Tag Archives: vishnu

Bhakti Marga – The Ultimate path

Bhakti Marga – the path of Devotion is often referred as the pinnacle of all paths, where all other paths eventually converge.   It is one of rarity even though it is profoundly blissful.

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The Sufi Saints, Gopis of Krishna, Mira bai, Hanuman are examples of who walked this path.  Well, this is not even a path, it’s more of a state.  The state of devotion, in which the distinction between the limited Self and the object of devotion, often it being the – Universal Self disappears.   Even Gyan Marga talks about the very same thought.  Then how does this differ?

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Narada – in his treatise – Bhakti Sutras – describes the maturing of love as devotion.   When the desire or longing intensifies to a level, where the only focus is the attainment of the greatest, or the divine, one is said to be in state of devotion.   It is the next level to love.    Love is about coming close, merging.   At the physical level, this often manifests as attachment.   Love gets distorted to lust, anger and other negative feelings through the layer of Ego.  Ego field is the reason for the distortions we experience in our daily lives.   But without this ego interference, the power of Bhakti shines.

The wise people realized the dissolving of this veil of ego is easier when one effortlessly falls in deep love with the divine.   Devotion is the natural outcome.   One doesn’t seek anything more.  The part – Bhaj, is now merged with itself ( the bigger Self).  What more can a child ask for than to be re-united with the mother?

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How does one even experience a taste of devotion?  Does it require one to sing hymns, praises to the divine?  Does it call for anything special?  The special thing to do is to turn ordinary!!!  Only an ordinary being can experience this special state of devotion.   Because even if one believes oneself to be something, the veil of ego will stop from experiencing devotion.  So in that sense, it is being totally surrendered, an act of wilful submission, of dissolving.

Na aham vasami vaikunthe yoginam hridaya na cha, madbhakta yatra gayanti tatra tishthami narada.

The Lord says: “O Narada, I dwell not in Vaikuntha, nor in the hearts of Yogis, but I dwell there where My Bhaktas sing My name!! The state of infinite bliss and bhakti are inseparable.

There is the keynote of devotion and surrender throughout the Gita. Bhakti-marga is the easiest, safest, surest and quickest way for attaining the highest bliss or God-realisation. That is the reason why Narada Rishi says: “Bhakti is greater than Karma, Jnana and Yoga. ”

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That’s the ultimate Treasure – Love for the sake of love itself.  Love without any conditions. Love for the highest!!

This can not only uplift oneself, but the whole Humanity.  All great shifts have happened because of devotion of few people to a cause, country or God’s children.   The power is always there.  The power of Bhakti – by being the instrument of the divine.

Dissolve and be free !!!

By Vikas Bhatia 

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Creating the GOD Company

There is divinity in every enterprise, Big and Small. I will go so far as saying there is GOD in every enterprise! Did you just raise an eyebrow? Let me explain. Spiritually speaking, if GOD is in each one of us and we’re but HIS manifestation, shouldn’t there be a more powerful version of HIM in a collective enterprise that has energies working together for a greater purpose (or at least trying to!)?

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If the infinite supreme that we refer to as GOD is all-pervading and all-inclusive, then by the very nature of HIS being, enterprises of all sizes are necessary and deserve to co-exist within HIM and as manifestations of HIM. There is a natural, self-regulatory balance that is achieved because of this. It is then safe to deduce that the measure of the enterprise’s success and how long it lasts is then defined by how much or less of HIM is in the fabric of their being.

BVM

Metaphorically speaking, therefore, every sustain-ably successful enterprise has three gears working together, endlessly, without friction, feeding into each other’s ceaseless motion forward: Generators, Operators and Destroyers, GODs for the acronym-lovers. Why do we need them and how do we go about surrounding ourselves with these manifestations of the ‘holy trinity’ in good measure? That is the name of this game called life or business or both, since one is the other, right?

Generators: These persons are the natural creators/ ideators/ initiators. This is their Swadharma – their natural wont, inclination, their destiny if you will!

