Thursday, January 31, 2013
The Dance of the Divine
Q: Dear Gurudev, can you please tell us more about the lineage of the masters?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Well, we do not know when it exactly began, since it goes back many thousands of years.
The knowledge of Yoga, Meditation, and the knowledge that the whole of the universe is created by One energy, has been passed down through the tradition of the Masters.
Usually when you create something, the creator is separate and the object is separate.
For example, if you were to create a candle, you would think - this candle is different from me, and you would keep it apart and away from yourself. You would think, ‘It is my creation but it is not me.'
So, this is usually what people think, the Creator and this Creation are two separate things. But if you say God is omnipresent, meaning present everywhere, he must be present inside the Creation as well.
Where is the space for something to exist outside of it, if something is omnipresent? Isn't it?!
If I am all powerful, can there be something else which is more powerful than me? Not possible.
So the Creation and Creator are not two different things. There is only One thing.
Now, how do we understand this, that the Creator and the Creation are one? Through the example of a dance and the dancer. Can you separate a dance from the dancer? No! It is impossible.
If you have to see the dance, you can only see it through the dancer.
A painter and his painting are different. A painter can paint a painting and move away, and there will still be a painting. But a dancer cannot move away from his dance.
So the Creation and the Creator are like the dance and the dancer.
That energy, which we call God, or Love, or Light, is permeating the whole of creation, and every particle of the universe.
This is the essence of the ancient knowledge, and this is exactly what modern science, and quantum mechanics explains as well.
The whole world is made up of One field; One energy.
This solves so many riddles of the theologians.
Q: How can we turn thoughts of lack into thoughts of abundance?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: The very thought that you want to do it, means you have already started moving in that direction.
Look at what your requirements are and you will see that they will always be met. Whatever you need always comes to you. But do not take it to an extreme and say, 'Let me just do nothing and let everything come to me', no, that is not correct.
You have to put in your efforts, and you have to have courage. These two things bring you wealth.
There is proverb in Sanskrit that says, ‘Udyoginam purusha-simham upayati Lakshmi.'
It means that great wealth comes to one who has the courage of a lion and who puts in all his efforts. Therefore put in all your efforts, and be like a lion.
Do you know, the lion is the laziest animal. It is the lioness who hunts for the prey and presents it to the lion. The lion just goes and eats the prey. The lioness does the work.
The lion does not even do the work of hunting the prey. He is lazy, yet he is the king of the forest and has the confidence.
So this is what you need to have - confidence and the sense of majesty of a lion.
Then you must put in your 100% efforts, and that is when wealth comes to you.
Do not be feverish about it, just take up a project and do it.
Later on, you will see that you will get wealth as well, along with it.
Q: Dear Gurudev, you said there are different types of prana, could you please talk a little bit more about that?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: There are ten types of Prana (the subtle life force energy). Of these, there are five major and five minor kinds of Prana. Today let me just talk about the five major types of Prana.
The first major type of Prana is called Prana which arises from your navel upwards to the top of the head.
Then there is another type of Prana that goes downwards from the navel, and it is called Apana.
When the Prana level is too high, you cannot sleep; you can get insomnia and you feel very jittery. However, if the Apana level is too high, you feel so dull that you do not even want to get off the bed.
Have you had this experience? Sometimes you feel so heavy, gross, and dull. This is due to the imbalance of Apana.
The third type of Prana is Samana which is present as the digestive fire in the digestive system, i.e., in the stomach. It is the agni or the fire that helps digest the food.
Samana is that which helps indigestion, and it also helps other bodily systems. It helps in balancing the system.
Then there is Udana Vayu or Udana Prana which is somewhere near the heart region and is responsible for emotions.
In Sudarshan Kriya, people cry or they laugh, and you find that all these emotions well up. This is due to the Udana Vayu. So this Udana Vayu is responsible for all the emotions.
Then the fifth type of Prana called Vyana which is responsible for all the movement in the body. It is spread all over the body.
In Sudarshan Kriya, you feel some tingling, some energy all over the body. Have you all experienced this?
What happens in Sudarshan Kriya is, all the five Pranas get balanced, and that is why you cry, or you laugh, and you feel a tingling all over the body. That is the specialty of Sudarshan Kriya.
You also tend to feel very hungry after the Kriya, is it not so?
So, these five Prana in the body run our lives.
If Samana is imbalanced, then it gives rise to digestive problems, and you cannot digest the food properly, or you may experience nausea. All this happens because of an imbalance of the Samana Prana.
When Udana Prana is stuck, you feel an emotional block that also affects your thinking and your mind.
When the Vyana which is all over the body is imbalanced, then you have joint pain, or movement trouble, and either you become too jittery and restless, or you may feel like you do not want to do anything.
Moving around anywhere in such a state gives discomfort and creates restlessness in the body. All this is caused by theVyana imbalance.
After Sudarshan Kriya, you would have noticed that all these imbalances go away. Has this not happened to all of you?
All earlier discomfort in the movements of the body, or its circulation, or some pains due to Vyana imbalance, all disappeared after Sudarshan Kriya.
So these are the five different Pranas.
There are five other sub-ordinate Pranas as well, but that we will discuss that another time.
Q: How compatible are love and dispassion for a life companion?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You need both, passion and dispassion in life.
Usually we think, ‘When I have passion, how can I have dispassion? If I am dispassionate, how can I be passionate about anything?’
This is what the normal concept is in the minds of people. I tell you, it is not that way.
It is like, breathing in is passion, breathing out is dispassion and in-between the two, is compassion. You need all three.
You need to be passionate about something in life, otherwise you will go into depression.
Be passionate about knowledge, be passionate about doing seva, be passionate about thinking; or about anything. Some passion definitely needs to be there in life. You can have a passion for wisdom as well. So passion is essential!
Dispassion is essential as well. Without dispassion there is no joy; no happiness. You will be miserable if you do not have any dispassion.
And of course, compassion is needed in life. So all three are essential.
Q: What happens if we do not make it to liberation this time around. Can we be with you in our next lifetime?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, of course. Do not worry about it.
Q: Dear Gurudev, I wonder why so many couples cannot get children. What is happening in the Western World?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Well, that you have to ask the doctors. They will give you the right diagnosis.
We cannot generalize about this. Of course one of the reasons is alcohol and the use of intoxicants. That is no good.
People start drinking alcohol right from their college or schooldays. That is no good. This world would be a far better place if people keep away from intoxicants.