group N.Chandrashekaran. He comes from a humble background studying in a Govt school in Tamilnadu in the local medium. He then did his graduation from Coimbatore Institute of technology and MCA from REC Trichy. He joined as an engineer in TCS, India’s biggest software company in 1987 and slowly climbed up the ladder to become the CEO of TCS in 2009. It took him 22 years to reach that position. Then in 2016 he went on to head the entire Tata Group. What has driven him is the ambition to succeed and climb up to the top and Chandrashekaran has shown much effort to achieve that position. Imagine from thousands of software engineers to become a CEO how much efforts it would take. 
There are examples where people fumble after reaching the top again because of the ego. Classic example we can take is Chanda Kochhar of ICICI bank, India’s largest Private sector bank. Born in Jodhpur in Rajasthan she did her schooling in Jaipur, before moving to Mumbai for doing B.com and subsequently MBA from Jamnalal bajaj Institute of Management. In 1984 at the age of 23 she joined ICICI as a management trainee and the journey continued till she became MD of International banking operations of ICICI bank in 2009 and subsequently she went on to become the MD of ICICI bank. But the downfall came when she colluded with Videocon in giving loans for a quid pro quo involving her husband. This ego of making him also rich brought her downfall. However the example we need to take is how a person tireless works with ego and efforts to achieve his/her goal. 

Chapter 18 Moksha Sannyas Yoga Verse 6

Chapter 18 Moksha Sannyas Yoga Verse 6
Etaanyapi tu karmaani sangam tyaktwaa phalaani cha;
Kartavyaaneeti me paartha nishchitam matamuttamam.
But even these actions should be performed leaving aside attachment 
and the desire for rewards, O Arjuna! This is My certain and best conviction.
Interpretation

This shloka is the concluding part of the reasons as to what kind of Karmas should not be abandoned. After this, the next three shlokas concentrate on the three kinds of renunciation. In this shloka, Lord is talking about performing the acts of gift, sacrifice and austerity without getting any attachment to the task. Not only that the person should also has to set aside his connect to any rewards that are associated with it. So, Lord is very clearly telling Arjuna not to abandon the acts of gifts, sacrifice and austerity and says that He has a very strong conviction towards it and others also should believe in the same.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

The human being is the most selfish being in this Universe. Every other being selflessly contribute something to this Universe but man is the one who is only contributing to himself and his own growth. The caterpillar that weaves threads in the form of cocoons is used extensively by humans in making silk fabrics. Cow’s milk business is a 50 billion dollars per annum industry today. Like that there are so many bacteria that saves us from diseases, rats, rodents and other animals which save our agricultural products from insects and every minute of our life we are all dependant on one organism or the other in this universe for our survival. We domesticate those animals which are harmless and put in zoos those which threaten us.

When we talk about self-less acts filled with sacrifice we are talking about things that we do not only to the fellow human beings but also to the other beings like plants and animals which live in this Universe. All that we are doing is for business and for our growth. someone is in the timber, furniture and paper industry will be killing so many trees on a daily basis for his profits, someone who is in the leather industry is killing so many animals and everything is done only for profits. The first step towards change is identifying these acts and slowly cutting off from them step by step. Then we need to do acts that help them and help other human beings also. The reason why I have dealt with this is, we have spoken many times before about doing actions without expecting results but today we have looked at our responsibility and our actions not only for humans but also for other species which are contributing to our growth.  

Bhagavadgita Chapter 18 Moksha Sanyyas Yoga Verse 4

Chapter 18 Moksha Sanyyas Yoga Verse 4

Nishchayam shrinu me tatra tyaage bharatasattama;
Tyaago hi purushavyaaghra trividhah samprakeertitah.

Hear from Me the conclusion or the final truth about this abandonment, O best of the Bharatas; abandonment, verily, O best of men, has been declared to be of three kinds!

Interpretation

After talking about the viewpoints of the sages, the wise men and what different philosophers say about abandonment and relinquishing the fruits of the work, Lord Krishna in this shloka talks about the abandonment. He tells in a very authoritative voice to Arjuna to hear from Him, the final truth about the abandonment. He also praises Arjuna as the best of all men born during those times and also the best among bharathas. He then says that abandonment is mainly declared to be of three different kinds. Then he starts talking about the three different types of abandonment.

Extending Interpretation to Mankind’s Life!

