Banaras, A Mystic Love Story

Banaras is not a destination its a journey of our lives. If you go to watch this movie for a ready-made solution or only to "kill" two hours, you may get disappointed. Banaras is aimed to create a thirst for something one is generally uncomfortable to explore.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Commentary on ' The grand design' , by Stephen Hawking & Leonard Mlodinov

In the beginning when there was near nothing ( Though, gravity was always to be there, says the book), say of the size of an atom, genereal theory of relativity would not be valid ( and the expansion of the space must have happened at infinite times the speed of light) and only the quantum mechanics would apply. Therefore, ( since none of us were there to observe ) the quantum particles must have chosen every possible trajectory. Now since according to M theory, there are 11 ( 10 dimensions and time) dimensions including the time ( even though you and I can experience only four because others are too small for us to see in our universe), there must be billions of other worlds like us and trillions who would not be like us because the dimensions they may exist will be a different set of three ( because more than 3 dimension worlds are not stable) than ours.

Obviously those worlds would have a different set of laws etc than ours.

The book then goes to a great length highlighting the miraculous nature of the planet that we inhabit. To quote some:

"The many improbable occurrences that conspired to enable our existence... if...."

".......Our solar system that seem oddly conducive to the development of human life but also the characteristics of our entire universe, and that is much more difficult to explain."

".......At the time no one knew enough nuclear physics to understand the magnitude of the Serendipity that resulted in these exact physical laws."

The key word used many times to justify the things why they are the way they are is serendipity.

The universe seemingly can be born out of nothing..if there was to be gravity before the universe, according to the book.

However to have a gravity you need the matter and energy which requires the universe and that would put us back to where we began.

There is that usual dogma attached as to every subject that looks at the world only from its own point of view. Like to a musician the creation is just a rhythm, to chemistry is all about chemical reactions and periodic table, to engineers everything is engineering and to mathematician everything mathematics. ..poor us!

Philosophy is a subject which ought to join the fragments and try and project a plausible reality. However the book begins by saying that philosophy is dead and I agree entirely that the way we knew philosophy, indeed is dead but supposedly being taken over by physics.....!

Science needs to be objective or else it's not science and if it engages to dabble in what essentially is unknowable with its faculties, it begins to sound very amateurish.

The book confronts the Bible, esp,, the Genesis, but maintains an ominous silence on the Upnishads. It is my belief that the interpretation and the very definition of God should be finalized first, before trying to make a comment on it, using the typical reductionist approach.

When it is well known and accepted by prominent physicists around the world that upnishad's understanding of creation and the creator is far more sophisticated, subtle and holistic, the very omission suggests that to the esteemed authors the definition of 'Brahman' seemed too inconvenient while discussing the truth of creation.

Here I quote, Ulrich Mohrof, a Quantum physicist and spiritualist:

"Remember the ancient conundrum about the divisibility of matter? If the synchronic multiplicity of the world rested on surfaces that carve up things much as cookie cutters carve up rolled-out pastry, then things ought to be divisible ad infinitum. If on the other hand we want to understand matter in the manner which has been paradigmatic for some 25 centuries — i.e., in terms of the composition and interaction of parts — then there have to be ultimate, not further divisible parts. But why then are these parts not further divisible? Thanks to QM, we know now why the modern “atoms” — quarks and leptons — are not further divisible. The reason they are not further divisible is that they are formless. The shapes of things resolve themselves into sets of fuzzy relative positions (or spatial relations) between formless objects.
If now you recall that ultimately there is only one “thing,” and that this is or consti-tutes everything, you will conclude that the shapes of things resolve themselves into MOHRHOFF: SPIRITUAL PHYSICS 65
the self-relations of a single formless “something.” Taking our cue from the Upanishads, we might as well call it Brahman. Brahman is said
• to be without form,
• to constitute all things,
• to contain all things,
• to originate all things.
Here is a nutshell account, based on QM, of how formless Brahman originates and comes to contain and constitute all things: Brahman enters into spatial relations with itself. As a result,
• there are things that have shapes (sets of spatial relations),
• there is space — Brahman as the one place that contains them all,
• there is matter — Brahman as the apparent multitude of relata (“apparent” because the relations are self-relations) and as the one thing that constitutes them all.
Can you think of a more concise creation story or a more economical way to manifest a world?"


'The grand design', the book, may be considered as a nice introduction in physics to a lay man and may certainly prove to be a money spinner that may have been an important motivation for the authors and the publishers, it does little to unravel anything fundamentally new.

