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Every morning as I walk to school through the dark blue decrepit world, I feel like I’m coming down with the flu. By the time I reach the school, my entire body is depleted as if I have spent the night in chills, reabsorbing the damp excreting from my own pores. I am always excreting something. My ex-boyfriend noticed it. He would ask why I was always cold and sweating, why I was always at war with myself. When he licked the excretions off my body, I would ask myself, Is this a life? He used to say dirty things to me like, Desubjectify me, bitch. The way he fucked was senseless and crazy. I don’t get fucked like that anymore. As a teacher I am not getting fucked and the children can tell. Some of the children are teenagers and menstruating and ejaculating. They have no control over their excretions and, in that way, perhaps we’re all alike. Sometimes they talk to me as if I’m a nun. No, little children, I’m not a nun. I never was. There are people where I am standing, outside the school’s entrance. I am waiting to open the door. I encounter someone’s father. He has a cord of wood strapped to his back. How are you, Maya’s teacher? No, how are you? Then a different father holds the door open for me. Go on in, he says. I have always hated people’s families and fathers. The school is inside what used to be an American legion hall. It’s an open space the size of a gymnasium with hundreds of chairs organised in circles and two offices and practice rooms and closets. Some of the children are huddled in clumps on the floor like mounds of peanut shells. The peanut shells are listening to the Notorious B.I.G. I touch the handle of the teachers’ bathroom. There is one adult bathroom for thirty adults. The sweat on my skin dries and leaves a thin film. The door is locked. A phone is ringing somewhere. I wait patiently. I am filled with
Five Golden Principles
Wherever you live, there you are living in your home. The significance is not in living in your home, but if you live in God's kingdom then there is much significance and greatness. This home (kingdom) you have called your own. But this home was from the very beginning belonging to God only. Even right now it is God's and later on also it will remain God's. If you die, then surely this house will not go with you. It belongs to God only. Therefore from today onwards, accept that I live in God's home. Really speaking you are living in God's home. When you come to Haridwar the you say - Oh ! this is gateway to God's home. When you come to Vrindavan you say that this is the place where God engaged in His divine loving pastimes. When you go to Ayodhya then you say we have come to God's palace. Accept it as God's kingdom or God's home, then this very house that you live in will become Vrindavan. At all times let that thought prevail, that I am living in God's home, and we are his very dear ones that belong to him. From today onwards accept this. All of you, do not consider your home as belonging to you. Oh' It is God's home! We have considered it our home in the middle somewhere. Before it was God's, and later on it will be God's then in the middle how can it become ours? Simply for no reason you have put a stamp on it. There is a point that you must pay close attention to - whatever work you do, accept it as God's work and then do it. Whether it is washing your clothes, taking a bath. This body is also God's, therefore to serve God you are doing it's work. Eating and drinking is also God's work. Office work and business is also God's work. The Master of this entire world is God, therefore the master of all the bodies is also God.Therefore work related to this body and to this world can be whose work? It is God's work only! What a wonderful thing this is! We live in God's kingdom and we are doing His work - these are two points. Now the third point is - All the things that are in the house, they too belong to God only. If the house belongs to God and you belong to God then can the things belong to someone else? Mothers and sisters should want that they should take those things that belong to God and cook with them. In the mind must be the thought that Oh! it is for offering food to God that I am cooking this meal. Now offer the foods prepared to God and thereafter however many people that are in the house, understand them to be God's people and offer them food.Understand them to be God's loving people, they are God's very loving and sweet children. I am feeding them. I am serving God. Just like if you love someone's child, then his mother will be very pleased, won't she? similarly, if you serve God's children, then God will be pleased. What a wonderful point this is! Cooked God's food, offered it to God and fed God's children with the prepared foods. When you eat yourself, then too think of it as God's "prasad" (partaking in the food offered and blessed by God). How very wonderful! "Tumhi nibedit bhojan karahin | Prabhu prasad pat bhooshan gharhin || (Manas 2/128/1) As discussed earlier, make everything an offering to the Lord; not just food. If you wear