StarCentral magazine recently had the pleasure and privilege to feature and interview acclaimed spiritual guru, world-renowned Astro gemologist, author, thought leader, mentor of millionaires, and also the mentor of the Indian gemstone giant Gemstoneuniverse.
Starting his online e-commerce and consulting business in the early days of the internet in 1996, Guruji Shrii Arnav today mentors internet tycoons to steel magnates as well as world statesmen and spiritual giants.
The year 2020 was a landmark year for him and Gemstoneuniverse where he trail blazed a path to success and at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic led from the front and received many breakthroughs and awards not only for himself but his clients as well.
He was recently featured in Forbes Magazine wherein many of the Gemstoneuniverse bespoke Gemstones and Jewellery pieces were featured along with the industry bigwigs like Bvlgari, Boucheron, Chanel, and Piranesi amongst others.
An intellectual giant and the winner of the competition Success Review – Mr. Super Brain of India, much loved and admired by people and fondly referred to as Guruji-The Teacher, StarCentral Magazine caught up with him to be inspired by his story, and here’s what went down.
When did your entrepreneurial flair first reveal itself?
I had a rather unconventional upbringing wherein due to my mother pursuing her higher degree in medicine in a different part of the country, I used to accompany my father to the Central Jail / Central Prisons where he was the medical superintendent.
Between the ages of 3-6, my playmates and friends, and adversaries were the convicts and the constables of the Central Jail.
This is akin to going to the University of Hard Knocks wherein I learned the basics of demand and supply, negotiation, leveraging, and most importantly the power of boundaries and saying “NO.”
At age 12, I gathered kids around the neighbourhood and asked them to contribute a small amount to start a literary and sports club. I used the funds to buy old discarded comics from the market at discounted rates, got the club members to contribute and share their comics. The same for sports equipment!
Coming from not-so-privileged backgrounds, the members were thrilled to get a large range of literature and sports material at a fraction of the cost. I must proudly say that we had literature ranging from Hardy Boys to Gorky and from Archie’s Digest to Herman Hesse. This led not just to variety but also tremendous value in terms of concepts and adding to our vocabulary repertoire.
I am thrilled to say that we also had top-notch sports equipment which most of us could not have individually owned.
Both my parents were doctors employed by the government and I could see that despite the hard work and dedication they put in those efforts were not recognized either financially or gracefully in an adequate manner.
I promised myself never to opt for a government job that still is a cherished dream of many back home due to the stability it offers.
I wanted to do things on my own and then in 1995 the internet happened and opened a whole new world. My journey on the internet space from Geocities to Yahoo Geocities to Astromandir to Gemstoneuniverse is well documented in the internet space and published media.
Emerald Designed by Guruji Shrii Arnav
You and Gemstoneuniverse bespoke pieces were recently featured in Forbes International. How does it feel to be mentioned alongside other high-profile individuals?
Absolutely fantastic! I consider it a victory for Gemstoneuniverse patrons and workmen rather than my personal accomplishment to be featured with the very best.
In fact, the moment I saw the story I told my team to send a congratulatory message to the actual patrons for whom we made these bespoke pieces and the bench jeweller team who with their exceptional dedication made these pieces. Some of the team members of the bench jewellery team come from far-out villages.
They made me proud and I sent them a personal message saying, “see you are right up there with the very best and that is the way you should feel.”
It says a lot about two things.
One, at Gemstoneuniverse we have a quality standard and process that cannot be compromised, and second, our manufacturing quality is second to none.
It breaks the stereotype that Indian jewelry manufacturing practices and workmanship is inferior – it is not and we prove it with every single piece that we make with love, dedication, and attention to detail.
As an entrepreneur, what is it that motivates and drives you?
Let me give you an example. Since March 2020 when Covid was at the peak to the present day, Gemstoneuniverse has not let off any single team member. There are mining areas where mining has halted but we found ways to keep our employees gainfully occupied.
2020 and 2021 till now have been years of many landmarks and that is possible because of being an entrepreneur. At the same time what thrills us is the victory of our clients and patrons.
We mentored and were a part of the success journey of many of our patrons whether it was through gem therapy, life coaching, or mentorship.
It is the spirit of entrepreneurship that ensures that we sustain not just our employees but also their families and extended relations.
The ability to be a positive change agent is what motivates and drives me and the humane side of entrepreneurship is ‘People are responsible for People’s Success.’
We grow when our team grows when our clients grow and I am happy to be in a nice place.
Guruji With Emeralds
Despite the uncertainties of the markets and the severe financial squeeze and lack of opportunities due to COVID, you were able to open the new Gemstoneuniverse plush store in one of the most iconic properties in the world’s coloured Gemstone Capital – Bangkok. How did that come about and how does it feel to have Ms. Thailand as your brand ambassador?
I am of the opinion that adversities and uncertainties are the best friends of mankind for they foster innovation and bring out the best in you.
