My passion bala 18

A world through his lens: My Life My Passion -C Radhakrishnan

Celebrity photographer Shri C Radhakrishnan spoke about his life and passion to the Gitamritam campers.

 

He started his talk with a slideshow of some photographs. He spoke of how his young son gave him suggestions for creating videos on Youtube. He said that he is here to learn from youngsters and that learning should never stop in one’s life. He spoke of his early life in Ernakulam. He spoke of his simple life, playing cricket and how his life revolved around his home, his school and the temple. He spoke about his mother’s love for movies and him listening to movie narrations from his mother and he was always eager to know who the cinematographer was. This is where his visualization capabilities started. After schooling, he had to move to Hyderabad to look for a job due to his family situation. His typewriting skills came handy in finding a job. He said anything that you learn will become useful in life, whether you learn by force or out of interest. Later he learned television mechanics. He got his first camera when he was in college and that is how he started being involved with photography. He started by taking photographs of events like birthdays and weddings and his work appreciated by people. He missed his college exams when photographing one such event, such was his passion. He said it is important to understand what one is interested in, and people to support a successful life.

 

“Passion is something you will do even if you have a billion dollars in your bank”. This is how he explained passion, to the students. He said despite that amount of money one should be pursuing his/her passion and not want to rest, and that is the seriousness with which one should pursue one’s passion. He advised that there are two major requirements to pursue one’s passion. One is to stay in an environment that would evoke the passion and let it come out. Next, it is important to recognize it early and test if that is what one wants to do in life. He decided early in life to go to Mumbai to become an advertising photographer. He said that when we think about something very seriously, nature will conspire to present the opportunities in front of you. People who he did not know gave money or film rolls, and he got opportunities to meet the right advisors. Nature conspires to send you the messiahs at the right time to help you, and we realize these messiahs only later in life. He then spoke of his career and the hard work needed to establish his career. He shared his experience of how he met Amma in Mumbai and how Her blessings got his big break to do a shooting on Mother’s day. From that day on he never had to look back on his career. Finally, he said he would talk of any phase in life as a struggle since he did what he loved. He then shared several photographs and the experiences taking them with the audience. He left the campers inspired with his humorous and interesting talks and his passion for photography.

Feedback

He made us see the beauty of life through the field of the camera. – Anjana A

His amazing insights on life and his passion was extremely helpful to me and for me to think outside the box when it comes to my passion and what I love to do. -Devika Vinod

He is a lively person. I learnt that we should always stick to our passion even when society tells us that what we are doing may not be highly paid or respected. -Abhinav Saikrishna Maddipati

The most adorable person from whom I learnt to proceed with what passion I like and he helped me understand the divine even better. -Ananya G

I got to know how beautiful nature actually is and that it is not only the celebrities that have to be shot, everyone/everything is beautiful. -Dhanushree Ramakrishna

He has an awesome personality. He is funny and optimistic. -Radhesyam Raghav K R

I was inspired by his words, ” change the habits”. -Nitheesh Surya K S

He taught us to have confidence in our passion. -NS Sudarshan

I knew Radhakrishnan sir before camp as I was following him on youtube. I never imagined that I will see him in person. It was a very good experience. -Logesh R

Learnt that you should never stop learning and it is important to be down to earth. -Radha S Navada

The fact that everything we learn helps us someday and all the skills we develop will help us in one way or another was something that I found to be important. -Anagha Manoj

I am impressed by his speech. Like him, I too have a crush on photography. So I listened to him very keenly and took him as an role model. -Treshai Hary S

Learning never stops and we must be the first to own up to our mistakes and ask for pardon. Every moment is the right moment. -U Shriram

I learnt that for learning there is no age limit. -Subiksha R

He was a great photographer and I want to be a simple man like him. Even though he is a great man, it was his simplicity that  attracted me. -Keerthana G

 

 

Love for law & order: My Life My Passion – Vinod Kumar Pandey

Shri Vinod Kumar Pandey enthralled the young audience with anecdotes from his life and shared his passion.

 

He started the session by asking the youngsters “What is life? Who do we owe our life to?”He said that parents are God for each of us, and we owe everything to them and must take care of them. He said that he got this advice from a saint when he was young. The saint said that if we pray to God for our parents’ well being, we will be happy, and so will our parents, since our parents always care about the children’s happiness. He went on to talk about passion and explained that for each of us, our interest develops in a direction and it drives us. That becomes our passion and makes us love our life. Passion, however, is demanding, it will force us to work very hard, and make us devote our energies. Therefore decide what you want to become early in life. He said that even animals and insects are passionate and love their lives. Passion can also be for one’s well being. He gave an example of his father who was born in a poor farmer’s family and was passionate about getting an education and improving his standard of living, that made him work hard and get to a good position in life. He learnt honesty, dedication, punctuality and work ethics from his father.

