Sunday, December 22, 2013

Three Faces

A hidden phase in a painting’s life
Locked away in an artist’s mind
None take notice of a blank canvas
When a finished painting craves the attention

Sketches made create a shell
Connecting dots makes a line
Fleeting images hang on the string of life
A complete picture is never seen in the mind

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Mindful of Desires

Quenching the flow of desire may be a thirsty effort
Dousing the mind’s fire brings joy without end
Thoughts are tethered by invisible threads
Every desire is a puppeteer that unsettles the mind

A remote planet can be seen but not touched
Desires twinkle like stars, too many to name
A distant light triggers a cascade of memories
Commanding a price paid through sleepless nights

A desireless mind gives more that we can take
Like a land that gets plundered over time
Even a mind of gold becomes a barren mine
When the mind touches the forbidden gem

Thursday, November 28, 2013


A day of remembrance and gratitude is here
For a bountiful harvest in the year that passed
Everybody partakes in a hearty feast
Banishing hunger is a noble goal

The body of man is fed by grain from the land
The power to give back lies within the mind
A detached witness cannot force its hand
A starving soul lives with a mind that does not share

Ingredients for the feast are assembled with care
The gift of fire helps a cook display his tricks
A spread that fills is gladly shared
Everyday is an opportunity to care

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Soul of a Tree

There isn’t an heir to this world of air
Beings spring alive in vacuum’s void
Every breath, a treasure taken for granted
Yearning for a heaven, the golden world is ignored

Eyes are kissed by an invisible breeze
The soul of all life hides from curious eyes
Making an entrance in the breath of life
To this wealthy merchant, every mortal is an equal

The cycle of life is orchestrated fun
In the mind’s world, that concept’s rare
A creative realm, can be a devil’s lair
Laced with joy, it unlocks heaven’s gate

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A Melting Pot

One hundred men, all brave at heart
United by an adventurous past
Biding their time in a corner of the world
A land insulated by desolation and ice

These men of valor, seen from time to time
Every generation has offered a guard of honor
A friendly chat will not reveal a past that’s dark
Kings of deception, they appear at night

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A Mythical Land

A black canvas mounted in the dark
In a mythical land of the unseen
The paint brushes are the eyes
As colors come alive in the mind

Flowers hide the field that bears them
As brushstrokes of the wind guide their dancing smile
Sunlight skies are painted at night
With etchings of the stars, erased at dawn

On a perfect day, the elements are at play
A perfect night is an invisible sign
Seen only in the mythical land
A nameless realm that bears us all

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Work in balance

Talk given at World Precision Instruments, Sarasota, FL on 9-25-2013

“ Without rest, a man cannot work; without work, the rest does not give you any benefit. ”
— Abkhasian Proverb

There are only a few things in life that are certain. You can count the 24 hour clock as one of them. Day after day, no matter who we are or what we are doing, we are bound by this 24 hour clock. If you leave out 8 hours for sleep, we are left with 16 hours to complete our daily tasks, which may include work, play, study, eat, read etc. Broadly speaking, our waking hours are consumed by either work or leisure. Everyday, we experience an undercurrent of thoughts that help or hurts our work-life balance. It is easier to achieve this balance if the body and mind are in tune with one another.

Deep sleep provides rest to the body and the mind. In this state, both the body and the mind are in a natural state of harmony despite one being unaware of it. When the mind is completely rested, the body rests and when the body is completely rested, the mind rests. Sometimes, sleep seems more refreshing than work. During sleep, rest is a passive process that starts with the body and envelops the mind. During work, rest is an active process that starts with the mind and this in turn affects the body. The waking state is a working state as far as the mind is concerned. When one leads a highly predictable and conditioned life, one can almost predict what the state of mind would be on any given day of the week. As an example, a “weekend mind” that feels strong and refreshed may turn into a “weakened mind” come Monday morning.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

A Falling Leaf

Little white wave on a deep blue ocean
Like a green leaf in the Amazon
A twinkling star in a milky galaxy
Like an emerald in a chest of diamonds

A great king once a helpless baby
Whose rule will be a fable in time
Unlike a thief of hearts who has no beginning
This is a storyteller’s dream without an end

Changing mores of men to come
Hidden in minds like water in trees
The rise of sap is a miracle of sorts
Any other way would be a fall from grace

