Conscious Decisions — Going Against What Is Popular

Just because an idea or way of doing things is popular doesn’t mean it’s right for everyone. However, part of the way that something becomes popular is that many of us don’t take the time to determine what’s right for us; we simply do what most of the people we know are doing. In this way, our decisions about life are made by default, which means they aren’t what we call conscious decisions. There may be many other options available, but we don’t always take the time to explore them. This may be the result of feeling overwhelmed or pressured by family, peers, and humanity at large, to do things their way, the way things have always been done. Regardless of the cause, it is important that, as often as we can, we decide for ourselves what to do with our lives rather than just drift along on the current of popular opinion.

It is not always easy to make decisions that go against the grain. Many people feel threatened when those close to them make choices divergent from the ones they are making. Parents and grandparents may be confused and defensive when we choose to raise our children differently from the way they raised us. Friends may feel abandoned if we decide to change our habits or behaviour. Meanwhile, on our side of the fence, it’s easy to feel frustrated and defensive when we feel unsupported and misunderstood simply because we are thinking for ourselves. It can be exhausting to have to explain and re-explain our points of view and our reasons.

This is where gentleness, openness, and tolerance come into play. It helps if we are calmly persistent, consistent, and clear as we communicate to those around us why we are making the choices we are making. At the same time, we have the right to say that we are tired of talking about it and simply need our choices to be respected. Our lives belong to us and so do our decisions. Those who truly love us will stand by us and support our choices, never mind what’s popular.

Being Your Own Village

the inner and outer village.
the inner and outer village.

Being Your Own Village My daughter sketched this concept for me, about the Buddhist Vihara particularly the paintings where there is a projection of a pillar and then one side of the pillar is the village life, and the other side is the monastic life, claiming that the balance is required between the two. a major issue in today’s world seems to interpersonal relationship, we do not know how to deal with either ourselves or others. Simple survival requires us to be in possession of many skills. The pursuit of dreams requires many more. Most individuals rely on the support of a village, whether peopled by relatives or community members, to effectively address the numerous ways we need assistance. This can mean anything from asking favours of acquaintances and leaning on loved ones for support to paying a skilled artisan to handle specialized tasks. However, each human being is born with the capacity to be their own village. We embody many roles throughout our lifetimes, all of which are representative of our capacity for self-sufficiency and self-determination. In different moments in our lives, we are our own counsellor, janitor, caregiver, cook, healer, teacher, and student. Our willingness to joyfully take on these roles grants us the power to maintain control over the direction our life’s journey takes. We are now in the era of single discipline specialization, focus so we have not learned those survival skills. Many of us uncomfortable standing at the helm of our own existence. We question our ability to make decisions, concerning our won health, happiness and welfare and left feeling dependent and powerless. The authority to take ultimate responsibility for our lives is simply a matter of believing that we have the necessary faith and intelligence to cope with any circumstance the universe chooses to place in our path. Proving that we can each be our own villages through action enables us to accept that we are strong enough to exist autonomously. Cooking, cultivating a garden of fruits and vegetables, undertaking minor home repair, or adopting a healthier lifestyle can help you reassert your will. Being your own village does not mean embracing isolation, for a balanced life is built upon the dual foundations of the inner and the outer villages. Rather, being your own village is a celebration of your wondrous inner strength and resourcefulness, as well as an acknowledgment of your innate ability to capably steer the course of your life.

Voice of the ocean

. Someone once told me that if you need strength go to the mountain, if you need, calmness go to the see. Like us, the sea is ever-changing. And, like us, the earth’s vast oceans appear at a distance to be stable and homogenous. But beneath the mask of solidity that both we and the sea wear, there lies unpredictability, sensitivity, and power. There is much we can learn from the ocean, representative as it is of our inner landscapes. The rough sounds of the sea’s waves are spiritually soothing, and its salt can purify our physical selves. Yet not everyone has the luxury of living by the shore or even visiting the coastlines where water and land meet. The ocean, however, exists in our conscious minds, put there by images we have seen and descriptions we have read. Wherever we are, we can access that mental image and use it as the starting point from which we can help to heal our emotions by meditating on the sea. To begin, gather together any ocean artefacts you may have on hand. Seashells, a vial of sand, beach glass, stones rubbed smooth by the pounding surf, or a recording of ocean sounds can help you slip more deeply into this meditation, but they are not necessary. Sit quietly and visualize the ocean in your mind’s eye. Allow all of your senses to participate in your mental journey. Feel the tiny grains of sand beneath your feet and the cool spray of mist; hear the sea’s rhythmic roar as the waves meet the beach and retreat; smell the tang of salt in the air. Watch the sun’s rays play over the ocean’s surface, creating shifting spots of teal, cerulean, cobalt, and green. Don’t be surprised if you see dolphins or whales frolicking in the waves—they are there to assist you. Spend a few minutes drinking in the ocean’s beauty and appreciating its vast splendour. Once you are fully engaged with the setting before you, visualize yourself sitting on the beach, facing the ocean, and watching the waves advance and retreat. As each new wave of seawater approaches, imagine it carrying healing energy toward you. The magnificent ocean in your thoughts is sending you light and love while the sun supports your healing efforts and Mother Earth grounds you in the moment so healing can occur. When you feel you are finished, grant the ocean your earnest gratitude for the aid it has given you. Thank the sun, the sand, and any other elements of your visualization that offered you guidance. Perform this meditation daily or monthly in order to rid yourself of negativity and re-establish emotional equilibrium. Just as the ocean’s tides sweep the shores free of detritus, restoring balance, so can the waves in our mind’s eye cleanse our souls of what no longer serves us?

who is a mystic?