My friend ( if I may call him, since he is my FB friend and also has seen and commented on Banaras movie), Urich Mohrof's short extract, quoted earlier, from his paper 'spiritual physics', speaks all that can be spoken of creation and the creator, in nutshell.

To me this is the truth, because it is simple.


Sunday, March 14, 2010

Heart of the existence

Courtesy Gita Belin:

"In September 2001, two geostationary operational environmental
satellites (GOES) orbiting the earth detected a rise in global magnetism
that forever changed the way scientists view our world and us. The
GOES-8 and GOES-10 each showed a powerful spike of Earth's
magnetic-field strength in the readings they broadcast every 30 minutes.
It was the magnitude of the spikes and the time they occurred that first
called them to the scientists' attention.

From a location of about 22,300 miles above the equator, GOES-8
detected the first surge, followed by an upward trend in the readings
that topped out at nearly 50 units (nanoteslas) higher than any that had
been typical for the same time previously. The time was 9 a.m. eastern
standard time, 15 minutes after the first plane hit the World Trade
Center and about 15 minutes before the second impact. The correlation
between the events and the reading was uncanny. And it was undeniable.
In light of the data, two questions had to be asked: Were the attacks on
the World Trade Center and the satellite readings actually related? If
so, what was the link? It's the answer to the second question that
sparked the research, and the ambitious initiative that has followed.

Subsequent studies by Princeton University and the Institute of
Heartmath, an innovative nonprofit institution formed in 1991 to pioneer
research and development of heart-based technologies, have found that
the correlation between the GOES readings and the events of 9/11 are
more than coincidences.

Following the discovery that the satellites had recorded similar spikes
during events of global focus in the past, such as the death of Princess
Diana, the factor that seemed to connect the readings was clear: the
indications pointed to the human heart.

Specifically, it's the heart-based emotions of the world's population
that results from such events that seems to be influencing the magnetic
fields of the earth. What makes this discovery so significant is that
those fields are now linked to everything from the stability of the
climate to peace between nations."

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A melting life

A melting life

When the sheer intentionality to be, intricately assembles the elements from the ingredients to create a being that can breathe, think, meditate, reflect, reason and love, a miracle that is life, begins.

The being then wishes to ‘become’, giving birth to ego and fear, which in turn, manifests as anxiety, depression, jealousy and hatred.

This compulsive nature to become grows into an obsession. The self (I) and everything associated with it (mine) becomes the epicenter of the existence, bringing the corporeal world to the centre stage. Life thus, becomes a perpetual race where we all try to quench the unquenchable thirst of the ego.

A day, however, arrives in all’s life when the revelation comes. To the rare, it comes early but to majority, only in the end. But comes it does. It may come weeks before, hours before or even moments before the end.

When the end is in sight, life begins to melt and ego begins to fade
The reality of the illusion begins to dawn and the true meaning of existence transcends the being.

As tears trickle down the eyes, a sad smile appears on the lips and futility of the spent life is realized, a new intentionality is born even as the corporeal world disappears;

The resolve, to come back again.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Grand illussion

Living the moment

Lately the whole world has been talking about Living the moment. Is it that suddenly our evolution has begun moving faster? Is it that the philosophy of life is finally beginning to be understood?

Alas! The phrase is being taken too literally.

Living the moment is being interpreted to defy your own logic. It is thought to be the point of liberation from all kinds of ethics. Morality that has been the reason for a lot of conflict is suddenly no longer a burden.Living the moment is interpreted to succumb to your sensory system completely. A complete liberation from reason.

This is the grandest of all illusions.

Living the moment is to live every moment in complete awareness.To Live with complete knowledge. No bias. No conditioning. No denial. Only compassion. Pure awareness.

It's the feeling of unification with everything.
Yet being aware of oneself.

Monday, December 31, 2007

Welcoming an opportunity

We are blessed with yet another year to understand our true nature.
Let us welcome the opportunity of spending some precious time together on this planet.

Let us celebrate this togetherness in complete awareness.
Welcome the new year.


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The state of No-mind

I reproduce a comment/question from a wise friend along with my observations. I am taking the liberty to post it here (rather than replying in the comments space) so all could see it.

Dear Mr.Singh,

I recently saw your movie and was extremely impressed by your deft handling of such a complex topic.

I've been exploring mysticism for a few years myself and have heard that one needs to drop the mind to realize the "no-mind".

