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*This contest entry won me a Lakshmi Pooja Pack*


Over the years, my definition and method of praying has changed quite a lot. 

As a child, morning and evening prayers were a quintessential part of my life. After returning from school in the evening in Dubai, we would bath, pray for half an hour and only then sit down for dinner. That formula stayed put throughout most of my high school years in India as well. 

Mangalore
Kudroli temple, Mangalore
Perhaps the first modification occurred when I joined the medical profession as a MBBS student. Now, between waking up and rushing for the morning class and the exhausted trudge back to the hostel, the pattern changed. 
Now, the visits to God's abode in a town 14 kms away from the medical college were restricted to once a week with the old roommates. Every Sunday, we would catch the morning bus to town, go and visit two of Mangalore's most popular temples, the gorgeously pristine Kudroli temple and the famous Kadri temple. This was of course followed by a trip to another popular haunt, the restaurant Janata Deluxe where we would feast like kings on dosas, puris and yes, even ice creams at 9am in the morning as we leisurely read the paper there! Believe it or not, we did this ritual for over four years and even undertook this 30km journey on the precious Sunday in between two university theory exams. More often than not, he was by my side in those studying days. 



A lot of events have passed from that day to now. My equation with God is a lot less clearly defined and reverential than it used to be. Frankly, I don't really pray for myself any longer. Every time I did pray for something for myself in the years after MBBS till date, destiny conspired to work against me in some truly unique ways. 

But that does not imply that I have stopped praying. I do pray even today. You see, the crazy thing I realized is that while he may conspire against my own self-centered wishes, he does listen when I pray for others. I have prayed for friends who've had miscarriages, friends whose parents took a turn for the worse, friends who struck out in love - and all of them did get make it through the worst moments of their lives and are happier today. But that selective hearing really helps me as well, considering I work in literally a life-or-death profession, managing intensive care units and surgical operations. 

I pray for every patient individually before I begin a case. I pray that the surgery goes well and they recover without any adverse complications or suffering. And in praying, I run through a whole list starting with the Holy Trinity, their respective spouses, their equally gifted kids and even a nod to certain local Gods of my land before skipping across the religious border and directing my prayer to Gods of other religions as well. You see, I don't want my patients to suffer just because of a spiritual technicality on my part. 

And I can honestly say, it has worked so far. From tiny infants weighing less than a kilogram in weight to ninety year geriatrics with multiple health issues, God has obliged me there for which I am grateful. There have been nights when I've lost sleep, fretting over how I would manage the complicated case the next morning, worried if the breath I took away from the patient with my medications would be their last. But against all odds, even the most complicated of cases have run smoothly and the patients are now up and walking around, lost in the crowds of various cities across India.  

So this Diwali, my reason to use a Lakshmi Pooja Pack should be pretty obvious: an all-encompassing wish - irrespective of age, religion and gender - that every patient who comes to see me ends up having a complication-free operation and leaves the hospital with a smile on their face. 


Lakshmi Pooja Pack

Considering that I'm very rusty in my shlokas, the audio CD provided is a true blessing while the attached booklet allows me to pray alongside as well. The set itself has everything I would need in one package -  agarbathies, camphor, kumkumam, aabharanam, gandha tablets, rangoli powders and stencils, deepam and sambrani among 20 essential ingredients for the puja. They even have Gangajal and idols of Lord Ganesha and Lakshmi Devi. Now that is one well-thought of compilation.


I'm not being totally selfless, of course. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping that by watching all their happy smiles and words of gratitude, the reverse works in my favour too - that God will reconsider his earlier decree to veto all the things I've noted down for my personal wish-list!

Happy Diwali everyone. Wishing you all love and happiness.


Author's note: This post is part of a contest by Cycle Pure Agarbathies.

   

29 Comments

BK Chowla, said…
Happy Diwali.
Lets hope your wish is granted by the almighty.
:-) wow a pooja kit ! That is an innovative product I must say.
Karanth S R said…
May the almighty start granting all your personal wishes too :)
Michelle Liew said…
Faith is indeed an arduous journey. Thanks for sharing with us!
Aditi said…
It's great that your prayers for others are answered! May God almighty always be with you....in a way the supreme power listens to you ad well, no? With all your surgeries and ops going well, at the end of the day, you are happy and content! Guess, that's what matters!
Viditi Bhargava said…
may god listens to your wish every time!!
Kathy said…
It is always nice to realize God is real and He is listening to your prayers and needs. ♥ Makes all that praying worthwhile and draws you even closer to Him.
Happy Diwali sir.
I hope so too.
It's actually got a whole lot of stuff in there.. more than I could even list down here. Seriously, a one-in-all pack for those wondering where to buy different items
Sigh... I certainly hope so.
It indeed has been Michelle. Have a great day.
Oh Aditi, I am very much aware of the fact you point out and I am indeed grateful for that. Working in a high risk field and managing to get all the patients out of harm's way is definitely due to help from up above...
I hope so Viditi. Happy Diwali.
I certainly hope so Kathy :)
jaish_vats said…
It's so nice to know the sensitivity with which you deal with your patients. Kudos ! As for theveto list its only because He thought of something better that you did not . :)
maithili said…
May God always listen to your prayers :)
Beautiful post for the simplicity in it.. Kudroli is soo beautiful during the day but this night lighting is just awesome!
Sumana said…
Good one..Good luck for contest..

And congrats on winning in Historical Fiction Contest..Waiting for "The Woman of the Night " post .. :)
Soham Roy said…
I liked your Prayer for this Diwali...That the patients leave the hospital premises with a Smile...Amen!!
Yes.. I'm eager to see this mega-prize he has kept hidden from me , as well :D
I've always visited Kudroli in morning hours I think... its simply awesome.
Thanks Sumana. And yes, am delaying another "show-offy" post for now atleast... too many show-offy posts this year !!
simple prayer... but such a hard thing in reality.
Binu Thomas said…
Very nice thought doctor. Infact we all should follow this concept of praying ONLY for others.. Praying for others shows our love and concern for the people around us, relative or not.. Maybe that's what this set of people on Earth is missing largely..

All the best for the contest.. This post was pure in its form and I really hope it wins :)
Thanks man.. and yes, this one was from the heart. Used it more as a prompt for a personal post than a contest, I guess.
Renjith Nair said…
May the "Light" always be with you and your prayers. Happy festive season ahead Doc.
I could almost feel the smell of agarbathies and sambrani ;-)
Reflections said…
I pray alright but I feel i haven't progressed beyond tht......somebody wise once told me that it was not enough to pray, after sometime we need to progress to a level where we listen to Him. I try but it's difficult:-).
Thanks Renjith. :D
I guess I have a long way to go before I reach that phase.. I definitely have a listening problem where he is concerned.
Anonymous said…
Hah! I came here to nominate you for the Liebster award and see that you are a bit too 'established' in blogging (as per the pre-requisites of the award). :D