Guest Articles: For the Joy of Sharing

Themes in Guest Articles

INSPIRE
REFLECT
EVOKE
EXPLORE

GUEST ARTICLES

Guest Articles by Volunteer Authors


#51. STATUS OF HOMEMAKERS IN INDIA

By Khushi Modani
BBA Student, PES University
Bangalore, India
16-Sep-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword to the article by Venkat
It is important to realize and accept that by design of our nature, we are an integrated set of components that often function best in opposite ways. For instance, as social beings our needs and social status is best valued through effective interaction but as individuals our needs and self-worth is best valued through effective calmness. Mental capacities are unlimited for an active mind but physically there is always limitation in terms of the energy and biological processes. By various factors such as prejudice, conditioning, ignorance, laziness or low self-esteem, the self-awareness of these integrated components is lost. Thus the mind is fooled into giving more importance to what is directly tangible, obtainable, pleasurable or easily understood. With the lack of importance to the intangible, hard to obtain, the unpleasant and complexity, they soon get devalued as well. Only hard, painful experiences or inspirational education can bring the self-awareness and the balanced perspective on the value of intangibles along with the tangibles. All human values are intangible for physical senses but life, including the economy, ultimately runs best when human values of trust and respect are at their best. Economic health is best measured by tangible factors such as health, education, skill etc. but all of these are best produced by intangible, non-physical factors such as focus, discipline, practice, happiness etc.

Khushi, in this insightful article, highlights the development of societal views on homemakers and the need for a progressive change in the outlook. Undervaluing homemakers for their non-economic nature of home activities is clearly a product of an unaware mind that has lost the perspective on the great value of the intangibles. Kudos to Khushi for bringing such a relevant topic for the due attention it demands.

To understand the plight of homemakers in India and appreciate the need for due respect to their hard work, read further, in this well written article.


#50. The Virtual Guests At My Dinner Table

By Swati Kakodkar
Educator, Founder & Storyteller – STORY KI BORY

Bangalore, India
30-Aug-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
Just as ‘No size fits all’, no meaning fits all because in the human space, there is no end to its dimensions. Meanings switch quickly depending on the level of one’s trust, interest, purpose and needs. There could be as many reasons to connect as there could be for conflicts. Given the presence of humans in any social situation, there is always a different shade of meaning for everyone and humor is certainly one of the dimensions among them.

Swati presents a sweet chapter in a lighter vein from the pages of the pandemic we all have lived through. I am sure this story will resonate with most people who worked online, having innumerable meetings with some in parallel with lunch or dinner in the presence of other family members. While the pandemic taught us many great lessons on human values, it also brought in peculiar and unusual social situations to savor in irrepressible waves of laughter.


Enjoy this lovely short story from a wonderful story teller – Swati Kakodkar.

#49. From Concessions To Exploitation!

By L Muralidharan
Chartered Accountant, L. Muralidharan & Co. Chennai, Practices Tax, Internal Audit and Statutory Audit,
Founder – Sreeram Coaching Point, Coaching for CA Exams
Chennai, India
05-Aug-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
It is researched that human brain has no limit to the amount of information it can retain in the long term memory structures. What about the human stomach? How much food can one eat in a meal? Clearly one cannot eat beyond a certain amount. We are an amalgamation of the infinite and the finite in our capabilities. Usually the infinite capacities are in the realm of our inner world in our mind. For example it may manifest as infinite patience or as an unending craving for pleasures. Thus, the attachment to the ‘bigger, easier and sooner’ is hard to resist in temptation. It clouds the mind from being aware of the optimal needs. Mr. Muralidharan brings a subject on a similar line of thought. He talks about how measures taken for the betterment of certain sections of society and fairness are abused by some people. Thus, measures to give the freedom of opportunity may in reality be usurped by some from those who are intended to actually receive their benefit.

Mr. Muralidharan supplements his views with some apt and common examples of the misuse of concessions and policies intended for the benefit of specific sections of society.

For some good triggers to think on the conundrum of societal policy vs benefit, please explore in this short piece of writing by Mr. Muralidharan.

#48. AN INSPIRING JOURNEY

By Anish Baheti
Chartered Accountant, MBA from University of Sydney, Certified Life coach, Certified Brain mapping practitioner
Ahmedabad, India
26-Jul-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
It is said that necessity is the mother of invention. Knowing and understanding needs is only the first pillar on which a useful invention stands. The inspiration, perseverance and value envisaged are the three other important pillars which bring an innovative idea to reality. Value can be generated by either making something better or solving a difficulty. To be inspired to solve the problems of learning difficulties needs an empathetic heart. Anish’s innovations, in my understanding, are driven by empathy for others’ learning experiences and the outcome for Accounting learners was his amazing 52-card deck. This story narrated by Anish brings his inspiring journey towards the making of the Numb€₹$ Deck followed by a unique Life Deck to power one towards mindfulness and move purposefully from self-inquiry to self-realization.

Anish has a natural talent to translate abstract concepts into easy-to-relate material components like the LEGO pieces to have fun and learn. Enjoy his wonderful journey of innovation in his own words!