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These are the Brahma manifestations that come up with ideas, create the concepts, identify opportunities, fathom projects/ products etc. that pretty much define the collective enterprise. They are the architects not burdened by logic or reason whose minds can see endless possibilities, the very engines of change and initiative. They give life to the collective. BUT, they are not almighty by themselves.

In expending all their energies on the aspect of Generation, they unconsciously seek out others who can maintain, nurture, preserve, incubate, monitor, moderate etc. in order that their creations do not die. They NEED Operators to complete their task and in a sense complete them! The irony, of course, is that Generators more often than not, despise Operators!

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Think about it – Generators are free-thinkers who despise rules, hate micro-management, are annoyed by processes and deplore routine. In effect, they despise the very character of their bête-noire Operators and yet cannot thrive without them! Is this a problem? Nope – it is in fact a God-sent opportunity! Read on…

Operators: They are the nurturers/ protectors/ guides/ mentors/ managers/ leaders et al. This is their Swadharma. They are the Vishnu manifestations that nurture ideas, give shape to concepts, execute and ensure project completion.

Vishnu

They are the ‘Managers’, if you please, who can appreciate the brilliance of creativity and yet excel in working with logic and reason.  Their minds are focused on ensuring prosperity and abundance, while being pragmatic and fair, without getting swayed. In effect, they nurture the life of the collective and balance change with continuity. BUT, they are not Almighty by themselves either…

While they use their energies on this aspect of Operation, they consciously seek out others who can finish, close out, stop, and destroy etc. in order that the created leave the stage after their lifespan, to make way for the new. They NEED Destroyers to complete their task and in a sense complete them!

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As irony goes, they too despise their Yang-halves, the Destroyers! After all, if one is naturally inclined to preserve and nurture, one will therefore hate the disrupters, naysayers, the critics, the tough-task-masters, the finishers if you will. Yet, they cannot thrive without these chaps! And therein lies our other God-sent opportunity…

Destroyers: These are the disrupters, critics/ doubters/ the skeptics/ the tough-call-takers/ the closure-specialists/ the devil’s advocates if you please. It is their Swadharma.

Shiva

They are the Shiva manifestations who know when it is time to pull the plug, kill an idea, stop a project, phase-out a product, ease out a resource, disrupt an entrenched process etc. They are unaffected by the creative genius behind a creation or the perseverance that nurtured it. They are neither driven by emotion nor by logic. They are the change-agents who decisively influence the course of the collective’s journey. BUT, they are not Almighty by themselves.

While exhausting their energies on this aspect of Destruction, they actually seek out Generators in order that creation can start again.

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They NEED Generators to complete their task and complete the trinity, even though they hate their ilk! It makes sense doesn’t it? By nature, if they are adept at disrupting, they must abhor the ideators, the creators, the dreamers who made those things in the first place!

OK. Point made and well-taken I hope. Now imagine the perfect collective enterprise that has somehow managed the perfect mix of Generators, Operators and Destroyers, who are working with and seemingly against each other, in a symbiotic manner. They could have managed to achieve this by having an eco-space that encourages each of these manifestations to blossom individually as well as collectively.

Questions

How could this have happened? In HR parlance, we can hazard to guess that their ‘self-defined KRAs’ demanded that Generators actually seek out and bring Operators who can nurture their creativity, into the Collective. Similarly, Operators are expected to find and bring in Destroyers who can put out their outdated projects and disrupt the cruise-mode. Finally, the Destroyers are mandated to hunt for Generators who can create anew post their disruptive actions.

Net-net, there is a self-sufficient eco-system that looks after itself and its talent needs! They are all leaders in their own right, working autonomously yet collaboratively as stakeholders. This three-way yin-yang, if you can imagine it, is naturally self-balancing, fair, self-feeding and sustainable, destined for equitable success, don’t you think?

