[racchabanda] A note from last night.

 

The super blood wolf moon of 1/20/2019

 

Yes, I have seen it. Watched the lunar eclipse - as it is happening - for a little over an hour. From 10.30 pm onwards. To reach its conclusion.  Right from my front balcony.

 

In the end, thru the binoculars I could appreciate the dusky red hue of the moon and it being a sphere rather than a flat disc that I see on regular full moon nights. It is a pretty neat celestial sight.

 

It is a cold night here in Naples, Florida.  It is now 12.13am. The red moon almost disappeared over the roof of the building. I can't see him even bending backward over the railing. And I am not going to run into the street at this hour, and watch the reversal of eclipse.

 

Nah. I have seen the bright white full moon prior to the eclipse. At that time the sky is studded with thick clouds. The moon appeared as though he is in big hurry and running away from someone. Perhaps Rahu or Kethu.  Pretty soon the clouds cleared. Sky turned blue.  Many stars appeared in the sky.

 

Nah! I am not going to watch the moon recovering its fullness, glowing white and bright again. It's alright. The super moon will be alright without my supervision.

 

I am going to bed.  

 

Lyla.


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www.telugubhakti.com Digest Number 4851

8 Messages

Digest #4851
1.1
Sri Satya Sai Baba by p_gopi_krishna
1.2
Sri Satya Sai Baba by p_gopi_krishna
2.1
Srimad Bhagavad Gita by p_gopi_krishna
2.2
Srimad Bhagavad Gita by p_gopi_krishna
3.1
Positive Life by p_gopi_krishna
4.1
5.1
Health by p_gopi_krishna
6.1
Satsangam by p_gopi_krishna

Messages

Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:12 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

In our daily experiences, there are a number of instances which reveal the existence of Divinity in every person. Consider a cinema; on the screen we see rivers in flood engulfing all the surrounding land. Even though the scene is filled with flood waters the screen does not get wet by even a drop of water. At another time, on the same screen we see volcanoes erupting with tongues of flame, but the screen is not burnt. The screen which provides the basis for all these pictures is not affected by any of them.. Likewise in the life of man, good or bad, joy or sorrow, birth or death, come and go, but they do not affect the Atma. In the cinema of life, the screen is the Atma - it is Shiva, it is Sankara, it is Divinity. When one understands this principle, one will be able to understand, enjoy and find fulfilment in life!

Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:32 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

Learn to live in harmony and unity. The village (society) is to the villagers (members of the society) what the body is to the individual.. Every organ in the body functions in cooperation with every other part. If the foot steps on a thorn, the eye feels the pain and sheds tears. If the eye notices a thorn or stone on the road, it warns the foot to avoid it. Villagers should develop the same sense of unity and share their joys and troubles as one organic body. There is nothing you cannot achieve with unity as your strength. With purity and unity, you can unravel your Divinity and develop genuine devotion to God. You should fill your hearts with love and make your lives holy and purposeful. When everyone works in this spirit of unity and charity, the village would become a model for all the rest.

Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:14 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

Our intelligence is not like a fixed deposit – it is like a stock market share Suppose we invest in stocks, but think of such an investment to be as stable as a fixed deposit. If the stocks go down, we may end up with far lesser money than what we invested. To protect our investment, we need to regularly monitor stock market prices.

