One gathers information, gains knowledge and attains wisdom, step by step, in many ways – like one’s own life experiences, from reading, ruminations, discussions, travels, interactions etc. The precious jewels of wisdom thus gathered are distributed by the great thinkers to others for their enjoyment and edification. My friend Dr T P Sasikumar is among those distinguished intellectual spiritualists who edify the society through their writings and discourses. I feel extremely fortunate to be instrumental in introducing an invaluable collection of simple but profound aphorisms by DrTPS called LIFE made SIMPLE which is figuratively speaking an ocean of pearls. It goes without saying that one has to drive deep to acquire these riches accumulated through experiences of reading, writing and teaching, distilled into pure simple aphorisms.
Though the book is called LIFE made SIMPLE, I wonder if life has to be made simple. It is not we ourselves who make life complex and complicated by infusing into it confusing thoughts, theories and philosophies? Please look at the human life in the earliest stages. How simple our life was then! Similarly the lives of animals are still simple and unpolluted, if left alone by human beings.
Each pearl in this beautiful garland symbolizes the answers and solutions to the various problems, mental crises, internal conflicts, anxieties and doubts confronting all of us in every walk of modern life of stress and strain. And significantly the answers and solutions are utterly simple and entirely practicable. That only shows how great they are. Whatever is truly great will naturally be very very simple like, for instance the poetry of Poonthanam who has expressed the profoundest Vedantic thoughts in the simplest of languages so that they go directly to the reader’s heart.
It is an invigourating experience to go through the poet’s simple sayings, observations and conclusions which are highly scientific and rational. They encompass such a multitude of topics as the essence of spirituality, values of human life, family relations, relevance and importance of the materialistic world, paramount significance of pourusheya or human endeavour, the concept of God, Heaven and Hell, distinction between the real bhakthi and polluted bhakthi, real faith and superstition, the vital need for a ‘Guru’, absolute necessity of the control of our mind and emotions, the meaning and benefits of satsang etc. etc. The end result of all these are our happiness and well-being.
I would like to compliment DrTPS from the bottom of my heart for his indomitable efforts to remove some of the cobwebs of misconceptions prejudices from the minds of Malayalees. Our minds have been polluted and vilified for generations by the false and mischievous legends and episodes about say, Onam and Mahabali. It is obvious that the Maveli the ruler of Kerala has no relation to Mahabali or Vamana avatar episode. Dr.TPS has done well to correct this and give the real meaning. How I wish he turns his attention to other similar distortions like the disgusting encounter between Poonthanam and Melpathur. The despicable episode of Melputhur deriding Poonthanam is so obnoxious as to be calumniating to both great poets. I am surprised how a sensible poet like Vallathol gave credence to this product of an evil mind and wrote a poem on the theme.
No man is free from dilemmas and worries. It is a well-known saying that life is a tragedy for those who think and a comedy fro those who feel. The best and only way to mental peace and material progress is to adopt a strict code of good thought (sad-vichar) and good behaviour (sad-achar). This is also the core message running through this slander volume – life, otherwise ephemeral and sorrowful can be made lovable by adhering to this code – that way; I would like to call this book a modern Thirukkural. This is the end result of the author’s long years of learning, teaching and reflections. While expressing my sense of gratitude to the author for requesting me to pen these words of introduction, I feel an introduction is redundant because it will speak directly to the reader. I wish him and the book all the best. I am sure that many will be benefited by reading the book. Let me conclude by quoting the essence of all the puranas
papaya para peedanam”
(doing good to others is the real virtue and merit, Harming others is real sin).
Prof. Akavoor Narayanan,
Retired Professor, Delhi University, NEW DELHI
IT IS A LIVELY BIG SPACE
We talk about life. We philosophize about life. We dream about life. We worry about the certain uncertainties in life. We speak about our experiences in life. Rarely do we realize that we are floating in an ocean of life – a big life. It is not just an empty space around us – it is a lively big life... It is not simple. But it can be made simple, says Dr T P Sasikumar, who is popularly known as Dr.TPS in his book ‘’ Life made Simple”.