 

 

He then went on to explain his journey after joining the Police Force. He spoke about the training period which was rigorous, and at high temperatures. During the difficult phases, he spoke about how he kept going considering his family situations. After passing the training he was placed in different positions, but he was not happy with the work profile. He later applied to CBI and got selected. His first assignment was the Bokaro Steel Plant theft case, which was a challenging case, that many officers refused to handle. He explained how he solved this case through perseverance and strategic investigation. He said, “When you are passionate about your job, we can handle people who threaten or lure you”. He went on to give interesting anecdotes from his other case, the JMM bribery case. He explained how he surrendered to Lord Hanuman to help him solve the case whenever things became tough. He enthralled the audience with his adventures and how he overcame difficulties through honesty, intelligence and determination.

He kept the campers enthralled with how he solved different cases, how he overcame difficulties and fear many times. His devotion to Hanumanji helped him in such situations. His passion for solving his cases was evident from his talks. He said that despite reaching top positions he has the drive to do more. He advised students that one must be fearless, honest, dedicated, work hard and be punctual and sincere. He said that he was not even thinking about his family when solving such cases. He reminisced about his long hours at work and how he did not even realize that his baby boy had started sitting. Such was his dedication to his work. His wife who is also in the police force was supportive and understanding. The students were inspired by his life and passion.

 

Feedback

I really learnt to be brave. – Pankajam T

His adventurous stories of CBI investigations were mesmerizing. -Adithya Kartha C B

I learnt the importance of our own strict rules, sincerity and dedication towards our goal. -Gayathri Narasimhan

His experience taught me a lot about following our own dharma and not others’. –Devika Vinod

The real respectful and fearless man who inspired me to live and look at the world in a different way. -Ananya G

It is not that a farmer’s son should become a farmer. We should do what we like. -Dhanushree Ramakrishna

He gave me the most important lesson- that is to do our dharma and the right thing, we must not back down or be afraid. We need to be honest, punctual and disciplined. -Kushagrika Marwaha

The amazing narration had me on the edge of my seat. His life is one that should truly be admired. -Anirudhan Menon

I liked the things which made his life a miracle. -Buvana Varthani

I thought he was the new Sherlock Holmes. –Sachin Kurup

His life story was like a James Bond film. It was very interesting and thrilling. -Radhesyam Raghav K R

It was inspiring to hear his journey. Listening to his stories made me want to face fears in life and to be punctual, diplomatic and hard working. -Radha S Navada

I learnt that we should have the grace of elders which is the main source of success. -Pramarsha B S

Through his life experience, he told us how to be bold, disciplined, honest and punctual in our life. -Shama Chandrasekhar Sankole

Helped me understand that we have to be brave and follow our path whatever happens. We should stand up against people who are doing adharma and work selflessly for the society. -Anand

The real game of life in which he could do his dharma was a good example to me towards patriotism and upholding dharma. -PM Dharsshan

His investigation technique was very amazing. The investigation experience he shared with us was mind-blowing. -Amruth Ganesh Jm 

He taught us the way to deal with people and his ideas of catching the culprits were very good which would make anyone inspire. -Anupama K Patil

The very definition of a patriotic Indian. His dexterity and agility have to be inculcated in every little child. -Aditya R

I have learnt that I have to have the dedication to reach my passion or goal. -Sushma K M

I am really glad to hear about the stories from the real heroes of our country. -G Kirtana

 

 

Love for Surgery: My Life My Passion – Dr Mohit Sharma

Dr. Mohit Sharma Clinical Professor. Specialist in for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, Burn Surgery, Ear Reconstruction, from Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences spoke about his life and passion.

 

Dr Sharma started with his experiences in school. He said that all through his life he always wanted to improve and do something better. Through an anecdote from childhood, he advised that it is important to be straightforward and simple and express clearly without hesitation. He explained that being straightforward and simple is one of the divine qualities mentioned in the Gita. He spoke of his experiences in a camp during his fifth grade where he learned that to do service to country one needs “tan, man and dhan’’, i.e. body, mind and wealth. It is not wrong to earn money righteously to help others and help our country. His interest in medicine kindled when he read magazines about heart surgeries and heart transplants. Despite his interest, he said he was an average student with an aversion towards Maths, and he decided to overcome it and wanted to get rid of the label of not being up to the mark, and during his 10th grade, he worked hard in his studies, especially Mathematics. His hard work helped him get a distinction in his exams. He said that it is essential to have a single pointed focus and that helped him focus during his twelfth class on biological sciences and do well in these subjects. He was especially inspired by the shloka that says that God’s grace can make a mute speak with eloquence and a lame person climb high mountains. He felt he can do something incredible if he has faith in God.

