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A six session course on

Effective Leadership and Time
Management and other seminars

Compiled by: Radheshyam das

Vedic Oasis for Inspiration, Culture and Education (VOICE),
ISKCON, 4, Tarapore Road, Pune Camp, Pune-1,
Ph: (020) 636 1855,

To Live, Love, Learn, Leave a legacy

Spiritual Mental

A six session course on
Effective Leadership and Time
Management and other seminars

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare


Dear reader,

Hare Krishna.

Recently I was asked to give four lectures on Leadership and two on Time Management at
IsquareIT, a famous Management Institute at Pune. We have been preaching in the field
of engineering colleges and it is for the first time I had prepared some material for the
management students. It personally helped me to apply these practical guidelines in my
role as a President of a ISKCON centre as well as to inspire the students of management,
how the timeless scriptures like Bhagavad-Gita gita and Srimad Bhagavatam contain such
valuable information that is so relevant to the modern man. As anticipated, many students
were enlivened by the course with color slide shows and have become interested to know
more about Krishna consciousness from the books of Srila Prabhupada.

The Part 2 of this booklet contains different topics, some of which could be taken as a
one time program in the colleges and others may be useful for personal learning. Many
of these articles may be relevant to preachers worldwide although some adjustment may
be needed according to time, place, circumstance, and audience to which you may

I would consider my attempts successful, if any of these articles comes to your help in
preaching to the college youth and bring them closer to Sri Krishna.

Your servant,
Radheshyam das,

Director, VOICE,
President, ISKCON, Pune.
Feb 2004, Appearance day of Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur

A six session course on
Effective Leadership and Time Management

1. To learn ourselves the art of effective Leadership and Time management
Purposes of this six-session Leadership and Time Management seminar

2. To help students appreciate a Vedic outlook to leadership and time management
3. To get an entry into some management college officially and to get access to address the
students the philosophy of KC in their language
4. To spot the Management students interested in Vedic philosophy to introduce them to
Krishna consciousness.

How to use this book?

The part 1 of this book can be conducted as a series of seminars in a Management college. Each of
the sessions has got a color slide show associated with it. The notes can help you to understand the
subject thoroughly and slides also contain enough information to be elaborated. Each session could
be spoken in about 80 minutes.

Who can conduct these seminars?

If you are at least a graduate with some firsthand experience in some leadership or management
situation, then the subject is not very difficult for you. You need not be a management graduate.
The subject matter is quite simple enough for any educated preacher with a little management bent
of mind, to grasp and speak easily.

1. Go to a MBA or any management college with a requisition letter for giving permission to
Generally weekend is preferable.
How do we get the things started?

2. Use a LCD projector to show the slide show. Session 0 is an overview to give inspiration
for the students to regularly attend the future 6 sessions. Thus Session 0 is like the one
time program and the 6 sessions will follow it. While teaching make it interactive to
identify the active participants amongst students.
3. After the class spot the serious ones; if there is no resistance you can distribute prasadam
and Srila Prabhupadas books.
4. You can follow up the serious students by visiting their rooms, befriending them and
inviting them to the local temple.
5. By the time you complete the six sessions, you should have collected at least 10 to 20
interested students, whom you will follow up through e-mail cultivation and through
personal visits.
6. These students can become serious devotees eventually.

How to use Part 2 of this book ?

Part 2 contains some topics that can be taken in any college as a one time program to introduce
students to KC philosophy. The other seminars can help the Preacher to learn the art of
presentations or counselling or improving memory and concentration.

For any further clarifications, please write to:

Radheshyam das,
ISKCON, 4, Tarapore Rd.,
Pune Camp, PUNE-1 or

Part 1 Effective Leadership & Time Management through Self Management

** Session 0: ELTM through SM - An overview & Introduction
** Session 1: Eight Attitudes for Effective Leadership Part 1
** Session 2: Eight Attitudes for Effective Leadership Part 2
** Session 3: Proactive Leadership Part 1
** Session 4: Proactive Leadership Part 2
** Session 5: Time management Part 1
** Session 6: Time management Part 2

Part 2 Miscellaneous Topics

** Session 7: Self management
Session 8: Art of Successful Delegation
Session 9: Character Backbone of a leader
** Session 10: Constructive Criticism How to give it, How to take it?
** Session 11: Positive Thinking (or) Positive Mental Attitude
** Session 12: Art of Mind Control
Session 13: Practical Tips to Mind Control
Session 14: Learning to give better Presentations
Session 15: Concentration and Memory
Session 16: Youth Counseling system at VOICE, ISKCON, Pune

** Slide shows available for the topic with two stars

Book References used for compiling the material:

1. Bhagavad gita As It Is by His Divine Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta swami Prabhupada
2. Srimad Bhagavatam by H.D.G. A.C. Bhaktivedanta swami Prabhupada
3. Seven Habits of Highly effective people by Stephen Covey
4. Leadership by Peter Burwash
5. Leadership for an age of Higher consciousness, 1 and 2 by B.T.Swami
6. Emotional Intelligence by Robert Cooper
7. Victory over Death by Radheshyam das
8. Art of Mind Control by Radheshyam das
9. Practical tips to mind control by Radheshyam das
10. Power Presentations by Peter urs bender
11. Garden of Life by Radhika Krishnakumar
12. Putting First things First by Stephen Covey


Session 0: Effective Leadership and Time Management through SM
- An overview & Introduction

Hints for remembrance

1) How will I benefit from this seminar?

- How to better manage the inner organization as a means for effective leadership of external
- How to motivate and inspire people based on a holistic self-managing approach
- Provide individuals with techniques of meditation to manage one self
- Realign and adjust with the changing environment with new attitudes, work style and behavior
- Learning Proactive behavior rather than reactive behavior for calm, clear and creative thinking
by studying the psychophysical natures of different people
- Learning the right attitudes for effective leadership
- Learning the nature and the roles of mind, intellect, senses and ultimately the self itself to bring
out the innate qualities that are a integral part of ones being
- Learning the benefits of Character in Leadership
- Learning different generations of time management and the latest fourth generation time
- Learning the deficiencies of previous generations and the art of managing time effectively.

2) Learning new self-managing skills

Self-managing skills like intuition, flexibility, focus and tolerance are required for functioning in a
changing environment.
Physical stress management, health, safety, nutrition etc
Mental - Mind power, Creativity, Innovation, intellectual development program
Social - Psychological assessment, Transactional analysis, Quality circles, Teamwork

Missing dimension: Spiritual aspect that is intimately connected with the being. Spirituality is
connected with our innate values, innate power, self-respect, enhancing our will power through
meditation techniques and the power to apply spiritual insights practically.

3) Essential objectives

To learn how to have more control of your own thoughts, feeling and behavior
To become a better leader through better self understanding and practical application of
Spiritual knowledge and principles
To take more personal responsibility for your state of mind and emotions and stop blaming
To learn how to communicate better with people

To learn a principle-centered Time Management and write down vision, mission and goals for
ones own life

4) Self Management - Learning to manage ourselves before managing others

Organization cannot be changed without changing consciousness of individuals
How to gain the courage to manage myself before managing others?
Managing ones own sense organs, before taking up the responsibility of managing ones life,
family or workplace and maintaining a balance in all the different areas of ones life


Session 0: Effective Leadership and Time Management through SM
- An overview & Introduction (One hour)

In this first introductory session, we present a overview of all the different topics that they will learn
as a part of this course. This is to create an inspiration to participate in the full course.

0.1. How will I benefit from this seminar?

This is a course for those who are facing major challenges in their life. For anyone change
crisis is a period of stress and uncertainty, but for those who have a responsibility for leading
others through a period of chaos, the anxiety can be unbearable unless they have exceptional
self management skills.
Pressure at work puts unbearable strain on relationships at home; health deteriorates, self-
confidence falls and stress level rises. Fear becomes the dominant motivator. Faced with this,
many people give their endeavour to meet the stress as the leader to motivate and inspire
such people. This is where SM training programme comes into play and can help.
It provides individuals with the personal skills and confidence necessary to master change
and lead others through the present day chaos of transformational change. Naturally this will
increase his Capacity, Capability and ability to make more and even improve its quality. The
organisations have slowly begun to realise that happier and fulfilled staff not only works better
but can contribute significantly to the achievement of their objectives.
It empowers the individual to realign and adjust with the changing environment and thereby
develop greater self-esteem and self control in terms of new attitudes, work style and behaviour.
It provides the tools to do this with relevant mental training and thereby change management

0.2. Aims of this course

0.2.1. How to better manage the inner organization as a means for more effective leadership of the
external organization.

Traditional view of management is that if you could manage the external environment then you
could manage the change successfully. Now the emphasis has shifted from the external to the
internal that is towards managing our inner environment that is, harnessing our inner resources,
which we have so far tended to neglect. We can consciously create our future on the basis of
guiding values and a focused vision of the future or we can sit back and be driven by the external
situations and circumstances.

0.2.2. Learning adaptability in changing situations and to achieve a great mental presence, an alert
state of mind, a lot of creativity and also intuition to act at the right time in a world of
cutthroat competition.

Modern mans life is like a navigator setting off into the unknown, without any maps, not aware of
the turbulent times that he would have to go through, charting new territory, finding safe passage
through storms and heavy seas, not even aware of the wild sea-creatures that might be after him,
much less of the silently moving undercurrents of the ocean. The worst part is we do not even have
a compass that can tell us whether we are moving in the right direction or not. Therefore we are
totally at the mercy of crisis. It is time to build up the personal resources which are required if we
want to do better than merely cope with contemporary life and do more than simply react to events
as they unfold. The challenge is to re-define, re-invent and re-orient ourselves for the future.

Things are not going to go back to the stable patterns of the past. We see a world characterized by
fierce global competition. Competition begins when a child starts going to school and he has to
struggle for survival in the highly competitive world till the last breath of his life. Revolutionary
new technologies are coming in a big way and it is becoming increasingly difficult for people and
organizations to cope and adapt to the changing technology.

In order to survive in this competition we need to have a great mental presence, an alert state of
mind, a lot of creativity and also intuition to act at the right time.

0.2.3. Learning to have a clear focus about individual and organizational vision, mission and
values so as to steer through changing times as well as the purpose of life itself

If I am not aware of my personal mission, vision and values then I would be constantly experiencing
stress, inner conflicts and a lot of confusion within my own self and it would be difficult to
contribute to the achievement of the organizational mission and vision.

When I use a tool for the actual purpose for which it is meant, then I get the benefit, happiness and
contentment. A farmer may use a Mercedes Benz that he achieved as a gift from a friend, for
ploughing his field. Similarly, I can spend my life in the way I want to, but is that the purpose of
life? When I spend my life on the basis of its real value with a clear focus and there is no
confusion, stress or anxiety about it, there is satisfaction in life and I lead a meaningful purposeful
life also.

Therefore it is very essential to be aware of where I am heading to and what do I stand for and align
the same with the organizational mission, vision and values so as to move with confidence and a
clear focus.

0.3. Learning new self-managing skills

New and different capabilities are required to be effective in this changing environment. These
are not just the technical or functional skills but they are the self-managing skills like intuition,
flexibility, clear focus, tolerance etc.
In any management-training program, development of various aspects of human resources like
the physical, mental and emotional or social are taken care of, to tap the inner potential to the
For the development of the physical aspect, where the doing capacities are connected, there are
various programmes relating to stress management, health, safety, nutrition, diet etc.

Likewise, there are many programs for the development of ones mental capacities like:
intellectual development program, mind power, creativity, innovation, learning, studying etc,
which deal with our thinking abilities.
Because we are social beings, emotionally connected with each other, there are development
programs like Psychological assessment, Transactional analysis, Quality circles, Team work etc.
But we find that the missing dimension is Spiritual, which is intimately connected with the
being. Spirituality is connected with our innate values, innate power, self-respect, enhancing the
will power through meditation and relaxation techniques and the power to apply spiritual
insights practically.

0.4. Management With Hands, Head And Heart

Productivity/ efficiency is got when the body and the mind are in perfect co-ordination

We cannot change the consciousness of the organization without changing the consciousness of the
people working within the organization. According to the need of time, the organizations managed
on the basis of American system or J apanese system, used to move forward. But, today even these
systems do not seem to work.

If we go to the history of management, the locomotive of economic change affecting every
organization of the world was either America or J apan. Following the Second World War, most of
Europe was heavily devastated in one way or the other and it provided the opportunity to rebuild
reconstruct. The J apanese economy and the J apanese industry were fattened and it gave J apan a
chance to start again.

In America, the situation was different. Its industry was fairly intact although it suffered a loss of
many lives. But in gearing up after the 2
But, after that period, the criteria for the world became exactly the opposite. Instability and
recession, particularly in the western countries, followed where the market stared contracting and so
they shifted the industries from West to East as the labour costs in the East were low. The social
laws in the in the Eastern countries are without protection, without rules and regulation and it was
world war, industry went through a huge change. When
the American generals came back home they had two things with them. They had earned a lot of
money during the war and knew that after the war, there would not be another war immediately.

Secondly, they were literate people. It was the first time; an educated working class was emerging in
setting up industries. The way in which the economic formula was used for growth and
development was one, which encouraged the production and credit arrangements. The management
system adopted by them was more like military style where the commands and controls where in
their hands and as they would command the people down the line had to follow. As the people were
not literate, they asked the people to come with their hands to work.... They said, Come with your
hands and we shall use our heads. The two main criteria of that time were stability and growth as
the commands and controls were in the hands of one. This was the American system of management
with the Taylorist approach, and was also known as the pyramid style a much-centralised
decision making. It was perfect for stability and permanent growth. This system of management
successfully went on for about 30 years.

easy to get the product at cheaper rates without providing any social security resulting in social

Twenty years back, the Total Quality Management concept emerged. This was the beginning of the
J apanese system of management or networking based on the eastern culture, where there is a society
culture or where there is the culture of we consciousness. Hence, the J apanese realised the
creativity of every human mind and said, Why just come with your hands, bring your creative mind
as well. So they said to the people that they needed their ideas, their creativity, proposals and
suggestions. Thus introducing the Kaizen system, they started taking the suggestions of their people.
This is how they came out with Total Quality Management and within the short span of time they
became the leaders in the world. But, today, they are also finding problem... what is their problem?
When too many heads get together, the ideas start contradicting and clashing. Due to ego, the best
management system can fail.

So the organisational world is looking for another system of management which more than the
hands and heads. And what are they looking for?

The organisational worlds want the hearts of the people, i.e. the organisation wants self-motivated,
committed and responsible people. How do we get people motivated and committed? We need to
identify their values in order to get motivated, committed and responsible people. Therefore, the
cultures with very deep spiritual roots like India have competitive advantage which is now being
realised even by the present day management gurus who are trying to find some solutions to the
organisational problems from the Indian ethics and its spiritual wisdom.

Some five thousand years ago, India had an ancient cultural heritage of gurukul Sri Ram and Sri
Krishna also went for their education. What were they thought in this gurukul? Through the spiritual
insights the guru guided them to identify their value- system and function on the basis of those
values. They were thought the art of self-management so that when they take the reins of their
kingdom in their own hands, they rule the kingdom with responsibility, commitment and at same
time be motivated to lead and inspire their subjects through their own example.

This is what the organisational world is looking for a technique or a training module through which
the HRD can tap the inner potentials of their people. The HRD is responsible for peoples
development in terms of relationships, communication, training, recruitment, assessment etc.
Lakhs of rupees are being spent by the HRD organising training programmes to motivate people, to
enable them to commit themselves & to make them capable of taking responsibilities. That is to
bring their heart into the workplace. But after the training programme is over very few people take
up the responsibility? Why? It is because motivation, commitment & responsibility cannot be taught
or brought about through trainings. The consciousness of the people has to be changed through
proper awareness.

Motivation cannot come from outside and it is for this reason that nobody can motivate anybody
else. The motivation has to come from within; it cannot be taught. For example Take a person
coming to work. On Friday when he is about to leave, if you ask him how does he feel? You will
find that he is very enthusiastic & looking forward to the weekend with a feeling of in good mood
and happiness. When the same person comes to work on Monday morning mood even after a hectic
day, in the evening, we ask him how he feels. When he is aware that the whole week will be the
same, he feels tired, drained, exhausted & knows that he has to pull himself through the week. SO

what was the basis of his motivation on Friday evening, which was not there on the Monday
evening? Nobody motivated him on Friday; the motivation was from within. There was no
incentive or appreciation from anyone, which may be the basis of his motivation. On the contrary he
may have incurred more expenses to fulfil the demands of his family, but still he was happy. The
basis of his motivation was that his heart is at home. If he can bring the same heart to the work place
he will be enthusiastic and motivated. The same applies for the responsibility and commitment.
People willingly take up the responsibility of the family and are fully committed to them, because
the heart is attached there. There is the feeling of belonging. But the people are unwilling and even
afraid to take up responsibilities and commit themselves at the work place because their heart is not

How do we bring his heart at the work place or how do we bring the change
in his consciousness?

What do we need to start the wheel of self-motivation? The two key words are self confidence
and self satisfaction. Self confidence brings self motivation and there is job satisfaction. But
what are the roots of confidence. There is no confidence without will power. When we have the will
power we get the confidence to perform. But how do we get the will power? Knowledge is power,
so knowledge or information about a particular subject generates the inner strength and confidence.
Knowledge has to be digested well in order to get the strength. If the knowledge is mere information
in our heads and not digested and brought down to the level of understanding, and being then it
remains theoretical. So when we have realised knowledge, we have the will power, and the
confidence. On the basis of the confidence, we have the courage to take initiative to do something
and bring about a change. When we master that change, there is job satisfaction. Satisfaction is the
most important factor for incentive and motivation. It enriches us with valuable experience which
adds to our understanding and enhances our knowledge which in turn gives us more power and his
is how the wheel f self motivation starts. This induces us to take up the responsibility and commit
ourselves. When people enjoy their activity, they spontaneously try to get more and more
information. But in the initial stage, if we lack in information, we dont have the requisite power,
confidence and courage to take the initiative to bring about a change and then there is no job
satisfaction as there is stagnancy. Thus, there is no feeling of progress and self-development. The
motivation is also affected and life becomes a mechanical process.

The practical problem in todays world is that people are not willing to part with complete
information; that means that they do not want to give the power and so how can we expect people to
work with responsibility without adequate information or knowledge, which results in resistance
and reactive focus is created.

But, when we take in information we have to be very selective and capable to filter that information,
otherwise, instead of being motivated, we may get into a vicious cycle. We need to be self-
empowered to take in the correct information to enhance our knowledge and understanding;
otherwise we bring about a temporary change at the superficial level only. We are not able to bring a
permanent change from the consciousness level or at a deeper level.

There are various levels of change. The most superficial gross form of change is at the behavioural
level, that is, to bring about change in our actions or activities. Sometimes we change at the
intellectual level after understanding things in a different way, but it is pertaining to that situation
only, because we always expect others to change. As such, this change is also temporary. The third

level of change is at the emotional level that is, bringing a change in our feelings. But all these
changes are temporary.

At the root level, that is, bringing a change in the consciousness. Consciousness means the state of
mind. To change the consciousness means to change our thinking process. Think in a different way.
How do we think in a different way? It is a cycle. Consciousness or the state of the mind is formed
on the basis of thought pattern. What stimulates the thinking? A circumstance, situations, desires,
needs, environment all these are registered in the memory. It is from the memory that the mind
gets the stimulation. J ust as whatever we feed in the computer is stored in the memory, similarly,
the human memory is alike whatever we perceive through the senses about the environment, the
circumstances, the needs or crisis everything is then registered in the memory. Then, according to
the time or need the thought process starts.

In the West, small children of 10 or 12 years age take guns in their pockets to school and shoot their
teachers and students when asked why they did this, their answer was that they did it for fun. What
was the fun? Normally we try to check the behaviour of the children, but the roots are deep down in
their memory. A research was done on their psychology. After the research; they found out that
there are about 125 channels shown on the televisions in the west and in one day there about 18,000
to 20,000 scenes of violence that are being shown. As the children are not much interested in the
educative programmes, those scenes of violence are being registered in their memory, so their
thought patterns are changing accordingly. They have begun to think in that way. Their
consciousness is built on the basis of their thoughts. Their attitudes, and perceptions towards life
and society have changed and also their behaviour. Ultimately, their complete personality has
changed. We can thus imagine how their future will be shaped? If we are not aware of the quality of
the inputs absorbed by the memory, how can we change their behaviour and personality? When a
person gets into this vicious cycle, it is very difficult for him to mange himself and in the later
stages there is great frustration created and one even finds difficult to survive.

Where do we break this vicious cycle? We all know that without our conscious awareness the
memory is absorbing maximum negative input. Where do we bring the change? According to
psychologists, human memory is so powerful in the early morning hours that it absorbs the inputs
like a blotting paper. As such we have to be cautious of the quality of nourishment we are giving to
our memory, because accordingly our entire system will function. When I nourish my mind with
healthy positive inputs, I empower my self. Spiritual dimension thus enables one to empower the
self, which is the only source from where we get quality information or knowledge. Knowledge
generates will power and we can thus take the focus of control in our own hands. Once we are self -
empowered, we look at the problems and situations in a different way and instead of being
influenced and controlled by them; we can manage them in a better way so as to easily control them.
We can maintain a positive attitude, a positive thinking process and deal accordingly. This is how
we manage our complete inner mechanism.

0.5. Self Management Learning to manage ourselves before managing others

We cannot change the consciousness of the organization without changing the consciousness of the
people working within the organization.

We always want to manage others, manage men, money, market, material, machines etc., but always
forget the man within and therefore it is said that the man is before the men. If I do not know how
to manage myself, how can I manage others?

J ust as we have the courage to direct others as to what they should be doing, why they should be
doing and how they should be doing, similarly, are we able to direct our sense organs with proper
understanding of these aspects.

For example, the tongue has no bones but it can break bones if not managed properly. On most
occasions, the information slips through the tongue in the wrong place, at the wrong time, in front of
the wrong person and one cannot avoid the consequences that arise. This is the difficulty in
managing oneself. If I am not able to take the responsibility of managing my own sense organs,
how can I take up the responsibility of managing my life, my family or my workplace and maintain
a balance in all the different areas of my life? In short, therefore, we need the courage to manage
our own selves.

We need the maturity when to manage, where to manage, how to manage, to what extent to manage
and in which way we have to manage. If we do not have the maturity or understanding then it
would be difficult to survive, as we can easily become victims.

0.6. Need of a caring leader who gives care and concern instead of manipulation
and exploitation

When people feel cared for and empowered, they tend to be much more effective in all areas of
life. Without the loving protection of a Leader, systems and individuals may be stocked with
resources, but the return will be mediocre or minimal.
When an environment is filled with love, compassion and selflessness and the peoples value
system is based on hard work, dignity and integrity, productivity will be high. These qualities
are contagious. When other citizens enter such an environment, they will automatically be
positively influenced.
The converse is also true: when an environment is based on manipulation and exploitation
newcomers will not only be influenced by the atmosphere but will tend to enhance it with their
own negative energies.

Protection and Insecurity

Vedic scriptures say that the sign of a righteous and powerful government is that a woman can dress
in fine cloth and garments and can sleep under a tree without fear of being harassed or abused. We
can see from this example how powerful the divine monarchs were. Under their rule, citizens were
afraid not only to steal but to abuse any other citizeneven if an opportunity seemed to present

In the past as well as in the present, leaders who cannot protect their dependents will rarely have
strong or serious followers. Many modern day corporations create a insecure atmosphere. They use
employees for production and do not care for them in any human way. Employees often find
themselves suddenly without jobs as their companies downsize or reconstruct. Of course, when
employees are not cared for, they lose their sense of loyalty. They understand that they are not
protected because their leaders do not value them. Keeping talent loyal to a corporation has become
one of the greatest difficulties faced by many top companies in the Western world. It is a serious

issue among the Fortune 500 companies in the US. Now CEOs are trying to find ways to train and
keep the talent that has been recruited by their companies. They are trying to find out ways to
protect their employees interests, self-esteem, creativity and the development of trust in the
corporations vision.

0.7. Character building

Compassion and Humility are the mothers of virtue, but Character, Competence and Courage are
the fathers of virtue, particularly character. With Character one can buy what money cannot buy.

You can buy bed but not sleep; you can buy a book but not brains
You can buy clothes but not beauty; you can buy medicine but not good health
You can buy people but not friends; you can buy reputation but not character.

No one should accept the position of authority over others unless his character is spotless.
We can develop a strong Character by studying others who have outstanding character.
Character is the ability to rise above the self-interest for the sake of others.
Character is who you are, when others are not watching.
Character is shaped by how we choose our everyday thoughts, words and actions.

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 culture

Many people have poor character because they lack courage. Another obstacle in building character
is when we become caught up in temporary pleasure. We must become the change that we expect
in others. We should be asking ourselves constantly, What do I need to change about myself to
help others change?

We cannot be good LEADERS if we are not good FOLLOWERS
We cannot BUILD TEAMS unless we are ourselves STRONG TEAM PLAYERS
We cannot TEACH our kids SELF DISCIPLINE unless we are ourselves SELF DISCIPLINED
We cannot have a STRONG NETWORK OF FRIENDS unless we are GOOD FRIENDS.
We cannot develop a CLOSE COMMUNITY unless we are GOOD NEIGHBOURS.

Warren Bennis the distinguished professor of business administration and founding Chairman of the
Leadership Institute at the Uty of Southern CLA explains: I think Leadership is Character. It has
got to do with who we are as human beings and what shapes us. I also believe that character
evolves as we grow and develop.
Bhishma to Yudhishtir: ultimately, all things will be left behind. It is only DHARMA and our
Character that follow us out of this life.


Session 1: Eight Attitudes for Effective Leadership Part 1 (80 min)

1.1. What makes a Leader different from a Manager?

Managers are fairly common; real leaders are extremely rare. Managers use people to make things
happen; leaders make things happen for the people. The difference between a manager and a leader
is that the manager stays at the back and pushes people into the system, while a leader stands in the
front and pulls the people along with him. True leaders are associated with the four Cs:
Character, Competence, Compassion and Courage. When we find a true leader, we will find a
strong performance in all these areas.

A True leader is interested in stewardship. He sees himself as a caretaker rather than as a proprietor
or dictator. He has a passion to serve others. He does not become addicted to privilege. Rather, the
more assets and privilege he obtains, the more humble and responsible he becomes. He has a
healthy possession of power, which he uses to increase his responsibility and to facilitate the
achievement of his goals. The more influence and facility he has, the more he uses them to give
back to the people. He is also aware of what is going on around him. He is empathic an constantly
looks for ways to bring healing and nurturing to all situations that appear broken or in conflict.
He is persuasive, sharing his ideas with others and building stronger communities.

Corporation elicits feelings and images of authority, bureaucracy, competition, power, rigid rules,
machines and military chain of command. Community evokes feelings of volunteers helping
others out, co-operation, town meetings, democracy, personal responsibility, commitment,
teamwork, creative magic and fun. Community gives a richer, more involved sense of people
opting to be part of the relationship to a large whole.

Management is a transactional paradigm of managing the mechanics of things. Leadership is a
transformational paradigm of managing the interdependence and transformation of people.
Things Paradigm People Paradigm
Manager Leader
Administers and maintains Innovates and develops
Relies on systems Relies on people
Counts on controls Counts on peoples trust
Enables things to be done right Does the right things through inspiration
Efficiency Effectiveness
Structure Spontaneity
Control Empowerment
Expenditure Investment
Administrative efficiency Customer service
Techniques Principles
Compromise Synergy

Organizational world demands leaders not just managers. Who is a true leader? One who never
reacts, but observes, understands, analyses and then acts decisively. He would not react
immediately on small things because he has some powerful, charismatic qualities.

1.1.1. Efficient Management and Effective Leadership

Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things. Management is efficiency
in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the
right wall.

You can quickly grasp the important difference between the two if you envision a group of
producers cutting their way through the jungle with machetes. They are the producers, the problem
solvers. Theyre cutting through the undergrowth, clearing it out.

The managers are behind them, sharpening their machetes, writing policy and procedure manuals,
holding muscle development programs, bringing in improved technology and setting up working
schedules and compensation programs for machete wielders.

The leader is the one who climbs the tallest tree, surveys the entire situation, and yells, Wrong

But how do the busy, efficient producers and managers often respond? Shut up! Were making

As individuals, groups, and business, were often so busy cutting through the undergrowth we dont
even realize were in the wrong jungle. And the rapidly changing environment in which we live
makes effective leadership more critical than it has ever been-in every aspect of independent and
interdependent life.

We are more in need of a vision or destination and a compass (a set of principles or directions) and
less in need of a road map. We often dont know what the terrain ahead will be like or what we will
need to go through it; much will depend on our judgment at the time. But an inner compass will
always give us direction.

Effectiveness- often even survival- doesnt depend solely on how much effort we expend, but on
whether or not the effort we expend is in the right jungle. And the metamorphosis that is taking
place in almost every industry and profession today first demands leadership and then management.

Efficient management without effective leadership is like straightening deck chairs on the Titanic.
No management success can compensate for failure in leadership. But leadership is hard because
were often caught in a management paradigm.

1.1.2. Three types of power Coercive power

To compel by force or intimidation by exploiting fear and anxiety

E.g. bullying them with meaningless catch phrases, derision or anger.

Hierarchical authoritarian organizations: The lower levels needs clear-cut orders (which cannot
always consider necessary tactics). Otherwise they cannot take initiative because they will be
considered insubordinate or neglectful. Creativity is diminished, as it is not welcomed. Ability
to function according to the recommended formula of time, place and circumstance is seriously
Hierarchical authoritarian organizations hinder members learning from their experiences. Those
responsible do not admit failure or incompetence, but rationalize, deny or find scapegoats.
Because they do not admit mistakes, they do not learn from them, and failures tend to reoccur.
Hierarchical authoritarian organizations can absolve the individual from being hampered by
guilt, carrying out orders sanctioned by authority.

For some reason many leaders have the mentality that it is their role and duty to catch people doing
things wrong. Once this kind of mentality permeates the culture of an organisation, the employees
become fearful.

A sword-wielding leader will never get the best from his employees. People may respond short
term to this approach, but in the long term, they move on to another job. Those who manage by
Dread that sub-ordinates may do better and usurp their position and power
Believe that subordinates enjoy working for them when in fact, the fear they instill simply
fosters hate or disgust
Catch people doing things wrong
Feel appreciation is not necessary
Feel that since they give a pay check to their people, therefore appreciation is not necessary and
expect the job will always be done well

The leaders should avoid making statements that:
Blame (if you were not gloomy, I wouldnt be stressed)
Instil guilt (youre focussed on yourself)
Make charges of incompetency or inadequacy (only an idiot would act that way)
Threaten abandonment (I am sick of this I am ready to quit and never come back)
On the contrary show a deep sense of appreciation to make great individuals by catching people
doing things right. People look for recognition, appreciation, creative freedom and opportunity for
suggestion and participation. Expedient power

A mutual agreement, or trade off based on self-interest.
E.g. If you just keep going for another year, well send you to J apan

Such promises should not be only for the sake of getting the job done, but should be fulfilled in
time, else they will break the trust.

Offering short-term incentives, as in this expedient power may not always work without inspiration
and motivation from within.

22 Legitimate power

Based on spontaneous attraction to an exemplary authority that commands respect through his
qualities and example.

Organisations often experience problems because their employees are either not qualified or have
little propensity for the positions in which they are employed. They may have no desire to work in
the ways in which they are being asked.

A servant leader values everyone according to who they are. From that position, he is able to find
the means to help them work in a complementary way or to find them appropriate engagements or
employment elsewhere. The Srimad Bhagavatam explains how King Prithu oversaw his citizens as
a father cares for his children. The Manu Samhita mentions that a leader should know his people
just as a mother knows her children and should care for them with the same affection. A servant
leader who does not build a strong culture of trust will not be able to engage his dependents

There was a president of a university business school who could understand his students
propensities. He found an interesting way to encourage them in their budding careers. When the
students graduated, he gave each of them a $10,000 grant toward the founding of their new
businesses. As years passed by, many of his students became successful businessmen. They
remembered the start they were given by their old professor and because they felt like valued sons,
donated literally millions of dollars to the school they had attended. This university president was
obviously both a clever and caring servant-leader, who understood process of loving reciprocation.

A servant leader who engages people according to their propensities understands how to satisfy their
needs. A servant leader strives to satisfy needs rather than wants. The fulfilment of needs will
satisfy people; the fulfilment of wants will not.

People Want People Need
Sympathy Empathy
Riches Fulfilment
Fame Appreciation
Power Support and opportunity
Domination Protection
Prestige Recognition and appreciation
Freedom Good guidance and facility
Intoxication Altered awareness and self actualisation

A servant leader will constantly address others needs, especially their need for self-actualisation
and realisation thus helping people to become greater than they could have ever dreamed.

1.2. The Eight attitudes that enhance the Effectiveness of a Leader:

Leadership means taking responsibility. Leaders are obliged to provide momentum, to keep people
excited and challenged. The real key to leadership is to maintain a childlike enthusiasm when we
are doing the same thing over and over again or when we have trials and tribulations in our life.

It is very important to realize that, before becoming a great leader, you must learn to be a great
follower. The best leaders are those who have served many apprenticeships. Leader truly means
ultimate servant. The measure of a man is not how many servants he has but how many people he

The leader is effective and efficient due to eight main attitudes or inner powers that he exercises at
the appropriate time and right place. There are some core values connected with these abilities and
powers and when he becomes aware of them and practices living those values, then the abilities and
powers are naturally developed.

The Eight Attitudes

Power to listen - Patience
Availability - Humility
Tolerance - Love
Adaptability - Maturity
Discrimination - Knowledge
Decision Making - Clarity of Mind
Ability to Respond - Courage
Team Spirit - Co-operation

1.2.1. Power to listen

The first ability that a leader needs to have is the listening ability or the power to withdraw. The
greater his ability to be a detached observer in what one is trying to say or from the disturbing
influences of information, and the great his ability to remain stable in any conditions, the greater is
his ability to manage the paradox. In Bhagavad gita Lord Sri Krishna speaks about how a devotee is
free from the dualities like heat/cold, honor/dishonor, happiness/distress. One should practice
tolerance through chanting and meditation and conquer these dualities (BG 2.14,15). If he does not
have the ability to pull back and observe he will immediately react, judge and assume what the other
one is saying on the basis of his very first impression. Before the other one has had the chance to
complete what he is trying to say, he colors it with his own feelings and references. This is very
dangerous, as leaders for correct decisions, are very much dependent on the information they
receive. In order to enhance the listening ability one needs to have patience when someone is
sharing something with him.

Once Alfred Sloan, head of General Motors was in a board meeting, about to make a important
decision. He said, I take it that everyone is in basic agreement with this decision. And everyone
nodded their heads in assent. Sloan looked around and said, Then I suggest we postpone the
decision. Until we have some disagreement, we dont understand the problem. He was ready to
listen to his people although they were keeping things to themselves.

On the contrary there are leaders who cannot pay any heed to their employees words. To such
leaders who are only accustomed to giving orders and chastising subordinates and constantly
surrounded by yes men, we can ask, Have you learned lessons only of those who admired you,
and were tender with you, and stood aside for you? Have you not learned lessons from those who
brace themselves against you, and dispute the passage with you? How does one lose Patience?

One way to erode patience and tolerance is by failing to consider the position of another person,
recognizing only ones own motivations and desires. Although someone may be able to tolerate
another out of a sense of duty or magnanimity, the underlying attitude in such a situation is one of
intolerance that considers the other as a nuisance whose opinion has little merit. Oftentimes people
have such high regard for their own insights and realizations that they are reluctant or even
unwilling to consider another persons perspective.

To behave in this way is to deny anothers individuality and humanity and to minimize that persons
contributions. Therefore instead of thinking, I will tolerate this situation it might be more helpful
to think, I will try to understand this situation and respond appropriately without overreacting or
minimizing its significance.

Those who are satisfied with a superficial evaluation of behavior will have difficulty being patient
and tolerant in this way. People who lack compassion for others cannot be tolerant. People who
think in terms of being co-workers with God, but refuse to recognize His supremacy in all things,
assume the unfortunate position of trying to control everything themselves. Anyone who thinks and
acts in this irresponsible way eventually becomes an instrument of chaos. They view themselves as
centers around which all things revolve for their personal pleasure.

Highly mechanized impersonal structure of modern society leads to more impatience and
intolerance. People risk becoming impersonal, insensitive, and intolerant in such circumstances.
Modern weapons can end hundreds of lives in a flash, or a small problem in a electrical grid can
instantly cause power failure for millions. Computer linking businesses, banking systems,
government agencies can crash, causing instantaneous problems for those dependent upon them.
With such tools at everyones disposal, the importance of patience and tolerance cannot be
overestimated. Creating a Favorable Debate Culture

True leaders will encourage people to accept inevitability of disagreements and discontent and learn
new ways to tap creative energies when we give up having to be in agreement. Look around: how
often do some people before they even hear what you have to say, get defensive, even hostile, and
voice their disapproval and doubts, skepticism and criticism? "Whatever it is, I am against it.
Paradoxically, most attempts to overcome resistance end up making it worse.

Leaders of future are advancing in the opposite direction. They extend respect and trust. They stay
open curious, empathetic and constantly learning in the face of resistance and criticism.

Because of this many managers are exploring ways to legitimize healthy conflict. Motorola has
Debate culture.

Discontent can prove to be a hotbed of creative ideas and opportunities to build deepened trust and
connection. If human frustrations are ignored or unresolved so often they block or undermine

Constructive value of discontent:

Awareness: Discontent helps to recognize what really matters to you and other people and what
you and they care about, are sensitive about and are willing to fight for.

Problem exposure: Dialogue about areas of frustration and irritation can identify relationship
blocks, injustices, poor quality, and under efficient projects and processes.

Applied empathy: The feeling of empathy has meaning only when it is applied and in times of
conflict and difficulty at work our sense of empathy is put to test. Can you stretch to understand the
value of diversity and difference in others, and draw upon this as an aid rather than feel it as a
detriment to progress?

Trust, inclusion, participation, empowerment and partnership: Discontent can be a catalyst for
sparking, shaping, reflecting on, and advancing new ideas, especially when people begin to realize
that they can be open and trusting, that their leaders are actively encouraging them to take a stand, to
speak up, and to be involved.

Learning in action: Mark Twain joked, The person who grabs the cat by tail learns about 44%
faster than the one just watching.

Challenge and engagement and even fun: Brains alertness is raised by a sense of passionate
involvement. Creates genuine interest rather than the routine. People are more enlivened and happy
that your ideas and input are helping to shape something worthwhile.

Saves time, increases opportunity for doing real work: Many managers spend more time and
energy attempting to smooth over differences. When guided and valued, constructive discontent
reduces the time wasted by destructive arguing, hidden agenda, office politics, backstabbing,
erroneous assumptions, ambiguous behavior, misunderstanding etc.

In many organizations, managements avoidance of disagreement is based on :
- Lack of experience in handling heated dialogue
- Worry that wemanagers and professionals will lose control if opposition becomes vocal and
conversation intense.

If for someones new idea you get angry, thats a useless idea, you may never get another idea.
Ask: In what way you feel this idea would be profitable to the company? And then, help the
person with the idea to determine the answer. You might offer to provide resources or contact of

someone in R & D. With this approach, you help preserve, and even enhance, the feelings of pride
and enthusiasm that are so vital if you want yourself, and others who work with you, to keep coming
up with new ideas.

Town meetings held at plants where managers must stand before the employees and answer
questions posed
Pasting of blank paper throughout office and factory for people to write comment, criticism, ideas

- Listen, ask and speak up culture.
- Company wide Idea contests, open to all employees held regularly and most promising receive
organization support, time and funding.
- Young engineers are given exceptional levels of responsibility and are encouraged to question
their superiors in debate or dialogue. One start level engineer came up with a innovation
followed by a heated debate that superior to water-cooled engines would be a air-cooled
engines. His idea was earlier rejected. Later Mr.Honda reconsidered and observed the validity
of the innovation and called him back. Today the same boy, Tadashi Kume is Hondas CEO. Developing Patience and Tolerance as a growing Leader

One serious problem is the temptation for leaders to become autocratic or to act solely on the basis
of their own desires, aspirations and perceptions. Instead, leaders can view their role as one of
coordinating the activities of those for whom they are responsible. To do so properly requires the
constant awareness of being a servant to others. Being a servant entails keeping abreast of the
peoples problems, needs and goals in order to be in a position to stimulate growth and develop
useful projects that enhance the quality of life.

A second pitfall for leaders is the elitist syndrome, the tendency to take the benefits of leadership for
granted, forgetting that most people do not share in the blessings and privileges inherent in such a
position. One way to counteract this complacent attitude is to visit institutions of the less fortunate
like hospitals, prisons, orphanages etc. Seeing such suffering can greatly increase your desire to
help others.

A third pitfall is the temptation to be bored, unenthusiastic and even depressed at times. Those who
feel this way, forget the extent to which their lives are being guided, controlled and assisted by the
Lord, whether they know it or not. Although some may not accept the existence of a God, it is a
fact that higher forces do act upon every persons life. Leaders can overcome some of these
negative feelings by reflecting on the many wonderful situations God has arranged for them, in
contrast to the experiences of the average person. Such thoughts can bring immediate relief, or even
exhilaration, as these many blessings become apparent.

You might notice that certain spiritual people with few material possessions seem to have a great
wealth of inner happiness, peace and love. In contrast, as you look a your surroundings, you can

notice how many superficial commodities have become part of your daily environment. Indeed, any
confusion, tension, or disappointment you experience may result from having overly complicated
your life.

When you are the apparent controllerwhich, as a leader, you generally are any small decision
may seem insignificant to you. But the people affected by that decision might experience extreme
anxiety, especially if they perceive that their survival is being threatened.

For example, the ultimate example of lack of appreciation and concern is the abrupt termination of
employees who have given 15 to 20 years of their life in good service to a company. Good leaders
care about their employees, not just as workers but as human beings. Loyalty should start from the
top; when it does, it permeates through all employees.

1.2.2. Availability

The responsibility of a leader is to be present whenever and wherever he is needed. The listening
ability and availability are deeply connected. Whenever he is called upon, he needs to pack up all
other thoughts, and pull out from whichever engagement his mind is busy in order to be fully
available for the next. He needs to be available to those for whom he is responsible.

Availability does not only mean physical availability, a leader has to be mentally available to his
people. It means you have all means available to you to be able to delegate well to other competent
persons for those jobs. If you cant delegate you will be very busy and therefore not available. He
may be too busy in doing a lot of other things, which are not that important but very urgent or
because he is not well organized.

One top busy executive said, I have no time to greet everyone I see or for real dialogue. I want
to. Yet what you observe with such leaders is a man drowning in paperwork and struggling with
the ongoing misunderstandings that came from his avoidance of genuine dialogue with his people.
It is a vicious cycle. His staff and customers complained about relationships disintegrating.
Through it all, he felt powerless to do anything about it.