Despite a disrupted supply chain and unpredictable shipping and delivery times, I have to thank the Gemstoneuniverse patrons and community who kept the faith in us and the orders kept coming in.
We already had a buying division facility in Bangkok but I felt the need to have a retail outlet here since it is a global capital and one of the major power tourist destinations in Asia where I think the next decade of future business activity and growth lies.
Besides keeping in line with the Gemstoneuniverse’s unmatched price policy it helps us climbing some notches in the Gemstones pipeline which in turn leads to even better quality and reduced costs that we can pass onto our patrons.
Both Gemstoneuniverse facilities in Indira Nagar Bangalore, as well as The Holiday Inn Silom Bangkok, are world-class facilities located in iconic properties.
This was my vision from the start to bring some kind of respectability to planetary Gemology and Astrology which due to the kind of practitioners earn a bad rep. We have patrons ranging from bus conductors to tempo drivers to royalty to world statesmen and products ranging from $15 onwards to no upper limit.
Regardless of the client profile each one gets equal respect at Gemstoneuniverse and enters our facilities without any pressure or prejudices.
I am thrilled whenever a teenager walks in and buys a small little earring for their special friend and posts a photo tagging us or a senior citizen who is an existing client stopping by just to have a cup of tea because he likes the people and ambiance – that kind of special relationship, camaraderie, and goodwill is difficult to earn and I cherish it a lot.
As far as Ms. Thailand – Ms. Grace Narintorn is concerned, it was an honour to have her at the opening. She represents all that Gemstoneuniverse stands for.
Solid traditions with a modern outlook. She is deeply spiritual and currently pursuing higher studies in Forensic Psychology. She sported a Nine Gemstone Pendant worth $150 to a bespoke Burma Blue Sapphire and a Diamond Necklace worth $1 million. That is the range and people I am talking about.
Guruji Shrii Arnav With Ms. Thailand Grace Narintorn
As a mentor, you are known for your unconventional methods and approach. What are the key factors that you use to get success for your clients?
There is no one size fits all strategy or a miraculous silver bullet. Each person is unique, their problems are unique, their capabilities are unique and so are their solutions.
I might find a solution in Vedic Astrology, sacred spirituality, Gem Therapy, coaching and mentoring, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Mantra chanting, esoteric practices,SWOT analysis, or the 7 habits of highly effective people framework or maybe use a combination of tools to bring the desired results.
Hard work and consistency are mandatory and when I see that I can examine situations akin to DNA analysis and then share battle-tested tips and techniques to take the game to the next level.
There is no bigger joy and reward to me than to see my clients and those who believe in me succeed. As I said, every person is unique so to get a person with PTSD to realize his dream of becoming a bestselling author or naming the SKUS of certain parts of an automobile Giant or helping someone gain better spiritual insights to assisting folks excelling in their careers each one requires a unique strategy and approach.
What do you hope to see happen in the near future for small businesses all over the world?
Entrepreneurship is directly proportional to self-reliance and I am happy to see so many young folks interested in starting out on their own. Small businesses the world over are all set to become the lifeline of the economy.
However, small business owners need to realize that dreams have to be matched by hard work and client delight. I think if you have 100 delighted clients who would vouch for you then there is no looking back.
Instead of dreaming of million-dollar valuations or getting rich overnight in stock trading, I would advise young folks to get their first 100 delighted clients and look at unique ways to solve a critical problem.
Less dependence on governments and corporates for employment augurs well for all and I wish all small business owners well.
The Grandmaster Examining a Fine Emerald from the Coveted Muzo Mines for a Prestigious Auction
You have been hailed as the father of Astro Gemology with your book the secrets of Jyotish Gems becoming a worldwide phenomenon. What do you feel about it and what are your future plans.
What gives me some satisfaction is that the book has bought some kind of standardization in the field of Astro Gemology and trading of Gemstones especially in the vastly unregulated markets in Asia where essentially they do not follow the best practices and good information is lacking leading to trading of ineffective poor quality junk stones pedaled as Gemstones.
It was quite surprising to me that despite much of the information available on the Gemstoneuniverse portal the book has had a more powerful and far-reaching impact.
In a short span of 18 months, the Secrets of Jyotish Gems is now available in 5 different languages and what I learned is even though most people would understand English and some of the essence may be lost in translation, people still enjoying reading it in their local language.
The latest edition of the Book published by the prestigious publishing house Har-Anand Publications is in Thai Language and was presented by His Excellency General Prayut Chan-o-cha – The Prime Minister of Thailand and several important dignitaries and spiritual giants.
What is your message to our readers of StarCentral Magazine?
Where is the time to hate when there is so little time to love!
Dream Big, back it up with hard work, don’t search for the 27th alphabet, celebrate small wins, and be gracious and humble while enjoying your success journey. I wish you well.
To know more about Guruji and Gemstone Universe you can visit their website via www.gemstoneuniverse.com.
You can also follow them via their social media accounts below:
Guruji Shrii Arnav presenting the Secrets of Jyotish Gems to the Prime Minister of Thailand