THE DIVINE GARB

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"I see the crimson colours of the Divine Garb"
"I see the crimson colours of the Divine Garb"

THE DIVINE GARB

 I see a divine garb hanging round my body

In the early morning hours when I still feel bodily pains

And warding off all attempts to bring to an end

Night’s dreamy splendour;

I see the crimson colours of the divine garb

Absorbing the cooling effect of the early morning rays

The garb giving me the feel

That  I am something of the very special

The divine garb is not like the one

Faked by rogue weavers

To make a gullible king walk half naked in the streets

The garment is indeed woven as a web

Where threads are smeared with thoughts pure and holy

To give them a dazzle and sheen

I get up not knowing what to do

Is the garment meant to convey a message

That I should play the role of a missionary

To make the man in the street learn his relationship with Almighty

Though a devoted soul I know I am hardly fitted to play such a role

My inadequacies are too many and too glaring

To dare and challenge those already in the field.

Is the garment meant to wake up in me thoughts lying dormant

Like particles floating in the rays of the morning sun

To enable me to join the ranks of knowledgeable souls

Whose message conveyed through word and print

Makes them unrivalled in the field of poetry or art

Here again I feel humbled

As the gumption that produced those wizards

Whose classics enthralled hmanity over the centuries

Is not what I can lay claim to with confidence.

I pick up a few granites of hard History

Which is all I could gather after digging over the years into realms of past

Though the effort is not much I can see the road ahead

I have an understanding how the world is what it is today

The chronicles are there for anybody to read

To understand the myriad efforts put forth by man to achieve progress

I find the divine garb is sent with a mission

To give cheer and hope to an agonised soul

Perplexed with dismay and despair

Facing the trauma of a life besieged with problems of aging and health

Its message is not to waver but put forth best effort

In the service of man even in a limited way

As the last days could also be best days at times

The mind cast in a mould of peace and content,

And God remains sheet-anchor in thought and deed.

 

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WELCOME TO TARANGINI

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Water supports Life. Running or Streaming Water represents Life in Motion.
Water supports Life. Running or Streaming Water represents Life in Motion.
TARANGINI - FLOWING STREAM - THE HOPE FOR HUMANITY
TARANGINI – FLOWING STREAM – THE HOPE FOR HUMANITY

 

 
 

Tarangini - The Running Stream
Tarangini - The Running Stream

 

 The word “TARANGINI” means a flowing river or stream. The act of flowing gives the water a life of its own. The river or stream is alive as long as the water is flowing. Man is confronted by the problems of aging and health. It is the thoughts and deeds of the man that survive which gives us a hope that human life could get over the limitations imposed by mortality. Tarangini conveys the thoughts that are expressed by my father, Shri. Rebbapragada Suryanarayana Murthy and I am happy to share his thoughts with others. In the fluidity of this flowing stream, I express a sense of hope for humanity and its quest for immortality. Please also read my personal tribute to my father at my entry titled “TARANGINI” – THE WAVE THEORY OF IMMORTALITY at my Home Page of Bhavanajagat.

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2009/10/20/tarangini-the-wave-theory-of-immortality/

 

 

WHOLE DUDE – WHOLE ARGUMENT

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If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, the exchange of words could escalate into open warfare.
If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, the exchange of words, the battle of words, the Whole Argument could escalate into open warfare.

THE WHOLE ARGUMENT – THE BATTLE OF WORDS : 

If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, the exchange of words, the battle of words, the Whole Argument could escalate into open warfare. Women while initiating conversation with men begin in the mode of interrogation. Women tend to open up with a sharp question. Some questions that are often asked are; Who are you?, What have you been doing?, Where have you been?, and What else? When questioned by a female partner, men tend to give straight, and short answers. Women never get impressed by brief and matter of fact statements. While men try to use a specific word to project a specific image associated with that word, women are adept in interpreting that word using an alternate image. Women’s zeal to prolong the conversation is often motivated by a desire to probe the man further. When the grilling begins, man relents, starts using words of endearment with his responses to defuse the situation and to take cover. Once the Battle of Words begins, women tend to remain focussed on the battle as long as they have the ammunition. Women ignore all words of endearment used by the men as they view it as a distraction and fear that they may not be able to accomplish their mission of winning the Battle of Words. The inhabitants of Venus would not stop until a total victory is firmly grasped. Man, specially the Most Auspicious One, not only is willing to accept a defeat but also lovingly chooses to get killed in the duel of words. Getting killed is Divine when the Battle of Words involves your female life partner. 

