Love has no law (by Sita Krishnan)

It was Inayat Shah's birthday and the Master was sitting in audience on open grounds. People were singing and dancing. Some dancing girls had joined them in celebrations. Bulla who was standing far and watching them, afraid of going in his Master's presence, devised a plan.

He went back to his house, disguised himself in women's clothes  and slowly and steadily joined these women who were dancing and singing in front of the audience and Inayat Shah.

As the Master knew who had joined them, at once recognized Bulla!!!  While pointing his fingers at Bulla in disguise, he shouted - Batao bhai, kia tum Bulla ho?? (although Bulla was in disguise of a woman, he could not fool his master)

Bulla recognized his Master's voice, tears were raining down from his eyes. At once he fell down on his feet and said - Haan mein Bhooliya hoon!!! (Bhooliya means once who is lost!!!)

Inayat Shah recognized his favorite star disciple and at once stood up and embraced Bulla and hugged him!!!

To say the least Bulla Sayeed gave up his family name right in the presence of everyone and said "From now on, I will be known as Bulla Shah!!! because my murshid is a Shah!!! I dare anyone lift even a finger at my Guru, and you will hear what I will have to say to such miscreants!!!"

So, brothers and sisters, the delay in accepting the Master's glory and majesty is from us, our ego is a big hindrance. We do not wish to leave our individual identity!!! How are we going to be with our Master on spiritual planes?? Success belongs to them, who recognize themselves as nothing compared to their Guru and surrender themselves at his feet!!! It is your LOVE that Master wants and nothing else!! He is willing to embrace you provided you give up everything!!!

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  • Thank you God for another day (by Sita Krishnan)

    Thank you God for another day
    To enjoy all the gifts You bestow,
    From the sunrise in the morning,
    To the night when stars are aglow.
    Through every hour of the day
    My mind is connected to You;
    Feeling the peace of Your presence,
    In everything that I do.
    I know I'm safe in Your keeping
    Should troubles come my way.
    My heart is forever thankful,
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    IAF pilot to IIT students during a Seminar (by Krishna from DSRC)

    This was narrated by an IAF pilot to IIT students during a Seminar on Human Relations:


    Venkatesh Balasubramaniam (who works for IIT) describes how his gesture of booking an air ticket for his father, his maiden flight, brought forth a rush of emotions and made him (Venkatesh) realize that how much we all take for granted when it comes to our parents.


    My parents left for our native place on Thursday and we went to the airport to see them off. In fact, my father had never traveled by air before, so I just took this opportunity to make him experience the same. In spite of being asked to book tickets by train, I got them tickets on Jet Airways. The moment I handed over the tickets to him, he was surprised to see that I had booked them by air. The excitement was very apparent on his face, waiting for the time of travel. Just like a school boy, he was preparing himself on that day and we all went to the airport, right from using the trolley for his luggage, the baggage check-in and asking for a window seat and waiting restlessly for the security check-in to happen. He was thoroughly enjoying himself and I, too, was overcome with joy watching him experience all these things. As they were about to go in for the security check-in, he walked up to me with tears in his eyes and thanked me. He became very emotional and it was not as if I had done something great but the fact that this meant a great deal to him.


    When he said thanks, I told him there was no need to thank me. But later, thinking about the entire incident, I looked back at my life. As a child, how many dreams our parents have made come true. Without understanding the financial situation, we ask for cricket bats, dresses, toys, outings, etc.

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    Irrespective of their affordability, they have catered to all our needs. Did we ever think about the sacrifices they had to make to accommodate many of our wishes? Did we ever say thanks for all that they have done for us? Same way, today when it comes to our children, we always think that we should put them in a good school. Regardless of the amount of donation, we will ensure that we will have to give the child the best, theme parks, toys, etc. But we tend to forget that our parents have sacrificed a lot for our sake to see us happy, so it is our responsibility to ensure that their dreams are realized and what they failed to see when they were young. It is our responsibility to ensure that they experience all those and their life is complete. Many times, when my parents had asked me some questions, I have actually answered back without patience. When my daughter asks me something, I have been very polite in answering. Now I realize how they would have felt at those moments.


    Let us realize that old age is a second childhood and just as we take care of our children, the same attention and same care needs to be given to our parents and elders. Rather than my dad saying thank you to me, I would want to say sorry for making him wait so long for this small dream. I do realize how much he has sacrificed for my sake and I will do my best to give the best possible attention to all their wishes. Just because they are old does not mean that they will have to give up everything and keep sacrificing for their grandchildren also. They have wishes, too.


    Take care of your parents too. THEY ARE PRECIOUS.