jewellery, offer it to God "Thakurji". Wear only those clothes that belong to Thakurji. Let all things be taken in as if it is "prasad" (offering to the Lord), then all things will get purified. Have you seen this or not, that when food is offered to Thakurji's as "prasad" and is later distributed to all, then every person will bring forth their hand to receive the "prasad". Even if the smallest portion is given, then too he will be happy. Whether he is a millionaire or a billionaire, he too will bring his hand forward, and if you give him a small piece of the "prasad", he will be happy. Is this person hungry for sweets? If some millionaire or a billionaire asks for "prasad" and if you tell him let us go to the market and I will buy it for you from the market, then he will not be happy. He will say, am I starved of sweets or what? I want "prasad". Now tell me the importance of "prasad"? It is Thakurji's (God's) "prasad" (offering to the Lord). Everything in the house belongs to the Lord. If you follow this, then I would like to share with you a very great point. Have mercy and simply do it, then it is very great thing and very beneficial. Place "tulsidal" (the sacred basil leaf) on all the money - wealth that you have at home. On all the jewellery, clothes on everything place "tulsidal." Even for the house, offer it. On all animals, place tulsidal. On all children, place "tulsidal" Now whose children are they? They are Thakurji's (God's) children.It is like magic. If you are able to do, then I will share, but do it from the heart, then it will be magical. Son is rebellious and does not listen. With a true heart, lift off the proprietary interest (sense of mine-ness) you have in him and say that he is not mine at all. He is only Thakurji's (God's). The son will become totally alright. Just as when food it offered to God it become sanctified and many great people revere it. Similarly, with a true heart, completely wipe off your proprietary interest and only consider him as belonging to Thakurji (God) then he will be purified. He will become sacred. Try it and see for yourself. The challenge is to completely lift off your proprietary interest. Just like another person's child, similar is this child. if he dies then too no affect on you. He is not our child, if he dies the it is Thakurji's, whereas Thakurji's never dies. If he dies here, then there he is born. He is never apart from Thakurji. By doing so, the son will be purified. It is the truth. Sense of mine-ness (mamta) itself is impurity. Sense of “mine-ness” (proprietary interest) is impurity. It is due to mine that there is impurity. If you give donation - charity, then have no relation with it. “Daatavyamiti yadaanam deeyatenupakaarine” (Gita 17/20) “Anupakaareene” does not mean that the other person does not do anything helpful. IT is an understanding that previously the person did nothing beneficial, and there is no expectation that he will oblige in the future. Give donation to such a one, with whom you have no self-interest. Give to such people. Do not keep a selfish relation with family members. Both will lead to the same, as in the end only one will remain. Serve where there is no sense of mine or where you serve there get rid of the feeling of mine. It will be the same thing. We are God’s. We live in His kingdom. We do His work. We receive his Prasad. And with his offering, we serve his children. I too am receiving his “Prasad”. This is true “Pamchaamrt” (Five Golden Principles). From today onwards, grab hold of these points. “Sarvabhaaven maam bhajati” and in all sentiments and feelings worship only the Lord, therefore have the sentiments that this body belongs to “Thakurji” (My Lord). I am doing my Lord’s work. Then you will be able to do a favor for the Lord that Maharaj! (Great One) I am doing your work. A Brahmin used to keep saying - daily I feed one Brahmin. He used to eat himself and have the sentiments that daily he is feeding a Brahmin. It is such a great thing! Similarly, the entire family and various families all belong to Thakurji (God). I am taking care of Thakurji’s family. Even Thakurji says that he is taking care of the family Brother! God will be touched that yes! It is true! He is taking care of my family. When there is no sense of mine-ness, when there is no attachment, then God says that He is taking care of my family.In all sentiments, let God’s work alone be done. This will turn into pure devotion “avyabhichaari bhakti” We want to take nothing, we have no sense of mine-ness. There is neither selfishness nor proprietary interest. Whether home members listen to you or not, whether they serve you or not, we have to serve Thakurji’s family. We have to serve him, Brother! If family members do not work, then we should be happy, it is a good thing! If they work and do everything according to our preference, then understand that our good deeds are getting exhausted. Therefore if they do nothing and further give us trouble and sorrow, then it is a good thing. Even if mother-in-law causes suffering, if daughter-in-law gives sorrow, if sister-in-law or any one give