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In one of our recent blogs while highlighting some of the key elements concerning how organizations like ours should approach serving the members (senior citizens)it was mentioned we ‘promise less, deliver more’. It obvious that receiving a thing, or two beyond the signed ‘Terms & Conditions’ always carries with it an element of surprise. It adds to the ‘wow’ factor.

This apart, in the website we had mentioned under the section ‘Why Porosh?’ about our ‘commitment to utilizing a portion of earnings for societal well-being’. We realized the need to walk the talk has arrived with Durga Puja being round the corner. What else could be a more appropriate gesture than giving back some thing to the members who are enrolled with us for more than six months?

The planning started a month in advance. Our team members observed the preferences of clothes worn by our members which included colour, design and brand. Once we got a sense of it - sarees, kurtas etc. were purchased. For the sake of not losing personal connect it was decided that the gifts should be handed over in person instead of couriering. What turned-out subsequently is indeed memorable and gratifying.

Receiving surprise puja gifts from Porosh overwhelmed them. While some greeted us with smile, a few had tears rolling-down in joy. We were showered with blessings. It was indeed a heart-touching experience for us.It was payback time for Porosh. Actually such experiences provide us with necessary fodder to keep on experimenting with innovative ideas.

In the recent past we have referred to a particular book Living Within a couple of times to share with our readers insights pertaining to our daily existence. For the uninitiated, this book is a compilation of thoughts of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, the former’s spiritual consort, on aspects as wide ranging as mastering ‘obsessive and compulsive thoughts’, how to ‘rest and relax’, developing ‘will, discipline, endurance’ etc. It is in this book that there is a section on ‘Faith and Suggestion’ from where we are going to quote a few relevant portions. We hope you shall find the thoughts and ideas interesting and practical as well.

1) “A suggestion is not one’s own thought or feeling, but a thought or feeling that come from outside, from others, from the general atmosphere or from external Nature, - if it is received, it sticks and acts on the being and is taken to be one’s own thought or feeling… This feeling of doubt and self-distrust and hopelessness about oneself is a thing moving about in the atmosphere and trying to enter into people and be accepted. I want you to reject it, for its presence not only produces trouble and distress but stands in the way of restoration of health …”

2) “Coue was a doctor. He used to treat by psychological treatment, auto-suggestion, and he called this the true working of the imagination; and what he defined as imagination was faith. And he treated all his patients in this way; they had to make a kind of imaginative formation which consisted in thinking themselves cured or in any case on the way to being cured, and in repeating this formation to themselves with sufficient persistence for it to have its effect. He had very remarkable results. He cured lots of people; only he failed also, … But in any case, this made many people reflect on something that’s quite true and of capital importance: that the mind is a formative instrument and that if one knows how to use it in the right way, one gets good result.”

3) “… if you catch yourself thinking – well, if you do it suddenly, if you look at yourself thinking all of a sudden, spontaneously, unexpectedly, you will notice that nine times out of ten you are thinking something troublesome. It is very rarely that you are thinking about harmonious, beautiful, constructive, happy things, full of hope, light and joy; you will see, try the experiment … Well, you will see, it is almost always foreseeing a bigger or smaller, more or less vast catastrophe.”

The points highlighted above in no uncertain terms indicate that our well-being & health (mental and physical) are dependent on the state of mind. If we channelize our thought processes in thinking positive so much better for us. Such an approach assumes greater significance with the kind of negativity that has surrounded us due fear corona virus.

With the Durga Puja about a fortnight away, the city of Kolkata is decking-up though not the way we are used to seeing her over the years. The atmosphere is quite subdued this time around. The advertisement hoardings are yet to be jostling for space and the FM channels have till now spared the loyal listeners from incessant bombardment of advertisements. Probably they will, a few days from now. However, what has indeed been the point of debate in the town is whether strict restrictions should have been imposed this year given the delicate situation concerning COVID 19.

What Kerala is experiencing in the aftermath of Pongal and Maharashtra after the Ganpati Puja, is there something for us to learn from? The answer is an unequivocal ‘yes’. While the cases of COVID infected persons have skyrocketed in Kerala due to laxity of crowd management during Pongal yet the situation in Maharashtra has not spiraled out-of-control post Ganpati Puja due to restrictions. This is what experts seem to suggest based on facts and figures.

It seems Bengal is inclined to follow the ‘Kerala Model’. Words of caution and learning from others’ mistakes seem to have fallen on deaf ears. One may hope that good sense prevails for the sake of safety of large section of the society. An odd dot ball, as we say in cricket, need not be construed as a failure. Not considering so is.

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