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Friday, March 17, 2017

Cute Quotes


1. If time doesn't wait for you, don't worry !
Just remove the damn battery from the clock
and Enjoy Life !
2. Expecting the world to treat you fairly,
because you are a good person is like
expecting the lion not to attack you because
you are a vegetarian ! Think about this.

3. Beauty isn't measured by outer appearances,
and what clothes we wear, but what we are inside...
But don't try going out naked tomorrow, to assess
how others admire 'what you are inside' !

4. Don't walk as if you rule the world,
walk as if you don't care who rules the world !
That's called Attitude. Keep on rocking !

5. Every woman hopes that her daughter will marry
a better man than she did, and is convinced that
her son will never find a wife as good as his father did!

6. He was a truly good man... He never smoked,
nor drank, and never had an affair. When he died,
the insurance company refused the claim...

They said, "He who has never lived, cannot die"!
7. A man threw his wife in a pond of Crocodiles.
He's now being sued by Animal Rights Activists
for being cruel to the Crocodiles!

8. There are so many options for suicide :
Poison, sleeping pills, hanging, jumping
from a building, lying on train tracks, etc....
But many chose Marriage : It's slow, but sure!

9. Only 20 percent boys have brains,
the rest have girlfriends!

10. All desirable things in life are either illegal,
banned, expensive, or married to someone else!

Did you also notice they walked everywhere?"

A teenage boy had just passed his driving test and asked his father when they'd be able to have a discussion about using the car. 
The boy thought about that for a moment, decided he'd settle for the offer, and they came to an agreement.

After about six weeks, his father said: "Son, you've brought your grades up and I've observed that you have been studying the Bible, but I'm disappointed you haven't cut your hair yet." 
The boy said: "You know, Dad, I've been thinking about that, and I've noticed in my studies of the Bible that Samson had long hair, John the Baptist had long hair, Moses had long hair - and there's even strong evidence that Jesus had long hair!"
"Did you also notice they walked everywhere?"

Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara –


Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara – This is one of the absolute classics!! This incident has been vividly described by Shri Thiruvannamalai Gowrishankar Mama.
Maha Periva Charanam,
“I once went to a place called Vaasangere in Karnataka to have His darshan. He was camping in the mines area which belonged to Sandur Maharaja. Swamigal was a sitting on a tarpaulin along with the other devotees. Annathurai Iyengar of Veda Raksha Nidhi Trust was also there with a few students from his Veda Patashala. It was around 10.30 in the night.
The Sandur Maharaja, Maharani and their son were also there. His son was a Reader in the Department of Mathematics at Yale University in the US. He had a PhD degree in Maths. His parents were standing there respectfully before Him but he appeared to be quite casual. Swamigal conversed with the Maharaja and Maharani in Kannada for a while.
After a while He turned towards their son and asked, “Where do you live? What are you doing?”
“I am a Reader in Maths Dept at Yale University”, he replied.
“What have you studied, you have done your PhD in which branch of Maths”, He asked.
Their son did not answer for a minute, hesitating to reply as he was unsure if Swamigal could make sense of what he had studied. His father goaded him to reply.
“Quantum Theory.”, he said, matter-of-factly.
Swamigal drew a +ve sign on the mud and circled it; He also drew a -ve sign and circled it. Pointing to the two signs Swamigal asked him,
“Did you use the positive or the negative approach in your Quantum Theory PhD thesis study?”
Their son who was a bit indifferent until then, was startled to hear this from Him. He was trembling for words and suddenly became more respectful and replied, “Positive Approach.”
“Why did you not take the Negative Approach, will you do you it later”, He asked.
“It is difficult to use the Negative Approach”, he said.
Swamigal looked at Annathurai Iyengar and said, “He is saying it is difficult; can you ask the Veda students to recite this particular verse from Rig Veda?”, and prompts them with first two words.
The students recited that particular verse for 5 minutes. After this He turned to their son and said, “you must have obtained your PhD in your 24th or 25th year correct?”
“In my 25th year”, said he.
“Rig Veda, the verse which you heard now, talks both about the Positive and the Negative approaches”, He said.
The son was astonished and requested the students to recite the verse again.
“Are you now thinking that you need not have spent lakhs and lakhs of rupees for your 25 years of education and if only you had studied the Vedas you would have learnt this Truth in just 7 years?!”, replied Lord Parameshwara.”
*****
Narrated by Shri Thiruvannamalai Gowrishankar Mama!
Yale University is one of the top universities in the world, but obviously not a match for the Vedas! :)))
This is the beauty of Maha Periyava!!
Courtsey. Mahesh krishnamurthy
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Experiences with Maha Periyava: Boundless grace and compassion
One is apt to think that "boundless compassion" exists only in rhetoric till one has a darsan of Paramacharyal. In His marvellous presence one instinctively recognised boundless compassion, purity, grace and the quality of equal vision. Countless must be the instances of His Grace curing diseases, warding off calamities, giving peace of mind and above all, guiding an aspirant on the razor-edge path of ascent along the Sushumna. Instance of the last kind might not be normally made public, as they pertain to the innermost lives of the persons. I happened to know of at least one such case, as it was of my father. From among my experiences, I give the following few.
When, more than four decades back, I passed the competitive examinations and got appointed to a top service, Paramacharyal specifically advised me that I decline that offer, which I did. At that time almost all who knew me were against my going by His advice and some even said that He was not qualified to give such advice! Events, far later, showed how gracious and farsighted He had been and what great kindness. He had shown in giving that advice!
Once, He, in His own inimitable manner, knocked good sense into me, and gave a lesson in dealing with one's Guru Maharaj. It is as follows.
He was camping at the place of my posting and I came to know that the timepiece He was using was not working well. So, I went to the shop and selected a good piece, which had a black dial and against which radium coated white numerals and hands stood out well. (Please bear this description in mind.) It was a bit costly. A relation of mine who was with me. At that time, and who was rather close to the SriMatham, advised me to go in for a cheaper variety. His reasoning was that devotees were giving timepieces to the SriMatham fairly frequently, and one cannot say whether Periaval will use a particular piece at a given time; and hence a costly place may not be with Periaval all the time. I was taken in by this argument, and got a cheaper piece, which had a white dial. I had completely overlooked the point that a Sishya must offer only the best to his Guru, particularly when it was available. When I took the piece to the SriMatham, Perival had gone inside, and so I gave it to Pudu Periaval, and informed the Manager, When I went in the evening for darshan, the Manager called me aside, and gave back the timepiece, saying, "Periaval saw the timepiece and wanted to know who had given it. He was told that Nagarajan had given it. He desired that the article be returned to you with the remark that He preferred to have one with black dial, against which white numbers were prominent. Many, who were present at that time, offered to get such a piece. But Periaval said that Nagarajan only should get it." When I heard this, I broke down and cursed myself for having listened to specious advice, and having been stingy towards Guru Maharaj. Needless to say that I rushed to that shop, was relieved to find that item on the shelf, and bought it. The above incident shows the all-pervasive awareness and infinite compassion of Periaval. I felt really happy and blessed, when some months later I saw Him using that same timepiece.
In 1962 Periaval was camping in Elayathagudi. On the day we went for darsan, He had walked a long distance and was seated in a temple. Pudu Periaval was in the SriMatham Camp, after seeing whom we went by cart to the place where Periaval was. I sought His blessing for the upanayanam of my son, to be performed soon. He said that we could go after taking "akshata", and were wondering why we in particular were asked to wait. After some time a devotee came in a car, and Periyaval sent the car to the camp to get the "akshata", gave it to us and permitted us to go. The reason for His action was revealed to us very soon. On the return journey my son (whose upanayanam had been arranged), suddenly became sick and started vomiting. No medical help was available In the bus or outside. We could only pray to Periaval and clutch the "akshata" so kindly given by Him. The boy became normal in a short time, and there was absolutely no problem thereafter. Then only we realised that Periaval, with His infinite grace and compassion and all-pervading knowledge, had given the "rakshaa" to mitigate the evil which might have befallen us otherwise.
I could write on and on. It all comes to the same thing, "BOUNDLESS GRACE AND COMPASSION".
Who can fathom Paramacharyal's infinite greatness?

