Art of Living Experiences.

Since this is a site for Art of Living bloggers. .. I will write my first ever blog on why did I follow the THE PATH !

This blog is nothing but the story of my life!

Just like most of us, I was born and brought up in normal circumstances … I didn’t do anything spectacular during my childhood days … I was an average child and only was good in few things that I was passionate about! I strived to be perfect in things that I would do (if I ever did them).  I was far from what I am today!

Me and My Family after Art of Living

Me with My Family – Hubby and In-Laws

I got married into a rich family.. having got married at a relatively young age, I didn’t know a wee bit as to how to handle all the demands of household, the in laws and the husband! I never felt I am up to the challenge of this demanding marriage.  The pressure grew only larger and larger and started to weigh me down.  A time came when I was diagnosed with so called DEPRESSION by eminent psychologists!

But I always had that passion to live and therefore I refused to give up.  I tried to seek help from everywhere … At an early age of 25 years, I visited psychologists, did Reiki, attended Satsangs and even did an Art of Living course!

That was it …

The Art of Living course turned out to be a turning point.

 It was only after this course I realised so many things … I HAD THAT URGE TO CHANGE … NOT OTHERS BUT MYSELF!

As I progressed, I did many other courses by Art of Living and when I did a DSN course, my life changed forever!  It gave me the platform that no one could ever give me before.  I realised that I have exceptional organisational skills …. I got Sewa projects like looking after some media work and organising medical camps in Nithari village (during the times of Pandher).

During Yogathon 2012 of The Art of Living

That’s Me organising Yogathon 2012

I could organise everything on just a short notice; be it sessions in schools or medical camps. My achievements included getting a Maulvi to attend the satsangs aimed at creating a One World Family!  These achievements gave me the much needed purpose of life and ignited the passion in me to live for others.  The spirit of doing something for the society became my passion!

I never looked back.  I changed, I grew, I learned to live my life!

Today I smile through almost all the situations and I am not concerned about my worth anymore!  Art of Living has convinced me of my abilities and the role that I can play for the betterment of this society, It may not be much… yet, I am ready to be that change which we all wants to see in our society.

I learned the ART OF LIVING….

Others.

A woman writes to the IT Technical support Guy :
Dear Tech Support,

Last year I upgraded from Boyfriend 5.0 to Husband 1.0 and I noticed a distinct slowdown in the overall system performance, particularly in the flower and jewellery applications, which operated flawlessly under Boyfriend 5.0.

In addition, Husband 1.0 uninstalled many other valuable programs, such as Romance 9.5 and Personal Attention 6.5, and then installed undesirable programs such as NEWS 5.0,MONEY 3.0 and CRICKET 4.1 .

Conversation 8.0 no longer runs, and Housecleaning 2.6 simply crashes the system.
Please note that I have tried running Nagging 5..3 to fix these problems, but to no avail.
What can I do?

Signed,……………………

Very soon the following Reply came from the IT support team :

DEAR Madam,

First, keep in mind, Boyfriend 5.0 is an Entertainment Package,
while Husband 1.0 is an operating system.

Please enter command: ithoughtyoulovedme. html and try to download
Tears 6.2 and do not forget to install the Guilt 3.0 update.

If that application works as designed, Husband1.0 should then automatically
run the applications Jewellery 2.0 and Flowers 3.5..

However, remember, overuse of the above application can cause
Husband 1.0 to default to Silence 2.5 or Beer 6.1.

Please note that Beer 6.1 is a very bad program that will download the Snoring Loudly Beta.

Whatever you do, DO NOT under any circumstances install
Mother-In-Law 1.0 (it runs a virus in the background that will eventually seize control of all your system resources.)

In addition, please do not attempt to reinstall the Boyfriend 5.0 program. These are unsupported applications and will crash
Husband 1.0.

In summary, Husband 1.0 is a great program, but it does have limited memory and cannot learn new applications quickly.
You might consider buying additional software to improve memory and performance. We recommend: Cooking 3.0 and Hot Looks 7.7.

Good Luck Madam!

IT SUPPORT DESK

Submitted by Art of Living Blogger, Rajkumar Bhatnagar

Art of Living Projects, Art of Living Wisdom.