Like you, I too am a techno marketer and find it difficult to balance the use of the mind in creating business strategies and then drop it while meditating.

What I do for a living requires intensive use of the mind and the thought process, while the investigation of the ultimate tool requires dropping the mind / thoughts all together.

How does one create "cunning" business strategies to outmanoeuvre competition and at the same time develop compassion.

Have you faced this dilemma and what has been your experience?

Would love to hear from you.


Dear sir,

I thank you for taking time out to write to me. I also wish you to succeed in all your quests.

In my mind you can never play a role honestly until you have known yourself.You can pretend to be a marketer but you will only play that role the way others expect you to.

Business, as we understand is “competition” and competition is primitive. It all is very Darwinian. And if you want to be a true winner, you have to be watchful and adaptive. But the destination of an evolved business should be excellence and not competition.

Yet business like any other living entity, needs to survive.You used the word “cunning” in the context of business strategy but you must remember that when you create business strategies you “become” the business. Business strategies need to be defined in complete awareness and there is no question of them being “cunning”. You do certain things, you win, you do some other things, you fail. There is nothing “cunning” or “wrong”. There are only the right things that need to be done.

However, you have a choice to play the kind of role you want to, for a kind of (business) entity you wish to. It’s completely your choice.

Sir, since you are already having the conflict all I can say is your level of awareness is changing. Conflict brings change. You are seeking non-movement of thought, a kind of transcending peace, but your role is bringing you a disturbance. You need to investigate the two and create harmony between them.

If you know me then you know that I left big companies so that I could live by my own value system, I could live my dream. Not that the companies I worked for in any way were wrong ( in fact some of them are the most reputed companies of our time) its just that I “grew” to become “non-fit” in those surroundings.

This is the clue to attaining a state of “no mind”. You have to align yourself to who you are. You have to continually work to end the conflict.This is how you will evolve and that’s how you will achieve the “no-mind”.

Let me also say that the peace thus attained shows on one’s face as also manifests in one’s work.

I do hope I have not sounded like a preacher, and if I did, please forgive me.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

God is not great..... by Christopher Hitchens

The case against religion.... and God

After I finished this book titled, God is not great,
I tried to fathom the unfathomable dissonance of a mind. I guess when someone as informed as Hitchens, enters a state of I-know-all, the outcome is a highly jumbled up and an opinionated product, nothing less than this book.

Hitchens attacks everyone and everything. He makes sniper attacks on Jesus, Mohammad, Moses, Buddha and every other prophet you can think of, and sprays bullets on the likes of Gandhi, mother Theresa and Martin Luther King. He declares all religions to be evil and all believers to be idiots, extremists or terrorists.

Religions, in time, become dogma and dogmas are not something to be proud. Hitchens is entitled to his opinion about individuals from his knowledge of right and wrong and there is little one can do change it.

Hitchens ridicules God and in fact negates his very existence. And that prompted me to write this article.

First and foremost, from what I could make out from his book, his mind is conditioned by the description of God as he may have interpreted from reading books. He may also be influenced by the disillusionment he may have personally experienced by living in the company of “masters” he may have chosen in the past or were chosen for him. He looks for a God of some higher order who has the capability to interfere with our actions, decide our fate and generally keep a watch on whatever we do. Will he be disappointed? I bet.

God is not something that can be captured even in imagination, leave alone being described. And it is very stupid of Hitchens to make presumptions about believer’s perception of God.

According to Hitchens, our world is completely explained by Charles Darwin and all the credit for our being here is given to “evolution”. While I have no quarrel with Darwin, I have a few questions for Hitchens.

The world (or any system) left on its own has tendency to move towards disorder (Law of thermodynamics. We experience this in our daily life, as we have to spend large sums of money in repairing and maintaining our belongings), implying that when we get a glimpse of some kind of “order” among chaos, it is manifest of some intelligence. Our species and all other species living on this planet are good examples of this.

Humans are more evolved than other species because they have the potential to “connect” and “see” the truth much beyond the capability of their sensory system. However, this transcendental experience, being tacit in nature, is beyond articulation and can not (is incapable to) be expressed or shared with others. And such people, who, even though have personally gone through such experience, when confronted by people like Hitchens to give sensory evidence of that experience, can only listen and smile.

Unchecked by his own reason, Hitchens goes after the idea of intelligent-design and uses some convoluted logic to explain our presence through evolution.

