Thursday, September 28, 2006

Dazzling Dussehra

Times have changed to an extent that its a rare circumstance to see too many people aware of why festivals are celebrated or even devoting few minutes to God due to erratic lifestyles which result in ever increasing stress levels and leave them hard pressed for time for anything else. This mythological tribute is done from the bottom of my heart as over the past few years I have started to believe that the almighty walks with me in every step I take in life. This faith has done wonders for me personally and brought about a serene feeling. A celebration all over the country has inspired me to do this tribute to the mighty Goddess whom I believe in has brought in that inner strength and spirituality. Just wanted to share this feeling with all and include everyone in my prayers.

Dussehra or Navarathri....Is a ten day celebration of victory over the evil forces that engulfed our mother earth centuries ago ".Dus" means ten and depicts the 10 evil faces of the villain of Ramayana called Ravan.This popular festival is celebrated every year, with these 10 facets of evil destroyed for good, by our own hero Ram, who is believed to have been the ardent devotee and worshipper of Goddess Durga.This belief prevails the northern parts of India and is celebrated with great pomp and splendor.

The day is also attributed to the power of 'Shakti', a unified symbol of the divine forces, the incarnation of 'Devi', known as mother of Goddesses, is none other than "Durga"which means invincible. She is the destroyer of all sufferings and evil forces. A beautiful, yet powerful manifestation of this deity on a lion, occurred after obtaining numerous weapons from various Gods especially the 'chakra' (disc) from Vishnu and trident from Shiva, to fight the powerful and cruel demon called Mahish.

A small story precedes this creation by various Gods. Several centuries ago, there existed the much feared,deadly,powerful asura called Mahish,born out of a union of Rambha and a she buffalo(Mahishi) and was a consequently, a half man and half buffalo, who also attained a boon from Agni,(Fire) which predicted that he could only be killed by a woman. A boon, which created complacent and superior feelings within the Asura that, he was invincible. This made the demon create havoc in the heavenly lives, causing a rumble in the skies and making all the Devas panic and tremble with fear. Helplessness drove these devas to the Trinity, who were aware of the boon and decided to unite their collective powers to create a Goddess, the sight of whom would scare the demons away. A valiant and bloody battle raged for ten whole days, at the end of which the Goddess, managed to pin down the Asura and behead him. This mighty destruction caused the Gods to shower flowers from the skies and a feeling of joy engulfed the celestial beings. This victory is celebrated as "Dusshera"

This powerful Goddess, Known by several names such as Ambal,Katyani ,Maa sherawali,Mahishasura Mardhini,etc is worshipped with great devotion in our subcontinent, especially in West Bengal and southern regions. Temples have emerged in honor of this mighty Goddess, prayers and offerings are placed before the deity, pleasing her immensely, especially during this ten day festival.

This cult projects the woman to be powerful and strong; and a symbol of motherhood to the entire universe. Prayers to her help abolish the enemies within and around us. Recitation of the popular prayer "Mahishasura mardhini" is bound to give an inner strength that can encounter any battle.

Let us therefore bow our head to the supreme beauty, the creation of the Trinity and other divine forces and vow to eradicate evil forces such as deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy that brings about the birth of a demon in all of us. The triumph of good over evil, though a slow process, is inevitable and is sure to happen.

This is a tribute to Durga Ma and to make these 10 days special and continue to do so for the rest of the years to come.



Monday, September 25, 2006


The below article is definitely something to think about. It is actually very true. As a psychologist cum counselor strongly believe that a person is solely responsible for how he or she reacts or feels. It is a fact that others don’t cause our feelings of happiness, sadness, hurt etc.Its we who choose to feel that way.

It should be realized that no matter what others do or don’t do, it is their problem not ours. If they say something or do something, we are not the losers but they. If people behave in a wrong manner even if it pricks us like a pin, its is they who suffer the consequences of their actions, not us. In short, this is the much talked about LAW OF KARMA.

What goes around comes around. If we do well, we get good, and if we do badly, we get bad. So let’s remember that if someone does something or says something which is against us, instead of feeling bad for ourselves, we should feel sorry for them as they end up with a liability of the bad deed with a huge sum of interest.

A lot of peace of mind is obtained thereby reducing our ever increasing stress levels due to lack of application of the 90/10 principle.10% of what happens to us is definitely not in our control. But the rest 90% is left up to how we react and largely depends on our ATTITUDE.

Difficult, but not impossible. Think about it

What is the 90/10 Principle? It means that 10 percent of life is made up of what happens to you; 90 percent of life is decided by how you react.

What does this mean? We really have no control over 10 percent of what happens to us. For instance, we cannot stop the car from breaking down, the plane from arriving late, which throws our whole schedule off. We have no control over this 10 percent.

The other 90 percent is different. You can control the 90 percent. How? By Your Reaction. Let’s use an example. You are eating breakfast with your family. Your daughter knocks over a cup of coffee onto your business shirt. You have no control over what has just happened. What happens next will be determined by how you react. You curse. You harshly scold your daughter for knocking the cup over. She breaks down in tears. After scolding her, you turn to your spouse and criticize her for placing the cup too close to the edge of the table

.A short verbal battle follows. You storm upstairs and change your shirt. Back downstairs, you find your daughter has been too busy crying to finish breakfast and get ready for school. She misses the bus. Your spouse must leave immediately for work. You rush to the car and drive your daughter to school. Because you are late, you drive 40 miles an hour in a 30 mph speed limit. After a 15-minute delay and throwing Rs.100 (traffic fine) away, you arrive at school. Your daughter runs into the building without saying goodbye.

