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.
1. Effort. Without your self-effort, nothing happens. So you have to put your effort. Will everything happen only through your effort? No.
You make an effort and sow a mango sapling today and you want the fruit of it tomorrow, it is not going to give you the fruits tomorrow. It will take its time. 2. That is the second aspect: time. Everything has a right time. Similarly, even for acting there is a right time. Suppose in winter you sow a mango sapling and then you say, ‘Oh, nothing has sprouted’, it is not going to sprout now, unless it is in a green house. There is a right time to act and a right time to receive the fruit of action as well. So, time is the second factor. 3. The next factor is a higher power or grace; that of all possibilities. You should always keep room for possibilities; give miracles a chance. Logically you may think that something is impossible, but many times it becomes possible. How many of you have had this experience? A gift from the higher power is that of all possibilities.
You can club the three components as perseverance, patience and possibility. These are the three aspects. This is knowledge.
At midnight, you cannot say, 'I made all the effort, I removed the curtain but the sun is not coming in'. No, the sun will only come at the right time. And if you have all the blinders on even when the sun is there, you will not get the light. So, all the three have to match.
Like in a cell phone, the charger, sim card and the signal, all these have to be there. If the phone is charged but the sim card isn’t there or the range isn’t there, then the phone is not going to work. So, all three aspects are needed.
If you put a lot of effort at the right time, there is achievement. But sometimes it also happens that you put very little effort but still you are very successful. This is because the unseen possibilities are coming to your help. For example: someone has not put any effort, but they won a lottery. When time and possibilities come together, you call it luck. You say, ‘I don’t know how it all happened!’. In a devotee’s life this is more; the right time and the possibility come together.
When at the right time you put a lot of effort, it will give you benefit. When you put in a lot of self effort, but there is very little support from nature, that is bad luck. When there is little effort but a lot of support from the divine, it is good luck.
Solar eclipse is over just now. Eclipse is a very good time for mantra chanting and meditation. When the Earth, Sun and Moon are in one line, at that time it affects the mind, and they say that when you chant mantras at that time, it is much more powerful. This is the ancient saying.
One or two hours before an eclipse, stop eating so that the food gets digested well and during the eclipse time you have an empty stomach, and on the empty stomach chanting and mantras are done for maximum result.
What if a resolution breaks?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
Never mind. In the field you throw so many seeds. Not all seeds sprout. Some sprout, some don’t. When you sow saplings, not every sapling grows. Some do, some don’t. In a tree, not all flowers become fruit. Some fall when they are not even ripe. That’s why you put your effort and then you give up (here meaning surrender). Giving up without putting any effort is foolishness and after putting all your effort, not giving up is also foolishness. Put all your effort and give up. Not putting all your effort and giving up is also foolishness.
What makes you free? Putting your effort and giving up makes you free.
If you say, 'I give up', without putting effort, it doesn’t make you free. You say, 'I give up', but you have not really given up because of that tendency of wanting to do. That will hold you back from being free. The secret of freedom is, put your effort and give up.
Not putting your effort and giving up doesn’t free you. And, putting all your effort and not giving up will also not free you. Any action should only be done with awareness. An action from an unaware state has no meaning. Then it’s not called effort.
(A member of the audience asked a question and it was inaudible)
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
Wait for the time. Choice is not between good and bad. Whatever you choose, something else will always look better. So, be choice-less, be spontaneous. Take up something. Play with life.
Too many choices and it gets difficult to choose.