On Soaking in a Summer Day

Today, the boys and I headed out to a spring and natural water pool.
It was a long drive.
It was also a hot day.

When we reached our destination, the beautiful sight of bluish green water awaited us.
I walked down to the natural pool.
Under the rich green trees and blue water, the sun didn’t seem that hot.

I know only a tad bit of swimming.
I waded in the water.
Then, when I got to deeper part, Shakthi offered to ferry me across the water so I can stand under the water fall.
I took up his offer and rided on his shoulders to the other side of the pool.
Several people gave them their hand and offered to lift me off the water and up the rocks.
I gladly took their hands.

Then, I climbed up on the rocks and found my way to where the water came pouring down.
I placed myself under the pounding cascade of the cold waterfall.
I soaked in the water fall.

I turned around and gazed at the beautiful natural pool.
I looked at the tropical-looking greenery.

I let the water flow against my body and nourish by mind and soul.

I soaked in the water and the summer day.

Misogi – is a Shinto purification ritual of standing under a waterfall.

Photo Credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krause_Springs

Meaningful Mantras

In my younger days, I used to think mantras (or slokas, prayers) were all meaningless. I still recited them out of awe and respect for Appa who taught me with such passion and love.

However, now, as I age, I understand that mantras have more meaning than I can comprehend during this lifetime.

There is nothing religious about this. It is pure science.

I don’t want you to take my word for it. You never should.

Read about the science of the universe, cosmos, sound and how our body resonates.
Mull over it and share your learnings with me.

To get you started, here are a couple of links:
Thank you Srinivasan T Venkatraman for sharing awesome resource FE with me.

While, we are on this topic, here is my favorite song/mantra (or whatever else you want to call it) of all times – Bho Shambo Shiva Shambo.

You don’t have to understand the words, the meanings, the ethos…nothing.

Just listen….and feel the power.

I have heard many versions of “Bho Shambo Shiva Shambo” by many talented highly acclaimed singers recite it. Of all those, the 2 best versionsare the following:
* Maharajapuram Santhanam’s version is the best…because of the strength of his voice
* The version my dear friend Subashini Ganesan sang for me many decades ago in a dorm room when we had no strength left in us to get through the next page of some damn physics book in our freshman year. Unfortunately, I don’t have a recording of that powerful version. But, the sound and power of her singing it is safely stored somewhere as biochemicals in my brain and I can recall on it during my weak days. I am confident advancement in science will find a way to transfer that as mp3 some day soon. That is the day, I’ll retrieve her voice from my brain to share with you.

“Bho Shambo Shiva Shambo” words transliterated in English:
bhO shambhO shiva shambhO svayambhO

gangAdhara shankara karuNAkara mAmava bhavasAgara tAraka
nirguNa parabrahma svarUpa gamAgama bhUta prapanca rahita
nija guhanihita nitAnta ananta Ananda atishaya akSayalinga

dhimita dhimita dhimi dhimikiTa kiTatOm tOm tOm tarikiTa tarikiTakiTa tOm
matanga munivara vandita Isha sarva digambara vESTita vESa Isha sabEsha nitya niranjana nitya natEsha Isha sabEsha sarvEsha

On Bells and Chimes

Bells and Chimes are used in cultures throughout the world in ceremonies and religious places. There is many reasons for this. But, the one that I like the most is the following –

The sound produced by a bell is designed to strike a cordial balance between our right and left brain. The striking of the bell is believed to instantly halt all thought movement, creating a natural state of awareness. This also works to soothe the mind. The ringing of the bell produces a sharp sound which reverberates for approximately 7 seconds as an echo, long enough to touch on the seven healing centers or chakras in our body.

A well designed bell can produce resounding strains of the sound of “OM”.

With that background, let me recount for you what happened today morning.

It was a windy day here in Austin. I walked into the Sri Venkateswara Temple of Austin (which had the Maha kumbhabhishekam last weekend). As I walked into the temple courtyard, I was pleasantly surprised by the sound of the bells. I just stood there for several minutes focusing on the sound and taking it all in.

Here is a short recording.

I hope the sound of the wind and the sound of the bell brings you as much joy as it did to me today morning.

A Spring Dandelion – Here today…and gone tomorrow

I am sleep deprived, caffeine deprived and carbs deprived today….which, for me, means being in a hallucinatory state.
Even with all that going on today evening, this Spring dandelion looks beautiful to me.

I know,
this dandeloin…
like people…
like moments…
like life…
will be…
here today…
and gone tomorrow.

The UnReality of Reality – Fascinating Digital Images

I have been sharing my love for math, science, quantum physics, metaphysics and more with Adi for as long as I know.

Even before he knew what a wave or particle meant he had possible heard about wave-particle duality. Even before he could pronounce Heisenberg he had possibly heard about Uncertainty Principle. There are many concepts that I don’t understand. But, that hasn’t stopped me from teaching him the concept in some mutated form with the hope that he will one day return to visit me after roving this planet and having a lot better clarity on the (un)-reality of this Universe than I ever will.

Now, there is some background to how I built that hope.

Appa and my dear friend Shashi Sastry told me to teach him everything at an early age without questioning whether he is absorbing it or not.

Since, Appa and Shashi are very wise people I blindly trusted them. I poured forth the knowledge that I have had the fortune of having access to.

Given the digital era we live in, I also encouraged Adi to seek answers through science articles and videos.

A few years ago, as we were discussing the total unreality of reality and how time and space don’t actually exist as we believe them to, I took him along to see Sunil Shah and Renu Vora’s independent film called The Wisdom Tree Film(which showcased science, art, music, mysticism). As a prerequisite to watching the movie, we watched “What the Bleep Do We Know”.

Sadly, with the comings and goings of a crazily scheduled high schooler’s life, Adi hasn’t had the opportunity to chat with me and delve deep into topics that don’t belong in the realm of normal everyday discussions.

You know how they say it is darkest before it dawns.

Right when I was about to give up hope about all the time and effort that I had put in to Adi… wondering whether what he had heard in the last decade had evaporated into ether…and whether I should really invest that same amount of passion, time and effort with Ari…right at the hopeless moment, magic happened.

Yesterday, I think the Universe conspired to tell me that none of my effort has been wasted.

Adi returned (pun, in case you can notice it?!) home and showed me some digital pictures that he had created online. The pictures are not what amazed me. The titles that he had captioned those kaleidoscopic image is what amazed me.

Check it out – The UnReality of Reality – In Pictures

I love all the #REALITY that exists in #UNREALITY.

There is always #HOPE.