GOD GIVEN VISION AND OUR PASSION LED US HERE

God is not human, that he should lie,
    not a human being, that he should change his mind.
Does he speak and then not act?
    Does he promise and not fulfill?

Wow! Candles Online completed 3 years today.

This journey actually started long back in the year 2006 which you can find in the ABOUT page. And the journey came to a standstill in 2014. 2014 was a year when I saw my child ‘Candles’ succumbing to death because of many different constraints that had been troubling me from all around. It was a very disturbing year in regards to my passion and vision. But 2015 was a year when God prompted in my heart to revive my dead child in a newer way. And I praise God, that I could revive my child with the help of 6 valiant warriors who joined hands with me in the same. These 6 valiant warriors were Anupam, Sulagna, Avishikta, Khristina, Rajnandini and Prabhjot.

11th July 2015 my child ‘Candles’ was reborn as ‘Candles Online’ on a Web Platform. My joy was by leap and bounds and was uncontrollable. And we seven were excited and were happy about what we were doing. We discussed, shared our ideas, helped each other and  wrote numerous articles together. I wrote a lot of articles then as we were very less in number and my team members were a bit busier than me. But we did give a kick start to this initiative in a very good way.

After few months when Avinash, Aastha and Kalpana joined, I became greedy. 😛 I started searching for more writers and I did get some awesome writers. Prabhjot fired the bullets at Kuljeet & Preeta her sisters, keeping the gun on my shoulder and they joined as well. Pradita came in and Candles Online became very heavy and well decorated with multi-talented writers.

This journey was not an easy one. Those who were with me from the beginning, like Rajnandini and Prabhjot were aware of those struggles to some extent. Sometimes I was scolded for this initiation. I was told it’s a wrong vision. I was mocked at. Some could not commit time for it, some rejected it, some were arrogant about it, some were rude with me, some left it.

Yet, those who grasped it, wrote for it though I understand some of my team members are  extremely busy with their professional life but they had never disown me or Candles Online. Some of their passion for Candles encourage me so much. Few days ago someone almost screamed at me for not paying proper attention to Candles Online and I am proud of that person. Couple of days ago we came up with 18 old and new topics together. And I was enthralled by the passion of my team members. Because for that passion to change and to be a change agent we stepped into this boat called Candles Online.

(Image Source: Pixabay.com)

I praise God for His faithfulness envisioning me and helping us to carry this mantel to lit the fire in everyone’s heart and bring the true joy and transformation in their lives through His divine intervention.

On this auspicious occasion few of my family members have shared their hearts as well.

They say…

Saakshi: A lone candle lit  was enough to vanquish the darkness from our hearts and now it’s been three incredible years and the light just gets brighter, stronger, mightier.

Sriram: It’s a platform where we express ourselves and our thoughts and we let our own lights shine, in best hope, that our experiences or views will be a shining beacon to those who read and can relate or learn.

Rajnandini: From multifarious topics addressed on paperprints years before, to completing three remarkable years in the web world, CANDLESONLINE has come a long way in reaching far and wide in realising it’s vision and mission to touch lives and rekindle the spirits of people.

Kuljeet: Candles Online is 3 years old.. Many many congratulations.. Under the able guidance of Chiradeep we have published at least one article every day.. No mean feat.. I joined this creative journey one year ago and loved every moment of it… Kudos to the creative, hardworking and beautiful family of Candles Online…

Ashrita: Congratulations to all the team who help the community learn new things each day for the last 3 years!

Peter: A great team of people who bring hope and encouragement to others through their honest and sincere experiences shared in their well-crafted, thoughtful articles, always leaving behind a nugget of wisdom.

Prabhjot: In last 3 years, this platform has helped me build an amazing relationship with my readers and co-writers and in this journey, I have grown multiple folds. Thanks to this community.

And at the end Preeta nailed it by saying: Keep burning and enlighten everyone. Cheers! May we grow, grow and grow.

WISH YOU ALL A HAPPY 3 YEARS ANNIVERSARY!

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SAY – ONE LINE ABOUT YOUR MOM

Today, on the occasion of International Mother’s Day, I asked few of my friends and family members to say one line about their respective Moms and I received quite a number of responses which I recorded as under:

The most disciplined and systematic women and she is a workaholic.

Can be a lioness when she wants to be, protective and fierce.

She’s the one who truly care…

She is an epitome of Love, Care and Selflessness. She is my Mother.

She’s the most patient, persevering and selfless woman I’ve ever seen and I hope I can be the same at her age even when life has given her so many hardships…

Mother: She maps her esse inside our bones and tissues, knowing and feeling everything even when she is not around.

