Sweeter than Tansen



Sub Value: Devotion

Akbar the Great, was one of the greatest Mughal rulers of India during the period 1542-1605. He strived hard to unify far flung lands through his good administrative policies and loyalty. He was a patron of arts and culture, religion and during his administration peace and harmony prevailed despite religious and cultural diversities. His Royal court was full of scholars and men of wisdom.   Among them were a chosen few called the “Navratna” or “Nine Gems” who adorned his court with knowledge, wit, music and other arts. Tansen, the court musician, was one of the Nine Gems and was the greatest Sufi musician of his days.

Being a lover of music, Akbar was pleased and delighted, whenever Tansen sang. Legends tell us that when Mian Tansen sang the Raag ‘Megh Malhar’, dark clouds gathered in the sky bringing down the rain. When he sang the Raag ‘Deepak’, the candles would light up automatically; he had the ability to make animals listen to his music. Akbar was immensely proud that he had in his durbar (court), a musician of such great caliber and repute.

One day, while Akbar was engaged in prayer, he heard the distant music of a Haridâs, a wandering minstrel; a beggar singing to the tune of a single-stringed instrument, held in his hand. Akbar was thrilled, enchanted and deeply moved. The sweet soulful music touched him more than Tansen’s music; so much so, that he began to wonder if the Haridas was a better singer than his “Navratna” Tansen.

Akbar summoned for Tansen and questioned, “Mian Tansen, why did the music, sung by the Haridas, appeal more to me than your music? What is the difference in your music and his?” Tansen replied unhesitatingly, “Badshah Salamat (Your Royal Highness)! There is only one difference. I sing for the Badshah of Delhi and his happiness; in return I receive tokens of appreciation from him.  But the Haridas, sings in joy, for the Badhshah of this Universe, the Almighty Lord, with no greed for material wealth or ambition for earthly goods.”

What an enormous difference!


Any work done without expectation and for the love of God derives everlasting joy.

Courtesy: chinnakatha by Sri Sathya sai Baba

Read this story now in diff Indian languages





Story of the stolen cookies

Value: Right Conduct

Sub Value- Non judgmental

A young lady was waiting for her flight in a boarding room of a big airport

As it was a long wait for her flight to depart, she decided to buy a book to spend her time and also  bought a pack of cookies.

She sat down in an armchair, in the VIP room of the airport, to rest and read in peace.

Beside the armchair where the packet of cookies lay, a man sat down in the next seat, opened his magazine and started reading.

When she took out the first cookie, the man took one also. She felt irritated but said nothing. She just thought, “What the nerve! If I was in the mood, I would punch him for daring!” For each cookie she took, the man took one too.

This infuriated her but she didn’t want to cause a scene so controlled her temper.

Only one cookie remained and  she thought: “Ah… what will this  shameless man do now?” To her chagrin, the man took the last cookie, divided it into half, gave her one half. “Ah! That’s too much!”, as waves  of anger washed over her, in a huff, she took her book, her things and stormed out of the boarding room.

Later, as she sat down in her seat inside the plane, she looked into her purse to take her eyeglasses, and to her surprise, her packet of cookies was there, untouched… unopened. She felt so ashamed! She realized that she was wrong… she forgotten that her cookies were kept in her purse.

The man had divided his cookies with her, without feeling angered or bitter, while she had been very angry, thinking that she was dividing his cookies with him.

And now, there was no chance to explain or apologize.


Never be judgmental. Do not judge without knowing the facts. Analyse before commenting, Better not to comment without knowing the other side.

The Potter and the Clay

potter and clayValue: Peace, Right Conduct

Sub value; Patience, Forbearance

The story is told of a couple who went to England to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary and shopped at a beautiful antique store. They both liked antiques and pottery especially tea-cups,and when they spotted an exceptional cup, their interest was piqued. “May we see that? We’ve never seen a cup quite so beautiful!”they requested the  lady at the shop.

As the lady handed it to them, suddenly the tea-cup spoke.. “You don’t understand”. It said, “I have not always been a tea-cup. There was a time when I was just a lump of red clay. My master took me , rolled me, pounded and patted me over and over, until I yelled out, Don’t do that. I don’t like it! Let me alone”. With a  gentle smile he said; “Not yet!!” “Then, WHAM! I was placed on a spinning wheel and suddenly I was spun round and round and round. “Stop it! I’m getting so dizzy! I’m going to be sick!” I screamed.