    The Cards You Hold (by Shabbir Kagalwala)

    A wealthy man decided to go on a safari in Africa. He took his faithful pet Dachshund dog along for company.

    One day, the Dachshund starts chasing butterflies and before long the Dachshund discovers that he is lost. Wandering about, he notices a leopard heading rapidly in his direction with the obvious intention of having lunch.

    The Dachshund thinks, "I'm in deep trouble now! Then he noticed some bones on the ground close by and immediately settles down to chew on the bones with his back to the approaching cat. Just as the leopard is about to leap, the Dachshund exclaims loudly, "Boy, that was one delicious leopard. I wonder if there are any more around here."

    Hearing this, the leopard halts his attack in mid-stride, as a look of terror comes over him, and slinks away into the trees. "Whew," says the leopard. "That was close. That Dachshund! Nearly had me."

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    Meanwhile, a monkey who had been watching the whole scene from a nearby tree figures he can put this knowledge to good use and trade it for protection from the leopard. So, off he goes. But the Dachshund sees him heading after the leopard with great speed, and figures that something must be up.

    The monkey soon catches up with the leopard, spills the beans and strikes a deal for himself with the leopard. The leopard is furious at being made a fool of and says, "Here monkey, hop on my back and see what's going to happen to that conniving canine."

    Now the Dachshund sees the leopard coming with the monkey on his back and thinks "What am I going to do now?" But instead of running, the dog sits down with his back to his attackers, pretending he hasn't seen them yet... and just when they get close enough to hear,

    the Dachshund says........ ......... .....

    "Where's that damn monkey? I sent him off half an hour ago to bring me another leopard."

    Moral: It doesn't matter what cards you hold but how you play them!!

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    The Role of HR Professionals

    Human Resource Mangement (HRM) is a part of every manager's job.  In a dynamic working environment, the boundaries of any role cannot be clearly defined; the role of a HR manager therefore takes a number of forms.  A broad outline of the various roles in today's dynamic environment can be as under:


    The Business Partner.  The HR professional has to align itself to the business goals and priorities by gaining knowledge of the business processes, competitors, technology, etc.  He has to also be the relationship manager for key accounts where the customer is the king in today's business scenario.  He has to create an environment for nurturing business growth and foster innovativeness and creativity.  He has to hard sell the company's image.  He has to be the strategic advisor to the top management.  He has to design and develop the HR systems for implementation. 


    The Service Provider.  Managers need information to make decisions on various employee related issues like deployment of personnel.  An HR specialist can help by providing information on market statistics of personnel availability, pay rates, etc.  HR specialists can also interpret the complex labour laws and legislations that are applicable in day-to-day work.  This categorization of the work of an HR professional is not definitive.  As mentioned earlier, there will often be an overlap between the different roles the HR professional must assume.


    The Executive.  Though HRM is a part of every manager's job, yet HR specialists typically carry out certain HR activities like recruitment, compensation, etc.  The managerial and operative functions are explained below in detail.


    The Facilitator.  A large number of organizational activities require an HR professional to play the role of a facilitator.  He acts as a facilitator when training and developmental activities are planned and conducted and performance appraisals are done.  One of the responsibilities of an HR specialist is also to ensure that other managers who undertake such activities are well equipped to do so.  He has to develop and design structured learning programs for self-study and workshops.  He also helps people in assessing their competencies, values and goals, at the same time assisting a group or team to add value in the workplace.

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    The Change Manager.  The dynamic business environs today include a spate of mergers and acquisitions, global businesses and takeovers, all necessitating the management of different cultures working together.  Where change is the only constant, the HR professional has to 'sell' the change to the workforce.  He has to be a generator and reflector of organizational commitment.  He has to facilitate the development and implementation of strategies for transforming organizations.


    The Consultant.  Managers face many problems while supervising employees.  These problems may be due to lack of motivation, lack of training, a job misfit or grievances related to pay.  Managers seek the advice of HR professionals to resolve such problems smoothly.  Thus, the HR professional plays the role of an internal management consultant in this area.


    The Auditor.  HR professionals are responsible for ensuring that all members of the management perform their respective roles concerned with the effective use of human resources.


    The functions of a HRD manager can be broadly classified into two categories :-


    1.            Managerial functions

    2.            Operative functions


    Managerial functions


    The managerial functions of a personnel manager have an impact on the operative functions as well.  They are enumerated below :-


    Planning – this involves formulating the future course of action.  Planning includes determining in advance the personnel programs and changes required that would contribute to the achievement of organizational goals.

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    Organising – it involves establishing an intentional structure of roles for people in an organization.  Structural considerations such as the chain of command, division of labour, and assignment of responsibility are party of the organizing function.  The organizing function establishes relationships among employees so that they can contribute collectively towards the attainment of an organisation's goals.