#47. THE POWER OF CHOICES

By Sanjeevini Surendran
Engineering student, Cambridge Institute of Technology
Bangalore, India
24-Jul-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Our experience to a large extent is determined by our choices. Right from the choice of friends, choice of career to choices in food. To choose a specific flavor of ice cream is by one’s sense organ, to choose the amount of it is by one’s knowledge of good nutrition and to choose the occasion or company to have it with is by one’s wisdom. Thus our choices change based on our preference, need, capacity, awareness, knowledge and wisdom. At times it is hard to see that we do have a choice in some situations because either we are not willing to explore enough or are limited by our perceptions on what is allowed in a situation or a culture. Regardless of these apparent limitations and the various determining factors for our choices, there is a lot of value and sense in using our discretion to consciously put an effort and choose what works best for us.

In this short yet thought provoking writing by Sanjeevini, she elaborates on the important role choices play in our life. She persuades well in her cogent and well laid out thoughts on the need to time and choose the choices wisely for our best life-experience.


In Sanjeevini’s
succinct message, “Making a choice is totally worth it”. Discover the wisdom behind it in this wonderful article!

#46. PUSH ME!


By Malini Misra Bhattacharya
Freelance Writer, Yogi and fitness enthusiast, Singer, Seeker of Life’s wisdom, Maker of fermented beverage and food.

India
08-Jul-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
The artist’s paint tubes come in limited quantities of different colors. Once used, one has to replenish with a fresh stock of it. While there is a limit to the quantity of the paint, there is no limit to the creations an artist can produce. That sums how life works. The science, technology, knowledge, models, theories each are a paint tube with their own defined limits. What one could possibly produce remains limitless. Exactly as an artist does with the tubes. Knowledge is a tool in our ‘artistic’ hands and not a published fence to define or create limits on ourselves. However, much like Farhan Akhtar, as Malini mentions, we at times, assume some limits and fear crossing it, without being forcibly pushed over. We have to be reminded on our true limitless nature to build the resilience to cross over things that seemingly hold us back.

Resilience is the most relevant and critical life skill for anyone – not just the young. Spirituality, and various philosophies on life at the core are intended to build the same resilience. Each person who lives through the tenets in them and experiences the inner transformation becomes a voice to inspire others. Malini’s succinct message is one of those voices, given in a simple and practical format. She brings easy and relatable examples to make her point. The eight ideas Malini presents bring the right ‘push’ to ‘jump with courage and try’ for a wide range of situations where one might limit oneself.


Reflect on your experiences and find the right one to guide you through!


#45. THANKS TO MY GRANNY

By L. Muralidharan
Chartered Accountant, L. Muralidharan & Co. Chennai
Practices Tax, Internal Audit and Statutory Audit
Founder, Sreeram Coaching Point, Coaching for CA Exams

Chennai, India
30-Jun-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
The essence of a growing relationship is in knowing and being aware that our views are bound in certain limits at any moment of time. This awareness drives the curiosity to understand others and substantiates the need for togetherness. On similar lines, our tendencies to understand the universe and need for harmony with it seems to rest on knowing and being aware that human capacities as a whole are bound in certain limits at any point in time. We can only continuously try to know the universe and may never really know it in a complete sense.

Mr. Muralidharan’s narration of his conversation with his grandmother and her wise words reverberate the same sentiments on how our perception as humans is quite limited in the larger scheme of things – on how nature and life have been designed to work. This short piece of writing comes with a deep and lingering thought on our place in life as humans.

Reflect on the wonderful insight presented by Mr. Muralidharan’s grandmother to his strong argument.


#44. Cultural Conflict – Starts with you and your family

By Manna Abraham
Thought leader, mindful entrepreneur, international life mentor, personal and business breakthrough coach, trauma healer, speaker, CA, CPA and Founder- EMPR Method
Adelaide, Australia
03-Jun-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
The balance more critical than work-life balance is the balance between the independence we seek and the interdependence with others for a meaningful living. Our perceptions and beliefs become the wedges on which this balancing game rests. These perceptions and beliefs are largely determined by the culture of the times and one’s individual mindset. When these perceptions and beliefs differ from others, the principles of tolerance and acceptance bring the scale back to balance. If not for such a resolution, independence and individualism shift towards exclusion and seclusion.

Manna Abraham, with her long and rich experience as a leader in solving human problems, dives into the nature of conflict, illustrated well with real-life examples. In this article she explores how the management of conflict at a personal level in one’s family sets the foundation to management of conflict at the team, organization and country levels. In a succinct and logical approach, she shows how the inner virtues of tolerance and acceptance help us rise to our challenges for better living and experience.

Reflect on the concepts of culture, interpersonal relationships and the antidote to conflict as prescribed by Manna in her wonderful words.

#43. CHANGE IS INEVITABLE

By Mekhala Chakravarty
Home maker
Bangalore, India
28-May-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Everything is either in a stage of growth or in a stage of decay. Hence change happens whether we agree or not. In this short article, Mekhala brings insight into change as a natural process and the advise to accept it. This is well illustrated with the tadpole and caterpillar story. At the same time, change is a necessary process for improvement and more often than not with a discomforting experience. The fact is that human intention, attention and effort can grow or decay things as per the discrimination used. Health, brainpower, learning and mental wellness can all be traced to an increase or decrease in cellular growth and neural connections. This intention, attention and effort come at the price of staying off one’s comfort zone but that is the differentiating factor between those who continuously improve and those who don’t.

Once again Mekhala brings a powerful message using very simple examples as food for thought.

#42. The Changed Woman but Not-so-changing Man!