Science and Spirituality are not two separate entities. They are two sides of the same coin says Gurudev Sri Sri Ravishankar ji (Can be followed on www.twitter.com/srisrispeaks).

SSIOC – Simple Solutions for Inner and Outer Climate Change is a yeomen project that has been initiated by Sri Sri Institute of Agricultural Sciences and Technology Trust dedicated to tackle climate change with a spiritual perspective.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar at the Simple Solutions for Inner and Outer Climate Change summit

It is always observed that whenever we are upset, we never keep our surroundings clean. Whereas, when we have a guest who is very close to our hearts at home, we keep our home very clean and tidy. This might be like any usual routine of our life, but it signifies how inner transformation is essential to impact our environment.

Lets take another example, in forests, which is a habitat of the animals which have inner purity, we cant find a single corpse lying around. The nature keeps its surroundings clean and tidy because the habitants of the forest are pure from within.

Off late, we have been spending millions of rupees to tackle the climate change problem by conducting innumerous summits and conferences. But ultimately all of them fail. When we ponder the reasons out, we can arrive at a conclusion that, it is because of the hot headed and narrow minded politicians. Politicians ultimately focus on political borders rather than focussing on the issue as a whole.

As our Gurudev Sri Sri Ravishankar says, climate has no political borders. A storm that originates in the South india ultimately strikes Orissa which is politically unrelated to the place of origin totally. Similarly the ill effects of the environmental pollution would also affect the places which are not connected to the site of the activity.

Simple Solutions for Inner and Outer Climate Change Summit by The Art of Living

We need to raise the level of sattva in our life and radiate positive energy so that we can keep our surroundings clean. If you visit the tribal villages of Jharkhand and Chhatisgarh you will be surprised to find that they maintain their localitiy so clean. This could be because their inner self is very clean and uncomplicated.

Whereas people who wield power have corrupt minds and an impure self hence create a havoc in both the country as well as in welfare schemes that contribute to the environmental ordinances.Instead, if all the citizens of our country do bring about a purity in personal and community life through sadhana, seva & satsang, we can achieve a cleaner and greener nation.

 With Love and Regards
Aravind Soundararajan

Art of Living Wisdom.

HH Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

 ध्यानमूलं गुरुर्मूर्तिः पूजामूलं गुरुर्पदम् ।

मन्त्रमूलं गुरुर्वाक्यं मोक्षमूलं गुरूर्कृपा ॥

Dhyana Moolam Guru Murti, Puja Moolam Gurur Padam,
Mantra Moolam Gurur Vakyam, Moksha Moolam Guru Kripa

The very form of Guru is the root of Meditation, Guru’s feet, the root of worship. Guru’s words forms the root of Mantras and Grace of Guru the root of Liberation, says Sage Vyasa

Today, July 3rd 2012 is Purnima, the full-moon day in the month of Ashada, the fourth month in the traditional Lunar Hindu Calendar observed as Guru Purnima. This day is dedicated to Maharishi Ved Vyasa, who has rendered invaluable service to Humankind by writing down four Vedas, Eighteen Puranas, the Mahabharata and Bhagavata.

Guru Veda Vyasa

Sage Veda Vyasa
Photo Courtesy: www.sringeri.net

The Supreme knowledge that was being passed on orally from the memory of the great Masters was for the first time compiled and written down by Maharishi Ved Vyasa. He had retired to a secluded place, inaccessible even to his closest disciples, and entered into deepest possible state of meditation. From that space of consciousness, he wrote down the great teachings of the Saints of yesteryugas. After recording the Supreme Knowledge on Bhoja Patra (Birch Tree bark and leaves), Maharishi Ved Vyas emerged out and appeared to his disciples on this auspicious day of Ashada Purnima. Hence, this day is dedicated and celebrated by Spiritual Seekers as Vyasa Purnima.

The greatest form of gratitude any Sadhak (spiritual seeker) can offer to a Master is by constantly studying and practising the teachings of such enlightened souls.

His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

His Holiness Pujya Gurudev Sri Sri Ravishankar ji Founder of The Art of Living Foundation says,

Guru Purnima is the day when the disciple wakes up in his fullness and in the wakefulness he can’t be but grateful. This gratitude is not of dwaita (you and me), but of advaita. It is not a river moving from somewhere to somewhere, but is the ocean moving within itself. So, gratefulness on Guru-Purnima symbolizes that fullness.

