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GEETA ASHRAM MALAYSIA Founder President:
H.H. Swami Hari Har Ji Maharaj


MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE 2012-2014
President:
Shri Chandru Binwani

Deputy President:
Datuk Fateh Chand

Vice Presidents:
Shrimati Tangamani Menon
Shri Sriniyasan Narayana

Honorary General Secretary:
Shri Sivashankar Krishnapillai

Honorary Assistant Secretary:
Shrimati Vanita Rani

Honorary Treasurer:
Shri Jagmohan Kumar

Honorary Assistant Treasurer:
Dr Darshan Kumar

Committee Members:
Shri Mahadev Lalchand
Shri Prabhat Kumar
Dr Tilla Chelliah
Ms Asha Devi
Shrimati Usha Devi
Shri Kishan Kumar Agarwal
Shrimati Suresh Kumari Shukla
Shri Soorya Rao Simhadar
Dr Diljeet Kumar Bhanot
Shri Hetish Sharma
Ms Nirmlah Dahvy

EDITORIAL BOARD
Dr Diljeet Kumar Bhanot
Shrimati Tangamani Menon


SACRED THOUGHT
July 2013 <> Volume 41 Issue 2

For internal circulation only

Contents

Editorial Note3
Life of Swami Hari Harji Maharaj4
Devotees' Faith and Scriptural Injunctions (BG17:1)
H.H. Swami Hari Harji Maharaj
6
Bhagavad Geeta vs Upanishads
Dr Diljeet Kumar Bhanot
9
Lessons from the Bhagavad Geeta (13)
Shri Ashok Lal Bherumal
10
Reverence to Parents
Dr K Dharmaratnam, Klang
12
Meditation
Shree Parthasarathy Sampath
14
Remembering My Guru
Shrimati ‘Pummy’ Sharma Kumari Shukla
16
Radha Krishna Bhajan Yatra 2013
Shrimati Usha Devi
18
In a Lighter Vein19
Recipe: Sweet Jaggary Rice (Ponggal)
Shrimati Tangamani Menon
20
Bhajan Lyrics - Kanhaiyã Kanhaiyã21
Dad's Valuable Time
Shri Sivashankar Krishnapillai
22
Crossword Puzzle23
Geeta Ashram: Recent and Upcoming Activities
Shrimati Tangamani Menon
24
Be Thou a Devotee of the Lord
Dr Diljeet Kumar Bhanot
24a

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Shree Radha Krishna


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EDITORIAL NOTE

Feedback on the electronic Sacred Thought

The first issue of the electronic Sacred Thought, which was posted in March 2013, was well received by members of the Ashram and devotees in general. Teething problems are, of course, to be expected at the beginning. Feedback from those who accessed the online magazine helped to bring out these problems for rectification.

Those who are not used to surfing the net regularly may have initially found it a bit inconvenient and cumbersome to read long texts from the screen. Some found the fonts too small for comfort. There were others whose browser versions did not support the flipbook form of presentation. Thankfully, by the Grace of the Lord, solutions were sought and found for most of the issues.

Now that the Sacred Thought magazine has become borderless, we hope that it will be read by devotees internationally. We also hope to include contributions from members of Geeta Ashram centres around the world. A special section in the magazine shall be dedicated to highlighting the activities at Geeta Dham in India.

Over the next few issues, we hope to introduce articles on new areas of interest. Quizzes, crossword puzzles and competitions are among the ideas being considered. We would especially like to attract the attention of members of the younger generation who represent our aspirations and hopes for the future.

This is your magazine, especially being brought out for you. So get the most out of it, and don't forget to send in your feedback, comments and suggestions to further improve its looks and content. Articles, letters and pictures are welcome for inclusion in future issues of Sacred Thought.

A memorable Bhajan Yatra

The most memorable event at the Ashram since the last issue was the Radha Krishna Bhajan Yatra held on 8 June 2013. From 5.30 pm to 9.00 pm the ashram hall echoed with the reverberant sound of bhajans dedicated to Shree Radha Krishna. Devotees sat spell-bound as groups from various organisations rendered melodious praises of the Almighty. The lyrics of all the bhajans were simultaneously projected onto the screen, making it very easy for all present to sing along.

Dr D K Bhanot


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LIFE OF SWAMI HARI HARJI MAHARAJ

The Early Years
The auspicious birth of our beloved Guruji Swami Hari Har Ji Maharaj took place on the full moon day, in the month of Phalgun in the year 1899. He was born to a family of respected Brahmins and was named Sri Fateh Raj Ji Purohit. His father Sri Jeth Mal Ji Purohit was a Judge of the then Jodhpur state. Swamiji got his early education at Sri Sumer Pushtekar School, Jodhpur.

In 1928, along with his elder brother Sri Damodhar Ji Purohit, His Holiness went to Karachi (Sindh) in undivided India, where he initiated a number of institutions like Pustak Bhandar, Marwari Vidyalaya, Gujarati Pracharak Mandal, Navyug Sewa Dal and Marwari Sabha of which he was appointed President. He worked mostly in the Pali area of Marwar in Rajasthan.

Swamiji was an expert in making carpets and had also acquired knowledge of running a printing press. He was a real Karmayogi following the principles enshrined in the Bhagavad Geeta:

karmany evaa’dhikaaras te
maa phaleshu kadaacana
maa karmaphalahetur bhuur
maa te sango ’stv akarmani
(BG2:47)

Participation in India’s Freedom Struggle
Swamiji was a very energetic young man. He was a prominent and active member of the Indian National Congress. He got a call from the revolutionary freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose to work actively for India’s freedom from British rule. He immediately gave up Pustak Bhandar shop in Karachi and left barefoot to join the freedom struggle. He followed the preachings of the Geeta:

sukhaduhkhe same kritvaa
laabhaalaabhau jayaajayau
tato uddhaaya yujyasva
nai’vam paapam avaaapsyasi
(BG2:38)

As a staunch revolutionary he spent most of his youth underground facing many hardships. Several warrants were issued against him by the then British Government and he was kept under strict vigilance. He constantly kept the Geeta and a revolver by his side. He assumed various disguises including Bhudev Shastri, Fateh Mohd, George Ferdes, Sant Fateh Singh, etc. Swamiji also spent several years in jail, but he never gave up his struggle for freedom. He worked in the company of eminent leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Khan Abdul Ghafar Khan, Pandit Madan Mohan, Sri Aurobindo Ghosh, Sardar Bhagat Singh, Sardar Ballav Bhai Patel, Dr Rajendra Prasad, Dr S Radhakrishnan and many more.

Soon after independence, India's first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru invited Swamiji to join the Government but His Holiness rejected the offer as, by then, he had become a Sannyasi and had already chosen the spiritual path.

Journey to Spiritual Enlightenment
Maharaj Ji’s transformation from freedom fighter to supreme Yogi was guided by the supreme will of God.


