Saturday, March 30, 2019

Wonderful black & white pic of the mother chosen by Sathya Sai Avatar: Mother Easwaramma

Last updated on 31st Mar. 2019

I have been reading Love is My Form, Volume 1 by R. Padmanaban, in fits & bursts. This book has wonderful pics of the family of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba.

I felt that this black & white pic of Mother Easwaramma in it which shows her at a younger age than most of her pics publicly available on the Internet, is a wonderful one. I had seen this pic elsewhere but I think it is not available at good resolution on the Internet.

[To open pic in higher resolution, right-click on pic followed by open link (NOT image) in new tab/window. In new tab/window you may have to click on pic to zoom in.]


Google Search showed that Radio Sai website does have the same pic but at lower resolution (and so showing less details): http://media.radiosai.org/journals/Vol_06/01MAY08/images/07_swami_and_me/Easwaramma/Mother.jpg.

So I took a few pics of this book photo of Mother Easwaramma using my mobile phone camera, and picked up a good pic to put up in this post. I think this pic that is attached to this post is higher resolution than the above Radio Sai pic.

Radio Sai also has a higher resolution coloured pic which seems to be based on the Black & White pic and seems to have artificial colours added on to it. Article link: http://media.radiosai.org/journals/vol_13/01NOV15/SAI-STREE-SHAKTI-SERIES-08.htm and pic link in it: http://media.radiosai.org/journals/vol_13/01NOV15/images/11_h2h_special/eswaramma-sathya-sai-baba-7.jpg.

But I like the black & white (original) pic better.

Mother Easwaramma is the mother that Sri Sathya Sai Avatar, my beloved and revered Gurudev, chose to be His mother! I offer my sincere and deeply reverential pranams to Mother Easwaramma.
-----------------
31st Mar. 2019
Took a few additional pictures today of the same book pic, in slightly better sunlight conditions. Have attached the best two of those pics (to my amateur eyes) below:




[I thank Shri R. Padmanaban and publishers of Love is My Form book, and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above pic of Mother Easwaramma from their book on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Friday, March 29, 2019

Great to see how a white Jewish guy from near Chicago, USA, is now Radhanath Swami, an inspirational leader of the globally well known ISKCON Hindu sect

Last updated on 8th April 2019

I have written about Radhanath Swami earlier. For those readers who may not have read my earlier posts on him, here is some info. about Radhanath Swami based on his wikipedia page, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radhanath_Swami.

Radhanath Swami was born as Richard Slavin in December 1950 in Chicago, USA to a Jewish family with roots in Eastern Europe.

He has been into Bhakti Yoga and acted as a spiritual teacher for over 40 years.

He is viewed as a key figure in ISKCON's free midday meal scheme for over a million school children across India, and the Bhaktivedanta hospital in Mira Road, Mumbai.

He is largely based in Mumbai, India, and travels extensively in Europe and USA in what seems to be a role of a spiritual mentor and a preacher of ISKCON and Hindu devotional path and the philosophy behind it.

I never had the good fortune of seeing Radhanath Swami in person (as against seeing him in videos). But a software industry colleague of mine in late 1990s, if I recall correctly, who had the good fortune of having some association with Radhanath Swami, took me to the Chowpatty ISKCON centre where Radhanath Swami is a key figure. I have vivid recollections of the powerful devotional atmosphere in the main worship hall of that centre.

The two videos shared below both seem to show Radhanath Swami in that same worship hall that I mentioned above.

1) There are many gods in India. Why you worship Krishna?, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B75Z3s--NlQ, 5 min 19 secs, published by Radhanath Swami on 30th Oct. 2015. Radhanath Swami answers this so well and in such a beautiful way!

2) This is an ISKCON traditional Bhakti dance video with the Hare Krishna Mahamantra being sung. I like such traditional worship dancing. Radhanath Swami`s ecstatic dancing in Chowpatty, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RZNLpVdfik, 14 mins 4 secs, published on 23rd March 2015

It is wonderful to see that a white Jewish guy from USA has become such an inspirational spiritual leader of a Hindu spiritual organization with global presence - ISKCON. That he was based for many years, and continues to be based, in the city where I was born, raised, studied and earned a living as a software professional, Mumbai, makes me happier. Really great to see a foreign national from the other side of the world adapt to Hindu tradition and become a saintly and noted Hindu spiritual teacher! How many people of India and other countries will have already benefited from his spiritual teaching and mentorship! And how many more people will benefit in future! What a great contribution Radhanath Swami (Richard Slavin) has made to contemporary Hindu faith through his work in ISKCON! May God continue to shower His Grace on him and his devotional and social work.

P.S. The former software industry colleague who took me to ISKCON Chowpatty centre in the late 1990s (if I recall correctly), is now serving (full time, I think, and as of a few months back when I spoke to him on phone) at Bhaktivedanta hospital in Mira Road, Mumbai, along with his wife, who too is a software industry professional.
=======================================================

In response to a comment on Facebook post, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2449671478582748, associated with this blog post, "Aren’t we all one at the spiritual level - no race, no religion, no caste nor creed?", I wrote:  Well, that is the teaching of Sai and that is my belief but a belief that is not backed by any mystical experience of such oneness. And while we are in this world we have to deal with the reality of differences and explore how we can live in harmony with these differences. That's my humble view.

For me, a very simple test about oneness of all as a matter of practice (as against belief) is whether I am willing to share all my rather limited material possessions with the vast number of very poor people in India who have much lesser material possessions than me. As of now, I am not there. That is the plain and simple truth of the matter. I am still far away from a great renunciate like Gautam Buddha or Mahatma Gandhi. So oneness of all is only a matter of belief and NOT experience and practice for me, as of now at least.
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Thursday, March 28, 2019

How 16 year old Lord Rama kills giant demoness Tataka (Tadaka) in his first major battle - Part 2 of 5 (Valmiki Ramayan)

Minor update on 11th Aug. 2019

This post continues from the post: How 16 year old Lord Rama kills giant demoness Tataka (Tadaka) in his first major battle - Part 1 of 5 (Valmiki Ramayan), https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2019/03/how-16-year-old-lord-rama-kills-giant.html, 14th March 2019

[I had initially thought this would be a two-part article but now I see that it is going to be more than 2 parts and I am not sure how many parts it will be.]

A small extract from the bottom of the above post:

After they cross the confluence of rivers Sarayu and Ganga, they see a horrendous forest without any trodden paths. Rama mentions the swarms of crickets, wild boars, tigers, elephants and vultures which were making fierce screeching noises, in this forest. Rama then asks Viswamitra what this wretched forest is.
--- end extract ---

Viswamitra tells Rama that once this forest had two very good provinces, designed by gods, known as Malada and Karuusha, which were blessed by a special boon from Indra (a powerful god). These provinces were affluent and the people there were happy with wealth and grains. Ref: https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga24/bala_24_frame.htm

Later a yaksha female called Tataka, who is the wife of Sunda, came to this place. Tataka has the capacity to change her form at will and has the strength of a thousand elephants. [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yaksha tells us that yakshas are nature-spirits which are usually benevolent but sometimes are mischevious or capricious. Ravi: So they are not fearsome creatures like rakshasas (demons).]

The malevolent Tataka stays in this place, blocking the route and is always destroying (human) inhabitations of Malada and Karuusha due to which this place has become a forest (Tataka's forest).

Sage Viswamitra then tells Rama that his (Viswamitra's) assignment to him (Rama) is that, based on his own strength (strength of his own arms), he (Rama) should kill this evildoer (Tataka), thereby freeing this province/region from the (thorny) menace. Ref:1-24-30

[Ravi: I think this is a very important verse in Valmiki Ramayana as, for the first time, we see Lord Rama, a 16 year old young warrior, being assigned or requested or instructed (whichever way one wants to interpret it) to kill an evil demon (demoness) who is tyrannizing human populace of a region. Tataka herself has not harmed Rama or Ayodhya. So this deals with the far-beyond-Ayodhya role that Lord Rama was born for. It deals with Lord Rama's mission of upholding Dharma and protecting good and pious people across large areas of Bharat (India), by defeating and/or killing demons (rakshasas) who were indulging in evil Adharma of killing the good and the pious.]

Sage Viswamitra says that the province has been made uninhabitable by the demoness with none being able to enter the province.

The manly-tiger Lord Rama asks Sage Viswamitra that as yakshas themselves are considered to be not strong creatures, how can a female yaksha (yakshi) possess the strength of a thousand elephants? Ref: 1-25-1 and 1-25-2, https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga25/bala_5F25_frame.htm

Viswamitra explains that she got that strength through a boon bestowed on her. He explains that Tataka's father, a yaksha called Suketu had done great penance which pleased Lord Brahma due to which he gave a gem like daughter Tataka to him with the daughter possessing the strength of a thousand elephants.

She grew to be a beautiful female yakshi and was married to Sunda from whom she had a son called Mareecha.

Eminent Sage Agastya cursed Sunda which led to Sunda's death [Ravi: details are not provided]. Tataka and her son Mareecha wanted to take revenge on Sage Agastya.

Tataka, along with her son Mareecha, rushed towards the godly Sage Agastya as though she was going to eat him. Sage Agastya then cursed that her son Mareecha will become a demon (rakshasa).

The highly infuriated Sage Agastya cursed Tataka that she will lose her form of a beautiful female (yakshi) and become a cannibal (man eater) and have a monstrous form/body. Ref: 1-25-12 and 1-25-13

Maddened and infuriated by that curse, Tataka is destroying this province where once the (eminent and auspicious) Sage Agastya lived in and moved about in.

Sage Viswamitra continues, for the welfare of Brahmins and cows (Sanskrit: "गो ब्राह्मण हितार्थाय" 'go brahmana hitaarthaya (cha)'), you shall kill this evil and very powerful yakshii (Tataka). Ref: 1-25-15

Viswamitra says, "निहन्तुम् त्रिषु लोकेषु त्वाम् ऋते रघु नन्दन" 'Nihantum trishu lokeshu tvam rute Raghu nandan' which I think means other than you, Raghu's descendent (Lord Rama), there is nobody in the three worlds (Ravi: three worlds may be swarga (heaven), earthly plane and naraka (nether world)), who can kill (Tataka). The other part of the verse states that Tataka is well sheathed (protected) by the curse. Ref: 1-25-16.

