Sri Sri Ravi Shankar lovingly called as Guruji, the founder of Art of Living Foundation through which He relieves the stress at individual levels, thus reducing violence, sufferings and conflicts and spreading the love, harmony, peace throughout the world in various societies.
We must always remember that there is one Supreme power, and we are all floating in the sea of that Divine power. It is present both, within us and outside us. When this faith dawns from within, then nothing in the world can shake us. Life acquires such great inner strength when faith comes to us. Until and unless a person does not become strong from within, he will never be happy. He will continue to feel sad and miserable. So it is very important to become strong from within. And that inner strength can only come from this faith that there is one Supreme power that is taking care of everything, and that we are never alone.
I came to know about an incident that happened here in Maharashtra which left our farmers feeling very dejected. Their crops got destroyed because of a natural disaster. I want to tell the farmers not lose hope because of this.Life is much greater than the events that take place.
Believe that ‘God is there and is taking care of me at all times’. With this faith you will also get a lot of self-confidence in yourself. Then you will think, ‘When the Creator of the creation resides within me, why cry for petty and trivial things in life?’ This faith brings great enthusiasm and patience within us.
Problems come in everyone’s life. Who does not face problems in life? Lord Krishna, Lord Rama, Lord Buddha, and Prophet Mohammed – they all faced problems in their life. But despite problems, when you have this total faith in the Divine, then no problem really appears like a problem that you cannot overcome.
I came to know about an incident that happened here in Maharashtra which left our farmers feeling very dejected. Their crops got destroyed because of a natural disaster. This is the time when you must keep your faith and hold on to it. I want to tell the farmers not lose hope and inner strength because of this. Life is much greater than the events that take place. I heard that five farmers recently committed suicide. Through this platform, I want to take the opportunity to give this message to the farmers that you should not do such things. Just move ahead with faith and confidence. We all are there with you.
When spirituality grows in the country, then even nature is happy and at peace. These furious outbursts of nature are because of the rising injustice and wrong deeds in the country. If we continue to damage the soil, pollute the air and water resources of our country then nature will continue to react angrily, resulting in such calamities.
Did you know that the amount of toxic dioxin that is produced by burning just one plastic bag is enough to induce cancer in 1000 people? We have to care and attend to our environment. We must all try and avoid the use of plastic products as far as possible. It is difficult to completely do away with plastic products in today's time, but we can surely make an effort to reduce it to the maximum extent possible. We can surely refrain from throwing plastic waste in the rivers; or burning them in the open.
It is time for our farmers to wake up! I would strongly urge every one of you to adopt chemical-free farming techniques.
Today, the number of animal slaughterhouses in the country has increased a lot. I am sure you all know that when India became independent, the total animal wealth of the country was 120 million and our population was just 30 million in number. At that time, one man had four cows in his house. Today the condition is just opposite: the population in the country has risen to 120 million and our animal wealth has dwindled to just 20 million. India has suffered a great loss because of this. We are exporting 6.5 lakh tonnes of beef every year. If this goes on, a day may come when we will only get to read about milk in the books but never really have it. It will be a very tragic situation for our coming generations.
Do you know, one cow is sufficient to make one acre of land fertile. Do you all know that the percentage of hydrocarbons and nitro carbons in our soil has become very less? By international standards, the percentage of hydrocarbons required for a healthy fertile soil is estimated to be 6%. In foreign countries, this percentage is between 4 – 5%. But in India, the percentage in the soil is as low as 0.2-0.3% only. Just as reduction in iron content in the blood causes Anaemia in us, our Indian soil is also suffering from a similar Anaemia. Why is this so? It is because we are subjecting our fertile soils to toxic chemicals and artificial fertilizers. It is time for our farmers to wake up! I would strongly urge every one of you to adopt chemical-free farming techniques.
The wheat plant harvested using foreign seed varieties and chemical farming techniques has about 50-60 seeds, but the same wheat plant grown using native Indian seeds and organic farming methods has 120 wheat grain seeds per plant. Using indigenous seed varieties and chemical-free farming, farmers have been able to grow six feet long bottle gourds. By telling you all these facts, I want to urge you all to abandon chemical farming techniques and assure you of the goodness of our indigenous seed varieties and organic farming. We always used to sow multi-grain crops in our farms, i.e., we would plant two or three different crop varieties in the same piece of land. This would ensure that the soil remains healthy and fertile, and also give a healthy crop harvest. Also, even if one crop got destroyed, we would still have enough from the other two crops to help us get by for our own needs. This mono-cropping methods (planting or harvesting only one kind of crop from the land) is used in places where there is a shortage of manpower and resources. It is not at all suitable for our Indian soil.
We are exporting 6.5 lakh tonnes of beef every year. If this goes on, a day may come when we will only get to read about milk in the books but never really have it. It will be a very tragic situation for our coming generations.
I would once again ask the farmers of our country that if we have to prevent natural disasters from happening, we all need to ensure that regular Satsangs take place everywhere. We should encourage chanting of sacred mantras in our farms and villages. It has been prescribed in our scriptures and this I have seen from my own experience.Wherever there is a chanting of theRudram (a set of sacred verses chanted in the glory of Lord Shiva) and other mantras, the environment becomes charged with very positive vibrationsand the resulting crops are healthy and bountiful too.
You know, countries like South America have readily adopted our ancient techniques such as the Trayambakam Homa and the Agnihotra. They are putting it to beneficial use in their farming. Why should we lag behind and not adopt the same? This is our own cultural heritage.
I would ask all the farmers here to not lose hope and not to be discouraged. There is a lot of humanity in our country even today. There is no need for you to commit suicide. If someone is having suicidal thoughts, just take them to our Art of Living teachers, or ask our Art of Living teachers to visit them. They will heal them in just two days. In fact not even two days, I would say they will do it in a matter of just one day. Even earlier, there were so many incidences of farmer suicides in the region of Vidarbha, here in Maharashtra. Our Art of Living teachers swung into action and worked in 118 villages to improve the situation of the farmers there. I would like to congratulate them all for their good efforts. I came to know that all those villages are doing very well now, and there have been no further incidences of any suicides in those villages after that. Spirituality alone has the power to stop suicides, and to stop crime.
(Note: The discourse was given in Hindi. Above is a translation of the original talk.)