Posted in Best things in the world, Books, Diary, Fun, Knowledge, Spirituality

Vashistha’s teachings

Ashram days were filled with many interesting things including the sessions on Yoga Vashishtha by Nakul Bhaiyya . Movies like matrix, inception are inspired from this scripture. but careful! If you are not meditating regularly, this book is not for you, except for chapter one may be! Else you will go coockoo or think like you are playing jumanji. You can see the videos of talks by Nakul bhaiyya here. The original scripture is huge and the english translation is available in this book.Page 87 is particularly interesting! I laugh out loud reading it 🙂 Only a saint can think or write like that !

The book with its perplexing stories and words of wisdom about brahman takes you out of misery of mind caught up in small small things and concepts about life. The dialogue of this scripture happened between Lord Shri Ram and Vashishta Rishi in the royal court of King Dasharatha. The maturity of questions asked by Ram at the age of 16 and detailed answers by the sages are of great value and wisdom at today’s world too.

Posted in Best things in the world, New avenues

Back to Chess!

gheesh ! I havent’ blogged for like ages. earlier blogging was similar to breathing. latest activity i am doing is to teach chess! Chess has been my first love in life and its amazing how i used to think of Life as a game of Chess!

Its a cool thing that SSRVM has introduced Chess in its school for all the students. That way they learn to think properly! plan, strategize, organize, look for alternatives and so on!

Posted in Best things in the world

Hubli YES!+

The happy happening Hubli team of YES!+ graduates had organized a YES!+ course. It was my pleasure to teach that one! What gems and pearls they are! 

I was so well taken care of during the stay and travel.

Each time I teach a course, something opens up inside me! A certain load is lifted up. However now I don’t have that heavy and slightly sorrowish feeling at the end of the course which I used to have when I did seva as a volunteer – now I know its not an end of a great thing, its just a beginning!


Posted in Best things in the world

A clean Room

Recently Varun Bhalerao from Caltech University visited IIA and it was super pleasure to be with him and attend his talks. You combine a four years of IITB engineering training and on top of that the practical hands on work in a Space Technology lab at Caltech, you get Varun. An absolute genius when I met him years ago, in Fergusson college, he bagged gold medals in Astronomy olympiads in his junior college days. He made a rare switch from an EE Btech in IITB to Astro in Caltech!

He spoke about the new X ray space telescope they are building at Caltech, its requirements, capabilities, deployment schedules and many interesting things. The best part was Varun explained things very clearly, making it understood to the audience. The next day he spoke about other compact star objects and their studies.

The third day we visited some of our labs at CREST – IIA’s center at Hosakote. Apart from remote monitoring of Hanle’s observatory, this center has some ingenious labs for space technology testing and fabrication. The room is called Clean Room, because its dust particle density is ensured to be much smaller through filtered air supplied in the room. The room can be visited in special suits covering your whole body, and the transition to the rooms chambers is through an Air Shower. The chambers have successive cleanliness, in the sense that one has 3lac, 1lac, 10k and then even lesser number of particles larger than .5 microns per meter cube. the cleanliness is maintained to avoid any contamination of the space grade instruments. in Space telescopes, if you have even a small contaminant, then it will evaporate on exposure to the radiations, and spoil the entire set of observations.

The room had many ovens so to speak, containers where you can bake the material to specific temperature for evaporating its surface contaminants and then outgassing the vapors. if the vapors are more than allowed limit, the sample is sent back to the fabrication unit!

I learnt many new things, things not written in your textbook diagrams. for example, there is a pipe near primary in a reflecting telescope, which allows only the light reflected from secondary to go into it, thus avoiding any stray light directly entering in. Then there are axial and other safety precautions in the mounting of the telescope in the satellite. There are precautions on what materials you use to make all those small parts.

We also visited the optics lab where the research focus is on adaptive optics, a method of correction for atmospheric disturbance in the propagation of light from stars to the earth based telescopes. The lab had state of art facilities and equipments.

Posted in Best things in the world, Diary, New avenues

Danke Schooooooooooooooon!!!

First and foremost I would like to thank Prof. Jayant Murthy for his huge patience and perseverance.  My PhD work is complete because of his consistent encouragement and guidance in my research career. He gave me great insights and taught me lot of skills of scientific analysis.
I thank Prof. Arnab Rai Choudhuri for his valuable support and guidance.
This work wouldn’t have been possible without help of my seniors Dr. Sujatha and Dr. Shalima, and the discussions with them have been of great help. Lots of thanks to my collegues and friends from IIA,  – Anantha, Nataraj, Jaydeep, Sampoorna, Shashikant, Ekta and others. Its been a great research experience at Indian Institute of Astrophysics, and the Institute has supported my research and other requirements with lots of facilities and efficient Administrations. I thank all the members of IIA for the excellent research environment here.

PhD is a long time thing, and many many people have supported and encouraged me to complete it.