A leader needs humility to be available to all his associates to gain the trust of his people. In the
best companies, employees see their leader everyday. Management By Moving Around (MBMA) is
the formula of such successful leaders. Visible leaders boost up the enthusiasm of employees while
the leaders who do not like to interact with people and do not care about the employees soon lose

Often busy leaders fear giving time to others and try to hide from others. Such busy leaders can still
make the time spent with them FEEL longer and more valuable by adopting the following methods:
Practice the habit of good listening
Sit down while you are interacting with people. Think about standing beside someone who is
poised to flee and trying to have a brief conversation with him. No matter what words are
spoken, what does it feel like? Devaluing? Rejection?

Dont make any Time-urgent movements such as watch watching that indicate that you are
overly concerned about how much time has passed. Dont say, I have only 10 minutes. Say,
I have 10 minutes to spend with you.

1.2.3. Tolerance

All the uncertainties, complexities and contradictions require a lot of tolerance. A leader has high
level of tolerance. Tolerance is the ability to work in very demanding situations, when there is a lot
of turbulence and high pressure. A leader has to handle many different situations simultaneously
and to accept considerable feedback. He has to take major decisions and take the responsibility for
those decisions. He has to be able to take criticism without reacting or even feeling it as a burden.
As soon as a leader loses his tolerance power, his goodwill is lost. Others will not want to follow

In the 6
chapter of BG 6.9 Lord Sri Krishna says, suhrt mitra ari udasina. how a learned
person should treat his well wishers, friends, indifferent people, neutral people, envious, relative,
saintly person, sinful person all alike. If a leader has this type of tolerance, he will never hesitate
to learn good things from various quarters.

In Srimad Bhagavatam Krishna cites the example of a tree, how it gives shelter to birds, squirrels,
ants, snakes and human beings. Even when a human being cuts the branches of the tree it does not
protest. Thus, Titiksha the quality of a devotee is the most difficult quality to be achieved. We
may not resist an evil, but at the same time we may feel very miserable. A man may say very harsh
things to me, and I may not outwardly hate him for it, may not answer him back, and may restrain
myself from apparently getting angry, but anger and hatred may be in my mind, and I may feel very
bad towards that man. This is not Titiksha. I should be without any feeling of hatred or anger,
without any thought of resistance; my mind must be as calm as if nothing has happened.

The jnanis and yogis bear tremendous heat and cold to attain this tolerance; but a devotee of God,
like the great king Ambarisha achieve it easily by absorption in remembrance of the Lord and
serving Him. King Ambarish even when his life was put to threat by Durvasa muni by a fiery
demon, did not protest or defend himself as he had developed complete faith in the Lord. Such
tolerance naturally begets great respect for every living being in Gods creation seeing everyone as a
part-and-parcel of God.

Tolerance is developed through love. Through love, a leader empowers people and the people in
return are available to him when he needs them. All are in the same boat so that he let them cross
the stream together. It is said in Srimad Bhagavatam, If the kings mind is fully controlled, all his
family members and governmental officers are subordinate to him. His provincial governors
present taxes on time, without resistance, and what to speak of lesser servants? [SB.6.14.20]


Session 2: Eight Attitudes for Effective Leadership Part 2 (80 min)

2.1. Adaptability

Flexibility and the ability to adapt is the strength that helps the leader to reach his goals. A river
finds its way through the landscape and reaches the ocean despite many obstacles along the way. In
the same way, flexibility in a leader is the ability to adjust to many different personalities and
situations he or she faces in the process of reaching his goal. He needs maturity to give way to
others, to bend and to tolerate. The more flexible the leader, the better will be his capability to
accept pressure.

Employees believe they have the knowledge, the understanding and, in most cases, the answers.
But they cant get the management to listen. The frustration is eating them up. When a company
becomes impersonal, employees talk negatively about management and the company then the whole
company break apart quickly.

2.1.1. Dont fear change, welcome it

Change adopted in a systematic method according to the need of the hour brings enthusiasm and
newness. We find wherever people get together, what do they talk to one another? The theme of
their talk is generally change. Sometimes people talk about change in the government, its policies,
in society, young generations, traditions, rituals or customs, cultures adopted or change in total
environment. Thus everyone wants everything else to change except his own self. He does not
wish to become role model for others and take up an initiative to lead others through the change
process and when one does not want to change himself, no change can ever take place. A Leader
with a high talent of adaptability is ready to implement a change similar to a trapeze artist who
swing from one rod and go to the other rod, and let go off the first rod as they catch hold of the
other rod. They have this art of changing from one and jumping to the other. It is this skill of
changing that entertains people. Similarly a leader should not be stuck in the old ways of thinking
and doing things, but be ready to adapt himself to switch over and catch hold of something new, to
adopt new ways of thinking and functioning.

2.1.2. Be flexible to consider and apply employees suggestions

There has never been a day in a restaurant when a waitress did not get a special request to do up
something different than what was on the menu. Managers complain about high turnover rates with
waiters and waitresses, but would you want to stay in a job if all you were asked to do was carry
food from the kitchen to the table with little opportunity to use your brain cells?

A leader needs to have the maturity as to where to adapt, how to adapt, to what extent to adapt and
when to adapt. Surprisingly many automobiles today have been designed without the input of
mechanics, the individuals who ultimately have to service the car. Saturn Corporation, offshoot of
General Motors has a great policy. Employees sit in on the design planning of the car. Getting

employees involved at all levels and giving them a sense of family and participation and remaining
flexible to analyze and accept suggestions and improvement all this will satisfy the employees as
almost everybody know what are at the top of employees wish-list : recognition, appreciation and
creative freedom.

2.1.3. Employees need some degree of flexibility to not run to authority for every small thing

Look back at how inflexible you were and how guilty your employees made the customer feel when
they dared stray from exactly what was on the menu. Each and every employee when they have a
face-to-face encounter with a customer is truly facing a moment of truth. And it is these
thousands of moments of truth every day that ultimately make or break a company.

Flexibility is very important in dealing with customer complaints. To face those moments most
effectively, employees must be given some degree of flexibility. Obviously there have to be
guidelines, but the most important guideline is that the employee can be flexible enough to ensure
that the customer receives the best service possible.

Once in a flight trip, the flight attendant asked me what I would like to drink with dinner and I
replied, Milk. In a very abrupt voice she said, Milk is for children. What else do you want?
Now I have no idea if this is the airlines policy or if this particular flight attendant was just having
a bad day, but it definitely did illustrate a lack of flexibility.

When companies or employees are not flexible, what they are actually saying is, we do not want
your business. A tree that bends with the wind does not break.

2.2. Discrimination

A leader has a very powerful ability to discriminate right from wrong, truth from falsehood, reality
from illusion and benefit from harm. This ability is absolutely crucial for a leader who is taking
decision for so many others to follow. If he lacks discrimination power and chooses the wrong path,
the consequences may be hard hit. It requires a powerful management information system for
selecting, analyzing, synthesizing, prioritizing, assessing, appraising and evaluating information.
Discrimination power means that you build up a very good assessment system. Knowledge enables
one to have accurate discrimination.

Can a leader commit mistakes? Great leaders do not worry about their mistakesthey learn from
them. You can win tomorrow, if you know why you lost today. We learn much more when we
lose. Most of us would learn from our mistakes if we werent so busy denying that we actually
made them.

Great leaders are experimenters. They stick their necks out and therefore inevitably make lots of
mistakes. People like this have the courage to take action where others hesitate. Leaders who
succeed in life do not worry about the mistakes they have made. They know that mistakes are going
to happen and they are willing to live with the consequences of their decisions.

2.2.1. Leader-subordinate relationship when leader makes mistakes

To err is human. We can tolerate a leaders mistakes as long as the leader has his dependents well
being in mind. That is, we can tolerate a leaders honest mistakes if his motives are correct. This
does not mean that we should deny the mistake, but we can help the leader learn from the mistake.
Otherwise, we can use the leaders mistake to cloud our relationship with him and to take away his
influence. It is different when the dependents feel that the mistake was not so honest, or that the
leader does not have their best interests in mind.

In modern society, leaders make many mistakes. This is not such a problem. The real problem is
when a leader makes a mistake and tries to cover it up, or when the mistake is part of a general sort
of deviance, lack of integrity, lack of ethics or morality, or is done secretively. Such leaders
obviously do not have the highest interest of their dependents.

When a leader tries to act as if he is free of mistakes, it is worse than if he merely makes mistakes.
This is so because it reveals his arrogance and lack of honesty, which will cause his dependents to
lose faith in him.

The worst, however, is when a mistake is made by a leader, denied or not denied, and it is based on
self-centered interest rather than on the interest of his constituents welfare. When there is proper
leadership, then mistakes can be fixed because of the leaders honesty. His constituents can help
him face the crisis caused by his mistake and, together, they can correct it.

Great leaders know that mistakes and failures are simply opportunities to understand what is
necessary to become successful. Thomas Edison made over a thousand errors in his pursuit of
developing the light bulb. Rather than becoming discouraged, he saw each mistake as bringing him
closer to success. In that sense, mistakes are not mistakes. In any case, we should not be overly
disturbed if we see that our leader makes a mistake.

When people lack culture, they tend to overreact. If a leader has made a mistake, a reaction is
natural. But to go so far as to insult a good person for his mistake is an overreaction. That people
insult their leaders over mistakes is also a sign that they do not see their connection with the leader
or with the issue over which the mistake was committed.

Leaders should therefore build team ship. Building a team means building a culture of trust. Then,
if there is a mistake (or even an apparent mistake), they will want to help solve the problem it
creates rather than denigrate the person who committed it. In a culture of envy, people hope their
leaders will make mistakes so that they can tear them down in an attempt to regain their so-called

Bhagavatam mentions that King Vena was cursed because his sinful activities were grievous. This
indicates that Vena did not have good intentions toward his citizens. Rather, he was a self-centered
leaderabusive and exploitative. Therefore, the sages took it upon themselves to try to rectify him,
and when that didnt seem to work, they resolved to remove him, to bring about his demise. They
took his life by simply chanting mantras. The sages had such power and purity that simply by
chanting mantras, they were able to force his soul out of his physical body. This is Vedic culture :

The king has great power, but the sages have greater power based on their purity, their performance
of austerity and their knowledge of scriptures. Therefore, it was their duty to monitor the king and
to be sure he always practiced stewardship toward the people.

2.3. Decision-making

One of the major tasks of a leader is to take decisions. He is constantly in situations where he has to
judge, where to go next. The power of decision is not only to discriminate between right and
wrong, but further to judge which of the several options in hand would be the best choice. After
using imagination, vision and creativity the power of decision is required to commit to a powerful
course of action for the future.

King Soloman had to make a decision to which of the two mothers the child should be handed over,
although both mothers claimed the child to be their own. He ordered the soldier to cut the child into
two halves and give one piece to each mother. The real mother broke down to tears and told the
king to hand over the child to the other mother, so that the child will be protected. Thus intelligent
Soloman concluded who the actual mother is. This type of ability to investigate, analyze and finally
make decision is required by the leader.

King Bali was about to offer oblations of water to Lord Vamanadev, while his guru Sukracarya
stopped him saying that this child is none other than Vishnu. Bali asked if the child was Vishnu,
then why should there be hesitation to offer everything to Him; after all everything comes from
Him. In this way, Bali realized that Sukracarya was attached to his post and the profits and facilities
offered by that post. Sukracarya thought, what will happen to me and my family if the king
becomes bankrupt? Seeing these ulterior motives on one hand and realizing what dharma is, Bali
offered oblations of water. Although apparently he was defeated by Lord Vamanadev, he was
reinstated at Sutala loka, which is more opulent than heaven and Lord Vamanadev out of love for
his devotee, Bali became a doorkeeper. He promised Bali that he would be made the future Indra.
Thus one, who offers everything to the Lord, never loses; he only stands to gain. Such moments
like this in the life of Bali give us a clue that a leader can be put into severe tests in making the right

To decide is to cut off other alternatives. Making correct choice is often difficult as it means to
renounce other options. Decisions often have to be made on the spot and therefore his power to
judge needs great clarity. A leader needs to investigate, analyze, synthesize and understand first,
and only then take decision after considering all pros and cons of the matter. not to take decisions
first and then understand, he needs to have a great clarity of mind to take bold decisions.

One is mode of passion and ignorance makes hasty decisions in illusion and regrets later like the
Bhasmasur or Vrkasura who kept his hand on his own head and cracked his head to pieces. Clarity
of mind is achieved only in the mode of goodness.

2.4. Ability to respond (Responsibility)

The leader has to have the power to face as he carries the main responsibility. The implication of
decision-making is to take up the responsibility. This ability is similar to courage. He needs the

courage to face the effects of his own decisions, which may sometimes be unpleasant. That means,
he has to be trustworthy and responsible. When a leader is involved in the process of making
decisions, he has to become responsible. The power to face is the ability to anticipate barriers,
problems and contradictions and face them when he goes wrong. Honesty increases his power to

Courage emboldens such capabilities as
Willingness to take a stand
To raise your voice
To face pain and rejection
To act with honor and grace under pressure
To maintain your values in the face of opposition and fear
Healthy fear of risking failure, making and admitting mistakes, asking for help, acknowledging
that you dont know something and go learn it.

When His Divine Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta swami Prabhupada went to the West in his ripe old age
of 70 years in the cargo ship, J aladhuta, he got two severe heart attacks. Although many suggested
him to return to India and better peacefully live in Vrindavan, he was determined to follow the order
of his guru in taking the message of Bhagavad gita to the people of the West. He went with just
Rs.40/- with no friends or well-wishers to greet him in America. He foresaw the future that there
are going to be temples, devotees, nama sankirtan, books printed and published and courageously
took the steps forward though alone.

Most managers are, by tradition and training, experts at caution, which in many situations is indeed
an asset. We are skilled critics and cynics, trained to go after every weakness and we can shoot
holes in virtually any idea or initiative and have fun doing it. But what enables us to create a
successful future is courage, not caution.

Courage also means, reaching for stars by breaking out daily routines, stretching ourselves,
accepting the challenge to grow and excel in new ways and thereby generating Transformational
learning, not just repeating past habits, but effectively changing who you are as you create the

It requires Courage to patiently hear someone criticizing you out of pure concern, to let it in your
heart as well as your head and try to learn from it. No one expects a leader to be perfectonly
genuine and honest. These men have the courage to:

find themselves,
to tell the truth who they are,
the mistakes they have made,
the dreams they hold and what they are most concerned about and excited about in growing the
business or life.

This is the bedrock for open dialogue and trust.

Courageous speech is indeed one mark of a leader and it has long held people in awe, not like
politicians. Men with authentic presence are as comfortable with silence as they are with speaking.
And when they speak, they have something worth saying and they say it in a voice that emerges
from deep inside of them. It represents their inner world and convictions.

2.5. Team spirit

A leader should have the ability to create a team spirit and the power to co-operate. A leader needs
to be able to inspire co-operation in others and he can do so only when he himself is able to co-
operate well with others. The ability to co-operate with each other is becoming more and more
important as lot of time, money and energy are at stake. Co-operation comes from a common
purpose and in seeing the specialty of each member of the team, an appreciation of the distinctive
contribution that each one can make.

Team spirit means that people are strongly connected in the same value system. It is a power, which
is able to make huge tasks easy and enjoyable as well. Creating a team-spirit means to get people
committed to take up the responsibility collectively in a team.

A true leader is attuned to peoples needs and the resolution of conflicts. In Sanskrit this is referred
to as sarve janah sukhino bhavantu. This also means he skillfully deflects misfortune. We should
note how important it is for the people in modern society to feel happy, secure, protected and loved.
With globalization of markets and the increase of technological capacities, it is becoming more and
more important for leaders, managers, and CEOs to produce things inexpensively, quickly and with
greater quality. The competition between companies is so intense that what often determines
corporate survival is a corporations ability to empower its employees in teamplaying.
Empowering employees and creating healthy teams is based almost entirely on people feeling good
about themselves, about others, about the institutions or corporations for which they work, about the
leaders of those institutions and especially about the mission and vision associated with both their
leaders and the institutions for which they work.

2.5.1. Effect of positive and negative emotions on Physical health

The hypothalamus is a gland that regulates such things as sleep patterns, body temperature and the
release of hormones from the pituitary gland. In many ways, the hypothalamus affects the health of
the entire body. When someone is feeling good about himself or herself, the hypothalamus
regulates the body in a healthy way; when they are not feeling good about themselves or their
environment, and are feeling anxious, then the hypothalamus responds by stimulating the body in
negative ways. Mental anxiety is often channeled by neurotransmitters and delivered to various
parts of the body. It can be said that the mind is actually attacking the body. Every physical illness
has a mental counterpart.

Love and positive emotions release endorphins in the blood. Endorphins are the bodys natural
painkillers and they strengthen the immune system. Conversely negative emotions, worry, anger,
depression etc dump high levels of adrenaline into the blood. Adrenaline constricts blood vessels
and raises blood pressure. So the more we have gratitude, feel love, etc the more endorphins and

less adrenaline we deposit in our bodies. As we count our blessings we literally bathe ourselves in
good hormones.

Peter R.Schemm in his book entitled, Love: Impact on Physical and Mental Health explains that
people who live in relationships in which they do not feel loved, protected, happy or secure are ten
times more susceptible to chronic disease and five time more susceptible to mental illness. Also
studies prove that love heals diseases. People can avoid illness, heal better from illnesses they
already have and become more productive in all areas of their lives if they feel loved, secure and
happy about themselves and their environment.

A good leader understands that community is based on sharing and concern for one another. He
will not allow social and personal disintegration, but will implement policies that engender a sense
of community, security and protection.

2.5.2. Closer relationships, greater success

In his book Coaching for Leadership, Marshall Goldsmith explains that when someone assumes a
new leadership role today, he or she has a 40% chance of demonstrating disappointing performance,
voluntarily leaving or being fired within 12 to 18 months. Not only will we have wasted time and
money in training such a person, but we also may be eliminating our pool of potential candidates as
the dissatisfied trainee complains about us to others. Why do these people fail? 82% of them fail to
build teamwork relationships with subordinates and peers; 58% are confused about what is expected
of them; and 50% lack the required skills and knowledge to be able to be successful. Thus we see
how important it is that each person feels properly valued so that they can stay in the organization
and use what they have learned for the ultimate success of the enterprise.

In the early 1990s, the American government began to study why J apanese businesses were so much
successful than American businesses, even though Americans had better schools and more facility.
Stanford University spent millions of dollars to study this phenomenon. The researchers discovered
that it had more to do with the J apanese mentality than American ingenuity. The J apanese have
more of a family culture. Even in the business world, employers and managers work together
better, communicate better, and tend to understand the inside workings of things better than
Americans. Their success was based on closer relationships. The J apanese companies were built
on team ship, relationship, and especially character. American business schools now teach that
management success is about 20% technique and 80% relationship. Relationship, of course, means
understanding peoples needs and being able to lead more from the inside outfrom a platform of
strong character.

The best service companies have a very simple philosophy. They do whatever is necessary to
ensure that their customers have an excellent experience and are served beyond their expectations.
One of the concepts that helps make this happen is that of lateral service where serving fellow
employees is given as much importance and emphasis as serving the customer. Lateral service is
often known as espirit de corps or team work. It can range from helping out a fellow employee in
trouble to doing someone elses job to ensure it gets done. Lateral service is the art of making good
on somebody elses mistakes. And it translates into a much better experience for the customer.


In the Vedic times, the Kings were particularly trained to become saintly and to have no concern
beyond the welfare of their citizens. This mentality is the qualification of a divine monarch. The
monarch was trained systematically to care for his citizens needs. Some of the duties of a divine
monarch are :

Tosana : to see that there is sufficient food to feed all of the citizens
Prinama : distributing gifts to satisfy them
Upalalana : calling meetings and speaking sweet thoughtful words in order to satisfy the people
Anusasana : giving instructions on how to become good citizens

In Vedic times, a king, a father, a spiritual mentor as well as any head of any project are considered
to be leaders who give shelter to people and responsible for managing them, keeping in mind their
long-term security and overall welfare. Such gestures from the leader bring about co-operation
amongst team members, discipline and most importantly giving their heart for the work.

2.5.3. Celebrating Diversity and Interdependence for team spirit

When there is a forced conformity, there will never be true unity; when there is simply diversity
without any attempt at unity, this is anarchy. The leaders duty is to engage the people according
their individual natures and responsibilities toward the central goal of developing a balanced

Synergy literally means that the total effect is greater than the sum of the individual elements. One
plus one equals more than two. The ability to synergise a group comes from celebrating diversity
among ones team members and then holding them accountable to fulfil both personal and the
project goals. It does not result from either dependent or independent members, but from those who
recognise their interdependence. Recognizing interdependence also results in the formation of
symbiotic relationships. That is, relationships based on mutual need. When the leader honours
unity in diversity, it allows for symbiotic relationships among the team members wherein all

Diversity experts realise that by celebrating diversity, we can avoid four cancers that are
detrimental to the achievement of synergy. These are: Criticism, Complaint, Comparison, and
Competition. Without celebrating diversity, we may exist, but will we flourish? In such a
condition, we will not optimise our potential. Unless we learn to cooperate, we will only

While too much dependence impedes peoples creativity and initiative and leads them to dullness,
too much independence destabilises an institution or community because it produces anarchy.

Only a leader who:

wants to share the success with his people,
realises the contribution of every individual member of the team and values it,
feels that he needs them and they need him
can put aside the ulterior motive to gain fame and credit all alone
can put aside his false ego and treat his people as humans and not machines

has controlled his own mind and senses
can celebrate diversity of his team mates and overlook deficiencies
is capable of involving everyone in the achievement of the final goal

can be a good team player.

In the ancient gurukulas, children from all background would render menial services to guru
together. A classical example is of Krishna and Sudama. They studied together, for a long time, in
the same ashram. Their backgrounds were diverse; Lord Krishna hailed from a royal family and
Sudama from a poor Brahmana family. They immensely enjoyed each others company and
developed deep bonds of friendship.

Emotional bonds develop with long association, and through sharing of common living conditions,
joys and adversities. In an organisation special efforts must be made to develop emotional bonds
amongst people, in a compressed period of time.

2.6. Connection between the eight attitudes of a Effective Leader

There is a deep proactivity and interactivity between all these abilities.

To listen we need to be available and to be available, we need to have interest in listening to
To be available, we need to be strong, which means to have tolerance. If our level of tolerance
is low, we will not make ourselves available. Even if we are physically present our mind will be
occupied with so many others things and we shall not listen, so we shall miss the information.
To have tolerance we need the ability to adapt. The one who is rigid breaks easily.
Again information increases our understanding that enhances the level of tolerance and we are
able to adapt at the right time, in the right place.
But in order to adapt in an accurate manner we need the discriminating ability so as to know
what to adapt, when to adapt and when to be firm.
The more we analyse and discriminate, the better decisions we take.
Taking decisions implies that we shall be responsible for the results of the decisions we have
Team spirit is based on shared responsibility and to function in a team we need the ability to
listen to all. It is only then that we get the co-operation of all.

Out of these eight abilities the first four abilities is what a leader has to be ready to listen,
available, tolerant, adaptable and the latter four abilities is what he has to do or perform
discriminate, make decisions, take responsibility for decisions, encourage team spirit.

It is not that the manager does not have these abilities. In fact, we all have these abilities but it
varies in degree as also the manner in which we function, clockwise or anti-clockwise. Thus it is
these qualities that enable a person to take up leadership and become a source of inspiration for
others as well.

For example, on Monday morning, when a manager is fresh and fine he works in a clock-wise
direction i.e., he is a good listener and keeps himself available to all, he has the strength to tolerate
and adapt himself, he discriminates and takes timely decisions and is there to take up the
responsibility and co-operate with all to create a team-spirit.

But on Friday evening after a stressful week, he starts functioning in an anti-clockwise manner. He
then expects others to listen to what he is saying and wants them to keep themselves available, he
expects others to tolerate and adapt to his conveniences, and further, he wants them to even
discriminate and take decisions and be responsible and co-operate. Sometimes within a day, there
are fluctuations in his state of mind and the way he functions, in the morning and during the day he
become impatient and starts functioning in an anti-clockwise direction. With rapid fluctuations in
ones state of mind and behaviour, people are not comfortable to work with such personalities.

A leader in any case should not fluctuate in his state of mind and behaviour. He should always
function in a clockwise direction. Thus he becomes a source of inspiration for others as well.

The purpose of self-management is to find a personal way to change and develop these abilities in
high degrees so that we do not fluctuate with the changing times but remain stable throughout the
week. In Srimad Bhagavatam it is said, yasyasti bhaktir bhagavaty akincana sarvair gunais tatra
samasate sura.. which means that one who surrenders to God in love and follows His instructions
faithfully and leads his life in accordance to scriptural injunctions with the aim of pleasing the
Supreme, such a person becomes endowed with all godly qualities; on the other hand one who is
not a devotee of God, he cannot possess genuinely any quality.

In the modern times, owners of multinational companies like Ford, Mafatlal, Desai exhibit the
qualities of a leader that we have discussed so far as they are great devotees of God.


Session 3: Proactive Leadership Part 1 (80 min)

3.1. Emotions that dictate our behaviour

One CEO of a manufacturing company flew into a tirade and shut everything down. His behavior
erupted. He screamed and swore, bellowing criticism at the top of his lungs. Four Vice Presidents
and eight board members and fourteen managers cringed sitting in rigid silence in their leather-
backed chairs. No one said anything. Not then. You could feel thing coming on. Everyone sensed
in hindsight. And none had a clue about how to stop it. Think back on your own experiences.
What might you have done differently to better manage the specific situation?

Let us consider an incident from the life of the great philosopher Socrates, that can throw some light
on this problem. Socrates used to spend hours in philosophical discussions with his friends in the
evening hours. During one such occasion, his wife, who was by nature quarrelsome, shouted at him
in front of all his friends about her usual chores of the imagined problems. Socrates continued
discussions with a cool head while his friends were a little taken over by anxiety. When Socrates
observed that his fellow mates are getting disturbed due to the rash behaviour of his wife, he
suggested them that they all better proceed to some park to continue the discussion. As soon as they
came out of the house, all of a sudden there was a downpour of bulk quantity of water from the top
right on the head and body of Socrates. Everyone was stunned to notice that it was Socrates wife
who went to the first floor to pour a bucket of water on his head as a display of her anger. No one
could steal the calmness of Socrates. He smiled and exclaimed, sometime ago, it was thundering
and now its raining. Thats all!

Socrates was not just a cool headed gentleman, but a great realised philosopher who was deeply
aware that he was not this material body. The body is just a covering upon the pure soul, the
spiritual personality. When Socrates was administered poison, he laughed at those who wanted to
kill him and said that they cannot even see him what to speak of capturing him or killing him!

How is it that even the most learned and educated are deceived and overpowered by such forces like
anger, lust, pride, greed, envy and illusion? The original nature of the soul is that of peace, love,
bliss, purity, wisdom and eternity. One who knows the knowledge of soul, God and the eternal
loving relationship between them, can never be bewildered by the pushings and pullings of mind
and senses.

While the scientists have hardly begun to understand these emotions that the living beings exhibit
and often arrive at wrong conclusions as to considering them to be merely some chemical secretions
in the body, authentic scriptures like Bhagavad gita and Vedic literatures give us a detailed account
of such behaviour. Not only do they explain the mechanism of such behaviour, but they offer us
tangible solution to how to go about modifying our behaviour, to become a better gentleman for the
benefit of home, nation and the world.

As pure spirit souls, we all belong to the spiritual realm endowed with pure spiritual emotions
towards the Supreme Personality of Godhead; but owing to the separate desire to lord over material
nature, we have come here to this material world. Here we are covered over by two material

coverings, gross and subtle to acclimatize ourselves to the material world. The Supreme Lord is
such a kind father, that he makes a suitable arrangement to help the souls fulfill their foolish desires
to enjoy the material world. In order to make this possible, He utilizes three potencies goodness,
passion and ignorance to condition them in a particular manner to allow them to fulfill their
desires. For example, a soul wants to taste stool and in order to do this abominable activity he is
endowed with a suitable body like that of a pig in mode of ignorance to appreciate stool. Another
soul wants to achieve fame as the one who possesses the tallest building and in order to do that he is
offered a body that can work hard to accomplish his goals.

3.1.1. How Would You React?

Let us take a simple situation to illustrate how these three modes are observed in people. Say
hundred people are sitting and watching a movie in a theatre and the fire alarm sounds. How do you
think all people will react?

Not all of them will react in the same manner.
People with passion dominating their minds jump up and begin to run around searching for a
fire extinguisher. Too much passion creates reliance on activity.
People with ignorance dominating their minds, panic and flee or faint because of dullness,
confusion and fearfulness.
People with goodness dominating their minds will calmly analyse the situation before acting and
attempt to create order in a potentially chaotic situation.

In the mode of goodness, one can see things in the right position, one can hear things in the right
position, and one can taste things in the right position. Sattva or goodness lends itself towards calm,
clear, creative thinking, a state of mind that allows one to find effective solutions to lifes problems.
One becomes cleansed inside and outside.

The lesser qualities of `rajas, passion can then be relied upon to implement these solutions and
`tamas ignorance to bring these activities to an end. An influence of too much passion and
ignorance can distort the naturally positive aspects of these supportive qualities and have a negative
impact on our lives. One in mode of passion is never satisfied with the position he has already
acquired; he hankers to increase his position. If he wants to construct a residential house, he tries
his best to have a palatial house, as if he would be able to reside in that house eternally. And he
develops a great hankering for sense gratification. He always wants to enjoy sense gratification
with family members and relatives.

One in the mode of ignorance does not work by a regulative principle. Even though he has the
capacity to work, he makes no endeavour.

Thus the souls or living entities conditioned by material nature are of various types. One is happy
(goodness), another is very active (passion), and another is helpless (ignorance).

3.2. Why am I bound?

The soul can be an eternal associate of the Lord in the Kingdom of God or can choose to be away
from the Lord under the control of Maha maya in this world. Everyone has to surrender to the Lord,

otherwise they will surrender to maya. This is natural. As soon as the rebellious living entity comes
in contact with the external energy (material world) he is caught up under the clutches of three
modes of material nature-- mode of Goodness, Passion, and Ignorance.

The material world, which is a perverted imitation of spiritual world, offers facility for the
conditioned soul to enjoy false society, false friendship and false love imagining it to be real. This
is made possible by the three modes. But once the living entity realises his suffering and surrenders
to the Lord, then the covering of maya is removed and he can understand his constitutional position
as eternal servant of the Lord.

3.2.1. Which Mode Am I situated in?

We can analyse anything and see the mode at work.

People, animals, plants and times of day, food, places
thinking, feeling, willing and acting; happiness and sadness; and
sacrifice, austerity, charity, renunciation, and knowledge

are all predominated by certain combinations of the modes of nature.

For example, you can compare the qualities of the three animals given below:

Elephant mode of goodness
Eats only fresh vegetarian food, grass
Large, strong and gentle
Because of its intelligence learns to work well with humans

Tiger mode of passion
Kills and eats flesh of other animals
Fierce, aggressive nature
Very restless

J ackal mode of ignorance
Rather than to seek its own food, it eats whatever is leftover after another animal has eaten
Tends to be fearful
Lazy animal
Nocturnal, shuns daylight

We can remember times in our lives when we have felt peaceful, clear headed and kind-hearted
towards all creatures, when the simple beauty of nature pleased us and we contemplated the purpose
of life. At other times, we have felt ourselves driven by a passionate desire to achieve something, to
prove something or to satisfy our senses at all costs. Sometimes we have merely felt like sleeping
without a goal or perhaps bewildered by an intoxicant.

When in the midst of such moods and feelings we may have felt: I am peaceful, I am burning
with desire, or I am fresh and full of energy, or, I am tired, or, I am happy, or, I am upset.
We go through our lives impelled by many different mixtures of emotions and feelings. Sometimes

we may look back and wonder: Why did I behave like that, or say those things, or think in that way
or react in such a bad manner? Sometimes we act logically and reasonably, and sometimes we are
over or under emotional behaviour that we may regret later.

3.3. Characteristics Of One In Mode
Goodness, Passion And Ignorance

Everyone in this world is born with certain propensities. Our propensities are determined by our
state of consciousness, our occupational capabilities and our spiritual orientation.

Those in the mode of goodness tend to be powerful through humility. They are clean, selfless,
pious, humanitarian, considerate, kind and pure. Those in the mode of passion tend to be selfish,
egoistic, extremely interested in attracting adoration, distinction, personal profit, greedy and lusty.
Those in the mode of ignorance are lazy, unclean, disturbing to others and even obnoxious. These
three principles, which are like ropes that bind every human being, govern each thought and action
and form the environment in the material world.

Most of embody a mixture of these attributes as various modes of nature work on our minds.
People are different in character, habits, needs and desires based on how they are influenced by the

3.3.1. MODE OF GOODNESS: A man in mode of goodness becomes wiser than others.
Because he leads life in accordance to injunctions of scriptures, he is not so much affected by
material miseries. He has a sense of advancement in material knowledge. He has a sense of
happiness because he is more or less free from sinful reactions. The representative type is a
Brahmana, who is supposed to be situated in the mode of goodness.

When a living entity is situated in goodness, he becomes conditioned to feel that he is advanced in
knowledge and is better than others. The best examples are the scientist, philosopher and poet.

Example Of A Family In Mode Of Goodness

Dr. and Mrs. Bright and their two children have a small home, just suitable to their needs, in a
peaceful country town. Dr.Bright is the local M.D., a thoughtful, qualified man, respected for doing
his job honestly and selflessly. His hobby: reading books of philosophy, poetry and science. Mrs.
Bright and the children (when the children aren't in school) farm and garden around the house and
care for the family cow. The Brights are mildly prosperous people who give thanks to God for the
things they have and take their religion as a serious duty. By almost anyone's standards, they would
have to be considered exceptionally pious. They don't gamble, and for them intoxicants are strictly
prohibited, they don't smoke, and not to speak of liquor, they don't even drink coffee or tea. Dr.
Bright has seen too many of his patients bring trouble to themselves through extramarital affairs, so
he has always been faithful to his wife; and she, too, has always been faithful to him. The Brights
decided long ago that killing animals is barbaric, so they never eat meat, fish, chicken or even eggs.
All in all, the Brights lead a clean, simple and happy life. But the Brights are conditioned by a sense
of happiness and knowledge. They are attached to their harmonious world. Therefore they are
bound by the mode of goodness.

3.3.2. MODE OF PASSION: The mode of passion is characterized by the attraction between
man and woman. Woman has attraction for man, and man has attraction for woman. This is
called the mode of passion. And when the mode of passion is increased, one develops the
hankering for material enjoyment. He wants to enjoy sense gratification. For sense gratification,
a man in the mode of passion wants some honour in society, or in the nation, and he wants to have
a happy family, with nice children, wife and house. These are the products of the mode of passion.
As long as one is hankering after these things, he has to work very hard. Therefore in order to
please his wife, children and society and to keep up his prestige, one has to work. A man in mode
of passion may be engaged in fruitive activity; he owns as much as he can and spends for good
causes. Sometimes he tries to open hospitals, give to charity institutions, etc for developing his
prestige and status in society. Therefore, the whole material world is more or less in the mode of
passion. Formerly, in the Vedic age, the society was considered to be mode of goodness.

Example Of A Family In Mode Of Passion

The Smiths, live in suburbs in a stylish home filled with modern conveniences. Each morning Larry
Smith gulps down breakfast in time to fight traffic to the office. There he sits all day dealing with
different "headaches", as he calls them. A hard job, but worth it, he figures, since it lets him afford
the luxuries he enjoys and still have some money left over for the stock market and some rather
shady business schemes he has going on the side. "Money is the honey", Larry says. Gloria, his
wife, wakes up in time to see that the two older children look decent (family prestige is important to
the Smiths) and sends them off to school. She spends most of her day with the baby ("the one we
didn't expect", says Larry). Either Gloria's in the house with the TV going, in the playground with
the other housewives and children, in the beauty salon, or (sometimes it seems like forever)
shopping. All day the Smiths are active, on the go. At night they relax, but sometimes their minds
are just so wound up that they can't get a good night's sleep. They squabble with each other, and
sometimes they are depressed, but as Larry jokingly philosophizes, "There is no problem so great
that sex can't solve it". On the weekends the Smiths make a show of being religious, but it is more
or less a social affair, since in fact they generally disregard the guidelines of their scriptures. This
family is typical of the mode of passion.

3.3.3. MODE OF IGNORANCE: The mode of ignorance is just the opposite of mode of
goodness. In mode of ignorance, one cannot understand what is what. A man in ignorance is very
lazy and has no interest for spiritual life. He is not even active like the man who is controlled by
the mode of passion. Hesleeps more than is required. Six hours of sleep is sufficient, but a man
in the mode of ignorance sleeps at least ten or twelve hours a day. Such a man always appears to
be dejected and is addicted to intoxicants and sleeping. In the mode of ignorance whatever one
does is good neither for him nor for anyone.

Example Of A Family In Mode Of Ignorance

The mode of ignorance is exemplified by the lives of J ohn Dull and Betty Grumble. They never got
married, but they live together, in squalor, in a cheap apartment in New York City. J ohn earns by
peddling drugs. Religion, they both decided long ago, is something they want no part of. They
spend their time sleeping (at least 10 or 12 hours a day) or else getting high on drugs, feasting on
beer and salami, and languishing in their apartment. For years they have dreamed about starting a
commune in Spain.

3.3.4. Is it not enough if I dont harm others and be good? Is it necessary to bring God into
my life?

Some people, What is the need of God? Why not just be a harmless person and be good to others?
Is it necessary to pursue a spiritual path? If you are good and even if you give uniforms to school
children you might be born to a textile mill owner in the next life, where youll have no dearth of
clothes. If you distribute water to thirsty passersby in summer, you may have 24 hrs water supply in
your apartment in the next life.

But one will have to be born to reap the good fruits, which also means one has to go to school or
college, get old, get diseased and die. While we have an opportunity to purify our heart and return
back to Gods kingdom, why should we plan to stay in this prison-like material world and suffer?

A good prisoner is kept in `A class prison where he can see TV, read newspaper, do typing,
maintain library etc., A medium prisoner may have to break stones and a murderer may be kept in a
strict solitary confinement shackled with strong chains. Only less intelligent prisoners desire transfer
to nicer prison cells where mattresses are cleaner and sinks have hot water. Intelligent prisoners
want freedom. Ultimately jail is a jail. We should transcend the three modes by becoming
devotees and return back home back to godhead.

If even one in the mode of goodness is bound in this way, what to speak of those in the lower
modes? Those in passion, like the Smiths, are bound by their attempts to satisfy their
uncontrollable hankerings and longings. And those in ignorance, like Mr.Dull and Miss Grumble,
are bound by madness, indolence and sleep.

Becoming karma-free actually means to become free from the influence of these modes. Our real
life is spiritual and so it is eternal, blissful and full of knowledge. Under the illusion of goodness,
however, we look for this reality in mundane learning and a feeling of material satisfaction; in
passion we seek it in sex and possessions; and in ignorance we seek it in sleep and intoxication.
Thus our pure spiritual nature is perverted by impure desires, born of the modes of nature. Still if
one should try to situate oneself in activities in mode of goodness and practice spiritual life to
transcend goodness.

3.4. Free Will And Destiny

If one is controlled by a particular mode, does that mean one is programmed to act in a particular
way? Somebody may blame destiny for his or her inability to progress in life and become better
people. It sometimes appears that our past conditionings like lust, pride, anger, illusion etc are so
prominent that they cover our Krishna consciousness. What hope is there for such persons?

3.4.1. Does Destiny Hamper Our Free Will?

The argument may be given that if a living entity were subject to the results of his previous
activities there would be no scope for free will; once having committed a sinful action, the living
entity would be bound in an endless chain of suffering, being perpetually subject to previous
reactions. According to this speculation there cannot be a just and omniscient God, since the living
entity is forced to commit sinful activities by the reactions of his previous activities, which were
reactions to still previous activities. Since even an ordinary gentleman will not unfairly punish an

innocent person, how could there be a God witnessing the helpless suffering of the conditioned
souls within this world?

This foolish argument can easily be refuted by a practical example. If I purchase a ticket for an
airline flight, board the plane and commence the flight, once the plane has taken off my decision to
board the plane forces me to continue flying until the plane lands. But although I am forced to
accept the reaction of this decision, on board the plane I have many new decisions I can make. I may
accept the food and drink from the stewardesses or reject it, I may read a magazine or newspaper, I
may sleep, walk up and down the aisle, converse with other passengers and so on. In other words,
although the general contextflying to a particular cityis forcibly imposed upon me as a reaction
to my previous decision to board the plane, even within that situation I am constantly making new
decisions and creating new reactions. For example, if I cause a disturbance on the airplane I may be
arrested when the plane lands. On the other hand, if I make friends with a businessman sitting next
to me on the plane, such a contact may lead to a favourable business transaction in the future. Thus
our destiny does not hamper our free will; rather a sincere devotee of God can easily overcome the
previous conditionings by humble surrender.

3.5. Leaders or Managers functioning in three modes

When a leader is situated in Ignorance

He feels tired all over.
He collapses in his chair/sofa at night.
His fatigue is mixed with nervousness, tension or anxiety.
He is not pleasant and often there is a sense of low esteem and of life being a burden.
Depression may be triggered or worsened.
He feels undesirable moods, negative thoughts and dysfunctional behaviour and takes drug or
alcohol to alter mood.

When a leader is situated in Passion

He has a stress-driven mood characterised by almost pleasant sense of excitement and power
His physical energy feels high, even though he may face high levels of stress or strain from long
hours of hectic schedule
In a tense energy state, he tends to impatiently push himself towards one objective after another
rarely pausing to rest or reflect.
His efforts are infused with a moderate to severe level of physical tension, which after a while
may be imperceptible to him.
Without realising it, by allowing this situation to persist, he blunts his ability to pay deep,
genuine attention to his own needs, other peoples needs, project needs and
He can suddenly wake up to find himself at the edge of burnout and exhaustion

When a leader is situated in Goodness,

He Feels low tension and high energy
He Feels remarkably serene and under control

He Replaces tense energy with an alert, more optimistic presence of mind, peaceful and
He experiences pleasurable body feelings, deep sense of physical stamina and well being.
He sees that his Mental and physical reserves are high
He experiences best combination of healthy vitality and increased creative intelligence
He feels a kind of flow state of relaxed alertness or mental and emotional overdrive
He gets an extra gear that allows you to do just as much or even more but with less struggle, less
wear and tear

3.6. Mode of goodness behavior

Fatigued people make errors, work slowly and less effectively and do things the long and routine
way and fail to see efficient short cuts. Without alertness, there is no attentiveness. Without
attentiveness, there is no performance.

