Being Grateful


It is always good to be thankful in life. It helps you to keep a check on your ‘self’. There are innumerable factors to which you can be grateful towards. Your body – the house of your senses, your family, friends, sun, moon , stars and countless such random – tangible and intangible entities.  It is grand and fulfilling gesture that goes a long way in helping you understand the valuable lessons in learning more about your ‘self’.

But, there is one factor , in particular, which under any circumstances cannot be overlooked. It’s value cannot be estimated by mortals. This factor comprises of the valiant armed forces that protect our country & the police that helps to uphold the law and order of a country. Any other profession in a country can only survive and thrive in the presence of protection that the armed forces and the police provide against external and internal threats. The order of a society is maintained because of them. These brave-hearts lay down their lives to help protect the interests of billion others whom they have never even met in their lives. They sacrifice their lives so that you can lead yours in peace.

They fight for everything that you and the very society you are a part of, stand for. They armed forces and the police not only defend the farms, temples , bridges and buildings but also the ideas that gave rise to them in the first place. To quote from ‘Horatius’ -

(They fight for) ‘For the ashes of his fathers,

And the temples of his Gods.’

All one needs to do if not anything else, is to respect them and their sacrifice. Respect their families. Respect the code by which they have lived their lives and honour them. Yes, there can be rotten elements among them and they should be dealt with the necessary punishment that they deserve. But then, a timely mention to yourself towards the selfless service of the police personnel and armed forces would go a long way in help you understand the value of their efforts and also reinstate faith in them about the fact that their actions don’t fall under the garb of ‘Thankless’ jobs.

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International Women’s Day Poem


My best wishes and warm regards to every woman on the eve of International Women’s Day. I have once again tried to encompass the spirit of a Woman through these below words. I dedicate the below poem to every woman in the world and once again, humbly reiterate my request to guide humanity and the world to a better and glorious future.

You are the divinity in the lightning,

Your are the coolness in the breeze,

You are the insurmountable energy of the sun,

That controls the nine jewels and the actions of the seas.

You are the voice in the sky,

You are the melody in a bird’s voice,

You are the strength in a mother’s love,

That rocks and shapes the cradle of mankind.

You are the mystery in the night,

You are the power of light,

You are the wisdom steeped in the nectar of knowledge,

That guides the paths of the mortal minds.

You are the kindness that resonates in the actions of the wise,

You are the steadfastly patience that witness the act of foolhardy minds,

You are the guiding star for the souls lost at sea,

That renews hopes in the minds of the ones engulfed in misery.

Words can never describe your true form,

Nor can imagination be stretched to sculpt the same,

No efforts can be deemed enough to repay your love,

That has guided and graced every moment our world’s ways.

Yet O Mother! On this sacred day,

Accept these humble salutations from a world that wonders at your grace,

Bless our every moment and our worldly ways,

For without you, O Mother, we would be truly lost,

Like a lifeless leaf on a windy day.

Bless your love upon us,

Bless your elegance,

Bless your kindness upon us,

So that we endeavor to understand and sing your praises during every moment of our mortal ways.

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Interview with Author – Age of Hiblisk- Sumukh Naik


Hi everyone, it gives me great pleasure to share with you my latest interview as conducted by www.bookgeeks.in. This interview first appeared on their website – www.bookgeeks.in

Link for the Interview : http://www.bookgeeks.in/entries/authors/sumukh-naik-author-interview

Interview :

SUMUKH NAIK | Author Interview

Geeked On January 24, 2014

Sumukh Naik is the debut author of ‘The Age of Hiblisk’, a fantasy novel. He juggles his time between managing his family business and writing books. Many authors find it difficult to reach their readers’ imagination with vivid descriptions of fantasy lands, but Sumukh does it with ease and calls it a gift of mother nature. In this interview with us, he talks about his passion for writing, love of Sanskrit, and more.

 

BookGeeks:      Please tell us something about yourself and your passion for writing.
Sumukh: I am a Human Resources professional handling our family business and based in Mumbai. Writing for me is a very hallowed method of communicating. It holds the potential to influence all those who now, and in future, will chance to look upon my words, sentences framed, paragraphs structured and ideas dressed within them. It is also a challenge, because what is written by you can be interpreted in thousand ways and more.  As an author, it is always stimulating for me to ensure that the idea is not lost in the words that are employed to dress it. I feel that what an author wants to communicate must stand out on its own – be it in the presence of the sun or in the presence of nocturnal elements.
 
BookGeeks: Fantasy is a tough genre even for experienced writers. Any reason why you chose fantasy as the genre for your first book ‘Age of Hiblisk’?
Sumukh: The idea that I have tried to communicate in my novel is unique in various aspects. I wanted everyone to be patient enough to understand and learn from the same. I felt, the best way to achieve the above is to keep a person entertained. The genre of fiction provided me this solution. The base of fiction has been widely used from time immemorial to communicate ideas which have strong moral overtones.
 