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tapasvibhyo ’dhiko yogi
jnaanibhyo ’pi mato ’dhikah
karmibhyash caa dhiko yogi
tasmaad yogi bhavaa ’rjuna
(BG6:46)

Swamiji was attracted to Lord Krishna by an episode in which a wound on his brother's foot was healed by a Holy Baba with miraculous yogic powers after medical treatment had failed. After sending his brother home, Maharaj Ji rushed back to the village of the Holy Baba and surrendered himself to the Baba. With strong faith and determination, he gave up everything and started living as a Sannyasi. After a full month, he was accepted for initiation by the Baba. He received Guru Diksha and was blessed by the Baba.

Journey to Attainment of God
Blessed with the guiding light and power from the Holy Baba, Swamiji started his journey, his sadhana, to attain Lord Shree Krishna. instilled with faith in the truth of the verse found in the Geeta:

sattvaanuruupaa sarvasya
shraddhaa bhavati bhaarata
shraddhaamayo ’yam purusho
yo yacchraddhah sa eva sah
(BG17:3)

Maharaj Ji did tapasya - intense meditation and severe penance - for twenty years in the hills of Rajasthan. As a Maha Yogi, he rebelled against the "tyranny of the flesh, the myopia of the mind and the pride of the ego". His jeweled sayings radiate the light and joy of a Siddha (illumined soul). He has shown the way to control the senses. For the last 70 years of his life, he refrained from taking cereals, salt and water. Occasionally did he take some milk and boiled vegetables.

Ultimately graced by the vision of Lord Shree Krishna, Maharaj Ji successfully requested for the benevolence of the vision and blessings of Shree Radha Ji along with the Lord.

At Mathura, the birthplace of Lord Shree Krishna, Swamiji gave the jnana form of Lord Shree Krishna, the Bhagavad Geeta, a home, and thus, the first Geeta Ashram came into existence.

Maharaj Ji had the vision of the past, present and future. He was also gifted with divine powers. But his sole aim was to propagate the message of the Bhagavad Geeta to those who desired to attain liberation. Many Geeta Ashrams have been built all over the world. The administrative office of Geeta Ashram in New Delhi functions as the headquarters of the International Federation of Geeta Ashrams formed in 1974. Under its auspices, national seminars and international conferences are held from time to time in various countries. The Geeta Dham near Jodhpur is his vision of spirituality in the midst of activities while being in harmony with the environment.

Swamiji was described as "one of the greatest Tapasavis of the present era" by H.H. Jagad Guru Shankaracharyaji. He toured the world (even at the age of 100) to dispel darkness and gloom and to weave humanity in the bond of universal brotherhood and peace based on the teachings of the Geeta.

Swamiji left his physical body on 30 March 2000 at New Delhi, at the age of one hundred and one years. In our hearts and minds, we know that he is still with us all the time.


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DEVOTEES' FAITH (SHRADDHA) AND SCRIPTURAL INJUNCTIONS
Commentary on BG17:1 by H.H. Shri Swami Hari Harji Maharaj
Arjunauvaacha:
yeshaashtravidhimutshrjya
yajanteshraddhayaa ’nvitaah
teshaamnishthaatukaakrishna
sattvamaaho rajas tamah

Prose-order and meaning:
Arjuna=Arjun; Uvaacha=said; ye=those; shaashtravidhim=ordinances of the scripture; utshrijya=neglecting; yajante=perform sacrifice; shraddhaya=with faith; anvitaah=endowed with; teshaam=their; nishthaa=condition; tu=verily; kaa=what; sattvam=Sattva; aaho=or; rajas=Rajas; (or) tamah=Tamas

General Meaning:
Arjuna said: Those who perform sacrifices with faith, neglecting the injunctions of the scripture, what O Krishna, is the state of their devotion? Is it Saattvic, Raajasic or Taamasic?

Explanation:
After having heard the daivaasur-sampadvibhaag yoga, in the previous chapter (16) Arjuna enquires from Lord Krishna about the state of devotion (nishthaa) of those who worship gods with shraddha, but without following the injunctions as prescribed in scriptures. Whether it would be Saattvic, Raajasic or Taamasic?

A river at its point of origin is absolutely pure. There is no trace of impurity at that state. But as it flows, gathers dirty water from other rivers and drains, which contains chemical and other impurities from factories etc. Water in that very river becomes unsafe for drinking as it contains toxic material which would cause serious harm to the body. Similarly, creation emerges out of Parmaatman and is absolutely pure then. But with the passage of time (through sat-yug, treta-yug, dwaapad-yug, kali-yug) there is progressive reduction in good qualities (guna) and increase in bad qualities.Demoniac tendencies go on expanding. People go on accumulating devilish endowments, which pervade the world. It is well-understood that both the tendencies (divine and demoniac) are like two sisters, the divine being elder to the demoniac one. They live together. While the elder sister reigns supreme for a long period of time, the younger one remains in a rather subdued state. With the advent of kali-yug the younger sister gains tremendous power and the elder sister loses her importance. People no longer follow injunctions of the scriptures and start to behave as they wish. They gradually lose faith in God, shraddha in divine powers, respect for scriptures and belief in life after death. Traditional rituals prescribed by saints and sages are gradually discarded by majority of people. Yet there remains a small group of people who do conserve shraddha in God and scriptures but they do not have enough understanding of the rituals, ways and means to perform sacrifice (yajna), donation (daan) and austerity (tapas) and as such even if they wish to do such things, are unable to do so in the right way.

Taking these facts into consideration, Arjun puts up this question before Lord Shree Krishna. That was the time when dwapad-yug was coming to an end and kali-yug was knocking at the door. As Arjun himself was endowed with divine attributes he was able to pose a relevant question to Lord Shree Krishna and enquire as to what would be the kind of devotion (nishthaa) in those people who carried on worshipping gods while having abandoned the practices as prescribed in the scriptures. Whether that would be considered Saattvic or Rajasic or Taamasic?


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Sat-yug has four components -satya (truthfulness), tapas (austerity), dayaa (kindness) and daan (donation). One of them is gradually lost during the following yuga (treta and dwaapad); as such in kali-yug only a part of one constituent (truthfulness) remains. Devotees in general, according to the effect of each yuga, carry on the practice of worship with changing shradhha in them. During kali-yug people generally are devoid of scriptural knowledge, yet some shraddha does remain in a limited way in some. They do perform worship, observe austerity, give donation and perform yajna. It was just that Arjun wanted to know from Lord about the kind of shraddha they would have: whether Saattvic, Raajasic or Taamasic?

