Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Revisiting Ramayana with Author Shubha Vilas

Author of Ramayana Game of Life Series, Shubha Vilas is a spiritual and a motivational speaker. The unique thing about Mr. Vilas is that professionally, he holds degree in engineering and law. He believes that a good teacher, no matter how knowledgeable he may be, always sees the process of learning and teaching simultaneously as an inherent aspect of personal and spiritual growth.

In an exclusive, chat with Strokes of Pen, Mr. Vilas his ideologies behind his book, Ramayana Game of Life Series: Shattered Dream. He also discussed that how values are important in life and its circle.:

Q1) You are a spiritual seeker and motivational speaker. You have studied engineering and law. The earlier field is contrasting to the latter. How did you shifted to the former one? (When did your spiritual self-come forth?)

Shubha Vilas: An engineering mind is logically driven and a legal mind is analytically driven. I know the combination is rare, but the combination really helped me delve much deeper into logically trying to analyze the purpose of my life and trying to find meaning to deeper truths of life through spirituality.

Q2) What/Who/How were you inspired to write this book?

Shubha Vilas: I heard stories from the Ramayana all through my childhood from my grandmother. So my first inspiration comes from her. Another motivating factor was to bring out the epics from the closet and present in a way that can be understood and appreciated by a larger audience.

Q3) How many parts does the book, ‘Ramayana – the Game of Life Series’ have?

Shubha Vilas: Valmiki’s Ramayana is written in six parts (khanda). This is also the pattern I am following.

Q4) What are you trying to convey with these books?

Shubha Vilas: Every heart is looking for an exciting story and every mind is looking for enlightening wisdom. The Ramayana has both. My role is to present all these facets of the Ramayana in the best possible way.

Q5) Ramayana is a story well known to everyone. What tricks & treats have you used to distinguish it and make it interesting?

Shubha Vilas: I have been told that the lessons that come as footnotes on every page make the books extremely interesting. More so as they are practical pointers apt for modern audience. Other than that, the story of Ramayana is itself so fascinating that no tricks or treats are required! My role is simply to present it in a modern contemporary style with a gripping narrative.

Q6) In today’s materialistic life, people are forgetting values. Through your book, how do you try to bring the best in them? Or teach them that human values are still an essential part of everyone’s life.

Shubha Vilas: Yes, sadly, people are totally involved in a materialistic lifestyle, leaving behind human values. We can learn about values from every character of Ramayana. Rama’s unwavering persona teaches us how to handle reversals positively; Bharata’s actions teach us how to handle temptations and Sita’s courage probes us to explore beyond our comfort zone. Every relationship in this family drama is a lesson on values.

Q7) Ramayan then and now – as in when it was perceived earlier and as it is perceived today, has lot of difference. Not everyone would relate or agree to the morals in it. In such a situation, was it hard to pen down something with such deep value?

Shubha Vilas: What the society needs today is not an eye transplant but a vision transplant. An eye transplant grants the gift of sight and a vision transplant grants the gift of direction. Shattered Dreams reveals profound rules of human relationships and conduct – what works, what fails to work and how to navigate through this amazing labyrinth called life.

Since I am trying to address the needs of a modern man through the story of the Ramayana, my experience has been that people have loved it.

Q8) If yes (to Q7) how are you using the best possible things to revive Ramayana and its teachings?

Shubha Vilas: The heavy philosophy and teachings of the Ramayana, I am trying to make it very light and yet at the same time I am not compromising on any of the deeper principles embedded in it. Here are some interesting quotes from the book, which bring out deeper truths of life in a contemporary and at the same time uncompromising manner.

"The decisions to make decisions has to be made in moments of strength not in moment of weakness"
“One ounce of immaturity coupled with ten ounces of ill advice is the perfect recipe for a life of disaster”

“Convenience is about changing the law to suit your life but maturity is about changing your life to salute the law”

"Excessive lamentation is like tying to gulp hot tea. It results in a blistered tongue. One's lamentation for the past should not ricochet to destroy one's future."

“The circle of indifference has the self at its centre. The circle of compassion has others at the centre. The former leads to apathy; the latter to empathy.”

Q9) Any tips to our readers?

Shubha Vilas: Readers will do well to remember that:

Keep your expectations in alignment with the realities of life. Don't ever hand over the remote control of your life to another to browse your emotions. Remember, if you desire what you deserve, it will come to you. But if you desire what you don't deserve, you will run after it.


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