Special Lecture – Dr. Thimappa Hegde
Venue : Institute of Agricultural Technologists
Time : 5 September 2010, Sunday, 1500hrs
Dr. Hegde had a slide show to aid in his lecture. He began with the title of a book Don't sweat the small stuff by Carlson. He said it is important for us to recognize our priorities in life and to know which are the small issues and which are big issues needing our attention. He advised that the problems that we face in everyday life will begin to look smaller if we grow bigger. The theme of his talk was that we have to grow bigger than our problems ,then our perspective about our problems will change.
The talk was also about being grateful to people who have molded us, inspired us and taught us. It went in sync with the day being celebrated as the Teacher's Day. He gave the sanskrit sloka
Guru Brahma Gurur Vishnu
Guru Devo Maheshwaraha
Guru Saakshat Para Brahma
Tasmai Sree Gurave Namaha
Meaning : Guru is verily the representative of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. He creates, sustains knowledge and destroys the weeds of ignorance. I salute such a Guru.
Next he brought up Patanjali one of the ancient gurus also considered as the father of Yoga. The following quote from Patanjali seemed apt:
When you are inspired, dormant faculties, talents and forces are awakened, you become far greater than that what you ever dreamed of yourself.
Dr. Thimappa said he dealt with a lot of cancer patients and their families. Some of them come to him with the medical reports and want to know the truth. He said they will say they want to know the truth but we cannot give them the truth as they cannot handle it straight. They are not really looking for the truth, but they are looking for reassurance. He said all cultures have recognised the fact that people cannot handle truth of the moment hence, have devised a way of story telling. To explain the idea of our becoming bigger than the problem, our tradition has the story of Hanuman in Ramayana. When Laxman becomes unconscious, the need is for the Sanjeevini herb that is available in Himalayas. Hanuman is sent to get it. When Hanuman reaches the Himalayas he is confused as to which is the Sanjeevini herb as the hill is covered with herbs. Hanuman decides to carry the whole hill with him. To surmount the problem, Hanuman grows bigger than the hill so that he can carry the complete hill in his hand. This story is graphically illustrated as we see the Hanuman carrying the small hill in his hand and flying to Laxman.
Dr. Thimappa said that we should cultivate the attitude of gratitude towards all things that life has given us. He mentioned that we should think of how lucky we are to have what we have and them we should make the most of life. He gave an apt poem here:
My Cup Has Overflowed
(I Drink from the Saucer)
I've never made a fortune,
and I'll never make one now,
But it really doesn't matter
'cause I'm happy anyhow.
As I go along my journey
I'm reaping better than I've showed.
I'm drinking from the saucer
'Cause my cup has overflowed.
I don't have a lot of riches,
And sometimes the going's tough
But with kin and friends to love me
I think I'm rich enough.
I thank God for the blessings
That His mercy has bestowed.
I'm drinking from the saucer
'Cause my cup has overflowed.
He gives me strength and courage
When the way grows steep and rough,
I'll not ask for other blessings for
I'm already blessed enough.
May we never be too busy
To help bear another load;
Then we'll all be drinking from the saucer
When our cups have overflowed.
He said we should be grateful to all the teachers in our lives as they have moulded us. In Thailand as they were transporting a clay idol of Buddha from one place to another, it fell down and broke. The clay fell apart to reveal the golden Buddha inside. Dr. Thimappa used this as a metaphor to indicate that there is a golden Buddha inside all of us but we are covered with clay. Our teachers, mentors, guides and gurus help in chipping the clay away to reveal the real person. No one can make us into Golden Buddha, it is there inside us already, they can only help us see inside ourselves.
Then he went on to explain the Chin Mudra that people use when then are meditating. It has the index finger tip joining up with the thumb of the same hand. The index finger stands for the ego and the thumb stands for the spirit. In this posture we are surrendering the ego to the spirit. He recommended the book by Wayne Dyer, Your Sacred Self for us to understand the concept better.
Dr. Thimappa listed six points for us to ponder over, for accessing our Higher Self
- Commune with Nature
He then told the story of the man who prayed to God for riches and God told him that next day he will meet a Sadhu on the river banks who will give him the riches. The man met the sadhu the next day and the sadhu told him that he had nothing to give. When the man explored the sadhu's bag he found a large diamond in it. The sadhu told him that he had picked up the shinning stone on the road. When the man asked the sadhu to give it to him, the sadhu gave it willingly. The man took it home in all joy. He had become a rich man overnight. But he could not sleep that night as an issue kept bothering him. Next day he went to the sadhu and told him he was puzzled by the way the sadhu gave away the diamond so easily. Only a man who has something bigger with him can give away something like a diamond. The man wanted that something bigger that was there within the sadhu.
After mentioning the saying from Jesus on the Fatehpur Sikri bridge which reads, Human life is bridge, Don't make a home on it, Dr. Thimappa ended the talk with a note on Ramana Maharshi another inspirational character. He said Ramana Maharshi always gave the following message to all who went to him for salvation
Roughly translated it means, I am not the body, When I enquire, I will know that I am that.
FREE Online Psychological Counselling by Banjara Academy for anyone, anywhere in the world
- Are you stressed about your child?
- Is your marriage in trouble?
- Are you stressed about your education?
- Do you feel overwhelmed by anxiety and fear?
Just mail your counsellor now, sharing your problems, your worries, your anxieties, your fears. Your counsellor will reply to you, and be there for you until you need her to help you cope and get going.
Leading Banjara Academy's online email counselling team of volunteer-counsellors, I realize it is not an easy task reaching out to a person one has never met, never seen, without the added advantage of gestures, eye contact, a gentle reassuring touch, tone of voice and yet providing empathy, positive strokes, making the person feel heard and understood.
With the aid of only written words, it is quite a task building trust, making people open up and share and helping them cope and feel better. So when in many instances they write back saying thank you and that they feel so much better, the feeling one gets is priceless and incomparable - knowing one has done something right, something good!
Hats off to all the volunteeer-counsellors of Banjara Academy who have been carrying on this work silently, anonymously for the last couple of years. Truly commendable! - Sreedhar MA