Friday, December 26, 2008

The Journey for Peace : Sri Sri's visit to Iraq Dec 21 - 23

If any country's citizens needed de-stressing it would be those of Iraq. “
“The (Art of Living) foundation has a history of taking on tough tasks. It has operated similar de-stressing courses in Macedonia, Kosovo, Croatia, Gujarat and in New York after the 11September attacks.”
--BBC World News, January 14, 2004

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Thursday, December 25, 2008


The mind that seeks pleasure cannot be centered. When you are centered, all pleasures come to you anyway, but they cannot charm you any longer because you are the source of the charm.The mind that seeks pleasure can never achieve the highest. And if you enjoy drowning in your suffering, you cannot be centered; you are far away from the Path. If you are after pleasure, forget about Satsang. Why are you wasting your time? This is the Art of Leaving. You either seek pleasure or come to me.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Joy and sadness

Question: Can we observe joy and sadness, envy and praise, etc. at the same time?
Sri Sri: Emotions are not very clear. Sometimes you are happy with something and unhappy for something else. Sometimes when you change a place, you are happy about moving to the new place but sad for leaving the old place. I've seen even between father and son or husband and wife, conflicting emotions of envy and praise. It's a flow of energy. Energy moves. There's no demarcation.

Question: Does nature always guide us? If I miss the bus on the way to an interview, should I take a cab or look for another job?
Sri Sri: Take a cab to the interview, and if you don't get the job, look for another one!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Do you believe and accept rebirth?

Sri Sri : It is not just me, today it is proved beyond doubt and almost all psychiatrists use regression as a therapy. Past life regression is used all over the world. I think that time has gone when people used to wonder whether it is true or not, whether it is there or not there? For West it is a new discovery, but in the East it has always been there.
Question: While you do believe in this, you do not subscribe to the fact that you do poonya (good deeds) in this life, in the next life, you evolve to a higher caste. That is not connected to the way you see the concept of rebirth?
Sri Sri : No. Rebirth simply depends on the strongest impression on the mind. Even here, in the aashram, there is a boy who is just eight years old and he speaks four languages. He has never gone to school. He is a boy of a farmer. He speaks Sanskrit, Hindi, Oriya and English. He just closes his eyes and he starts talking. He talks deep knowledge and philosophy. I myself had this experience. I know Gita from when I was very young.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ravishankar suggests blend of knowledge to end conflicts

Guru Sri Sri Ravishankar suggested that a blend of knowledge of all traditions, including the teachings of Islam, Christianity, Hinduism and indigenous faiths, to end conflicts.
"Look at Japan where people blended Shintoism and Buddhism so much so that it is now difficult to distinguish between the followers of the two religions."
Pointing to China, he said, Taoism and Buddhism were similarly blended there. "We should also take note of these achievements and try to effect such a blending rising above narrow fundamentalism.
"The teachings of Islam, Christianity, Gita and indigenous faiths, all have wonderful messages for mankind." Replying to a question he said spirituality was different from religion. "Spirituality is like the banana while religion is like its skin." People belonging to all religions could join hands to solve their problems unitedly.
Referring to militants and terrorists he says, "we should talk to those who have been misguided through exposure to wrong beliefs. They should be convinced that all are the children of the same god." Blaming politicians, he said, "politicians won't do anything. Only the spiritual leaders can inspire people."

Monday, December 8, 2008

Terrorism: The Cause And the Remedy

The act which is only destructive and inflicts suffering both on oneself and others is terrorism. In such an act, human values are lost in the process of achieving a goal. Some of the factors that lead to terrorism are:Frustration and desperation to achieve a goal
Confused emotion
Shortsightedness and Impulsive action
Belief in a non-verifiable concept of heaven and merit; a childish concept of God favoring some and angry at others, thereby undermining the omniscience and omnipotence of the Divine.Terrorism induces fear psychosis in all, increases poverty, suffering and loss of life with no apparent gains. Instead of solutions the terrorist looks for destruction as an answer. If you simply criticize without giving a solution, know that this criticism comes from the same seed as terrorism! Although there are certain qualities you can appreciate in a terrorist such as:
Commitment to a goal
You will have to learn from them things that you should never do:
Valuing some ideas and concepts more than life.
Having a narrow perspective of life and dishonoring its diversity.
The Remedy for terrorism is:
Inculcate a broader perspective of life -- value life more than race, religion and nationality.
Educate people in human values – friendliness, compassion, cooperation and upliftment.
Teach methods to release stress and tension.
Cultivate confidence in achieving noble aims by peaceful and nonviolent means.
Create spiritual upliftment which can weed out destructive tendencies.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Prayer within breath is SILENCE
Love within infinity is SILENCE
Wisdom without word is SILENCE
Compassion without aim is SILENCE
Action without doer is SILENCE
Similing with all existence is SILENCE

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Gurudev Sri Sri reaches out to Mumbai Terror Victims

Sri Sri will conduct a special prayer, pranayama and meditation session for all Mumbaikars at Priyadarshini Park & Sports Complex, Nepean Sea Road on Dec. 6 at 6:30 pm.Have anymore Questions? Ask them here

The Art of Living Foundation is conducting trauma care and counselling sessions, following the recent terror attacks in Mumbai.
For Helpline numbers: +91-9821620948, +91-9967477004
If you’d like to volunteer, call: +91-9820612152

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Salvation and a perfect life

Question: How can I be assured of salvation and a perfect life on this planet?
Sri Sri: You need a warranty on the spiritual path also, don't you?
Examine how much time you spend on the spiritual path...Evaluate the seva (service) you are doing...How much are you meditating? There should be a balance between seva and meditation. Those who do a lot of service get burnt out, if they don't make time for meditation, and those, who only meditate, become 'dry', if they don't make time for service. So you need both - service and meditation.