BookGeeks: Tell us the secret behind the name ‘Hiblisk’. How did you come up with it?
Sumukh: I was looking for an intriguing name. Hiblisk just struck me out of the blue. I liked the sound of it. So, without giving it much thought, I just decided to go with it.
 
BookGeeks: In a fantasy novel, an author has to construct the entire world with his imagination. How difficult was it for you to conceptualise ‘Jaguar’, ‘Ivory’, ‘Hiblisk’, ‘Himra’, etc.?
Sumukh: The entire book came pretty naturally to me. I wish I knew the exact answer to your question but the fact remains, that I really didn’t require putting in great efforts to conceptualise and imagine the various world. I guess, the credit goes to Mother Nature for she has been kind enough to bestow her blessings on me.
 
BookGeeks: Tell us the story behind the maps that came along with the book. Whose idea was it?
Sumukh: The maps are my idea. I had drawn those on a large drawing paper and the same were then converted by a professional artist into the ones you find attached with the novel. I felt it was a serious requirement to help readers keep track of various places and also helped the story to move forward.
 
BookGeeks: The names of half of the characters are Indian and the other half are western. Any reason for this?
Sumukh: The ideas and concepts that I have mentioned in my book have universal appeal. But the soul of the story is based on Indian ethos. I never wanted the book to remain confined to the minds of Indians alone.  I felt that adding western names to the various characters will aid them (non-Indians) to relate to the story much easily.I have myself found it very difficult to focus on novels written by western authors due to the unfamiliar names used in them. I guess, perhaps from this very difficulty that I faced, rose this idea to devote western names to certain characters so that it becomes easier for them to get
involved with the story. I am not aware whether the western names that I have used are common or not but it was a conscious effort from my end to aid all those who are not familiar with Indian concepts on spirituality to help relate with the story of my novel.  The western names have been used majorly at the start of the novel to help the westerners get comfortable with the novel.

After devoting initial chapters to this very exercise, I have introduced Sanskrit and Hindi names for ease of Indian (Subcontinent) readers. I have tried to strike a balance in the same. Few of my readers have found it weird with such naming of characters but through your medium, I would like to state to the world, that there is a ‘Method behind the Madness.’

 
BookGeeks: Which Bollywood actors do you see in the role of William, Sara, Sage and Dushtt, in that order?
Sumukh: No idea. The industry is full of talented artists and if the time comes the necessary sane decision will be taken by those concerned.
 
BookGeeks: Are you working on the sequel now? Any sneak peeks?
Sumukh: It is too early for me to make any comment on this.
 
BookGeeks: Any message for the readers?
Sumukh: Please try and learn the mother of all languages – ‘Sanskrit’ so that it will help you to read the great scriptures in the real sense and not the translated versions. Also, ‘Sanskrit’ being a scientific language has many advantages associated with it. Please make a conscious effort to read books of Indian regional languages. Our literature is a treasure house of enigmatic concepts of all possible genres available under the sky including spirituality, philosophy, fiction, fantasy etc.
 
BookGeeks: Your testimonial for BookGeeks.in.
Sumukh: BookGeeks.in is a great organisation, with innovative and excellent mode of working. Thank you for providing a wonderful platform for Indian authors. I wish you All the Best in your future endeavours.

Thanks a lot bookgeeks.in for giving me an opportunity to share certain nuances about my novel with the world.

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Book Review – Age of Hiblisk


Sharing two 4*/5 reviews on Age of Hiblisk:

Age of Hiblisk: A Story with a Soul, a highly entertaining and enriching fantasy tale, filled with beautiful secrets of Mother Nature and advanced spiritual knowledge is the journey of Prince William and Princess Sara, the central characters, through the magical and spiritual worlds of Pantolis, Hiblisk, and Ikra in a mythological landscape with corresponding characters which have been securely fortified for eras by the people of the secret planets at the back the alarm by the sinister services of Dushtt to assert primacy over the domain of Pantolis.

AGE OF HIBLISK
The plot is easy to understand and follow. It might even be real, if you think of it. Two disputing kingdoms, the village bewilderingly caught between them. The villagers appeal to one kingdom, the king rises to their aid, only to be caught by the other kingdom. That in turn leads to nemeses becoming allies against the darkness, helped in their efforts by a “master”. It is not very confusing, but it’s not something on unexpected lines either. The message that the author conveys is nice, it felt like the yin-yang concept to me. The twist toward the end was nice, but the reaction to the twist felt out of place. The character names , On one hand you have these names like Jickson and Prede, William and Sara, which feel like Western names, and then you have names like Shalaka and Dussht which feel Indian. The best part of the book was the map at the end perhaps. That was something that got a smile

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Anger Management


There is a fine line between ‘Getting Angry’ & ‘Getting frustrated’. The former is a vital step to reach the latter but very rarely vice versa. One must understand this difference in their lives as the threshold for both these facets of emotions vary from person to person. Perhaps, the below mentioned lines by Aristole should help to serve as a guiding light.

“Anybody can become angry – that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way – that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.”