Eklavya was by caste a Bheel. When he went to the ashram of Guru Dronaachaarya, with a view to learn archery, Guru Dronaachaarya said, "My child I have been appointed to impart knowledge of archery to princes belonging to Kuru-dynasty. Here only a prince can take lessons. You go somewhere else and attain this knowledge." He also blessed Eklavya with full affection. Eklavya did not want to go elsewhere. He raised a platform made of soil, in a place which was lonely and quiet, in the midst of dense forest, right in front of Purnkuti. He established a statue of Guru Dronaachaarya made out of mud, on that platform. He offered leaves, water, flowers, fruits collected from that jungle and prostrated before that statue. He then started to practise on his own after obtaining a bow and arrow, prepared as per his own family tradition. With tremendous shraddha on his Guru and hard work, he completed the promise he had made himself to attain complete knowledge in the art of archery. He had the blessings of the Lord and received guidance from Him in an unknown way. The Lord has said;

sarvasyachaahamhridisamnivishto
mattahsmritirjnaanamapohanam cha
vedaish cha sarvairahamevavedyo
vedaantkridvedavidevachaaham. (BG15:15)

Meaning: "I alone reside in the hearts of all beings and from Me emanates memory, wisdom and also the loss. I am verily that which is to be known by the Vedas, I am the author of the Vedanta and I am the knower of the Vedas."

Thus, Eklavya became a very skilful archer. One day Guru Dronaachaarya, along with his own disciples, including Arjun, entered that part of jungle where Eklavya was practising. A dog, which was following them, having seen Eklavya practising, started to bark. This disturbed the attention of Eklavya. He then took his bow and with tremendous speed sent out a number of arrows skilfully, so as to plug the dog’s open mouth. Guru Dronaachaarya, Arjun and all saw the astonishing spectacle. Arjun wondered who that archer could be who could close the dog’s mouth in such a way that it’s barking stopped without hurting the dog in any way. He turned to Guru Dronaachaarya and said, "Gurudev, you had blessed me saying that I would be the best archer in the world, but whosoever has done this (put a number of arrows at the same time in the mouth of the dog) seems to be better skilled in archery than I am."

Eklavya, seeing Guru Dronaachaarya, straightaway lay prostrate before the Guru. Guru Dronaacharya asked Eklavya, "O son, from where did you learn archery? Who is your Guru?" Eklavya replied, "O Lord, you are my Guru. See, I have made your statue in which I see you and keep praying to you all the time while practising on my own. By your grace I have been able to achieve some success in archery." Guru Dronaachaaryaji said, "If you consider me as your Guru then you must give me my Guru-Dakshina (offering to Guru)." With folded hands Eklavya replied, "Gurudev, please let me know as to what I need to do." Guru Dronaachaaryaji said, "My son, offer me the thumb of your right hand." Eklavya gladly agreed and forthwith severed his right thumb and gave it to his Guru.


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That archer had sacrificed everything, as he lost the power to use the arrow and perform archery, having lost the most vital part required to do so, yet he had no remorse. Today his name is immortal in the history of mankind. Not by way of scriptural injunction had Eklavya taken initiation from Guru Dronaachaarya nor had he taken any lessons on archery from him, but his shraddha towards his Guru was supreme. Because of this profound saattvic shraddha he achieved whatever he wished and became one of the most ideal disciples, and gave to the world an unparalleled example of devotion to Guru, sacrifice and renunciation.

By the time the Mahabharat period arrived, that era dissipated in oblivion, when each and every Brahmin would remember by heart those hundred-thousand verses of the Vedas. Then Shree Vedavyaasji divided that store of knowledge into four parts (Rig-veda, Yajur-veda, Saama-veda and Atharva-veda) which the sages used to attain at the time of samaadhi. Over a period of time, when the disciples lost the power to memorise even one veda, he further split the Vedas into smaller segments and disciples used to memorise these. Having noticed further decline in the power of memory among his disciples Shree Vedvyaasji wrote the Mahabhaarat with one lakh slokas, which could be understood by most at that time.

Arjun was a saattvic person. The question he had raised in this sloka is for the benefit of mankind and is quite pertinent. He realised that in future there would be hardly a few who would be sufficiently knowledgeable in the understanding of scriptures. He also, in his far-sightedness, realised that despite lack of spiritual knowledge, there would be those who would retain shraddha in performing pious work. He wondered as to what would be their standing. People would not be fortunate enough to have the opportunity for top-class satsangs and discourses by high-level and wise mahatmas. In such a kali-yug it would be a further rarity as there would be people who are not conversant with scriptural injunctions, yet carry on selfless work through service to gods, worship, yajna, daan, tapas with full shraddha. Thus, Arjun asks the Lord as to their state of devotion: is it Saattvic, Raajasic or Taamasic?

(Translated by: Dr U Prasad)




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THE BHAGAVAD GEETA AND THE UPANISHADS
by Dr Diljeet Kumar Bhanot

Classification of Hindu Scriptures
Hindu scriptures can be broadly divided into 2 types: (1) Shruti, which is revealed or heard, and is of Divine origin (2) Smriti, which is remembered, and is of human origin. Shruti includes the Vedas, Upa-vedas (subsidiary vedas) and the Vedangas (explanatory limbs). Smriti includes the Dharma Shastras (law books), the Itihaasas (e.g. Ramayana, Mahabharata, Yogavasishtha, Harivamsa), the Puranas, the Agamas (theological treatises) and the Darshanas (schools of philosophy). There are 4 Vedas: Rigveda, Samaveda, Yajurveda and Atharvaveda. Each Veda has 2 sections: (1) Karma-kanda (ritualistic section) comprising Samhitas and Brahmanas (2) Jnana-kanda (knowledge section) comprising Aranyakas and Upanishads.

The Place of Upanishads and Bhagavad Geeta among the Hindu Scriptures
The Upanishads constitute the concluding portions of the Vedas, and are therefore defined as shruti. They reveal the eternal truths, form the basis of Vedanta teaching and are the foundation of Sanatana Dharma. Their position as shruti, in theory at least, gives them a higher and more authoritative status than most other religious literature.

The Bhagavad Geeta is a part of the 6th book of the Mahabharata, and is thus referred to as smriti rather than shruti. However, because it is presented by Lord Krishna, the Supreme Deity Himself, it has considerable authoritative status in its own right.

Shared Doctrines
The Bhagavad Geeta's teachings are mostly in line with the doctrines of the Upanishads. At some points there appear to be direct quotations from the Upanishads. For example, the concept of the eternal and undying soul presented in Chapter 2 of the Bhagavad Geeta appears to be drawn from similar material in the Katha Upanishad. The Shvetashvatara Upanishad is a Shaiva text, and it identifies a Deity distinct from the self, thus providing common ground with the teachings in Chapters 13 and 15 of the Bhagavad Geeta. The idea of Karmayoga can be recognised in the Isha Upanishad, and in Chapter 8 of the Bhagavad Geeta we find a discussion of the Chandogya Upanishad’s instruction on the best times to depart from this world. To a large extent, the teachings of the Bhagavad Geeta are entirely congruent with those of the Upanishads, stressing the presence of the supreme principle within every being and the need to understand the higher nature of the eternal self.