Who is a mystic? A seeker or someone who intuitively knows? Exploring the only path I know I conclude.

Mystics are neither drop outs nor escapists; they are scientist of catharsis and conversation. Now and then they do claim unqualified communication with god.

They interpret the world with a different eye than an ordinary one. They have an internal way of seeing, knowing an eternal way of gaining knowledge they value experience.

Mysticism does share a common area with magic, prayer, workshop science and metaphysics. It is based on the magic view of life though the mystic does not possess miraculous power a mystic is not interested in being a miracle man, prayer and worship exists despite of being the essence—of mystical complex. Mysticism may take help form metaphystisics or theology but is not indispensable. The definition that I like the best was”consiousness of the beyond

The mystic’s final goal is to return to the root or source, this faces psychological and semantic blocks.

Mystics have inspired cultures and revolutions.

The mystic gathers news from nowhere for he has the conscious of the beyond of an unseen reality that results in freedom.

The chandogya Upanishad puts it beautifully

in this body is a spirit, there is a little house shaped like a lotus in that house is a little space there is as much pace in that house as there is in this world. What likes in that world des not decay when body falls, the space is that of the spirit

It is only we have strayed away from the path to this house, finding our way back to it is a quest, the mystic knows the path.

Another concept the mystic Red Indians have is “every part of this earth is sacred. Every shining pine needle, every mist in the dark woods, every sandy shore every clearing and humming insect they are all sacred we are part of the earth and earth is part of us. We are siblings—the flowers the horse and I—but in the modern city there I no quiet no place or time to hear the unfurling spring, or the rustle of the wind Bu I do not understand for I have become savage.

For a mystic everything is holy what brings romanticism and mysticism close to each other is a sense of beyond. They are sensitive to both sensuous and non sensuous.

Without the mysticism the aesthetic education of an artist incomplete.

Mystical may be part of the ordinary or heightened awareness

Mystics have affinity towards the magical and mythical

At the end of the day mysticisms and literature meet because both deal with creative set of man and both need special language or semantics may be one should forget questions and experience the wonderment of the poetry. To quote Rumi, what I have got to do with poetry there are moments in life when

A nameless marvel fills motionless hours

Its spirit mingle with the eternity’s heart

And bears the silence of the infinite.

Can I call the mystic as a psychic traveler on the quest for a meta-physical city?

the geopiety of the vatavriksha.

            Under the banyan tree is a favorite saying. Since traders sit under the banyan tree the British called “Banyan” after the Bania—the trades people who used to sit under the tree to sell their wares. Or just take break during their travel.

The full moon of June saw the vata savitri vrta again an ancient concept of geo-piety.  This comes at the onset of rains, in the west coast of India this does not have as much promininece as the nariyal poornima, that heralds the new cycle.

             The vatavriksha, which is usually at the southern side of the village or the south facing wall of the temple, is the symbolic representation of spirituality.    The Banyan belongs to the family of the fig, whose most popular member is the ficus religosa or the pipal tree. This is particular significant to the Buddhist because the Gautama not only had his enlightment under this tree he also achieved Nirvana there.

            The vatavriksha tends with its vast limbs and Ariel roots make an eerie visual. The tree is non fruit bearing making it an outcaste in the frame work of a family oriented society. But it houses many birds, creepers and sometimes even plants. (The vatavriskha at Bhim Taal houses a cactus.)

            This tree symbolizes the eternity of the soul and the parallel mortality of some parts of the tree, or other dependent plant and animal life allows saprophytic cycle. This has made people believe that it houses vetal’s and Pischaas

            The Indian psyche recognizes the transient nature or rather the cyclic components of life everything immortal is revered so is the Banyan tree, it symbolizes immortality security and survival who better than lord of souls Yama is the person the tree is dedicated to.

            The banyan with is vastness marginalizes the sunlight thus it is not possible for smaller trees or grass to survive beneath it, this also makes not so comfortable for the grass eating animals. The story of vata savitri vrta the tale of savitri the daughter of the sun, the supreme symbol of knowledge, with the grace of wisdom again symbolized by the tree, rescues the lost soul of satyvan.

            The binding of the tree with a rope, and going round a tree that symbolizes immortality is again linking immortality to the marriage.

            There are two kinds of sacredness in the Indian ethos one of continuity the material reality and the other associated with spirituality the banana and its fleshy fruit symbolizes the former and banyan is the hermit of botanical life.

