What are you doing this Dussehra?

Dussehra is one festival which lets you experience a myriad of things in one season…

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In our childhood Dasara was all about the quarterly break where it’s all play and no work, with one day dedicated to Saraswathi Pooja where we transfer the onus of the exam results to the goddess :D..But as we grew old and started experiencing the world, it became bigger with so much more to offer…

In AndhraPradesh we worship the goddess for 9 days in 9 distinct avatars with the reference taken from Vijayawada KankaDurga temple and we also have 9 different prasadams made by rice as offerings for each particular day.

In TamilNadu, the main event is Koluvu. They keep it for 9 days with odd number of steps like 3 or 7 or 9 for odd number of days. Even the sellers on the road arrange the toys in neat little steps bringing the Koluvu to the streets. And the other major thing is Ayudha pooja. The one prominent mythological story related to this day is that of the Pandavas retrieving their weapons after 13 years of exile. So we normal people usually do ayudha pooja for bikes, laptops and our everyday utility items (Ayudha here is considered as something which helps us survive on a daily basis, I guess)

Mysore so far in my experience offers the best Dussehra event. Everyone there from descendants of kings to shopkeepers to everybody else come all out and enjoy the festival.. We can’t blame them..they have the Chamundi Temple & Mysore Palace there. To visit the temple in those 9 days is one herculean task. The Palace decked up is a sight to behold and the whole town comes abuzz with processions, elephants, exhibitions, fares ..you name it , they have it.

One of the equally good experience should be Calcutta,If you can visit at this time. But the next best thing is bringing Calcutta pandals to all the other states. The traditional pandal typically has the idols of Goddess Durga along with Ganesha, Lakshmi, Saraswathi & Kartikeya who are considered to be the children of the goddess with different backdrops. The prayers & the offerings with the traditional bengali  priests performing them is one unique experience.

In Punjab, where Goddess worship is predominant in the name of MataRani, Dussehra is celebrated as Navratri. Fastings, bajans and special prasadams offered to MataRani, and on the 8th day all the young girls in the neighborhood are invited into their homes and Kanjak puja is celebrated.(If any of this is false, please blame Indian Tv 😉 )

Then we have the Dandiya events representing the Gujarat-Rajasthan style with Bandini Cholis, where if you attend one, you are automatically pulled into the circle of dance irrespective of you capable of shaking a leg..:P

And lastly in the northern part of India, people celebrate it as the return of Rama after the defeat of Ravana, where Ravan Dahan is a huge thing, what with a huge 10 headed Ravan erect is burned down amidst all the celebrations.

Culturally diverse things, from all the four corners of India with each side offering  something different makes Dussehra a truly unique experience.

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Lost – TvSeries

After much to see & not to see on Tv, I finally decided to give Lost a chance. And boy, am I glad!! I would have surely missed an awesome series if I had skipped this one. It landed straight into my top 3 even before the series ended (which turned out to be the right choice, what with the stupid ending & all :P)

The first season is totally gripping and for the first few episodes I couldn’t take a break. The fascinating adventure is not the only thing that is interesting in the show, the journey of the characters and the way they are interlaced is simply amazing.

Sure they were times when I thought the makers have lost it and sometimes I felt I have lost the connections, nevertheless it was one exhilarating journey.

But I couldn’t and wouldn’t excuse them for the ending. What was that? Initially when they were showing flash sideways in the last season I thought it is some alternative perspective of how the characters meet and discover themselves and others if they didn’t crash on the island or something.You know like being given a second chance but only with the added advantage of reminding them of the experiences of the island journey enriching their lives.(Don’t look at me like that, Isn’t it fiction.) Yeah that is what they showed more or less but they did it in Purgatory and I wanted it to be in the real world.. It would have given us a perfect closure.

When we see the whole picture, each season may seem a little isolated from the other. Nevertheless, It keeps us high between the seasons, but nothing actually is transported to the next phase..But the bright part is , only after you finish all the seasons you realize that everything is not tied up neat and clean and it doesn’t really matter in the end.

Thank you makers for showing us how beautiful and adventurous, being lost can be..

 

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Unintentional Heartbreaks

It’s your regular day at office, you login and instead of worrying about work,you sit lost in your chair and weep silently into your handkerchief.Everyone around you from your team mates to the people passing by stop and ask you, on seeing your state. You smile,pretend and say it’s nothing.Because it really is nothing, atleast nothing that anyone would understand…It can be something as silly as moving away from your childhood surroundings.