The Concept of Bhakti and the Deity
There are, however, certain notable distinctions between the Bhagavad Geeta and the Upanishads. Firstly, unless we accept Shankaracharya’s view that Lord Krishna is identical with the atman rather than a separate Deity, the theology of the Geeta does not seem to support the Advaitic doctrines pursued throughout most of the Upanishads. The Geeta's idea of God seems to be closer to the Shvetashvatara Upanishad's concept of three distinct but closely related principles of existence - the Deity, the atman, and matter. Secondly, the Bhagavad Geeta goes beyond any of the Upanishads in arguing that one should not merely know this Deity but should also worship Him, developing a mood of loving devotion. This insistence on the importance of bhakti is the principal distinction between the ideas found in the message of the Geeta and the doctrine of the Upanishads.


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LESSONS FROM THE GEETA (13)
by Shree Ashok Lal Bherumal

The Blessed Lord said: I taught this imperishable Yoga to Vivasvan, Vivasvan told it to Manu and Manu spoke it to Iksvaku. (BG4:1)

In the tradition of all our ancient scriptures, the Vedas, the Upanishads, Puranas, etc, it has always been the practice to hand this knowledge down from teacher to student, from father to son. Sri Krishna is validating the importance of this knowledge as it has been kept alive over the centuries since the very beginning of time. That knowledge which has been handed down and revealed to Arjuna, has not been changed or adulterated or modified and yet holds so much relevance today as it did thousands of years ago.

Sri Krishna says that He first gave this knowledge from the very beginning of time to Vivasvan. Vivasvan represents the Sun God. Nobody knows the time and origin of the sun, although science says that it has been existing for millions and millions of years. The Sun also represents our intellect or the state of enlightenment. So this knowledge itself is time immemorial and existed from the very beginning of creation!

Vivasvan then handed this knowledge down to his son Manu who represents the mind. From Manu also is said to come the “Code of Conduct and Laws” for mankind, some of which are said to be found in the present day Indian Penal Code. Manu in turn handed down to his son Ikshvaku who is said to be the first ruler of the solar dynasty. Ikshvaku represents the physical person. Thus, knowledge must be imbibed by the discriminating intellect (Vivasvan), then used to guide and stabilize the emotional mind (Manu) controlling the physical body (Ikshvaku) systematically.

Thus handed down from father to son, the royal sages knew it till that Yoga was lost to the world through long lapse of time , O Paramtapa (Arjuna). (BG4:2)

It was this tradition of handing down this valuable knowledge of rightful living i.e. from father to son and also the royal sages who used this knowledge to advise Kings and rulers in administrating the country and the peoples on the basis of these spiritual laws, that kept ancient societies living in peace and harmony. In BG3:2, Krishna mentioned King Janaka (father of Mata Sita) who ruled in accordance with these very high principles.

So Sri Krishna says, as time marched on from Satyuga, to Treta Yuga and then to Dvapara Yuga (in which the Bhagavad Gita was delivered), this knowledge was practiced less and less. Instead of progressing spiritually, greed, anger, jealousy, pride, lust, etc. become the order of the day. These traits were very dominant at the time of Dvapara Yuga and escalated in the current Kali Yuga age as we witness strives and wars even between families. In fact the epic Mahabharat tells the consequences of those rulers and individuals who chose to violate the laws of Dharma as a result of which the people and the country suffered severe consequences. Sage Vyasa who penned this epic was said to have forewarned mankind to learn from the lessons therein to avoid falling into the same miserable trap! But alas! History repeats itself as man fails to pay heed and continue on the path of self destruction. Through long lapse of time this code of righteous living has been less adhered to due to the negative tendencies that have infiltrated man’s thoughts and tendencies.


11

Now Sri Krishna says "I have come to re-establish this knowledge". Each avatar (God’s descent) throughout the ages came for a specific purpose. In Sri Krishna’s case here, He gives the main reason for taking incarnation. Therefore the Mahabharat is not just another war, although massive destruction and loss of many lives prevailed, but allegorically is also the setting of strive and misery of everyday living with the formula for navigating out of this battlefield intact!

The same ancient Yoga has today been imparted to you by Me, because you are My devotee and friend & this is a supreme secret. (BG4:3)

One may wonder, what is the relevance of that knowledge in ancient times to these present day modern times? How could the problems faced by people of ancient times be similar to the present scenario? People may differ in dress ans style of living but haven’t the same negative elements of pride, greed, anger, ego, lust, jealousy, envy, hate etc which existed then also exist in abundance today? The Gita is therefore as relevant as it was before as it is today as it seeks to guide us out of these very negative elements that are the cause of our state of misery and unhappiness.

Why do I tell you this knowledge, Arjuna? Sri Krishna says because you are my friend and devotee. It is not that many people do not have access to this knowledge, yet who is qualified to not only listen seriously, i.e. take this knowledge seriously, listen to it, reflect upon it and also implement it in our daily lives? Only those people who hold some value for God, spirituality and the quest to uplift themselves by leading a righteous life. Otherwise you can advise and lecture people until the cows come home - but they still are not interested to listen, reflect or even adopt this knowledge. What is holding them back? Ego, pride, “I know it all” attitude. So, when one is a friend and devotee of God, one is “all ears” to listen and imbibe this philosophy.

3 types of people never succeed on the spiritual path:
(1) People who are not interested to listen, read or understand anything about God.
(2) Who read & hear divine philosophy BUT have NO FAITH.
(3) Who vacillate between faith and doubt.

So Sri Krishna says, the minimum qualification is that you should be a devotee or a friend - that means you have an inclination to listen and a willingness to learn and change yourself. Then only this knowledge will be validated.

Why a secret?

Anything that is known only to a few people is a secret. When many are not interested and do not make any attempt to seek this knowledge, then it remains a secret because it is not known, or discussed or practiced by the masses. This knowledge is not just another ordinary secret. This knowledge is so valuable that it has the power to uplift us out of our state of misery and confusion. That is why Sri Krishna calls it “rahasyam uttamam”, the most supreme secret, because of its utmost importance in the life of humans.

JAI SHREE KRISHNA!


12
REVERENCE TO PARENTS
by Dr K Dharmaratnam

He is rich or poor according to what he is, not according to what he has - Henry Ward Beecher

Gratitude is one of the sattvic and divine qualities insisted on in chapters 12, 13 and 16 of our Srimad Bhagavad Geeta; and the rationale for gratitude to our parents is much stronger than for anything else. Every culture in the world, every race, every religion and every scripture extol reverence to parents as one of the highest virtues and even as the highest virtue. We have even gone one bold step further by insisting “Annayumpitavummunnarideivam” i.e. “Mother and father are the earliest known gods!” The late SathyaSai Baba, revered by millions as the avathar of modern times, proclaimed “If you cannot revere your parents, who are your creators in human form, how can you revere God, who is your Creator in Divine Form. Revere your father and the Divine Father will bless you. Revere your mother and the Divine Mother will protect you. Learn to bend before their authority!” This is only one of the numerous appeals by great sages and saints at least not to hurt our parents by deed, word or thought. Merely honouring our parents is not dharmic enough.