Question: How to pray? I was raised in a non-religious environment.
Sri Sri: Meditation is the best form of prayer. In meditation you surrender, you say let thy will be done. You may light a candle, chant Om Namaha Shivaya.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Depths of calm

Only a healthy bud can blossom. In the same way, only a healthy being can suceed.
So, what's being healthy?
If you are not feeling rough inside, then you are not healthy; If the mind is stiff and not calm, you are not mentally healthy. When the emotions are rough, you are emotionally not healthy. To attain a perfect state of health, one has to remain mentally calm, steady and emotionally soft.
The stae of healthiness has to flow from the innermost of your being to the outermost, and vice versa. That state is called Swasthya in Sanskrit.
Swasthya means health. It also means being in one's self. Swasthya or health is not just confined to the body and the mind; it has come to you as a gift from the cosmic mind or the 'Indra'
Have you noticed this? When you enter a place, where a very disturbed and stressed person has spent some time, you start feeling disturbed for no reason, even if the stressed person is not around any longer. The same feelings, same thoughts same emotions come to you. Similarly, when there is a harmonious vibration like at a place where a Satsang is happening, you feel good. You don't know why. So feelings are not isolated in one's body, they are all around. So is breath. Same goes for the mind. It is in the whole environment, because the mind is subtler than the five elements - the earth, the water, the fire, the air and the ether.
Like if there is a fire somewhere, the heat is not just in the fire, it is also radiating throughout the place. Subtler than the air, which is all over. So if you are unhappy or depressed, you are not the only one who is feeling it; you are spreading it to the whole environment.
A time may come in the future, when people will be fined for being depressed because they are creating emotional pollution!
But how can we control this? That is the key question and the answer lies in meditation. The main purpose of meditation, Pranayam and related practices is that they increase prana or the subtle life energy. Prana is subtler than emotions. When you atttend to the subtlest, the gross becomes all right. You handle the breath and body gains good health.The words that you hear from people around you, affect your state of mind. They either give you peace and joy or create disturbance. Ususally what happens is that, when people say something that creates jealously, anger, frustration or sadness in us, we hold them responsible for it since we are contributing to the process. We are affected because the mind is not in its Self; it is not centered.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Our Karma!

Question: How can we change our karma?
Sri Sri: Strange are the ways of Karma...
By experience and wisdom, and some karma you just have to overcome it and work through it. Strange are the ways of Karma. The more you understand it, the more amazed you become. It brings people together and separates them. It causes some to be weak and some to be strong. It makes some rich and some poor. All the struggle in the world, whatever it may be, is the bondage of Karma. It cuts across all logic and reasoning. This understanding will lift you from getting stuck to the events or personalities and help you in your Journey to the Self.
Question: So a thief can say it is my karma to steal?
Sri Sri: Then the police have the karma to catch him too!
Only human life has the ability to be free from Karma. And only a few thousands aim to be free from it. Only through Grace can the bondage of Karma be burnt. Performing actions cannot eliminate Karma.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Brings you joy

Sri Sri :Limited responsibility makes you weak,ties you.
Unlimited responsibility empowers you and brings you joy.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The future has not yet come

The future has not yet come. But you just sit there and think, “Oh! What will happen? What will happen?” Finally you will die! This is what is going to happen! So much anxiety about the future! In this run, the mind gets into such a mess. It is unable to see the presence that is all around it.
The mind totally forgets the divine. “Me, mine, what about tomorrow, the day after and the day after that, next year, ten years later?” You people plan in this way even up to the next birth! When people are newly married they say,”We will be husband and wife for many life-times to come! This one birth is not enough. We will be man and wife for the next seven births!” In reality, they may be fed up of each other in this birth itself, but they talk of the next seven births!
We should experience the divine´s presence, the divine´s light around us.You should have a desire in your mind to experience this. Have we ever desired the divine light? Has such a desire ever risen in you, that you want the highest peace? Has it arisen from deep inside you? The divine light, whatever that is, you do not know what it is. It is something by which the whole world is running. Have you ever really wanted it? When you sing or pray there should be total involvement. You don´t involve yourself totally. If the mind is preoccupied elsewhere then that is no prayer at all. There should be total involvement. When there is pain there is more involvement.
You are like a free bird. You are fully open. Feel that you are flying like a bird. Learn to fly. This is some thing which you have to experience within yourself. There is nothing else. If you consider yourself as bonded, you will remain bound here. Experience freedom. When will you experience freedom? After you die? Become free right now. Sit down and become contented. That thing in you which says, “I have to do. I have to do. I have to achieve”; that is wrong. Sit down in peace, thinking: “I have nothing to do now.”
You are afraid of opening your fists. What is there with you that you have to hold your fists? You have nothing with you. Open your fists. The whole sky will be in your hands. Be natural. Be with love. Do service. Celebrate all your life.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

