Commercial Astrology

Astrology is the study of influence that stars and sun have on human life. It is believed the position of sun, moon, planets and stars at the time of birth will have an influence on someone’s education, career, relationship and other events. Astrology starts with drawing a horoscope based on time and place of birth. With this horoscope, Astrologers predict the future of a person based on the various astronomical position. Even though I have never gone to a Astrologer I had great respect for this science until it became commercial. Horoscope matching of Bride and Groom is something which is given importance even today in Indian Marriages. Whatever our people have done in the past had lot of sense. Whether it is the raahu kaalam, finding auspicious time, drawing the panchangam, constructing a house, temple or anything our people did in the past had lot of meaning, it was done with sense which had sanity. Today, in the name of practicing the same, it is a shame to watch these getting abused by people who hardly know anything about the subject Astrology. There are still few of them who practice Astrology after studying, who doesn’t believe in going to YouTube and who doesn’t make use of it for commercial gains, I have a great respect for them.

I always thought Astrology is used for forecasting someone’s future based on his or her horoscope. I didn’t know Astrology can be used for forecasting about a Nation or a Pandemic like Covid-19. When the Covid-19 numbers started spiking, when we didn’t hear or read anything positive and when the whatsapp universities were busy forwarding without verifying, even I started going through some of the Astrology videos in YouTube to know when this virus will leave or when we will have the vaccine. I was watching it because it gave me lot of hope. I was worried about my family and friends, about their health, jobs and kids not going to school, when I was watching or hearing these Astrologers I thought at least one person’s prediction might come true. There were few Astrologers who told things will be better from the last week of March, many predicted things will be much better starting May 20 and the remaining predicted June 1st week. We know this virus is still very much active and none of the predictions have come true. What triggered me to write this post is a whatsapp forward from my friend which I watched yesterday. Someone in the name of predicting the future spoke completely rubbish. I don’t think this person like many others know anything about Astrology. Well, if the Astrologers had known the subject they would have predicted Covid-19 when 2020 started, it is not possible to call this year is going to be hit by a virus, they would have at least studied the planetary position and warned us about the pandemic, job loss and the possible recession. It will be fun to watch what some of the Astrologers said when 2020 started, it is going to be one of the Best Year.

What I have never liked about Astrology is the pariharam, this refers to doing some puja or ritual which the Astrologers says so that the evil affects or anything bad that might happen to someone based on the planetary position is minimized. There are people who have spent in thousands and lakhs believing these Astrologers. According to me this is where Astrology became commercial and this is where anyone without even reading the science started predicting or forecasting for others. Assuming if we do the pariharam the bad thing wont happen, everyone can commit any sin and start doing pariharam, what happens to karma? Alternatively when a child is born, parents can find out from an Astrologer what are all the pariharam that must be done when the child grows up and start doing the pariharam at the respective age. Will this ensure a problem free life. It is high time people realize Astrology practiced by many is commercial and they must stay away from these money minded people.

According to me whatever has to happen will happen, I believe in Karma. We must think nice and be nice to everyone. We must eat well, sleep well and definitely do some walking or running and yoga. Immunity is very essential to fight Covid-19 or any other virus and our blood should have good Vitamin D or we must take Vitamin D supplement. Please check my earlier Blog about Vitamin D which might be of help to you – https://rainbow-thoughts.com/2020/04/26/importance-of-vitamin-d/ . We all can continue with our prayers this Covid-19 must leave this World soon or the World must have a vaccine or medicine soon so that our normal life returns. Lets be nice to everyone and lets live a normal life. Lets all continue with our prayers so that we all and most importantly the children will have a better future.

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Go back to Village

I was born in a village in Tamilnadu but grew up in Chennai, a Metro City in India. I have never stayed in a village for more than two months at a stretch. During the school days it was a family trip to visit relatives in villages. After most of my relatives moved to cities, I hardly visited any village. Recently I visited one of the village, looking at their lifestyle and quality of life they have, I can only envy them. For someone depending only on agriculture income in a village, am aware of the hardships they go through every year due to unpredictable monsoon. In this post am going to look back at the city life when I was in Chennai, my gated community experience at Bangalore, teachings of Covid-19 and why I now feel it makes sense to go back to village post retirement.