This shloka is a prelude to what God is going to say on abandonment. Lord Krishna says that what He is going to talk about is the conclusion or the final truth about the abandonment. We say it is the final truth because different people have given different versions of abandonment and we also talked about different types of abandonment. God’s view is the final view and it has to be heard and understood in the right way because, whatever people might say, what God says here is the gospel. So, let’s wait to hear from Lord Sri Krishna as to what those three kinds of abandonment is

India’s Revenge without any Challenge – India Air Strikes crossing Pakistan’s LOC to eliminate the Terrorists!

India’s Revenge for the Pulwama Attacks!

13 days is all that it took India to inflict revenge on Pakistan supported Terror Camps. It is indeed historic moment for India where every Indian is celebrating this emphatic achievement of the Indian Air Force. This is very special to us because India entered Pakistan crossing LoC for the first time since 1971 and eliminated as many as 300+ terrorists which included fidayeens and the Jaish-e-Mohammed commanders. We were successful to carry the strikes without any damage to the Indian Air Force. The Jets used in this attack were Mirage 2000. The total 12 Jets which flew over the LoC and attacked the terror camps in LoC as well as mainland Pakistan.

It was an early morning mission like the Uri Surgical Strikes and was not as easy it sounds. For the protection of the 12 Jets, there was a Drone and a security Jet which was taking the lead to clear the space for the Air Force to enter the Terror areas. In flat 21 minutes, the jets pounded 3 locations destroying the terror camps and along with it around 300 terrorists hiding there. The army’s puppet PM Imran Khan says that Pakistan will retaliate and like kids they are attacking by violating the ceasefire along LoC. Dear Imran Khan, this isn’t a cricket match nor this is India which is old. This is a changed India and under the leadership of our PM Modi, we have gone too far from your reach. The only way that you can make peace with us is by stopping funding of the terrorists and giving a proper governance so that people don’t turn into terrorism.

It’s not just an attack, it’s the revenge for the 40 CRPF Jawaans who were Martyred by the Cowards of Jaish. We are always proud of our Army and we know how to fight the real battle and don’t indulge in something like cross border firing, Suicide Bombing and Terror attacks. You better get this straight into your head. India doesn’t have any kind of hatred for the people of Pakistan, definitely not, but with these Terrorists who have been creating massive damage by taking the lives of the innocent, India can never forgive them. Every Indian was furious, fuming with anger when the Pulwama Attack happened. We have already hit on the Websites of yours by our Cyber Power, and it’s not the Army but normal Citizens of India. You can’t even guess what can happen if the Army starts to Hack your Systems. Of course, we did hack your systems which is why your brothers (terrorists) are on their way to 72 Virgins.

The Mirage 2000 which attacked the Balakot area.

Just for facts, India was angry after 2001 Parliament Attack, India was facing the pain of 100 swords after the Mumbai Attacks but the Govt of the Day wanted to handle with peace and we were respecting the Govt taking the pain and living with it. But the time is up for your cowardly attacks and for every wrong step you take, we shall make sure that you will regret the acts committed. I wish to see peace but only after resolving problems. Those who want peace, please stop eating Non-Veg, killing insects etc etc; Violence is the order for the day and India doesn’t start it but we always end it.

Agar aur Izaat gavana chahteho toh aao kabhi Border pey, warna invitation ke bina Ghar me Ghus ke Maarenge!

Always India! Violence, Peace or anything, it’s always INDIA! #JaiHind #JaiBharat #JaiJawaan #VijayiBharat

Pulwama Attacks – A day that has made the India numb for 44 martyrs #IndiaFightsTerror

On the 14th of Feb 2019, the day recognised to be celebrated as the day of ‘Love’ turned out to be a Brutal and a Horrified day for 1.3 billion Indians. The terror attack in Pulwama district in Kashmir carried out by the Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorist killed more than 40 CRPF Jawans. It was an attack that left the entire country speechless and pushed every Indian into an emotional tailspin. People across the length and breadth were demanding for a befitting reply and the one thing that was common in everyone’s mind is ‘Revenge’. Govt has given a clear indication that it would act tough and vowed to pay for every drop of blood that the martyred Jawans shed.

INDIA Seeks Revenge!