1000 sitarists to strum for Bihar relief

The Art of Living will host a historic event, named Brahm Naad, which will showcase 1000 sitarists on one platform, in a first-of-its-kind concert. Scheduled to take place in Noida, Uttar Pradesh on November 21, 2008, the proceeds of this initiative are dedicated to aid in the relief & rehabilitation of Bihar.
Conceived by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the event fulfills two purposes; to popularise Indian classical music even while uplifting its practitioners and to epitomize the universality & unifying power of music to spread the message of peace and harmony.
Supported by the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Tourism, Govt. of India, the BrahmNaad initiative will also witness the participation of Pt. Ravi Shankar (Sitar), Pt. Hari Prasad Chaurasia (Flute), Pt. Rajan and Sajan Mishra (Vocal- Hindustani Music), Pt. Shiv Kumar Sharma (Santoor) and Sonal Mansingh (Odissi Dancer), who will be honoured, at the event, by the spiritual master. The music for this 1000-piece sitar orchestra is based on ancient ragas from the Gandharva Veda. The Art of Living has been involved in the relief & rehabilitation of the state of Bihar, through its volunteer network, at flood hit districts of Khagaria, Katihar, Purnia, Bhagalpur, Arariya, Madhyapura, Supoul & the army medical camp in Narpatganj. Having mobilized relief materials worth Rs 10 crore, His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has pledged to raise Rs 40 crore for the rehabilitation of the flood victims.
The mega event will also see the release of Sri Sri’s Hindi biography, Jeena Sikha Diya. Written by a journalist Swayam Prakash, the research based book details Sri Sri’s global social service, works, talks, question-answers, his interviews and some yet unknown aspects of his life.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Question: Why is that people suffer when they are in spiritual path?

Sri Sri: If you are suffering, it is because of foolishness and not because of spirituality. People on the path are strong enough to face turbulent times. If you are not on the path, you will break down. So, spirituality gives you strength!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

To thank deeply or superficially

Question: Which is better, to thank deeply or superficially?
Sri Sri: No, superficially. Thanking needs a separation. Thanking means there are two. If you are deeply thankful, it means you deeply feel the separation. Deep within there is no need to thank, because there is one-ness. But superficially you can thank. Thanks are like ripples on the surface of the water.
When you say "Thank you," you complete something. You are finishing a transaction, a relationship, a process. "Thank you" is like "good bye." You can complete all transactions at a surface level, but deeper inside is only one-ness.
Thankfulness always exists in relation to something else. You don't thank for nothing at all, you thank for something. But in this case, something is less than nothing!
At the deepest level, thanking has no meaning. Does one hand thank the other hand? The deeper you go, you see there is no "other" to be thanked.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I'm losing control of my life

Question: I feel like I'm losing control of my life.
Sri Sri: When were you in control of your life? If you ever thought you were in control of your life, then I'm sorry, for your ignorance. What is that you are going to lose? Do you have any control over your thoughts? They come like a stream.
After Pranayam and Meditation you have become aware of this. Now that you know what's happening then you started questioning. So now you are getting control, you are becoming aware of your thoughts. When we conducted courses in prison, prisoners told, oh I can watch my thoughts. They regret had they done this before they wouldn't be there in prison.
Don't worry you are not losing control. These are the moments when you realize nothing is in your hands.
Pray!!! Prayer will make your desire strong. It will fructify.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

How to love somebody

Question: How to love somebody you hate the most?
Sri Sri: First just accept that person. Just accept that they are incorrigible and will never change. Then understand that they are a victim themselves, of their circumstances and their ignorance. Compassion is the next step.
See, step by step we have 1, 2, 3.

Acceptance, understanding and love.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Have patience

Question: When we have so many ambitions and responsibilities to fulfill why God does not give us the means to perform?
Sri Sri: Definitely you will get the means; have patience.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Guruji: I am sure that deep within you, everyone of you feel that you have not grown, meaning you have not changed, not grown old. This indicates the soul in you, the depth in you, the spirit in you doesn’t change, doesn’t grow old, it’s not aging. The body is aging but something in you is not aging. Getting in touch with that something that doesn’t age, brings beauty in life. That is meditation.
We need to learn a little bit about our breath. We need to know a little bit about all the layers of our existence, viz body, breath, mind, intellect, memory, ego and the self. This is what I call Art of Living, learning a little bit about ourself, the seven layers of our life. And that makes you be in the present moment and it helps us to maintain the innocence that we are all born with, and feel at home with everybody, anywhere.
What I would suggest is take one week off every year for yourself, like you take your car for servicing. During that time, align yourself with nature, wake up with the sunrise, do some exercise, eat proper food, just as much food as necessary, some exercises, yoga, and some breathing exercises, a few minutes of singing, and keeping silence, enjoying the creation. Aligning ourself with nature, our whole system gets recharged, makes the whole year, we feel so vibrant, enthusiastic.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Love is the nature of human

Question: If love is the nature of human, why is there so much hatred among people?
Sri Sri: Because love devoid of knowledge gives rise to imperfection. You love perfection and get angry at imperfection. If you love somebody, you become jealous and possessive. Love is the cause of all problems in the world. Through love, jealousy, anger and hatred all come out.
But we cannot live without love. Even a dog may not like to live without love. It would refuse to eat food, if it is not able to see its master. So love is the most wanted thing for everybody. Yet all theseimperfections and all these problems arise out of love. So what is the answer ? We need such a love which is free from imperfection and that can be attained only through knowledge. "So love minus knowledge is problem and love with knowledge is bliss."

