My Homage And My Pledge


Sairam

I pay homage today to a larger than life phenomenon knowing that my words would fail to fully convey what I am feeling.

On this 90th Birthday of Sri Sathya Sai Baba, I offer my humble tribute to the tireless efforts of a Loving Divinity that walked on this earth physically for 85 years.  His clarion call to “Love all, Serve All; Help Ever, Hurt Never” reverberated from a tiny hamlet of Puttaparthi in South India – a dot that was not on the world map, a village so remote once upon a time, that access to it was through many means of transportation including a walk through the sands of Chitravathi River.

That call to Love that started 76 years ago when He was a mere lad of 14 now has spread through in 123 countries in the world, touching millions of people directly and indirectly.

I heard that call 3 times before I took serious note of it, once in 1969, once in 1983 and finally in 1993.

22 years later I am ready to not only receive but live the call for Love fully, openly and humbly, grateful to have found it, knowing that I will never fully understand or fathom its power but craving to be enveloped and anchored in its simplicity of living and loving the LOVE that is omnipresent, omnipotent and omniscient.

That LOVE continues to show the way to a Peaceful, Truthful living with Righteous Conduct that ultimately leads to Non-Violence in Thought, Word and Deed.

How can I ever pay homage to the LOVE that

  • Is pervading and patiently persuasive in its eagerness to show the way?
  • Demonstrated tirelessly for over 7 decades what love is all about, without taking a break?

Is it possible even to think that I can understand or fathom the depths of that LOVE that shone purely in its simplicity and was brighter than a thousand suns?

Is it humanly possible to peer into the depths of those loving eyes that saw everyone in their naked vulnerability and yet love them to their core?

Can I hide from a pervading force that is embedded in every cell and atom of everything that seem to operate from that Force?

No, it is not humanly possible for me to understand that so I will not attempt to analyse.

I will just allow myself to be enveloped in the arms of that gentle LOVE with total acceptance and through that touch I will come to know that LOVE enveloping me is already in me and is not separate from me.  It is in me, around me, in front and back, above and below, always in all ways.

When I understand this, I have understood the LOVE that walked this earth even though no longer physically present in  a form, is very much present in all the deep recesses of every living atom that is being guided and driven by it.

I pay homage to that LOVE which physically embodied as Sathya Sai Baba and walked on this earth to show and tell what loving is all about, what life is and to wake up and recognize that I am that LOVE, You are that LOVE, we all are that LOVE which manifests in a variety of colors, forms, shapes, sizes, smells and tastes, so we all can enjoy its varied flavors.

I pay homage to Sathya Sai Baba who made it possible for me to recognise that, not only recognize but to live with LOVE as an anchor that moors me solid in the flowing waters of life so I can become a resting place for the restless passers-by.

The ultimate tribute I can pay to Him is to make my life that resting place to others as He is to me. 

I can only do that if I become Love in Action like He showed through His life.

Today on His 90th Birthday, I pledge that I will put my heart and soul in to practicing and living His message of Love every minute of every day, which means, I will see Him in every one.

I can only do that if I make My Life HIS MESSAGE which is LOVE.

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

 

 

 

What Does Your Destiny Depend On……


Do you ever wonder about this?

English: Chaitanya Jyothi Museum in Prashanthi...
English: Chaitanya Jyothi Museum in Prashanthi Nilayam is a spiritual museum which records the life and works of Sathya Sai Baba. Museum devoted to the life and teachings of Sathya Sai Baba. Museum has won several international awards for design. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Are you caught in the thick and thin, riding the waves of success and defeat, up and down, at the mercy of the Emotional Gods whose active role is to rob you of your peace of mind?

Want to know how to maintain the peace of mind regardless of what is going on  around you?

Listen here – Thought for Thursday – a message from Sathya Sai Baba – read in my voice – a new experiment for me (voice message instead of written alone).

What do you think?

Share your thoughts here or on Facebook page. Love to hear your comments.

Until next time

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

 

4 Fundamental Desires That Fuel The 3 Enemies – Part I


Español: Sathya Sai Baba alimentado los pobres...
Español: Sathya Sai Baba alimentado los pobres año 1948 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last 3 blog posts I talked about the 3 Enemies that Rob Your Health in all the 5 personality domains and in the last post promised to talk about an antidote for these enemies.

Well it is now time to explore that idea.

What do you think are the fundamental desires that motivate us human beings to live on this planet?  No matter what you do, life is governed and ruled by all of these desires.

You cannot escape from them.  They overlap each other – one leading to the other and eventually becoming one huge pot of a massive desire.

Do you know what they are?

