Meditation Part Of Curriculum For Top Marks

Meditation Part Of Curriculum For Top Marks
Last Updated: 1st March 2009, 2:40am

This might be the most peaceful way to start the school day.

The 20 students in Ahalya Ganesh’s Grade 6 class are sitting around in a circle with a tealight candle placed in the centre. Their teacher presses ‘play’ on the CD and the daily ritual of 10 minutes of meditation begins.

“Focus your eyes on the light in front of you,” Ganesh, a teacher at Sathya Sai School, said soothingly to the class. “Think: May I always feel good, may I always speak the truth.”

After the music stops, the students are asked to reflect on what they were thinking of.

“I imagined what the world was like without pollution,” said Dhiviya Muthucumarasamy, 11. “I thought about what ways I could help the world. So I sent the light to everyone.”

The idea of peace is just one of the principal values at Sathya Sai School. The Scarborough private school of 160 students — from JK to Grade 6 — works on five core values of truth, right conduct, peace, love and non-violence, stemming from the philosophy of the school’s founder and south Indian guru, Sathya Sai Baba.

These values are embedded in regular classes, so you will find love in math and non-violence translated through science. A 40-minute “human values” class is scheduled each day where teachers and students discuss the core principles of the school. Two months are devoted to each of the five values.

Students also get 45 minutes of yoga classes in the gym each day.

This inner-peace is most likely responsible for the 100% scores on all Education Quality and Accountability Office tests in 2008 and the perfect 10 position for the second consecutive year in the Fraser Institute studies, said the school’s principal, Dr. Revathi Chennabathni.

“It’s the dedication of the students and teachers,” she said. “When we start the day with meditation, it helps them to calm down. I think the yoga and discussion in each of the classes on human values and reflection on that is adding to a better intellectual potential.”

This is the only Sathya Sai-influenced school in North America among 45 schools worldwide. It opened its doors in 2000 and has bounced from two other locations in Scarborough before landing at Ellesmere and Principal Rds.

The tuition was originally free for the first 6.5 years, but Chennabathni said it has since risen to $2,300 a year to cover renting the space. They are looking for a building of their own in the near future.

The majority of children who attend the school are of Tamil, Hindu and Sri Lankan heritage, but Chennabathni emphasizes that the school is open to all religions and all socio-economic backgrounds. They follow the Ontario curriculum with the addition of an extra holiday on Nov. 23 — the founder’s birthday. The only thing that isn’t allowed is eating meat on premises.

“The vegetarian lunch program helps them give good thoughts,” Chennabathni said.

The lessons learned in the classroom will help students translate it at home and in the community, Chennabathni said. Each month, the kids distribute sandwiches to the El Mocambo club at College St. and Spadina Ave. for the homeless.

On May 31, the pupils will go on their annual Walk for Values at Dundas Square. Instead of raising money, the goal is to pledge their commitment to one of the five values and promise to practice it for a year.

“Parents are very sure that their child would learn good values here,” Chennabathni said. “Not everyone’s a follower of our founder, but (parents send their kids here) because of the good values their child can learn and that they can build character.”

Toronto Sun Reference

Source-Omega Founder Speaks on Microalgae Oil Omega-3 Replacements for Medical Fish Oils

Source-Omega Founder Speaks on Microalgae Oil Omega-3 Replacements for Medical Fish Oils

Source-Omega, LLC announced today it will be presenting at the upcoming International Symposia on Bioinformatics for Biomedical and Ecological Applications in Prasanthi Nilayam, India. The conference is being held during February 20-21, 2009 at the renowned Sri Sathya Sai University and is organized by Biosciences Chair Professor Srirama Krupanidhi.

Chapel Hill, NC, February 20, 2009: Source-Omega company Founder and Chief Scientist Scott Doughman, Ph.D. will present Saturday February 21, evidence that only one microalgae oil source for both docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) omega-3 and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) omega-3 qualifies as a replacement for medical fish oils, including the prescription form of synthetic fish oil.