    Staffing – This is the process of obtaining and maintaining capable and competent personnel in various positions at all levels.  It broadly encompasses manpower planning, recruitment, placement, induction and orientation, transfer, career progression, promotion and separation.


    Directing – it involves directing all the available resources towards the common organizational goals.  Thus, direction is a vital management function, which ensures maximum employee contribution and also helps in establishing sound industrial and human relations.  It also involves coordination between different departments.


    Controlling – it invoves the measurement of performance against goals and plans, identifies deviations and by placing the process back on track, helps in the accomplishment of plans. 


    Operative functions


    These can be classified into four broad areas, employment, development, compensation and employee relations.


    Employment – it involves procuring and employing individuals with suitable knowledge, skills, experience and aptitude necessary to perform various jobs.  It includes functions such as job analysis, human resource planning, recruitment, selection, placement and induction. 


    Training and development - This process aims to train and develop employees to improve and update their knowledge and skills, so as to help them perform their jobs better.  The process also includes developing the attitudes, beliefs and values of the employees to match the organizational needs.  This comprises of performance appraisal, training, management / executive development, career planning and development.


    Compensation - It is governed by the principle of rewarding an employee extrinsically during and after the course of his job for his contributions to the organization adequately, equitably and in a fair manner.  It encompasses salaries, incentives, bonus and fringe benefits.  This function comprises of Job evaluation, wage and salary administration, incentives, bonus and fringe benefits.


    Employee relations & services - This function deals with employees as a social group that contributes to the organization, it includes maintaining employee records, analyzing them and developing information needed for managerial decision making; increasing employee productivity; keeping the employees satisfied and motivated; maintaining a healthy and effective human organization; counseling services and developing employees into complete individuals and responsible citizens; developing policies, rules, guidelines and procedures relating to employee behavior and ensuring their implementation and observance; developing team building, team management and leadership skills in employees, etc.


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    When you stand and meet someone, stand firm and steadfast. A telling sign of an unfocused, weak mind is constant fidgeting, shifting of the eyes and shallow breathing.


    Act strong and you will be strong. Have courage and inspire others with your actions. But always be considerate.


    Ask not what this world can give you but, rather, what you can give to this world. Make service an important goal in your life. It is a most fulfilling investment of time. Remember, in the twilight of your life, when all is said and done, the quality of your life boils down to the quality of your contribution to others. Leave a rich legacy for those around you to savor. Sustained happiness does not come from what you get but from what you give.


    Once a week, rise at dawn. It is a magical time of day. Be still, go for a walk or simply listen to an old Ella Fitzgerald recording. Take a long, hot shower and do 100 pushups. Read one of the classics. You will feel alive and invigorated. Getting up early builds self-discipline and self-respect.


    Your health is your wealth. Without excellent health, you have nothing. Make being in world-class physical condition your number one priority.
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    The Bowl is never filled up (by Sita Krishnan)

    An emperor was coming out of his palace for his morning walk when he met a beggar. He asked the beggar, "What do you want?"The beggar laughed and said, "You are asking me as though you can fulfill my desire!"


    The king was offended. He said, "Of course I can fulfill your desire. What is it? Just tell me."

    And the beggar said, "Think twice before you promise anything."


    The beggar was no ordinary beggar, he was the emporers past life master. He had promised in that life, "I will come and try to wake you in your next life. This life you have missed but I will come again." But the king had forgotten completely -- who remembers past lives? So he insisted, "I will fulfill anything you ask. I am a very powerful emperor, what can you possibly desire that I can not give to you?"


    The beggar said, "It is a very simple desire. You see this begging bowl? Can you fill it with something?"


    The emperor said, "Of course!" He called one of his viziers and told him, "Fill this mans begging bowl with money." The vizier went and got some money and poured it into the bowl, and it disappeared. And he poured more and more, and the moment he would pour it, it would disappear. And the beggging bowl remained always empty.


    The whole palace gathered. By and by the rumour went throughout the whole capital, and a huge crowd gathered. The prestige of the emperor was at stake..


    He said to his viziers, "If the whole kingdom is lost, I am ready to lose it, but I cannot be defeated by this beggar."


    Diamons and pearls and emeralds, his treasuries were becoming empty.The begging bowl seemed to be bottomless. Everything that was put into it --everything! --immediately disappeared, went out of existence. Finally it was the evening, and the people were standing there in utter silence. The king dropped at the fet of the beggar and admitted his defeat. he said, "Just tell me one thing. You are victorious - but before you leave, just fulfill my curiousity. What is the begging bowl made of?"