A leader who desires smooth functioning has to cultivate mode of goodness behavior, as the
qualities mentioned above are desirable for efficiency and performance.

Everyone in this world is subjected to some stimulus or the other at different times. Between
stimulus and response is a human beings greatest power the freedom to choose. We may feel like
responding in a certain way but when we live our lives, close to our values, we can subordinate our
feelings to values. This will make us act responsibly. Look at the word response-ability the
ability to choose your response. A God conscious person never blames anything circumstances,
conditions or other people for his actions. He is aware that he has chosen to respond pro-actively
(based on chosen values) rather than re-actively (allowing the stimulus to dictate his response). It is
not what happens to us, but our response to what happens to us that hurts us.

When we study the behavior of leaders in different modes, we can easily see the behavior in mode
of goodness is desirable to be successful in the long run. Mode of passion is good to begin or
create, but in the long run one who lacks mode of goodness, leads him to burnout and concomitant
failure. Now, is it in our hands whether we want to be leaders in any one of these modes? Or every
one of us is like a programmed robot who functions according to our past life conditionings,
upbringing in childhood, our past good or bad association etc? Do we have freedom to decide how
we want to act? This question is the very essence of proactive behavior. Lord Sri Krishna
addresses this question in Bhagavad gita. One who is used to behaving in passion of ignorance may
ask, If my power of conditioning is tremendous, do I have any control over it? Do I have a chance
to become better? The answer according to Bhagavad gita is fortunately yes.

rga-dvea-vimuktais tu viayn indriyai caran
tma-vayair vidheytm prasdamadhigacchati

But a person free from all attachment and aversion and able to control his senses through regulative
principles of freedom can obtain the complete mercy of the Lord. (Bhagavad gita 2.64)

In order to be successful, one should give up all attachment to wrong things and aversion to the right
things. Scriptures explain that meat eating, gambling, intoxication and illicit sexual relations lead
one to degradation and plunge one in passion and ignorance. Watching Horror movies, seeing
pornographic pictures, taking intoxicants etc put our mind in turmoil and make us glide down to

lower nature. One who wants to become peaceful and happy should strenuously endeavor to give
up attachment to such unwanted things that produce no good, but unlimited suffering.

Generally people are lazy or sometimes even averse to the favorable things that are aiding supports
to Internal maturity & Peace of mind such as:

all those that enhance the mode of goodness:
satvik diet - fruits, milk, grains, cereals, vegetables, natural products, sanctified karma-free diet
satvik dress - simple dress that does not provoke passion
satvik environment - taking out time to meditate on God by chanting His names and being
contemplative about ultimate purpose of life
satvik association - company of saintly people, spiritual literatures like Bhagavad gita, Srimad
Bhagavatam, Mahabharata, Ramayana etc

Lord Krishna says that one should give up aversion for this type of right things that bring one to
mode of goodness. It is possible for every serious human being to elevate himself by his will power
and by taking shelter of God to come to the point of mode of goodness. This will make one very
efficient in day to day functioning as well as give opportunity for understanding the higher sublime
truths easily.

3.7. Meditation for the Modern Age

The most powerful tool that totally transforms the unwanted behaviour of a person (like converting
bell metal into gold by alchemy) is the chanting of the holy name of God. Many people want to
know some method to know and experience God. But often when it comes to surrender to God,
people tend to think of it to be some impossibility. There are various methods for God realisation.
In this age of Kali yuga, according to all the revealed Vedic literatures, the chanting of the Holy

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

is prescribed as the most sublime method for reviving our transcendental consciousness.

According to Dr.Herbert Benson, the Relaxation Response by a technique based on Western
relaxation methods, Eastern meditative practices and certain type of Prayers consisting of Four basic

1) a quiet environment
2) a comfortable position
3) the repetition of a prayer, chanting
4) a passive attitude free from thoughts

During meditation, the overall metabolism of the body slows markedly. For instance, heart and
breathing rates decrease blood flow to the muscles stabilizes, and blood pressure falls

In his doctorate thesis on Effects of the Hare Krishna mahamantra on Stress, Depression and the
three gunas Dr.David Brian Wolf mentions that by chanting Hare Krishna, persons who habitually

think depressing thoughts such as, I am worthless train themselves to replace these thoughts with
thoughts that are rewarding and supportive of self-esteem.

3.8. Circle of Concern and Circle of Influence

We have a wide range of concernsour health, our children, problems at work, the national debt,
nuclear war, global competition, economic recession, government policies, wrong attitudes,
assumptions etc. We could separate those from things in which we have no particular mental or
emotional involvement by creating a circle of concern.

As we look at those things within our Circle of Concern, it becomes apparent that there are some
things over which we have no real control and others that we can do something about. We could
identify those concerns in the latter group by circumscribing them within a smaller Circle of

By determining which of these two circles is the focus of most of our time and energy, we can
discover much about the degree of our proactivity (effectivity).

3.9. Proactive and Reactive Behavior

Proactive or effective people focus their efforts in the circle of influence. They work on the things
they can do something about. The nature of their energy is positive, enlarging and magnifying,
causing their circle of influence to increase.

Reactive people, on the other hand, focus their efforts in the circle of concern. They focus on the
weakness or faults of other people, the problems in the environment, and circumstances over which
they have no control. Their focus results in blaming and accusing attitudes, reactive language, and

increased feelings of victimisation. The negative energy generated by that focus, combined with
neglect in areas they could do something about, causes their circle of influence to shrink.

As long as we are working in our Circle of Concern, we empower the things within it to control us.
We are not taking the proactive initiative necessary to effect positive change. By working on
ourselves instead of worrying about conditions, we will be able to influence the conditions.

One way to determine on which circle our attention is focussed is to distinguish between the
HAVEs and the BEs. The circle of Concern is filled with the HAVEs :
If only I HAD a project that was as easy as that of others
If only I HAD respectful friends
If I could HAVE more time to myself

The Circle of Influence is filled with the BEs :
I can BE more patient, BE wise, BE loving. It is the character focus.

Anytime we think the problem is out there, that thought is the problem. We empower what is out
there to control us. The change paradigm is outside-in what is out there has to change before
we can change.

The proactive approach is to change from the inside-out: to be different, and by being different,
to effect positive change in what is out there I can BE more diligent, I can BE more creative, I can
BE more co-operative.

If I really want to improve my situation, I can work on the one thing over which I have control
myself. I can stop trying to shape up my wife/subordinate/friend and work on my own weaknesses.
I can focus on being a great partner, a source of unconditional love and support. Hopefully, that
person will feel the power of proactive example and respond in kind. But whether the other person
does or doesnt, the most positive way I can influence my situation is to work on myself, on my

There are so may ways to work in the Circle of Influence to BE a better listener, to BE more
loving marriage partner, to BE a better student, to BE a more cooperative and dedicated employee.
Sometimes the proactive thing we can do is to BE happy, just to genuinely smile.

3.10. Problem solving through mode of goodness behavior

We can apply this new ability of focussing on our area of influence when we deal with problems.
Whether a problem is direct, indirect, or no control, we have in our hands the first step to the
solution. Changing our habits, changing our methods of influence and changing the way we see our
no control problems are all within our circle of influence.

The Problems we face fall in one of the three areas:

Direct control problems involving our own behaviour
Indirect control problems involving other peoples behaviour
No control problems we can do nothing about such as weather, things of the past etc.

Direct control problems are solved by working to improve our own habits like avoiding being
aggressive, judgemental, making snap decisions without hearing both sides, downplaying, being
sarcastic, impatience in listening, being egomaniac etc. Dont argue for other peoples
weakness. Dont argue for your own. When you make a mistake, admit it, correct it, and learn
from itimmediately. Dont get into a blaming, accusation mode. Work on things you have
control over. Look at the weaknesses of others with compassion, not accusation. It is not what
they are not doing or should be doing that is the issue. The issue is your own chosen response to
the situation and what you should be doing. If you start to think the problem is out there stop
yourself. That thought is the problem.
Indirect control problems are solved by improving our methods of influence, thereby increasing
our circle of influence, (inside-out not outside-in) like Understanding the individual, paying
attention to details, keeping commitments, showing integrity, apologizing sincerely when we
commit mistakes and Clarifying expectations etc lead to a positive deposit in the emotional bank
of those who may cause us problems.
No control problems involve taking responsibility to change the line on the bottom of our face
to smile to genuinely and peacefully accept these problems and learn to live with them. There
are things beyond human control and one has no other refuge other than the Lord Himself who
is the source of everything.

One who acts proactively can appreciate the prayer, O Lord, give me the courage to change the
things which can and ought to be changed, the serenity to accept the things which cannot be
changed, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Focussing on our area of concern will do little or nothing to alleviate the problem. Concentrating
our energies on those things within our circle of influence will help us to become a part of the
solutions to problems gradually increasing our circle of influence.

Also we can work on Quadrant two (not urgent but important) problems in a regular manner to not
allow them to turn into crisis Improving communication with people, Better preparation, Better
planning and organizing, Taking better care of self, Seizing new opportunities, Personal
development, Preventive maintenance, Empowerment etc.


Session 4: Proactive Leadership Part 2 (80 min)

After learning Proactive behaviour, here in this section we are going to learn how to apply in
practical situations and dealings with different people.

We should learn to respect and value every employee because:
They are part-and-parcel of God
They are working for the companys mission; our behaviour can encourage them or discourage
them and that will enhance or decrease their contribution to the mission of the company.
They need us and we need them; imagine living in a forest or desert.
Our behaviour should not make them lose self-respect, respect for their job, institution.

Thus being sensitive to others feelings means to speak and act in such a thoughtful way that will not
hurt other devotees (according to time place and circumstance, adapting oneself intelligently
without compromising on the policies and principles of the company).

4.1. Let us not hurt them, let us heal them if theyre sick

4.1.1. Moody leader

The employees expect a steadiness in the behaviour of their boss. Sri Krishna calls it sthairyam in
Bhagavad gita. One should be equipoised in success and failure. One should not think oneself high
or give credit to oneself in success and not dump the blame on others and criticise the subordinates
in failure.

People dont like bosses whom they have to dread dealing with when he is in a bad mood, or hold
back questions or information until he comes to a good mood.

Moodiness truly hurts the atmosphere of a business or of a relationship, as does the loss of temper
by a boss or leader. Too often what is said during anger is something we regret when our emotions
are calmed down.

4.1.2. Do not hold grudges; it is mental cancer; maintain a positive attitude

Outstanding leaders do not hold grudges. There are many people carrying heavy emotional baggage
because of grudges of the past. The best leaders are able to let go of that negativity.

Perhaps the biggest challenge all of us face today is that there is so much negative news it is
sometimes tough to keep a positive outlook. Its probably a good idea to incorporate into your
regular activities to avoid TV, newspaper etc as far as possible.

One of the greatest coaches in college basketball history was J ohn Wooden. A saying of his was,
Dont let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. He focused this positive mental
attitude on the practice floor as well as during the game. He did not talk about winning but

concentrated on intensity, trying hard and doing your best. His positive approach led his teams at
UCLA to a record 10 championships. This is the art of Do your best and leave the rest to God.

Recently Fortune magazine did a survey and found that 94% of the Fortune 500 leaders attribute
their success to a positive mental attitude.

4.1.3. Dont delight in abuse; give them a chance to improve

A compassionate leader smiles, is friendly and really cares bout the employees. This attitude is
received like a signal by the employees and passed down to other visitors who receive warm,
sincere smiles. But when the leader takes delight in abusing his employees and instilling fear
throughout the ranks, then the employees pick up the same mood and thus the spirit of the company
is killed.

Discipline must be reasonable, not emotional, and balanced by the use of positive reinforcement for
good efforts and results. It is also important that after you have disciplined someone, you give them
some space and time to work on the areas you talked about. It is said, Do not criticize someone for
being dirty while he is taking a bath. In many companies, one of the deep concerns the employees
express is that the leaders continued to discipline them while they were taking a bath. Such
leaders show no recognition for the improvements the employees make or their sincere efforts to
improve, but would continue to discipline them in the same area.

It is worth noting that anything that produces strong feelings of fear tends to kill ideas, undermines
confidence, for example, fear of criticism, ridicule, failure, yelling bosses, being fired etc.

Thus in order to be sensitive to peoples feelings one has to act maturely according to time, place
and circumstances and not impose right rules at the wrong time. When somehow or other one
behaves insensitively towards another, the next step is the arousal of anger which can escalate into
rage and hostility between the parties. In a team, we have to be extremely careful about this,
otherwise you will see the newcomers to company who will lose faith in the company and go away,
seeing the tussle between seniors. Also if there are fights between senior members, that will only
weaken our efforts in propagating the mission of the company.

4.2. Capturing the Constructiveness of Anger

Every feeling is a signal. It signifies that something you value is being called into question or there
is an opportunity to be seized.

Anger is a inner voice that shouts, pleads, compels and demands:

(E.g.) Hes a kid who came yesterday. Why is he speaking as if he knows better than me?
Why did my boss appreciate him publicly, but totally ignoring me?
Why do my subordinates not understand and accept my viewpoint?

Anger is meant to be respected and acted upon; not acted out, or escalated into rage and hostility.

If we happen to overreact to anger or any other feeling, we are being driven by impulse.

If we ignore the call of feelings the energy of these intuitive feelings does not vanish; it builds up.
And then, often, at the most inappropriate moment, it takes over.

We blow up; we `lose it often over something petty.

(E.g.) You were always envious of me from the beginning!
You dont like to see me prospering in my field!
If you were smart, you would have realised how intelligent am I
Why are you cribbing? If you really understood the things the way I do, you would not.
If he told I am not so great in my field, then he is a fool number one. He doesnt know who am I
I have never committed mistakes, because I have 30 years experience in this field!

In many cases we are consumed by damage control spending large amounts of time trying to :
mend fences, make apologies, wrestle with guilt and regret. It distracts us. We all lose.

4.2.1. Observing and managing our emotions and behaviour: Danger of impulsive behaviour

We all feel oftentimes a compulsion to speak or act in inappropriate or hurtful ways due to:
Irritations when we hear something unpalatable or against our self-image
Fatigue-driven frustrations due to tension and tiredness
In either case, we have to manage our response as soon as we feel the first surge of impulse by
redirecting our attention in some constructive direction.

If we dont manage the sudden waves of feeling, impulsivity can undermine our relationships and

A practical historical story is given below. And appropriate lessons added in between: The great devotee King Ambarish and Durvasa muni

Once upon a time there lived a great king named Ambarish. He was an exalted devotee of Lord Krishna and
celebrated for his great merits. He achieved complete perfection in his life by engaging all his senses in the
service of Lord Krishna

Maharaj Ambarish the most fortunate personality achieved the rule of the entire world, achieved inexhaustible
unlimited opulence and prosperity on earth. Although such a position is rarely achieved yet he did not care for
it at all, for he knew that all such opulence is material. Like that which is imagined in a dream, such opulence
will ultimately be destroyed.

Lesson: A leader is never proud of his position rather he considers that post as a facility to serve others.
Thus he engages in others welfare.

Maharaj Ambarish was a great devotee of supreme Lord Vasudeva and of the saintly people who are the
devotees of the Lord. Because of this devotion he thought entire universe as being an insignificant as being
as insignificant piece of stone.

Maharaj Ambarish engaged his mind in meditating on the lotus feet of Krishna, his words in describing the
glories of the Lord, his hands in cleansing the Lords temple and his ears in hearing words spoken by Krishna
or about Krishna. He engaged his eyes in seeing the Deity of Krishna, Krishnas temples and Krishnas

places like Mathura and Vrindavan, he engaged his sense of smell in smelling the fragrance of tulasi offered
to the Lord and engaged his tongue in tasting the Lords prasada. He engaged his legs in walking to the holy
places and temples of the Lord, his head in bowing before the Lord, and all his desires in serving the Lord 24
hours a day. Indeed Maharaja Ambarish never desired anything for his own sense gratification (enjoyment).
He engaged all his senses in devotional service in various engagements related to the Lord. This is the way
to increase attachment for the Lord..

Lesson: A saintly king understands himself to be a servant of the Lord and does not consider himself to be
the supreme controller. In this way, by rendering service to God in various ways, he gives up his false ego
and lives for the benefit of others. Similarly a leader should never consider himself up in the clouds; he
should consider himself one amongst the members of his company working for the same mission but offered
a post for greater service.

In performing his prescribed duties as king Maharaj Ambarish always offered the results of his royal activities
to the supreme personality of Godhead, Krishna. He certainly took advice from Brahmans who were faithful
devotees of the Lord.

Lesson: A leader needs good advisors and experts in various fields and a leader does not consider that a
humiliation to his talents. In the Vedic times the Brahmanas, who spent their time in spiritual contemplation,
could often see beyond the swirling waters of politics to more essential principlesthe principles that go
beyond material conceptions. They were the carriers of spiritual tradition. Today, we see quite a different
model. Humanity has changed the system so that the masters of coercion and manipulation become
leaders. People today are more prone to use the power of personality (might is right) than the power of soul

The citizens of the state of the King were accustomed to chanting and hearing about glorious activities of
Lord. Thus they never aspired to be elevated to the heavenly planets, which are extremely dear even to the
demigods. They were always happily situated.

Leader: When the leaders as well as the employees have mutual respect and love for one another that
sprouts from love for God, then in such a situation everyone can be happy. Any amount of material
adjustment using intellectual manipulation or incentives is unable to keep people happy and motivated as
such an effort is on the material realm.

To worship Lord Krishna Ambarish Maharaj observed Ekadashi and Dvadashi vow for one year, after bathing
in Yamuna, Maharaj Ambarish worshipped Lord in Madhuvan. Then he did Abisheka (bathing) dressing of
the Lord attentively and worshipped brahamanas and gave charity to them and guests. He was then about to
observe end of Ekadashi with their permission when Durvasa Muni arrived.

After standing to receive Durvasa, King Ambarish offered him a seat and paraphernalia for worship. Then
sitting at his feet he requested him to eat. Durvasa gladly accepted but he went to perform regulative rituals in
Yamuna. He dipped into water and performed meditation. Meanwhile only little time remained to break
Ekadashi, so it was important to be broken immediately and he consulted brahmanas. Ambarish said: to
transgress the laws of respect to Brahmans is offence but if one does not break fast within time of Dvadashi
there is flaw in its observance. Hence O Brahmans if you think it will be auspicious and not irreligious. I shall
break fast by drinking water. Drinking water is considered eating and not eating or breaking the fast and at
the same time not eating.

So he drank some water and meditated on Lord and waited for Durvasa who could understand by mystic
power that Ambarish has drunk water without his permission. Durvasa angrily spoke to Ambarish. Alas just
see the behaviour of this cruel man. He is not a devotee of Vishnu. Being proud of his position, he considers
himself God. J ust see how he has transgressed the laws of religion. You have invited me to eat but you ate
yourself first, so I shall show you something to punish you. Uprooting a bunch of hair from his head, he
created a demon resembling the fire of devastation to punish him. Taking the trident in his hand and making
the surface of earth tremble the demon came before the king.

Lesson: Durvasa became unnecessarily disturbed by a small apparent mistake of the king and overly
reacted in return. Being too critical brings about ruin. Taking extreme ends without having a balanced
approach has always caused problems in this world, e.g. Hitler, Stalin etc.


But the king upon seeing him was not at all disturbed and did move even slightly from his position. As the fire
in the forest burns the snake similarly by the order of the supreme Lord His disk, Sudarshan Chakra,
immediately burnt to ashes the demon to protect the Lords devotee.

Lesson: A Leader neither becomes critical towards those who fall short of his expectations, who are
irresponsible, lazy, whimsical nor does be retaliate upon someone who finds fault with him. He simply tries to
find out the best course of action that will bring good for everyone. Here king Ambarish took shelter of the
Lord, being His great devotee. All great leaders like Yudhistir, Arjun, Parikshit, Gandhi, Mother Teresa have
the habit of praying to the Lord for everyones well being in danger. After all Lord is our nearest friend and

Then it started chasing Durvasa who tried hiding in Sumeru Mountain cave, in the sky, on the earth, inside
ocean, in different planets, even heavenly planets- but everywhere he saw the unbearable fire of the Chakra
following. Finally he approached Brahma in the Brahmaloka who said: we are all surrendered to the
supreme Lord Vishnu and carry out His orders for living entities benefit. So I cannot help you. Then he went
to Shiva at Kailash who said: we cannot compete with the supreme Lord who creates and annihilates
millions of universes. This Chakra is intolerable so please approach Supreme Lord.

Lesson: Once a hunter releases the arrow from his bow, it cannot be taken back. Similarly speech or action
done in rage or anger will carry its consequences and one has to be prepared to bear the consequences. At
least one should contemplate on the future consequences of such angry behaviour before one releases
words or acts out of rage.

So he went to Vaikuntha and surrendered to the supreme Lord asking for protection. I have offended your
devotee. Kindly save me from the reaction of this offence.

The Lord said: I am completely under the control of my devotee. I sit only in the core of their hearts. Even
devotee of my devotee is very dear to me.

He told Durvasa to take shelter of Ambarish Maharaj. He immediately approached him and being very
harassed by the Chakra fell down and clasped the Kings lotus feet.

Ambarish Maharaj felt embarrassed and started offering prayers to the Sudarshan Chakra. O most favourite
of Achyuta, you have thousands of spokes, O master of all worlds and destroyer of all weapons, original
vision of supreme Lord I offer my obeisances to you. Kindly give shelter and be auspicious to this Brahmana.
Being satisfied from the prayers, Sudarshan stopped burning Durvasa who praised the qualities of Maharaj

Lesson: An ideal leaders formula is: Forgive and Forget. He only wishes well for others.

Ambarish Maharaj had not taken his food for one-year living only on water. He fell at the feet of Durvasa and
requested him to take food. After Durvasa took food he requested the king also to eat. Durvasa heartily
glorified the king and the path of pure devotional service.

Lesson: Maintaining a cool head certainly pays unlimited returns. It keeps us cool, and it transforms the
heart of others. What more is required?

If I took responsibility for every feeling I experience and for every word I utter,

What was your answer?

Id have to be more alert and aware.
Id probably be taken more seriously.
Id be more accountable.

Id have to put all my values into practice.
Id make fewer snap judgements that end up being wrong.
Id have to be more emotionally honest.
Id have to pay more attention.
I wouldnt do or say hurtful or shortsighted things.

Ask yourself: Why am I disappointed? It might be that another devotee caused you pain or you
yourself committed a mistake due to which your heart feels pain. Take steps so that it does not
happen again.

(E.g.) I was disappointed that I was not given promotion this time although Im qualified
I feel upset at the way you spoke to him/her about me yesterday
Im angry at myself for completely forgetting this commitment I made last month.

4.3. Constructive Criticism: How to give it?

Inability to communicate properly leads to many wrong notions: misunderstanding, extrapolating,
rumour mongering, undermining intentions, rebelling against authority etc.


In your company, there is a start-off meeting for a new upcoming project on the First
Monday afternoon of every month. You are the Project Leader and Mr. Ravi is one of your
team members but is senior enough to play a key role in all the projects. In the past 2
meetings he had either come one hour late or missed it. You are totally upset with Mr.
Ravi as projects are stuck up without him. You want to call Mr. Ravi and tell him.

How will you handle the problem?

EPM formula to keep yourself in control:
(Empathize, Pinpoint, Move forward)

Empathize - see the problem from the other persons viewpoint for co-operation. What am I
going to get out of this criticism? What to accomplish?

(E.g.) Dear Ravi, I wonder youd some busy engagement after lunch that we missed
you in our project start-off meeting.

Pinpoint - Stick to the issues/specifics/fact; attack the problem, not the person. Being specific
leaves us something to work with and no ambiguity.

(E.g.) This project is offered by the London company and youve a key role to play in that. At the
start-off meeting we discussed how the whole thing is going to be co-ordinated and completed
before the deadline

Move forward - Open a discussion or negotiation (dont give instruction) and co-operatively go

(eg) Since we take up new project every month, and we missed you for the past two
start-off meetings that were held after lunch, I wonder how we go ahead without your
contribution in the first meetings.

Between Empathizing and Pinpointing, dont use `but it cancels empathy.

Tact is the art of pinpointing problem without criticizing.

4.4. Constructive Criticism: How to take it?

When criticised, we show Fight/Flight response, which means striking back or running away. For

Fight response: Who are you to give me idea in quality control of which you have no experience?
Mind your own business.

Flight response: Dont say anything to me. I have not been a university topper like you during
my college days and I am simply a muff. Thats all.

Leaders who are defensive by nature:
Lose opportunities for growth, because nobody will dare to point out their mistakes
Make others fearful and covered and so lose friendship
Will be seen as proud and nobody will want to be with them
Imagine themselves to be always correct and so are often frustrated

If someone criticizes you, it could be:
A factual criticism out of concern for you
Misunderstanding due to varied perception
Unresolved relationship

How should we react when we receive a criticism from someone?

1) Anticipate - Dont take it personally; Professional way of taking criticism is to see it as an for
opportunities for learning. What can I learn from this criticism?

2) Ask questions - Help criticizer with communication (be specific, give examples). Face the
criticism by eye contact and not shy away. How could have I done it better? What can I do
dutifully next time?

3) Agree with something - general principle or fact in a constructive term (for common
ground). If I do this much, will that be alright for you?

4) Analyze - carefully weigh taking some time to review criticism

The solution is Active Listening. Consider what it feels like when other people, especially ones you
care about or those who are important to your devotional service arent listening to what you have to
say. The sense that youre not being heard or understood is both painful and discouraging. Thats
why an attentive ear and an open heart are, when applied together such a powerful force in
relationships. Say,

Please help me understand. Tell me more.
What are your feelings and ideas about
What matters the most to you about

If we learn the habit of giving compliments to others always, over a period of time it will become a
positive habit, which is very favourable to devotional service. We should give constructive
criticism only if we are put in a authoritative position or when we are very close friends with
another and the person is eager to know and correct himself/herself.

How could Mr. Ravi take the criticism?

If you were raised in a home where the first response to anger was to scream and blame that may be
your default option for your entire life; but you can LEARN to

1) Listen, Clarify, Value
Sir, you told me that I missed the last two meetings and the recent ones in which the London
project was discussed. I wish I never missed any of them; by the way I was given a different duty by

2) Stand up and Step forward
When I was called for that another duty what should I have done Sir? Probably I should have
informed you in advance about it...

3) Learn and Innovate
How can I become more responsible? Unfortunately it has happened twice. When two superiors
offer me jobs, how can I manage? Let me find out

4) Consider, Remember, Empathize
Certainly my bosss idea must have some meaning.
He told me a couple of months ago, not to take two jobs at a time
I can understand how much he must be put in problem because of me

5) Change and Motivate
Now I am going to act like this as per his direction.

4.5. Meditation for the Modern Age

All above methods can help one situate oneself in mode of goodness. While living a life in mode of
goodness in this world, we need a method to get in close touch with God, to perceive His love and
friendship that He is offering us, be able to cherish it and be nourished by it, so that all our lower
animalistic tendencies die off. By this we can go out of this world, back home back to Godhead.

Many people want to know some method to know and experience God. But often when it comes to
surrender to God, people tend to think of it to be some impossibility. There are various methods for
God realisation. In this age of Kali yuga, according to all the revealed Vedic literatures, the
chanting of the Holy names:

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare
Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

is prescribed as the most sublime method for reviving our transcendental consciousness.


Session 5: Time Management Part 1 (80 min)

5.1. Introduction to Time Management: Book of Life

Are you aware that the autobiography of each one of us our own book of life
is being written on the pages of time? Every day is a page. Every year is a

Examine the chapters that have already been written. Do they reveal a
person who has been kind, serene, humane, secure, cheerful, generous,
helpful, self-confident, humble, godly, sacrificing? Or a person who has been
unkind, intolerant, petty, greedy, egoist, jealous, insecure, fearful, always

Does your book of Life satisfy you, or would you wish to suppress it? Read
quietly, sensitively, the pages already written. Are you pleased with those
pages? Or are you ashamed? Have you known yourself through self-
observation or have you lived your life mechanically, selfishly, in a disorderly
way, blind to your own habits and characteristics?

Will you improve the chapters that are to follow? Will you make the ending
better than the beginning?

Visualize your thoughts being recorded in your Book of Life. See your words
and deeds and relationships being inscribed on its pages. Moment by
moment, the story of your life is being written. If you are quietly, objectively
alert, you can observe your thoughts and actions. As skill in self-observation
improves, self-knowledge increases then one can ascertain causes and
consequences of ones action. This makes us aware of which action is the
right one for us. Right action has to take place here and now not some time
in the future. Thus, ultimately, perceptive insight itself results in the right
action at the right moment.

Hence, irrespective of circumstances, you have the potential ability to act right
now, with self-respect and honor, becoming worthy of the Gift of Life. This
ability operates when self-observation and self-awareness flower into zeal
that changes ones life radically.

Then, there is nobility in the little things of everyday life. You say kind
words, meet difficulties with courage, stand up for the right, and keep your

word. You care for people. You become a giver instead of a taker, a builder
instead of a destroyer. With a heart that is a receptacle of Gods love and
mercy, you receive qualities such as calmness, kindness, selflessness,
abundant love and serenity and distribute the same all around.

It is your own Life. It is up to you to write it as you will. Day by day your
book grows towards the completed volume of your life. You cant do anything
about what you have already written. But, look at these white pages ahead!
They invite you to make the rest of the chapters deeply satisfying by acting
rightly in the present. The potential is within you. Make it a fine piece of

The following sheets have to be photocopied and given to students a week before the
program; they have to go through the exercise, contemplate, write answers and submit it
to the teacher. Depending on the time availability after the program, the answers could
be discussed.


Activity 5 minutes

We give meanings to words and terms from our own perceptions based on our experience. For
some, the phrase Managing Time may mean becoming a Time Nut or always looking at the
watch, or becoming over-organized. For some others, it may mean making effective use of time.

What do YOU understand by the phrase Managing Time? In the space below, write down what
YOU understand by the term:

Time Management

Activity 5 minutes

Rewrite the ones given on the left by accepting ownership of the use of time by you:

Incorrect Language Correct Language
Where has the time gone? How did I use my time?
It was such a waste of time
The time just flew past.
(He) They took up so much of my time.
Where has the day gone?
It is a way of killing time.
He swallowed all my day today when I tried to
convince him of my viewpoint.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Working smart means organizing yourself, so that you invest your time on value-added activities.
Spoken words, sped arrow, time spent do not come back.

There are three types of demand on your time.



PLANNING: is organizing
DOING: is carrying out the plan as decided
INTERACTING: is working with other people

What is your Style?

PLUS =You are Strong MINUS =You need improvement

Encircle your Style


Am I a PLUS Time Manager or a MINUS Time Manager ?
You are a plus time Manager, if you had two or more plus

+ + + You are a balanced person
+ + - You do your own things well
- + + You do others priorities well
+ - + You have good intentions, but no work done.

You are a minus time Manager, if you had two or more minuses

+ - - Unrealistic dreamer
- + - You are on a treadmill
- - + Delightful person, but incompetent
- - - Neither delightful nor competent

a) Are you a PLUS or a MINUS time manager?
b) Does it tally with what others think of you?


How wisely do you manage your time?

1 Do you write daily to-do lists?
2 Do you prioritise your to-do lists according to which
items have the highest payoff for you?

3 Do you finish all the items on your to-do list?
4 Do you up-date in writing your professional and personal

5 Is your desk clean and organised?
6 Do you put everything in its place?
7 Do you deal effectively with interruptions?
8 Can you easily find items in your files?
9 Are you assertive?
10 Do you allow yourself quiet time during which you can
work undisturbed everyday?

11 Do you deal effectively with long-winded callers?
12 Do you focus on preventing problems before they arise
rather than solving them after they happen?

13 Do you make the best use of your time?
14 Do you meet deadlines with time to spare?
15 Are you on time to work, to meetings and to events?
16 Do you delegate well?
17 Do subordinates co-operate enthusiastically on projects
you assign them?

18 When you are interrupted, can you return to your work
without losing momentum?

19 Do you do something every day that moves you closer to
your long-range goals?

20 Can you relax during your free time without worrying
about work?

21 Do people know the best time to reach you?
22 Do you do your most important work during your peak
energy hours?

23 Can others carry on most of your responsibilities if you
are absent from work?

24 Do you begin and finish project on time?
25 Do you handle each piece of paperwork only once?

Your score: Give yourself 4 points for every OFTEN you ticked, 2 points for every SOMETIMES,
0 points for every RARELY. Add your points together and compare yourself with the scale below:

81-100 : You manage your time very well. You are in control of most situations.

61-80 : You manage your time well some of the time. However you need to be more
consistent with the timesaving strategies you are using already.

41-60 : You are slipping. Dont let circumstances get the better of you. Begin principle
centred proactive approach to activities.

21-40 : You are losing control. You are probably too disorganised to enjoy any
quality time. Implement the ideas you learnt.


If working harder, smarter, and faster wont solve it, what will?

Have you ever faced any of the following situation?

I need more time!
I want to enjoy my life more. Im always running around. I never have time for myself.
My friends and family want more of me but how do I give it to them?
I am always in crisis because I postpone, but I postpone because I am always in crisis.
Theres too much stress!
Theres too much to doand its all-good. How do I choose?

Traditional time management suggests that by doing things more efficiently youll eventually gain
control of your life, and that increased control will bring the peace and fulfillment youre looking
for. Is it true?

We are constantly making choices about the way we spend our time, from the major seasons to the
individual moments in our lives. We are also living with the consequences of those choices whether
we like or not.

5.3. The Clock and the Compass

The clock represents our commitments, appointments, schedules, goals, activities what we do with
and how we MANAGE our time.

The Compass represents our vision, values, principles, mission, conscience, direction what we
feel is important and how we LEAD our lives.

Often we sense a gap between the Clock and the Compasswhen what we do does not contribute
to what is most important in our lives. Some of us feel empty. We have defined happiness solely in
terms of professional or financial achievement, and we find that our success did not bring us the
satisfaction we though it would. We have painstakingly climbed the ladder of success rung by
rungthe diploma, the late nights, the promotions only to discover as we reached the top rung
that the ladder is leaning against the wrong wall.

Some of us know we are out of balance, but we dont have confidence in other alternatives. Or we
feel the cost of change is too high. Or we are afraid to try. Its easier to just live with the

5.3.1. Wake up Calls

We may be brought to an awareness of this gap between the clock and the compass in a dramatic
way. A loved one dies. We may find our younger brother on drugs. Pictures flood our minds
times we could have spent through the years doing things together, sharing, building
relationship. But didnt because we were too busy earning a living, or too busy climbing the
ladder of success.

The company is downsizing and job is on the line. Or our doctor tells us we have just a few months
to live. Or our marriage is threatened by divorce. Some crisis brings us to an awareness that what
we are doing with our time and what we feel is deeply important dont match.

In the absence of such wake up calls many of us never really confront the critical issues of life.
Instead of looking for deep chronic causes, we look for quick fix band-aids and aspirin to treat the
acute pain. Fortified by temporary relief, we get busier and busier doing good things and never
even stop to ask ourselves if what were doing really matters most.

5.4. The Three generations of Time Management

First generation: It is based on how to try to keep track of things you want to do with your time
write your report, attend the meeting, fix the car, clean out the garbage etc. This generation is
characterized by simple notes and checklists. If youre in this generation, you carry these lists with
you and refer to them so you dont forget to do things. Hopefully, at the end of the day, youve
accomplished many of the things that you set out to do and you can check them off your to do list.
If those tasks are not accomplished, you put them on your list for tomorrow. Thus there is a
recognition and inclusiveness to the many demands placed on our time energy.

Second generation: This generation is one of planning and preparation. It is characterized by
Calenders and Appointment books. Its efficiency, personal responsibility and achievement in goal
setting, planning ahead, and scheduling future activities and events. If youre in this generation, you
make appointments, write down commitments, identify deadlines, and note where meetings will be
held. You may even keep this in some kind of computer or network. This reflects an attempt to
look ahead, to schedule events and activities in the future.

Third generation: The third generation approach is planning, prioritizing and controlling. If
youre in this generation, youve probably spent some time clarifying your values and priorities.
Youve asked yourself, What do I want? Youve set long-, medium-, and short-range goals to
obtain these values. You prioritize your activities on a daily basis. This generation is characterized
by a wide variety of Planners and Organizerselectronic as well as paper basedwith detailed
forms for daily planning, of making a specific plan to accomplish those goals and activities
determined to be of greatest worth.

In someway, these three generations of time management have brought us a long way toward
increased effectiveness in our lives. Such things as efficiency, planning, prioritization, values
clarification, and goal setting have made a significant positive difference.

But the gap remains between whats deeply important to them and the way they spend their time.
We are getting more done in less time, people are saying, but where are the rich relationships,
the inner peace, the balance, the confidence that were doing what matters most and doing it well?

While third generation has made a significant contribution, people have begun to realize that
efficient scheduling and control of time are often counterproductive:
a) The efficiency focus creates expectations that clash with the opportunities to develop rich
relationships, to meet human needs, and to enjoy spontaneous moments on a daily basis.
b) The planners make people feel too scheduled, too restricted and turns off people who throw
the baby out with the bath water reverting to first or second generation techniques to
preserve relationships, spontaneity and quality of life.

But there is an emerging Fourth generation that is different in kind. It recognizes that time
management is really a misnomerthe challenge is not to manage time, but to manage ourselves.
Satisfaction is a function of expectation as well as realization. And expectations (satisfaction) lie in
our Circle of Influence.

Rather than focusing on THINGS and TIME, fourth generation expectations focus on preserving
and enhancing RELATIONSHIPS and on accomplishing RESULTS in short, on maintaining P/PC

5.5. P/PC balance

Most people think that the more you produce the more you effective you are. For example a person
in charge of a physical asset such as a machine may be eager to make a good impression on his
superiors. Perhaps the company is in a rapid growth stage and promotions are coming fast. So he
produce at optimum levelsno downtime, no maintenance. He runs the machine day and night.
The production is phenomenal, costs are down, and profits skyrocket. Within a short time, he is

But suppose you are his successor on the job. You inherit a worn out machine, which, by this time,
is rusted and starts to break down. You have to invest heavily in downtime and maintenance. Costs
skyrocket; profits nose-dive. And you get blamed. Your predecessor liquidated the asset, but the
accounting system only reported unit production, costs and profit.

Thus the effectiveness lies in the balance of PRODUCTION (P) of desired results and the
PRODUCTION CAPABILITY (PC), the ability or asset that produces the desired results.

This P/PC balance can be easily understood by the fable of the goose and the golden egg - a poor
farmer, who one day discovers in the nest of his pet goose, a glittering golden egg. At first, he
thinks it must be some kind of trick. Day after day, he awakens to rush to the nest and find another
golden egg. He becomes fabulously wealthy and it all seems too good to be true. But with his
increasing wealth comes greed and impatience. Unable to wait day after day for the golden eggs,

the farmer decides to kill the goose and get them all at once. But when he opens the goose he finds
it empty. There are no golden eggsand now there is no way to get any more.

If you adopt a pattern of life that focuses on golden eggs and neglect the goose, you will soon be
without the asset that produces golden eggs. On the other hand, if you only take care of the goose
with no aim toward the golden eggs, you soon wont have enough to feed yourself or the goose.
Effectiveness lies in the balance of P/PC.

5.5.1. Three kinds of Assets

When you use a saw over and over again, without sharpening the teeth due to laziness or lack of
time, you will reduce the efficiency of the job as well as incur a serious loss. Such Physical Assets
like car, computer, washer or dryer, even our body or our environment should not be ruined for
short-term returns or results. Keeping P and PC balance makes a tremendous difference in the
effective use of PHYSICAL ASSETS.

There are organizations that talk a lot about the customer and then completely neglect the people
that deal with the customerthe employees. The PC principle is to always treat your employees as
you want them to treat your best customers. You can buy a persons hand, but you cant buy his
heart. His heart is where his enthusiasm, his loyalty is. You can buy his back but you cant buy his
brain. Thats where his creativity is, his ingenuity, his resourcefulness. PC work is treating
employees as volunteers just as you treat customers as volunteers, because thats what they are.
They volunteer the best parttheir hearts and minds. Working in the mode of shape up or ship
out leads to turnover, and absenteeism. Thus while the employees are the PC their service to the
company in dealing favorably with the customers leading to the betterment of the company is the
golden eggs, P. This should be remembered with respect to HUMAN ASSETS.

Children are very little and dependent. It becomes so easy to neglect the PC workthe training, the
communicating, the relating, the listening. It is easy to take advantage, to manipulate, to get what
you want the way you want itright now! So just why not tell them what to do? If necessary yell
at them or insist on your way.

Or you can indulge them. You can go for the golden egg of popularity, of pleasing them, giving
them their way all the time. Then they grow up without any internal sense of standards or
expectations, without a personal commitment to being disciplined or responsible.

Either wayauthoritarian or permissive you have the golden egg mentality. You want to have
your way or you want to be liked. What happens when the child reaches the teenage years? Will
he know from his experience with you that you deeply care about him as a person?

Suppose you want your son to have a clean roomthats P, production, the golden egg. And
suppose you want him to clean itthats PC. Your son is the goose, the asset that produces the
golden egg. If you have P and PC in balance, he cleans the room cheerfully, without being
reminded, because he is committed and has the discipline to stay with the commitment. He is a
valuable asset, a goose that can produce golden eggs. But if your paradigm is focused on
production, on getting the room clean, you might find yourself nagging him to do it. You might
even escalate your efforts to threatening or yelling, and in your desire to get the golden egg you
undermine the health and welfare of the goose.


5.6. The Time Management Matrix

The two factors that define an activity are URGENT and IMPORTANT. URGENT means it
requires immediate attention. Its Now! Urgent things act on us. A ringing phone is urgent.
Most people cant stand the thought of just allowing the phone to ring. Urgent matters are usually
visible. They press on us; they insist on action. They are often pleasant, easy to do. But so often
they are unimportant!

IMPORTANCE on the other hand, has to do with results. If something is important, it contributes
to your mission, your values, and your high priority goals.

We REACT to urgent matters. Important matters that are not urgent require more initiative, more
proactivity. We must ACT to seize opportunity, to make things happen. If we dont begin with the
end in mind, we dont have a clear idea of what is important, of the results we desire in our lives,
we are easily diverted into responding to the urgent.

Am I active or Busy? Am I productively busy or unproductively active? Or do I want to seen as
busy by others? Many are unproductively busy due to no proper planning or setting goals or not
delegating or being organized.

Successful people are not activity oriented; but result oriented. They do not mistake being active
as being busy. They distinguish between important and urgent. They are clear about their Life
Time Goals. Whatever they do in their everyday life is towards accomplishing these goals. They
have Time for everything. They are relaxed and never tense. They spend every minute of their
Time pleasantly, fully enjoying it.