Kastvam? Shuuli, mrugaya bhishajam;Neela KantaH Priye aham, Kekaam yekaam kuru;PasupatiH,naiva drushtey vishaaney;Sthaanuur Mughdhey, na vadati taruH; Jeeviteysa ShivaayaaH, gachha atavyaam; iti Hatha VachaH paatu va Chandra ChuudaH.
Kastvam? Shuuli, mrugaya bhishajam;Neela KantaH Priye aham, Kekaam yekaam kuru;PasupatiH,naiva drushtey vishaaney;Sthaanuur Mughdhey, na vadati taruH; Jeeviteysa ShivaayaaH, gachha atavyaam; iti Hatha VachaH paatu va Chandra ChuudaH.

THE BATTLE OF WORDS BETWEEN THE “FIRST COUPLE”  : 

Parvati :  Kastvam?  =  Who are You? 

Shiva  :  Shuuli  = The one with “TRIDENT”, the bearer of a Spear. 

Parvati :  Mrugaya bhishajam  = ( Go and )  Find medicine. 

Parvati pays no attention to the tradition that allows men to identify themselves by the personal weapon they carry. Lord Vishnu is often identified as “CHAKRI” for He uses “Sudarsan Chakra” as His personal weapon. People who worship Lord Shiva recognize Him as the bearer of “TRI SHUULA” or “TRIDENT”, a Spear. Parvati ignores the image attached to the word “Shuuli” and uses an alternate meaning attached to the word “Shuuli”. The word “Shuula” is a disease entity which is characterized by stomach ache. She interpreted “Shuuli” as a person with a disease entity called “Shuula” and hence She very mockingly suggested to Lord Shiva to go and find some medicine for His stomach ache. 

Shiva  : Priye + Aham + Neela KantaH = My Most Beloved, I am the One with Dark Blue Neck. 

Lord Shiva ignored Parvati’s mocking suggestion to find medicine, and very politely responds with the word “Neela KantaH” which is often used to describe Him. As per the legend, Lord Shiva had protected the world from being consumed by a dangerous poisonous gas called “Haala Hala” and had safely retained it in His throat and the deadly poison had imparted a dark blue color to His throat and contributed to His name and He is very popularly known as “Neela KantaH”. 

"Neela KantaH" or Pavo cristatus, family Phasianidae, a large pheasant with a metallic blue green body; the male is celebrated for its beauty and is endowed with strong "CROWING" voice.
“Neela KantaH” or Pavo cristatus, family Phasianidae, a large pheasant with a metallic blue-green body; the male is celebrated for its beauty and is endowed with strong “CROWING” voice.

Parvati  :  Kekaam + Yekaam + Kuru =  ( You ) Shout loudly ( with Your “CROWING” voice ) once. 

Parvati not only avoided identifying Lord Shiva as “Neela KantaH” but also She had challenged Him to give a demonstration of His voice. Birds are very often identified in nature by their unique bird calls or songs. The Indian Blue peacock utters a long mournful scream . Parvati is unwilling to look at Lord Shiva’s throat and identify Him as “Neela KantaH” and She would rather prefer to identify Him by the quality of the sound that comes from His throat. 

PASUPATI, BULL - Bos indicus, Zebu, the Brahman Bull; family Bovidae.
PASUPATI, BULL – Bos indicus, Zebu, the Brahman Bull; family Bovidae.

Shiva  : PasupatiH  =  The Lord of all four legged creatures; the Lord of all living entities. 

Lord Shiva is not provoked by Parvati’s suggestion to give a demonstration of His voice by giving a loud call. He very politely gives Her a different answer and identified Himself as the Lord of all creatures and He rides a Bull known as “Nandi”. 

Parvati  : Naiva + drushtey + vishaaney = ( I am ) Not able to see the Horns. 

Parvati made a literal interpretation of the word “Pasupati” which means a bull and responded to Lord Shiva with a bit of sarcasm and had commented that She is not able to find the Horns which could be a very characteristic feature of a bull. 

Shiva  : O’ + Mughdhey + Sthaanuur  = O’ Sweet faced One, I am “Immovable”. 

Lord Shiva is very patient, did not argue about the meaning of the word “Pasupati”, and tactfully changes the subject and speaks of His Personal Quality with which people identify Him. He is famously known for His Steadfastness and the word “Sthanuu” signifies this personality trait and character. He also demonstrates no signs of  irritation in His manner of speech and He very carefully chooses His words and responds to Parvati with a compliment about Her beautiful face which is full of charm and youthful exuberance. 

Ficus religiosa or the Bodhi Tree is often worshipped in India. The tree is also described as "Sthaanuu" which means immovable.
Ficus religiosa or the Bodhi Tree is often worshipped in India. The tree is also described as “Sthaanuu” which means immovable.

Parvati  :   Na + vadati + taruH  =   A ‘tree’ cannot speak!!! ( How could a ‘tree’ talk??? ) 

Parvati shows no interest in evaluating Lord Shiva’s character and steadfastness and interpreted the word “Sthaanuu” in a very simple manner and further commented  that if the description of “Sthaanuu” is correct; She would not expect to hear  any words as trees are not endowed with the power of speech. 

