Thursday, May 27, 2021

Exposure builds immunity

Immunology 101: exposure builds immunity. 

Continuous exposure in small doses is required for the body to develop resistance to New viruses 

When the baby is born, it picks up "germs" from the  mother's vaginal canal , a huge load of them which gives it a great start in life.  C Section babies are less immune and they start with a handicap in life.

Children need to play in the mud, eat some mud, and get dirty, to develop their immunity 

Everyone needs to drink the local water of the place they visit ( and not drmineralised, lifeless, germless  "mineral" water) in order to pick up the local germs for the body to be familiar with.

We, all of us, life long, need to be always "exposed" to all that is out there so that our bodies are constantly facing these gems, and developing their responses to it, storing all of that in the cells' memories.

We are doing the opposite. We are isolating, masking, and rubbing our hands with alcohol. We are running away from germs .

I am not talking of corona. In the name of escaping from the corona virus, we are doing all  that.

The prognosis is not good.

Wanting it All

The ironies of life are too immense,
To be a mere coincidence,
We humans have a natural talent,
For muddling up, not knowing our own minds!

To be or not to be is the question,
We would rather be, and not be, at once,
We want to have the cake and eat it too,
We lose both us and the cake in trying!

The journey is a road with many forks,
Each one branching out into many more,
We always regret and we look back,
Wishing we had taken the other one!

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Into The Magic Shop by James R Doty : Book Review


Just read this book, Into the Magic Shop, by James R Doty, MD. It bills itself as a "Neurosurgeon's quest to discover the mysteries of the brain and the secrets of the heart."


A wonderful read – it has been a long time since I finished a book in a single sitting. It is much more than what it claims to be. It is a heart-warming story of success against all odds, about life's vicissitudes and about passion, to one's profession, and towards whatever one wants to manifest in one's life. But it also more than that.


The story is quite simple. Poor buy fights against all odds to reach success. Becomes a neurosurgeon. Becomes famous. Loses all his money in the crash. Then he picks up the pieces and builds his life again. Ends up as Director of CCARE – Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford, for which the Dalai Lama is the Chief Patron. So far, nothing very different from the usual heroic-achiever stories.


But it is different in the way he achieves his success. When he is a boy, he finds a teacher who teaches him the secrets of manifesting whatever he wants in his life, by desiring it deeply. It is the same trope of "the universe conspiring to give you what you want, if only you believe in it strongly enough", except that the path to achieving it, is set out in exceedingly simple terms.


His teacher starts first by teaching him how to relax. The technique is exactly the same as that used for Savasana in Hatha Yoga. Swamit Satyananda Saraswathi of the Bihar School of Yoga, while talking about meditation, spoke about how important it is to relax first. Most people fail to see this connection.


From relaxation, the teacher leads him on to techniques of concentration, which are very beautifully laid out – the book touches on the three most effective techniques for concentration (which leads to meditation)  - focusing on one's breath, staring at the flame of a candle, and chanting a mantra. It is all done in a natural way, like when you would explain to a twelve year old, for that is how old the author is when he is learning all this.


And then, it talks of visualization, and manifesting whatever you want in your life. The Dhammapada, in its first two verses, says "1. Our life is shaped by our mind; we become what we think. Suffering follows an evil thought as the wheels of a cart follow the oxen that draw it. 2. Our life is shaped by our mind; we become what we think. Joy follows a pure thought like a shadow that never leaves."  (The Dhammapada,  Eknath Eswaran's translation)


The teacher first teaches him to "open his heart" which is the seat of wisdom, and then the techniques to bring into his life all that he wants manifested.  The techniques are described in a very simple way, but it is one of the best manuals on meditation I have read, explained in a few, simple, concrete steps, devoid of all jargon.


The book is written in a very direct, simple style, and it manages to do what all good books do – put you in the shoes of the protagonist and make you look at life through his lens, and share in his journey.  All in all, a good read, short, sweet, and insightful.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

A Crossword Setter

Oh these convoluted fellows,
Never do they like to think straight,
With their crosswords and cryptic clues,
They will lead your thinking astray!

Anyone who solves those crosswords,
Is suspicious to the extreme,
With them, never you bandy words,
For they twist them and mangle them!

As to one who sets the damn things,
He is a certified crazy,
For you have to be insane,
To set those infernal things!

Beware, all you my countrymen,
Of all these crossword setters,
There is not one among them,
Who can ever be trusted!

Thursday, May 20, 2021

DT left

One fine day DT he left,
On a galactic journey,
He turned left and then left,
At the next turning!

Where he left to no one knows,
He left in the dark of night,
Was he right, too, no one knows,
For he left nothing behind!

They are still looking for him,
In every road and its tangent,
For no one can really say,
Where DT guess, or where he went!

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

The Four Yogas

Offer your services to the world,
Expecting not any rewards,
Do not fall into inaction,
For therein lies the wrong path!

Immerse yourself in what you do,
You are no different from the Work,
In immersion lies Mastery,
It flows on its own, as it were!

Dedicate your work, all, to Him,
There is peace in the surrender,
Once you drop all expectations,
The world places itself at your feet!

Forever strive to distinguish,
The Transient from the Real,
The world attracts with lots of tinsel,
The Truth is hidden, plainly in sight!


Offer your services to the world,
Expecting not any rewards,
Do not fall into inaction,
For therein lies the wrong path!