The 4 Fundamental Desires are

  1. The Desire to Live
  2. The Desire to Create 
  3. The Desire to Experience
  4. The Desire to have Continuity for our Existence

Are you wondering how these desires are related to the 3 enemies?  Well, if you look at the first one – The Desire to Live is connected to Curry (Food in general) – don’t’ you think?

The desire to live is a fundamental human trait, not just human but every species on this planet has a desire to live as long as it can.

That basic desire which used to be satisfied with simple sustenance over the centuries now turned into a massive industry that is billions of dollars worth with trillions of choices – The food industry

As the choices increased, the Desire to Live gradually turned into a Desire to Consume  and now we are at a point where this desire is potentially killing us, both through excessive consumption and excessive wastage. We all know what excessive consumption does to us – from obesity to diabetes to heart disease – all life style related diseases point to one thing – the type of food that we consume.

Whilst the developed nations are slowly killing themselves through excessive consumption, the wastage that happens in these  nations is also one of the reasons for the starving deaths of the millions in the other part of the world.

We are dying due to excess, they are dying due to lack – where is the equality?

Answer to this – NO, Not give up eating ( I like my food too)

Desire is fundamental, we cannot live without desires.  Desire motivates us, desire drives us. So stopping to desire is not an option because that leads to self-deprivation and we cannot survive self-deprivation for long.

So, what is the answer?

Ceiling on Desires

It is a concept and a program coined by Sathya Sai Baba.  Knowing that we have desires, knowing that our desires motivate and drive us,  we actively put a ceiling on those desires.  Measure the resulting savings in monetary terms and donate that money to a charity of choice.

Example: If you like chocolate ( or anything else for that matter), instead of having 2 chocolate bars, have one and the money you would spend on the second chocolate is donated to a charity.  I am sure you can come up with any number of examples.

So, how does a Ceiling on Desire for food help your health?

  1. Physically – your ceiling will help you (of course that is obvious).
  2. Mentally – you are satisfied about your self-control.
  3. Emotionally – you are happy that you are saving money.
  4. Socially – you can be an example, a role model to others in many ways – from saving money to looking beautiful. You can also be the talk of the town (wink, wink)
  5. Spiritually – the sacrifice you made by not choosing that extra is literally going to give life to others. The resulting joy and contentment you gain through your direct contribution to society is priceless.

All that through a little act of putting an active ceiling on desire – isn’t it worth thinking about?

When we consciously think about it, we waste so much food.  Forget about supermarkets throwing out good food, we waste so much food in our homes. Our pantries and fridges are over flowing and half of that stuff never sees daylight and yet we are driven to buy more and eat more.

As a start, I am going to put a ceiling on my Coffee consumption – only 1 cup per day, that is from 6 a day down to 1 a day.  If I convert that into dollars, I would save at least $ 15.00 a day.  I will get a jar and put that money in every time I feel like a coffee and donate to a charity.  So, Good Bye 5 cups of Coffee…………

What is it for you?  What ceiling are you going to put today on your eating habits?

Open declarations help us stick to our plans better.   Please comment here and publicly affirm your ceiling.

Also stay tuned for the next 3 posts on how the other 3 desires are fueling our remaining 2 enemies of Hurry and Worry.

Until next time

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

W.A.T.C.H Out!!!!!


 

Stopwatch

What am I asking you to watch out? Find out below.

WATCH OUT “……cautions a Parent

“WATCH IT”………warns a Friend or a Foe

“WATCH WHAT?”…………says my mind.

The cautioning of the parent is about – Words

The warning of a friend or a foe is about – Actions

The inquiry of my mind is about – Thoughts

regarding watching out my – Character

and my – Heart

So watching Words, Actions, and Thoughts will give shape to Character that oozes the Love in my Heart.

If it all starts with words,  what kind of words?

Words that are Soft, Sweet and Loving only – all the time and in all times.

For that to happen our words have to go through the following gate keepers – says  Sathya Sai Baba.  Before we say anything we should ask ourselves –

“Is this the Truth?

Will it hurt me?

Will it hurt the others?

Will it improve on silence?”

The answers will determine whether I should say anything.

Well, as there wouldn’t be much that can improve on silence, I won’t have a lot to say EVER, will I?

LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!

Seriously, if my words are the first step in shaping my character, then I will be WATCH…ing my words.  Will you join me?

What kind of words will you use, with yourself and others – today, tomorrow and the day after?

Let me know. I am keen to hear.

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

Who Is The Master Mind Behind Your Life?


Sai Baba
Sai Baba (Photo credit: Raios de Luz – Gláucia Góes)

Did you ever think of that? Who influences you in your decisions? What is the moral fabric on which you write your story?

