April 2016 A crazy love affair By Abhishek Thakore If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. If you find Life Positive in your mail though, read it! 20 years of walking with this beauty, this labour of love, has been a privilege. My relationship with her has been mostly as a Laughing Buddha contributor (save the article on urine therapy that kept getting more popular in spite of my attempts to suppress it). So maybe it is time for us (her and me) to look at our journey and giggle a bit. When I was young and…well, young, I used to revere Deepak Chopra – the 7 Spiritual Laws was my Bible. Today, I find the Chopra Random Quote Generator quite amusing, and make up nonsense songs about him. On the other hand, the stock that has really scaled up in my market is J. Krishnamurti, who, on various occasions I had parodied, made fun of and mimicked. Today, he stands as a living and powerful presence in my life. And reminds me to be a light unto myself! Not a bulb or a tubelight or an LED lamp – but a solar-powered light unto myself! Along the way I picked up and dropped and picked up again a laundry (or bucket) list of powerful paths: NLP, gestalt, reiki, pranic healing, merkaba meditations, EFT, appreciative inquiry, ontology, integral theory and channelling (and Shiv Khera too) – yes, I am a true blue, New Age, always-on-the-path Shopaholic! Life Positive too has grown – she has become more beautiful and the ads are no longer silly. The profound wisdom continues to flow in newer ways, and we, the seekers continue to whisper to each other: “Has your seeking ended?” as we struggle to hide a copy of the magazine! My own writing has moved from “how-would-each-guru-respond-to-this” kind of stories, to the more recent sharing of what it feels to be suffering from bipolar depression (Bi and I, Life Positive, March 2015). The article brought me in touch with many others grappling with these conditions – and gave me a chance to share my journey. 15 years ago, when I started writing, I felt I might have liked to be featured as a guru someday. There was a recent edition on gurus and I was present there – as an anonymous Laughing Buddha (Oops! There, I gave it away!). Over the last 15 years, my backpack has become lighter. I laugh more at myself and my earlier attempts at ‘reaching’ enlightenment – as if it was the next cool holiday destination! Slowing down, having time for stillness, being centred in the now have all come with the 30s. As for the much younger Life Positive, I wish her all the gifts for a great 20s – lots of travel around the world, crazy affairs (and maybe finding true love), exploring and more exploring, a connection to her dark side (hmmmm!) and lots of grace from the Universe! Abhishek Thakore is the founder of Blue Ribbon Movement A writer is born By Ambica Gulati Sometimes I wonder whether Life Positivewas a destined or a gifted path. It truly came into my life as a balm to the soul. It was 1999 and my brother handed me a magazine titled Life Positive. It looked interesting enough with all things positive in it – I had just begun yoga classes. I knew nothing about rituals, gurus, energy healing, New Age! But this could be the beginning of a beautiful journalism career, I vaguely thought. Naïve, ignorant and knowing nothing about the world of careers, I reached its office in Greater Kailash II, Delhi. And till date I don’t know why I was hired by Parveen Chopra. Looking back, I was pathetic at what I did and wrote. But the magazine never gave up on me. Slowly, I transformed. I left behind a lot of my old self. I learnt the art of reporting and the skill of editing. Suma Varughese was based in Mumbai and we never met, but I read all her articles. Like a sponge I absorbed the technique of weaving a story through her articles. I was like a babe in the woods, but gentle woods, nevertheless. Since then, I have written many articles on many subjects for many magazines, met many journalists, editors and publishers, but nothing would have readied me for this except Life Positive. It was the catalyst I needed to understand the life behind the visible and how it shapes our life and reality. It helped me become who I am today. I understood that someone spent a lot of time on me, to create a new me. I hope Life Positive does that to more people for many more years to come. Ambica Gulati is deputy editor with B2B magazines, and also has two blogs. A silent revolution By Anil Bhatnagar I have always perceived Life Positive not as a magazine but as a much needed silent spiritual revolution. Lots of great friends and opportunities without which I would not have been what I am today came to me only because of my association with Life Positive. Thanks to Life Positive, today I am a corporate trainer to over 100 leading companies in India, the Middle East and the US, an author of five