After arriving at the office 20 minutes late, you find you forgot your briefcase. Your day has started terrible. As it continues; it seems to get worse and worse. You look forward to coming home. When you arrive home, you find small wedge in your relationship with your spouse and daughter. Why? Because of your reaction that morning.

Why did you have a bad day?
A) Did the coffee cause it?

B) Did your daughter cause it?

C) Did the policeman cause it?

D) Did you cause it?

The answer is D.

You had no control over what happened with the coffee. How you reacted in those 5 seconds is what caused your bad day. Here is what could have been done and should have happened. Coffee splashes over you.

Your daughter is about to cry. You gently say, "It's OK honey, you just need to be more careful next time.” Grabbing a towel you rush upstairs. After pulling out a new shirt and your briefcase, you come back down in time to look through the window and see your child getting on the bus. She turns and waves. Your spouse sees you off and you go to work. You arrive 5 minutes early and cheerfully greet the staff. Notice the difference?

Two different scenarios. Both started the same. Both ended different. Why? Because of how you REACTED.A powerful principle... especially for those who take life too seriously. Apply the 90/10 principle. It will change your life at least the way you react to situations.


Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Munnabhai meets Gandhi

This is a writeup on how Munnabhai meets Gandhi and the incidents that have preceded this encounter. This is not a review or story of the whole film. However, instances have been quoted on how Munnabhai meets the Mahatma and the twist in tale of Dadagiri vs. Gandhigiri.What turns out to be a laugh riot entertainer, also precipitates the social message coming across to the contemporary youth and civilization. It’s also the case of history meets present, by bringing to life, the yesteryears father figure into the current scenario. The mode of reviving back the memories of the great personality, is indeed an excellent thought to present to us, that not everything is achieved through war and bloodshed. As a famous quote states” The pen is a mightier weapon than the sword”, this film states that Ahimsa is a mightier combat than physical force and abuse.

Lage raho munnabhai bole tho Sequel alla re.Yes,back on screen are the troublesome duo Munna and his reliable buddy circuit to sizzle the screen with their chemistry, in this case history and dadagiri. Our own Munna is in love with the voice of the chirpy radio jockey Jahnvi played by Vidya Balan and her even more chirpy "GOOD MORNING MUMBAI."

Eager to meet his lady love in person, makes Bhai mask his identity as a history professor and win a quiz contest on a historical figure none other than our own Bappu, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who is brought in cleverly by the director. Proclaimed as the winner of the contest, gets Munna an encounter with radio gal to whom he reveals his adulation for Gandhigiri that impresses her so much that Munna is invited to give a lecture on the father figure to personalities in the second innings house.Sanju Baba is in fix but not for long as his solution personified Circuit puts him in a mix of reading books about Gandhi to an extent that Munna gets hooked and absorbed so much that he has illusions of seeing Bappu live.

Unknowingly, Master of Dadagiri becomes a slave of Gandhigiri and story takes off in a journey where one encounters other characters, such as the greedy, manipulative, photo sessions obsessed Lucky Singh played by Boman Irani who is after the second innings house as a means to gift it to his daughter’s (Dia Mirza) in laws on the wedding day. Other individuals are the old people who are friends of Janvi’s grandfather spending their second childhood in the second innings house which gives no room for sad feelings.

Clash takes place between Munna and Lucky over second innings house when the latter throws out the aged people out of their home to fulfill his selfish motives. This makes the former resort to a live radio show along with his lady love preaching his new found fascination Gandhigiri to whole of Mumbai and gets the city not only hooked to this problem solving cum counseling live show but also as a tribute to send flowers to the proclaimed ill friend Lucky.

It ranges from giving solutions to an irresponsible son to confess to his father about blowing up money in shares, rejecting a prospective life partner on the basis of treatment given to a waiter to an ironical yet funny situation in the pension office where bribes are demanded to get a miniature signature by the concerned person. Story brings out to light other social issues prevailing in our country such as throwing elders into old aged homes and concept of horoscopes being the ruling factor instead of a guiding force.

An excellent mode of presenting the almost forgotten Mahatma to the current youth and that Gandhi’s ideologies do work in most situations. One needn’t resort to violence ALWAYS to prove their point. The fact was Bappu was more popular than the much feared Hitler were the two harmless weapons possessed by the former known as Satya and Ahimsa.

Brilliant performances by Sanjay Dutt and Arshad Warsi.Other artistes make an impact.Vidya Balan has a good screen presence. Lively music, edge of the seat comedy and this sequel proves to be better than its first part. It is a definite award winning category overall.

The above concept of Gandhigiri vs Dadagiri have stirred up a lot of young restless curious minds to seek more information about M.K.Gandhi which many documentaries and educational lectures failed to do so. It has brought about a realization that points can be gotten across by merely making others feel small in a passive manner rather than aggressive acts. Lastly, statues or no statues in the parks, lectures given on him or not, books read about him or not, this film overall shows “Hamare Bappu abhi bhi hamare dil se lage hue hain.”