Wishing you a very Happy and Prosperous Diwali….
On this special day, I am pleased to introduce an exceptional writer whose blog posts go viral when he writes on politics. He is a very spiritual person and can give any topic on earth the flavor of spirituality! A veteran blogger who has been there and done that!
Let’s invite Desh and have a look at what he has to share about him, the culture, religion, and blogging below.
Happy Diwali Desh Kapoor……
Gurunath: You have the name “DESH” which in English translated as “NATION” is that have any impact on you to be so religious, patriotic and spiritual?
Desh Kapoor: Names do have an impact on people and even places, but that wasn’t the only thing that lead me to my pursuits. Although my mother was very religious, I wasn’t as much. I had questions, but they were dormant until 2003 when I started writing my own blog and started contemplation on spiritual path. One thing led to another. As for politics, I once happened to read India’s history in one-go. I sat down one evening and got up the next morning and I read from MohenjoDaro to India’s Independence. Looking at everything, when I thought through the whole thing, I felt our history had been brutally murdered. And, then I realized that even something that happened in front of me – the Sikh massacres – were being called “Hindu-Sikh riots”. We Delhi-ites knew that (1) they weren’t riots (2) No Hindu went to kill a Sikh, in fact my entire street including I, was out to stop the goons from entering our street! So, I realized if something in my times could be fudged, imagine what would have happened to history?
That’s when I decided that I will chronicle my times in my words so at least there is one voice that people read in years to come that talks about things the way they are.
Gurunath: On this auspicious day of Diwali, please explain us in brief about this festival and how do you celebrate it?
Desh Kapoor: In Hindu Spiritual traditions, Twilight holds such significance. Meditation at that time brings most results. It is the time of shift. Shift which can nudge Awareness. And Awareness, even for a few moments, abets Realization. Realization that helps one move from the Untruth to Truth.From Existential Darkness to Light.
Diwali, a 5-day “Process” and Possibility to bring such a shift in one’s consciousness is one such opportunity. Ashwin is the lunar month in September / October and in it’s Krishna Paksha (“dark fortnight”) starts the time for Diwali on DhanTeras. The Diwali days end on the Second day of the Kartik month which are in ShuklaPaksha(“bright fortnight”).
Diwali is the Shift. Between the “Dark Fortnight” to “Bright Fortnight”.From Dark to Light. Nature doesn’t need candles to announce the shift. Or lamps. It becomes the “Shift”. We light lamps because those who understood the movement of nature and its significance, spiritually, had suggested it to us, in case we missed the larger phenomenon.
Diwali is not a Cultural Festival. It is a Spiritual Opportunity.
Gurunath: What is the relationship between religion and Science in your point of view?
Desh Kapoor: Both, Scientists and those who are on Spiritual path, are seekers. And after all the questions, one main question becomes the central query – How did the Finite comes from the Infinite. For Scientists, it’s how matter comes from wave and for Spiritualists it’s how did the existence have came from the Universal Consciousness or the Divine? They are essentially seeking the same point. The only thing different is that Science goes about it by deduction and Spirituality goes by experience. And, that is a big difference because even if you deduce the secret of happiness you cannot necessarily be happy. However, if you experience happiness, then you yourself are in that state. And that has been India’s biggest strength.
Gurunath: According to you, what prevents people from living to their full potential?
Desh Kapoor: Focus and fear. We fear something or the other and do not do what is needed for that moment. Our limitations – whether in the shape of tradition, habits, fears or social conditioning – stop us from doing all that we can. When there is a lack of focus then we cannot do anything with seriousness and when we cannot commit ourselves fully, then the results don’t come. I am reminded of Swami Vivekananda’s quote here – “Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life; dream of it; think of it; live on that idea. Let the brain, the body, muscles, nerves, every part of your body be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success, and this is the way great spiritual giants are produced.”
Gurunath: How important is religion, culture and beliefs to one’s existence ?is that have any effect on humanity?
Desh Kapoor: Well, these things are socially important but completely irrelevant existentially! The religion is based on belief – which is make-believe. Spirituality has nothing to do with belief. On a Spiritual path, either you are a Seeker or Realized! Culture and traditions bring vibrance to any society and are important in that sense. The centrality of beliefs came from outside India. In the ideological belief systems sprouting out of Middle East, everything was history-centric. Only one person can take you to the end state, only one person is correct and rest have no value, or only one book works in that framework. Only belief can work in that framework, not seeking. Seeking happens when you want to look for Truth and be there yourself, experientially!
Gurunath: How can you handle people of diverse communities commenting on your blog and what type of research you do to support your posts on religion, politics and culture?
