May 3, 2014
January 27, 2012
January 8th 2012. .The chosen date for Swami Kriyanandas book launch in Mumbai of his Biography on Paramhansa Yogananda, his Guru, at the Jamshed Bhabha Auditorium, was for the Mumbai and Pune team of us devotees, a challenge of sorts. It was Swami jis first ever public discourse in Mumbai. In the current scenario of ‘brokers’ who in the garb of religiosity peddle their wares with gusto, aggressive marketing, no holds barred publicity campaign, would Swamijis underplayed, unassuming, simple personality reach across to the souls of the real spiritual seekers in Mumbai, ‘the city that never sleeps’? Would it awaken to the call of Self Realisation and Paramhansas eternal message? Would Masters earthly representative get the welcome he and our Gurus deserved?
Swami ji was content in just serving his Guru and devoting himself to spreading his teachings for the past 63 years all over the world, that he often joked ” Ananda is the best kept secret”. But it was so important that the world get to know and hear his message. Not given to histrionics and ‘celebrity endorsing’ antics, we at Ananda believed in following the ideals of our Masters. But would the world so accustomed to screaming averments understand the integrity behind such ideas? This and other such thoughts clouded our minds. There was nothing we wanted more desperately than to have a packed theatre. Nothing less than this was good enough for Swami ji. Nothing lesser than a resounding welcome by Mumbai for Swami ji was what we were praying for and working towards.
On Hindsight..Such unfounded fears and anxieties. When the Divine has ordained and has willed Swami ji to represent him, only stupendous victory can happen and will happen! Those whose hearts were open to the call of Paramhansa, responded.
What a huge success it turned out to be! It was as if the vision emblazed on or minds had taken fruition, with nigh an absence of detail. The hall was packed to capacity,.. with a spill over.. A huge television screen was placed outside the auditorium in the lobby, to enable viewing of the event for those who weren’t lucky enough to get a seat inside.
Mumbai had welcomed Swami Ji with arms wide open.
A Must read for all Paramhansa lovers..hitherto unknown facts
revealed for the first time. His miracles, divinity and simplicity.
Yours truly along with Mr Narayan Swamy , a journalist devotee who had come down from Delhi just to help out with the event, were in charge of one of the book tables. Strategically placed right opposite the entrance , we were filled with enthusiasm and gratitude to see the crowds come in on a Sunday evening , expectant, ready for the experience of a lifetime.
Even before the event could begin, crowds thronged our table. (more…)
September 5, 2011
Shirin before the attack..youthful hopeful zestful
Shirin Juwale an innocent young bride who was the victim of a criminal act of the highest order, when her husband threw acid on her face , perhaps with the intention to disfigure her forever. Well he did succeed in disfiguring her face, to some extent but failed to make any lasting impact on her indomitable spirit.
Shirin today 16 surgeries later ..confident and whole.
Acid attacks need not always be from a bottle. The tongue suffices magnificently, as is evident when you further read the story of her struggle. The principal of a college, the name of which has been with held by Shirin, out of an act of kindness ( misplaced, I would think) on a request from her to speak to the students of her NGO Palash was met with ““We only want heroes to come here. Not survivors. It does not take courage to survive,” she was told” (more…)
February 28, 2011
Sri Sri Paramhansa Yogananda
As unsurmountable a task as it is to assimilate the ocean in a bowl, is this my effort to encapsulate the Love of Paramhansa Yogananda and Swami Kriyananda and their effort to better our world through Kriya Yoga and Ananda Sangha . May Master help me and guide me through.
Ananda – meaning Bliss, the will o’ the wisp longing that is ever eluding yet ever inviting. We live our lives in the eternal quest of happiness, delusionally believing it to sprout forth from the gardens of worldly pleasure without realising that it is not transient, deceptive happiness but Bliss that the soul longs for. That ever lasting Bliss which was once rightfully ours but has been masked behind the layers of dark desires, never-ending and never gratifying either.