Thus, the path to find the above mentioned distinction in ourselves may not be easy but nevertheless, it is a path worth pondering and acting upon for it will only help and guide us.

There is nothing wrong in getting angry or frustrated, but finding the right cause behind these emotional expressions and addressing them in a positive manner always helps. If possible, strive to remember the above said quote of Aristole. It helps.

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Value of Innocence


Smartness lies in understanding & nurturing the inborn innocence in yourself & not in outsmarting it- Sumukh Naik

Everyone is born with the necessary grace to make the best us of talent bestowed upon him from birth. But many in life fail to actually even notice the hidden talent in themselves. It is no rocket science  when it comes to unleashing the hidden talent in ourselves. All we need to do is to be true to every moment that life has blessed us with. Being true to ourselves can be defined as a state when our thoughts and actions are in complete positive coordination with our conscience.

One can never control the functioning of outer world but can always control his inner world. The main instrument of controlling the the works of our inner world is by being true to ourselves. Through the outer world we receive innumerable quantities of emotions, information, energy, synergy etc making it very difficult if we are to adapt ourselves to its continuous changing nature. But, if we develop in ourselves the qualities of vast ocean then we can easily assimilate the ever changing rivers of life and yet remain steady, in control of the situation at hand and ourselves. Remember that the rivers of the world finally empty their energy into the vast ocean but the ocean on other hand never oversteps its boundaries. Our main ally in this activity is our innocence that helps us to remain true to who we are in reality.  Trying to outsmart it will only be a valid act of fooling ourselves.

Hence, my friends, ‘Smartness lies in understanding & nurturing the inborn innocence in yourself & not in outsmarting it’.

 

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Story about a Story


To express one’s views, feelings, and experiences to the world is an essential pillar on which the world of art and communication stands on. Expressing oneself is an important exercise, which helps to connect the person with the subject being expressed and also helps to put forth to the world a different view. It is an exercise which not only liberates but at the same time makes you aware about the responsibility that comes with expressing.

One such faculty of expression employed by humans and developed to the degree of an art is – Story Telling. The art of story telling has blossomed since ancient times. In today’s age, writing a story is a more widely accepted and successful form of story telling. People write to express themselves, their views, experiences, feelings on various subjects. How the world takes this bowl of expression depends completely on each individual that comes in contact with the work of an expressionist. One cannot have any control as to how the world might perceive the words employed, to express the thoughts. But one can and must, certainly make an effort, to ensure that they be simple, to the point and should do justice to the subject.

Story telling comprises of the story teller, the medium one chooses and the manner employed to communicate the story. Any message that one wants to put forth to the world travels extensively through these mediums. One must ensure that none of these mediums are used in a corrupt way or to further personal agendas as it will not only end up in corrupting the message and its aspects, but also do a disservice to the interest of those who wish to learn and experience the craft of the artist.

Story telling is an art which weaves in itself important faculties such as the characteristics, imagination, experience and intent of the wordsmith. But, the most important faculty of a story teller is to remain true to the story tellers’ responsibility towards the society. A story should not only be a set of words employed to put forth to the society the skills of a writer; but they should act like the source of knowledge from which the world can learn from.

Expression achieved by the act of story telling, should be a selfless one. It should be aimed at educating the society and at the same, if possible, then entertain them too. The gift of story telling should not be corrupted by using it to further the glories of the writer. An artist has an undeclared but natural obligation towards the society he lives in. It is his responsibility to ensure that his art enriches the society and does not degrade it. If an artist gives preference to his personal agenda and selfish actions over his art and his obligation towards the society, then he ends up corrupting all the three elements – himself, his art and the society of which he is a part of. Results of which can never be escaped.

A story told in its true form will enrich the story teller, the medium used and the audience. A story without a moral is like a temple without an idol. While telling a story, celebrate the trials and tribulations within it in a way that will encourage the readers, to enthusiastically endure those difficulties and not shy away from them. Tell the story in a manner that will inspire them to face and conquer their inner demons. Let your story liberate the readers from their dilemmas. A story teller must decide whether he wants to give priority to the moral of the story, which should be aimed at enriching the lives, or to highlight the heroics of the writer in him. Let the story and the moral it carries, be like the ray of sun which illuminates and energizes the lives of all.

A story teller has to be aware and responsible to the fact that his art is meant for the purpose of story telling and should not prevent the readers from experiencing the true glory of the story. A story teller should only be an element that transmits the story and not the story itself. Allow the story to reach the readers in its purest form.

Every individual is an artist. Every artist can become a story teller. Every unfolding moment in our lives is a spark which can fuel some of the greatest stories ever told. The answer to the question – ‘How we wish to put forth our stories to the world?’ lies within the voice of our conscience. Let your story free a soul to embrace its true potential. Let your story act like a guiding light in the dark of a treacherous night. Let your story inspire others to believe in themselves and to guide their lives for the betterment of themselves and also of the society they live in.

Story telling is more than art, it is a heavenly gift. It ought to be treated with the respect it deserves.

 

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