But the master only nodded and said quietly, “Not yet”.

He not only  spun me and poked me, but also prodded and bent me out of shape to suit himself.  Subsequently, he put me in the oven where  I experienced extreme heat. I yelled , knocked and pounded at the door.

“Help! Get me out of here! I screamed. “Not yet”, said my master. When I thought I couldn’t bear it another minute, the door opened. He carefully took me out and put me on the shelf, and I began to cool.

Oh, that felt so good! “Ah, this is much better,” I thought. But, after I cooled he picked me up and he brushed and painted me all over. The fumes were horrible.. “Oh, please, Stop it! Stop it!” I cried. He only shook his head and said. “Not yet…”

Then once again he put me back into the oven. Only it was not like the first time. This time it was twice as hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged… I pleaded… I screamed…I cried… I was convinced I would never make it. I was ready to give up and just then the door opened and he took me out and again placed me on the shelf, where I cooled and waited and waited, wondering “What’s he going to do to me next?”

An hour later he handed me a mirror and said “Look at yourself.”

And I did… I said, “That’s not me, that couldn’t be me. It’s beautiful. I’m beautiful!”

Quietly he spoke, “I want you to remember, then,” he said, “I know it hurt to be rolled and pounded and patted, but had I just left you alone, you’d have dried up. I know it made you dizzy to spin around on the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled.

“I know it hurt ,it was hot and disagreeable in the oven, but if I hadn’t put you there, you would have cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed and painted you all over, but if I hadn’t done that, you never would have hardened. You would not have had any color in your life.

“And if I hadn’t put you back in that second oven, you wouldn’t have survived for long because the hardness would not have held. Now you are a finished product. Now you are what I had in mind when I first began with you.”


Trust the Master- God/ Guru/ Guide or your teacher to mould you. He knows what is best for you and how to bring out the best in you.

Anything great can be achieved in life only by working hard, going through lot of trials and tribulations. One should keep the goal in mind and continue doing the work without giving up.

Happiness comes from within

Value- Right Conduct

Sub value- Right attitude

A Zen monk visited a small village. The villagers gathered around him and placed their requests before him and implored, ‘Dear Sir, Please help us get rid of our problems; let our desires be fulfilled, and said, only then would our lives be full of joy.’

The monk listened to them, silently. The next day, he agreed to be an oracle, that is a voice medium  through which Gods gave advice or prophesies.

`Tomorrow at mid-day a miracle is going to take place in this village. Pack all your problems in an imaginary sack, take it across the river and leave it there. Then, in the same imaginary sack, put everything that you want like gold, jewelry, food and bring it home! You do this and your desires would materialize.’

The villagers were in doubt, as to whether this oracle was true or not. However the voice from the heaven astounded them. They thought they had nothing to lose by following the instruction. If it were true, then they would really get what they wanted and if it were false, any way, it wasn’t a big deal! So they decided to do what was told.

Next day, at noon, they all packed their troubles in an imaginary sack and went across the river, left it there and brought back all that they thought would bring them happiness ..gold, car, house, jewelry, diamonds .

On their return, they were really stunned! Whatever the oracle had said come true! The man who wanted a car found one parked in front of his house. The one, who wished for a palatial house, found that his house had turned into one. They were all so happy! Their joy knew no bounds!

But alas! The joy and celebration lasted for a while. As they began to compare themselves with their neighbors; each one felt the person next door was happier and richer than himself. Now they began to talk among themselves to pry out more details.Soon their joy and happiness turned into regrets and remorse.

‘I had asked for a simple chain, while the girl next door had asked for an ornate gold necklace and  she got it! I just asked for a house but the man residing in the opposite house asked for a mansion. We too should have asked for such things! It was a wonderful opportunity; the chance of a lifetime .We let it slip by, foolishly!’

Such were the thoughts that occupied their minds. Once again they returned to the monk and piled their complaints in front of him. The village was once again plunged into frustration and discontent.


Many feel that they cannot be happy if they have problems.

