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Messages - Nagaraj

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Humour / Re: Funny pictures,quotes,videos...
« on: July 13, 2013, 08:14:05 PM »
Inspiring Talk!!

Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai has addressed the United Nations as part of her campaign to ensure free compulsory education for every child. She marked her 16th birthday by delivering the speech on Friday at the UN headquarters in New York. Taliban gunmen shot Malala on her school bus last October following her campaign for girls' rights.

"I am here to speak up for the right of education of every child," she said.


General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: July 13, 2013, 08:11:58 PM »
Thanks Sri Ravi, :) i am hoping to complete it by tomorrow.


Typical Menu Items
   Sarkarai Pongal
   Sweet Poli
   Kadamba Sambar
   Moor Kuzhambu
   Cucumbar Thayir Pachadi
   Tomato Thayir Pachadi
   Vazhakkai Podimas
   Kothavarangai Paruppu Usuli
   Aviyal (or) Eriseri
   Kathirikkai Pitlai (Brinjal Pitlai) (or) Oolan
   Paruppu Rasam
   Lemon Rasam
   Semiya Payasam
   Milk Payasam
   Medhu Vadai
   Paruppu Vadai
   Puli Milagai
   Fried Appalam
   Fried Paddad(Vadam)
   Curd Rice
   Curd Rice
The picture above is a typical South Indian meals, served specially in a fresh plantain leaf. At Ramanasramam, food is served in plantain leaves even today. The menu is usually incomplete without appalams. Appalams are the favourites with everybody, from children to old granny.

(Bhagavan liked Brinjal Oil Curry and Aviyal was a favourite of Muruganar, well everybody!)

Appalams is generally a south Indian dish consumed by a large number of people. It is usually taken during meals, as no meal is complete without an appalam. It can also be called as the perfect side dish as it can be made very easily compared to other side dishes.
Appalams cannot be directly consumed. It can only be consumed by following this simple procedure. It should be fried up with cooking oil, as it cannot be consumed raw and what you get is a tasty and crispy Appalam, so get ready to smack your lips.
So make sure that you taste Appalams, as no meal is complete without Appalam.

Let us look into how this tasty appalams
are made and the ingredients as suggested
by Bhagavan Ramana, a master cook Himself!


Hand mill, in which the ingredients are
crushed and reduced to fine powder

தான்ய வுளுந்து
Urad Dal / Lentils!
Skin is black, when skin is removed, inside is white.
When ground into flour or paste, is used in the preparation
of Dosa, idli, vadai, appalams and many other items.
These lentil-like beans have black skins covering creamy
white interiors. With respect to its other features, this
dal is low in fat, zero cholesterol and is an excellent source
of protein and fiber.

Analogy - 'I am the body' idea, Attachment.


    Juice of பிரண்டை or square-stalked vine (Cissus quadrangularis)

Pirandai / Perandai in Tamil, with ribbed veins, is a medicinal plant grown in kitchen garden. A small piece of stem planted in a pot grows abundantly, and it does magic in one's health. It is also known as bonevine, adamant creeper, and veldt grape.

Pirandai made in the form of thogayal or thuvaiyal can be had atleast once a week as it has many health benefits. Here Bhagavan asks us to use the Juice of Pirandai.


Pirandai has enormous medicinal benefits. It is useful in curing digestive problems , breathing problems, cough, piles, nausea, flatulence (vaayu or gas in digestive track, stomach and bowels). It acts as an appetiser. These are used even today in some houses specially for Shraadham etc.

Analogy - Satsangam, the catalyst agent that inspires equanimity of mind, peace

ஜிரகம் Cumin Seeds are basically the dried fruits of a small herbal plant. Cumin is a type of spice well known for its medicinal uses. Also known as 'jeera' in india, they are good source of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals. These cumin seeds are also used in various traditional medicinal applications to treat certain diseases. Cumin has since been used as a wash for eyestrain and irritations. Chinese and Hindus used it as a snake bite remedy. Cumin is stomachic, diuretic, carminative, stimulant, astringent, emmenagogic and antispasmodic. It is valuable in dyspepsia diarrhoea and hoarseness and may relieve flatulence and colic. Cumin Seeds has also been used in ancient medicine of Ayurveda as an ingredient for many digestive formularies. Cumin is supposed to increase lactation and reduce nausea in pregnancy and has been shown to be effective in treating carpal tunnel syndrome, as well as diarrhea, indigestion and morning sickness. Cumin seeds are used as a flavoring agent in many herbal medicines and to help disperse flatulence. The seeds, and roots, also help to open obstructions of the liver, spleen and gall bladder and to ease painful swellings, in addition to helping with yellow jaundice, the gout and occasional cramps. Cumin seeds are a very good source of iron and a good source of manganese. Other nutritional are Protein, Carbohydrate, Dietary fiber, Vitamin A, B, C, E and K, Calcium, Phosphorus and Potassium.

