During the last and final test between Sri Lanka and India, pollution masks were worn by the Sri Lankan team on the field, with cricketer SurangaLakmal even vomiting on the field.

“I think we are making a mountain of a molehill!” said an Indian political heavy weight who lived in the capital, “Masks have always been worn in the Indian capital, and it is only right that when in Rome do what we Romans do!”

“Whoa! Whoa!” I exclaimed as another Sri Lankan player started coughing and throwing up on the field and their harried doctor was called to assist him in his breathing, “How could you make such a callous statement?”

“Well,” said the politician, “Just look at our PM!”

I looked in the direction of Gujarat where I saw a white-bearded white-haired man campaigning for the elections, “Surely you are wrong?”

“Look closely,” smiled the seasoned politician, “Is this the same man who you see in Delhi? Is this the same man who hugged Trump a few months back, who warmly congratulated the Miss World last week?”

“No!” I said rather reluctantly, “he speaks rough and actsharshly!”

“In Delhi he’s one man, during elections another man? Do you think there are two men? One so pleasant and patient and the other blowing volcanic fire, spewing venom with vengeance on all his opponents while campaigning?”

“It’s strange!” I whispered.

“It’s a mask!” said the seasoned politician. “As soon as he steps into Delhi he starts wearing a mask of humility and meekness!Now forget the Prime Minister, can you see that boy over there?”

“Yes!” I said as I saw a boy with dimpled cheek running towards his mother. “Seems quite a sweet little fellow! I like the way he’s running, just to be hugged!”

“Now watch his front door as he steps out again, wearing his mask!”

A little later I watched the door open and a confident man stepping out, eyes focused and speech ready to be delivered. I watched as he boarded a plane to an election state and watched as he delivered a biting speech against Modi, “Why!” I said with astonishment, “That’s Rahul Gandhi!”

“The same little boy you saw running to be cuddled stepped out a different man, how?” asked the political heavy weight smirking at me, “Tell me how?”

“He’s got a mask on!” I admitted lamely.

“Exactly!” said the politician turning in the direction of Sri Lanka, “When the capital of our country requires you to put on a mask, just put it on and don’t complain!”

“The Sri Lankans had to do it, because everybody in Delhi does it!” I agreed, shrugging my shoulders as the bus with the island’s cricketers, staring with agony through their pollution masks, drove straight to the hospital..!

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 “Mitron!” said the leader of a nation, stroking his white beard, “here are laws you can break!” Saying so he placed the tablet of stone on which he had engraved the said laws. The crowd roared its approval. It was the first time they’d been given laws they could break without punishment, and hooligans, thugs, ruffians, rapists yelled their approval as the leader showed the laws they could break to them.

Soon vigilant mobs roamed the country, thrashing, assaulting and lynching those who followed another dietary preference to theirs. They stopped trucks, carrying animals who’s taste they did not subscribe to, beat and killed owners and drivers.

They looked into homes where women cooked and if their noses smelt smells their own kitchens ne’er  produced they pulled those women out and had their way with them, even as they confiscated and took away meals meant for the poor and hungry who couldn’t afford what these mobsters ate. 

With the ‘breakable laws’ written and pinned to their sleeves they mobbed what was once a peaceful nation, rushing into places of worship where citizens worshipped in ways different from theirs, broke walls, burnt sacred objects, molested worshippers, thrashed priests, and with jeers and cries of jubilation, went to the next.

They separated couples in the name of love warfare, pulling women away from lawful wedded spouses and murdered those men who dared fall in love with another from their own faith.

The leader of the nation, stroked his beard and watched first with knowing smile, but same smile became frozen, turned to shock, then confusion. “Stop!” he cried, “What are you doing?”

But the mob did not stop.

They had learnt to break the law, and now with the taste of blood, they wanted more:

They marched into hospitals, smashed X ray machines, ransacked operation theatres, threw cancer patients from their wards, injured doctors.

They shot journalists dead, point blank, whose writings they cared not for.

They added these new freedoms to their list of ‘breakable laws’ pinned to their sleeves.

They ran into college campuses, pulled out those who thought different, battered them, whether they wore trousers or skirt.

They stopped cars on highways. Raped women travelling in them. They stopped the screening of films whose plot they did not understand. They followed tourists, and if perchance they did not allow selfie with them, beat them up, groped theirwomen, left them wounded, bloodied.

“Stop!” shouted their white bearded leader,as the world press asked questions. “Stop!” he cried then watched helpless. “Stop!” he feebly whispered as foreign presidents commented how unsafe his country had become. “Stop!”

But today the mobs, ruffians, thugs, rapists,touch the laws sewed to their sleeves. They cannotstop the bloodlust, now embedded in their hearts..!