I was in Chennai for more than four decades until six years back when I moved to Bangalore. In Chennai we were living in a rented independent house initially, subsequently we moved to a small apartment and we continued our living in apartments. Life in a small apartment was beautiful. I had lot of friends, play most part of the day when its a holiday and during the summer vacation we used to play day and night. When there were festivals or New Year, we used to have grand celebration with lot of cultural programs and dinner. Most of the family living in our apartment will participate in these events. We were living as one large family in these apartments. Today, even after my brother and myself moved to Bangalore with our families, my parents want to continue living in the same apartment because they have some nice friends and they just can’t miss their place. The families in this apartment live as one large family.

I moved to Bangalore around six years back and we live in a gated community. There are around one thousand seven hundred flats with all the amenities and convenience stores. On the amenities, we have a nice club house, few swimming pools, decent library, tennis court, indoor badminton and squash court. Moving to convenience stores we have few grocery stores, vegetables and fruits store, two clinics, pharmacy, two chat shop, nice salon and few others coming up. When I started living in this community I was enjoying the stay, I picked some nice friends and joined few groups. Some of the positives of living in a gated community are a) we have runners and yoga group – I joined the runners group and we used to run together during weekends and there were yoga trainers teaching yoga for lot of residents b) Senior Citizens Group – the senior citizens do their morning walk, some of them do laughing meditation and in the evening they have nice time chatting in the garden c) Children’s Play area – sitting in the balcony and watching Children’s play is something that I like the most, this is fun and at times it is a learning for me hearing their conversation. This is one thing I like even today staying in a gated community. After enjoying the honeymoon of gated community for first few years, I started seeing the other side. a) even our neighbors wont say Hello b) when there are celebration for festival or new year, hardly people participate. c) the runners and yoga group slowly disappears and it will be back to running on our own. d) there are bunch of people who have learnt to throw out anything from their balcony e) there are smokers who prefer to smoke from their balcony with no concern on the senior citizen or children on the next door f) even for the general body meeting there wont be a quorum for the meeting g) what I didn’t like the most is, even during these Covid-19 days, you will find residents not wearing the mask. My two cents about gated community is we live together in a community without knowing each other and people don’t care about others, they do what they want to do.

Image Courtesy : The Hindu

After having such a mixed experience in a Gated Community and after all the most valuable teachings from Covid-19, I have started thinking life will be much better in a village. Kindly click this link for my learning from Covid-19: https://rainbow-thoughts.com/2020/05/01/lessons-from-covid-19/ . In today’s world what is very important in our life other than our family and friends are WiFi, Mobile, Netflix and Tata Sky. I can move to a village, maybe have better network coverage for WiFi and Mobile Data, Netflix and Tata Sky can move with us wherever we go. To have these services where we stay doesn’t matter. Why I also started thinking about moving back to a village is, I can have better quality of life. I can start my day running or walking, I can continue doing my yoga, I can eat home grown vegetables and fruits, I can stay connected with my family and friends and overall I will have a healthier life. I have started thinking about the pros and cons of moving back to village, am certain life will be much better than what I experience in a gated community. Am hoping one day I will go back to a Village.

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Lessons from Covid-19

Today I complete six weeks of house arrest and must admit this is one of the best learning experience for me. This learning is better than what I learnt in school, college and at work. Numbers are still climbing and I only hope the hot weather and astrological predictions will help us see the numbers come down from May 5, 2020 and we will also have the vaccine at the earliest. It is very sad many have lost their lives and I can’t imagine the hard times people are going through when their dear ones get admitted in hospital and they cannot even spend time with them in person when their dear ones leave the world. Once, the lock down is lifted and things return to normal there are many things that won’t be the same. I don’t know how many will lose their jobs, how many companies will have the cash to pass through recession, how many will default in loan payments and what will happen to their investments, very hard to even imagine. This Covid-19 is one way helping us understand the basics of life and what is essential for our future. Here is my list of learning and how things will change in post Covid-19 days.

