Thursday, May 16, 2013
Making Life A Rich Experience
Our life becomes richer when there is some dance, music, philosophy, science, service and silence. These six things can make our life richer. If you miss on any one of them, then life is not complete. Today, we will have an encounter with inner silence.
Inner silence is the mother of all creativity, the source of intuition, and the storehouse of energy, and we all have it! The only thing is, we have locked it, and forgotten the key. It is similar to how you forget your computer password sometimes? In the same way, we all have this enormous wealth of silence in our heart, but somehow we have forgotten how to tap into it. This needs to be understood.
So today, we have had some dance, some beautiful music; now, we should discuss some philosophy.
To discuss something very close to our heart, very dear to our life, we need to be in a cordial and informal atmosphere. Do you all feel at home now, here? Let us take 30 seconds to greet the people sitting around us.
Now, did you really greet the person next to you? Or did you just do it as a formality?
Often, these pleasantries that we exchange in life are all from a very superficial level.
For instance, you go to a hospital to visit someone who is sick, and you ask them, ‘How are you?’ They say, ‘I am alright’.
When someone brings you a glass of water, you say, ‘Thank you so much’. But that is not really meant! I am not saying you should not say, ‘Thank you’, when you get a glass of water, but I want you to notice that these words do not carry the depth. They are almost like the air-hostess wishing you, ‘Have a nice day’.
However, when the same words come from someone very dear to you, it carries some vibrations, and these vibrations convey more than the words.
We have positive vibrations; but if we are stressed and upset, we emit negative vibrations.
Have you noticed that for no reason, you feel like avoiding some people? And sometimes, for no apparent reason, you feel very good with somebody else. This is because of the vibrations.
Neither at school nor at home, did anyone teach us how to make our vibrations positive.
If you are feeling negative, you live with those negative vibrations within you. If you are depressed, angry or upset, you carry these emotions with you. This is because nobody told us how to handle this mind, or change our vibration to something very positive and vibrant. This is where The Art of Living is essential. It teaches us how to change the negativity into positivity. This is possible through few exercises, using our breath, mind, alertness, intellect.
Okay, what topic would you like me to speak on now?
(Audience: Service; Peace; Love; Making correct decisions; Increasing Intuition; Guilt; Attachment; Relaxation; Time; Forgiveness; Fear; Karma; Desires; Unity; Confidence; Happiness; The Master; Education; Nature; Honesty; Death; Meditation; Wisdom.)
Tell me, if you really want to know about all these topics, if you go to a library or log on to Google, you will get all the information about these topics.
What if I know nothing about any of these topics? Does it really matter on what topic we speak?
Do you know, there are four levels of communication?
First, there is head-to-head communication. Second is the communication that is from the head-to-heart. Third is the communication that is from heart-to-heart, and fourth is soul-to-soul communication.
Have you noticed, sometimes, two people are saying the same thing, but when they speak, it appears as though they are arguing. This happens because the element of feeling from the heart, or trust, is not there.
We convey more through our presence, than words. I can sit and talk about love for an hour, but just one look would convey more than that one hour of talk. Isn’t that so?
You just look into the eyes of children, and they convey love. A puppy, a dog in your home, goes round and round, and conveys all its love. It doesn’t have to say, ‘Oh, I love you so much.’ Nor does a child have to say, ’Oh mummy, I love you so much.’ In fact, verbalizing love, reduces love.
I heard about someone who gave a lecture for three hours on How to be Happy. At the end of the lecture, everyone was so unhappy, because he spoke too much. He was supposed to speak for an hour, but he spoke for three hours!
The point is - there is something deep within all of us. When we are in touch with this aspect within us, then we are authentic, happy, and joyful. There is a sense of fulfillment within us. Meditation is attending to that deep aspect within us.
See, life is very short; 70-80 years of life goes so fast, isn’t it? Half of the time we spend in sleeping, and the rest of time, we spend in bathrooms, restaurants, traffic jams, complaining, or worrying; and life gets over! That is why I said, we must not forget these six things. Spend time in intellectually stimulating philosophy, some music, a little bit of dance, science, and service.
