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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

(B07)- Hit the enemy at his weakest point!

 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Continuing our discussion on the debates on Brahma or God, in this episode let us see how the Brahma supporters face the criticisms by the Vaisheshikas or the ancient Indian atomic theorists.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

(B06)- Ancient Indian Atomic theorists




Did you know that there existed atomic theorists in India more than 2000 years before Dalton and others developed our modern atomic theory? 

You may not find their theories as elaborate as the atomic theories of today. But the fact is that they did come up with such a theory thousands of years ago! And without any sophisticated gadgets that we have today. They did not even have an ordinary microscope for that matter. Isn’t that amazing?

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

(B05)- Does God get bored?














We human beings get bored sometimes. And we end up doing all kinds of silly things. But does God also get bored sometimes? Does he also do silly things?

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

(B04)- Punching holes in opponent’s claims




In the previous episode we saw how the ancient Samkhya philosophers put forward their claims. In one stroke they make the idea of Brahma or God totally irrelevant. 

Apparently, they can explain ‘everything’ without taking recourse to any mystical entity called God! How does the Brahma supporters take on this onslaught of the opponent?

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

(B03)- Here comes the main wrestler!



We were talking about the debates between rival Indian groups about their ideas on Brahma or God.

While we discuss these things, we should keep in mind that we are talking about a time period when many of the major world religions of today did not even exist. When even the concept of God was not a matter of mere faith but something that had to pass through the rigors of logic and reasoning. The people in those times too had their scriptures, but they did not accept anything with closed eyes. They questioned everything, even the God!

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

(B02)- Five blind men and the elephant



Once there were 5 blind men. They wanted to ‘see’ how an elephant looks like. Being blind they obviously cannot ‘see’ the elephant. But they were inquisitive and they went on their expedition. After ‘seeing’ the elephant one by one, they gathered in a place to exchange notes on their elephantine experience.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

(B01)- Why should one care to know about God?







In many faith-based religions, this question does not arise at all. It could even be a forbidden question to ask. It is sacrilegious to question the existence of God. 

Acceptance of God is the most basic prerequisite. There is no religion if there is no God. But not so in ancient India. India had a completely open system where anyone was free to question anything including God.

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

(B00)- Let us talk big



Several years ago, I was part of a large institution. This institution used to organize frequent lectures by eminent scholars in various fields. 

The Head of this institution used to invite me to attend to all these lectures. The funny thing was that the topics of most of these talks were not directly connected with my field of expertise nor something that was of my interest. That used to puzzle me.

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

(Mind70)- Let us progress together



Each one of us has our own idea of what our goal is. 

One goal that many Yoga enthusiasts have is to enjoy health. To achieve that goal, they ‘twist and turn’ their bodies with the hope of making the body stronger and resistant to illnesses. 


They may practice breathing exercises of Yoga to minimize their stress. Since stress is linked to our proneness to illness, they hope to achieve healthy life using these techniques.


There are others who may long for the bliss experienced by meditation. They indulge in regular meditation and enjoy the bliss that results from a tranquil mind.


There may be some advanced Yoga practitioners who aim at realizing the ultimate truth. That realization may bestow them eternal peace.


A Buddhist may slog to free himself from the endless cycle of births and deaths. Prolonged meditation may enable him to achieve that.


But have you observed something common in all these goals?

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

(Mind69)- All unifying aspect of Yoga



In the last episode we looked at various things Yoga can achieve. Depending on where you are and where you want to go, you can stop at any intermediate goal. But the real target of Yoga is ultimate realization – the realization of the ultimate truth about this existence – existence as a totality.

What this ultimate realization is, is explained in the ancient Upanishads, believed to have been recorded 5000 years ago. The sages who recorded these Upanishads arrived at this ultimate truth after prolonged meditation or practice of Yoga.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

(Mind68)- Ultimate goal of Yoga



Depending on what state you are in, and what your expectations are, the goals of Yoga can be different.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

(Mind67)- Where did Buddha go when he died?




With no offense meant, this is an important question. Buddha himself once faced this question and he handled it in his own way.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

NewBook: The ultimate book on Yoga




 

I am happy to announce the release of my 22nd book namely “The ultimate book on Yoga”. This also happens to be my 5th book on Yoga.

I have been working on this book for quite some time.  


Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

(Mind65)- Burnt seeds don’t germinate!



If you have ever done a bit of gardening, you very well know how difficult it is to keep the weeds at bay. No matter how many times you pluck them out, they regrow once again.

That is because these weeds leave back their seeds before you pluck them out. And these seeds sprout back into new weeds at proper times. So, you will forever face the menace of these weeds.


One way is to carefully eliminate the seeds one by one so that there is nothing left to germinate. But that is a difficult proposition. Now-a-days we have several chemical sprays that render these seeds ineffective. They literally burn out these seeds. And burnt seeds don’t germinate.


Patanjali says that our mental impressions that delude us are like the seeds left behind by our past Karma. They re-germinate however much we try to suppress them. We have to somehow get rid of these seeds or render them ineffective.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

(Mind64)- The five things that bind us to the world










We were talking about the preset impressions that all of us are born with. Patanjali calls it Avidya or wrong knowledge.

How does this Avidya cause problems?

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

(Mind63)- We have a firmware that is hard to erase!