pain and sorrow then be happy, thinking we are greatly benefited. We have to serve, and if they give pain then we will be doubly benefited. On one hand there will be benefit of serving “seva” and if they give pain and sorrow then your sins will be reduced. When will suffering remain, tell me? Even on getting suffering, there will be joy. There will be no place remaining for sorrow and suffering. All roadways will be blocked, then that itself is “sarvavit”. Have you understood this well? If you are becoming happy and unhappy with this world, then you have not understood this well. We are living in ever bliss. We have not the least bit of unhappiness. God supports, protects and takes care of everyone. He takes care of all, then such a devotee of God does not experience any sorrow at all. They remain ever blissful, they remain so joyful that with their association you feel delighted and intoxicated. By remembering Thakurji (God), bondages break off. Simply by reciting the divine Name, by remembering the Lord, by listening to His divine plays (stories) sins are destroyed, He is that pure. “Pavitraanaam pavitram yo mangalaanaam cha mangalam" In essence what is the point? It is a small thing. “I am only God’s” not anyone elses. For serving I belong to the world, but for our own purpose, I am no one elses. I only belong to God, simply accept yourself as being God’s, then this house belongs to God, this kingdom belongs to God, this family belongs to God, the wealth and possessions belong to God, the work is God’s, the food is God’s everything will become God’s. This is the absolutely Truth.I am sharing based on my very experience. The child that the mother has accepted as her own, when he climbs into the mother’s lap then the mother is pleased and joyful. If he climbs from the back onto her shoulder, then too she laughs and if he intentionally pretends to cry ‘Um-Um-Um” the Maa smiles that look he is pretending with me. What is that action performed by a child that the mother does not like? The child is mine. Similarly being God’s if we do all work, then all our actions will become worship and adoration of God. What to speak of worship and adoration, it makes God pleased, happy. Whatever work you do, God continues to remain happy. He is my child. My child is playing. What delight! The point is only one, to become God’s. This is the truth. If I ask you that have you taken birth in this household knowingly? If you are living, then are you intentionally living? If knowingly you are living, then who would be dead? No one would die. If you are living in a healthy body, is it knowingly so? If you were knowingly living like this, then do not ever fall sick. Whatever strength and intelligence you have, has it been knowingly acquired? Then why get old? Don’t become dependent. But you are becoming dependent. Therefore this pride is your own, nothing else. Your are simply filled with pride. Therefore I am Thakurji’s (God’s). I am dependent on God. Whatever strength Thakurji (God) gives, that alone I do. How much work did Hanumanji do? When Ramji went to Lanka, he created a bridge and then crossed the bridge. But Hanumanji simply flew over to the other side. Whose strength does he have? The strength that Hanumanji has comes from Thakurji (the Lord). “Baar baar raghubeer sambhaari.” “prabisi nagar keeje sab kaaja. Hrdey raakhee kosalpur raja.” It comes in Valmiki Ramayan that Hanumanji roared that even if thousand Ravans come they cannot spoil anything of mine, I am servant of the Lord (Thakurji).The world is suffering due to pride. Therefore have mercy and leave the pride, offer it to God, that I am God’s. All our strength has to be applied in doing God’s work. “Tvadeeya vastu Govind tubhyameva samarpaye”, “Sarvabhaaven bhajati maam” - with all sentiments they worship and adore God. Divine Name recitation is adoration, chanting holy name is adoration, reciting various scriptures is worship and adoration, to listen, to share, is all worship. By “Sarvabhaavena bhajati”, getting up, sitting, eating, drinking, sleeping, waking up, all work is God’s work that we are doing. What an elevated thing this is. We have taken refuge in the Lord and we will do only His work. The work is not ours at all. This is not our house, therefore it is no our work. All work is Lord’s work. I have heard from saints, he who cannot regard anything as his own, neither the mind, nor the intellect, nor the body, nor the life breath, nor the senses, nor the house, nor the wealth. When all things belong to Thakurji (Lord), then wherever they live there is nothing but joy! Everything is given to the Lord. Therefore they remain ever blissful. We have heard one thing about a Saint. Saints are very unique. When they go to the market and see the various different sweet dishes that are displayed, fruits that are kept and stores that are well decorated. Wherever they see some great things, there they stand-by and in their mind say, Lord (Thakurji), please partake in this offering. Please take these sweets as an offering. Simply standing they blissfully offer it to the Lord. Similarly, you too offering