Decades after decades millennium after millennium we hapless souls trudge through this vortex of the world, which with its steely grip keeps us earth-bound while Satan smiles at having won each time in deluding us into believing in the reality of our existence with its saga of joys and sorrows, pain and pleasures , all the time ensnaring us in this duality.
We periodically want out, long for this crushing excruciating existence with transient and ephemeral promises of joy, that traps us , to vanish. Yet, all it takes is just a peek of another desire within reach and what vanishes instead, is this hitherto urgent need to free ourselves, now relegated into oblivion.
Yet there comes a time in the life of each one, when the veil lifts. The drama is revealed. The lack luster world is shorn thread bare once and for all, in the glorious, illuminating, divine light of the Almighty, gently waking us from this dream. Soon we realise the folly of having lived birth after birth pursuing that which does not exist.
My quest for Truth and the mystery of my existence began in the eighties.
December 23, 2010
Mr Mohan Siroya veteran journalist and friend sent me this exclusive on his experience and comments of the IFFI GOA 2010, to be published on Sachiniti.
A DETAILED ANALYTICAL REPORT FROM MOHAN SIROYA
A DETAILED ANALYTICAL REPORT FROM MOHAN SIROYA
A COMEDY OF ERRORS AND MIS-MANAGEMENT GALORE, LACK OF FESTIVAL SPIRIT AND INFERIOR QUALITY OF SELECTED FILMS FOR “CINEMA OF THE WORLD” OBSERVED FROM START TO FINISH
IFFI 2009 -Goa perhaps had come out of teething troubles as it was better organized with large number of quality films. So this year the expectations were high about the fest ,but what the delegates and media saw was a complete chaos till first 3 days .
- As per long standing practice of the fest, directorate used to screen a few shows of foreign films two days prior to inauguration day for the press/media to enable them to taste the palate before hand to build up arousal .This year those who reported earlier had to cool their heels in disappointment as no shows were kept. On the prior day of inauguration, of course there were screenings BUT ALL OF INDIAN PANORAMA films. None cared to inform before hand or afterwards why?
- Boards were put prominently debarring carrying of any food and “beverage” inside auditorium. Funnily the security staff continued to include our own “Warm water bottles” as beverage. I had asked the CM and Festival Director in the first press conference as to what security risk , a senior citizen carrying his /her own warm water bottle will pose besides denying a normal human facility, the CM had agreed that it should be allowed and accordingly had told the Director . Unfortunately the security was an authority unto itself being 3 tier viz; CISF ,local police and theatre guards with zero co-0rdination. Festival Directorate and the local sponsors – Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG) supposed to provide facilitation of infrastructure appeared to be at loggerheads with all other coordinating agencies. Even co-ordination lacked between the media centre (managed by PIB),directorate and the CEO of ESG- Goa. ESG CEO promised many things for facilitation and comforts but very few were fulfilled. Because there was a facility for a daily delegate , local children or those less than 18 years even got registered and attended although legally they can not view “A” or uncensored festival films.
- First organizers decided to open computerized ticketing only on the morning of first day of fest(23rd). Delegates and media had to protest since the screenings were scheduled at 9 a.m. Then the booking started earlier day on 22 nd( before inauguration) but neither the printed Schedule with film code no. nor the film catalogues were available . By evening only the Indian Panorama Films catalogue was made available sans cinema of the world catalogue . Hence for the first two days, we had to select the films to watch only on “Guess”. A few of the media persons could not get the catalogue even after 3 days because of shortage and lack of communication. DFF , who was responsible for that could not explain the delay. Less said the better about the “Incomplete Info” in the World Cinema catalogue. There was neither any film indexing for convenience nor any credit/award details were mentioned about the films which can reflect on the quality of films. Compared to this shoddy and delayed work, the catalogue of Indian Panorama films was much better in all respects. (more…)