Dharam ‘paaji’ and the secret of living above this world!

The surest way to stay grounded is to be silent. Not just in the face of emotional and physical provocation, but in terms of making it a daily practice.
Practicing silence periods awakens you to your true Self. This method is called Shubha Mouna Yoga.
Dharmendra in ‘Yamla Pagla Deewana 2’
Picture Courtesy: Internet
Listen to Bollywood legend Dharmendra, now 80, on how silence helped him. In a recent media interview, he’s quoted as saying: “…In 2001, I was alone in America with a back problem. Loneliness was killing me. No one to share sorrows. Guess what? I started talking to myself. Then tanhayee (solitude) started talking to me, ‘You don’t know me. You are afraid of me. You can’t escape me. Remember your childhood dreams of becoming a star? You were on my lap then. I was in the lullabies your mother sang. You didn’t need me in all those years of mahurats, megahits, parties, tamashas. But now you are in my arms again’….”
The benefit of mouna is orgasmic in nature – it has to be experienced. It cannot be explained or described. Your being silent does not require the environment to be quietened by you. It requires only you to remain silent. When you are silent you encounter your God – the ‘one’ within you. When you converse with your God, you understand the truth of your creation. “Then you will know the Truth and the Truth will set you free” – Jesus (John 8:32). When you are free, your world looks and feels different; there are no pressures, no worries, no fears. This does not mean problems vanish and challenges cease to exist. It means your problems don’t trouble you and the challenges don’t weigh you down. You live in the same world. But you now know how to live above it.

Reaching this state of evolution requires just 20 minutes of being silent each day to start with. Won’t you give 20 minutes of your time daily to gain control over the remaining 1420 minutes in the day? If you invest in the stock-market or real-estate or mutual funds hoping to get a good return on investment (ROI), you will understand the value in giving 20 and taking back 1420!!! You don’t have to listen to Jesus or to me, but listen to Dharmendra, a man who has lived Life fully, is a very colorful personality, has a glad eye, has married more than once and drinks even today with true Punjabi flourish! For he’s one of those who have discovered the secret of living in this world and yet being above it!

Choose ROE over ROI!!!

Instead of ROI__Return on Investment, focus on ROE__Return on Enlightenment in Life!
Enlightenment is an understanding, not an event. It is an understanding of Life itself__a quiet acceptance of what is. It is a spiritual threshold that anyonecan attain. Somehow we have this misconception, because of most (self-proclaimed) spiritual ambassadors being in monk-like robes, that you need to be a saint to be enlightened. Wrong. Saints are not necessarily spiritual. They may be deeply religious, and therefore, ritualistic or they may even be dogmatic, and therefore inflexible. Spirituality and Religion are two different things. Spirituality really is the flowering of inner awareness; it is an awakening. It helps you understand the true nature and meaning of Life. When you understand the true meaning of Life, you are enlightened.
Understanding the true meaning of Life does not mean that you stop enjoying it. Your enjoyment or sorrow does not change what happens in Life. No matter what or how you feel, you will continue to experience Life. Except that when you understand its meaning, when you are enlightened, you will stop reacting to it. You will just be unmoved. To be unmoved, you don’t need to be sitting under a tree. You could well be on a cricket field. Watch Indian cricket skipper M.S.Dhoni carefully. He understands Life__that what goes up, comes down, that victory and defeat are mere events, that Life goes on, no matter what. So, he stays calm and stoic – almost always. And so you know him as Captain Cool.
Enlightenment and spiritual empowerment do not mean abstinence. You can be essaying whatever roles you are playing in Life__employer, employee, father, mother, husband, wife, citizen, sportsman__and still be enlightened. You can be the Monk who bought a Ferrari and there will be nothing wrong with that! That may well be both ROI and ROE! And you could be doubly richer!

So, work towards a better understanding of Life and you will reap a higher Return on Enlightenment. You will live longer, wiser, healthier and happier!

In this New Year, try a different ROI!

Follow what inspires you and you will harvest a greater return from Life!
Another New Year is upon us. And the business newspapers this morning are full of stories of where-to-invest and how-to-maximize-your-return-on-investment in 2015. While prudent financial decisions are key to leading a comfortable Life, some people get obsessed with their wealth and assets. Life cannot and must not be lived on financial parameters alone. When every action, each opportunity is dissected, scrutinized for Return on Investment (ROI), we are operating from our intellect. When we operate from our intellect all the while is when so much stress and strife comes. I am not saying that’s bad. It is perhaps complicating Life a notch too much. Instead try another ROI – Return on Inspiration. Have you ever wondered what to do with stuff that inspires you in Life?
I find this philosophy of Return on Inspiration, so simple and so effective. I am the sort of person who is inspired by film music – I can never quite thank the generations of music composers, lyricists, singers and artistes who have left behind a treasure chest full of their work for us to savor them endlessly. The other day, on Christmas, a bunch of friends and us got together. We jammed, singing old Hindi and Malayalam film songs. Nobody operated from the intellect. Nobody worried about the next morning or the next paycheck or about what was past or what was coming up. Each of us sang from our souls, inspired by the works of some of the greatest composers, lyricists and singers from Indian cinema. We went on for a good hour, humming away our worries. Each of us had a story. Each of us had our challenges. Kids to be raised. Bills to be paid. Life to be dealt with. But if that hour reflected bliss in a microcosm, we all experienced it wholesomely. That’s why I am truly believing of this way of Life.
Kaviarasu Kannadasan, that divine poet, has said this so simply, so soulfully, so beautifully, in his song written for ‘Paalum Pazhamum’ (‘Milk and Fruits’, 1961, A.Bhimsingh, music by Viswanathan-Ramamoorthy, sung by T.M.Soundarajan, Sivaji Ganesan, Saroja Devi), “Ponaal Pogattum Poda….” Which means, ‘whatever goes, let it go….let bygones be bygones…let go of whatever has left you….” Those of you who follow Tamizh may enjoy this song (video is, understandably, bad).
So, in this year, just keep doing what inspires you! Whatever it is, just do it! And review how you feel doing it! That feeling, which cannot be compensated or computed in money terms ever, is your true ROI – Return on Inspiration!