If we compare knowledge to wealth, then we often misunderstand the nature of the wealth o spiritual knowledge. When we study the Bhagavad-gita and understand its broad philosophy, we think that we have now understood the Gita, that our intelligence has now become equipped with Gita wisdom.
However, intelligence is essentially not informational, but transformational – intelligence is meant to transform our actions, empowering us to resist our unhealthy impulses and to reinforce our healthy impulses. The Gita (18.30) states that healthy intelligence perceives the consequences of actions and then chooses wisely. Such is intelligence in the mode of goodness. In the mode of passion, our intelligence gets used to implement our impulses, not to inspect them (18.31). And in the mode of ignorance, our intelligence often rationalizes and glamorizes our unhealthy impulses, thereby totally misleading us (18.32).
Just as the modes influencing us keep changing, so too does our intelligence keep changing. That's why the wealth of our intelligence is not like a fixed deposit – it is not determined by the spiritual information we have, but by the spiritual inclination we have. And as such inclination is shaped by the changing modes, our intelligence is like a volatile stock market share.
We need to monitor our intelligence regularly – and strengthen it by repeatedly studying the Gita and resiliently striving to live the Gita. Then that intelligence will become like a fixed deposit. Not only that, it will appreciate in value, eventually granting us the return of lasting fulfillment.
Think it over:
What is the essence of intelligence? How is our intelligence like a stock market share? How can we make our intelligence like a fixed deposit? https://www.facebook.com/sharer/sharer.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19887&picture=http://www.gitadaily.com/wp-content/images/Bhagavad-Gita-Chapter-18-Text-32.jpg http://twitter.com/share?text=Our%20intelligence%20is%20not%20like%20a%20fixed%20deposit%20%E2%80%93%20it%20is%20like%20a%20stock%20market%20share&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19887&hashtags= https://plus.google.com/share?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19887 http://pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19887&media=http://www.gitadaily.com/wp-content/images/Bhagavad-Gita-Chapter-18-Text-32.jpg&description=Suppose%20we%20invest%20in%20stocks%2C%20but%20think%20of%20such%20an%20investment%20to%20be%20as%20stable%20as%20a%20fixed%20deposit.%20If%20the%20stocks%20go%20down%2C%20we%20may%20end%20up%20with%20far%20lesser%20money%20than%20what%20we%20invested.%20To%20protect%20our%20investment%2C%20we%20need%20to%20regularly%20monitor%20stock%20market%20prices.If%20we%20compare%20knowledge%20to%20wealth%2C%20then... http://bhagavadgitaclass.com/bhagavad-gita-chapter-18-text-32
http://bhagavadgitaclass.com/bhagavad-gita-chapter-18-text-32



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Sun Jan 20, 2019 9:35 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

Don't run from pain or rush towards pleasure – refocus on your purpose Suppose we are driving on a road to a destination. If the road is filled with traffic moving at a snail's pace, we may find it tiresome to move on, but if our destination is important for us, we won't turn away just because of the difficulty in driving.

Conversely, if we see an attractive movie playing in a theater along the road, again we won't stop driving just because of that movie; we will move on towards our destination.
Gita wisdom urges us to have a similar purposeful focus during our life-journey. We are souls who are on a multi-life journey of spiritual evolution towards unending happiness in a loving relationship with the all-attractive whole, Krishna. During our life-journey, the pleasures and pains we encounter are like minor gains or losses. In contrast, the culmination of our spiritual evolution – eternal, ecstatic absorption in Krishna – is so glorious, so eternally fulfilling that everything else pales in comparison.
Therefore, the Bhagavad-gita (05.20) urges us to not get elated on getting the desirable or to get dejected on getting the undesirable – it urges us to stay fixed in spiritual knowledge and spiritual realization, staying free from illusion by virtue of a steady intelligence nourished by philosophical conviction. When we regularly study the Gita, we get the impetus to focus on our purpose and to not get distracted by pleasure or pain.
Undoubtedly, life's journey will bring dualities in our life – and some of those may be huge, in terms of promising enormous pleasure or threatening catastrophic pain – but in the long run, they won't matter much, just as huge pleasures or pains from a decade ago don't matter much now. What matters ultimately is the evolution of our consciousness – and focusing on that is the path of eternal auspiciousness.
Think it over:
What is the purposeful journey that helps us see our present in perspective? How can we stay focused amidst dualities? What matters most in our life?
https://www.facebook.com/sharer/sharer.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily..com%2F%3Fp%3D19894&picture=http://www.gitadaily.com/wp-content/images/Bhagavad-Gita-Chapter-05-Text-20.jpg http://twitter.com/share?text=Don%E2%80%99t%20run%20from%20pain%20or%20rush%20towards%20pleasure%20%E2%80%93%20refocus%20on%20your%20purpose&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19894&hashtags= https://plus.google.com/share?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19894 http://pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.gitadaily.com%2F%3Fp%3D19894&media=http://www.gitadaily.com/wp-content/images/Bhagavad-Gita-Chapter-05-Text-20.jpg&description=Suppose%20we%20are%20driving%20on%20a%20road%20to%20a%20destination.%20If%20the%20road%20is%20filled%20with%20traffic%20moving%20at%20a%20snail%E2%80%99s%20pace%2C%20we%20may%20find%20it%20tiresome%20to%20move%20on%2C%20but%20if%20our%20destination%20is%20important%20for%20us%2C%20we%20won%E2%80%99t%20turn%20away%20just%20because%20of%20the%20difficulty%20in%20driving.Conversely%2C%20if%20we%20see%20an%20attractive%20movie... http://bhagavadgitaclass..com/bhagavad-gita-chapter-05-text-20
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Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:49 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

