Service & Karma Scoring

With no knowledge of what one had been and no clue as to what one would be, why worry about the karma ledger? On top of it, in terms of clarity, D/L scoring for rain-affected matches in cricket is better than Karma scoring!

Previous birth has 3 connotations: (1)Our previous birth (2)Our own yester-years in the current birth, (3) Previous generation, which is our parents
In this, Parents’ Karma is the most menacing thing, because it implies that our bad karma will affect our children and that’s a chilling thought capable of blackmailing one into clocking good karma points.

‘Service / Dhaanam’ with humility is Indian ethos as against ‘help’ with overt or covert conceit.

Service, in Hinduism, is a self-cleansing act and operates at individual level. ‘Service’ is seen as a good Karma and is carried out to mitigate the effects of bad karma. The philosophy is that effects of karma can be countered only by another karma of the same individual.

Service is also seen as an Ankusa (a stick with which mahouts control elephants) to tame the ego. Hence, while one is offering Service, it shd be done with humility, almost thanking the beneficiary for providing an opportunity to service him. Scholars like Kanchi Paramacharya are against creating an organization for providing service and they prescribe Service at individual level. Where there is Organization, there is structure and hierarchy. Where there is structure and hierarchy, there is Ego which is counterproductive to the basic objective of Service, which is emancipation from ego. Rotary too is not an exception!

With such lofty values in the country, one is shocked to see the donors’ vanity when they paint their names even on the tube-lights donated to temples, sacrificing the luminescence of the light as well as the self !

Shanks

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Fragmented Society & JK

Fragmented Society no good! – JK

Fragmented society is a poor product of man’s search for security. While seeking comprehensive security, they achieve only psychological security, with their very act undermining their physical security. To JK, even patriotism is a dirty word because it works against humanism. Vasudaiva kudumbakam is a great concept, expressed beautifully in Tamil also as yaadum oore, yaavarum kelir (Relatives).

JK’s prescription is to evacuate all thoughts(which comes out of memory, which in turn is the outcome of experience/knowledge). He says retain knowledge pertaining to functional skills, evacute all other thoughts. Look at every moment afresh, with no judgement, which is possible only when we carry no baggages in the mind in the form of thoughts/knowledge.

I was’nt aware that our beautiful and happy RECT days had such a vicious side to it. Nice to see Gopi and Jaques talking about their experience, with no bitterness.

Sankaran

Madness

I am fascinated by madness! In fact there is a thin line between madness and creativity, if at all there is any difference. I think madness/creativity is a post-result nomenclature. If an idea/concept is successful, people call it a great creative idea and if it fails, the same people are quick to condemn it as madness.

To draw a parallel from cricket, when a batsman hits a six, how often have we have seen our erudite commentators hailing it as a great shot and that the batsman played his natural game under pressure. If, by a slight margin of error, he gets caught on the boundary, the same commentator would talk about indiscretion in shot selection!

There is an element of serendipity to all successes, being at the right place with the right idea at the right time. This combination is too complex a model for the human mind to solve and one has to dig into his intuition to fathom it. Isn’t that “madness”…something that defies ‘logic’. The humans haven’t yet effectively solved the equations engaging the logical and illogical, absolute and the absurd, serious and the comic,. But experience shows that they are all inter-related.

Seldom success is achieved by focusing on one business idea or a model in the beginning. One attempts a few things before arriving at the winning formula, if he is lucky. Though ‘focus’ makes a better storyline, invariably any success story is an edited version of the real story.

I would rather attempt something mad and give myself a chance to be creative and be successful. Not to be creative and following the beaten path is like committing suicide for the fear of getting murdered! Excellence demands consistency, but if you are consistent you are vulnerable. A paradoxical situation! So as Tom Peters says, while dumping his own book “In search of Excellence”, screw around vigorously (SAV), you have a chance to succeed. Probability….as he says GAK ( God alone Knows) !

So the taraka mantra is madness (SAV)! Hail madness!!

Shanks

Spiritual Politics/Rule

My recent interactions with a few friends who are heavily into spiritual reading set me thinking. I felt they could do well to focus on relationships, have a better sense of self-worth, develop sense of humor, empathy etc. than get lost in self-discovery, renunciation, self-denials etc. in which also they were not doing too well!

Oriental & Occidental wisdom:

While Eastern spiritual readings help address the core of the individual, it does not adequately handle the peripheral behavior. Converse is true in case of Western behavioral sciences. Spiritual reading precludes transactional behavior and the western behavioral science precludes themes on self-discovery and spiritual evolution. In other words, spiritual readings help one connect with oneself and the behavior science with the outside world. So while doing a lot of spiritual readings, one can neglect behavior science readings at his/her own peril.

I wonder if the two streams are still that different today – maybe they are. Haven’t done enough readings to confirm my hypothesis, but I would be really surprised if confluence of Oriental and Occidental wisdom has already happened. May be the convergence is on the horizon, with the abundant mixing of oriental brains with the western management stream.

Vedic Management:

Guru Chinmayananda’s school talks about Vedic Management which looks good to me with the stated objectives of :

 a. Functional without being frenzied
 b. Confident without appearing omnipotent
 c. Humble without sounding helpless

Spiritual Rule/Politics:

If such objectives are met by a Society at individual level, then Politics can get spiritual or Dharmic without becoming diabolic. In Indian Society it is possible because our social construct is on such premises. Pl see my blog on “Service & Karma Points” to appreciate how we are different.

There is hope!.

