Yog Daily

  • Of Gold and salt…
    Well, I learnt a bit about both this week. First – about gold. That it’s lure still attracts, but in ways that I didn’t quite imagine. Something about the yellow metal makes it impossible for us to stay away from it, even after so many years. Anyways, I was speaking to someone about how he …

    Of Gold and salt… Read More »

  • Of Tithis and New Years…
    The lunar calendar can be confusing, or invigorating, depending on which side of the fence you are on. If you are on the boring side, every year is the same, as far as dates are concerned. Your birthday always falls on the same day, so does New Year, and everything in between. But if you …

    Of Tithis and New Years… Read More »

  • Of 20s and moons…
    Ok, I watched a match after a long time, and India lost. Terribly. India-Pakistan matches used to be evenly balanced – our batting vs their bowling prowess. These matches used to be fought inch-to-inch, with the tide turning many times during the battle. Then, they started to get one sided. Usually on our side. India …

    Of 20s and moons… Read More »

  • Of crustaceans and You Tubers…
    Two bits of information caught my attention today. One was about Epishura, and the second was about Li Ziqi. Now, chances are that you have not heard of either of them. Nor had I. The first one inhabits Lake Baikal, the largest source of freshwater in the world. It contains 23% of the worlds’s freshwater, …

    Of crustaceans and You Tubers… Read More »

  • Add the Gāyatri to your daily life…
    ॐ असतो मा सद्गमय।तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय।मृत्योर्मामृतं गमय ॥ ॐ शान्ति शान्ति शान्तिः ॥ बृहदारण्यकोपनिषद् 1.3.28। asato mā sadgamaya, tamaso mā jyotirgamaya, mṛtyormāmṛtaṃ gamaya We have all heard this mantra and have had a quick glimpse of it’s meaning – lead us from ignorance to knowledge, from darkness to light, from death to immortality. This mantra …

    Add the Gāyatri to your daily life… Read More »

  • Just do it!
    A break from the Gāyatri series today. Not in practice, just the blog. A few things caught my attention today. One – how difficult (or easy) it is to make a child sleep – depends on the day, the quantity and quality of food, and above all – the hair dryer sounds on loop. I …

    Just do it! Read More »

  • Theory is good, but…
    That is why this great mantra dhīyo yo naḥ pracodayāt prays not for these ephemeral constituents of our imagined glory in this world. It asks for our understanding to be rightly directed. What is meant by rightly directed understanding? It is that understanding which can tune itself to the great light of the universe. It is the …

    Theory is good, but… Read More »

  • Chhandas forms the base…
    “The body has its own natural obligation to get subjected to the process of the movement of time, and thus has to one day or the other enter a condition called senility, old age, it is expected that our mental, intellectual and spiritual life is not to attain senility. That our understanding be vigorous even …

    Chhandas forms the base… Read More »

  • Savitr, and the Gāyatri chhandas…
    Did you try the task that I put across yesterday? I did. Woke up, had a bath, performed basic yog and prānāyāma and then sat down to listen to the Gāyatri japa. I sat through the complete 108 japas. The beauty of a mantra is that it’s sounds should reach your ears – that is …

    Savitr, and the Gāyatri chhandas… Read More »

  • A sound by any other tālā will not sound as sweet…
    तत्स॑वि॒तुर्वरेण्यं भर्गो॑ दे॒वस्य॑धीमहि । धियो॒ यो नः प्रचो॒दया॑त् ॥ tatsaviturvareṇyaṃ bhargo devasyadhīmahi dhiyo yo naḥ prachodayāt We all know the above as being the Gāyatri mantra. Actually we may know it in it’s varied form, the one that starts with ॐ भूर् भुवः सुवः । You may also have heard it in Anuradha Paudwal’s soothing …

    A sound by any other tālā will not sound as sweet… Read More »

  • Gāyantam trayati gāyatrī
    गायन्तं त्रायते यस्मात् गायत्री प्रोच्यते बुधै: That which protects the person who recites it with full consciousness… The Gāyatri mantra is one of the most well-known mantras. From yoga schools to evening bhajans, the Gāyatri has been heard in various forms and recitations. People say that this is the most powerful mantra, and if one …

