I shifted to Pune in September 2011, with a new job. My life started changing from the day I thought to move on in my last organization. It was a new home in a Pune, new lifestyle, new neighbors, new friends with a new job. Everything started changing. There was a swimming pool in my new society. I was very excited to swim. But only I found that I have lost all the stamina and I could not swim more than 1 short round at a stretch in the pool. I knew, my bad habit of smoking is taking its toll on me.
I thought it is the right opportunity to quit smoking, which was on my agenda since many years. I made a plan, i had already reduced smoking to 1-2 fags a day. In pune I finally quit smoking. However it wasn’t a full stop. I still used to smoke when I was tensed and flooded with thoughts making an unstable state of mind.
So now in order to quit smoking I had to get over all the tensions. I thought lets take this opportunity to implement my long time plan to learn some meditation technique which might help me to reduce some tension which in tern help me quit smoking. I was reading many things about meditation which just increased my confusion whom to believe and what to follow. During this time my nephew Priyen came to visit us in Pune while returning from his visit from a small village in Kundapura near Udipi. I heard stories of this remote place, lots of rain and astonishing nature surrounding. I was very impressed by this and thought this would be the best place to meditate. I always used to think that meditation could be practiced or at least learned at such remote places, where there are no honking cars and no noise and no pollution. But the courses conducted at this place were only for advance courses. Which means one should know the basic techniques taught in the Part I- AOL course.
By then I had made my mind that I am going to attend this Advance course at Kundapura and for that I will do a basic course where it is possible. Things were changing, I was changing, a few months ago I was a AOL hater. I used to hate it like anything. And now I was thinking to give it a try. I got to know that there is an Ashram, named Triveni Ashram ( Markal Village ) near saint Dyaneshwar’s place Alandi at Pune outskirts. That was good place for me as per the criteria I always had in mind and it was close to home. I registered for this course and did my Part I course with Teacher Sharad Thakkarji at Triveni Ashram, Markal gaon. Sharadji was mind blowing. The three days I spend there were so peaceful and brought me so much happiness that even my newly bought Skoda car didn’t ever gave me. I had lots of dance, sang songs and had lots of fun during this course. All the time I was thanking of my sisters and my mom and many other well wishers for their efforts to help me reach this place. I completed this course only with the strong thought to do the Advance course asap and not to wait for the course that will be conducted during Guru Purnima at Kundapura. Also doing the advance course once before doing it at Kundapura would have helped me to be more comfortable, that’s what I was thinking.
I was fortunate enough to get another opportunity to do an advance course soon after the Part I with Balwinderji again at Triveni Ashram. I had amazing experiences during this course. I found answers to many of my long time unanswered questions. I found the peace which I never found in most of the temples. The dancing, singing, drawing, celebration, service, happiness and many more things were of course advance in this advance course. The fun was also much much more than that of Part I. I got to know what silence means, whats the reason and power of silence. I noticed some funny people trying to communicate with each other in sign language.
I learn many things from this course. When I was back, many things in my life were changed, changed for good. I started exercising again, I quit smoking finally. All these things started showing their results on me. I started feeling more happy, energetic, light and tension free. I started loosing all those unnecessary fats I had earned during last so many years. Doctors had given me warning to reduce weight since I am on the border line and might soon suffer problems with high cholesterol. After 3 months of doing my first AOL course, practicing Pranayam, Sudarshan Kriya and little exercise made me lose 10kgs.
Last weekend I had a short visit to Dombivli, my home town. All of my old friends were stunned looking at me. Everyone noticed the changes, I was happy about it. Not only the appreciation of people but I was more happy that some of them expressed their wishes to do this course so that they can also achieve something. I am happy that the happiness which I have got in my life has inspired people to do those good things in their life as well.
To Be Continued….