2. Now, more than ever before, has the above assumed the greatest relevance and importance, as disrespect to parents is now growing like a cancer eating into the very vitals of especially the younger generation. Not only disobedience to parents, but also rude and abusive language, verbal and even physical assault and neglecting them in their old age have all become too common, resulting in many a flourishing ‘old folks’ home’ where all parents have been ‘dumped’ by ungrateful,unrepenting and merciless children, with a ‘good riddance’ attitude.

3. The rationale for revering our parents is simple and clear-cut. i.e. undying gratitude for our having been created, fed, protected and nurtured by them, till we are able to fend for ourselves. “There is no greater sin than ingratitude” states our Tamil scripture, the Thirukkural. In fact all our numerous scriptures teach, glorify and demonstrate filial piety and reverence to teach,glorify and demonstrate filial piety and reverence to parents as the highest dharma and the highest penance. A modern error and blunder is to ignore and scoff at scriptural authority because of ignorance of it or denying its historical basis. But none can disprove its historicity. Besides, “Scriptural truth is more relevant than historical fact.” Lord Ganesha circumambulated His parents Shiva and Parvathi on reverence. Sathyavan lovingly tended to his blind parents with meticulous reverence and so was rewarded with Savithri as wife, a paragon of chastity who redeemed his life from death itself. In the Ramayana, Saravanan carried about his blind parents (see this at Jeyram Ashram at Hardwar) till death; and Rama revered not only his parents but even his stepmother Kaikeyi. In the Mahabharatha, young Puru happily took over his father Yayathi’s old age and infirmity; Bheeshma even renounced all sexual pleasures in order to enable his father Santhanu to marry Sathyavathy; the Pandavas revered their mother Kunti to such an extend that they happily obeyed her injunction, though given unknowingly “Share equally whatever you have brought!” to the very letter, though this meant that Draupadi hadto be shared by all five of them. In the Bhagavatham, Pundalik a great Krishna devotee, refused to come out of his hut even for the Lord’s ‘darshan’ and blessing till he had fully completed his filial service to his parents, and the Lord, instead of giving vent to fury, proclaimed for the benefit of mankind “Service to parents is equivalent to worship of God!” Cynics may scoff at the above only because they are too stone-hearted or finding excuses to shirk responsibility.


13

4. If so, then they must at least take heed of the inexorable law of karma, which is a 100% certainty i.e. the Biblical “As you sow, so you reap”. The ‘Field’ described in Chapter 13 of our Bhagavad Geeta is a highly elastic field and so whatever deed, word or thought we are responsible for will bounce back on us from this Field without fail, sooner or later. In this instance, if we ill treat our parents or hurt them in any way, in God’s good time our children will ill treat us in similar fashion. This is certain as “The mills of God grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly small” (Sir Winston Churchill).

5. A proverbial repentant youth mourned at his parents’ funeral thus: “Even when a fly or mosquito settled on me when I was a child, you felt pained as if a needle was pricking your eye! Alas, it is too late for me to show my gratitude!” This is indeed like locking the door after the horse is stolen!

AUM TAT SAT!



14
MEDITATION
by Shree Parthasarathy Sampath

Most of us are not aware of this thought-power. What is mind? A bunch of thoughts. All these thoughts, accumulated tendencies in the subconscious mind, make us dance to their tune. What a helpless condition? We are just machines manipulated by our thoughts. They guide us, make us act, force us to commit blunders. They drive us to unknown places, rotate us in the wheel of samsara, and bind us to this world. They drag us, pull us, and sometimes throw us in a ditch, and again lift us. There can not be an effect without a cause. Yes, we ourselves are the cause of our helplessness. It is we who are responsible for our slavery. Yes, we entertain the most crooked, evil, terrible, violent, lustful, greedy and harmful thoughts. Brooding over them for years, nay births,we have brought ourselves to this miserable state.

But there is nothing to despair or to be afraid of. There is hope. There are infinite possibilities hidden in each one of us. We can certainly undo what we have done. No one can do it for us, not even God. “You are the Creator of your Own Destiny” says Swami Vivekananda. “You are your own friend and you are your own enemy”, says Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita. The whole responsibility lies on our shoulders. Self-help is the best help.

It is our own mind, not someone else’s. We are the masters, only untrained masters. However, we should not blame our mind. Mind is essentially good, pure, and fertile, only it is barren due to our negligence, and the result is all sorts of weeds have taken deep roots in it. We can convert it into a beautiful flower or fruit garden. We can enjoy the fruits of our good actions, which results in peace and happiness-infinite. Beware of the senses- they are thieves and cheats. They rob our wisdom. They are unintelligent. Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsasays: “Bhoga-roga-yoga”. Senses run after Bhoga-enjoyment. This leads to roga - diseases which cause pain. To get rid of them, we need Yoga - that is self-control. Senses are not essentially bad. They are good,obedientand very useful. They are like strong horses, useful for a long journey; they can certainly take us to our destination; the only thing needed is a strong master, an expert charioteer, a perfect driver. Learn the art of controlling the senses and turning them within.

We cry and weep. We blame God. We blame our kith and kin. We blame the stars and planets and we blame our fate. We blame our surroundings and circumstances. We blame everything for our misfortune, but we do not blame our own self.We are ignorant,forgetful,immature prate. We forget that there is none to be blamed, but ourselves. You are not what you consider yourself to be. You are not better than those who surround you. Take care of yourself for the time being. Your negative thinking has brought you to this situation. It is you who created these situations by your own thinking. Blame yourself and stop blaming others. Learn the art of positive thinking; everything will change, the moment you change your way of thinking.

The world is a mixture of good and evil. The choice is yours. Choose as you like; make or mar yourself. Duryodhana, a misguided young man accepted Shakuni as his guide. Kaikeyi, a misguided queen, accepted Manthara as her guide. The choice of a wrong person marred their lives. Shakuni and Manthara are not to be blamed, but Duryodhana and Kaikeyi for their wrong choice of the guide.


15

Positive thinking can even help us to get rid of our physical and mental problems. It helps us to achieve our goal. To develop positive attitude, we must cultivate the habit of reading good, strengthening and inspiring Sacred Literatures, regularly attending to—satsangs i.e., spiritual workshops and discourses, bhajans etc., This is the best food for the mind. Holy Mother Sri Sarada Devi, a simple unassuming character with a wonderful depth of understanding, rightly said: "If you want peace of mind, do not find fault with others, but see your own faults".

Negative thinking is the cause of many physical and mental disorders. It is not age that makes us old or young, but our way of thinking. Cheerful and healthy thoughts are a sign of youth, whereas sickly, weakening and negative thoughts are a sign of old age.

How Problems Arise

Negative Karmas, whether in thought, speech or action, are stored as grey energy inside the cells of our body, in our chakras and nadis. Over time this accumulated negative energies decreases the continuous flow of positive energy that we absorb from prayers and meditation. When more and more negative energy gets accumulated, it results in organ malfunction and disease and also various problems at home and at work.

Mankind is not meant to suffer but to experience the best of the best on the planet earth. It is only through ignorance and accumulation of negative karmas there is untold sufferings. Our Destiny can be changed.