So have I answered all your questions? Any topics left?
Death is inevitable. Death means the mind separating itself from the body, and the link between the body and the mind, i.e., the breath stops.
However, by the law of thermodynamics, you know that matter and energy can never be destroyed. The mind is energy, it does not get destroyed. So, even if you are separated from the body, you are still there. You can know more about this as you go deeper into meditation. Then you understand that you have no death at all. You are simply moving from one body to another. And your fear of death goes away; it disappears.
Why do you want to get rid of attachment? Because it gives you pain, right? Why don’t you make your attachment bigger?
It is natural for you to get attached to your children, parents, spouse, friends; nothing wrong with it. However, you should not become possessive. When your attachment becomes possessiveness, then you are troubling the person that you are attached to, and you can bring trouble to yourself as well. So, broaden your attachments. Just as you are attached to your children, you should be attached to other children also. If it is not to the same degree, then it could be at least 50% or more.
Service is essential. All of us should do a little bit of service in life. Whatever we can do to help others, to bring joy and a smile to others, we must do.
Service brings you immense satisfaction. When you are serving, your attachment will not cause you misery. As a parent, you are there to serve your children; as children, you are there to serve your parents; as a spouse, you are there to support each other. When you go with this feeling, with this attitude, then life takes a different dimension.
Meditation makes your body strong. It boosts your immune system, gives you more energy. It makes your mind very focused, and helps the intellect become very sharp. It makes your feelings so much nicer, you feel so good from inside; and your vibrations become very positive. These are some of the benefits. There are many more. And, good luck also comes with meditation.
Q: Sri Sri, please tell us about forgiveness. How do we forgive?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Don’t forgive, hold on to it! Who is at a loss?
An event that happened, it happened! Whether it was your mistake or somebody else’s mistake, it is over. However, if you are holding on to it, then you are suffering.
Imagine you are in that position, where a mistake happens through you. If someone else doesn’t forgive you, doesn’t understand you, and holds you responsible for all your life, how would you feel? You would feel very bad, isn’t it?
You forgive a person not for their sake, but for your own mind, so that you can save your mind. See, in life, some pleasant things happen, some unpleasant things happen. Some things we wish for them to happen, some things we don’t want in life to happen. Whatever happened, it happened; finished! You put it back, and move forward - that is very important. Do it only to save your own mind.
In fact, if you see from a wider angle, you will find that every culprit is a victim of ignorance in a situation. When you see things from this perspective, you will automatically feel compassion. We have seen this with those incarcerated, when we teach in prisons. These people who are being condemned in prisons, they are good people, but due to ignorance, due to lack of awareness, they made a mistake.
To make your life richer, I would suggest you spend five days in these different places:
1) In school with children.
2) In school, as a teacher. When you are teaching children, you understand what it is to teach. The role of a teacher makes you very rich.
3) In a mental hospital. When you are with crazy people, you realize it is the same thing as being in the outside world also. People just say anything they want. Once you have this experience, then nobody can upset you.
4) In a prison. When you are with those incarcerated, you will understand the pain and suffering of a victim.
5) On a farm. When you are with the farmers, digging soil, sowing seeds, working with mud, just being there enriches you in some unknown manner.
And one day, you should spend just by yourself, with nature.
Q: Gurudev, I feel I am stuck. I am unable to spread The Art of Living knowledge. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You don’t need to do that what you cannot do. Nobody expects you to do anything which you cannot do. But whatever you can do, you must do. This is because when we do service, it does good to other people, and that brings us immense satisfaction too.
Okay, before you leave, I want you to give me all your worries. I want you to go home with a big smile. And whenever you feel you are down, upset, not feeling happy or good, remember you are not alone! I am with you! And the whole Art of Living family is with you.
My dream is to see everyone with a big smile, and the whole world as one family. And I would like you all to join me in this dream to make a violence-free, stress-free, and happy society.