Deadline driven projects
Pressing problems
Breakdown maintenance
Heart attack
Urgent time-bound orders for supply


Self development
PC activities
Relationship building
Recognizing new opportunities



Telephone calls
Drop in unexpected visitors
Pressing matters
Popular activities

Trivial matters
Some unimportant mail
Pleasant activities
Time wasters
Useless phone calls

Let us take a look at the time management matrix:

Quadrant I is both urgent and important. It deals with significant results that require immediate
attention. We usually call the Quadrant I activities as crises. People faced with such problems
feel, I dont have even half-a-minute for myself, from nine in the morning to nine at night. In this
company everything is required to be completed by yesterday. We need three hundred components
by tomorrow night. It is urgent and top priority. I have to prepare for the day after tomorrow yearly
festival also and I have no time to even give instructions to my subordinates what they should do for
that This type of situation of rushing from one crisis to another crisis, dealing with whatever
problem is on hand, is called Crisis Management or Fire fighting. Here is where we handle an irate
client, meet a deadline, repair a broken-down machine, undergo heart surgery, or help a crying child
who has been hurt. We need to spend time in Quadrant I. This is where we manage, where we
produce, where we bring our experience and judgment to bear in responding to many needs and
challenges. If we ignore it, we become buried alive. But we also need to realize that many
important activities become urgent through procrastination, or because we dont do enough
prevention and planning.

The likely effects of this lifestyle in the long run are very high levels of stress, fatigue driven
frustration, collapse in health, forgotten or broken relationships, lack of efficiency, loss of direction
and real happiness etc. As long as you focus on Quadrant I, it keeps getting bigger and bigger until
it dominates you. A huge problem comes and knocks you down and youre wiped out. You
struggle back up only to face another one that knocks you down and slams you to the ground. Some
people are beaten up by problems all day every day. The only relief they have is in escaping to the
not important, not urgent activities of Quadrant IV. So when you look at their total matrix, 90% of
their time is in Quadrant I and most of the remaining 10 % is in Quadrant IV, with only negligible
attention paid to Quadrants II and III.

Quadrant II is the heart of personal management. It deals with things that are not urgent but
important. This is the Quadrant of quality. Heres where we do our long range planning, anticipate
and prevent problems, empower others, broaden our minds and increase our skills through reading
and continuous professional development, envision how were going to help a struggling son or
daughter, prepare for important meetings and presentations, or invest in relationships through deep,
honest listening. Increasing time spent in this quadrant INCREASES OUR ABILITY TO DO.
Ignoring this quadrant feeds and enlarges Quadrant I, creating stress, burnout, and deeper crises for
the person consumed by it. On the other hand, investing in this quadrant shrinks Quadrant I.
Planning, preparation and prevention keep many things from becoming urgent. Quadrant II does
not act on us; we must act on it.

Quadrant III is almost the phantom of Quadrant I. It includes things that are urgent, but not
important. It is the Quadrant of Deception. The noise of urgency creates the illusion of
importance. But the actual activities, if theyre important at all, are only important to someone else.
Many phone calls, meetings and drop-in-visitors fall into this category. People in Quadrant III may
be thinking theyre in Quadrant I. They spend most of their time reacting to things that are urgent,
assuming they are also important though they may be trivial.

Quadrant is reserved for those activities that are not urgent and not important. This is the
Quadrant of Waste. Of course, we really shouldnt be there at all. But we get so battle-scarred from
being tossed around in Quadrant I and III that we often escape to Quadrant IV for survival.

Reading addictive novels, habitually watching mindless TV shows, gossiping around the water
fountain in the office etc are this quadrant activities. It may have an initial cotton candy feel, but we
quickly find there is nothing there.

5.6.1. Time Wasters

The following list gives a few examples for Time Wasters that lead to Quadrant III or IV.

never setting goals or setting goals and not sticking to them,
moving around and socializing too much,
low level of concentration, getting easily distracted by trivial things
trying to do more than one thing at a time
getting involved in everything
making too many personal phone calls regularly
not doing the most important work during peak energy hours
indecisive and postponing decisions
liking to help others or to feel important about oneself
fear of hurting people or to say No
accepting unrealistic deadlines
not able to get rid of callers or visitors quickly
inability to delegate
thinking, no one else can manage my work if I am absent
forgetting things or badly organized or messy environment, unclean desk
looking for too much of perfection in job leading to micromanagement
assuming that people understand your motives leading to crisis
forgetting things and not filing important information to get that in time

People who spend time almost exclusively in Quadrants III or IV basically lead irresponsible lives.

Effective people say out of these two Quadrants because, urgent or not, they arent important. They
also shrink Quadrant I down to size by spending more time in Quadrant II.

What is the one activity that you KNOW if you did superbly well and consistently would have
significant positive results in your personal life?

What is the one activity that you KNOW if you did superbly well and consistently would have
significant positive results in your Professional or work life?

A few common answers given by thousands of people are:
1. Improving communication with people
2. Better preparation
3. Better planning and organizing
4. Taking better care of self
5. Seizing new opportunities
6. Personal development
7. Preventive maintenance
8. Empowerment

All of these are in Quadrant II. They are important. So why arent people doing them? Why arent
you doing the things you identified from the questions above? Probably because they are not
urgent. They arent pressing. They dont act on you. You have to act on them.

Case History:

A group of shopping center managers were faced with problems one after another. They had reports
to make out, meetings to go to, correspondence to answer, phone calls to make, constant
interruptions. Quadrant I had consumed them.

They were spending very little time, almost 5% with the store managers, and the time they spent
was filled with negative energy. The only reason they visited the store managers at all was to
enforce the contractto collect the money or discuss advertising or other practices that were out of
harmony with center guidelines, or some similar thing.

The storeowners were struggling for survival, let alone prosperity. They had employment problems,
cost problems, inventory problems, and a host of other problems. Most of them had no training in
management at all.

The owners decided to be proactive. They determined their purpose, their values, and their
priorities. In harmony with those priorities, they decided to spend about one-third of their time in
helping relationships with the tenants.

They climbed from 5% to around 20% within a couple of years. In addition they changed their role.
They became listeners, trainers, and consultants to the tenants. Their interchanges were filled with
positive energy.

By focusing on RELATIONSHIPS and RESULTS rather than TIME and METHODS, the numbers
went up, the tenants were thrilled with the results created by new ideas and skills, and the shopping
center mangers were more effective and satisfied. They were no longer Policemen or hovering
supervisors. They were problem solvers, helpers.

Whether you are a student, a worker in an assembly line, a fashion designer, or President of a
company, if you were to ask what lies in Quadrant II and cultivate the proactivity to go after it, you
would find the same results. Your effectiveness would increase dramatically and your crises and
problems would shrink to manageable proportions because you would be thinking ahead, working
on the roots, doing the preventive things that keep situations from developing into crises in the first
place. In time management, this is called the Pareto Principle -- 80% of the results flow out of 20%
of the activities.


Session 6: Time Management Part 2 (80 min)

6.1. The Art of Self Management
- To Live, to Love, to Learn and to Leave a Legacy

As we move from urgency to importance, we encounter the fundamental question at hand: What are
first things and how do we put them first in our lives?

At the heart of the Fourth generation are three fundamental ideas that empower us to answer that
1. the fulfillment of the four human needs and capacities
2. the reality of true north principles
3. the potentiality of the four human endowments

6.1.1. The fulfillment of the four human needs and capacities

There are certain things that are fundamental to human fulfillment. If these basic needs arent met,
we feel empty, incomplete. Whether or not we fully acknowledge or address these needs on a
conscious level, deep inside we know they are there. And they are important. We can validate them
through our own experience and of others and most importantly in the Vedic literature. The essence
of these needs is captured in the phrase to live, to love, to learn, to leave a legacy.

The need to live is our PHYSICAL needs such as food, clothing, shelter, economic well being,
The need to love is our SOCIAL need to relate to other people, to belong, to love, to be loved.
The need to learn is our MENTAL need to develop and grow.
The need to leave a legacy is our SPIRITUAL need to have a sense of meaning, purpose and

Each of these needs is vitally important. Any of these needs, unmet, reduces the quality of life. If
youre in debt or poor health, if you dont have adequate food, clothing and shelter, if you feel
alienated and alone, if youre mentally stagnant, if you dont have a sense of purpose and integrity,
your quality of life suffers. Vibrant health, economic security, rich, satisfying relationships,
ongoing personal and professional development, and a deep sense of purpose, contribution and
personal congruence create quality of life.

These needs are real and deep and highly interrelated. If we see our spiritual need as separate from
all other needs, we may not realize that what we believe about ourselves and our purpose has a
powerful impact on how we live, how we love and what we learn. To compartmentalize or even
ignore the spiritual dimension of life powerfully affects each of the other dimensions.

If we see our physical need as separate from all others, we may not fully realize how the quality of
our health affects the quality of each of the other areas. When we arent feeling well, its much

harder to think clearly, to relate in positive ways to others, to focus on contribution instead of

Fulfilling the four needs in an integrated way is like combining elements in chemistry. When we
reach a critical mass of integration, we experience spontaneous combustionan explosion of
inner synergy that ignites the fire within and gives vision, passion, and a spirit of adventure to life.

The key to the fire within is our spiritual needs to leave a legacy. It transforms other needs into
capacities for contribution. Food, money, health, education, and love become resources to reach out
and help fill the unmet needs of others. Abraham Moslow, one of the fathers of modern psychology
developed a needs hierarchy in which he identified self actualization as the highest human

6.1.2. The Reality of TRUE NORTH Principles

North is not a matter of opinion or something to be voted on by democratic process, but a reality
independent of us. The reality of true north gives context and meaning to where we are, where we
want to go, and how to get there. Without a compass or stars or a correct understanding of our
location, we may have trouble locating it, but it is always there.

J ust as real as true north in the physical world are the timeless laws of cause and effect that
operate in the world of personal effectiveness and human interaction. The collective wisdom of the
ages reveals these principles as recurring themes, foundational to every truly great person or society. What Principle is and what it is not

We are not talking about VALUES. Many of us think that just because we value something,
achieving it will enhance our quality of life. We think, I will be happy and fulfilled when I make

Spiritual Mental

more money. When I get recognition for my talent. When I acquire an expensive home or a
new car. When I finish my college degree.

But the focus on values is one of the major illusions of the traditional time management approach.
Its content without context. It essentially says, First things are your priorities. You decide what
you value and go after it in an efficient way. This can lead to arroganceto thinking we are a law
unto ourselves, and to looking at other people as things or as resources to help us accomplish
what we want to do.

Values will NOT bring quality of life results unless we value principles. A vital part of the fourth
generation is the humility to realize that there are first things independent of our values. Quality
of life is a function of the extent to which we make these first things OUR first things and
become empowered to actually put them first in our lives.

We are not talking about PRACTICES. A practice is a specific activity or action. A practice that
works in one circumstance will not necessarily work in another, as parents who try to raise the
second child in the same way as the first can readily attest. The power of principles is that they are
universal timeless truths. If we understand and live our lives based on principles, we can quickly
adapt; we can apply them anywhere. By teaching our children principles instead of practices, or
teaching them the principles behind the practices, we better prepare them to handle the unknown
challenges of the future. To understand the application may be to meet the challenge of the
moment, but to understand the principle is to meet the challenge of the moment more effectively
and to be empowered to meet a thousand challenges of the future as well.

We are not talking about some RELIGION with no foundation, but made up of some superficial
formularies. We do believe that issues such as salvation, life after death, or even GODthe source
of all these principles are all important topics, they are important issues for each individual to
address. We are not dealing with why true north exists, where it came from, or how it came to be.
We are simply dealing with the fact that it is there and that it governs the quality of our lives. We
do find evidence of these principles in the sacred writings of every major religion, from the writings
of philosophers, scientists, kings, and saints throughout the world and throughout history.

These principles deal with things that, in the long run, will create happiness and quality of life
results. Principles are essentially unarguable because they are self-evident. One way to quickly
grasp the self-evident nature of principles is to simply consider the absurdity of attempting to live an
effective life based on their opposites. I doubt that anyone would seriously consider unfairness,
deceit, baseness, uselessness, or mediocrity to be a solid foundation for lasting happiness and

The more closely our maps or paradigms are aligned with these principles or natural laws, the more
accurate and functional they will be. Correct maps will infinitely impact our personal and
interpersonal effectiveness far more than any amount of effort expended on changing our attitudes
and behaviors.

76 What Principles are: The Law of the Farm and law of the School

In agriculture we can easily see and agree that natural laws and principles govern the work and
determine the harvest. But in social and corporate cultures, we somehow think we can dismiss
natural processes, cheat the system, and still win the day.

In the past 200 years of writing about success, much of the success literature of the past 50 years is
superficial. It is filled with social image consciousness, techniques and quick fixeswith social
band-aids and aspirin that addresses acute problems and sometimes even appears to solve them
temporarily, but leave the underlying chronic problems untouched to resurface time and again.

In stark contrast, almost all the literature in the first 150 years or so focused on what could be called
the Character Ethic as the foundation of successthings like integrity, humility, Courage, J ustice,
Patience, Industry, Simplicity, Modesty, etc. The Character Ethic taught that there are basic
principles of effective living, and that people can only experience true success and enduring
happiness as they learn and integrate these principles into their basic character.

But shortly after World War I the basic view of success shifted from the Character Ethic to the
Personality Ethic. Success became more a function of personality, of public image, of attitudes and
behaviors, skills and techniques that lubricate the processes of human interaction. This Personality
Ethic essentially took two paths: one was Human and Public relations technique (PRT), and the
other was Positive Mental Attitude (PMA).

The Personality Ethic approach is clearly manipulative, even deceptive, encouraging people to use
techniques to get other people to like them, or to fake interest in the hobbies of others to get out of
them what they wanted etc. Some of this literature acknowledge character as an ingredient of
success, but tend to compartmentalize it rather than recognize it as foundational and catalytic.
Reference to the Character Ethic became mostly lip service; the basic thrust was quick-fix influence
techniques, power strategies, communication skills, and positive attitudes.

If I try to use human influence strategies and tactics of how to get other people to do what I want, to
work better, to be more motivated, to like me and each other while my character is fundamentally
flawed, marked by duplicity and insincerity then in the long run, I cannot be successful. My
duplicity will breed distrust, and everything I do even using so-called good human relation
techniques will be perceived as manipulative. If there is little or no trust, there is no foundation for
permanent success. Only basic goodness gives life to technique.

To focus on technique is like cramming your way through school. You sometimes get by, perhaps
even get good grades, but if you dont pay the price day in and day out, you never achieve true
mastery of the subjects you study or develop an educated mind. The price must be paid and process
must be followed. You always reap what you sow; there is no shortcut.

What we are communicates far more eloquently than anything we say or do. We all know it. There
are people we trust absolutely because we know their character. Whether they are eloquent or not,
whether they have the human relations techniques or not, we trust them, and we work successfully
with them.

The Character Ethic is based on the fundamental idea that there are PRINCIPLES that govern
human effectiveness natural laws in the human dimension that are just as real, just as unchanging
and as law of gravity in the physical dimension.

Once a captain came to know that their ship was on a collision course with another ship. He then
called to the signalman, Signal that ship: we are on a collision course, advise you to change course
20 degrees. Back came a signal, Advisable for you to change course 20 degrees. The captain
said, Send, Im captain, change course 20 degrees. Im seaman second class, came the reply.
You had better change course 20 degrees. By that time, the captain was furious. He spat out,
Send, Im a battleship. Change course 20 degrees. Back came the flashing light, Im a
lighthouse. The captain ordered his ship to change its course.

We can see a reality that is superceded by his limited perception a reality that is as critical for us
to understand in our daily lives as it was for the captain in the fog.

Principles are like lighthouses. They are natural laws that cannot be broken. It is impossible for us
to break the law. We can only break ourselves against the law.

While individuals may look at their own lives and interactions in terms of paradigms or maps
emerging out of their experience and conditioning, these maps are not the territory. They are
subjective reality, only an attempt to describe the territory.

The objective reality or the territory itself, is composed of lighthouse principles that govern
human growth and happiness natural laws that are woven into the fabric of every civilized society
throughout history and comprise the roots of every family and institution that has endured and
prospered. The degree to which our mental maps accurately describe the territory does not alter its

These principles are not esoteric, mysterious or religious ideas, unique to any specific faith or
religion. These principles are a part of most every major enduring religion, social philosophies and
ethical systems. They are self-evident and can easily be validated by any individual. Its almost as
if these principles or natural laws are part of human condition, part of the human consciousness,
part of human conscience. They seem to exist in all human beings, regardless of social

For example, the principle of FAIRNESS, out of which the whole concept of equity and justice is
developed. INTEGRITY and HONESTY create the foundation of trust, which is essential to co-
operation and long-term personal and interpersonal growth. Other principles are HUMAN

Can you imagine cramming on the farm? Can you imagine forgetting the plant in the spring, and
hitting it hard in the fallripping the soil up, throwing in the seeds, watering, cultivating and
expecting to get a bountiful harvest overnight?

Cramming doesnt work in a natural system like a farm. Thats the fundamental difference between
a superficial social system and a natural system. You can go for the quick fixes and techniques
with apparent success. But in the long run, the Law of the Farm governs in all arenas of life.


How many of us wish now that we hadnt crammed in the school? We got the degree, but we didnt
get the education. We eventually find out there is a difference between succeeding in the social
system of school and succeeding in the development of the mindthe ability to think analytically,
creatively, at deep levels of abstraction, the ability to communicate orally and in writing, to cross
borders to rise above outmoded practices and solve problems in a newer and better ways.

What about Character? Can you cram and suddenly become a person of integrity, courage, or
compassion? Or physical health? Can you overcome years of a potato chip, chocolate-cake, and
no-exercise lifestyle by spending the night before the marathon working out at the gym?

What about marriage? Whether it is governed by the Law of the School or the Law of the Farm
depends on how long you want it to last. Many people who marry dont want to change their
lifestyle at all. They dont take time to nurture seeds of shared vision, selflessness, caring,
tenderness, and consideration. The social system quick fixes and personality ethic techniques they
try to install to solve the problem simply dont work.

What about relationships with children? We can take the short cutswe are bigger, smarter, we
have the authority. We can talk down, threaten, impose our will. We can put them under a servant
maid and be free to be absorbed in our urgent matters. But over time, will these shortcuts develop
responsible, caring, wise adults empowered to make effective decisions and live happy lives? Will
they result in rich, rewarding relationships for us with those who have the potential to be our closest

In all of life, there are sequential stages of growth and development. A child learns to turn over, to
sit up, to crawl, and then to walk and run. Each step is important and each one takes time. No step
can be skipped. This is true in all phases of life, in all areas of development, whether it be learning
to play the piano or communicate effectively with another. It is true with individuals, with
marriages, with families and with organizations.

We sometimes look for a shortcut, expecting to be able to skip some of these vital steps in order to
save time and effort and still reap the desired result.

To relate effectively with a wife, a husband, children, friends, or working associates, we must learn
to listen. And this requires emotional strength. Listening involves Patience, Openness and the
desire to understandhighly developed qualities of character. It is so much easier to operate from a
low emotional level and to give high-level advice.

Our level of development is fairly obvious with tennis or piano playing, where it is impossible to
pretend. But it is not so obvious in the areas of character and emotional development. We can pose
and put on for a stranger or an associate. We can pretend. And for a while we can get by with it
at least in the public. We might even deceive ourselves. Most of us know the truth of what we
really are inside.

The high trust climate is based on the natural principles and processes. Manipulations often
produce low trust climate.

Borrowing strength be it from superior size, physical strength, position, authority, credentials,
status symbols, appearance or past achievements builds weakness. It builds weakness in the
borrower because it reinforces dependence on external factors to get things done. It builds
weakness in the person forced to acquiesce, stunting the development of independent reasoning,
growth, and internal discipline. And finally, it builds weakness in the relationship. Fear replaces
cooperation, and both people involved become more defensive. And what happens when the
borrowed strength changes or is no longer there?

A practical example would be to force a adamant child to share his toys with his other friends rather
than to take the child alone, quietly, when the relationship is good and to discuss the value to have
greater impact. Illusion vs. Reality

The problems in life come when were sowing one thing expecting to reap something entirely

Many of our fundamental paradigms and the processes and habits that grow out of them will never
produce the results weve been led to expect they will. These paradigms-created by people looking
for shortcuts, advertising, program-of-the month training, and seventy years of personality ethic
success literature-are fundamentally based on the quick-fix illusion. This not only affects our
awareness our fundamental needs but also the way we attempt to fulfill them.

Physical Needs

Vibrant health is based on natural principles. It grows over time out of regular exercise, proper
nutrition, adequate rest, a healthy mind-set, avoiding substances that are harmful to the body. But
instead of paying the price, were caught up in the illusion of appearance fantasy that the right
clothes, the right makeup, the quick-fix weight-loss programs (actually proven to contribute to the
long-term problem instead of solving it) will fulfill our physical need. Its an empty promise. It
brings short-term satisfaction, but its cotton candy. Theres no substance to it. It doesnt last.

Economic well-being is based on principles of thrift, industry, saving for future needs, earning
interest instead of paying it. But we live with the illusion that having things will fulfill the need
regardless of the fact that theyre bought on credit and we spend months or even years paying twice
what theyre worth for the cotton-candy satisfaction of instant gratification.

Social Needs

Quality relationships are built on principles especially the principle of trust. And trust grows out
of trustworthiness, out of the character to make and keep commitments, to share resources, to be
caring and responsible, to belong, to love unconditionally.

But when were lonely and in the pain of the unmet need, we dont want to be told to go out and
earn it, to be trust-worthy worthy of someones trust and affection. Its so much easier to believe
in the cotton-candy illusion of sexual gratification, or the idea that appearance and personality will
win affection, or the idea that appearance and personality will win affection, or that we can call the
900 number on late-night TV and have someone talk to us in an affectionate way. Its easier to get a


Independent Will
fix of love than to work on being a loving person. And our culture music, books, advertising,
movies, TV programming is filled with the illusion.

Mental Needs

We often go for the illusion of cramming instead of the reality of long-term development and
growth. Were into get the you can get the you can get the you can
buy the youll be successful. But what does that kind of success bring? Can that
bring about the same character and competence that come from deep, continuous investment in
learning and growth?

Spiritual Needs

There is meaning to life only when one lives for a higher purpose other than for oneself. The results
of illusion and the reality are as different as the Dead Sea a stagnant end in itself where theres no
outlet and no life and the Red Sea, where the waters flow on and nurture abundant life along the

In the area of time management, many of the techniques and practices masquerade as practical,
hard-hitting, bottom-line solution that address immediate concerns. But their implied promise is
quick-fix illusion. The chronic, underlying needs are not addressed. Solutions are truncated from
the principles that grow long-term quality-of-life results. Were back to cotton candy satisfaction,
and the results were getting in our lives validate it.

6.1.3. The Potentiality Of The Four Human Endowments

As human beings, we have unique endowments that distinguish us
from the animal world. These endowments reside in that space
between stimulus and response, between those things that happen
to us and our response to them.

The endowments that reside in this space self-awareness,
conscience, creative imagination, and independent will
create our ultimate human freedom: the power to choose, to
respond, to change. They create the compass that empowers
us to align our lives with true north.

Self-awareness is our capacity to stand apart from ourselves
and examine our thinking, our motives, our history, our
scripts, our actions and our habits and tendencies. It enables
us to take off our glasses and look at them as well as through them. It makes it possible for us to
become aware of the social and psychic history of the programs that are in us and to enlarge the
separation between stimulus and response.

Conscience connects us with the wisdom of the ages and the wisdom of the heart. Its our internal
guidance system, which allows us to sense when we act or even contemplate acting in a way thats
contrary to principle.


Independent will is our capacity to act. It gives us the power to transcend our paradigms, to swim
upstream, to rewrite our scripts, to act based on principle rather than reacting based on emotion or
circumstance. While environmental or genetic influences may be very powerful, they do not control
us. Were not victims. Were not the product our past. We are the product of our choices. We are
response-able to respond, to choose beyond our moods and tendencies. We have will power to
act on self-awareness, conscience, and vision.

Creative imagination is the power to envision a future state, to create something in our mind, and to
solve problems synergistically. It enables us to write a personal mission statement, set a goal, or
plan meeting. It also empowers us to visualize ourselves living our mission statement even in the
most challenging circumstances, and to apply principles in effective ways in new situations. Nurture Self-awareness by Keeping a Personal Journal

Keeping a personal journal is a high-leverage Quadrant II activity that significantly increases self-
awareness and enhances all the endowments and the synergy among them. By developing self-
awareness we can know our conditionings that make us behave in a particular fashion. Bhagavad
gita discusses elaborately the characteristics of one who is completely self-aware (refer Bhagavad
gita As It Is by HDG A.C.Bhaktivedanta swami Prabhupada, Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, BG 2.54-
71, BG 5.18-26, BG 6.18-32, BG 12.13-20, BG 13.8-12). Only one who can study his own
behavior has the ability to alter his behavior when he detects something that needs to be changed.

What things would you write about in a personal journal? If you dont like a result youre getting in
your life, write about it. Get it out on paper. Notice how the law of the harvest operates in your
life. See how consequences flow from root causes. See how results can be traced to paradigms,
processes, and habits. Envision possibilities and write them down. Dreaming builds creative
imagination. Then test your dreams. Are they based on principles? Are you willing to pay the
price to achieve them?

As you develop your imagination, you can use it to create in your mind what you hope to create in
your life. Its the blueprint before the finished house, the directors vision before the stage
performance. Its creating the long-term, mid-range, and short-term goals that help translate vision
into reality.

You may find youre living with unfulfilled dreams. You may be resigned, feeling youre settling
for second best, and thinking, if only things were different you could fulfill those dreams. But if
you pay the price and hammer it out, you may find your dreams are delusions youre wishing and
waiting and wanting something that will never brings quality of life.

Stand apart from you dreams. Look at them. Write about them. Wrestle with them until youre
convinced theyre based on principles that will bring results. Then use your creative imagination to
explore new applications; new ways of doing things that have the principles based power to
translate dreaming to doing.

Keeping a personal journal empowers you to see and improve, on a day-by-day basis, the way
youre developing and using your endowments. Because writing truly imprints the brain, it also
helps you remember and apply the things youre trying to do. In addition, it gives you a powerful

contextual tool. As you take occasion perhaps on a mission statement renewal retreat to read
over your experiences of past weeks, months, or years, you gain invaluable insight into repeating
patterns and themes in your life. Educate the Conscience by Learning, Listening, and Responding

When most people get into their deep inner lives, regardless of their culture, upbringing, religion, or
race, they seem to have a sense of the basic Laws of Life.

To hear conscience clearly often requires us to be still or reflective or meditative- a condition
we rarely choose or find. Were inundated by activity, noise, social and cultural conditioning,
media messages, and flawed paradigms that dull our sensitivity to that quiet inner voice that would
teach us of true north principles and our own degree of congruency with them. Of course, one
cannot learn these principles by silent mental speculation, but by learning them from scriptures of
God and contemplating on them. One achieves inner maturity and muscles of character by chanting
Gods names repeatedly. History shows that crude personalities devoid of character have been
transformed into great sages endowed with great conscience by such chanting. Valyakaula became
Valmiki by chanting Lord Ramas name and later became the author of Ramayana, the most famous
historical epic. One Angulimal, who derived pleasure in severing peoples fingers and making a
garland out of them, later met Buddha and became a enlightened soul. One Mrigari used to half-kill
animals and birds. He later met Narada muni and heard words of wisdom about devotion, became
totally transformed so much so, that when Narada and Parvata muni came to meet him one day,
from a distance Mrigari offered obeisances on the ground after removing the ants by his upper
garments to not hurt them. Such transformation by encounter with God or His messengers is not at
all surprising. Indeed that is the best way of developing ones conscience.

This is the kind of humility we experience when we come to the realization that principles govern
that there is an independent universal reality outside ourselves that conscience affirms.

Lets compare the development of conscience to the development of physical competence
symbolized by five sets of hands. One set belongs to a great concert pianist, who can enthrall
audiences with her renditions. Another pair is the hands of a skilled surgeon, who can perform
delicate operations on the eye or the brain that can save lives and sight and thinking processes.
Another set of hands belongs to a great golfer, who wins tournaments by making great shots under
pressure. Another set of hands belongs to a blind man, who can read at incredible speeds by
touching the raised markings on a page. And the fifth set of hands belongs to a great sculptor, who
can make beautiful art out of solid blocks of marble or granite.

A highly educated conscience is much like any of these sets of hands. A great price has been paid to
educate it. Sacrifices have been made and obstacles overcome. In fact, it actually takes even more
discipline, sacrifice, and wisdom to develop and educated conscience than it does to become a great
sculptor, golfer, surgeon, Braille reader, or concert pianist. But the rewards are far greater an
educated conscience impacts every aspect of our lives.

We can educate our conscience by:
Reading and pondering over the wisdom literature of the ages like Srimad Bhagavatam,
Mahabharata, Ramayana, Bible, Koran etc to broaden our awareness of the true north principles
that run as common themes.

Standing apart from and learning from our own experience
Carefully observing the experience of others.
Taking time to be still and listen to that deep inner voice by chanting Hare Krishna softly on
beads and hearing attentively. In ISKCON devotees chant for about 2 hours everyday. This
brings about humility, tolerance, respect for others and no hankering for false prestige. Thus
one becomes peaceful within and without, put in contact with God through the holy name.
Responding to that voice by living a life of purity and selflessness by offering all ones fruits of
action to God in love.

It is not enough just to listen to conscience, we much also respond. When we fail to act in harmony
with our inner voice, we begin to build a wall around the conscience that blocks its sensitivity and
receptivity. As C.S. Lewis observed, disobedience to conscience makes conscience blind.

As we connect with the wisdom of the ages and the wisdom of the heart, we become less a function
of the social mirror and more a person of character and conscience. Our security doesnt come from
the way people treat us or in comparing ourselves to others. It comes from our basic integrity. Nurture Independent Will by Making and Keeping Promises

Each time we do, we make deposits in our Personal Integrity Account. This is a metaphor that
describes the amount of trust we have in ourselves, in our ability to walk our talk. The Vedic way
of life as taught to the children in gurukulas beginning from 5 years of age, brings about a deep
sense of integrity. This makes them committed to themselves, elders, and ultimately God. If
something is right, a trained student would do it anyway, no matter how much difficulties may be
involved; and if something is wrong to do, one would shun such an act even if opportunity presents
itself and one happens to be alone, because such students are trained to develop a high degree of
conscience and to utilize the independence in a way guided by God. There is a story that illustrates
this principle. Once a gurukul teacher gave a mango to all the students and asked them to go some
hidden place, eat it and come. Many of the children hid themselves behind a bush, covered
themselves with a blanket, locked up themselves in a room, finished eating the mango and returned
back. There was nevertheless one student who returned to the teacher with his mango. When
interrogated he said, I could not find any place where God was not watching me. Thus such
training teaches one to make and keep promise. This kind of education is lacking in the modern
times. Children are taught how to systematically tell lies to elders, how to rob others property
without being caught, how even the leaders themselves are corrupt and such lack of training makes
the children poor at heart with no ability to make and keep promise.

Make and keep a promise even if it means youre going to get up in the morning a little earlier and
do some physical exercise and to chant some two or three rounds.

Be sure you dont violate that commitment and be sure you dont over-promise and under-deliver.
Dont risk making a withdrawal from the Personal Integrity Account. Build slowly until your sense
of honor becomes greater than your moods.

I will do this. And then, no matter what, do it. Like a devotee of God may promise, I will fast
today for Ekadashi from grains. And they stick to it even if attractive food is kept in front of them.
This builds ones determination.

Little by little, your faith in yourself will increase, and if the thing youve committed to do is
principle-centered, you gradually become a little more principle-centered. You keep the promise to
yourself and your own integrity account goes up.

We need to ask ourselves: Am I willing to be a person of total integrity? Am I willing to apologize
when |I make mistakes, to love unconditionally, to value someone elses happiness as much as I do
my own?

Part of our scripting and history may say, No, Im not. Thats not the way I was raised. Thats not
the environment. But then our independent will say, Wait a minute! You re capable of this. You
dont have to be a function of your scripting or the social mirror and the expedient path others take.
You have the opportunity now to decide your response to all that has ever happened to you.
Whether others do it or not is irrelevant. You have the power to look at your own involvement, to
observe your response, to change it. Develop Creative Imagination through Visualization

With a solid understanding of principles, we can easily see that the Law of the Farm applies as well
to personal development as it does to growing tomatoes or that the same principle of synergy that
makes it possible for two boards to hold more weight together than the combined weight held by
each separately also empowers two people to come up with a solution better than either could have

The process we suggest to help develop creative imagination is visualization a high-leverage
mental exercise used by world-class athletes and performers. But instead of using it to improve
your tennis game or your concert performance, we suggest you try using it to improve your quality
of life.

Set aside some time to be alone, away from interruptions. Close your eyes and visualize yourself in
some circumstance that would normally create discomfort or pain. Something pushes your button.
Your boss yells at you. Your teenage daughter complains that you never buy her any clothes. Your
co-worker starts a vicious rumor about you.

Use your self-awareness to separate yourself from your normal thoughts and feelings the situation
would create. In your minds eye, instead of seeing yourself react as you might normally do, see
yourself act based on the principles you are convinced will create quality-of-life results. See
yourself interacting with others in a way that combines courage and consideration. The value of this
exercise multiplies when you accomplish it or plan a meeting to create much of the quality of your
own reality before you live it.

The best way to predict your future is to create it. You can use the same power of creative
imagination that enables you to see a goal before you accomplish it or plan a meeting to create much
of the quality of your own reality before you live it.

For example, say you are upset with the behavior of one of your subordinates. You dont like his
foolish opinions, crazy behavior, awkward hand gestures and poor quality work. You hate him
totally and feel too angry to see him. Adding insult to injury he always argues against anything that
you say. Assume that now you have met him ten minutes from now. You can use your creative

imagination and predict your future behavior and try to bring about a change that would lead to
positive result, beneficial to both of you. When we study histories of great kings like Rantidev,
Ambarish maharaj, Yudhistir maharaj we certainly feel inspired to change our behaviour and
become better people. The Humility Of Principles

Out of the paradigm that principles exist and that were only effective to the degree to which we
discover and live in harmony with them comes a sense of humility. Were not in control of our
lives; principles are. We cease trying to be a law unto ourselves. We cultivate attitudes of
teachability, habits of continual learning. We become involved in an ongoing quest to understand
and live in harmony the Laws of Life created by God. We dont get caught up in the arrogance of
our own opinions or values that blinds us to self-awareness and conscience. Our security is not
based on the illusion of comparative thinking Im better looking have more money, I have a better
job, or I work harder than somebody else. Nor do we feel any less secure if were not as good-
looking or have less money or prestige than somebody else. Its irrelevant. Our security comes
from our own integrity to true north.

When we fail or make a mistake or hit a principle head-on, we say What can I learn from this?
We come to the principle to be taught by it. And as we learn where we went wrong in accordance
with that principle, we can turn weaknesses into strengths. We confront behavior with truth in a
way that represents confidence in the truth and recognition of our own ability to learn and change.

Humility truly is the mother of all virtues. It makes us a vessel, a vehicle, an agent instead of the
source or the principal. It unleashes all other learning, all growth and process. With the humility
that comes from being principle-centered, were empowered to learn from the past, have hope for
the future, and act with confidence in the present. Bhaktivinod Thakur sings, anadi karma phale,
padi bhavarnava jale, taribare na dekhi upaya which means that everyone in this world has fallen
into the ocean of good and bad acts that one has committed in the past like an ant fallen into a
ocean. One cannot be rescued from this precarious situation with becoming humble and taking
shelter of God. Gods shelter gives one the real confidence. It helps one live according to
principles that originate from Him. This confidence is an assurance, based on Law of the Farm
evidence across the globe, throughout history, and in our own lives that if we act based on
principles, it will produce quality of life results.

6.2. Moving Into The Fourth Generation

Certainly we want the tremendous benefits of the first three generations efficiency prioritization,
productivity, and accomplishment of goals but we need more. Doing more things faster is no
substitute for doing the right things. We need a generation of theory and tools that will empower us
to use our endowments to fulfill our basic needs and capacities in a balanced, principle-centered

Bottom-line, the power to create quality life is not in any planner. Its not in any technique or tool.
And its not limited to our ability to plan a day. None of us is omniscient. We dont know that
opportunities, challenges, surprises, sorrows, or unexpected joys the next moment in our lives will

The power to create quality of life is within us in our ability to develop and use our own inner
compass so that we can act with integrity in the moment of choice whether that moment is spent
planning the week, handling a crises, responding to our conscience, building a relationship, working
with an irate client, or taking a walk. To be effective, a tool must be aligned with that reality and
enhance the development and use of that inner compass.

6.2.1. Dependence, Independence and Interdependence

Dependence is the paradigm of YOU YOU take care of me; I blame YOU for the results.
Dependent people need others to get what they want. If I were physically dependentparalyzed or
disabled I would need you to help me. If I were emotionally dependent, my sense of worth and
security would come from your opinion of me. If you did not like me, it could be devastating. If I
were intellectually dependent, I would count on you to do my thinking for me, to think through the
issues and problems of my life.

Independence is the paradigm of I -- I can do it; I am responsible; I am self-reliant; I can choose. If I
were independent, physically I could pretty well make it on my own. Mentally, I could think my
own thoughts. I could think creatively and analytically and organize and express my thoughts in
understandable ways. Emotionally, I would be validated from within. I would be inner directed.
My sense of worth would not be a function of being liked or treated well.

It is easy to see that independence is much more mature than dependence. Independence is a major
achievement in and of itself. But independence is not supreme. Most of the self-improvement
material puts independence on a pedestal, as though communication, teamwork, and cooperation
were lesser values. But our current emphasis on independence is a reaction to dependence to
having others control us, define us, use us, and manipulate us. Therefore we find people, often for
selfish reasons, leaving their marriages, abandoning their children, and forsaking all kinds of social
responsibility all in the name of independence.

True independence of character empowers us to act rather than be acted upon. It frees us from our
dependence on circumstances and other people and is a worthy liberating goal; but it is not the
ultimate goal in effective living.

Independent people who do not have the maturity to think and act interdependently may be good
individual producers, but they wont be good leaders or team players. They are not coming from the
paradigm of interdependence necessary to succeed in marriage, family or organizational reality.

Life is by nature, highly interdependent. To try to achieve maximum effectiveness through
independence is like trying to play tennis with a golf clubthe tool is not suited to the reality.

Interdependence is a far more mature, more advanced concept. If I am physically interdependent, I
am self-reliant and capable, but I also realize that you and I working together can accomplish far
more than, even at my best, I could accomplish alone. If I am emotionally interdependent, I derive a
great sense of worth within myself, but I also recognize the need for love, for giving, and for
receiving love from others. If I am intellectually interdependent, I realize that I need the best
thinking of other people to join with my own.

As an interdependent person, I have the opportunity to share myself deeply, meaningfully with
others, and I have access to the vast resources and potential of other human beings.

Interdependence is a choice only independent people can make. Dependent people cannot choose to
become interdependent. They dont have the character to do it; they dont own enough of
themselves. As you become truly independent, you have the foundation for effective

6.2.2. Taking the Initiative

Our basic nature is to act, not be acted upon. As well as enabling us to choose our response to
particular circumstances, this empowers us to create circumstances. Taking initiative does not mean
being pushy, obnoxious, or aggressive. It does mean recognizing our responsibility to make things

Many people wait for something to happen or someone to take care of them. But people who end
up with the good jobs are the proactive ones who are solutions to problems, not problems
themselves, who seize the initiative to do whatever is necessary, consistent with correct principles,
to get the job done.. Of course, the maturity level of the individual has to be taken into account.
We cant expect high creative cooperation from those who are deep into emotional dependence.

The difference between people who exercise initiative and those who dont is literally the difference
between night and day. Were not talking about a 25 to 50 percent difference in effectiveness;
were talking about a 5000-plus percent difference, particularly if they are smart, aware, and
sensitive to others.

6.2.3. Why do I work the way I work? What is the real definition of success?

It is incredibly easy to get caught up in an activity trap, in the busy-ness of life, to work harder and
harder at climbing the ladder of success only to discover its leaning against the wrong wall. It is
possible to be busyvery busywithout being very effective.

If you carefully consider what you wanted to be said of you in the funeral experience, you will find
YOUR definition of success. It may be very different from the definition you thought you had in
mind. Perhaps Fame, Achievement, Money, or some of the other things we strive for are not even
part of the right wall.

When we begin with the end in mind, you gain a different perspective. One man asked another on
the death of a mutual friend, How much did he leave? His friend responded, He left it all. All things are created twice

It is very important to ascertain what we want to accomplish in life, based on the principles,
otherwise mindless endeavor leads to lot of work but hardly any desired output. Our life is short,
time is precious. It is wiser to sit back, contemplate and come out with a clear vision of how we
want to lead our lives in harmony with the principles of God.

The carpenters rule is measure twice, cut once. There is a mental or first creation and a physical
or second creation to all things.

Take the example of the construction of a home. You create it in every detail before you even
hammer the first nail into place. You have to make sure that the blueprint, the first creation, is
really what you want, that youve thought everything thorough.

For another example, look at a business. If you want to have a successful enterprise, you clearly
define what youre trying to accomplish. The same is true with parenting. If you want to raise
responsible self-disciplined children, you have to keep that end clearly in mind as you interact with
your children on a daily basis. Before going to a trip, you determine your destination and plan out
the best route. Before you plant a garden, you plan it out in your mind, possibly on paper. You
create speeches on paper before you give them, you design the clothes you make before you thread
the needle.

It is a principle that all things are created twice, but not all first creations are by conscious design.
In our personal lives, if we do not develop our own self-awareness and become responsible for first
creations, we empower other people and circumstances outside our Circle of Influence to shape
much of our lives by default. We reactively live the scripts handed to us by family, associates,
pressures of circumstances etc.

These scripts come from people, not principles. And they rise out of our deep vulnerabilities, our
deep dependency on others and our needs for acceptance and love, for belonging, for a sense of
importance and worth, for a feeling that we matter. Whether we are aware of it or not, whether we
are in control of it or not, there is a first creation to every part of our lives. We are either the second
creation of our own proactive design, or we are the second creation of other peoples agendas, of
circumstances, or of past habits. A Personal Mission Statement

The most effective way to begin with the end in mind is to develop a personal mission statement or
philosophy or creed. It focuses on what you want to be (character) and to do (contributions and
achievements) and on the values or principle upon which being and doing are based.

Because each individual is unique, a personal mission statement will reflect that uniqueness, both in
content and form. Rolfe Kerr, has expressed his personal creed in this way:

Succeed at home first.
Seek and merit divine help.
Never compromise with honesty.
Remember the people involved.
Hear both sides before judging.
Obtain counsel of others.
Defend those who are absent.
Be sincere yet decisive.
Develop one new proficiency a year.
Plan tomorrows work today.
Hustle while you wait.
Maintain a positive attitude.