Every soul comes on the planet earth with a specific purpose. In order to achieve its purpose, everysoul chooses a particular vibrational frequency of each of the seven factors that affect the life of an individual. These include health, prosperity, relationship, children, career, etc., However, when they come on this planet under the influence of maya, they forget their very purpose of their birth. When caught in thisweb of illusion, the energy of the seven factors starts vibrating at a lower frequency. If health is vibrating at lower frequency, it means occurrence of diseases, poor health. If relationship is vibrating at a lower frequency it results in unhappiness in married life, misunderstandings, and ultimately in divorce. If prosperity factor is vibrating at a lower frequency, it means lack of wealth etc.

Meditation is rediscovering yourself/Oneself. The world is full of impurities associated with thoughts that pollute the mind. Meditation allows you to retrospect yourself and then purify the polluted or affected part in you. In essence meditation is seeking to explore your inner self, while in constant communion with Positive Energy that is God. You leave your physical being and analyze yourself from inside.

It is just like looking at yourself in a mirror. That mirror is meditation. It shows both the darker and brighter sides of your being.As you meditate your mind becomes purer as you head towards the Eternal Bliss. Meditation is your medium to communicate with God and stay connected while you become purified.

JAI SHRI KRISHNA!


16
REMEMBERING MY GURU               by Shrimati ‘Pummy’ Sharma Kumari Shukla

In 2006, Geeta Ashram Malaysia organised an International Youth Geeta Conference. My thoughts about my Guruji, Swami Hari Harji Maharaj, were published in the souvenir book. I would like to share that article, with minor changes, with you in conjunction with Guru Purnima 2013.

NEVER Before
I was 6 years old when there was this buzz around our home. My eldest sister was telling our grandpa and father about this visiting Swamiji in Ipoh. Her overly excited state was perfectly normal, often witnessed by the younger siblings. This was always the case with any visiting swami, astrologer or soothsayer. "This one is really different," she would remark, "There has NEVER been anyone like him before."
And so it was with this visiting Swamiji - there had "never been anyone like him before". Grandpa, dad and my eldest sister went to meet him. The impact however was on all our lives.

Be Home by 7pm - Daily!
How does a 6-year old react to having her playtime shortened DAILY? Every evening we had to wash up and be seated cross-legged, ready to recite Chapters 12 and 15 of the Geeta while the neighbourhood was in full swing with fun and games.
One fine day, the visiting Swamiji, whose name I made out to be Swami Hari Harji, posted several copies of the Bhagavad Geeta to us. Each of us got a personal copy of the sacred book. I proudly wrote my name on it. During evening prayer time, as the older siblings followed the verses with their fingers and turned the pages, I would do the same. It felt good, turning the pages at the right time. But the best part of the prayer time was ... when it came to a close!

Household Name
Swami Hari Harji soon became a household name. I no longer saw him as being responsible for shortening my playtime. Feeling the calm and comfort in his presence, I began to look upon Swamiji as a grandfather figure. He would say "You are the daughter of my son’s son" (bete ke bete ki beti).

Guru Diksha
Initiated at the age of ten, I received my Guru Mantra from 'my Guru'. The image of the Guru Diksha ceremony remains fresh in my mind. I learnt more about the power of the Guru Mantra in one of Swamiji’s discourses. He stressed that the two syllables of the word Mantra convey the meaning of ‘Man ke Andar’ (within the mind), and thus it should be recited mentally. Swamiji likened this to air within a tyre which enables it to move forward to its destination (i.e God); if recited loudly it would be similar to air being released from the tyre and the end of motion. The message has stuck on in my mind till today. I have never ever doubted the power of the Guru Mantra since. Just so, I have seen it work miracles too!

Can I Come To Your House?
In the early 1990s, Swamiji planned a trip to Ipoh, my hometown. He stayed at my parent’s place that weekend. I could not make it back to Ipoh, being involved in weekend television studio recording. I felt lost and sad, missing out on playing ‘co-host’ to Swamiji at my parent’s place. Those who have hosted Swamiji would be familiar with the really great moments with him once he was in his element.
He was so loving and would joke and ask riddles; he was so much fun to be with that no one would feel the need to sleep. Added to that was his personal ‘Geeta tuition’ which has left a lifelong impression. He would patiently guide us on anything from correct pronunciation to the philosophy of the eternal message. It was an indescribable satisfaction to ask him just anything and to get answers relating back to the Bhagavad Geeta.


17

That Saturday night, my eldest sister phoned me from Ipoh conveying Swamiji's wish to speak to me. His words to me were, "Pummy, I want to come to your house tomorrow. Can I come?" My energy was instantly revived. My Guru wants to come to my house - it was as if he had read my mind, my thoughts, my wishes. How did he know? I had not mentioned this to anyone. The following day it was immensely gratifying to have a private audience with my Guru. Subsequently I have witnessed Swamiji expressing his wishes to visit several of his dikshits (initiates) at various times - those unwell, those unable to attend satsang or just some committee member. They too must have desired to meet him - see how the Guru responds!

3G
My spiritual life has been extremely simplified with Guru, Geeta and Gopal. The miracles experienced through the grace of Geeta Mata have been amazing. When the Geeta recitation was ‘imposed’ on me at the tender age of 6, I was obviously not the most jubilant. But being a young ‘captive audience’, for me the Bhagavad Geeta was then centre-stage. As the pressure of schools and exams increased, it took a back seat, with Chapter 12 being recited parrot fashion. It was also vital and mentally reassuring to recite ‘Vasudeva Sutam Devam ...’ before any examinations. This carried on up to university level. Reciting Chapter 12 - at the start of a journey, before an exam, at Diwali, or during auspicious and special occasions - was an automatic gesture. Then, in 1985, in the final days and upon the demise of my dearest grandpa, we recited the entire Bhagavad Geeta, not once but several times over. It was an unparalleled experience with a satisfaction that a great hurdle had been crossed in moving beyond Chapters 12 and 15.

Treasure Trove
Swamiji tells us that every verse in the Geeta is a gem, and reading it brings forth more gems and precious stones. Reciting the Geeta with faith under the guidance of a Guru unlocks countless miracles, sometimes unrecognised in their manifestation. The term 'Guru' means 'dispeller of darkness or ignorance'. My experience has been that the Guru’s guidance is ongoing and brings light at different dark times and circumstances. I further feel blessed that my Guru’s guidance has been coupled with the bottomless treasure trove the Bhagavad Geeta is. For me the two are synonymous. My Guru brought the Bhagavad Geeta into my life, and my Geeta Mata is embodied in my Guru.