    The beggar laughed and said, "It is made up of the human mind. There is no secret. It is simple made up of human desire."


    This understanding transforms life. Go into one desire -- what is the mechanism of it? First there is a great excitement, great thrill, adventure. you feel a great kick. Something is going to happen, you are on the verge of it. And then you have the car, you have the yacht, you have the house, you have the woman, and suddenly all is meaningless again.


    What happens? Your mind has dematerialised it. The car is standing in the drive, but there is no excitement anymore. The excitement was only in getting it. You became so drunk with the desire that you forgot your inner nothingness. Now the desire is fulfilled, the car in the drive, the woman in your bed, the money in your bank account - again excitement disappears. Again the emptiness is there, ready to eat you up. Again you have to create another desire to escape this yawning abyss.


    That's how one moves from one desire to another desire. That's how one remains a beggar. Your whole life proves it again and again -- every desire frustrates. And when the goal is achieved, you will need another desire.The day you understand that desire as such is going to fail comes the turning point in your life. The other journey is inwards. move inwards, come back home.......................


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    The Art of Constructing DEMONS

    The Art of Constructing DEMONS



    IF THERE WAS no Mahishasura, the gods would not have invoked the warriorgoddess, Durga. If there was no Tarak-asura, there would have been no need for the divine warlord, Kartikeya. If there was no Ravana or Kansa, Ram or Krishna would not have walked the earth. Demons and villains are without doubt an integral part of mythology. Buddhists speak of Mara, demon of desire. In Jainism, there is Prati-vasudeva, villain to the heroic Vasudeva. Greeks had fabulous monsters from the bull-headed Minotaur to the snakedhaired Medusa. The Bible is full of the God-rejecting Canaanites, Romans, Babylonians, Assyrians and of course, the Devil. 
       It is the defeat of the villain that transforms a man into a hero. It is the destruction of the demon that makes a deed noble and divine. That is why 'demonising' cigarettes, alcohol, narcotics and junk food not only makes people healthy, it also grants them the moral high ground. That is why 'demonising' plastics and urbanisation grants environmentalists a smug superiority. And that is why marketers personify mosquitoes and germs as 'ugly horned monsters' in advertisements giving children the chance to be heroic as they pester their parents to buy a particular brand of repellent, toothpaste or antiseptic. 
       Considering the intense emotions demons evoke, one wonders if 'constructing demons' can be a strategic tool of management? Politicians have long used this technique to rouse a mob. Typically, the politicians demonise an outsider, an immigrant, a foreign hand, a stranger, anyone, the mob is willing to blame for its problems. It has been the favourite tactic used by kings to wage bloodthirsty wars against neighbouring lands. Just brand the opponent as 'evil', and before you know it even an imperialist ambition starts being perceived as a holy crusade. 
       The art of constructing demons stems from an understanding that demons are not natural phenomena. They are artificial constructions, created through clever storytelling, as in the case of Shakuni. 
       In the Mahabharata, Shakuni is the maternal uncle of the Kauravas. On his advice, his nephews invited their cousins, the Pandavas, to a gambling match and instigated them to wager all their wealth. Playing for the Kauravas, Shakuni threw the die so skillfully that he won every game and laid claim to all that the Pandavas possessed. Later, on his advise, the Kauravas refused to return even a needlepoint of Pandava property, even if it meant war. This makes Shakuni the great villain of the epic; one who deserves no mercy. 
       What follows now is a little known story based on the Mahabharata found in Andhra Pradesh. Before Gandhari, mother of the Kauravas, married Dhritarashtra of the Kuru clan, she had been — on the advice of astrologers — to avert a calamity, 'married' to a goat and the 'husband' had been sacrificed promptly thereafter. Technically, this made Gandhari a widow and Dhritarashtra her second husband. Fearing a scandal if this information became public, the elders of the Kuru clan put Gandhari's entire family under house arrest. They were served just one fistful of rice every day. Realising that this was an elaborate plan to starve them to death, Gandhari's father declared that none but his youngest son would eat the sparse food being served, so that at least one amongst them would survive to avenge the death of the rest. This youngest survivor of Gandhari's family was Shakuni. He swore vengeance. He used the knuckle bones of his father and dead brothers to make the dice with
    which he was able to defeat the Pandavas in the gambling match, a victory that eventually led to the war at Kurukshetra in which the entire Kuru clan was annihilated. 
       This folk story transforms the villain of the Sanskrit epic into a victim and gives the story an avenging angle. So who is Shakuni – a hero or villain? It all depends on the story we are told, and stories we choose to believe. During all his departmental meetings, Ravi has been hearing stories of Jaideep, head of another department. He has been hearing how cunning Jaideep is, how he exploits his team, undercuts the competition, manipulates the figures, poaches the best candidates, takes credit for other people's work, does not share his contacts, pulls people down during evaluations, and uses his political connections to get his way in the industry. In the past eight months, Ravi has come to believe that Jaideep is indeed a horrible man, someone he must stay away from. 
    So it was quite a surprise for Ravi when he actually met Jaideep during the National Conference. During their interactions, Jaideep came across as a gracious, soft spoken man. "Don't be fooled by his table manners," warned one of Ravi's friends during the tea break. This confused Ravi. He realised that everything that he had heard about Jaidep was negative, yet his own interaction, and his own gut feel was positive. So is Jaideep really the demon every body claims he is, a wolf in sheep's clothing perhaps, or is that all propaganda? Ravi does not know whom to believe because all he has heard is stories. 
       We live in a world of stories.
       Some stories create heroes, others villains.
       Some sprout horns,
       some bestow halos.
       Few have a 360-degree view of the world. A master strategist knows this. Hence he exploits the art of selective story telling to transform all his competitors and hurdles into monsters. 
       People are eager to believe in monsters and thoughtlessly destroy them because monsters provoke the most primal of emotions, bypassing all rational thought. They trigger our deepest fears, threatening our wellbeing, making us so insecure that we refuse to invest any time or energy in trying to understand them or reason with them. Who knows what Mahish-asura or Tarak-asura actually did that they had to be killed? Nobody bothers about details. Demons are pre-judged. They exist to be destroyed. In fact, we consider any attempt to argue their case as treason or blasphemy. Fear of demons, hatred of villains, unites us, organises us, empowers us to direct every ounce of our energies towards destroying the monster with extreme prejudice. That is why, however unethical it may seem, 'constructing demons' is and always will be a powerful arrow in the strategy quiver.