Shiva  : Jeeviteysa + ShivaayaaH  = ( I am ) Life Partner of Parvati. 

Lord Shiva uses His final and ultimate weapon in this Battle of Words. The word ” SHIVA” also describes “Parvati”. By claiming that He is the Life Partner of Parvati, Lord Shiva intended to charm Her with His words and yet the same time give an appropriate response to Her question of “KASTVAM” with which She has initiated this Battle of Words. 

Parvati  :  Gachha +  Atavyaam  =  Run to the forest. 

The alternate meaning of the word “Shiva” is Jackal. Parvati who is fully focussed upon winning the Battle of Words is not in a mood to succumb to the magic of Lord Shiva’s endearing words. Parvati amply demonstrates Her deftness in interpreting words as per the circumstances of the Battle. Jackals are very timid animals. They simply run away when they are challenged by voice. Parvati taunts Lord Shiva and tells Him to run to the forest for He has called Himself a Jackal by using the word “Shiva” to describe His Identity. 

The humble  and shy Indian Jackal is also described as "SHIVA".
The humble and shy Indian Jackal is also described as “SHIVA”.

Iti Hatha Vachah paatu va Chandra ChuudaH  =  The Lord whose hairlocks are adorned by the Crescent shaped Moon, who is thus killed in the Battle of Words may protect me. 

Lord Shiva- Shuuli, Neela kantaH, Pasupati, Sthaanuu, Chandra ChuudaH.
Lord Shiva- Shuuli, Neela kantaH, Pasupati, Sthaanuu, Chandra ChuudaH.

The Lord has chosen not to win the Battle of Words. Ordinary mortals should not even attempt to succeed in such a Battle of Words. Following the Lord’s example, man should choose to get killed in a Battle of Words and grant victory to the inhabitants of the planet of Venus. To concede defeat makes the argument, a Whole Argument.

Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham, 

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India, 

M.B.B.S.,  Class of  April, 1970.

WHOLE DUDE – WHOLE KSHAMA

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John the Baptist preaching repentance - polych...
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Prophet Jeremiah had more to say about repentance than any other prophet in the Books of The Old Testament. The idea of repentance is well expressed in different cultures but the interpretation of its consequences is not the same. In the Land of India, the idea of repentance is not used to seek remission of sins. In Sanskrit language, the word repentance is described as “Pashchath Tapa”; it is the feeling of sorrow or grief for inflicting pain, or causing an injury, or an insult. Indian thinkers have described repentance as mental catharsis. It is a process that can bring about changed conduct. Through repentance man changes his thoughts, his desires, his habits, and his actions. India is described as the Land of Karma and man is expected to experience the taste of the fruit of his own actions.

Kindly join me to explore the idea of repentance at my Home page of Bhavanajagat.

Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,

M.B.B.S.,  Class  of  April,  1970.

WHOLE DUDE – WHOLE REPENTANCE

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The idea of repentance is well expressed in different Cultures but the interpretation of its consequences is not the same. The Jews associate the idea of repentance with Divine Atonement and Absolution of sins. Repentance, and forgiveness of sins in the name of Jesus is the theme of the Books of The New Testament. Christian faith calls upon man to repent and be converted through the act of Baptism. In Islam, true repentance means that man must reject all other forms of belief and avoid the worship of false gods. By repenting, a Muslim agrees to truly believe in one and only God(ALLAH) and live in strict obedience to His Five Commandments and other ordinances as revealed in the Holy Scripture of Quran. Islam also demands that the true believer must ask the non-believer to repent. Islam encourages the idea of harshly punishing all individuals who fail to truly repent. In India, the Land described as ‘Karma Bhumi’, repentance is viewed upon as a personal choice. Repentance could only be used to change one’s own conduct. Most importantly, in the Land of Bharat, the idea of repentance is not associated with the idea of converting the religious beliefs of a man. The idea of ‘repent or perish’ does not define Indian Identity. 

JUDAISM AND THE DOCTRINE OF ATONEMENT  : 

Repentance is a common theme of Old Testament Prophets. Prophet Jeremiah had more to say about repentance than any other Prophet. He called upon Jews to repent and condemned them for their false worship and social injustice.
Repentance is a common theme of Old Testament Prophets. Prophet Jeremiah had more to say about repentance than any other Prophet. He called upon Jews to repent and condemned them for their false worship and social injustice.

To Jews, repentance means living in obedience to Yahweh’s Will for the individual and the nation of Israel. For a Jew, atonement is expiation for his own sin in order to attain God’s forgiveness. He may achieve this in various ways, including repentance, payment for a wrong action, good works, suffering, and prayer. Repentance and changed conduct are stressed as the most important aspects of Atonement. 