We should not link our happiness to problems. Problems are there in everybody’s life. Tell yourself this `Let problems be there on one side I will still continue to be happy!’ and remain cheerful. This does not mean one should not think of resolving the problems.

Who could have faced more problems than Lord Krishna? Was not his uncle Kamsa plotting to kill him even before Lord Krishna’s birth? In the war of Mahabharata, he served as the charioteer of Arjuna. Did Arjuna not create problems in the last minute by casting of his armour and declining to fight in the battlefield of Kurukshetra, each day was fraught with problems of all kinds. Each arrow that was aimed at Arjuna said hello to Krishna. Despite this, the joyful smile ever adorned his face!

Lord Krishna has expounded further in Bhagavad Gita. “Learn to view equally both sorrow and joy; be open to joy, be open to sorrow. They are the two sides of the same coin. Try to learn from both, clarity will emerge. This clarity will bring you bliss!’

Attitude is what matters in life. Happiness is not in external things.

Courtesy; guru gyanopeidia fb group


dasturji picture

Value- Truth

Sub value- Honesty

There was once, a Dasturji (a Parsi priest) who accepted an offer to work in an Agiary (fire temple, place of worship for Parsis) in Mumbai. A few weeks after he settled down in the city of Mumbai, he had an occasion to ride the bus from his home to the downtown area. Excited, he boarded the BEST bus and bought himself a ticket to his destination, from the conductor of the bus. He soon discovered that the conductor had accidentally given Re: 1 more in return, while deducting his ticket fare.

Dasturji considered what he ought to do. He thought to himself, ‘I’d better give the rupee back. It would be wrong to keep it.’ Then he thought again, ‘Oh, forget it, it’s only a rupee. Who would worry about this little amount? Anyway, the BEST bus company charges a high fare; they will never miss this rupee”. He told himself, “I shall accept it as a ‘gift from God’ and keep quiet.”

Occupied with his musings and taking in the sights of his new city, Dasturji soon reached his destination and was about to alight from the bus; when he paused momentarily at the door. As an afterthought, he turned to the conductor and said, “Bhaisaheb! Here is the extra 1 rupee you gave me, while returning the cash for my ticket ‘.

The conductor looked at Dasturji intently; then with a smile he enquired, ‘Aren’t you the new Dasturji in town?’; taking the rupee back.

‘Yes’, replied, Dasturji, taken aback.

“Well, I have been hearing a lot of good things about you lately. I wanted to check you out, and see what you would do, with the extra rupee I gave you.” The conductors’ words jolted Dasturji and echoed in his mind as walked towards the bus door to exit.

As Dasturji stepped off the bus, he reached for the nearest light pole on the pavement, for support, and whispered to himself, ‘Oh My God! I almost sold my conscience for a Rupee!’


So friends, lets watch out! Our minds play games. Lets become aware!

Watch your thoughts; they become words.

Watch your words; they become actions.

Watch your actions; they become habits.

Watch your habits; they become character.

Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.

So one must always control our mind moving towards negative or wrong thoughts. Our guilt will not allow us to stay in peace after a wrong deed.

Read this story now in diff Indian languages





Value- Optimism, Truth

Sub value- Positive thoughts

A son and his father were walking on the mountains. Suddenly, the son falls and hurts himself. In pain he screams: AAAhhhh!!!

To his surprise, he hears the voice repeating, somewhere in the mountain:


Curious, he yells: “Who are you?”

He receives the answer: “Who are you?”

Angered at the response, he screams: “Coward!”

He receives the answer: “Coward!”

He looks to his father and asks: “What’s going on?”

The father smiles and says: “My son, pay attention.”

And then he screams to the mountain: “I admire you!”

The voice answers: “I admire you!”

Again the man screams: “You are a champion!”

The voice answers: “You are a champion!”

The boy is surprised, but does not understand.

Then the father explains: “People call this ECHO, but really this is LIFE. It gives you back everything you say or do. Our life is simply a reflection of our actions. If you want more love in the world, create more love in your heart.

If you want more competence in your team, improve your competence. This relationship applies to everything, in all aspects of life; Life will give you back everything you have given to it.”


OUR LIFE IS NOT A COINCIDENCE. IT’S A REFLECTION OF US! So if we build positive thoughts and believe in ourselves we can achieve success.


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