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Focused on God

Question: What is the way to keep the mind focused on God?
Sri Sri: Where there is love no concentration is required. Suppose you love astronomy, you don't have to make an effort to study astronomy. If you are interested in History, You need not make an effort to concentrate in History. Concentration is necessary only when you don't love something. You don't require concentration to watch a T.V. serial because you like it or you are interested in it. Meditation, breathing exercises and bajans all these automatically lead to single-mindednessor focused on God.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Einstein said that we were only using 10 percentage of our potential

Question:I was delighted as a young man when Einstein said that we were only using 10 percentage of our potential and there was a possibility that we could develop our full potential. So of course the search was on. Having him say that, it was kind of like intellectual greatness was that potential and I looked around and realized that there were a lot of other qualities that are great: compassion, courage, happiness and responsibilities. It made me realize that, at least made me think that our full potential wasnt just intellectual greatness, it was other greatness that is part of our full potential. I was wondering if you could describe the qualities of a person who is really living their full potential.
Sri Sri:You know, the energy in an atom is something you can not measure. Similar to the human potential, you can not see how much is full potential. The ancient saying goes that nature of a human being is very similar to that of an atom.
In an atom, the central part of the atom is positive and the negatively charged particle is only on the circumference, the ion. Similarly, all the negativity of a person is not his true nature; its only on the circumference. So when someone is centered, it means to be calm, steady, pleasant and violence is not there as part of his or her nature. Violence is an indication of violation of the domain a human has.
If you ask me, how we can be more energetic, yes, because every atom releases energy in our body! And in Sanskrit its said, "praktar tig market mukshar means if you know one particle of your existence thoroughly, you will be free, you will be liberated. Of the zeak philosophies, one is called the vashika - means the knowledge of atoms or particles and substances in the creation; in that school of philosophy, they dont talk about god at all.
God also is a field not as a person or an object. And whether the knowledge we have is correct or not, how do we know? There are so many methods to know about the knowledge we have - is correct or not correct? Thats why, even 10000 years ago, 15000 years ago, people knew there are 12 moons to the Jupiter, without any telescope or anything. And the subjective way of knowing things, is using the intuition within you, quieting your mind from all the thoughts and the mind becomes calm like a space, like sleeping but you are not sleeping.
You are totally alert inside, and then an intention is taken. And with that intention, intuition comes, knowledge comes, inspiration comes from within. Using this method they calculated all the bending eclipses happening and then all the mathematics was derived.
Today even the almanac calendar, says exactly at what time, which minute the eclipse is going to happen. And or when the moon is transiting the sun, the whole of astrology, astronomy is derived at. And it was always said, the sun is the center of the solar system, and all the planetsare going around, this is an ancient system that has been coming out. People have been used to this thought. And also, which herb is good for what, to treat in their medicines. The ayurveda system was developed that way.
So I see that the methodologies they used, is to awaken the intuitive awareness inside you, in which you feel every cell in your body is alive now, fully alive, and mind is quiet. And you callthat Samadhi. Samadhi is the function of the body. I feel that if we take some time, two or three days in a year and those three days we take silence and observing the watchfulness of our own thoughts and observing our own emotions, then we are able to get a sense of what is the quietness that is inside, how we can be quiet. You know the freedom from the jugglery of thoughts, is the basis of intuition. And intuition is part of innovation. What do you say? Correct?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Desire and Joy

Sri Sri:All desires are for happiness. That is the goal of desire, isn't it? How often does your desire lead you to the goal? But have you thought about the nature of desire? It simply means tomorrow, and not now, isn't it? Joy is never tomorrow. It is always now.
How can you have desires when you are joyful? And how can you really be joyful now when you have desires? Desire appears to lead you to happiness. In fact it cannot. And that is why it is Maya. What do you say?

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Breath of Life

Guruji: Learning something about our breath is very important. Our breath has a great lesson to teach us, which we have forgotten, for every rhythm in the mind, there is a corresponding rhythm in the breath, for every rhythm in the breath there is a corresponding emotion. So, when you cannot handle your mind directly, through breath you can handle the mind.
Neither at school nor at home does anybody teach you what to do when you are upset or angry or depressed. Isn’t that so? The first thing we did when we came to this planet is that we took a deep breath in and then we started to cry. The last thing we’ll be doing, we’ll breathe out and make others cry! In between, the whole life, we are breathing in and out, but, we have learnt very little about our breath! No breath, no life... know breath, know life!
The rhythm in breath can help us get in touch with the depth of ourself, our soul, our consciousness, our being and we feel connected with everybody, with everything in the world.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Dealing with Blame

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: When someone blames you, what do you usually do? Blame them back or you put up resistance in yourself. When someone blames you, they actually take away some negative karma from you. If you understand this and don't put up resistance and feel happy about it, then you drop your resistance. "Oh, good. That person is blaming me. Good. Something is going away." And when you drop the resistance, your karma goes away. Do you see what I'm saying?
So when someone blames you and you put up resistance in your mind, and you don't react, then you are not allowing them to take the negative karma. Outside you may resist, but inside if you don't resist, and feel happy, "Oh, good, somebody is there to blame me and take some negative karma," you will feel immediately lighter.
How does it feel to you when someone blames you? Do you feel some heaviness? Usually, when someone blames you, you feel hurt and you feel unhappy, you feel sad. This is all because you're . . . resisting. That is it. What you resist, persists. The ignorant person tells someone, "Don't blame me because it hurts me."
An enlightened person also says "Don't blame me." Do you know why? Because it might hurt you. This is a beautiful point. What are the points? You get hurt because you resist the blame. When someone blames you, you resist it inside. Outside you may not resist, but inside when you resist, then that hurts you.
An ignorant person warns you, "You better not hurt me, you better not blame me because I will feel hurt." Someone warns you not to blame them because it will hurt them and they'll do something harmful to you out of revenge.
An enlightened person says "Don't blame me because it will hurt you." So here you say, don't blame because of compassion. You can tell someone, don't blame me out of compassion, or you can say it out of anger.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Question: What is the Perfect Relationship?
Sri Sri: No Relationship! ‘Relationship’ means two, and when there are two, there can’t be perfection. When we recognize that there is no two, this is the perfect relationship. What is your relationship with yourself? When you relationship with yourself is perfect, all your relationships are perfect.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sudarshan Kriya::Living Art