Dr.TPS is one such blessed being who has received a special stroke from heaven to understand that life is essentially a learning experience. He believes that each situation, challenge, and relationships contain messages that are worth learning and teaching. His criticality and powerful observations about life is what you find in the seminal work. It is this strong faith that has shaped his convictions and has enabled him to offer us simple solutions to alleviate the pain arising out of the complex life that not only baffles us but also atomise our existence. The title is very apt as it says “Life made simple” for us by this simple unassuming person who is a scientist, mathematician, poet, with degrees in LLB, MBA, M.S in Psychotherapy, and who is well versed in Vedas, Upanishads, Thanthra and Astrology. He has given us a good introduction about himself in his book. I quote “moved through Naduvil, Taliparamba , Payyannur, Kannur, Calicut, Kochi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, New Delhi on study and job”. You can read about what he is in page 136 of this very special Book.
The sum total of his learning and vast experience of teaching contributed to the genesis of this book, through a socializing web site ‘ORKUT’. He named his community life is to live and conveys the strong message not to wallow in self-pity, which is worse than death! I should say he dramatically alters your perceptions of the world and yourself. This is what he says about criticism which makes us emotionally anemic "…Arrow goes forward only after pulling the string backward. Bullet goes forward only after pressing the trigger backward. Every human being will get happiness only after facing difficulties in his path of life” (LS, 15).
The book is divided in to four sections. Part one comprises of fourteen chapters which holds the different permutations of our life under the microscope, He confesses life is not simple, but being simple, with no extra ego, we can make life simple.
In part two titled “The Life coach speaks to you”; he discusses the blues of life and offers simple maxims to chart our journey peacefully. He warns us of our six enemies Kama-Lust, Krodha-Anger, Lobha-Greed, Moha-Delusion, Mada-Pride and Matsarya-Violence. He has defined matsarya as violence highlighting the fact that the unhealthy competition in any relationship is a violence against once own divinity! Part three deals with the FAQ are of day to day life. The answers are simple at the same time thought provoking and easy to comprehend.
Dilemma of Life in Tit Bits forms the fourth section. He says “life is to win, win over self” (147) enunciating the greatest philosophy of life. He answers the single most important question that people have always asked “what is the purpose of this life?” Here comes an answer which is simple- but far from easy. Live in a manner that is consistent with one’s spiritual ideals. Be consistent and live your life with a strong faith in God. He says “our finite power holds the infinite power. This why nothing is impossible”, conveying his deep rooted faith in God.
He reconceptualises love. He stresses the need for us to abound in unconditional Love that becomes the ultimate truth that lies at the heart of creation. The spirituality that he speaks about is not that simple for us. He says I quote “you need power to remain free from the influence of others. Detachment is this power”. (Page-19). In other these words are well grounded in the wisdom of Vedas which tells us to remain as a drop of water in the lotus leaf. The hardest philosophy of life is made simple by saying practice detached attachment to live your life meaningfully
This book is special as it carries very interesting anecdotes about Hitler being a vegetarian and Ravana who meditated regularly. The book is replete with comments of his ORKUT community. So it becomes a discourse on “Life”.
HE offers you 4 simple steps to reach God, viz. Neglect those who oppose bhakthi; Mercy on those who are materialistic and not spiritual; Friendship with Bhakthas and Love god. Thus this simple book becomes sacred in illumining your way to god.
His earthy sense of humour is well reflected in chapter 11 titled economics of life. A peep into our life cycle begins thus “Our birth is our opening balance, our death is our closing balance” They are pithy epigrammatically sentences which make us reflect seriously about our karma. His views about karma can be summed up with the lines of Bhagavad-Gita.
“sarva karma bhale thyagams praahu thyagam vichakshaha”
One who sacrifices the fruits of his karma makes the supreme sacrifice. He defines karma as the activity of service to others. The book thus epitomizes the creativity of Dr.TPS which is a net of love that catches many souls. We feel that he is a great teacher who touches a life forever. The quote
“anna daanam param daanam vidyaa daanam athath param”
reveals his conviction that teaching the seeker is greatest of all services that has given birth to this discourse on Life. My discourse ends, but the personality keeps on growing - Just as LIFE.
Dr. Latha Nair. R.,
Department of English, St.Teresa’s College, KOCHI
GREAT THINGS IN SIMPLE WORDS
‘Great people say great things in simple words’ say Swami Vivekananda. Great people like his guru Sri. Ramakrishna speak out of their experience and therefore their words leave an indelible impression on the minds of the people.
Dr T P Sasikumar’s book – LIFE made SIMPLE – in a small measure is close to the words of Swamiji’s Dr Sasikumar says, ‘There is no last word in anything. I keep telling in my lectures. My prayers is that “Let me have more knowledge to realize that what I have learned till now is to be corrected and updated. There is not last, the best …”. This sums-up the philosophical overtones behind the musings penned down by Dr T P Sasikumar, a scientist turned philosopher from Space Science.