    Gāyantam trayati gāyatrī Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 9
    श्रियं दिशतु वः शंभोः श्यामः कण्ठो मनोभुवा ।अङ्कस्थपार्वतीदृष्टिपाशैरिव विवेष्टितः ॥ १ ॥ śriyaṃ diśatu vaḥ śaṃbhoḥ śyāmaḥ kaṇṭho manobhuvā |aṅkasthapārvatīdṛṣṭipāśairiva viveṣṭitaḥ || 1 || May Śiva, Neelakantha, the one with the dark neck, whom Kamadeva has captivated through Pārvatī who lies in his embrace…may Śiva give you prosperity. संध्यानुत्तोत्सवे ताराः करेणोद्धूय विघ्नजित् ।सीत्कारसीकरैरन्याः कल्पयन्निव पातु वः ॥ …

    Navrātri – Day 9 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 8
    The penultimate day. Yesterday’s Nirjala Vrata was easier than today’s fast. Once you have a fruit, the body realizes that it the option is still open:)) Jokes apart, this Navrātri has been easier…maybe because of experience and maybe because of the yog. I have found the sweet spot (I think) of how much to eat …

    Navrātri – Day 8 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 7
    ॐ जयन्ती, मङ्गला, काली, भद्रकाली, कपालिनी। दुर्गा, शिवा, क्षमा, धात्री, स्वाहा, स्वधा नमोऽस्तु ते॥ एष सचन्दन गन्ध पुष्प बिल्व पत्राञ्जली ॐ ह्रीं दुर्गायै नमः॥ ওঁ জয়ন্তি, মঙ্গলা, কালি, ভদ্রকালি, কপালিনি। দূর্গা, শিবা, ক্ষমা, ধাত্রি, স্বাহা, স্বধা, নমোহস্তু তে॥ এষ সচন্দন গন্ধ পুস্প বিল্ব পত্রাঞ্জলিঃ, ওঁ হ্রীং দুর্গায়ৈ নমঃ॥ Om Jayanti, Mangala, Kali, Bhadrakali, Kapalini। Durga, Shiva, Kshama, Dhatri, Svaha, Svadha …

    Navrātri – Day 7 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 6
    Six down, three to go. But these are the top three. There is the Mahā Ashtami – culminating in the Sandhi puja, then the Mahā Navami and finally Vijayadashami. Tomorrow is Nirjala Upavas – no food no water until the Sandhi Puja completes, which should be around 9 pm Dubai time. One wonders – why …

    Navrātri – Day 6 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 5
    Someone asked me today – you follow Bengali rituals, Punjabi rituals, processes from the South of India…where are you from exactly? As predicted, today may have been the hardest. I didn’t find it too hard though. The lack of food has not been a problem, given my fasts on Ekādashi, and I surprisingly have not …

    Navrātri – Day 5 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 4
    Tamas has been taken care of. Rajas is next. These four days, I haven’t had tea or coffee. Most of us find caffeine to be the most difficult to control. You absolutely need that early morning cup of tea or coffee and some more to get you through the day. Or so you think. We …

    Navrātri – Day 4 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 3
    Have come one-third the way, two-thirds remain. Navrātri is also an important occasion because of the opportunity to socialize. People visit each other’s houses, exchange sweets and generally catch up on the happenings of the previous months. Today, I got a chance to visit the most happening Golu in south Dubai – the one at …

    Navrātri – Day 3 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 2
    The second day is also easy. You still have the passion, the energy to go through the vrata. You will feel a slight change towards the worse starting tomorrow:) Today is the second day of destruction. The body starts to realize that you are fasting, and slowly starts to dig into it’s reserves (polite word …

    Navrātri – Day 2 Read More »

  • Navrātri – Day 1
    The first day is also the easiest. Some people think otherwise, but in my experience, the first day is the easiest to get by. You are fresh, well-fed the previous day, and eager to get going. The middle part of any fast is the worst, relatively speaking. You are only halfway from where you started, …

    Navrātri – Day 1 Read More »

  • The significance of nine…
    सर्वमङ्गलमाङ्गल्ये शिवे सर्वार्थसाधिके ।शरण्ये त्र्यम्बके गौरि नारायणि नमोऽस्तु ते ॥ sarvamaṅgalamāṅgalye śive sarvārthasādhike .śaraṇye tryambake gauri nārāyaṇi namo’stu te .. The number nine holds special significance in our lives. In fact, we begin our journey with the number nine – that is the number of months we spend in our mother’s wombs. Yog shastras consider …

    The significance of nine… Read More »

  • Of memories and lineages…
    Tomorrow is Bhadrapada Amavasya, a day when one remembers one’s ancestors and performs pujas for them. The following day is the start of Navrātri. Why do we remember our ancestors? Now that you think of it, how many of us remember our great-grandparents? Chances are that we did not even get a chance to see …