I would like to share mine here.  This story is my spiritual journey so far in a nutshell and I am attempting to pay homage to a larger than life phenomenon who has directly affected my life and transformed me.  I know that my words would fail to convey my feelings and yet I have to try, because through that trying I reinforce what I feel and give shape to it.

It has been two years that a Loving Divinity in the form of Sathya Sai Baba walked on this earth physically for 85 years.  His clarion call to “Love all, Serve All; Help Ever, Hurt Never” reverberated from a tiny hamlet of Puttaparthi in South India – a dot that was not on the world map until recently, a village so remote once upon a time, that access to it was through many means of transportation including a walk through the sands of Chitravathi River.

That call to Love that started 73 years ago when He was a mere lad of 14 now has spread through just about every country in the world, touching millions of people directly and indirectly.

I heard that call 3 times before I took serious note of it, once in 1969, once in 1983 and finally in 1993.

November 1969 – A Friday evening, a quiet street in Red Hills, Hyderabad, India.  An evening of regular devotional singing at a retired Judge’s house; a nine year old girl led the bhajan “Hara Shiva Shankara” to a room full of packed young, old, middle aged men and women ecstatic in their collective expression of ritualistic worship paying tribute to their Gods.

A middle aged woman approached the 9yr old and asked if she attends Bal Vikas classes.  The girl never heard of that name before and she was told that is a weekly class for young children to learn new devotional songs and stories about God.

Coming from an Orthodox Hindu Brahmin family where worship of Lord Shiva is as normal and spontaneous as breathing, the girl eagerly nodded agreement which meant a 5km walk each way every Sunday afternoon come rain, hail or shine for the next 4 years.

As life took over, the central figure of Bal Vikas classes faded into background and the girl grew up to get married and lead the dutiful life of a good daughter-in-law and wife – in that order.  Religious worship was still a strong driver in the girl’s life, but this time in the in-law’s house the worshiped deity is not Lord Shiva but the Living Lord Sathya Sai Baba.  The girl was only a respectful observer from a distance with no close personal attachment or ties to this Lord.  She heard the exciting stories narrated by her mother-in-law with half an ear.

February 1984 – 6 months pregnant with her first child, the girl, one day saw Sai Baba in her dream.  He came, stood in front of her and said “Anandam, Anandam, Nityanandam, Brahmanandam; Omkaram Para Brahma Swaroopam” – loosely translated it was about Supreme Bliss and ‘Om’ the ultimate embodiment of Divinity.

The girl woke up startled at the dream so vivid and real, turned to her mother-in-law for guidance but was brushed off with a comment that it wasn’t easy to dream about Sai Baba.  Confused at the comment, perplexed at the seeming reality of the dream and not having any answers or further guidance, the girl moved on with life but never forgot the dream or what was said in the dream.

That was the second clarion call beckoning to follow the ‘Living Love’ walking this earth on its mission to show and tell what Love is all about.

Fast forward to May 1993 – life brought the girl to Australia for a better future but unbeknown to her, the real force behind migration was the ‘Living Love’ trying to connect with her brought her here to reveal itself.

A little ad in the local paper caught the girl’s attention which read “Sathya Sai Baba bhajans on every Friday, call……. for info”. “Wow! I can take my mother-in-law for the bhajans, I like to sing as well and she will enjoy her weekly sessions that she misses so much” – were the thoughts running through the girl’s head as she drove her mother-in-law on a cold, dark, wet evening on a Friday in May.

There were a whole heap of books on Sai Baba.  The girl who likes to read picked up “Man of Miracles” and “Holy man and the Psychiatrist”.  The miracles of that Holy Psychiatrist have hit home hard and memories of the dream came flooding back as the girl realised the previous two callings from LOVE to love and patience with which that LOVE waited and repeated its call.

The girl was ready to receive it fully, openly and humbly, grateful to have found it, knowing that she will never fully understand or fathom its power but craving to be enveloped and anchored in its simplicity of living and loving the LOVE that is physically present in its form.

That LOVE showed a way to a Peaceful, Truthful living with Righteous Conduct that ultimately leads to Non-Violence in Thought, Word and Deed.

How can the girl ever pay homage to the LOVE that is pervading and patiently persuasive in its eagerness to show the way?

How can the girl pay homage to the LOVE that demonstrated tirelessly, without taking a break, for over 7 decades, what love is all about, ?

Is it possible even to think that she can understand or fathom the depths of that LOVE that shines purely in its simplicity and is brighter than a thousand suns?

Is it humanly possible to peer into the depths of those loving eyes that see everyone in their naked vulnerability and yet love them to their core?

