just absolutely love being in India. Been apt hunting these two days and guess what, they are gods and goddesses placed outside the house and i do a quick prayer to them.
it feels so good stepping into a house whose gods you are familiar with.

No wonder, Elizabeth Gilbert came to India to pray, as kone kone pe God miltha hain, and if we are aware enough, kind enough and observant enough, we can see God in everyone who is crossing by.

Ek dil chahiye that is Made In India.

Love every minute being in India !!

i am enjoying cooking, for my anna. He is visiting from Chennai. All these days, when i was young, they fed me, took care of me whenever we visited them and being abroad after marriage, no one has really visited me, the older folks who petted me and coddled me. 

Now is my turn, to repay, all their kindness and love they had for me when i visited them and when they visited my parents. 

What joy, the cooking gave me, for loved ones. 

When you think it is a chore , it is a chore. 

Do it for the Lord, 

I have been getting this a lot - 'you may not be able to do big things greatly, but you can do all little things greatly'. It is amazing to incorporate all these little sayings into your daily lives 

today, i read in the papers, an interview with ARR, and he says 'what little i do towards my spiritual side, is not enough'

What profoundity, i realised, we can never do enough of taking the Lord's name and keeping it in our thoughts for a good measure of a time. 

Like Swamiji said 'you have do these 3 20s daily - 20 minutes of japa, 20 minutes of meditation and 20 minutes  of spiritual reading'

I promised myself i would do all those, but its has been correctly 20 days, and sad to say i have not done anything '

Atleast when i blog about it, i blog about you my Lord, please grace all my thoughts, pleace grace all my actions, let me life be an offering of a petals at your feet, let all my actions be offerings of prasad and love to you, let me see you in everybody.

Like Chinmaya said 'ever remain in a state of gratefulness'

For example, you have to feed these guests, think sakshath bagavan is coming to feed from you and cook with joy. When things become a chore, it is God who is testing you, are you panning out every single test. 

Like Chinmaya said when he was giving a discourse, 'i expect you all to be grateful to me that i am giving you this vast ocean of knowledge for free, i am not getting money for it, the least i expect all of you is appreciate me for doing this inspite of my discomforts today and have come just for you'

'no if i think like that, i will expect you to be grateful to me and appreciate me and if that doesn't happen, i get disappointed , grumpy and finally sick in the mind. Instead, i am grateful you all came, you all came, so i can take the name of the lord for all these hours'

Ever remain in a state of gratefulness. 

Once namdev gets realised .. i have to take care of the adupu.

will be back later with namdev's story. it touched me in so many ways.

Taa Mommy.

when i wrote daily, i had this continuum, when something happened in real life, i would absolutely think it blogworthy and form thoughts with reference to the blog. Infact if you are an obsessed blogger, all you can think about is should i blog this or not. It was like in the days of pre-digital photography. Since you could only take a limited number of pictures, you always wondered if things were picture worthy or not and only took pictures if you thought the moment was right. Not shooting left, right and center. But we digress. So much was my obsession about should i take this pic or not, that i refused to take my camera on my backpacking trip to Singapore. Hence i do not have a single picture from my days of backpacking for a week in Singapore. All that is left are faded memories and 'I did that too', without any corroboration to the fact. Ofcourse, I am not here to convince anyone that indeed i visited Singapore, nor is it going to get me any crowing achievement, and even so, just in front of a few humans, not before the wise Lord, he doesn't care if i trekked Singapore in foot or not, he cares if my heart was pure, was it in the present, was it enveloped in love, did i stay in my dharma ? Those are the questions that he is concerned with.

Mayya veshya mano ye maam, nithyayukta upasathe I
Shradaya parayo petham, me yukthama mathaha II

The Lord said : Those who, fixing his mind on me, worship me, ever steadfast and endowed with supreme faith, these in my opinion are the best Yogis

When i was told the true meaning of Yogi, i was dumbfounded.
I had always thought a person who does yoga is a yogi

Then i was even dumbfounded when they said yoga is more than just physical excercises, but there are different forms of yoga like Bhakti, Karma, etc.
So ignorant was I.