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The audience troops into the theatre, walk slowly behind courteous ushers who help them to their seats. They sit expectantly, looking at the curtain, and suddenly see itturning red, then blue, then fiery yellow, and in a few seconds, the colours intermingle, becoming one, with a single rainbow streak going along into the sky!

“Wow!” cry the people, “Wow!”

They sit mesmerized, watching the shimmering cloth transforming itself, entertaining them. They scream with pleasure at the entertaining curtain.

They sit through the whole show, watching the curtain, laughing, chuckling, grinning, smiling as ruffian red cloth, oftimes the brigand blue, moves from the top, envelopes the yielding yellow. Then watch as same impish yellow tries to get away and blue fabric chases it, then splashesherself all over the red.

The audience rise at the end of the show and make their way home.

“How was the play?” ask their sons, daughters, friends later.

“Play?” they ask.“What play?”

“But you went to see a play?”

“The curtain was more interesting!The green going into the yellow!And so funny when red crashed into the blue!”

“Didn’t the curtain open?”

“No!”

“But weren’t you interested in seeing what was happening behind the curtain?”

“The curtain was interesting enough!” say the people nodding at each other in agreement, “Who’s interested in seeing anything behind!”

And in a bigger theatre called India, the same seems to be happening: There’s a play going on, actors and actresses acting their part, doing their roles, voicing their lines. Their faces filled with anger, their speech with communal hate.

They stick their swords and daggers, not wooden swords and daggers given to them in the original script, but real ones, made of steel, or deadlier ones, made of hateful speech, which they thrust onto unsuspecting crowds who wounded cry and shout and look at us the audience for support.

But we the audience sit impassive, laughing, giggling, smiling, interested only in watching the curtain.

Yes, the curtain of Padmavati, the curtain of our beloved PMs foreign jaunts, the curtain of newspapers full of tributes from small leaders, and clever WhatSapp cartoonand video curtains lampooning opposition leaders amuse and entertain us, keeping us occupied, as those behind the same entertaining cloth, fall wounded, are kicked, lynched, raped and murdered.

The world asks: “Your country seems to be having more rapes than the rest of the world?”

“Lots of communal tension after the present government came in?”

“Demonetization has killed your economy!”

But we stare only at the curtain. Fooled into vehement anger whether Padmavathy should be screened or not, gulled into watching the prime minister’s new clothes, his hands drumming Chinese drums, while what is happening behind the curtain, ceases to interest us!

Are we, you and I, not seeing the play?

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By Yogi Ashwini

In this series we have been discussing the asans and beej mantras for the various chakras as entailed in the the Sanatan Kriya and how one can activate them and strengthen the corresponding body parts. After vishuddhi we now we move on to the Agya chakra.

Agya (Crown Chakra): This master chakra controls the brain, eyes, and nose, and pineal and pituitary glands. It also directly controls all other chakras. The beej mantra for this chakra is HAM THAM OM.

Take your awareness to your breath at the tip of the nostrils. Watch the rhythmic pattern of breath at this point and with every subsequent inhalation, make your breath longer and deeper. Maintaining the awareness of Agya chakra, start with the chant of HAM THAM OM. Keep the chant deep and slow. Continue with the chant as we graduate into the asans for Agya.

The Yogasutras talk about three very powerful techniques, the Mahabandha, the Mahamudra and the Mahavedha. According to Hatha Yoga Pradipika ‘aetatrayam mahagunghyam jaramrityuvinashanam vahnivriddhikaram chaiv hyanimaadigunapradam’. These are the three secrets which destroy old age and death, increase digestive fire and bestow the siddhis of anima etc.

Mahabandha: Mahabandha unites the three nadis at the agya chakra and helps the mind reach the seat of Lord Shiv, kedara. It helps arrest ageing and is a bestower of great siddhis. Sit down; bend the left knee, pressing the heel into the perineum/vagina. Place the right heel on the left thigh. Inhale from the right nostril and perform the Shambhavi (center yourself and fix your eyes at the center of the forehead between the two eyebrows) and Khechari Mudra (for this, the tongue is turned backwards into the cavity of the cranium). Holding your breath inside, perform Mool Bandha (keeping awareness at the perineum and contract the perineal muscle lifting it up towards the navel and holding the posture) followed by Jalandhar Bandha (retaining the breath, bend the head forward and press the chin tightly against the chest) Come back and release the bandhas, first Jalandhar and then Mool Bandha. Repeat the same on the other side.