[Ravi: I think the above words about Lord Rama alone, in the three worlds, having the ability to kill Tataka, are very important. It implies that Sage Viswamitra cannot kill Tataka. Nor can great warrior-heroes including Rama's father King Dasaratha (but excluding Rama, of course) kill her. And Rama is only a 16 years old warrior-lad! Viswamitra knows that God has taken Avatar as Lord Rama and so Lord Rama has superhuman and divine warrior-power even if he is only 16 years old! Viswamitra plays his role as the teacher and advisor who provides Rama with mantra-power (e.g. Bala and Atibala mantras) and gives him background knowledge about the powerful demoness Tataka. So the eminent Sage Viswamitra helps the young warrior-lad Rama but Viswamitra knows that he himself cannot kill Tataka and that it is Lord Rama and Lord Rama alone who will be able to kill Tataka. Extraordinary and fascinating aspect of the story of Lord Rama's divine advent.]

Viswamitra also tells Lord Rama not to spare Tataka just because she is a female. To protect people (from Tataka's murderous and cannibalistic ways), a protector has to execute such deeds (of killing grave evildoers).

"राज्य भार नियुक्तानाम् एष धर्मः सनातनः" 'Rajya bhar niyuktaanaam esha dharmah sanatanah' English translation: For those who bear the burden of ruling kingdom(s), this duty (of killing grave evildoers) is the age-old (eternal) duty. The other part of the verse instructs Lord Rama to kill this evildoer as there is no goodness in her. Ref: 1-25-19

[Ravi: The next part will cover how Rama reacts and responds to Viswamitra's words and then move on to the battle between Rama and Tataka.]

------------------------


[I thank valmikiramayan.net and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extract(s) & references from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Good renditions of 'Ek pyaar ka nagma hain' (Life is a song of love) - famous philosophical song from 1972 Hindi film, Shor

Superb rendition of the classic Hindi philosophical song from the 1972 film, Shor - "Ek pyaar ka nagma hain", https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciNCQZ6eQjA, 4 min 19 secs. The lady singer is Sarrika Singh. The male singer is not named in the video description.

The lines in this rendition of the song (smaller version as compared to the original Hindi film song) are:
Ek pyaar ka nagma hain
[English: (It/Life) is a song of love]
Maujon ki ravaani hain
[English: (It/Life) is the flow of waves]
Zindagi aur kuch bhi nahin
[English: Life is nothing but]
Teri meri kahani hain
[English: the story of you and me (the hero & heroine and their child implied).]

Kuch paakar khona hain
[English: Some thing has to be got and then lost.]
Kuch khokar paana hain
[English: Some thing has to be lost and then (some other thing perhaps) got.]
Jeevan ka matlab to
[English: The meaning of life is]
Aana aur jaana hain
[English: (the) coming and going.]
Do pal ke jeevan se [The singer mistakenly says Do pal ke samandar mein]
[English: From (this) life of two moments (brief time period)]
Ek umra churani hain
[English: An age (a lifespan) has to be stolen.]
Zindagi aur kuch bhi nahin ..

Toofan ko aana hain
[English: The storm has to come]
Aakar chale jaana hain
[English: After having come, it has to go.]
Badal hain ye kuch pal ka
[English: These are clouds of a few moments (brief time period)]
Chakar dhal jana hain
[English: After having covered (the sky), it has to fade away]
Parchaiyan reh jaati
[English: The shadows remain]
Reh jaati nishaani hain
[English: What remains is the rememberance/memento]
Zindagi aur kuch bhi nahin ..
----

Santosh Anand is the song writer. Lata Mangeshkar and Mukesh sang in the original song with the music director being Laxmikant Pyarelal, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shor_(film).
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The original Hindi film video clip, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YMw1xJG1l7Q, around 6 mins.
...
Nice remix version by Sanam, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVv8rcMEMuM, 4 min. 41 secs.
...
Interesting remix version by IMX, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMn3Fmcmf_U, 6 min. 35 secs.
...
This one is rendered in 2017 and is a rendition of the original song with Pyarelal of Laxmikant-Pyarelal who gave the music to original song (1972 film Shor) playing the violin (or violin like instrument) to great melodious effect, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ecmqs1GZ3Ew, 5 min. 45 secs. The singers, Mukhtar Shah & Sarita Rajesh, are good too. An enjoyable rendition!
---

Friday, March 22, 2019

NZ PM Jacinda Ardern emerges as global hero(ine) for religious pluralism, multi-racial society and peace

Last updated on 24th March 2019

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern has emerged as a global hero(ine) for upholding and promoting religious pluralism, multi-racial society and peace in New Zealand. May God bless her and keep giving her strength and courage for the great work she and her team are doing in this regard.

Here's an interesting Al Jazeera interview of her, dated 21st March 2019, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YX3s5HszG_g, 5 min. 40 secs.
-----

Dubai's ruler, Sheikh Mohammed's tweet: "New Zealand today fell silent in honour of the mosque attacks' martyrs. Thank you PM @jacindaardern and  New Zealand for your sincere empathy and support that has won the respect of 1.5 billion Muslims after the terrorist attack that shook the Muslim community around the world.", https://twitter.com/HHShkMohd/status/1109124817888915461

[Above tweet has a pic of famous Dubai building showing pic of PM Jacinda Ardern showing sympathy & love to Muslims.]
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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Share in the grief of C.Srinivas and family due to very shocking passing away of their daughter, Dr. Sreemayee

Aum Sri Sai Ram!

I share in the grief that Shri C. Srinivas, his wife and other family and friends are going through now due to the very untimely and shocking passing away of Shri C. Srinivas' daughter, Dr. Sreemayee Srinivas, a few days ago. May Bhagavan shower His Grace on her! May Bhagavan give Shri C. Srinivas, his wife, and all of us the strength and courage to overcome our grief.

I do admire the dedication to serve that Shri C. Srinivas' daughter, Dr. Sreemayi, https://www.facebook.com/sreemayee, a cardiac anaesthesiologist, showed. I saw her speak in a video of the Navi Mumbai hospital function and was very happy to see a grown-up son/daughter of a Sai university/educational institution alumnus play a significant role in the function.

That she was taken away from all of us at this young age is a very great shock. I repeat that I share in this grief. May Bhagavan give all of us strength and courage to bear the loss.

Jai Sai Ram!

Regards

Ravi S. Iyer, Puttaparthi

Prayer meet at Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani hospital, Palwal, Haryana is on 27th March 2019 as per this public Facebook post: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10161106369495538&set=a.10150229148135538&type=3&theater

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Feeling very happy that The Divine Life Society (library) founded by Swami Sivananda has accepted my gratitude offering of my book, "Who am I? I am I ..."

Last updated on 19th March 2019

A few days ago, I wrote an email to the General Secretary of The Divine Life Society (DLS), Shivanandnagar, near Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India, offering to send a copy of my first self-published book on spirituality and God & Science to them as expression of my gratitude to their institution.

Their website, http://www.dlshq.org/, carries this message at the top:
"SERVE, LOVE, GIVE, PURIFY, MEDITATE, REALISE
 So Says Sri Swami Sivananda Saraswati Maharaj".

Extracts of my mail to them are given below:

I have benefited significantly by reading the books and magazines that have been published by The Divine Life Society. I take this opportunity to thank The Divine Life Society for that service that they rendered to me then.
...
As an expression of my gratitude to The Divine Life Society, I would like to send a free printed (paperback) copy of my book to your library ...
-- end extracts --

My book is this one: "Who am I? I am I - Ultimate Existential Reality Answer; Vedanta; God and Science conversation", https://www.amazon.in/dp/B07K7M2963 (free ebook available on iami1.wordpress.com).

I was overjoyed to receive a response from them a few days later stating that I could send the book to them and that it will be placed in their library.

I wrote them: "Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to express my gratitude to The Divine Life Society by sending a copy of my book on spirituality and God & Science to your library."

I organized ordering a copy for them.

On 15th March 2019 (yesterday), I got a confirmation from the General Secretary of The Divine Life Society (DLS) that the book has been received and that it will be placed in their library for readers. The mail also said, "May god bless you."

Extracts from my mail response to the General Secretary (DLS) are given below:

Dear sir/madam,

My humble pranams!

Thank you so much for your blessings!

Thank you very much for informing me that the book has been received and will be placed in your esteemed library for your readers.

My prayers to Almighty God to continue showering Grace and blessings on your esteemed institution of The Divine Life Society which has been founded by the highly revered Swami Sivananda Saraswati.
...
It is a matter of great satisfaction for me that my humble offering of gratitude was accepted to be placed in the library of your esteemed and revered institution, and I would like to publicly mention the same.
--- end extracts ---

I again thank The Divine Life Society for kindly accepting my gratitude offering.

Note that the founder of DLS is Swami Sivananda (born 1887, died 1963) and is the same Swami Sivananda that Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, my beloved & revered Gurudev, visited in 1957 in Rishikesh.

Given below are pics of Swami Sivananda and Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba in 1957 (in Rishikesh, one presumes).


Above pic courtesy: https://sathyasaiwithstudents.blogspot.com/2013/06/swami-visits-badrinath-part-2.html


Above pic courtesy: Saibhakta Brasil, https://www.pinterest.com/pin/444589794453981343

Small extracts are given below from Swami Sivananda's wiki page, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sivananda_Saraswati:

Sivananda Saraswati (or Swami Sivananda; 8 September 1887 – 14 July 1963) was a Hindu spiritual teacher and a proponent of Yoga and Vedanta. Sivananda was born Kuppuswami in Pattamadai, in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu. He studied medicine and served in British Malaya as a physician for several years before taking up monasticism. He lived most of his life near Muni Ki Reti, Rishikesh.
...
Swami Sivananda was born Kuppuswamy on Thursday, September 8, 1887, during the first hours of the morning, with Bharani star rising in Pattamadai village on the banks of Tamraparni river in Tirunelveli district, Tamil Nadu. His father, Sri P.S. Vengu Iyer, worked as a revenue officer, and was a great Shiva Bhakta (Bhakti) himself. His mother, Srimati Parvati Ammal, was a very religious woman. Kuppuswamy was the third and last child of his parents[4][5].

[Wiki References:
4. http://sivanandaonline.org/public_html/?cmd=displaysection&section_id=1645
5. http://www.yogaesoteric.net/content.aspx?item=3658&lang=EN
end Wiki References]
--- end wiki extract ---

My brother-in-law (elder sister's husband) and his father and grandfather hail from the same Pattamadai area that Swami Sivananda hailed from. When I checked about this with my brother-in-law, he wrote (slightly edited):
"Yes you are right. My parents and grandparents are from Pattamadai and nearby villages. I have done a year at Pattamadai school wherein my parents studied. Swamiji’s Madam (spiritual centre) is there in Pattamadai and also a hospital is established and running."

Here's a small related video: Pattamadai, the birth place of H.H. Sri Swami Sivananda Maha, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsJZE4q5Qo8, 1 min. 54 secs.

A video about the hospital: Swami Sivananda Charity Hospital, Pattamadai, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-s5htpCoEUk, 8 min. 6 secs.

