A PAUSE…in the History of Time!

‘London Statue STOP’ – the denner would yell and all of us would stop, statue-like in whatever positions we were.

Those who moved would be out of the game, some would nudge and poke, some would hastily change positions, while many would simply enjoy the pause. But that pause was for a game and this pause amid Coronavirus is for…life itself. Distressing, funny, confusing, unprecedented…

India has locked down completely, USA is in turmoil with more than 3.8 million unemployed people, Spain and Italy are under great pressure, countries are taking desperate measures.

For the first time in history, no one is in control of the situation. And humans don’t like not being in control. Who is the denner? When will he say – Go?

This sudden pause…a break in our fast paced lifestyles is toppling, wrecking, shaking and affecting many lives. Many people have readily halted while many are still coming to a screeching halt. Each one of us has been affected in some way or the other.

Suddenly, everything we ever knew has paused. And there are grim realities and uncertainties to deal with – life, family, jobs, education, salary, food…! And moreover, there is no end in sight to this ordeal.

Yes, for the first time we realize no one has control over this situation. Presidents, Prime Ministers, Leaders, Millionaires… no one.

And no one knows how this crisis will come to an end – may be a cure, or unknown cause or certain steps would work. But one thing is for sure – we will prevail. Until then, we have to pause and wait.

And in this pause, there are great questions and realizations –

Where did we go wrong?

We need so little to survive, so why the greed?

What were we running after?

Has anything ever been in our hands?

What’s the use of power, wealth and luxuries when an invisible, dead virus can threaten it?

What is the most important thing for us, right now?

Who are the people in our support system? Are we taking care of them?

If we are to die tomorrow, what would matter most?

What selfless deeds have we done?

Where does our hope lie?

How important are we to others?

The answers to this questions are humbling and point out to all those things that are truly dear to our hearts. Just that much is really required for life.

Rest of the things are just extras but the people, ideals and things that matter to us in times like this form our core.

And in this pause there is great understanding. Just like the silence after AUM is as powerful as the mantra itself, similarly, this pause is profound. Who knows the human race might change for better after experiencing this crisis!

So let’s be there for others, practice gratitude and be loving, sensitive and kind… for we never know what others are going through.

One day, the denner up there will say – Go. And life will start running and go back to normal. We will return to our ordinary existence but the way we endured and handled the crisis during this extraordinary time will stay with us forever.

Heroes are not always those who fight and win but those spirited people who brave the crisis with courage, determination, cheerfulness and dignity.

This pause is an opportunity to realize and be our best self. We owe this to us and to all other living beings. Let’s make the best use of this PAUSE.

(Image courtesy Google)

One virus that not just impacted health…

I saw them all falling victim during this peace time war-like situation…

A little, broken boy who depended on school meals…

An assistant teacher who had been saving for college tuition…

An old lady who picked leftovers from empty racks at her grocery store…

One sudden layoff that left a family in a lurch…

A single mom who got released from her job in a closing restaurant…

A sick girl who had been waiting for Spring to play in the park…

A housewife who struggled to keep kids quiet as the husband worked from home…

A family that had saved and booked for a vacation…

A student who wanted to pass an exam to support his family…

A family whose visa needs demanded travel during hazardous times…

Parents who had made plans for their daughter’s wedding…

A niece who wanted to visit her dying aunt in a different city…

A family stuck in another country waiting for this ordeal to pass…

So many lives have stopped, changed and jolted as coronavirus continues to spread around the world…

But I have immense faith in the resilience of the human spirit. Hang in there, this too shall pass!🙏🏻

(Image courtesy Google)

Just a thought – Tulips greeting the spring?

These are my husband’s Tulips and they are blooming now! Does this mean Spring is here? Is it good-bye time for long, harsh winters? Are we getting the colors back on the white canvas that Minnesota is now?

Tulips shyly smiling, greet the spring
Tightly closed when at 
First we meet
Tulips slowly opening, begin to sing
Gaining volume 
Ever sweet

No longer shy, as days grow longer
Raising their heads
They begin to flirt
Tulips dressed in many a color
Breezes swirling
Each floral skirt

  • Mary Havran

Looking forward to seeing colors back on this landscape!

Paw Things#4 – A blog by a Dog (cute pics included)

 

Hi, there! I am Happy. It has been long since someone wrote something about me. Hmmm…so, I took the liberty to post my own Paw Things with many selfies and pics.

I am all grown up now, but still have that cute puppy face. Don’t you think so?

In January, I was unwell for about a week and there seemed to be a major health issue. It scared my family. But all turned out well in the end.

I am all hale and hearty now. I love to run in the snow and sniff around. I probably scare off the hibernating rabbits and squirrels. But what the heck, Spring is coming…they should gear up!

No, snow does not bother me at all. I love to eat a mouthful every now and then, when no one is watching.

There is something about the lake. I love to meditate near it.

This is my favorite spot. And my favorite thing in the world? Sleep Yoga!

I always wait for the boys to come from school. It is super exciting when they get down from the bus and run towards home.

