Chess, My thoughts, Personal

Unschooling Diaries #11 : Today was a Great Day!

Today was a great day. From many days I was struggling to find people to practise chess with. But today we connected with over 30+ plus people who live near my house and are ready to meetup to play chess! So how did this miracle happen? How we go from 0 people from months to suddenly 3 dozen people. 

So we can say one thing led to another. Last week I had gone to a chess tournament, over there we met someone and told him about our problem. So. he added us to a WhatsApp Group where all the chess parents of Bengaluru are there. He said us to post regarding our problem over there and we will probably find someone. So over one week had gone we didn’t post anything, but today we finally decided to start the conversation. All we suggested was are chess players living around Koramangala interested to meetup and play few games. That is it and under one hour the whole group was on fire! Everybody was responding. By afternoon there were 6 different groups for 6 different areas and over 100+ people in total.

Apparently everybody was facing this issue of offline playing practise. We ourselves were struggling from such a long time. And it took just a 2 simple steps to resolve it. The saying is true ” The best solutions are often simple yet unexpected.” Look around you, is there anything you are struggling with right now? Maybe talking to your neighbor, friend, or somebody will help. This is one thing I have learnt in life, and is now firmly engraved in my mind with what happened today. Talking to people always helps.

My thoughts, Personal

Unschooling Diaries #10 :- What is the Greatest Spirituality?

Today, my mom and I went to Ashram to take a Level 2 Kriya Yoga class. So, basically Kriya Yoga is a path of spirituality, like the Gyan Yoga, or Bhakti Yoga. To get initiated into Kriya Yoga you are required to complete 4 levels, and 9 – 11 classes. So, my parents and I had taken L-1 together, around 3 months ago, and my dad had also completed his L-2 last month. 

But this time I felt the teacher was not that good. Like many people won’t come back, simply because the class failed to touch their hearts. This event reminds of a quote, I wrote about a few days ago:- Life should be chiefly service. Without that ideal, the intelligence that God has given you is not reaching out toward its goal. When in service you forget the little self, you will feel the big Self of Spirit.” On the first line I had written how Yogananda Ji, means to develop a seva attitude in everything we do. There is a nice story from my Vrindavan trip related to this

On Janmashtami a group of the volunteers were decorating one of the ashrams. So everybody was trying to decorate the altar, because that would be the center of attention. I was blowing balloons with another volunteer. Inwardly I was thinking, ‘what an insignificant job, I want to do something important too.’ Naturally with this thought process even the action was being done halfheartedly, Then, a bit tired I  went around the Ashram to take a look as to what was going on. When I came to the entrance I saw that some of the staff were decorating it, and they all were working hard doing a good job. So, I got inspired to help them. I noticed that there was a shortage of balloons. ‘Oh, so this is where they were getting used” I thought. I quickly went inside and blew up many balloons of different colors and helped them decorate the entrance. Decorating the entrance was as important as decorating the altar, after all the entrance was going to be the first impression of anybody that was going to come. That day I realized that even blowing balloons was such animportant task, its fruit might not be taking place in front of me, but I was helping someone. This means that all jobs are equally important, and everybody should do their work diligently and honestly.

Coming back to today’s L-2 class. Today, the teacher had a very important job, she was preparing everyone for initiation into Kriya. Unlike the L-1 class, which was taken very nicely and almost all students had come back for L2 and L3, I don’t think there will be this much success rate in this class. There was no personal interaction, no proper explanations, etc. Because she lacked that enthusiasm, that thought of “oh, today I just want to fill these people with the essence of kriya yoga” was not there.

So, this is why I consider doing your job correctly the greatest spirituality. Today, she could transform some people’s lives and consciousness forever but she failed. Similarly if governments functioned honestly, parents parented correctly, schools thought properly, we would live in a different world. Think about it. Are you doing your job properly?

Travelling, Uncategorized

The Best Surfing Spot in India

Pack your bag and catch a bus to Mamallapuram, a.k.a The best and the cheapest surfing spot in India. The town is a tourist attraction and is just 80 km from Chennai. Serene beaches and ancient temples mark this quiet city.

As for the food, I have simply no words. The quality and taste were just amazing. 

Go to the beach when the tide is right, and you will find smiling people surfing and having fun. Enticed, we decided to give it a try too. Just right by the beach was Mumu Surf School. 

Run by Mumu, a very friendly and welcoming person. He is not only passionate about surfing but is using it as a way to help his community too. As we were talking to him, he told us about a program he runs called “Surfing for Healing”. Where they teach children from backward backgrounds to surf. 

You can find them here https://mumusurfindia.com/. Even though I didn’t go in the water, my dad did, and this is what he has to say about it – “ Amazing, a simply amazing experience, must for everyone at least once.” Their studio has a beautiful aesthetic Bohemian touch to it. 

My thoughts, Personal

I Started Reading “The Prophet” by Kahlil Gibran 

The Prophet is a collection of philosophical poems, which took more than 11 years to perfect. Yes, you heard that right, Kahlil Gibran spent 11 years re-writing and perfecting this book. No wonder it is one of the top sellers. 

It is to my great fortune that I had this book kept at home. I started with the first chapter and knew from the first page itself, this was going to be a one-sitter. But considering that it was already late and I had to wake up at 5 am, I decided against it. I have completed almost half of it, and It is so good, I have no words. 

I believe it should be made compulsory for all parents and teachers, especially the chapter on “Children”. Not only for parents and teachers, it should be taught at school too because it contains many lessons from important topics in life like marriage, work, time, etc.

To quote one of my favorite lines from the book:-

“ Verily the lust for comfort murders the passion of the soul, and walks grinning in the funeral.”

-The Prophet on ‘houses’.

Chess, My thoughts, Parenting, Personal

My First Sparring Round

Swami Vivekananda once said, “You will be nearer to heaven through football than through the study of the Gita.”

My coach told me, when I joined him, that when he sees someone’s chess games: he gets to know the exact personality of the person. I didn’t understand him then until I saw it for myself. When a person plays any sport: Boxing, Chess, or Football, his/her personality, fears and nature is laid out like a blueprint. 

And that is one of the most beautiful things about sports: you can’t hide. Your fears and inner demons will come out and you have to face them. Isn’t it a great tool for self-betterment and analysis? To me, it is surely the next best thing to meditation!