Friday, December 31, 2010

And It's 2011...

As another New Year approaches, the usual resolutions like losing weight or taming your career come to mind. According to me, it is also the time to mull over on how to help oneself become a better individual by cultivating certain areas of my life and to not to repeat the mistakes that I committed this year.

It is difficult to feel positive about life when things don't seem to go the way you want. Like all people I too have moments when I feel low but then there is a lot more to life. Abraham Lincoln's words come to mind, "We can complain that rose bushes have thorns. Or we can rejoice that thorn bushes have roses". We all have a tendency to look at the negative but it is so much better to look for the positive in our lives. I know it’s easily said than done. But there is no harm in giving it a try.

Another very important thing that I have learnt is to stop expecting others to change for me because each person has his or her own life to lead, and though you can advise them, their life will be their own. Even in love you have to feel sufficient in yourself rather than worry about being hurt or not being loved enough. As they say, “Life is short, so enjoy every single moment of it.” What we have today might not stay with us tomorrow so let’s cherish it.

It is also essential to be yourself otherwise you will lose track of who you are meant to be in life. Sometime we are swayed by other people or we change ourselves so that people love or like us more. This is when words of Oscar Wilde, "Be yourself, everyone else is taken. It is only by discovering one's true self that you can find your true journey in the world. You have to start liking yourself for others to like you. It’s better to avoid inferiority complex. It just pulls you down.

Every individual should welcome change in life. That is what makes life such an interesting journey. As you grow older you grow wiser and each age brings with it a new beauty and experience.

In conclusion, the words of Jesus, "Pure Love is a flood which covereth all things. Nothing can stand against it, for it floweth from the Eternal Sea" it encourages us to think better and make better persons of ourselves as we grow afar the limits that we set upon ourselves as humans.

Have a kickass 2011! Enjoy! :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Knocking Our Doors - The Sacred Month Of Muharram

With the observing of the new moon the Islaamic New Year is steered in. Muharram, the first month is one of the four holy months that Allah has talked about in the Holy Qur’an, with which the Muslims begin their lunar Hijrah Calendar. Muharram is so called because it is a holy month and to confirm its sacredness one can read the Allah's words "so wrong not yourselves therein…" mean do not wrong yourselves in these sacred months, because it is believed that sin committed in these months is worse than in other months.

Muharram is so called because it was improper to fight during this month; the word has stemmed from the word ‘haram’ meaning prohibited. Muharram is not a festival in the celebratory sense as it mourns the Karbala tragedy when Imam Husain, grandson of Prophet Muhammad, was martyred in the early days of Islamic history. Their death is a sad day for all Muslims, especially the Shi’a, who hold grieving rituals to recall the virtuous qualities for which the brave martyrs stood and the grave calamities that they thus had to bear. The remembrance of this brutal massacre (Battle of Karbala) begins on the first day of Muharram and reaches its highlight on the 10th of Muharram, the day of the battle, known as ‘Ashurah’.

The massacre of Hussain took place on the tenth day of the month of Muharram; hence, the occasion is called Ashura. It is perceived as a day for public expression of grief. These episodes brought about the division of the community into two sects - the Shias and the Sunnis. The Shias consider Ali, Hassan and Hussain as the just heirs of Prophet Mohammed and mourn their death during Muharram. At the appearance of the moon, people clad in black assemble and recite sorrowful verses over sweetened cold drink, in memory of Imam Hussain. They observe the entire month as a period of mass mourning. There is no celebration or expression of joy of any kind. Women are expected to abandon all adornments. Public enactments of grief, portraying scenes from the Battle of Karbala, are carried out in Shia mosques on the first ten days. This is done to express the brutalities that Hussain suffered during the battle of Karbala. The Sunnis, on the other hand, celebrate the occasion on a quieter note and indulge in calm and silent offerings.

Profusely decorated Taziyas (bamboo and paper replicas of the martyr's tomb), elaborated with gold and mica are carried through city streets. Mourners beat their back mourning and weeping over the murder, accompanied by drum beats. Young men beat their back crying "Husain! Husain!" in collective sorrow.

To conclude I would like to say is the best tribute that we can pay to them is to do some soul-searching. Do we have the right to be called the followers of the Prophet Mohammed? Have we really understood the message of Imam Husain? Are the tears for Husain drawn merely by the scenes of mere bloodshed? Are we ready to shed aside our differences and respect each other’s views during our religious talks during Moharram?

When we will have all the answers and when we will follow the path that they have told us to, only then will we be able to comprehend the significance of Karbala.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sapno Ka Shahar... Aamchi Mumbai

The Second Anniversary is on the way...

