Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Book of Ram by Devdutt bose Pattanaik: ~~~Ram~remains~serene~in~ his~majesty~~~

Author: Dr. Devdutt Pattanaik

Publisher: Peguin India

Price: Rs. 250/-

Author, his passions, his career and his versatility: Dr Devdutt Pattanaik (b.1970) is a multi-faceted personality mastering different streams of life. After passing out his MBBS from Grant Medical College, Mumbai, he spent 14 years working in the Pharma and Healthcare companies such as SIRO and Apollo. After that he started afresh as a marketing consultant and got associated with prestigious organizations like Sanofi Aventis and Ernst & Young. He is also a mythologist by passion. He topped the Mumbai University course in Comparative Mythology and lectures extensively on the relevance of sacred symbols, rituals and stories and their significance in modern times. His articles appear regularly in First City magazine (Delhi) and Times of India (Mumbai). He lives in Mumbai. His passion always being mythology drove him to writing and lecturing extensively on relevance of sacred stories, symbols and rituals in modern times. And it is in this capacity that he has joined Future Group as Chief Belief Officer where his role is to help construct the culture of the entire organization. He regularly writes in Economic Times (Corporate Dossier), Times of India (Mumbai), Hindustan Times, First City Magazine and Sunday Midday. His books have been published by VFS, Haworth, Inner Traditions, Indus Source, Penguin India and EastWest Publications displaying his command over writing superbly. Few of his books include: Shiva – an introduction (VFS, India), Vishnu – an introduction (VFS, India), Devi – an introduction (VFS, India), Hanuman – an introduction (VFS, India), Lakshmi – an introduction (VFS, India), Goddesses in India – five faces of the eternal feminine (Inner Traditions, USA), Indian Mythology – Stories, symbols and rituals from the heart of the subcontinent (Inner Traditions, USA), Man who was a woman and other queer tales from Hindu lore (Haworth Publications, USA), Shiva to Shankara – decoding the phallic symbol (Indus Source, India), Myth=Mithya: A Handbook of Hindu Mythology (Penguin, India), The Pregnant King (Penguin, India – this was his first work of fiction), and The Book of Kali (Penguin, India - based on his talks).

The Book: In this book, Dr Devdutt explores the eleven different iconic symbols of Lord Ram presenting relevance of Ram in modern times by examining him in his various roles: as Dashrath’s son, Lakshman’s brother, Vishwamitra’s student, Sita’s husband, Ravan’s enemy, Hanuman’s master, Ayodhya’s king, Vishnu’s incarnation, Valmiki’s inspiration, the Ramayan’s protagonist and Hindutva’s icon. The book tells about various perspectives of Lord Rama as Eka-vachani – the king who keeps his words – always, Eka-bani – an archer who strikes his target perfectly with the first arrow, Eka-patni – a husband who is eternally devoted to his single wife. All his aspects show him as ‘maryada purushottam’ who is perfectly able to balance his life with social values, his Raghu vansh, and the solar dynasty. He is known to be the 7th avatar of Vishnu. Ram word brings peace and harmony in life.

My views: The author doesn’t want to preach via this book. This is a well researched book, which can be kept in one’s personal library, and can be read time and again, whenever a person wants some peace or solacement. This is a though provoking book, with each angle of Ram being reflected clearly that can be carved upon in one’s life. This book answers to many whys and hows, those were unanswered till now. In each man on this earth, there is a part of Ram and Ravan each with varying percentage. Similarly in each woman there is Sita, Ahilya, Surupnakha and Mandodri. A man’s personality has been reflected by many icons – Ram, Lakshman, Hanuman, Angad, Bali, Sugriv, Jatayu, Dashrath, Bharat, Shatrughan, Ravan, Vibhishan etc. similarly woman’s face has been reflected in many icons – Sita, Mandodri, Ahilya, Surupnakha, Mandodri etc. Logically, in today’s world, it is your karmas, or what you do in your actual life, that defines what icon a woman is, and what icon a man is.

The book is a must read, for all ages, all genders. It is short, crisp and with a precision.