    Of memories and lineages… Read More »

  • Of fasting and variety…
    It’s that time of the year again. Navratri, Durga Puja and Dussehra…celebrations and pujas, fasting and overeating. Those nine days have it all… Last Navrātri I fasted the whole nine days. You can read about it here. I also compiled the Devi Mahātmayam series during this time. Days pass fast, don’t they? Anyway, I was …

    Of fasting and variety… Read More »

  • Of vacay goals and dazed sons…
    You cannot have your cake and eat it too. Of late, news websites have been carrying less of news and more of advertorials and snippets that put (in)famous gossip magazines to shame. And so you have an actual piece of news, followed by 8-10 sleazy posts on celebs vacationing in the Maldives, creating couple goals …

    Of vacay goals and dazed sons… Read More »

  • Of Fathers and nations…
    Today is the second of October. Usually celebrated as Gandhi Jayanti. The “Father of the Nation” is omnipresent across the political spectrum. Statues adorn the landscape all across India, and nearly every city has a Mahatma Gandhi Road. Gandhi’s face adorns all our currency, and quotes attributed to him float on the internet, along with …

    Of Fathers and nations… Read More »

  • Of seekers and believers…
    “In the Middle Ages people believed that the earth was flat, for which they had at least the evidence of their senses: we believe it to be round, not because as many as one per cent of us could give the physical reasons for so quaint a belief, but because modern science has convinced us …

    Of seekers and believers… Read More »

  • Let’s watch ambitions soar…
    I had written earlier about my personal experience in Dubai, and how we all stand together to welcome the world to visit us, to know our story, and see what we have built. Today is the opening ceremony, from 7.30 UAE time/9 pm Indian Standard time. Watch it on YouTube – am sure that it …

    Let’s watch ambitions soar… Read More »

  • Of hulking and sulking…
    And so the Congress has done it again. Just when they were cruising in Punjab, with the elections not too far away, they got themselves a Siddhu bullet to shoot themselves in the foot. Capt. Amarinder Singh is the best Chief Minister they have, and they don’t have many. And why break something that is …

    Of hulking and sulking… Read More »

  • Addicts, but what is the solution?
    After yesterday’s post, a lof of you got back to me asking for solutions. Yes, we are addicted, but how do we change this? Well, I may have sound a lot pessimistic yesterday, but let’s face it. Technology is here to stay. You cannot “Un-google” yourself out of digital existence. You cannot go back to …

    Addicts, but what is the solution? Read More »

  • Addicts…all of us!
    Aren’t we? IOS 15 has a new feature called “focus”. For those minutes and hours that we need to spend on one thing, without any distractions. This from the world’s leading manufacturer of all things distraction. I love it how technology companies create a problem, and then go about claiming to bring you solutions to …

    Addicts…all of us! Read More »

  • How do we intend to get around?
    Mobility is a bit broken, isn’t it? I mean, it shouldn’t take so much to ferry people from point A to point B. Yet, mankind has yet to solve this puzzle – they have been at it from a hundred years now, and things are just getting more and more complicated. It started with gasoline-powered …

    How do we intend to get around? Read More »

  • Bruce Lee and his letters…
    Any mention of Bruce Lee brings to mind a thin, reed-like but chiseled physique, a cat-like cry and a kick faster than the eye can see. Bruce Lee was so famous, that his name became synonymous with martial arts – do you think you are Bruce Lee? was an often heard expression. To reach a …

    Bruce Lee and his letters… Read More »

  • Of quizzes and sandstorms…
    There are some days that pass without much consequence, but still end up being spent well… It started with us receiving the news that a guest who was to fly in, was unable to make it since the PCR test was not taken in the stipulated window. A few hours difference in the test results, …

    Of quizzes and sandstorms… Read More »

  • Of kanyas and daans…
    Ok, the Alia ad has set a lot of tongues wagging. One side applauds, denouncing “regressive” practices and questioning why women are demeaned and equated to “dhan”. Why should a girl be given away, why not the boy as well? Another side questions the intent of the advertisement. Who are they to interfere with age-old …

    Of kanyas and daans… Read More »

  • This is our time…welcome to Expo 2020
    In India, we have a concept of Janmabhoomi, and Karmabhoomi. Janmabhoomi is where one is born, where you are a citizen of, the passport you carry. Karmabhoomi is where you work, where you earn a living… India is my Janmabhoomi, and the United Arab Emirates is my Karmabhoomi. I came here sixteen years back, with …