Can she hide from a pervading force that is embedded in every cell and atom of everything that seem to operate from that Force?

No, it is not humanly possible for me to understand that.  So, I will not attempt to understand or analyse.  I will just allow myself to be enveloped in the arms of that Gentle LOVE with total acceptance and through that touch I will come to know that LOVE enveloping me is already in me and is not separate from me.  It is in me, around me, in front and back, above and below, always in all ways.

When I understand this, I have understood the LOVE that walked this earth even though no longer physically present in  a form, is very much present in all the deep recesses of every living atom that is being guided and driven by it.

I pay homage to that LOVE which physically embodied as Sathya Sai Baba and walked on this earth to show and tell what loving is all about, what life is and to wake up and recognise that I am that LOVE, You are that LOVE, we all are that LOVE which manifests in a variety of colors, forms, shapes, sizes, smells and tastes, so we all can enjoy its varied flavors.

I pay homage to Sathya Sai Baba who made it possible for us to recognise that, not only recognise but to live with LOVE as an anchor that moors us solid in the flowing waters of life so we can become a resting place for the restless passers by.

The ultimate homage I can pay to Him is to become that resting place as He is to me.  I can only do that if I become Love in Action like He showed through His life.

I can only do that if I make My Life HIS MESSAGE which is LOVE.

Until next time

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

5 Ways To Bring Love Into Your Life – A Gift Offer


Love Love Love
Love Love Love (Photo credit: Gregory Jordan)

I have written this post for Christmas 2011.  The reason to re blog this is to offer a gift to all my readers so far, who actually grew in number recently.  Thank you for taking time to read and comment.  I really appreciate it. Read on and there is a gift to download

A year and a bit later, whether it is festive season or not, I have grown to believe that every day is a festival if we want to be.  The choice is ours.  If we dwell in our story and only look at the story taking wrong turns, then it will be hard to share the love.

There is a manifesto to download and it is yours for FREE.  Download it, print it, share it – do whatever –  your choice.  My only hope is that you like it and live it.

So here is the blog from Christmas 2011.

This  is the season of Joy, Fun, Friendship and Love.  A season to take stock on how our lives are travelling and to bring more of what we cherish. ‘ Love’ stands right there at the top of the list along with Truth, Peace, Right-Conduct and Non-Violence.

However what we find in today’s fast paced society is that these are the rapidly declining values.

We all agree that we need to slow down and bring back our attention to how we manifest what we truly are – Love

As it is said in the Bible

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Can we live up to that – Yes we can

Do we have the potential – Of course we do

Its just that our potential to love is covered under the many layers of soot of busyness, of trying to win the rat race, of selfishness, of greed, of jealousy, of envy, of anger, of hatred, of desire etc.,

When we blow this soot away gently with the winds of Truth and Right-Conduct , the embers of red hot Love will be visible underneath glowing in Peace and Non-Violence.

Want to know how to do this?

Get your free copy of ‘Manifesto of Love’ attached below and find out how Love is the undercurrent of all human values.  This is my thank you gift to you all for supporting me in this blogging adventure.  It was a learning experience and I am slowly getting a handle on how to write, how to blog and how to serve you all through this.

Manifesto of love

Wish you all Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Hope 2012 brings you all the joy, happiness, health and wealth that you deserve.

I am sincerely hoping, wishing, desiring that I will be able to share a lot more with you through this blog.  I hope you do enjoy reading, if you do please subscribe.

Until next time

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

Does It Matter How You Look?


Face.2
Face.2 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After the International Women’s Day has come and gone, I am reeling with this question just as much as I was before the day.  I was a speaker at Women in Chamber’s luncheon, I was interviewed by ABC local radio, and I was a guest contributor on ABC Open ‘s “What’s your Story?”  

I am suddenly pushed into a public arena that is far open and wide for my own comfort as I am not confident about my looks and dress sense.  These issues (like the photo in ABC Open’s story) rob me off my self-esteem slightly, well actually a lot.  I do say ‘Looks shouldn’t matter’ but I know they do for me even for a little while and I am sure they matter for majority of us.

I feel shy and nervous and inferior in new surroundings because I don’t have a perfect smile or my clothes are never suitable for the occasion.  Once my passion for life and practical understanding of people shines through I get back into my groove.  It is strange and I battle with that every day.  It goes to show saying these things is easy, actually following it through is the most difficult part.

