A Friend In Need

“Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it’s all over.”

Gloria Naylor

Happy Janmashtami One and All! 

Krishna is always special in India. He is there in everyone’s life here. Now-a-days, I do see his devotees across the world irrespective of religion. 

What is so special about him?

Why is he spoken about even after ages? 

Once Saurabh Jain, the one who enacted as Shri Krishna in Star Plus Mahabharata 2013, in his Instagram handle, spoke about how people see him as the Lord Krishna himself and share their worries, pain and ask him for guidance. 

Such is the impression people have. Shri Krishna is seen as the guiding force. There is no caste, creed, religion or sex for the supreme being. He is all here for the people who love him truly. As simple as that. He goes a mile extra for such people. He stays with them in every step and ensures they reach their goals and destination that must be reached. He is the journey himself. 

In his life he had taught the world many aspects through his way of living, being around with people, the way he carried himself in intense situations. And he never missed timing. When he had to be there for his friends he had been there. Neither a moment delayed nor a moment prior. He has been just there for his friends. He was a friend of all. The poor. The rich. Brahmin. Kshthriya. Male. Female. It never mattered. He would have their backs till the moment arrived and then he would appear at the right moment to take their hands and lead the way to the destined destination. 

Treating Friends

He taught how to treat people, especially friends. We do see in real life how people treat their friends. Few people use them. Few people put down their own people. Say, when a friend is rich, people use them for paying bills in a get together. His big heart is taken for granted. His wallet gets burnt. There is also the other extreme where poor people are ill treated. Most times friends are seen with benefits. Unconditional love for friends is a rare trait. Both Krishna and Rama have been an epitome of unconditional love, friendship. 

Lord Krishna treated Sudhama, his poor Friend and Arjuna, his rich Friend alike. Both were from different castes. But it didn’t stop him from treating them alike with respect and love. Beyond helping them to grow with his guidance, he respected them and their privacy. He always maintained the invisible line when it came to helping others and respecting them. 

He never did it all by himself. He let them do and appeared when his presence was much needed. In the case of Sudhama, he was in poverty beyond words. He was Krishna’s childhood friend. He tried all his means in an ethical way to lead a good life and when he couldn’t find a way, he went to Krishna, the king of Dwaraka upon the request of his wife. 

Being Humble

Sudhama was shabbily dressed and had some flattened rice in a torn cloth to offer it to his beloved friend. As Sudhama reached Krishna’s palace, the security guards did not let him in. But Krishna came running to receive him. Sudhama was moved. He did not openly ask for help. Krishna understood his situation and blessed him prosperity.

Krishna did not put his friend down. He neither felt proud about his wealth nor made fun of his childhood friend. He just empathized and did what he could do to help his friend. 

Zentangles in Flower vase with Lotus flowers which is close to Krishna. Self Designed one for Krishna Janmashtami.

The Takeaway

In our lives after college we might lose touch with childhood friends in the course of life. Say after some 10 years you accidentally meet your friends. You may bump into any of the following situations. 

Your friend fastly moves away from your sight. He may not have achieved his goals and might feel shy and move away. And some other time you may meet a friend who is in a higher position than yours and he may think why to talk with his peers and he wouldn’t smile back even. The vice versa is also possible. Where you are in a higher position and you think small about others.

Krishna, through his actions revealed that if a friend is in a lower financial status due to some reasond, but is here looking for help, do not question him knowing his situation. If in a position to help him, in ways you can, do it wholeheartedly with no ounce of pride. That way one can do a sane service and his respect isn’t at stake. Just need to thank God that we are in a better position, the position where our hands give rather. 

Krishna, the Jagad Guru even during intense times never left himself behind. In friendship if both Friends connect with the child in themselves even after years, then the ego dies. Friendship just becomes immortal. 

This Janmashtami let’s vow to treat people better with love and respect. Especially our friends. If one does not have a friend like Krishna. Being one may help. Might be. 

With love,

Rukmini

Periya Puranam – A History And Beyond

“If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.” Michael Crichton

Hello All,

Hope you are doing good. With lock down there is no way out on weekends. Sometimes it’s difficult but at times it does constantly remind me that there is a way in. And to learn or know something new, Sky’s the limit.

Hailing from Srirangam called Bholoka Vaikundam, I know very little about Nayanmars. Do not ask me if I know more about Alwars. I do not know them as well. But I have seen Alwars frequently during Thiru Adhyayana Utsavam also known as Pagal Pathu, Ra Pathu Utsavam, here in Srirangam which is celebrated during Vaikunda Ekadashi every year. But I have never been to Arubathi Moovar Vizha which is the famous festival in Mylapore every year in the month of Panguni. 

So, I thought I should start knowing more about Nayanmars. Hence writing about Nayanmars. And when it is about Nayanmars, it’s nothing but Periya Puranam that strikes my mind. As I learn about them I would like to share with you for two reasons. If you know about Nayanmars please do comment on this blog and let me know if the story is right or wrong. Another is to send some spiritual vibes which are more positive and powerful. And I guess we need this with the situation we are in. 

So, now straight into the introduction for Periya Puranam. 