            Shiva is placed facing south as the south is the direction of change or death. He sits under the banyan tree the embodiment of eternal soul, unafraid of the change as he understands the world. At his feet sits the sages who seek wisdom so much so Shiva the dakishnamurti is always placed on the south wall of a temple.

            Vishnu the second of the Hindu triad accepts change, in a dynamic pattern; hence we refer to his work as “leela”. More dynamic, constant rejuvenating and re-inventing he is associated with fragrances, tulsi, champa and kadamba. He was pictured as the


The baby on the banyan leaf was a vision seen by rishi Markendeya saw the vision of the dead flood and the entire world, symbolizing the transitory nature of life and the baby symbolizes the capacity of the new life to replace the old generation. This is possible only by the grace of Vishnu. The banyan leaf again represents eternity.

Hello world!

hosa chiguru, hale beru kudiralu marasobhagu

hosa yukti, hale tattwa dhodhagoode dharma.

this small poem in kannada has inspired these pages.  Basically the poem translates to

the new leaves on an old tree, makes it beautiful

new techniques to work a old principle

makes it fruitful.

 Let’s start at the very beginning, a very good place to start with.

I have been blogging for a while now, it was a kind of mein aur mere tanhai when I started, I remember my tag line being,

”sab le gaye anmol rattan ghere paani doob, mein baawari dhooban dari rahi kinare bait.”

Somewhere I figured no the about column is about who I am, and I really needed to look, all that I could come up with “ A gypsy meandering through  a mystic journey to a mythical land,” well I realize I am a gypsy and I do meander, but I am not really lost,  so then came the current tag line

A travelogue through life.

My last journey to Bangalore to meet other wonderful women at #BreakingBarriers, an event by www.Women’ I reckoned, yet my blog is a chronicle a vine, with Wine, Whine and Win. Maybe that is great place to be in.

When I began this journey it was hands on, I did not really know the difference between category and tag. So now it is time to set the act right, I have given myself about 100 days to do so, so help me Lord. Maybe I should just stick to those as my let me get back on this one, the challenge for me is to classify what I have. hmm not bad, let’s see where I go from here.

April.12.2017 —

Here I am trying to find something very witty or rather to be impressive, the bottome line I have to answer is why am I blogging?

I began precisely I felt left behind as the rest of the world went on, I wanted someone to talk to and unburden, who better than the unseen to the hear the voice of the unheard. Actually categories and tags seem so irrelevant. But thousand odd blogs later more for myself I realize i need to make categories.

There was the traditional one,

Pataskala about dishes, adhikaprasangi about being a busybody, tailor-made about tailoring, etc. etc. but then I would need to explain the terms to people, here, what is my blog about?

  • Complaints about my pet peeves,
  • Venting out nastily
  • Some things l learnt along the way
  • Amazing people and places
  • Epiphany
  • Book reviews

I do sound all over the place but then lets see let me create the Mandala of life, and see what I can put there and build things on from there, that Kind of sounds more workable. Some of my initial categories have grown into being independent blogs. I need to have those links in place too. hmm, that a lot of work.






Plebeian Woe”s — Autorajya.

picture courtsey internet
picture courtesy internet

Pedestrian Woe’s

In this great juggernaut of development the most forgot person is the plebeian.

matter. first and foremost his royal highness refuses to ferry you to the destination.  After a while some auto driver will be condescending enough to do so, but wait he decides the fare. It is usually one and half times what would show up in the meter.

The other day I wanted to go some place, I asked the people at the building where I stay about the fare,  I was told no don’t take a rick, they’ll charge you around 200/- well due to circumstances  I had to take the rick, I to driver “meter lagao” two auto men refused the third  agreed and fare was 95/-Rs. we are resigned  to paying 200/- we avoid taking the auto because we know it is overpriced but we do not stand up for our rights and ask  for the meter.

This seems a pattern, people crib and complain but don’t really do anything constructive about it.  The citizen’s forum at Hyderabad ran an invitation to the public about handling this here were some interesting suggestions.

  • Designated Auto rickshaw bays at theatre’s, bus-stops, railway station, malls, prayer houses.
  • Pre-paid auto facility, organized not by middle men or vendors but by the RTO.
  • Autos without meter should be declared unauthorized. And unauthorized vehicles should not be allowed to ply.
  • Based metering system the app. being released by the RTO.
  • One stop helpline for auto users – how exactly this will function well I’m not sure.
  • GPS based security – again how exactly it works I am not sure.
  • Period education and upgrading of auto drivers. Those who do not go for this will be declared unauthorized.

Implementation of declaring someone unauthorized because he has not gone for a refresher does seem very improbable.

Frequent changes in the fuel hike effects the traveller. While the auto’s hike the price when the fuel prices hike they do not reduce it when it falls. Again each auto driver hikes on his pleasure.

Before we invite “foreign investor” and talk “development” we need to put our house in order. The house includes plebiscite, who is as much the citizen of the country as the person on who zooms by in the two or four wheeler.