Sudarshan Kriya is a unique rhythmical breathing process that is said to have been revealed to Sri Sri Ravi Shankar during a spell of silent meditation that he had gone into for 10 days in 1982. The theory is that the kriya allows a healthy and pleasant mind to produce chemical messengers, which travel from the nervous system to the immune system, resulting in the overall betterment of both body and mind.
Ravi Shankar has described the working of the Sudarshan Kriya thus:"There is a rhythm in nature. Seasons come and go. In your own body also, there is a rhythm. Life has a particular rhythm. Similarly, your breath also goes in a pattern. Your emotions move in a particular rhythm, as well as your thoughts. All these rhythms arise from your being, which has its own rhythm.
"In Sudarshan Kriya, we get into the rhythm of our being and see how our being is permeating our emotions, our thoughts, our breath and our bodies. Soon, every cell of our body becomes alive and releases all the toxins and negative emotions it has stored from times past. Once again, we are able to smile from our hearts."
Ravi Shankar also teaches that besides certain yogic asanas and other processes, sudarshan kriya involves pranayama, which silences inner turmoil. According to Ravi Shanker, through this kriya the mind experiences deep rest. He states that the process also involves the infusion of a maximum amount of oxygen to the cells, which helps in the release of neuropeptides that regularize Abnormal Brain Wave patterns in patients suffering from neural disorders.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Where did we learn to be afraid of making mistakes?

Sri Sri: There are many people who have no fear of making mistakes. Many students who have no fear, drop out of school and are involved in violence. Recent statistics reveal that as many as 30% of the children in North America are resorting to some sort of violence. This is a very big number. They resort to violence because they are not afraid of making mistakes. There must also be another 30% who are afraid to make mistakes, who are not interested in taking the risk and who shy away. Ideally we need to keep a balance. We are afraid of making mistakes because of the consequences, because we think we will be punished or the consequences will be very bad. Often those who have been punished several times are no longer afraid of the consequences.
You cannot totally eliminate fear, nor should we. Fear is like salt in the food, it keeps one on his toes. Fear keeps one’s feet on the ground, but fear is essential to some degree only. Life salt in the food, if there is too much salt, the food is not consumable, but you cannot eat the food without any salt. A little bit of fear is essential in the process of growth. Nature has built you like that. You drive on the right side of the road (in US) because of the fear you would get in to an accident. You walk on the sidewalk, you drive only when there is green light. These actions happen out of fear. If you are totally without fear, you could do anything and violate all the laws. Laws are always followed with a pinch of fear, and it is not a bad thing, but if there is too much fear, then it cannot be helpful. You have to keep a degree of fear like a little bit of salt in the food.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Who am I really?

Sri Sri: When intellect matures, it comes up with this question. But the answer to it is beyond the intellect. When you have had a good night's rest, then the intellect recognizes that the body has rested. Similarly, when this question comes up and you meditate, then it recognizes first that you are not the body you are not the mind .
Then you come to a quiet center within you .and you have no answer and you are That. The silence you come to when you ask this question is what you are. He gave an interesting example He said you/the body are like the fan; and the Self is like electricity. The fan cannot run without the electricity .and electricity cannot manifest itself without the fan. So when you start asking the question 'Who am I'; you start moving to the point where the fan is connected to the electricpoint!(laughter).

Thursday, September 18, 2008

What is your vision for the youth?

Sri Sri: I want you to have a vision. Each one of us should take the responsibility of ourselves and people around us, take such a vision. Have a dream. When I was in school, I used to say to my friend that I have friends all over the world and they are waiting for me. One day my mother came to know about this. She questioned me about why I am telling lies to my friends, I didn’t know what to say (And today it’s a reality!). One day my school friend wrote “Ravi is going to London, Paris, New York…” and so many things on the toilet door. Since that day I never used that toilet throughout my schooling (huge laughter). You know youth like you should not be so serious. Play some pranks. Once Pitaji (Guruji’s father) had to go somewhere on business tour. I replaced the stuff in his suitcase with my toys. When he opened the suitcase in front of his clients, toys popped out (laughter) but he sportingly enjoyed my childhood pranks. Don’t lose your smile for anything in the world, it is not worth it.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Business & Spirituality

Question: How can we relate Business & Spirituality?
Sri Sri: Often business is looked down upon by spiritualists and spirituality is put off as non-practical by businessmen. Spirituality is the heart, business is the legs, and that is what the ancient people conceived. An individual or a society is incomplete without both these aspects. Business brings material comfort and spirituality brings mental and emotional comfort. Spirituality brings ethics and fair practice to business. In the body/mind complex depriving any one comfort means depriving both the comforts. You cannot talk spirituality to the poorest of the poor people without taking care of their basic needs. They need to be supported materially. There is no spirituality in the world that is devoid of service and service cannot happen if material needs are ignored. Service cannot happen only through the lips. For service to move you need legs. Every system has its flaws. As capitalism exploits the poor, socialism dampens individual creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. Spirituality is the bridge between socialism and capitalism. Spirituality gives the heart to serve to the capitalists and the spirit to innovate to the socialist.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Talk about success and spirituality.

