We are time and again given sermons about how to always be happy, grateful, generous, determined, focused blah blah. We are told and told and told some more, but we are never ‘taught’ how exactly to become that alien person who is always cheerful, full of energy, never ceases to believe in him/herself and is, in short, simply perfect. In all our growing years, there are so many tips, words of wisdom (or whatever you call them) that we learn from so many sources, but it’s just that we become so busy living our lives that we stop thinking about ‘how’ we are living it!
I’ve always thought of myself as a content and well brought up person, but it was not until the YES+ course that I started opening my eyes to all the little things that had the potential to transform my life ( trust me I’m not exaggerating even the tiniest bit)! For those who do not know, YES+ (Youth Empowerment and Skills) is the name of the ‘Art of Living’ course conducted in our campus in August. When we hear of the Art of Living foundation, many of us have the tendency to immediately relate it to people in white kurtas talking about peace and spirituality or we might even think of people performing pujas and other religious practices. In reality, (as I came to know only after getting associated with the foundation) it simply is all about the ‘Art of living’, not just living, but living every moment with the widest and brightest smile! No offence taken if you call me dense and stupid to even suggest something as outlandish as being happy all the time, as though our lives are easy and undemanding! Life is no bed of roses and I know it too, all I’m saying is that it’s all in the perspective. By accepting people as they are, I’ve learned to derive peace of mind through lesser resistance and avoidance. By living in the present moment and enjoying every bit of it, I’ve learned to do what I love and love what I do!
It was a four hours a day, seven day course and even after a grueling day of classes, tut tests and other activities, we used to line up outside the hall, excited about another day of fun. Some of you might be shocked that I actually used the word fun, but trust me, that is exactly what it was –fun! We used to have all kinds of fun activities and games, some of them so strange that you wouldn’t believe me if I told you. Our teachers- Venky and Purnima (we are asked to never refer to them as Maam or Sir) are both corporate professionals who are part time Art of Living teachers, and somehow merely thinking about them puts a smile on my lips!
All of us would sit down with expressions of awe and disbelief as Venky and Purnima would tell us straightforward yet often forgotten little things, triggering jolts in certain parts of the brain as a realization suddenly dawns upon us. It was like literally drilling sense into our heads!
Have you ever experienced complete and unparalleled bliss, a state wherein you feel so happy and peaceful about yourself and everything around you, that nothing in the world could make you feel low or depressed? Have you ever felt so blessed and grateful for everything you own, every little thing from the clothes you are wearing and the perfectly abled body and mind you own to the loving friends and parents you have? This course has shown us all this and much more. Apart from this, it’s the Sudarshan Kriya, Pranayams and other breathing exercises taught in YES+ which make it so popular. These techniques, to put it mildly, have a zillion benefits and make us feel totally stress free. Now if I start telling you about all the mental and physical health related benefits of Sudarshan Kriya, you would surely think I'm the official spokesperson of Art of Living! Some things can never be fully understood till you actually experience them, this without doubt is one of those things. There is another YES+ course scheduled for the first week of October, I would say- experience the magic yourself!