Finally i am living my religion every day. i am trying to live the Gita everyday.

A Christian thumbs through the Bible.
Similary as a Hindu, all children should be given exposure to the Gita and then it is up to them to fly with or without it.
But if we as Hindu parents, do not introduce the Gita to them, who will ?

I came to know the Gita in my thirties, after having kids.
I come from a religious household.
They even made me byheart some parts of the Gita
But i had no idea what the Gita was. Nobody told me it was the sacred text of the Hindus.
That all the questions are answered in here, on how to live and to conduct life.

I am sure, most of us Hindu children do feel this way. We are ignorant partly because
it is in Sanskrit and we haven't kept up with the times.
We did keep up with the times in the sense, we do not practise Sanskrit anymore,
but we refused to bring along our texts with us.
And the meaning though deciphered, only a few knew.

How many Hindu families have the Gita text and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many Christian families have the Bible and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many Musilm families have the koran and open it for prayer and contemplation
How many ....

Yes, Hindus must be the minority in the above.
We did have the Gita in my house. I loved those pages as they were paper thin and almost silk like
and each page was gold bordered. it was my favourite book, but i absolutely did nothing with it.
Nobody did anything with it.

My dad was super religious.
He had his own set of books which he followed.
But we all get the point ?
People might say we do not have one book to follow like most religions.
We have a hundred texts. And i agree, all of them are as beautiful, and probably all tell us
to submit to the lotus feet of God.

Once we are in the higher reins of the Gita, they say God is just a crutch.
So that you surrender your ego, nothing is your doing but somebody else's doing and that somebody else - lets call him God.
We did not create ego, but somehow as man, we have that ego, i guess i am too sleepy to coherently put my thoughts right now. maybe later.

Anyway, coming back to the Yogi -

A yogi is one, who mind, intellect and body are all in alignment.
That is they do not contradict one another.

When the mind is enticing you to have icecream, the intellect is strictly forbidding you and the body acts according to the one or the other, mostly it listens to the mind, he is not a yogi

A yogi is one who can rein in his senses and all his intellect, mind and body act in unison.

i was awestruck when i heard the definition, not too long ago, just a few years ago, after i had my children and courtesy Balavihar, courtesy my children.

When i started this post today, i was truly a blank slate, i had nothing to write, infact i wondered what to write, but then i saw that i had not blogged for so many days, which is not the promise i made, i said, okay let me blog about that and lo, my mind wandered through hills and valleys, mountains and terrains, gorges and plateaus and words did tumble like the narrow Angels falls in Venezuela which my husband had wanted me to accompany but i did not, as i had no love for travelling those days, my love was in saving any little money we had and thinking that the workplace would close up, if not for me.

i was under a chinese boss who refused to give me a week's vacation and now i have americans who always tell me 'family first', 'throw the cellphone in the fish tank while on vacation'.

And now i believe in that. Vacation was a chore earlier with packing from diapers to bottles to now where it is all wonderful.

Anyway, time to say goodnight

take care
Seated in love
Lord, I pray at your Lotus Feet, to give me equanimity in all situations,
please let not a day go by without my being grateful to have my little ones around
let not a moment go by without me acknowledging how priviledged I am, that they chose to be born here
let not a thought go by without being loving to them
let not an action go by without enveloping them in love
let not a word go by without making them feel appreciated
let not a touch go by without caressing them in hugs
let not a sigh go by without their topmost concern in my mind
let me be immersed in my love for them
let me not forget that what i have is precious and one harsh moment cannot be replaced by a thousand tender moments as that harsh moment will be etched deeper than the tenderness.

Am i not like that ? My maid toils day and night and the minute she makes a mistake, I remember that for the rest of the days to come by.

Let me rise above my petty emotions of right and wrong, and please seat me deep in your love and my love for all humans.