According to Hitchens “airplanes are, in their human-designed way,”evolving” and so in a different way are we”. Taking his argument further, if the airplane “evolution” is driven by human-intelligence what intelligence is driving the Darwinian evolution?

Hitchens should know that intelligence does manifest in other forms and can be replicated but never be created from nothing. If evolution is intelligent, then there must be a source for that intelligence. I wonder if Hitchens would like to propose a name for such a source.

Evolution is limited only to conscious entities. It is not applicable to the "material" world. Evolution is a process that is authored by some intelligence to ensure that it doesn’t have to keep looking over it.

Certain intelligence creates a universe with certain laws and replicates itself inside to create evolution, much as humans create airplane and replicate themselves inside the airplane. The laws of the universe do not evolve. Only the consciousness does.

And consciousness is a replication of the infinite intelligence that causes everything to emerge from nothingness. If that can be called God then he certainly is great.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Banaras at the Wychwood festival in England

Banaras receives standing ovation at the Wychwood festival in Cheltnham.

Cheltnham is among one of the most picturesque locations in England. The festival for music and movies was organized in the famous Cheltnham racecourse grounds of this beautiful city. The festival attracted more than 8000 people on this sunny and warm Saturday of the 2nd day of the June.

The movie Banaras, a mystic love story was selected as the only Hollywood movie ‘cause of its “spiritual” appeal.

The audience comprised of families and mature audience who were all enthralled with the music, dance and the sheer experience of watching the movie.

The intensity and the effect of the movie were visible on the audience as many of them had tears in their eyes. The viewers were all English and Europeans. At the end of the movie, I was invited to come to the stage and take questions.

It was a wonderful feeling to know that the movie had connected so well with the audience who knew nothing about Banaras and did not speak Hindi.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

"A wonderful story"

I am reproducing the mail which I recieved from someone who viewed Banaras on a DVD.

"Dear Mr. Singh,

It's at times like these I wish I had a better command of language. I've just seen Banaras - A Mystic Love Story for the first time, and I fear my meager grasp of words is insufficient to describe the profound impact it had on me.

I confess, I bought the DVD because it starred Urmila Matondkar. I'm a newcomer to Indian film having only discovered it this year, but because of her I developed an immediate fascination not only with Indian film, but with India in general. But Urmila-ji was only the initial motivation for my interest -- not the sole reason I feel so compelled to write to you.

Even taken only at face value as a work of art Banaras excels. When you place the most beautiful woman in the world against the backdrop of such an inspiring place only good things can result. So even if all you do is look at it, Banaras is well worth the time.

Worth the time, but if you only look at it as a pretty thing you will cheat yourself. Allow yourself to respond without thought to the images and dialogue on the screen and the film -- like the city itself, I can only imagine -- will conduct you to places you hadn't hoped to go because you never knew they existed.

Allow youself to experience the film without filtering and you will feel Shwetanmbari's anguish, Soham's serenity, Baba-ji's wisdom, Gayatri's guilt... the current of emotion washes you away as surely as the Ganga herself.

This is a film that cannot be merely seen. It must be experienced. If the viewer can allow himself to do that, why... he might even learn something. I certainly did, though what it was I cannot readily define.

Or perhaps it was not learning at all, but validation of that which I already knew. Consciously or unconsciously, what I saw did not seem like a revelation so much as a confirmation. It took on the appearance of revelation -- perhaps because I had not, or would not, recognize it as a truth I already knew.

One thing is certain. I will watch Banaras many more times. I find that -- having to depend on subtitles -- this is necessary with any non-English film, but particularly one with such a rich subtext.

Sir, you have crafted a masterpiece, a triumph. And perhaps one day I will find the words to define its effect on me. Until then, I can only offer the sincerest of thanks for bringing such a wonderful story to life.

James Bengel,
Raleigh, NC, USA"

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Blessed, Soham

A lot happened in the past few months!
Time ran faster, yet,I became younger... A sense of renewal!?

I became a grandfather on the Valentine’s Day, the 14th February 2007.

All our family sat in a room to discuss and finalise the name of the new born baby. We all had our long lists of names... A very lengthy debate followed.

Someone jokingly remarked, “Why don’t we ask the little one?”
We joined in a chorus...….yes...yes…Let’s ask him!... And suddenly there was a familiar chant on television.

As our heads turned towards the TV, we saw Soham sitting on the Ganges in deep meditation.

The movie Banaras promo was coming in South Africa.

We were all speechless. Soham had spoken.

Welcome back Soham !!!