Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Mark Twain gems!

Posted: January 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.” — Mark Twain.

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How feelings awaken abundance

Posted: December 8, 2011 in Uncategorized

How feelings awaken abundance.

Choose awarefully!

Posted: December 7, 2010 in Uncategorized

Dear Friend,

I may seem like a happy-go-lucky person, but that is not the whole truth. I may seem to be always having fun, but many times it’s just a facade. I have been in pain too and I totally understand your’s, excepting I won’t talk about it unless you bring it up.

Life would be meaningless without the opposites. If you weren’t so tall, your best friend won’t be so short. If you weren’t fair, I wouldn’t be dark, right? To understand pleasure you need to feel the pain. There cannot be pleasure without the pain. That is what I have come to understand about life.

Even if you had a row of buttons in front of you and you can make things happen by pressing those buttons; get a Ferrari, fall in love, be married or happy, you would still want a button which says “surprise”. Because if everything happened exactly as you want it to happen, you will be very bored.

So it’s best that life is full of uncertainties, sometimes even unhappiness. Pain comes through non-acceptance as Buddha, Jesus and Mohammad taught us. Accept pain, in fact embrace pain. I know it’s easy to say, but there is no other way out. Most of the suffering comes from resisting. Jesus said resist not evil. Whatever you resist, persists.

As Rhonda Bryne’s “The Secret” tells us about the “law of attraction”, whatever we think most about, happens to us. If you think of pain always, you will be in pain. That doesn’t serve you.

So think about what you want, and your mind will find a way to get it for you. The mind is a homing device and it always stays on target. Just give it the right target. In fact choose your target, your desires.

Most times, we are running on auto pilot and we are not aware of a majority of our thoughts. Our subconscious mind records every single thing you see, hear, taste touch or smell and for ever. It is the operating software of your life. What you believe deep in your heart is what you get and your belief is because of your experiences right from childhood till now.

So if you don’t have the life you want, you need to look deep inside and find that faulty belief and remove it. You have to increase you awareness and one way of doing that is through meditation.

Being a muslim, I don’t know if that way is open to you but, meditation has nothing to do with any religion. It just makes you still your mind, and there are no conflicts within yourself and from that still ness whatever you think and want will come about.

I am just being your friend here, and sharing the knowledge that is helping me. According to quantum physics and the ancient Hindu Vedanta (the cream of the Vedas), as also many ancient religions, GOD is that energy which is conscious of itself, and which has precipitated itself into you, me and all the others apart from this earth, the milky way, the galaxies, the air we breath, the water we drink, the animals, plants, etc.

So GOD is not just the screenplay writer of our life, but he is also playing all the characters. He is also the props, he is also the stage and he is also the audience. It’s too complex a thought to comprehend, but if you trust in the divine – may it be jesus or Allah, you may experientially understand it.

This is not something I speak of with most of my friends, as they may not understand it, but I see you have a higher awareness and so this conversation.

Don’t ask how you will rid yourself of the pain. Ask yourself what will make you happy and walk that path. Happiness will be in the journey and not the destination.

So do each thing joyfully and whenever you think about any pain, smile, embrace it, welcome it, make it your friend, treat it as a dear memory and then think of the next joyful thing you want to do. Focus only on what you want and that thing will grow and you will attract more and more of it and before you know it, your life will be filled with laughter and love.

Loosen up my friend, don’t take anything too seriously and have fun. There is nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. Everywhere, there is you, just you. Even I am you, so is the guy who gave you so much pain. You can’t run away from yourself can you?

And watch the secret everyday till it is burned into your being. It will lead you to research and read many more books which will help you understand.

The Secret indeed has really helped me and I am sure it will help you too. Also read Rhonda Bryne’s THE POWER, if you haven’t already.

Though we had connected only briefly, trust me, I do care and wish you all happiness always.

Your friend,

Devraj.

The ratings War!

Posted: July 21, 2010 in Uncategorized

I grew up in Ahmedabad, the-once-capital of Gujarat, India’s western most state bordering Pakistan. Like any desert part of the world, the climate was extreme. While in winter, though the mercury never did dip to the minus, summers were terrible at 50 degree Celsius.

Television viewing was a ritual we indulged in as kids. Home after school, was spent in front of the TV. With the frying heat, sneaking out was not a choice. Cable TV hadn’t started and the options were limited to local content.

As I grew up in the late eighties and early nineties, Ahmedabad was a booming TV station and the richest TV station amongst all regional TV stations with lots of sponsored programs. Gujarati stars came from Mumbai to act there and it attracted a host of directors and editors also from Mumbai. A few big time Mumbai (them Bombay) producers also had serials running there.