The Evolution Of Anger
We become a little irritated when we are stuck in a traffic jam and we getting late to reach somewhere on time, or we are not going to complete a particular task, as per our expectations or if someone whom we very well know decides to ignore us today, for some reason or the other.
If this seed of irritation is watered, or in other words it is given the concentrated energy of our attention i.e. we continue with the irritation for some time, it slowly grows or evolves into frustration.
Unless we take some constructive inner action to stop the growth of the frustration and we keep energizing it, it will grow or evolve into anger. And if this happens regularly and we are not careful, it will become a habit, a part of our personality, which we will finally come to believe is a natural part of your nature. We will even think we were born with it. That it is 'in our genes'.
Every time we become angry we cause the production of certain chemicals in our body and we also become addicted to those chemicals - then we look for people and situations which will give us an excuse to get angry so that we can have our daily dose of chemicals. We not only become attached to material objects, people, ways of thinking, beliefs etc. - we also become attached to our emotions like the emotion of anger. The regular secretion of these chemicals will finally kill our body. We don't need to kill our body.
We need to accept that anger is never ever productive, know that it is just not necessary to be angry with anyone or about anything, know that it is entirely our own creation and know that we can choose a different response. If we know and accept that, we will experience freedom from it.
ANGER is a deadly Killer will kill us only. It is ONLY WE, repeat ONLY WE can control our anger by adopting Forget Forgive attitude.
Jabalimuni Putrevu https://www.facebook.com/jabalimuni?__tn__=%2CdK-R-R&eid=ARCltd7gOdnv88n61ophiID73WFNRPkN8PAj6tHXPx0tzwiajV_jdgr3N2R9o4RiH4PgKnlJVsbRih0e&fref=mentions

Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:51 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

Sri Bhagavan remarked how true the words were - Talk 646.
Sri Bhagavan referred to the following passage of Gandhiji in the Harijan of the 11th instant:

"How mysterious are the ways of God! This journey to Rajkot is a wonder even to me. Why am I going, whither am I going? What for? I have thought nothing about these things. And if God guides me, what should I think, why should I think? Even thought may be an obstacle in the way of His guidance..
"The fact is, it takes no effort to stop thinking. The thoughts do
not come. Indeed there is no vacuum - but I mean to say that there is no thought about the mission."
Sri Bhagavan remarked how true the words were and emphasised each statement in the extract. Then He cited Thayumanavar in support of the state which is free from thoughts:
"Although I had often heard that all the Srutis declare the state of stillness to be one of Bliss, all Bliss - yet I continued to be ignorant.
Again I did not follow the advice of my Lord - the Silent Master - because of my folly. I wandered in the forest of illusion: alas! it was my fate."
"Bliss will reveal itself if one is still. Why then is this illusory yoga practice? Can it (i.e., Bliss) be revealed by directing the intellect in a particular way? Do not say so, you who are given to the practice and are therefore an innocent babe."
"The eternal Being is that state where you have disappeared. Are you not in it too? You, who cannot speak of it, do not be perplexed. Although you do not manifest, yet you are not lost. For you are eternal and also still. Do not be in pain. Here is Bliss - come on!"
(Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi)

Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:57 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

H E A L T H B U L L E T I N - Nature Cure and Natural Methods of Treatment
"Health Tips for Busy Office going People"
Being overstressed and under-rested, and thinking that there are a few simple steps that can be followed to stay healthy, brings to mind Cecile B DeMille's famous quip: "It is impossible for us to break the law. We can only break ourselves against the law."
Experts agree that the key to healthy eating is the time-tested advice of balance, variety and moderation. In short, this means eating a wide variety of foods without getting too many calories, or too much of any one nutrient.
If you know someone – or, you are one of those busy executives – whose life circumstances are such that you just do not have the "luxury" of getting adequate physical and emotional rest on a regular basis, please consider sharing the following 20 diet tips [better still - practice them!]:
Find out how many calories you need
It is not as easy as it sounds, but it is very important for an individual to know his/her caloric requirement [approx 1,800 calories/day] – on the basis of which reduction in calories for weight loss, weight management, or weight gain, can be pursued. Speak to a dietician or nutritionist who can help you decide on what suits your needs best.
Be a fan of fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are packed with beneficial fibre, vitamins, and anti-oxidants. They fill up your stomach quickly, so you feel full just as quickly. They are also low in calories and help to keep your calorie count low. Take at least 3-4 servings of fruit and 4-5 servings of vegetables each day. Snack on apples, melons, peaches, carrots, or green and red pepper strips. Don't forget juices – or, a glass of fruit or vegetable juice.
Watch for portion-size
Eat moderate portions. If you keep portion sizes reasonable, it's easier to eat the foods you want and stay healthy. One serving of pasta means 1/2 cup of cooked pasta. However, most restaurants serve a pasta dish with 4 servings of pasta! You do not need to finish and clean off the plate every time. You can simply ask to take home the leftover.
Do not skip meals
Eating small frequent meals helps to balance your calorie intake throughout the day and also keeps your blood sugar level balanced. Instead of eating three big meals, try to eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day.
Eat your breakfast
"Breaking the fast" from the prior evening is crucial for sustained mental work. The brain's sole source of energy is glucose, and it has no storage reserves. Eating breakfast has been shown to improve overall attitude, increase concentration and problem-solving ability. In addition, studies show those who eat breakfast typically consume fewer calories and fat compared to those who do not start their day off with a healthy meal. If you aren't used to eating something in the morning, grab something light like a yogurt and a piece of fruit, or a bowl of oatmeal. Avoid heavy breakfasts – skip high fat meat, deep fried snacks like samosa, batata wada. Choose oatmeal, 100 per cent fruit juice, milk, yogurt, fresh fruit, or high fibre cereal for a great breakfast.
Take time for balanced lunch
Yes, for the busy executive many of your lunches are often something you grabbed out of the pantry and snacked on while working at the computer. Not only is it important to take a break during the day, it is crucial to take time to eat. When you eat at the computer, it becomes unconscious eating. You aren't paying attention to how much of that food item you are eating and this, in turn, is a quick way to gain weight. It becomes impossible to be conscious of feeling "full" when your mind if focused on work, and not your body. Take some time for yourself to eat a balanced meal during the day. Include some protein, whole grains, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. This will help you to improve your energy and focus during the day as well as keep your weight where you want it.
Go for wholesome fresh foods
If possible, purchase fresh foods and avoid package [processed] and convenient foods such as fast-food. Packaged and convenient foods are often high in sodium and fat content. Many people are amazed that they can easily lose weight by packing a home-cooked lunch to work instead of eating out.
Reduce, don't eliminate certain foods
Most people eat for pleasure as well as nutrition. Everyone has his or her favourite treats. Simply allow yourself a little indulgence, but watch out for the frequency and the quantity. Having a small treat once in a while can be rewarding to your weight loss experience. Cutting too much of your favourite treats usually leads to an early relapse.
