Never thought sports would teach my daughters these FIVE life lessons. Seriously!

I love Table Tennis

Both my daughters, Anaga (16) and Ananya (12), are avid table tennis players. They love the game, take it as seriously as possible and try to never miss a practice session or a tournament. Well, at least most of the time :-). Of course, I would not classify them as top notch players, but they do their best and that is the most I can ask of them.

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An affair too pedestrian to remember

Yesterday, I had the chance to walk down from Kadavanthara junction to my house in Vyttila. The reason why I had to walk is too complicated to enumerate here – just let it be understood it was not of my own wish, and I did not have a choice. So, I walked roughly 2 kilometers through one of the busiest roads in Kochi, and at peak time too – around 6 PM.

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Of books and blurbs – poem written 18 years ago!

I do not apologize for this “naive” poem I wrote in 1996……came across this when I was cleaning my desk at work. Nothing thrills (or embarrasses) me more than coming across an old piece of writing! This comes across as so cliched and trite (“merry brook”?), but I am still smiling after reading it half an hour ago….

http://theadvocate.com/multimedia/photos/2178888-133/photos-weekly-gallery-022612.html
Image courtesy: theadvocate.com

Of books and blurbs

Reading a book is like no other,

Even space travel goes no further

I explore within a single page

The entire earth, Man’s bonded cage.

Books are my passion. My addiction.

A never-ending world of fascination.

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Daughter’s bake sale for charity raises Rs 2400 for Girls home in Kakkanad

The poster for the Charity shop
The poster for the Charity shop

 

It all started 3 weeks ago, when we were in the thick of exams. Anaga was preparing for her 10th and Ananya for her 6th. In between answering questions on Ashoka and Buddhism, Ananya was busy scribbling down a menu card. “What are you doing?”, I asked. “Mummy, this is for the charity sale for Easter. Shika and I are getting it ready.”

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The rape of our Gods in our temples

As the  word “rape” becomes de facto in our daily news and life, I would like to draw your attention  to a real problem that lakhs of devotees face everyday when visiting temples – the rape and abuse of our Gods.

Bear with me for a few minutes as I explain what I mean. This is based totally on my personal experience, and that of a few close friends who shared their experiences once I related mine. My intention is not to hurt any religious sentiments, but as true devotees we need to be fearless in voicing our anger when the system is wrong.

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The Feet that rules the world

I was in Pandhripur, Maharashtra last weekend. It has been my dearest wish to see Lord Vithala, and that wish came true on August 23, 2013. Mere words cannot describe the emotions and the happiness I felt when I saw the Lord’s form, but I sure am about to try!

The Feet that rules the world. And our hearts.

Can you think of a lord who waits to see His devotee

With patience, charm and with arms akimbo?

Can you describe a lord who runs to His devotee

With a smile on His lips and so willingly?

Can you imagine a lord who listens to His devotee’s whim

And comes speedily to where they sing of Him?

Can you conjure a lord who serves His devotee

Cooks, cleans, washes and even sweeps?

Can you believe a lord who has given His Feet

So that every devotee can touch and feel?

Can you divine a lord who has given His blessings

To all irrespective of caste, creed and belief?

If you can do so, then it is only my Vittala Lord

Only Vittala, only Vittala, Vittala, Vittala

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The Freedom to Write. Responsibly.

Responsibility is the price of freedom” – Elbert Hubbard

People demand freedom of speech as compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use” – Soren Kierkgaard

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes” – Mahatma Gandhi

As I celebrate India’s 67th Independence Day, I am amazed at the freedom kids and adults have, to speak what is on their minds. And text, tweet and email it. Even before a thought appears on their tongue, it seems to have appeared in their social media accounts.

So when engagements get broken and friendships take a back seat due to free speech, what is our responsibility as a free society that gets to gab all we want, online and offline? Can we say the first thing that comes to our mind? Or should we think through, calculate the pros and cons and then message it out? Sure, some thoughts don’t need any filter (“Good morning! How are you?”), but what about the ones that hurt, assume, implicate, exploit or anger?

Hmm, tough one, isn’t it? How do we know what will cause negative emotions, and what will not? How do I know if a simple message like “these politicians are morons” will not cause a state-wide bandh and an arrest? How do I know if what I sincerely feel does not set off a ticking bomb? Does this mean I do not voice my angst and my anguish? Does this mean I keep quiet when injustice happens? How else can I share and support the good things happening around me?

Questions are endless. So probably are the answers. The only person who can answer this honestly is you. The freedom to write brings with it the bondage of responsibility. We are accountable for what we write, and every word we write has to be weighed against facts and common sense.

Write every word as if it reflects your integrity. Therein is the true freedom of expression. And probably why great men’s words continue to be spoken time and again.

Wishing you all a year filled with love, freedom and mistakes! And the floor is now open for responsible discussions!!!

 

 

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Do I want you as my son, Kanhaiya?

Do I want you as my son, Kanhaiya?

You steal, you tease, you run, you take

You dance, you lie, you play, you break.

Do I want you as my brother, Kanha?

You twist, you scheme, you chide, you shame

And use me as a pawn in your game.

Do I want you as my husband, Kishan?

You elope, you flirt, you philander, you chase

With 16,108 wives, I do rest my case

Do I want you as my friend, Keshav?

You advice, you confuse, you talk, you pontificate

You charm, you smile, and then refuse to elucidate

No, no, no.

Do I want you as my God, Krishna?

You fight, you kill, you disembowel, you destroy

Every problem I face

You give, you fulfill, you offer, you shower

Every dream I chase

You protect, you bless, you love, you cherish

My every night and day

You watch, you adore, you love more and more

With every breath I take.

Yes, yes, yes.

I want you as my God, Krishna.

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