What if I was my favourite animal?

— Mukta Kulkarni (7-July-2020)

One day when I woke up, I was a Leopard! I was surprised. On my body, I had black spots and I had a long tail. I went to drink milk, but I could not drink it as I did not have fingers. I had paws. So, I had to lap the milk. Then I went out and was again surprised as I saw animals were humans and we were our favourite animals.

After that I went to the park. I saw my friend was a cat! I went to her and told her what had happened. She also told me the same. As we were talking my three friends came. When I saw them, I laughed. My first friend was a monkey. The second was a dog and third was a lion like Simba. We told each other what had happened and then played ‘Catch Catch’. I was the denner in the game. As I was a leopard, I could run very fast and caught everyone in no time.

Suddenly I felt someone pushing me. Then I woke up with a start. I saw my mom waking me for school. I saw myself. I was a human. Even if it was a dream, I had a lot of fun being a leopard.


The Lost Cub

— Mukta Kulkarni (7-July-2020)

Once upon a time there used to live a mother Cheetah and her cub in the jungle. One day while the mother Cheetah was out in the forest wondering for food, that time her baby cub saw a butterfly and started chasing it. He did not understand, but till then he came to the nearby village and then he got lost. The butterfly off course escaped, but the baby cub started running here and there throughout the village. Before anyone could see him, he jumped into a barrel of brown colour. When he came up, he looked like a dog. So, wherever he would go no one would get frightened as he was looking like a dog. After some time, it started raining. The hungry lost cub ran to find shelter from here to there. Before his paint could go away a small girl saw him and told him, “Come here, come with me. I will give you some food and shelter”. The small cub came with her. She sheltered him for the night and gave him food to eat.

In the morning the mother Cheetah in the den was searching for her baby. She started smelling for her cub. She understood he was in the village. After a while everyone was playing with the dog because now everyone knew that the dog meant no harm to anyone and the dog was not a street dog. So, what happened is while playing, one of them tried to feed him dog food. But as the cub was a Cheetah’s small baby, not a dog, he refused to eat the dog food. After a while people got confused and offered him to eat some dog bones. But he did not eat. He only wanted meat. That is why one wise person of the village came and looked at him. He understood that it was not a dog.

After a while he asked someone to sprinkle water over him. After he sprinkled water over him, they were shocked to see that he was a Cheetah’s cub. That time the wise man started calming the girl and everyone. He said that it has done no harm to the girl. What harm will he bring to us elders? People agreed and started calling for its mother. After a while, the mother reached the village. The cub saw his mother and ran towards her. When the girl and the elders of the village understood that they meant no harm, they gave them lot of meat to eat. After that the baby cub went home and lived happily with his mother.

People went into the forest to visit them every time.


Balulu The Balloon Man

— Mukta Kulkarni (11-July-2020)

Once upon a time there was a village, where people used to live in peace and harmony. In the village, there lived a child called Balulu who was very funny. He had a body, but his head was a balloon! He had a tall balloon head, which was weird. He had two small eyes with a smile on his face. People used to tease him for being like that.

One day while he was walking outside to go to a nearby shop to purchase something, that time the wind blew extremely fast and as he was a balloon head, he flew up. When the air slowed, he came down again. That time four people were walking there and started making fun of him. They said that NaNanaNaaNa…….. “You are a balloon man so you will never succeed in being on the ground for all the time”. Sad, the Balloon man Balulu ran away. Balulu came to the shop. He purchased some things and went home and slept.

The next day he saw the news was showing that the village was going to have a thunderstorm and it will be flooded after some days. So Balulu kept a warning and did not step out of his home as he was a balloon and may would fly away. But then the day came of the flood. The villagers who had forgotten about that were walking in the street and the flood came. Water flowed everywhere and the villagers, those who could not swim started screaming for help. That time Balulu the Balloon man understood it and ran out to save the villagers life. He could fly because of the wind as there was a lot of wind. So, he flew and took the villagers in his house. Like that he saved everyone. Everyone praised him for his work. For some days Balulu sheltered them at his home and after when the flood cleared all the villagers went home. The rest people who had teased him before, apologised to him and Balulu who always was a good man smiled at them and forgive them immediately. After that Balulu became everyone’s hero.



आज मला
जरा निवांत झोपूद्या

बंद खोलीत
उघड्या खिडकीतून
ताऱ्यांशी बोलूद्या
आज मला जरा निवांत झोपूद्या

पांघरलेल्या चुकांना
हळूच डोकावून बघुद्या
आज मला जरा निवांत झोपूद्या

उद्या पळू कि परत, शोधायला !!
माझं काय आणि कोण
आज फक्त बसुद्या
जरा… निवांत झोपूद्या
जरा निवांत झोपूद्या

