In my World

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In my world,

there is no sorrow

there is no depression

there is no anxiety

there is no crime

there is no violence

there is no hunger

there is no betrayal

there is no politics

In my world,

there is only love.

Brought by benign souls

Promoted by kind angels

They share their excess with kindness

They accept from others with humility.

And they maintain a balance.

Tell me you are one of them.

Tell me.

Because I know, that I am.

But my world needs you to become perfect.

My world needs change to become what I define it to be.

My world.

Born free. Free to choose.

Live and Help Live.

Truly Befikre

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‘Befikre’ is a Hindi word meaning ‘Carefree’.

When I watched this movie, I was really impressed by the story line and the way the romance bloomed between the key protagonists despite all resistance to love.

An absolutely fresh movie, the story revolves under a couple in a live-in relationship who decide to break up. After their break up, they become thick friends. However, both share the ideology that love does not exist. As the lady decided to marry a supposedly “tall, fair, handsome rich” guy after discussing with the lead, both of them realize that they are in love. Everything else ensues, but I did not like the ending, which was turned into a humorous confusion ending with the lead couple just running away from the chaotic scene. The movie also touches hearts with its absolutely fresh and melodious songs with liberal use of French. I didn’t know French is such a beautiful language until I saw this movie. (Maybe I will learn French some day). My personal favorite songs are Je T’aime, Labon ka Karobar and You and Me.

I decided to write about this movie because some moments in the movie touched my heart. There is one scene where the lead heroine is upset with the hero and turns and walks away from him. That is an amazingly acted out scene, as the way she walks away, her head high, her steps confident, is outstanding. It’s a rarity, especially in the Indian society, where that kind of self-assuredness and headstrong attitude is seen as a negative trait, and women are mostly expected to be submissive and meek.

For me, a confident lady is the epitome of the ‘perfect’ woman.

She may belong to any walk of life, but she is to be celebrated for the sheer determination that she displays in leading a respectful life.

She is the successful lady that sits in the cabin and runs her business.

She is the lady in the white suit inside the VP Cabin, devising a strategy for her company.

She is the lady who sits in the cubicle, churning out thousands of lines of code to complete a client project.

She is the lady with dignity who is the pioneer of the small weaving industry in her village.

She is the lady who topped her IAS examination and is now making a huge difference in others’ lives.

She is the lady who plays the roles of a police officer, a sexy siren and a dumb babe with the same degree of poise.

She is the lady who chooses to stay with her partner without worrying about society rules – how does a marriage certificate stop a couple from tearing the relationship apart, and how does the absence of a marriage certificate stop a couple from leading a life of together forever?

She is the lady who expertly counsels individuals and couples with no inhibitions on any issue, and no judgments whatsoever.

She is the lady who decides to walk out of a relationship that’s marred by abuse.

She is the lady who says no to emotional manipulation.

She is the lady who starts life afresh after being ‘abandoned’ by her husband.

She is the lady who paints her heart out and wins accolades in her first art exhibition.

She is the lady that left a high paying job abroad to help poor and abandoned children lead a respectful life by training them on vocational courses.

She is the lady who….  need I say more?

These women are truly ‘befikre’ and I salute them. Do you?

Who is your She?

National Legal Services Authority (NALSA)

 

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Do you know about NALSA?

I didn’t.

When I came to know about it through the advertisements displayed in movie theaters, I was really sad that I did not know about it before.

NALSA stands for National Legal Services Authority and provides free Legal Services to the weaker sections of the society. It was constituted under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987.

NALSA ensures that justice is meted out to all citizens, irrespective of economic or any other problems. It identifies certain sections of the society that may need legal help / are entitled to legal help, and formulates various schemes for the implementation of preventive and strategic legal service programmes to be undertaken and implemented by the Legal Services Authorities at the various levels.

Citizens that come under the identified sections as in link above can lodge an online application and request for legal aid.

However, how many such people know about this forum, and how many have access to online means of sending a request?

I believe there should be widespread awareness of this initiative and we all should make it our duty to inform the weaker sections of the society that we come in contact with, for example, house help, etc and if needed, help them apply if they are in need of free legal help.

Justice is everybody’s right and we must ensure more and more people know about it.

How many of us know that 9th November was Legal Services Day?

We speak of 9-11 in so many ways, but this is something that needs to be celebrated so that a huge chunk of people know about NALSA and the free legal aid that it provides.

In 2015, Justice Thakur, who is also the executive chairman of the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) stated, “Over 40 percent out of 1.25 billion Indians are acutely deprived of certain basic rights and opportunities”.