Author: T.B. Nagarajan
--------------
Chaaturmaasya Vichaara - LAKSHA PRADAKSHINA
One of the austerities prescribed for Chaturmaasya Vratha is Laksha Pradakshina. It involves walking around an icon or idol in a temple one lakh times.
Apparently it looks difficult even for a normal healthy person to complete the same during four months period.
What is important is that, one should understand the significance of Pradakshina and Lakh is only indicative that it should be in abundant numbers according to one’s capacity (yathashakti) and physical condition.
Pradakshina means circumambulation (Parikrama) around the intended idol/icon in a temple which is a form of worship that is in vogue in Hindu religion and culture (Bharateeya Samskruti) since time immemorial.
Generally we come across devout Hindus taking Pradakshina around;
Thulasi plant;
Aswatta Vruksha;
Sacred Cow (Go Pradakshina);
Sacred fire;
Temple deity like;
Lord Hanuman;
Sri Raaghavendra Swamy Brundavana,
Navagraha etc.
Apart from normal Pradakshina, we come across special types of Pradakshina like...
Giri Pradakshina
Anga Pradakshina
Praakaara Pradakshina
Aatma Pradakshina etc.
Actually, Pradakshina is a sort of penance to beseech the God’s grace to get rid of bad karmas that one may be facing in life.
The guiding principle behind this is that, if God’s worship is performed with sincere devotion and total surrender it helps in reducing the impact of bad karmas and not by the amount of offerings to the God.
Recognizing God as the focal point in our lives we go about doing our day to day tasks. God is the centre point/source or essence of our lives and everything revolves around Him.
When we undertake Pradakshina every point on the circumference is equi-distance from the centre ie, the God and we are equally close to the God and His grace flows impartially towards us.
Pra means prominent/famous/the best and dakshina indicates the direction ie... to the right.
Pradakshina means prominently moving to the right side that is auspicious and eventual.
When we perform Pradakshina we circumambulate in clockwise direction and God always remains to our right side that symbolizes auspiciousness. This is just to remind ourselves to lead an auspicious and righteous life.
With regular chanting of divine Veda manthras in the temple it is believed that there will be accumulation and roaming of positive vibrations/energy around the idol/temple.
While making Pradakshina the mind will get purified, the devotee absorbs the positive energy and gets the divine aura that surrounds the Deity.
Pradakshina is a form of Prayaschitta (expiation). It should be performed with utmost humility and devotion in a meditative mood with focus on the concerned deity and not just as a routine.
Pradakshina is performed as a mark of respect, obeisance and total surrender to the deity.
It should be performed slowly and not in a hurry with our thoughts and actions dwelled on the God with folded hands.
According to its merits Pradakshina will tone down the sins; cause destruction of Karma; bestows upon what is desired; leading to the path of salvation.
Yaanikaani cha paapaani janmaanthara kruthaani cha
Thaani thaani vinasyanthi pradakshina padae padae
Meaning: let lapses and blemishes made in this current as well as the previous births and resultant afflictions perish with every pradakshina

Friday, September 23, 2016

Purity of Heart and Soul can lead you Godliness

Purity of Heart and Soul can lead you Godliness
There lived a cobbler by the name Ramdas who lived and worked near river Ganga. A pilgrim group came there and they saw Ravidas sitting and fixing leather shoes. They gave one or two pairs of shoes for repair and asked him how many times he had taken bath in Ganga. He replied that he had not bathed in Ganga at all. These pilgrims who took pride in their spiritual accomplishments sarcastically told him:
"We wish we did not give our shoes for repair to such an atheist who lived and worked near divine Ganga nadi and still never bothered to take bath in this punya nadi."
Then they gave him a coin as remuneration for mending their shoes. He refused to accept the money and told them that he never accepted money from pilgrims. If they are very particular, he said they could offer that coin to Ganga Nadi saying :
"Ganga Devi, this is an offering from cobbler Ravidas". So they took bath in river Ganga and threw the coin in to the river and said mockingly: "Divine mother Ganga, here is an offering from cobbler Ravidas." Immediately two beautiful hands appeared from inside the river and caught the coin with those hands and told: "I am so honored to accept this gift from Ravidas, the great soul. " Then she gave a beautiful golden bangle studded with precious stones to the pilgrims and told them that it was a gift from her to Ravi das.
As we can imagine, they did not give it to Ravi das, but took it to the king of Benares and offered it to him to please him. King gave the bangle to the queen and queen liked it so much that she wanted another one. So king asked the pilgrims where they got it and they were afraid to tell the truth. So they promised the king that they would get another one and ran to Ravidas and fell at his feet and and asked him to get one more bangle.
Ravidas had a small container in front of him with water to wet the leather. He said:"If our mind is pure and if we love Ganga Devi, Ganga Devi will even come and stay in this container." Then he asked them to look inside the cup and they saw another bangle in that water that matched exactly with the one given before by Ganga Devi. They could not believe their eyes. They took the bangle, prostrated at his feet and apologized for their treating him with disrespect. Ravidas blessed them by praying to Ganga Devi and continued his job of mending the shoes.
It is our sincere attitude of surrender that matters and not nothing else.
May Bhagavan bless us with an attitude of total surrender!​