I don’t believe there is a single person on this planet who is not happy about some aspect of how they look.  The feedback we get from each other when we first shake hands or make eye contact says a lot.   The unspoken words, the facial expressions, the body language –  creates a sense of self instantaneously.  In the presence of some people, one is not so self-conscious, where as in the presence of some other people, one feels uncomfortable instantaneously.  Are they perceived judgments by me or real thoughts of people that I can sense?

Acceptance is crucial to belonging. When we are thrown into new surroundings, unless we feel accepted instantly, we don’t feel comfortable.

There is no respect in judgment is there? When there is no Respect, there is no Acceptance and therefore no Love.

Respect only arises when we recognise and address the Love within.  Would that come with practice or spontaneously?

I am not raped, I don’t live in abject poverty, I am educated, I don’t have to struggle to establish my rightful presence, I don’t have fistula caused by genital mutilation, I don’t face a civil war, or guns or bombs on a daily basis, I live in a country where I can speak up and speak for, my freedom is not impeded, I don’t live in fear of survival, I don’t have to flee from every known comfort and surrounding to protect myself, I feel protected and I am protected, my family is safe,…..  When I enjoy so many privileges automatically, for which more than half the women population fight for on a daily basis, why am I concerned about how I look?

Concern about looks is a first world country’s artificially created dis-ease that keeps one self-centered and selfish.  If living in such comfortable surroundings that I expect to be my right to have, creates a broody artificial sense of insecurity and makes me a demanding consumer, how can I come to understand let alone respect the situation that I just described above faced by women and children around the world?

I poke my head out of my comfortable silo, cluck my tongue in sympathy, more laced with pity and throw a silent gratitude at the same time that I don’t have to face all that.  I then quickly bury my head into my silo and start looking inward and feel sorry for my lack of beautiful looks or wardrobe or the ideal body weight.

Would I honestly be able to stand face to face in front of a woman who is permanently disfigured because of acid thrown in her face to stop her from getting educated and see her beauty without cringing at the dis-figuration or feeling sorry for her state, whilst sighing with relief that I will never have to live like that?  Can I see her inner beauty shining through her burnt face or mangled body and treat her as equal?  Do women who suffer need my sympathy borne out of a supreme attitude?  How would Respect manifest in such a situation?

Our silent unspoken judgments of ourselves, of and by others, build layers of those silos and the more the layers, the less the inner light visible.  The silo itself can be a beautiful structure but if it is not lit from within, it will be lifeless.

Every time I think ‘I am not beautiful’, ‘I don’t photograph well’, ‘I don’t have good clothes’ etc.,  or ‘what is she wearing’, ‘look at her hair’ or ‘gosh! she is big’, or pass a complement that I mean exactly opposite of, (and there are people who do this constantly),  I am covering my inner light with layers of soot which thicken the walls of my silo.

We need to dismantle those dark sooty walls of negativity and judgment and let the inner light shine.

Sai Baba says – ‘You are three people – The One who You think You are, the One who Others think You are and the One that You Really Are”

So who is that real us – we are really Love inside.  We are a Love that underpins and manifests in our Thoughts as Truth, Feelings as Peace, Actions as Right Conduct and Understanding as Non-Violence.

I think I am not beautiful, others think I am inspirational. Both those statements are true, but who am I really?

Really –  I am, you are and we all are the light of Love that shines from within us.  How brightly that light shines depends on how much soot of negativity and judgments is covering it.

So does it matter how I look? No it doesn’t.  The only way I can live with that knowledge is if I draw strength from that inner light of Love rather than from opinions of myself by myself and others.

I don’t subscribe to the women’s magazines because they scream that looks do matter and at the same time run a token story of a mishap faced by a woman.  If we all collectively boycotted the media that constantly draws our attention to our inadequacies whether it be body weight or perfect smile, then our focus can be drawn onto who we actually are.

It is actually a great service if we all did that,  not just to us but to our future generations as well.  Let us take a pledge here that “Looks do not matter” and that “we will live in Love of ourselves and of each other”

Would you like to take that pledge?

Love to hear what you think – do looks matter to you?

Until next week

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

What Can You ‘Give Up’ to ‘Gain’????


Possession Beach
Possession Beach (Photo credit: CalamityJon)

What do you define your life through?  What are some of the things that you place extreme importance on for living?

Do you focus on “Earnings, Possessions, Appearances, Celebrity/Fame” – if so you are suffering from “Affluenza Virus” as defined by Oliver James in his book titled the same.

Accordingly, exclusive focus on those four things results in :

  • Selfishness
  • Self-Centredness
  • Greed
  • Hoarding
  • Upward social comparisons
  • ‘Having’ as opposed to ‘Being’.