If you agree with me and believe that legal aid should be available to the weaker sections of the society, please forward/share/reblog this post as much as possible so that awareness can be spread.

Source: www.nalsa.gov.in

Cults and Young Minds

Har Har Japoon Main Har Har

depressed-woman

Har Har Japoon Main Har Har

Har Har Japoon Main Har Har

Courtesy: Google Images

Courtesy: Google Images

Picture this:

A lone girl – Just divorced/Just broke up with her BF/staying alone in a big (or small) city

A middle-aged lady – son has left for US/ daughter just got married/ is in a middle age crisis/going through empty nest syndrome

A young man who has lost interest in life because he does not know how to earn million dollars.

A student who consistently fails in exams, but is promised miracles.

What do you think is common between all of them?

At first glance, perhaps nothing.

Think a bit more, and one word will resonate – VULNERABLE

EASY PREY

When you are low in life, apart from fighting your own demons, you also have to fight predators who are looking out for people like you. Cult members are everywhere around us. The reason why they are not apparent is because one of the requisites of their modus operandi is to remain inconspicuous to the general public, and very very ‘in-your-face’ conspicuous to those who are like the ones described above, vulnerable and easy prey.

In many cases, it starts with a trust building statement that goes like, “I know what you are going through. I have been there. I know how much it hurts. But I had ‘grace’ and was saved from this suffering’. And then begins the story. Then begins the seva. Then in the name of seva, they suck into your time, slowly and surely, through mental manipulation and guilt mechanisms; ensuring that everything you do, is connected to ‘right’ and ‘wrong’, ‘good’ and ‘sin’ and then, you end up spending a large chunk of your life with the cult members, doing seva of various forms. And then the Guru talks random stuff like, “I know what you are going through. Let it go, set it free. You will feel better.” – as though he knows what IT is. No, he does not. He is counting on your blind faith in him, to “fit” your issues into his words and believe, “Wow! Guruji is really omnipresent, he is really antaryami! He knows what is in my heart and mind.” And thus goes the story.

Meditation is a good way of calming your mind. You do it yourself, with a guided meditation audio in your phone, and you will still feel relief. Hence this is a primary weapon that these cults use. Through meditation, one’s mind does respond, in a different way. However, cults take this as their success. It is so harmful to have your senses opened by cults and to be left all alone in the darkness of the other planes, that the trap keeps getting deeper and deeper. The fear keeps getting larger, and your dependence on the Guruji solidifies into a life long relationship that sounds like, “My life is nothing without Guruji. I will get destroyed if I do not share my problems with him.”

Mostly, the cults have a “living master”, or a “living God” or someone like that. They insist on 100% devotion to “The One”. They can not bear anyone talking ill about their Master and will ensure that the person knows he/she has committed a sin that they would pay for. These Masters travel first class, stay in the best of luxuries and visit foreign countries in name of getting followers. They go to extent of publishing wrong statistics about their sermons. You can not ask them questions. You have to “trust” them unconditionally, because The One trusted YOU unconditionally and CHOSE YOU to be the fortunate one. Being among the followers is being fortunate.

This Master is a good preacher. He knows the psyche of the human mind. He knows how to twist it. He uses positives and negatives and negatives as positives to mess up the followers’ minds. He ensures that he talks about sadness, sorrows, circle of life, importance of Guru, why even Arjun needed Krishna to guide him, importance of surrender etc. etc. so on and so forth. This is to seal dependence of followers into him. When such people play with psyche, they turn young fresh vibrant minds into machines, clueless about what and why they are doing as told.

Another significant characteristic of cults is that nothing comes free. In name of seva, they collect funds, which they claim to use for various charities. However, no one know or dares to ask about where the funds go. Many followers who have given up their karmic lives, to do seva are cited as examples and glorified, saying, become like them. They have given up their luxuries and donated their earnings into the cult. So, slowly, followers who came here for peace of mind and direction to be able to learn ways of life and earn the luxuries of life, slowly are made to give up even what they currently have.

If you are in a similar organization and are being asked to keep it a secret, please ensure that all your antennae are up. Many cults encourage secrecy. They arrange member meetings behind closed doors and preach and preach and preach them to get  more members “inside”. There is an “inside circle” that is not open even to members, esp new members and the new members are encouraged to complete courses to move ahead in their “spiritual path leading to the Master”. As the members start with courses, they become elevated as the next course is always an attraction – to reach the Master. Thus, leaving the cult becomes almost close to impossible, as one keeps moving further, and further.