By Narinder Kaur
Counsellor, Energy Healer, Life Coach
Motivational Speaker, Author & POSH Trainer
New Delhi, India
25-May-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
It is said that men are from Mars and women from Venus. Venus takes 243 days to complete one spin around itself and that works to about a medium walking speed by humans. Mars takes 24h 36 min (much like the earth) to complete one spin. Venus is the slowest spinning planet in our solar system and this stands in complete contrast to the point made by Narinder Kaur. The pivotal changes in society with women outgrowing the stereotyped roles, brings new equations to balance especially when the patriarchic mindset does not evolve to the pace. New equations of power, skills as well as thought process demand the attention as persuaded by Narinder. Her story is a reflection of the hard realities and brings several questions to work on, not just at an individual level but on a social-cultural aspect as well. The larger and deeper question remains on what transforms an outdated mindset.

For some food for thought, brace up for the message in Narinder Kaur’s bold and inspired words.


#41. Face Your Fear

By Deborah Templeton
Learning Architect
Ottawa
Ontario, Canada
30-Apr-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
While role models serve to inspire, the courage to persevere comes from conquering our own fears. Just one experience can transform the entire life and Deb’s amazing attempt at the Grand Canyon did just that! Her wonderful narrative is thrilling to read, laced by the expressive emotions she went through and the transformative value she reaped from the same.

Find inspiration to face your fears and in Deb’s words “Discover yourself and achieve beyond what you ever did!”


#40. Being A Parent

By Kajal Kataria
Homemaker
Bangalore, India
28-Apr-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
Independence, Inter-dependence and dependence are three levers on which our lives run. All need to work in tandem for good balance in experience and harmony. In the quest for one, the other two may get neglected and that is when the needs of others or the self begin to get neglected as well. The effort and intention towards a balance of the three remains a continuous duty as well as a struggle at every age in every person. And this applies to every relationship with humans as well as nature. Kajal’s article stands out on the same for the parent-child relationship on how much to care and how much to control. In fact at the core lies the fundamental principle of “when to let go and when to never give up”. In her simple yet beautiful persuasive style, Kajal urges us to think on deeper questions of dependence, inter-dependence and independence in a parent-child relationship. How much to control to allow independence and yet help realize the inter-dependence (empathy) and dependence (for e.g. on education and skills).

This is a wonderfully thought provoking article and evokes the appropriate emotion to reflect and see if we care or care so much to lose time for other precious moments of life .


#39. Five Tips To Improve Your Math Skills

By Aarti Panchal
A freelance researcher in Indology,
Associate at GHARS,
an NGO in Australia
Surat, India

26-Apr-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
To consider, treat or learn a subject as if it were separate or independent from others would be as tasty as eating salt, oil, pepper, spice, veggies, meat, grain, and cereal in separate exclusive portions. It is the beautiful blend of those ingredients that makes the taste linger long on the tongue and the mind. It takes many years after schooling to realize that those seemingly disparate subjects are inseparable from each other in their function in real life. Like form and soul (Shakti and Siva), one does not exist without the other. The treatment of math as something separate probably makes it tasteless to many. It is time to bring in word problems in math like speed of RBC cells in the blood, proportion of carbs and protein in a meal, percentage problems of F# keys in a song, perimeter problems with paramecium, acceleration problems with Dinosaurs etc. to bring the spirit back to math in the learner’s mind.

While it may be hard to find an institution or someone who brings such an integrated approach to learning math, these tips from Aarti provide excellent ideas to make math more interesting than it may seem to the unguided eye. Among these 5 tips, keeping math as a ‘lens’ in day-to-day activities to view life through math is the key in my humble opinion.

Explore these wonderful ideas to enjoy learning math cast in the lovely and simple words of Aarti.


#38. Maya and Meta

By Anusha Jaishankar
Semiconductor Engineer, Explorer
Bangalore, India

24-Apr-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
The title ‘Maya and Meta’ may conjure a picture of this being a story of two sisters bearing those names. Maya refers to the illusory sense perception of the world we consider as the reality and Meta is a short form for Metaverse – a framework to experience the virtual techno-based world through our senses as a reality. While this is not a story about two sisters, Maya and Meta seem to have a deeper blood relation as two grandiose veils pushing us away from the Vedantic absolute reality (the underlying substratum of the apparent reality called Mithya).

Anusha draws parallels between Maya and Meta with insightful explanation and examples. Illusions come from various seeds such as ignorance, opinion, attachments etc. and in various intensities from simple misconceptions to addictions. Indeed, it may be possible that reality has a relative scale like the pH value of acids and bases across various dimensions bound in the limits of our sensory perception. Anusha persuades well on the ‘dangerous curve’ the Metaverse might posit humanity into in the future.

Inspire yourself by the juxtaposition of the unreal reality of our perception and the unreal creation of reality by technology in relation to our mental well being expressed so poignantly by Anusha.


#37. My First Sea Voyage

By C.I. Sivasubramanian
Aged 95, Retd. Director, Ministry of Commerce
New Delhi, India
22-Apr-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
Any travel to a strange land is always fascinating and when it comes as surprise at a young age, it becomes an adventure. Mr. C. I. Sivasubramanian shares his beautiful memories of his first travel by a ship to Mombasa, Africa. He describes in his tender touch, the various feelings his mind sailed over while aboard the English ship, with his wife, a young child and a new chapter of his now illustrious career.

There must be something deep in this mode of travel that brings a connection to reminisce even after fifty years. Perhaps, where the waters run deep, we sense the depth of life. Personally I have never been on anything bigger than a small boat. Looking forward to one some day!

