The wonderful principle of Triage

Fortunately I have got an opportunity to review a wonderful book on Self Development. This book is Personal Development for Smart People written by Steve Pavlina who owns the Internet’s most popular self-help blog’ Steve Pavlina.Com‘. I have not yet finished the book but whatever I have read till now has impressed me deeply. This book is filled with golden nuggets of wisdoms. In one of my subsequent posts, I’ll post a detailed review of the book.

However, just for your interest, here is a small excerpt from the book which tells us how to give priorities to our tasks, projects and actions in the most efficient way possible.

Triage

In battlefield medicine, the principle of triage involves dividing patients into three groups:

1. Those who will die anyway, whether they receive medical attention or not

2. Those who will survive anyway, whether they receive medical attention or not

3. Those who will survive only if they receive timely medical attention

When resources are limited, medics must attend to members of the third group before the first and second groups in order to save as many lives as possible.

Triage can also help you build your authority by focusing your attention on the most significant actions. In this case you divide your tasks, projects, and activities into three groups:

1. Projects that will fail to have a significant impact, whether you do them or not

2. Projects that will succeed anyway, whether you do them or not

3. Projects that will have a significant impact only if you complete them in a timely manner

If you focus your attention on the first group, you’re just spinning your wheels while more important tasks remain undone. If you focus your attention on the second group, you’re wasting your energy for no meaningful return. But if you attend to the third group, you’ll put your time and energy to the best possible use. In order to focus on the most significant actions, you must withdraw your attention from the first two groups.

Practicing triage is extremely challenging because it requires repeatedly saying no to what you may instinctively feel are good choices. It’s the time-management equivalent of saying no to wounded people calling for help. But if you fail to master the art of triage, many worthwhile projects will die needlessly.

This process is a challenge of consciousness. It’s easy to lose sight of the big picture when you’re staring at a project screaming for your attention. But you still need to muster the awareness to ask yourself: Is this the most important thing for me to be doing right now?

Make a list of your group-three projects and activities, and keep it handy at all times. Maybe it’s a list of your key goals, but it could also be a list of the life areas you want to attend to, such as your health, relationships, and spiritual practice. Review that list every day to keep refreshing its presence in your mind. This will help you make the tough triage decisions when the need arises. It’s easier to say no to groups one and two when you can see the whole battlefield.

What are the group-three projects that are dying in the trenches but that can still be saved if you reach them in time? Your health? Your relationship? Your career? Your spiritual connection? In order to make time to save them, what ones and twos are you willing to pass up?

That’s all for this week.

Keep Meditation ! May God Bless You !

Eklavya

Meditation during the time of economic turmoil

A few days ago the news of an NRI’s suicide in America shocked India. Karthik Rajaram (46), a Los Angeles based NRI, shot his family and himself dead when stock market crashed in US. Rajaram had been a bright student and had worked with high profile companies before he started his on venture fund company. He made many million dollars when the company was liquidated. Thereafter he got unemployed and invested his money in the stock market and rest is known to all.

In his suicide note, he blamed his economic conditions that have worsened in the aftermath of Subprime crisis. (Read more here about this crisis)

He was one of the most educated and affluent group of American Indians. He had enjoyed all the luxuries of life. Yet he failed to cope with the stress of the pressing economic condition.

When I think about this incident, I feel that this suicide is among one of those cases where the person fails to accept the harsh realities of his life and started blaming himself for all kind of miseries he and his family are facing. Continue reading “Meditation during the time of economic turmoil”

Meditation Weekly : Newsletter

Hello friend,

Welcome to the current issue of Meditation Weekly, the meditation e-zine from MeditationIsEasy.Com.

In this issue:

(1) How we look at Life is our own choice

(2) Meditation Articles from around the word

(3) The road to success is paved with failure

(4) What’s new at MeditationIsEasy.Com
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How we look at Life is our own choice

Once a monk, along with his disciple, happened to pass through a place where a very big temple was being built. He saw three laborers crushing the stones there. The monk saw that all the three laborers have different expression on their face. The first man was angry, the second one was sad and the third one was happy. The monk came near to them and asked the first man, ” My brother, what are you doing?”. This man was angry and he replied even more angrily, “Are you blind? Can’t you see I am crushing the stones? Continue reading “Meditation Weekly : Newsletter”

Meditation weekly : Best book on Vipassana Meditation

Best book on Vipassana Meditation :

I want to tell you about a wonderful book on Vipassana Meditation. It is one of the most impressive and useful books on meditation I have ever read. This book is ‘The Art of Living: Vipassana Meditation: As Taught by S. N. Goenka’. This book is written by William Hart and is based on the lectures and writings of S. N. Goenka the famous Vipassana expert who has almost given a rebirth to this wonderful meditation technique of Gautama Buddha.

