Hara Hara Shankara, Jaya Jaya Shankara

Hara Hara Shankara, Jaya Jaya Shankara

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Best recipe for any food

The Divine recipe 

We, as Indian Women, find great pleasure in cooking. Even tough we talk of women's liberation, freedom, cooking is something which is dear to a women's heart. In spite of their high flying careers and commitment, they cook for their family and derive a great sense of satisfaction.

Things might have changed for a few or many. But I am talking about majority Indians where the wife makes breakfast, dinner , lunch for the family. She may be a CEO of the company, still cooking for her husband and children is very close to her heart. Special recipes, special dishes like vada payasam during festivals, special snacks for kids are some of the opportunities she explores to display her culinary skills witht he outcome bringing a load of appreciation and satisfaction.

Why is it that when we eat outside, we restrict ourselves to only one dosa. When we go to a resort for 4 days, thinking that we need a break, we surely get bored of the food. We long for the home food. For men whose job involves a lot of travel, get bored of hotel food and crave for home food even if it is simple rasam and curd. But on the contrary, we hardly get bored of home food. Even if it is the same rasam, sambar, chapatis everyday, we tend to relish and long for the same the next day. Why is this so.? The food made at home not only has spices, salt, and dal but a lot of affection and love. A lot of interest by the home minister, the mother, with keenly searched recipes does her work with 100% dedication and commitment. And the outcome is a whole lot of aahs..and wow..by children and husband. This gives an encouragement and further motivates her. 

To make things better, I would like to propose a recipe. This recipe will go with any dish, will make it more tastier and return more happiness. And that is chanting while cooking. This will not only increase the taste of the food but the purity and holiness of what we eat. The vibrations that come out of the chant is a mixture of love along with devotion. These vibration will give good health and happiness to those who eat. 

It will be good if she chants it loudly. This is because, the chant will be heard by inmates and they too will be drawn into the track. We must offer the food cooked to the Lord and thank him for the day's food. After all,every grain eaten is HIS gift and we must not forget or overlook this aspect. Also, we must get our children into the habit of offering a small prayer before eating like "krishna arpaanam" (All belongs to krishna) so that the food is purified. Some may argue if the food is really purified, will we be free from diseases. Well, what we suffer is due to our karma. By doing this, we will accrue good karma and at least avoid suffering in future. After all, 

Even, when we go out for a treat, we must offer it to god. We don't know the state of mind of chef who cooks in a hotel. He would do it as a mundane job or with some grudge or with enthusiasm. Whatever be the emotions of the chef, the vibrations will surely affect us emotionally and physically. It is therefore not good to eat food outside. Even from the point of view of hygiene, our elders (shastras) don't advise us to eat outside food. But this is practically impossible these days. Our lifestyle has changed so much that it may be difficult to bring this into practice. So, at least, when we eat outside, let us offer it to god so that we can nullify the negative vibrations that has gone in. It will not only purify our food, but also our thoughts and mind. Let us keep this mind and make a conscious effort.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Stories Less Told

The preferred feet

The mahabharatha is considered as the fifth veda. The lessons that we learn from this epic is innumerable and immeasurable. Each incident and event that has been narrated in this, delivers us some lesson which we can follow in our lives.

When the war between the Pandavas and Kauravas was inevitable, there was a lot of horse trading. Salya, who was the uncle of Nakula and Sahadeva was inducted into the kaurava gang through deceive. Yuyutsu, who was one of the brothers of Duryodhana, changed his side to pandavas. Such things were prevalent in those days itself.

Shakuni, advised Duryodhana to go and seek Krishna's help in the war. It was his intention that Krishna be drawn to the kaurava's side so that victory would be certain. When duryodhana went to meet krishna, the lord was asleep. Duryodhana was a person who would not even bow to the feet of his own parents. He thought that if he sat at the feet of the lord, it would be degrading for a great warrior like him. He therefore sat near the head. After sometime, Arjuna entered, saw the lord asleep and humbly sat near the feet of the lord. When krishna woke up, he saw arjuna and started conversing with arjuna. Duryodhana then interrupted and requested for help. Krishna then asked both of them as to what they wanted. Since HE saw arjuna first, he asked Arjuna what he wanted. Duryodhana was in a way anxious if Arjuna would ask for the same thing which he wanted. But Arjuna asked just for the lord's blessing. A warrior requires a trustworthy charioteer, one who would know all directions, one who would take care of the horses, one who would never misguide him. Who else but the lord can be the best charioteer. He requested that Krishna be his charioteer in the war. Duryodhana was overjoyed with this request. He asked Krishna for his army at Dwaraka and was granted. He went away too satisfied. But little did he realise that he lost the battle the moment he gave up the lord.

Many a times, we seek mere materialistic pleasures leaving out the precious GEM. The LORD is the ultimate goal. The state of supreme bliss must be the goal of life. The materialistic pleasures are only temporary means to achieve the lord. But we turn the tables around and make the mundane pleasures as the very goal in life and use the LORD to achieve them. We offer all kinds of bribes and special prayers to get our desires fulfilled. This is not wrong. Asking GOD for favorus is not wrong. The GITA itself divides devotees into 4 classes and one of them is known as "artharthi" i.e. bhaktas who pray for desires to be fulfilled. But we must not remain in the state forever. Just like how we graduate to a higher class every year, we must graduate and lift ourselves from the state of temporary happiness to a level of eternal bliss.    

This is possible only by constant and conscious practice, introspection, satsang, chanting, reading and contemplating on the goal of life. In this fast paced life, we must make sure that we spend atleast 15 minutes everyday in solitude to deeply think and connect with the supreme.