Some memories are forever to cherish and some experiences always inspire. Enjoy the sweet journey in this narrative spruced in uncle’s gentle humor!


#36. Mythology and Evolution

By Mekhala Chakravarty
Homemaker
Bangalore, India

19-Apr-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Nikola Tesla, the Serbian-American inventor is best known for his design of our modern-day alternating current system. He confirmed his inspiration to look at force and matter as energy came after his ‘chance’ meeting with Swami Vivekananda over discussions on the Vedic cosmology. While he could not prove it, the proof came ten years later by Albert Einstein. This serves as a good example to absorb the wonderful parallel drawn by Ms. Mekhala between modern science and the ancient Vedic texts. Mekhala has a wide range of interests across various subjects including Vedic Astrology.

Find your inspiration in the lovely mapping of the modern theory of evolution and the ten avatars of Lord Vishnu in Mekhala’s simple and easy-to-read style!


#35. My School life

By Bindu K Varma
Reiki, Angelic Healer
Bangalore, India
16-Apr-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
While it is important to look forward to the future to make progress and be better, it would be an empty success without gratitude to parents, family members, friends, teachers and the schooling that made it possible. In the same spirit, Bindu Ji recalls the various wonderful things that made her schooling a complete experience not just in learning skills but in imbibing values and broadening the outlook to life. Being educated in a KV myself in two different cities, the experiences described are so relatable for me! Indeed, school days are full of opportunities to explore the world, find inspiration from others, develop self-expression, and the love for various subjects of interest.

Reflect on the beautiful experience of your own schooling through Ms. Bindu Varma’s pleasant expression of gratitude towards the same.


#34. Mein Kampf

By Jyotsna Balasubramanian
Chartered Accountant
New Delhi, India
12-Apr-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
Certainty and uncertainty seem to go always hand in hand not just in action but in thought as well. And not just in extent but in degree as well. An attacking (firm in mind) soccer front runner has more opponents tracking him or her. Being too certain or fixed in views carries the risk of being too fragile to last. It is hard to be sure if our choices are completely from our free will. Yet like soccer, life must go on regardless of the in-progress goal score. Some decisions may be great and some otherwise but the key is to keep playing the game.

Jyotsna shares glimpses from her personal experience of the various turning points in her life in career and as a mother with the lovely lessons they brought. Grateful to her kindness in sharing a wonderful perspective and thoughts to muse over.

Reflect on your decisions and the experiences they brought through this wonderful article to answer the deeply provocative questions on perspective, dependency and choice.


#33. A Lesson From History

By Kajal Kataria
Homemaker
Bangalore, India

10-Apr-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
As students we learn about the law of conservation of charges which states that the total charge in a system remain constant and the positive and negative charges always exist in pairs (equal in amount). This law can be applied as well to life and human nature to equal effect. The capacity to interpret the negative comes when the positive in known. While the real nature is non-dual as explained in detail in our scriptures, the pairs in all dualities are a necessary means to understand as well as to communicate to help others understand the value of things. No story can be effective in conveying its message without the pair of opposites (usually of the good and evil).

Kajal takes us through a trip into a few pages of history and nails down the value that emerges from the contrast of the named vs. the unnamed tombs (again opposites). While we will never know the likely turn of events if Aurangzeb’s elder brother ruled instead of him, we can be rest assured that where there are liberals, there would be conservatives (and vice versa). So it would not really matter if history were different (than we know it today) going by the law of conservation of dual qualities (if I may call it so)!

This article in Kajal’s simple words, inspires to always explore the unwritten stories, unsung heroes, and un-named tombs of history that brought us to our present.


#32. My Native Place

By Divyaa Doraiswamy
Founder – GURUKULAM The Shloka Learning Centre (REGD)
Bangalore, India

06-Apr-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
Memories are best, of the songs which touch, of the stories that inspire, of the people that love, and of the places that are exciting. Chennai became Divyaa’s Disneyland as a child, offering the exciting change from the Bengaluru gardens, and the boring quietness at home. It is natural that we absorb as well as observe better when we are into things in full enthusiasm – so evident in Divyaa’s descriptions and lucid imagery.
Reflect on the things that bring out the spirits in you and their influence on your choices as Divyaa spotlights on every such event and place in this lovely article!


#31. Financial Literacy for the Young

By Oliver Sequeira
Senior Management
BFSI experience across Sales, BD,
Operations and Customer Service
Bangalore, India
04-Apr-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat

There have been various interesting guest and student articles so far covering the ways to appreciate and experience the value of things viz. When we lose them, being in Switzerland, through stories, from one’s own child, improving learning habits, loving oneself, latent messages in art, in the will to explore, creating happiness than to search it, in conscious consumerism, redefining perfection, in avoiding overload of information and so on. Anything of value (in quality and durability) comes through conscious effort, understanding and practice of good habits run on good principles. It then makes sense to price this effort and the gamut of knowledge that made it possible (which themselves have costs we already paid in the process of education).

In this wonderful writing by Oliver, he shares his rich and vast experience in financial literacy as useful tips for the young. While there are a few areas of the financial literacy covered in schools, it does not come with an end-to-end view or an independent program in most institutions in my understanding. Financial literacy is certainly a critical life skill and it is better to learn it from basic principles than to learn the hard way through experiences after schooling. It is interesting to note Oliver’s recommendations for every age bracket through the schooling years. He has a lovely prize-winning game in the end for young readers of this article. A big thanks to him for sharing his practical advice to the young to become financially independent sooner.