We salute our Soldiers Shri Hemant Karkare, Vijay Salaskar, Ashok Amte, Unni Krishnan... The Hero of The Soil sacrifice their life for all of us when we went through a phase that was nothing but brutal. 26/11 was the worst terror attack that Mumbai ever witnessed. Terror has become a part of our life for almost two decades but we have taken everything in our stride and will do so. We cannot be bullied down by any terror and will get back to our business as usual as we are known. Mumbaikar never stop, never’s the Spirit of Mumbai which will never die. We will never forget their sacrifice.

Mumbai…The largest metropolis of India, the city full of dreams that virtually never sleeps. Life here never appears boring, especially due to the presence of its everlasting chaos and action. That’s Mumbai! This brightest gem of the country addresses over 15 million Mumbaikars, including the affluent industrialists, stunning celebrities and distinguished artists.

The city buzzes with actions 24x7. Local trains...the life line of Mumbai are a famous pull. They ascertain that proficiency is still there in India! The Local trains do a great job indeed. I am a student and i travel from Vasai to Churchgate every day.

Mumbai is a friend, philosopher and a teacher. It teaches a lot about life. It teaches you how to survive. Probably no other city in India teaches you as that of Mumbai. You do not have to read books or talk to people to understand life. If you live in Mumbai your outlook would change and you would feel that you are with a good friend.

Mumbai is the live example of sayings like "Sky is the Limit" or "Nothing Is Impossible". Gems like Dhirubhai Ambani, Ratan Tata, Azeem Premji are live examples. People from various states and culture live happily without any barriers of caste, creed or language. You can call it the ‘Melting Pot’. The belief of "Mera Bharat Mahan" is felt only in Mumbai.

Mumbai is the second word for oppotunity. Some people who reached Mumbai without any money have become millionaires through a lot of hard work. I may say the city is a city of opportunities and prosperity. If you want to work you will always find some opportunity to earn your livelihood without depending on others.

Attractions in Mumbai (in and around)
Film City
Gateway of India
Mahalaxmi Racecourse
Versova Beach
Chowpatty Beach
Juhu Beach
Marine Drive
Hanging Gardens
Sanjay Gandhi National Park
Bombay Natural History Society
National Gallery of Modern Art
Nehru Planetarium
Prince of Wales Museum
Victoria & Albert Museum
Powai Lake
Tulsi Lake
Vihar Lake
Haji Ali
Mumba Devi Temple
Essel World
Water Kingdom
Chor Bazaar
Crawford Market
Fashion Street

Other tourist's attractions near Mumbai City
Ajanta & Ellora Caves
Aurangabad Caves
Elephanta Caves
Kanheri Caves

Hotels in Mumbai City
Le Meridien Mumbai
Grand Hyatt Mumbai
Taj Lands End Mumbai
Sun-N-Sand Mumbai
Leela Kempinski Mumbai
Hyatt Regency Mumbai
Taj Mahal Mumbai

Referred as the city of Bollywood, Mumbai pulls thousands of promising actors and artists from all over the country. Experience its dazzling nightlife in beaches, lounges, discotheques, pubs and bars. Gardens, museums, shopping malls, amusement parks, beaches and lakes define the charisma of this economic hub. Thus, without any delay, travel to the New York of India and experience its glimmer.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Festival Of Sacrifice In Islam

Eid-Ul-Adha also known as 'Festival of Sacrifice' or 'Sacrifice Feast' is mainly an event to give and to sacrifice. This festival is an occasion to remember Allah for all the prosperity granted on us. This feeling is confirmed by sharing your affluence with less fortunate ones. Just like Ramadan and Eid ul-Fitr, Bakra Eid too is celebrated with grand fervor and eagerness. This holy occasion is observed from the 10th to the 12th day of the twelfth month of Dhul Hijjah in the Islamic calendar. The festival memorializes the faith of Prophet Ibrahim in God, when he agreed to sacrifice his son upon the order by God. Popularly, Bakr-Id is marked by the slaughter of animals (Kurbani as they say) as sacrificial offerings, after which the meat is distributed among the needy and deprived. Id-ul-Zuha, or Id-ul-Adha, as it is called in Arabic, translates as 'the feast of sacrifice'.