I would like to add a little more information about my exposure to DLS and to Swami Sivananda Saraswathi. I read some magazines and books of DLS that were available at a family friends' home in Dombivli (near Mumbai and in Thane district, Maharashtra) in the early 1980s - I was also living in Dombivli then. I think that was my first exposure to DLS and to Swami Sivananda Saraswathi. One person of this family was a young person then (referred to as R), slightly older to me, who had done M.Tech. (Comp. Sc.) from an IIT (I think it was IIT Bombay) and was working with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tata_Consultancy_Services, and who was also into DLS. I think I may have been quite impressed by the fact that this person, R, with top-notch technical qualifications and who was well placed in a top software company in India then (in 1980s), was reverential towards DLS.

I am even now in touch with this family who now are based in Bengaluru/Bangalore. I had visited them in Bangalore some years back. A few months back, R's mother accompanied a Sai university alumnus' family who are their neighbours, on a visit to Puttaparthi. R's mother stayed for some hours in my flat and we had a wonderful time discussing many things. I was also able to offer with gratitude my book to R's mother and through her to others in R's family including R.

I informed R of DLS library graciously accepting my book for their library. R wrote back that it was great to hear that. He also wrote, "Sivananda Ashram is a holy place. I had the good fortune of visiting the Ashram in 1983 or 84 and stayed there for 2-3 days."

R also wrote, "It is really heartening to know that your book will be kept in the DLS library."

BTW, if I recall correctly, it was R who told me sometime in late 1983 or early 1984 about an advertisement for trainee programmers by Datamatics, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datamatics, (in Mumbai) in Times of India newspaper (if I recall correctly), which was open for graduates of science (and perhaps commerce too) and engineering streams. I had dropped out of my M.Sc. due to financial issues and so was a science graduate (B.Sc. Physics). Usually at that time, companies like TCS limited entry level programmer positions to engineering graduates or science (and commerce too perhaps) post-graduates. I applied to Datamatics, tried to ensure that my application was properly received, cleared the written exam and interview, and got the trainee programmer job starting in March 1984 with a 3 year bond period including an initial period of around 4 months of only training. This Datamatics software developer trainee job put me on my commercial software developer and later software consultant career for around 18 and a half years (March 1984 to Aug. 2002). After that I moved to Puttaparthi to focus on a spiritual career under the overall guidance of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba with me offering free service (Seva) from Jan. 2003 to Mar 2012 of teaching software lab. courses, providing technical guidance to M.Tech. (Comp. Sc.) project work of students, and, for initial period of 5 years, contributing to managing a software lab., in the Sai university.

I take this opportunity to thank R and his parents, and family in general, for the kindness and love they gave me over the years, which also includes an important part of my exposure to Swami Sivananda and Divine Life Society's books and magazines.
===================================================

Thought I should also add a couple of screenshots of mail from DLS to me confirming receipt of book and that it will be placed in DLS library.

[To open pic in higher resolution, right-click on pic followed by open link (NOT image) in new tab/window. In new tab/window you may have to click on pic to zoom in.]



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I felt it appropriate to share this here:

Swami Sivananda of Divine Life Society said, "There is no book in the whole world that is so thrilling, soul-stirring and inspiring as the Upanishad. The philosophy taught by the Upanishads has been the source of solace for many, both in the East and the West. The human intellect has not been able to conceive of anything more noble and sublime in the history of the world than the teachings of the Upanishads." [From http://www.dlshq.org/religions/upanishads.htm]

On my Facebook post (link given below), a person commented on the above quote of Swami Sivananda, as follows: "It’s noteworthy that His Holiness SS surgically highlighted the Upanishads, rather than the Vedas of which they are a part [Smiley-icon]"

I (Ravi) responded (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- sir - Swami Sivananda was a medical doctor trained in Allopathy (Western science medicine), who also ran a medical journal, and who practised medicine in India and in British Malaya (which I think is today's Malaysia), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sivananda_Saraswati#Early_life. I think that may have led him to be more comfortable with Vedanta (Upanishads and sometimes Aranyakas) as against the initial part of the Vedas, the Karma Kanda composed of Samhitas and Brahmanas.

My own experience as a student of science - Physics mainly - in college, and in my commercial career as a practitioner of software development where logical analysis and logical approach to problem solving are absolutely vital requirements for success, has been that from an intellectual point of view, Vedanta was, and continues to be, very attractive to me. Note that many Western science greats like Erwin Schrodinger, Werner Heisenberg and Robert Oppenheimer had praised Vedanta and/or Bhagavad Gita, https://detechter.com/6-famous-international-physicists-who-were-influenced-by-hinduism/. So when one read or discussed Vedanta and/or Bhagavad Gita, one was in some sort of hallowed company of some of the science greats of the 20th century.

In my case, it was only after I came under the influence of Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba's written works, books on him, and then my association with Sathya Sai orgn. and later my Seva at Prasanthi Nilayam in the presence of physical form Bhagavan, that I started focusing on the Samhita and Brahmana part of the Vedas. Note that as I was following Tamil (Kerala Iyer) Brahmin culture rituals for a good part of my life, I was already exposed to some part of the Veda through these rituals! But while I had read books on Vedanta I had not read books on Karma Kanda of Vedas then. [Note that reading small books on Sandhyavandanam, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandhyavandanam, the daily ritual supposed to be done by the Brahmin whose Upanyanam has been done, is different. Those are stand alone and small books.]

Sathya Sai and the Sai organization and PN ashram that he founded, played a vital role in me getting a more balanced understanding of the Vedas with respect for all parts of it - Samhita, Brahmana, Aranyaka and Upanishads - and the vital role all these parts of the Vedas play for nourishment and nurturing of Hindu communities. Worship of God through Karma Kanda of Vedas which I think typically involves prayers for material benefits, is a very important part of the Vedas, especially for householders (Grihasta Ashramis). The renunciate/monastic type may focus on Vedanta but the renunciate depends on the support provided by householders, with these householders being nourished and nurtured by the Karma Kanda of the Vedas (from a Hindu community perspective). So even the renunciate or monk who is focused on Vedanta is being indirectly nourished and nurtured by the Karma Kanda of the Vedas! Jai Sai Ram!
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Given below are some comment exchanges from my Facebook post,  https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2439645719585324, associated with this post :

In response to comment, "Can you please share more about the links between Swami Sivananda and Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba?", I (Ravi) wrote (slightly edited):
This is the main article (having a relevant extract from Sathyam Shivam Sundaram) that I have seen on the web about Sathya Sai visit to Sivananda ashram: http://www.saibaba.ws/articles/saibabasivananda.htm.
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In response to comment, "Moment of great pride & joy! Om Sri Sai Ram!", I wrote: Thanks sir for sharing my joy. Jai Sai Ram!
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In response to comment, "Wonderful indeed are the mysterious ways in which life’s paths take us.", I wrote: Very insightful remark, sir! Thanks a lot!
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In response to comment, "Congratulations sir! A big recognition indeed!", I wrote (slightly edited): Thank you so much, --Name-snipped-- sir.
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I also received private email messages congratulating me. I thanked them for it.

[I thank wikipedia, sathyasaiwithstudents.blogspot.com and Saibhakta Brasil, and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extracts or pics from their website/pages on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Friday, March 15, 2019

Horrendous and barbaric attacks on two New Zealand mosques; Prayers and sympathies for victims and their families

The horrendous and barbaric attacks on the two New Zealand mosques which have reportedly killed 49 people and injured a number of people, have been very shocking. My prayers and sympathies for the victims and their families.

The ruthlessness and the sheer brutality of these attacks, one of which was Live Streamed and whose video seems to be available on some social media channels, is mind-numbing. How can people in our early 21st century become such ruthless killers of innocent people!

The NZ Prime Minister has been categorical in her rejection of the (extreme white nationalist type) ideology and motive behind these cowardly and dastardly attacks on Muslims in these two mosques. That provided slight relief from the utter dismay that these events have created.

49 killed in mass shootings at 2 mosques in 'one of New Zealand's darkest days', https://abcnews.go.com/ABCNews/multiple-dead-reported-shooting-attack-zealand-mosque/story?id=61699679, 15th March 2019

Thursday, March 14, 2019

How 16 year old Lord Rama kills giant demoness Tataka (Tadaka) in his first major battle - Part 1 of 5 (Valmiki Ramayan)

Last updated on 28th Mar. 2019
Minor update on 11th Aug. 2019

Recently I have started reading in detail or rather studying, in fits and bursts, Kamala Subramaniam's abridged Ramayana in English, which seems to be based on Valmiki Ramayana. A few days back I read about Lord Rama engaging in his first real battle at a young age of 16 years, which was the one where he killed the demoness (rakshasi) Tataka also known as Tadaka.

Please note that in the past I have read about these events in other abridged Ramayana versions I have read but I don't think I then had the luxury of time to delve into the details and savour the blissful parts. Now, by the grace of God, I am in a position to allot some time to leisurely and detailed reading of such Hindu scripture. I offer my deeply felt gratitude to God and to my beloved and revered Gurudev, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, for this blessing.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Kamala Subramaniam's account of Lord Rama battling and killing Tataka under the guidance of Sage Viswamitra, and felt blissful. I thought I should put up a post on it but this time referring to Valmiki Ramayan, a version of which is available on the Internet, and felt that it may be of interest to some readers.

Lord Rama was the Divine power (God in formless aspect) taking form (an Avatar) as a human being, in particular as a warrior prince, to safeguard the good devotees of God and kill those demons (rakshasas) who were tyrannizing the good devotees of God, and disturbing and creating grave problems for sages (rishis) who were trying to do their penances and rituals. This was one of the big tasks for which Rama Avatar was born and which Lord Rama accomplished in his life.

The demons were very powerful not only in physique - they were giants as compared to humans - but also in the magical powers they had which they used to attack and kill humans. A pitiable state of affairs for humans who were living in territories that were ruled or were attacked by these demons.

So Lord Rama was a saviour at the physical level where he provided protection to the good devotees of God from such demons, and also a saviour at spiritual level where he was a model for Dharmic (ethical) life and embodied Dharma (ethical living).

In this context, it was fascinating for me to read in detail, and with faith that the account is largely true even if some details may be slightly inaccurate (as I think some literary license may have been used by the author of (this version of) Valmiki Ramayan), about how Rama engaged in his first real battle where the situation was kill or be killed. I say, kill or be killed, as that was the brutal reality with these demons. Tataka not only killed humans but ate them (a cannibal). As Tataka was a demoness who was brutally tyrannizing humans, Rama was instructed by Viswamitra to kill her, to protect and foster Dharma. So when Rama did battle Tataka, there was no question of Tataka imprisoning Rama or Rama imprisoning Tataka. It was kill or be killed.

