Shayana Ekadashi – Toli Ekadashi

Today (July 12, 2019, this year) is an auspicious occasion for us. It is the Sleeping Ekadashi on which day, God Vishnu starts his sleep and keeps sleeping for the entire period of 4 months.

It is believed that Vishnu sleeps from the eleventh day of the month of Ashada till the eleventh day of the month of Kartik which is a four-month period. One year for human beings is equal to one day for celestial beings. As per that calculation, 8 hours of sleep comes to a 4 month period. So, God is taking his 8-hour sleep during this period.

People observe this occasion by worshiping Lord Narayan and Devi Lakshmi every day with special austerity and by keeping fast on each first Ekadashi of all the four months during this period.

The devotees throng the temples of God Vishnu and his other forms. Special pujas take place in those temples. In Maharashtra, Pandharpur Vithal Swamy is famous where people of all creeds get together and participate in processions during these days.

So, wish you all Lord Narayan and Goddess Lakshmi’s blessings.

It is the Pongal Festival

We, Indians, are celebrating the Pongal festival these four days. It started on Sunday (13 January) evening and continues till 17 January. We celebrated the bonfire in the morning today and worshiped the Vishnu Bhagwan and celebrated His marriage with a great devotee of him known as Andal. The bonfire is a kind of discarding old things by burning them and welcoming the new season. The harvesting is done by this time and the fresh stock of food grains and vegetables arrive in houses by this day. So, people celebrate that occasion.

Tomorrow is Makar Sankranti which is more popular as it is celebrated by the whole of India with that name. People take bath in holy rivers and visit temples and express gratitude to Lord for the bounty granted to them. They prepare the Pongal and offer it to God and then enjoy it with family and relatives. They celebrate the festival by flying colorful kites all over in the sky from the roof of their buildings.

The next day is celebrated as Kanum Pongal, mostly in Southern India. It is the festival of cattle. Cattle are bathed and decorated with colorful clothes. Their horns are also decorated with flowers and even colors. Then they get worshiped. People cook a food item known as Vada with the batter of black gram lentil which is fried in oil. It is considered as a must food on this day. It is made round with a big hole in the center.

The fourth-day people enjoy watching cockfights and bullfights. But, this practice is dwindling gradually as it involves violence towards living beings. Nowadays, they simply enjoy some outings or picnics with friends and family or in watching movies, etc.

How Do You Adjust to Changes in Your Daily Life?

I think changes are always there in anybody’s daily routines according to some circumstances and environments.

Suppose you are indulging in your daily activities according to a preset schedule. Now, something happens and you are required to change your schedule according to your new requirements.

Changes can take place due to two major reasons: Change happening due to any unforeseen or unexpected incident in your life or change emerging as a result of your own actions.

Both of them result in the re-scheduling of your daily routine.

Unforeseen change can be due to a calamity taking place or due to the transfer of your job unexpectedly.

Change as a result of our own actions can be like seeking a new job, seeking for shift-duty, changing your residence, or changing your routine according to your own volitions.

Whatever change takes place, you should always try to reschedule your timetable so that you can utilize your time with utmost advantage for bettering yourself.

Each part of the available time needs to be efficiently allocated proportionally to all of your requirements like reading/writing, entertainment, exercise, job, food intake, sleep and all other daily chores of life.

I got this query because I had to adjust my TV time and reading/writing time since this week due to a change in the telecast of a TV serial that used to be shown at 8 pm now shifted to 2:30 pm thereby disturbing my schedule for these 2,3 days.

I adjusted my rest time after lunch accordingly. Further, I want to tell you that I don’t take the nap after lunch. I simply lay in the bed and either read a magazine (spiritual) or any novel or watch some nice insightful videos during that 30 minute time.

Even while watching a TV serial, I read the articles in newspapers on the Editorial page which I admire very much during those commercial breaks.  My TV time used to be one hour during 8 pm to 9pm but, now, it got increased by another half-an-hour due to the shift of my one serial time to 2:30 pm after lunch.

I may like to know about your experiences regarding the changes in daily-life through your comments here.

6 Tips For Success in Life

Here are some wonderful tips for success in life drawn from Goutham Buddha’s teachings.

