Sunday, May 31, 2015

I am grateful to Auroville / My post on Auroville Intranet

I am grateful to Auroville - JV by jvavadhanulu on April 27, 2015, 1:20 pm

After living in Auroville for more than 7 years, I left it as a place of residence on 1 March 15. This is my expression of gratitude after waiting for 8 weeks, lest I should change my mind.

I am grateful for the privilege of meditating in Matri Mandir and walking in the gardens. I am grateful for finding the purpose of my life in making the world a healthier and happier place through workshops and retreats. My special thanks to Andrea & Pitanga, Ashoke Da & Bharat Niwas, Kalsang& Pavilion of Tibetan Culture, Bhavana & Verite, Shraddhavan & Savitri Bhavan and Jaya & Unity Pavilion for encouraging me and enabling me to offer the workshops and retreats. I am grateful to each and every one of you who attended the events and I thank you for the generosity of your listening. I feel very fulfilled and satisfied because so many of you practiced and reaped the benefits in your life. My life has been transformed in finding the joy in the purpose of my life.

I am grateful to Chandresh, Mr. Bala Bhaskar, Srinivasa Murthy and Manu for a making a beginning in manifestation of my dream for an Auroville Network. I am certain that it would have a significant role to play in the manifestation of The Dream.

I was ‘medically’ advised never to play a game after my cardiac crisis in 1987. I was inspired by The Mother playing tennis and rediscovered the pleasure in playing ping-pong. Playing a game is like a dynamic meditation and I found that it improved my being mindful. I stopped all medication quite some time ago but was taking a substitute for baby aspirin. I developed ulcers and I stopped it 28 Feb 2014, despite ‘medical’ advice. I am grateful to The Mother for being totally free of medication.

So many Aurovilians and friends of Auroville helped me to do workshops and retreats abroad. This not only furthered the mission of my life but also was in tune with my passion for travel. I am grateful to every one of them.I discovered that I belong to the family of Integral Yoga of The Mother and Sri Aurobindo and revel in it. Atithi Griha was my home in Auroville. I am grateful to Ashoke Da, Raji and all the staff of AGGH for my experience of having a home in Auroville. My stay in Auroville blossomed to what is was, thanks to the friendship, guidance and support from Syamala, Bhavana and Vradharajan and many Aurovilians and friends of Auroville who contributed to me and my personal growth.

We also started a Telugu Sankritika Kendramu (Telugu Cutural Center), thanks to the initiative of Syamala. One of the delightful things that happened is the annual musical celebration of Saint Thyagaraja.Thyagaraja composed in Telugu, lived in Tamil Nadu but his music and message are Universal.The small beginning we made will be a Juggernaut because of the message of the Saint and the purpose of Page 1 of 2 Auroville being Human Unity. I feel happy, grateful and privileged to have been a part of it.

I am grateful to my wife and children for giving me the time and space to explore and experience Auroville. I was also twice blessed to be a grandfather during my stay in Auroville. I never realized how beautiful it is to have grandchildren. I am grateful to the Divine for the two blessings into our hearts.
While I chose to leave Auroville as a place of residence, I choose to remain to be of the ideal of Human Unity. Wherever I am, I am committed to continue the work I had the privilege and opportunity to begin in Auroville. Because, part of me will be always in Auroville and part of Auroville will be with me wherever I go. And, Auroville is the ‘Mani hara’ of people with goodwill.

In gratitude, JV
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Saturday, May 30, 2015

Stress Management workshops at IIITB and Unifylabs

In the process of picking up the threads, I connected with IIITB and my friend Raja has immediately given me the opportunity to do a 3 session (of 3 hours) workshop for the students of STP (a post graduate program). The rationale is to have a gap between the sessions during which the participants can practice the tools and techniques and assimilate the principles better.
Meanwhile, based on the introductory session, the interest of Unifylabs also firmed up, thanks to my friend Srini and the rest of the management team. The majority of this young, growing and vibrant company are youngsters of similar age group at IIITB and in my thinking, it made sense to it in 3 sessions instead of a one day or two day intensive workshop.

The three sessions cover
1. Basics of science of stress and  on-line stress management 
2. Managing emotions and improving  self-awareness/IQ
3. Resilience and building immunity to stress

While the 3 session format worked reasonably well at IIITB, there was surprise at Unifylabs. I think that the work commitments could be factor in this and the second aspect is related to the interest and focus of young IT professionals who tend to look at personal growth as something that they can look at ‘later’. It wouldn’t have been difficult to guess this but strangely, I needed an actual experience to become aware of what I know. Hopefully, I learned something deeper than the surface lesson- the real lesson is that with a bit of ‘presence’, you can transform knowledge into awareness.  
The major celebration from the events is getting to know Ashok at IIITB, Srikaran, Chandra and Subbarao, who, along with Srini founded and run Unifylabs. Of course, I have the major satisfaction from all events. Some people, though a minority of the participants, took significant value out of the events and produces great results. Sometimes, I hope that it the majority that would do this and not a minority. The truth in personal development is that some people will not be ready and transformation needs lot of energy. Like Ekhart Tolle said, Coal transforms into diamond under tremendous pressure and inconceivable temperature". Waht time would it take for the coal to transform to diamond?