everything to Thakurji, please accept this offering, then it all becomes an offering. You tell me, what is the difficulty in doing this? Then you too do this. Who is preventing you from doing so? Wherever you see anything wonderful, offering it to the Lord (Thakurji). Everything belongs to Thakurji. What should we do? We will simply rejoice. Now we have no work remaining. Now it is only Lord’s work, Lord’s Name, Lord’s contemplation, listening to Lord’s divine stories. What work is remaining for you to do? You are doing the Lord’s work. Lord is the master of all the work in this universe. By offering everything that belongs to the master at his lotus feet, how much do you have to exert, tell me? You tell me that this is mine, but for how many days? How many years will you continue to say that it is mine? As such it will eventually remain the Lord’s. Therefore while living, turn it over to Him from the heart, then it will be joyful! What an easy and what a deep well grounded point this is! Saints have said - “Ram naam ki sampada do anter tak dhoon | Yaa to gupatee baat hai kaho bataave koon" Who will tell such a great point? And how easy it is! What a high class point this is ! What a worriless, fearless, blissful point this is ! neither worry, nor fear, nor dejection, nor desire to live, nor desire to die. We have no desire whatsoever. May our desire be blended (one) with the Lord. Now however the Lord does, however he keeps us -
“Jaahi vidhi raakhe Ram, taahi vidhi rahiye |SitaRaam, SitaRaam, SitaRaam kahiye"
We have no demand, nor any wish. By this our troubles will be wiped out, and God will become pleased with us. By considering it as ours, there will be worries. It is my room. Certain things are lying there. Clothes are drying there. Someone will take them, then there will be worries. Now when it is all offered (turned over) to God, then what ecstacy ! If it goes away it is the Lord’s, if it remains it is the Lord’s ! Narayana! Narayana! Narayana!
From book in Hindi "Jeevan Upyogi Pravachan" by Swami Ramsukhdasji
Things I learnt in my 2+ yr Startup Stint
The Journey:I joined DEN Snapdeal TV-Shop, 7 days before its launch on 22nd Sept’14 as Sr. Marketing Manager & the challenge was humongous.
And from all the areas:- The industry was new to me- This was my stint in marketing- And a business which was not yet launched.
While in our first year, we took the bull by its horns — chasing growth, & clocked a revenue of 400 Cr+, but then in second year only, because of external market and investor sentiment, had to chase profitability, but took it as a challenge and achieved it.
25 Months in the business, and I felt, I saw pretty much everything to everything, both Scaling up to achieve growth & then scaling down to a profit.
First part of the journey:While I joined the place as a Sr. Marketing Manger, but there was no one above me in Marketing, and hence, had to set up marketing function, hiring people, seeing which medium works to acquire customers, which mediums helps get re-call, launching a 360 marketing campaign, setting up metrics, SLAs, review processes, making sure the team remains clear & focused on what needs to done BAU & what needs to be chased in long run were few things.
My learning here was: Madness is important - not just work, but behavioral communication too, because it is infectious.
Soon after our first Diwali FY15, when we achieved our revenue peak, I was given another unknown animal - setting up our e-commerce business.
Second part of the journey:Setting up E-Commerce business, was again an interesting journey, where I learnt every nut and bolt of the business on P&L, operational level. Interesting because there was no tech/product guy, no operations guy or actually anyone, just me and one passionate Junior.
But it actually helped me. I worked I also worked on setting up system/product for the overall business, where all the learning while setting up e-commerce product came handy.
Launching the e-commerce biz, and growing to a size of 15 members in 1.5 months, and then scaling down to 2 members, was one hell of a journey.
My learning from this time period was: Passion beats unknown.
Third part of the journey:
Third part of the journey, was both the shortest (5.5 months) & the beat learning phase. I was made “Chief of Staff” and was working with CEO directly on everything to everything. In this period, I understood that setting up systems, functions, processes was much easy, but the most difficult problem of the business is people — Some times senior, sometimes junior, sometimes those who love you, sometimes those who hate you, sometimes those who are motivated, and most of the times those who are not. In this time, I also learnt about business plan, investment deck, raising funds ( we couldn’t raise external funds — but I atleast learnt the process).
Learning during this time was — when you have to fight people and they are against you or business, don’t fight people, but the reason because of which they are what they are.
Turning people positive towards business goal is the most important thing, then giving up on them.
