Art of Living Wisdom.

Having been raised in a Jain family, I wasn’t exposed to the Bhagavad Gita during my growing up years. Of course, I had heard of it, perhaps read a few portions of the same – but never really took an interest in it.

I heard about the Bhagavad Gita from my friends. And just before Shradh in 2006, a family friend recommended that I read it. “The blessings go straight to your ancestors,” he said.

So I started reading the text and much to my surprise, found it to be a delightful experience. The simple text, the feeling of reading the beautiful thoughts of Lord Krishna left my hair standing on end.

And I found it quite addictive. I ended up carrying a pocket-sized Gita in my bag – wherever I went. Waiting for a bus, in college, en route to dance class and yes, even coffee at Barista. Somehow I always carried the text with me.

BG

I found little influences of the Gita slipping into my daily life. Like the focus on the action and not the result. This was especially useful during the long hours of study – the rambling of my mind towards the portions to complete, how much my friends had completed, the exam date, the number of days left…those few words from the Bhagavad Gita left me sane.

The indestructible quality of the soul – imperishable by fire, by water – as expounded in chapter 2 kept me stronger when faced with the unexpected death of near ones.

The glory and magnanimity of Lord Krishna as described in chapter 11 left me wide-eyed at the realization of a Higher Power. The Brilliance of a thousand rising suns, mightier than the Himalayas, purer than the Ganges – the sheer poetry of the lines satisfied the writer in me while the beauty of the thoughts left me wondering at the power of the mind behind the words.

When faced with unexpected situations of unpleasantness, exasperation and despair – I was reminded of the karma as expounded in the Bhagavad Gita. For nobody can give you that which is not yours. Often I find myself feeling stumped – wondering why someone behaves in a certain manner, why a particular situation happened. Yet when I remember the play of karma – I feel a sense of peace, feel calmer and decide to wait some more before acting on frustrated thoughts of anger and hurt. The need to be vindictive, quit or hurt someone quells and again, I decide to wait some more. And be patient.

These are common life situations – occurring almost everyday, isn’t it?

A conflict at home, tension in the office, meeting the many demands and wondering, where is the real me in all this? Yet as you wait amidst the angry vehicles at a red signal, waiting to make the final run home; or purse your lips instead of retorting to a rude comment; while you wait for someone to gear up and see another perspective and wait patiently for yourself – don’t behave like this, it’s not you.

What makes these situations different is a perspective and that is what the Bhagavad Gita offers. A slowly growing Archimedes moment of realization until you find yourself doing something mundane and realize but I read somewhere…and can trace the source to the Gita.

I personally find the Bhagavad Gita neither religious nor preachy. It’s a guide, if you wish. A simple truth that is expounded in a universal language of love, forgiveness; a call to experience a Higher Thinking that all of us are capable of. The Bhagavd Gita is a beautiful gift to yourself. Only if you allow yourself to experience it.

Join us as we demystify this secret, book your webcast now: www.artofliving.org/bhagavad-gita

By Resha Desai Patel

Art of Living Experiences, Art of Living Projects, Yoga and Meditation.

“The more you give and the more you get. Then Life will become a sheer dance of love” This quote of Sri Sri Ravishankar resonates in my heart because the more I keep sharing, the more I receive, in multifold; directly or indirectly; as either an opportunity to serve more or getting my wishes granted by Divine!

One such opportunity where I contribute as well benefit is “The Global Yogathon Challenge”.

I thoroughly enjoyed each and every moment of the last Yogathon challenge. It not only helped my body but also my mind; and thus began a new practice of doing Surya Namaskar / Sun Salutations daily. This year too I am looking forward to participate in this event.

Yogathon_Teaser

This unique event called Yogathon; which has grown globally since its inception in 2012; will unite around 46 cities, 10 countries across the globe on the same date i.e. Aug 16th – in support of children’s education in India. All the proceeds support Care for Children, an initiative of the Art of Living Foundation that helps educate children in India’s more underprivileged communities.

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Isn’t it a cool idea to Rise for a cause and connect with your Inner yogi at the same time? All you will need that day is a Yoga mat and a benevolent spirit, to join me and many like me to participate in execution of a challenge of completion of 108 Sun Salutations.

Rise to educate and Register at www.yogathon.org

See you on August 16

Mohit Lathi

Art of Living Stories.

People have this idea that being a Guru is a serious business. Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Presenting a hilarious sharing about Gurudev by Dvorah Adler:

 

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar lets a group of us waiting outside into his room. It’s late at night and I’m stoked because I don’t have far to go because my room is right next to his!! (Remember?)

I walk in and sit on the floor facing Gurudev. My feet are pointing directly at him. John who’s sitting next to me, tells me to move my feet away from Guruji’s direction or at least cover them. I try, but it’s very uncomfortable. I’m thinking (Geez! Give me a break! Not another traditional old wives tale).

And I remember Gurudev once saying: “Did I say that?? Did I tell you to do that?” So now I’m feeling more at ease with the whole “feet” situation.

Nevertheless, I’m still trying to move my feet, not wanting to seem disrespectful. Gurudev sees me fidgeting and offers a solution: “Dvorah, come sit over here”.  He motions to the bench to his right where my friend Jeff is sitting. I move over there and get comfy. My back’s been screwed up for long time and sometimes I lose my usual “sexy walk” and kinda “hobble” around. I actually bought one of those Native Indian walking sticks and call it my Danda stick.