God set up Laws for the Israelites mostly regarding holiness and worship. The Old Testament Book of Leviticus, Chapter 16, verse 34 :"This is to be a lasting ordinance for you; Atonement is to be made once a year for all the sins of the Israelites."
God set up Laws for the Israelites mostly regarding holiness and worship. The Old Testament Book of Leviticus, Chapter 16, verse 34 :"This is to be a lasting ordinance for you; Atonement is to be made once a year for all the sins of the Israelites."

The Day of Atonement or YOM KIPPUR is the most important and solemn of the Jewish holidays. It is the tenth and final day of the Ten Days of Repentance which begins with Rosh Hashanah. 

God has issued a lasting ordinance and has called upon the Jews to obtain Atonement once a year.After the destruction of the Second Temple at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Jews discontinued the practice of ritualistic animal sacrifice to make the sin and burnt offerings to seek Atonement.
God has issued a lasting ordinance and has called upon the Jews to obtain Atonement once a year.After the destruction of the Second Temple at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Jews discontinued the practice of ritualistic animal sacrifice to make the sin and burnt offerings to seek Atonement.

The observance of Yom Kippur includes 25 hour period of fasting and intensive prayer. At the end of Yom Kippur, the man considers himself absolved from his sin and is reconciled to God. 

Repentance is not a personal choice for the Jews.
Repentance is not a personal choice for the Jews.

THE MESSAGE OF JESUS – THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NEAR AND THEREFORE  REPENT  : 

"REPENT, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS AT HAND!" - Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 3, verse 2.
"REPENT, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS AT HAND!" - Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 3, verse 2.

The Baptism of the sinless Man. From that time on Jesus began to preach, "REPENT, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS NEAR." - Gospel of Matthew,Chapter 4, verse 17.
The Baptism of the sinless Man. From that time on Jesus began to preach, "REPENT, FOR THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS NEAR." - Gospel of Matthew,Chapter 4, verse 17.

Jesus announced the approaching Kingdom of God and therefore called people to repentance. Jesus’ call to repentance is grounded in this message of the approaching Kingdom of God. In Jesus’ preaching, repentance does not mean a prerequisite or precondition or even a penitent contemplation of oneself but, rather a consequence of the proximity of the Kingdom of God. 

The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 2, verse 38 :Then Peter said to them,"Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."
The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 2, verse 38 :Then Peter said to them,"Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."

Christians believe that the redeeming of mankind and the reconciliation of God with man is brought about by Jesus’ suffering and Crucifixion. As per Christian belief, Jesus came to Earth and became the sacrifice for all mankind. It was the sins of all mankind that has put Jesus on the Cross. Christians seek forgiveness through Jesus Christ the Savior. 

Risen Lord - Jesus the Redeemer. The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 3, verse 19 :"Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord."
Risen Lord - Jesus the Redeemer. The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 3, verse 19 :"Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord."

LENT SEASON : The period of forty week days from Ash Wednesday to Easter is observed variously in Christian Churches by fasting and penitence. Christians do not celebrate a 'Day of Atonement'. Christians seek forgiveness of sins through GRACE of their Risen Lord.
LENT SEASON : The period of forty week days from Ash Wednesday to Easter is observed variously in Christian Churches by fasting and penitence. Christians do not celebrate a 'Day of Atonement'. Christians seek forgiveness of sins through GRACE of their Risen Lord.

Christian traditions accept the announcement of God’s willingness to forgive all those who truly repent of their sins. Christians are sharply divided about the Doctrine of Conciliation and the power to “bind and loose”. Jesus after the Resurrection told the disciples :”If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”( Gospel of John, Chapter 20, verse 23 ) This statement is interpreted in different ways. Catholics believe in Sacramental Absolution of sins and they extend the power to “bind  and loose” that was conferred by Jesus on the Apostles  to all of their priests. Martin Luther, the leader of Protestant Reformation in Germany had asserted that daily repentance is the repeated actualization of Baptism. The Protestants have ruled out the Fourth Sacrament of Roman Catholicism. 

ISLAM – “ALLAH IS HE WHO ACCEPTS REPENTANCE”.   : 

"Know they not that Allah is He who accepts repentance from His bondsmen and taken the alms, and that Allah is He who is the Relenting and Merciful." SURAH IX, At-TAUBAH,verse 104, Holy Quran.
"Know they not that Allah is He who accepts repentance from His bondsmen and taken the alms, and that Allah is He who is the Relenting and Merciful." SURAH IX, At-TAUBAH,verse 104, Holy Quran.