LCP We are all used to the term Business Continuity Plan, BCP. The purpose of BCP is to make sure the essential services are rendered to Customers as Business Usual even during an emergency or calamity. None of us would have imagined that we will be sitting in our homes for weeks and months because of a virus. The worst hit are the senior citizens who cannot do their morning walk, cannot go to hospital for check up and have no other choice but to watch the TV News and keep worrying more. Am also worried about kids less than 10 years who are missing their school and cannot even step out and play. Parents have no other choice but to force their children to watch YouTube and TV. All of us must now assume we might have this lock down every year and do a Life Continuity Plan, LCP so that we take care of our family members well.

Work From Home As mentioned in one of my earlier Blog, My Covid-19 Experience, one thing that has zero impact during the lock down days is work. During the post Covid-19 days many organizations will ask their employees to work from home if there is no requirement for them to come to office and if they don’t have face to face meeting with their Customer. This will help Companies reduce cost of operations and this will also help employees to either do more work or do their personal work during the hours they use for commute. In a city like Bangalore where most people have to spend around 2 hours in their car, bike, bus or metro to commute to office, working from home will help them have this 2 hours at their disposal. This also means lesser pollution on the road and people who cannot work from home can have a safer drive or ride to work. Companies will also think when employees can work from home, it doesn’t matter whether their home is in India or US, Bangalore or Chennai or any village. Companies will allow their employees to work from any location and people on assignment in International Location might be hit hard. They might be asked to return to their homes in India and work from home.

Business Travel Airline and Hotel Industry will be hit very hard for a year or two as people will neither travel for Business nor for Pleasure. With the talks on pay cut and job loss people will not have the mind to go on a vacation to enjoy.

Animal Life and Nature These are the best days for wildlife and nature. Most of the dirty looking cities now look beautiful. Quality of Air is extremely good. The wildlife will be happy to roam around in their homes which is the forest as the poachers and hunters will also be in their homes going through lock down. I have started thinking it is better we have compulsory lock down for at least 4 weeks in a year, this will help the wildlife and nature immensely.

Personal Lock Down – It will be good if we have understood the benefits of lock down and go through a self imposed lock down for at least 2 weekends in a month. This will help us do the domestic work ourselves and will help us have better health by not eating the junk food which we normally eat during the weekends. We can have good time with our family at home, do domestic work, watch some nice movies on Netflix and write a Blog or read books.

Social Distancing and Hygiene This is not something new for us in India. What was taught by our Parents when we were kids we forgot it for many years. Now, most of the world has learnt the importance of social distancing. The only way we can stay away from any virus in future is by Social Distancing and maintaining good Hygiene.

Social Media Distancing It is very important during these tough days we stay away from Whatsapp forward. Most of the forwards are not checked, they can be fake and other than bringing fear on our minds it does nothing. I have also learnt that it also makes sense to stay away from most of the News Channel. The only News channel that I watch is WION. They hardly have any debates and they show what happens around the World as an information.

Fitness I always liked running in Beach, Lake and Park. I have been doing this for ages and am not comfortable to run even around my community. Today, I have learnt that Walking and Yoga is enough, I walk inside my house for a hour every day and do pranayama, surya namskar and few asanas when I start my day. Post Covid-19 I will go back to running inside my community and continue with yoga at home. I must also get exposed to sunlight regularly as this is the main source for Vitamin D.

Covid-19 has helped me learn some of the basics in life. Hopefully I will make use of this learning in future and be a better person. I will be very happy if you could share your views or your learning in the comments section, lets learn from each other.

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My Covid-19 Experience

Last few weeks are the toughest days for many of us. Wherever we are, life is only about Social Distancing, Hygiene and Immunity. Am waiting for the virus to leave so that I can see my niece and take her to mall, I want to go to Chennai to see my parents, I want my family, friends and relatives to live life without fear. I want to take few minutes to share my experience during the last few weeks.

There is one thing that this virus has no impact, that’s my work. I continue to work as usual and I don’t see any challenge to work from home. I only hope after this virus is gone, lot of corporates in cities like Bangalore allow employees to work from home so that there is lesser pollution and we give a better environment to children.