निरंजन कुलकर्णी


सुट्टी नाश

आज आपली सुट्टी आहे
ट्रॅफिक शी कट्टी आणि
सोफा शी बत्ती आहे
आज आपली सुट्टी आहे
पिल्लाला सांगितलंय
निवांत झोपायचंय
बायकोला समजावलंय
बाहेर नाही जायचंय
तेव्हाच तो phone वाजतो
Boss म्हणतो “Production is down
No one is around ”
I defend say “Chill !!!”
He says “office आके  मिल !!!!!”
दोन मिनिटांच्या शांतते नंतर
बाहेर मी डोकावतो
आमच्या मावशींना आलेला
आजचा उच्चाह दिसतो
Jeans सगळ्या चिंब होवून
लटकत तारेवर पाडल्या आहेत
आणि कदाचित  त्यातल्या किल्ल्या
डुंबत तळाला बुडाल्या आहेत
आज माझी सुट्टी होती
Traffic शी कट्टी होती
Sofa शी बत्ती होती
आज माझी सुट्टी होती
— निरंजन कुलकर्णी (२०-ऑक्टोबर-२०१९)

अरे माझ्या मित्रा

अरे माझ्या मित्रा
होऊ नको दुःखी
दुनियेवर रुसून
बनू नको खच्ची

रडण्याने का कुणाचे
दुःख कमी झालाय
लढणंच आयुष्य आहे
दुःख थोडच चुकलंय

कोणी नाही आपलं
अस नको मानू
दुसऱ्यांच्यातला राम शोध
आणि काम ठेव चालू

प्याद्यांच्यातील नाहीस तू
आहेस तू राजा
दुनियेच्या पटावर
गाजवतो जो सत्ता

परत आता रडताना
दिसलास जर मला तू
नाही वाईट माझ्या सारखा
लक्षात ठेव तू !!!

— निरंजन कुलकर्णी (२६-जनुकारी-२०००)


काळी रात्र


काळी रात्र, थंड वाऱ्याची मंद झुळूक
बाभळीचे झाड त्याचा तो विद्रुप आकार
मनात आलेले हे असले विचार
आणि अंगावर पडलेली ती पाल

— निरंजन कुलकर्णी (२२-मार्च-१९९९)


प्रिय सखी

माझी तिची गूढ मैत्री
मला हवी ती रोज रात्री

दिवसातील एक त्रितीअंश वाहिला तिज साठी
न विसरता आठविते दिवसाकाठी

कॉलेज मध्ये असते नेहमी माझ्या पाठी
विसरतो फाक्त तिला परीक्षे साठी

अंधारच साकारतो तिचे येणे
उजेडच घडवितो तिचे जाणे

मेल्यावरही आहे जिला होप
ती माझी प्रिय सखी झोप

— निरंजन कुलकर्णी (०७-डिसेंबर-१९९७)


Baby रॅप

आई जरा ऊठ
आर्धा तास झोप झाली
तुझ्या साठी खूप
आई जरा ऊठ

बाबा ला हवाय चहा कॉफी
मला थोडा दूध
आई जरा ऊठ

बाहेर पडलीये हवा मस्त
फिरायला जाऊ सगळे दोस्त
आई जरा ऊठ
आई जरा ऊठ

लंगोट माझा बदलताना
बाबा चिडतोय खूप
आई please जरा ऊठ
आर्धा तास झोप झाली
तुझ्या साठी खूप
आई ऊठ….आई ऊठ.. आई ऊठ ..आआआआ ..आ आ आ आ ….

–निरंजन कुलकर्णी (१८-सप्टेंबर -२०१९)


Karma Yoga (Swami Vivekananda)

Below is the summary of Karma Yoga. The book is written based on lectures the Swami delivered in his rented rooms at 228 W 39th Street in December 1895 and January 1896. The classes were free of charge. Generally, the Swami held two classes daily- morning and evening. I hope this summary will help you understand about Swami Vivekananda.