Sri Sri: The smile on your face, which nobody can take away, is success. It’s a sign of success and it can come only through spirituality. There is a book called ‘Celebrating Silence’ and I recommend all of you to read it. All the questions, which were asked here, have been answered in it.
What do you call success? Whom do you call a successful person? What are the signs of success? Ulcers? Blood Pressure? Fear? Ego? Anxiety? Problems? Are these signs of success? Then what are the signs? Power?
Look at all the people in power, there is such a struggle and they are not happy. Then when they have power, there is so much fear that they may lose it! To maintain it, again there is struggle and when they have lost it the memory of that power makes them miserable…
A Smile that comes from the depth of an innocent heart, the freedom which you are able to feel in life… these are the signs of success.
Are you free? Then you are successful! Are you in the present moment? Then you are successful! Are you useful to the people around you? Then your life is a success! Do you feel love for all humanity? Then that is a sign of success in life!

Monday, September 15, 2008

If there is no love !

Guruji: The world would be free from trouble if there is no love! All the problem in the world is caused by love! So also all the joy, pleasure and the very purpose in life. Do you see what I’m saying? Suppose there is no love, you can’t be jealous; jealousy is because of love. Greed is because you love objects too much. Anger is because you love perfection, that is why you are angry at imperfections. You love yourself too much and that’s why pride and arrogance comes to you. Isn’t it?
So, every distortion of love causes problems not only for ourselves, but for everybody. Even though this is the case, without love what is there in life? Just imagine there’s nobody who loves you on this planet, and you don’t love anybody. Does life have any meaning, any purpose? It appears absolutely depressing, boring, uninteresting, isn’t it so? But, how do we get to that point of love where that love is free from the distortions and we are able to be at ease with ourself?
This is where a little knowledge about ourself, about our mind, our consciousness, and the root of distortion will help. It is when you are tired and exhausted that you are not in touch with your virtues. Every individual is bestowed with all the virtues in the world. They simply get covered by lack of understanding. All that is needed is to just to uncover the virtues that are already there.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Letting go of Fear

Question:Guruji, Please can you talk about fear and letting go of fear, and why its so difficult to do?
Sri Sri: Its not difficult, just take a few deep breaths, do a few bhastrikas and pranayams and thats it. Wheres the fear? Fear is just love upside down. You have to turn it up. When there is love there is no fear, or when there is hatred there is no fear. Two types of people in the world have no fear- those who are in love, and those who are in hatred. They both create sensation in the heart region.
We do this in a 5, 6 days long Part II in the Art of Living program, in which we discuss about all different emotions and the places in the body where they are generated, how they are affected and how they can be handled. For 5 days you know. In 5 days, 3 days you remain in silence, and you observe different sensations, emotions. No fear!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Q: How to deal with anger?

Sri Sri: Anger is ok. I have a technique for you. Whenever you get angry, sing. If you get angry on your husband/wife, scold them by singing. Opera singing is even better. See if you can do it. (He sings a couple of lines... “You stupid, what did you do to me” and everyone breaks into laughter)
If possible take a guitar and sing with it. It must be very interesting. Some people will become musician like this. Anger comes when you go out of certain rhythm. And, music isbringing that rhythm back. Antidote for anger is music, exercise, karate, martial arts....
You know martial arts have to be done without anger.
In Bhagvad Gita, Lord Krishna says to Arjun, "Arjun, fight but not with anger or hatred." Now, anger does not take permission before coming. Don’t regret anger.
It’s ok to be angry with children. If you don’t get angry at them, they become so weak in the world. They cannot take criticism. Theybecome weak. You should know the limitation though. You know how much salt should be put in the food. How cold or warm, your finger will tell you. As parents, don’t feel guilty for scolding your children. Thinking that way you become stressed and are preparing yourself to get more upset or angry.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Benefits of the "Art of Living" Course

The Art of Living Course teaches us how to have greater peace, energy and joy...for a lifetime. We have learned many skills at home and in school, but we have never been taught how to handle negative emotions like anger, sadness, fear etc. If we learn the skill to deal with our mind when these emotions arise, the quality of our lives can change significantly for the better. Through the power of the breath and ancient knowledge of the mind, the Art of Living course teaches us this skill.
How can you benefit?
* More enthusiasm and dynamism in activities
* Increased harmony in relationships at home and at work
* Increased resilience to withstand stressful situations
* A smile born from inner stability
* Experience of a new depth in life and spirituality

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Arguments and wrong actions

A person who argues should not be given knowledge. An argumentative mind is not receptive to knowledge. When someone is in an argumentative mood, then giving knowledge or advice is in vain. In an argumentative mood you feel you know it all. Then you are not ready for knowledge. That is why wise people do not give advice when they are in an argumentative environment.
Argument has a purpose. It can bring out the truth if there is no emotion or sense of "I" attached to it. Argument can also have a disadvantage. It can make untruth appear to be truth.
A wise man will not take arguments seriously; he will just have fun with them. Wisdom is beyond all arguments.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

What to do if someone is jealous of you?

Sri Sri: Nothing(laughter). When you are unable to control your own mind then why should you want to manage someone else's mind! Jealousy towards someone else can happen because of 4 reasons someone else's money, fame, partner or somebody's wisdom/enlightenment
Any of these jealousies is not worth it as the grass is always greener on the other side .People who are famous are never at peace, surrounded by security and of course insecure about how long fame will stay; that soon someone else may come who can become more famous and anyways, one day they will all die ..billions have come to this earth ..and billions will come and die. You need to broaden your horizon whenever such negative emotions arise think of how huge this universe .millions of galaxies . Among them in a galaxy is the solar system, and within it in a tiny planet called earth, we reside in a corner. If you look at how insignificant your presence is in this universe, then all negativity would drop. If you keep thinking about the vastness of the universe, expansion happens.
You become the seed you sow, if you keep thinking, 'I'm a sinner, I'm a sinner' then that is the seed you sow. Look at life as a dream know that everything is dying every moment.
He asked everyone to read 'Celebrating Silence' where He has written at length about how to deal with negative emotions.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Happiness within us.......