Dr. Doughman is to discuss the importance of both DHA and EPA together for satisfying the regulatory guidance available for omega-3 oils regarding qualified heart health claims. He is also to discuss metabolic evidence that the naturally produced and scientifically optimized oil matches human clinical needs better than fish oils, particularly with respect to the intracellular fatty acid pathways known as the Kennedy cycle. “The ways our cells incorporate omega-3s are best matched by microalgae oil sources, plus there is no lingering fishy after effects, a major compliance issue facing fish oil omega-3 products” Doughman indicated.

The Indian subcontinent harbors the largest vegetarian preferred population in the world, with increasing fish oil prescriptions by doctors due to a lack of suitable alternatives. “Microalgae oil now provides a replacement for the same or better medical results, according to recent clinical trials” suggested Doughman.

The large, growing body of scientific evidence reproducibly demonstrates all ages benefit from an adequate DHA supply in the diet, with 90% of human omega-3 content incorporated as DHA. Scientific research highlights the primary importance of DHA alone for lowering triglycerides naturally. Clinical studies underway are to evaluate the role of DHA in decreasing the incidence of certain neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s Disease. Leading experts around the world note that DHA is an important nutrient for health in humans, yet Americans and Indian populations have some of the lowest daily dietary intakes of DHA in the world.

Although suggested, but not finalized, one area of development is the apparent emergence of minimum percent daily value claims for DHA. In particular, omega-3 DHA serves as a primary building block for the heart, brain and eyes and DHA supports brain, eye and cardiovascular health throughout life.

Yet debates continue in the functional food market. According to The Wall Street Journal, the European Union is cracking down on foods that advertise health benefits without scientific backing. Even with scientific backing from clinical studies, the Food and Drug Administration in the United States gives notice that sufficient nutrient levels be present to support claims. “That is why I developed the first Omega-3 DHA Therapy method, a 3 month plan to properly eliminate possible DHA deficiency. The method is based on my research and the overwhelming evidence reported in human trials” said Doughman.

Concentrated omega-3 DHA dietary supplements made from microalgae oils or extracted from fish oils currently are the best way to get medical dosages of DHA at levels above 1 gram daily. DHA is found at low levels in fish and at high levels in certain microalgae oils.

Dr. Doughman points out that DHA is the only omega-3 needed in abundance as the other omega-3 forms are easily made by the body from DHA stores. Doughman received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Biochemistry and conducted National Institutes of Health funded postdoctoral research in Metabolism and Nutritional Biochemistry on polyunsaturated fatty acids at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Department of Nutrition. He has also served as a Visiting Faculty in Biosciences at the Sri Sathya Sai University since year 2000.

Source-Omega, LLC, Chapel Hill North Carolina, USA, is a manufacturer and distributor of private label microalgae products. The company is located near the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina and specializes in the branding, marketing and globalization of microalgae oil products. Source-Omega seeks to be a leading global internet distributor of microalgae oil under the brand name PURE ONE™ for triglyceride lowering benefits and protection from cognitive decline, promoting health and wellness for every stage of life. The company manufactures DHA plus EPA supplement products as a sustainable vegetarian source of medical omega-3s.

Visit The Source-Omega Website

Ahimsa With A Side Of Bacon

Preface: I am not prejudiced against meat eaters. Nor do I care to preach to anyone about what they should or should not eat (just as I would not like to be preached to about what I should or should not eat). This article’s intent is to expose Tony O’Clery’s hypocrisy and double-standards when it comes to “ahimsa” (non-violence) and meat-eating.

