Monday, February 19, 2018


We are so used to despair, that we consider smiles difficult to come by. And even when they do, we doubt their credibility. "Is it really the smile we have been awaiting since long, or just another disappointment in disguise?" we think, sceptically.

We assume all possible negative scenarios, forgetting that smiles are a gift for our patience and perseverance, and should be relished whole-heartedly, without an iota of doubt.

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Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Ramayana-Stand Strong - Review

The Ramayana is not a story. It’s a way of life. It’s the game of life.
Life is a constant reminder that nothing, however powerful in one season, remains unchanging. The endless cycles of change can truly us if we are unprepared to face its realities. However, we often see these changing times as problems larger than they really are. Many issues in life when perceived with fear, result in pain; but when perceived with CLARITY, result is FREEDOM.
Situations of helplessness are almost always created by our own limited imagination.
Do you have the courage to face your fears?
Stand Strong, the fourth book in Ramayana: The Game of Life series reminds us through its eternal stories -- such as the tale of brothers Vali and Sugriva -- that life is like a high-risk treasure hunt: one often has to walk through a maze of confusing paths while being chased by dangerously complex dilemmas to find the hidden treasure of wisdom.

About The Author
Shubha Vilas is a spiritual seeker and a motivational speaker. He helps people in dealing with modern-day life situations through the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and other dharmic traditions. He conducts leadership seminars in premier institutes across the world and inspires deeper human values.

I have been an ardent follower of Ramayana – The Game of Life series, not only because I love reading Indian mythologies, but also because the author Subha Vilas imparts the tales with such lucidity that one seems to be witnessing the story on a first person basis. Along with the fluent narration, Subha Vilas also adds lessons based on the learning from the epic that we can apply to our day to day activities.

Stand Strong’ takes the story forward from its prequels, ‘Roar With Courage’ (Book 1), ‘Conquer Change’ (Book 2) and ‘Adopt Patience’(Book 3). As the title suggests, this book imparts the message to be strong and wise in all adversities. The story starts with Rama and Lakshmana’s search for Sita, which takes them to the Rishimukh mountain range. Here, they are spotted by Nala, Nila and Taru, who failed to recognize them and rushed towards Sugriva to warn him of upcoming danger. Thus commences the Kishkinda Kand of Ramayana, which revolves primarily around the vanaras and how they serve Rama in his mission.

‘Stand Stronng’ also introduces one of the most loved characters of Ramayana, Hanuman. We get to know about his birth, childhood, and the boons and curses he went through, in crisp details. We are made aware of his journey, his powers and his prowess. Hanuman is humble and despite being more powerful than Sugriva, he has no qualms in serving the latter. He performs his duties with utmost sincerity, and can rightly be considered as the backbone of this great epic.

The fight scene between Vali and Sugriva is one of the key highlights of this book. Initially, one might be apprehensive towards Rama’s judgement and his actions during the fight between the two brothers, but as we read along, we understand the deeper meanings of Rama’s deeds. We realize how he analyses the situations, and like a true leader, he knows what would be the right decision for a particular course. However, there are moments when Rama feels low and disheartened with the loss of Sita.  He misses her with the change of seasons, comparing her and their love with beautiful metaphorical references to the world around. At such times, his brother and able companion Lakshmana provides him mental support, urging him to have patience and be calm and strong.

As always, Subha Vilas does full justice to the epic. He has narrated the events in such details and with utmost beauty that the readers will be transported to that divine world. The characterization is perfect, with every protagonist in the book being provided with their own space to grow and form an image in the mind of the readers. We, while reading the book, find ourselves questioning the actions and the deeds of the characters, forming our own judgments. This indicates how well the author has managed to create a connect with the readers.

Though I have been familiar with the basic premise of the Ramayana, it’s still a delight reading this version, an added plus point being the numerous back stories and anecdotes which we are not aware of, but which still play integral roles in the development of the plot. This is a must read for all lovers of mythology, and for those who are not, this book might well be able to pique their interest towards this field.

Title: Ramayana-Stand Strong
Authors: Shubha Vilas
Publisher: Jaico Publishing House
Publication Year: 2017
Language: English
Binding: Paperback
Genre: Mythology, Religion
No. of Pages: 316
Price: Rs 295
My Rating: 4/5

Saturday, February 03, 2018


I wrote another piece in Hindi today, and tried converting into English. Though I personally like the Hindi version more, I feel there are lots of rooms for improvement in both. Let me know your suggestions :-)

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Thursday, February 01, 2018

Once In A Blood Moon

I witnessed the Blue Blood Moon today, a celestial phenomenon which I might not be able to experience again in this lifeline.

And then, the poet in me raced to form a few lines.

While the original poem came in my mind in Hindi, I tried to translate it to form a piece in English as well.

Hope you like them!

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