 

According to Dr Sharma life is 90% grace and 10% effort. He advised that when one serves elders and teachers their blessings comes back as grace. Understanding his strengths and weaknesses he put in the right effort to get into the medical college. Grace helped him do well in the entrance exams and he got an admission for MBBS.

His advice for students was that they should join medicine only out of love for the subject, not out of compulsion, without passion the pressure becomes stressful and difficult to manage. He also mentioned that hard work alone is insufficient, intelligent hard work is important. He recollected an advice from a doctor that branches are not important but persons are important. If people are good, then that branch flourishes. He advised the students to take the branch based on interest and not based on its popularity, short gains or easy life. Passion made him pursue surgical sciences.

While doing his MS he got acquainted with Swami Ranganathananda and other saints. Once a Swamiji took him to Amma. During the program, he was called by Amma, and Amma asked him to join AIMS after completing studies.

After completing MS, he started preparing for Plastic Surgery entrance exam. Since he did not do as well as he expected, he was at the top of the waiting list. However, his passion for plastic surgery drove him to meet the Head of the division at the University of Delhi to allow him to observe his surgeries without pay. Within four months he was allowed to scrub in and assist in these surgeries. His passion and perseverance and being available gave Dr Sharma the right opportunity in plastic surgery. He tried the entrance again, however, the second time it was much tougher. Due to the grace of God he got through this time. Through this experience, he demonstrated to the student how one should fight through challenges to do good to humanity.

After his training, he joined AIMS Kochi in the plastic surgery department. He spoke of one surgery he performed in AIMS when they reconstructed the tongue of a patient affected by oral cancer. This groundbreaking surgery took him to England for a couple of fellowships. He then spoke of the successful hand transplants performed by his team. Throughout his talk, he gave examples of how grace helped him get through obstacles; “If you have tremendous self-effort and grace of God, all success will follow”, he concluded with these beautiful words.

Feedback

I learnt that failure is the stepping stone to success. – Pankajam T

As my ambition is to become a doctor I really enjoyed and imbibed the secrets of his success, his dedication and determination. -Ananya G

Dr Sharma showed us how to stay dedicated to ones work and to always remember that without God’s grace, nothing is possible. – Abhinav Saikrishna Maddipati

He helped more people to attain their happiness so I also want to be a source of happiness like him. -Keerthana G

He is a living example who learnt and applied the Bhagavad Gita. He connected his life to the slokas of Gita. -Aadarsh Kalyaan S

Win over your own fear and that we have to be clear about our goals. -Sannidhi

I learnt that you are the one to lift yourself and so you should always have a single point focus. -U Shriram

Showed us that dedication and ultimate surrender to God can help us achieve miracles. -Aditya R

He is one of the most inspiring personalities I have ever seen. The dedication to his work is very inspiring. -Anupama K Patil

Dr Mohit Sharma’s life was an eye-opener & as I understood how important the grace of God is, the blessings of family, teachers and friends are, to help us soar and that it is actually the key to balance in one’s life. -Amrit Subramaniam

The thing which I liked is that he never stopped learning. I liked him as he was not too smart at first and then he became a person who could help the handless people, get another persons’ hand and thus lead a normal life. -Amruth Ganesh Jm

The importance of the belief in God and his blessings is proved by his journey. The lesson of loving oneself and that we are our best friend and the worst enemy is something which I learnt from his speech. -G Sripujitha

I learnt that if we enjoy the work that we do, then we won’t feel bored while doing that work and that we will be happy doing it. -Yashas Kumara Adi

From his speech, I learnt that we can achieve anything through hard work. -U V Thanushya

He inspired me to have faith in myself and god. -Ramyadevi V

It was an inspiring session and I came to know the miracles he did which made me think more creatively. -Pavithra M

His commitment and passion for his profession and how he rose against all the odds was inspiring. -Anagha Manoj

Mind-blowing. Really deepened my passion towards medicine and service to the world. Really felt my life surge through with his words inspire me to the core. -Vidya Suresh

Learnt that just hard work doesn’t help, you need to have grace as well. -Radha S Navada

Be ready to help the people around, have good friends and always listen to your grandparents. -Praneshwaran V

Interesting. I learnt to be straightforward in my life. We have to be open-minded -Sachin Kurup