Tony O’Clery (an ex-devotee of Sathya Sai Baba) often blathers about “ahimsa” (non-violence) and vegetarianism. As a matter of fact, Tony is so averse to eating meat and causing harm to animals that he has written a great deal about it on his own personal website and on the SSB2 Yahoo Group. For example, Tony cited (copied from another source) the following spiritual texts as authorities on the ills of eating meat and causing suffering to animals:

“Mahabharata” (18.113.8) says: One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one’s own self. This, in brief, is the rule of dharma. Yielding to desire and acting differently, one becomes guilty of adharma.Atharva Veda Samhita 6.120.1. VE, 636 You must not use your God-given body for killing God’s creatures, whether they are human, animal or whatever. Yajur Veda Samhita 12.32. FS, 90

Nonviolence is all the offerings. Renunciation is the priestly honorarium. The final purification is death. Thus all the Divinities are established in this body. Krishna Yajur Veda, Prana Upanishad 46-8. VE, 413-14

To the heavens be peace, to the sky and the earth; to the waters be peace, to plants and all trees; to the Gods be peace, to Brahman be peace, to all men be peace, again and again-peace also to me! O earthen vessel, strengthen me. May all beings regard me with friendly eyes! May I look upon all creatures with friendly eyes! With a friend’s eye may we regard each other! Shukla Yajur Veda Samhita 36.17-18. VE, 306; 342

No pain should be caused to any created being or thing. Devikalottara agama, JAV 69-79. RM, 116

The Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita, Epic History The very name of the cows is aghnya, indicating that they should never be slaughtered. Who, then could slay them? Surely, one who kills a cow or a bull commits the most heinous crime. Mahabharata, Shantiparva 262.47. FS,pg. 94

He who desires to augment his own flesh by eating the flesh of other creatures lives in misery in whatever species he may take his birth. Mahabharata, Anu. 115.47. FS, pg. 90

One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one’s own self. This, in brief, is the rule of dharma. Yielding to desire and acting differently, one becomes guilty of adharma. Mahabharata 18.113.8.

Those high-souled persons who desire beauty, faultlessness of limbs, long life, understanding, mental and physical strength and memory should abstain from acts of injury. Mahabharata 18.115.8.

Ahimsa is the highest dharma. Ahimsa is the best tapas. Ahimsa is the greatest gift. Ahimsa is the highest self-control. Ahimsa is the highest sacrifice. Ahimsa is the highest power. Ahimsa is the highest friend. Ahimsa is the highest truth. Ahimsa is the highest teaching. Mahabharata 18.116.37-41.

He who sees that the Lord of all is ever the same in all that is immortal in the field of mortality-he sees the truth. And when a man sees that the God in himself is the same God in all that is, he hurts not himself by hurting others. Then he goes, indeed, to the highest path. Bhagavad Gita 13. 27-28. BgM, pg. 101

Tirumantiram and other Scriptures Many are the lovely flowers of worship offered to the Guru, but none lovelier than non-killing. Respect for life is the highest worship, the bright lamp, the sweet garland and unwavering devotion. Tirumantiram 197

SPIRITUAL MERIT and sin are our own making. The killer of other lives is an outcast. Match your words with your conduct. Steal not, kill not, indulge not in self-praise, condemn not others to their face. Lingayat Vachanas

AHIMSA IS NOT CAUSING pain to any living being at any time through the actions of one’s mind, speech or body. Sandilya UpanishadWhen mindstuff is firmly based in waves of ahimsa, all living beings cease their enmity in the presence of such a person. Yoga Sutras 2.35. YP, pg. 205

Those who are ignorant of real dharma and, though wicked and haughty, account themselves virtuous, kill animals without any feeling of remorse or fear of punishment. Further, in their next lives, such sinful persons will be eaten by the same creatures they have killed in this world. Shrimad Bhagavatam 11.5.4. FS, pg, 90

It is the principle of the pure in heart never to injure others, even when they themselves have been hatefully injured. What is virtuous conduct? It is never destroying life, for killing leads to every other sin. 312; 321, TW

Harming others, even enemies who harmed you unprovoked, assures incessant sorrow. The supreme principle is this: never knowingly harm any one at any time in any way. 313; 317, TW

What is the good way? It is the path that reflects on how it may avoid killing any living creature. Refrain from taking precious life from any living being, even to save your own life. 324; 327, TW

How can he practice true compassion Who eats the flesh of an animal to fatten his own flesh? TK 251, TW