Gautham Buddha was a great spiritually enlightened soul. He meditated for many years under a pipal tree to find the purpose of life and the solutions for misery in life. He came out from that meditation after attaining some wonderful enlightenment to all those haunting problems of life.

He stressed the need for acquiring wisdom through listening to other seers and people around you. Each one is gifted with some wisdom or other. So, you can learn many things by listening to others.

After gathering some knowledge or information from others, you need to think about it again and again to digest the essence of it. Then only you can become acquainted with that subject.

Goutham Buddha further established that meditation and prayer are very helpful in gaining good knowledge as you will be directly in contact with nature and your mind during that process. Mental peace and utmost devotion are essential for gaining wisdom.

He further emphasized not losing Hope at any cost. You should be enduring and keep on trying the struggles of life never thinking of quitting.

There are many other points he highlighted through his teachings. But, I am selecting these six life building tips in the bulleted format.

  • Before you express your feelings, Listen to others.
  • Before you put in writing, Think over it.
  • Before you preach, practice it.
  • Before you quit in your endeavors, try again.
  • Before you spend anything, you need to earn.
  • Before you think of Death, try to Live.

What is Happiness?

Happiness is the inner feeling in our hearts that keeps us in a pleasant and joyful mood.

It has no monetary value. It’s par all material enjoyments.

Most people generally believe that material success brings them happiness. Happiness, for most of them, means having a good job or business, living in a comfortable house, possessing all comforts of life.

But, it is not so. Even after possessing all the wealth and other comforts or luxuries of life, one may not find happiness in his life. All that can only lead to a more complicated and worrysome life. You are always worried of your position and assets of life. You can’t live as you wish. You always feel compeled to act in a restricted way to maintain your position and everything. So, that can’t provide you a happy life.

On the other hand, even a poor man dwelling on the pavement can feel vey happy in his life because he is free to live under the sky enjoying the fresh air and consuming whatever he gets from the nature and from the generous people around there. He has nothing to worry for in his life. So, he lives the most satisfied life if he keeps away from other distracting factors.

So, we are able to see that Happiness is not a result of wealth and material possessions. It is the result of one’s own satisfaction and joyful mentality.

Let us all try to refrain ourselves from running after those material possessions of life and be content with whatever is enough for our real existence on this earth.

Let us all aim at that simple, blissful Happiness as our goal of life.

Need for The Code of Conduct or Morality

We live in a society. No one can live aloof from society unless he has taken reclusion and goes to live in a deserted land, forest, or a hill-top.

And, you can see that one has to perform different actions to meet his daily requirements of life. Without action, there is no life. Just like I act, the other also may be acting in his own way. Thus, the entire society is the collection of various activities of various people.

Further, each of us often needs to interact with other people around us. We may have to take help from the other or need to help the other at times. Thereby, our actions affect the people around us and their actions, in turn, affect our lives.

Now, you may be realizing the concept of how each person’s actions can impact others’ lives.

We need to develop a code of conduct for all of our actions that shall be acceptable to all the members of the society. This code of conduct is known as Morality or Moral values of a society.

Each one of our actions should be performed in such a way that it does not impact a bad effect on your neighbor’s existence or life. If everybody tries to act in his own way, without caring for the existence of the other, it will be a chaos. The society can become tense and very difficult to live peacefully.

So, the need for some moral values and ethics of society arise. Our present society is lacking these moral values and gradually becoming very unruly and uncontrollable. That is why we are witnessing so many rapes, terror attacks, fraud cases, criminal activities, etc.

Our Governments and Judiciaries have become very weak to protect people.

If only each person understands his moral obligations and tries to differentiate between what is right and wrong, or good and bad, and tries to correct himself, then only can our humanity survive and lead a peaceful life.

Be Honest to Your Self

We need to be honest in all our actions and thoughts for achieving something. Honesty always leads to success.

If one is honest in his actions, he will not be worried. He enjoys the satisfaction that he has done his duty without evading or skipping anything. It will provide him with a nice feeling of joy and happiness. He can sleep well. He need not be afraid of anyone. Because he had done his duty perfectly well.

Otherwise, when he would have evaded his duty or responsibilities, he would be always feeling tense and be worried about being spotted and questioned. He would be unable to face his own self which will be pointed towards his guilt acts. He can’t be happy or enjoy his life peacefully.

So, we need to be honest always for our own sake. For our own happiness and our family’s happiness.