There is a fascinating legend that states the importance of Bakri Eid. Once, Allah challenged Prophet Ibrahim, the friend of Allah and the father of Prophets. Ibrahim had to prove his faith in Allah. Allah asked him to sacrifice the dearest and nearest one in his life. Ibrahim decided to take up the challenge and decided to sacrifice his son Ismail. His love towards his son was as strong as his faith in Allah. Though his heart went numb, he put his son on the altar at the mount of Mina near Mecca. It was impossible to see his son dying in front of his eyes. He could not imagine slaying his own child but he could not deny the order of almighty. He closed his eyes and raised the sharp sword. Reciting Allah's name he divided the head from the body. He opened his eyes and could not believe on his senses. His son Ismail was standing healthy and hearty in front of his eyes. A dead ram with his head apart was lying in the pool of blood. Ibrahim emerged as a winner as he accepted god's challenge with complete faith.

Soon after completing breakfast, it is time for sacrifice of domestic animals. Only animals that have been regarded Halal or approved for sacrifice are slayed. Such domestic animals include goat, sheep, lamb, ram, camel, cow, buffalo, and others. While most people purchase them well in advance and take good care, others prefer purchasing the animal at the time of slaughtering. The slaughtering can be carried out from the morning of the 10th day to just after afternoon on the 12th day.

Muslims wear good clothes and exchange greetings with one another by hugging and wishing “Eid Mubarak”. The festival gives one an opportunity to meet near and dear ones and get closer. Special gatherings and parties are organized on this special season. Also, a number of getaways and picnics are exclusively prearranged during these three days. Muslims across the world indulge in spreading joy and happiness through celebrating this festival.

To conclude…

May this...
Eid bring Fun, Eid bring Happiness,
Eid bring God Endless Blessings,
Eid bring fresh love...
EID MUBARAK to You with all best wishes!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Outrank Your Online Competitors With These Simple and Easy SEO Tips & Techniques

It is true that amongst every technology and invention till now, internet is one of the most outstanding triumphs in the technology. Individuals are surfing internet for miscellaneous reasons. Search Engine Optimization, also known as SEO, is the art and science of making web pages attractive to the search engines. The better optimized the page is, the higher a ranking it will achieve in search engine result listings. This is especially critical because most people who use search engines only look at the first page or two of the search results, so for a page to get high traffic from a search engine, it has to be listed in those first two or three pages. In this process, the page content should be properly distributed with relevant keywords to be recognized by search engine robot in order to index the contents easily. Properly selected keywords make your site easily reachable for the target customers.
As the time is passing by, the vogue to attain high traffic volume in websites is getting faster and tougher. That is if you are passé on SEO Techniques like On Page SEO, Off Page SEO or Article Writing. In the event you lack as well considerably knowledge in promoting your site, then you must make a move now.

Cited below are a few SEO Techniques that can help you to improve your rankings:
  • Keyword Research Analytics - Apprehending what keyword research involves and employing it persistently is the basis of all of the SEO marketing techniques. Think of a keyword as a problem statement or a question. Think of how your mind works when you type in an inquiry on Google. For example, if you want to know ‘where do I find a good SEO Consultant' you will enter your query and get Google or Yahoo! or Bing to do the work for you. That search generates the familiar results page. If you are a SEO professional or a Consultant, you would be delighted to have your business appear in the first entries on the page. You get discovered that way. Become a guru in keyword search and implementation and in time, you will be followed like a celebrity.
  • Quality content - That goes without saying. Good, quality content which is fascinating to the audiences is requisite. Nothing can influence the search engine more, make no mistake. Make sure you write the contents for your audience and not for the search engines. And it is very important that you add fresh and new contents to your web pages repeatedly as it tells the search engine that your web site is very much alive and active. Consistency is very important.
  • Not Using Analytics Software – If you are not measuring the effectiveness of your web site with a free of charge, powerful analytics software such as Google Analytics, then you aren’t going to be in a position to play with the big boys. As a way to grow, develop, and make critical amendments to your strategy you will certainly need to understand what has taken place, what exactly has been effective, and what hasn’t. You just can’t do this without an analytics program. There is no justification not to utilize one considering one of the very best programs out there, Google Analytics, is free of charge.
  • Link building - Good content and consistent link building – the two most important factors of Search engine optimization. Gone are the days where any links were good enough to achieve good page ranks with the search engines. Now you should take extreme care on who are linking to you and from where? You must have come across the terms like “relevant web site/page” and “good neighborhood”. It means that you get more credit if you get back-linking from web sites which are based on the same theme as yours and preferably have high page rank.
    Now the big question… Who is going to link to you? Why should well reputable web sites with high page ranks, will consider linking to a new site like yours? Most of them will not, but if you have a decent site with quality content some may just agree. Other options like submitting to directories are one of them. Try writing some good articles on your web site theme and submit them to directories round the world. Most article directories will allow you to put a couple of links inside your article provided your article is good enough to be selected. Submitting to various directories get your web site indexed by the search engine much faster than otherwise.
  • Approach - Your overall approach towards optimizing your web site will ultimately influence your site’s ranking in more than one ways. ‘Slow but steady’ should be the right approach. You can’t achieve anything here in the SEO world overnight. Patience is the key here. Don’t try to optimize your site for broad keywords like ‘web design’ or ‘Pizzas’ at the first instance- it will be sheer waste of time and energy. Rather chose what is known as ‘long tail technique’. And when you have got some results start working on those broader keywords. And you should have the same approach towards link-building as well. Be realistic. Don’t try to get too many links too fast. Search engine call it spamming and they ban spammers. Just keep everything plain and simple.
Although apart from these there are many other factors and techniques that determine your ranking! Its a long road but there is nothing better than seeing your site on the first page of the result page.