Riches cannot be found in the hands of the thriftless. Nor can compassion be found in the hearts of those who eat meat. TK 252, TW

Goodness is never one with the minds of these two: one who wields a weapon and one who feasts on a creature’s flesh. TK 253, TW

If you ask, “What is kindness and what is unkind?” it is not killing and killing. Thus, eating flesh is never virtuous. TK 254, TW

Life is perpetuated by not eating meat.The clenched jaws of hell hold those who do. TK 255, TW

If the world did not purchase and consume meat, there would be none to slaughter and offer meat for sale. TK 256, TW

When a man realizes that meat is the butchered flesh of another creature, he must abstain from eating it. TK 257, TW

Perceptive souls who have abandoned passion will not feed on flesh abandoned by life. TK 258, TW

Greater than a thousand ghee offerings consumed in sacrificial fires is to not sacrifice and consume any living creature. TK 259,TW

All that lives will press palms together in prayerful adoration of those who refuse to slaughter and savor meat. TK 260, TW

For those of us who are vegetarians (yes, I am vegetarian), this may sound all good and well. But for those who truly believe in non-violence, here is the clincher: Tony’s wife eats meat and he has no problem with her doing so because she is “not on a spiritual path” and allegedly doesn’t eat “red meat” (as if that makes the slaughter of fowl, fish and pigs any less violent)! Tony throws aside the very scriptures he cites to support his views on ahimsa and vegetarianism to defend his wife’s eating of meat. Because Tony O’Clery allows his wife to purchase (with their joint money) the flesh of slaughtered animals and allows her to bring those carcasses into his house, he is committing the offense of himsa (violence) through association (according to the scriptures he cites to support his views). Tony indulges in what I call “conditional ahimsa” (i.e., violence is bad, but if your wife is “not on a spiritual path” then violence doesn’t matter)! According To Tony Bologna O’Clery, Those who are not on the “spiritual path” are apparently perfectly entitled to indulge in violence and meat eating with impunity!

The funny thing about all of this is that O’Clery goes to great efforts to convince others about the ills of eating meat, yet obviously cannot convince those nearest and dearest to him on the ills of eating meat! Tony allows the bloody flesh of slaughtered animals to take shelter in his house, in his fridge and in your wifes body and has the audacity to rant about “ahimsa” and vegetarianism! Tony even posted the following verse on the SSB2 Yahoo Group:

The “meat-eater,” is poignantly described in the following passage from the obscure Mansahara Parihasajalpita Stotram: “Those who eat the flesh of other creatures are nothing less than gristle-grinders, blood-drinkers, muscle-munchers, sinew-chewers, carcass-crunchers, flesh-feeders-those who make their throat a garbage pit and their stomach a graveyard-mean, angry, loathsomely jealous, confused and beset by covetousness, who without restraint would lie, deceive, kill or steal to solve immediate problems. They are flesh-feeders, loathsome to the Gods, but friendly to the asuras, who become their Gods and Goddesses, the blood-sucking monsters who inhabit Naraka and deceptively have it decorated to look like the pitriloka, the world of the fathers. To such beings the deluded meat-eaters pay homage and prostrate while munching the succulent flesh off bones.”

Also, Tony O’Clery said:

“Namaste, I think meat eaters have a mental condition and a defective psyche, combined with cognitive dissonance carnalitas. They may have a nice personality and be loving even, but their levels of awareness have not evolved much beyond australopethicus..They haven’t caught up with the other vegetarian hominids the Gorilla and Oran Utan..Tony.” (Reference)

Those nearest and dearest to Tony O’Clery are “gristle-grinders”, “blood-drinkers”, “muscle-munchers”, “flesh-feeders”, “sinew-chewers”, and “carcass-crunchers” who are afflicted with “mental condition and a defective psyche, combined with cognitive dissonance carnalitas”. With his meat-eating wife and family at his side, O’Clery tries to take a peaceful stand for ahimsa and the ills of eating meat and miserably fails!

O’Clery preaches ahimsa, but is married to himsa.