Keep a sense of humour.
Be orderly in person and in work.
Do-not fear mistakes-fear only the absence of creative, constructive, and corrective response to
those mistakes.
Facilitate the success of subordinates.
Listen twice as much as you speak.
Concentrate all abilities and efforts on the task at hand, not worrying about the next job or
promotion. Center and Alternative Centers

Are we confident that we are leading a principle-centered life? If not, whatever is at the center of
our life will be the source of our security, guidance, wisdom and power.

Security represents your sense of worth, your emotional anchorage, self-esteem.
Guidance means your source of direction in life, your internal frame of reference that interprets
for you what is happening out there, implicit criteria that govern moment-by-moment decision-
making and doing.
Wisdom is your sense of balance, understanding of how various principles apply and relate to
each other
Power is the faculty or capacity to act, the strength to accomplish something. It also includes
the capacity to overcome deeply embedded habits and to cultivate higher, more effective ones.

o Your Security lies somewhere on the continuum between extreme insecurity on one end,
wherein your life is battered by fickle forces that play and a deep sense of high intrinsic worth
and personal security on the other end.
o Your Guidance ranges from dependence on the social mirror or other unstable, fluctuating
sources to strong inner direction.
o Your Wisdom falls somewhere between a totally inaccurate map where everything is distorted
and nothing seems to fit, and a complete and accurate map of life wherein all the parts and
principles are properly related to each other.
o Your Power lies somewhere between being a puppet pulled by someone elses strings to high
proactivity, the power to act according to your own values instead of being acted upon by other
people and circumstances.

Each of us has a center, though we usually dont recognize it as such. Neither do we recognize the
all-encompassing effects of that center on every aspect of our lives. Given below are several centers
or core paradigms people typically have that affect the sum of life that flows from them.

Spouse centeredness: If our sense of emotional worth comes primarily from marriage, then we
become highly dependent upon that relationship. We become vulnerable to the moods and feelings,
the behavior and treatment of our spouse, or to any external event that may impinge on the
relationshipa new child, in-laws, economic setbacks, social successes etc. Love-hate over
reactions, fight-or-flight tendencies, withdrawal, aggressiveness, bitterness, cold competition are
some of the results of dependence on spouse. We resort to sarcasm, cutting humor, criticism to
protect ourselves and keep from exposing the tenderness within. (eg) Pururavas attachment to
Urvasi, Ravanas attachment to Sita

Family Centeredness: Family-centered parents do not have the emotional freedom, the power, to
raise their children with their ultimate welfare truly in mind. Their need to be popular with their
children may override the importance of a long-term investment in their childrens growth and
development. They become upset, guided by the emotions of the moment, spontaneously reacting
to the immediate concern rather than the long-term growth and development of the child. They may
yell or scream. They may overreact and punish out of bad temper. They tend to love their children
conditionally, making them emotionally dependent or counter dependent and rebellious. (eg)
Dhritarashtras attachment to his son Duryodhana blinded him and he could not hear any good
counsel of Vidura; thus he led the whole Kuru dynasty to be destroyed in the Kurukshetra battle.

Money Centeredness: Ambition turns to Greed. One becomes anxious, uneasy, protective and
defensive about anything that may affect employment and income. Work and money provide no
wisdom, no guidance and only a limited degree of power and security. Money centered people often
put aside family or other priorities, assuming everyone will understand that economic demands
come first. Only a intelligent father can say, the work will come again, but childhood wont and
prefer taking his kid to a temple rather than to do overtime to earn more money. (eg) Modern
executives and managers

Work Centeredness: These people become workaholics driving themselves to produce at the
sacrifice of health, relationships, and other important areas of their lives. Their fundamental
identity comes from their work I am a writer I am manager. Their security is vulnerable to
anything that happens to prevent them from continuing it. Their guidance is a function of the
demands of the work.
(eg) the technological advancement creates a concrete jungle in the city devoid of greenery, but
flooded with increasing vehicles, pollution (noise, water, sound, mind), rapid lifestyle (eating,
commuting, working) that leads to stress in the long run.

Possession Centeredness: A driving force of many people is possessions not only tangible,
material possessions such as fashionable clothes, homes, cars, boats, and jewelry but also intangible
possessions of fame, glory, or social prominence.

If my sense of worth lies in my reputation or in the things I have, my life will be in a constant state
of threat and jeopardy that these possessions may be lost or stolen or devalued. If I am in the
presence of someone of greater net worth or fame or status, I feel inferior. If I am in the presence of
someone of lesser net worth or fame or status, I feel superior. My sense of self-worth constantly
fluctuates. I dont have any sense of constancy or anchorage or persistent selfhood. I am constantly
trying to protect and insure my assets, properties, position or reputation. There are stories of people
committing suicide after losing their fortunes in a significant stock decline or their fame in a
political reversal.

Pleasure Centeredness: Another common center, closely allied with possessions, is that of fun and
pleasure. We live in a world where instant gratification is available and encouraged. TV and
movies are major influences in increasing peoples expectations. The pleasure-centered person too
soon bored with each succeeding level of fun constantly cries for more and more. So the next new
pleasure has to be bigger and better, more exciting with a bigger high. Too many vacations, too
many movies, too much TV, too much video game playing too much undisciplined leisure time in
which a person continually takes the course of least resistance gradually wastes his life. His talents

remain undeveloped, mind and spirit become lethargic and the heart is unfulfilled. Where are the
security, guidance, wisdom and power?

Friend / Enemy Centeredness: It creates a high degree of dependence on the fluctuating moods,
feelings, attitudes and behavior of others. Friend centeredness can also focus exclusively on one
person, taking on some of the dimensions of marriage. The emotional dependence on one
individual, the escalating need/conflict spiral and the resulting negative interactions can grow out of
friend centeredness.

When someone feels he has been unjustly dealt with by an emotionally or socially significant
person, it is very easy for him to become preoccupied with the injustice and make the other person
the center of his life. Rather than proactively leading his own life, the enemy-centered person is
counter dependently reacting to the behavior and attitudes of a perceived enemy.

Feelings of self worth are volatile, a function of the emotional state or behavior of other people.
Guidance comes from the persons perception of how others will respond, and wisdom is limited by
the social lens or by an enemy-centered paranoia. The individual has no power. Other people are
pulling the strings.

Church/Temple centeredness: Church/Temple going is not synonymous with personal
spirituality. You can be a regular visitor to a church/temple but inactive in its teachings. In a
church centered life, image or appearance can become a persons dominant consideration, leading to
hypocrisy that undermines personal security. Guidance comes from others artificially in terms of
active inactive orthodox conservative etc. Church as an organization cannot give inner
security but living by the principles taught by church can give it.

Self-Centeredness: Perhaps the most common center today is the selfishness that violates the
values of most people. It accepts, but never gives. It becomes stagnant. Their energy is devoted to
justifying his or her position in an ongoing negative relationship.

Most people are very much a function of a variety of influences that play upon their lives.
Depending on external or internal conditions, one particular center may be activated until the
underlying needs are satisfied. Then another center becomes the compelling force.

The ideal, of course, is to create one clear center, from which you consistently derive a high degree
of security, guidance, wisdom and power, empowering your proactivity and giving harmony to
every part of your life. By centering our lives on correct principles, we create a solid foundation for
development of the four life-supporting factors.

Our security comes from knowing that unlike other centers based on people or things that are
subject to frequent and immediate change, correct principles do not change. We can depend on

Principles dont react to anything. They dont get mad and treat us differently. They wont divorce
us or run away with our best friend. They arent out to get us. They arent here one day and gone
the next. They cant be destroyed by fire, earthquake or theft.

Principles are bigger than people or circumstances and that thousands of years of history have seen
them triumph, time and time again. We can be secure in the knowledge that we can validate them
in our own lives, by our own experience.

Principles always have natural consequences attached to them. There are positive consequences
when we live in harmony with the principles. There are negative consequences when we ignore
them. But because these principles apply to everyone, whether or not they are aware, this limitation
is universal. And the more we know of correct principles, the greater is our personal freedom to act

By centering our lives on timeless, unchanging principles, we create a fundamental paradigm of
effective living. It is the center that puts all other centers in perspective.

6.3. Becoming a Self Manager

6.3.1. Identify Roles

The first task is to write down your key roles. Writing your mission in terms of the important roles
in your life gives you balance and harmony. It keeps each role clearly before you. You can review
your roles frequently to make sure that you dont get totally absorbed by one role to the exclusion of
others that are equally or even more important in your life. You may want to list one or more roles
as a family member a husband or wife, mother or father, a devotee of God, son or daughter, a
member of the extended family of grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins etc. You may want to list a
few roles in your work, indicating different areas in which you wish to invest time and energy on a
regular basis. You also may have role in the temple or community affairs. J ust consider the week
and write down the areas you see yourself spending time in during the next seven days: Personal
development, Parent, Temple service etc.

6.3.2. Select Goals

The next step is to think of one or two important results you feel you should accomplish in each role
during the next seven days. These would be recorded as goals. An effective goal focuses on results
rather than activity. It identifies where you want to be, and, in the process, helps you determine
where you are. It gives you important information on how to get there, and it tells you when you
have arrived. It unifies your efforts and energy. It gives meaning and purpose to all you do. At
least some of these goals should reflect Quadrant II activities. Ideally these weekly goals should be
tied to the long-term goals you have identified in conjunction with your personal mission statement.
But even if you havent written your mission statement, you can get a feeling, a sense, of what is
important as you consider each of your roles and one or two goals for each role.

Personal development Visit Ayurvedic doctor for indigestion problem

Spouse / Parent sons science project for the upcoming exhibition


Manager- new product Test market parameters, study consumer survey

Manager Research study last test result

Manager administration end of month report, salary review reports

6.3.3. Schedule (also sharpen the saw)

Now you can look at the week ahead and with your goals in mind, schedule time to achieve them. If
you set a goal to chant and meditate to achieve peace of mind and develop your inner strength and
integrity you may set aside an hour everyday. There are some goals that you may only be able to
accomplish during business hours, or some that you can only do on Saturday.

Having identified roles and set goals, you can translate each goal to a specific day of the week. You
can also check your annual or monthly calendar for any appointments you may have previously
made and evaluate their importance in the context of your goals, transferring those you decide to
keep to your schedule and making plans to reschedule or cancel others. Shift appointments if you
need to, to savor relationships and interactions with others, to deeply enjoy spontaneous
experiences, knowing that you have proactively organized your week to accomplish key goals in
every area of your life.

6.3.4. Daily Adapt

With Quadrant II weekly organizing, daily planning becomes more a function of daily adapting, of
prioritizing activities and responding to unanticipated events, relationships and experiences in a
meaningful way. Taking a few minutes each morning to review your schedule can put you in touch
with the value-based decisions you made as you organized the week as well as unanticipated factors
that may have come up. As you overview the day, you can see that your roles and goals provide a
natural prioritization that grows out of your innate sense of balance.

6.3.5. Live it (by compromising in III and IV)

Living it primarily is a function of our independent will, our self-discipline, our integrity, and
commitment not to short-term goals and schedules or to the impulse of the moment, but to the
correct principles and our own deepest values, which give meaning and context to our goals, our
schedules, and our lives.

The popularity of reacting to the urgent but unimportant priorities of other people in Quadrant III or
the pleasure of escaping to Quadrant IV will threaten to overpower the important Quadrant II
activities you have planned. Your principle center, your self-awareness and your conscience can

provide high degree of intrinsic security, guidance and wisdom to empower you to use your
independent will and maintain integrity to the truly important.

But because you are not omniscient, you cant always know in advance what is truly important. As
carefully as you organize the week, there will be times when, as a principle-centered person, you
will need to subordinate your schedule to a higher value. Because you are principle-centered, you
can do that with an inner sense of peace.

Again, you simply cant think EFFICIENCY with people. You think EFFECTIVENESS with
PEOPLE and EFFICIENCY with THINGS. We can see many parents, particularly mothers with
small children, often frustrated in their desire to accomplish a lot because all they seem to do is
meet the needs of little children all day. Remember, that frustration is a function of our
expectations, and our expectations are often a reflection of the social mirror rather than our own
values and priorities.

If you have the habit of beginning with the end in mind, the knowledge of P/PC balance, you have
those higher values driving you. You cant subordinate your schedule to those values with integrity.
You can adapt; you can be flexible. You dont feel guilty when you dont meet your schedule or
when you have to change it.

6.4. Delegation: increasing P and PC

We accomplish all that we do through delegation- either to time or to other people. If we delegate to
time, we think efficiency. If we delegate to other people, we think effectiveness.

Many people refuse to delegate to other people because they feel it takes too much time and effort
and they could do the job better themselves. But effectively delegation to others is perhaps is the
single most powerful high-leverage activity there is.

Transforming responsibility to other skilled & trained people enables you to give your energies to
other high-leverage activities. Delegation means growth, both for individuals & for organizations.
The late J .C. Penney was quoted as saying that the wisest decision he ever made was to let go
after realizing that he couldnt do it all by himself any longer. That decision, made long ago,
enabled the development and growth of hundreds of stores and thousand of people.

The ability to delegate to others is the main difference between the role of manager and independent
producer. A producer does whatever is necessary to accomplish desired results, to get the golden
eggs. A parent who washes the dishes, an architect who draws up blueprints, or a secretary who
types correspondence is a producer. But when a person sets up and works with and through people
and systems to produce golden eggs, that person becomes a manager in the interdependent sense. A
parent who delegates washing dishes to a child is a manager. An architect who heads a team of other
architects is a manager. A secretary who supervises other secretaries and office personnel is an
office manager.

A producer can invest one hour of effort and produce one unit of results, assuming no loss of

A manager, on the other hand, can invest one hour of effort and produce ten or fifty or a hundred
units through effective delegation. Management is essentially moving the fulcrum over, and the key
to effective management is delegation.

6.4.1. Gofer Delegation

There are basically two kinds of delegation: gofer delegation and stewardship delegation. Gofer
delegation means, Go for this, go for that, do this, do that, and tell me when it is done. Most
people who are producers have a gofer delegation paradigm. Remember the machete wielders in the
jungle? They are the producers. They roll up their sleeves and get the job done. If they are given a
position of supervision or management, they still think like producers. They dont know how to set
up a full delegation so that other person is committed to achieve results. Because they are focused
on methods, they become responsible for the results.

I was involved in a gofer delegation once when I had gone on a trip to Kanyakumari. The evening
setting sun was so beautiful I wanted to click a photo. With the hope of training my secretary in
photography, I handed over my camera to him and asked him to take some pictures.

At first, I told him to be selective in her picture taking because we didnt have much film left. Then
I realized he was unfamiliar with the camera, so I became a little more specific. So I told him to be
sure to wait until the sun is appearing to be touching the waters before setting.

But the more I thought about his angle of holding the camera and his inexperience with the camera,
the more concerned I became. I finally said, Look Ram, just push the button when I tell you.
Okay? And I spent the next few minutes yelling, Take it!- Take it!- Dont take it!- Dont take it!
I was afraid that if I didnt direct him every move every second, it wouldnt be done right.

That was true gofer delegation, one-on-one supervision of methods. Many people consistently
delegate that way. But how much does it really accomplish? And how many people is it possible to
supervise or manage when you have to be involved in every move they make?

There is much better way, a more effective way to delegate to other people. And its based on a
paradigm of appreciation of the self-awareness, the imagination, the conscience and the free will of
other people.

6.4.2. Stewardship Delegation

Stewardship delegation is focused on results instead of methods. It gives people a choice of method
and makes them responsible for results. It takes more time in the beginning, but its time well
invested. You can move the fulcrum over; you can increase your leverage, through stewardship

Stewardship delegation involves clear, up-front mutual understanding and commitment regarding
expectations in five areas.

Desired Results: Create a clear, mutual understanding of what needs to be accomplished, focusing
on what, not how; results, not methods. Spend time. Be patient. Visualize the desired result. Have

the person see it, describe it, make out a quality statement of what the results will look like, and by
when they will be accomplished.

Guidelines: Identify the parameters within which the individual should operate. These should be as
few as possible to avoid methods delegation, but should include any formidable restrictions. You
wouldnt want a person to think he had considerable latitude as long as he accomplished the
objectives, only to violate some long-standing traditional practice or value. That kills initiative and
sends people back to gofers creed: J ust tell me what you want me to do, and I will do it.

If you know the failure paths of the job, identify them. Be honest and open tell a person where the
quick sand is and where the animals are. You dont want to have to reinvent the wheel everyday. Let
people learn from your mistakes or the mistakes of others. Point out the potential failure paths, what
not to do, but doesnt tell them what to do. Keep the responsibility for results with them- to do
whatever is necessary with the guidelines.

Resources: Identify the human, financial, technical, or organizational resources the person can draw
on to accomplish the desired results.

Accountability: Set up the standards of performance that will be used in evaluating the results and
the specific times when reporting and evaluating will take place.

Consequence: Specify what will happen, both good and bad, as a result of the evaluation. This
could include such things as financial rewards; psychic rewards different job assignments and
natural consequences tied into the overall mission of an organization.

A practical example Stewardship delegation from Stephen Covey Seven Habits

My seven-year-old son, Stephen, volunteered to take care of the yard. Before I actually gave him
the job, I began a thorough training process. I wanted him to have a clear picture in his mind of what
a well cared for ard was like, so I took him next door to our neighbours.

Look, son, I said. See how our neighbours yard is green and clean? Thats what were after:
green and clean. Now come look at our yard. See the mixed colours? Thats not it; thats not green.
Green and clean is what we want. Now how you get it green is up to you. Youre free to do it any
way you want, except paint it. But I'll tell you how Id do it if it were up to me.

How would you do it, Dad?

I had turn on the sprinklers. But you may want to use buckets or a hose. It makes no difference to
me. All we care about is that the color is green, Okay?
Now lets talk about clean, Son. Clean means to messes around-no paper, strings, bones, sticks,
or anything that messes up the place. Ill tell you what lets do. Lets just clean up half the yard right
now and look at the difference.
So we got out two paper sacks and picked up one side of the yard. Now look at this side, look at
this side. Look at the other side. See the difference? Thats called clean. Wait! he called. I see
some paper behind that bush!
Oh good! I didnt notice that newspaper back there. You have good eyes Son.

Now before you decide whether or not youre going to take the job, let me tell you a few more
things. Because when you take the job, I dont do it any more. Its your job. Its called a
stewardship. Stewardship means a job with trust. I trust you to do the job, to get it done. Now
whos going to be your boss?
You, Dad?
No, not me. Youre the boss. You boss yourself. How do you like Mom and Dad nagging you all
the time?
I dont.
We dont like doing it either. It sometimes causes a bad feeling, doesnt it? So you boss yourself.
Now, guess who your helper is.
I am, I said. You boss me.
I do?
Thats right. But my time to help is very limited. Sometimes I am away. But when I am here, you
tell me how I can help. I will do anything you want me to do.
Now guess who judges you.
You judge yourself.
I do?
Thats right. Twice a week two of us will walk around the yard, and you can show me how its
coming. How are you going to judge?
Green and clean.
I trained him with those two words for two weeks before I felt he was ready to take the job. Finally,
the big day came.
Is it a deal, Son?
Its a deal.
Whats the job?
Green and clean.
Whats green?
He looked at our yard, which was beginning to look better. Then he pointed next door. Thats the
color of his yard.
Whats clean?
No messes.
Whos the boss?
I am.
Whos your helper?
You are, when you have time.
Whos the judge?
I am. Well walk around two times a week and I can show you how its coming.
And what will we look for?
Green and clean.
At that time I didnt mention an allowance. But I wouldnt hesitate to attach an allowance to such a

Two weeks and two words. I thought he was ready. It was Saturday. And he did nothing. Sunday ...
nothing. Monday ...... nothing. As I pulled out of the driveway on my way to work on Tuesday, I

looked at the yellow, cluttered yard and the hot J uly sun on its way up. Surely hell do it today, I
thought. I could rationalize Saturday because that was the day we made the agreement. I could
rationalize Sunday; Sunday was for other things. But I couldnt rationalize Monday. And now it was
Tuesday. Certainly hed do it today. It was summertime. What else he has to do?

All day I hardly wait to return home to see what happened. As I rounded the corner I met with the
same picture I left that morning. And there was my son at the park across the street playing.

This was not acceptable. I was upset and disillusioned by his performance after two weeks of
training and all those commitments. We had a lot of effort, pride and money invested in yard and I
could see it Going down the drain. Besides my neighbours yard was manicured and beautiful, and
the situation was beginning to get embarrassing.

I was ready to go back to gofer delegation. Son you get over here and pick up this garbage right now
or else! I knew I could get the golden egg that way. But what about the goose? What would happen
to his eternal commitment?

So I faked a smile yelled across the street, Hi, Son. Hows it going?
Fine! he returned.
How is the yard coming? I knew the minute I said it I had broken the agreement. Thats not the
way we have set-up the accounting. Thats not what we had agreed
So he felt justified in breaking it, too. Fine, Dad.
I bit my tongue and waited until after dinner. Then I said, Son, lets do as we agreed. Lets walk
around the yard together and you can show me how its going in your stewardship.
As we started out the door, his chain began to quiver. Tears welled up in his eyes and, by the time
we got out to the middle of the yard, he was whimpering.
Its so hard, Dad!
Whats so hard? I thought to myself. You havent done a single thing! But I knew what was hard
self-management, self-supervision. So I said, Is anything I can do to help?
Would you, Dad? he sniffed.
What was our agreement?
You said you would help me if you had time.
I had time.
So he ran into the house and came back with two sacks. He handed me one. Will you pick that
stuff up? He pointed to the garbage from Saturday nights barbecue. It makes me sick!
So I did. I did exactly what he asked me to do. And that was when he signed the agreement in his
heart. It became his yard, his stewardship.
He only asked two or three more times that entire summer. He took care of that yard. He kept it
greener and cleaner than it had ever been under my stewardship. He even reprimanded his brothers
and sisters if they left so much as a gum wrapper on the lawn.

Trust is the highest form of human motivation. It brings out the very best in people. But it takes
time and patience, and it doesnt preclude the necessity to train and develop people so that their
competency can rise to the level of that trust.

I am convinced that if stewardship delegation is done correctly, both parties will benefit and
ultimately much more work will be done in much less time. I believe that a family that is well
organized, whose time has been spent effectively delegating on one-on-one basis, can organize the

work so that everyone can do everything in about an hour a day. But that takes the internal capacity
to want to manage not just to produce. The focus is on effectiveness, not efficiency.

Certainly you can pick up that room better than a child, but the key is that you want to empower the
child to do it. It takes time. You have to get involved in the training and development. It takes time,
by how valuable that time is downstream! It saves you so much in the long run.

This approach involves an entirely new paradigm of delegation. In effect, it changes the nature of
the relationship: The steward becomes his own boss, governed by a conscience that contains the
commitment to agreed upon desired results. But it also releases his energies towards doing whatever
is necessary in harmony with correct principles to achieve those desired results.

The principles involved in stewardship delegation are correct and applicable to any kind of person
or situation. With immature people, you specify less desired result and more guidelines, identify
more resources, conduct more frequent accountability interviews, and apply more consequences.
With more mature people, you have more challenging desired results, fewer guidelines, less
frequent accountability, and less measurable but more discernable criteria.

Effective delegation is perhaps the best indicator of effective management simply because it is so
basic to both personal and organizational growth.

6.5. Time, God and goal of time management

1) Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad gita that He is Time Himself (11.32). While He shows His all
beautiful all attractive form to His devotees who are constantly absorbed in His remembrance, He
comes in the form of death for those who ignore Him and break the injunctions of the scriptures.
The mouth of a cat is graveyard for the fearful rat, but shelter for smooth transfer from one place to
another for a kitten. Similarly death is end of everything for the ignorant atheist, but Lords divine
embrace to transport His devotee to the spiritual world or another favourable destination for a

2) The time is compared to a serpent (Srimad Bhagavatam 1.13.46) that swiftly devours the frog.
Similarly time devours everyone and everything. All great dynasties and kings have disappeared in
the sands of time. Time brings about a great change in the whole cosmic situation.

3) Time turns clean faces into faces with wrinkles thus changing young into old; sends the old to
graveyard. It makes all fond events turn into mere photographic memories to be seen and
remembered in old age with a deep breath. With the rising and setting of the sun, one day is
removed from the calendar of our life (SB 2.3.17.). Those who realise that, I am not this perishable
decayable body, but pure unchanging spirit soul eternal servant of the Lord can only go beyond

4) Prahlad, a great devotee of the Lord has analysed how a man spends his valuable life:

Every human being has a maximum duration of life of one hundred years, but for one who cannot
control his senses, half of those years are completely lost because at night he sleeps twelve hours,
being covered by ignorance. Therefore such a person has a lifetime of only fifty years. (SB 7.6.6.)

In the tender age of childhood, when everyone is bewildered, one passes ten years. Similarly, in
boyhood, engaged in sporting and playing, one passes another ten years. In this way, twenty years
are wasted. Similarly, in old age, when one is an invalid, unable to perform even material activities,
one passes another twenty years wastefully. (SB 7.6.7.)

5) One whose mind and senses are uncontrolled becomes increasingly attached to family life
because of insatiable lusty desires and very strong illusion. In such a madmans life, the remaining
years are also wasted because even during those years he cannot engage himself in devotional
service. (SB 7.6.8.)

Shankara said : balyavastha kridasakta, tarunavastha taruni sakta
Vriddhavasta cinta magna, para brahmani kopi na sakta
In childhood one is attached to playing, in youth one is attached to beautiful women, in old age one
is absorbed in varieties of lamentation; Alas! No one realises the need of searching about that
Supreme Truth that is the source of all bliss!

6) Chanakya said, ayushah ksana ekopi na labhyah svarna kotibih One moment lost cannot
be recovered by even paying millions of dollars... If time is so precious and is a energy controlled
by God, how can every moment be well managed and spent?

We all have left our original home that is free from all anxieties, disease, old age, death and other
miseries. Now we are wandering here like a bird in the sky in search of a resting place. Our time
can be considered well spent only if we can keep that supreme goal of returning back to the
Kingdom of God as the first priority during our Time management. When that is taken care, all
other priorities can be aligned around that supremely important and urgent priority.

When His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada preached in America, the youths realized that there is no
point being busy in paving way to hell by a lifestyle that totally ignores God, our relationship with
Him, and life after death. Today there is a worldwide awakening due to the preaching of
International Society for Krishna consciousness (ISKCON). Anyone who surrenders to God by
acknowledging Him as the Supreme Controller, Enjoyer and Proprietor and develops loving
attraction for Him -- he has achieved the perfection of his life and utilization of his time.


Part II Miscellaneous Topics

Session 7: Self Management (80 min)

Refer to the following sections of the notes:
3.1. Emotions that dictate our behaviour
3.5. Leaders or Managers functioning in three modes
6.1. The Art of Self Management - To Live, to Love, to Learn and to Leave a Legacy
6.1.1. The fulfillment of the four human needs and capacities
6.1.2. The Reality of TRUE NORTH Principles
6.1.3. The Potentiality Of The Four Human Endowments
3.7. Meditation for the Modern Age

Session 8: Art of Successful Delegation

1.1.1. Efficient Management and Effective Leadership
1.1.2. Three types of Power All things are created twice
6.4. Delegation: increasing P and PC
6.4.1. Gofer Delegation
6.4.2. Stewardship Delegation

Session 9: Character the backbone of a Leader (80 min)

0.4. Management With Hands, Head And Heart
0.5. Self Management Learning to Manage ourselves before managing others
0.6. Need of a caring Leader who gives Care and concern instead of Manipulation and Exploitation
0.7. Character building
6.1. The Art of Self Management - To Live, to Love, to Learn and to Leave a Legacy
6.1.1. The fulfillment of the four human needs and capacities
6.1.2. The Reality of TRUE NORTH Principles
6.1.3. The Potentiality Of The Four Human Endowments
3.7. Meditation for the Modern Age

Session 10: Constructive Criticism How to give it and How to take it (80 min) How does one lose Patience? Creating a Favourable Debate Culture Developing Patience and Tolerance as a growing Leader
4.3. Constructive criticism How to give it?
4.3. Constructive criticism How to give it?
3.7. Meditation for the Modern Age

Session 11: Positive Thinking (or) Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) (80 min)

11.1. Understanding our Personality and developing a positive attitude What Principles are: the Law of the Farm and Law of the School

11.1.1. A planning model for the individual and the organization

The organizational planning model is like a compass or a road map that gives a direction to the
people to determine the way they have to navigate and achieve their vision.

The organizations direction is determined on the basis of the facts obtained from the organizational
SWOT analysis so as to move into the future and reach out for those opportunities that are opening
up. The insights help to redefine the mission, vision statements and the values and that becomes
fuel to reach out the vision.

Very similar to this planning model, self-management personal planning model becomes the road
map for self-development and in leading a meaningful life of fulfillment and satisfaction. But it is
important to have the right mental state when planning for our future. We should be free from all
preconceived notions about the self and the things, which are influencing us. The best mental
position is that of a detached observer. In this state, we are able to observe ourselves and the
influences in the way of our life.

The key to stability is balance. The personal planning process involves two major areas of balance:
firstly, the balance between the past and the future and secondly the balance between hard thinking
and soft thinking i.e. to be analytical, logical and rational and at the same time be intuitive,
creative and emotive.

In order to play a leadership role, we must be able to bring about significant changes in our own
mission, vision and values. A leader is someone who is easily able to exercise both thinking styles,

hard and soft according to the need. Many people lack this balance some are too emotional and
others are too rational. A leaders mind features a fine balance of both.

SWOT analysis for Personal planning

A SWOT analysis is commonly used in the strategic planning of a business but it is used in a
different way for personal strategic planning. A SWOT analysis is an analysis of our own personal
strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Our personal strengths are those aspects of life
that are really good and working well. Weaknesses are those aspects of life, which are not so good
and are causing sorrow or discomfort to us. Threats are those things that we may be worrying about
in the future, and opportunities are those golden chances that may be right there in front of us if only
we are able to recognize them.

Being in the present moment, we go into the past, recollect the memories from the past happenings,
events and situations and find out what were the particular personal strengths that we have used, in
order to be successful and on which we can depend on in the future. Likewise, what were our old
weaknesses and how they could be removed? It would have a greater impact on our life because if
we are not able to do that then in future greater risks or negative challenges will come and we will
have to deal with them in future. If we are able to get rid of them, then what are the opportunities
that we can see opening up in our own life so that we are able to navigate our life on the basis of

J ust as when a pebble is thrown into a still lake, the ripples start to spread out from the point where
it hits the water. In the same way, everything starts with the state of the self and then radiates to the
body, relationships, society, environment and the world. The inner qualities affect our mental state
that affects our physical state, which in turn affects our relationship, the society and the
environment. To help us develop the right mental state for undertaking the SWOT analysis it is
important therefore, that we know more about the inner self before proceeding to the analysis of our
outer life.

11.1.2. Spiritual insights

Given that human nature tends to be selfish and that people are often drawn into their own lower
passions, if the leader does not stimulate his own and others awareness of the higher self, he and
his people will have a tendency to concentrate on the animal propensities of eating, mating, sleeping
and defendingthe work of base survival rather than self actualization.

Abraham Maslow, in his discussion on hierarchy of needs explained that people have five basic
needs. The first is physiological. That is, food, air and waterall of which are necessary for the
survival of the body. Physiological needs are the first to be addressed. Once the physiological
needs are arranged for, people can progress to the second level of concern: the need for safety.
Once people feel safe, they need to be affiliated with something. That is, they need to feel they
belong to a group and receive support, affection, friendship and love. Once they have found their
place in society, they can focus on developing self-esteemself-respect, recognition and status.

Of course, after all these needs have been addressed he says then one can concentrate on self-
actualization, which addresses our need to develop our human potential and to transcend the
physical and mental limitations imposed upon us by our bodies. We can learn to connect more with
the higher, spiritual self, ultimately realizing ourselves as essentially spiritual beings and developing
our service relationship with God.

The Vedic system describes the hierarchy of needs as follows:
Annamaya : the organism is literally absorbed in the search for food and basic reproduction.
Organisms functioning on the anna-maya stage barely distinguish themselves from others. Rather,
they recognize only themselves and whether the other is edible or not.

Prana-maya : the organism has moved beyond the consciousness of food vs. non-food, and can
distinguish between itself and others, and its own species and others. At this stage, the need to
defend (safety) becomes more prominent.
Jnana-maya : the organism is developed enough that it begins to acquire knowledge and refine its
thought processes, all of which take place beyond the actual physical need to survive.
Vijnana maya : (also known as ananda maya) : the organism asks the questions, Who am I? Why
am I here? And begins the philosophical search that will lead toward transcendence.

Many civilizations in the history of the world never evolved beyond prana-maya, which is also the
level at which animals function. Much of the information available on management and corporate
structure deals mainly with training people to pursue their most basic needs. Many management
books make these problems sound like we are living on a battlefield when we address them. They
speak about tackling the problem, capturing the market, gaining full control, never
retreating, eliminating the competition and maintaining the combative mentality of I win, you
lose rather than providing win-win solutions.

An empowered leader wants to encourage people to focus on self-actualization, and to do so, he
addresses their physiological and security needs. He provides them with a model of good team ship,
helps them feel a sense of affiliation with the institution, and provides them with validation to build
their self-esteem. From the platform of self-actualization people can then move forward to anada-

11.2. Why are the problems increasing despite the comforts offered by growing
Science And Technology?

As we move into the 21
The world's leading economic giants, such as the United States of America and J apan, although
hundreds of times more scientifically and technologically advanced than India, strangely show the
Century, we see that Science and Technology have reached heights, which
could not have been imagined a few hundred years ago. There are so many modern amenities today
like air-conditioners, vehicles, 5-star hotels, the finest of vehicles, a communication system by
which the entire earth has shrunk, etc. The purpose of Sciences is to either eliminate all miseries, or
at best to reduce miseries and thereby bring more and more happiness in the lives of the common
people. So what should we expect to find in the technologically most advanced countries? We
should expect the most cherished qualities of love, peace and fraternity amongst the citizens.
However, the present day scenario is just the opposite.

highest suicide rates amongst the young and rich citizens! They are always anxiety-ridden, frustrated
and very disturbed. The divorce rate in America today is more than 75% in the first three years of
marriage. More and more people (especially of the higher income class in the Western countries) are
forced to take sleeping pills in order to sleep at night, and they also visit psychiatrists regularly.
People are so terrified they have to screen their guests through a lens on their door, and for better
safety they install several security systems. This 'culture' has now invaded Indian cities. People
move exactly like robots or zombies with no emotions, or at best false emotions.

11.2.1. What is missing in our modern society?

His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON, would often given an
example, which illustrates the condition of modern society today. If we take a pack of dogs and put
them in a locked room, what do you expect would happen? Would they be smiling at one another?
Would they develop loving relationships amongst themselves? One would hardly expect that! In
fact they would be barking, screaming, biting, quarrelling and killing one another. A very similar
situation can be observed in today's society. If, `Knowledge is power' what are we doing with all our
knowledge if we are not being able to control the world situation today?

One need not blame the management of the government, politicians, bureaucrats, police officials,
judiciary etc. or for the problems that the world faces today. We are INTERNALLY DISTURBED,
so we create disturbances for others. We have to evaluate the nature of our mind to understand the

11.2.2. My real identity

The biggest problem is the identity crisis. Who am I? Am I this body, mind, intelligence, or the
head, or the nose? If one can find out one's real identity, then he can work towards achieving lasting
happiness. We are not these bodies; we are pure spiritual souls (Atma). The existence of the soul is
not based on the blind faith of a group of religious followers, as some people wrongly think. It can
be proved through logic and understanding.

Once a scientist analysed all the chemicals present in the body and the "Market Value" of the
components of the body put together was just Rs. 110/-.!!! Anybody, who argues that this body is all
in all, and that there is nothing as a soul of higher dimension within his body, has to ask himself
whether his parents would sell him off for Rs.110?

If your friend travelling on his bicycle falls off it, what will you do? You will forget the cycle worth
Rs.2000/- on the road and rush the body of your friend worth Rs.110/- to the nearest hospital. Even
if your friend riding in a Mercedes Benz, faces a head-on collision with another car, you'll anxiously
rush to the hospital with his Rs.110/- body, bothering the least about the Rs 25/- lakh car lying on
the road side. So it is not difficult for a sane man to appreciate that there has to be something very
special and superior in a living body, which everyone values so much, even though one may not be
in complete knowledge of the eternal soul. The soul is the real eternal personality residing in this
temporary body and the entire world, with all its advancement, is only learning to pamper this
useless body worth Rs.110/-, which is nothing more than a bag of chemicals.

The soul can be compared to a driver and the body to a vehicle. The soul is the spark of life that
makes the body appear alive and when the soul leaves the body, we say the person is 'dead'. An

analogy of a car can be given in this regard. There are headlights in the car to see the road, you also
see with your eyes. The car produces sound with the horn, you also speak. The car has four wheels,
you also have two hands and two legs. The car moves from place to place and you also do the same.
But once the driver gets down from the car, the car cannot budge one-inch even after a 100 years.
Similarly when a man dies, the body is exactly like a car without a driver. The body, which we see,
is actually dead. It appears to be lively because of the presence of the soul. When the soul
leaves the body, the body becomes inactive.

The body is also compared to a cage and the soul is compared to a parrot in the cage. So if someone
takes very good care of the cage by polishing it very carefully and keeping it clean, but ignores the
needs of the resident parrot, then the whole purpose of keeping the parrot in the cage is defeated. In
today's society people are making all arrangements for bodily comfort and luxuries, but spiritually
everyone is starving, and hence everyone is suffering.

The Vedic scriptures explain that the soul is constitutionally a resident of an eternal realm, the
spiritual world. It is explained in the Upanisads, `nityo nityanam, cetanas cetananam, eko bahunam,
yo vidadhati kaman' the Supreme Personality of Godhead is one amongst many many souls who are
all subordinate to Him. Every soul is endowed with a minute independence either to choose to love
and serve God, or to be independent of God and struggle for the so-called illusory enjoyment in this
material world. The souls in this world have chosen the second option.

11.3. Body-senses-mind-intelligence mechanism

The knowledge about the soul is quite exhaustive and is beyond the scope of this book. If one can
understand the body-senses-mind-intelligence mechanism, how it works, then one can learn to
perfectly control the mind.

The soul, when he comes to this material world, is awarded a gross and subtle covering to
acclimatize him to the material surroundings. The gross body consists of earth, water, fire, air and
ether. The subtle body consists of Mind, Intelligence and False ego.

Now in this chapter we study the subtle body deeply to understand what leads to negativity and how
one can manage ones life in such a way to achieve positive thinking.

The false ego is the connection or bond between the material body and the soul. Everyone exhibits
this as bodily consciousness. Everyone thinks in terms of `I' and `mine'. To think `I am fair', `I am
black', `I am tall', `I am short', `I am a brahman', `I am Indian', etc., is false ego. True ego is to
realize oneself to be a part and parcel of God.

Intelligence is the decision-maker. It is supposed to discriminate between good and bad, and give
proper direction and guidance to the mind to know what to do and what not to do. Every thought
the mind creates is sent to the intellect that will evaluate, judge, refine and make a decision upon if
and when necessary. The intellect is gifted with the wisdom and will power that acts as a filter to
take accurate decisions. So if we want to take the right decisions we need to have a good filter.

The problem is that there is some interference that is developed which alter the function and affect
the will power. There are four types of interferences.

Mental Positioning: refers to optimistic or pessimistic approach. Saying that the glass is half
empty is negative and saying that it is half full is positive.
Mental limits: our natural trend is to create a comfort zone in which we feel safe and in which
we try to maintain ourselves, but this can impede our growth in learning new skills, to use other
resources that are within us, latent and yet never explored.
Assumptions: we guess and imagine negativity that prevents us from having a right idea of
what it is really.
Associated memories: taking action by assumption based on preconceived notion.

When we look at all these interferences, we need to be extremely cautious about the way we act or
react towards each situation. Only by remaining alert and unprejudiced and by practicing open
mind can we remain free from these old limitations and discover a totally new way of thinking. The
method to improve our decision-making is to identify the blockages and the holes are.

The mind is the centre of all activities of the senses and is the reservoir of all ideas of sense
enjoyment. The mind is the storehouse of thoughts, unfulfilled desires and previous experiences.
The functions of the mind are thinking, feeling and willing. Mind is the common centre for all
knowledge-acquiring senses - eyes, nose, ears, tongue and skin.

11.3.1. Types of thoughts

Positive thoughts are value-based thoughts that have no selfish intentions. The necessary thoughts
are related with the day-to-day routine, work, profession, career etc. The negative thoughts are
based on weaknesses, vices, evils, selfishness, complexities etc and the waste thoughts are the ones
in which the mind keeps brooding over the past or worrying about the unknown future.

Positive Negative Necessary Waste

J oy Anger Work Past
Love Stress Career Future
Hope Egoism Routine
Mercy Racism Profession
Peace Laziness
Honesty Revenge
Harmony Carelessness
Tolerance Criticism
Enthusiasm J ealousy
Understanding Attachment The Power of thoughts

As is the quality of our thoughts so are our feelings, attitudes, beliefs and behaviour.
We are responsible for our own thoughts, feelings and behaviour.
Positive thoughts generate energy and strength and negative thoughts rob us of the power and
strength and make us feel tired and drained.
What we believe comes true for us due to the thought power.

Lord Krishna says that in whatever way we think and act now, the sum total of all thoughts
reflects at the time of death and decides our future situation. Thus every thought in which we
dwell is important to be checked.
It takes time to change the old patterns of thinking. We have to have patience.

11.3.2. Conscious Mind

Consciousness or the state of the mind is formed on the basis of thought pattern. What stimulates
the thinking? Circumstances, situations, desires, needs, environment all these are registered in the
memory. It is from the memory that the mind gets the stimulation. J ust as whatever we feed in the
computer is stored in the memory, similarly, the human memory is alike whatever we perceive
through the senses about the environment, the circumstances, the needs or crisis everything is then
registered in the memory. Then, according to the time or need the thought process starts.

The following incident can give an idea how our behaviour, perception, attitude and consciousness,
thoughts are all moulded according to what is absorbed by our memory.

One day I saw an old man walking by the side of the road. Suddenly a dog came running out from
one of the lanes and bit the man from behind. The man fell down and started screaming trying to
get rid of the dog. Some people gathered around him and helped him. Somebody caught hold of the
dog so that he could not bite anyone else. Someone called a taxi and helped the man and took him
to the hospital. I was nowhere connected but, this whole incident was registered in my memory.
Some days later I went out somewhere and heard a noise from behind, turned back, and found a
dog behind me.