vipassna book pic

Well who is this man S N Goenka ? If you have ever tried to find the term ‘Meditation’ in Google, you must have found this wonderful website : Dhamma.org . This website is among the most popular website on meditation since a very very long time. This site is the international home page of the organizations which offer courses in Vipassana Meditation as taught by S.N. Goenka and his assistant teachers in the tradition of Sayagyi U Ba Khin. Mr. Goenka is a teacher of Vipassana meditation and his Vipassana courses have attracted thousands of people of every background. Unique among teachers of meditation, Goenka is a retired industrialist and former leader of the Indian Community in Burma. Although a layman, his teaching has won the approval of senior Buddhist monks in Burma, India, and Sri Lanka, a number of whom have taken courses under his guidance. Despite his magnetism, he has no wish to be a “guru” –instead he teaches self-responsibility. This book is the first systematic study of his teachings to appear in English.

Based on the lectures and writings of S. N. Goenka–and prepared under his direct guidance–The Art of Living shows how this technique can be used to solve problems, develop unused potential, and lead a peaceful, productive life. It includes stories by S. N. Goenka, as well as answers to students’ questions, that convey a vivid sense of his teaching.

If you are interested in meditation, I strongly recommend you to read this wonderful book as it is the next best alternative than physically attending the 10 days course of Vipassana. It’s full of stories and anecdotes from the life of Buddha and you will find it deeply involving and inspiring.

You can buy this book at your local bookstore or you can order it from Amazon.com.

 

Meditation Weekly : Newsletter

Welcome to Meditation Weekly Newsletter
In this edition:
(1) How to include meditation in your daily routine ?
(2) A Sanskrit Scholar admonished me.
(3) An interesting true fact.
(4) On loosing and winning.

How to include meditation in daily routine

This is a problem faced by most of us. We read a book, meet some one and get excited. For some days, we make a routine, set aside time and meditate regularly. However, after a few days the enthusiasm fades away and we get back to an older routine of our life. The complexities of life in 21st century has made it really difficult for most of us to spend a little time of with ourselves !. We can spend hours in restaurant, watching movies /daily soap, shopping and gossiping. However, when it comes to spend some quite moments with ourselves we find excuses : My busy routine, work pressure, exams, study of children and what not ?

So what to do ? First of all understand this problem in some detail. It is not that we don’t have time – all of us can find at least 10 minutes from our busy life. It’s not that we don’t want to meditate – then why you’d be reading this ? It’s not that we can’t meditate -we all can meditate as it’s really easy.

The real reason is that we all are victims of our own circumstances. Past habits of procrastination, dilly-dallying, wrong food, irregular sleep pattern is taking it’s toll on us. If your whole life is in mess, how can you be expected to be disciplined enough to incorporate a new habit instantly ? You need to proceed slowly on this – one step at a time.

First of all you need to set your priorities once again. It is really important to ponder over what matters most to you. Is it money, fame, love, recognition, peace of mind or a combination of all ? Are you taking any of your worldly needs too seriously? Except a true peace of mind all your desires are transitory in nature and short lived. None of them is going to last forever. Be a little contemplative about your life. Understand that you are playing a tiny role in this stage called life. This role has a limited life. Many actors have played their role before you and many will played it after you. The role is significant and may appear very important to you. But at the end of the day, it’s just a role.

An honest look over your entire life and a deep pondering over what you exactly want out of it is necessary to understand the true role of meditation in your life

Let me give you a suggestion. If you can’t include meditation in your life daily, try to do it at least once in a week. On weekend you can do it easily. Even if that seems a task for you, just make a visit to your nearest Chapel, Temple, Mosque or any peaceful place once a week. Go alone at a time when there is least crowd there. Afternoon will be an ideal time. Sit there in a comfortable place and spend some time with yourself. Just think about how life is going on. How much you have achieved, how much you have lost and does it really matter ? Think about the ephemeral character of life. How the world is changing everyday, how life is becoming more & more complex everyday and how despite all this, some fundamental principles of life still prevails over everything: Like we all take birth and die, spend our life filled with various emotions of love, lust, hate, care, compassion, anger, joy, sorrow etc. We all know that this world is not a permanent place to live in, yet we behave as if we are going to live here forever. There are many such realities of life over which you can think during your weekly visit. I am sure once you start spending some quality time with your self (even if only once in a week ), you will be inspired to adopt meditation in your daily routine. Meditation will become a part of your life on it’s own. I wish you good luck.