    Wheel of 84 (by Sita Krishnan)

    A man was wandering in dense woods when he caught sight of a tiger and he started running as fast as he could as the tiger chased him. He couldn't see ahead and fell into a dry well and as he was falling he caught the root of a tree which was growing from its wall. He thought to go down in dry well and take rest and to wait for the tiger to loose hope and go away, but then he saw a snake lying down there. He had no other option but to hold the branch tightly as there was snake ready to bite him at the bottom and the tiger on the top. He thought he couldn't do anything to snake but he would wait for the tiger to leave and then he would try to go up and save himself. Then suddenly he saw there were two rats one black and one white biting the root of the branch. This way the branch was getting weaker and sooner it would crash down. Then he saw there were honey drops on leaves of the branch. He stretched himself and tasted it-it tasted so sweeet !!


    This is our life. The tiger- representing Kaal is always chasing us, the snake  certain death - which is waiting for us, the branch  the little life we got as a hope, the rats black and white  representing day and night, slowly cutting the little life thus getting us closer to certain death  and we just try to escape from this truth and try find comfort in sensual pleasures, this way escaping from naked truth.


    There is only one way, one hope for us to be saved. We need to drop this escaping attitude, to face the reality as it is and try to get a way out of it instead of getting absorbed in sensual pleasures. There are hidden wings which GOD has given us, his Name. We need to put whole effort to open it, to learn flying and this way escape from all miseries.



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    Talent Retention Methods

    No organization likes to lose its cherished employees, i.e. employees who have fit in well with the environs and the prevalent culture, are both effective and efficient and are respected by their colleagues, seniors and subordinates.  Every organization therefore seeks to retain the best talent within it.  The following are some of the ways and means:


    *         Proper planning of human resources to avoid redundancies.

    *         HR policy to be based on sound principles of HRM in relation to recruitment, promotion, placement and training.

    *         Introduction of proper wage incentives and promotion plans.

    *         Provision of reasonable amenities and welfare measures.

    *         Setting up of machinery for ascertaining the cause of grievances and redressal thereof.

    *         Provision of retirement benefits.

    *         Provision of proper channel of communication to improve the morale of the employees.

    *         Optimum working conditions and work environment.

    *         Encourage workers' participation in management.

    *         Career planning for all the employees.

    *         Providing opportunities for growth, diversification and challenges within the organization.

    *         Offer non-monetary rewards to the best performers.

    *         Recognize and reward talent transparently and adequately.

    *         Take care of the security and insurance needs of the employee and his family.

    *         Provide enough opportunity for the social needs of the employee.

    *         Continuously nurture and train the employees.

    *         Provide ample scope for self-development to each employee.

    *         Try to bridge the gap between the employee's goals and aspirations and the corporate objectives.

    *         Provide clarity and enrichment in his job.


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