Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Wisdom is beyond all arguments

It is said that logic has no loyalty. Any kind of logic can be concocted to be for or against an issue. Remember those debating contests in school? Pick a topic and tell one person to debate for that topic and the other to debate against it. True wisdom is beyond such logic.

There is no shortage of such controversial topics - in fact, it is the easiest way to divide a group. The topic could be something as simple as the humble apple or as complex as off-shore drilling. It is impossible to know everything and by that metric, any opinion is at best a guess. When our own position is a guess, what are the odds of comprehending another person's point of view?

Nature reflects this wisdom. There isn't only one type of apple, there's hundreds of varieties. There isn't even just one type of fruit, or even one category of food. Nature is comfortable with millions of opinions on everything - birds, leaves, stones and seas. And that is the wisdom beyond arguments. It's all already there to see, no arguments can change that.

Once that wisdom dawns, there are no winners or losers anymore, just the universal truth.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Reflections on 2010

2011 is here and as we celebrate new beginnings, let's pause a moment and reflect on our achievements this past year. Our Art of Living Center turned 1 on December 2010! and we have a lot to be proud of, thanks to the dedication of our volunteers. Here is this year's the main highlights:-

  • Increased  teacher headcount from 4 to 8
  • Started the Art of Living Austin Facebook page, and a very successful blog
  • Taught/Hosted the following courses:
    • 5 YES+ workshops (3 of which were conducted by Austin teachers)
    • 3 Sri Sri Yoga workshops
    • 2 Know your Child Workshops
    • 2 Sahaj Samadhi meditation classes
    • 2 Refugee Empowerment workshops - one for adults, and one for teens
    • 1 Art Excel course for kids
    • 1 Know your Child Teacher Training
    • 1 Know your Teen Workshop
  • Successfully completed a Health and Happiness Seminar Series, and launched a second one.
  • Revived weekly knowledge sessions with ongoing sessions of the following series :
    • Ashtavakra gita
    • Patanjali Yoga Sutras
    • Bhakti Sutras.
  • Hosted Swami Pragyapad. He taught the Art of Living, and Sahaj courses, and gave a public talk.
  • Spent an evening in divine satsang with Swami Suryapada
  • Spear-headed and led Sri Sri ashram activities and all ashram renovation work.
  • Conducted weekly yoga sessions, and taught relaxation techniques to juvenile delinquents between age group of 11-17 years at Gardner Betts Juvenile Justice Center.
  • Conducted free weekly yoga sessions for students at the University of Texas at Austin
  • Organized a retreat for University of Texas at Austin Business School students at the Sri Sri ashram.
  • Started Hindi workshops for kids and teens as part of center activities.