Then the competition got hot and all sorts of people started coming in. Not understanding what TV/films are all about, they started undercutting each other. To compound matters, a small poor production got good ratings. There being NO established co-relation between ratings and expensive productions, ratings became the sacred mantra.

Some overzealous well meaning higher up, without adequate understanding of the media, allowed the rates to dip. Since the per-episode rate became low, the artist rates, writer rates and technician rates as also production value had to be cut. It resulted in bad production. Because of bad production, the viewer-ship fell. Because the viewer ship fell, the ad rates also fell. So the per episode rate dipped even further and so began a vicious circle that destroyed the industry which impact is felt to this very day.

It has been 20 years since, but Ahmedabad still hasn’t recovered from those disastrous happenings. With the rates falling so low, all the good artists, technicians had no choice but to migrate to Mumbai. The left overs were non-artists and technicians who wouldn’t have been accepted anywhere. Only monkeys work for peanuts.

I am glad, that we at ASTRO are doing the reverse. We are paying good money to the good producers who make good productions. More per-episode money will attract the intelligent, well learned, qualified people to the industry whose parents otherwise will not allow their sons and daughters into the TV industry were the money to be small.

So more money, more intelligent people coming in, better productions, more viewers, better ad rates, and the cycle goes higher and higher. This indeed, is the way to build the TV industry.

Yes the important thing is that ASTRO should be all ready and prepared to milk the benefits when it grows bigger. If you expand the pie and others partake of it that would be stupidity too. I would say as industry leaders who invariably stand to earn, when the market grows bigger, the onus is on ASTRO to build this industry and the best way indeed is to pay well.

I was quite impressed with Zainir in the May 19th Pitching Forum, when he said that EPIC DRAMA costs are very high and he was aware that they may not fetch big ratings. But it showcases the Malaysian legends and history to the world and it is an exercise above the ratings game. He cannot recover their cost by running it only on Citra. I am sure he has ideas to sell it to the international market. Looking at the good budgets and the production values, I am confident the HISTORY channel and DISCOVERY will lap it up.

ASTRO has had the foresight to have foreign tie-ups. Foreign tie-ups, by its superior production values, international scripts with universal appeal tweaked to drama perfection, with good camera work, editing, music, mixing, styling, etc gives the local industry an example to aim at. That alone is worth the premium it commands. It will surely raise the industry standards, and expand the industry. At the moment, so research tells us, many upper class Malaysians prefer watching English content.

Slowly but surely, superior content produced locally will win them over. I am glad that even when sometimes ratings are not all that high, good productions are being appreciated and that, we are not succumbing to the pressures of the ratings game. I am glad that we have the vision to understand that what wins the ratings war is King only for the day, but good content will always rule.

We at ASTRO understand that Ratings won, is just a battle won. There are other countless battles that make up this war; and an important component of it is MONEY which increases quality exponentially, on all fronts.

How I wish somebody had shown the same mature understanding, 20 years ago in Ahmedabad. It then would have been a thriving hub of great cultural activity and the local TV station would still be teeming with talent. Well, all’s not lost and I see signs of the industry being resuscitated.

I am glad we have such examples to guide us through, but my heart still asks – why does it take an Ahmedabad to …………. and why did it have to be ‘My Ahmedabad’ or ‘Aapnu Amdavad’ as it is known now?

Adios!

What to blog

Posted: July 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

Hi guys,

I am in an unsual place today. I have been asked to contribute a blog to the Astro blog. It could be anything under the sun, excepting not anything under the sun makes for interesting reading.

Now I am not into politics and I am certainly not abreast of the disasters happening, all around us.  I follow Gandhiji’s dictum of “DONT SPEAK, HEAR OR SEE EVIL”, which rules out most the stuff which makes this world interesting – some would say.

I don’t watch horror movies, nor will I make them. However, I do have a show on air called Aalia which is telecast on Astro, Prima 9PM monday – thursday. The other serials which I have produced and which are now doing the repeat rounds are Katrina Kamelia, Senja Permia, Di bawah ketiak istri, Qalesya, etc.

Qalesya season 2, by the way, begins from 9th August, 9Pm at Astro Prima. I think the world of Qalesya which is a well crafted entertaining drama featuring some of the most amazing kids I have worked with and my expectations are pretty high for it.

The management class I lectured the other day about our activities was pretty interesting too. Maybe I could blog on that, unless you guys have different ideas.

Do, please do let me know, what to blog….

Cheers!!

Dev.

Hello world!

Posted: July 13, 2010 in Uncategorized

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