Desh Kapoor: I treat everyone on their merit. As for research, I read a lot. Books, blogs, news, magazines. And for my articles I go as much into history as I can to see the links and trends.
Gurunath: When and how did you start your blog? What are the Pros and Cons of blogging?
Desh Kapoor: I started off in 2004 or something. But Drishtikone.com – my flagship blog was started off in 2005. It was only this year that Archana, my wife, and I started drishti.co. And, this blog is far more enriching that the earlier one.
Blogging can be a thankless task. The good thing is that you can put your voice out there and the audience will give you feedback in almost real time.
Gurunath: I have seen some hundreds of posts from you and you do at least a post per day, how do you do that?What is the most satisfying aspect of blogging?
Desh Kapoor: Well there was a time I used to do more than this. I personally like to articulate things and I do write quite fast. Thankfully, Archana is my Quality Control boss and she vets my posts for mistakes. That helps. We have segregated our tasks and that helps make things faster as well. It’s a joint effort. Plus I use technology – like RSS reader, Blogdesk, Zemana etc to speed up things.
Most satisfying part is when people whom you don’t even know come up to you to tell you how much they love certain post of yours.
Gurunath: How do you rate the Indian blogs in general and what are your favorite blogs?
Desh Kapoor: Generally speaking, Indian blogs are high on creativity but low on substantive content. Not enough original thought and not enough research or deep analysis. Most of the better-known bloggers are wordsmiths and not real analysts. That I find to be the greatest weakness.
I generally don’t read any Indian blog, but if I have to, I only read the one by AtanuDey – Deeshaa.org Atanu is one blogger whom I have admired for his in-depth knowledge and direct style. So that is my favorite.
Gurunath: What advice you will you give to someone who wants to start a blog right now?
Desh Kapoor: Speak from your heart. Write what you think is your expression. Find yourself. Experiment with your styles. Archana has, for example, done an amazing job of starting a “Haiku movement” in the Indiblogger community as it were purely on the strength of her own creativity. When she started writing, she started off on travel related stuff, but she experimented and discovered her many strengths.
Gurunath: I have seen beautiful Social media Icons on your blog and your theme looks great at Dristi.co. What tools you use to make your Website/blog look stunning?
Desh Kapoor: For the social media icons, we bought Cresta Social share from codecanyon.com and for the theme we used ThemeForest’s Voice.
Gurunath: How do you promote your blog and what tools you implement in doing so?
Desh Kapoor: The main blog promotional avenues are – Facebook, Twitter, Stumbleupon, Linkedin and Indiblogger. These vehicles have proven to be useful.
Gurunath: How it feels to have a blogger wife who writes so well?
Desh Kapoor: Extremely good. Blogging is not easy and it requires a certain mindset and commitment. Archana is able to do that better than me. In fact she is a stickler to quality and a certain format. She is also a perfectionist. I lacked all these qualities when I blogged on my own earlier. So it’s a boon to blog along with Archana.
Gurunath: Everyone has some inspiration and heroes of their own, who are your favorite inspirational heroes in the blog and real world?
Desh Kapoor: In blogging world, I don’t have many. Huffingtonpost has been a great experiment and success so I admire Ariana Huffington for what she achieved. As for heroes in a real world, I find Narendra Modi very inspirational. The vitriol and ridicule he has been subjected to, and the odds he had against him aren’t easily to handle. Yet, he doesn’t come out as a bitter or devastated person. He thinks very clearly. Very few can do what he has done and is doing.
Gurunath: What’s your opinion on the future of blogging and any final words to our BestOfGuru readers?
Desh Kapoor: Future of blogging is in writing content that unique and presenting information that is credible. Too much ranting etc has been going on but sooner or later people will tire from it. Distinctive styles also matter. So create your own identity and go with it.
Group blogs are the other big things that will strengthen going forward.
For the readers of BestofGuru – do your research on how to start a blog, find a medium that works for you, then create your own distinct identity and write credible, good stuff in your own voice. And then, promote the heck out of it. No use doing something without promotion. That is important as well in this world.
Gurunath: Finally, we will conclude off with few favorites:
Holiday spot: Miami, South Beach
Movie: Pyaasa (Guru Dutt and WaheedaRehman) and Guide (Dev Anand and Waheeda).
Sport: Hockey and Cricket
Book: Vasistha’s Yoga (English translation of YogVasistha) by Swami Venkatesananda.
Quote: It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. ~ J. Krishnamurti
Thanks to Desh Kapoor for this inspiring interview and sparing some time to us.
If any of you have any queries, please do ask in the comments below !
Don’t forget to share this awesome interview in social media. I will be pleased if you share this now !!! Cheers!!! Join Best Of Guru on Facebook, & Twitter.