As soon as I saw the dog how could I react or behave? I will take up a stick or a stone and try to get
rid of the dog. There is fear psychosis. Before that many times dogs may have followed me but I
was not even aware. But after that incident everytime I see a dog, I become cautious, whether it is a
street dog or a pet dog, me perception changes, my attitude changes, my consciousness changes,
and in fact my thinking process has changed because there is something that is registered in the
memory. Hence, as is the quality of the input, so is the output seen through the behaviour.
Behaviour brings a change in the personality. And the personality reinforces the memory. And a
cycle is formed.

How do we degrade
from positive
thinking to negative

109 How do we degrade from positive thinking to negative thinking?

This is how all the mechanisms are affected and it becomes difficult to manage the inner
mechanisms. Information comes from outside and is registered in the memory and affects each and
every mechanism. One negative piece of information registered in the memory changes the entire
mechanism from positive to negative.

Now this is not just with dogs, this is what happens with human beings as well. I am sitting in my
office, trying to work on a project with deep concentration, and there is a knock on the door. An old
friend comes to visit me. As he comes in he seems to be very confused and stressed. Talking about a
few things here and there, he starts relating to me about Mr. X, how he thought him to a nice man
and accepted his help and later he understood that his intentions were selfish and mean. Mr. X had
deceived him and created such problems that he is in a state of confusion and stress and his life is
messed up and he does not know how to manage himself. After sharing this information, he leaves.

After he has gone, with the fresh piece of information that is registered in my memory, my thought
process starts: Can Mr. X be really like this? How can he do such a thing? And then from my
memory, I start digging out all those instances whenever Mr. X had behaved in a peculiar manner.
Gradually, I start relating all those pieces of information with the present information that I have

As are my thoughts so is my consciousness. My attitudes are gradually changing. As I am thinking,
time passes. After some time, Mr. X comes to meet me. He is in a good mood greets me and comes
and takes a seat. He talks for some time then seeing something on my table, he enquires as to what it
is. I tell him that I am working on a complicated project that needs a lot of concentration. Mr. X
says: Is there anything I can do to help you? Now, with the fresh layer of information registered in
my memory, and the fresh thinking process that I have about him, my consciousness, attitude and
perception have all changed. So I would be cautious and try to avoid him until I analyse and find out
what his intentions are. So just see how one piece of information can change the entire inner

In the west, small children of 10 or 12 years age take guns in their pockets to school and shoot their
teachers and students when asked why they did this, their answer was that they did it for fun. What
was the fun? Normally we try to check the behaviour of the children, but the roots are deep down in
their memory. A research was done on their psychology. After the research; they found out that
there are about 125 channels shown on the televisions in the west and in one day there about 18,000
to 20,000 scenes of violence that are being shown. As the children are not much interested in the
educative programmes, those scenes of violence are being registered in their memory, so their
thought patterns are changing accordingly. They have begun to think in that way. Their
consciousness is built on the basis of their thoughts. Their attitudes, and perceptions towards life
and society have changed and also their behaviour. Ultimately, their complete personality has
changed. We can thus imagine how their future will be shaped? If we are not aware of the quality of
the inputs absorbed by the memory, how can we change their behaviour and personality? When a
person gets into this vicious cycle, it is very difficult for him to mange himself and in the later
stages there is great frustration created and one even finds difficult to survive.

Where do we break this vicious cycle? We all know that without our conscious awareness the
memory is absorbing maximum negative input. Where do we bring the change from?

110 Memory absorbs input like a blotting paper; give good quality input

According to psychologists, human memory is so powerful in the early morning hours that it
absorbs the inputs like a blotting paper. We have to be selective, especially in the early morning
hours when the memory is in a high state of absorbing. As such we have to be cautious of the
quality of nourishment we are giving to our memory, because accordingly our entire system will
function. When I nourish my mind with healthy positive inputs, I empower my self.

Spiritual dimension thus enables one to empower the self, which is the only source from where we
get quality information or knowledge. Absorbing the mind in Mantra Meditation like chanting Hare
Krishna, reading scriptures like Bhagavad gita or Srimad Bhagavatam in the early morning hours
purifies our heart. Such divine knowledge generates will power and we can thus take the focus of
control in our own hands. Once we are self-empowered, we look at the problems and situations in a
different way and instead of being influenced and controlled by them; we can manage them in a
better way so as to easily control them. We can maintain a positive attitude, a positive thinking
process and deal accordingly. This is how we manage our complete inner mechanism.

11.3.3. Subconscious Mind

In the subconscious mind are recorded all our experiences and actions, though we are not aware of
them, they are latent. Understanding the subconscious mind can help us foresee our internal
enemies and take necessary precautions to protect our self. At the same time, we can enhance the
quality of our life and develop the necessary will power to transcend the lower pulls offered by the
subconscious mind.

What we know of each other is only a tiny amount of the 11% visible. 90% of our invisible
personality which is within the subconscious and unknown to even ourselves is controlled by some
very strong undercurrent and is the driving force of our personality in a particular direction.

There are five undercurrents moving very silently in everybodys life and controlling 90% of our

1) False Ego: The first and powerful under current is the various forms of ego or the evils generated
from the ego. It is the driving force in the present time. This makes us think I and Mine.

2) Past Life Conditioning: The second undercurrent is the record carried forward from the past
life that keeps on interfering with the present action and becomes the driving force. That is when the
intellect doesnt work and we are controlled by these latent subconscious memories. Many times we
see mature people making some mistakes and when they are caught, they go through some
punishment. If we ask them, how is that they made this mistake, they would say please dont ask, I
dont know what came into my head at that moment and I was driven by it.

3) Upbringing: The third undercurrent is the ancestral, which we inherit in our nature from the
parents and the grandparents. We can see how these impressions function from time to time and
people are not able to change themselves and they are controlled and driven by those impressions.
Some of us might have faced situations at home where there might have been quarrel and

misunderstanding amongst elders, impersonal behaviour, mistreatment, abuse etc during childhood.
These affect our psychology and behaviour at later years.

4) Association: The fourth powerful undercurrent is the company in this life. Thus there is the
saying that a man is known by the company he keeps. There are some children from very good
family backgrounds but when they get indulged in bad company they hardly realise where they are
being driven.

So human beings are being are tossed in various directions by these undercurrents. Sometimes, there
is a lot of inner conflict experienced because of these undercurrents trying to pull us in various
directions. Hence, people are at the mercy of these undercurrents. There is a method through which
we can completely rule them out of our life. We can do this with the help of the fifth undercurrent.
As it is said an iron cuts an iron. Likewise an undercurrent cuts an undercurrent.

5) Will Power: The fifth undercurrent is will power. We need to activate it. How do we activate
our will power? In order to activate our will power, we need the positive thought energy, as thought
energy is the greatest inner resource. But, where do we get positive thoughts from? The source is
spirituality, especially Mantra Meditation which is very easily performed by anyone with no
qualification. This is why spiritual dimension is said to be the missing dimension in human life.
Otherwise one may misuse this power in engaging in nefarious activities that brings about ruin to
oneself and others. More about this will be explained in the later part of this article.

10.3.4. The Senses karmendriyas and jnanendriyas

While mind with its conscious and subconscious component remains the centre of all the senses, the
senses (indriyas) act as a direct link with the external world. Information is gathered by the five
knowledge -acquiring senses (jnanendriyas) viz. the eyes, nose, ears, tongue and skin (touch) and
the body acts with the help of the five working senses (karmendriyas) namely- voice, legs, hands,
anus and genitals. This activity of the body is always related to the objects of the senses, namely-
form, smell, sound, taste and touch. Everything we perceive in the world falls into one of the five
categories of sense objects.

Now we can illustrate with an example how the body-mind-intelligence mechanism works: When
you are walking along the road and you see a gulab jamun in a sweetmeat shop, first your eyes (one
of the jnanendriyas) are attracted by the gulab jamuns. This information is passed on to the mind.
The mind has two things: the previous experience of the sweet taste of gulab jamun and the input of
seeing gulab jamun. The mind consults the intelligence and the intelligence dictates to your hands
and legs (karmendriyas) to go to the shop and purchase the gulab jamuns. In this way co-ordination
takes place between the jnanendriyas, karmendriyas, the mind and intelligence. The Chariot of the body

The following analogy can be found in the pages of the Upanisads, which helps one in
understanding the gross body, mind, intelligence and the soul. It is described in the Vedic literature
that the gross material body is like a chariot. The soul is the passenger in the chariot. The
intelligence is the driver and the mind is the driving instrument (the reins or ropes). Finally, the
senses are the horses. If the senses (horses) are uncontrolled and wild, the body (chariot) will be led
in the wrong directions. If, however, the intelligence (driver) is strong and resolute, then he can

exercise tight control on the mind (the reins) and thus restrain and discipline the senses (horses).
The overall purpose of the whole soul-body arrangement can thus be fulfilled only if the
senses are controlled.

Therefore, we can understand that although the mind plays a pivotal role, above the mind there is
the determination of the intelligence. And yet above the intelligence is the soul proper. It is stated in
the Bhagavad-gita (3.42): "The working senses are superior to dull matter, mind is higher than the
senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he (the soul) is even higher than the

11.4. Will Power

Whenever a decision has to be made there is a tug-of-war between the mind and the intelligence.
Where the intelligence is stronger, reasons prevails and decisions are made after giving issues due
thought. In this case, we are less prone to make judgements impulsively. Where mind is stronger,
feelings and impulses are more important and decisions are made without much thought because
intellect takes a backseat. Here there are more chances of making mistakes because the way we feel
is often strongly dictated by immediate needs, conveniences and pleasures rather than long-term
benefits or consequences.

For example a boy is waiting impatiently to cross the road. His mind says, Come on ! J ust cross
the road. How long can I wait? His intellect says, The traffic is heavy. Wait for a few seconds
more. Better to reach a few minutes late than never. If his mind wins, the boy dashes across the
road and is likely to meet with an accident. If his intellect wins, he may go home three minutes
later, but he has taken total care of his safety in this particular situation.

Will power is activated when intelligence is nourished by higher consciousness wisdom that makes
one taste higher spiritual experiences. In other words,
studying Bhagavad gita, Srimad Bhagavatam, reading sattvic literature that reduce our passions
and ignorance,
eating pure sattvic foods that is offered to God, Krishna prasad
practicing sattvic habits like rising early morning, offering prayers by chanting Hare Krishna,
giving up meat eating, gambling, intoxication and illicit sex,
keeping good company that enhances positive spiritual thinking like the company of pure
hearted devotees of the Lord and
most importantly regularly performing mantra meditation

all these can offer us will power with which we can move mountains.

We are generally covered over superficially by our acquired qualities like Experiences, Abilities,
Memories, Learning, Habits and Beliefs etc. But the innate qualities of the soul like Peace, Love,
Power, Truth, Happiness, and Equilibrium are hidden. When we activate the will power it becomes
the driving force and awakens the innate qualities of the soul and forces them to come out in the 4
Rs of our life. In the various roles that we have to play, the different routines that we go through,
the responsibilities we have to shoulder, and the various relationships that we care for; the innate
qualities required, are essential and full of potentials.

They are permanent in our nature, and they take us beyond ego enabling us to be more efficient and
effective in adverse times. It is just like a volcano eruption. When the volcano erupts the lava comes
and settles and that becomes the most fertile land full of various minerals. Similarly, when the
innate qualities of the soul come out in our personality there is a great transformation. When we
realise that we have these core values, we are totally open. The strong shell of our old pattern is not
interfering and our old memories are paralysed. The transformation is easy - as realisation restores
the synergy of the system.. The intellect is very clear and the memories are aligned. The four
undercurrents become powerless. This is called self-empowerment, which inspires and gives
enthusiasm to others to change.

Thus a crude person like Valyakaula, who behaved as a rogue and thief, becomes a flower like
devotee, Valmiki who compiled Ramayan. This kind of transformation is possible in everyones

11.5. The Miserable Ferris wheel game

The nature of the spirit soul is Sat-Cit-Ananda i.e. the soul is eternal, full of knowledge and full of
bliss. In contrast, the body is temporary and full of ignorance and suffering. Because of this
incompatibility between the two, the soul, who is meant to be happy in an eternal blissful
atmosphere, is never happy in this temporary miserable body. The soul has to repeatedly experience
birth, old age, disease and death in different bodies and it is all because of carrying thousands of
impressions in the mind that cause us to take bodies one after another.

Hence Shankaracarya has sung:
punar api jananam punar api maranam, punar api janani jatare sayanam
iha samsare bahu dustare kripaya pare pahi murare

O Murari, Lord Krishna, I am repeatedly tossed in the waves of birth and death. I am forced to be
born again and again and forced to die again and again. In this way I have been occupying the
wombs of millions of mothers. Please kindly shower your merciful glance upon me and deliver me
from this ocean of nescience.

In this way, the soul sometimes is damned to occupy a dog's body or blessed to get a human body,
depending on his past desires and activities. This cycle of birth and death is like a Ferris wheel
where sometimes you are at the top and sometimes at the bottom. Similarly the soul keeps on taking
one body after another until he becomes completely purified and becomes a surrendered devotee of

11.6. Art of Controlling the Mind to aid Positive thinking

The mind (which is part of the subtle body) plays a major role in causing misery to the living being
who is conditioned in material existence. So it is very important to know how the mind functions,
its nature, its behaviour, and the method of controlling it, to utilize it positively.

11.6.1. Effect of Mind on the Physical body

One demonstration of the minds great potential can be found in the many ways in which the
physical body responds to the minds influence.


For example, psychosomatic illness is a physical ailment generated by mental processes and
having no discernible biological cause. Despite the absence of apparent medical problems, an
arm may function as if it were physically paralysed because of some traumatic memory or fear
buried in the individuals unconscious mind.
In phobias, a person may experience levels of fright and dysfunctional behaviour that appear
unwarranted to others. In some of these cases, with a proper change of consciousness, the
subject no longer experiences the symptoms.
Another classic example of the minds effect upon the body is the placebo effect. In controlled
experiments, one group of subjects is given actual medication for a particular problem, while
those in another group, told that they are taking medication, in fact simply receive sugar pills of
no medicinal value. Improvements frequently occur in the group taking the placebo, a
phenomenon that researchers attribute to the subjects expectationsin other words, to the
minds power of suggestion.
Psycho-neuro-immunology is the study of the mysterious way in which a persons mind and
emotions can influence the immune system. Research in this dynamic, new area of modern
science is providing insight into ways of harnessing the power of mind, including the emotions,
to heal the body.

The studies show that mind can be a most powerful healing tool.

11.6.2. Nature of mind

The mind is sometimes compared to a monkey that jumps from one branch to another. The mind
never stays stable on one object. It has a nature of thinking about one object at one time and to think
of another at the next moment. The mind is also sometimes compared to a child who is very restless
and mischievous. Everyone is torn apart completely in trying to satisfy the demands of the mind.
The mind is not satiated no matter how many of its desires you try to fulfil. The mind is similar
to an unchaste prostitute who changes different color dresses at different times to attract different
types of men. Similarly, the association of the uncontrolled mind completely ruins a person.
Even a great personality like Arjuna frankly admitted that the mind is very difficult to control. In the
Bhagavad-gita [B.G. 6.34] Arjuna says:

chancalam hi manah krsna, pramathi balavad drdham
tasyaham nigraham manye vayor iva suduskaram

The mind is restless, turbulent, obstinate and very strong, O Krishna, and to subdue it, I think it is
more difficult than controlling the wind.

Arjuna was such an expert warrior that he thought it could have been possible for him to control the
wind with weapons, but in his battle against the mind he felt he had no hope.

11.6.3. Uncontrolled mind: what it can do to you?

The position of a person whose mind and senses are uncontrolled becomes pitiable. On one side the
tongue is pulling him to arrange for tasty food; then thirst drags one to get a suitable drink.
Simultaneously, the sex organs clamour for satisfaction, and the sense of touch demands soft,

sensuous objects. The belly harasses one until it is filled, the ears demand to hear pleasant sounds,
the sense of smell hankers for pleasant aromas, and the fickle eyes clamour for pleasing sights. Thus
the senses, organs, and limbs, all desiring satisfaction, pull the living entity in many directions.

All these senses wander astray in all directions due to an uncontrolled mind. A foolish man who
knows no solution when faced with dangers in life, may fall prey to bad vices like smoking,
drinking or suicide, to free himself from suffering; but he is inviting more suffering than ever
before. In modern times we can practically see people getting stress, lack of confidence, lack of
determination and so on. due to an uncontrolled mind. `What profiteth a man who has gained the
entire world, but has lost his own soul? -- certainly a sensible question. There is no peace and
happiness in accumulation of wealth, or possessing bodily beauty, or in display of strength. The real
secret of happiness is a controlled mind, which is gradually achieved through a God-conscious way
of life.

11.6.4. Can the mind be our friend?

Lord Krishna says in the Bhagavad-gita [B.G. 6.6]:

bandhur atmatmanas tasya yenatmaivatmana jitah
anatmanas tu satrutve vartetatmaiva satruvat

"For him who has conquered the mind, the mind is the best of friends; but for one who has failed to
do so, his very mind will be the greatest enemy."

Thus the disposition of the mind determines one's happiness or distress. The mind can be compared
to a sharpened knife. The sharpened knife is used by miscreants to cause violence, but the same
knife is used by expert surgeons to save one's life. The knife in itself is neither good nor bad. When
the mind is controlled one achieves the highest perfection of life. He voluntarily agrees to abide by
the direction of the Personality of Godhead, who is situated within the heart of everyone as the
Supersoul. Such a person is unaffected by the dualities of material existence, namely distress and
happiness, cold and heat, etc. This state is practical Samadhi or absorption in the Supreme.

In the Bhagavad-gita Lord Krishna also explains the nature of the uncontrolled mind. Such a mind is
always making plans to enjoy the different sense pleasures. Lord Krishna says, "While
contemplating the objects of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such
attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises. From anger, complete delusion arises, and
from delusion bewilderment of memory. When memory is bewildered, intelligence is lost, and when
intelligence is lost one falls down again into the material pool." [B.G.2.62-63]. The uncontrolled
mind is thus the cause of our material existence and all the sufferings we experience in this world. If
the mind is controlled the senses will not trouble us. The intelligence of a person must be strong
so that the mind is under its control and then the senses are automatically subdued. The driver of the
chariot must be stout, strong and expert in holding the reins tightly so that the horses are in check.
The intelligence must be strengthened by hearing instructions from a superior authority. Lord
Krishna says in Bhagavad-gita: [BG 4.34]

tad viddhi pranipatena pari prasnena sevaya
upadeksyanti te jnanam jnaninas tattva-darsinah

'J ust try to learn the truth by approaching a spiritual master. Inquire from him submissively and
render service unto him. The self-realized souls can impart knowledge unto you because they have
seen the truth.'

By this process the intelligence will become strong and the uncontrolled mind will be subdued.
Good spiritual instructions are food for the intelligence. They nourish the intelligence and purify the
mind. When the intelligence (driver) is strong then he will be able to control the mind (reins) tightly
and the soul (passenger) will have a peaceful journey. But as long as the intelligence is weaker than
the mind, there is no possibility of any peace or happiness in our life.

11.6.5. Mind control through meditation The tortoise technique

To develop good qualities and be really happy in life one must control the mind. Lord Krishna
explains this in the Bhagavad-gita [BG 2.58]:

yada samharate cayam kurmo 'nganiva sarvasah
indriyhanindriyarthebhyas tasya prajna pratisthita.

"One who is able to withdraw his senses from sense objects, as the tortoise draws its limbs within
the shell, is firmly fixed in perfect consciousness."

The senses are compared to venomous serpents. They want to act loosely and without restriction.
But we must be strong enough to control the serpents - like a snake charmer. We must never allow
the senses to act independently. There are many injunctions in the revealed scriptures; some of them
are do-not's, and some of them are do's. The example of the tortoise given by Lord Krishna is very
appropriate. The tortoise can at any moment wind up his senses and exhibit them again at any time
for particular purposes. An idle man's brain is a Devil's workshop

You may question, "If you are telling me to refrain from so many things, what should I do? I cannot
remain inert and idle. I must DO SOMETHING!!! It is extremely important to engage the senses in
superior spiritual activities. The senses are so strong and impetuous, that they forcibly carry away
the mind even of a man of discrimination who is endeavouring to control them. (BG 2.60). So if the
mind and senses are not engaged in superior Krishna conscious activities, then they will
immediately drag you to material sense enjoyment.

There are many learned sages, philosophers and transcendentalists who try to conquer the senses
but, in spite of their endeavours, even the greatest of them sometimes fall victim to material sense
enjoyment due to an agitated mind. The great sage Vishvamitra tried to practice mystic yoga with
severe penance by strictly controlling the mind and senses. But when he heard the tinkling of the
ankle bells of Menaka, all the desires for sense enjoyment in Visvamitra's mind came up to the
surface. He forgot all his yoga practices and enjoyed with this woman. Therefore, it is very difficult
to control the mind and senses without experiencing a higher taste, being fully Krishna conscious.
Without engaging our mind in Krishna, one cannot cease material activities.

117 Two-component formula: Withdraw your senses & Engage them in God's service

Contrary to Vishvamitra is the story of the great devotee Srila Haridas Thakur. Haridas Thakur
absorbed himself completely in chanting the holy names in mantra meditation on Lord Krishna. He
would chant three hundred thousand names of the Lord each day. The body of this extraordinary
saint, who was constantly in trance, was maintained by spiritual strength from chanting, and he
barely slept at all. He was so influential that all the neighbouring people offered their respects to
him. But a landowner named Ramachandra Khan was envious of Haridas Thakur and, unable to
tolerate the great respect, which was offered to Haridas Thakur, he schemed to dishonour him. He
sent a beautiful prostitute to allure Haridas in the dead of the night.

The prostitute, after dressing herself in a seductive way, went to the cottage of Haridas Thakur.
Exposing part of her body to his view, she sat down on the threshold and spoke to him in sweet
words. She told him, "My dear Haridas, O great preacher, great devotee, you are so beautifully
built, and your youth is just beginning. Who is the woman who could control her mind after seeing
you? I am eager to be united with you. My mind is greedy for this."

Haridas Thakur replied, "I shall accept you without fail, but you will have to wait until I have
finished chanting my regular rounds on my beads. Until that time, please sit and listen to the
chanting of the Holy Name. As soon as I am finished, I shall fulfil your desire." When the night
came to an end, the prostitute became restless. Seeing this, Haridas said, "I have vowed to chant
ten million names of Krishna in one month. I tried my best to chant the Holy name all night, but I
still did not finish. Tomorrow I will surely finish, and my vow will be fulfilled. Then it will be possible
for me to enjoy with you in full freedom." The prostitute left and she came again that night. The
same thing happened. Haridas continued to chant and the prostitute sat nearby waiting for him to
finish his vow. This continued for three continuous nights. By her constant hearing of Haridas'
chanting, the mind of the prostitute had changed. She began to cry and fell at the lotus feet of
Haridas Thakur and revealed her evil intentions. She begged Haridas, "Kindly instruct me in my
duty by which I may get relief from material existence." Haridas answered, "Chant the Hare
Krishna mantra continuously and render service to the Tulasi plant by watering her and offering
prayers to her. In this way you will very soon get the opportunity to be sheltered at the lotus feet of
Krishna." Haridas Thakur was not the least affected by the prostitute. In fact, he converted her into
a great devotee of the Lord.

When one engages in devotional service (Krishna consciousness) then automatically material
enjoyment becomes distasteful. Krishna explains in the Gita that, besides restraining the senses
from sinful activities, we must engage our mind and consciousness on Him. He says: (B.G.2.61)

tani sarvani samyamya yukta asita mat-parah
vase hi yasyendriyani tasya prajna pratisthita

"One who restrains his senses, keeping them under full control, and fixes his consciousness upon
Me, is known to be a man of steady intelligence." The sure-shot method of controlling our mind and
all our senses is to engage them in positive spiritual activities.

In the Vedic times the saintly kings would take taxes from the general people and use it to help the
devotees to preach Krishna consciousness. They would build temples, which were like universities
of Vedic wisdom and culture. These big temples of the Lord were built right in the centre of the
town so that many people could gather there for spiritual education. These kings would not only
help in propagating Krishna consciousness throughout the world but would also strictly practice the
principles of bhakti in their lives. The exemplary standards of devotional service set by the saintly

kings were followed by the common people and they would get a chance to progress on the path to
the spiritual world - back home, back to Godhead. There was once a great devotee-king of the Lord
called Ambarisa Maharaja. The king engaged all his senses in the service of the Lord and was able
to conquer his desires, as mentioned in the Srimad Bhagavatam (9.4.18-20). The panacea for all problems

When we forget our prime duty of serving God, we are forced to serve the misgivings in our heart
such as lust, anger and so on as described previously. Presently, we have forgotten our relationship
with God and hence the process of yoga is described in the Vedic texts in order to revive our
loving relation with the Supreme Lord. There are various yogic processes for attaining the Supreme,
but in this day and age of Kali Yuga, which is described as the age of quarrel and hypocrisy, there is
only one way i.e. the chanting of the Holy names of the Lord.

Hare Krishna maha-mantra: The great deliverer of mind (include to this also 3.7. Meditation for
the modern age)

The word `Mantra' means `deliverer of mind'. `Maha-mantra' means `the great deliverer of mind'.
No artificial technique can help you except the revival of your dormant God consciousness through
the chanting of the Holy names of God. Mantra Meditation is a process of repeated recitation of an
authorized name of God. Such a repeated recitation produces spiritual vibrations in the heart of the
chanter and vanquishes all the misgivings in the heart and establishes a pure consciousness leading
to peace and serenity. There are hundreds of names of God and all of them are very powerful. But
the Kali-Santarana Upanisad specifically mentions the Hare Krishna maha-mantra. The Upanisad
assures that by chanting this Maha-Mantra regularly, one can destroy all that is undesirable within
one's heart. It is further declared that there is no other way of self-realization from the point of view
of all revealed scriptures.

When you go to a medical shop, although there are hundreds of medicines available, you only ask
for a specific medicine prescribed by your doctor. In the same way, for this particular age of Kali
yuga, the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra is prescribed. The effect of such spiritual sound vibration (as
the Holy name of the Lord) is a universal principle, just like the law of gravity or any other law of
Physics. It causes transformation within the heart of anyone who sincerely adopts this principle, and
gives them higher happiness and confidence.


Session 12: Art of Mind Control (80 min)

11.2. Why are the problems increasing despite the comforts offered by growing
Science And Technology?
11.2.1. What is missing in our modern society?
11.2.2. My real identity

11.3. Body-senses-mind-intelligence mechanism
11.3.4. The Senses karmendriyas and jnanendriyas The Chariot of the body

11.4. Will Power
11.5. The Miserable Ferris wheel game
11.6. Art of Controlling the Mind to aid Positive thinking and all its subheadings

Session 13: Practical Tips to Mind Control

The modern scenario

The search for happiness is the eternal quest for every living entity. In the modern times, the
propaganda throughout the world is to work very hard to earn ones livelihood, to accumulate more
and more wealth and to increase ones name and fame and thus become happy. Consequently
everyone is caught up in an environment of cutthroat competition. In such a situation, every avenue
to stay alive and get ahead in life is thoroughly exploited. Mind control plays a decisive role in
determining the performance and shaping the future of a person and therefore nowadays it has
become a buzzword in professional circles.

The Necessity Of Mind Control

We all know that, somehow or other, if we can learn to control our mind then we can accomplish so
many things in our life. So naturally we are all interested in controlling our mind. At the same time
we are all well aware of the disastrous consequences of an uncontrolled mind. If the mind of a man
is uncontrolled, it will make him miserable throughout his life and may harass him so much that he
may even go to the extent of committing suicide.

Every intelligent person should learn to control his mind and lead a peaceful life. There are many
institutions offering courses on Mind control, but most of them dont go to the root of the problem.
They are based on only a superficial knowledge of the mind and the way in which it works. Mind
control without proper understanding of oneself, God and the purpose of life is just eyewash; it can
yield no tangible benefit.

In this article however, we will get a proper understanding of the mind based on the timeless
wisdom of the Vedic philosophical masterpiece, the Bhagavad-gita.


The mind frequently causes us a variety of problems. And amateur attempts to tackle these
problems are bound to fail since the body-mind mechanism is extremely complex. Therefore the
first step in mind control is to understand the answers to the following basic questions: What is this
body? Who am I? What is the purpose of this creation?

In order to get authentic answers to these questions, the best course of action is to approach the
super-intelligent designer of this body, the mastermind behind the creation, namely, the Supreme
Lord, and ask him, Why did you create all these problems? This approach involves tackling the
problems of life by going to their root cause and so it can provide a permanent solution. J ust as
when we get a disease, we go to a doctor, an expert in that field, to diagnose the root cause of the
disease and get it cured, similarly we need the help of a guru or a spiritual master, an expert in the
knowledge of the essence of life, who can teach us why our mind and body give us so much
suffering in this world and the way to permanently get rid of all suffering.

Krishna, the Supreme Lord, is universally acclaimed as the jagat guru or the spiritual master of the
whole universe. And He is teaching Arjuna in Bhagavad-gita how to control ones mind and how to
lead a pure life.

Right at the outset of the Bhagavad-gita, Lord Krishna explains to Arjuna that we are not these
material bodies; we are actually spirit souls. This body is simply like a dress; it is just an external
covering. The atma, the eternal being, who is the eternal servant of God, is now trapped in this body
exactly like a parrot trapped in a cage. Being trapped in the body we are constantly suffering due to
the miseries caused by the body and the mind. It is not that we are suffering only now; our history of
suffering dates back to many, many lifetimes. Therefore according to all the scriptures the ultimate
goal of life, the only way to lasting happiness, is to liberate oneself from the cycle of birth and death
and to achieve the kingdom of God. That is our original home and it is from there that we have
come to this foreign place, the material world.

Due to our stay in the material world, our mind has become the storehouse of varieties of thoughts,
impressions and unfulfilled desires. These material impressions on the mind drag the atma from one
body to another, birth after birth. Until all these material impressions are wiped out from the mind
and pure spiritual consciousness is established, there is no possibility of returning back to the
kingdom of God.

But as long as we are in this material world, we are inescapably stuck up with the body and the
mind. And the mind gives us a variety of sufferings.

Herein we will try to learn a few tips, which can help us to control the mind. But these tips have to
be applied while a person simultaneously engages in cultivating knowledge about God, the ultimate
goal of life and about himself. There is no overnight, short cut to control the mind; if it were so
easy, modern man would not talk so much about mind control. We request the reader to refer to our
previous book on `Art of Mind Control to get some understanding of soul-body-mind-intelligence
mechanism so that he can apply the following tips more effectively:


Generally we can see that our mind becomes especially agitated whenever we are insulted and the
thorn of the desire to take revenge torments the mind for a long time. The only way to control the
mind in such circumstances is by shutting our eyes to the insults. On reading this, you will probably
be thinking, Why in the wide world should I not take revenge on the person who has insulted me?
He has caused me so much pain; he must suffer. But the reality is that he is not the actual cause of
our suffering. We must have done some sinful activity in the past as a reaction to which we are
insulted now as per the law of karma. And the person who has insulted us is just acting as an
instrument in the hands of nature to deliver us our due suffering. When we understand this, then we
will be able to take the insult in a mature way without being unnecessarily agitated and without
maintaining a vengeful feeling.

This is vividly illustrated in an instructive pastime that took place about 5000 years ago. The
emperor of the whole world at that time was Maharaj Parikshit. Once when he was going through a
forest, he was afflicted by severe thirst. Though he was the king of the entire world, here he was in
the midst of the forest and there was no one to fetch even a glass of water for him. At that time he
saw a sage, Shamik rishi, performing penance in a hut. Being desperate to quench his thirst, he
requested the sage to give him a glass of water. The sage was in deep trance and so he did not even
hear the king. Parikshit was angered due to this apparently discourteous behavior of the king. In his
anger he put a dead snake around the neck of the sage and went away. After some time when the
son of Shamik rishi Shringi came to know about how his father had been insulted, he pronounced a
curse on Parikshit, You will die after seven days due to the bite of a poisonous snake-bird.

When King Parikshit was informed about the curse, his response was highly exemplary. He was the
emperor of the entire world and he was also a pure devotee of Lord Krishna. And for a minor
mistake on his part, a young impudent boy had sounded his death-knell. If King Parikshit had
wanted he could easily have counter-cursed Shringi. But far from trying to get even with Shringi,
Parikshit humbly accepted the curse and immediately renounced his entire kingdom in order to
prepare for his imminent departure from this world. He went to the banks of the Ganges, offered his
humble obeisances to the great sages assembled there and requested them

tam mopayatam pratiyantu vipra ganga ca devi dhrta-cittam ise
dvijopasrstah kuhakas taksako va dasatv alam gayata visnu-gathah

O brahmanas, just accept me as a completely surrendered soul, and let mother Ganges, the
representative of the Lord, also accept me in that way, for I have already taken the lotus feet of the
Lord into my heart. Let the snakebird--or whatever magical thing the brahmana created--bite me at
once. I only desire that you all continue singing the deeds of Lord Vishnu.

In this way Parikshit reacted to the curse in a very composed positive way. And consequently he
was able to end his life on a very glorious note by returning to the kingdom of God.

On the other hand if someone takes an insult very seriously then he can never be peaceful as is seen
from the story of Hiranyakashipu.

The king of the demons, Hiranyakashipu, was the master of all the three worlds He had practically
conquered the entire universe. J ust by the raising of his eyelashes, all the powerful demigods would

start trembling in fear. His small five-year-old son, Prahlada, however, did not accept him to be
supreme and did not obey him. Though he was the emperor of the whole universe, just one tiny boy
not accepting his supremacy was intolerable for him. His life became completely miserable; he lost
his night sleep. He decided to ruthlessly murder small innocent Prahlada. But when all his attempts
to do so were foiled, he became totally dejected. And finally Hiranyakashipu himself had to meet a
ghastly death.

In the same way, if a hundred people respect us but one person insults us, that one insult makes us
thoroughly miserable; the respect of hundred other people has no value for us. But if we understand
that all these insults are coming upon us as a result of our past activities then we can learn to close
our eyes to the insults.

And when we are insulted in such a way due to some reason, we should learn to forget and forgive.
We should never maintain grudges. If we nurture an ill feeling towards a man who has insulted us in
our heart without openly expressing it, that is even worse than openly expressed anger. Suppressed
anger is like mental cancer. It leads to sleeplessness, it poisons your blood, and it increases your
blood pressure and takes away all peace of mind. An insult is like spilt milk. If milk is spilt on the
ground, then what we can you do about it? Its finished; its done. So we should learn to forget about
such incidents, which have already happened and just go ahead with our regular activities without
becoming distracted or diffident. But if we nourish the grievances and brood over the past
happenings, then not only does it cause immense pain to our heart but it may also lead to disastrous
consequences, as seen in the following incident from the Mahabharata.

Once when Drona, a brahmana, and Drupada, a prince, were studying in the same gurukula, they
became close friends. One day, in a moment of intimate friendship, Drupada promised Drona,
When I inherit the kingdom of my father, I will give half of it to you.

Later, Drupada went on to become the king of Panchal, whereas Drona became a poor brahmana.
Once in a moment of acute poverty, when his son was crying piteously for milk and Drona had no
money to get any milk, he remembered the promise of his childhood friend, Drupada. He therefore
went to meet Drupada and reminded him of old friendship. Sitting on his majestic royal throne,
Drupada looked at the poor brahmana standing in front of him in the midst of the court and said to
him, O unfortunate brahmana, how do you consider me as your friend now? Past friendships are
meaningless. Only equals can be friends. Now I am a great king and you are a poor brahmana. Do
not try to invoke a long dead relationship. Saying this, Drupada laughed at Drona, gave him a little
charity and sent him off. Deeply insulted, Drona left Panchal, but his mind was fixed on revenge.
He did not forget and forgive; instead he kept the memory of the incident burning in his heart and
resolved to take revenge when the right moment came.

Later on Drona became the military teacher of the Pandavas and the Kauravas. When they
completed their training and asked him what guru-dakshina they could give him, Drona requested
them to capture Drupada and bring him as a prisoner before him. On hearing the desire of their
guru, first the Kauravas, headed by Duryodhana, attacked Drupada, who easily defeated them. When
the Kauravas returned defeated, the Pandavas, headed by Arjuna, invaded Panchal. They defeated
Drupada, arrested him, brought him as a captive to their gurukula and threw him at the feet of

On seeing how Drupada had been thoroughly humiliated, Drona smiled at him and asked him, Oh
my dear king, do you now desire to revive our old friendship? It seems that your kingdom and
wealth have all become mine. Humiliated and ashamed, Drupada couldnt speak a word. Adding
insult to injury, Drona further said, After all, I am a liberal brahmana, I am not going to take away
your life. Moreover I have always cherished affection for you as a friend. So I still desire your
friendship, but, my dear Drupada, friendship can only be among equals. Now you have lost your
whole kingdom and have become a beggar. And your entire kingdom and wealth have now become
mine. So how can friendship exist between a king like me and a beggar like you? Having pity on a
beggar like you, I give half of my kingdom to you. And Drona gave half of the kingdom of Panchal
to Drupada.

Although he felt severely insulted, Drupada kept silent, knowing that he was in no position to
retaliate. He understood that the martial power of Drona was much greater than his. And moreover
Drona now also had the mighty Pandavas as his disciples. So Drupada quietly took half of the
kingdom and went away, but in his mind, he resolved, One day I will take revenge for this great
insult. Later Drupada performed a massive fire sacrifice (yajna) to beget a son Dhrishtadyumna,
who would kill Drona.

Thus we can see that, when one is insulted by another, but is not ready to forget and forgive, then
one insults the other, the other counter-insults the first and the fight goes on and on. So, when we
meditate on insults, there is no end to such fights. Therefore instead of wasting our precious human
form of life in brooding over such past events, it is better to turn to God and seek refuge in Him.
And, even if our heart is very much pained by the insult, we should go to God for shelter just like
Dhruva did.

When he was insulted by his stepmother, Dhruva took the right shelter. He went to the forest and
approached the lotus feet of Lord Vishnu. By taking shelter of Lord Vishnu, instead of being left in
the cold to futilely mourn and grieve, all of the pains of Dhruva were wiped out and he achieved a
kingdom greater than that of his great grandfather, Lord Brahma.

In the same way, we can also become free from all suffering if we turn to God when we are insulted.


We should also know that no one can make or mar our career. Sometimes we imagine, `A has
blocked my promotion. or `B has ruined my business by competing in the same field. and so
on. And due to such imaginary conceptions, we feel envy and animosity towards others. But actually
our career and life is shaped by our previous karma; others cannot influence it.

A typical example of one nourishing such needless envy and enmity is Duryodhana. Right from the
time the Pandavas came to Hastinapura as small children, Duryodhana was envious of them. He was
afraid that they might take over the kingdom. So, to destroy them, he hatched various demoniac
schemes such as feeding Bhima a poisonous cake, gifting the Pandavas a palace made of
inflammable shellac and then arranging to have it set on fire so that they would burn to death and so
on. But by none of these tricks could he succeed in killing them.

Later during the svayamvara of Draupadi, he became mad with lust on seeing her exquisite beauty,
but he was crestfallen when he could not win her hand. And when the Pandavas won the hand of
Draupadi, his envy increased manifold.

When he realized that the Pandavas had become very powerful and wealthy due to their alliance
with Drupada, the father of Draupadi and the king of Panchal, he feared that they might attack and
defeat him. So he decided to give them half of the kingdom, but once again, due to his envious
nature, he tried to cheat them by offering them the barren part of the Kuru kingdom called

But, by the mercy of Lord Krishna, that desolate land was miraculously transformed, in no time,
into the great city Indraprastha. Indraprastha was a magnificent and opulent city filled with learned
brahmanas, chivalrous kshatriyas, well-to-do vaishyas and faithful shudras. All the subjects were
living a very happy God-centered life in accordance with the Vedic scriptures. All the cows,
women, old men, children and brahmanas were properly protected. The mellifluous chanting of
auspicious Vedic mantras could be heard everywhere in the city. And Mayadanava constructed the
Mayasabha, a gorgeous mansion akin to a heavenly abode, for the Pandavas. When Duryodhana
heard about the opulence of the Pandavas, he just could not stand it. In fact the very thought that
Yudhishtir was now the emperor of the world caused him indescribable agony. He felt that that
position was his exclusive birthright and that the Pandavas had unlawfully usurped his position.

At that time, Maharaj Yudhishtir decided to conduct the Rajasuya yajna to establish the supremacy
of Lord Krishna. He invited all the kings and sages from all over the universe for the yajna. At the
time of the yajna, he allocated various services to his relatives and close friends. He requested
Bhishma and Drona to oversee the organization of the sacrifice, Dushasana to take care of
distribution of food to all the guests, Ashvatthama to attend to the brahmanas and Duryodhana to
receive all the gifts. Lord Krishna took the humble role of washing the feet of all the sages and
brahmanas arriving for the Rajasuya yajna.

Seeing the hundreds and thousands of priceless gifts that came for Yudhishtir, Duryodhanas heart
burnt with envy. And when he saw the incomparable opulence of the famed palace of the Pandavas,
the Mayasabha, he could no longer control his jealousy. He sniffed and huffed and frowned harshly
at the innocent servants who were cheerfully passing by within the place. He was in a state of total
misery and despondency.

On his way back to Hastinapura, Duryodhana told his uncle, Shakuni, It is impossible for me to see
the prosperity of the Pandavas. What man who possesses any self-respect can bear to see his
enemies prosper more than him? How can I ever equal the power and the opulence of the Pandavas?
All my efforts to do so have been frustrated. And my attempts to destroy the Pandavas have also
met with total failure. On the contrary, they are flourishing like lotuses in a pond. Therefore I cannot
live any longer. I will enter into fire or I will swallow poison and thus end my life. Please inform my
father Dhritarashtra about the terrible anguish I am in. And while he was speaking, the fire of envy
in his heart started burning more and more and he became even more fearful that the Pandavas
would vanquish him.

When Dhritarashtra came to know about the devilish mentality of Duryodhana, he tried to pacify
him, My dear son, whatever you may want for your enjoyment is already at your disposal. Our
opulence is no less than that of the gods in heaven. We have immense wealth, magnificent

mansions, the best of clothes, the finest food and beautiful women. All these are just waiting to give
you pleasure. What reason is there for you to become depressed?

Duryodhana sullenly muttered, Dont you know that Yudhishtir got thousands of invaluable gifts in
the Rajsuya yajna?

Dhritarashtra suggested to him, You can also perform a similar sacrifice and you will also get those
gifts. But Duryodhana knew that he would not get even one tenth of the gifts that Yudhishtir got.

Therefore the evil-minded Duryodhana, along with the diabolical Shakuni, decided to devise some
devious way, by which the Pandavas could be destroyed. Duryodhana knew that he could not
challenge the Pandavas in a battle; they would easily defeat him. So he decided to invite the
Pandavas to a gambling match so that they could be cheated of their kingdom and be exiled into the

Even during the exile of the Pandavas, Duryodhana, though the emperor of the entire world, was
constantly in anxiety about the possibility of return of the Pandavas in future; he was never at peace.
On the contrary, the Pandavas, who were great devotees of Krishna, being nonenvious, lived
peacefully though they were in utter poverty in the forest.