Choose skim or low-fat dairy products and lean cuts of meat such as flank steak. This can reduce your fat intake significantly. If you love fried chicken, you don't have to give it up. Just eat it less often. When dining out, share it with a friend; ask for a take-home bag, or a smaller portion.
Understand food claims and labels
A product labelled with a fat-free claim does not mean that it is low in calories. Similarly, a product labelled as low-sugar or low-carb does not mean it is low in fat or calories. Always read the nutrition label on the packaging, or ask an expert.
Watch for sugary drinks and relinquish caffeine
Juices, pop, cream and sugar in your coffee or tea all add up. Opt for drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water a day. In addition to providing hydration to your body, it will also help you feel full.
Starting your day off with a pot of coffee is not exactly a balanced breakfast, but it is likely the most common. People are more dependent than ever on caffeine to provide them a "perk" of energy. The downside is that's all it is providing – a quick perk. The reality is caffeine gives you small bursts of energy and then you crash to an energy low which leaves you to need even more. Caffeine also pulls fluid from your cells, which can cause mild dehydration and contributes to the three o'clock slump. Symptoms of mild dehydration are: fatigue, lack of concentration, irritability, anxiety, and mild headache. hmm, sounds familiar? Stick to one caffeinated beverage a day and work on drinking more water
Keep a food journal
Writing a daily food journal helps you pin-point your eating pattern and enable you to easily modify it.
Exercise
Most authorities recommend 30-40 minutes of physical activity a day to stay healthy. Also, try adding weight-bearing exercises at least two times a week. This will help burn some of the unwanted calories.
Eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods
You need more than 40 different nutrients for good health, and no single food supplies them all. Your daily food selection should include bread and other whole-grain products, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, meat, poultry, fish, and other protein foods. How much you should eat depends on your calorie needs. Speak to a dietitian or nutritionist for individualised needs..
Go for the grain
Nutrition experts recommend 6-11 daily servings of grains, including bread, rice, cereal and pasta. To reach this goal, you can include plenty of grain-based snacks that are low in fat and calories, like crackers, pretzels, and fat-free flavoured rice cakes.
Balance your food choices over time
Not every food has to be "perfect." When eating a food high in fat, salt or sugar, select other foods that are low in these ingredients. If you miss out on any food group one day, make up for it the next. Your food choices over several days should fit together into a healthy pattern..
Know your diet pitfalls
To improve your eating habits, you first have to know what's wrong with them. Write down everything you eat for three days. Check your list with the rest of these 20 tips. Do you add a lot of butter, creamy sauces or salad dressings? Rather than eliminating these foods, just cut back your portions. Are you getting enough fruits and vegetables? If not, you may be missing out on vital nutrients.
Make changes gradually
Just as there are no "miracle foods," or easy answers to a healthy diet, don't expect to totally revamp your eating habits overnight. Changing too much, too soon, can get in the way of success. Begin to remedy excesses or deficiencies with modest changes that can add up to positive, life-long eating habits. For instance, if you don't like the taste of skim milk, try low-fat. Eventually, you may find you like skim, too.
Remember, foods are not good or bad
Select foods based on your total eating patterns, not whether any individual food is "good" or "bad." Don't feel guilty if you love foods such as apple pie, potato chips, candy bars, or ice-cream. Eat them in moderation, and choose other foods to provide the balance and variety that are vital to good health.
Don't forget dairy
Include snacks from milk, yogurt and cheese group. To help meet your daily calcium requirements, choose two to three servings of dairy products each day. Snack on low-fat yogurt, or have a low-fat or skim milk shake.
Start small
You're not going on a diet. Rather, you're changing the way you eat for the rest of your life. So, there's no need to cut out dietary fat – all at once. You might start by switching to milk instead of cream in your coffee, or low-fat mayonnaise on your sandwiches and so on.
In addition to this, check your height and weight. Or, use a chart to see if you are overweight for your height. Your body mass index [BMI] is the weight in kilogram divided by the height in meter-squared: remember, it should be below 25.
Most important: follow the Three As in life – adjust, adopt, accommodate.


