REFLECTIONS ON LIFE AND EDUCATION - "SPIRITUALITY AT WORK"
"In a world of much turbulence and rapid changes, Spirituality at Work can help us find our own inner strength and serve as an inspiration to find new gateways. I thank Devdas Menon for sharing his deep insight and wisdom, and I very much recommend this book to anyone interested in self-development. This book is based on the wisdom from the ancient Indian scripture, Bhagavad Gita. It draws inspiration from the famous sage of India, Sri Aurobindo, and the author's own experiences and interpretations. The author makes the Gita come alive with his profound and inspiring way of presenting the message. He has introduced courses such as Self Awareness and Integral Karmayoga at IIT Madras with great success, and knows how to present ancient wisdom to young people in a modern world."
Christian Thaulow, Professor, NTNU Norway
"Spirituality is often, mistakenly, associated with withdrawal from life and action. This book comes as a refreshing reminder to show us that not only can our daily work be a means for spiritual progress, but the very spiritual progress is our most effective means to excel in our field of work and live a deeply fulfilling life, contributing to the general progress of humanity. Devdas Menon has done a masterful rendering of the essential wisdom of the Bhagavad Gita for the new generation in a language that is simple, practical and rooted in his own spiritual and professional experience. It is a great joy to see that this book is coming from someone who is living the teachings of the Gita. This is an essential book for all aspirants who want to transform their daily life activities into a field of Karmayoga."
Manoj Pavitran, Auroville
"In the Preface Devdas Menon says "the message of Integral Karmayoga in the Gita is meant for immediate practice while working and living in the world, and not something to be dabbled with, post-retirement!" The path of Karmayoga in the Gita holds the key to a life-transforming spirituality which can integrate inner growth, well being and fulfilment with the outer efficiency, productivity and innovation sought after by the modern corporate world. This integration has to be achieved over a spititual foundation with an emphasis on inner progress, which means a progressive inner perfection, flowing out into the outer world in the form of an increasingly better quality of material life, which is not only efficient, productive and prosperous, but also suffused with aesthetic refinement, moral strength and mental vigour. In his book Devdas Menon describes how to achieve this synthesis in our individual consciousness and life through the path of Integral Karmayoga, put into living practice in our daily life, in our work, actions and relationships. I wish and pray that Spirituality At Work may have a positive impact on many young minds in India"
M. S. Srinivasan, Research Associate, Sri Aurobindo Society
"I have truly learned a great deal about myself after taking the Integral Karmayoga course at IIT Madras. A big shift in my attitude has also happened. Now, whenever my routine is disturbed or I am stuck in unhealthy habits, I am able to come out of that ignorance quickly. I am not easily let down by external challenges, and feel more focussed and efficient at work. I have also been able to quit unhealthy habits (such as addiction to social networking, netsurfing, pornography), and to nurture healthy ones (getting up early every morning, exercising, meditating). All this has brought more energy, enthusiasm and vitality in my life. I feel more peaceful and grounded after meditation."
Ganesh Bapat, PhD research scholar, IIT Madras
"Life moves at an incredibly fast pace in today's highly competitive world, and we feel stressed and confused when we (especially women) have to manage both career and home. This book really helps one explore and understand one's own self, realise one's inner strength and find inspiration for meaningful and healthy living. The depiction and descriptions of the three gunas pinpoint with clarity as to exactly how we normally function in the lower nature, unconsciously. We realise clearly what needs to be done for us to drop dysfunctional habits and to evolve consciously. I find myself to be a much happier, contented and inspired person after the living experience of reading and re-reading this book."
Ambili Mechoor, Biotechnology Research Head, Sahrdaya CET, Thrissur
"I highly recommend this book to get the most out of one's life. It is a "how to" book on realising Peace, Satisfaction and Happiness in Life. I understand that this book is a compilation of the notes the author uses in his class to teach students in their early twenties. I found it equally absorbing, thought-provoking and useful for my generation of retired folks in their seventies. This book indeed is a classic for people of all ages."