The account starts with Sage Viswamitra approaching King Dasaratha (father of Lord Rama) in his court. He says that he is attempting to perform a sacrificial vow but that two demons (Rakshasas), who have the ability to change their form, are creating obstacles for him. When he was performing a sacrificial ritual, towards its end two valiant and well-trained demons, Mareecha and Subahu, desecrated the altar with meat and blood being streamed on it from the sky. This desecration of the (uncompleted) ritual led him to depart from the place with disappointment. As while doing the ritual he is not supposed to curse anybody, he said that he was not able to curse the two demons. [Ref: Verses 1-19-4 to 1-19-8a, https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga19/bala_19_frame.htm.]

Then Viswamitra asks Dasaratha to send his son, Lord Rama, with him to kill these demons, saying that Rama is divinely blessed and with his (Viswamitra's) protection, will surely defeat the demons. He also says that none other than Lord Rama can defeat them.

King Dasaratha shudders at this request of Viswamitra and swoons.

King Dasaratha says, my lotus-eyed Rama is less than 16 years old. I do not see the warrior ability in him to fight these demons. Ref: Verse 1-20-2, https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga20/bala_20_frame.htm

King Dasaratha says that he will come with his powerful armed battalion and protect Viswamitra's ritual. And that if Viswamitra does want Rama then he should also take himself (Dasaratha) and his army along.

Dasaratha then asks Viswamitra to tell him more about these demons.

Viswamitra then talks about Ravana who he describes as a very brave and mighty demon who has the boon of Brahma which he is using to torment the three worlds (three planes of existence). He says that Ravana is assisted by other demons in this (evil) work of tormenting the three worlds. Ravana is himself not interfering with Viswamitra's rituals but is instigating the two powerful demons, Mareecha and Subaahu, to create big hindrances for rituals.

Then Dasaratha says, when I myself am not capable of confronting the evil Ravana, how can I send Rama to confront him? Ref: Verse 1-20-20

Dasaratha mentions how powerful Ravana is and how even Devas (divine beings/gods) are afraid of Ravana. How can mere humans confront Ravana!

Dasaratha who had earlier told Viswamitra that he will do whatever he says, now tries to back out saying that he should be excused from not fulfilling his word (of doing whatever Viswamitra asks of him).

Viswamitra gets very angry. Note that Viswamitra's anger is feared as in that anger he may curse, and his spiritual power (gained from ritual and penance, I presume) is such that the curse will come to pass.

Seeing Viswamitra's anger, Vasistha the famous sage and Guru of Dasaratha, urges Dasaratha to keep his word. Vasistha says that irrespective of whether Rama is trained or untrained in weaponry, so long as Viswamitra is protecting Rama, it will be like heavenly ambrosia/nectar being protected by fire, due to which no demons will be able to hurt Rama. Ref: Verse 1-21-9, https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga21/bala_21_frame.htm

Vasistha says that Viswamitra is knowledgeable about all kinds of weaponry/missiles. He tells Dasaratha that he should not have any doubt about sending Rama with Viswamitra.

Dasaratha gets convinced by Vasistha's words and agrees to send Rama with Viswamitra (to kill fearsome and mighty demons).

After getting the blessings of Dasaratha and Kausalya (Rama's mother), Lord Rama is entrusted to Viswamitra by Dasaratha. Viswamitra leads the way with Rama and Lakshmana following Viswamitra. [As Lakshmana is very close to Rama, Lakshmana accompanies Rama]. Both Rama and Lakshmana each have their own bow and quiver(s)/arrow(s). Note that the bow and arrow was the mighty weapon for humans at that time.

Rama and Lakshmana are praised as highly charming and dynamic figures with their walking behind Viswamitra being compared to Ashwin twin devas (divine beings/gods) walking behind Brahma. Ref: 1-22-7,8, https://www.valmikiramayan.net/utf8/baala/sarga22/bala_22_frame.htm

Rama and Lakshmana are also praised as being highly effulgent and compared as sons of Agni Deva (Fire god) with Viswamitra being compared to god Shiva. They are also armed with swords and their fingers have leather covers.

Once they reach the river Sarayu, Viswamitra asks Rama to take water (in his hand, one presumes) and then teaches him two mantras, Bala and Atibala, which when recited (properly) will not allow tiredness or fever to affect the chanter (Rama) and also protect him from demons when he is sleeping or not vigilant.

Viswamitra also speaks about additional powers that these mantras will give Rama and make Rama a very powerful figure that nobody can match.

Rama accepts the teachings/mantras and his face beams with gladness. Rama shines like a thousand rayed sun in a cloudless sky in autumn.

--- skipping some events to jump to encounter with Tataka ---

After they cross the confluence of rivers Sarayu and Ganga, they see a horrendous forest without any trodden paths. Rama mentions the swarms of crickets, wild boars, tigers, elephants and vultures which were making fierce screeching noises, in this forest. Rama then asks Viswamitra what this wretched forest is.

[Ravi: This is the forest tyrannized by Tataka demoness. More about the forest, Tataka demoness and the killing of Tataka by 16 year old Lord Rama in part 2 of 2, which I hope to put up in the next few days.]

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[I thank valmikiramayan.net and have presumed that they will not have any objections to me sharing the above extract(s) & references from their website on this post which is freely viewable by all, and does not have any financial profit motive whatsoever.]

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Former Archbishop of Melbourne, Australia, Cardinal George Pell, aged 77 years, sentenced by an Australian court of law to 6 years in prison for child sexual abuse

Cardinal George Pell sentenced to 6 years in prison for child sex abuse, https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/cardinal-george-pell-sentenced-6-years-prison-child-sex-abuse-n982331, 13th March 2019

The article has a 2 minute video where the Australian judge says that he convicts and sentences Cardinal Pell (of the Catholic church) to prison on the various charges related to child sexual abuse against him.

The article mentions that he was convicted in December (2018) "for the molestation of two choir boys while he was the archbishop of Melbourne in the 1990s".

Cardinal Pell says he is innocent and he and his lawyers are going to appeal the conviction.

This article, https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/pope-francis-financial-adviser-cardinal-george-pell-convicted-child-sex-n975896, dated 26th Feb. 2019 gives some details about the conviction.

A 12 member jury delivered unanimous verdicts of guilty.

The article reports that a victim who had testified at the trial said that he has undergone "shame, loneliness, depression and struggle." The victim said that it took him years to understand the bad impact of this sex abuse on his life.

The second victim died of a heroin overdose in 2014 and was 31 years old then. The father of this deceased victim has been fighting for justice for his son.

Ravi: Justice seems to have been served but Cardinal Pell has not acknowledged his guilt and one does not know how the appeal will go. My considered view is that if Pell really did commit those acts of child sexual abuse then perhaps he is now in psychological denial of that reality. I think psychological denial of very unpleasant truth is a mental defense that is naturally prompted by the mind. It takes great moral courage and great ability of self-appraisal to overcome such psychological denial of very unpleasant truths and acknowledge the truth in such cases. And I think it is especially the case when the person concerned is a high-ranking official of a religious organization, in this case the Catholic Church in Australia. So I think there is a good probability that Cardinal Pell's mind has got into psychological denial of these sexual abuse acts that he committed.

But then Karma is something that cannot be fooled by psychological denial defense of the mind! My belief is that if Cardinal Pell did commit those child sexual abuse acts, he will face the negative karmic consequences of that, in this life or a future life, unless he genuinely repents from the very bottom of his heart and prays to the Lord and his victims for forgiveness, in which case the Lord may cancel his negative karmic consequences.

It is wonderful that Australian justice has held Cardinal Pell accountable for his actions. Even if the appeal overturns the verdicts on some grounds, the fact that a trial court tried Cardinal Pell for these charges and convicted him is a great achievement. I mean, the guy was Archbishop of Melbourne, a famous city worldwide. So I think, even if the appeal overturns the guilty verdict, the trial court conviction is a great victory for Sathya (truth) and Dharma (ethical living) in Australia, and which victory will have a positive impact worldwide in the fight against child sexual abuse.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Added exception: 'provided that content does not criticize any person by name', to free reuse permission of my content of my blogs & books

Today (12th March 2019), I updated the main blog page dealing with free reuse permission of my blogs & books: All my blog data and books publicly accessible on Google Drive; Permission for free reuse, https://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/p/all-my-blogbooks-publicly-accessible-on.html

I have given below the key modification I made on the above blog page:

1. I hereby grant permission to anybody, anywhere to freely reuse (including adaptation) MY CONTENT of any of my above mentioned blogs/books provided that content does not criticize any person by name, and provided they give a reference to the original source (blogs/books) to enable interested persons to easily cross-check with the original source.

An explanation of the exception - provided that content does not criticize any person by name: It has been my unfortunate duty to criticize some persons by name in some of my above mentioned blogs, to counter Asathya & Adharma. I hated writing such posts but I felt that I would be failing in my duty if I did not criticize those persons by name for Asathya & Adharma acts of theirs. While that content is on my blogs, I don't think it would be appropriate for that content to get replicated elsewhere. Therefore I have NOT provided permission for free reuse of such of my content that criticizes any person by name.

--- end extract from blog page ---

Friday, March 8, 2019

Referral: NYT Editorial Board article on nuclear exchange being most likely between India and Pakistan

Readers may want to read my recent post on another blog: NYT Editorial Board article on nuclear exchange being most likely between India and Pakistan,
https://ravisiyermisc.blogspot.com/2019/03/nyt-editorial-board-article-on-nuclear.html.

Bismillah Sai Ram Tiffin Centre - where Hinduism, Islam and Christianity are treated with equal respect and reverence

Somewhere in a town in India where all of its people respect and revere all peaceful religions that respect other peaceful religions.



As a Hindu, I respect and love such Islam which respects other religions.

Ishwar Maalik! Allah Maalik! Yesu Maalik! Sabka Maalik Ek!
[English translation: Ishwar (Hindu name for God) is the Lord! Allah is the Lord! Christ is the Lord! The Lord of all is one!]

Fear of virtually inescapable bad consequences of sin is the crucial part of formula for making the world a better place

Warning: Those who don't want to read disturbing things should skip reading this post and the New York Times article linked below.

Chris Watts Describes Killing His Wife and Daughters in Chilling Confession, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/07/us/chris-watts-confession-tapes.html, 7th March 2019

Absolutely monstrous! Did the man have no fear of the wrath of God, of the inevitable and very harsh karmic consequences that he will surely have to bear?

I am getting more and more convinced about what I have heard Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba say as the mantra, the formula for a better world: Daiva Preethi Paap Bheethi Sangha Neethi.