Making Friends - Andrew Mathews

Title: Making Friends – A Guide to Getting Along with People 
Written and illustrated by – ANDREW MATTHEWS (author of the international bestseller ‘Being Happy!’
My Views:
 It is a perfect teacher provided you are a dull student.This is book is about getting well along with people, that is how you can improve your relationship with them, how you can understand their attitude, how you can understand their personality, and how to overcome the problem they face and need someone to help them. If somebody has an attitude for seeking tension or problem, and he feels that everyone ignores him, he will try to attract everyone’s attention. People keep highlighting your weaknesses or problems but don’t get bogged down by this, ignore it, swallow it, digest it and silently improve upon it. Don’t let yourself go into a shell because of this, overcome this weakness or problem. If people are not happy with you, or ignore you, seek answers from them why they do it, what is the reason, what do I do that I don’t get ignored. People have a tendency to react sharply if your weakness is highlighted, like if somebody says your body has a bad odor, people, friends around you will start ignoring you, even if they are not getting bad smell at all. More happens on preception and listening than actual experience.
ike yourself, love yourself, but don’t ignore others, like others too, don’t be too proud of yourself.
top comparing and stop getting depressed if you are compared. Emphasize that you are you and not that person with whom you are being compared.
void boasters who praise themselves and always let others down
efore changing others, change yourself, adjust, compromise and your life will be happy.
on’t wait for others to come to you and invite to join a party, throw a party and invite people. That will start a cycle.
et out of corner, stop hiding yourself.
on’t wait for other to come and highlight your weaknesses, or improve you, change yourself, who knows you better than YOU.
on’t fear of a CHANGE.
Don’t let your low esteem work in reverse.
ho is bothered about the pimples on your face, go out of your room instead of waiting in your room for pimples to leave your face (and you stop all your outdoor activities)
uit playing games, don’t pretend, and pour your heart out. You want to go out for a dinner, but you want your wife/husband to say this. How does she/he know what you have in your mind right now? And how you are so sure that she/he will refuse? But be sure that it is NO if you don’t talk about it.
Sometimes L
 ive your life to fit your belief system. Mary doesn’t feel good about her. And due to this perception about her, she is usually ignored by most of her friends. Fred likes her, behaves well with her but Mary starts wondering why Fred likes her when she is not likable, and starts ignoring him, responding him. Fred feels ignored and gets a reverse message that Mary doesn’t like him. So he silently moves away from her life. Now a stage comes in Mary’s life when nobody likes her and she starts scolding herself that why nobody is there to like her. Why there are no good persons in my life. Why everyone ignores me? Lucy has a belief system that there are good people around in the world and she can always find the caring and loving people to be with. She decides not to spend any time with the people who don’t like her, or who are rude and aggressive. With this attitude she is able to find good and caring people and leave lousy people for Mary. Decide what you want to be – Mary or Lucy?
artin has a habit of taking everybody’s work besides his own work in the office. He found a friend, who wanted to help him, but this looked abnormal to Martin and he pushed this friend away from his life. Martin thinks that all the people who don’t help him in his work and who don’t do their own work are normal.
About Book: 
This book is about enjoying people, dealing with prophets of doom, how to say NO sometimes, prevailing over gossip, pettiness and anger. It is about understanding that IF YOU WANT FRIENDSHIP, YOU MUST BE A FRIEND FIRST. The book is funny reading too with a lot of serious learning. It has lot of comical strips which are perfectly able to convey the message. Like one says – “There are 70% people having problem with their partners. Ok, what about the rest of 30%. Oh, they are singles.” Another one says – “But I don’t want to concentrate on my business, yours is more interesting than mine.” There are lot many more, all interesting, funny but meaningful. Author says “Being Happy” was about yourself, this book is about people around you, people who depend on you, those you want to see, and those you avoid.
About Author: 
Andrew Matthew is based in Adelaide in South Australia. His first book Being Happy became a worldwide publishing phenomenon after its release in 1988. His writing, illustrating and public speaking talents are in great demand throughout North America, Europe, Southeast Asia and Australia.