At the stroke of midnight ...

As we enter a new year of freedom...
Let us learn to Tolerate 
Let us learn to Accept
Let us be free 
from our numerous prejudices ...
Let us be free
from our fears
Let us be free
from our hatred
Let us learn to be aware 
of all fanatics and lunatics 
Let us wake up into a world
filled with hope and laughter
Let us wake up into a world 
of no caste or creed 
Let us wake up into a world 
of no religion as a barrier
Let us wake up into a world
where all are equal
No matter the gender
No matter the caste
No matter the religion
No matter the money
No matter the color of skin
No matter the place of birth 
No matter the language 
No matter at all ...
Let that be our tryst 
Our new tryst with destiny
Let this age end here 
Let there be a new dawn

Sri Sri and Me - Part 1

My relation with Sri Sri started somewhere in 2004 when I was in MGBS bus-stand, waiting for a bus to take off on my bi-weekly random trip. (Yes, I was that crazy person who used to go the bus-stand, pick a bus at random, go to the last stop, spend a day there and come back) I usually had a book in hand for emergencies, and this time, I had none. So, I went to the book stall and for the first time, saw the book Mahaprasthanam. I have heard people talk about this book, the poems / snippets mentioned in movies like Aakali Rajyam and Rudraveena but never actually read it. So I bought and I was blasted away.

The sheer force and energy of the words blew me away so hard that I just kept reading them again and again and again and then again. I was actually made aware of the power of words, the force with which they can hit you and the ever lasting damage that they can create. From then on, wherever I went, I always carried a copy of it with me. Someone would always ask for it, and I would end up gifting it to that person and buying a new one. 

The current copy I own in the 18th that I bought. How do I even start to describe the effect this book had on me. Whenever I feel drained of energy, I just have to open a page at random and read it and somehow, I would be refilled with enough energy to complete the task at hand. Surprisingly, for me, its not the underlying revolution that impacts me but the words and their usage to literally slap you on your face, shake you up and leave you enthralled, exhausted and inspired at the same time that does the trick.

Let me start off with some excerpts from "Yogyata Patram" by Chalam (Another revered writer). 

Warning: Most of the content from here on will be in Telugu. For the benefit of some readers, I will be typing in Telugu using English. 

"Hrudayamella kampisthe, aaa kampanaki matala roopaanni yivvadam athanike telusu, maatalni katthulu, eetelu, mantaluga marchatam athanike chetanavunu. Padyalu chaduvuthunte, ivi maatalu kaavu, aksharalu kaavu - udrekalu, baadhalu, yuddhalu - athani hrydayamlonchi mana hrydayamloki direct gaa pampina utsahaalu anipisthundi.

Yendukante --

Krishna Shastri tana baadhani andarilonuu palikisthe, Sri Sri andari baadhanuu tanalo palikisthadu.

Krishna Shastri baadha prapanchaniki baadha. Prapanchapu baadha anta Sri Sri baadha. "

This is what Chalam suggests we do with this book:

"Sri Sri pusthakam koni teerikaga chadavandi, padyam padi saarlu chadavandi. Emi artham kaleda - Ea yuvakudiko, bhikshakudiko, death-bed present gaano pampandi. Paareyyakandi. Anthakanna daachukokandi. Telugu kavitvanni khandinchi, deevinchi, ooginchi, saasinchi, rakshinche apoorva sakthi mee chethilo pusthakam, pass it on.

Padellu aagandi, ee lopala asthi sampadinchadam, pillalni kanadam, dharalu peragatam  kaaka jeevithamlo inka emanna mimmalni amithamga influence chesinavi jarigiunte, malli kotha copy koni Sri Sri padyalni chadavandi. Appudanna ardhamavutundemo..."

What else can I say. That is Sri Sri. Will try to post some my favourite excerpts in the next post of this series.

Work is Worship... or is it ????

This monday, I came across a company where the employees leave their footwear in a footwear stand before they enter into the office. The security person informed us that its a company policy.

I was with a friend of mine and both of us were surprised. I rejected to go in on the matter of principle. Then I got thinking what might be the reason behind it. I had couple of guesses but kept them to myself. When we got down the lift, we came across an employee of that company and my friend asked him about it and his reply was because it is a "place of worship".

I was traveling that night and this reason got me thinking:

a. If that office was a place  of worship, then what are they worshipping??? The company is there to make money, and the employees work there for money, does it mean they worship money in that office?? 

b. If its work that they worship at office, then what is the final objective of the work they do, for the company, its profits and for the employees, its salary. Comes back to money again.

Then, I went into the analysis of what might have made the company boss(es) to come up  with such a policy. I did not like what I came up with.

Then again, who am I to comment on how a company should run and what policies the company should have. Atleast, they are running a business, which is more than what I am doing.

However, the policy was very interesting. I am sure I would not go there again, but the experience shall remain with me as one of those interesting facts that you come across in life. Lets see if there are any more such places.

Welcome to my office...

Location: Johannesburg, O.R. Tambo International Airport.

