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Showing posts from February, 2014

Meaning of Maha Shivaratri: Significance of Tripurandaka, Vibhuti and Gangaajal

Maha Shivaratri is a festival of great spiritual significance to Hindus. Prayers are undertaken by devotees throughout the night. Yet how many of us understand what makes it a holy occasion? It doesn't have anyt marketing jazz or feel-great frenzy to it like many other festivals. Yet Maha Shivaratri is one of the most spiritually powerful festivals you just shouldn't miss.
According to Hindu scriptures, observing night long prayer has been declared by Lord Shiva himself. This is cited as His answer when Parvati Devi asked him which rituals performed by his devotees pleases him most. It is also believed that those who observe Maha Shivratri correctly will be greatly blessed and that they will attain moksha.



Here are some interesting points to explain the spiritual significance of Maha Shivaratri, .taken from various discourses rendered by Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
1. Shiva means 'auspiciousness.' Maha Shivaratri should be spent in the constant contemplation of God.

2. A…

How to Find Your Story Idea with a Magic Blender (not Blunder!)

The best writers get their story ideas from crazy, unexpected places. If you don't believe me, read Stephen King's book 'On Writing.' You may also want to read my previous posts on 'How to transform a blank page into a chrysalis, a work of art'and 'What do you want from your writing?
So, what's still holding you back from exploring fabulous story ideas? 

Maybe the thought that there's nothing left to learn in a world where everything is written about already? 
This reminds me of an apt quote from Avvaiyar, "What we've learned is like a handful of earth, what we are yet to learn is like the whole world." Profound, isn't it?
If you are still on the lookout for story ideas, Barry has an answer for you and yup, it tucks in a dash of magic. Here you go:
Imagine you have a magic blender. And you carry it with you all day as you go about your life. And stuff falls into it: Sounds, names, words, smells, people, actions, everything. And ev…

Life's Challenges: Accept or Resist - What's Your Choice?

"To offer no resistance to life is to be in a state of grace, ease and lightness. Learn to accept the impermanent nature of all things and conditions. Life flows with ease."-  Eckhart Tolle

Think like a writer. Every para is  garland of words, carefully woven together for a purpose. The purpose is usually leading you to a situation of conflict, heartbreak or pain. So, you already know (whether you are a reader or a writer) that it is hiding just around the corner, waiting to pounce on you at exactly the moment when you lower your guard.

It's just a matter of time before it hits you - pain, discomfort, conflict, problems.

So, in a way, I have always resisted and fought against situations that create conflict or discomfort within or around me. A sense of 'survival' sets in - but this doesn't mean that I go and fight with each and everyone who stands in my way. Far from it! I don't ever hold individuals responsible for conflicts as much as the situations that p…

How to listen to your thoughts to become fully involved in the present

"When you listen to a thought, you are not only aware of the thought but also of yourself as the witness. A new dimension of consciousness has come in. As you listen to the thought, you feel a conscious presence - your deeper self - behind or underneath the thought as it were." - Eckhart Tolle (The Power of NOW)

You don't change overnight. A series of events build up towards creating an opportunity for change. And yes, that's how it all started with me. Like a bolt from the blue, I started to crave for silence. I began to focus on NOW instead of the past or the future. 

Action Plan: Create a time slot to meditate

YES it worked! Here's how silence helped me to understand myself better.

The more I began to practice silence, the more peaceful I began to feel. Through silence and meditation, I began to love myself more, be less critical of my actions and become more involved in the present

There were moments when I wondered: Am I going crazy with meditation? That is whe…

What do you want from your writing? Make that your definition of success

For years, as a writer, I have been lost in a jungle of my own making – thoughts that juggled a hundred ideas but took me nowhere, among other things. 
In January 2014, I told myself firmly, “That won’t do. You will sit down and write.” The moment I became firm, I began to write. Not at the pace that I want to. Still, I can honestly say that a majority of the stumbling blocks have been overcome.

Then I read this thought provoking post by Jane Friedman who argues that one must answer this question to grow as a writer: “Do you know what you want from your writing?”
Jane Friedman cites broad and general examples that enthusiastic writers tend to cite. “Fame,” “Livelihood” and “I want to be heard” are among them. I began to feel dejected. These are not my reasons. Does that make a non-serious writer? Maybe I should just write instead of getting into a philosophical rut about why I want to write in the first place.
But let me not jump the gun. We are talking about THE Jane Friedman here and y…

Love means to see the one you love happy

Every day is a new beginning to celebrate one's love. 

Yet some uncomfortable questions arise: 

How open are we to love? Do we take the one we love for granted?Is there something that can be done to bring happiness to yourself and the person you love? Sometimes, can letting go be the best option? 
Love - a much maligned, abused word. How many times have we heard it, said it and not meant it? Billion? Zillion? Or have you hesitated to say it at all? Or maybe you are one of the lucky ones who have experienced love in a most beautiful way? Good for you! That is the way it should be.

But if you have been let down by some one you love, don't let it define the rest of your life or make you feel worthless. Far from it - you have learned something and you WILL move on to a happier self though it may not seem evident at the time. Remember this, no matter what happens: Nothing is permanent - not even our troubles. 


How to love with all the passion and truth in you? Here's what I believe …