Still life in Oil – 1997
NORMALISING CONVERSATIONS ON MENTAL HEALTH
We’ve all been there. On the brink of an emotional breakdown, negative emotions fuelling up, feeling like you’ll immediately burst . You can’t focus on school, lash out at loved ones, and maybe even disconnect yourselves from them completely. Trust me when I say this, you are not alone. As teens we’ve all sprained an ankle or broken a bone before right? We’ve even gone to the doctor to get ourselves fixed. Why is it that we don’t see our mental health in that same light? Why do we believe that mental illnesses are something to be ashamed of? Having a mental illness doesn’t make you inferior, or less than. It doesn’t indicate emotional weakness and most often such illnesses are flaws of biology, not of character. The stigmatization of mental illness has veiled the overarching presence of mental health struggles amongst our age demographic. We’ve romanticized and ridiculed the topic to such an extent that mental illnesses are only used as derogatory insults. How many of us have heard,or even said, something like – “She looks anorexic” , or “I’m like really OCD.” The first step towards solving a problem is recognizing it in the first place. So, let’s get this conversation going. Start talking about these issues more. Let’s not ignore our mental health. Our struggles are valid and should be treated as such. We can be the force that changes society’s perception of mental health.
The dazzling ripe-orange hue,
contrasting against sky’s deep-blue.
Wondrous! The Gulmohar tree’s view.
Scorching summer Sun burnt them all.
Na! She is resilient she still stood tall,
showing off her saffron fashionable shawl.
Expressing her vibrant beauty,
provides shade diligently performs her duty.
Remain untouched enunciates this May-Flower Rooty.
Expressions from the journey
Voice Of India
Congratulations on the huge victory, Prime Minister!
Respected Prime Minister,
In 2014 we helped the election commission to enroll five lakh new voters in the country. We worked 24 hours a day for over a Year because we were working for our countrymen to rise and understand the power of their vote. Our nation was looking for a U turn towards path of prosperity ..
Thanks to your leadership a lot has changed in last five years. But it only feels like a good beginning for the long journey ahead all of us. The flight needs to take off now!!! The beneficiaries, the citizens of our country are expecting miracles to happen in their lives under your leadership. For they have been deprived too long for hundreds of years. India deserves to be a Golden bird again, isn’t it!
Here is a wish list of voters who look forward to the next five years of your term for the making India a JUST, Peaceful & Prosperous Country.
#WishListOfIndianVoters #Election2019 #VoiceOfIndia #WishList2019 #IndiaOfMyDreams
A very strong and effective Judicial system for fast tracking cases which remain pending for long. Justice delayed is justice denied. Stringent action against culprits who break laws. The administrative body to be made more effective and corruption free.
Every year thousands of intelligent youth are compelled to move out of our country for higher education. Many never return back home. We need multiple world-class universities over next five years to reverse this trend. Atleast five world class universities to be established over next five years.
At regular time intervals there must be third party audits of government spending on different welfare schemes. Very often the funds sanctioned on paper do not reach the actual beneficiaries. Making them unsuccessful.
Empowering the local citizens and taking their help for effectively implementing government schemes is good example for making governance effective. An example that should be followed. Give back powers to people and they will do wonders.
Bringing back the lost pride to Farming sector. We need educated youth to look at farming as a respectable & lucrative career.
Promoting Organic & Natural Farming practices for betterment of environment & health. Making India self sufficient in food production. Indian Farmers are intelligent, they have over the years with their best practices, learned to yield three crops in an Year. They do not need freebies or sympathy. Empower them with water and electricity throughout the year for farming & they will generate wealth themselves.
Rita Kuhad ji’s (teacher by profession, runs a free school for underprivileged women) wishes
“I’m for improving the education system by providing quality training to teachers. We don’t have efficient , knowledgeable, dedicated teachers in Govt schools. That’s what sets apart the govt schools from the elite schools.”
Shashank Poddar (CEO of a company which employees 2000 people)
- A more effective Finance minister.
- Lowering burdens of taxes on tax payers.
- Making the administrative body more effective and disciplined.
- Being more inclusive about public participation while formulating policies
- Ten or more times more spending on Judicial reforms
- Overhauling law implementing agencies
- Upgrading Infrastructure in cities
Shubham Choudhary (Software Engineer)
Continuing development in the field of science, establishing happiness centers, skill development centers adding benefits for our soldiers, including spirituality in the education, leading make in India movement to new heights, Overall reviving India to the Superpower that it has been
Swami Pranvanand (Social worker)
- Strategical elimination of Poverty by creating opportunities,but not by cash rewards from taxpayers pockets.
- Decisive Governance
- Authentic intention to prosper Holistically.
- Streamlining the economic hochpoch even at d cost of tough decision.
- Elimination of anti-nationalism.