Periya Puranam is also called Thiruthondar Puranam. It is 12th in the list of 12 Thirumurais (Panniru Thirumuraigal). These are 12 sacred texts of Shaivites. And this Periya Puranam is a treasure, a collection of life histories of all the 63 Nayanmars. This was compiled by Sekkizhar in the era of Kolothunga Chola II, King Anabaya Chola. 

Sekkizhar was the prime minister and poet in his court. Kolothunga Chola II was dazzled by the work Seevaga Chindamani. The work is about how a prince Seevagan conquers his kingdom back, by marrying eight dames exhibiting his heroics and errotics, gains the support of those kingdoms and becomes powerful. Ultimately, he renounces his kingdom realising the impermanence of the world and becomes a hermit. 

But King Anabaya Chola was stuck with the materialistic part of the work beyond the balance. Which naturally happens for any human. All that matters is to be aware of it and strive for balance. But the Chola king has gone so deep to make him aware of his off balance state. To put him back on track, Sekkizhar, a staunch devotee of Lord Shiva wanted to pen about Nayanmars. 

Some Illustrations Depicting Periya Puranam and Sekkizhar. Illustrations inspired from the pins Enrich Minds and 123RF from Pinterest.

To lead a peaceful life being spiritual helps. Too much erotica could spoil and ruin one’s life to destruction. And if a King goes off balance, the entire kingdom is at stake. So Sekkizhar travelled places to collect evidence and life histories of all the 63 Nayanmars. 

Most of the Nayanmars were leading a normal middle class life yet were strong about their spiritual seeking and their devotion to Lord Shiva. Despite hurdles, they were strong willed to go with their conviction.

Periya Puranam is a treasure as it clearly reveals about the time, place, the way of living of all Nayanmars. And Nayanmars are not from the same caste or sex. They are from all castes, creed and sex. The book is an epitome of Inclusiveness.

The book says that devotion, god, the elements of nature is for all. All that it requires is a heart full of love, conviction and purpose.

Most quotes on History say that it is a waste of time to read them and urge people to create one rather. But in Reality, one can read, relate and be inspired from History. And Periya Puranam not only says about devotion to God. Along with that it clearly emphasizes on love, compassion, acceptance. These aspects of life seem trivial but are difficult to put in practice in real life. But Periya Puranam is all about these little things that matter in life through the life histories of Nayanmars. 

So Periya Puranam is much more than to be seen as history as such. 

Planning to read and write about Nayanmars in the coming weeks as well. Hope things go as planned. 

Happy Week ahead! 

With Love,

Rukmini

References

www.shaivam.org

Periya Puranam Aaivu Nool, Vijaya Publications

Father’s Day

Fathers are one of the most responsible personalities in this world. One who takes responsibility is likely to be called as father. Despite the challenges faced in office, they carry a smile on face. On surface some are totally detached but on the flip side more connected.

On getting the first salary in hand realization heavily strikes. Might feel ashamed, for crying, for being adamant to get the Kitchen set or the Car right away at the end of the month or during crucial financial times.

Father holding his baby. – Photo from pexels

While buying anything, say when spending from own pocket one tend to do an analysis on the contents of the product. I have done this. For example, Vicco turmeric. Sans sandal costs one price and the other is of different price. But when you ask father to choose based on price, he asks to go with heart and doesn’t see the price tag. While he presents a hundi to teach the power of savings, he ensures to teach the value of money. Often asks to save 1/6th of salary at the same time spends selflessly for his children.

If selfless spending with lots of love is a course, fathers are the gurus.

To such selfless souls who motivates to lead a practical life, full of love, Happy Father’s day.

With Love,

Rukmini

#NoMoreMeToo – Part 3 – The Upbringing

“Most things are good, and they are the strongest things; but there are evil things too, and you are not doing a child a favor by trying to shield him from reality. The important thing is to teach a child that good can always triumph over evil.” –Walt Disney

The third post on #NoMoreMeToo. This is all about upbringing of children. One of the difficult and exhaustive one is parenting! Running behind the child for feeding, playing is exhaustive and as you see the child smiling at you, it is all worth it! The difference between the current and the yester generation is that, the yester generation grew up. With today’s technological developments, the current generation has to be brought up!

Years back, screen was an unknown element. Now it it is almost the way of life. There are new parenting glichtes and it all requires new techniques to handle the same.

What #MeToo or #NoMoreMeToo has with Upbringing?

Parents play a pivotal role in setting a good, safe environment for the children. So, it is the duty of every parent to have an eye on the child’s growth and curiosity.

Image Courtesy : Pexels.com

At your home you may streamline, have a better routine, give an open space, cut the screen time or have no screen time at all for your child but other children may have different kind of parenting. So, one can control only what is in one’s control! Hence, making children understand on digital spaces, routine and private parts in essential. And to be honest the last one can feel awkward. Here, the post concentrates on the sexual talk.

Though awkward, it can happen through regular communication with children. Slowly can tell about what is good in touch, in seeing, in hearing. Because abuse can be of any form. Child Psychology says that even before they go to school, children would start to explore their bodies.