    This is our time…welcome to Expo 2020 Read More »

  • Of Fintech and money management
    Money is simple – it is a promise. Made by the Central Bank of the country, to honor it when presented, and to assign a pre-determined value to it. A piece of paper, made important because of this promise. Handling money however, is a different ballgame altogether. We spend our lives trying to earn it, …

    Of Fintech and money management Read More »

  • Of loans and favors…
    What does a relationship of fifteen years mean to you? Trust, loyalty and respect? If you are a bank, apparently none of the above. In fact, it may not mean anything much at all. If you have been following by blog, you would know that I was in the market for a new car, and …

    Of loans and favors… Read More »

  • श्री गणेश चतुर्थी – Ganesh Chaturthi
    Ganesh Chaturthi, also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi (Vināyaka Chaturthī) or Vinayaka Chavithi (Vināyaka Chavithī) is a Hindu festival celebrating the birth of Ganesha. It falls in the months of August or September of the Gregorian calendar. The festival is marked with the installation of Ganesha clay idols privately in homes, or publicly on elaborate pandals …

    श्री गणेश चतुर्थी – Ganesh Chaturthi Read More »

  • Of speech and perspectives
    So my son has started to say da-da da-da. Although I would love to believe that he actually prefers me to everyone else, that sadly is not the truth. Research has shown that children have larger tongues in proportion to their mouths (to aid in breast-feeding), and so have limited motor capabilities, limiting the sounds …

    Of speech and perspectives Read More »

  • Of prime ministers and Prime Ministers
    Ok, a lot of you knew this post was coming, isn’t it? Well, I don’t have to take you through the journey of the man – most of you already know it, or at least some parts of it. Today, I want to speak about learning. Constant learning. Modiji is an exceptional politician because of …

    Of prime ministers and Prime Ministers Read More »

  • Of visitors and festivals
    Time does fly past – it seems like just the other day in 2020 when we entered lockdowns, and now we are nearly the end of 2021.  One welcome news was the opening of flights and travel. Who would have thought that we would be grounded for more than a year? Ok a small correction …

    Of visitors and festivals Read More »

  • Of creating and cleverness…
    When I was growing up in India, there were only two qualifications that mattered – MBBS and B.E. In English – doctors and engineers. Parents slogged day and night to get their kids into Engineering and medical colleges, paying hefty capitation fees, after coaching centres had already made a killing in tuitions. These two professions …

    Of creating and cleverness… Read More »

  • Of apples and wearables…
    Here it is! Another Apple event, and another set of iPhones, iPads and AirPods to wow our senses and empty our bank balances. I love their products. But surely there is an end, or at least a slowing down, to the continuous line of phones that they come out with every year? How many times …

    Of apples and wearables… Read More »

  • Of cars and journeys – the sequel
    A couple of days back, I had spoken about my hunt for a car. Well, it seems that I have found one and will soon be driving it (provided the bank likes my application that is). And as usual, I have been reflecting on the decision. I ended up spending twice the amount I had …

    Of cars and journeys – the sequel Read More »

  • Leaderless consensus…possible?
    The world is structured in one way. Technology is now trying to make it change. Our society, our financial system, work, play, interests…all have traditional been centralised. There is one key decision maker at the top, and this filters down to everyone else. From the head of the family, to the head of government, central …

    Leaderless consensus…possible? Read More »

  • Of cars and journeys…
    So I am on the lookout for a new (actually used) car. I had sold my earlier car just before COVID hit us, and I didn’t see the need to buy another one given that we already had one in the family. But now, as activity picks up, the need for a set of wheels …

    Of cars and journeys… Read More »

  • Ganapati Atharvashirsha
    श्री गणेशाय नमः! Shri Ganesha is among the most popular deities in the Hindu Pantheon. He is worshipped in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bali, Bangladesh, Fiji, Mauritius, and many other countries around the world.  His images are found in Tibetan Buddhism, Shingon Buddhism, Japanese Kanji and Jainism as well.  Known as the remover of …

    Ganapati Atharvashirsha Read More »

  • Of square pegs in round holes…
    Am helping a client out with interviews for a CEO position at their startup. Resumes! And LinkedIn! You sometimes miss the days of cover letters and old-school resumes – today it is a job posting on LinkedIn and people applying with a click – often not even reading the requirements for the role. My first …

    Of square pegs in round holes… Read More »