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Everyone is excitedly watching the last match of your favorite cricketer but you sit in the corner trying to get a grip on your emotions and being a boy it is drilled into you that you shouldn’t cry in public. But in the end you fail and bawl your heart out along with your idol.

Did you get the pattern here…Emotions are a tricky thing. Where we invest them is a puzzle in itself and most of the time it happens with out our knowledge.And the sad thing is you only realize the weight of your emotions when everything comes crashing down. The retirement of your favorite cricketer,moving away from your hometown,last page of a book,marriage of your celebrity crush,letting go of your favorite series,breakup of the fictional couple you shipped,replacing your old things,sad climax of a movie…anything can trigger it.

We mostly internalize our feelings, so knowingly or unknowingly we form a bond with things which are often not in our control and when suddenly the pattern goes against us it is not always easy to go with the flow.We oppose, we fight and end up breaking down.

I used to have a very different notion about being emotionally strong or weak,but with time I realized the thresholds and the canvas are what is actually different.The anguish and broken-hearts are real and same for everyone. It’s just that everybody breaks down, but the things they do for differs.

The funny thing is the outsiders perspective of all these is quite hilarious.Even our own real heartbreaks when viewed from non personal lens can be really funny.And I feel that is the reason most of the time we don’t share things seemingly silly and end up being depressed.

Heartbreaks and emotional mess are the proof that we are living.And trust me,the presumably frivolous things also leave us with lots of pain :P. But at the end of the day, all that really matters is how we emerge stronger by each experience. The best heal as they say is time.Time heals almost everything. You will realize that the way to get over the last chapter is to start the first one all over again.

One sure shot way to get over anything is to sleep it out. Personally I have resolved many of my crises in sleep and woke up a little wiser in the morning…:P

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My Tryst with Yoga

Ok, how excited are you to do yoga…I for one if can get a great body with out yoga,gym or anything in between I would grab it with both my hands and never question it…But in real world all I get is one eye-roll and ‘get real’ for that…:P

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So recently I have started yoga…Well,maybe it’s too premature to even say that..Trying on the gear and getting a hang of it is what Iam doing…and from that I realized I can actually be qualified in a few days to name it something else because the output what I get is definitely not Yoga of what we see everyday…and my inflexible body is not helping one bit…Uffff

On top of that you are supposed to meditate and add breathing to those poses…That is a sure shot code red for me…I never could manage a 15 min meditation in the school,so forget about a prolonged time. The thing is my brain never shuts down..Keeping my mind blank is an Everest for me….It always need to think,Whether I acknowledge it or not doesn’t really matter to it…it keeps doing its stuff… May be my brain should be my role model…you know, to do things irrespective of what others say..

Anyways coming back to yoga…Sometimes, I would really love it if I can get a break from my brain…Already imagining that calmness is making me delirious. And then there is Reiki, I feel it as a natural progression to meditation..healing others or ourselves through energy or something…Any Reiki experts, don’t kill me for placing it with meditation.Iam a simple person, I like it when things are simple…so I added it under the tag meditation which are inturn under the broader tag of Yoga for me…

Need to mention my family here..My mother encourages or rather urges me to practice yoga daily…Infact she pushes me for any hobby I take up, I guess she is just glad that Iam willing to do something…:D  And then my brother, ever ready with the eye-rolls and ‘get real’s that I mentioned above…and finally my father, the strong and silent type..encouraging in his own way, when he is not busy acting as a referee between the rest of us…

I didn’t mention the good part,right…I was saving it for the last…The Yoga pants and Tee,ofcourse…..;)
You know what for all the stress we are under mental ,physical and biological I want some perks for Yoga..At the least I want Yoga and chocolate to balance it out…Isn’t Nature all about balancing things.So nature if you are listening, this ones for you…

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Life comes Full Circle

Whether we recognize it, experience it or approve of it,Life comes full circle in more ways than one.

We start , we crib, we move on and eventually end up at the same place but now with a changed mindset and appreciating the things which we didn’t before. Our notions, our attitude, our beliefs everything travels and evolves. Sometimes it may complete a circle & sometimes it can begin a circle or sometimes it merges with another circle. If you are patient enough to analyze these things everything can be measured.