For a seeker, Guru Purnima is a day of significance, is a day of New Year. It is the day to review one’s progress on the spiritual path and renew one’s determination and focus on the goal, and to resolve what one wants to do in the coming year. As the full moon rises and sets, tears of gratitude arise and repose into the vastness of one’s own self.”

You can read more on this on the official HH Sri Sri ‘s blog page here :

As Saint Kabir says:

Guru dhobi Shisha kapada,sabuna sirjana hara;

surati sila para dhoikai, nikasai joti apara.

Master is the washer man, disciple the garment, and Creator Himself is the soap; when the clothes are beaten on the stone of divine reflection, they shine out bright and clean.

Sri Guru Gita describes Guru as follows

गुकारस्त्वन्धकारश्च रुकारस्तेज उच्यते । 

अज्ञानग्रासकं ब्रह्म गुरुरेव न संशयः ॥

Guru is that which leads from darkness to light represents Guru. Gu – Darkness and Ru = Light. Guru thus is one who dispels darkness of ignorance with luminescence of Knowledge.

Gu refers to ‘guna teetha’, which means ‘beyond attribute’, i.e with any Gunas (qualities, characteristics, attributes, tendencies or traits). A classic example for understanding this was given by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravishankar.

Electricity when supplied to a fan results in breeze, when supplied to a motor results in rotation, when supplied to a bulb results in light, when provided to a stove results in heat and when provided to air-conditioner results in chillness. Can we now call electricity as breeze, heat, chillness or light? No way.

If you call Electricity as heat, the Refrigerator may not concur and if you call it light, the Fan may not concur. While Electricity is in all these appliances, the reverse is not true – the appliances are not in Electricity. It is the same with Guru tatva (Principle). It is present in all the attributes and yet is beyond the attributes – “Guna teeta”

Today is the day, when we express our gratitude to all the Masters of the past, present and the future ones – who walked this planet. Not Master in HIS physical form but the Guru Principle that transcends the form.

||Jai Gurudev||

 

Art of Living Wisdom.

An auspicious day, the Guru Purnima to pen down something from and about someone, around whom  life now revolves 🙂

My Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

Guruji (HH Pujya Guruji Sri Sri Ravishankar ji, Founder of Art of Living) ….

Gratitude is too small a word for the transformation the presence of a Master brings to life.. Just sharing a few words from Him….

He says:

Guru Purnima is called the day of the Master but it is actually the day of the Devotee. Guru Purnima is New Year for spiritual seeker. There are three types of people who come to the Master, the student, the disciple and the devotee.

– A student goes to a teacher and learns something, gets some information and then he walks out of the School.

– The disciple follows the example of the Master. But a disciple is with the Master for the sake of learning wisdom, for the sake of improving his life, for the sake of attaining enlightenment. He is trying to bring a transformation in his life.

– And then there is devotee. He is simply rejoicing in love. A devotee is not there even for wisdom. He has fallen in deep love with the Master, with the Infinity, with the God. He doesn’t care as to whether he gets enlightened or not. He doesn’t care as to whether he acquires wisdom or not. Every moment, he is immersed in Divine Love; that is enough for him or her. A devotee is very rare to find.

Students are in abundance, disciples are a few, but the devotees are rare.

Devotion is very beautiful. A student comes to a Master, Teacher, and Guru with tears in his eyes. There are so many problems, and when he leaves, he is carrying the same tears, but the quality of the tears is different, it is of gratitude. It is so beautiful to cry in love.

One, who has cried even once in love, knows the taste of it, of surrender and  devotion. The entire Creation rejoices it. The entire creation is longing for only one thing, the transformed tears, from salty tears to sweet tears.”

Tears of Gratitude…. Bliss and Blessings to all on this beautiful day… 🙂

PS: Today 3rd July is Guru Purnima.

Watch live webcast of Guru Purnima Celebrations with HH Sri Sri Ravishankar ji from North Carolina (Boone Ashram) here :http://www.artofliving.org/satsang

4 July 2012: 1:00 am – 5:00 am IST

Art of Living Courses, Art of Living Wisdom.