Entire World is also moved by this attack and as many as 60 countries have come out in support of India and have sent a strong warning to Pakistan. UN has also strongly condemned the attack and urged for punishment to those who are involved. USA and Trump have gone on to say that Pakistan must stop the funding and supporting the terrorists on their soil. These were few opinions of Leaders against Pakistan in the last 3 days since the attack happened.

India in the wake of this attack has withdrawn the Most Favoured Nation tag to Pakistan, Movie artists association banned the Pakistani stars from being a part of the Indian entertainment industry and the customs duty on Pak imports have been raised by 200%. Apart from this Social Media is on full trolling of the Pakistanis. Pakistan is under pressure and PM Imran Khan had come out after 5 days to say that Pakistan believes in peace but will not keep quiet if it India attacks it. India made it clear that it is not in war with Pakistan, but with the Terrorists who are supported by ISI. If the world is raising questions at you, then PM Imran Khan you must do something about it and not ask for proof which actually is visible right in front of him. It must condemn the attacks and start an operation to find the terrorist groups in their soil, and hand them over to India.

If that’s how the things are across the Border, internally also things aren’t that fine. India did conduct an operation to clear the cockroaches who planned the Pulwama attack. Indian army was successful to eliminate the cowards and Jihadi JeM terrorists, though unfortunately, we lost 4 of our soldiers, taking the toll of death of Jawaans to 44 in last week. Indian army is yet not finished and is up to something big to clean the terror that is taking the lives of innocent.

But unfortunately, the democracy in India is making people to talk anything that they wish which is unacceptable. Sidhu, who is a former cricketer and now the MLA from Punjab is asking the people of India why should the entire country be criminalised for the 4 terrorists? Media personnel, especially the journalists are raising alarm for the Kashmiri Youth and creating unwanted panic in them. One of the entertainment industry ladies asks people why are we feeling so much grief for the Army when there are many more others who die daily because of food etc;

What are these voices made of? How can one be so illogical against the country? Where has the unity of India gone in the tough times, even after all the political parties have taken a singular stand of punishing Pakistan and seeking for an act of revenge, why are some set of people still cursing and acting manipulative. People must stay united in these tough times to back the soldiers, the govt so that the problem can be handled the way the Country wants. Spreading false and scripted stories has become part of the DNA of these heartless people who are time and again continuing to support the anti-nationals and bringing violence to the Country.

This manipulation of facts has to Stop, hashtags like How’s the Jaish has to stop, Violence has to Stop, Terrorism has to Stop! If it requires a violent and drastic step against the terrorists has to be taken, then let it be. This is not the time to talk about peace and talks, because it undermines the very purpose and the sacrifice that those soldiers have made to protect our motherland.

Let us make a resolution to root out the terrorism forever from our soil and let’s continue this struggle till the last terrorist is gunned down.

Jai Hind! #PulwamaAttack #IndiaFightsTerror

India’s 1% Richest get richer by 39% in the year 2018 and the bottom half only by 3%!

A day ago, I had read an article that was released by many websites on the Income levels throughout the Globe. This study comes from the Oxfam, Oxfam is a group of 20 charitable organizations working in 90 countries working for reducing the poverty. So, I decided to give my view on the findings of the research by Oxfam which is being presented with a strong ‘bias’.

Below are few highlights brought out from the study:
  1. The study reveals that Billionaires saw a 12% increase in their income levels per day and the poor half of the people saw their wealth decline by 11%.
  2. India’s top 1% richest people have seen their wealth increased by 39% whereas the bottom half saw only 3% increase in their wealth.
  3. The Study also revealed that 10% of India’s who are poorest remained in debt since 2004.
  4. India’s top 10% people hold 77.4% of India’s total wealth and top 1% hold as high as 51.53% wealth and 60% of India’s population which is the majority holds only 4.8% of India’s wealth.

These facts were presented in an article in such a way that India’s rich are looting India and blaming the Govt for not doing anything to India’s poor population. People started commenting on the ‘ache din’ concept and then the other side of people started hitting at 70 years rule of Congress. The blame game went on for most of the comments. I would want to make very few points and educate the uneducated.

Let’s say there is a family who has taken debt and is expecting someone to come from heaven and pay off the debt, is it going to happen? Debt once taken has to be repaid by the working person who took the debt by earning money. If you fail to do so, you are going to be called as debt holder till the time you clear them. Why people take debt is something which depends on the individuals who are not to be discussed. Secondly, the article also talks about Rich getting Rich and Poor getting poor, the fact is that Rich have money to send their kids to better schools and give knowledge. Whereas the poor don’t have the luxury of sending the kids to good schools. So obviously rich kids get the best possible results.