Lord, open my eyes to you
open my heart to you
open my self to you
Let me know only love, just like you wanted
Let me not move away from my natural state of love
Let me be love

thank you Lord
Hari Om

How Can A Parent Be A Good Disciplinarian Without Being Harsh, Domineering, Or Controlling?

The above all is from the girls. I cannot stop admiring their cursive. After coming to Mumbai, they no longer do cursive at school, but I have asked the girls to hold on to all the knowledge that has been imparted to them till KG in MMC and they have tried to keep it as best as they could. Aren't they precious? And did you notice the Amma? I had asked them to call me that, lest we lose our roots and she has remembered it while writing that sweet note. And what with so many exclamations. Indeed they are growing. 

Bless them. Lord, make me worthy of my children. They deserve a loving nurturing mommy and help me remain calm while things go awry. Bless me with grace under fire. Thank you Lord Hari Om

The maid waltzed in with a piece of paper. She found it somewhere on the floor post Mother's Day. Tejas had never given his card to me. He said he would do it in the evening when the girls had their handsful of stuff to give. They all encouraged Tejas to give it to me in the morning. He was in another land.

Anyway this is what the maid gave me. I am just on cloud nine, after reading his letter. I quizzed every passer by, well all my children, if my son wrote this in camp. They said no no no, not at camp. Well, i am struck by thunder. Hari Om, the ways of the Lord, Tharini for sure will love this.

What more motivation and inspiration do i need to be the mom he wants me to be.

A picture speaks a thousand words

I walk into the kitchen and what do i find ? My anjali petti in a state of careful disarray. All kinnams holding all items and an extra special item a badam biscuit distributed among all 7 kinnams. I knew it must be Aishu.
Usually I would have been very mad and huffed and puffed and belittled the child, the harried person I am with a 100 things to do. but my new post camp persona kicked in and I actually admired her handiwork.

She waltzed in a few days later and asked me 'Mama, did you like it ?'
And i waxed eloquent.

But I was actually shocked. I thought she would know that this would make me mad.
Little did i know that she thought she was actually creating an artwork and not a thought about messing a neatly laid out anjali petti.

So pure is the heart of the child.

Hari Om

Mothers day 2012

will be very special to me. The twins have been planning forever what to give me. They measured my head and made a paper crown and they would hide it when i walk in the room and sneak from room to room holding it in the back.

They drew countless pictures, threw it away and drew another set of countless pictures.

They wanted me to not get out of the bed. i was to sleep with Tejas the whole day and they would make breakfast with Dad. They would make lunch with dad and they would make dinner with dad. they planned out an elaborate menu with dad. Only what i liked was to be made. They made a huge brownie cake the previous day and reserved it for mother's day.

They wanted to give me a single red rose and pestered dad to get it for them to give it to me.

I am crying as i write this. The children took such good care of me that i didn't thank them then as much as I am thinking and thanking them now, for their love.

I was happy they did all this but they needn't have. Moms are so generous that way. They just know to give and are at a loss when it is for theirs to take. My mom is exactly like that. She would get angry if we ask her to take and she would get mad if we want her to stop giving. Guess all of us children have got that from her. We do not expect anything from each other. Infact if they do, we chide them for doing it.

So coming back to my kids, it wasn't a big deal for me. But it was big deal for them. Yes, they showered me with their love and i became pure in all their love.

thank you my children and my dear hubby for making the day so special.

Taa's mom forever. 

Back From Balavihar Camp

and what am i ? A changed person, atleast a changed parent. Lots to work on the marriage front, as to stop nagging, contradicting him when he is speaking to the kids, etc, but atleast at the kids front, i can see a visible change.

