Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Are you still carrying?

Two monks were making a pilgrimage to venerate the relics of a great Saint. During the course of their journey, they came to a river where they met a beautiful young woman -- an apparently worldly creature, dressed in expensive finery and with her hair done up in the latest fashion. She was afraid of the current and afraid of ruining her lovely clothing, so asked the brothers if they might carry her across the river. 

The younger and more exacting of the brothers was offended at the very idea and turned away with an attitude of disgust. The older brother didn't hesitate, and quickly picked the woman up on his shoulders, carried her across the river, and set her down on the other side. She thanked him and went on her way, and the brother waded back through the waters. 

The monks resumed their walk, the older one in perfect equanimity and enjoying the beautiful countryside, while the younger one grew more and more brooding and distracted, so much so that he could keep his silence no longer and suddenly burst out, "Brother, we are taught to avoid contact with women, and there you were, not just touching a woman, but carrying her on your shoulders!" 

The older monk looked at the younger with a loving, pitiful smile and said, "Brother, I set her down on the other side of the river; you are still carrying her."

How many of us are still carrying so many thoughts along with us? Human beings can either entertain thoughts or discard them, but many still hold onto it. Like other monk in the story, how many worries, negative thoughts, low energy, and pre-conditioned thoughts we carry within us?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Losing Sleep

Once there was a King, in a far far away land. He was strong and mighty. He had an army of thousands of soldiers. His soldiers were his greatest strength. He won all wars he had ever fought in his lifetime. Some people said that he won because he was the most disciplined leader, some said that he had the charisma to inspire his men, some thought it was because it was in his fate and one section thought because he honored his word.

However, lately the king had started to face some problems in his sleep routine. He couldn't sleep well at night. Something disturbed him. He complained to his Royal Priest that he was losing all battles in his dreams. His priest was extremely knowledgeable & clever, He realized soon that King was unable to sleep as he wasn’t concentrating on what he had instead was obsessed with thinking of new battles to conquer newer pastures.

Understanding the key issue the Priest suggested a remedy to the King, He asked the King to do the following task at 4 am tomorrow. King was asked to keep his eyes fixed at a target 10 meters away from him, while walking a muddy path. The King was anxious to know how this would help achieve a peaceful sleep and kept tossing in the bed all night. At sharp 4 am, royal guards knocked at the King's door to see the King ready for the activity. He came down to his central kingdom ground. It was summer then so the morning sun was just about to rise. The sky was glowing in beautiful orange hues. The priest asked the king to start. The King started walking the muddy path, while reminding himself that he had to keep his eyes glued to the target or else he would have to do this all over again tomorrow at 4 am. The initial few steps that the King took were with a lot of caution but gradually his confidence got built and he started walking the path a little faster. The King couldn't help thinking about the time when he would reach the target. He was so engrossed in thinking about the future that he didn't realize that his right foot got stuck in a puddle. Now, for a minute, he looked at his stuck feet, which now was fully immersed in the mud and figured out how he would get out from this mess. He gently shoved off the slimy mud in excess to continue walking. But, soon he realized that his target was nowhere in sight. He looked at the Priest inquisitively but the Priest looked as calm as ever. He then realized that because he didn't do the exercise as instructed, the Priest would have him do it again tomorrow morning 4 am.

He couldn't sleep again that night. His failure to keep sight of his target was worrying him. The king had never lost before. It was a huge blow for him. However, he was even more determined now to not lose focus on the target. He was waiting for the dawn to break. The Royal guards were waiting outside the door at 4 am. The King quickly moved out of the royal door to rush his way to the royal ground where the priest was already waiting for him. The King bowed to the Priest in respect before starting; the Priest gave a gentle smile. The King began walking once again, with his eyes affix at the target. This time he was more cautious of every step that he took. He walked slow but never lost sight of the target. But he was constantly reminded of his failure yesterday and at every step, was apprehensive that he would eventually get stuck again in the same puddle. He was worried, so he paced down drastically when he approached that puddle. He walked a little to the left to avoid that puddle, looking straight at the target. His right leg was just about to slip in the puddle but because he was slow, he managed to maintain his balance. He was relieved yet nervous. He marched ahead as he was in a hurry to finish his task. After three quick steps, he tripped over a small stone and fell over his face on the ground. All his guards rushed towards him to help him. He got up with their help but he knew that the target would not be there as he was unsuccessful once again to keep his eyes on the target at all times.

The King was dejected and hurt. He summoned the Priest to his royal chamber in the evening. The King asked why he couldn't do this simple task, when he had won so many difficult battles before. The Priest smiled and told him that the answer to his question was there in his mind. The King was perplexed, he didn't know what the Priest wanted to convey. The Priest smiled and then said " King you have won many battles in the field because you didn't allow your mind to wander. Today, you are fighting a war with your own mind.". The King requested the Priest to explain why he couldn't focus his mind on the target. The Priest explained both the instances. He said, "My dear King, when you were walking the path for the first time, your mind was only fixed at the target. You didn't realize that there would be hurdles in your path, which is why you were pacing your steps on an unknown path. Your mind was wandering in the future; you were busy thinking about how you would get some good sleep after this simple activity. You were not alert about your present surroundings." The King nodded in approval but asked the Priest why he lost the second time. He told the Priest that he was not thinking about the future then. The Priest answered- “Yes, you are right. In the second time that you undertook this activity, you were not thinking of the future. But, you were thinking of your previous experience. You were worried about what happened to you last time should not happen to you again. You kept dwelling on your past and in nervousness did not anticipate the stone in the path, which is why you tripped." The King understood what the Priest wanted to teach him and bent before him in honor. The Priest had given the King the answer to his questions. That night, before sleeping, the King wrote a page in his Diary.