I learnt that if we fail one time, we have to try again and again. -Buvana Varthani

Enjoyed the presentation and learned a great deal about the life of a surgeon and how Gita helps to live it right. -Sriram Ganesan

To become successful in life, teamwork is very important. –Dhanushree Ramakrishna

Dr Mohit Sharma taught me that through hard work, simplicity and discipline you can do anything. He derived a lot from Gita using it in the correct way and I wish to do that too. -Kushagrika Marwaha

 

 

 

 

Love for Science : My Life My Passion – AP Jayaram

Dr A. P. Jayaraman, a world-renowned scientist from BARC and a passionate science communicator shared his life and his passion for science with the campers. His interaction was filled with interesting and humorous anecdotes from his life. He started by showing a picture of himself with Stephen Hawking, and humorously referring to how he was not easily recognized, while everyone can identify great men from great distances. That is the travesty of our times, that we do not recognize people standing in front of us many times. A celebrity journal asked Dr Jayaraman to explain Hawking’s contribution in a sentence, and he replied that “Hawking derived the total wave function for the universe”. However, this is not easily understood by many, as science is many a time explained in a complex manner. He humorously mentioned that professors tend to give complex and abstruse explanations. He says that one’s ability to marginalize and universalize a problem is a good exit strategy in tricky situations and a good skill to learn.

 

 

He explained how despite being a renowned scientist, was having trouble solving Engineering problems his grandson brought to him. He said that every generation is log cycle ahead in IQ and two log cycles ahead in intelligence. He shares his birthday with Edward Teller, father of the hydrogen bomb. While they share the same birthday and visited the same places, he has not done the same things as Teller. Dr Jayaram explains that correlating lives is not effective and is fruitless. He said that if we look at our fellow mates who travelled the life along with us, each will write a unique story.  He spoke about how memory helped during his time but now information is available on the internet and that the ability to process information and create new knowledge is valuable today, not the ability to carry volumes of information.

Inspired by Dr Bhabha’s invitation to people to become nuclear scientists, he applied to Bhabha Atomic Research Center in Mumbai, his career spanned 40 years in BARC. He also spoke about how he joined the people science movement in which top nuclear scientists helped save the Silent Valley. He also explained his project on developing a solution for converting sea water to fresh water, which is a major contribution of his team in BARC. His work to purify water was inspired from his interactions with Prof. M. S. Swaminathan, which was presented to NASA. He advised his students to have minds like Dr C V Raman and Mendeley, combining depth and breadth of the mind in addition to creativity. In addition, he emphasised that one should have ethical and a spiritual mind, which Indians obtain from a single source. He also spoke about his work with his colleagues to create interesting stories that help make scientific concepts easier to understand. His talk inspired the students and gave an insight into scientific thinking, the treasure of knowledge obtained through experience, and his passion for teaching science.

 

Feedback

I found a role model. -Keerthana.

We are inspired by him. -Sooryanadh, Anirudhan Menon, Radha S Navada, G Sripujitha, U Shriram, Subiksha, Narayana Pillai, Aadarsh Kalyan, Treshai Hary and Amrit.

Got many scientific ideas. -Sooryanadh.

We are amazed by his wit, energy, intelligence and views on education and this generation – Abhinav Saikrishna, Devika Vinod, Adithya Kartha, Anirudhan Menon, Anagha Manoj, Radha S Navada, Prathiksha, Yashas Kumara.

Amazed by his contributions to Science – Devika. 

Learnt how to choose friends and how important that is to our future. – Devika Vinod, Sandhiyae, Aadithyaa, G Sripujitha, Ashwannth.

Inspired to follow my passion. – Anirudhan Menon.

Like your innocence. – Kushagrika Marwaha & Anirudhan Menon

Learnt the importance of dedication and never giving up. – Kushagrika Marwaha & Deva Prakash.

Liked the fact that you mixed science in the stories of cooking of food. – Samhitha Panuganti, Subaharitha, Buvana, Logesh, Subaharitha, Achyuth, Narayana Pillai, Buvana & Vaidoorya.

Astounded by his knowledge of Science – Aditya.

Learnt to apply what I learned in class to life. – Amrit

Taught me that even the minutest parts of the world have an impact. – Vidya Suresh.

Got really good pointers on how to study. – Mathipriya, Subiksha & S Shiva Dharshan.

Learnt that we can learn everything. -Sachin, Anupama.

Came to like science because of him. – Tamilarasi & Ananya.

Learnt that creativity can help in pursuing a passion. -PM Dharsshan.