  • Phew!
    There are days that are tiring, and there are days that are TIRING. This is the latter:) Been working since 6 am, with no end in sight. Of course, I do take breaks but the calls has been a bit too many. Work is exciting, and am learning something new many days, but it does …

    Phew! Read More »

  • Of new ventures and old scores…
    Starting a new venture is like a relationship – you don’t really know what you are getting into unless you take the plunge. And so ensuring that you discuss everything beforehand is essential, actually critical to the success of the venture, or the relationship for that matter. Everyday I come across individuals coming together to …

    Of new ventures and old scores… Read More »

  • Of teachers, and teachers…
    A famous line from Casino Royale – there are dinner jackets and there are DINNER JACKETS – this, is the latter… In the same vein, there are teachers, and there are TEACHERS…the level of learning that you reach in life largely depends on which one taught you. Sanskrit has levels of teachers – depending on …

    Of teachers, and teachers… Read More »

  • Of knowledge and illusions…
    Knowledge is an illusion. No, this isn’t some catchline – it really is an illusion. We all think of ourselves as rational beings, able to view situations and make informed judgements, but studies have shown that we always thought in groups. From the time we hunted, till the time we went to the Moon, and …

    Of knowledge and illusions… Read More »

  • Of hobbies and recreation
    Did you know that the etymology of the word “hobby” is “hobby”, which meant a small horse? The word then went on to become “hobby horse”, which was a wooden playhorse for children. It then began to be associated with pastimes, something that was practiced regularly but did not necessarily have a financial reward associated …

    Of hobbies and recreation Read More »

  • Of confidence and persistence
    I took an interview today. It was for a junior position at my consultancy, and so I was looking for a certain basic skillset, presentability (since it is for a client-facing activity) and verbal abilities. And I was amazed by the kind of confidence displayed by the candidate. Not just her, but I have observed …

    Of confidence and persistence Read More »

  • Of becoming owners and running companies
    One of my clients just got licensed in the DIFC. They are three professionals, who got together to launch an investment advisory business. Their first foray into the world of business ownership. What should we look out for? They asked me. Well, keep it simple, I replied. Manage your costs, keep your clients and staff …

    Of becoming owners and running companies Read More »

  • Of celebrations and the mundane
    So the festivities came to an end today. Well, at least for now. Ganesh Chaturthi is in September, Durga Puja in October, and Diwali in November. The festive season is on! The odd thing about festivals is that the very next day feels very mundane, very ordinary. After the running around and preparations and celebrations…it …

    Of celebrations and the mundane Read More »

  • जय श्री कृष्ण!
    Krishna, Kishan, Madhav, Banke Bihari, Gopala, Kanhaiya, Ranchhod, Parthasarathy, Ishvara…the many names and the many facets of the personality of the most loved God in the Hindu pantheon – Sri Krishna. The Madhurāshtakam of Sri Vallabhacharya sounds like a bit excessive at first glance. The lyrics have too much sweetness in them, it is literally …

    जय श्री कृष्ण! Read More »

  • When does God appear?
    या निशा सर्वभूतानां तस्यां जागर्ति संयमी |यस्यां जाग्रति भूतानि सा निशा पश्यतो मुने: || 69|| yā niśhā sarva-bhūtānāṁ tasyāṁ jāgarti sanyamīyasyāṁ jāgrati bhūtāni sā niśhā paśhyato muneḥ What all beings consider as day is the night of ignorance for the wise, and what all creatures see as night is the day for the introspective yogi. …

    When does God appear? Read More »

  • Of queens and trips…
    Trips…short or long…have some commonalities. There is the booking, and then the planning, and then the packing, and then the journey. You then have the “to-do” list, the free breakfast (which you do complete justice to), the good food overall (hopefully), the mandatory long bath (not your water after all) and then the wrapping up, …

    Of queens and trips… Read More »

  • Of pools and staying relevant
    So here I am, in sunny Fujairah, a two hours drive from Dubai. A slightly different world than what I have come to be used to…with a few farms on the way and many isolated houses that made me wonder on how some want to be in the thick of the action, while others want …

    Of pools and staying relevant Read More »

  • Of names and good company
    Had a meeting today where I discussed a structure with a potential client. We got talking and they asked me about the name of my consultancy – 10 Leaves. Why 10? Why Leaves? They also came to know the name of my son, and liked the fact that it is a unique name, with a …

    Of names and good company Read More »