The Revelations stated in the Holy Book of Quran state that it is always possible for a sinner to repent( Taubah or Tawbah) and redeem himself by a genuine conversion to the truth. Genuine repentance has the effect of removing all sins and restoring a person to the state of sinlessness with which he started his life. 

(Triumphant) are those who turn repentant( to ALLAH ), those who serve( Him ), those who praise ( Him ), those who fast, those who bow down, those who fall prostrate ( in worship ), those who enjoin the right and who forbid the wrong and those who keep the limits ( ordained ) of ALLAH - And give glad tiding to believers! - Holy Quran, At-Taubah, Surah IX, verse 112.
(Triumphant) are those who turn repentant( to ALLAH ), those who serve( Him ), those who praise ( Him ), those who fast, those who bow down, those who fall prostrate ( in worship ), those who enjoin the right and who forbid the wrong and those who keep the limits ( ordained ) of ALLAH - And give glad tiding to believers! - Holy Quran, At-Taubah, Surah IX, verse 112.

In Surah IX, At-Taubah ( Repentance ), Holy Quran issues stern Commandments against idolaters, disbelievers, transgressors, the Jews and the Christians for they have taken as lords beside ALLAH their rabbis, and their monks, the Messiah, and that son of Mary. 

Quran was sent down as a guidance for the people.( Surah II, verse 185 )
Quran was sent down as a guidance for the people.( Surah II, verse 185 )

The ninth month of the Muslim Year during which the Quran was sent down as a guidance for the people is observed as a period of daily fasting from sunrise to sunset. Ramadan is seen as an obedient response to a Command from God and to a lesser extent it may represent a period of Atonement. 

THE LAND OF BHARAT : SUBMISSION OF ALL ACTIONS TO GOD : 

Kaaye na vaachaa manasem indriyairvaa, Buddhyaatma naa naa prakrutey sva bhaavaat, Karomi yadyatsa kalam parasemai, Naraayanaa yeti Samarpayaami.
Kaaye na vaachaa manasem indriyairvaa, Buddhyaatma naa naa prakrutey sva bhaavaat, Karomi yadyatsa kalam parasemai, Naraayanaa yeti Samarpayaami.

While the Jews, the Christians, and the Muslims are constantly reminded to repent and to seek forgiveness of God for all of their sinful actions, in the Land of Bharat, the people are counseled to submit to God all of their actions; either good or bad. Whatever actions that a man accomplishes with his body, with his speech, with his mind, with his organs of motor function, or because of his attitude or temperament; all of those acts without any exception should be dedicated or submitted to the Supreme Lord known as Narayana. Without making any distinction between good or bad actions; man should refrain and should not  desire the fruits of his actions. 

Sattvam, rajas, tama iti gunah prakriti- sambhavah, Nibadhnanti Maha-Baho, dehe dehinam avyayam.
Sattvam, rajas, tama iti gunah prakriti- sambhavah, Nibadhnanti Maha-Baho, dehe dehinam avyayam.

THE THREE MODES OF MATERIAL NATURE – ‘GUNA TRAYA VIBHAGA YOGA’ : 

The Lord’s Song known as Bhagavad Gita, Chapter XIV, verse 5 states that the material Nature consists of the three modes – goodness ( Sattva ), passion ( Rajas ), and ignorance ( Tamas ). And when the living entity comes in contact with Nature ( Prakrti ), he becomes conditioned by these modes which enslave the immutable consciousness of the self within the body. Man acts under the influence of any of the three different modes of material Nature. 

Gunam etan atitya trin dehi deha - samudbhavan, Janma - mrtyu jara-dukhair Vimukto ' mrtam asnute.
Gunam etan atitya trin dehi deha - samudbhavan, Janma - mrtyu jara-dukhair Vimukto ' mrtam asnute.

The Lord’s Song further states that when man is able to rise above ( transcend ) these three qualities known as Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas, the embodied soul can become free from birth, death,old age, and their distresses, and can enjoy “Amrit” ( the Divine Nectar that bestows Immortality ) even in this life. The Supreme Lord is transcendental to the three modes of Nature. When man acquires the true knowledge of the Supreme Lord, he is emancipated ( Vimukti ) from the conditioning effects of Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas. 