Going by Oliver’s lovely article, fortune favors not only the brave but also the financially literate! Read on to learn some basic skills to achieve it.


#30. My Favorite Word

By Usha Ramaswamy
Senior School Head
The Shri Ram Universal School
Hyderabad
Hyderabad, India
02-Apr-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat

There could be two reasons to be lost. Either we don’t know where we are going or we don’t know the right route. All education, knowledge, tradition and culture give us various abstractions, concepts, means and symbols to tread back on the right track. In other words the various stories, theories, models, laws, sciences, theorems, algorithms, and so on become guiding lights for us to move on than be lost or reinvent the wheel.

Despite these, there is a third reason to become lost (which seems more common) and that is in not being self-aware – of doubt and confusion while being on the right track. Here is where feedback matters and nothing could be better for the good to be told that they are good. Appreciation even for the tiniest things are instant guiding lights that bring energy and firm one’s commitment to doing the good.

Ms. Usha Ramaswamy, the Chief Appreciation Officer (in her friend’s words) unravels the science behind the art of appreciation and the special wonders it brought to her interpersonal interactions. The law of reciprocation always works be it in thought, deed or words of appreciation. An excellent choice of her favorite word that reflects in her beautiful experiences.

Reflect on what appreciation has done for you in your lives in this lovely recount by Usha.


#29. Lost and Found- A Blessing

By Meera Venkatesan
Learning Consultant, Performance Storyteller
Trainer, Creative writer,
Bangalore, India
30-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
The best lessons in knowing the value of a thing come when we lose it. Meera in her simple style, joins the disconnected dots to form an embroidery of truth from her recent personal experience. We all have received a ‘refresher’ through the COVID pandemic to reconnect to the things that really matter and to regain ownership of the powers within. It is in the misplaced understanding of values that we often do not know what to hold on to and what to give up. Losing, then seems to be a great way to find ourselves back in the spirit we are endowed with. There is a wonderful tinge of humor in Meera’s writing which is eclipsed by the finishing lines that sets our thought rolling on a steady groove.

Enjoy in Meera’s words, the subtle force of life’s realities in finding the value of what we lose.


#28. Love Yourself

By Aarti Hudiya
Positive Psychology Coach, Manager GlobalArt
Zumba Fitness Instructor
Bangalore, India
28-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
As we grow, we first read the lines, then learn to read between the lines, then read around the lines and finally sift through the pages of life that manifested those lines. This is in contrast to the paradigm of seeing a thing from different perspectives because there is as much meaning there in what is unsaid, unseen and the unfelt. The commonplace notions and stereotyped views on people and their physical characteristics are more for the comforting cushion of parochial bonhomie of some groups. It needs grit and a brave heart to stand one’s ground while being excluded by others outside the walls of such stereotypical labelling. One such brave heart is Aarti Hudiya and she shares her wisdom and rich experience in clear, practical tips for the new generation (Gen Z). Anyone born from 1997 onward is part of the new generation termed as Generation Z. Aarti’s success in the various roles she dons brings inspiration and courage to deal with similar labeling which every generation goes through in some form or the other.

A bouquet of inspiring, crisp and powerful thoughts in this simple yet beautiful article!


#27. Truth is stranger than fiction

By Meena Sanyal
Retired IT Project manager, World Bank
Washington DC, USA
26-Mar-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
A fruit in its various stages is potent with different qualities and benefits ideal for each stage. In its raw form, it is sour, perfect for pickles and in its ripe form, it is sweet, perfect for quick energy and the palate. Experiences and our views are no different. They bring a multitude of meanings over time and in differing contexts, tease our ever fragile temperament. And often the truth is such a variable that it becomes stranger than fiction! Meena recounts her wonderful experience and the range of moods she inadvertently found herself go through.

Enjoy a rolling trip on the coaster we call truth in the beautiful twists laid in Meena’s expressive style!


#26. My struggles to get a degree

By C.I. Sivasubramanian
Aged 95, Retd. Director, Ministry of Commerce
New Delhi, India
25-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Some fires when ignited can never be doused be it floods or rain. Uncle ji’s sweet story of earning a degree and a post-graduate degree in his 90s is testament of just that. It is poignant to see how priorities that brought him early into employment came at the price of delaying education and the same became a cause to delay progress in career (at the needed times). At a time when most would find earning a degree as irrelevant – post retirement – uncle still persevered and found his happiness of achieving what he was keen to complete in his 20s! A beautiful story indeed to fuel the fire in us to learn and succeed.

Experience the amazing journey of Mr. C.I. Sivasubramanian through life and the crowning glory of a seemingly elusive degree!


#25. Consumerism Vs. Conscious Consumerism

By Lakshmipraba U S
Founder & Director
Prithvimitra Innovations(OPC) Private Limited
Bangalore, India
24-Mar-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
The title of this article echoes the sentiment in Jyotsna’s article on ‘conscious information processing’. It is true that as consumers we need to be more conscious of what we consume. The inspiration however must come from understanding of our real needs. Like too much information, too much of product availability disconnects us from awareness of our real needs and the needs of the environment we live in. The earth has its own needs. All the biotic and abiotic elements of the eco-system have their own needs to be able to mutually function and sustain the natural cycles for living beings to enjoy the richness the earth offers. This lends so much value to the mythology we have on earth, nature and elements as part of Vedic heritage. Nothing could serve better than those mythological stories abound in abstractions and allegory to heighten our awareness of the needs of nature as well (worshipped as gods and goddesses).