I am committed to my mission of spreading health, harmony and happiness, continue to seek the opportunities, enjoy every event and do my best in every event and be open to the possibility that before I call it a day, I will be facilitating events in which each every person (including me) is transformed.

Basics of Stress Management Workshop at PMC Sierra Semiconductors

I and Sanjeev are friends since a long time and he attended one of the earliest ‘Being Well” week-end workshops I conducted in Bangalore. He was the MD (Sales) of Freescale Semiconductor at that time and he also gave me an opportunity to do a couple of workshops for his team. In the process of picking up the threads, I got in touch with him. He is currently the MD (Sales) of PMC and he responded positively and immediately created this opportunity.
He asked me whether I could do a two to two and half hour session as part of their 10 year celebrations and I was ready to try it out even though it was a challenge to do something that would be useful for the participants within two hours as opposed to the 12.5 hours at IIIMI.   I did struggle a bit but in the end it was a very enjoyable experience and the workshop was very well received.  I n my experience, the people were quite positive about the concept of on-line stress management and the feasibility of  pulling-in  the micro-breaks, micro-meditations  and emotional freedom process into their busy life . I am happy that we could make a good beginning and here is the testimonial frpm Sanjeev

Mr. J.V. Avadhanulu conducted 2 hours workshop on "Basics of Stress Management" at PMC Sierra, Bangalore on 27th May 2015. He explained what is Stress and what causes it and then shared a simple and manageable tool of "Micro Breaks" which can help to overcome the stress. All our employees are very happy with this workshop and found it practical and effective.
I would like to thank Mr. JV for putting across a complex issue in a simple way in a short time.”
Sanjeev Keskar
Managing Director Sales
PMC Sierra India and SEA"

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Change of course and picking up the threads with 3 workshops

Come 2015, there is yet another change of course. It is in the place of my (ordinary) residence but it is impacting my work to spread health and happiness in unforeseen and interesting ways. I and my wife decided to live in Bagur, a small, pretty village near, Devlali, the charming twin town of Nasik, in eth Western Ghats (hills) of Maharashtra- about 3 hours form Mumbai. The rationale is to live away from the hustle, bustle, congestion and pollution of big cities. In fact, we were looking for a salubrious, peaceful and rustic place to live and this was the very first place that the Universe has revealed to us. We grabbed it instantaneously, without second thoughts and considering alternatives. We came to know about this place, thanks to Cmde Syam, who was building a house in the same society. The presence of Barricks, a close friend in the Navy and Rachana, our ‘third daughter’ in Nasik were major factors in the quick decision. Well, we moved fast but the Cantonment Board didn’t. As a result, we are to live in our flat at Bangalore for about an year, till the house is ready. I am will be leaving to Europe and USA, starting So, I decided to pick up the threads in Bangalore and see if I can be fruitful engaged in my mission.
I am grateful to so many of my friends responding positively to my request and creating opportunities to do workshops. The first to happen was a session on Stress Management at IIITB, thanks to Raja. Raja has asked me to do two more sessions and I would be completing them by end May. Next to happen was talk on “The science of mind and meditation” at IISC, thanks to my friend Hari. I also did an introductory session to personal growth for the first time at Unifylabs, thanks to Srini. We are in the process of setting up a three session program on stress management.  Sanjeev Keskar is now with PMC and we will be doing a session for PMC towards end May. I had to shift the model and mode to suits these groups, as opposed to the set patterns that I established at Auroville and IIMs. I enjoyed this as there was a creative element in such changes, the most significant being the long term model at IIITB and Unifylabs. I would like to see through these programs and capture my experience and assessment of the long –term engagement model.
I am delighted and grateful to all my friends who helped me to pick up the threads and spread health and happiness in the short stay of the month of May at Bangalore. It is satisfying and immensely fulfilling to my heart, which is filled with gratitude to my friends and the Universe.

This post would be incomplete without an explanation about the shift from Auroville. My wife doesn’t like Auroville. As time went by, my inspiration about Auroville came down. The most cogent explanation I can give for myself is that Auroville doesn’t make ‘reasonable’ use of the resources – human, land, money, material and Time. I wonder how far or close we are to the Dream. I would never know (unless I am enlightened) whether this explanation is independent of my wife’s opinion of Auroville. I know that I wanted peace and harmony in our lives. What was the real cause? May be, it doesn’t matter. Wherever I am, I am part of the ideal of Human Unity. I know that I take Auroville wherever I am.  I also left behind some part of me in Auroville. Finally, it is all about the ideal.