Saturday, September 14, 2013

A letter written on water

A sculpted man chiseled from stone
Standing witness by the ocean shore
As rock turns to sand with a sculptor's blows
Letters in sand dissolve when water flows

A sculptor’s tool and the beak of a gull
One meets rock and the other water
Beauty arises from jagged stone as fish from sea
Transient are they as writing on water

Sunday, September 8, 2013

The Windy Trident

Circling high above in the cosmic breeze
As toiling winds below move not but a blade of grass
Too important to even push a cloud
God of the wind lamented on his only son

Unlike brown mountains that appear blue from afar
A windy world morphed from the heavens above
The hills and dusty plains to turquiose waters
The wind god aided the ebb and flow of all life divine

Monday, September 2, 2013

The Five Elements of Heart Health

Talk given at Westminister Manor, Bradenton, FL on August 30, 2013

A patient of mine who had a heart bypass surgery about a year ago, came in last week for a follow up visit. Following her bypass she made an excellent recovery. When asked how she felt, she replied, “physically I feel great, but there is something that is different since my heart surgery”. When asked if she could describe in one word how she felt before her bypass and now a year since her bypass, she replied “ before the operation I felt invincible, now I feel vulnerable”. Although her physical body had healed fully, her psychological body was not healed.

Health and well being is a common goal for one and all. In all our thoughts and actions, we knowingly or unknowingly promote or destroy our health. When the body is healthy, we tend to forget about it and assume that it will stay that way forever. When the body is diseased, it makes a loud announcement in our minds, more severe the illness, the greater is the degree of worry in the mind. This is part of human nature that no one can avoid. Illnesses run the gamut from brief, self limiting colds to serious life threatening problems. It is virtually impossible to live a disease free life. However, by following certain simple principles of healthy living, it is certainly possible to avoid some serious illnesses.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Song Of The Kingbird

A dying wish stayed alive

Faintest of memories in secret chambers
The valley of kings but a temporary abode
For a truth that lasts an eternal time

A mournful dove whispered to the wind
Within the golden egg lays the truth
Then came the mockingbird’s cry
Under a forested land lies the hoard

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Island Time

Sailing the seven seas in three masted carracks
Tradewinds bring gems from the south
Spices from the east and icy wind from the north
And the medieval west is where it all starts

Seven sails of different shapes
Squares, circles and triangles according to the wind
In the crow’s nest sitting high above
Stood the captain looking for the elusive shores of gold

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Five Lagoons

In an age before time, a king ruled
A land so vast and beautiful
The sun, moon and stars spectators
From a heaven so bountiful

The sun holding up the blue canopy
Stars twinkling with hope and dreams
Moon doing its dance to its crescentic fullest
Kingly eyes watched the heavens above

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Fear to Fearlessness: Surviving the Himalayan Tsunami

Getting there

After months of on and off preparation, the moment had finally arrived. I was back in India and this time it was to the Himalayas in Northern India. I had planned to spend two weeks of solitude in the mountains. It was my first trip to the Himalayas, let alone a trip of silent contemplation. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Food, Mood and Exercise

Based on a talk given at Weight Watchers, Bradenton, FL June 2013

The life cycle of every cell in the human body goes through three processes, namely creation, preservation and destruction. Food is the main source of energy for creative processes in cells. One of the main goals of life is the preservation of happiness, the human mind ceaselessly pursues happiness from birth to death. Exercise, by promoting healthy blood circulation helps in the elimination and destruction of cellular toxins.

Both humans and animals have the need for food. However, obesity is a problem unique to the human species. In the wilderness, you don’t come across obese animals or birds. An overweight tiger will not be able to hunt for food, an obese deer will not be able to escape predators and a bird that puts on a few extra pounds may not be able to take flight. Animals are instinctual eaters whereas humans are predominantly emotional eaters.

Hunger instinct is a basic survival mechanism for the body. The human mind, by turning this survival instinct into a social and emotional concept, has made food a source of comfort. Right from our infancy, we either eat to live or live to eat. Eating to live generally promotes good health and living to eat ultimately results in disease.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

The conquest of the mind. Lessons in practical spirituality from from Sun Tzu’s Art of War. Part 1

Art of War, is a book written by Sun Tzu over 2000 years ago. It consists of thirteen chapters. This is a commentary (based on Sun Tzu’s work), that will hopefully help with the conquest of the mind.