She is a fighter.

A lady who strives to walk in the way of the Lord – treading the path with sacrificial simplicity, firmness of purpose and an extreme level of God-given power of endurance.

Mother is God personified.

My mother is a peace of heaven. She has spun her life around me. She revolves and rotates around me. I fall, she picks me up. I fail, she lifts me up. She’s my everything. I know that’s more than one line. But I can’t summon her up in a whole volume.

Hardworking and generous.

I spell my mother’s name as I-N-V-I-N-C-I-B-L-E .

Soft n tough… 😘

She is my love and my superhero, my strength and my weakness, my world.❣

She is my friend, my confidant and my go to person in all circumstances.

The loveliest masterpiece of the heart of the God is the heart of my mamma.

She’s the most sacrificing mom in the world.

My mother is a simple-hearted, hard-working lady, whose ability to stay calm and face adversities is amazing, and her quiet ways of expressing love understated. She inspires me to be humble, thankful to God and remain grounded.

Next to God🤗

Inspiration to many 😌

Hardworking.

I wish I could be as nice, hardworking and energetic like her.

My mom is someone who has helped me to fight with my problems alone and has made me to learn to lean on God for everything…

Innocent.

The backbone of my mind.

Whenever I pray, Its my mother who listens and grants my wishes!

One who unites the family and one who always puts someone else’s happiness and well-being ahead of her own.

Hardworking and God fearing.

My mother is, the most loving, caring, crazy and weird best friend of my life. No one has ever got close to her.

Whatever i am today,its only because of the wonderful mother that God has blessed me with.😊 Even thousand lines wont be just enough to describe the worth of our mothers.

Whenever I count my Blessings, I count my Mummy twice.

Wow! I was overwhelmed with emotions after reading those lines about all different lovely Moms.  Some even tried to treat their Mom as their god though God is supreme and incomparable to any human. I can feel their emotions towards their mothers. They were all adorable.

But I had received few negative replies as well from those who didn’t have great experiences with their Moms. Some were treated bad by their moms. Some have never seen their moms. Some moms have left their children alone to suffer for their selfish motives. Some Moms have left their children forever in tears and grief. I understood their hearts and pain as well. I can understand it more as my wife’s Mom had also left her when she was just five years old. It is truly very painful. I remember one verse from the Bible in this regard which I would like to share for the encouragement of those who are troubled today:

And the Lord said:
“Can a mother forget the baby at her breast

    and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
    I will not forget you!
See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.
As a mother comforts her child,
    so will I comfort you

What comforting words!

Mothers are the greatest blessings that we all children can enjoy but remember God assures us that He can gather us as a mother hen gathers her chicks under her wings when things are not going well with us.

Stay cozy with your Mothers and give them the best possible treatment today and everyday!

Stay Blessed!

YOU ARE THE ONE WHO IS GONNA CELEBRATE…

You were the one, who was lonely and deserted in the beginning…

But you were the one for whom God created her with such sophistication…

You were the one who wowed seeing the beautiful her…

But you were the one who accused her to be the cause of your sin…

 

You were the one who caused her so much pain for whole nine months…

But you were the one for whom she rejoiced the most on your arrival…

You were the one for whom she stayed awake so that you sleep well in the night…

You were the one for whom she skipped her meals so that you can have the best…

 

You were the one who desired her…

But you were the one who betrayed her…

You were the one who made lewd comments on her…

And you were the one who blamed her to be indecent…

You were the one who promised to protect her as a brother…

But you were the one who raped her physically, mentally and emotionally…

 

You called her ‘Mom’ when you longed for her lap to rest the pained you…

You called her ‘Sister’ when you needed a friend to share your heart…

You called her ‘Wife’ when you’re desperate to hide your face in her bosom for comfort…

You called her ‘Daughter’ when you wanted to boast about yourself as the best father…

But you are the one who breached your relationship with her in so many ways…

You are the one who’s responsible for her condition today…

 

So today,

You are the one who’s gonna set everything right…

You are the one who’s gonna give the credit, value and care due to her…

You are the one who’s gonna liberate her from the bondage you have put her in…

You are the one who’s gonna respect her for who she has been in your life all these time…

You are the one who’s gonna acknowledge her contribution in your life…

You are the one who’s gonna celebrate her as the Woman of Substance and Sacrifice…

WISHING ALL THE WOMEN A RESPECTFUL WOMAN’S DAY!

FREE INDIA: I BURNT YOUR HOUSE BECAUSE YOU BURNT MINE

Today is India’s 69th Republic Day.