This circle of exploitation is never-ending and I have not mentioned the “out of ordinary” stuff in this blog post at all – stuff that is tricks of hand, hypnotism, magic, etc. I am assuming that the victims are intelligent enough to understand that “Sweet” can not come out of “thin air” – something a Guruji once produced, and gave it as “prasad/offering” to a troubled lady who had trouble conceiving.

Very recently, and the reason why I was prompted to write this blog, was because I came across the following blog published by Art of Living survivors, one of them, in fact, was an exalted teacher in the group. Although I am not against or in favour of AoL, I think the way these authors have presented the choice of knowledge without thrashing out the cult case in point, is commendable.

They clearly demarcate between their own discoveries within the AoL as an organization, and offer blog readers the choice to explore further or the choice to move away, if they are ardent followers. As opposed to a normal cult behaviour, that emphasizes “conversion”, they offer the wisdom of experience and the freedom to choose.

Anyone interested should check out this: https://aolfree.wordpress.com/2010/10/02/the-purpose-of-these-blogs/

Now, talking about the purpose of my blog, I was in a situation recently, where in I witnessed a young mind getting pulled into the trap of an organization deeper and deeper, and when I researched, I was shocked to see and read the truth. My own brush with another organization, and my “thank god for good sense” that I could recognize that things are not right and listening to my own intuition, walking out bravely, was something that served as a strong blast from the past. I did not want the same to happen to others, however, I have grown wiser and I do realize today, that each one has come into this world, to learn their own lessons and I can not influence anyone.

All I can plead is for God to give common sense to the vulnerable.

She lost. Yet she had the last laugh.

She had tried her best and lost
She had won them all and lost
She had shed her tears and lost
She had granted smiles and lost

She grew too large and lost
She became invincible and lost
She became invisible and lost
She set an example and lost

Yet she had the last laugh
Her losing meant someone’s win.
She stood up for another soul.
And so, she had the last laugh.
Even though she lost.

Introduced in February 2013 on Everyday Gyaan – an invitation, a prompt, a linky. Write exactly a 100 words on the prompt and publish it on your blog – a story, a poem, a mini-essay. The linky will be open right up to next Friday.
100 Words on Saturday will be up on Write Tribe every Saturday.

This week’s prompt: ‘She had the last laugh’.

 

Blog Action Day: Be Human; and let all be human

Born Free. equal in dignity

Born Free

Human Rights.

Blog Action Day 2013 is for Human Rights.

What do we all understand by human rights? For most of us, today, we end up saying, having access to a computer laptop, phone smart phone nay Ipad is our birthright. We have rich brats zipping across the roads in their BMWs and Skodas, claiming their right to be on the road risking pedestrians’ lives. We have the elite blaring loudspeakers on wedding nights claiming the entire locality as their right.

Lying demurely, in a corner of the road is a little girl, scantily clad, huddled against the wall, staring blankly at the passers by. Her left hand clutches her stomach as if she is in pain. I approach her to see what’s wrong. She just gestures with the other hand, moving it towards her mouth.  “Food.” She is not in pain. She is hungry starving. We keep our nations’ future leaders starving. RIP Human Rights.

“Sati” was abolished in 1829. Honour killing is still a reality in India. RIP Human Rights.

Child Marriage Prevention Act came out in 1929. In 2013, India refuses to sign the UN resolution on early and forced marriages. RIP Human Rights.

2001 – Right to Food implemented. 2013 – Global Hunger Index places India at rank 63. Over 40% of children below 5 years are under weight. We feed our children mid-day meals which are ethically, morally and physically inedible. (I could not write it in clearer words.) We waste thousands of tons of food in our high affair weddings. Who cares? RIP Human Rights.

Human trafficking is an $8 million dollar business in India. Of course, it isn’t legal.

With all due respect to the Supreme One, whose message is to serve humanity, Shirdi’s Sai Baba temple gets Rs 3.44 cr donation in 3 days. We can spend crores on stone idols, but we do not have a heart large enough to accommodate an orphan, or feed the poor, or educate the uneducated.

The UN, in its Universal Declaration of Human Rights, abolished slavery on 10 December 1948. 21 million people are enslaved worldwide in what is called modern slavery – debts, rape, trafficking for prostitution.

Should I go on?

Right to speech, freedom, expression, walking without fear, breathing freely, food, water, sanitation, electricity, the right to live, we all have a long long way to go.

Just one request to everyone reading this blog post and participating in Blog Action Day 2013, can we all be more human, and less cold-blooded? Can we all be more inclusive and less judgmental? Can we all be compassionate and caring?