In clear, direct and lucid style, Lakshmipraba underlines the importance of being conscious consumers and benefits of aligning our habits towards a universal harmony.

Read on for some thought provoking triggers towards better and healthier living!


#24. Fun With Physics

By Mekhala Chakravarty
Homemaker
Bangalore, India
23-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
The best way to engage and feel engaged with something new is in having the means to connect it with what we already know. And stories are a great means to achieve the same. How should these stories be? Does one need to be highly creative? Mekhala’s example brings a model answer with a story so simple and relatable for students that it makes the subject so much more fun! Only a person who is simple in thought and living can come up with such simple models for describing complex things. Mekhala has a wide range of interests across various subjects including Vedic Astrology.

Relish the rib-tickling story to remember Newton’s laws of motion and a method to make learning enjoyable!


#23. An Exciting Journey

By J Vaidhinathan
Retired Deputy Secretary,
Ministry of Commerce and Industry,
Govt. of India
New Delhi, India
21-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
A travelogue from an octogenarian of a travel as recent as 2019 itself sounds exciting and to read an account with such rich imagery and details is pure delight. Mr. Vaidhinathan and his group (The Travel Circle) inspire so much energy and zest for life in us, running an initiative since the 1960s with nearly one hundred travel trips! His description of the MV Nancowry ship covering in-depth on its topology, the people, activities, and interactions is gripping. The Andaman & Nicobar is certainly more inviting reading the captivating descriptions of beautiful sights the islands abound.

Immerse in the rich experience of this long and amazing travel account by Vaidhinathan uncle. The joy and verve in this writing rubs off on you indeed!


#22. Ignorance is Bliss

By Jyotsna Balasubramanian
Chartered Accountant
Bangalore, India
20-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
This is an incident narrated by Jyotsna from her personal experience and it brings out some amazing things to think about. These days, when information comes in so quick, our objective thought and composure are many times not ready to keep up to the pace. The mind is a great equipment to think but increasing the load of information may bring our emotions to unsettle our composure and the drive to action. Project managers are taught about the interplay and the needed ability to balance between Cost, Quality and Scope. If one of these goes beyond a limit, the other two are naturally impacted. On the same lines one can see the interplay between Wisdom, Knowledge and Will with each hinged on our plane of senses. Any of these when heavier than the other two, it can make us lose control, leading to bad and untimely decisions. A good balance among them, ensures things get the attention when needed and to the right amount.

Enjoy this recollection by Jyotsna written in lovely and thoughtful words to bring so many things to think, act and feel about!


#21. Perfect Mom

By Aarti Hudiya
Positive Psychology Coach, Manager GlobalArt
Zumba Fitness Instructor
Bangalore, India
19-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Perfection. A word one can love and hate at the same time because we jump so easily to equating (im)perfection at a skill to (im)perfection as a human being. Aarti’s tip may seem directed to mothers but it brings good thought to reflect on for fathers or anyone who measures the difference between one’s value and worth. The world’s perfectly shaped samosa may be high in worth but is of no value if it does not taste good. Our value lies in how we make others feel and there is nothing imperfect in us as human beings. Nothing makes a child happier than a happy mother indeed. A point well driven in this wonderful writing – “Invest your energies wisely”

Find the inspiration in this advice as mothers and in the underlying thought as human beings!


#20. School Education In My Time

By Divyaa Doraiswamy
Founder – GURUKULAM
The Shloka Learning Centre (REGD)
Bangalore, India
18-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
Matter exists in various forms, and each form has a specific melting and boiling point. Whatever fuels one may use, one has to reach the needed temperature to create the fire. Divyaa’s wonderful recollection and contrast of the schooling in her days and now tells us just that. While methods, formats, activities and social interactions change over time (and place), the role of a school remains the same – to ensure the same are given to the extent needed to light up lives till the end.
Experience the wonderful contrast with our present day schooling and impact of education in our lives through this enjoyable narrative!


#19. My Journey In Samskṛtam Studies

By Marcelo de Aquino Vicente
Founder, Nāda Brahman International
Teacher of Nada Yoga
La Plata, Argentina
17-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
In this candid narration, Marcelo Ji shares his interesting story of the deep search in his yogic studies and the culmination towards learning Samskṛtam. His real life experience and discovery brings to light the deep connection of Samskrtam, sound and yoga. Truly amazing. He has worked for years with the yoga of sound and runs a yoga school, Nāda Brahman International in Argentina (his native country). He is a man of varied interests including Vedanta and plays the Rudra veena.

Enjoy this amazing recollection from Marcelo Ji of his journey in Samskṛtam!


#18. Inspire and Get Inspired

By Kajal Kataria
Homemaker
Bangalore, India
16-Mar-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
In several ways, looking at life from the lens of physical and natural laws aligns us towards the deeper meanings in life. It is no wonder that pure science and philosophy seem to unroll down to the same essence of nature. By conservation of energy, when potential energy reduces, the kinetic increases or by conservation of matter, we can neither destroy nor create matter. If one continues to look at reductions and losses as something bad or ill-fated, then one remains ignorant of the increases and gains lying elsewhere.

In a beautiful narration from her personal life, Kajal brings two important lessons here: 1. What we experience depends on what we give attention to 2. Inspiration can come from the very person we want to inspire.

Feel the evocative spirit of things between Kajal and her daughter while deep, soul stirring meanings transpire in her!