Immerse yourself in what you do,
You are no different from the Work,
In immersion lies Mastery, 
It flows on its own, as it were!

Dedicate your work, all, to Him,
There is peace in the surrender,
Once you drop all expectations,
The world places itself at your feet!

Forever strive to distinguish,
The Transient from the Real,
The world attracts with lots of tinsel,
The Truth is hidden, plainly in sight!

*(The Bhagavad Gita talks about: 
Karma Yoga, Raja Yoga, Bhakti Yoga and Jnana Yoga )

Monday, May 10, 2021

The covid panic continues

People are rushing helter skelter for vaccines. There is a shortage and many hospitals in Bangalore have suspended the vaccine program due to lack of stocks. Online slots for vaccines where available  are being cornered by techies since they are very good at the game of fastest finger first.

People are desperate. On meeting ( at a six feet distance) they ask "vaccine done?" and not "how are you?".  A burst of envy greets the other person if the reply is positive.

The fear is palpable. Everyone is trying to "be safe", and "being careful".
To the best of my knowledge that involves trying to run away or hide from something which will anyway get you.  Many people who have been "safe" have also got the virus. 

There are repeated exhortations to continue wearing the mask and maintain  distance even if one is vaccinated. Why this should be so, I can't figure out. I do get the standard explanation being trotted out  but that is not convincing.

It seems to me that whether you follow all precautions and take the vaccine, or you don't do any of those things, 
the chances of anything happening to you is about the same. Or , so marginally different, that it makes no difference.

But the cost of "taking precautions" is high. And it is  certain, a hundred percent probability of decline in immunity due to masking and distancing, due to shallow breathing, and lack of exposure.

 Life is anyway a probability game. There is no such thing called hundred percent. 

In such a situation, the most rational approach is to do nothing. No masks, no distancing, and no nothing.

Better to live every day and die once, than die  every single day.

Sunday, May 9, 2021

The Walking Quartet

There are many things to look forward to in Ferns, and one of them is
The Walking Quartet.

Without fail , from 4.45 to 6 pm, I used to see these four ladies... Walking at such a brisk pace that I would find it difficult to keep up.

Of late, I am not seeing all of them together, hopefully that should correct itself soon.

For there are certain things that you become so used to, you look forward to them.

-    -     -    -    -    -    -

Every day you see them,
The Quartet, without fail,
Walking in the evening,
At a frenetic pace!

Come rain, come shine, they walk,
Not a day they miss,
Overtake them you can't,
They have wings on their feet!

Everyday you see them,
In the evening at five,
Rushing to turn the corner,
There they go whizzing by!

Now you see them, now you don't,
By the time you turn around,
You've to be quick to catch them,
Unless you run, you can't!

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Nature will strike back

As people consume antibiotics, the "germs" develop resistance to them and become "superbugs".

The body has 100 trillion germs ( don't beat me up if it is a billion or two off, in case you happen to count). Of which ten percent is "us" and the balance is "outsiders".

If a lake is dirty due to stagnant water, and mosquitoes breed there, how will you clean the lake?

One approach is to pump the lake with poisons. The mosquitoes die, but the lake becomes more polluted as a result.  

The other approach is to let sunlight through, let the water flow, remove the weeds, in short let the lake's "prana" , the vital energy , flow.

Our body is that lake. Drugs, especially of the allopathic kind, are the poisons that we pump in. Antibiotics cause immense damage to the gut bacteria. It takes a couple of months to recover from a course of antibiotics. Vaccines are even  worse, they are a bunch of deadly chemicals. Steroids are very harmful too. At least these can be justified on the grounds of  "emergency" or "single use" , pay the price and recover later.

But what about lifelong drugs for lifestyle diseases, the blood thinners, the anti cholesterol medicines, the statins?  Rather than changing their lifestyle, people continue eating processed foods, ordering take-outs from restaurants ( which by definition is inferior), don't exercise... The list is long, and the effect on the health compounds over a period of time.

And then, when threatened with "germs" which by the way have always been there, and will continue to be there, they rush to pump further poisons into their bodies , and further weaken their immune systems!

By the way, those who think the vaccine is a one time solution are sadly mistaken. Each vaccine protects only against existing variants. The germs keep mutating, that is in their nature and it is   their dharma to mutate.

So the pharma companies will now  convince us that annual booster shots are required. It is not the "weakened virus" in the vaccine that one should be worried about, but the cocktail of deadly chemicals that it floats in.

The holy grail of the pharma industry is to make healthy people consume drugs, Including young people and children.

What is the point if only sick people take drugs? No profits to be made there.

And we are all willing participants, or should I say victims, in this deadly race to the bottom!

If we ignore the laws of Nature, Nature will strike back and we will pay a price.

We don't have to wait that long for nature to strike back, strike back it will.

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

The Big G

Big G, like Big B,
Is legendary,
When comes the Big G,
It's incendiary!

Big G's like wrestling,
With stubborn pit bull,
She gets hold of you,
There's no letting go!

Big G is prepared,
Does her homework well,
No one ever dares,
To call her to account!

Big G likes to see,
Facts and data points,
She throws them at you,
You will likely drown!

Big G sparks the life,
Sometimes bit too much,
Chaps get electrified,
Not just singed, but burnt!

Big G likes to say,
It, the way it is,
Anybody disagrees,
Then they really face it!

Big G, makes music,
Big bass drums, a boom!
The word then goes out,
One-Man army has come!