Kids are always fun and are all smiling. They are very generous with their 1000-watt smiles. Smiles work wonders!

Yes, kids will grow up while smiling less and less, and some eventually stop smiling, appearing all business-like. Like the ones that have already grown up and are now college-going teenagers or have graduated and have taken up jobs somewhere just like ME.

I used to wonder – why do we smile less as we grow up? Why is it that we have made our smile so expensive like Petrol? 😉 A smile certainly meant a lot more once i grew up!

Smiling and Frowning faces

Everybody, whether he/she believes in God or not, lives for happiness. Is there anyone who does not like to be happy at all? We build big bank balances, invest in stocks and shares, mutual funds or property, etc , because we do not want to be in trouble. Trouble only induces sadness. So dukha-nivritti is nothing but sukha. This samsara goes on in a quest to be happy.

A big smile!

I always believed that making people laugh (LOL’s and ROFL’s) was easy and it is a lot more difficult to bring on smiles. Can we bring on the smiles on the faces of people who are suffering, neglected and deprived, I used to ask myself?

YES!!!!, was the answer. There are people who are doing just that.

On a lovely weekend, it was a privilege to take the Art of Living Happiness Course. Not in search of peace, not to forget the stress but just to give company to my friend. After the Sudarshan Kriya, a feeling of happiness and a BIG SMILE was pasted on my face, and I don’t know from where. I was in a different world. No thoughts, no tensions… A genuine smile was on my face. Realised that – A genuine smile can come only when one’s inner journey starts. (Sadhana, Seva and Satsang)

On Last day of the course, I met my Gurudev, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji for the first time. He smiled and spoke to me as though HE knew me from ages.

Gurudev says – “When you wake up every morning, look into a mirror and give yourself a good smile. The smile is the sacred gift of life.”

As a kid/teenager, I used to experience Happiness by eating an ice cream/chocolate, by watching movies and freaking out with friends. But this ananda/happiness had a ‘vikara’ i.e. it depended upon other person or an object which is not permanent.

After undergoing Sudarshan Kriya, I felt my mind lighter, calmer and filled with peace and love. Guru’s love is deep and everlasting. Guru loves everyone unconditionally.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7cvleNdF-g&rel=0]

In today’s age of anxiety, stress, tension and excessive competition, it is extremely necessary to live a Spiritual Life (of Prayer, Surrender and Meditation). I feel extremely lucky and blessed to have a Living Satguru in my life.

Love & Pranaams

Ashwin Belagodu

About Art of Living, Art of Living Courses, Art of Living Wisdom.

Administrator(s)! I hope you have just got out of your meditation after Kriya – and highest state of “accept (and approve) the blog as it is…”

Even straws practice Yoga!

I start with an answer to a question a whole lot of my friends (surprised at how I suddenly changed since 1998) – Why so spiritual and amidst a busy schedule “Breathe” spirituality the Art of Living way. Answer is simple – I enjoy it. For those who know me, if it was only hard work (or even work-outs), I would be far away from it. So Sadhana (no, no! not a girl) as in Spiritual practices continues to be fun, despite my slim figure – “O” is a figure too, isn’t it?

As His Holiness Sri Sri Ravishankar rightly said God loves fun (Oye… me too) and Spirituality is not that quagmire of complicated words that I otherwise heard for most part of my life. Hence I chose to make trips to the Art of Living centres and avoid repeated trips to Medical diagnostic labs with samples in bottles.

Some Personal experiences with Yoga

With years of practice of Yoga today I gradually stretch to conclusions and don’t jump to it.

Oh yes! The best part that I am able to stretch the best is my Jaws. Research says average biting force of the human jaw is 162 PSI! And Boy…with such a workout that I give it, mine is atleast 5 times more

More facts on the biting force of various teeth – maximal biting force values of incisor, bicuspid, and first molar of all the males were 43.3kg, 99.11kg, and 120.66kg. (the last two pretty much matches my weight)

The other exercise that I practice with unfailing regularity was “Taking my Hands from the Plate to Mouth” and again and again… I can do this for hours together. The reason why instead of increasing Weights (during Weight training), I increased my Waist.