As Easy As A-B-C
Spirituality or prayers are not meant to be pursued only at an older age. Generally, a child of 3 starts with A-B-C. These same letters see him through right up to PhD level. If the PhD of spirituality is the ultimate liberation, then what is it’s A-B-C? Swamiji made it simple for us. Start at an early age with the parrot-fashion recitation of the Geeta verses. This will see us through every stage of spiritual life.
We may never get the time to read all the Upanishads, Vedas, Puranas and countless other scriptures. Let that not be a deterrent. Shri Krishna has made it so simple for us. In just 700 verses of the Geeta, He has given us the entire essence of all the scriptures. And my Gurudev, Swami Hari Harji Maharaj, has made all this possible for me. I thank my parents for instilling the love and respect of Guru, Geeta and Gopal in our lives.

Dikshits in Waiting
My sister once asked Swamiji how we would find him in our next birth. He smilingly responded, "I will find you just as I found you now. A Guru finds his disciples."
I have to conclude in the words of my eldest sister, "There has NEVER been anyone like him." Swamiji, we your initiates, are dikshits in waiting ...


18
RADHA KRISHNA BHAJAN YATRA 2013               by Shrimati Usha Devi
satatam kirtayanto maam
yatantas ca drdhavratah
namasyantas ca mam bhaktya
nityayukta upasate
(BG9:14)

Meaning: "Always singing My glories, striving to attain Me, prostrating before Me with firm vows, ever united with Me, worship Me always single minded"

This year's Radha Krishna Bhajan Yatra was held on 8 June 2013. A congregation of about 100 devotees participated in the spiritually rejuvenating event.

It was a memorable event, a glorious and wonderful experience for all those present.

The Lord’s altar was intricately decorated and was indeed a sight to behold! Shree Radha and Krishna were adorned in stunning attire and jewelry with matching garlands. The variety of colourful and sweet-smelling flowers provided a divine treat to the senses.

From 5.30 p.m., after a short pooja by Panditji, right up to 9.00 p.m. the ashram hall echoed with the reverberant sound of bhajans, mantras and aartis dedicated to Shree Radha Krishna. Devotees sat mesmerised as groups, comprising the young and old, from Art of Living Malaysia, Sai Centre Malaysia and Geeta Ashram Malaysia rendered praises to the Lord with enchanting tunes and celestial melodies.

The lyrics, together with the meaning in English if available, of all the bhajans, mantras and aartis were simultaneously projected onto the screen, making it very easy for all present to sing along.

The Radha Krishna Bhajan Yatra was indeed a pilgrimage for the Self to seek and unite with Him who is seated within our very own hearts. The Lord says: "sarvasya caa ’ham hridi samnivishto" (BG15:15) - "I alone reside in the hearts of all beings".

At the conclusion of the Yatra, the devotees were treated to refreshments and preeti bhojan.

JAI SHREE RADHE KRISHNA!

Jis Haala Me, Jis Desha Me, Jis Vesha Me Raho ...
Radha Krishna, Radha Krishna, Radha Krishna Kaho ...



19
IN A LIGHTER VEIN

A naughty little boy was overheard praying:
"Lord, if you can't make me a better boy, don't worry about it. I'm having a real good time as I am."


A mother asked her little children, as they were on the way to temple, "And why is it necessary to be quiet in temple?" Her youngest one replied, "Because I must not disturb people who are sleeping."

With such big advances in science, the great scientists came to the conclusion that they could manage without God. They decided to go and tell God that He was no longer needed.
God was very understanding. He nodded His head and said, "I see. Well, no problem at all, and no hard feelings. But before you go let's have a little contest. What do you think?"
"What kind of contest?" the scientists asked.
"Just a simple man-making contest, you know, out of clay," replied God.
The scientists were already experts at cloning sheep and humans. So they quickly agreed to God's proposal. The chief scientist bent down and picked up a handful of clay to start work.
"Okay, I'm ready!" said the scientist.
"No, no, no....." replied God, "You go get your own clay."

A RM1 note met a RM50 note while they happened to be in the same wallet. "Hey, where've you been?" the RM1 asked, "I haven't seen you around lately."
The RM50 answered, "Oh, I've been hanging out at the casino in Genting Highlands, then I went on a cruise. I've been to most of the shopping malls and clubs, and quite a few cinemas. How about you?"
The RM1 sighed and said, "You know, the same old place - temple, temple, temple."

A man asked God, "Can I ask a question?"
"Go right ahead," God responded.
"God, what is a million years to you?" the man asked.
God said, "To me, a million years is only a second."
"Hmmm," the man wondered, and then he asked, "God, what is a million dollars worth to you?"
God said, "To me, a million dollars is just a cent."
So the smart guy said, "God, can I have a cent?"
And God cheerfully responded, "Sure!!.....just a second."

One day Lord Narayana was looking down at Earth and saw all the evil that was going on.
So He instructed Narada to go down to Earth and check out the situation.
When Narada returned from Earth, he told Lord Narayana, "My Lord, the situation on Earth is really worrying. 95% of the population is bad and only 5% is good."
Lord Narayana felt that this was not at all good and that something had to be done. He decided to send an e-mail to the 5% that were good to encourage them a little, something to boost their morale.

Do you know what He said in that E-mail?
Oh! You didn't get one either, huh?                    


20
RECIPE: SWEET JAGGARY RICE (PONGGAL)
contributed by Shrimati Tangamani Menon

(This is a popular prashad-offering for Lord Krishna)
Ingredients:
1 cup Bhasmati rice
½ cup split yellow mung dhall (lightly roasted)
1½ cups brown sugar (boil in 1 cup water & strain)
3 tbspns. ghee
2 tbspns. cashew nuts
2 tbspns. raisins
½ tspn. cardamom powder
½ tspn. dry ginger powder
½ cup evaporated milk

Method:
1) Mix dhal with rice. Wash and let boil in a thick bottomed pan with 4 cups water.
2) When rice is almost done, pour in the liquid brown sugar and stir to mix. Simmer this over low heat.
3) Meanwhile heat the ghee in another small pan over slow fire. Roast the cashew nuts till golden and stir in the raisins. Remove from heat.
4) When sweet rice is almost done, add in the cardamom & ginger powder along with roasted cashew nuts, raisins and ghee. Mix well.
5) Finally stir in the evaporated milk. Cover pan and switch off the stove.
6) Let the prashad stand to set for about 10 minutes before offering.

Preparation time: About 30 minutes

Note:
A savoury version of the same may be prepared in the same manner by omitting the sugar, raisins, cardamom, ginger powder & milk.
Boil the rice and dhall in 5 cups water with ½ tspn. saffron powder and salt to taste. When almost done, stir in 1 tbspn. ghee and switch off the stove. Stand awhile before stirring in the sautéed ingredients in ghee i.e. 1 tspn. black pepper seeds, 1 tspn. jeera, 1 tbspn. chopped ginger, 1 green chilly (chopped), cashew nuts and 2 stalks curry leaves.



21
BHAJAN LYRICS - Kanhaiyã Kanhaiyã                  <bgsound src="KanhaiyaKanhaiya.mp3" loop="false">
Kanhaiyã Kanhaiyã tujhe ãnã paðegã, ãnã paðegã
Vachan Geetã wãlã nibhãnã paðegã
Vachan Geetã wãlã nibhãnã paðegã

Gokul men ãyã Mathurã men ã
Chhavi pyãri pyãri kahin to dikhã
Are sãnvare, are sãnvare dekh ãke zarã
Sooni sooni paði hai teri Dwãrika, Kanhaiyã..........