Thanks to Sabariram for standing by in all tough times; Karpagavalli for lots of verbal pinches and tasty dosas; Pooja for setting an example; Jaydeep for making science fun; Mansi for clearing the cobwebs in my mind; Rashmin for laughing out loud on me; Shailendra for  getting me going; Aditi for teaching me survival skills in cooking; Sabariram (again), Mahesh, Shantanu, Shyam,  Rohit, Divakar, Akhilesh, Vinod for sharing me space in their caves; Guruprasad and Archana for a lovely time in IISc; Amit (Ghost) for making joke out of everything; Priyamani for her jewel story; Ashutosh for being the complete Scientist friend; Bawa for giving me a Physics toy; DineshG for Making Study Simple; Rajesh S for helping me in planning out my life; Jeetu for leading as a Spiritual Scientist; my Parents for being an what they are; My Brother for a helping hand anytime; Bhabhi for making me dream big; Advaita, my nephew, for coming in this world at the right time{! 🙂 }; Many who consulted me as a Physics Maths Electronics teacher, for they kept the fire burning!

….oh this list is endless!

Let me see who didn’t help. Coming to think of it, That list is empty.

Thanks to Poojya Gurudev Sri Sri Ravishankar Guruji for giving me a new outlook to the world, life and myself.

So whose PhD degree is it anyway guys, its all yours ! Have it and Enjoy!! Cheers!

Posted in Best things in the world, Spirituality

Shrimad Bhagawad Geetha :- Chapter 2

Geeta Ch.2 v.1-10:- Krishna tells him to wake up,shake up and get going.but Arjuna gives some more reasons of not fighting. Then, as if smiling, Krishna spoke thus,”You grieve over those who should not be grieved for and yet speak like learned. Wise men do not sorrow over the dead or the living”.

Comments:- Notice that Krishna is saying this with a smile! often consoling/guiding a friend in trouble, we get involved in that person’s emotions and lose our peace of mind. Madhusudan is completely centred within himself.

And he tells not to grieve on the dead or the living. how many times a day do we say oh I am sad because of this pain in body or that person said this, or some trouble at work, and so on, which is nothing but lamenting for the living. He even says not to grieve over those who have left the body.

Geetha Ch.2 v.11-12:- In fact there was never a time when I was not,or when you and these kings were not. Nor is it a fact that hereafter we shall all cease to be.Just as boy hood youth and old age are attributed to the soul through this body,even so it attains another body.The wise man does not get deluded by this.

Comments:- A firm establishment in understanding of re-birth puts down all cravings and aversions for something in this lifetime. The re-birth is phenomenally described akin to the simple natural transition from childhood to youth and old age. The mistake of my aging , because body is aging, is also pointed out.

Geeta Ch 2:- 14:15 Arjuna have forbearance with respect to the transient experience of objects of senses, which give feelings of opposite like hot and cold, happiness and unhappiness. One who keeps joy and sorrow on same footing, he is eligible for immortality.

Comments:- How long does the taste of your most favorite dish last on your tongue or the joy lasts in the mind!? few minutes? That’s what is the transient nature of the experience of the objects of senses.

Geeta Ch2,16:17-The unreal has no existence, and the real never ceases to be; the reality of both has thus been perceived by the seers of Truth.Know that alone to be imperishable which pervades this universe; for no one has power to destroy this indestructible substance.

Geeta Ch2 v.17-22. The body is perishable, and the soul is imperishable, indestructible. Like one changes from old clothes to new ones, soul takes a new body in next birth.

Comments:- How long is the shelf life of the human body!? ? 30-60 years… may be 100! then what! where will you be 100 years from now.
Those who feel sad about terminally ill patients also need to know that everyone is terminally ill! going to go sometime!
I recall a joke. a patient was told by a doc that he is going to live only 6 more months. the patient became happy and smiling and doctor asked, why are you happy? he said, I have 6 months to live, you could even die tomorrow, who knows! 🙂 😉

Geeta ch2.23-27:- the soul is indestructible. And, Arjuna, if you should suppose this soul to be subject to constant birth and death, even then you should not grieve like this.For, in that case death is certain for the born, and rebirth is inevitable for the dead. You should not, therefore, grieve over the inevitable.

Comments:- So many child prodigies are clear examples of re-births. So many cases children recognize their “previous” address and tell the exact details there. Past regression therapy is a well accepted past life therapy now.  So that means past lives exist. So also future lives exist coz life is an expression of energy and energy can neither be created nor destroyed, it can only be transformed from one form to another.

Geeta ch2:28-19:- Krishna tells of life as a journey from unmanifest to manifest and back to unmanifest again. He tells that very few look at the soul with wonder, some talk about it with wonder, some listen about it with wonder, and some other do not know it even after listening about it.

Comments:- Two interesting recollections.

One, Q:- Guruji, if the souls are born again, how come population of is increasing. A:- because some other species like birds are getting extinct.
Also, its like a neon light sign board on the streets. It is a set of light bulbs. At some time some of them glow, and you see the advertise of Colgate. other time you see Ad of Reliance. Like that, some souls shine at some point of time. Others remain unmanifest. We are in Air like the fish in the water. Our bodies are floating in the ocean of consciousness.