K. Ramachandran, retired Researcher, Boeing and Bell System, USA and alumnus, IIT Madras
"This wonderful book makes it clear that the solutions to all our problems are to be found through the problems themselves. The choice to challenge our lower self and make progress has to be taken right now, not later. This book has made me become more resolute. My decision-making is now wiser and firmer. It has also made me more compassionate and kinder to my fellow beings. I may never "finish reading" this book. I have to go over it, again and again, till it helps me truly evolve and ascend into higher nature"
Vijay Kumar Nair, Airside Operations Manager, Dubai Airports
"Devdas Menon is a world-class structural engineering professor. But his mission is much larger: to help awaken self-awareness and Self-realization in students, professionals, teachers and others. He does this with profound passion and selflessness. His earlier book, Stop Sleep Walking Through Life!, is bringing about transformation in many students and professionals, as they make choices during their life. His latest work, Spirituality at Work, based on the Gita, will help seekers with valuable guidance on many of the issues we face in what he calls a 'Living Battlefield' of life. His words and wisdom have positively impacted me and several of my colleagues at all levels at our R&D center in India, enhancing not only productivity at work but also fulfilment in personal life. The way he brings equanimity and peace into tough situations using the 'inner meaning' from the Gita quenches many boiling issues. Embracing the teachings from this book will help in transforming the corporate soldiers of our industry from a self-centered short-term results pursuit to a deeper fulfilment, by addressing the burning needs of the society, and meeting customer demands in a highly ethical, moral, meaningful and fulfilling way. I am personally grateful for his teachings and interventions during many challenging situations at work."
Anand Tanikella, Managing Director, Saint Gobain Research India Pvt Ltd
"This book is a very illuminating and comprehensive analysis and lucid rendering of a very broad canvas of spiritual knowledge that the Bhagavad Gita is. I could experience Krishna speaking to me through the words of the author saying to those of us who are distressed, confused, unfulfilled or frustrated in our work and in our lives:
'Awaken and arise and reach out to ME and hold steadfastly to ME. As you proceed step by step, day by day, holding steadfastly to ME, you will slowly begin to realise who you are and who you are not. You will realise who you are: the imperishable Atman. You will realise who you are not : your body, your sensations, your desires, your emotions, your thoughts, your roles, your responsibilities, your fame, your name, your wealth, your possessions, your relationships. As you keep shedding all these false images of yourself, your miseries, pain and sufferings, your fear, doubts and confusions and your weaknesses will fade away and slowly disappear. You will slowly realise that all these false images you had of yourself were constricting and limiting you to think, feel, speak and behave in particular ways that were creating suffering for you and also to others and to the universe in general.
You will slowly realise that your image of yourself as doer is also an illusion. While you were in unawakened state, your thoughts, speech and actions were mostly involuntary, conditioned by ignorance and by belief systems, habits and gunas of innumerable past births. While awakened and connected to ME you will realise that your awakened thoughts, speech and actions are also involuntary... they are the flow from MY divine consciousness being channeled through your awakened consciousness. You will slowly realise that in your awakened consciousness, holding steadfastly to ME, you have the power to transform your thoughts, feelings, speech and actions from a predetermined past template into one that is supremely present, live, dynamic, connected to ME and flowing from ME. You will slowly realise that that this is the ultimate purpose of life...to establish the flow of MY divine consciousness through yourself into action.
When this happens you will realise that whatever the task or duty set before you, whether by choice or circumstance, becomes holy. It becomes MY divine task. Working through MY consciousness, you will be able to undertake this task or duty with right knowledge, skill, courage, strength, harmony, reverence, with meticulous perfection, with calm delight, without any anticipation of reward and with great humility. As you proceed slowly, step by step and day by day, holding steadfastly to ME, you will realise that every soul you meet on your journey is equally a manifestation of MY Divine consciousness and the love flowing from ME to you will flow from you to everyone around you."
Srilatha, Homemaker, Chennai