In a similar way, in the present times of cutthroat competition, most people live totally insecure
lives, being torn apart by immeasurable anxieties, This person is trying to pull me down, It is
only because of that person that I cannot progress in my life, That person is growing bigger than
me. How can I cut him down? Such people grit their teeth, bite their lips, frown, grumble, brood
and, riding on the chariot of their mind, make elaborate plans to destroy all their so-called enemies
and become supreme. But all their endeavors are repeatedly frustrated and they have no peace of
mind whatsoever.


However such resentment and envy in people are actually a sign of cowardice, a sign of the absence
of the courage to accept the reality that they cannot control the world around them. They are
disturbing their peace of mind for no gains whatsoever, because nobody has the power to change the
will of God. Wisdom lies in understanding that the happiness and distress destined for us at the time
of our birth according to our past karma are inevitably going to come, no matter we do. J ust as
distress comes in our life uninvited, by higher arrangement, happiness will also come of its own
accord. Therefore real wisdom lies in seeing the loving and well-wishing hand of God behind
everything that happens in our lives. Only with such a vision can we live in peace.

But if a person is jealous of others and is trying to pull them down or destroy them, then he can
never be at peace. Why? Because such a person is concerned not so much with how well he has
fared, but with how badly others have fared. His success lies in the failure of others. His mentality is
like that of a crab, who having been trapped in a fishermans basket along with many other crabs, is
worried, not about saving his life by jumping out of the basket, but about pulling other crabs down
so that he may stay at a higher level than them within the basket. What an utterly foolish mentality!

Therefore an intelligent person, a devotee of God, does not measure his success by such a
meaningless standard the failure of others. He understands that real success in life is in pleasing
God because only by the mercy of God can all problems be solved, once and for all. And knowing
that everything happens by the will of God, he lives by the wise saying: what cannot be cured has to
be endured.

This same truth is taught by Lord Krishna in the Bhagavad-gita (2.14)

matra sparsas tu kaunteya sitosna sukha duhkha dah
agamapayino nityas tams titikisasva bharata

Krishna says, O son of Kunti, the nonpermanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their
disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer
seasons. They arise from sense perception, O scion of Bharata, and one must learn to tolerate them
without being disturbed.

For example, the duty of a housewife is to cook. In the summer season, though the kitchen may be
very hot, she cannot say, I will cook only in the winter. In summer, the kitchen is very hot. So I
cannot cook. Even though the kitchen may be hot, she has to just tolerate the heat and go on with
her duty of cooking.

In the same way, we have to know that there are many things in life, which are beyond our control.
If a person thinks, I can control everything in every situation throughout my life, the mind of such
a person will be literally torn to pieces. An intelligent person knows that God is the supreme
controller and that He is controlling everything that is happening throughout the world as well as in
his own life. Such a person, who sees with the eyes of knowledge, can understand that he is bound
from head to toe by the laws of nature. When we ourselves are so completely controlled, how then
can we expect to control every situation, or for that matter, any situation? Therefore though there
may be hundreds of inconveniences, annoyances and irritations from the moment we wake up every
morning to the moment we sleep at night (and even when we are asleep), we have to understand that
they are not within our power to change, so we should learn to tolerate them without being


You may be wondering, How is it possible that there are disturbances all around me, but I am not
disturbed? It is possible when we depend on the power of God by taking His shelter whenever such
inconveniences come. When we surrender to Him, He will give us the necessary will power, inner
strength and patience to endure such trying circumstances. This is the reason why godly people are
able to stay undisturbed in the face of trials and tribulations, whereas those who are not surrendered
to God, when faced with a crisis, usually seek refuge in some illusory escape-route such as drinking
or taking drugs. And sometimes, they may even go to the extent of committing suicide like a

At this juncture, you may ask, Taking shelter of God is a very vague and abstract concept. Is there
any practical way of actually doing this? Certainly! We can very easily take shelter of God by
chanting His Holy Names. The chanting of the Hare Krishna mahamantra,

Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare

when done everyday, can give us tremendous inner strength and iron-like determination to tolerate
any situation in any walk of life. So by inner spiritual strength derived from regular chanting, we
can learn to endure all the suffering of the world.

And of course it is not that we just have to go on enduring the blows of the world for the rest of
eternity and that there will be no respite ever. Though we may be suffering at the present moment,
we should know that, as we are performing devotional service to God, we are gradually becoming
purified and we will eventually be taken out of this world of misery and we will be situated in the
kingdom of God, an abode of eternity, bliss and knowledge, which is our original home. So as long
as we are connected to God and are on our way to back to God, we can be assured that in the future
there will be no suffering for us and, even in the present, as we learn more and more tolerance, our
suffering will keep decreasing. On the other hand if someone has no connection to God, he is, at
present, being helplessly tossed about in an ocean of suffering and, due to his present sinful
activities, he is going to be cast deeper into that ocean. So as long as he does not connect himself
with God, there will be no respite whatsoever in his sufferings.


Craving for worldly glory and recognition is the surest way to physical and mental restlessness. The
whole world is running madly after name, fame and recognition. But why do we want recognition?
Have we ever asked ourselves this question? We want name, fame and recognition so that people
may understand our greatness. Everyone in this world considers himself to be a very great person
and so he wants people to respect him. Even those, who dont have any extraordinary ability or
talent by which they can become famous, try to obtain fame by connecting themselves with those
who are famous. That is why people want to have their photograph taken with a popular film star or
cricketer; so that they can show it to others and make an unspoken statement, J ust see! I am putting
my hands on the shoulder of this famous cricketer. J ust see it! And understand my greatness! Thus
everyone wants to achieve recognition in some way or the other.

But in complete contrast, Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu prays

na dhanam na janam na sundrim kavitam va jagadish kamaye
mama janamani janmani isvare bhavatad bhaktir ahaituki tvayi

O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I
want any number of followers. I only want your causeless devotional service birth after birth.
(Shikshashtakam 4)

The first reaction of most people on hearing this prayer is shock and utter disbelief. Wealth, women
and followers are what people hanker and toil tirelessly for throughout their lives. But to the degree
a person is hankering for recognition from worldly people, to that degree his mind will be torn to
pieces. Why? Because the harsh unpalatable truth is that no one in the world respects you, has any
concern for you or is even interested in you; their respect, concern and interest are all for what you
possess. Countless examples can be given to substantiate this truth:

A prostitute will smile at a man, speak sweetly with him and provide him with all enjoyment;
due to her behaviour, the man may naturally start thinking, O shes attracted to me. I am so
handsome! But she is not the least interested in him; the moment his pocket is empty, she will
When a tree is full of fruits, multitudes of birds flock the tree. The tree may think, All these
birds are coming to me. I am such an important entity. But the moment the fruits get over, not a
single bird even glances at the tree
When many charming deer are grazing in a forest, the forest may think, I must be so wonderful
that even these beautiful deer are coming to me. But when there is no green grass in the forest,
the deer will not stay there even for a moment

Similarly it appears that all the people, who surround you, are interested in you and that they all are
impressed by your greatness. But when you grow old and are no longer beautiful or when you lose
the opulence that you have today, none of these people will come near you; they will simply
disappear. Films stars and cricketers have thousands of fans in their youth and they feel on top of
the world, receiving the adulation of their fans. But when they grow old, none of their fans pay even
a little attention to them, leave alone respecting or adulating them. And for one who has been
famous, obscurity is worse than death. For example, there was a celebrated football player and, due
to his exceptional talent in maneuvering the ball with his foot, he had millions of fans all over the
world, literally mad after him (or so he thought). But one day he somehow broke his leg and he
could no longer play football. And that was the end of all his fame; not even a single soul would
come to meet him thereafter. Even if nothing like this happens to a famous person, still all his
accumulated wealth, possessions, recognition etc., are going to be lost in the sands of time at the
time of death. In this way we can easily understand that being mad for recognition from the people
of the world is foolishness.


Instead of aspiring for such ephemeral worldly recognition we should be aspiring to be recognized
by God. Why? Because God is a person who loves you for what you are and not for what you have.
And He loves you so much that He remains your greatest well-wisher and heart-to-heart friend, even
if you are not in the least interested in Him. Therefore, instead of directing our craving for
recognition towards the people of this world, we should re-direct it towards the Lord and His
representatives, the saintly persons.

A person can do this only when he has understood what is the greatest achievement in life. In the
modern times people generally think that earning fabulous sums of money or going abroad and
returning with a lot of wealth or leading a very happy family life or having hundreds and thousands
of possessions is the greatest achievement in life. But history shows that anybody who thought like
this had to suffer terribly in the end. The inevitable time factor defeats all such hedonistic plans for
enjoyment and reduces to nothing all of ones accomplishments exactly like the roaring waves of a
ocean devastating a sand castle built by a child. This is the harsh reality of the material world.

That is why Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu says, I dont aspire for wealth, women or followers, but
rather He prays to the Lord, Please give me pure love for you. As the scriptures proclaim, prema
pumartho mahan The greatest achievement in all of creation is to achieve pure love of God. Why?

Because the only true need of each one of us is happiness. And happiness comes only when we truly
love and are truly loved. And the only person worthy of reposing love is God, because He alone can
be the eternal object of our love; all other so-called loving relationships are inevitably severed by
the sharp sword of time. We can achieve happiness and peace of mind automatically if we re-
awaken our dormant love of God. And this love can be awakened simply by serving and
remembering God in whatever we do and by chanting His Holy Names.

But instead of trying to re-establish our relationship with God, if we get entangled in the rat race for
recognition, we will be doomed to disappointment and frustration. While we are alive, we will
never get any peace of mind and, at the time of death, we will realize that we have been cheated
because all the things, that we gave our entire life to obtain, will be forcibly taken away.


People ask for peace of mind but they want to very carefully preserve their material greed. But the
truth is peace of mind and material greed are incompatibles. You have to make your choice.

It is wisely said, God has provided for everyones need, but not for everyones greed. An angry
man can be pacified when he gives vent to his anger by chastising someone; a thirsty man can be
satisfied by having some water; a hungry man can be satisfied by having some food. But a greedy
man can never be satisfied by anything, no matter how much he accumulates. So the only way to
deal with greed is to give up the greedy mentality.

People go on increasing their facilities more and more, thinking that they are becoming bigger and
bigger controllers. But, by increasing their facilities, they end up becoming slaves of those facilities.
J ust imagine a modern man surrounded on all sides by modern gadgets. He has a grinder; so he has
no need to use his hand. He has a mobile phone; so he doesnt have to move from his bed to attend
to phone calls. He has a remote control; so he doesnt have to get up from his bed for switching on
the television. Nowadays there are remote switches even for fans and lights and one can switch
them on from ones bed. In this way man has increased his luxuries and facilities and he thinks,
The control for the whole world is at my finger tips. J ust by a slight movement of my fingers, I can
control everything around me.

But, in the process, he becomes utterly dependent on these gadgets. If even one of them doesnt
work properly, he becomes miserable. And what is the ultimate consequence of such needless
indulgence? Those, who use such gadgets throughout their lives, get a variety of bodily maladies in
their old age. And when they go to a doctor, he tells them, You have not done any exercise
throughout your life. So now you have to move your hand up and down as if you were drawing
water from a well. or You have to rotate your hand as if you were working on a grinder. or You
have to go every morning for walking or jogging.

What an irony! By the arrangement of nature, man has to do all these things and, if he does them, he
will never get rheumatic pain or any such sickness. But considering such basic bodily activities to
be troublesome, he works hard to earn money to get gadgets to avoid doing these things. But on
getting such gadgets, he suffers because he becomes utterly dependent on them. And, in the end, he
gets health problems and is forced to do the very things, which he originally wanted to avoid!

But despite the foolishness of it all, unfortunately people today increase their needs more and more
and work hard like donkeys to accumulate more wealth for procuring these facilities. But it only
entraps them further. For example, in the modern times, there is the credit card system. A person
can take any gadget he wants just by showing his credit card. Tempted by the desire to have the best
facilities in his house, he takes many expensive gadgets. But later he finds out that he has to work
like a donkey for another ten or twenty years just to pay the instalments for what he purchased using
his credit card.

So in this way people think that they are getting more and more facilities and that they are enjoying
but actually they are only increasing their suffering. The material nature created by the Lord, maya,
is so powerful that it thoroughly cheats those who try to exploit her resources without using them in
the service of God, as is illustrated by the following story.

Once upon a time a sadhu was climbing a mountain. Finding the climb laborious, he thought how
nice it would be if he could cross the mountain on horseback. He therefore started singing, hey rama
ghoda dila de hey rama ghoda dila de. O Lord Ram please give me a horse. And lo and behold!
While he was praying like this, a passer by came and, seeing a sadhu struggling to climb the
mountain, donated a horse. The sadhu was very happy that the Lord had fulfilled his desire

He promptly climbed on the horse and started going up the mountain. After some time all of a
sudden, the horse stopped and, despite repeated prodding, would not budge even an inch. When he
got down to see what was wrong, he noticed that the horse was actually a mare. She had been
pregnant and had just given birth to a baby horse. And due to her natural maternal affection for her
offspring, she was not ready to leave it.

Perplexed, the sadhu wondered how he could make the horse move. Suddenly an idea struck him
and he picked up the baby horse and started walking. Being attached to her offspring, the mare
quietly followed him. The sadhu was very pleased with himself, J ust see how clever I am! I have
tricked the horse into walking.

But after just a few steps he started panting due to the weight of the foal. He then started thinking,
Hey! Wait a minute! I wanted a horse to carry me, but I have ended up carrying a horse! I was
much better off earlier; at least I did not have any burden to carry.

In this way we sometimes increase our facilities in order to enjoy life but later we see that those very
facilities becomes the sources of trouble; we become slaves of those facilities.


Therefore the Vedic way of life is based on the principle of Simple Living and High Thinking. We
should work only as much as is necessary to fulfil the basic necessities of life and spend the
remaining time, energy and money for reviving our eternal life by engaging in devotional service to
God, by chanting His Holy Names and by reading and hearing many wonderful scriptures like
Srimad Bhagvad-gita, Bhagvatam, Ramayana, Mahabharata, all of which teach the message of God.

Someone may ask, What is the need for doing all this? It is because every one of us is actually a
part and parcel of God, an eternal servant of God, in the spiritual sky. We all belong to that original

home where there is no misery, no birth, old age, disease or death. Life there is eternal, full of bliss
and full of knowledge. Therefore an intelligent person should hanker for that life. And that can be
achieved only when we are high thinking, that is, our life is centred around God.

And why should one reduce ones necessities to the minimum? Suppose you are travelling by train
from Pune to Bombay. Will you construct a house in the train? Or will you carry a television, fridge
and other such luxuries with you to enjoy in the train? Certainly not! Why? Because by the time you
finish constructing a house within the train, Bombay would have arrived and you would have to get
down. In the same way, expending all ones energy for accumulating wealth to increase luxuries in
the name of necessity, forgetting the prime goal of life, is a mere waste of time, because life is short
and temporary.

But wonder of all wonders! People work hard throughout their life just to purchase a flat in
Bombay. And by the time they are able to purchase it, they have reached the fag end of their lives
and they quit the world like cats and dogs without any understanding about God or the goal of life
or without even being able to enjoy living in the flat.

But if we live simply and spend time everyday to chant the names of God and to remember Him,
then we will see that gradually the mind becomes light like a swab of cotton and can be very easily
controlled. In fact, it can be moulded just like wax. And one can experience the joy of the eternal
realm even while being in this world.


It is important to note in this connection that when we say that we should remember God and chant
His names, it doesnt mean that we should become lazy and give up all our responsibilities. The
ideal approach to work is: Be balanced; dont be irresponsible, but dont purchase trouble either.

Sometimes, one tends to think, I am getting this much salary, and he is also getting the same
amount. But he is doing very little work and is mostly escaping from his work. So why should I
work so hard? Let me also escape. But by escaping from ones responsibilities, one gets a feeling
of guilt, which increases ones anxieties manifold. The safest and the best course of action is to just
do your job honestly and responsibly while at the same time living a God centred life.

While doing our duties responsibly, we should be intelligent enough not to add on to our
responsibilities by taking additional loads due to our egoistic initiative; otherwise we are simply
purchasing trouble. Such an egoistic person thinks, He is doing so much work. I must show the
world that I am greater than him. And so one takes on so many loads on oneself that one has no
time for God; no time for ones own family, no time for even the basic activities of life. In this way,
one becomes practically crazy working 14 or 16 hours a day. And there is no end to such work. How
can such a person, who, in order to satisfy his inflated ego, is caught up in unending materialistic
activities and the concomitant immeasurable anxieties, ever attain peace of mind?

So one should do ones job properly and, at the same time, set aside sufficient time for cultivating
ones inward life by chanting, reading scriptures and coming together with ones family to worship
the Supreme Lord Krishna. There is a wise saying: The family that prays together stays together.
So if one comes together every morning with his wife, children and family, and worships God by
chanting Hare Krishna, offers bhoga to the Lord and accepts the Lords prasadam, then ones life

will become peaceful. One can lead a happy life while one is in this world and, at the time of death,
one will returns to the kingdom of God.

On the other hand, one who increases his material responsibilities more and more due to his egoistic
initiative will find himself disturbed in the mind by countless anxieties. And such a person who is
disturbed within will naturally cause disturbances for everyone around him. He will quarrel with his
wife, shout at his children and be harsh and unreasonable with his subordinates. Such a person
cannot do any good, either for himself or for others.

And all this is because he did not give time for his inner spiritual growth. J ust as when one keeps
writing with a pencil, but does not sharpen it, it eventually becomes blunt and incapable of writing,
similarly if one keeps on working, but does not spare time for manta meditation and prayer, then
ones efficiency goes down drastically and one becomes incapable of doing any worthwhile work;
ones work becomes meaningless.

Now a days, such workaholics are very proud of the saying Karma hi pooja hai. But if one tries to
live like that, working like a donkey, one will be totally frustrated in life and will never get any
peace of mind. On the other hand, if everyday one sets aside some time for God and chants Hare
Krishna, it is like sharpening the pencil. By such regular spiritual practice, one can manage both
ones material duty as well as ones duty to God nicely. This is the way to living with peace of
mind both in this world and the next.


At this point, a question may come up, Daily spiritual practice is alright. But how should we go
about our various duties. In other words, how should we live in this world? The first and foremost
thing to understand is this most basic truth that we are not God, but we are the eternal servants of
God. We are therefore meant to utilize our whole life and all our possessions, not for our own
enjoyment, but for the service of God.

This principle is graphically illustrated in the Ramayana in the way Ravana and Hanuman behaved
towards Lord Ramchandra. In the Ramayana, we see that Lord Ram was served by everyone; by
mother Sita, by Lakshmana, by Hanuman, by Bharata, by Sugriva, by Guha and by so many other
persons. But there was only one person who was opposed to serving Lord Ram - Ravana. He wanted
to take away Lord Rams property, mother Sita and enjoy her for himself. And what was his
ultimate destination? He had to meet cruel death at the hands of Lord Ram.

In the same way, nature and all the resources provided by her are the property of mother Sita. If one
tries to take the resources of the world like grains, fruits, minerals, water, air, light etc., provided by
God and tries to enjoy them without acknowledging the proprietorship of God, such a person has
Ravana-like mentality: he wants to enjoy the property of God for himself without even thanking
God; he is doomed. Therefore while living in this world, we should always humbly bow down
before God and thank Him for all that He has offered us for our subsistence.

And one should never ever try to extract enjoyment from this world. If we have this enjoying
mentality of dominating others and extracting pleasure from this world by engaging in sinful
activity, then we will be inevitably frustrated. Why? Because trying to get enjoyment through

materialistic engagement is like trying to extract nectar from the mouth of a venomous cobra. It is
an inherently futile attempt; all that one can get from the mouth of a cobra is poison.

There will be so many people who will tempt us to eat, drink, be merry and enjoy life, but, if we
look into the lives of these very people, we will find that they are the most frustrated people. Apart
from the propaganda of these materialistic people, our senses are also so agitated that they are
dragging us in all directions to enjoy. Our tongue is pulling us in one direction to taste a variety of
delicious foodstuffs. Our eyes are scanning all the directions in the search of beautiful forms. And
the same is true for every one of our senses. J ust like a man having 5 wives is dragged in different
directions by each one of them for enjoyment, similarly, we are also dragged by our senses in
various directions. But if we close our eye of discrimination and go in the direction dictated by the
mind and the senses, then we are on the royal road to hell.

We can see with our own eyes the disastrous consequences of material enjoyment. One who smokes
is afflicted by lung cancer; one who drinks wine is struck by liver diseases; one who is addicted to
gutka suffers from oral cancer in the teeth; one who wants to enjoy many women is terminated by
AIDS. Thus nature gives severe slaps and kicks to those who try to extract enjoyment from this


Many people understand, at an intellectual level, that material enjoyment is always the cause of
suffering, but still despite their best efforts to restrain themselves, they are unable to give up the
desire to enjoy. Therefore the million-dollar question is: how can we give up the enjoying

It is possible only when we engage all our senses in the service of God. Our senses are like
venomous serpents with the fangs of the enjoying mentality. But if we engage the senses in the
service of the Lord, it is like removing their poison teeth. Without its fangs, a snake can cause no
harm. Similarly if our senses are engaged in the service of the Lord, they become harmless. Service
to the Lord gives us a higher pleasure, which enables us to give up the pleasure derived from sense

How can one engage the senses in the service of the Lord? By using our eyes in beholding the
beautiful forms of the Deities in the temple, by using our hands in cutting vegetables for the Lord
and in washing the temple, by using our legs in going to the ISKCON temple, by using our whole
body for dancing in front of the Lord, by using our tongue for chanting the Holy Names of God,
especially the Hare Krishna mahamantra and for honouring prasadam. In this way all our senses can
be purified of the contamination of the desire to enjoy.

And if our mind starts making too much demand for material enjoyment, still we dont have to
experience it to realize its futility. We can see and learn from the experience of the worldly people.
Those who are struggling to increase their enjoyment more and more in the world are only
becoming more and more frustrated. Thus, using our intelligence, we can control the mind.

We can derive further spiritual strength by knowing that life, after all, is flickering and temporary; it
is just like a dream. Every night, when we sleep, we have an 8-hour dream. But life is an 80-year
dream; that is the only difference. Both are temporary and, after they are over, neither has any

factual existence. Knowing that life will pass away like a quick journey, we should cultivate the
Hanuman mentality of serving Lord Rama. J ust as Hanuman was trying to make arrangements to
bring Sita back to Rama, similarly we should try to bring all the things of the world closer to God by
engaging them in His service. Then we can achieve peace of mind.

How can we actually engage all the things of the world in the service of God, especially in the
modern times? All of us can use our various talents in the service of God. Some of us who are
expert in computers can do computer services for publishing books about God and His message.
Some of us can make beautiful garlands to decorate the Deities of the Lord. Some of us can come to
temple on Sundays for assisting in making puris for all the devotees of the Lord. Thus according to
individual abilities and inclinations, we can all engage ourselves in service to the Lord. By
performing such service, the most dangerous enjoying mentality will subside and we will get the
serving mentality, which alone can bring us to the platform of sanity and peace. The enjoying
mentality is like a deadly disease and the service of the Lord is the perfect medicine for it.


Lastly we have to understand that unless we agree to abide by the laws of God, we can never
achieve peace of mind. This can be understood from an example. Suppose a person wants to break
all the laws of the Indian government; he wants to steal, he wants to rape women, he wants to
murder. And he comes running to you and asks you, I want to be peaceful. But I also want to break
the laws of the state. Please tell me how I can still have peace of mind. What solution can you offer
such a person? An intelligent person will advice him, My dear friend, first of all you follow the
laws of the country. Then when you are living as an ideal citizen, you can be free from persecution
and anxiety and can live peacefully.

In a similar way, the whole world is the state of God; after all, He has created it. And He has also
made many laws for those who live in the world. These laws of the divine government are given in
the bona fide scriptures of the world. So an intelligent person should hear the scriptures from the
saintly people and, based on scriptural knowledge, he should discriminate between the right and the
wrong, the good and the bad, and act accordingly. And in this way, when he carefully follow the
instructions of God given in the scriptures throughout his life, then he can have peace of mind.

God is our only eternal friend. To be frank with you, this is the harsh reality that no one in this
world is interested in you. Dont expect the world to rush to you to rescue you when you are in
trouble; it will just not happen. Far from running to help you, even your best friends will run away
from you when you are in trouble. There are many levels of friends - official friends called
bandhu, social friends called mitra and so on. But the Lord is our only real friend. He is therefore
called suhrt, meaning that He is our heart-to-heart friend. There is no one as close to us as God,
although we may not know it. God is such a great friend, that even if we forget Him, even if we
neglect Him, even if we become envious of Him, He still loves us. J ust as a selfless mother only
wants to serve her child always, irrespective of whether he is obedient, disobedient or naughty,
similarly God is always very keen to help us, whether we reciprocate with Him or not. Krishna says,
suhridam sarva bhutanam I am the suhridam, well wisher, of every living entity. I am the heart to
heart friend of every living entity. So we should always learn to keep God in the centre of our lives.

An ideal example of this is Arjuna. Arjuna never did anything unless it was connected in service to
Krishna. Even his act of fighting was for the pleasure of Krishna; before going to the battlefield, he

circumambulated Krishna and offered Him obeisances. So for Arjuna, there was no one as close as
Krishna. And the same is true for every living entity because Krishna says: sarvasya caham hrdi
sannivisto I am residing in the heart of everyone as the Parmatama. So in the hearts of each one of
us, besides the soul there is the Supersoul, who is an expansion of Krishna. And the Paramatma is
always ready to help us and give us guidance about what to do and what not to do.

Therefore we should work for gaining Gods friendship; it is the greatest gain. And when we have
that, peace of mind is an automatic by-product. We cannot achieve peace of mind overnight by
taking some pills told by some doctor. Nor can we achieve it by following some godless mechanical
methods. Sometimes people teach some mind control techniques in which they say Imagine a
form. or imagine a picture. But all such methods are futile because they cannot give lasting peace
of mind.

Actual peace of mind can arise only out of spiritual growth and such spiritual growth is greatly
aided by external support and greatly marred by external incompatibilities. The aiding supports are
all those things, which enhance the mode of goodness (sattva guna) in us. For example, by taking
sattvika diet - prasadam, wearing sattvika dress, living in a sattvika environment, coming to sattvika
association of those who are devotees of God and reading spiritual books, we can enhance our
understanding about God. And in this way all these sattvika habits can help us to come closer to
God and become internally mature

On the other hand, if we associate with those things, which increase the lower modes of passion and
ignorance in us, our mind will become more and more agitated. For example, by watching horror
movies, seeing pornographic pictures, taking intoxicants etc, we will go further away from
achieving peace of mind.


So we should give a prominent position in our life for prayers and pilgrimage, fasts and festivals
and for satsang and self-realization. These are all very important to free our mind from the
sufferings of the world. In our Hare Krishna movement, the ISKCON movement, Srila Prabhupada,
the founder-acharya, has established a wonderful program by which everyone can very easily
achieve peace of mind: the chanting of the Hare Krishna mahamantra. Right from a small child to
an old man, anyone can practice this chanting on a daily basis. One can chant one or two rounds.
Regularly fixed up devotes chant sixteen rounds and they never feel that they are wasting time in
sitting and chanting the Lords name. Why? Because chanting Hare Krishna increases your
efficiency in all fields and gives you an increased capacity to turn out more work in less time. Great
productivity can be achieved when one chants Hare Krishna. Therefore the chanting of Hare
Krishna will never interfere in your daily work; rather it will enhance your daily work.

Moreover, the practical experience of many, many devotees all over the world shows that when one
chants Hare Krishna one is, in no time, able to give up all the bad habits like smoking, eating meat,
taking intoxicants, illicit sex etc. One can give up all the lower tendencies and can become
completely pure. And with a pure heart ones mind becomes very light; one can grasp any subject
quickly and one can act efficiently. In this way, one can achieve the ultimate success in life through
controlling ones mind by mantra meditation.

The nature of the mind and the importance of chanting are illustrated in the following story.

Once upon a time, there was a man who pleased a sage. As a benediction, the sage offered him a big
demon and told him, Take this demon him with you. He can fulfill all of your desires; he can do
any work you give him. But the sadhu warned him, If you keep him unengaged, then he will
devour you. So be careful to constantly engage him. This man said, Oh! Dont worry. I have got
thousands of things to do. So this man took the powerful demon with him home and ordered him,
Plough that thousand acre land. And the demon ploughed it all in just five minutes. He returned
back and he said, My dear sir, give me the next order. The man was stunned. Build a big
bungalow for me, he said. And the demon made a big bungalow for him in a matter of minutes. So
in this way whatever he asked for, the demon arranged for immediately. Now the man became
frightened because he had no engagement to give him; he was just too quick in executing his action.
So what could he do? He ran back to the sage and screamed to him, Please save me from this great
demon! It is about to devour me. I dont have any work to give him. So the sage told him, You
fool! It is easy. Take that ladder with you. Place it next to your house and tell the demon to climb up
and down. Whenever you need him, call him and give him service. And at all other times tell him to
go up the ladder and come down. The man acted accordingly and was thus saved from the demon.

Our mind is just like the demon. It is very powerful; it can do hundreds of things very quickly. And
the moment we leave it unengaged, it starts thinking of unnecessary and undesirable things and fills
us with insatiable cravings, anxieties and fears. And what is the ladder to deal with the demon of the
mind? It is the Hare Krishna mahamantra: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna Hare, Hare
Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare. If we constantly chant the mahamantra and remember
the Lord, then the mind can never disturb us.

It is said that an idle mind is the devils workshop. But if the mind is engaged in chanting the holy
name and remembering God, one can become completely peaceful and the mind can be positively
engaged for performing good activities for oneself and for the whole world at large. In such a pure
mind, pure thoughts naturally arise and then we can propagate the pure spiritual knowledge for the
benefit of whole humanity. And in this way we can achieve peace of mind ourselves and we can
benefit others also.

Hare Krishna.

Session 14: Learning to give better Presentations

(notes prepared from the book POWER PRESENTATIONS by Peter Urs Bender and another
video on public speaking)

Communication refers to the conveying of ideas to other people in such a manner that it is clearly
understood. People who communicate effectively are able to:

Exercise leadership
Inspire staff and colleagues to take action
Obtain trust and respect
Have more fun with people
Get others to feel more confident about themselves
Convey information easily and accurately
Achieve their goals and reach their objectives

Communication takes place in many forms audio, visual, sensual through sounds, images and
physical impulses. It consists of talking, listening, looking, touching, tasting, feeling, smelling,
acting and much more. It can involve sending messages through photos, posters, books,
newspapers, magazine, TV, radio, recorded sound, video tape, computers, fax machines, etc.
Everything you do and everything around you communicates messages.

It is critical that we communicate as quickly and effectively as we can. The challenge in todays
world is to capture other peoples attention to get them to turn their concentration away from
others and focus on us and our message.

Too often we assume that because we are trying so hard to communicate everyone will
automatically understand us. Nothing could be more untrue! This is like the story of a tourist
travelling in a foreign country. Not knowing the language, he yells loudly at the natives thinking
that he will be better understood! They, of course, think he is nuts.

Most of the time, people simply do not say what they mean. Listeners judge you by what THEY
think you said, rather than what was intended. It does not matter that your intention was not to hurt
the others feelings, if what you said did indeed hurt.

The meaning of your message is determined by the reaction you get from other people. Your
intentions are not important if others do not understand you. A wise man once observed:

`I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but, I am not sure you realise that
what you heard is not what I meant

Do you emphasize understanding when you communicate, as opposed to agreement?

No Nos in Public Speaking

Talking too rapidly
Speaking in a monotone
Using too high a vocal pitch
Not smiling enough while talking
Talking and not saying much
Presenting without enough emotion or passion
Using too many big words
Using abstractions without giving concrete examples
Using unfamiliar technical jargon
Not introducing the message and its relevance clearly
Using poor grammar
Talking so quietly that people cannot hear
Using slang like `fired-up or `fried out
Talking without preparation or knowledge of the topic
Disorganised and rambling performance
Not making proper eye contact with listeners
Fidgety behaviour that distracts listeners
Indirect communication, that is beating around the bush
Not summarizing and concluding the message clearly
Insulting the audiences intelligence
Not asking for action

The purpose of your presentation should be, foremost, to be heard, and second, to be understood.
Having done this, if things are going well, you can work on getting the listeners to agree with you
and take the action you want.

Five sure ways to Kill a Presentation

Do not make eye contact with your audience
Make people feel stupid talk down to them
Tell them just the facts Nothing but the facts
Do not get excited keep it boring do not use any body language
Do not smile at all

Six steps for Communication

1. Have a Message worth communicating: `dont put your mouth in motion before your mind is
in gear. It takes time and practice to organize your thoughts before you speak.
2. Gain the Listeners Attention, Capture their Interest, Build their Trust: Plain statements,
without regard to the needs and desires of people, beg the response, So what? Unless you
relate your message to something of interest to the listeners, you will not maintain their attention
for very long. You must obtain their trust in order to persuade them to your way of thinking. If
audience does not have confidence in you, they will not believe what you say. Establish trust at
the beginning of your presentation, not at the end.

3. Emphasize Understanding: Focus foremost on making yourself UNDERSTOOD. Do not
worry about proving that you are right.
4. Obtain Feedback: Find out if they understand you. If they do not, stop and clarify what you
mean. Try again and again if necessary to illustrate your point. Be patient with your listeners.
See things from their point of view. It is not THEIR fault if they do not understand you. It just
means that you did not communicate clearly.
5. Watch your Emotional Tone: Do not allow argumentative tones and strong emotions to
interfere with your message. When communicating with people, whose emotions are aroused,
acknowledge as early as possible that you understand and agree with what they are saying.
Doing this will help calm them so that your message can be heard.
6. Persuade Them: this is the last step and perhaps the most important one for you. Once you are
confident that your listeners have understood you, then and only then, focus on persuading them
to adopt your point of view and take the action you want.


It is not only WHAT you say that makes the difference, it is HOW you present it that determines if
and how your message will come across. Understanding is the test of effective communication. If
your concept is not grasped, YOU did not do a good job.


It is unfortunate that the way we communicate often distorts what we are trying to say. Some
presentations suceed in spite of the poorest techniques. You can announce a 20% raise or two extra
weeks vacation for your staff and they will not care how you do it! You can do a terrible job and
they will still love you. The power of certain messages is sometimes enough in itself.

However, most of the times, the way you say it determines whether you will be understood and have
your ideas accepted. You have to believe whole-heartedly in your message. If you do not, it will
show. For example, you want to say that this material world is a place of unhappiness, be confident
of this fact before presenting it.

Your Presentation Objectives

What is the message you want to convey?
What are your objectives in talking to the audience?
What knowledge or experience do you have that can benefit people?

You may find yourself having to present concepts people do not want to hear at all (like material
worldplace of misery and temporary). The challenge then rests in finding a benefit for your

A speech has to have at least one of four objectives:
a) To Inform
b) To Entertain
c) To touch the emotions
d) To move to action

A good presentation covers all four objectives.

a) To Inform:

This is the most common objective. When you inform, you are sharing knowledge. You are
providing news that should be interesting and helpful. Be careful to talk only about data that is
relevant to the audiences needs or wants.

Do not waste time explaining ideas they do not care about. And remember, too much information is
deadly. People can absorb only so much. If they become overwhelmed you have lost them.

Decide what is essential and leave out the rest. However, if you do not provide your audience with
enough information during the presentation, your credibility and competence will soon be
questioned. Listeners must have sufficient facts to make a favourable decision.

b) To Entertain:

This is the toughest thing to do! The delivery and punch line of jokes must be perfect or you will
look like a fool. If you omit an important part of the joke and it doesnt make sense, people will not
laugh and you may be quite embarassed.

Best and safest humour is a story or anecdote from your own personal experience. It is better to
throw eggs at yourself than at others. Done in this way, it does not matter whether the audience
laughs or not. Personal anecdotes and self-deprecating humour are the most sincere way to win an
audience over. They will trust you more if you poke fun at yourself and laugh at your faults or

Be sure that you pace the delivery of your humorous material so that the listeners will have enough
time to digest it. If you do not pause so the punch line can be absorbed, they will miss your

Worse still is trying to tell several jokes in rapid succession. Be sure to give enough time to laugh
or the lingering laughter will cut off the beginning of your next lines. React to your own message
clearly and obviously and they will react in turn. Smile and they will too.

The best approach is to focus on energizing them in the first 5 to 7 minutes of the presentation.
Begin with a funny personal experience related to an area of interest, then move into the substance
of the presentation.

c) Touch the Audiences Emotions

Use laughter in the beginning and emotion in the middle. Start on a light note and get progressively
more serious and personal. Help the audience feel good about what you have said. End on a
positive note. A good presentation should follow the `MMFG-AM formula `Make Me Feel Good
About Myself. People need to be reassured that they are good human beings that they are in
control of their lives and able to cope with lifes challenges.

A responsible speaker will never leave the listener feeling helpless and hopeless. Do not depress
them. Never criticise without offering constructive solutions. Offer ideas to make the situation

d) Move Them to Action!

Ask yourself, what is the ONE thing you want the audience to do in reaction to your speech? Write
out the CALL-TO-ACTION in the form of a question you will ask at the end of your presentation.
Be specific and direct. You have to request a commitment!

this world is no better than a house on fire ! All of us are saved by the mercy of Srila Prabhupada.
Who would want to remain lazy in such a situation? Let us take to the chanting of Hare Krishna
seriously on a regular basis to save ourself and go BTG

the only time you can be teachy, preachy is in your call to action. If you do not tell them exactly
what to do in reaction to your message, no changes will occur, they will forget everything you said,
and all your efforts will be wasted.

Language and Words

Adjust your vocabulary to suit each particular group to which you present. Each audience has its
own unique language, familiar expressions and sense of humour with which you must be
comfortable or you will not gain credibility. For e.g. saying, `rationalising your departmental
budget when you really mean you are `cutting costs.

Dont talk to your audience in a manner which creates unnecessary distance
Dont talk down to them by using by using sophisticated words, obscure quotations, unless you
are sure they will appreciate them.
Dont come across as arrogant in your knowledge of your subject and its terminology:
communicate to listeners in language that they can understand.

If you address a technical or academic group, you should use their precise buzzwords.


Never try to cover too many things or you will not hold your audiences attention. Keep your
message as simple as possible. Repeat your central point several times and in different ways.

After considering the interests of your listeners decide quickly what your topic will be and
immediately start researching what you will cover.

Be passionate about your topic and thoroughly knowledgeable. You will feel highly confident and
no one will be able to stump you with a question. Keep an idea file solely devoted to your
presentations. Save clippings, quotations and articles in it. In order to be an authority in front of
your audience you should know at least 10 times as much about your topic as they do. In this way
you are an expert in their eyes.

How to Begin Your Speech

Go from the Familiar to the Unfamiliar
Make them participants not spectators
what would you do if Imagine that you have just..
Help the audience to visualise the situation with their own eyes.
Use a hook that involves your audience in your message
Tell a story
Acknowledge the Occasion and the Audience
Pay the Listeners a Compliment
Make a Striking Statement
Use an Unusual Statistic
Refer to a statement made by a preceding speaker
Ask the Audience a Challenging Question
Ask for a show of hands
Establish Your Believability (I was speaking at TELCO)
Make a Promise

Clichs to Avoid:

Unaccustomed as I am to public speaking
I dont know why I have been asked to speak today
I havent really prepared anything
Uh.Uhhh. Ummmm
so on and so forth..
Today I am going to speak about

How to End the Speech :

Summarise your presentation: In conclusion, there are three points I want to.
Close with a story that makes audience feel good.
End with a Call to Action: `when you go back today, tell your friends
Ask a Rhetorical Question: What would happen to us if
End with the same way you began

We hope that this information about giving better presentations will help you to spread the glories
of Sri Krishna better. Hare Krishna.


Session 15: Concentration and Memory
(prepared for the Value Education syllabus of school children at Pune)


When your teachers say, Pay attention! or Listen, what they are asking you to do is to

Concentration is being able to focus the mind on a thing and hold it steadily there without letting it

What is Memory?

Memory is a function of the mind. Memory is a product of attention or Concentration, which in
turn is a product of interest. Memory is a selective process, because normally, we remember only
that which we must or want to remember.

What makes Concentration possible?

A student sits and looks at the teacher as the class is going on. Where should his mind be? In the
class and on what the teacher is saying. But he suddenly sees the students of another class playing
outside. He imagines how nice it would be to be with them.

The teacher asks him a question. The students ears are in the class but he does not hear the teacher
till she comes near him and lifts him by his ear!

If it is the ears only that hear, then the student should have heard the teacher because his ears were
in the class. But he did not hear her.

So what is it that actually makes hearing possible or complete?

It is the mind that lies behind the ears and hears through it.
It is not just the ears that hear.
When the teacher spoke, though the students ears were physically present in the class, his mind
was outside, in the playground. So he did not hear the teacher.
So to hear anything, the mind should be present along with the ears.
To see anything, the mind has to be present along with the eyes.
To do anything, the mind has to be present along with the hands.
When the mind is present with us without wandering, we are able to concentrate.

Everyone in the world has to concentrate to succeed in what he does. For example,

Think about the pictures of tigers and lions hunting for food. They are still, head down and ears
flat, in complete concentration, before they leap on their prey. If they did not concentrate, they
would not be able to catch even a small rabbit to eat!

For their part, the deer put their heads up, their ears twitching this way and that way, listening. If
they sense their hunter nearby, they grow still, concentrating, ready to flee. This watchfulness,
continuous and concentrated, saves their lives because many of them are able to run away just in

Do you want to know an easy way to do well in your studies?

It is to concentrate totally in class. Do you know why you have to?
When you concentrate in class, what the teacher says enters your memory bank and stays
there. Then half your work is done because when you go home you have to revise for only a
short while to know the lesson well. You are left with more time to play and do others things
If you do not pay full attention to teachers words, you have to study the same thing over to
remember it. This will leave you little time to do anything else.
So if you want to finish your studies quickly and get more time for the other things you like to
do, concentrate in class and while you are at your Homework. You will be good at studies and
also have plenty of time to play. See how concentration is the trick to a life of good marks and
good fun.


How can we train our memory ?

There are two methods of training memory:

Learning or remembering by heart by developing
so great an interest in it that it becomes a part of
ourselves, like the food which we digest and
For instance, when we learn to swim or to drive a
car, we repeat movements occurring in a close
For constructive or Creative work Mechanical repetition of words & actions
We learn `by heart bringing reason We learn by `rote repetition
Assimilate the knowledge which we wish to
retain and recall at will
Knack of fixing and recalling details of a fact like
memorising a poem

It is wrong to think that by just sticking to the poem and repeating it endlessly, one can memorise it
(concentration for a length of time always tires the mind).

