Thursday, October 15, 2009

6 Novel Ways to Celebrate Diwali

Came across this article by Vandana Rana in TOI, which makes so much sense...

6 Novel Ways to Celebrate Diwali

How do you celebrate Diwali? By lighting diyas, bursting crackers and eating sweets! But as we do this every year, how about bringing in a positive 6 novel ways to celebrate Diwali change this time, which will help people around as well?

Traditional way to save electricity
Diwali is also known as the Festival of Lights. So this time let's decorate our houses with traditional lamps and diyas rather bulbs. This was how in earlier times, people touched up their homes with cotton wicks dipped in ghee or oil. This will help you save electricity as well. This will add a traditional stroke with social responsibility in the festival.

Food wise
There are many people who cannot afford even one square meal so, how can they afford Diwali celebrations? In this season cut short your list of crackers and use that money in buying them food. Your joy will be doubled and your kitty will brim over with blessings and wishes.

Celebrate with a new expression
Our country is a blend of several religions and festivals too. Then why not celebrate this Festival of Lights with our Muslim, Christian and Sikh friends? Use this opportunity to introduce one culture to another. Such an act will encourage unity and teach new morals to your kids.

Make a new family
Diwali is family time. But what about those elders and kids who have no families. Wouldn't it be nice if we all could take out some time this Diwali to meet them. There are several old age homes and orphanages dotting the city so finding them shouldn't be a problem. This is the time to exchange your happiness with their gloominess. So go ahead and put a smile on at least one such pretty face.

Have a healthy Diwali
Post Diwali pollution is always on an all-time high despite there being a ban on crackers. Say no to crackers if you have'nt done so already and gift saplings to friends and relatives along with sweets. This effort will sweeten the celebrations of your loved ones. Plants are great for a pure and positive environment.

Decorate the neighbourhood
Every year we paint and touch up our homes. But no one pays attention to that garbage dump in the corner. It stinks to the high heaven and is a veritable house of all ills. Have it cleaned up and painted afresh. At least for sometime, flies and mosquitoes will be less. Let's join hands to clean the society as well as it will encourage positive atmosphere in neighborhood and double the joy of festivity.

Happy Diwali to you!

Friday, October 02, 2009

And he said....

...and he said...

  • There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.

    ...and he said...

  • Satyagraha does not begin and end with civil disobedience.

    ...and he said...

  • My notion of democracy is that under it, the weakest should have the same opportunity as the strongest.

    ...and he said...

  • To me I seem to be constantly growing. I must respond to varying conditions, yet remain changeless within.

    ...and he said...

  • True democracy cannot be worked by twenty men at the center. It has to be worked by the people of every village.

    ...and he said...

  • What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism, or the holy name of liberty and democracy?

    ...and he said...

  • We are constantly being astonished at the amazing discoveries in the field of violence. But I maintain that far more undreamt of and seemingly impossible discoveries will be made in the field of nonviolence.

    ...and he said...

  • There is more to life than simply increasing its speed.

    ...and he said...

  • Today the cities dominate and drain the villages so that they are crumbling to ruins. Exploiting of villages is itself organized violence. If we want freedom to build on non-violence, we will have to give villages their proper place.

    ...and he said...

  • As soon as we lose the moral-basis, we cease to be religious.

    ...and he said...

  • The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.

    ...and he said...

  • The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problem.

    ...and he said...

  • It may be long before the law of love will be recognized in international affairs. The machineries of government stand between and hide the hearts of one people from those of another.

    ...and he said...

  • First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

    ...and he said...

  • Whatever you do will become insignificant, but it is very important to do it.

    ... such was that fussy old man who changed the destiny of an Empire with a fistful of salt!!

  • Thursday, October 01, 2009

    The Economics & Physiology of "Joy of Giving"

    Question 1: How do you "monitize" this act of "Giving"???.... What is the economics of "Giving"?

    Ramaa wrote a beautiful piece about "The Joy of Giving - What Price, Happiness?"... (which thankfully, was rescued out of Facebook and reproduced on his blog by Ninja...)

    Lots of events are happening in XLRI as we celebrate the "Joy of Giving Week" & the "Jamshedpur JoyFest"... e.g.

    ...and Ramaa's note was about one of them - the visit to the old-age home "Nirmal Hrudayalay"... her note ended with an observation:
    "I walked out of the gate, smiling a little, wondering about the price of happiness.

  • To Mala: her bangles and the promise of a big stool to sit on.
  • To the boy: strumming a guitar.
  • To Poorni: talking to me in Tamizh.
  • To the children there: playing throw ball.

  • To Nirmal Hriday: Two hours of our time.

    I had all of these things they each wanted, and yet I had never been so happy. Giving it to them created the happiness, the priceless joy- of caring, of sharing and giving."


    Question 2: What is the "physiology" of "Giving"?... Why do people indulge in "unselfish acts"... and self-lessly "give" - money, time, service, resources - in this age of an oxymoron - the "enlightened self-interest"?

    So, I also came across an interesting study by National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke in Bethesda, Maryland - reported by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences... and converted into an article on "Altruism" by The Economist". To quote... because we "feel good" - the study reports....because "giving"/ altruism...

    "...also engages the part of the brain that plays a role in the bonding behaviour between mother and child, and in romantic love. This involves oxytocin, a hormone that increases trust and co-operation"

    Ah! Good to know that !!... Good to know that the science/econmics has found out - what any decent human being would know in his/her heart!!