books and a reiki teacher. As an author, I have been associated with Life Positive since its very birth. I still remember my first visit in 1996 to Life Positive’s office somewhere in Greater Kailash in New Delhi and my meeting with assistant editor, Ritu Khanna. She asked me to write something and that is how my first article, Mind Your Thoughts(an article on Cognitive therapy), was published in Life Positive. Thereafter, I kept writing for Life Positive at regular intervals. One such article published in December 1997 was noticed by a publisher (before I could see it myself), who asked me to write a book on that topic. That is how my second book, Success 24X7 was born. Former editor Parveen Chopra gave me generous opportunities to write several lead stories such as Living by the Body Clock (February 1997), How to Use Both Sides of the Brain (July 1997), What’s Right, What’s Wrong (June 2000), Staying on the Path (April 2002), Emotional Evolution (October 2002) and The Joy of living (May, 2004). Often people compliment me for my indepth knowledge in my field. Perhaps the research work I did for these articles was the foundation for this; it became a way of life with me. The legacy Parveen left behind has continued to take new roots. Suma Varughese has taken the magazine to new heights. I am grateful to Suma who continued to extend similar opportunities to me. On this occasion of its 20th anniversary, I extend Chairman Aditya Ahluwalia, former editor Parveen Chopra, editor Suma Varughese, former editor of Life Positive Plus, Swati Chopra, former vice-president Venkat, ex-event manager Vijay Dhiman, deputy editor Shivi Verma, and author Jamuna Rangachari, and all its other editors and staff members my heartfelt appreciation and congratulations! Anil Bhatnagar is a corporate trainer to over 80 leading companies in India and abroad A whole new world By Ashish Virmani Lieeefeee Positive! That’s how I like to say it. Because it’s not just a magazine, it’s the reflection of an altogether different paradigm in life. A paradigm of peace. A paradigm of healing. A paradigm of supportive relationships. A place where people are actually trying to help you access a world that is joyful, vibrant and completely different from anything we’ve ever known. In a world where there are too many cynical people, a whole bunch of embittered people, and an entire truckload of people on their way to becoming either of the above, Life Positiveis the gateway that leads to a path of happiness for you and me. Actually there are many gateways in the magazine of different philosophies and spiritual practice, so take your pick. As a Buddhist I wrote about Buddhism, other people write about Hinduism and yoga, still others about Christian healing, Zen and Sufism. The magazine’s eclecticism is actually its greatest strength. People nowadays are generally wary of religion, and rightly so perhaps. But the spirituality offered by Life Positive is life-affirming. I know of people who swear by it and by the vision of its editor, who in the last 20 years, has managed to make a mainstream space for the magazine, which is no mean feat. And what has kept it all together is the behind-the-scenes dedicated work of its subeditors and staff who, month after month, have toiled in order to make this world a better place to live in. So congratulations! Senior Assistant Editor with DNA, Ashish Virmani’s life’s purpose is Buddhism Viva Life Positive! By Ayesha Chopra January 2011. An issue of Life Positive falls into my hands for the first time and a new journey of personal growth begins for me! From the first page (Editspeak) to the last, I found the unpretentious, unassuming, honest and humane ethos of the magazine very impressive and arresting. And I am proud to say that the process of enrichment that was set in motion for me then, continues to this day! First of all, I cannot thank Suma Varughese enough for readily welcoming me into the fold of Life Positive and unhesitatingly providing me with a wonderful channel to express my thoughts. Soon after my initial euphoria at having found something as heartwarming as Life Positive somewhat settled down, I took the liberty of sending her an article I had written on happiness. Suma’s response – immediately warm and accepting –was deeply gratifying. I remember my eyes welling up at the genuinely sincere tone of the initial communications with her. Her spirit –friendly, kind and straightforward – came through clearly and was immensely appealing. Shortly thereafter, I had occasion to meet Life Positive Chairman, Aditya Ahluwalia and some other members of the Life Positive family. I experienced the same openness and genuine interest from each. It didn’t take me long to realise that this rare spirit of bonhomie was a hallmark of Life Positive and e
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