I am not looking at them as something that needs to be molded, but a person with feelings of ego and respect. I have become much more calm and friendly towards them. I have let discipline take a back seat for now, nurturing them and letting them play forever instead of harping on practise and routine. Not necessarily a good thing. but what i am intending as my final result is 'DISCIPLINE WITH LOVE'. Just discipline would not cut it and for me, DWL is a hard line to walk. Probably its me who has set up this pattern, that the final scream does it, makes the kids listen, i have to transform it to them listening to me without the scream. My entire point from the moment i became a parent, or actually somewhere along is, i do not want to lose my dignity and reduce my state by screaming. How would i feel if my husband lifted a finger at me, and yet i do not give a moment's notice to myself if i have to scream or that occsional spank.

Can i elicit correct behaviour without these ugly tools ?

It has always been a challenge. And now, what i got to hear from Brni. Nidhiji, which i always wanted to do, validated by Nidhiji, is to be a friend first and then everything else.

What relations do we crave from our spouse, children, relatives, bosses.

To be a friend. Someone who loves you unconditionally without judgement . They already love you and hence you can reveal your weaknesses and despair without any cause of concern for selfimage.

That is the goal we have to seek from ourselves to give to our children.

That was a wonderful camp. Four days of bliss.

I urge all of you to join Balavihar and if you do not have kids, just join Chinmaya Mission. They have enough to cater to just the adult mind.

Please do not miss this opportunity. If you are abroad, it will start in September and hence do all your groundwork and if you are in India, it will start in June. It starts with the school year where ever you are. Even if the place is far, join it, it is worth every effort you take to reach the lotus feet of the Lord.

There is enough for the atheist as well. It is all about surrendering of the ego and God is just the crutch to do that.

Run for it

Hari Om

I just happened to like her that morning, with her hair all tumbling over her, she looked exactly like Ms. Tangled from Tangled, do you know what i mean.
I just couldnt resist clicking a picture. usually she has her front two tooth out or making piggie faces or literally blocking her face with hands, when i am clicking her. i think she thinks she is a celebrity, Afff.. so irritating. i cannot even take pictures nowadays without threatening them. Otherwise its all funny monkey faces. 
Moi : Sir, we are going to the Balavihar camp to Chinmaya Vibhooti the next couple of days and then their old school starts from May 7th. So we will not be able to have these daily classes that we have had these past two weeks.
Sir : Sure, call me back when you come and we can set up an evening time for the classes twice a week or however you want
Aishu ; No, I want to stay in French
Sir ; What do you mean ?
Me : She wants to continue French classes
Aishu was nodding vehemently. This was the girl, after the first day, took one look at the Sir and shallowly said he doesn't look good and all suave, and hence will not be categorically taking classes from him. Give me a lady teacher she had said.
But Mr. B has so skillfully with his infinite wisdom of handling kids, had made French fun while learning it in the process and the kids actually were looking forward to their regular 9.30 AM classes.

So the kids love it and so do i. I find it exotic enough to love it.

Anyway we will be going to the Balavihar camp. Will give you guys an update once done

Take Care
Au Revoir

It is time to ramble again and ramble i must as i want to keep this ball rolling. Okay you get the drift. You've read the ball rolling on day one and then you read about the ball rolling on day 2 and then you really don't want me to write about the ball rolling on day 3 as you can very well see, that the ball is rolling and hence I, in all my right senses should not make a post out of it.

I actually enjoyed writing yesterday's piece, okay i enjoy rambling, but it came with a sense of freedom as i was addressing you guys as well. That i didn't mind rambling for my audience and that fact that I have the temerity to expect an audience and to write for them. And the fact that i write what i want, for my audience as well. That is incredible freedom. Not only am i writing for myself but I am willing to show my rambling to my audience without any awkwardness. Now i call that real freedom, to be real even among the unreal (that is you folks).

I guess my confidence is increasing, not necessarily in my writing, but about myself, that i am ok to write this rambling piece of xx and not have a problem with you guys reading it.

And somehow today i did read my para post before writing this, so the para's are coming to me in the nick of time to leave a para.

I guess that is enough rambling for one day ?

Thank you for reading this post ;)