Learnt that passion has no age limit. -Ramyadevi, Keerthana & Aadarsh Kalyan.

He is just like an encyclopedia. – Prathiksha.

Love his dedication towards his passion. -Amruth Ganesh & Aadarsh Kalyan.

Learnt how important hard work, smartness, and never giving up is for success. -Amruth Ganesh, G Sripujitha, U Shriram & Pramarsha.

Admired and enjoyed his humility and simplicity. -Yashas Kumara

 

 

Dance is my religion : My Life My Passion – Haleem Khan

The Kuchipudi dancer and actor Shri Haleem Khan enthralled the Bala audience with his fascinating life. The session started with a short and wonderful promo of his dance and his life.

 

Born into a conservative family, Haleem Khan demonstrated that art is beyond religion and creed“.

Introducing his journey of life, he said: “For me dance is everything”. Combining humour and bhava he took the audience through his journey. He spoke of how he used to watch and enjoy classical dance programmes on TV for hours when he was young, and this slowly turned into an obsession and he wanted to learn dance. He explained his family situation and how he silently and patiently waited for the right opportunity to learn dance. When he found the opportunity, he persisted in getting his first teacher in accepting him as a student, who was initially apprehensive of teaching him. He secretly continued his classes with this teacher, and later with her Guru. He explained how he used to practise in the bathroom and secretly continued his classes and practise for almost four years. His passion drove him to move to Hyderabad on the pretext of learning hardware engineering. There he got the opportunity to teach dance, and perform on stage. As he was balancing his passion for dance, his programmes and his work he decided to pursue dance as a career, risking failure and other challenges. He also spoke about how he started donning female roles as a Kuchipudi performer. He then gave a humorous recollection of how his family came to know about his dance, when a local TV came to interview them and how his strength, his dedication to his art helped him convince his family to accept this.

 

 

Convincing family and overcoming the differences was a challenge and he explained how he managed the situation of a man donning a female role. He wanted to preserve the tradition of Kuchipudi where traditionally men don female roles. He said even today we learn Bhagavad Gita since it is not just a book, but our culture. We have so much to learn from it, and it is our tradition. Similarly, he wanted to carry on the tradition of Kuchipudi and pass it on to the next generation. He slowly delved into the contradictions of his religion of birth and the religious aspects in the dance he was pursuing and how society looks at it. He told the audience that for him dance is his religion. This he says is how he sees his India, his religion and life. He explained how this was natural for him as a dancer. He said that while dancing he learned so much about the deities and this was not just physical but he experienced them mentally and spiritually and became one with them. He said unless you truly believe in the stories and that they are Gods, you cannot portray them genuinely. He says when he dances as Parvathi he becomes Parvathi. He eloquently explained that he becomes more than a devotee, and that is the strength that dance gives, and this helps transports the audience.

 

 

He says he believes it is his destiny to become a dancer, and that can be seen from the way he followed his passion and overcame so many difficulties to pursue it. He advised the students, that to do anything in life, it takes some struggle and constant fight to help achieve it. He said that one strong love and desire should be there and we should surrender and God will give strength to open doors in this journey. When you are happy & comfortable with your life, love every moment of what you do, and wake up looking forward to it every day, there is nothing more you need. You may have small struggles, but you should be ready to fight for it and achieve it. He concluded the inspiring session with a small demonstration and made the campers do a few steps along with him, leaving them inspired and motivated to pursue their passion in life.

 

Feedback

He opened our eyes to towards our passion which we had never given a chance to grow. – Anjana, Mathipriya, Vidya & Anirudhan.

He is our role model. – Keerthana and Prathiksha.

He has inspired us. – Keerthana, Anjana, Aditya, Amrit Subramaniam, Aishwarya, Yashas Kumara Adi & Ramyadevi.

Helped increase our faith in God. – U Shriram, G Sripujitha, 

Amazed at the fact that he  “blew up the stereotyping and labelling of society”. – Aditya & Ramyadevi.

Great to see someone who grew to be so successful even after facing so many hardships.- Seaynawa

His life’s story taught us that failures are also good. – Aishwarya Ht, Anupama K Patil & Buvana Varthani 

Taught me the importance of passion, willpower, hard work and confidence. Unable to believe that he was in front of me. – Shakti

Taught me how to be simple. – Sandhiyae

Like the fact that he did not show any inequality between religions. -Samhitha

Liked his straightforwardness. – Rohan

Never seen someone who is so passionate towards dance. – Vaidoorya

Could especially connect to him as a dancer. – Devika

But most of all you have inspired many students to overcome their obstacles and pursue their passion.