Kashiji/Kamleshji – Just a question – if I was supposed to touch my knees with nose, God would have placed knees would be on my palms no? Well! that is the only part that can easily reach the tip of my nose (for now I can reach my nose with my hands – thank God! not too much of a distance between mouth and nose)

After the Yogathon 2012, my body gave me a gentle reminder of every single bone, joint and muscle that exist in me (other than the only two that I always was aware – jaws and hand). Namaste….One…Two. Those counts still ring in my ears.

Finally it would do good to know that it is far more important for a smile to spread over your chin than it is to get your chin closer to your shin.

Remember! Life is hard. It’s breathe, breathe, breathe … all the time. This is what Art of Living and staying “Within” is all about.

Art of Living Wisdom.

This is in response to two of my fellow bloggers on another discussion forum (which is not functional now) – Ved Vahan and Subash. Cross posting it again to share it with the audience here. While I don’t have access to those blogs wherein those 2 loving souls had brought out concept of OM, I humbly submit that this is an amateurish attempt to complement their indisputable explanations. Wherever relevant, I have made any reference to their writing,I have specifically reproduced for relevance.

So here I go….

Aum or Om the universal sound

For our ordinary minds (and true for almost all beginners on the spiritual path), it is not so easy to conceptualize or comprehend an idea without expressing them in words. If it cannot spoken about or if not expressible we somehow get a  feeling of surreality or unreal.

So this idea of God or Divine, has to necessarily be associated and expressed with Words. Another condition is that since God/Divinity is considered fundamental fact of the Cosmos, the word expressing It needs to be fundamental too. The ancients saints, seers and Rishis struck upon and agreed that this word “AUM” is a fundamental word that can truly express the Divine.

Why is this word fundamental? Here let me begin by exploring deeper purport of one of my fellow blogger on another site – Sri Subashji’s explanation. Representing the “G”enerator, “O”perator and “D”estructor – nature of GOD.

“A” the creative force originating at the lower part (Step on a thorn or when you get hurt on your legs or feet, the natural sound that emerges out is “Aaaah”)

“U”, the maintaining force originating at the middle part (someone punching on your abdomen, the natural sound that is expressed would be “Uuuuuu”).

“M”, the destructive force – of evil tendencies originating at the top part (ask
someone to give a sharp knock on your head, the sound that emerges would be “Mmmmm”).

Sum total of these forces represents the entire universe and hence lends a legitimate expression representing God representing the Trinity – Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, considered as the Creative, Maintaining and Destructive Forces.

The very construct itself renders AUM a fundamental WORD.

“A”, the root sound is pronounced without touching any part of the tongue or roof of the mouth,

“M” pronounced with closed lips representing the last possible sound.

“U” rolls from the root to the end of the palate, right upto the lips. So the three
syllables together forms the PRIMORDIAL expression called “AUM”, which represents the whole phenomena of sound production (“A” + “U” representing “O”).

The symbol of OM

Next why 3 times? As Ved-Vahan ji rightly said, “it represents three dimensions of our existence and a honor to all the three dimensions representing the
divinity in us. More importantly someone said, “It is Gurudev’s bidding (referring to His Holiness Sri Sri Ravishankar ji of Art of Living) , HE knows why :-)” (personally the most important and favourite reason for chanting it 3 times).

It is pertinent to remind here that chanting of 3 times is an aspect specific to Sudarshan Kriya and many Art Of Living processes but not mandatory – it could be more. (As HE keeps saying in various forums, in these busy times,
it is good enough if someone can chant 3 times – anything more and people would simply cite lack of time and discontinue Sadhana). 108 time chanting is quite popular too (9 Grahas x 12 Rashis).
My personal experience (not to do with numbers, but the very act of Chanting OM) – it clearly demarcates the activities on either side of my chanting. Prior to starting with a Sadhana, I disconnect the pre-Sadhana life with OM. As a rule, our group of AOL’ites whatever be the spiritual practices we embark on (viewing Knowledge Videos, beginning of AOL meetings, beginning satsangs)we chant OM, which clearly separates (mentally and physically) the mundane things from our mindspreparing the ground for our subsequent activities.

ॐ ॐ ॐ

HyperSmash