69 years ago we gave ourselves the Constitution and swore to abide by it as honest, progressive and peace-loving citizens. 69 years hence we are doing everything but that.

We are now a nation that not only endures but covertly even encourages religious bigotry, self-righteous vandalism, myopic sexism and ruthless rioting. Certain sections of our citizens have learnt that the Constitution is actually a toothless tiger. Worse still, some of our countrymen believe that it exists only so that it may allow them the freedom to engage in vandalizing properties, killing their own countrymen, abusing each other’s religious sentiments, violating our men, women and children and terrorizing their own brethren over trivialities like a movie!

This anger in my writing is a reaction towards the fringe mob attack on a school bus which was conveying children to their homes. The mob was protesting the release of the controversial movie, Padmaavat, in Gurugram, India, and had preiously burnt a State Transport bus before setting eyes on the school bus. Those of you who yet do not know of the attack, please head to this link and see the horror for yourself. And those of you who want to know why there are protests over the movie Padmaavat, please click on this link.

Anger swamped me when I first saw the video on a news channel and I’m sure this is the same emotion that must have overcome you while you were watching that video through the link above. These were innocent, harmless children, some as young as 4 – 6 years old, who were heading home from school, while their bus was assaulted with stones and sticks by an unruly mob whose only reason to protest was the release of a movie that depicts a character from folklore…okay, maybe history, but that character is very much dead.

I repeat – this was a ‘moving school bus carrying children‘.

Thankfully there were no casualties, but what if there were? What if the driver got hurt while he was driving, leading to an accident… and deaths? How does attacking children resolve the issue for these rioters? Where do we draw the line between the right to protest and heedless vandalism? If you have watched the video you may have noted the newscaster’s anger and she is right in pointing out, ‘These could have been my children, these could have been your children’. But it’s not just about whose children these were. The bigger question is how do you justify attacking an alive human being over a piece of fiction?

Sometimes I feel freedom is wasted on us Indians because we don’t just misuse it, we abuse it. This is not the only case of abuse of freedom that we have seen within the last one year itself in India. The very start of the year was besmirched by the infamous mass molestation of women in Bangalore on New Year’s Eve, followed by equally shocking incidents like the inter-religious attacks over the beef ban issue, the Bhima Koregaon attack and the northern India riots over Godman Ram Rahim Singh’s rape conviction. But these are bigger transgressions in the name of freedom. How about everyday abuse of freedom – in the blatant violations of traffic rules; in our stubbornness in finding loopholes in the law; in our netas not only supporting but propagating vandalism and unlawfulness; in our ‘chalta hai‘ and ‘jugaadu‘ attitude for everything; in a person spitting or peeing on public property because he can and because there’s no one to put a check on him?

The above instances prove that we have not only no regard for the law, but also that it has become the agitated Indian’s habit to take to the streets and cause mayhem, sometimes going to the extent of drawing blood, in the name of religion, cult, culture and gender? Throughout these incidents, the Police were powerless, the governments inert while the opposition is either muckraking or fuelling the agitation.

What use is the Constitution? What use are these words contained in the Preamble:

JUSTICE, social, economic and political; LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship; EQUALITY of status and of opportunity; and… FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation…

These are just words if we Indians do not internalize them and base our lives upon these ideals enshrined in the Constitution. My fellow Indians, remember, we are lucky that we have the freedom to do as we please, to go where we want, to worship who we want and to practice what we want. There are many other nations out there where freedom is not freedom in the real sense of the word; where you may be free to breathe, but death is considered a better option. Consider yourself lucky that you are born in a country where tolerance is not just an ideal but a way of life. But in your lust for freedom do not forget that you are part of a bigger thing – you are a nation. You, your beliefs and your actions are what shape your nation. The future of us, our children, will have the same beliefs as you do. Give them a better lesson than violence and intolerance.

Freedom does not mean that you do as you please. If every one of us was free to do as we pleased, we would have anarchy. Freedom comes with a responsibility – that of respecting the freedom and well-being of others. If you don’t respect the right’s of other’s, why will other’s respect your rights? If you have burnt someone’s house to the ground citing religious freedom as the reason, remember tomorrow your house could be the victim of someone else’s right to religious freedom.

Violence does not need a reason but remember that you only reap what you sow.

This Republic Day, let’s take a vow to be responsible citizens. To bring out differences and resolve them by dialogue and not violence. To practice freedom but not out of malice and indifference towards the freedom of others. To abjure inhumanity, intolerance and deviant behaviour that harms the people of this country and the ideals of our forefathers. Citizens, compatriots, this Republic Day vow to rise above your menial differences and become better human beings.