#17. An India Adventure

By Anusha Jaishankar
Semiconductor Engineer, Explorer
Bangalore, India
15-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
The dualities in life such as good & bad, narrow & broad, positive & negative etc. in general mean opposites with clear demarcation both in experience and interpretation. But there is one duality of the known vs. unknown which offers a range of experiences depending on one’s will to explore and the unexpected responses received. For those who love to explore or try new things, venturing into the unknown can be exhilarating and bring some amazing experiences. One such beautiful one is recounted in this story by Anusha in her simple and engaging style.

Enjoy the turn of events and the lovely family experience with Anusha as a US-returned Indian!


#16. Important Lessons to Enhance Learning

By Malavika Hukeri
Tutor for Middle & Secondary School
Bangalore, India
14-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
In today’s world where people have less time for others and more things to do (be it productive or otherwise) for the self, aligning to some principle or process to manage oneself has great pay offs and benefits. In this easy-to-read article, Malavika puts forth the key ‘recipe’ to manage one’s learning effectively. Individually these lessons may appear obvious but as a plan, become the blueprint to meaningful attainment of goals and fulfillment. This is replete with the needed ingredients to fuel one’s learning process. Just as five fingers, when together give the power to punch, so may these five simple lessons together give power to your success.

Let these lessons inspire you with a better grip and control on your learning activities!


#15. Learning Through Stories: A Story of Learning

By Nitika Bose
Head of Internal Communications,
Global Infosys BPM
Bangalore, India
13-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
Can one ever forget one’s favorite friend, song or dessert? One could relish and reflect on the same feelings even when alone. Such is the power of association between intense feelings and human memory. The painting of a concept through various shades of characters having contrasting motives woven in threads of pain and fulfillment makes it an intense and engaging personal experience.

Nitika, with her meticulous touch dismantles the complex machinery surrounding the principles of storytelling in the context of learning. In an innovative way, she nails down the art of learning through the story of Ekalavya from the ancient epic Mahabharata. Every possible detail is covered right from the synthesis of memory structures to the power of inspiration built in the elements of a story. It is a pure joy to find this article make its way into the list of guest writings here. Undoubtedly among the “superhit” articles in the ‘INSPIRE’ theme.

Find inspiration seep into your purpose and actions in the journey to success through this amazing article!


#14. Forgiveness

By Aarti Hudiya
Positive Psychology Coach, Manager GlobalArt
Zumba Fitness Instructor
Bangalore, India
12-Mar-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
Values follow a logical sequence just as music does. Like music, they must be experienced (felt), lived (sung) and then understood (aligned to harmony). And then it only gets better and better in all the three aspects. Aarti, in her beautiful words, expresses her understanding of the deeper shades in the human value of forgiveness, coming from rich experience. The ‘never give up’ attitude must be complemented with the ‘letting it go’ attitude to find the right balance in life. It is so wonderful to explore the various benefits and the need to inculcate forgiveness in our lives, in this concise yet crisp article.

Feel the joy of forgiveness in its multiple flavors as the tonic for our soul in this wonderful article!


#13. Idiosyncrasies Of The English Language

By C.I. Sivasubramanian
Aged 95, Retd. Director, Ministry of Commerce
New Delhi, India
11-Mar-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
Some confusions bring pain (more often than not) but there are some which bring peals of humor (if not laughter)! While the previous guest article by Ms. Mekhala explored the confusions between the literal and the figurative, this one by Mr. C.I. Sivasubramanian explores how vernacular usage differences in the English language leads to funny interpretations.

Enjoy these idiosyncrasies in the typical style and sweet humor of Mr. C.I. Sivasubramanian!


#12. A Perspective

By Mekhala Chakravarty
Homemaker
Bangalore, India
10-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
We have often heard of the ‘Making a mountain of a molehill’ idiom. It is not so much due to the presence of an indisputable truth as the real presence of two truths in parallel. Taking example from the Mahabharata, Mekhala sweetly exposes the layers of abstraction behind the physical facts and appearances. This is an essential skill to learn – ability to look at the same thing from a different (person’s) perspective – to build the power of understanding and compassion. Mekhala has a wide range of interests across various subjects including Vedic Astrology.

A simple yet powerful message is conveyed in this article to inspire in children, a different way to absorb stories!


#11. If I Knew Then What I Know Now

By Vasundhara Srivatsava
English Teacher
New Jersey, USA
9-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
There are times when we unlearn to relearn what we learnt and there are times we experience what we missed to absorb in the past. Becoming a teacher gives a perfect way to enter this time machine and completely ‘re-experience’ ourselves in an older, wiser self on the same stage. Vasundhara brings this out so cogently, laced in subtle humor, fitting the unseen ‘jigsaw’ puzzle pieces of what appear like ‘unrelated’ subjects in school academics as school students.

Enjoy this wonderful perspective – an integrated outlook – and connectedness of language, science and art in one blended ‘alloy’ called learning experience!


#10. What a Women’s Day is NOT

By Meera Venkatesan
Learning Consultant, Performance Storyteller
Trainer, Creative writer,
Bangalore, India
08-Mar-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
In this wonderful article, Meera delves deeper into the core of what Women’s Day is truly about. Her writing poignantly peels down the layers under which the cause for rejoicing womanhood for itself, has been swathed in superficial paints of success and consumerism. Her message is brightly hemmed with apt questions to think about.

Let these beautifully strung thoughts bring the meaning of Women’s Day in our minds and hearts in the sense it must be taken and understood.