Next, how are these Rich making money? Is it not because of their hard work and the way they run their business? Absolutely yes. We can definitely ask Government for helping the poor in better health, better facilities etc but all in all the efforts are something which needs to come from the individuals. We cannot at one place and keep complaining or blaming others for our failure. Nobody will take you the sky if the sky is one’s goal he needs to work hard and show some real strength to reach the heights. Putting up the easy tagline of Rich becoming Rich and Poor becoming Poor will only waste 5 more seconds in your life. Understand it’s the reality. As a saying goes, Blame nobody for being born poor but blame yourself for dying poor.

Finally, Rich and Poor discrimination should not be justified in terms of Money, much crucial and rewarding than money is the ‘Knowledge’ which builds character which in turn can help you to build a rich empire. Money is needed but not in excess, the only thing that has no delimitations even if it’s in excess is ‘Knowledge’.

The Untold Truth about Makara Jyothi & Makaravilakku – Makara Sankranti

The Untold Truth about Makara Jyothi & Makaravilakku – Makara Sankranti

Amidst high controversy, Sabarimala Ayyappan Darshan on 14th of January 2019 was successfully conducted by Travancore Devaswom board in Kerala. The agitation over the entry of women has been making a lot of noise and disturbing the devotees. Violence was spotted in many places, but all was fine on the big day of Makara Jyothi Darshana or Makaravilakku festival. This day turns out to be the most auspicious day of the two-month-long festival season. Supreme Court will hear to review petition in coming days and devotees would wait eagerly for that day and the verdict.

Let us understand what is Makara Jyothi?

The one in the sky is ‘Makara Jyothi’ and the one which is in middle of screen is ‘Makaravilakku’.

‘Makara’ as we know is one of the twelve Zodiac signs name in the Hindu traditions. Makara translates to Capricorn in Western Astrology. Capricorn is the 10th sign in the list of 12 signs. As we all understand that every month the Sun moves from one sign to another, on an average Sun stays in a sign for about 30-31 days. Every month on the 14th it moves from one sign to another sign. In the same way on the day of 14th of January 2019, Sun moves to ‘Makara’=’Capricorn’ from ‘Dhannus’=’Sagittarius’. That moment when the Sun enters Makara Rashi is termed as Makara Jyothi Darshanam. Makara Jyothi is coined as the term because when Sun moves into ‘Makara Rashi’ there comes a spark of light high in the sky, which the Ayyappa devotees equate as Lord Ayyappa himself. This Makara Jyothi appears in the sky around 6 pm to 6:30 pm on the day of 14th January. This is a pretty much natural phenomenon and no controversies surround that. Simply put the first ray of sun after it moves into Makara Rashi is called as Makara Jyothi.

Now coming to Makaravilakku which is the controversy that has been floating for many years. People believe that the burning flame like object which appears on the hills of Sabarimala as the Avatara of Lord Ayyappan who appears thrice to bless his devotees. But the reality is very different. The flame-like object is a man-made fire which is practised in the forests place called as Ponnaambalamedu. This is a practice by the tribes in the forest for hundreds of years. Like there is a Sabarimala Temple where the humans worship Lord Ayyappan and give ‘aarti’ to him, in the same way, the tribes in the forest after the Makara Jyothi Darshanam, tribes also perform the ritual of lighting the lamp and rotate it for 3 times. It’s exactly like the Aarti that the devotees at Sabarimala perform. Because aarti has to go in rotation, tribes rotating the vessel for three times makes the ‘Makaravilakku’ appear for three times to the people on the hill of Sabarimala. Which has been believed by people as the avatar of Lord Ayyappa. But its nothing supernatural. Even the Government and High Court have proven the fact behind the ‘Makaravilakku’ and this is now controlled by the Government of Kerala and the Travancore Devaswom Board. This is truth of Makaravilakku. We should not confuse between Makara Jyothi and Makaravilakku as both are very different from each other.

Will Makara Jyothi day remain the same?