I would translate that to: Love of God, Fear of Sin, Following ethics/norms of the community (one is in).

Among these, I have to say, based on what I have read/viewed about events in India and the world from around mid 2012, the big one is fear of sin, or rather fear of the bad consequences of sin.

Had this man had fear of sin, there is no way he would have done the utterly monstrous things that he did. It will take me a very long time to come to terms with how this monster killed his two young children.

As a Hindu with devout belief in Karma, I think that the bad consequences of sinful acts (hurtful to people and with bad motives) is virtually inescapable and has to be faced in this life or a future life. The only exception is that devout prayer to God by the repentant sinner may lead to God canceling out the bad karmic consequences. But this exception, I think, is quite rare.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Very happy that family of administrators of my first school (later closed) - (Jayakar's) English High School, Dadar (E), Mumbai - has received paperback copy of my book, "Who am I? I am I ..."

Around the middle of last month (Feb. 2019), I was pleasantly surprised to receive a mail from a person of the Jayakar family who were associated in the past with my first school (closed down some years ago), English High School, Dadar (E), Mumbai. This seems to have been triggered by a Facebook message I sent to a different school that he now administers.

I studied in English High School, Dadar from 1st standard (or less probably from K.G.) to 6th standard, corresponding roughly to period from mid-1968 to mid-1974. The School Leaving Certificate from the 2nd school I joined - Cardinal Gracias High School, Bandra (E), Mumbai - mentions my previous school as English High School, Dadar. You can see a pic of the certificate on this post of mine: Very happy that my school - Cardinal Gracias High School, Bandra (E), Mumbai - has received paperback copy of my book, "Who am I? I am I ...", http://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2018/10/very-happy-that-my-school-cardinal.html.

English High School, Dadar, which also seems to be known informally as Jayakar's Dadar English High School, was located bang opposite the main entrance of Dadar (East) Suburban Central Railway Station. This school got closed down some years/decades ago and it is difficult to get historical information on it from the Internet. The land and building of the school got sold to a business organization.

Note that the IES school (English medium) (formerly known as King George school) in Dadar/Matunga area in Hindu colony, https://www.facebook.com/pg/iesdadar/about/, is a different school to which some of my friends in the Dadar Central Railway Officers' colony that I lived in, went to.

The parents of the Mr. Jayakar who mailed me, named Mr. Jaysen M. Jayakar and Mrs. Kalpana J. Jayakar, were associated (as administrators, I guess) with English High School, Dadar, perhaps before I joined it. Their relative(s), also named as Jayakar I guess, continued to be associated (as administrators) of this school, while Mr. Jaysen Jayakar and Mrs Kalpana Jayakar discontinued their work in English High School, Dadar and established 3 other schools in Bombay/Mumbai (in Parel, in Santa Cruz and in Marol). In particular, the latter started St. Lawrence High School in Santa Cruz, Mumbai in 1961, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Lawrence_High_School_(Santa_Cruz). Mr. Jaysen Jayakar was the principal of St. Lawrence High School. Their son, Mr. Jayakar, who contacted me over mail, is the current administrator of this St. Lawrence High School.

Perhaps my school - English High School, Dadar - was founded by the father of Mr. (Principal) Jaysen M. Jayakar mentioned above, who would have been a Mr. Jayakar leading to the school being known as Jayakar's Dadar English High School.

I have some memories, most of which are very faded memories, of my student days in this Dadar school. Perhaps that's due to my small age at that time - I would have studied there from age of 4 or 5 years to nearly age of 12 years. But I still have a few clear memories of my Dadar school student days including the school building and its outside area where hawkers would sell eatable-goodies to students! Tasty food has so much power for a kid that memories of it are very deep and accessible even many decades later!

English High School, Dadar was my first school and so I am grateful to the school.

I was very happy to be in e-mail contact with a family member of the Jayakars who were administrators of my above school, at some point. Over email I expressed my gratitude to Mr. Jayakar for his (larger) family's contribution to my schooling. I also expressed my gratitude to all the teachers in the school that taught me, and also to my schoolmates for their friendship.

I told him about my first self-published book (a blog book) titled, "Who am I? I am I - Ultimate Existential Reality Answer; Vedanta; God and Science conversation", https://www.amazon.in/dp/B07K7M2963.

I wrote him that I would be very happy to send him a printed (paperback) complimentary copy as a token of my gratitude and love for the years that I was taught in Dadar English High School which his (larger) family had administered.

He wrote back saying that he would love to have a copy of my book.

I wrote him back as follows (an extract from the mail):
"I am glad that you have accepted my offer to send you my book as a token of my love and gratitude to the Jayakar family which was associated with administration of (Jayakar's) English High School, Dadar, of which I was a student for six or seven years. I note that there is a good probability that your late parents may have discontinued their association with the school prior to the years I was there (late 60s to mid 1974), and that it may have then been administered by your uncle. In any case, I think it is well established that the Jayakar family has been associated as administrators of English High School, Dadar, which was closed down some years ago. And so I am very happy that I am able to offer my first self-published book on spirituality and God & Science to you, sir, as a member of the Jayakar family."

I organized sending a copy of the book. Mr. Jayakar confirmed receipt of the book around the end of last month (Feb. 2019) and thanked me.

I responded by thanking Mr. Jayakar again for accepting this offer of gratitude from me towards the family associated in the past with Dadar (Jayakar's) English High School, where I did the first part of my schooling.
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About how I attempted to locate and contact Jayakar family associated with my 1st school

I thought some readers may be curious to know this and so have provided it.

Some time back, I had made attempts to find out information about my 1st school - English High School, Dadar, from the Internet. I found a shell like Facebook page here which seems to correspond to it: https://www.facebook.com/pages/english-high-school-jaykar-dadar/536420083172546 but it does not have any significant activity. The name Jaykar used in this FB post and also in some other pages found on the Internet for English High School, Dadar, if I recall correctly, rang a bell.

I then searched for this Mr. Jaykar on the Internet which led me to some other Jaykars/Jayakars in Mumbai including one associated with St. Lawrence High School of Santa Cruz, Mumbai. I saw a youtube video of this school which gave some history of the school and referenced Mr. Jaysen Jayakar and Mrs Kalpana Jayakar as its founders. In Jan. 2019, I sent a message to the Facebook page of St. Lawrence High School of Santa Cruz, Mumbai asking whether the founders Mr. & Mrs. Jayakar of their school were associated with English High School, Dadar in the past. I also gave my background as a student of the latter school.

I received a Facebook message response but the person did not know about English High School, Dadar part. In the course of our exchange, I gave my contact info. I think this person may have later passed on the info. to Mr. Jayakar, the administrator of St. Lawrence High School due to which Mr. Jayakar sent an email to me which I have mentioned at the beginning of this post.

I should also mention that I made some other attempts to contact via messages on the Internet (email, youtube etc.), some other Jayakars of Mumbai that I found on the Internet who I felt may have some association in the past (through their parents/family) with my school. I gave them - 2 or 3 such Jayakars - the background and reason in these messages. But there was no response from them.

Friday, March 1, 2019

Miscellaneous Facebook posts & comments in March 2019

When author of post or comment is not mentioned, it should be assumed that it is me (Ravi S. Iyer).

https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2451446385071924

Some Shiva songs ... BTW by my family background, I am a Shaivite, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaivism.

'Bho Sambho' by Sudha raghunathan, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bOuVpPcH4bM, around 8 mins.

Interesting and somewhat modern rendition: Bho Shambo Shiva Shambo by Lakshmy Ratheesh & Radhika Venugopal, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmEhqGLbmGs, around 6 mins.

A Sadhguru Vasudev video. I loved the singing. Bho Shambho Shiva Shambho Swayambho - Shiva, the Adhi Yogi, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36AT5eY9HtQ, 5 min. 25 secs.

A Mooji video. Interesting and joyful Shiva song. Loved to see foreign folks (white and black) sing and enjoy this Shiva song. I have a special affection for African origin music and singing. So I was very happy to see an African origin singer in this singing group. Mooji Music. Shiva Shambo, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBso7TPtvJU, 7 min. 12 secs.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DaUoA0hPCJ4, 5 min. 27 secs. An outstanding rendition in Carnatic classical style by one of the outstanding Carnatic music vocalists of the 20th century, Mahrajapuram Santhanam, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maharajapuram_Santhanam. I thoroughly enjoyed this rendition.
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2449575528592343

Interesting Jan. 2018 video of around 5 mins about how the Indian indentured labourers (coolies) who migrated to West Indies to work in plantation fields under colonial (Christian) masters, maintained their Hindu identity under adverse circumstances and even resisted attempts of evangelists to convert them to Christianity. "I am a West Indian Hindu | Understanding the West Indian Hindu Experience", https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hVCwd9M6VZw. The narrator lives in Canada and was born and raised in Canada, but his family hails from Trinidad and Tobago and their ancestors came from India.

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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2448807418669154

Croatian gents and ladies chanting Veda in front of Hon'ble President of India, Shri Ramnath Kovind in Zagreb, Croatia, around 4 mins.

I was so happy to see this. Awesome Veda chanting by the Croatians. May God bless them.

[Shared video: https://www.facebook.com/PresidentOfIndia/videos/319317692272047/]

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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2447993162083913

Good to see this. The police should prosecute the case and ensure that a clear message goes out to the people concerned as well as to the country through the media, that such thuggery (goonda raj) will NOT be tolerated irrespective of the religion (or caste) of the attackers and the victims. Note that the victims in this case are a Muslim family who were attacked by mob which seems to have been comprised of Hindus.

The article states, "All the arrested people are residents of Nayagaon. None of them has a regular job."

So all ten arrested are jobless fellows! The brutal reality of life in small town and village India is that some such jobless fellows turn to thuggery and associated intimidation and crime as a way of life, a livelihood! Many times, they are used by rich and powerful bosses in these towns and villages as a sort-of muscle power base with which to intimidate their enemies and rivals.

[Shared article: All 10 accused of mob attack held, cops look for missing injured youth, https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/gurgaon/all-10-accused-of-mob-attack-held-cops-look-for-missing-injured-youth/articleshow/68588512.cms]
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2447088365507726

I am so happy to see Indian External Affairs (Foreign) minister Sushma Swaraj aggressively take up this case of the Hindu minor girls who were kidnapped, forced to convert to Islam and forced to marry Muslim boys, in Pakistan.

I fully support her in this matter. May God bless her for these efforts and may she succeed in rescuing these minor Hindu girls both from their forced marriage as well as from their forced conversion to Islam.