In Hindu philosophy we fondly call this as Karma.What goes around,comes around. The way we treat others, our words, our actions are again returned back to us with added fervor.Life’s way of teaching us things, I suppose. This is only understood by experience and that’s why they say experience is the best teacher.

It’s exactly like what you sow, you reap.Our inherent pride always wants us to be the ones at the top, but life is same to everyone.It only appears like it treats them differently.We each are different individuals and what we need and want from life are also very different, so comparing only ruins things.We compare different things and get disappointed and are never happy with the life we have there by giving grief to others which eventually reaches us.

As they say ‘How people treat you is their Karma, How you react is yours.’

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Decoding: Girls….

What do you know about girls, anyway? 🙂

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In my world and in my words they are geniuses who has the ability to multitask on multiple topics beating even this generation’s greatest invention(computer) which can only multitask. How awesome is that!!!!!  You just need to be brilliant enough to catch up with that.

 

Teenage_Girls_Gossiping_Royalty_Free_Clipart_Picture_090514-016200-769053Ok,we gossip,gossip & gossip and never get tired of it. The secret behind this is that it is both an energy booster and a stress buster and actually very entertaining .

Thought dissecting – This comes instinctively to us. Why did I do that?What did I think while doing that? What would he think about that?What do you think he thought about that? & How dare he actually thinks? 😉

Giggling- Remember, the famous Aishwarya Rai’s giggle. I don’t normally do this unless Iam with my best friend and we had a crazy moment.
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Dieting – Whether we do it or not , we love to talk about it. Talking and thinking itself reduces half our weight. We definitely ponder on ways of doing it but actually doing it is all together a different matter.

 

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Shopping –  Can a girl ever live with out this.A sage person(my cousin, ofcourse 🙂 ) once told me shopping is the solution to every problem present and it is kind of true too.This is the best therapy one can find. Cheers you up immediately.And I tell you nothing beats the feeling of finding and owning something which you have envisioned for a long time. We just don’t like to buy , we love to show them off  too . Dressing up is the most fun thing that can be done.

Cellphone- Talk, talk & more talk.You know how we girls love to talk and how we have an opinion on everything under the sun and how we need to let that out. It all starts in college when you need to dissect everything that happened in the class with your friends & continue to womanhood  where you do the same thing but in a different tangent altogether. Ahh, How I miss my best friend – all those silly conversations and those nights where we stayed up late talking to each other. Long distance relationships do suck and cellphone is the only saving grace here.

& Finally,
“A girl is so much more than she seems……”

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What is your definition of love? by Shanti

I’ve been in debt of writing a guest article for this blog since forever. 🙂  Finally I decided to open up my laptop and get my thoughts flowing. Let me share a little background on why I chose the above topic for this blog-post.

largeSeveral years back there was this question tossed around a group of our friends while we were still in college, “how would you describe love?” I distinctly remember saying, “love is a combination of red, yellow and white roses”. My explanation was this – red symbolizes attraction and there cannot be love without attraction, yellow means friendship and there cannot be love without understanding, white stands for trust and there cannot be love without loyalty.

Many years have passed since we had that discussion and my opinions also have greatly changed. I am no longer a college girl with some fancy views on love.:) While I still believe the three roses concept somewhat holds true, I came to learn that there is so much more to love than just that. One thing I realized is that there cannot be such a thing as “love at first sight”. That’s just plain attraction. Love on the other hand needs time and nurturing. It needs to grow. It needs hard work. YES, like any other job you need to work hard for love. Attaining love maybe easy but sustaining it is not. Because down the road all it takes for a relationship to strain might be an argument or an action that results in hurt feelings.

I think the two most important things that matter here are commitment and forgiveness. These are the wheels on which love runs. They enable love to stand the test of time. Making the conscious choice to embrace these qualities might just make all the difference! Often people (including me ) underestimate the power of forgiveness but taking that small step needs a lot of commitment and courage, especially when you think the other person is totally at fault. Agreed, easier said than done but the encouraging fact is the more you labor for love, the greater rewards you reap…

Also equally important are having mutual respect and the patience to listen to each other. Even though it is possible that love can be communicated without actually speaking, it is sometimes wise to sit down and voice your feelings and hear out what the other person has to say, than taking the silent road.

Well, that’s my take on love. Hope this entertained you or enlightened you a bit. 🙂 So, what is your definition of love?

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