From the knowledge that I have gathered, it’s not possible for Makara Jyothi to appear on the same day. Geographically it’s not workable. There are two things we need to understand here one is that there is a difference of 50 seconds of a degree between the tropical and sidereal movement of Sun. Sidereal is the movement of the Sun on the basis of Astrology and Tropical movement of Sun is the actual movement that we know. So when we calculate the difference between both it comes to 50 seconds. This way as the time increases the date also moves forward, not going too deeper in the concept, not very far ago we had Celebrated the festival on 14th of January and now we are celebrating it on 15th of January and like this in the next 72 years, we would celebrate the festival on 16th of January. So there isn’t any fixed date for Sankranti festival and it keeps changing every year in terms of time.

Ayyappa Deeksha – One of the most famous pilgrimages in this World!

Ayyappa Deeksha – 41 days of unwavering and intense Devotion towards Lord Ayyappa.

Today, I will be writing about the Story of the Lord Ayyappa. Lord Ayyappa and his Story is close to me and the reason is my father taking the Deeksha since last 24 years which made to me know more about the Lord Ayyappa and his life. Devotion is a completely different shade altogether in one’s life. Some express their devotion and some follow the implicit way. In South India, the Devotion followed towards any Lordis by taking up ‘Deeksha’ or ‘Consecration’ (following the religious path). Deeksha is seen in praying for Lord Durga, Lord Hanuman, Lord Shiva, and Lord Ayyappa aswell. I will now explain the Deeksha and the dedication in devotion that human being shows. Firstly, Lord Ayyappa is mainly worshipped in South India. He is also worshipped as ‘Manikandan’. It is believed that he was born out of the union between Lord Shiva and Mohini, who is an avatar of Lord Vishnu. Therefore, Ayyappa is even called as ‘Hariharan Puthiran’ which means the son of both Hari or Vishnu and ‘ Haran’ or Shiva. That’s how the Lord Ayyappa was born and he was born for the welfare of the society.

Reason for Ayyappa’s birth was to protect the World from ‘Mahishi’. ‘Mahishi’ was given a boon that she would not be killed until or unless it is the union of two males. That’s the major reason for Birth of Ayyappa to Lord Shiva and Vishnu. Lord Ayyappa Deeksha is observed in the Hindu month of ‘Kartika’ which falls in the month of November as per Georgian Calendar. One who takes up this Deeksha follows strict religious practices to receive the Lord’s blessings. The devotees observe a 41-day ‘Deeksha’ before visiting Sabarimala. During this Deeksha, a devotee has to wear black colored clothes and walk barefooted. The devotee should avoid all physical pleasures and other family ties and should live like a celibate or ‘Brahamachari’. He should continuously practice the good behavior and should not involve in any kind of unethical things. Apart from the above practices, the devotees have to take bath only with Coldwater early in the mornings and pray Lord Ayyappa before the Sunrise every day and do the same in the evening after Sunset. After dedicated 41 days Deeksha, Devotees carry ‘Irumudi’ which contains rice, coconut and other things which run the family. Holding it high on their heads, Devotees start their journey for Sabarimala. Irumudi kettu is very essential and only those with Irumudi kettu are allowed to climb the 18 golden steps which take Devotee to the entrance of the Lord Ayyappa.

After reaching Sabarimala, Devotees take bath in the holy river Pampa, and they start their hill journey to reach the abode of Lord Ayyappa. Once Devotees reach the shrine, the atmosphere turns Spiritual, Undisturbed, Calm and Soulful. With those vibes, the devotees with a lot of devotion and happiness climb the 18 Golden Steps and submit their Irumudi Kettu to seek the blessings of the Lord Ayyappa. This is how the Deeksha of 41 days gets completed, a ‘Vratham’ that changes the Individual and makes him a person with a lot of responsibility, respect, and dedication.

I will tell you what do these 18 golden steps represent:

  1. Vision – (ThePanchedriyas – Five Human Senses)
  2. Hearing
  3. Smell
  4. Taste
  5. Touch  
  6. Love – (Ashtaragas– Feelings of Humans)
  7. Anger
  8. Greed
  9. Lust
  10. Pride
  11. Unhealthy Competition
  12. Jealousy
  13. Self-bragging
  14. Thamas – (Trigunasand Last Two– Human Personalities)
  15. Rajas
  16. Satva
  17. Avidya – Ignorance
  18. Vidya – Knowledge

I have been part of the LordAyyappa journey for as many as 23 years and have been to Sabarimala temple 3 times and each and every time has been a fantastic experience. Must and should plan the 4th one soon!