Never should we think, ‘‘Oh, deep inside me there is sorrow’’. I say it’s only skin deep, go a little deeper there is no sorrow. You cannot have hurt deep inside you, that only means you have not gone deep enough. That’s why we are unable to forgive somebody because we think that person has caused us hurt. Right? But if you look at the person from a different perspective, that person himself is also a victim of ignorance, small mindedness, lack of awareness. So, inside every culprit there is a victim crying for help. If we can recognise that we don’t need to forgive them, we will feel compassion for them.
When we are happy, something in us is expanding, have you noticed it? And when we are upset, something in us is being crushed, a sense of contraction is felt. Just knowing this brings freedom to us. Then our mind or our consciousness no more becomes a puppet of anybody’s words, opinions or their sayings. It becomes free. We are unconditionally happy.
Each of us should reach out to everyone and say, ‘‘Hey, come on, just be friendly!’’. Do you know that a child smiles 400 times a day, an adolescent only 17 times, and an adult doesn’t smile at all. And that too, if he becomes a little successful, he becomes much more stiff. I can’t understand this! To me, someone who has no fear, who feels at home with everybody and has a smile which no one can take away is a successful person.
From today, make one resolution — that you are going to be a guiding lamp for the world, for the people around you. Wherever you go, you are going to uplift the atmosphere. If someone comes to you with complaints they should go back with a lighter heart, feeling more enthusiastic.
Can you all do this?

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Return To Joy

Our mind tends to vacillate between the past and the future. We are either regretting the past or anxious about the future. However as we all know living in the present moment is the route to joy. Our mind is such that we cannot control it in a direct manner. We cannot force it to be in the present moment. But we can influence our mind through the breath.
"Take a deep breath" is an age-old recommendation for relaxation. The Art of Living course takes this effect of breath on our minds and applies it in a very precise and powerful manner through the Sudarshan Kriya technique.

Practice of this technique can bring our mind effortlessly into the present moment. As this happens, we learn the ability to reduce the effects of negative emotions and return to our natural state of joy.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Negativity needs an Anchor

Negativity cannot remain without a support. Positivity, happiness can be without any reason.
The mind goes on trying to find support for its negativity. It looks for a hook to hang its negativity on - if not this person, then that thing or that person and so on.
This perpetuates the maya!
The creeper of negativity needs a support in order to grow. But negativity or aversion for even one person can guarantee a one-way ticket to hell - you need nothing else!
All negativity is a pointer to move to the centre and broaden the vision to the cosmic intelligence.
Instead of focussing your attention on support for your negativity, look at the seed of negativity.
With meditation, silence, kriya, the source of negativity is nipped at the root.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Faith and Belief

Question: Are faith and belief the same?
Sri Sri: Belief is a little diluted, faith is little strong, more concrete. Our beliefs can change, faith is firm. Faith is yogurt, belief is buttermilk. Like a child has faith in the mother, the child does not make the mother into an object of knowing. The child does not try to know the mother, it simply has faith in the mother. When you have faith, what is the need to know it? You cannot make love an object of knowing, if you try to make love an object of knowing, if you try to know it, it will disappear.
In the same way you cannot make Self, or God an object of knowing. God, love, sleep, and Self are beyond knowing. If you try to analyze, doubt comes in and faith will disappear. So whatever you want to have faith in, do not want to know it or analyze it. The moment you make something an object of knowing then analysis starts and then doubt follows. Analysis creates a distance, synthesis brings it together. Faith is synthesis, knowing is analysis.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Faith, Joy, Sadness, Envy and Praise

Question: Can we observe joy and sadness, envy and praise, etc. at the same time?
Sri Sri: Emotions are not very clear. Sometimes you are happy with something and unhappy for something else. Sometimes when you change a place, you are happy about moving to the new place but sad for leaving the old place. I've seen even between father and son or husband and wife, conflicting emotions of envy and praise. It's a flow of energy. Energy moves. There's no demarcation.

Question: Can you have faith without being aware of it?
Sri Sri: Yes. You have faith. Consciousness cannot exist without faith. Faith is a relaxed, stable, quality of consciousness. It is like the flame of a candle. The nature of consciousness is faith.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

His action

Question: If everything is God's work, are the good things and bad things occurring to me is also His action?

Sri Sri: God has given you intellect. If you don't use it, you land up in trouble. Animals have no choice because they have no intellect. We cant be like that. Freedom comes with intellect. So we can't say that everything happens. Life is a combination of rules and freedom. Let us say that a cow is tied to a bamboo through a rope. The cow's freedom is within the rope's limit. We have little freedom. Increasing freedom is spirituality. Through seva(service) you get merit and achieve increase in freedom. Complete freedom is siddhi(special power). Mind is stable and does not get stuck is free mind and it is called siddha's mind.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Perfect Health

Guruji:The objective is to have fun in life and make sure that the knowledge we gain in life, permeates inside us. With this, Upanishad happens and the learning process begins. As we learn more about life, the mystery of the whole Creation unfolds. Then the question that arise in the mind are - What is the meaning of Life? what is its purpose? What is this world, what is love, what is knowledge.....?
Once these questions arise in you, know that you are very fortunate. These questions need to be understood; you cannot find the answers in books. You have to live through them ad witness the transformation. That is perfect health; You are transformed from within. and the bud becomes a totally blossomed flower.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Love of the Ignorant and the Anger of the Enlightened