I’m sitting happily looking at Gurudev, minding my own business when he calls me out: “Look! There’s Mikey over there!” He wrote “Stumbling into Infinity. Dvorah is Limping into Infinity” The place starts laughing, they sense the fun is about to begin!

“That’s going to be my new book Guruji. Limping into Infinity. Mikey and I are going on tour together. When they call us up to talk about our best sellers, we’ll stumble and Limp onto the podium! hahaha

 

Dvorah_Datetree

Well by this time the iPhone cameras are rolling and we’re on the floor laughing and I can’t stop. The mental image of me and Mikey hobbling together up to the podium is just too much. I look over at Mikey and as usual he wants to hide to get away from me.

“C’mon Mikey, let’s show him how it’s done!” You stumble and I’ll limp and mumble and we’ll just fall into Infinity!” By now no one can keep a straight face, the place is Rolling! On The Floor!

“OH Guruji” I say. “You’re the best! “(the crowd ooooohhhhs) “You’re THE BEST IN THE WEST!!” I slide down to the floor leaning against his sofa.  The crowd is now laughing and cheering with glee! “You are just too too much Gurudev” I beam happily. “You’re just too too much!” “Well Dvorah” He laughs, “I’m surprised you JUST realized that after 25 years!” The crowd in the room in now howling. I’m looking at Guruji transfixed, completely smitten beyond repair. (How the heck does he remember it’s been exactly 25 years?)

“Gurudev do you remember telling me how I look great, at least 20 years younger then my age? Well guess what?? That was NOT a compliment! Gurudev! You think that was a compliment, but it wasn’t!!” I look at the crowd getting ready for my punchline………… when Guruji steps in:

“Yes! She was old even then!” He begins to laugh, beating me to my own joke!! “When she was a kid” He continues, “She looked like a grandma!!’ hahaha  Even I couldn’t help laughing so hard, I was choking.

“Guruji,” I tease, (making a peace sign for the cameras), “It’s tough having a guru that’s funnier then you! “Nobody can compete with you, De-vo-rah!” He laughs. “I give up!” I chuckle. (Now, I’m thinking I gotta get up, before my legs fall off!)

“Guruji, I can’t get up, seriously” I complain. “My legs have fallen asleep. Can’t you call a truck or something to pull me up???” “Oh Dvorah” He turns to the crowd. “Does anyone have any bananas?” The crowd begins to giggle.

Guruji pats his legs, several times and bobbs up and down in laughter: “If you sit next to Dvorah and you want some silence, make sure you have a bunch of bananas.” He dissolves in laughter patting me on the shoulder and handing me a date; motioning me to put it in my mouth.

“I don’t think that’s funny, Guruji!! Does anyone think that’s funny!” I say with a straight face. We all howl with laughter.

“Guruji” I look up at him, “Are you going to call a crane to get me up? How am I going to get up?” “Are there any donkey’s here?” He jokes. “If somebody has to get up, the best thing to do is get a donkey. They come and they drag you up!” He’s jousting with me now patting me on the shoulder. We’re a comedy routine! and I’m in a bliss!! I’m loving being tapped on the shoulder by my Guru. And I JUST LOVE BEING a STRAIGHT MAN.

“Is that donkey stuff true Guruji?”, I innocently ask. “Yaaaahhhh” he affirms. “In ancient times there were no cranes, everything was done by donkey.” We are all in hysterics again imagining me being dragged and hoisted up on a donkey and dragged out the door! I’m in stitches trying to keep a straight face!!

“OYYYYYY” I moan, trying to get up again. “Guruji, can’t you just help me lose weight?” “My God!!” He retorts, eyes wide open. “That’s a huge task! It would be easier to ask me to join two continents together!!” The place is now in hysterics, breaking out in rhythmic clapping. Guruji hands motion two continents coming together. It’s all absurdly amusing!

I pull myself up to my knees, pointing at him with my index finger, as if to say: ’You got me!!!’ Gurudev still laughing, offers a “high five” and I tap his right hand several times.

I look at the crowd and ask with a straight face: “Is that funny?” “What’s funny” chides Guruji, “Is that you can still talk with a date in your mouth!”  The place roars. “That date has a pit in it.” He jokes. “You better be careful a tree is going to sprout!” I keep my straight face, as the crowd in the room can’t control themselves anymore loses it, cheering, laughing, clapping and God knows what else!! Again! I clearly see I’ve lost this ‘battle’, and begin to get up. “Oh well” I think. “Maybe next time”.

As I get up, someone in the crowd chirps up: “Dvorah, we want you to stay here, it’s so funny!” “I know honey!”, I respond, pulling myself upright. “It’s because when I go, you all go!!!” hahahaha (Unfortunately we all know that’s true!!!)

We are ALL now giggling and happy to be together. I finally get up as Sri Sri begins to hand out prasad and bless individually all HIS silly smiling unruly devotees(including me). WE just LOVE having fun and hanging out late at night with our Adorable Lovable, Naturally Funny, Mystical, Magical Guru. I’m mean really?? What could be better?? hahaha

 

Also Read : http://artoflivingsblog.com/guru-nature/

Also Read : http://artoflivingsblog.com/unspeakable-tragedy-assuaged-healed/

More about Dvorahji Dvorah Adler :

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/dvorahji

Website : http://www.shutupguru.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/dvorahji