Jamunã ke pãni men halchal nahin
Madhuban men pehlã sã jalthal nahin
Wahi kunj galiãn, wahi kunj galiãn wahi gopiãn
Chhanakati magar koi chhãgal nahin, Kanhaiyã..........

Koi Teri gaeeyã kã wãli nahin
Amãnat yeh Teri sambhãli nahin
Kayi Kans Bhãrat men, kayi Kans Bhãrat men paidã huye
Kapat se koi ghar bhi khãli nahin, Kanhaiyã..........

Hare Hare Krishñã Hare Murãri
Jai Jai Govardhan Giradhãri, Hare Hare.........


22
DAD'S VALUABLE TIME
contributed by Shri Sivashankar Krishnapillai (author unknown)

One day a little boy asked his very busy father, "Daddy, how much do you make an hour?"

The irritated father told his son that it was none of his business to ask such a question. When the son persisted, the man told him, "Okay, if you must know, I make RM100 an hour."

"Oh!" said the son with his head down, "May I borrow RM50?"

The father was furious at his son's show of insolence and disrespect. He reprimanded the boy and sent him off to bed. The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door.

The man was initially very angry but later, when he had calmed down a bit, he began to wonder what his son wanted to buy with the money. He felt somewhat remorseful, realising also that it was not often that his son requested for money. He went to the little boy's room and opened the door.

DAD: "Are you asleep, son?"
SON: "No daddy, I'm still awake".
DAD: "I've been thinking, maybe I was a little too hard on you. It's been a long tiring day, and I guess I took out my frustrations on you. Here's the RM50 you asked for."

The little boy sat up smiling, took the money and thanked his dad. Then, reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some crumpled up notes and began to count his money. The father started to get angry again.

DAD: "Why did you want some more money if you already have so much under your pillow?"

The son looked up at his father.

SON: "These are my savings. I didn't have enough, but now I do. Daddy, I have RM100 now. Can I buy an hour of your time? Please come home early tomorrow. I would love to have dinner with you."

The father was absolutely devastated. With moist eyes, he put his arms around his little son, and begged for forgiveness.

This is just a short reminder to all of us working our guts out in life. We shouldn't let time slip through our fingers without spending some of it with those who really matter to us, those who are close to our hearts. We must remember to share that RM100 worth of time with our loved ones. When we are gone, the company that we are working for could easily get a replacement in a matter of days, but the family and friends we leave behind will never stop feeling the loss.


23
BHAGAVAD GEETA CROSSWORD PUZZLE
by Dr D K Bhanot
This interactive crossword puzzle requires JavaScript and a reasonably recent web browser, such as Internet Explorer 5.5 or later, Netscape 7, Mozilla, Firefox, or Safari. If you have disabled web page scripting, please re-enable it and refresh the page. If this web page is saved to your computer, you may need to click the yellow Information Bar at the top of the page to allow the puzzle to load.
   


24
GEETA ASHRAM MALAYSIA: Recent and Upcoming Activities
by Shrimati Tangamani Menon

Ongoing Activities
Everyday: A short pooja is performed at sunrise and sunset.
Tuesdays: 8.00-9.00 p.m. Hanuman Chalisa recitation (5 times) & related anecdotes by Panditji
Wednesdays: 7.30-9.00 p.m. Better Living Yoga Course for Householders from a holistic approach based on theoretical and practical aspects of the Patanjali Yoga system being offered by Ms. Nirmlah Dahvy.
Thursdays: 7.30-8.30 p.m. Bhagavad Geeta study and discussion classes in English by Mr. Ashok Bherumal.
Fridays: 7.30-8.30 p.m. Sanskrit classes by Panditji
Saturdays: 6.00-7.00 p.m. Hindi classes by Panditji   7.30-8.30p.m. Geeta Recitation classes by Panditji
Sundays: (a) 11.00 a.m.-1.00 p.m. Geeta satsang, bhajans, recitation and explanation of seven verses of the Geeta. (b) 11.00 a.m.-12.30 p.m. Children’s class conducted by Ms Asha Devi & Mr Chandru Binwani.

Every Purnima all 18 chapters of the Geeta are recited followed by a get-together and sharing of whatever prashad (pot-luck style) brought by devotees.
Purnima dates for the next 3 months are: July 22nd, August 21st and September 19th.

Community Services
Mobile Geeta brought to your home/venue on request anywhere within the Klang valley consisting of;
1) A one hour satsang or
2) 2 ½ hours recitation of the entire Geeta

Happenings during Last 3 months:
11 - 19th April 2013: Evening satsangs were arranged during Guruma’s visit while on moun vrat during Navratri.
25th April 2013: Special prayers (evening) held in conjunction with Hanuman Jayanti & Purnima
19th May 2013: Swamini Mataji Vanamali from Rishikesh spoke on Dhyana Yoga during Sunday Satsang
26th May 2013: 47th AGM held at 1.30 p.m.
8th June 2013: Radha Krishna Bhajan Yatra from 5.30- 9.00p.m. Groups included singers/devotees from Sai Centre P.J. and Art of Living besides Geeta Ashram singers/devotees.

Havans:
24th February 2013: Sri Kishen Agarwal & Family
26th May 2013: Dato’ Ramesh Kodammal & Family
7th July 2013: Dr Manjit Sidhu & Family
11th August 2013: Shri Vijay Binwani & Family

Upcoming Celebrations:
1) Guru Purnima on 22nd July 2013
2) Shree Krishna Janmashtami on 28th August 2013

Hosting a Sunday Satsang:
In commemoration of a birthday, anniversary or simply in memory of a loved one, devotees may sponsor/host a Sunday satsang. Please contact the Ashram at Tel. 79564267 (10.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m.) for info / reservations.


24a
BE THOU A DEVOTEE OF THE LORD
a composition by Dr D K Bhanot

Be simple. Be humble.
Discard arrogance and resentment.
Surrender thy ego at the feet of the Lord.
Eliminate any sense of separation from the One.
Be thou a devotee of the Lord.

Be loving. Be caring.
Be kind. Be forgiving.
Shed the cloak of jealousy and animosity.
See God in everybody and everything.
Be thou a devotee of the Lord.

Be thankful. Be grateful.
Be sincere. Be honest.
Marvel at the wonder of this universe.
Appreciate the beauty of the Divine Creation.
Be thou a devotee of the Lord.

Be generous. Be big-hearted.
Have faith. Have hope.
Give thou within thy means.
Take thou within thy needs.
Be thou a devotee of the Lord.

Feel the oneness with the Lord.
Meditate on the glory of the Lord.
Yearn to be united with the Lord.
Bow thy head in prayer to the Lord.
Be thou a true devotee of the Lord.