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Can you visualize its in-built, self-check mechanisms because of the very opposing natures of the three forces that drive it, like conjoined levers or gears, a smooth, flowing three-petaled Yin-Yang?

And then there is the aspect of balancing the G-O-D that is within us! It is safe to say that all three qualities Generator/ Operator/ Destroyer are in some measure inside each one of us. The challenge is to nurture and allow these manifestations to express themselves at the right time and in collaborative response to the expressions from our colleagues. That will also mean an inherent respect for the G-O-D in the other person and awareness at all times. It is possible isn’t it?

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Now do you believe you can help create a GOD company within your existing set-up or even outside of it when you start your next entrepreneurial venture? Well, what are you waiting for my dear fellow manifestation? Godspeed!

By Nandakishore Padmanabhan (with inputs from Vikas Bhatia & Aanchal Sethi)

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Prithvi

“Mata bhumih, putro aham, prithivyaha”.

Mother Earth!!! We address her…”Prithvi” – the lone perpetual life sustenance mechanism available to mankind.

“Shantah Prithvi” – calm and serene despite raging storms. From time immemorial, man has been drilling holes all over its vast expanse, has been yanking out its entrails, yet it remains silent, never complaining. Waterfalls fall, rivers traverse cutting across its flesh, yet she remains forgiving and kind. She didn’t even cry when Hiroshima & Nagasaki burnt, absorbing all the pain and shock, giving back life and happiness again and again.

Love for mother comes naturally to a child, perhaps developing in the womb itself. Although we try to repay it through different means, the indebtedness towards mother remains life long. And if we extend this analogy to Earth and Nature, which provide human beings with life sustaining elements, we have quite utterly failed to express gratitude in any way.

Stable and consistent: Prithvi, ever committed to its mission. For ages, it is going around the sun at its appointed path, never failing and not wavering focussed as ever.

All embracing, it is Home to everyone and everything. The crawling little insect and the huge dinosaur, all find a place on this benevolent earth. Food for everyone, water for the thirsty, gold for the greedy. Close your eyes and think of those twinkling stars, if they ever fall, where do you think they would go. Such is the attraction of “Prithvi”, the scientists so dismissively call it the gravitational pull.

Yet hark the whining bird, hear the silent wailings of the earth. Beware the volcanoes raging within its crust may burst any moment. Nurse its wounds and slow down the devastation, because home is where Prithvi is.

In addition to the above summary I’d like to add a drop of mythology that might shed some further light on this manifestation of Devi:

The Earth Goddess, Bhoodevi, nourished all humankind with Her bounty, She was venerated by sages and seers; She belonged to all. But then humans sought to possess Her and plunder Her wealth. Enraged by this callous new attitude toward Her, the goddess refused to let any seeds sprout or any plants bear fruit.

Humanity began to starve and die away. Moved by their plight, the god Vishnu descended to Earth as the patriarch Prithu and tried to make peace with Bhoodevi. But she refused to forgive humankind; She ran away from Prithu in the form of a cow. Prithu decided to take a harsher approach, pursuing Her on his chariot and threatening to shoot Her with arrows.

“If you harm me,” She warned, “the world will cease to be.”

“I do not wish to harm You,” he replied. “I want You to feed mankind.”

“Why should I nurture those who do not respect me?” She asked.

“Fear not,” he told Her. “I shall make sure humans respect their Mother Earth and treat Her as a cow treats Her calves. I will be Gopala, the cowherd, protecting You from danger.” And so it came to pass, Prithu instituted the practice of prudent economics and taught mankind to draw on the Earth’s resources without exploiting Her. He also established the sacred laws of dharma that ensure stability in society, and maintain a harmonious relationship between mankind and the world around.

Pleased with this, Bhoodevi called Herself Prithvi, beloved of Prithu.


But the lesson remains, and may yet return to destroy humankind — as exploitation replaces respect, will She continue to nurture us and give us life?

Aum Maatangyai Namaha

By Aanchal Sethi

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