#9. School Education In Our Times

By Kajal Kataria
Home maker
Bangalore, India
07-Mar-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
The education system changes over decades and that includes methodologies, teaching medium and the learning environment. However, within this evolving paradigm of learning, certain instructions (reading habit, memory drills) have to remain the same for consistent and long term effect in language development and mathematical reasoning.

Explore the contrast in education methods in this warm and easy-to-read article bringing out subtly some important thoughts to ponder over.


#8. The Coronation of Napoleon

By Anusha Jaishankar
Semiconductor Engineer, Explorer
Bangalore, India
06-Mar-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
In this simple yet powerful piece of writing, Anusha brings attention to the various motives and expressions lying latent in a refined painting and the man of power – Napoleon Bonaparte. There is much more to be observed and woven before an understanding develops to align the real and unreal in their various nuances. So wonderful to read through this article!

Explore the art of fine observations on the landscape of power, intellect and fancies exposed in a beautiful painting!


#7. Tasmai Sri Gurave Namah!

By Usha Ramaswamy
Senior School Head
The Shri Ram Universal School
Hyderabad
Hyderabad, India
05-Mar-2022

EVOKE

Foreword by Venkat
In this beautiful recount of school days, Mrs. Usha Ramaswamy brings the effect, power and presence of teachers in our life experiences, well beyond the life as a student. Indeed without doubt, some incidents and words with our teachers can be so touching that they can be life transforming. Now, herself with long experience as a teacher, holding a senior position in a well known school, her presence will remain an inspiration to scores of students, as the baton changes hands year on year.

Enjoy and feel the touching moments as they evoke so brightly in this wonderful article.


#6. Modern Indian Inventions

By Aarti Panchal
A freelance researcher in Indology,
Associate at GHARS,
an NGO in Australia
Surat, India
03-Mar-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
In this article Aarti brings out five modern inventions / innovations by Indians. Four of these (USB, Fibre Optics, Email and Pentium chip) are so much a part of our everyday life that one must not forget the people who made it possible. This comes in aptly, right after the celebration of the National Science Day in India on 28th Feb.

Explore the modern Indian inventions for our inspiration to inculcate the spirit of creativity and innovation.


#5. Education, Skills, Success

By Khadija Darifi
2nd Year Undergraduate Student,
Geology, FSA Ibn Zoher, Agadir
Agadir, Morocco
02-Mar-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
In this article Khadija brings a global view on the trends in education and skills with regard to the measure of success. True to her perspective, the definition and outlook on success has evolved over the last few decades. Khadija is an amazing, dynamic and an ever-learning person. She has varied interests and very much into digital marketing, writing, and reading. She lives with her parents, two brothers and a sister in Morocco. It is wonderful to receive her contribution and succinct views in simple words.

Reflect on the evolving ideas on success, education and skills with this short yet sweet article.


#4. My School Days (1945 to 1957)

By J Vaidhinathan
Retired Deputy Secretary,
Ministry of Commerce and Industry,
Govt. of India
New Delhi, India
01-Mar-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
It is a blessing to be in the presence of Mr. Vaidhinathan (affectionately called JV mama) who is full of talents including gardening, writing, and a special signature one – the ability to electrify any social gathering and bring smiles around! ‘Energy’ as a word would shy away looking at the amazing bubbling cauldron of enthusiasm in him, which he continues to exude even today in his 80s. He mentions that he was ‘always playful during school days’ but this remains true even to this day!

Enjoy his amazing recount of his days as a school child and picturesque details of India in 40s and 50s.


#3. Seven Lessons to Accelerate Learning

By Divyaa Doraiswamy
Founder – GURUKULAM The Shloka Learning Centre (REGD)
Bangalore, India
27-Feb-2022

INSPIRE

Foreword by Venkat
When it comes to children and Shlokas there can be no one other than Divyaa. She has a powerful way of connecting with children and her life itself is an inspiration to align towards the power of shlokas and mantras. I had the fortune to experience this connect and her presence in a kids club session where she taught some shlokas and mythology to children. She has won innumerable awards and continues to win in several events. Truly a honor to receive her article having lessons to inspire, from her own experience. More on her profile is available below.
Absorb these inspiring lessons and make them a practice towards success and fulfillment.


#2. Faith, Trust, Belief

By Mekhala Chakravarty
Homemaker
Bangalore, India
26-Feb-2022

EXPLORE

Foreword by Venkat
The best way to understand a concept is through an example or analogy and when the same comes as part of a story it has a lasting impact. The following submission from Mekhala is one such amazing story making the distinction between meanings of faith, trust and belief so clear! She is a good friend and an avid learner of Vedic Astrology.

Enjoy this beautiful story of a rope walker and the abstract concepts of Faith, Trust and Belief.


#1. My Childhood Days At Coimbatore

By C I Sivasubramanian
Aged 95, Retired Director, Ministry of Commerce, Govt. of India
New Delhi, India
24-Feb-2022

REFLECT

Foreword by Venkat
It is a blessing indeed to publish the first article here, received from my maternal uncle as the first guest author. ‘Chinna Mama’ as we call him in family is an adorable, humble man and a role model in so many ways. Nothing could be a better inspiration to learning and upskilling than his enthusiasm to complete a graduate and post graduate degree at the age of 93! Sharing his story published in a newspaper.

Enjoy his beautiful recollection of his childhood and school days with various sweet, humorous, touching and curious incidents. His writing also gives a rich glimpse into the life in India in those times.


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