I'm joining Service Space because ... it feels like my community
A good day to me is when ... good day implies there are some that are not. I must be in denial about those, for every day seems good to me.
My hero in life is ...ordinary decent folks who just persist and do the right thing day after day .... ok, the Dalai Lama, Rev Desmond Tutu and others who laugh easily also tug at my heart strings
My favorite book is ...Ten Tall Tales by Dr Suess, The Little Prince, Stories from Panchtantra and many more
One thing I'm grateful for is ... a good enough life that enables me to serve
May 06, 2020, 5 smiles Awakin circles have been a huge influence in my life and that of many others, in more ways than can be described. Nipun closed this evening's Santa Clara circle with a story of an incident from four years ago at the Santa Clara Awakin circle. Someone had dropped off dessert to be served after the circle, to mark the birthday of a person attending the circle, at a time when the hosts were not in a celebratory frame of mind due to personal challenges facing the family. Yet, by the end of the circle, the individual and collective reset from shared space and energy led to a joyful sharing of the dessert. This makes me want to share my recent experiences that are a direct ripple of how Awakin circles have rippled though my life, and those of others I keep company with. For the past three years, I have been ... Read Full Story
Mar 27, 2020, 1 comments, 3 smiles If shelter-in-place is causing you anxiety, here are a few suggestions that might offer you one way out of it. Treat it as a time to reclaim your creative self - sing, dance, play or make music, paint, cook, tailor, embroider, read, write, make photo albums and collages, bake, sculpt with clay, flour, even aluminum foil, quilt, re-purpose old favorite clothes by joining square cut pieces into bags or quilted throws, knit, make jewellry, write letters, or poems, dress up and take turns to do family photo shoots, make home movies with mini biographies or personal expertise, study, enroll in an online class and learn what you always wanted to but didn’t have the time to, meditate, create a self-designed at-home retreat, have a story telling circle - real or online, try a new software to make infographics or tell a digital story, research something you are curious about, teach ... Read Full Story
Mar 23, 2020, 3 smiles Like in many parts of the world today, to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we too have been asked to stay at home. After 8 days of being indoors, I realized this comes easily to me but is very challenging to many others. I will likely not leave home for many more days. I work as an educator. Through the government announcements I learnt for the first time in years that my services are considered 'essential' so instead of closing down like most other institutions, we have continued to teach, although to maintain social distance and keep campus safe, we have moved all classes online. This week I spent over 30 hours teaching in video conference call style classes. All of my students are working adults, and they too are impacted. They are either off work or working from home. No one is commuting to work or traveling as they used ... Read Full Story
Mar 05, 2020, 9 smiles Meeting life itself in 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s & the rocking 80s at an Awakin circle at the temple of kindness to be reminded to keep the flame alive sharing passing it on till it spreads like a virus that eats all fears Awakin all.
Oct 08, 2019, 4 smiles Small Kindnesses by Danusha Laméris I've been thinking about the way, when you walk down a crowded aisle, people pull in their legs to let you by. Or how strangers still say "bless you" when someone sneezes, a leftover from the Bubonic plague. "Don't die," we are saying. And sometimes, when you spill lemons from your grocery bag, someone else will help you pick them up. Mostly, we don't want to harm each other. We want to be handed our cup of coffee hot, and to say thank you to the person handing it. To smile at them and for them to smile back. For the waitress to call us honey when she sets down the bowl of clam chowder, and for the driver in the red pick-up truck to let us pass. We have so little of each other, now. So far from tribe and fire. Only these brief moments of exchange. What if they are the true dwelling of the holy, these fleeting temples we make ... Read Full Story
Jun 20, 2019, 1 comments, 11 smiles At the Santa Clara Awakin Circle this week, a new-comer sat in front of me and in his share mentioned the awe he experienced at the purple blooms on trees around the Bay Area. It was as if he had read what was on my mind as all through the week, I too had been attracted to these Jacaranda trees. Everywhere I went, amongst all the green trees, there would be a shock of purple bursting forth, showing off its majestic and unique, if short lived, beauty. I had actually stopped more than once simply to get a closer look and enjoy the exuberant displays. In the presence of these magnificent trees, I could clearly hear my inner voice declaring, this was my Bodhi Tree. I could see myself happily sitting under it, endlessly, until I was enlightened to my Buddha nature. What would it take for me to offer up my gifts to the world with the same enthusiastic and uninhibited presence?
May 07, 2019, 1 comments, 9 smiles I have borrowed the practice of taking a minute of silence, from Birju that I use at the start of all classes I teach. Many students have appreciated it. Some make it their own. As I was reading the midterm reflections of the current batch of working adults in my class, here is a quote from one of them. "I have been applying the outside exercises to my daily routine. Specifically, prior to starting my day or some big task at work or at home, I will take a moment of silence to just breathe and relax and center myself so that I can focus on the task at hand and not on other distracting issues. This has been extremely helpful as it reduces the build-up of stress and allows for a more focused and deeper concentration than just performing one task after another without taking a moment for myself." Another student ... Read Full Story
May 02, 2019, 6 smiles There is a story about a forest on fire from where all animals are running away, except for one bird carrying water in her beak flying towards it, to help put the fire out. When asked how her tiny beak's worth of water will help with the large forest fire, she simply says, atleast I will be remembered for trying to save my home, rather than abandoning it. I have several small acts I practice routinely as my own way of saving the planet from the path of destruction it seems to be on due to human activity. Most times I feel like the little bird carrying the tiny drop of water towards a forest fire. I know that me turning off the water faucet when I brush, or lights when I leave a room or drying my clothes on the line in the sun instead of the dryer, or buying ... Read Full Story