It was the 1st of Jan and I went to the airport to receive Ganesh. After he came out, we realised we still had time before Pramod would come and pick us up .. so we went to have some breakfast...

There were so many options and I was unable to decide where to go. Ganesh, who by now, knows my tastes pretty well said .. lets take a walk and you will know... and yeah.. there it was ... Fournos Bakery with all those delicious smells ...

We were greeted by a cheerful girl, and we went into the seating area. Ordered Scones with cream and jam for both of us to eat. Milo for me and Coffee for Ganesh to drink.

After the breakfast, I had to visit the loo. As soon as I entered, to my surprise, was greeted with "Welcome to my office Sir..." by a cheerful young lad. He entered a cubicle, cleaned the seat with disinfectant .. and walked out giving me a smile... I finished my work there... came out ... and was washing my hands and he offered me paper napkins to dry my hands saying .. "Hope you found my services to your satisfaction sir.. Have a wonderful new year!!" 

I was stunned.. never did I encounter ANYONE with this kind of attitude.. it was by far the MOST amazing thing I've experienced till date.. the energy.. the enthusiasm.. the smile... 

That is the next generation ... Its people like him who give me hope .. who keep teaching me day-in and day-out... 

I know you might never read this dear friend, but I want to THANK YOU for giving a wonderful start to this year.. 

Hope the lessons continue..

Tere Ghar Ke Samne

One of my all time favorite films... Devanand and Nutan.. Vijay Anand's Direction, S D Burman's music... I mean.. there are movies where EVERYTHING falls into place... This movie got released in 1963 and it still entertains me... guess there are some movies that one can call EVERGREEN...

The songs... and the lyrics... such simple poetry ... here are a few lyrics 

Song: Dekho Roothana Karo

Jaan par meri bani, Aapki tehri haseen
Hai main jaan gayi, Pyaar ki Fitraangee (I like this word a LOT)
Dil jalaaneke liye, Thandi aahe naa bharo

Song: Dil Ka bhavar kare pukar

Phool tum gulaab ka, Kya jawaab aap ka
Jo ada hain wo bahaar hain,
Aaj dil ki bekahi, aagayi zubaan par
Baat yea hain, tum se pyaar hain
Dil tumhi ko diya re
Pyaar ka raag suno re..

... aap gulab ho aur aap ki ada bahaar hain.. what a thought

Iss haseen paar pe, hum na baithe haar ke
Saaya banke saath hum chale
Aaj mere sang tu
Jhoome dil ki aarzoo
Tujhse meri aank jab mile
jaane kya kar diya re
pyaar ka raag suno re

Song: Tu kahan, yea bata

Hoo, aai jab thandi hava,
Maine poocha jo pata,
vo bhi katrake gayi,
aur bechain kiya,
pyar se, tu mujhe,
de sada, tu kaha??

heyy, chaand taaron ne suna
In bahaaron ne suna
dard ka raag mera
rehguzaaron ne suna
tu bhi sun, jaaneman,
aa bhi jaa, tu kahaan?

Song: Sun le tu dil ki sada

Aaj tak jo bhi hua,
Jhoote jhagdon ne kiya,
Pyaar hota, kuch na hota,
Naa ujadte aashiyaan
Sunle tu dil ki sada...

And finally the song ... Tere ghar ke saamne

He says:
Ek ghar banaunga, tere ghar ke saamne
Duniya basaunga, tere ghar ke saamne

She says:
Ghar ka banana koi aasaan kaam nahin,
Duniya basana koi aasaan kaam nahin

To which he replies:
Dil mein wafayein ho to, toofan kinara hain
Bijlee hamare liye pyaar ka ishaara hain
Tan mann lutaaunga, tere ghar ke saamne

She says:
Kahte hain pyaar jisse, Dariya hain aag kaa
Yaa phir nashaa hain koi, jeevan ke raag kaa

He replies:
Dil mein jo pyaar ho to, aag bhi phool hain
Sachi lagan jo ho to, parbat bhi dhool hain
Taare sajaaonga, Tere ghar ke saamne....

You need to listen to these songs, Md. Rafi saying Main bhi kuch banaunga tere ghar ke saamne at the end of this song to which Lata Mangeshkar says "Dekhe!" ... its magical....

The Will to Win

It's a WILL to win, and not just a WISH to win. I know a lot of people who have what I would call a wish to win. They'd like to go to the top. They daydream about the position they'd like to hold in life. I've seen fellows sitting around dreaming on the benches; you talk to them and they've got great dreams about what they'd like to be. They tell you their potential, about the heights they could soar to, if they would only get out and work and do the thing necessary to bring it to pass.

And you find them three or four years later still talking about what they could do if the ywould only pay the price. Wishful thinking, or daydreaming, is the kind of escapism, that will destroy many a man's greatest aspiration.

Now, I don't mean you dare no dream at all. I think the greatest thing in life is to be able to dream, to have great aspirations, but I think its equally importabnt that you have a will that can turn that dream into reality. You've got to have something within you that is able to translate into concrete practice the idea in the back of your mind.

From The Heart of a Champion by Bob Richards