Jeera water is a medicated drinking water made by boiling cumin seed (Cuminum cyminum) in water. The jeera water is popular in areas of southern India such as Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The popular Tamil saying Unave marunthu, marunthe unavu ("Food is medicine and medicine is food") attaches importance of food as medicine. Elders in Tamil Nadu households claim that jeera is used as an ingredient in many home remedies. In Kerala jeera water is a regular drink in many of the houses.

Analogy - Self control, moderation, 'Sama' etc..

     மிளகு Black pepper (Piper nigrum), the ‘king of spices’, is one of the oldest and the most popular spice in the world. The hotly pungent spice made from its berries is one of the earliest spices known and is probably the most widely used spice in the world today. It was mentioned as far back as 1000 BC in ancient Sanskrit literature. The name pepper comes from the Sanskrit word pippali meaning berry  Ancient Greek and Latin turned pippali into the Latin piper. Black pepper is native to south India, and is extensively cultivated there and elsewhere in tropical regions. Black Pepper is believed to cure illness such as constipation, diarrhea, earache, gangrene, heart disease, hernia, hoarseness, indigestion, insect bites, insomnia, joint pain, liver problems, lung disease, oral abscesses, sunburn, tooth decay, and toothaches.

Analogy - Self restraint, Self control, continence, 'Dama' etc..

   உப்பு Salt, also known as table salt or rock salt, is a crystalline mineral that is composed primarily of sodium chloride (NaCl), a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of ionic salts. It is essential for animal life, but can be harmful to animals and plants in excess. Salt is one of the oldest, most ubiquitous food seasonings and salting is an important method of food preservation. The taste of salt (saltiness) is one of the basic human tastes.

Because of its importance to survival, salt has often been considered a valuable commodity during human history. However, as salt consumption has increased during modern times, scientists have become aware of the health risks associated with high salt intake, including high blood pressure in sensitive individuals. Therefore, some health authorities have recommended limitations of dietary sodium, although others state the risk is minimal for typical diets.

In 1930, Mahatma Gandhi led at least 100,000 people on the "Dandi March" or "Salt Satyagraha", in which protesters made their own salt from the sea, which was illegal under British rule, as it avoided paying the "salt tax". This civil disobedience inspired millions of common people, and elevated the Indian independence movement from an elitist struggle to a national struggle.

Analogy - உபரதி - Renunciation of worldly desires or detachment

பெருங்காயம் asafoetida! This spice is used as a digestive aid, in food as a condiment, and in pickles. It typically works as a flavor enhancer and, used along with turmeric, is a standard component of Indian cuisine, particularly in lentil curries, such as dal, or various 'Pappu' like dosakaya, mamidikaya or tomato pappu. as well as in numerous vegetable dishes. It is especially widely used in South Indian cuisine, which is mainly vegetarian, and is often used to harmonize sweet, sour, salty and spicy components in food. It is used to hallmark the taste of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu sambar, a saucy dish made with cereals and lentils. It is called as"Ingu"(ಇಂಗು) in Kannada,"Inguva"(ఇంగువ) in Telugu also ”Perunkayam”(பெருங்காயம்) in Tamil.

Analogy - nurturing good vasana, yearning for Guru or God, yearning to serve your Guru, worship etc..


  நெய் Ghee is a class of clarified butter that originated in South Asia and is commonly used in South Asian (Indian, Bangladeshi, Nepali, Sri Lankan, and Pakistani) cuisine and rituals. The word ghee comes from Sanskrit: घृत (ghruta'sprinkled') and has several names around the world. Traditionally ghee is always made from cow's (considered sacred) milk [Sanskrit: गोघृत go-ghruta]) and is a sacred requirement in Vedic yajña and homa ( fire sacrifices), through the medium of Agni (fire) to offer oblations to various deities. Fire sacrifices have been performed dating back over 5000 years. Their purpose is for religious including marriage, funeral and other ceremonies. Ghee is also necessary in Vedic worship of mūrtis (divine deities), with aarti (offering of ghee lamp) called diyā or dīpa (deep) and for Pañcāmṛta (Panchamruta) where ghee along with Mishri (Mishri is different from Sugar), honey, milk, and dahī (curd) is utilised for bathing the deities on the appearance day of Lord Krishna on Janmashtami, Śiva (Shiva) on Mahā-śivarātrī (Maha Shivaratri). There is a hymn to ghee.