  • Of staycations and work…
    What do bromance, shopaholic, brunch and romcom have in common? They are all portmanteaus! At the risk of sounding like a certain Tharoor, portmanteaus are obtained by combining two words to make a new one that describes the combination. You may have heard quite a few portmanteaus, but the latest I heard is staycation. No, …

    Of staycations and work… Read More »

  • It doesn’t have to be crazy at work!
    Just finished an interesting book by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. Actually two. One is the title of this blog. The other is called Rework. I loved the fact that a lot of what they think about and suggest – is what we have already implemented at my consulting firm. It’s refreshing to hear …

    It doesn’t have to be crazy at work! Read More »

  • Of Humanoids and Blocks of chains
    The past week has seen a flurry of activity. I have been on the phones constantly, speaking with clients on various topics in Fintech – crypto, blockchain, robotics, A.I, big data… I go to YouTube and see an ad for a revolutionary Made-In-India Ola electric scooter – with a 7-inch display, operating system and “moods” …

    Of Humanoids and Blocks of chains Read More »

  • रक्षाबन्धनवर्णनम् – Rakshabandhanvarnanam – the history of Rakshabandhan
    Contrary to popular belief, Rakshabandhan did not originate during Mughal times. According to the Bhaviṣya Purāṇa, Shri Krishna, in a long narration to Yudhiṣṭhira, speaks about रक्षाबन्धन and it’s significance. This chapter is called रक्षाबन्धनवर्णनम्. Krishna says  “Listen to me carefully as I describe the ceremony  of Baliraksha.” “In the days of yore, there was a …

    रक्षाबन्धनवर्णनम् – Rakshabandhanvarnanam – the history of Rakshabandhan Read More »

  • OTT and the cinema experience
    I recall there was a huge outcry when Kamal Hassan had announced his plans to release Vishwaroopam simultaneously on OTT and in theaters. This was in 2013. Now, since 2020, theaters have done meagre business, if any, and most of the movie releases have been through OTT. “Only when the tide goes out do you …

    OTT and the cinema experience Read More »

  • Of masks and freedom…
    I saw a lot of faces staring at me as I walked into the DIFC today. Not quite as delusional to think that this was due to my good looks, I started to wonder – was it my hair? A spot I missed while shaving? A tear in my shirt?… Ah…my mask. I didn’t have …

    Of masks and freedom… Read More »

  • Ekādashi – fasting as a service
    Today is Ekādashi – the 11th day of a fortnight in a lunar month, as per the Hindu calendar. Since there are two fortnights, Ekādashi is celebrated twice a month. It is typically characterized by observance of a fast. And the fast can be of many types. From Nirjala Ekādashi – where one does not …

    Ekādashi – fasting as a service Read More »

  • Of ideas and disruption…
    Every quarter, I sit through a few presentations of people who want to change the world. A very few of them, if any, end up doing so. Every founder is taught to start with a question – what is the problem and how can I solve it? Some start with the question – What can …

    Of ideas and disruption… Read More »

  • All in a day’s work…
    Just a couple of days back, I had written on cricket and patience, and my friend Neelakantan’s relaxed weekend watching the ball being tossed around by 11 men and a couple. Today, as I browsed through the evening news, I noticed that it was the last day of the test match, and India had turned …

    All in a day’s work… Read More »

  • Of independence and responsibility…
    Ṛṇatraya literally means ‘three debts’. The idea of ṛṇatraya (pronounced as rina-traya), the three debts under which every human being is born, has been referred in the Rgveda. However it is more explicit in other Vedic literature like the Taittiriya Samhitā and the Satapatha Brāhmana. These ṛṇas are: Deva-ṛṇa – debt to gods : It is …

    Of independence and responsibility… Read More »

  • Of discipline and dedication
    I am a martial artist, and so two traits that come naturally to me are discipline and dedication. Almost like second nature. I guess thirty plus years of training help as well. However, there are times when I too take it easy. When I say times, I really mean days, sometimes months. I too subscribe …

    Of discipline and dedication Read More »

  • Of cricket and patience
    I remember growing up on a healthy dose of India-Pakistan cricket encounters and five-day test matches that mostly ended in a draw. The one-dayers were more interesting, but the five-day matches had a charm of their own. One didn’t have to sit through each ball, but a general session-by-session update was a given. But that …

    Of cricket and patience Read More »