Dr Sasikumar adapted a strange style in compiling these sayings. He develop0ed this book from his ORKUT socializing network site where he had answered the questions of a number of netizens across the globe. ‘Being simple, being as we are with no extra ego is simply beautiful. Cool, calm, smooth at ease is simple life. Try to be what we are’- is the simple message with which the book begins. Balancing one’s desires and how to be consistent in life, ability to accept the criticism to push forward are some of the first chapter prescriptions stemming out of an ocean of experience and wisdom. Politely daunting people indulging in inconsistent words and practices, Dr Sasikumar is emphatic about the need of value with courage.
He rightly puts the perspective of ‘possessiveness’ in terms of spirituality. The ‘me and the mine’ are often attacked in the Upanishads as false and illusions. In the like manner, he also exhorts to ‘Shun possessiveness in love’. His advice to the younger generation is to perform their ‘role, goal and value balancing’ with no ‘attachments to the role’ while keeping oneself balanced between ‘learning and being’. He discovered that, ‘The being is the actualization and the bliss of life is in that stage. Being in spirituality is the process of evolution’. His examples of Hitler as ‘vegetarian’ and Ravana as ‘meditator’ are something inspiring to have a positive attitude to even worst circumstances and towards dreaded objects too. He goes to explain the mathematical components of Gunatraya-vibhag of the Gita how each of the three gunas would take over another guna with out our explicit knowledge.
Decrying show of spirituality, Dr.Sasikumar stresses the need to do one’s duties with ‘sraddha in saadhana’. With a prescription to ‘retrospect’ and ‘introspect’, he suggests the measures to check the progress one achieved in life. It is a ‘must read’ book to make one’s ‘life made simple’.
Prof. Dr. CSHN Murthy
& Prof. Dr. Devesh Kishore
School of Journalism and Mass Communication
Institute of Management Studies, NOIDA
A GRASS-ROOT PHILOSOPHY
This book is something quite different.
If we can get something out of ORKUT. DrTPS has found ORKUT different. The book talks about the positive side of life. Really thought provoking. No sequence in the book. User-friendly. Anecdotes substantiate the theory. Profound philosophy of LIFE. Practically touching every aspect of LIFE. DrTPS has brought the Philosophy to the grass-root level. DrTPS is a grass-root Philosopher. So much scope to promote and kindling the energy of people. It could be used in training centers. Open any page and read, it givers energy. It is done so well. He is a guide for all of us. It gives the message that one can be raised from talker to doer to performer to achiever to reformer. It is simplicity. DrTPS is a profound teacher, evident intellectual; his activism had his own style. The last portion that says that all of us are useful and people who can keep them at the right place is lacking.
Dr. P M Nair IPS,
Director, CRPF, NEW DELHI
BOOK FOR PRACTITIONER
LIFE made SIMPLE can provide lot of inputs for making the life our kids simpler. Not everybody can answer the questions of out kids. Many kids are not having the freedom to ask questions to us. Through ORKUT many kids have asked lot of questions and DrTPS had answered all of them. DrTPS took the public domain for very private discussion. When one talks to DrTPS you feel that he is talking to you and you alone. He has the ability to get into your heart and the points are taken to your heart. Every question that one has is answered in this book. This book gives something to think, once you read any page. This combination of traditional philosophical knowledge and the most advanced networking technology is an innovative rare way. The value system that he is pushing though the book is commendable. LIFE made SIMPLE is a book for practitioner. The book tells you to look beyond what is evident. It is a wonderful gift that DrTPS has given.
Smt. Swagatha Sen Pillai
Classical Dancer, NEW DELHI
A RARE COMBINATION
KISS is keep it soft and simple. That is what DrTPS taught us. There are a few who flow with the time and a few change the time. DrTPS is a rare combination.
Prof. Rathnesh Pathak,
Station Director, Salam Namasthe, NOIDA
A LITTLE GEM OF A BOOK
I have just read "Life made simple", a little gem of a book; in todays' complex and media-distorted society it is a joy to read such a simple but great mixture of scriptural wisdom, life experience and common- life-wisdom. It is especially nice to think there is real communication between people behind it and not "one-sided preachers." The author , Dr. T.P.Saskumar shows how to install trust and faith in the micro- and macro cosmos, a rare gift for a scientist.