INDIAN VIEW – REPENTANCE DOES NOT REMIT SINS : 

In Sanskrit language, the word repentance is described as “PASHCHATH  TAPA”. It is the feeling of sorrow or grief experienced by an offender for his own actions that inflicted pain or caused an injury or insult. The Indian thinkers have described repentance as mental catharsis. Repentance is an act of purification of the mind. A man cannot unburden his conscience by concealing his actions, or by suppressing  the memory of his actions. The emotional stress and the burden imposed by a sense of guilt could be alleviated by bringing the memory of our actions to consciousness and by giving expression to sorrow or grief caused by these actions. The offender does not merely regret his actions. He mentally experiences the pain caused by his actions and gives expression to the emotion of sorrow or grief. In the Indian tradition, grief is manifested by actually shedding tears of sorrow with which the offender cleanses the feet of his victim. This process of mental catharsis brings about changed conduct. The man is enabled to change his mode of conditioned activities. The activities performed in the mode of ignorance( Tamas), and passion( Rajas) lead to distress. Man acquires real knowledge while acting under the influence of the mode of goodness or Sattva. Repentance helps the man to move upward into the mode of Sattva ( goodness ) from that of Tamas( ignorance ), and Rajas ( passion ). Through repentance man changes his thoughts, his desires, his habits and his actions. 

Please also view the related blog post titled ‘East and West – The Idea of Forgiveness’ 

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2009/09/14/east-and-west-the-idea-of-forgiveness/  

Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham, 

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India, 

M.B.B.S., Class of  April, 1970.

WHOLE DUDE – WHOLE CREATIVITY

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Creative Writing should not be like that of a boat rowing race and it should rather represent the act of gently rowing the boat down the stream and the act of rowing should give a sense of Joy as expressed in the following popular nursery rhyme :

Row, row, row your boat

Gently down the stream

Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily

Life is but a Dream.

A Creative Writer never dies as he always lives through the thoughts that he had expressed in his Writing. Please join me to explore the differences between East and West in the areas of Learning and Creative Writing at my Home Page of Bhavanajagat.

Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,

M.B.B.S.,  Class  of  April,  1970.

 

WHOLE DUDE – WHOLE WRITING

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Pioneer High School, Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Students started a new School Year on September 08. My children in the past had attended this School. In the past ten years, I had visited this building countless number of times particularly after the School is closed at the end of the day.
Pioneer High School, Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Students started a new School Year on September 08. My children in the past had attended this School. In the past ten years, I had visited this building countless number of times particularly after the School is closed at the end of the day.

 

EAST AND WEST – WHAT SETS US APART IN LEARNING AND CREATIVE WRITING?   

Besides food, in the East, particularly in India, we tend to use visual images and use imaginary personalities with individualistic characteristics to engage in all kinds of human effort and activity. In the field of Education, we use the images and the characteristics associated with the following personalities :   

Lord Shiva-The God of Learning: Om, NamaH Shivaya, Siddham NamaH
Lord Shiva-The God of Learning: Om, NamaH Shivaya, Siddham NamaH

 

Lord Shiva, the God of Learning insists that we should seek the ability to think for ourselves. Learning commences after the student respectfully submits to Him and states that he is ready and prepared for Learning. In Sanskrit language the student makes his submission to Lord Shiva : ” OM, NamaH Shivaya, Siddham NamaH.” An attitude of humility, and a willingness to accept personal responsibility and being mentally prepared before any Learning instruction is imparted are the first steps for Learning to begin. In my view, Lord Shiva presides over the frontal area( Prefrontal Cortex) of the human brain which is the seat of intellectual thoughts.   

Sarasvati - The Goddess of Wisdom and Perfect Knowledge, the Goddess of Speech or Vaak presides over the Broca's Area, the Speech Center of the Brain.
Sarasvati - The Goddess of Wisdom and Perfect Knowledge, the Goddess of Speech or Vaak presides over the Broca's Area, the Speech Center of the Brain.

 

Sarasvati is the Goddess of Wisdom and Perfect Knowledge. Learning is not about the mere exposure of a student to new information. Learning involves the process of assimilation of new information and an ability to analyze that information, and to formulate an opinion based upon that information. The student should be able to express that information in his speech and prove that he had imbibed the information in a critical manner. Sarasvati is also the Goddess of Speech or “Vaak” and controls the Speech Center or Area of the brain known as Broca’s Area. She banishes mental lethargy, mental laziness which impedes the ability to learn new information. She removes the mental barriers, the mental fences that we erect which disrupt ‘mental fluidity’, the fluid dynamics required for smooth flow of mental impulses between different areas of the brain involved in Learning and Speech.   

Lord Ganesha - The Mentor of Learning, the Remover of Obstacles.
Lord Ganesha - The Mentor of Learning, the Remover of Obstacles.

 

Lord Ganesha is the Mentor of Learning. Learning is a complicated process. At individual level, it needs neuro-muscular coordination and at an external level it needs the removal of all distractions that interfere with the process of Learning. Ganesha removes all obstacles that could prevent the student from his pursuit of Learning.   

Lord Rama is the source of inspiration to writers, musicians, dancers, and other artists and craftsmen.
Lord Rama is the source of inspiration to writers, musicians, dancers, and other artists and craftsmen.

