Monday, August 21, 2006

Hardship and Gratitude...

I was reading through this QA snippet between a questioner and Sadhguru.

Questioner:How do I use every opportunity, even every hardship that comes my way, as a stepping-stone for my growth, Sadhguru?

Sadhguru:How to use everything and everybody for your growth? First of all, you grow in gratitude, not in benevolence.....

The complete answer is here.

The thing that is difficult for me to grasp is, how can one be grateful when he/she is going through whatever hardship is happenning to him/her? Post all the changes, one can look back at whatever happened and see how it has helped them grow - that can be a trigger point for gratitude.

What blows me away in the above statement is the implementation aspect of what Sadhguru is talking about. I have read about a Master who used to thank God every night before sleep for the wonderful day He had been given. One day, He and His disciples where pelted by stones by a hostile mob and they had to go hungry all day. But the disciples were shocked to see the Master offer the same prayer to God that night as well. My question is, what is the Master's inner state that allows Him to be this way (genuinely grateful for what He is going through)?

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Child adopton policies and processes...

Ramya has written a great post on the child adoption policies and processes (and bottlenecks) in TN. (Click on the title link...)

Sunday, August 13, 2006

The Green Mile

A movie that offers so much for reflection.

Time and again, the history of humanity is filled with people who have inflicted hurt and death over other people, often for no good or trivial reasons. The incidents become more painful when the victims are innocent people. The pain becomes most acute when the victim blesses the aggressor with compassion (John Coffee).

The story is set in Louisiana during the 1935’s, when death sentences were carried out using an electric chair. The movie is uncompromising when it comes to displaying the details of the execution. Watching these scenes unfold raises several questions. Do we need to enforce the death sentence as capital punishment? Would “justice” be done with this act? Even so, is the method of execution considerate of the mental suffering undergone by the person being executed? In the US, the sentence is now carried out using poison instead of electric chairs. But yet, it is very humiliating to watch the execution carried out by staging it in front of an audience as a way of meting out “justice”.

Tom Hanks has a way of adding dignity to any character he plays - be it the portrayal of innocent Forrest (“Forrest Gump”), a HIV infected homosexual (“Philadelphia”) or a conscientious prison guard (this movie). All characters are neatly crafted in this powerhouse of a movie. The movie never deters from its focus, and neither does it compromise on the details, however painful or uncomfortable the situation (the execution of Eduard Delacroix for example).

One question that rings out very resoundingly at the end of the movie is – “Why are people so ugly towards each other?”

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Triplet for the weekend... :)

Ice Age

A very cute movie with realistic special effects. Since Ice Age 2 was out, I wanted to see this before IA2. Ray Romano's voice as Manfred was very nice - could recognize him instantly. At this point, I think the animation industry has evolved to the point where almost anything that can be conceived with vivid imagination can be brought to life the same way it was envisioned. IA is stunning in that aspect - the expressions on the characters' faces, textures (the flowing river for example), voices that suit the characters and so on. Another instance was when Manfred looks at the human lady with compassion, you can actually see it in his eyes - amazing case in point for how evolved the animation aspect is. It was a little difficult to conceive Sabre's as blood/revenge thirsty creatures, but I guess it is ok when we see them talking impeccable English :). You will also get to see why dodo's became extinct in this movie - in the real world, I suspect we humans had a hand (head?) to play in it. I do not know the name of the creature that was actually responsible for triggerring the IA (storywise), but poor thing, it never got to eat the nut even after 20000 years. It is also worth mentioning the thought of the movie makers to highlight human selfishness as a cause of animal destruction.

The Chronicles of Narnia

A fabulous movie to say the least. Another movie with spectacular special effects. As the credits roll on after the movie ends, the number of technicians who were part of creating the movie boggles the mind. Two aspects that really stand out after the movie end are Aslan's character (how majestic must a lion be? and how much wisdom must a sage exude? how would it be if both aspects where combined in one being?) and the background score for the movie (it really sizzles during the war scene). I really don't follow what the cupboard stands for - probably we can equate it to the human mind to say everything is in there - use it to create what you want. But for all purposes, you can set your logic aside and watch this movie. An enjoyable adventure into a fantasy-land.

Phenomenon

People who are used to seeing John Travolta as an action hero would probably be surprised at his performance in this movie. This movie is deeply spritual in the sense, it explores the possibilities of the human potential (this aspect would probably strike a chord very firmly with people who wonder how far the human brain can be pushed). Another telling aspect is in keeping John's (JT) character humble and caring even after he becomes a genius. The typical American genius is very egoistic (as we can see in several other movies - Core, Armageddon, Independance Day etc) - John comes as a refreshing and positive change in this movie. John (the director this time!!) should also be credited for not getting carried away too much by the premise of the movie - he portrays what he wants to very strongly without flying away too high. As a result, the movie flies high on several aspects. Another example would be the portrayal of human death and how we must take it with an open mind. All in all, this movie would be one where I can go back to if I need to be inspired at some point.
 
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