  • ਮੈਂ ਤੁਹਾਡੇ ਨਾਲ ਵਾਅਦਾ ਕਰਦਾ ਹਾਂ ਕਿ ਮੈਂ ਪੰਜਾਬੀ ਸਿੱਖਾਂਗਾ
    You didn’t understand the title right? It’s in Punjabi. Even if you are a Punjabi, and it is your mother tongue, there is a high chance are you were not able to read it. Being a Punjabi myself, I feel ashamed that I still haven’t managed to learn the language. Learning your native language is …

    ਮੈਂ ਤੁਹਾਡੇ ਨਾਲ ਵਾਅਦਾ ਕਰਦਾ ਹਾਂ ਕਿ ਮੈਂ ਪੰਜਾਬੀ ਸਿੱਖਾਂਗਾ Read More »

  • Of nursery rhymes and happy babies…
    Nursery rhymes are an odd bit. Children enjoy them, non-stop, on loop. Adults however, have a “U-shaped” relationship with them. We start by enjoying them – after all, we all were kids once, and some rhymes bring back memories…but then, after a while, one experiences diminishing marginal utility. Oddly enough, if this continues, one starts …

    Of nursery rhymes and happy babies… Read More »

  • Of art and creativity…
    Does acrylic painting on small rocks denote a creative mind? An interesting debate come up this evening. What constitutes art? When does someone transcend from someone who paints to an artist? Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth – so said Pablo Picasso. It is said that Saraswati, the Devi of knowledge, …

    Of art and creativity… Read More »

  • The Vetāla series…
    25 stories. 162 posts. Over 7 months. This was the Vetāla series, from the original Sanskrit version. When I started the series around December of last year, I had just completed the Panchatantra series and was looking forward to another set of stories, and what better than Vetāla Panchavimshati! Now that this series is done, …

    The Vetāla series… Read More »

  • The finale…
    Read the previous part here… “Oh mighty king! The sovereignty of the Vidyādharas,which was desired by the evil ShāntiShila, is now yours, once your life on this earth has come to an end. I have annoyed you a lot, but you kept your patience. I am pleased – ask me for any boon that you …

    The finale… Read More »

  • Of spears and medals…
    YES! Need I say more? Subedar Neeraj Chopra threw a spear in Tokyo, and struck our hearts back home. For once, cricket took a backseat, and a seemingly nondescript event, one that does not even register on our radars, found flavor with over a billion people. And I join all Indians in celebrating our first …

    Of spears and medals… Read More »

  • The king is triumphant…
    Read the previous part here… “To think that you would take up this task at such a desolate place, in the dead of the night!” “It is indeed true, that you are the king of kings, a man of unparalleled courage. You put the interests of others before your own interests. This is indeed the …

    The king is triumphant… Read More »

  • The conclusion…
    Read the previous part here… “So, when he asks you to perform the ashtānga-namaskarā, you should reply – “I don’t know this method. Please demonstrate it for me, and I will then do it.” “He will then prostrate on the ground to show you the correct method of the namaskarā, and that is when you …

    The conclusion… Read More »

  • Of phone calls and messaging…
    The grass is always greener on the other side isn’t it? For those of us, like me, who grew up in an era where it took 2-3 years and a bit of a bribe to get a telephone connection, mobiles would seem like a godsend. 15-odd years later, I am having second thoughts. A phone …

    Of phone calls and messaging… Read More »

  • What is my duty in life?
    I chanced upon an article that I wrote earlier, about swadharma. I spoke with an investment banker today, one who has been struggling for a while. He is unable to make new clients, unable to even get meetings with big-ticket investors, a career of 20 years seems on the decline. As I was speaking with …

    What is my duty in life? Read More »

  • Of innovation and learning
    I come from a time when one had to sit with a DTP (Desk Top Publishing) specialist to layout a magazine. Or even a simple brochure for that matter. Today, I log on to Canva for free and do it on my own. What was exotic earlier, is mainstream today. And this trajectory is only …

    Of innovation and learning Read More »

  • Of good news and new beginnings…
    So, right on the hells on my post last night, comes the delightful news of PV Sindhu becoming the first Indian Olympian to win two individual medals in consecutive Olympics. First Mirabai, then Lovlina in boxing, and now Sindhu. There still also hope in the discuss throw, with Kamalpreet storming into the finals with an …

    Of good news and new beginnings… Read More »

  • Of sportsmen and spirits…
    It’s the Olympics once again. And it’s us once again, clamouring for more than just 1 or 2 medals, and cheering every match in the hope that we land that elusive gold or silver, or at least a bronze. And once the Games end, the same comment on our lips – Why does a nation …

    Of sportsmen and spirits… Read More »