PURATTASI SHANI KIZHAMAI


Puratasi Masam is of great importance to Tamilians as it is believed that Lord Venkateswara (Balaji) appeared on the earth in this month. Puratasi sanikizhamai (saturdays) are dedicated to Lord Shani or Sani bhagavan. Some people observe partial fasting on all days in Puratasi while others limit it to Puratasi Saturdays.
Some devotees of Lord Venkateswara opt for strict fast on Puratasi Saturdays which involves not even drinking a drop of water - Nirjala Vratam. Some devotees do not include onion, garlic in their meal throughout this month.
The ritual of doing Mavilaku Mavu poojai for Lord Venkateshwara on Saturdays (1st or 3rd or 5th Saturday).
During the month of Purattasi Saturday, a lamp made of rice flour with added jaggery, Cashew, Ghee etc. is lit in front of Lord Venkateswara. Normally, this is done on any one of the Saturdays, on the first, third or fifth Saturday of Purattasi Tamil month. Mainly, this is done when there is no Utsavam and Dwajarohanam going on in the Tirupati Hill Temple.
Many of the Tamilians [irrespective of the Sect & sub-sects] offer Maavilakku to the GOD of their choice; Amman, Perumal, Murugan in temples or at their homes.
In Shivites custom, they offer this on the 1st Aadi and 1st Thai Vellikizhamai [Kataka/Karkatam and Makara months' first Friday]
Mavilaku Mavu Receipe:
Method: 1
1. Take 1cup of rice flour and mix it with 1cup of sugar/jaggery.
2. In blender dry grind little sugar/jaggery and 2pods of cardamom.
3. Add it to the rice mixture and mix well. Break a coconut and take the water in a cup.
4. By using this water little by little to the rice flour make it into a thick dough.
5. Then shape it into vilakku with a beak in front.
6. Keep kumkum to it and into the deep hole in the centre put ghee and thread.
7. Light it as a lamp to God Venkateshwara.
Method: 2
Ingredients:
1. Raw Rice 2 cups
2. Jaggery (preferred one is jaggery powder) 1 cup.
3. Cardamom 2 nos. [powdered]
4. Ghee 2 table spoons.
5. Cotton Wick 1 [not the conventional one]
Method:
1. Wash the rice and keep it soaked for 10 or 15 minutes
2. Drain well and spread on a clean white cloth
3. Grind the rice in a mixer [in small quantity] and sieve
4. When the powdered rice is ready, mix the flour with the jaggery powder [to add more taste, one can add honey, grated coconut and benzoine known as Pacchaikarpooram] and powdered cardamom
5. Spread the dough on a plate or basin and make one cup shape mould of the dough
6. Pour ghee
7. Put the wick
8. Now the authentic Maavilakku is ready
Draw a kolam and place the plate containing the Maavilakku. Decorate with flower. Light the lamp by chanting slokams or Govinda, Govinda or Venkataramana Govinda, Sankata harana govinda..etc. followed by Vishnusahasranamam and Devi slokams.
When the lamp is about to go off, do offerings, neivedhyam of Milk or Fruits. Afterwards, remove the burnt wick, mix the dough properly, distribute the Maavilakku Mavu Prasadm.
You have now had the tasty bud of MaviLakku. Now let us see the meaning behind this practice!
The entire DakshinayaNa (Mid July to Mid January) period is said to be of night time for the Devas. During these time, it is entirely devoted to prayer, offering and pooja etc. When the DakshinayaNa begin during Mid July, the Tamil month Aadi begin. From here on all the following six months known as Dakhsinaya is of festivities and celebrations and all to the Lord God.
Beginning from the first Friday of Aadi, then Varalakshmi Vratham, Sri Jayanthi - Gokulashtami, Vinayakar Chathurthi, Deepavali (Diwali), Navaratri all the festivals aiming at offerings to the Lord Gods of various Status.
The Legend:
During Every Saturday of the Purattasi month, it is said Lord Sri Balaji expecting his devotees to come closer to his consort hills. And for those who could not afford to travel at length, he beams himself through the light of this specific Mavilakku. Thus, a devotee getting His Lord's Darshan without climbing the seven hills of Thirumala Tirupati.
Also, the carbon emanated through the mixture of rice flour and cow's ghee is said to remove all the ill radiations and negative vibrations from one's home and that too when one recites aloud the name of the Lord God. To make it worthy, devotees recite the Lord Gods name several times.Surely, the fragrance, a temple like atmosphere and the divine recitals and the devotion, all that makes one refreshed and happy.
The Saturdays of the month are also auspicious and are dedicated to pleasing Shani (Saturn). It is believed that Shani loses its powers on Purattasi month.
Devotees offer Ghee or Ellu Lamp to Lord Shani in the month. They also prepare Yellu Rice as Neivedya to Shani Bhagavan. Navagrahas are also worshipped in the month. The popular belief is that Lord Shani loses his powers in the month and therefore he can be easily pleased.
Yellu (Sesame Rice) Prasaadam..
Ingredients:
Sesame seeds - 2tsp Dry red chilli - 1 or 2 nos Hing - little Mustard - 1tsp Urad dhal - 1tsp Channa dhal - 1tsp Curry leaves - little Rice - 1/4cup Salt - to taste Sesame oil - 2tsp
Method
1. Wash and cook rice. Allow it to cool.
2. Dry roast sesame seeds and red chilli.
3. In a blender dry grind redchilli, sesame seeds and salt. Add it to the rice.
4. In a heated kadai, add oil, then add mustard, hing, urad dhal, channa dhal and fry. Once it is golden brown add it to the rice. Add curry leaves and mix the rice well.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Walk in your own shoes



