Shloka Teacher Divya Doraiswamy Recites Her Favorite Shloka That Helps Her Attain Inner Peace
- IWB Post
- April 11, 2018
People usually have a song on their mind, I have had ‘Shlokas’ for last two days, you’ll soon find out why.
So many parents are still trying to understand the need for unconventional classes of music, dance, cooking, grooming, etc., and here is Divya Doraiswamy with her shloka school. She started Gurukulam – The Shloka Learning Center back in 2014 and is still running strong with great plans for expansion. She also found a way to reach out to her students by writing articles on her blog, Fun Shloka Classes. While everyone is trying to move forward to peep into the future, Divya takes a step back into the ancient world to find her peace.
She believes “kids as little as three need to be exposed to a variety of information since their grasping capacity is something spectacular.” She shares her thoughts and favorites shlokas with us.
A school for learning shlokas, how did you even think of this?
Sometime in 2004, I had gone through a bad phase in life dealing with my divorce, and to get over it, I had learned many shlokas. I decided to teach others what I had learned, and I chose children because it helps relieve anxiety, recklessness, and worries. I did a quick fast track program with six children in my apartment. Later I found out that a lot of parents were keen in sending their children to such classes. So, in 2014, I started my journey as a Shlokaprenuer.
How do you manage to connect the young students with the deep meanings shlokas have?
All the shlokas are in the Sanskrit language, and kids have not been exposed to it before. To children who are just 4-7 years old, I explain to them the meaning of the shlokas rather than interpreting word to word for them.
You even have mother-baby classes!
Today we don’t have much of those classes because I don’t travel much. I do sessions on skype now. Many moms-to-be or mothers with 2-3-year-old children come to me so they can introduce this art to their children. They later teach their children the same shlokas over the week.
Have you written any shlokas?
No. They have experts for that, so I leave it to them. I have learned a lot of them, but I don’t think I am capable of writing any so far.
Who is your teacher?
My parents have been there throughout my journey.
One happy story from Gurukulam that keeps you going?
I do teach kids with special needs. One child who had a speech difficulty showed improvement in just 6 months after taking shloka classes. That’s what makes me happy to this day.
What challenges have you come across while building this venture?
Gurukulam is the first of its kind Shloka School in Bangalore so reaching out to parents has been the biggest challenge. Since it’s a new concept and people need to believe in your work to get their kids coming for such classes.
Advertising might have taken a lot of time then?
I started putting up small advertisements in locals shops, boutiques, pre-schools, fitness centers and on Facebook. We have grown from 6 kids to 50 kids. Word of mouth has worked wonders too. Today, we don’t need advertisement. We have people waiting to join our classes. We have inquiries from the USA and Indonesia, and students are already in the queue for Skype lessons.
Now, I have been trying to reach out to schools for the visually impaired and government schools. I want to teach there as a service activity and not as something that gives me income.
How do you research shlokas for your classes?
My research happens from ancient religious texts and shloka books.
Do you think we should include shlokas in the school curriculum?
Currently, we are doing this as an after-school activity for children, but some schools have approached me asking to teach this in school. I haven’t given it a thought yet. The idea is to expand and reach out to more children. Shloka learning is an important part of education.
Are shlokas part of your morning, too?
In the morning, I love to take a quick walk and relish my morning cup of coffee. After that I have skype calls with children across the globe. Most of my classes for kids in India are post lunch. By 7 pm I wrap up work and either go for a swim or a walk.
You are very big on your Me-Time!
For me, it’s about swimming, writing my blog, reading and spending time with my niece. My family is essential, so I spend time with them.
What books do you prefer?
I am not an avid reader, but I read books related to economics, and the Indian economy, especially.
Define yourself in a line!
People’s person and a happy go lucky human.
What are your favorite shlokas?
The Hare Krishna Mahamantra :
hare kṛṣṇa hare kṛṣṇa kṛṣṇa kṛṣṇa hare hare
hare rāma hare rāma rāma rāma hare hare
I try and do 4 malas (1 Mala = 108 Beads) of this mantra daily. There is no particular reason or interpretation of the same. It’s just that I am an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna and saying this maha mantra helps me stay calm & makes me less anxious.
You keep reading other articles, while I google shlokas to attain inner peace.
This article was first published on September 5, 2017.