  • The plan…
    Read the previous part here… The Vetāla understood that he had finally puzzled the king, and so he laughed to himself, and thought… “The king does not know this answer! If he did, he would surely tell me, since my curse is very powerful.” “I should stop deceiving this valorous king now, and deceive that …

    The plan… Read More »

  • The twist…
    Read the previous part here… “So tell me, o King, about the children who were born in the course of time to the mother and daughter by the son and the father…what relationship did they bear to one another?” “Remember, if you know the answer, and don’t tell me the truth, your head will burst …

    The twist… Read More »

  • Will King Vikram reply?
    Read the previous part here… “My mind is tortured at the thought of your feet, that deserve to walk on flowers, walking on thorns instead. It seems strange that the dust raised by the wind and falling on your faces, makes us pale instead, and the fury of the fierce sun, that falls on your …

    Will King Vikram reply? Read More »

  • Of convincing and relenting…
    Read the previous part here… “Father, don’t speak this way. A man’s house is empty, without a wife. Have you not heard what Mūladeva said? When there is no woman waiting for you eagerly when you return home, you don’t have a house – it is in reality a prison, just that the chains are …

    Of convincing and relenting… Read More »

  • Of wives and promises…
    Read the previous part here… This village was the abode of thieves, people who robbed even their own neighbors of life and property…there was not one virtuous person there. They spotted the king from a distance, clad in his fine clothes and ornaments, and many Śavaras (thieves), armed with weapons, rushed towards him. King Dharma …

    Of wives and promises… Read More »

  • गुरु पूर्णिमा – Guru Purnima
    On today’s occasion of Guru Purnima, I bow down to all my Gurus, and present before you the various interpretations of the word Guru, it’s meaning, it’s importance and it’s relevance in our lives. There may be different ways to define a Guru, but definition by itself is not characteristic of our culture. The word …

    गुरु पूर्णिमा – Guru Purnima Read More »

  • Anna Prāshana – an introduction to a new world
    Samskāras are often seen as ritualistic and archaic. For most people, such practices do not fit into a modern lifestyle. Our minds have been conditioned to wear traditional clothes on “ethnic day” in office, or on a major festival. How then can we begin to appreciate the nuances of what has made us, us? Even …

    Anna Prāshana – an introduction to a new world Read More »

  • Of cross-connections…
    Read the previous part here… “At first he cried because he was sad that he had to abandon his body, one that had grown with him in his many years on earth, one that his parents had fondled when he was a child, and one that he had used during tapasyā to obtain many siddhis…” …

    Of cross-connections… Read More »

  • Of being agile and Kanban…
    The Emirates is closed for six days. A long weekend, that is actually a full week of holidays. And so I decided to use this time to relook at our internal work processes, lay the groundwork for the next level of services that we intend to offer, and in general, perform a spring-cleaning of sorts. …

    Of being agile and Kanban… Read More »

  • Crying, and dancing…
    Read the previous part here… “So tell me, o King, why did the sanyāsi first weep before entering the young man’s body? And then why did he dance? I am very curious to know the answer…” “Remember, if you know the answer, and don’t tell me the truth, your head will burst into a hundred …

    Crying, and dancing… Read More »

  • He is alive, but…
    Read the previous part here… “You are the fool, not me, you old idiot! I am no longer your shishyā, and you are no longer my Guru. I am leaving this very instant, go find someone else to stay with you!” He threw the begging bowl and his stick onto the ground, and walked away …

    He is alive, but… Read More »

  • The guru and the shishya fight…
    Read the previous part here… When Devasoma became sixteen years of age, that boy, who had captivated everyone’s hearts with his knowledge, modesty and good qualities, suddenly caught a fever and died. Yajñasoma was shattered, and along with his wife, embraced the dead body of his son, their tears refusing to stop, and both were …

    The guru and the shishya fight… Read More »

  • The sanyasi who first wept, and then danced…
    Read the previous part here… “The fourth however, saw that the result was a body of a lion. He knew the dangers of making that lion come to life…” “Yet, just because he wanted to show off his skills, he made it to come alive, and to disastrous consequences. Not only did he kill the …

    The sanyasi who first wept, and then danced… Read More »

  • Of growth, returns and peace of mind…
    I came across an interesting piece of information yesterday, and a conversation that I had with a client today brought that piece into mental focus. The 1972 book Limits to Growth, which predicted our civilisation would probably collapse some time this century, has been criticised as doomsday fantasy since it was published. Now, someone decided …

    Of growth, returns and peace of mind… Read More »