Analogy - Fire of knowledge, Jnana Agni

Pestle and Mortar This was a important kitchen instrument found in every household until the 90's when this made way for mixer grinders. I remember seeing it even in my own house in the early 90's but simply was just like Bhagavan "Summa Iruthal" :D The  ingredients mentioned are finely kneaded into a finely consistent dove ideal for making it into flat shaped appalams.

I remember a doha of Kabir where he sings:

Chalti Chakki Dekh Kar, Diya Kabira Roye
Dui Paatan Ke Beech Mein,Sabit Bacha Na Koye

ooking at the grinding stones, Kabir laments
In the duel of wheels, nothing stays intact.


Kabir cries out, and makes the reader to contemplate on this Doha and realize for oneself the hidden meaning behind this metaphor. Dui Patan here signifies earth (Prithvi) and sky (Akash) and within the ambit of these is all creation and life as also the manifestation of all natural phenomenon of dualities:  day and night, life and death, joys and sorrows, thereby making life forever in motion (Chalti Chakki) and an ever changing process. Trapped in this duality, whatever we see is perishable. Nothing that we comprehend is eternal.

பலகை and குழவி Slab and Roller
We roll out to flatten the the appalams with this into fine round shapes,

Analogy - the bottom slab is Samadhi,
Stillness, Adhishtanam, Being.
and the Roller is peace.



Very briefly and in very simple words:

  • Grind pirandai and salt nicely.
  • Add 1/2 cup water and boil.
  • Filter the water and add this to urud flour.
  • Add asafoetida and pepper and cumin seeds.
  • Make it to a hard dough.
  • Add ghee and make it very soft.
  • Using this flour, make appalams using a chappathi roller.
  • Dry the appalams the next day in hot sun.

Fry the solid appalams in oil and enjoy the atmic bliss.



Humour / Re: Funny pictures,quotes,videos...
« on: July 13, 2013, 10:48:59 AM »

General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: July 13, 2013, 10:36:54 AM »
Thanks Sri Ravi, you have explained it so wonderfully, and very clearly. I just cant stop loving tamizh day by day :) yes as you have mentioned i remember having seen இட்டம் in other song(s).

"அவணருளாலெ இடலாம்"



मनसः काममाकूतिं, वाचः सत्यमशीमहि।
पशूनां रूपमन्नस्य, मयि श्रीः श्रयतां यशः।।

manasaḥ kāmamākūtiṁ, vācaḥ satyamaśīmahi|
paśūnāṁ rūpamannasya, mayi śrīḥ śrayatāṁ yaśaḥ||

I request you goddess Sridevi,
To forever bless me,
With fulfillment of good desires of the mind,
With ebbing happiness in life,
With truth in my words,
And with beauty that plenty of food creates.

(Sri Suktam)

am just so delighted that even today, whenever i listen to either our national anthem or national song, it awakens every cell in my body, a feeling of pride and gratitude at the same time! It churns a feeling of bhakti as well, for our Mother.

Remembering the Mother, we cannot forget our most glorious National Song

वंदे मातरम् ।
सुजलाम् सुफलाम्
मलयज् शीतलाम्
मातरम् ।
वंदे मातरम् ।

सुमधुर भाषिणीम्
सुखदाम् वरदाम्
मातरम् ।।
वंदे मातरम् ।

           vande mātaram
sujalāṃ suphalāṃ
śasya śyāmalāṃ
vande mātaram

śubhra jyotsnā
pulakita yāminīm
phulla kusumita
sumadhura bhāṣiṇīm
sukhadāṃ varadāṃ
vande mātaram

I show gratitude to thee, Mother,
richly-watered, richly-fruited,
cool with the winds of the south,
dark with the crops of the harvests,
The Mother!

Her nights rejoicing in the glory of the moonlight,
her lands clothed beautifully with her trees in flowering bloom,
sweet of laughter, sweet of speech,
The Mother, giver of boons, giver of bliss.