Jai Hind!

Image Source: Catchnews

HOW DO YOU LIKE TO BE PART OF CANDLES ONLINE?

How do you like to be part of Candles Online?

“Great! Feel challenged to stimulate the thought process to write on diverse topics – something I may not have done on my own.”

“Being part of Candles Online has given me a sense of purpose and creative satisfaction.”

“Awesome, especially when I see my name on the top… 😝”

“Enchanted.”

“Has been a part of my existence since 2015.”

“As a family member.”

“It feels good to be part of candles and contributing for articles that may one day make a person ponder over …”

“As much as I love ice cream, cakes and chocolates, which is a lot… 😊 😊 😊 😊”

I am thrilled with these responses from my writer friends, My Angels… Yeah, all of them couldn’t answer in time as they were perplexed with a question all of a sudden from no where… I mean from me. They can still answer it along with all the readers in the comment section under this article. And if I have to answer this question then I would say:

“I feel relieved and stress free by sharing, caring, laughing, crying and smiling all the time.” 

Candles Online completed 2 years today!

Yeah, right… You heard it what I said ;)… It was in 11th July 2015,  I with few of my writer friends started it. And today we have  crossed many boundaries and borders to reach over 150 countries worldwide with 739 articles and poems written by 30 odd writers with 2290 comments on them till now.

I get feedback from people and they enthrall me whenever I receive them.  Candles Online has been such an inspiration to those who were dull and needed a push. It has encouraged the brokenhearted and those who were searching for a meaning of life.  It has not only helped the readers but motivated the writers as well. I don’t just manage it but live in it as a head of the family called Candles Online. 

Don’t forget to answer the question that I asked you all… Keep visiting and keep reading…

Stay Blessed!

FAILED YET FAMOUS

Today is a day of celebration for Candles Online. This post will be the 700th post of Candles Online. It’s truly a milestone and the timing is absolutely appropriate for the occasion with a concluding day for the topic ‘Celebrating Failure‘.  

If I look back, I find myself sad and sorrowful two years back when Candles Online was not in the picture. The printed format failed to stay afloat. All my dreams had sunk in the deep sea. But now… we have been inspiring many around the globe, over 130 countries approximately. Candles Online had faced failures a lot of times yet it has become famous among many. It is still growing day after day because of some very committed people along with me and also because of God’s grace. 

I am going to let you watch an incredible video of 25 very famous world personalities who had failed in their lives or were considered failures by people initially, yet became world famous personalities afterwards. 

Be encouraged and never quit…

Stay blessed!

THE BRAND CALLED ‘WOMAN’

Conversation 1:

Eve: Hello…this is Eve speaking… Could I speak with you for five minutes?

Man at the other end: Well, I’m just back from work and am totally exhausted… Is this important?

Eve: It is! And I promise I won’t take more than exactly five minutes.

Man at the other end: Uff!! Ok then…go ahead… How may I help you?

Eve: Thank you! Let me introduce myself first because you may not know me. I am Eve – the mother of all the living.

Man at the other end: Errr…excuse me?? I can’t make any sense of it. Who are you??

Eve: As I said, my name is Eve. As you don’t have much time to spare, let me get into business right away. I understand that you are about to get married shortly and so…

Man the other end: This is just unbelievable! I mean…I don’t even know who you are… How do you know about me? I think I need some rest…my mind is probably playing games… I’d better hang up. That’s it!

Eve: Hold on… How does it matter whether you know me or not? But, what I’m going to speak would matter. So, listen to what I have to say and then you can decide for yourself. A minute is gone already…four to go…

Man at the other end: Ok…go ahead…but mind you, not more than four minutes from now…

Eve: Thanks! To continue with what I was saying, as you are going to get married in a few days time, I wish to give you some words of wisdom to ensure that you enjoy nuptial bliss each day of your life. I promise to be brief.

Man at the other end: Ok

Eve: I’ll tell you just three things. Firstly, remember that God is giving your wife as a companion suitable for you. Bear in mind not to treat her as your subordinate…not to boss over her…or to trample over her by your words and deeds. Secondly, love your wife as you would love yourself. Just as you would not cause any harm to your own self, take care not to harm her in any way. Love her to the point of even being prepared to lay down your life for her, if the situation would ever so demand. Thirdly, guard her and guide her because she is vulnerable. Not because she is weak and infirm, but because this is your responsibility towards her.

Man at the other end: These surely are valuable words. But, isn’t a wife supposed to respect her husband?