We hope to issue weekly Nature Cure Bulletin, simplified with Symptoms, Causes, Treatment & The Cure for most of the common diseases.

Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:59 pm (PST) . Posted by:

p_gopi_krishna

Does God have form? ----- Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha
What do you mean by form?...Shape. In that case, God does not have a shape.. I do agree that if you philosophize that God is absolute and that everything in the world, including the world itself, belongs to God, the shapeful objects of the world are no doubt God's. They are God Himself.
But by saying so, you do not get at God, His nature or abode. If in the very first instance you say that the shapeful things are God, the world visible to us is itself God's and God, then you will not have to attain Him or reach His abode. Will you accept this truth? To accept it will be to throw off all forms of saadhana, to pursue no ideal whatever, thereby remaining wherever and whatever you already are. All divine thoughts, discussion, efforts and the like will stand fully negated then?
So such a proposition cannot be put forward and accepted. That is why, I wish you to think about the question set forth above.
Only when you consider God as shapeless, you have the chance of making a search for Him. Because whatever you deal with at present – in the world and the things in it – all have shapes and forms. However much you may look around, you will not be able to locate a shapeless product. Of course, the air is there. And so too is ether. But the latter is not visible or perceivable at all.
Well. 'As is air, so is God', if you say so, I have no objection. For by fostering such a concept, you will be safe in your divine path, your sadhana will make steady progress.
Even the Upanishads have compared the presence of God in the world to that of air. But make sure that your idea about the nature of God's presence is that relating to air. To say something further, in order to become all-pervading, God must necessarily have a shapeless nature. A thing which has a certain shape cannot certainly pervade in another shapeful object. Can a piece of iron, remaining solid and compact as it is, permeate into water?
Water which has a shape of its own is being pervaded by heat, because heat does not have a shape as has water. So too is magnetism, electricity, etc., the different kinds of energy. Energy becomes energy and is found to have the power to flow through matter media only because it does not have any shape, as against those of the media through which it flows.
Apply this common finding to the existence of God. If God has to be all-pervading, His nature must be one quite different from those of the things which He pervades. If the world and its contents are shapeful, then God must be shapeless. Then alone He can be permeating them all.
Only when you are thus able to think of God as shapeless, your vision and ideal will expand, will soar higher and higher. The heart will expand like air, only when it thinks in terms of the nature and quality of air. The mind will grow more and become elastic only when it revolves in it the thoughts of the most elastic and all-pervasive thing, like ether.
By pursuing the path of devotion, do you mean to improve your mind or hearts. To deliver them from their present shackles and moorings? To render them purer and finer, until at last their purity and fineness make them almost approximate to those of God? Or is it a mere pastime for you to think of God? In this world of utility and pragmatism, to involve oneself in anything useless and non-practical will be too wrong. The world we live in and the life we are leading, both are noted for their empirical value. Naturally, whether it is devotion, the thought of God, meditation on Him, all must have an empirical value: a useful significance.
Such value and usefulness can come only when your concept of God becomes better and more truer. Remember then that God is shapeless. Rather He is shape-free, although He is present in and through all shapes seen by us.
Your present trouble, religiously called bondage, can be got over, only when the mind is delivered from its stronghold on the shapeful objects. How to make the mind get away from this stronghold? The only tangible method is to make it think of God and then to impress upon it the truth that the God which it thinks constantly about has no shape. Let the shapefuls vanish from your mind and the shapeless God occupy it. Once this is accomplished, you will find that your divine life takes a remarkable turn. More of peace and divinity will manifest in your being. The God whom you seek will appear nearer to you than now. And at last will come a day when He becomes the nearest. Nay He and you will become One and the Same. And thus will you no more have a fall, a separation, a slip or doubt. Whatever you do, think or speak, all of them will be the pulsations taking place in the body of Divinity, will be vibrations emerging and subsiding in the limitless space of the Supreme Reality. Ah, what a great relief; how happy will your life be! How deep will your awareness grow! Rock-like firmness, ether-like expansiveness, ocean-like depth, fire-like purity. All these will fill you in full.