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A Sanskrit Scholar admonished me

Recently some interesting thing happened. I got an email from a Sanskrit Scholar from Argentina. He admonished me about my writing and warned me that first of all I should learn the Sanskrit Language before writing anything on Sanskrit text. I tried to reply to his email but he had given a wrong email address (along with a wrong name). Since I could not contact him, I am reproducing this exact email in this newsletter followed by my reply do that he can read it (if he revisited this website again).

From : Anonymous Pandita
Email; [email protected] (does not exist)
Country; Argentina

Comments;

Friend,

I like your mission and purpose very much, but, as a pandita (Sanskrit scholar) I must say to you this:

First, learn Sanskrit grammar, then speak about Sanskrit-related topics (like that of So\’ham), or else, if you don\’t want to/can learn Sanskrit grammar, simply don\’t write about topics involving Sanskrit scholarship. Your articles begin to seem non-sensical when you come to the Sanskrit region.

Please, cultivate your knowledge of Sanskrit or don\’t write about those complex subject matters only reserved to Sanskrit scholars unless you get due assistance. I am one of these scholars and as such I perfectly know what I am saying.

This message is just a suggestion, despite my imperative way of telling you the things. However, I am speaking to you because I know that your intentions are noble. Anyway, if you keep writing on what you ignore, you will only be helping Lady Ignorance get stronger and stronger in this world. People read your articles and many of them will trust your words (Sanskrit errors included).

Therefore, be wise and act wisely. Knowledge and spirituality implies social responsibility.

Thanks for your attention and sorry if I made you angry, but this is something more important than \”you\” and \”me\” (our little egos), and it was my duty to warn you.

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Now here is my reply to respected Anonymous Pandita

Dear friend,

Thanks for contacting me and telling me about my ignorance of Sanskrit language. I appreciate your concern for the right use of this great language and if (in the opinion of an expert like you), I have made some grammatical mistakes, I’ll surely want to rectify them.

However, I am quite perplexed as to why do you think that only a scholar can talk about this great Soham Mantra ? I am unable to understand how and why writing about this topic involves Sanskrit scholarship ?

“Please, cultivate your knowledge of Sanskrit or don’t write about those complex subject matters only reserved to Sanskrit scholars”

Is it so ? Who told you about this reservation? Is there any book or any living authority who prohibits persons like me to write about this topic. I am anxious to know.

In case your want to advise me that I should be careful while writing about/on Sanskrit text, I would request you to kindly give me specific suggestion on my writing and tell me precisely where I had committed mistakes. Only then I will be able to understand what pinched you on the site. It will be a great help to my website too.

My dear Anonymous, I write about meditation not about Sanskrit. The target audience of this website are simple ordinary folks who don’t know anything about meditation or spirituality not to speak of Sanskrit. It’s an idiot friendly site intended to arise an interest in meditation/spiritual among it’s reader in a language which they can understand. I have tried to be as plain and simple as possible while writing the stuff here. I don’t claim to be absolutely correct on everything I have written. I know I am not. Yet, I don’t want anybody to go into wrong direction by using my website. This site just point them towards a long inner journey. They may take a cue from this website but they are free to choose and decide their own path.

So’ham is a mantra which does not even require a recitation. It’s something that happens naturally in all of us. From where does the ‘Sanskrit’ come into picture ?

I am happy that a Pandit of Sanskrit lives in Argentina. I never thought that I would get an email from Argentina – that too from a scholar of Sanskrit. I am glad that you contacted me. Kindly send me suggestion as to how can I make my article better. I would be very happy to know about that. Further, I’ll be happier if I can know your real name too.

You did not make me angry. You gave me food for thoughts on many topics- like reservation. I hope I have not hurt your little ego.

Regards

Eklavya

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An interesting true fact

Lead poisoning has been blamed for contributing to the fall of the Roman Empire. Women became infertile by drinking wine from vessels whose lead had dissolved in the wine, and the Roman upper classed died out within a couple of centuries. Paradoxically, the Romans used lead as a sweetening agents and as a cure for diarrhea. It added up to massive self-inflicted poisoning

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On loosing and winning.

Charles Schulz asked his girlfriend, Donna Johnson, to marry him, but she turned him down and married a fireman instead. – Charles Schulz created the beloved comic strip Peanuts and immortalized Donna Johnson as the Little Red-Haired Girl who constantly rejects Charlie Brown. Peanuts run daily in 73 countries and earned Schulz $30 to $40 million annually.

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I hope you enjoyed this issue of Meditation Weekly Newsletter. You can also subscribe to RSS feed of our Meditation Blog which will keep update you about the recent issue of this Newsletter.

I hope to be more regular in publishing this Newsletter. Till then good bye and a happy weekend.

Regards

Eklavya