Many people speak about Adult-Child abuse but along with that child – child curiosity should also be addressed. No touching other than parents, grandparents should be the norm. Even if that is uncomfortable, there should be an open space to voice the same. Most young children will be curious about their bodies and also the bodies of children of opposite sex.

Similarly, When some other children seem to intrude in your children’s personal space, it is a must to speak with your child in an assuring way because only then the child would be open for communication in the coming years! Else the child would become secretive which could be dangerous for their growth, adding more trouble for us, the parents!

Even after all the precautions, when your child is subjected to threat or abuse, being calm and helping them divert their mindset will help them heal. Loving them unconditionally will help them lead a happy life. Till they understand that they will have a chance to explore sex with love, as a part of life, we as parents should be their fall backs. We have to build trust, a rock solid foundation. The child should believe that ‘Whatever happens when I tell my parents they will hear with calm mind’. Such a blind trust can make parenting easier! And the bond will be the strongest!

Treat children like plants! Allow them to blossom and grow. Take care and water them love and set the environment right. Because when a plant doesn’t grow, the environment should be fixed. It is not the plant’s fault after all! Positive parenting in communication, attitude, showing love is the key for winning our children’s hearts! Winning heart is a great deed. Winning children’s heart is an accomplishment to be cherished and a rare treasure!

Happy Parenting!

With Love,
Rukmini P Kirthivasan

‘Shiva Shakthi’ – The Role Models

A family is always special. It could be a nuclear family or a joint family. There is always more to learn when we are around people. A man can go anywhere in this world but his heart remains at his home. A man for whom, his fall back is his family is more confident, knows where peace, happiness and strength are. A man with a family is ever blessed. People with no support system are emotionally hurt and find difficulty in handling people and facing situations. But a man with father-mother knows he has a strong support system and sleeps peacefully. 

As children we tend to learn things from parents. Just like chromosomes come from both Mother and Father in equal ratio, behavioural aspects also come from surroundings where a child grows and learns to react and respond from mother, father and people around. In a family, both father and mother put equal effort and it is 50-50. Sometimes one gives more and sometimes other gives more and the family runs with mutual love, freedom, respect and understanding. 

In India, spirituality is an indispensable part of a family. Being religious is a choice though, but being spiritual is far from being religious and it is something that keeps stress under control. And festivals are something ever cherishable. It is another beautiful day that brings everyone on table and could share a delicious meal together! Only such memories give strength when one is at his/her low point. 

So, on this auspicious day of Maha Shivaratri, shall see how Shiva Shakthi influences our familial structure. In Indian mythology, there is the term ‘Ammai Appan’. Indeed famous in Tamil Nadu. The term denotes the universal father and mother, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi. There are numerous scriptures which speak about various manifestations of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi in nature. Philosophically, Shiva is stillness and Shakthi is energy. Scientifically, Shiva is the potential energy and Shakthi is the kinetic energy. 

Speaking here with respect to Family and contribution of mother and father being in the institution of marriage is inspired from the history that still stands as a wonderful example of 50-50 partnership on all aspects of life is the history of King Sundareshwara Pandiyan and Queen Meenakshi who ruled Madurai, Tamil Nadu. 

It is believed that the universal couple descended on this Earth to show how to run a family well. For 6 months Sundareshwara Pandiyan rules the kingdom and Meenakshi takes care of the family. Next 6 months Meenakshi rules the kingdom and Sundareshwara Pandiyan takes care of the family.

Shri Ardhanari – Line Art by Ajay Kaarthick and Sowmya @Miya’s Hut

There is no gender bias and no gender based task assignment. Might be, one could be a level up and other could be a level down in any of the tasks, but that doesn’t affect the other attempting to take up tasks where one is weak and do it once or twice and learn from the better half in polishing skills.

For the fact, I initially wanted to name this blog ‘Shiva Shakthi’ as they teach core family values. But it sounded a lot spiritual rather than general. So changed the name to ‘Thus Agam Speaks’ – Meaning Thus Heart Speaks. I take this Maha Shivaratri to Thank the Universal mother and father for the inspiration.

They had set an example on how to run a family with love, respect, freedom, acceptance, being there for another and balancing the cycle called life by being as each other’s better halves. Today, on Mahashivaratri, let’s pray Mahadev and Parvati devi to bless us with an emotional, psychological, physical well being, prosperity, consciousness in each one of us. Let there be love in every one and let’s radiate to others and let our families be more merrier as the masculine and feminine energies are at unison.

Happy Shivaratri!_/\_

#HaraHaraMahadeva

With love,

Rukmini P Kirthivasan

Merry Christmas

Happy Indian Family wishes a very Happy Christmas to all!

Festivals are symbol of hope, joy and sharing! Christmas is all about gifts from Santa for all! When young it’s all about chocolates, cakes, playing with friends. As we grow up it’s about good career, more money and energy to grow! And in old age it’s about good health, peaceful sleep!

On this day let Santa come and gift all that we have been dreaming for! While unwrapping new gifts make sure to unwrap the gift boxes in hand!

Let’s count our blessings as more blessings are on our way!

Photo by Ylanite Koppens from Pexels

Happy Christmas! 🙂

With Love,
Rukmini P Kirthivasan