Is your lifestyle solely based on ‘Having’? If you 

  • suffer from Emptiness & Loneliness
  • are consumption driven
  • feel inadequate due to constant comparisons
  • try to fill an internal lack through external means
  • replace ‘needs’ by ‘wants’

then YES, you are living a lifestyle solely based on ‘Having’. The results of this lifestyle are well researched and documented.  They are

  • Continuous low key dissatisfaction & unhappiness
  • Extreme competitiveness, 
  • Short life span
  • Depression
  • Mental Illness
  • Suicide.

Result – compromises are made in meeting the four fundamental human needs of 

  • Belonging
  • Security
  • Authenticity
  • Autonomy.

This is what Oliver James’s book “Affluenza ” states.

If defining who you are through ‘earnings, possessions, lifestyle, celebrity, fame” etc., is making you depressed, how do you, rather how should you define yourself?  When can you be happy and fulfilled?  This is the fundamental question that drives us all – does it not?

Martin Seligman evolved his Authentic Happiness theory to “Well Being Theory” and termed it “Flourish” – which measures

  • Positive Emotions
  • Engagement
  • Relationships
  • Meaning
  • Accomplishments.

P E R M A

He said that increase in PERMA increases Flourishing.

How can we bring PERMA into our lives?

Sai Baba says – “Happiness lies in liking what you do, not in doing what you like.”

What does He mean by that? What happens to you when you LIKE what you HAVE to do?

  • There is NO resentment
  • You finish what you undertake despite obstacles
  • You have NO ill feelings towards work – of any nature.
  • You develop a ‘Spirit of Sacrifice’

What does Sacrifice mean – what are you giving up?

  • Time
  • Money
  • Resources
  • Expertise
  • Knowledge

But people who regularly contribute to charities also give up all the above.  People who go out of their way and help physically during times of natural disasters are sacrificing their time, expertise, resources etc., They give to Charity or do Charitable acts.  Is it the same as Sacrifice?  Is giving to Charity a sustainable long term and transformational process?  

Charity generally is short lived.  Once the crisis is passed and things are back to normal, you revert back to your lifestyle based on ‘Want’ and ‘Have’. Well most do…..

So why is Charity short lived?  Is there a difference between Charity and Sacrifice?

Charity  

  • Is driven by the urge to meet needs of others who are in distress
  • Is giving of money, time or energy for a good cause
  • Is generally short lived
  • Feels good but no real transformation is possible
  • Stems from ‘Sympathy’ not ‘Empathy’
  • Can create feelings of superiority
  • No equality in charity
  • has a ‘giver’ and a ‘receiver’ and can breed dependency.

Sacrifice as Sai Baba puts it is giving up of one’s bad traits and weaknesses.  He says –

“If sacrifice means just the giving up of hearth and home, many people will do it very easily.  Sacrifice means something  more than giving up wealth, gold, and material objects; evil qualities like hatred, jealousy, wrath and malice, which have become ingrained in us over many lifetimes, must be discarded as well.” (Sathya Sai Vahini, Ch 21: The Inner Inquiry)

So what are some of the qualifications for Sacrifice – what state of mind allows you to sacrifice without resentment?

By giving up your negative qualities of hatred, jeaolusy, wrath and malice, you are reoriented on a spiritual trajectory of personal development and selfless service.

Through selfless service you can gain

A Pure Heart that is                Positive 
Creates Loving                         Relationships
Through Charitable                 Engagements
with Attitudes that are           Meaningful
and achieve Selfless                 Accomplishments

Positive Relationship is required first and foremost with one self and with others in order to create Engagements that are Meaningful.   If the Relationship with Yourself is NOT Positive, you cannot Engage Meaningfully that can be sustainable.  Burnouts happen far too quickly as a result, hence Charity is often short lived and people revert back.  

A minor rearrangement of Martin Seligman’s PERMA to  PREMA (LOVE) means eliminating negative qualities as a Spirit of Sacrifice and undertaking Selfless Service.  Result is Self-Transformation.

Your Self Transformation helps create a new social reality steeped in PREMA (Love) where the ‘Spirit of Brotherhood of Man and Fatherhood of God’ is constantly demonstrated.

When you “Bear all and do nothing; Hear all and say nothing’; give all and take nothing; Serve all and Be nothing” you are living in Love. (Sai Baba)

Then as Vedas declare – You go from

(Vyakthi)            to                    (Samasthi)                  to               (Parameshthi)

i                            to                            WE                         to                          I

Selfishness           to                   Self-Sacrifice              to                Self-Realisation

If giving up negativity creates room to give with a spirit of sacrifice and gain a new social reality based on Love, wouldn’t you want to join in that?

What are the barriers between your declared values and your actual behaviour?