O seekers, may you all become inheritors of such a blessed divine life.
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H E A L T H B U L L E T I N - Nature Cure and Natural Methods of Treatment

"Health Tips for Busy Office going People"

Being overstressed and under-rested, and thinking that there are a few simple steps that can be followed to stay healthy, brings to mind Cecile B DeMille's famous quip: "It is impossible for us to break the law. We can only break ourselves against the law."

Experts agree that the key to healthy eating is the time-tested advice of balance, variety and moderation. In short, this means eating a wide variety of foods without getting too many calories, or too much of any one nutrient.

If you know someone – or, you are one of those busy executives – whose life circumstances are such that you just do not have the "luxury" of getting adequate physical and emotional rest on a regular basis, please consider sharing the following 20 diet tips [better still - practice them!]:

Find out how many calories you need

It is not as easy as it sounds, but it is very important for an individual to know his/her caloric requirement [approx 1,800 calories/day] – on the basis of which reduction in calories for weight loss, weight management, or weight gain, can be pursued. Speak to a dietician or nutritionist who can help you decide on what suits your needs best.

Be a fan of fruits and vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are packed with beneficial fibre, vitamins, and anti-oxidants. They fill up your stomach quickly, so you feel full just as quickly. They are also low in calories and help to keep your calorie count low. Take at least 3-4 servings of fruit and 4-5 servings of vegetables each day. Snack on apples, melons, peaches, carrots, or green and red pepper strips. Don't forget juices – or, a glass of fruit or vegetable juice.

Watch for portion-size

Eat moderate portions. If you keep portion sizes reasonable, it's easier to eat the foods you want and stay healthy. One serving of pasta means 1/2 cup of cooked pasta. However, most restaurants serve a pasta dish with 4 servings of pasta! You do not need to finish and clean off the plate every time. You can simply ask to take home the leftover.

Do not skip meals

Eating small frequent meals helps to balance your calorie intake throughout the day and also keeps your blood sugar level balanced. Instead of eating three big meals, try to eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day.

Eat your breakfast

"Breaking the fast" from the prior evening is crucial for sustained mental work. The brain's sole source of energy is glucose, and it has no storage reserves. Eating breakfast has been shown to improve overall attitude, increase concentration and problem-solving ability. In addition, studies show those who eat breakfast typically consume fewer calories and fat compared to those who do not start their day off with a healthy meal. If you aren't used to eating something in the morning, grab something light like a yogurt and a piece of fruit, or a bowl of oatmeal. Avoid heavy breakfasts – skip high fat meat, deep fried snacks like samosa, batata wada. Choose oatmeal, 100 per cent fruit juice, milk, yogurt, fresh fruit, or high fibre cereal for a great breakfast.

Take time for balanced lunch

Yes, for the busy executive many of your lunches are often something you grabbed out of the pantry and snacked on while working at the computer. Not only is it important to take a break during the day, it is crucial to take time to eat. When you eat at the computer, it becomes unconscious eating. You aren't paying attention to how much of that food item you are eating and this, in turn, is a quick way to gain weight. It becomes impossible to be conscious of feeling "full" when your mind if focused on work, and not your body. Take some time for yourself to eat a balanced meal during the day. Include some protein, whole grains, and plenty of fruits and vegetables. This will help you to improve your energy and focus during the day as well as keep your weight where you want it.

Go for wholesome fresh foods

If possible, purchase fresh foods and avoid package [processed] and convenient foods such as fast-food. Packaged and convenient foods are often high in sodium and fat content. Many people are amazed that they can easily lose weight by packing a home-cooked lunch to work instead of eating out.

Reduce, don't eliminate certain foods

Most people eat for pleasure as well as nutrition. Everyone has his or her favourite treats. Simply allow yourself a little indulgence, but watch out for the frequency and the quantity. Having a small treat once in a while can be rewarding to your weight loss experience. Cutting too much of your favourite treats usually leads to an early relapse.