[Shared article: Sushma Swaraj demands justice for Hindu minors forced to convert, marry, https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/sushma-swaraj-demands-justice-for-hindu-minors-forced-to-convert-marry/articleshow/68573201.cms]

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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2446247388925157

The plight of Hindu minorities in some Muslim majority countries like Pakistan is pitiful. I am glad that the Indian external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj has taken up the matter with Indian embassy in Pakistan to investigate and provide a report.

Regarding Pakistan PM Imran Khan's actions on this matter - I am on wait and watch mode before I come to a view on how he handles this. As an individual, he may want to respect right of religious minorities in his country, but as a politician he has to worry about what his vote bank wants him to do.

I pray to God to protect these two Hindu minor girls in Pakistan and free them from the clutches of powerful Muslims in Pakistan who are alleged to have kidnapped them and alleged to have forcibly married them to Muslim boys (which would, I guess, involve forcible conversion to Islam). I further pray to God to give courage and strength to the family members of these girls to fight for justice in Pakistan, and save the girls from these monstrous kidnappers.

[Shared article: Pak Hindu minor girls approach court seeking protection, man suspected to assist in wedding held, https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/pak-hindu-minor-girls-approach-court-seeking-protection-man-suspected-to-assist-in-wedding-held/articleshow/68553838.cms, 25th March 2019.]

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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2445464262336803

This is a Sept. 2018 article from the big USA media house - CBS. An extract from the article, "A new report tracking the roots, spread and effects of violent Islamist extremism found that 121 groups that share elements from a common ideology are now operating worldwide. Their activities resulted in the deaths of 84,000 people – nearly 22,000 of them civilians – in 66 countries in 2017, the report found."

Religious extremism (Islamic extremism, Christian extremism, Hindu extremism ...) which kills people of other religions mainly because they are of a different religion is not just bad but an evil that has to be fought against by all good people worldwide, irrespective of whether they are religious or not.

[Article link: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/islamist-extremism-caused-84000-deaths-worldwide-in-2017-a-new-report-says/]

The above share-comment of mine was put up as a comment elsewhere on a post which shared the CBS News article (which is where I saw it). The author of that post responded to my comment, "Very true sir... I think once an offensive attitude starts in one religion against another it's a matter of time before other religion picks it up also (or gets wiped out :()... It's a vicious cycle... Someone like our swami needs to preside over to end such cycles"

I responded (slightly edited):
Well said --name-snipped-- sir. It ***is*** a vicious cycle. Great spiritual masters/religious teachers need to break such cycles.
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2444983625718200

The police should conduct a full investigation and reveal the motives of the attackers. If this Muslim family in Haryana was attacked simply because they are Muslim then that should be reported by the police to the public, and then this should be unequivocally condemned by all major political parties.

Sometimes there may be business enmity or some other enmity that may be the underlying cause. Even in that case, the law should take its course and assailants should face punishment under Indian law.

No group of Hindus have any right to violently target Muslims in India just because they are Muslim and have prospered. India is for all Indians no matter what their religion or even if they have no religion.
[Shared video: https://www.facebook.com/quintillion/videos/1857509427688837/]
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2441986402684589

How a Yogi drops his body (short story) - Swami rama

Interesting, 2 min 45 secs, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prdAZkf1k-A
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2441721499377746

Hindi: Bhar do jholi meri ya Muhammad
Laut kar main na jaunga khaali

Rough English translation: Please fill my bag/container, Oh Muhammad!
I will not go back empty handed
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Enjoyed this Qawwali by Mumbai policeman done by himself plus a metal bucket used as a (metallic) drum.

Video is 1 min. 21 secs.

[Shared video: https://www.facebook.com/thebetterindia/videos/246393659604637/]
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2440780422805187

As the Sai bhajan goes: Bhava Bhaya Harna ....

[My rough translation which may be slightly inaccurate: The remover of fear of worldly existence ...]

Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba has played, and continues to play, a big role in my ongoing journey to overcome fears of worldly existence. I am so deeply grateful to him for that. Jai Sai Ram!

[Shared post has pic of Bhagavan with message, "FAITH IN GOD REMOVES ALL FEARS" - Divine Discourse, 29th July 1996.]
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https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2443338565882706

 I think the ignorance that Bhagavan is referring to here is spiritual ignorance as against ignorance of material world knowledge.

[Shared post has pic of Bhagavan with the message, "Ignorance is the most important cause of sorrow.-Baba."]
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In FB post, https://www.facebook.com/ravi.s.iyer.7/posts/2432138083669421,
I wrote: If you are feeling blue about preaching or speaking about God, here's something that might lead you to be red-hot revived! The kid speaks of Jesus but perhaps that inspiration can be used for other deities of other religions too. The state seems to be Mississippi, USA, which is part of the Bible Belt of the USA.
[Shared video link: https://www.facebook.com/1718972725043585/videos/284453375517650/, around 3 mins.]

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In FB post, https://www.facebook.com/vr.ganti.1/posts/10214246437299514, in response to a comment, I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- As explained in a previous comment, since early 2017 I do not make any comments about Mr. Rathnakar.
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In response to a comment made under above comment, I wrote (slightly edited) on 1st March 2019:
I am sorry for the apparent fear that you have had for so many years after Mahasamasadhi as you have been silent for so long. Now you are trying to give the impression that you are a very brave person!

It is people like Mr. Vr Ganti, Terry Reis Kennedy and I (and a few others too who I have not named) who had the guts to expose Muddenahalli group on social media and take all the vicious attacks we got then from Muddenahalli group supporters. My social media work in this regard started in early 2015. Note that at that time there were many Prasanthi Nilayam ashram paid staff and honorary staff who were openly supportive of Muddenahalli group. Further note that Ms. Kennedy and I were living in Puttaparthi then (I continue to live in Parthi) and had to face some nasty behaviour from Muddenahalli group supporters in Puttaparthi, whereas Mr. Ganti was based in Singapore and for a time in the USA but still had to face some unpleasant impacts on his real life.

What did you do then, --Name-snipped--, against all this battering we were getting??? Perhaps you wanted to stay silent then out of fear and were watching the "fun" of Mr. Ganti, Ms. Kennedy and I getting battered by Muddenahalli group supporters on social media, with some of their actions impacting our real lives as well.

I do not have any fear of Mr. Rathnakar. No matter how much you or anybody else may think so, I am NOT afraid of anybody in Puttaparthi as I am a law abiding citizen of India and I am not afraid of even death so long as I follow Sathya & Dharma, as I understand it, which is the main teaching of Sanathana Dharma which has been reinforced in me by my beloved and revered Gurudev, Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. So why should I be afraid of anybody in Puttaparthi?

However, I respect Bhagavan's family members including those that have sided with Muddenahalli group in the past. While in Bhagavan's physical presence I saw for myself the special attention Bhagavan gave to his physical form family. I was respectful of Bhagavan's family when Bhagavan was in physical form, and I continue to be respectful towards them even now.

As I said earlier which you don't seem to understand, I have made a decision in early 2017 not to comment about Mr. Rathnakar. Period. The post which has those comments was in the past at which time I responded to comments. I did not put up that post now. It was Mr. Ganti who put up a reference to it now.

You seem to love to attack people who stood up for Sathya & Dharma in Sathya Sai movement when this great divisive threat of Muddenahalli group came upon us. I wonder whether you are a friend or foe of the Sathya Sai movement. If you continue your attacks in this manner, I would prefer to stop interacting with you.
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In response to comment on above comment, I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - I did perceive your comment as very aggressive against me. Note that I have been viciously attacked on social media by Muddenahalli group people who initially tried to act as if they are friends. So I am suspicious of aggressive comments against me and react strongly to them.

But I am happy to see that you have used polite words in the end of your comment. So I will continue to engage in this conversation.

You have no need to impress me and I have no need to impress you. Am ignoring the 'boost' part of your comment as I am not interested in knowing those views of yours.

Noted your appreciation of our work in exposing MDH on social media. That's good of you.

Ignoring the part about me not commenting about Mr. Rathnakar as I have already expressed my views on it and I don't think there is anything more to add.

I do think that you trying to re-open a quite forgotten controversy of a few years ago (the Dr. Voleti - Mr. Rathnakar matter) is something that may hurt the Prasanthi Nilayam based Sathya Sai movement. That is one of the reasons I wondered whether you are friend or foe of (Prasanthi Nilayam based) Sathya Sai movement.

Now it really depends on how you comment on such matters on social media for us Prasanthi Nilayam Sathya Sai movement supporters including me to judge whether your comments are helping Prasanthi Nilayam Sathya Sai movement or hurting it.

That is when at least I will be able to take a view on whether your social media comments are those of a friend or a foe of Prasanthi Nilayam Sathya Sai movement.

I am sorry if some of my words hurt you but social media has been used by some Muddenahalli group people in the past in a horrible way to hurt Prasanthi Nilayam Sathya Sai movement. So I react emotionally and aggressively to comments that I see as something that may hurt PN Sathya Sai movement. Unfortunate but that's how it is. And the blame for this state of affairs goes to Facebook fake ID Muddenahalli group cowards and crooks some of whom are based in Melbourne, Australia and who seem to have been supported by some in Muddenahalli and in Puttaparthi.

My prayers to Shiva-Shakti Swarupa Kali Yuga Avatar Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba to help ensure that Prasanthi Nilayam Sathya Sai movement follows the path of Sathya, Dharma, Shanti and Prema. Jai Sai Ram!
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In response to a comment I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - I disagree with your view. Mr. Ganti acts as an agent provocateur by raking up past matters. My normal approach is to ignore such provocations from Mr. Ganti wrt Prasanthi Nilayam and focus on the great work that he has done in exposing Muddenahalli group. Note that many persons among PN supporters active on social media do not interact with Mr. Ganti. I too had stopped interactions with him for some time. ... But as I saw that he was continuing to do great work in exposing MDH I decided to interact again with him but only on the MDH exposure work and ignore PN related parts of his posts.

I think revisiting the old matter in the manner in which some comments here have revisited it, are re-opening the healed wound and putting salt on it.
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In response to a comment I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - This is just not working out. So it is best that we do not interact. I will be unfriending you shortly and I request you not to tag me.
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In response to a comment I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - You may not know what is referred to as tagging on Facebook. Typing a person's name and then choosing the person's icon-name from a drop-down results in a blue link display in the comment. That results in a notification being sent by Facebook to the person about the comment. So both you and I have tagged each other in our comments here. I request you not to do so in future. I too will not do so.
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In response to a comment by Mr. V.R. Ganti that partly said, "The first point is about whether people in Parthi / Prashanthi Nilayam arer scared of RJR or not. In my opinion, there is no doubt at all." I wrote (as a separate top-level comment and not under the original comment):
Vr Ganti - If your view is that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar then I disagree and think it is time for me to part ways with you.
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A person responded: Ravi S. Iyer OMG! Why is this childish remarks. Let's be united for our common goal. Whether you're scared of Rathnakar or not, that doesn't matter for meeting our objectives.
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I responded (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- - I vehemently oppose your view that my remarks are childish.