I learnt cooking from my mom few years back, what I like in my cooking is I put the right amount of salt and spice. Last few weeks am cooking more and also trying out new dishes. Am now a better cook.

For the first time I started washing the vessels and also started cleaning the floor. I realize these two are the most toughest job.

I watch lot of old English and Tamil movies in Netflix and YouTube. I stopped watching TV since I want to keep my mind positive.

One thing I can’t miss is either running or walking. Last 2 weeks I walk inside my house and cover almost 6,000 steps. I do my regular exercises and yoga at home. Since, I can’t step out I sit in my balcony during sunrise.

I started reading more about Astrology. This is one thing which is giving me lot of hopes that things will be better after April 12, 2020.

I haven’t gone outside my community gate for more than 2 weeks. I haven’t traveled a kilometer in my car.

Am back to Blogging with a new site. I want to continue writing here once in a while. I also want to read lot of books and blogs in the future.

I haven’t gone to a temple last few weeks. I keep praying at my home so that this virus will leave this world very soon.

Am learning not to forward anything that comes as forward on whatsapp.

Am not listening to my favorite music these days. I keep listening to lot of devotional songs in the morning.

Covid-19 on a better side is helping everyone become a better person. My only concern is about people who get infected and leave this world. It is very clear that no country in this world is actually developed. I sincerely hope that we humans are kind to other humans, animals and nature. I will continue with my prayers for this Covid-19 to leave this world soon.

Leave This World Covid-19

Covid-19 has already infected around a million people and more than 40,000 are dead. The only positive thing for many in India until April 2nd 2020 is the virus has not made any major impact in India.

I want to look at what is done in India and appreciate some of the positives.

Waking up early – Thanks to Government for waking up early and educating all of us about this virus. We started preparing to fight this virus well on time so that a population of around 1.3 Billion will have no major impact.

Bold Actions – I must Thank the Government again for taking some bold actions like closure of International Airport across India, Screening of Passengers on Arrival, Lock down for 3 weeks and the way this is enforced. The only concern here is there are very few people who step out when they should not. I only hope that they understand the importance and stay at home next 2 weeks and follow the guidelines issued by Government.

Awareness to Public – Thank you Media, Mobile Companies and Social Media for educating us about this virus, do’s and don’ts and the online reports of how this virus is impacting every country with numbers.

Social Distancing and Hygiene – This is not something new for us in India. What was taught by our Parents when we were kids we forgot it for many years. Now, the only way to stay away from this virus is Social Distancing and Hygiene. Am also of the opinion that Social Media Distancing will also help in facing this issue without any fear. There are too many forwards which might be fake, reading and watching videos might bring more fear to us.

Essential Services – A Big Thanks to people who are part of Grocery and Vegetable stores, Medical Shops, Hospitals, Police and Armed Forces, Doctors and Nurses. Milkman, Bank employees who risk their life and service all of us. They are all doing a splendid job and making our lives safe and easier.

Positive Medical Reports and Astrological Predictions – Some of the Medical Reports that are published by leading Doctors explaining about Immunity, Malaria and Hot Weather in India and the Astrologers giving hope considering the planetary positions, help us to stay positive with the hope things will be better soon.

Last few days, some close people of mine passed away in my native place due to old age or health issue. They might be alive if this virus was not there as they would have got the medical attention on time. What is very disturbing is that I can’t even travel to my native, these are the toughest days we all are experiencing. Let’s continue our prayers, stay at home and get rid of this virus soon.

Covid-19 is helping all to understand what is important in our lives and is teaching the Basics of life and Demonstrating how each one of us is prepared to handle a crisis like this. Am confident India will win this battle against Covid-19 very soon and I also hope other affected Countries will also win this battle soon. It is very sad that many have already lost their lives to this deadly virus. It is very important people co-operate with Government and Stay at Home. This will help them, their family and others.

I only hope we humans are kind to other humans, animals and nature. Let’s all give a Better Life to all the Children as they Deserve a Better One. Stay at home and Stay Safe. Covid-19 will leave this World soon.