Eve: Yes, she is to respect her husband. A boss demands respect. But, love commands respect. Your wife would respect you seeing your love towards her. She may not be the perfect piece. You will have to bear with her just as she will also have to bear with you. Remember, for this reason a man is to leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife and they shall become one flesh.

Man at the other end: Hmm…

Eve: Getting married may be easy, but remaining married takes hard work in which both of you will have to contribute. Don’t have unrealistic expectations of her. Have realistic ones. Don’t treat her as an object for catharsis.  Accept her as your comforter. Don’t cheat on her. Remain faithful to her. Nurture her and she will blossom. Keep in mind that a woman is the glory of man. The more you polish her with your love, the more she will shine. The more you neglect her, the sooner  she will wilt away.

Man at the other end: Gosh! It all sounds like real hard work. I may have to change myself a lot.

Eve: Yes, you may have to change some of yourself for her just as she will have to change some of herself for you. But, this is the beauty of marriage. It ensures that the bonding would last till death would do you apart.

Man at the other end: Thank you very much! No one had made me aware of these things.

Eve: I’m glad that you appreciate. I hope you will bear the above in mind as you cherish your wife for all the days of your life. Wish you a fulfilling married life!

Conversation: 2

Eve: Hello…this is Eve speaking… Could I speak with you for five minutes?

Woman at the other end: Umm… if this is about some brand you are about to endorse, I’m sorry I have no time.

Eve: Well, this sure is about a brand. But, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. You are familiar with this brand already.

Woman at the other end: Which brand are you talking about?

Eve: I’m speaking of the brand called WOMAN.

Woman at the other end: Is there a brand by this word? I’ve never heard of it.

Eve: Yes, there is. And I am the ambassador of this brand since I was the first of this type to be manufactured.

Woman at the other end: Oh!

Eve: Let me tell you some unique features of this brand that would make you proud to be a part of it…

Woman at the other end: What’s there to be proud of it? Don’t you know of so many women at the receiving end of abuse and atrocities of unspeakable means? Haven’t you heard of women being made scapegoats for honour, diplomacy and war? Endless streams of tears and volleys of unspoken emotions… Is this something to be proud of? After all, why are women created so weak and vulnerable?

Eve: It’s sad that women are treated as objects of no worth by many, including the people of their own close circle. But, that’s not the way God created woman. The woman God created was of equal worth to man. Not equal in form, shape and biology…not having altogether equal potentials and capabilities…but of equal worth – so that men and women would complement each other.

Woman at the other end: Hmm…

Eve: So let me tell you about three special features of this brand called ‘Woman’. Firstly, she has amazing abilities to forge and maintain relationships. That is why you see women playing multiple roles and seldom getting worn out. A woman binds people. That’s the talent she is blessed with. Few men can match up to it without losing their cool! Secondly, she is strong. Yes, you heard it right – she is strong. A woman may not have the physical strength of ten elephants, but her mental strength is indisputable. She can fight against all odds and still pull along with life. She is often at the receiving end, but has the ability to brush all aside with a smile. She has high tensile strength! Thirdly, she is beautiful. The word ‘beauty’ is almost always ‘equated’ with woman. You hardly hear anyone complimenting a man as ‘beautiful’! She may be tall or short, frail or plump, a blonde, a brunette, black-haired or greyed, flat nosed or sharp nosed, dusky or fair – she is beautiful. It’s sad that men judge beauty by her external appearance. Beauty lies in the heart not in looks. When men understand this, they will go a long way in understanding women.

Woman at the other end: So true… Seeing the way women are treated all around the world, I was just feeling to give up on myself. Constant threat of security and the bang of patriarchal mindsets…it’s just so suffocating… I was just wondering, aren’t men and women equal after all?

Eve: Dear one, the heart really breaks to see the discrimination and unequal treatment meted out to women all around. Created in the image of God, both men and women are of equal worth. Neither is inferior. But, men and women are created differently with different functional roles so as to make this earth a harmonious civilization. They are meant to complement each other and not compete with each other in a power tussle. However in the face of rising inequality, the demand for equality has raised its head causing women to strive hard to prove themselves equal in every field. And, this has given rise to much disharmony.

Woman at the other end: Hmm…can relate to it now…

Eve: If you look at your watch, you will realize that I have well exceeded the time limit of five minutes. I hope my words will encourage you to feel proud of the brand that you are! Never look down on yourself because a man tells you so. Never underestimate your strength because the society tells you to. Never let your mind lose the battle that you have so valiantly fought till now. Remember, you are fearfully and wonderfully carved by the Creator.

Woman at the other end: I will remember for all the days of my life. It was such a pleasure to hear from you. No doubt, you are the ambassador of the brand WOMAN!