What is your view on this statement of Mr. Ganti: "The first point is about whether people in Parthi / Prashanthi Nilayam arer scared of RJR or not. In my opinion, there is no doubt at all."

Do you think all of us in Puttaparthi are scared of Mr. Rathnakar? Do you think I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar?
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The person responded:  Ravi S. Iyer garu, I'm just concerned about why are you worrying too much about what other people think whether you're scared of Shri Ratnakar or not? And to me, frankly speaking saying you ll unfriend anyone for expressing their views sounds childish..thts all.
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I responded (slightly edited):  --Name-snipped-- - There is something called self-respect. If somebody says --Name-snipped-- is scared of Mr. Rathnakar, scared of Malaysia Sai orgn. bosses and scared of Malaysia Prime Minister, do you think that's OK?

I mean, somebody who is your Facebook friend saying so publicly on Facebook.
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I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - What do you think? If somebody who is your Facebook friend says --Name-snipped-- is scared of Mr. Rathnakar and says is scared of Mr. Donald Trump, President of USA, how would you feel? Would you want to continue to be Facebook friends with that person?
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--Name-snipped-- responded:
That would depend on who is saying that and why. I may just laugh it off as ridiculous, I may defend my position, or I might just finally block that person if they had been irking me for quite some time...
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I responded (slightly edited):
Thanks --Name-snipped--. My reactions are similar to the latter part of the possible actions you mentioned. Thank you for responding.
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I wrote:
Vr Ganti - If I do not get a response from you to my above comment (within reasonable time) then I will presume that your view is that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar (which I disagree with). And then I will take suitable action (unfriending you and requesting you not to tag me in future).
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In response to comment by Mr. V.R. Ganti, I wrote:
Vr Ganti sir - Thank you for your response.

Regarding what you view as my childish behaviour:
I unfriended you in the past because of your providing a platform for misrepresented and false remarks viciously maligning me (and another person) by Muddenahalli group Fake ID coward and crook (Venkatesh Babu/Parthi Resident) who seems to be based in Melbourne, Australia and who either is Bhaskar Iyer of Melbourne, Australia or was supported by him. Venkatesh Babu/Parthi Resident Fake ID coward and crook seems to have also been supported by Muddenahalli group fellows in Muddenahalli and Puttaparthi. I have documented that matter in great detail in these two posts of mine: http://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2017/02/my-facebook-posts-related-to.html and http://ravisiyer.blogspot.com/2017/02/misrepresentation-and-fabrication-by.html.

Your actions then in providing a platform for Venkatesh Babu/Parthi Resident to conduct these misrepresented and fabricated attacks on me were very unfriendly to me, and so I did the correct action of unfriending you.

Many months later I decided to friend you again as I saw that you were continuing your wonderful work in exposing Muddenahalli group. I felt I should overlook the past unfriendly attitude of yours towards me and co-operate again with you in opposing Muddenhalli group. So I friended you again which you kindly accepted and we were able to team up again and do some work in opposing Muddenahalli group FALSE CLAIMS and misguidance of Sathya Sai devotees worldwide.

Now you have made an insulting statement about Puttaparthi people in one of your previous comments on this post. You wrote: "The first point is about whether people in Parthi / Prashanthi Nilayam arer scared of RJR or not. In my opinion, there is no doubt at all." This is in the context of another person commenting on this post that I seem to be afraid of Mr. Rathnakar (which I denied).

Now I know that in the past you have made sweeping statements which should not be interpreted literally. But your comment in this context seems to rather clearly indicate that you think that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar (which I disagree with). I don't want to be friends with a person who thinks that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar. It is as simple as that for me. So if you make a clear statement that you are NOT saying that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar then it becomes clear that you are not including me specifically in your sweeping statement above: "The first point is about whether people in Parthi / Prashanthi Nilayam arer scared of RJR or not. In my opinion, there is no doubt at all."

You have written "As regards whether you are scared of RJR is not on which I can me a conclusive statement either this way or that way." That's not good enough for me to view you as a friend.

If you don't make a clear statement that in your view I am not scared of Mr. Rathnakar then given the support you seem to have provided another person on this post who said that I seem to be scared of Mr. Rathnakar, I have no option but to treat you as an unfriendly person to me which then means that I will have to unfriend you.

So my behaviour in this matter is not childish but logical and appropriate, in my considered opinion.

Regarding your remarks against Mr. Rathnakar - that is something between you and Mr. Rathnakar. I have decided not to get involved. That does not mean I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar. Just because you don't make any negative comments about first Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew and about current Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong, though there are quite a few critical comments about them by others, I have not said that Mr. Ganti fears Lee Hsien Loong. Have I? That would be an incorrect conclusion. Have I said that since you live in Singapore and Lee Hsien Loong is the boss of Singapore, you are scared of Lee Hsien Loong and so you don't make any negative comments about him? I have not as that would be an incorrect conclusion.

A person choosing not to get involved in some matters does not necessarily mean that person is scared. Implying so about a person/persons is NOT a friendly thing to say.

Regarding me threatening you: You are dramatising things. It is a simple matter of me saying that if you are of the view that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar then I don't want to be friends with you. Where is the threat? Am I saying I will file a police complaint against you? Am I saying I will file a court case against you? Come on Mr. Ganti! Don't overdramatize things.

Regarding respect for me: I am glad to know that you respect me. I have publicly stated on Facebook and blog my admiration for the courage with which you have exposed Muddenahalli group. So you know how much I respect you for that work of yours. But if you think I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar then I will continue to respect the work that you have done against Muddenahalli group but I will NOT view you as my friend and so will have no option but to stop interacting with you. Thanks. Jai Sairam!
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In response to a comment arguing for spirit of unity, I wrote (multiple comments):
Spirit of Unity does not mean swallowing insulting statements about everybody in Puttaparthi being scared of Mr. Rathnakar. What is the use of Unity among people who choose to insult others in the group? Better to stay away from people who insult you and the town in which you stay - that is my considered opinion.

Tomorrow somebody may say everybody in Singapore is afraid of Lee Hsien Loong. And everybody in Malaysia is afraid of Mahathir Mohammed. And everybody in USA is afraid of Donald Trump. And everybody in India is afraid of Narendra Modi. Should we tolerate such nonsense in our group to maintain "Spirit of Unity"?
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In response to comment with question "Vr Ganti garu mentioned you're scared of Shri Rathnakar..??", I wrote:
He wrote in support of another person who said that I seemed to be scared of Mr. Rathnakar. He said Puttaparthi people are scared of Mr. Rathnakar - no doubt at all - or something like that. Very clearly, he was supporting the other person. I have been interacting with Mr. Ganti for 3 to 4 years now. I know how he operates.
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In response to comment "To me, I don't care what people think of me as it does not matter at all to my personal progress.", I wrote:
Noted that you don't care what people think (or even publicly say) of you. For me it is different. If somebody says something bad about me which I disagree with (constructive criticism is different - I welcome it) then I prefer not to view that person as a friend and prefer to stay away from that person.
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In response to comment (slightly edited to fix typo), "I am like you also sir; of what use is such artificial synthetic unity. The unity necessary is an intrinsic one where there is mutual respect and regard. Insult and unity cannot coexist. Genuine positive criticism and genuine showing of mirror respectfully is very different from this kind of tacit and explicit insult", I wrote (slightly edited):
Thank you --Name-snipped-- sir for your valuable view.
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In response to comment by Mr. V.R. Ganti that partly said, "Here the question is not Ganti or Ravi Iyer Garu.", I wrote:
Vr Ganti sir - For me now, it is a question of Mr. Ganti and me. The question is simple - Does Mr. Ganti think that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar? If no then fine, I would be glad to continue to be his friend.

If yes or not sure then I think it would be best that we part ways with good wishes for each other.

Regarding anything else you have to say about Mr. Rathnakar - that is between you and him. I don't want to get involved in the matter.
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In response to comment by Mr. V.R. Ganti, "Ha Ha Ha - Comparing RJR with PM of Singapore and PM of Malaysia is ridiculour. In any case by comparing like that it implies that RJR is a politician which has many more repurcussions I suppose Ravi Iyer Garu.", I wrote:
Vr Ganti sir - Since you have made sweeping statements insulting (all implied) Puttaparthi people that they are scared of Mr. Rathnakar, I had no option but to bring in some other comparisons to show how ridiculous your sweeping statement is.
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In response to a comment by Mr. Ganti, I wrote:
Vr Ganti - So it is clear that you think I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar. I vehemently disagree with you. But I don't want to waste any more time trying to make you see the truth. You are free to live in your fantasy world viewing it as your Sathya and your Dharma world. I am not interested to associate any more with you.

I have unfriended you. Do not tag me in future. Do not post any comments on my posts.
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In response to a comment by Mr. Ganti, I wrote:
Ha! Ha! What a joker you are Vr Ganti. You think you are the only hero in the world and the rest of all of us are cowards. Today you have targeted me (after initially saying something else - not sure ... which shows you did not have the guts to tell me at that time itself what you thought). Tomorrow you will target somebody else who thinks you are a good friend of theirs! And you will say that you are doing it in the name of Sathya & Dharma! What a joke!

Anyway, I think there is no point in trying to cure you of your delusion that you alone are the heroic man in the world and the rest of the world are cowards.

But you have done good work exposing Muddenahalli group. That has to be acknowledged despite these delusional fantasies that you seem to have got trapped in. I will always acknowledge that good work of yours, despite other weaknesses and delusions that you seem to be suffering from. Good Luck to you too. Hope you will get to real Sathya and real Dharma from delusional Sathya and delusional Dharma. Jai Sai Ram!
----

I wrote (multiple messages compressed to one):
Vr Ganti sir - After my last comment to you, this Swami Darshan video appeared on my wall - https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=10152864882186119

You and I have fought together to expose Muddenahalli group Asathya - Adharma which is misguiding thousands of devotees around the world using the name of our beloved and revered Gurudev Bhagavan Sri Sathya Sai Baba. I don't want our last exchanges to be harsh.

You are elder to me in years and perhaps more experienced in life. I value your leadership in exposing Muddenahalli group.

I would like memories of my last interactions with you on Facebook to be of this leadership that you showed when Sathya Sai movement was totally in the grip of Muddenahalli group spiritual fraudsters.

Both you and I have a common Gurudev. So we are Guru bandhus.

I thank you for your leadership then sir. That has been an absolutely vital contribution that you have made in the post-Mahasamadhi Sathya Sai movement. I will never ever forget that contribution as I know from our many close interactions on Facebook (including private chats) then how hard you worked and how much courage you showed.