Sun Tzu said:

The art of war is of vital importance to the State.

It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin. Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected.


The success, happiness and prosperity of a nation depends not only on the direction set by the people governing it but also requires the cooperation of the masses. When nations get along, the world is at peace. In recorded human history, there has not been an age when peace has reigned throughout the word. The ego one of the sources of this constant conflict among human beings. Ego makes us overlook the fairly obvious concept that all humans are similar in physical form and therefore the suffering and happiness that we experience is also experienced by others. Everyone is striving to attain the same goal of happiness. Ego drives us to trample on the trail to happiness that others may have created for themselves and in the process our own path to happiness gets stepped on by others. Fighting wars to physically annihilate one’s enemies can never solve the problem. It only removes the physical body but does not change thought.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The conquest of the mind. Lessons in practical spirituality from Sun Tzu’s The Art of War

Life is a game that is played between the earth and the skies

Man and animal arrive on sandy shores to claim their gift
Man is given the mind and the animal hide and paws
Going their separate ways man battles a mind adrift

A game is a test of wit between friends
A war is a test of wit between enemies
These last so long as the earth and skies do not part
The earth and sky reflect the body and mind

What do you take for the battle within
Where friends and foe may not enter
The game of deception begins the night
The morning star declares the winner

The feet move and the mind turns for the battle without
The mind is subdued and stilled for the victory within

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Taming the mind - Part VI

A butterfly begins its life on a leaf that is vibrant and green
The leafy home is heaven till wings give it flight
A human is a tiny speck in the endless void of space unseen
The earth is home so long as the mind dreams into the night

A newborn baby is graced by the mother’s touch
Hands that are soft as silk cradle life
The newborn clings on as a caterpillar on a leafy crutch
Moving on all fours a human enters the jungle of life

The body is free as long as the legs have their might
Worldly lights appear to strengthen the mind for the voyage ahead
At the journeys end the cold earth is a steady witness to the body’s plight
The secret to the treasures of the mind remain unsaid

The caterpillar wisely stays on the leaf despite having many legs
Wings of freedom set the butterfly free from its nest
The human mind flaps its wings chasing fantasies
Wisdom dawns when the wings of the mind are laid to rest

Wings of a butterfly take it from the bondage of a cocoon to freedom
Wings of fantasy take the human mind from freedom to bondage


The human mind can be compared to the roots of a tree. A tree root is generally hidden underground. The human mind is also not visible to the naked eye. The root is the basis of a tree. The mind is the basis for the body. The root supplies water and nutrients to the tree, provides stability and also stores nutrients for later use. The mind draws in nourishment in the form of sensory inputs, it provides a sense of direction and purpose to our lives. Memories and experiences are like stored mental nutrients that we can draw upon whenever we chose to do so.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Taming the mind - Part V

The human eye can discern only a very small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. This small slice of the electromagnetic spectrum that we can see is also known as visible light. Light is an intriguing phenomenon. It has no mass. The basic unit of light is called a photon, which is a tiny particle of light. Sunlight that reaches earth starts its journey deep inside the sun. There is a continuous stream of light is liberated from the surface of the sun. This light takes about 8 minutes to traverse the approximately 93 million mile journey to earth. The world we see around us in daylight is a result of a continuous stream of light particles striking the photosensitive part of the eye called the retina. When a particle of light lands on our retina after a 93 million mile journey from the sun, its energy is absorbed and this particle of light ends its existence at the back of the human eye.  

The energy generated by the impact of light on the retina sets off a cascade of reactions and the resulting electrical impulses are carried from the photosensitive cells of the retina to the visual cortex at the back of the brain. Here an image is constructed based on the light input that falls on the eye. Although all the image processing occurs at the back of the head in the visual center of the brain, it is projected in front of us giving us the illusion that this image is created in “in front of our eyes.” When our eyes are open to the world around us, the mind can be thought of as a dark auditorium where thoughts are like shadows lurking in the background. These thoughts continuously interpret and catalogue the stream of images that the brain processes every waking moment. When we close our eyes, this dark auditorium like mind changes. The shadowy thoughts that appear to have entered through the back door of the mind, now pierce the realm of our consciousness through the dark space in front of us.