One day two fish were talking:- Have you seen ocean? Other said, No, but my grandfather said he saw it!

Like that we talk of the eternal ever pervading consciousness with astonishment.

Geeta ch2.30-41. Madhusudan tells Arjuna to fight for the reasons of reputation, duty and others. Since he is still not ready to do so, he speaks about Karma this Yoga of action the intellect is determinate and directed singly towards one ideal; whereas the intellect of the undecided (ignorant men moved by desires) wanders in all directions, after innumerable aims.

Geeta ch.2.42-47:-Next Keshava told Arjuna to have a determined intellect concentrated on the Divine. And the famous verse of Karmanyevadhikaraste:- ” Your right is to work only and never to the fruit thereof. Do not be the cause of the fruit of action; nor let your attachment be to inaction.”

Comments:- Its been a constant reminder of this verse. Went to talk about part one course, and got registrations for part two! The fruit of action is His job, ours is to do the action!

Geeta Ch.2,48:54:-How to do the action? By being centered, with steady mind and intellect. Yoga is skill in Action. Yoagh Karmasu Kaushalam. Then Arjuna asks, what is the definition (mark) of a God-realized soul, stable of mind and established in Samådhi (perfect tranquillity of mind)? How does the man of stable mind speak, how does he sit, how does he walk?

Geetha ch2:55-57. What follows is a amazing description by Krishna on the mind of one whose intellect is steady. He has totally dropped all desires and is content with himself. He is unperturbed by sorrow, unexcited in happiness, and anger, fear and cravings have left him. He is unmoved by ups and downs and neither hates nor rejoices in them.

Comments:- Guruji had spoken on these verses too. long back. he took these verses 3 at a time, and even made us recite!

Geetha ch2. 58:60- The way tortoise takes in all his limbs when hit by something, one whose mind is steady, he retrieves his senses from the objects. One who is not having food, his desires leave him. Also when one gets a taste of the highest (the divine), the taste in sense objects leaves him. Even for one who is practicing self control, the forceful senses take away the pleasantness of the mind.

Sam John and Ashutosh Jogalekar like this.

Abhay Karnataki Love you Sam! A Hindu liking and appreciating Gita is good of course, but a Christian liking it is fantastic!! I would anytime like to listen to Bible and Jesus stories from you! cheers!

Geetha ch2:61-63: Controlling those all (senses) be focussed on me (divine). For one who has a say over senses, his intellect is well established. The man dwelling on sense-objects develops attachment for them; from attachment springs up desire,and from desire comes anger.From anger arises delusion; from delusion,loss of memory(of the self); from that loss of intelligence; and from that one goes to complete ruin.

This downward flow of life force energy is easily seen in all teenager heartbreak suicides.

Geetha ch2:64-65: [So does it mean that one needs to completely keep away from all objects of senses? Not quite], One who experiences the objects of senses, Being with oneself, devoid of cravings and aversions, grace bestows on him. Grace removes all the sorrow and any harm done. Then there is pleasantness of mind and the intelligence downs.

Geetha ch 2:66-68:One who is not united with the self has neither the feelings nor the intelligence.Without (proper) feelings,how can one have peace and without peace,how can one be happy?One whose mind keeps following the sense objects,his intelligence is swayed away like a ship in a storm.That’s why O powerful Arjuna, one who has withdrawn the senses from the sense objects,his intelligence is well established.

Next two verses are each worth chewing on for one whole day! Geetha ch.2: 69:- That which is night for all the beings, There the wise ones are awake. That which beings are awake into, is considered night by the seers.

Geetha Ch.2 70:-As the waters of different rivers enter the ocean, which, though full on all sides, remains undisturbed; likewise, he, in whom all enjoyments merge themselves without causing disturbance, attains peace; not he who hankers after such enjoyments.

Comments:- I would translate it slightly differently:- one who hankers over desires doesn’t get them fulfilled, but one who is unperturbed like an ocean, the way rivers flow into ocean, his desires get fulfilled by themselves, even before arising. Its like someone wanting to feed you even before you are hungry.

Ashutosh and Maitrayee like this.

Cheers Ashutosh, Maitrayee! I guess the geeta press gorakhpur book needs some corrections. Some places, the author has written the exact literal translation, leaving aside the inner meaning, and some places he has gone overboard in the spiritual meaning!

Geetha ch2. 71-72:-He who has given up all desires, and moves free from attachment, egotism and thirst for enjoyment attains peace.Arjuna, such is the state of the God-realized soul; having reached this state, he overcomes delusion. And established in this state, even at the last moment, he attains Brahmic Bliss.

Thus, in the Upanishad sung by the Lord, the Science of Brahma, the scripture of Yoga, the dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna, ends the 2nd chapter entitled Sankhya Yoga(the Yoga of Knowledge).