Would you walk a mile in someone else's shoes in order to understand them - where they're coming from and where they're going? But can we really understand others?

We can keep trying, but at the same time remember, someone else's shoes will not always fit.

To understand others better, we have to understand ourselves and walk in our own shoes. Understand who we are, where we're coming from and where we're going.
Consciousness 

Sometimes, while doing even a special task, our consciousness tends to become ordinary because of negative feelings for the self or others.
Such thoughts make even a special task into an ordinary one. So what
has to be done in a beautiful way is done in a very ordinary way. So
there is a tendency to just perform action and finish the task at hand,
which does not bring specialty and accuracy as much as it should. We
need to understand that as is the consciousness, so is the feeling
behind the task, and therefore its quality. When we are able to start
each task with a special consciousness, like "I am victorious", or "I
am powerful" or "this task is for the benefit of all", we are able to
experience the specialty of doing the task. We are also able to
increase our state of self-respect, whatever the task or however simple
it maybe.

Self Respect

Self-respect depends on knowing who I am, knowing my eternal (ageless), spiritual self. When I have found that sense of spiritual identity, I feel I have a right to be here, to exist. Without the spiritual dimension, it is very difficult to really respect myself deeply. In this case, I base my respect on identifying with the superficial (artificial) aspects of my being: looks, gender, success, my life partner, my intelligence. With such artificial identification, I will never have a stable sense of self-respect, because people's opinions change. Today they love me, tomorrow they reject me. What is the result of depending on their opinions? I will end up fluctuating all the time - feeling positive when they say good things, and feeling down when they say negative things. To stay stable in my self-respect, I need to have a deeper understanding of my spiritual identity (the foundation of this being that I am a soul) and tap into those riches that are within me forever, waiting to blossom, like the flower from the seed.
As I become spiritually aware, those riches and resources start flowing out of me. The more stable I am in my self-respect and spirituality, the more I radiate what I truly am. I feel a deep sense of contentment and I am happy to be me, however I am. I accept myself as I am.

Soul Sustenance

Neutralizing Anger
What is a good neutralizer for anger? Peace you would say. It’s not only peace, but a combination of truth, peace and love, in equal amounts. Truth and peace are the two inner states, which never ever leave us. Both remain permanently within each one of us. We already know, inside our subconscious and sometimes even consciously, the truth about anger and we can call our inner peace whenever we want – it’s there to be used. But what happens in real life situations is that we lose awareness of what is true i.e. the truth that anger is harmful and the truth of 'who I am'. And we also forget the practice of peacefulness because some negative situation or experience temporarily blocks our access to the peace of our heart.

Peace is also deeply connected with love and we all have experienced many a times that it is impossible to feel loving and angry at the same time. Both cannot co-exist. In fact it is love that is the healing balm for our heart, that we our self have stabbed and wounded by indulging in many anger habits since we were young. But what happens is that we search for love and peace from the hearts of others. That means we have not yet realized that we already have what we search for, within our own hearts. To heal the wounds of anger, which can be in different forms like irritation, resentment, hatred, revenge, rage, etc., it is essential to rediscover the truth of who we are and thepeace and love of what we are.
Message for the day

Simplicity is the promise of happiness.
Expression: The one who is simple is able to see through the complications of situations and people. He has the ability to only pick out what is useful and worthy from the expanse of all that is available. A simple person's words and actions are the ones that give happiness to those around.

Experience: When I am simple in my vision and attitude, I am able to remain happy, as I am free from the complications of all that is happening. My mind is not caught up with unnecessary things, and I am able to remain easy in the most difficult situations. This attitude of mine also helps in creating an environment of happiness where others too experience this happiness.