I wish you well sir. May Bhagavan bless you for your great courage and work in exposing Muddenahalli group spiritual fraud. Jai Sai Ram!
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Vr Ganti wrote: I am rather surprised that after the above comments you have changed your tone has changed. Good - within moments you changed. Suddenly you started good remarks started coming in. Anyway, I dont get carried away Sir.

I thought you have unfriended already.
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I responded: All the best to you sir! Jai Sai Ram!

I wrote: I have unfriended but not blocked. So I can still see your comments and you can see mine. My request to you not to comment on my posts stays. I will also not comment on your posts (after this exchange). Also you should not tag me. I will also not tag you. Thanks. Jai Sai Ram!
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A person commented: Ravi S. Iyer Vr Ganti Please end this. Mentioning Ravi as afraid of RJR or anyone in a public platform is not a nice approach. Fear or by policy, let our personal space be not intruded. Ravi choose to not to engage in topic on RJR, probably because RJR is mortal limited time version like all of us. Whereas, MDH is weed with fast spreading seeds. So allow Ravi to focus on his choice of Sai mission. Both of you love each other a lot. So, let us refrain from making statements that hurts. It's no use to avoid non violence and preach violence in speech. Unfriending, disconnecting between people who actually like each other is equal to suicide. It's a short life, why not forgive, forget and stay together.
...
I am probably a little more than half your age. We look of examples and guidance. and I am deeply hurt by the way Sai devotees engage in arguments and abuses while the soil under them is being fast washed away.
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I responded (slightly edited):  --Name-snipped-- - Appreciate your efforts to patch things up between Mr. Ganti and me. But it has gone too far now. Life is like that. We need to get a move on. Mr. Ganti can do his work independent of me, and I will do my work independent of Mr. Ganti. Thanks. But, I repeat, I appreciate your efforts to patch things up. Jai Sai Ram!
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In response to a comment by Mr. V.R.Ganti, I wrote (multiple comments given as one message):
Vr Ganti - I did NOT know about it. If you had told me earlier I would have unfriended you then itself.

I do not tolerate people who make such statements about me.

Hate to get into this harshness but you insist on making such statements. So I have to respond.

Lots of people have said lots of things about you Mr. Ganti to me. I have not used that against you.

I was focused on your contribution to expose Muddenahalli group and ignored stuff people said about you.

But you are judging me on Mr. Rathnakar matter. For me the issue is that he is Bhagavan's chosen relative who was made trustee. So I respect Bhagavan's decision. That you will NOT be able to understand as you have not served in Bhagavan's mission at Prasanthi Nilayam as I have.

When Bhagavan was in physical form, I respected Bhagavan's relatives who were chosen by him to take on responsible ashram management positions, and now after Bhagavan's Mahasamadhi I continue to have the same respect.

You will NOT understand that as you have not served in Bhagavan's mission in PN as staff for years like I have.

So you jump to conclusions that I am scared of Mr. Rathnakar instead of understanding that I respect Bhagavan's decision to have made him trustee.

We all have our weaknesses. I too have weaknesses and Bhagavan gave me room to work on it. You will NOT understand that as you have not served for years with Bhagavan in physical form. We are not perfect. Bhagavan gives us the room to improve.

You jump at every small mistake of SSSCT trustees and call them all sorts of names and demand their ouster!

How easy it is for a man to sit in Singapore and call for ouster of SSSCT trustees!

I have said enough. I hope to close this now. I don't want to block Mr. Ganti. Let's hope that this exchange winds down quickly.
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Vr Ganti wrote: Ravi Iyer Garu - Can you kindly stop from keep on commenting.
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I responded:  Vr Ganti sir - You stop commenting about me and then I will stop commenting about you. Okay?
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A person commented: Ravi S. Iyer Vr Ganti garu.. please both of you don't fight. Forget and forgive. That's human. We at time say something unknowingly or unintentionally. It's just a slip of tongue. Let's forgive and not react on this.
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I (Ravi) responded (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- - It's over. I have decided to move on. As I said elsewhere Mr. Ganti can work independently of me and I will work independently of him. I wish him well. Let me add that I plan not to say anything negative of him in future unless he says anything negative of me. This way while we would not be working together, we will not be coming in the way of each other.
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In response to a comment, I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- sir - I think --Name-snipped-- was approaching it from an emotional angle in trying to patch things up. I appreciate her efforts and her intent.
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In response to comments, I wrote (slightly edited):
--Name-snipped-- - I understand your efforts to patch things up and appreciate your good intentions. --Name-snipped-- sir has viewed things from a pure logical perspective, which has its validity too from a pure logic perspective. But life, I have learned, is a mix of logic and emotion. So I do give value to both logic and emotion. Jai Sai Ram!
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--Name-snipped-- wrote: Ravi S. Iyer I don't want to hurt neither of you hence used those words. But actually I wasn't aware of the whole conversation as I did not read all of it. So I may have missed some parts here.
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I responded (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- - Don't worry about it. Let us be emotionally smart with this one and close it :-).
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--Name-snipped-- responded: Ravi S. Iyer thank you heaps🙏
[I (Ravi) Facebook-Liked the above comment.]
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A person commented (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- there is no malice in your intent and as I said earlier too your intent is good. Ravi sir and Ganti sir are two of my heros as well. But I think to factually minimize and diminish the issue/insult at hand and brushing it off with purely emotional sentimental feel-good all-is-well Band-Aids is prehaps ineffective when the two sides you are dealing with are highly intelligent and advanced thinkers is what I was trying to highlight.
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I responded (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- sir - I am no hero :-). I have many flaws but I am a law-abiding Indian citizen and try hard to follow Sathya and Dharma, even if I may not succeed all the time.

I am deeply grateful to Prasanthi Nilayam based Sathya Sai movement which I have benefited from greatly right from around 1993/94. And so I am just a Jatayu like fellow who, despite some health challenges, has fought and is ready to continue to fight those Muddenahalli group fellows and others of that type who want to hurt Prasanthi Nilayam based Sathya Sai movement.
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A person commented: usually egos clashes. As Swami say you need two hands to clash to make a clap ! If there is one hand it is impossible to clap !
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Another person referring to the above comment wrote (slightly edited): --Name-snipped-- My mom used to say, "It takes two to tango"...
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I responded (slightly edited): I think it is wrong to characterise this matter as an ego clash. Would --Name-snipped-- and --Name-snipped-- accept being told that they are scared of so-and-so, when that is not the case, and when that is being used to tarnish their name? I don't know. But in my case, it is a matter of self-respect that I should not continue to associate with a person who says that of me.

Humiliation and insult are ways by which cult-leader wannabes try to dominate people. I have seen that in Prasanthi Nilayam (PN) itself even when Swami was in physical form, which became much more after Swami Mahasamadhi. When Swami was in physical form, I have tolerated some minor level of humiliation from those in power in PN system (e.g. being mildly ticked off by a dept. head for some matter that I was not responsible for). I did that as if I had tried to fight for justice in that minor case, there was a danger that I might be asked to leave the institution I was associated with as free service staff, and lose the most precious thing in PN ashram then for me, which was staff seating at Swami darshan!

But even when Swami was in physical form, I have drawn the line about the level of humiliation and insult that I was wiling to tolerate. I once insisted on clarification from my then HOD over email to dept. staff for some previous email from the HOD to dept. staff which I felt was grossly inappropriate and which could have referred to me and somebody else (the person was not named and so there was ambiguity). I said that otherwise I will quit from my free service activity in the PN institution I was with then (Sai university). It was a matter of protecting one's self-esteem and dignity. Eventually the then HOD backed down and wrote a short email which addressed the issue adequately. I immediately dropped the matter, thanked the then HOD and continued my free service staff activity there.

A fellow free service staff of PN system who was serving here before I associated with PN system in Oct. 2002, and who continues to offer free service now (must be close to two decades of free service!), once told me that self-esteem (or he may have said self-respect) is important. This person is unmarried and along with his service in PN system does other individual spiritual sadhana. I view him as a valued spiritual aspirant colleague, a Guru bandhu (brother)/Guru brethren, in Puttaparthi. I entirely agree with his words that self-esteem is important even in PN ashram. I extend that to spiritual groups (like the one we have on Facebook platform). One should not allow others to unjustly humiliate and insult one (minor things can be tolerated but not major things). I don't think swallowing such humiliation and insults and saying, Yes sir, Sairam sir, leads to spiritual progress. In fact, I think it may lead to tragic domination over one by some wannabe cult-leader types. And, very, very unfortunately, I know of such cases that have happened after Mahasamadhi in Puttaparthi apart from the many cases in Muddenahalli group where Narasimhamurthy and Madhusudan Naidu are the cult-leader types who have trapped many Sai devotees. Note that Indians as well as foreign devotees (people from almost all continents: Asia, Europe, North America, South America, Australia and Africa) have got trapped as followers of some cult-leader types in our own Sathya Sai fraternity after Mahasamadhi! I find it to be an astonishing social phenomenon.

But this is my view (about it not being an ego clash but a matter of having self-respect). Others are entitled to their views.
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I wrote (slightly edited):  I see that --Name-snipped-2-- has made a reference to me here. I do not give any value to her statements and do not want to waste my time referring to her words. But I would like readers to know that I am blocking  --Name-snipped-2-- now and will not be wasting my time reading or responding to her comments.
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I wrote (slightly edited): Have just blocked --Name-snipped-2-- and am thankfully not able to see any of her comments. Jai Sai Ram!
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Mr. V.R. Ganti wrote (in part): Sometime last week I was told by Ravi Garu that if I stop, he would stop this needless discussions. I am in fact not spending much time on FB for some reasons ... In the meantime, I only hope that the needless comments would stop.
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I (Ravi) responded (multiple comments coalesced into one message below:
I am responding to comments made about the matter by others. I am not saying anything about you.

If nobody comments about the matter with respect to me, I will have no reason to respond. I hope you understand that.
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A person commented: very good and much respected but my comments had nothing to do with your discussion, they were pointing out to completely different matters related to the PN and Muddenahalli issues that the original post was reffering.
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I (Ravi) responded (on 5th March 2019):
In my above comments, I am presuming that Mr. Ganti was referring to the "ego clashes" comment followed by the 'it takes two to tango' comment and my response to it in inner-level comments under a separate and earlier comment on this post. That's the only comment I had made today on this post, other than my above comments in this thread.
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Shared FB post, https://www.facebook.com/chris.gosden.79/posts/10218131337495690 which has a pic with some text. The beginning line is: "Walk away from people who put you down." and the ending line is: "The more you walk away from things that poison your soul, the healthier you will be."