The King wrote-
*       Keeping your eyes on the target at all times is important but what is most important is to live in the present.
*       Problems are bound to come but don't let one bad experience ruin your confidence in yourself
*       Walking slow enables you to keep your balance in life
*       Never take for granted what is going to come ahead
*       Worrying about the past or the future doesn't let me sleep !

That night, the King slept peacefully. He realized that he must not waste time worrying about the past or the future. It is only this moment which is the most precious to him.

Not many of us realize how simple life is. We invest so much time thinking about either the future or the past that we forget what life has to offer us right here and right now.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Gift of Existence

There lived a Sadhu who regularly used to give discourses. One day at the end of the discourse he was talking of being grateful to existence. “Operate from a space of gratitude, This will allow us to expand.”, a beggar was sitting in a corner and listening to the discourse, he came up to the Sadhu and said, “Maharaj, your talk was great. But one thing I am not able to do. You said to be grateful to the existence because it has always showered benediction on you. Sorry! But, existence has not given me anything. I am struggling even for one Roti”.

The Sadhu said, “I agree with you, I will give you rupees two lacks, right here, will you be grateful?”, The beggar was thrilled, “But I want something in return from you'', said the Sadhu. “I do not have anything, what can I give you? If I had something I would definitely give you.”, said the beggar. “I won't ask you anything that you do not have”', said the Sadhu. The agreement was made.

The Sadhu said, “I will make arrangements for the two lacks; you please give me both your eyes.” The beggar was astonished, “What will I do with these two lacks without my eyes! I don't agree to the deal” he said. “I prefer my two eyes to the two lacks”. The Sadhu said, “But you said you don't have anything and were cursing existence.”

What is the lesson - Two eyes he had, two hands, two legs, … and more… He is already a multi-millionaire. But all these gifts we do not see. For the beggar, money was what he wanted until he realized what he had with him was invaluable and he didn’t use that to make a living, instead he chose to be a beggar.

That we can see now is such a great gift of existence - We can hear. We can walk. All are great gifts. If you say you are unhappy, it is ridiculous. In fact we should dance and celebrate that existence has given us so many gifts. We are normally focused on what is missing in life. The moment you start operating from what you don't have, whatever you have also goes into darkness.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

I wish you enough

Recently I overheard a Father and daughter in their last moments together at the airport. They had announced the departure.

Standing near the security gate, they hugged and the Father said, “I love you, and I wish you enough.”
The daughter replied, “Dad, our life together has been more than enough.. Your love is all I ever needed. I wish you enough too, Dad.”

They hugged and the daughter left. The Father walked over to the window where I was seated. Standing there I could see he wanted and needed to cry. I tried not to intrude on his privacy, but he welcomed me in by asking, “Did you ever say good-bye to someone knowing it would be forever?”

“Yes, I have”, I replied. “Forgive me for asking, but why is this a forever good-bye?”
“I am old, and she lives so far away. I have challenges ahead and the reality is - the next trip back will be for my funeral,” he said.
“When you were saying good-bye, I heard you say, ‘I wish you enough.’ May I ask what that means?”

He began to smile. “That's a wish that has been handed down from other generations. My parents used to say it to everyone...” He paused a moment and looked up as if trying to remember it in detail, and he smiled even more.. “When we said, 'I wish you enough,' we were wanting the other person to have a life filled with just enough good things to sustain them..” Then he turning towards me, he shared the following as if he were reciting it from memory.

I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how gray the day may appear.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more.

I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final good-bye..

He then began to cry and walked away.

They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them; but then an entire life to forget them.



Wednesday, October 1, 2014


Conversation between a Husband (H) and a Psychologist (P):

P : What do you do for a living Mr. Bandy?
H : I work as an Accountant in a Bank.

P : Your Wife?
H : She doesn't work. She is a Housewife only.

P : Who makes breakfast for your family in the morning?
H : My Wife, because she doesn't work.

P : At what time does your wife wake up for making breakfast?
H : She wakes up at around 5 am because she cleans the house first before making breakfast.

P : How do your kids go to school?
H : My wife takes them to school, because she doesn't work.

P : After taking your kids to school, what does she do?
H : She goes to the market, then goes back home for cooking and laundry. You know, she doesn't work.

P : In the evening, after you go back home from office, what do you do?
H : Take rest, because I am tired due to all day work.

P : What does your wife do then?
H : She prepares meals, serving our kids, preparing meals for me and cleaning the dishes, then taking kids to bed.

P : Who takes care of kid’s homework, parent-teachers meets, school project work, extracurricular for kids?
H : My wife does as she is not working, I am busy in office.

P : What about the financials / investments – savings planning?
H : I don’t get time to plan it, my wife does that as she has more time than me.

P : What do you do on weekends?
H : Generally relax, chill out a little.

P : What does your wife do on weekends?
H : I think I am getting it now, she is busy on weekends too; more busy I guess.

No prizes for answering this question right ! - Who do you think works more, from the story above? !!

The daily routines of our wives commence from early morning to late night.
That is called 'DOESN'T WORK' !!

And if you bring the dimension of those wife’s who also do a day job; Well – well – let us not get there !

Appreciate your wives - their sacrifices are uncountable. This should be a reminder and reflection for all of us to understand and appreciate each other.

All about a WOMAN ....

When she is quiet, millions of things are running in her mind. When she stares at you, she is wondering why she loves you so much in spite of being taken for granted. When she says I will stand by you, she will stand by you like a rock.

Never hurt her or take her wrong or for granted...