Rima Engineer (CST Therapist)
- Increasing the happiness quotient of this country
- Environmental policy reforms where punishment of cutting a tree should be intense
- Corruption free society
Shreyans Mehta (IIM graduate & a teacher)
- Institutions taking pride in their Indic roots
- Introduction of yoga + meditation in all schools
- Higher education in all national languages
- Focus on Ayurveda + Indian knowledge systems
- Freeing temples from government control
Jainil Khandelwal (Travel Agent)
- Computerizing every Government office process to eliminate corruption
- Making not just highways, but good internal city roads as well, in 21st century today our roads are horrible
- Reservations strictly for economically poor only
- Reforming Education by 3 points:-
- Bringing in learning from stories of Indian heroes like Maharana Pratap, Chanakya etc
- Making it holistic to allow kids to pursue offbeat fields which encourages their natural skill set
- 1-2 yrs military service mandatory for school kids
Nita Gala (Mathematics Teacher)
- Rules and regulations which are made on paper needs to be actually implemented.
- Creating good Employment opportunities in rural areas too , so that cities are not crowded.
Jai Masrani (Entrepreneur)
- KPI implementation across all departments.
- Equal and fair judiciary system.
- Make in India implemented from the core component level.
- Strict quality monitoring by ISI and other quality standard bodies.
- Making all of the above environmentally sustainable.
- Removal of caste based reservation and solely based on economic status.
- Prohibition on tacit or forceful conversion.
- Spiritual practice to be imbibed in primary education.
- Compulsory military service before employment eligibility.
Rishi Poddar (Entrepreneur)
- Removal of article 370
- Uniform civil code
- No reservations
- Ease of doing business
- Elimination of black money
- Clean governance clean cities
- Better farm income
- Happy healthy and wealthy India
Akhil Patel (Filmmaker)
- Stabilizing J&K and saving resources by removal of Art. 35A & 370
- Support the growth of spirituality in the country.
- Active govt participation with NGOs in revival of rivers & developing waterways.
- Education revolution
- Welfare of farmers & promoting Natural farming
The list may seem long, but we are with you for bringing these reforms. With the support and blessings of our Countrymen – Hum honge kamyaab. And in 2024 we shall again have you, Dear Prime minister, our leader once again 🙂
(Citizen of India)
PS: We would love to know your wishlist from the government in the comments section below! 🙂
Dusting off Dindoshi traffic chowky
Pained at the sight of mounds of garbage, construction material and abandoned vehicles flanking Dindoshi traffic chowky, decided to undertake a spruce-up job.
I wanted to initiate the Aarey flyover project since long , and give it a makeover. The face lift kicked off on October 2.
Like everybody else, I used to look at the mess below the flyover during my daily commute and wonder how traffic cops spend time in such filthy surrounds. I felt the urge to do something. So I began meeting traffic cops to discuss possible solutions a month back.
Senior Inspector Vijay Salunke of Dindoshi traffic chowky, who assumed charge in September, was also keen to improve the state of affairs below the flyover, which helped expedite the project.
The project hopes to beautify the 700-metre stretch of the traffic chowky below the flyover. It aims to stop littering, remove abandoned vehicles and debris, level the ground, plant vertical gardens, create sitting areas and paint the section under the bridge.
On 2nd October, volunteers from Art of Living, local elected representatives, civic staffers, students of Dairy Science Institute at Aarey Colony and citizen activists held the first clean-up drive. In a matter of four hours, around three tonnes of trash was cleared. Seeing the citizens’ response, traffic cops on 3rd Octobe cleared another section near the chowky which they plan to develop as a garden. “This is a busy, noisy junction. We are sure the plants will help cut noise and dust pollution. Our staff is very happy at the difference just two days of work has made,” said Senior Inspector Vijay Salunke.
You can read the full article here
Our video of the Aarey Clean up Drive 🙂
Vigyan Bhairav – As I understood, just a little bit..
Attending the recent discourse on Vigyan Bhairav with Gurudev in Mumbai was like unveiling infinity. Vigyan Bhairav is the science of Consciousness or Shiva. The fact that there is so much to discover in existence got reiterated. So much so that we can never say ‘we know it all’ or ever get bored of learning this remarkable science.
Vigyan Bhairav started with Intellect or “Devi” asking “Shiva” or the eternal space a question – “What are the ways that I can be in a state like yours?” But why is the intellect wishing to be in a state like that of Shiva/space? And what is the state of space after all?
Let’s reflect upon what is space first. Space is and space is not. We cannot explain what space is in words and it’s presence cannot be denied also. The absence of material is space but inside material is also space. Everything emerges from space and everything dissolves in space. Space is nothing/zero and space is everything/infinite. The fifth element space is most mystical and has baffled scientists for time immemorial. Shiva is the space, it is the consciousness.
While Devi or Shakti is the Intellect. Intellect thrives on manifest which is – measurable. It relies on the organs of perception. All that is logical, expressible, understandable is in the domain of the intellect. Is it that the intellect has become tired of being busy and it’s now seeking to be in rest like Shiva? After all, a matured intellect does look for something permanent. Gurudev said that it’s then that higher questions arise in us like- ‘Who am I’, ‘What is the purpose of life’ …etc. I assume, Devi is stressed of overworking and she may be quite jealous of her husband being in an eternal state of siesta and so she finally asks Shiva this question, just Kidding! 🙂 It would surely be worth knowing the secret of Shiva’s blissful state, so let’s read along….