Good Luck!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Social Media - The Next Big Thing!

Social media is emerging and developing at a very fast pace. But SMM is a supplement and not a substitute. You cannot take it as a career opportunity but you can surely use it as a tool to boost your career. It is, in short, having an interaction. Have an interaction with your consumers because at the end of the day it’s all about benefiting your consumer and earning profit. It’s about having a dialogue rather than having a monologue. And what could be a better option than our Social Media. The most powerful tool at present. To put this in the shortest possible manner; it’s a three step process :

  • Direction
  • Objective
  • Improving lifestyle of the consumers

Know your direction. Be sure where you want to go. Then be clear with your objective. Target your audience. Do not lose your focus. And then the most important step of all... to improve the lifestyle of your consumer. Always remember 'Consumer is GOD'. It’s all about His benefit. If your product or service is not good then this hits you bad very badly. So be very sure of your product and the service that you are rendering.

But remember don't try to be everything to everyone. You'll end up being nothing to no one. Choose your segment. Choose your people.

Segment --> Position --> Attack!

And as I have already mentioned earlier, Social Media is a supplement and not a substitute. Integrate it with other media vehicles. Conventional media is equally important. Maintain a balance. Be responsive. As i said earlier, have a dialogue instead of a monologue. Be consistence. Interact with your consumers. But in all this process do not lose sight of the product. Read your consumers regularly. Remember...the need of the consumer is your need.

Having said that, one of the questions that arise is why does one use Social Media?
Ask yourself. The answer lies within you. Why do 'You' use Social Media?

  • To keep in touch with your loved ones.
  • To make new friends and know people.
  • Peer pressure - if your friends are using it then it becomes mandatory for us also to be a part of it.
  • To get validation.
  • Displaying. Humans have this tendency to 'show off'. They want others to know what they can do.
  • Creativity - again human tendency to 'show off' their talent to the world.

These are some of the reasons I got, which led me to the other question : How should one do it? The answer to this question is clear. One can do this through :

  • Blogs
  • Tagging
  • Wikis (Wikipedia)
  • RSS
  • Rating and Reviews
  • Social networking Sites (Facebook, twitter, etc...)
  • Forums and Message boards.

These are your tools. This is what Social Media is all about. Now all depends on how you use these tools for your benefit. Remember, it’s all about consumers. Earn the trust of your consumers and you will earn profit. It’s a give and take process. You give your consumers what they want and they will give you what you want!

Consumers trust consumers. 78% consumers trust peer recommendations. 14% trust advertisements. Humans have this tendency to share. They like sharing. So create sharable stuff. Remember, your brand is what your consumer says it is.

Social Media is very important in today's time and it will be the most powerful tool in the coming years. A famous person has said, "By the time there is a case study in your specific industry, it is going to be way too late for you to catch up."

It is a slow process but the results are very powerful. As they say, 'slow and steady wins the race'. It’s exactly the same. To be successful in this field, follow these simple steps:

  • Choose your people. Choose your segment. Know your Consumers.
  • Be very clear with your goal. What is your main purpose? Have a clear target in your mind.
  • Then plan a strategy to influence your consumers.
  • And then the most important of all is The process. As I mentioned earlier, the process is slow but the results are powerful.
  • Be consistent. Commit. It’s not about’s about conversation.

You have to learn to listen before you talk. It’s about creating 'show-able' content. Your users are also your content distributors. It’s not a campaign. It’s a process that will eventually evolve into a culture. It is a part of Integrated Marketing. It has to align with your other communication channels. Once you start, there is no going back. Be patient. Take baby steps. Be consistent.

It’s like lighting up a forest with a match stick. And as Baba Ranchoddas says “Pursue excellence, and success will follow, pants down.”