We concluded our previous episode by wondering why we cannot remain in an ever-blissful state even after we attain the ‘self-realization’ through the practice of Yoga.

The ultimate state of Yoga namely the ‘Samadhi’ is supposed to take us back to our real state – namely a blissful state. But when we come out of this Samadhi, we once again get trapped into a mix of happy and sad states of mind. Why?

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

(Mind62)- Does Samadhi have any practical use?






It was mandatory in many ancient Indian scriptures or philosophic texts to spell out the ultimate purpose of whatever was going to be espoused in the text before starting the discussion
.
So, does Yoga have any practical utility? Well, I am not talking about byproducts of Yoga such as health benefits, stress reduction and so on. I am talking about the utility of reaching the ultimate state of Yoga namely the Samadhi. Does it have any utility?

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

(Mind61)- Is Samadhi a self-induced slumber?



In the previous episode we tried to answer two important questions about the ultimate stage of meditation, namely the Samadhi.

Firstly, we argued that Samadhi may not always be a result of some form of mental conditioning. 


We also reasoned that the blissful experience that one goes through in the initial phases of Samadhi may not be originated in the brain, though our brain experiences it and we get aware of that.

Moving on, one important question about Samadhi is whether it is some form of deep sleep or unconscious state that we enter into as a result of meditation.

 

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

(Mind60)- Samadhi - Does it all happen in the brain?



I am happy to be back exactly after two months. I know lot of things would have happened in these two months. It is sad that there were so many deaths. I wish they did not happen.

During the pause, I was observing that many of you were re-reading/listening past episodes. 


Some asked me quite a few interesting questions both as comments as well as through the “Ask me” page in my blog. Some even communicated with me through other modes as well. I have always tried to respond in the best possible way. I am thankful to all of you.

I took the break mainly because of my voice related problem. I am better now and so I decided to break this silence. But instead of twice a week, I would be talking to you once a week – every Wednesday 12 PM PST. I am doing it both to avoid straining myself, and also to give you more time to ponder over the things I will be discussing in future episodes. 


The topics I will be discussing from now on are going to be a bit more technical and intense. But I will assure you that I will provide you details which probably you will not find elsewhere. At the same time, I will put every effort to provide authentic information and make it easy to understand.


So, let us get back.

 

Friday, June 26, 2020

Baba's Miracle!



I am sorry that I am still not in a position to record my voice. So, you have to read these posts on my blog. I hope to get back soon with my regular series on Mind that I paused a month ago.

The havoc created by Corona unnerves even a seasoned Yogi. So many deaths not just in underdeveloped countries but even in those countries supposedly advanced and on the cutting edge of innovation. 

Our scientists are struggling to come up with either a cure or a vaccine for this dreaded virus that has already upset our lives and appears to ruin it altogether. But no hope at sight.

All of a sudden, here comes an Indian Yoga Guru who claims that he has a cure for this dreaded disease! Before you dismiss this as yet another ‘Indian rope trick’, please read on. Maybe you will find some food for thought.

Friday, May 22, 2020

(Mind59)- Let us take a break!










I started this long series of talks on Mind beginning November last year. I spent a month each, discussing various scientific and philosophic aspects of Mind.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

(Mind58)- Samadhi with awareness









Many people associate different meanings to the Yogic state called Samadhi. Most people imply a sudden loss of awareness, or an experience of proximity to the divine, and so on.

Friday, May 15, 2020

(Mind57)- Once the fun starts all actions stop!






We were discussing the strange and unusual experience that Ramakrishna Paramahamsa used to go through every now and then. What was it?

Let me start with a simple analogy.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

(Mind56)- Can you experience Samadhi without meditating?

















Samadhi is the final stage of meditation. It is the eighth step of Yoga. As the meditation continues for a prolonged duration, one slips into this state of Samadhi.

The question is – “is meditation a necessary precondition to attain samadhi?”.

Friday, May 8, 2020

(Mind55)- What happens when you meditate?



In the past few episodes, I rushed through a selection of meditative practices from various disciplines, both ancient and modern. 

I am sure there are many more ways. 


In one of my books namely “Meditation – Important things you need to know”, I have hinted that most meditations ultimately lead you to the same destination irrespective of their form and origin. The time taken to reach the destination may differ in each case though.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

(Mind54)- Kundalini based meditation of the Hatayogis






For many people, Kundalini is an inalienable part of Yoga. 

They talk about the dormant mystic power Kundalini, an array of energy centers called Chakras spread all over the spine starting from the lower tip of the vertebral column to the top of the skull. 

 

Friday, May 1, 2020

(Mind53)- Meditation – The Buddha’s way




 







Meditation is the crux of Buddhism. But then what exactly is this meditation is something not very clear.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

(Mind52)- Bhagavad Gita’s way of meditation





As I discussed a few episodes ago, the ancient Indian scripture namely the Bhagavad Geetha has an entire chapter devoted to Meditation. It is called Dhyana Yoga, chapter 6.

Friday, April 24, 2020

(Mind51)- A meditation technique straight from Upanishads












Upanishads may be the most ancient of the philosophical texts that deal with meditation and the ultimate realities of the world. They are parts of ancient Indian Vedic scriptures, which the Indians believe to be eternal and authorless.