A Spiritual Researcher & Traveler
FILLS A GREATLY FELT VOID
Dear Dr. Sasikumar,
I owe you a big apology for not responding earlier. Thank you very much for your book "Life Made Simple". You have actually simplified a lot of spiritual and philosophical matters in such simple terms that even young children can understand them. I think this book fills a greatly felt void.
Heartiest congratulations!!! May you God help you bring out more and more of such books that are of greatpractical utility to people.
With best wishes,
Mrs. Valsala Kumari IAS
Commissioner of Civil Supplies,
Government of Kerala, THIRUVANANTHAPURAM
THE VERY IDEA OF THID BOOK IS GREAT
Please accept my hearty congratulations for your new book – LIFE made SIMPLE. It is really simplifies most of the complicated thoughts and situation in our day-to-day life. I especially appreciate the very thought of having this book, might be first ever originating from a social network group like ORKUT. The very idea of this is great. Cover design is very excellent. Thanks very much for making many of ours life SIMPLE.
With love and prayers.
IT REALY CHANGED MY LIFE
Thank you sir, you visited my school a few days back. Thank you so much sir. I read your book also, LIFE made SIMPLE – Mind blowing matter has written. It really changed my life.
Class X, Translam Academy International,
Just amazing. The way you have tackled and explained some of the complex issues in life. An awakening stuff. An eye-opener. I completely agree with one of your striking comments: 'Reduce your expectations.' Life Made Simple has definitely influenced the writer in me and it has opened a new window to my world of ideas and dreams.
Anantha Krishnan M.,
Senior Journalist and author of A Different Spirit.
Dr. Sreelakshmi released LIFE made SIMPLE at Chalakkudy, Trichur on 22nd November 2008 on the LIC Agents Training session on “Excel in LIFE”.
THAPASYA organized LIFE made SIMPLE release at Irinjalakuda, Trichur on 23rd November 2008 along with a Class on “Personality Development”
Prof. Maya Devi at Vimala College, Trichur with LIFE made SIMPLE on 24th November 2008 with the session on “LIFE is Becoming”.
Hon. High Court Judge Thottathil B Radhakrishnan released LIFE made SIMPLE at Kochi on 26th November 2008 along with a session on ‘Functional Proficiency’ organized by Adv. Rajendran Nair for SAMATHA LAW Society
Sri. Vinod Bhatathiripad and Sri. Unnikrishnan at CALICUT LIC Training Hall on LIFE made SIMPLE release on 27th November 2008 with a workshop on ‘Inter Personal Relationship & Communication’
Dr P M Nair IPS releasing LIFE made SIMPLE at Delhi Kerala House on 7th December 2008.
Prof. Akavoor Narayanan on LIFE made SIMPLE at Delhi Kerala House on 7th December 2008.
Smt. Swagatha Sen Pillai on LIFE made SIMPLE at Delhi Kerala House on 7th December 2008.
Prof. Rathnesh Pathak, Communication Expert on LIFE made SIMPLE release at Delhi Kerala House on 7th December 2008.
Sri. N Radhakrishnan, Kathakali Documentary Expert received LIFE made SIMPLE on release at Delhi Kerala House on 7th December 2008.
Project Director of AIDS control society in AP and the former Collector of Hyderabad Sri. Chandravadhanan, I.A.S., Sri. Chandra Mohan, PRO to Chief Minister and Swamiji Br. Raghunath on release of LIFE made SIMPLE at Mata Amruthananthamayi Mat, Hyderabad on 7th December 2008.
Dr P V Radhadevi, Space Scientist (wife of Dr T P Sasikumar) on release of LIFE made SIMPLE at Hyderabad on 7th December 2008.
Swami Nityamuktananda, with LIFE made SIMPLE in Rishikesh.
Prof. Roden, Traveler from UK with LIFE made SIMPLE in Delhi.
There is no last word in anything.
I keep telling in my lectures,
My prayer is that
let me have more knowledge
To realize that
what I have learned till now
is to be corrected
There is no last, the best
The day you feel that what we know is the perfect knowledge,
human lives as an animal / vegetable life.
The life is worth only when he continues to learn learns.
If the jottings in this book
Helps you to think
My attempt is a success.
Else let me try in another style later.
Nothing is the best, nor the perfect, More so this book too.
Dr. T P Sasikumar