Mahamudra: The Mahamudra incor porates the benefits of Kumbhak, Khechari Mudra, Mool Bandha and other practices, and so purifies the entire network of nadis, restores balance in all bodily functions and aids in absorption of rasa. Sit down, bend the left knee, pressing the heel into the perineum/vagina. Stretch the right leg out in front. Inhale from the right nostril and perform the Shambhavi and Khechari Mudra. Holding your breath inside and perform Mool Bandha followed by Jalandhar Bandha. Bend forward, resting your forehead on the knee. Continue as long as you can retain your breath without straining. Come back and release the bandhas, first Jalandhar and then Mool Bandha. Repeat the same on the other side.

Mahavedha: The final practice is Mahavedha which keeps all signs of ageing such as fatigue, wrinkles, grey hair and joint pains at bay. It is also an essential practice to reap the benefits of Mahabandha and Mahamudra, for these two practices generate enormous prana which needs to be channelized in the correct way. Mahavedha is hence done after performing Mahamudra or Mahabandha. Sit down; bend the left knee, pressing the heel into the perineum/vagina. Place the right heel on the left thigh. Inhale from the right nostril and perform the Shambhavi and Khechari Mudra. Holding your breath inside, perform Mool Bandha followed by Jalandhar Bandha. Lift your body, pushing your weight into the floor using your palms and descend such that the heel pierces into the Mooladhar. Repeat this up and down movement seven times. Come back and release the bandhas, first Jalandhar and then Mool Bandha. Repeat the same on the other side.

It is important to have a Guru to practice the above or it can damage the body.

After performing the mentioned asanas and bandhas, it is extremely important to relax the body and various energy points to distribute the energy so generated all through. In the next article we will discuss how to relax and rejuvenate the body with Yog Nidra.

Yogi Ashwini is the Guiding Light of Dhyan Foundation and an authority on the Vedic Sciences. His book, 'Sanatan Kriya, The Ageless Dimension' is an acclaimed thesis on anti-ageing. Log onto to www.dhyanfoundation.com or mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more .

By Yogi Ashwini

In this series of articles, I have been taking you through the chakra beej kriya which comprises of a set of asans and dhwanis to tap into the phenomenal power of six major chakras in the body namely Mooladhar, Swadhishthan, Manipoorak, Anahad, Vishuddhi and Agya. This technique is a part of self healing with Sanatan Kriya and the practioner can make desired changes in the body and surroundings through the power of consciousness. We have discussed the asans till the Anahad chakra and now will proceed to the Vishuddhi chakra.

Vishuddhi (The Throat Chakra)

: It is located in the Adam’s apple area in the throat region. It controls the thyroid glands and the power of voice. It is also responsible for controlling the breath. At the pranic level it is the seat for higher creativity. Its base element is ether. The beej mantra for this chakra is HAM.

Having returned from the chakra asan to the resting position, take your awareness to the Visshuddhi chakra, and begin the chant of HAM. Now we graduate into the asans for this chakra,

Halasana (Plough Pose)

: Lie on your back and take a deep breath. Resting the arms next to the body and holding the breath, gently raise both legs in a vertical position. Bend elbows to support the back with your hands and gently roll the buttocks and spine off the floor to lower the legs over the head. Try to touch your toes to the floor. Hold the posture for as long as comfortable while maintaining Ujjai breath.

Those suffering from sciatica, spinal and neck injuries or high blood pressure should refrain from performing this asana.

Sarvangasana (Shoulder Stand Pose)

: From the halasana, bring your legs to the front and using elbow support, place your hands on the upper back to roll the buttocks and spine off the floor such that the entire body upto the upperback is in a straight line perpendicular to the floor. Body is supported by the elbows, nape of neck, shoulders and head. The chest is pressed against the chin. Hold this posture for as long as comfortable while breathing in Ujjai and gently come back.

This asana should not be practiced by people with heart ailments, spinal problems, high blood pressure, during menstruation and pregnancy.

Vipreetkarni (Inverted Pose)

: From sarvangasana, lower your hips a little supporting them with your hands while resting the elbows on ground such that the legs are perpendicular to the ground while the spine is tilted at an angle of forty-five degrees. The shoulders and head stay on the ground, chin is partially tucked into the chest. Retain the posture while breathing in Ujjai.

This asana should not be practiced by people suffering from cervical spondylitis, slip disc, high blood pressure, during menstruation and pregnancy. This asana has the reversing effect of channelizing the nectar towards the Sahastrara and works wonders in dealing with grey hair, wrinkles and sagging skin.

In the next article, we will discuss the properties, asans and mantras for the Agya chakra. It is advised that you visit your nearest Dhyan Foundation center to learn the correct way to practice asans. The effect of all these asans becomes manifold when practiced under the guidance of your Guru who channelises energy into each asan.

Yogi Ashwini is the Guiding Light of Dhyan Foundation and an authority on the Vedic Sciences. His book, 'Sanatan Kriya, The Ageless Dimension' is an acclaimed thesis on anti-ageing. Log onto to www.dhyanfoundation.com or mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more.