What are you going to Give UP to Gain a Society that is steeped in Love?

I have Given up Judgments and Upward Comparisons, I am actively in the process of Giving UP Self-Criticisms….

What would you like to Give Up?

Would love to hear….Leave comments either here or on Face Book

Until next week

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari

What Are You Rising ‘FOR’ ??? (A Post Reflection on One Billion Rising)


Love Love Love
Love Love Love (Photo credit: Gregory Jordan)

Have you risen publicly? I have and masses of people have risen throughout the world as a response to a direct call of “One Billion Rising” – Men, Women and Children in 197 countries stood shoulder to shoulder in solidarity – a call to Strike, Dance and Rise, to demand to put an end to violence against women.

A fantastic result for a fabulous call to put an end to one of the world’s most pervasive,  most hidden, rarely brought to full justice, human rights abuse.  We have risen against violence. We know the statistics now.  We know the urgency to stop this because we understand that abuse of a woman and the results of it do not affect just the one person, the abused – it affects the whole fabric of the society.   Jean Kilbourne describes abuse of women as a public health issue.

Systemic abuse has now become a weapon of war in countries like Democratic republic of Congo which is dubbed as the Rape Capital of the World, Somalia, Sudan and many other countries.

Sathya Sai Baba said

Politics without principles, Education without character, Science without humanity, and Commerce without morality are not only useless, but also positively dangerous.”

These are the exact phenomenon we are witnessing in today’s society. We crave for change. We crave for a new order.  We crave for morality in society.  We are crying out for change and standing against something that is destroying the fabric of our society.

This rising is only a beginning towards that change.

What else can we do after having stood up against the wrong?

Socrates said –

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but building a new”

The new that we want is in our hands to build.

What is the NEW that we want?

This ‘Rising Against’ is also a call for a new time and a new way of being to herald the Human Values of Love, Truth, Peace, Right Conduct and Non Violence.

We want a New World order where:

  • Morality in Society is present every step of the way,
  • Politics are run with Principles, and
  • End of Education is Character.
  • A society where women are respected, honored and cherished, not objectified and made to identify just as ‘things’ associated with beauty.

We want a New World Order where

  • Looks do not matter, color does not matter,
  • Beauty is recognised as shining from within the individual.
  • Our children are safe in public places,
  • Neighbors look out for each other,
  • Doubts and suspicions are not the first reactions,
  • There is mutual Respect that grows from Trust.
  • Love and Compassion rule, not Greed and Lust.
  • Harmony prevails within individuals, at home, in our communities and in the world at large.

We want to live in times where there is:

  • Love in our Thoughts
  • Love in our Actions
  • Love in our Feelings
  • Love in our Understanding

We want to live in a society whose motto will be “Help Ever; Hurt Never”.

We are that society and we can create that society starting from now.

HOW?

We need to put aside our judgments, criticisms,  first and foremost against ourselves and then towards the others.

We may think we are not, but we are violent.  The violence we see out there is a collective manifestation of individual thoughts from minor criticisms to major judgments.  When we are critical of ourselves, when we cannot extend love to ourselves, when we blame ourselves, we are starting the violence.

How can we possibly extend love and understanding to others when we cannot do that to ourselves?

This Rising while outwardly looks like a rising against violence in society, indirectly it is a call to Rise to stop being violent within ourselves.

It is a call to Rise to cause self-transformation.

We cannot change others, we can only change ourselves. When I become a person who is non-violent in my thoughts, words and deeds, then I have removed violence from within my circle of influence.  If each one of us did that, then the circle of influence widens and soon the whole world is in that circle of Non-Violence.

Unity in Thought, word and deed is the most Non-Violent way to be.  We are not at all like the rapists in the world who violate the sacred physical, however, we rape our minds constantly through thoughts that violate our own person-hood.

Rise against that Violence within!!

  • Every time you have a negative thought, criticism, judgment, say “STOP”.
  • Demand from yourself to stop the negativity rising.

“Change begins with me” – said Gandhi.  So let us take a pledge here that in the coming year from today we rise against violence within us and in the society.

More than that let us make a pledge to

Rise for Love In Our

  • Actions which manifest as Right Conduct
  • Thoughts which manifests as Truth
  • Feelings which manifest as Peace
  • Understanding which manifests as Non-Violence

Let us make a pledge to understand ourselves and then understand others because as Satya Sai Baba said

“If there is Righteousness in the Heart, there will be Beauty in the Character;
If there is Beauty in the Character, there will be Harmony in the Home;
If there is Harmony in the Home, there will be Order in the Nations;
When there is Order in the Nations, there will be Peace in the World.”