Gurudev revealed the secret- like a small eye can hold the vast sky and a small mirror can capture a huge elephant, the human intellect can also withhold infinity. And then impossible start happening…In the scripture 112 techniques are mentioned those were given by Shiva to Devi for being in a blissful state like his. Here are a few techniques Gurudev shared with us-
1) Gurudev said – “Waiting can lead to Meditation”
Waiting can either lead to frustration or it can lead to meditation. Often when we are waiting we get restless or frustrated. But the space around us waits forever and waits for nothing really. Waiting for nothing is meditation. Meditation is enlivening and rejuvenating. So wait but for nothing to be in a state like Shiva.
2) Akshar (a letter) can be used to settle the mind.
A letter example “ka” if spoken mentally can be spoken forever. But it must be disconnected with breath and must be spoken internally for it to be continuous. Do it and see.Continue long enough…. Did you observe that after a while the mind becomes blank? Akshar spoken mentally can calm the agitated mind and carry us to space like nothingness.
3) The way to overcome worries-
Let’s see what a worry is? Worry is a continuous flow of connected thoughts. Like a whirlpool, it can drown us in it. Gurudev shared a way in which we can move out of worry. The thought which is a worry should be expanded. Like if the thought is -I hate him, elongate it to -I……….H…..A……..T…….E…..H…..I…..M. You will start laughing at the same thought. It works, you must try!
4) An effort for the impossible and 100% action.
Gurudev asked us, can we speak letter “Ka” without “aa”. We all tried and failed. Because it is impossible to say ka without aa. But what’s amazing is in the effort to say “ka” without “aa” flow of thoughts cease, what remains is effort alone. Being 100% in action can also keep us free like space is.
5) Gurudev made us do the chakit (Wonderment) mundra. He said that the diversity in the creation is so that we can be in constant amazement. Like kids are. In amazement questions disappear, wonderment takes over. I felt an upward movement of energy while doing this mundra. In wonderment heart is full and head is empty space like.
6) Remembering that everything is a lie.
When obstacles in life come they seem to be permanent. This makes us miserable. We forget the many challenges of our life in the past. Where are those events now? Like a dream they are all over, isn’t it? Everything is a lie Including this body as it’s temporary. Bringing into awareness that everything is a lie there is nothing that the mind can hold on to. Remembering this all burdens from the mind drop, even space holds on to nothing.
7) Ego for achieving impossible can lead us there.
Wanting to achieve the impossible is like wishing to achieve the highest. Like climbing the Mount Everest. But once the ego achieves the impossible, beyond the achievement it has nothing more to do. Then it ultimately rests. Gurudev says achievers are rested, but those still in the run may be aggressive. Space is rested, always.
8) Filling positivity with the power of thought.
Thoughts have great power. So much so that a single thought can even lift a body of 100 kilos and reach it to a place of that thought. Gurudev said, then why not use the same power of thought to know that the outer and inner spaces are filled with positivity and bliss.
Over the three days, Gurudev shared with us many simple and complex techniques. My synopsis of them all is that – when we forget our true nature, which is space like unbounded and internal, we become miserable. A reminder can get us out of this misery of life. That we are much bigger than all fleeting events, remembering this gives us strength and make us peaceful again. Using the methods shared by Gurudev in Vigyan Bhairav is like using the refresh button on the laptop. Instantly we can become blank and new like the space. Or be like Nandi, the bull, who keeps his gaze fixed on Shiva.
Actually by habit we do quite the opposite. Negativity catches our attention first. Let’s make a new habit and paste a board in the Heart- “Shiva resting, trespassing punishable.” 🙂
Gurudev narrated the story of Samudra Manthan. When Devas and Danavas performed Samundra manthan first poison came out. Shiva drank the poison and kept it in his throat and his throat became blue. That’s why Shiva is also called Neelkanth. Shiva did not let the poison seep deeper in his heart. This is symbolic for us to learn to save our heart at any cost. We cannot be goodie-goodie and may need to criticize sometimes, but let it be from the throat region, from the surface, and not from the depth of the heart.
Vigyan is Vishesh Gyan, special knowledge. Gurudev decoded this precious knowledge and downloaded it for us to experience. Making Vigyan Bhairav discourse an unforgettable experience. People from all walks of life came for this discourse, there were doctors, lawyers, scientists, students, homemakers, CEOs, politician, film stars, five thousand five hundred of them but all went back with common feelings – expanded, elevated and more peaceful than before. Which proves Vigyan Bhairav is universal and an absolute science.
Prostrations at the feet of Gurudev for this invaluable gift.
Life is like the Festival of Holi
Like Holi is a festival of colors, Life is a festival of emotions. Minus the emotions from life and life will be colorless, isn’t it!
The vibrant play of emotions- Happiness, Sadness, Gratefulness, Jealousy, Longing, Lust, Greed, Love, Hate, Fear…. continues all our lives, making life a festival like Holi.