Choose skim or low-fat dairy products and lean cuts of meat such as flank steak. This can reduce your fat intake significantly. If you love fried chicken, you don't have to give it up. Just eat it less often. When dining out, share it with a friend; ask for a take-home bag, or a smaller portion.

Understand food claims and labels

A product labelled with a fat-free claim does not mean that it is low in calories. Similarly, a product labelled as low-sugar or low-carb does not mean it is low in fat or calories. Always read the nutrition label on the packaging, or ask an expert.

Watch for sugary drinks and relinquish caffeine

Juices, pop, cream and sugar in your coffee or tea all add up. Opt for drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water a day. In addition to providing hydration to your body, it will also help you feel full.

Starting your day off with a pot of coffee is not exactly a balanced breakfast, but it is likely the most common. People are more dependent than ever on caffeine to provide them a "perk" of energy. The downside is that's all it is providing – a quick perk. The reality is caffeine gives you small bursts of energy and then you crash to an energy low which leaves you to need even more. Caffeine also pulls fluid from your cells, which can cause mild dehydration and contributes to the three o'clock slump. Symptoms of mild dehydration are: fatigue, lack of concentration, irritability, anxiety, and mild headache. hmm, sounds familiar? Stick to one caffeinated beverage a day and work on drinking more water

Keep a food journal

Writing a daily food journal helps you pin-point your eating pattern and enable you to easily modify it.

Exercise

Most authorities recommend 30-40 minutes of physical activity a day to stay healthy. Also, try adding weight-bearing exercises at least two times a week. This will help burn some of the unwanted calories.

Eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods

You need more than 40 different nutrients for good health, and no single food supplies them all. Your daily food selection should include bread and other whole-grain products, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, meat, poultry, fish, and other protein foods. How much you should eat depends on your calorie needs. Speak to a dietitian or nutritionist for individualised needs.

Go for the grain

Nutrition experts recommend 6-11 daily servings of grains, including bread, rice, cereal and pasta. To reach this goal, you can include plenty of grain-based snacks that are low in fat and calories, like crackers, pretzels, and fat-free flavoured rice cakes.

Balance your food choices over time

Not every food has to be "perfect." When eating a food high in fat, salt or sugar, select other foods that are low in these ingredients. If you miss out on any food group one day, make up for it the next. Your food choices over several days should fit together into a healthy pattern.

Know your diet pitfalls

To improve your eating habits, you first have to know what's wrong with them. Write down everything you eat for three days. Check your list with the rest of these 20 tips. Do you add a lot of butter, creamy sauces or salad dressings? Rather than eliminating these foods, just cut back your portions. Are you getting enough fruits and vegetables? If not, you may be missing out on vital nutrients.

Make changes gradually

Just as there are no "miracle foods," or easy answers to a healthy diet, don't expect to totally revamp your eating habits overnight. Changing too much, too soon, can get in the way of success. Begin to remedy excesses or deficiencies with modest changes that can add up to positive, life-long eating habits. For instance, if you don't like the taste of skim milk, try low-fat. Eventually, you may find you like skim, too.

Remember, foods are not good or bad

Select foods based on your total eating patterns, not whether any individual food is "good" or "bad." Don't feel guilty if you love foods such as apple pie, potato chips, candy bars, or ice-cream. Eat them in moderation, and choose other foods to provide the balance and variety that are vital to good health.

Don't forget dairy

Include snacks from milk, yogurt and cheese group. To help meet your daily calcium requirements, choose two to three servings of dairy products each day. Snack on low-fat yogurt, or have a low-fat or skim milk shake.

Start small

You're not going on a diet. Rather, you're changing the way you eat for the rest of your life. So, there's no need to cut out dietary fat – all at once. You might start by switching to milk instead of cream in your coffee, or low-fat mayonnaise on your sandwiches and so on.

In addition to this, check your height and weight. Or, use a chart to see if you are overweight for your height. Your body mass index [BMI] is the weight in kilogram divided by the height in meter-squared: remember, it should be below 25.

Most important: follow the Three As in life – adjust, adopt, accommodate.


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Posted by: p_gopi_krishna@yahoo.com
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