 So Peace & New World Order begins with Me….
Let us Rise For That!!!!

Let us re-educate ourselves who we are –

We ARE Love, We ARE Truth, We ARE Peace, WE ARE Non-Violent by nature.

When we don’t see those out in the world, we crave for those values.  Those values of Love, Truth, Peace, Right Conduct and Non-Violence are right in our hearts, inherent to our nature.  We need to consciously bring them out, and make a choice to live with them in thoughts, words and deeds.

As Pema Chodron says:

“Whatever you are doing, take the attitude of wanting it directly or indirectly to benefit others; take the attitude of wanting it to increase your experience of kinship with your fellow beings”.

Let us take the attitude of Love and Peace in our day to day, moment to moment living.

Let us Rise for Love within us and in the world.

Let us Dance with that Love in our hearts, joyously, and celebrate who we are –

We Are LOVE Walking On Two Feet.

Your thoughts? Would ‘Rising Against’ alone is enough, or should we ‘Rise For’ after rising against….

Please share your thoughts here, or on Face Book, Re-Tweet this if it has spoken to you.

Spread the word to RISE – RISE FOR LOVE, IN LOVE, WITH LOVE.

Until next week
With Love and Respect
Padma Ayyagari

How To Avoid The Emotional Roller Coaster……


English: Roller coaster in Xetululu, Guatemala
English: Roller coaster in Xetululu, Guatemala (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Do you feel angry, upset, sad one minute and excited, happy and joyful the next?

Do you feel bored, hopeless one day and full of inspiration and hope the next?

I do…

We all do…ride on the emotional roller coaster and go round and round on a regular basis if not on a daily basis.  UPpppp we go only to come down and again rise upppppp and come downnnnnnnn.

Over and over, again and again, the thrill that we get of being on that roller coaster is what we call life even though it churns our insides out and almost spills.  Most of the time, we catch the spills before they spill, and yet other times we just let the spills out like a broken water hydrant.

We tell ourselves not to feel THAT way, we beg others NOT to feel THAT way, THAT way being – angry, sad, upset, frustrated, jealous, bored, anxious, envious, angry…..on and on it goes like I am here right now.

Can anyone tell us how to or how not to feel? Can we stop ourselves from feeling? I guess we will be 6 feet under, the day we stop feeling.

Feelings are the natural expressions of emotions.  We cannot stop having them.  No one can tell us how to feel one way or the other. So, why do we have such reactions to our feelings?

If we cannot stop having the feelings, what matters then is what we do with them – does it not?

Our feelings need not be given expression, they can just sit within us as we acknowledge and acept them, certainly other people should not be the targets of our feelings.

As we acknowledge our feelings without judgment, they dissipate.  Feelings persist stubbornly because we don’t acknowledge them with complete acceptance.  The moment I feel something like anger or jealousy, I tell myself that “I shouldn’t be like that”, or that “it is wrong to feel that way” or “it is not nice to think like that”.

Feelings are like children.  When we ask a child “not to do something”, that is the exact thing they attempt to do.  Same with feelings.  When we say “Don’t feel that way”, the intensity of the feeling increases or gets suppressed and pushed down, never acknowledged and never accepted.  When enough layers are built, there will be no room left, so they spill out, usually as attacks on somebody.  Once purged, we carry on until the next layers build.  We have never processed them properly and given them a rightful place.

Feelings are as natural as breathing.  We don’t say it is wrong to breathe heavily, laboriously or smoothly.  We accept our changing breathing patterns without questioning.  So why don’t we accept our feelings without questioning ‘why’ or putting a judgment on them?

If we accept our feelings without questioning, they disappear as fast as they arise.  When I am angry, saying “I am angry” is enough.  It doesn’t have to be “angry at..” or “angry because…”.

I always have a choice of how I act or react with my feelings.

Reaction is the unfortunate accepted norm of society.  In reaction there is blame and judgment.  In action there is acknowledgment, acceptance and compassion.  So there is nothing inherently wrong in feelings.  It is how we express them that causes conflict – conflict within ourselves and with others.

Feelings arise.  We accept the feeling that has risen with no judgment.  Solutions appear.

Creation happens from acceptance.  

Acceptance requires Self-Love.

Do you love yourself enough to acknowledge your rising feelings without judgment and guilt or ridicule…

Next time you are feeling whatever — angry, sad, upset, anxious – try just saying “I am (feeling word)” and accept it completely without naming and blaming the cause or the causer and see what happens… You will be surprised.

Would you like to try? I would love to hear the results. Share them here.

Until next week…

With Love and Respect

Padma Ayyagari