 

Apart from the three personalities, the student can choose an image of his choice to specifically draw inspiration  while he travels on the path of Learning. The personality of Lord Rama alone had inspired thousands of Indians to express their devotion to Him in creative and distinctive ways.In the Indian Tradition, the ‘GURU’ or the teacher has a very unique position and is elevated to the status of the Divine Trinity represented by Brahma (the Creator), Vishnu (the Protector), and Shiva (the Restorer).   

George Bernard Shaw - July 26, 1856 to November 2, 1950 - Author of more than 60 plays, distinguished essayist, music critic, the only person who won a Nobel Prize for Literature and also an Academy Award.
George Bernard Shaw - July 26, 1856 to November 2, 1950 - Author of more than 60 plays, distinguished essayist, music critic, the only person who won a Nobel Prize for Literature and also an Academy Award.

 

George Bernard Shaw apart from being a great playwright, was an influential music and drama critic, a superb essayist, and a penetrating analyst of virtually every important aspect of Western culture. The adjective ‘Shavian’ describes anything resembling his distinctive ideas or personality. Shaw rejected orthodoxy to become an atheist and a Darwinist, and moved through radical anarchism, Marxism to Socialism. He had finally arrived at Creative Evolution which viewed life as a whole and over an infinite time span. I could use his image to inspire myself while I indulge in expressing my thoughts, but I cannot draw any inspiration from his distinctive ideas  and use them as a basis for my writing.   

Row, row, row your boat, Gently down the Stream; Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, Life is but a Dream.
Row, row, row your boat, Gently down the Stream; Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, Life is but a Dream.

 

THE CREATIVE WRITING CLASS AT PIONEER HIGH SCHOOL, ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN :   

Jeff Kass is a teacher of Creative Writing at Pioneer High School in Ann Arbor and he also teaches at the Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan. He teaches four sections of Creative Writing per day and over 110 students attend his classes to learn Creative Writing at Pioneer High School. He had included a quotation from the playwright George Bernard Shaw in the hand-out for his class and had designated the quotation as the Mission Statement for what his students will be doing throughout the semester. The quote is as follows: ” I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live.” Jeff Kass has further instructed his students : “I want you to be thoroughly used up. I want you to feel like you gave this class everything you possibly could and you have nothing left.” He drew the analogy of a boating crew, the athletes who compete in boating races. These athletes at the end of the race are very physically exhausted, they manage to hobble across the dock without an ounce of energy left in their bodies. Jeff Kass has stated that his Creative Writing Class students may experience a figurative death at the end of their semester as they are thoroughly used up.   

CREATIVE WRITING AND MENTAL FLUIDITY :   

Creative Writing should not demand any kind of strenuous effort and particularly should not result in mental strain. Firstly, writing needs neuromuscular coordination but it is not viewed as a physical effort. What makes an individual ‘creative’ is his ability to think for himself. An individual may need the necessary language skills to express his thoughts; he needs information about the subject of his thoughts, and his mind actually experiences a sense of profound relief when the thoughts find an outlet in the form of written expression. It is like the sense of relief a pregnant woman experiences after delivering the baby she had conceived before. A mind, full of thoughts is often compared to the state of pregnancy. The act of delivery is the ultimate Joy and the painful contractions of delivery are instantly forgotten and the face of the mother reflects a glow of happiness. I would expect to see such glow of happiness when the students leave the Creative Writing Class. Creative Writing should not be like that of a boat rowing race and it should rather represent the act of gently rowing the boat down the stream and the act of rowing should give a sense of Joy as expressed in the following popular nursery rhyme :   

Row, row, row your boat   

Gently down the stream   

Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily   

Life is but a Dream.   

A  Creative Writer never dies as he always lives through the thoughts that he had expressed in his Writing.   

INDIVIDUALISM AND CREATIVITY :   

We come into existence as individuals. We are created as persons with qualities and characteristics that set us apart from others. Our personal identity relates to the condition of being an individual or different from others. The students of the Creative Writing class should be able to describe their ‘Individuality’. For Creative Writing, the individual need to express his original, distinctive ideas, the ideas that set him apart from the ideas expressed by other individuals. The ‘Individuality’ is not related to the individual’s skin color, hair color,or the glasses the individual may wear. The ‘Individuality’ exists in the thoughts and which when expressed in words speak about the ‘Creativity’ of the individual. The students of the Creative writing class should seek to exist as individuals, capable of thinking for themselves, form their own opinions, and express their own distinctive ideas. The Class should provide tools to students to express their ‘Individualism’.   

CREATIVE WRITING : INDIVIDUALISTIC RHYTHM  vs GROUP DANCE :   

Raas Leela - Lord Krishna in Vrindavan dancing with Gopis. Lord Krishna is simultaneously ONE and also DIFFERENT. He is the manifestation of Creative Energy.This Group Dance is an example of 'Individualistic Rhythm'.
Raas Leela - Lord Krishna in Vrindavan dancing with Gopis. Lord Krishna is simultaneously ONE and also DIFFERENT. He is the manifestation of Creative Energy.This Group Dance is an example of 'Individualistic Rhythm'.