Shanks

Taj Mahal or Tejo Mahalaya

With the Ayodhya issue likely to be resolved in the next few months I thought this article would be relevant. I have read the book “Taj Mahal or Tejo Mahalaya” in 1984. Prof Oak is the Uncle of Gunds (IIM batchmate Nargundkar). We both had discussed this book. He remembers his uncle as a brilliant scholar, but quixotic at times; a researcher who decides on inferences first and goes about collecting data.

Taj, unlike other mausoleums, faces East like a Hindu temple. However, it is common knowledge that Moghuls either constructed their buildings on top of plundered Hindu temples or used the pillars and other reusable building materials of plundered temples. So it won’t be surprising to see evidence of Hindu architecture in many Moslem constructions in India. Qutab Minar is also no exception, with the first tier of Qutab replete with Rajput architecture.

The book does make brilliant reading and probably it is worthwhile investigating the veracity of Oak’s claims vis-a-vis usual history. There are times these scholars undermine their own cause by going overboard with their motivated research. Oak went on to write another book called “Christianity or Krishnity” drawing parallels between Jesus and Krishna (starting with both taking birth at cowshed). Such bizarre and overzealous claims tend to take away even the genuine attention and praise his works might merit.

I have read another book called “From Astrology to History through Astronomy” where a great Vedic scholar arrives at dates for various events of Indian epics. One of his stunning claims is that Hanuman jumped to Lanka from Gujarat coast and here comes the piece-de-resistance…Lanka is between Kerala and Madagascar (off Africa). He challenges the Govt to look for the Sethu (bridge) in that stretch of Indian Ocean.

Hanuman jumped 90 yojanas according to Valmiki. One yojana is 9 miles. So with an 810 miles leap, it can’t be between Rameswaram and the current SriLanka. Either one of the 2 or both the locations must be wrong if 90 yojana is correct!

Shanks

Bengali Beauties

A few years ago I was talking to one of my classmates, who shares my passion for that sultry Bengali femme fatale, Nandita Das. When I meekly suggested that Debashree Roy is another beauty he might want to consider (Oh! What a beautiful long neck she has!), he came down heavily and rejected the idea! It is Nandita followed by Aparna for him. Later I realized that Nandita Das is an Oriya and her father is the famous painter, Jatin Das whose book, “My village, my life” made waves. Ethnicity, as you would readily agree, hardly matters!

What about the other Sen girls…..Suchitra, Moon Moon…..or Mere sapnon ki Rani Tagore girl and the ever green Sharmeele Rakhi…..oh the list is sooo looong. How do they make such beauties?!

Sometime back I saw the Tamil movie ” Minnale”. When I went to the movie, I thought I was going to see a 3G Sen…..Reema d/o Moon Moon d/o Suchitra. Though quite not in the league of Nandita, she is worth a dekko. Quite a romantic movie, adding to the romance was the nice ambience, beer, Reema and the absence of wife!! Later in the press, Reema had screamed that she is not Moon Moon’s daughter and that she is a model and a first generation actress. Jr Moon is Rhea Sen.

Bengal has indeed produced a bevy of beauties! My apologies to the Chatterjees, I nearly forgot to mention that ebullient Moushmi, the lady with crooked teeth! Amidst all this chronicling, Jaya Bhaduri is getting left out, but I guess acting talents dont count for much in getting selected to this great group !!

You also have Aparna Sen’s daughter Konkana Sen who gave a compelling performance in Mrs.Iyer and daughter of Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen…….Nandana Sen of Seducing Maarya fame {?} and the Miss Universe Sushmita Sen.

Do I hear someone rooting for Bipasha Basu to be included in this roll of honour? Done! Just as I complete this article, market is agog with news/pictures of another Bengali Bomb that has just exploded. While, I am trying to remember the name, I am still struggling to forget her form! I understand this girl will make Bipasha’s escapades look like teddy bear’s picnic! I just got her name and it is Tanushree Dutta.

Hope you ‘d enjoy this frivolous piece of History/Literature!(As You Like It)

CAT Scan for Marriage

Right at the outset let me clarify that I am not a sexist, but that doesn’t stop me from writing or enjoying sexist jokes or articles on my theories on man-woman relationships like this one.
This morning, as usual, I was having filter coffee and an argument with my wife, when suddenly this pathbreaking idea struck me.
Why not use quanti scores for evaluating a marriage or choosing a partner, given that men are from Mars and women are from Venus. Let the boy and the girl write CAT/GRE/GMAT etc. You would have the following scenarios: (Legend :- M-Man W-Women G-Good Score B-Bad Score))
1.MG/WG: Steady, excitement-free life.Marriage will be safe.
2.MG/WB: Typical Indian marriage. If the wife is submissive man takes all decisions. Man with poor values might cheat his wife. If woman is not submissive, life will be chaotic on allv fronts. Quality of decisions will dpend on the involvement and commitment of the man.Flings outside of marriage by the man is highly likely.
3. MB/WG: If the man is submissive, life will be peaceful. Woman is likely to have a rare fling or two. If the man is Dominant, marriage will be chaotic with frequent arguments.
4.MB/WB: This looks like what the Doctor ordered for a happy and blissful marriage, if one or both are submissive.

Assumptions & Findings:
1.Direct correlation between Quanty scores and Rational /Objective behaviour.
2. Marriage not the right choice for an Objective man. At best marriage will be a tolerant association for domestic convenience and social acceptance.
3. Objective woman’s marriage also is fraught with a lot of perilous options. But, if we put together all the intangibles, in the Indian MIG context, Women benefit more from a marriage.

Next time you look for a match for your kids, apart from horoscope matching, do a CAT scan as well!!