  1. Watch a man do his most common actions; those are indeed the things which will tell you the real character of a great man.
  2. Great occasions rouse even the lowest of human beings to some kind of greatness, but he alone is the really great man whose character is great always, the same wherever he be.
  3. A fool may buy all the books in the world, and they will be in his library; but he will be able to read only those that he deserves to; and this deserving is produced by Karma
  4. The power is inside every man, so is knowing; the different works are like blows to bring them out, to cause these giants to wake up.
  5. Unselfishness is more paying, only people have not the patience to practice it.
  6. A carriage with four horses may rush down a hill unrestrained, or the coachman may curb the horses. Which is the greater manifestation of power, to let them go or to hold them?
  7. Even a fool may rule the whole world if he works and waits. Let him wait a few years, restrain that foolish idea of governing; and when that idea is wholly gone, he will be a power in the world.
  8. “To work we have the right, but not to the fruits thereof.” Leave the fruits alone. Why care for results? If you wish to help a man, never think what that man’s attitude should be towards you. If you want to do a great or a good work, do not trouble to think what the result will be. The ideal man is he who, in the midst of the greatest silence and solitude, finds the intensest activity, and in the midst of the intensest activity finds the silence and solitude of the desert. He has learnt the secret of restraint, he has controlled himself. He goes through the streets of a big city with all its traffic, and his mind is as calm as if he were in a cave, where not a sound could reach him; and he is intensely working all the time. That is the ideal of Karma- Yoga, and if you have attained to that you have really learnt the secret of work.
  9. But we have to begin from the beginning, to take up the works as they come to us and slowly make ourselves more unselfish every day. We must do the work and find out the motive power that prompts us; and, almost without exception, in the first years, we shall find that our motives are always selfish; but gradually this selfishness will melt by persistence, till at last will come the time when we shall be able to do really unselfish work. We may all hope that someday or other, as we struggle through the paths of life, there will come a time when we shall become perfectly unselfish; and the moment we attain to that, all our powers will be concentrated, and the knowledge which is ours will be manifest.
  10. The extreme positive and the extreme negative are always similar.
  11. I once met a man in my country whom I had known before as a very stupid, dull person, who knew nothing and had not the desire to know anything and was living the life of a brute. He asked me what he should do to know God, how he was to get free. “Can you tell a lie?” I asked him. “No,” he replied. “Then you must learn to do so. It is better to tell a lie than to be a brute, or a log of wood. You are inactive; you have not certainly reached the highest state, which is beyond all actions, calm and serene; you are too dull even to do something wicked.” That was an extreme case, of course, and I was joking with him; but what I meant was that a man must be active in order to pass through activity to perfect calmness.
  12. Inactivity should be avoided by all means. Activity always means resistance. Resist all evils, mental and physical; and when you have succeeded in resisting, then will calmness come. It is very easy to say, “Hate nobody, resist not evil,” but we know what that kind of thing generally means in practice. When the eyes of society are turned towards us, we may make a show of nonresistance, but in our hearts it is canker all the time. We feel the utter want of the calm of non-resistance; we feel that it would be better for us to resist. If you desire wealth, and know at the same time that the whole world regards him who aims at wealth as a very wicked man, you, perhaps, will not dare to plunge into the struggle for wealth, yet your mind will be running day and night after money. This is hypocrisy and will serve no purpose. Plunge into the world, and then, after a time, when you have suffered and enjoyed all that is in it, will renunciation come; then will calmness come. So fulfil your desire for power and everything else, and after you have fulfilled the desire, will come the time when you will know that they are all very little things; but until you have fulfilled this desire, until you have passed through that activity, it is impossible for you to come to the state of calmness, serenity, and self-surrender. These ideas of serenity and renunciation have been preached for thousands of years; everybody has heard of them from childhood, and yet we see very few in the world who have really reached that stage. I do not know if I have seen twenty persons in my life who are really calm and non-resisting, and I have travelled over half the world.
  13. It is the most difficult thing in this world to work and not care for the result, to help a man and never think that he ought to be grateful, to do some good work and at the same time never look to see whether it brings you name or fame, or nothing at all.
  14. A householder who does not struggle to get wealth is immoral. If he is lazy and content to lead an idle life, he is immoral, because upon him depend hundreds. If he gets riches, hundreds of others will be thereby supported.
  15. One idea comes out of all this–the condemnation of all weakness. This is a particular idea in all our teachings which I like, either in philosophy, or in religion, or in work. If you read the Vedas, you will find this word always repeated–fearlessness–fear nothing. Fear is a sign of weakness. A man must go about his duties without taking notice of the sneers and the ridicule of the world
  16. A spiritually strong and sound man will be strong in every other respect, if he so wishes. Until there is spiritual strength in man even physical needs cannot be well satisfied.
  17. Ignorance is death, knowledge is life
  18. What I am just at this moment is the effect of the sum total of all the impressions of my past life. This is really what is meant by character; each man’s character is determined by the sum total of these impressions.
  19. If a man continuously hears bad words, thinks bad thoughts, does bad actions, his mind will be full of bad impressions; and they will influence his thought and work without his being conscious of the fact
  20. Work, but let not the action or the thought produce a deep impression on the mind. Let the ripples come and go, let huge actions proceed from the muscles and the brain, but let them not make any deep impression on the soul.
  21. The whole of nature is for the soul, not the soul for nature.”
  22. Work through freedom! Work through love!
  23. Do you ask anything from your children in return for what you have given them? It is your duty to work for them, and there the matter ends. In whatever you do for a particular person, a city, or a state, assume the same attitude towards it as you have towards your children–expect nothing in return. If you can invariably take the position of a giver, in which everything given by you is a free offering to the world, without any thought of return, then will your work bring you no attachment. Attachment comes only where we expect a return.
  24. Be cheated millions of times and never ask a question, and never think of what you are doing.
  25. When we begin to work earnestly in the world, nature gives us blows right and left and soon enables us to find out our position. No man can long occupy satisfactorily a position for which he is not fit. There is no use in grumbling against nature’s adjustment. He who does the lower work is not therefore a lower man. No man is to be judged by the mere nature of his duties, but all should be judged by the manner and the spirit in which they perform them.
  26. Let the end and the means be joined into one.
  27. According to Karma-Yoga, the action one has done cannot be destroyed until it has borne its fruit; no power in nature can stop it from yielding its results.
  28. If we give up our attachment to this little universe of the senses or of the mind, we shall be free immediately. The only way to come out of bondage is to go beyond the limitations of law, to go beyond causation.

This is just the summary of his speeches. I request you to read the book to give you some idea about Swamiji’s philosophy and hopefully you will understand who he really was and not go by what we see or hear on the internet and from few people who project Swamiji differently.