Summary:Mentioned below are five key things I learnt, as an Individual from my 2 year stint at a StartUp, and what they fucking don’t teach you at BSchool.
And these are not just learnings, but more like rules, I have engraved in my behavior.
1. Be Bold in Communication:The problems, the in-securities, the issues, the love, the care, the feedback, sometimes just the obvious, to the seniors, to the juniors, when the biz has the opportunity, when the biz has problems.Just be brave, and say it…holding up doesn’t help anyone, not even you.(However, it doesn’t hold true always, there are cases when biz need to hold information to benefit people/biz — that’s seperate)
2. Never give up on People: People are people, and people are awesomePeople make or break businesses. The biggest buildings, the biggest businesses, the biggest economies as we see have been made by people.
I often say that in Biz — First thing is “Team”, second is “Seller/Supplier” & third is “Consumer”. Often in businesses, due to many reasons, we give up on people, because of expectation mismatch, but I believe that just be solved by Point 1 (Communicating expectations) People are people- Means we shouldn’t have too much expectations, of passion, accuracy & result from everyone. But when nurtured, they overtime become awesome.
Even when you hate someone or someone hates you, don’t give up on thm — Fight the reason and not the person — because if you fight the reason of hatred you will win the person, not just for some time, but for a long long time.
3. Be Optimistic & Opportunistic
a) Optimism/Hope is both the disease & the medicine. You can either hope that things will fall, and plan your actions basis that, or you can either hope that things will work and plans your actions towards it. I am not saying that you shouldn’t have a PLAN B, you should. But Plan B in mind often weakens the PLAN A in action.
I often plan for the worse, write it down in evernote or excel & forget about it, and keep workings words the goal with “high” on optimism, unless the assumptions change, its then when you need to modify both Plan A & B, and execute like wise.
Never give up. Even when others do not do their Job.
b) Be Opportunistic: Like Optimism, opportunity is also a bitch. Opportunity often lands in the lap of lucky 0.01% and for rest some lucky — they have to “find opportunity” & for other unlucky ones have to “Create the opportunity”. Being opportunistic helps, if like a hunter you always try and look out for opportunity in everything, and think of creating one if it being not there, then boss you already are a hero and success is guaranteed.
4. Try and do good even when no one is seeingThe good thing about life is, “… if you’re really honest with yourself about what you want out of life life gives it to you”.
And hence, this has always been my belief that keep throwing stone in the pond, even when no one is seeing, even when there is no ripple in the water, because sometimes, ripples take time & but they do come. Hence, keep doing good for the biz, help people, be open to feedback, give constructive feedback, listen to people’s problem, always vocalize solutions publically & problems individually.. Keep doing good, Keep doing right.
Live: Remember — there is just one life & it is this one. No matter what happens at the end of the day - cherish the moment. Just hold it and remember, how you will see this day (both success & failure) @ 70, and hence LIVE, live it to fullest.
Love: Love & smile are two renewable sources of energy, unless you have a constipated face. Hence, no matter what — keep loving the people in this journey, not because you want something from them, but just, because it will give smile to someone & make them happy.
Laugh: Be weird, as I was known, be crazy, it doesn’t matter what people will think of you, or how they will behave. Just laugh. Laugh over — your failures, your mistakes — of how stupid your assumption were when you thought that action plan or took that path. Laugh it over, it eases the emotions.
Lastly, I would just like to mention my mantra for live, because it compresses all in simple few words:
Dream — Believe — DoDo — Fail — Learn — Do.. & keep repeating.
P.S: In case of any feedback, or any observation, please feel free to respond or reach out to me at Satyaprem@nojoto.com
The future is unwritten, and the only person who can write that is you.
The way to write is directional hardwork, contant learning, and seeing where the world is headed.
We think Teachers/Mentors can actually help us write that chapter, but no, they can teach you write, thats it.
You have to find notebook, pen, and then write.
Also, always remember when you first learned to write, you didn't write entire book in one go, it's a slow constant hard work & self learning process.
The lesson is:
- Directional towards to the End Goal
- Constant Hard work
- Constantly learning from yours & others mistake
- Seeing who is learning faster in the world and the method they are using.
Hence the mantra for life is two fold:
Dream - Believe - Do
Do - Fail - Learn - Do
And keep repeating second step