Example: Read the following paragraph which has been taken from the purport of Srila
Prabhupadas Bhagavad gita As it is 16.1. Find out how you can take in the information into your

In the varnasrama institution the sannyasi, or the person in the renounced order of life, is considered
to be the head or the spiritual master of all the social statuses and orders. A brahmana is considered
to be the spiritual master of the three other sections of a society, namely, the ksatriyas, the vaisyas
and the sudras, but a sannyasi, who is on the top of the institution, is considered to be the spiritual
master of the brahmanas also. For a sannyasi, the first qualification should be fearlessness. Because a
sannyasi has to be alone without any support or guarantee of support, he has simply to depend on

the mercy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. If he thinks, "After I leave my connections, who
will protect me?" he should not accept the renounced order of life. One must be fully convinced that
Krsna or the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His localized aspect as Paramatma is always within,
that He is seeing everything and that He always knows what one intends to do. One must thus have
firm conviction that Krsna as Paramatma will take care of a soul surrendered to Him. "I shall never be
alone," one should think. "Even if I live in the darkest regions of a forest I shall be accompanied by
Krsna, and He will give me all protection." That conviction is called abhayam, without fear. This state
of mind is necessary for a person in the renounced order of life.

Then he has to purify his existence. There are so many rules and regulations to be followed in the
renounced order of life. Most important of all, a sannyasi is strictly forbidden to have any intimate
relationship with a woman. He is even forbidden to talk with a woman in a secluded place. Lord
Caitanya was an ideal sannyasi, and when He was at Puri His feminine devotees could not even come
near to offer their respects. They were advised to bow down from a distant place. This is not a sign of
hatred for women as a class, but it is a stricture imposed on the sannyasi not to have close
connections with women. One has to follow the rules and regulations of a particular status of life in
order to purify his existence. For a sannyasi, intimate relations with women and possession of wealth
for sense gratification are strictly forbidden. The ideal sannyasi was Lord Caitanya Himself, and we can
learn from His life that He was very strict in regards to women. Although He is considered to be the
most liberal incarnation of Godhead, accepting the most fallen conditioned souls, He strictly followed
the rules and regulations of the sannyasa order of life in connection with association with woman. One
of His personal associates, namely Chota Haridasa, was personally associated with Lord Caitanya
along with His other confidential personal associates, but somehow or other this Chota Haridasa
looked lustily on a young woman, and Lord Caitanya was so strict that He at once rejected him from
the society of His personal associates. Lord Caitanya said, "For a sannyasi or anyone who is aspiring to
get out of the clutches of material nature and trying to elevate himself to the spiritual nature and go
back home, back to Godhead, for him, looking toward material possessions and women for sense
gratificationnot even enjoying them, but just looking toward them with such a propensity--is so
condemned that he had better commit suicide before experiencing such illicit desires." So these are
the processes for purification.

How to digest the above material?

Read it over and over again at least twice.
You can infer that the topic speaks about the qualifications of a sannyasi.
It mainly focuses on Fearlessness and Purifying ones existence.

Under fearlessness there are three points:
Sannyasi has to be alone and depend on the Supreme personality of Godhead
He should be convinced that Paramatma is within and knows our intentions
He should think, Krishna is always with me and He will protect me.

Under purification of existence, there are the following points:
Sannyasi is forbidden to speak with a woman in a secluded place (eg) Caitanya
At Puri, his feminine devotees offered respect from a distance.
He banished Chota Haridasa from the association of devotees for lusty look
Caitanyas statement: Looking at Women and wealth for enjoying condemned

The above method of reading is ASSIMILATIVE and if one learns to remember things in
order, the impressions in the mind can be strongly stored and reproduced whenever
required. After becoming thorough, one may read over again to add finer details into

memory. The same might take several hours or even days to digest by rote repetition or

How can we develop our memory power?

In considering helps to memory, anything which helps us to fix a thought in our mind can usefully
be employed. For example, a drama actor may learn long passages by going to a quiet spot and
shouting his words to the skies. Or he may just look at the typewritten script and picture the words
in his mind, accompanying them by gestures that are extremely useful in helping his memory.

To memorise anything, the first and most important thing is to give our whole and undivided
attention to what we wish to remember. The more consciously anything is realised or pictured, the
more deeply it is imprinted upon the memory. For example, somebody may ask you, Show me
God. You can think of an analogy: I can show you God, but have you got the eyes to see? How
can you see God with your imperfect eyes ? What is the use of a mirror for a blind man? Picturise
this example in your mind and remember it. Then youll never forget it.

What are the obstacles to the creating of a good memory?

Emotional forgetting: Memory is intertwined with the heart as well as the head. For instance, we
may forget something that a person whom we dislike has told us, because it is linked with him.
Similarly we may find it difficult to recall some newspaper article we have read, because it dealt
with a topic that is distasteful to us.

Laziness: When we are listening to someone who is boring, or we ask ourselves: of what use is
that talk to me? Data slip off our mind like anything on a greasy surface simply due to the enemy
of sheer laziness.

Mental Exhaustion: This is indirectly due to our own negligence. Concentration alone will not
help. If we concentrate too long upon one subject, our mental faculties get tired. In the state of
exhaustion, what we try to remember just escapes us. Therefore for steady concentration, it is best
to have regular brief intervals.

What are the requirements for the memory to function well?

Interest: The first requirement for a good memory is interest. Once there is interest, one can
arrange the parts and make a whole. This is order.
Good Health: For the memory to function well, we should be in good health. Over-work, over-
feeding, over-drinking, all have a bad effect on memory.
Free from Worry: When we are worried our mind is chasing one thought after another in a circle
and the result is confusion. To remember, we must be free from worry.
Free from Absent-mindedness: Each year many thousands of people leave things behind in buses
and trains. Absent-mindedness is just daydreaming or aimless drifting of the mind due to laziness.
If a person is habitually absent-minded, he never pays attention because his mind is undisciplined
and disorderly. The only remedy here is to begin at the bottom of the effort, with interest and

Is there any method to train our memory to become more efficient?

Acquire the habit of learning in ORDER: Nothing plays so vital a part in training memory as
habit. Our fixed habits are all examples of memory in action. We learn to ride a bicycle, to button
our clothes, to dress without thinking of them. These actions have become automatic because we
have learnt how to do them. We have memorised the way of performing them. They have become
easy because of repetition, on the basis of order.

Order is the foundation of all efficiency. It means tidiness and precise arrangement of our mental
furniture. In our minds there is plenty of `fake furniture. For instance,
we use words wrongly.
For example, we may say, We are unable to become Krishna conscious because of the ill
effects of kali yuga although you actually wanted to say, The ill-effects of kali yuga are there ;
still we DONT HAVE A STRONG DESIRE to become Krishna conscious. These two sentences
mean just the opposite.
we are inaccurate or unspecific in our knowledge
Sometimes you know something about Krishna killing Putana. You may not remember
details like the rakshashi form of Putana (stomach like dried up well, breast like mountain,
thighs like river bank, 12 miles long body etc.,).
Our minds are choked with false and vague impressions

Most people use only a fraction of their ability to observe and listen. They are no better than
photographers who take pictures without bothering to focus the camera. Since the registration
itself is poor, the retention or recalling of such images (and that is what memory is about) is worse.

Therefore for clear thinking and clear remembering our minds must have neatly arranged

Our mind is clear when there is
Accuracy of knowledge and
Relationship of ideas

For example, you may discuss about the topic on importance of association with devotees. You
may tell the story of Mrigari, the hunter. You can immediately think of similar ideas : Valmikis
association with Narada, Naradas association with Bhaktivedantas, demoniac childrens
association with Bhakta Prahlada etc., You can also think of opposite ideas : bad association -- like
Kala Krishna das fell down by associating with bhattaharis of South, Ajamila fell down by
association of a sudra woman etc., You can also compare the association of a devotee like putting a
iron rod in fire, touching a electric wire and getting charged up etc., In this way we can have
association of similar ideas, opposite ideas and comparative ideas.

In training memory we are concerned not with recalling everything to mind, but with being able to
recall what we want and when we want it. It is a question of organising our memory. From the vast
jumbled mass of impressions, thoughts, feelings and ideas, we must classify and sort out particular
material that we need at any given moment.

For some people, seeing in pictures is very impressionable. They have a visual memory. Others
remember easier what they have heard. This is an auditory memory.


Do not hop and jump from one book to another within every few minutes; give a continuous
reading over a period of time to digest the information.
You can have change of subjects for avoiding monotony, but it should be pre planned.
Do not coast over the subject. Do not engage in multiple engagements while studying like
looking here and there or seeing TV and studying etc.,
Sit with a proper posture with back, neck and head in one line against the wall or back
support; do not study while lying down lest you go to sleep.
Think one at a time. There is a saying, Work while you work, play while you play.

Story: The best archer

Here is a story from the Mahabharata about the great Arjuna. This will give you a good idea about
what concentration is.

The Kaurava and the Pandava princes received their training under the renowned teacher
Dronacarya. One day, Drona decided to test his students abilities. He placed an artificial bird
high in a tree. Calling together all the princes, he said to each of them, Take your bows and aim
for birds eye. One by one I shall call you forward to shoot.

The first to be called was Yudhisthira. When he had placed an arrow on his bow and aimed, Drona
said, O prince, tell me what you see.

Yudhisthira replied that he saw his brothers, Drona, the tree and the bird. Drona asked him again
and again what he saw and each time received the same reply. Drona then reproached him and
told him to stand down without firing his arrow. You will not be able to hit the mark, he said
with annoyance.

Duryodhana was the next to be called. When he was ready to fire Drona asked him the same
question. The prince replied as Yudhisthira had replied, and again Drona told him to stand down.
One by one the princes were called and each responded to Drona similarly and was not allowed to
shoot at the bird.

Finally Arjuna was called. When he was prepared to shoot and was standing with his bow drawn
in a semicircle, Drona said, Tell me what you see. Can you see myself, your brothers and the tree

Arjuna replied, I see only the bird. I cannot see you or my brothers, nor the tree. Drona was
pleased. He waited a moment and asked, If you see the bird, then please describe it to me.

Arjuna responded, I see only the birds head. I cannot see its body.

Drona felt his hair stand on end with delight. He said, Shoot!

Arjuna released his arrow and it struck the wooden bird in the eye, sending it tumbling to the
ground. With tears of joy Drona embraced his disciple as Duryodhana and his brothers looked on
in anger.

Sometime after that Drona went with the princes to the Ganges to bathe. As he entered the water he
was seized by a fierce crocodile. Although capable of freeing himself, Drona cried out, O princes,
quickly kill this beast and rescue me!

The princes were confounded with sorrow at seeing their teacher held by the crocodile. They froze
in fearall except Arjuna. He instantly fired five arrows which struck the reptile under the water
and cut it to pieces. Its mouth fell open and released Dronas leg. Drona came to the river bank
and took Arjuna aside. He said to him, I wish to give you the greatest of weapons. Take from me
the knowledge of the Brahmastra, the irresistible missile endowed with Brahmas power. This
weapon should only be used against supernatural foes, for if released against others it may destroy
the very world. Drona then told Arjuna that no one would ever become superior to him with a
bow. He was now invincible.


How can you increase your ability to concentrate?

Practice maketh a man perfect: When you cultivate a habit, you save a lot of time, spent usually
in getting ready to do something. For example, when you wake up at a fixed time, you save the
energy needed on the effort to wake up. The extra effort you waste in routine things like getting up
early, beginning your studies, going for your bath or in doing your homework can be utilised more
fruitfully, if you develop the habit of doing all these things at a fixed time. Therefore, chalk out a
timetable for all regular work. Habits are great time-savers.

You may feel that there is no particular need to wake up early except during the examination time.
Such thinking is common among people who fail to do great things. To be able to get up early at
the time of the examination you have to cultivate the habit right now. If you chalk out a timetable,
you will find that you can get a lot more things done in the same time. The following is a specimen

4:30 A.M. Wake up
4:30 A.M. to 5:30 A.M. Brushing teeth, toilet, bathing etc.
5:30 A.M. to 6:30 A.M. Mangal Arati & Chanting Hare Krishna
6:30 A.M. to 7:30 A.M. Study Time
7:30 A.M. to 8:00 A.M. Discussing / hearing Srila Prabhupadas books
5:00 P.M. Back from School / College
5:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M. Play / Exercises
6:00 P.M. to 6:30 P.M. Dinner
6:30 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. Study and Home work
8:00 P.M. to 9:00 P.M. Discussing Krishna katha with family members
using Krishna Art Book or Srimad Bhagavatam
or BPS books or hearing a tape and discussing.
9:00 P.M. to 4:30 A.M. Sleep

In the case of boys and girls who are still at school or college, the time can be divided into four
major blocks:
Time spent in sleep
Time available before you go to school / college
Time spent in school / college
Time available after you return from school / college

Anyone who sleeps for more than eight hours is criminally wasting the excess hours spent in sleep.
If you learn to relax and go to bed without anything heavy on your mind, you can sleep well. The
second block of time is what you spend at school or college. If you take care on listening,
observation and concentration you will be able to invest your time in this block very well. List a
number of things you want to do at other times and prioritise them. Otherwise you may end up
completing only the unimportant things.

Some of the ways in which people normally waste time are listed below:

Sleeping more than is necessary
Complaining about things which they do not have
Comparing themselves with those who get more marks, are stronger, more good looking or have
many things, which they do not have and would like to have
Thinking of ways to play tricks on others or to take revenge
Brooding and ruminating on the setbacks suffered
Worrying about possible failures or calamities they are likely to face
Travelling long distances to eat some favourite dish or ice-cream
Worrying about the remarks passed by others, about what others think of them and about their
Watching too many programmes on the TV, Video, seeing films etc.,
Thinking of sex life or lack of self restraint

All the aforementioned things are capable of distracting you from your real goal. These are enemies
to concentration; we should curb them by special endeavour.

Mantra Meditation: Chanting Hare Krishna helps you to concentrate better. The meaning of the
word `mantra means `deliverer of the mind (`man =mind `tra =deliver). The three key words
`hare `krishna and `rama are spiritual seeds and are not like material words.

For example no one can quench his thirst by repeatedly shouting `Water `Water `Water `Water
This is because the substance water and the word `water are not the same. This is not true for
things on the Absolute plane. The sound vibration `Krishna and the Personality Krishna are non-
different. This is the reason why devotees of the Lord perceive the presence of Krishna as soon as
they chant the holy names of Krishna. And they can go on chanting hours and hours for many years
and even life long. They will never get bored.

If somebody argues that there is no greatness in simply repeating some name for a few hours per day
life long, then we can ask him to utter `Coca-Cola `Coca-Cola `Coca-Cola `Coca-Cola `Coca-
Cola a couple of hours every day for at least a year. One will get fed up within a day. It is not
possible because it is a ordinary mundane sound vibration; but Hare Krishna chanting is a spiritual

sound vibration. If one chants Hare Krishna sincerely, one can achieve innumerable benefits like
concentration, peace of mind, liberation, ecstasy of chanting and many more.

J ust as a small child cannot differentiate between a Rs.100/- currency note and a newspaper, a
layman cannot understand the difference between ordinary sound vibration and spiritual sound
vibration. Hare Krishna chant is a spiritual sound vibration and its results can be perceived by a
sincere chanter.

When you chant with proper attention and a prayerful attitude, immediately your mind becomes
calm and peaceful and this helps you to concentrate better.

Experiments conducted at Boston City Hospital (H. Bonson and R.K.Wallace : The Physiology of Meditation,
American J ournal of Physiology 221 : 795, 1971) reveal that when you close your eyes and chant the mantra
or meditate on the mantra, it results in many positive physiological changes. There is a decrease in heart
rate and blood pressure. There is a dramatic decrease in the level of lactates in the blood (Higher levels of
lactates in the blood indicate that the person in under stress). Electro-encephalograph study conducted at
the time of meditation shows a sharp increae in the alpha rhythm of the brain. When there is an increase in
the alpha rhythm, a person is quite relaxed. Thus chanting Hare Krishna leads to a highly relaxed state
where you can easily plant suggestions in your mind that develop will power.

The following certificate shows the research report of IBRA on chanting Hare





To Whom It May Concern:

The chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra (Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna
Krishna, Hare Hare / Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare) is practiced
as a form of meditation not only by the vaishnavas (Krishna devotees) of India but
by most Hindus. Millions of Hindus practice this meditation with great devotion as a
regular religious, social and familial function. I can assert that there is no difference
between devotional chanting of Hare Krishna practiced in India and that practiced by
members of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. I am not aware of
any case in which this meditation has exerted any detrimental effect on a persons
physical or mental health, on either him who performs the chanting or him who
hears it. In fact, the dancing and chanting performed by the Krishna devotees may
have profoundly beneficial psycological effects on persons suffering from mental
illness. Further, the devotional and meditative chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra
has no relation whatsoever to brainwashing.

Yours faithfully

Dr. J .J . Ghosh
Indian Brain Research Association
(On behalf of the IBRA)

Regulation in Eating, Sleeping and Recreation: Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad gita, yuktahara
viharasya yukta cestasya karmasu [BG 6.17]. He who is regulated in his habits of eating,
sleeping, recreation and work can mitigate all material pains by practicing the yoga system.

As far as eating is concerned, it can be regulated only when one is practiced to take and accept
prasadam, sanctified food. Lord Krishna is offered, according to the Bhagavad gita (9.26)
vegetables, flowers, fruits, grains, milk, etc. In this way, a person in Krishna consciousness
becomes automatically trained not to accept food not meant for human consumption.

The purpose of food is to increase the duration of life, purify the mind and aid bodily strength. This
is its only purpose. In the past, great authorities selected those foods that best aid health and
increase lifes duration, such as milk products, sugar, rice, wheat, fruits and vegetables. These
foods are very dear to those in the mode of goodness. Fat is available through milk products such as
milk, butter, cheese etc., Protein is amply available through split peas, dal, whole wheat etc.,

Foods in the mode of passion, which are bitter, too salty, or too hot or overly mixed with red
pepper, cause misery by reducing the mucus in the stomach, leading to disease. Foods in the mode
of ignorance or darkness are essentially those that are not fresh. Any food cooked more than three
hours before it is eaten (except prasadam, food offered to the Lord) is considered to be in the mode
of darkness. Because they are decomposing, such foods give bad odour, which often attracts people
in this mode but repulses those in the mode of goodness.

As far as sleeping is concerned, one should get at least 6 hours of sleep. Without enough sleep, the
mind cannot think clearly. Then how can you concentrate on what you are doing?

Watching too much TV dulls the brain. It reduces your ability to imagine, think and concentrate.
Outdoors games like kabaddi, swimming or doing gardening where there is clean air and open space
are best for health. They refresh the mind too.

If you follow dos and donts, you can greatly increase your concentration so that school and home
life becomes very enjoyable.


Borrow a magnifying glass and try this experiment. Angle the magnifying glass over a piece of
paper, directly under the sun, till a small point of bright sunlight falls steadily on the paper. If you
hold it still for a while, you will see that the paper catches fire and begins to burn at that point.
What can you learn from this experiment?

Sunlight is everywhere. It heats the Earth gently because the rays of the Sun are spread all over. But
when a magnifying glass is used, the rays of the sun are brought and focussed at one point. Then it
gains such power that it even burns what it is focussed on.

The mind is like the magnifying glass. Thoughts are like the rays of the sun. When the mind is not
focussed and the thoughts are everywhere, there is little use. But when they are brought together by
the mind through concentration, they gain tremendous power.
The suns rays scattered everywhere are weak.
Our thoughts scattered everywhere are also weak.

Suns rays concentrated through the magnifying glass gain power (to burn things).
Our thoughts concentrated through the mind gain power (to do great things).

This is the way concentration works. This is the secret of success in lives of great men.


1. Expand Time: As you advance in spiritual life, you may naturally increase your number of
rounds of chanting Hare Krishna. Some people complaint, Ever since I became a devotee I am
not getting time for my studies. This is wrong. By advancing in spiritual life you hate going to
movies, parties, gossiping about useless things, oversleeping, etc., which save lot of your time.
Besides these, chanting Hare Krishna pacifies our mind and increases our concentration.
Naturally a devotee is supposed to become better in his performance at school. Chanting can
help you turn out ten times more work than others, because your mind is given to the custody of
Krishna; it is free from dirty impressions of materialistic people.

2. Be Consistent: A disciple should have discipline in everything he/she does. Many students
dont study at normal times. They are engaged in going for movies, cricket, NCC, Extra-
curricular activities and in this way while away their time; at the end of the semester or year,
they try to slog hours and hours struggling to cram the subjects, but they miserably fail. A
devotee student on the other hand should CONSISTENTLY STUDY his/her subjects. As little
drops of water make a ocean, similarly the vast portions to be covered in a subject can be
steadily covered by regular study on a everyday basis. Then he/she appears in the exams and
leaves the result to Krishna.

3. Be Confident: We have to do our best in the studies; but even if we are unable to bag the first
rank after doing our best, a devotee student does not lament. He knows that there is Krishna
who is the Supreme Controller; nothing happens without His will. A devotee makes plans, puts
his full concentration in studies and places his full confidence in Krishna for the execution of his
plans. At the same time, he is detached from the results offered by Krishna whatever it be.

4. Never be lazy: Sometimes a neophyte devotee who is lazy in his studies puts his blame on
Krishna, saying that, Who bothers about studies? Study is all maya. I am Krishnas devotee. I
am not interested in studies. This is outright escapism from ones duty. Krishna also asked
Arjuna to give up lethargy and fight. Every devotee student should sincerely execute his / her
duty of school studies besides practicing Krishna consciousness and give up laziness.

5. Be attentive: A devotee is attentive to everyone and everything around him at every moment.
This concentration helps him to remember things, places, people, subject etc., very easily. If we
do not have this habit naturally, we should cultivate it.

6. Study for Krishna: We should never forget this fact. Our school studies are only for the
pleasure of Krishna. We study to develop our personality, to earn our livelihood, to stabilise
ourselves in the society but all these to ultimately offer our body, mind and words to preach
the glories of Krishna using all our talents.


Session 16: Youth Counselling System At VOICE, ISKCON, PUNE

Acronyms used:

BACE Bhaktivedanta Academy for Culture and Education
IYF ISKCON Youth Forum, a youth wing of BACE
IJ YF ISKCON J unior Youth Forum
BPS Bhakta Prahlad School, a children wing of BACE
FOLK Friends of Lord Krishna, a corporate wing of BACE
BVRIK Group Study program for anyone in English/Hindi
BTG Brahmacari Trainee before Grihastha ashram
RSD Radheshyam das, Director of BACE, ISKCON, Pune


The youth preaching (18 to 23) along with J unior youths (age between 14 to 18) and Bhakti Vriksha
programs (age between up to 30) has been growing steadily over the last several years at Pune. It
was becoming more and more difficult to give personal attention to devotees. Thus in 1996 a
counsellor system was started to train and educate devotees to bring them closer in warm
relationships. Srila Prabhupada explained how in the Vedic times, a guru could take care of
hundreds of disciples. One guru would teach ten and the ten would teach ten and in this way
everyone got personal attention.

The Concept

Technological advancements are making life faster and more stressful. To maintain harmony,
people need heart-to-heart conferences with others. Persons need relationships centred on pleasing
God. Otherwise we will try to assume the self-centred vortex position and create a circle of
materialistic relationships. As Alcoholics anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous provide support
and encouragement to addicts trying to give up their addictions, ISKCON centres offer support for
the soul endeavouring to relinquish material attachments. The important point in counselling
upcoming devotee students is that they feel support in attempting to solve problems.

Purpose of the System
1. To educate and train boys between 14 years up to the age of marriage or joining ashram in the
Krishna conscious principles of brahmacari life.
2. To provide an opportunity to learn the practical aspects of the application of KC in ones life
and learn where one fits in the society, gain confidence to go ahead.
3. To verify the progress of the growing youths in terms of sadhana, services, sleep, reading,
chanting, relationships with others etc besides training to solve their problems that come in the
way of advancement like career, settlement etc.
4. To allocate services, organizing major events, communication of important decisions or policies
and keep touch even if one is placed out of station.
5. To provide a formal framework within which personal care and attention can be extended to all
devotees so as to make them feel loved, wanted and a part of a wonderful spiritual family.

6. To foster warm personal relationships and a spirit of love and trust amongst devotees based on
KC principles.

Who is eligible to join the Counseling system?
Any unmarried student who is a part of IYF, IJ YF or Bvriksha program can join the Counselling
system provided:
He has been under the supervision of one of the Counsellors for a period of 6 months or more.
He should be chanting 8 rounds of Hare Krishna everyday and is planning to become more and
more dedicated in the time to come. It is NOT compulsory for even a 16 rounder devotee to
choose to become a counselee. He can join the system whenever he feels comfortable to join. It
is to be noted that such students names will be taken into account in occasions like sending
going for yatras, special programs etc only after one becomes a part of this system.
He should be convinced of the KC philosophy
One can be aspiring from any of the gurus of ISKCON in good standing.
He is eager to receive more guidance with respect to vaishnava etiquettes and lifestyle, become
more committed to mission by accepting services for Krishna.
He is eager to become a part of the family of vaishnavas by learning to mould his lifestyle
according to ISKCONs teachings for ultimate purification.
His ultimate goal is to become a pure unalloyed devotee of Sri Sri Radha and Krishna. He is
anxious for the association of those who can lead him to that goal.

Students who are detected to have joined the system with ulterior motives like job, marriage, debt
etc without properly practicing KC lifestyle will be suspended in due time from the system. It
should be remembered that this is a spiritual Counsellor system meant for helping sincere souls to
advance in the path of KC.

Students joining the Counselor system but do not keep up to the spiritual standards but pay
occasional visits to devotees cannot claim to be part of this system.

How does the Counseling system work?
The counsellors meet with their respective counselees once every fortnight or at least every
Besides the meetings, the counsellors maintain personal touch with their counselees to ensure
their all round welfare.
The board of counsellors and assistant counsellors, headed by Radheshyam das, Director, BACE
meets once a month and discusses philosophy as well as practical issues of importance. This is
an important policy making body for the youth preaching.
From time to time, according to the need, the Board of Counsellors recommends the name of
new candidates for the post of Counsellor or Assistant Counsellor.
The Counsellors, Assistant Counsellors and the BACE Leaders (Acting Manager, Preacher,
Branch Manager, Overall Coordinator) all jointly make the final decisions about the future plans
and policies of IYF, IJ YF, Bvriksha.
The Assistant Counsellors hold their own meetings, but consult their counsellor for expert
advice in issues that are difficult for them to solve on their own.

How can I get a Counselor?
Any student, fulfilling the eligibility criteria to join Counsellor system, can, according to his
choice, familiarity, liking and acquaintance choose one of the following Counsellors or
Assistant Counsellors. It is to be remembered that it is a two-way process: the counselee
chooses the Counsellor and the Counsellor has the freedom to accept a counselee or not.
The Counsellor can take as many counselees as he can, depending on whether he feels he will be
able to take up the task of guiding and caring for all his counselees.
The students are requested to write five choices and the final list is put up after the Counsellors
gather in a meeting to finalise the names of students they have chosen.
The Counsellors list is given for making the choice. Students can choose the above Counsellors
or Assistant Counsellors up to the point of marriage. After marriage, they have to choose
Congregation counsellors. More guidance regarding this can be obtained from HG
Krishnakishore prabhu.

Change of Counselor

There is a facility available for a counselee to change his/her Counsellor, if desired. This may be
due to various reasons inability to open up to his Counsellor, more familiar with another
Counsellor due to language, difficulty in meeting timings, more easy access to another Counsellor
who comes to BACE etc. Whatever is the reason, the concerned counselee can approach IYF Co-
ordinator or Director and submit a request for change of Counsellor and the request will be

Brahmacari and Student Counsellors

For IYF Students, BTGs,
Bvriksha members
IJYF Brahmacaris

1. Gaursundar p
2. Vrajabasi p
3. Srigurucharan p hbv
4. Sundershyam p
5. Advaita acharya p
6. Chaitanyacharan p
7. Murari p
8. Balagovinda p ebv
9. Akincanakrishna p ebv
10. Ramnitai p

11. Shyamarupa p (AC)
12. Sankirtan ananda p (AC)
13. Sundervar p (AC) ebv
14. Acharyaratna p (AC)
15. Vamsivadan p (AC)

Bvriksha Counselors
(Hindi or Marathi)
Sacinandan p
Braja vilas p (AC)
Gauranga pran p (AC)
Parthamitra p
Pundarika vidyanidhi p
Laxminarayan p
Sri Radha kunjabihari p (AC)
Sri Keshava p (Senior) (AC)
Kailashchandra p (AC)
Premanivas p (AC)
Aniruddha p (AC)
Sri Keshava p (J unior) (AC)
1. Chaitanyacharan p
2. Murari p

3. Balagovinda p
1. Rupa goswami p ^
2. Gaursundar p ^
3. Vrajabasi p ^
4. Srigurucharan p
5. Sundershyam p
6. Advaita acharya p
7. Chaitanyacharan p
8. Murari p
9. Parthamitra p
10. Pundarikavidyanidhi p
11. Balagovinda p ****
12. Akincanakrishna p


ebv - English bhakti vriksha leader also
hbv - Hindi bhakti vriksha leader also
AC - Assistant Counsellor
^ - Senior Counsellors whose guidance to be sought by other Counsellors

How is a Counselor nominated?

Counsellor must be a devotee who has been in active KC preaching to youth within ISKCON
for at least two years and has gained hands on experience.
He should have good foundation in the concepts of KC philosophy. In other words, he should
have conducted one-time programs, six session programs, guided a group of youths personally
by friendly talks after the program, has been a Acting Manager in a BACE for a year and can
conduct programs at YBF and YSJ level. These are eligibility requirements for IYF
In case of others like Bhaktivriksha Counsellors, they are chosen by the Board of Counsellors
based on their maturity in understanding of philosophy.
He should have been chanting 16 rounds and practicing regulative principles for a period of 3
years or more. They should at least be first initiated.
Should have the maturity to give a balanced counsel based on KC principles according to time,
place and circumstance.
Should not be prone to taking extreme and controversial positions on issues.
Should be willing to extend him to help others. In other words, should have a spirit of sacrifice.
Should be compassionate and have genuine concern for the welfare of devotees.
Should be a good listener.
Should be a mature, sober and stable individual.
Should demonstrate good standard of sadhana, etiquette or behaviour, service and commitment
to the mission of Srila Prabhupada.
Should be properly situated in his own ashram.

Responsibility of Counselors
A Counsellor is a friend and guide in KC. He is a servant of the counselees on behalf of the
spiritual master. The Counsellor is like a spiritual elder brother and must take personal care of
all devotees in the group.
Counsellors should inspire and encourage their counselees in KC and monitor their progress
both by conducting fortnightly meetings and by personal meetings. In this respect, the
Counsellor should take only as many candidates as he is confident of guiding and managing. He
should not overload himself with too many counselees and pay no attention to their lives.
They are expected to provide KC training to their counselees. The Counsellors glory will be
seen by the good behaviour of the counselee. The behaviour of a trained KC youth is pleasing

to the eyes of everyone. Untrained counselees come in kurta-pant, talk prajalpa, dance in
athletic way to break others bones, think of only themselves first in eating or sleeping etc. It is
the duty of the Counsellor to train the counselee and transform him from a crude state to a
flower like devotee.
While friendship between counselees within each counselee group is useful and welcome, they
should seek spiritual relationship outside their own counselee groups also. It is the duty of the
Counsellor to encourage his counselees to associate with and integrate into the IYF student
congregation at large.
They have to look into the overall welfare of the counselees. At the same time, the counsellors
must not go too much in their counselees personal lives such that they may be perceived to be
threatening or controlling or manipulating or forcing.
They recommend the names of qualified candidates for first and second initiation.
They are expected to provide useful inputs to the Board of Counsellors and to actively
participate in its meetings.
They should exhibit exemplary behaviour in terms of sadhana, service and behaviour.
They should maintain harmonious loving relation with other counsellors and devotees in the
If a counselee expresses a desire for changing his counsellor, it is the counsellors responsibility
to encourage and facilitate the change, removing any perceived fears or worries or awkwardness
in the mind of the counselee.

Responsibilities of Counselee
Everyone needs care, attention, love, guidance, correction, support, training, monitoring etc in
spiritual life to remain safe as well as to make advancement in KC. All these are done by the
Counsellor selflessly to help the counselee elevate himself gradually. In fact, even after one gets
a job out of Pune, wherever one is one can keep in touch with the Counsellor through e-mail and
phone and get guidance. This being the case, the counselee should gratefully accept the
Counsellor as a siksha guru and take his instructions and advice seriously. While clarifications
for making the instructions clear and precise are welcome, the counselee should not be
neglectful either about the meeting or the instructions given. If one is always eager to pose
problems to Counsellor, but is neglectful in following the instructions with respect to sadhana,
studies, personal life, services etc or ignoring the regular meetings, then one cannot make
tangible progress in KC. Even if one could not make it for the meeting, one should inform the
Counsellor and meet personally to know what happened in the meeting.
The Counsellors generally conduct the meetings once/twice a month and when they are out of
station, the Counselees should attend the meeting of second choice Counsellor (SCC). If he is
also out of station, then the third choice Counsellor and so on. The Counselees should not miss
the meetings.
Regular attendance to meetings (min 75% required) and to be on time.
If absent, should give prior intimation and a letter with proper reason to the Counsellor.
Should realise that they need to actively participate, thereby contributing to the success of the

Those who do not attend these meetings regularly, without giving proper reasons, choose to
withdraw themselves from the system. They make themselves ineligible to go for yatras or be
offered more responsible services.
While recognizing that Counsellors will do their best to help the counselees not only in spiritual
matters but also in domestic or occupational issues, the counselee should know that this
relationship should not be misused for material gain.

Difference between Counselors and Authorities

Srila Prabhupada made the GBC in order to run ISKCON society. The GBC appoints the Temple
President. In our Pune situation as of now, the Temple President happens to be the Director of
BACE. Thus any discrepancy in the functioning of BACE should be brought to the notice of the

Generally speaking, the counselees should follow the instructions of the authorities like the OC
(Overall Co-ordinator) of a youth BACE. Any local problems could be solved by the Acting

Whose instructions a Counselee should follow?

The authorities like OC (Overall Coordinator) of a BACE give instructions for the students within a
BACE or the Temple Manager gives instructions for others at the temple. One should take these
instructions seriously and execute them. In the event of any difficulty, one can consult ones
Counsellor who will give guidance and help with respect to any adjustment in services that is
required. The Counsellor is a mature devotee who is in good terms with the Temple Manager and
seniors, on one hand and on the other hand knows the needs and abilities of the Counselee on the
other. Thus the counselee should not go hither and thither, blaming the authorities or other
devotees, not knowing how to sort out his services. In case of serious problems or emergency the
counselee can directly approach the Director of BACE or the Temple President. If it is not solvable
by him, he can approach the GBC.

Thus the Counselee is supposed to follow the instructions of the authorities. Whenever he has
difficulty that he cannot freely express to authorities, he approaches the Counsellor. The Counsellor
meets the authorities, explains the problem of his counselee in a proper language, gets the service
adjusted in a way that will suit his counselee and then sends the counselee back to the authority.
The authority understanding the needs of the subordinate (counselee) feels sympathetic and does not
mind the adjustment made through the Counsellor.

For example, authority A, offers service to a subordinate B who finds no time for reading and
finishing his rounds of Hare Krishna. Now B may either directly express to A or can go to his
Counsellor C. In the latter case, C will have a discussion with A about Bs problems. Now having
understood the problem of B, A cuts down some portion of service and does not express any
grudges, but continues to behave in the same manner as before. The possible counselling scenarios

The student does not wish to discuss his difficulties, in which case the Counsellor has to instil
more trust, faith and confidence in the heart of Counselee.

The student may not have any problems at all.
The student has obligations outside ISKCON, to parents, friends, relatives etc.
The student has problem of career, marriage, and long-term settlement.
The student has philosophical doubts.
The student has physical difficulties like health, sleep, prasadam, clothing, lodging, sickness etc.
The student has inter-relational issues, getting along with other devotees.
The student may have different service preferences.

At Pune, every student or brahmacari who is a part of Counselling system, fills up a sadhana card
that carries information about waking up time in the morning, going to bed time at night, any sleep
during the day, hours taken for chanting, time of finishing last round, reading of SP books, hearing
tapes, any special experience during the day etc. This sadhana card gives a picture of counselees
lifestyle, whether he is regulated or not. Based on this, Counsellor gives suitable advice to the
counselee and makes adjustment in his services after discussing with the authorities.

Srila Prabhupada


RSD, Temple President

Congregation Counselors RSD, Director of BACE Different departments

Asst Co-ord.

BPS Bvriksha IYF

Managing Board
Overall Co-ordinators Youth Counsellors
Branch Managers
Acting Managers

Topics for Student and Brahmacari Counseling

Sadachar or Proper behaviour

1. How to be a ideal student/brahmacari
2. How to balance economic and social responsibilities with spiritual vows
3. How to tackle the culture shock of changing from BTG to married life
4. Learning the psychology of man and woman to execute peaceful KC life
5. Proper attitude towards other ashrams
6. How to behave as an ideal son/student/brahmacari/ husband/parent
7. To what extent can we bend ourselves to the karmi relatives or friends
8. Dos and Donts in the life of a progressive devotee to keep himself and others cool headed
9. How men should deal with women and vice versa
10. How to maintain devotional standards at kitchen, altar, sadhana etc.
11. How to preach with a humble attitude as a service to the acharyas

Knowledge about our Society

12. Saffron order brahmacari
13. Harinam diksha
14. Brahman diksha
15. The Four orders in ISKCON and their roles and goals in modern times
16. Srila Prabhupada and the GBC
17. The Guru system in ISKCON
18. ISKCON : First 30 years
19. The respectable position of Woman in Vedic society
20. ISKCON : New cult or Eternal culture?
21. Fall downs or Bloops
22. Child abuse and Prevention
23. Srila Prabhupadas contribution to the modern society
24. Prominent world figures who supported ISKCON and Prabhupada
25. ISKCONs position in worlds outlook
26. Victory and dangers facing future of ISKCON and what can I do about it
27. Indias Vedic heritage

General Knowledge

28. Nature our friend
29. Yoga and health
30. Good habits for good health
31. Ayurveda basics for good health
32. Importance of cultivating values
33. Save Krishnas energy
34. Following laws of state
35. Sanskrit basics
36. Good health and overall fitness
37. Geography of India and globe
38. Bogus History and Real Vedic history

39. Scientific world view and Vedic view

Preparing oneself for better future

40. Balancing self-study and preaching
41. Preaching to (new, old & elite)
42. Faith and doubt
43. Facing failures in spiritual life
44. Love, Care and concern
45. Accepting change
46. Positive attitude
47. Regulation in habits
48. Tolerance / self control
49. On Boredom of Monotony
50. Purity is the Force
51. Eagerness to hear at the feet of guru
52. Overcoming False Ego
53. Doing ones best & leaving rest to God
54. Perseverance and extending oneself

Proper and Improper Attitudes or Behaviour in the life of a growing devotee

55. Self Esteem and Inferiority complex
56. Moroseness & happiness
57. Peacefulness / dissatisfaction
58. Dealing with minds problems
59. Detachment from pulling of senses
60. Contemplating on four fold sufferings
61. Keeping busy in Krishna service
62. Giving up bodily consciousness
63. Looking for higher thingsnectar shopping
64. Personal and impersonal behaviour
65. Involvement in fringe fields
66. Fanaticism vs. broad mindedness
67. Separatist mentality
68. Sahajiya mentality
69. Deriding authority mentality
70. Giving up Lethargy
71. Loyalty and disloyalty to our guru parampara
72. Giving up political tendency
73. Whimsical behaviour
74. Using modern items as yukta vairagya
75. Over endeavour
76. Avoiding bad association
77. Intimacy
78. Vapu and Vani seva
79. Fall down Why and How does it happen?
80. Following in Acharyas footsteps

81. Prajalpa or Mundane talk
82. Following regulative principles
83. Compassion towards all living entities
84. Wishing well to even an enemy
85. Non enmity even with demons
86. Exemplary behaviour
87. Bragging and group forming
88. Can destiny be overcome by free will ?
89. Competition -- Healthy and unhealthy
90. Following Instruction of authorities
91. Worshipping the spiritual master
92. Giving constructive criticism
93. Accepting criticism
94. Learning to appreciate healthy differences/others opinions
95. Appreciating / glorifying
96. Respectful and arrogant attitudes
97. Introvertish vs. Extrovertish nature
98. Tendency for Escapism
99. Resisting temptations
100. Fearlessness
101. Snap decisions
102. Aversion to fault finding
103. Freedom from passion for honour
104. Equipoised in happiness and distress

Dealings in different situations

105. Dealing with Deities
106. Dealing with inmates and equals
107. Dealing with devotees changing saffron and leaving the ashram
108. Dealing with guests old and new
109. Dealing with parents and relatives
110. Dealings with seniors
111. Dealings with equals and juniors
112. Dealing with Sannyasis
113. Dealing with guru
114. Dealing with gurus godbrothers
115. Dealing with sick devotees
116. Dealings with Opposite sex
117. Dealings with foreign devotees
118. Dealings with Karmis
119. Dealings with life members, Rich or elite people
120. Dealing with devotees of the other ISKCON centres
121. Travelling preaching risks and rasas
122. Dealing with other sampradaya followers or devotees
123. Dealing with elder mothers and unmarried girls
124. Dealing with elderly people
125. Dealing with children

126. Dealing with animals, other creatures
127. Dealing with plants, trees, things

Values for a Principled Life

128. Gratitude
129. Dedication
130. Cleanliness
131. Punctuality
132. Honesty
133. Simplicity
134. Humility
135. Truthfulness
136. Forgiveness
137. Determination
138. Patience
139. Steadiness
140. Sentimentalism vs. Speculation
141. Familiarity breeds contempt?
142. Service attitude
143. Cooperation
144. Responsibility
145. Prayerful attitude
146. Loneliness
147. Non envy
148. Friendliness
149. Attentiveness or observant
150. Possessiveness
151. Non-violence
152. Gentleness
153. Helpfulness
154. Capturing constructiveness of Anger

Useful Skills for a growing devotee

155. Reading (Self study, making notes)
156. Developing skills for better service
157. Dress before address
158. Improving memory and concentration
159. Unique potential
160. Presentation skills
161. Communication skills
162. Crisis management
163. On driving vehicles
164. What is Leadership?
165. Holding the Customers
166. Delegating and training
167. Time management

168. Conflict resolution
169. Listening and Questioning skills
170. Mediation

!! Hare Krishna !!