General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: July 12, 2013, 11:38:31 AM »
Dear Sir,

thanks for correcting me, yes it was Satyamangalam Venkataramana Iyer. Friday and Saturday (specially saturday) parayanam is a treat for the heart, simple, where as the other days are little tougher and require bit effort!


General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: July 12, 2013, 11:26:26 AM »
i just cannot grasp in what kind of inspiration Sivaprakasam pillai composed this wonder - Ramana Sadguru Rayane song, it springs so much bhavam from within, such great heart touching song this is!

one of my favorite verse is below:

வெத நாயகன் வெத புஷணன்
வெத மெயுரு வாயவன்;
காத லாய்ப்பர வாழ்வி னிற்கடி
தெறி நின்று களித்தவன்

ரமண ஸத்குரு ரமண ஸத்குரு
ரமண ஸத்குரு ராயனெ;
ரமண ஸத்குரு ரமண ஸத்குரு
ரமண ஸத்குரு ராயனெ;

Veda Naayagannn Veda Bussannannna
Veda Meyuru Vaayavannn;
Gaada Laayppara Vaazhvi Nnnirrgatti
Derri Ninnnrru Kallittavannn


Ramanna Satguru Ramanna Satguru
Ramanna Satguru Raayannne;
Ramanna Satguru Ramanna Satguru
Ramanna Satguru Raayannne;

The Lord of the Vedas, the Jewel of the Vedas,
He is the Vedas Incarnate.
The delighter in life eternal gained by the power of his love,
Is Ramana Sat-Guru


Ramana Sat-Guru, Ramana Sat-Guru,
Ramana Sat-Guru, my Lord!
Ramana Sat-Guru, Ramana Sat-Guru,
Ramana Sat-Guru, my Lord!


I learned that I had come to Bhagavan on the evening of the famous Ardra Darsanam day.

Early next morning there was a gathering of devotees they were sitting before Bhagavan. But my attention was particularly gripped by a radiant personality amidst the gathering. He was, I came to know, Kavyakantha Ganapati Sastri. At once I saw that he was not merely a sastri, a learned man, but a poet and a tapaswin. His broad forehead, bright eyes, aquiline nose, charming face and beard, and the melodious ring in his voice — all these proclaimed that he was a rishi to be ranked with the foremost of the Vedic Seers. There was authority, dignity and sweetness in his talk and his eyes sparkled as he spoke. He recited the following verse (sloka) in praise of Bhagavan, which he had just then composed, and explained its import:

It is effulgent Devi Uma sparkling in your eyes
dispelling the ignorance of devotees,
It is Lakshmi Devi, the consort of lotus-eyed Vishnu,
alive in your lotus-face,
It is Para Vak Saraswati, the consort of Brahma,
dancing in your talk,
Great Seer, Ramana, the Teacher of the whole world,
How can mortal man praise you adequately?"

Viswanatha Swami

General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: July 11, 2013, 05:06:18 AM »
Dear Sri Ravi, subramanian sir

Its really so nice to look deeply into the appalam song and yes, the englush translations seem slightly barren.

Appalam ittu paaru

I infered ittu as ishta padardu, to desire

Bhagawan lovingly asking or requesting his mother as though a child desire for appalam. Also he actually lovingly asks her to desire and nit even try.

Some thoughts... :-) eagerly awaiting your translations...

General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: July 09, 2013, 08:33:56 PM »
One day Mother Teresa went to a local bakery to ask for bread for the starving children in the orphanage. The baker, outraged at people begging for bread from him, spat in her face and refused. Mother Teresa calmly took out her handkerchief, wiped the spit from her face and said to the baker, “Okay, that was for me. Now what about the bread for the orphans?” The baker, shamed by her response, gave her the bread she wanted.

General Discussion / Re: Teachings of Sri Ramakrishna
« on: July 09, 2013, 05:11:13 AM »
A man does not feel restless for God until all his worldly desires are satisfied.  He does not remember the Mother of the Universe until his share of the enjoyment of 'woman and gold' is completed.  A child absorbed in play does not seek his mother.  But after his play is over, he says, 'Mother! I must go to my mother.

(Sri Ramakrishna)

General Discussion / Re: Teachings of Sri Ramakrishna
« on: July 07, 2013, 08:56:01 PM »
Sometimes God acts as the magnet and the devotee as the needle. God attracts the devotee to Himself. Again, sometimes the devotee acts as the magnet and God as the needle. Such is the attraction of the devotee that God comes to him, unable to resist his love.

Sri Ramakrishna

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