I had fun sledding with the boys!

Yesterday, the boys enjoyed adding effects to my pic. Hmmm…do I look grumpy? Grumpy-Happy Dog!

Hope you enjoyed my pictures. I think Spring is around the corner and we will have more outdoor activities. I will share more pics soon. Till then, bye from Happy! Love Bark!

Small Things #25 – What is the last name of Krishna?

While my older one is excited about the wider acceptance and appreciation of our eBook ‘The Boy Named Joy’ (running in Amazon’s bestseller list of top 100 free books), the little one is exploring spirituality. Yesterday, he asked a question I had never thought of! “Krishna has so many names but what is the last name?” Baffling, isn’t it? Did you know?

Well, I threw the question back at him. “What do you think?”.

“Hmm…well Jesus has Christ as his last name. I don’t know why Krishna did not have a last name.”

So, I had to take help from Mr. Google and this is what I found. It seems that during Krishna’s age, the people had titles rather than surnames.

Krishna has been called by different names throughout Mahabharata – Yashodanandan (son of Yashoda), Giridhar (one who lifted a hill), Gopala (one who takes care of cows), Dwarikadheesh (King of Dwarika) and so on. But no surnames.

I guess, last names did not exist at that time. And since every name was based on the personal attribute of the individual, it was different. For example, Krishna was called Krishna (dark one) because he was dark in color.

In fact, all the people in the holy books ‘Ramayana’ and ‘Mahabharata’ are referred to by their first names, which indicates their personalities. Yudhisthira (one who is steady in war), Bhima (one who is formidable), Arjun (One who is pure and white), Nakula (most handsome), Sehdeva (with gods) and so on… Usually, no two people had the same name.

Last names began to be taken when the British came to India.

So, by today’s context, Krishna’s last name would be Vrishni. According the Google – “Krishna is referred to in the Mahabharata as a Vrishni during Arjuna’s war with Karna; the Vrishnis are a clan under the umbrella of Yadavas; Satyaki is also a Vrishni. So, by today’s human standards, Krishna’s last name would be Vrishni.”

It was a great question and looking for the answer was equally interesting. Kids really see things differently and that is why they ask the best questions.

(P.S.- Last day to buy ‘The Boy Named Joy’ for free. So, do download here. Thank You.)

(image- Google)

 

 

Bedtime Book – The Boy Named Joy on Amazon!

Children’s bedtime book, The Boy Named Joy is now available on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B084DMGH8J). Download your eBook copies on Amazon.com or Amazon.in (if you are in India).
Here is the preview:

About the Book: Why is King Boo-Hoo always sad although he has everything? And why is the boy named Joy always happy although he has nothing. What is the secret? The magic painting or something else… Read this endearing tale to know all about JOY!
 
The Making: The story was written quickly but the illustrations were a problem. Then, my eight-year-old, Adiraj stepped in and created the characters. He was enthusiastically encouraged by my little kindergartner, Aviraj. And after the characters were drawn on paper, I digitized the pictures and put it all together. This is how we created the book.

Message: The Boy Named Joy has a message for school children and adults as well! This Children’s eBook tells us that happiness does not really depend on cool gadgets, apps, video games or fancy clothes. That kind of happiness is momentary. True happiness comes by choosing to be happy irrespective of what we have and what we don’t have.

The eBook will help raise, good, happy kids who would learn to make wise choices in life. It is my sincere hope that this special tale will entertain as well as teach the kids to stay positive despite challenges in life just like the main character Joy.

Our kids face many challenges in life and this simple book might help.

Your feedback is extremely important and very welcome. Don’t forget to write a review on Amazon if you like it. Thanks again for being a great support!
– Shivangi
 

Blog Birthday – 5 years of blogging and a surprise!

My Dear,

I have a very special surprise (#blogiversary special) for you on this special day that marks 5 years of blogging on Stories by Shivangi. I have blogged almost every week, shared my meditative thoughts, updates on life and random observations with pictures and quotes. It has been terrific journey so far!

You have been a great companion to me all this while. You did not stop reading and I did not stop writing, it has been a lovely relationship!  This blog has grown beyond my expectations and page views everyday are really motivating.

There is some good news – my two picture eBooks ‘The Princess with Brown Teeth‘ and ‘Who Ate the Moon?‘ are now available on Amazon.com as Kindle purchase. The princess book is sure to motivate picky eaters and help them in making good food choices and the moon book talks about the various phases of the moon. Kids who have read it on iTunes have loved them.

But wait, here is the surprise  – my third picture eBook would be coming out very soon!!! Before the Valentine’s Day, for sure! It could make a lovely gift for your loved one. Here is a quick look at what is to come. The illustrations are by my 8 year old, who stepped in to create the characters from my story about ‘The Boy Named Joy’! (I would love to know what do you think). More exciting stuff to come in my next post…

I am grateful to god and you for keeping me inspired!

Love,

Shivangi

P.S – Thank You Sneha, my little sister and loved ones on Facebook for being my champion promoters. I need your support always.