 

Jeff Kass encourages his students to perform a ‘Group Dance’ to encourage them to share their thoughts with the ‘Group’ and getting connected to them.The individual always exists in an environment. For Creative Writing, the individual need to get connected to his ‘Inner self’, set himself apart from the social group to which he may belong. His concern should not be about the ‘Group’. His concern should be to focus on his own thoughts about everything else. What he thinks about the ‘Group’ is more relevant than being part of the ‘Group’. Creative Writing is not like the ‘Group Dance’ and it describes the ‘Individualistic Rhythm’. Lord Krishna in the above illustration is seen dancing with a Group of maidens known as Gopis. He appears before each of His dancing partner as a DIFFERENT individual. He uses His Creative Energy to perform His Individualistic Rhythm. Creativity gives us the ability to express individualistic variation and define our Identity in thought and action.   

“REFLECTIONS” – CREATIVE WRITING CLASS AT PIONEER HIGH SCHOOL :   

The Creative Writing Class has started with an incomplete quote from playwright George Bernard Shaw. The quote should read as follows :”I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.” This is GBS’s view about the purpose of his human life and existence and hence the quote cannot be used to inspire students learning the Art of Creative Writing. For Creative Writing, the individual must first recognize his individuality, define his identity and purpose, and get connected to his ‘inner self’ before paying attention to the social community or “GROUP”. This flawed ‘Mission Statement’ is now getting expressed in the ‘Reflections’ of the students. Two of the students of this Class had used a homophobic word in written assignments submitted to the teacher. Sexuality describes our attitude about human sexual relationships. A Creative Writer should first learn to express his/her ideas about his/her own gender. The same applies to issues such as race, religion, or ethnicity. The Creative Writer must be given the tools to express ideas and thoughts that explain his/her gender, race, ethnicity, physical or anthropometric identity, and purpose in life before venturing to express opinions about relationships with others. The student should first recognize the difference between an ‘idea’ and an ‘opinion’. The Class should aim at expressing ‘ideas’ and not upon voicing ‘opinions’. By including the ‘opinion’ of GBS in the ‘Mission Statement’, the students are given the wrong impression that  their purpose is that of expressing ‘opinions’. If I am a male, my own personal awareness of my gender is more important than expressing that gender identity in the context of homophobia. A Creative Writer needs to express unique, and distinctive ideas and such ideas would arise only if he/she understands his/her own self.   

A TEACHABLE MOMENT TO THE TEACHERS : CREATIVE WRITING AT PIONEER HIGH SCHOOL :   

In the last three weeks, the teacher at Pioneer High School has publicly disclosed verbal or written statements of his Creative Writing Class students without giving them a prior warning. It would be appropriate to disclose to the students that their statements would be publicly disclosed and would be openly debated by the rest of the Community. A physician who may have seen or diagnosed the pregnancy of the teen in the Creative Writing Class would not have divulged that information to others. A priest who may hear confessional statements of his parishioners would not disclose them to the rest of the congregation. I wonder if there is a confidentiality clause in the teacher-pupil relationship. At a minimum, the students should be aware of the blog postings of their teacher and the public discussion. It is relevant as the teacher has not set boundaries to the freedom of speech in the context of his lesson plans. The homophobic word or expression in the written assignments rendered by two students should be evaluated for its academic merit. It appears that the students who used the words have not yet acquired narrative skills. The word ‘idea’ in the context of Creative Writing could be defined as something one thinks, a thought, mental conception, or image. Students should be encouraged to visualize their ideas and then describe their mental pictures or images. The ‘reflective’ statements with the homophobic word lack this quality; a clear description of a mental image or picture and from an academic point of view, a creative idea is not described or stated. The word ‘opinion’ is defined as a mental conviction, a belief, an evaluation, impression, estimation, or judgment of the quality or worth of a person or thing; a conclusion affected by one’s personal manner of looking at things. The homophobic word qualifies as an ‘opinion’ and if it is used as an ‘idea’, the mental concept or image is poorly narrated. Creative Writing demands that the writer should project his mental concepts in a vivid manner and a reader should be able to visualize that ‘idea’ described by the author. It is a teachable moment to the teachers as the incident reveals the pitfalls of inadequate instruction.   

RELATED BLOG POST :   

Set your Mind Free – Let Sarasvati Flow .  

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2010/05/25/set-your-mind-free-let-sarasvati-flow/ 

 Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham,   

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,   

M.B.B.S., Class of April, 1970.