The love of the ignorant can be harmful yet even the anger of the Enlightened is not harmful. It can be only good!
An example is the school at the Art of Living Ashram in Bangalore. 250 children are enrolled but only 200 come to class on any given day. Fifty children don't show up. Why? They cry at home, "Mother, I don't want to go to school."
The mother says, "Oh, la la, don't cry . . . ok." She thinks, "No child in the world is like my child." And so she sticks up for the child and begins to speak for him. She does not see the teacher's point of view. The mother asks the teacher, "Why are you not teaching my child properly? He is so innocent, so lovely." So, what happens -- the child grows up spoiled. The love in the mother's ignorance has spoiled the child. The child will never learn the alphabet, never learn to read or write, but the mother says, "Oh, never mind, there are sheep to look after and fields to tend." The mother's love in ignorance has spoiled the child.
The anger of the Enlightened is a blessing. There are many instances of this in the Puranas. Once a Master was traveling in the middle province of India with a disciple following him a few yards behind. Some boys who were rude, rough, and abusive began to throw stones and tease the disciple calling him names. This went on for some time as the boys followed the Master and the disciple. They came to a river. The Master and the disciple got into a boat in order to cross. The boys got in another boat which started to sink in the middle of the river.
The Master slapped the disciple across the face. The disciple was so surprised as he had not said a word back to the boys in response to their taunts. He had been such a good disciple and yet the Master had slapped him!
The Master said, "It is your fault. You are responsible for their boat sinking. You did not respond to their abuse. Nature has now punished them in a worse way because you did not have enough compassion to quell their insults."
The slap that the Master gave took away the karma of this event such that it would not be carried into the future of the boys. It also served to take away any little bit of joy the disciple may have felt at seeing the boys' boat sink! Thus, it also took away the karma of the event for the disciple. So, the anger of the Enlightened is a blessing!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Self Pity

Question: How do I move away from Self-pity?
Sri Sri: One side is Self-pity, and other side is Blaming others. Either way is a problem. You have to stay in the middle. Just like how you ride a bicycle. Now, dont ask me how do I stay in the middle -or- how do I ride a bicycle? :-)

When you are losing balance on one side, just go to the other side. Then you learn to ride.

Friday, August 29, 2008

His action

Question: If everything is God's work, are the good things and bad things occurring to me is also His action?
Sri Sri: God has given you intellect. If you don't use it, you land up in trouble. Animals have no choice because they have no intellect. We cant be like that. Freedom comes with intellect. So we can't say that everything happens. Life is a combination of rules and freedom. Let us say that a cow is tied to a bamboo through a rope. The cow's freedom is within the rope's limit. We have little freedom. Increasing freedom is spirituality.
Through seva(service) you get merit and achieve increase in freedom. Complete freedom is siddhi(special power). Mind is stable and does not get stuck is free mind and it is called siddha's mind.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Five Types of Restlesness

Sri Sri: The first type of restlessness is due to the Place you are in. When you move away from that place, the street or the house, you immediately feel better. Chanting, singing, children playing and laughing can change this atmospheric restlessness. If you chant and sing, the vibration in the place changes.
The second type of restlessness is in the Body. Eating the wrong food or vata aggravating food, eating at odd times, not exercising, and overworking can all cause a physical restlessness. The remedy for this is exercise, moderation in work habits and going on a vegetable or juice diet for one or two days.
The third type of restlessness is mental restlessness. It is caused by ambition, strong thoughts, likes or dislikes. Knowledge alone can cure this restlessness. Seeing life from a broader perspective, knowledge about the Self and the impermanence of everything. If you achieve everything, so what? After your achievement, you will die. Knowledge of your death or life, confidence in the Self, in the Divine, can all calm down the mental restlessness.
Then there is emotional restlessness. Any amount of knowledge does not help here. Only Kriya helps! All that emotional restlessness vanishes. Also the presence of the Guru, a wise person, or a saint will help to calm your emotional restlessness.
The fifth type of restlessness is rare. It is the restlessness of the soul. When everything feels empty and meaningless, know you are very fortunate. That longing and restlessness is the restlessness of the soul. Do not try to get rid of it.
Embrace it! Welcome it! Usually to get rid of it people do all sorts of things - they change places, jobs or partners, do this, do that. It seems to help for some time, but it does not last.
This restlessness of the soul alone can bring authentic prayer in you. It brings perfection, Siddhis and miracles in life. It is so precious to get that inner most longing for the Divine. Satsang, the presence of the enlightened one, soothes the restlessness of the soul.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Love for everyone

Question: For most ordinary human beings, loving means loving some people more than others. For instance, I can't conceive of loving everyone as much as I love my family…

Sri Sri: It should not be forced on you; it is a natural evolution inlife. You love your son but [after some time] you start loving yourdaughter-in-law too. When a cousin you haven't seen for a long time arrives from America and his children come home, don't you feel love for them? Suppose you are in Russia or Mongolia and you meet [some] Indians. Almost instantaneously you start talking to them and it doesn't take long to get close to them. This sense of belongingness has different grades. As you move in the path of spirituality it happens instantaneously with everybody,whether you know them or not. You feel a sense of belongingness to the whole world, all people.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Seva and Smile

Question: What is seva?
Sri Sri: Sai is he, Va is him. Seva is like him. Like whom? Like the Divine. Doing an action like Him is Seva. God is not visible but does all things without expecting and that is seva. Moon shines whether you blame or praise, sun shines whether you like it or not, wind blows, river flows, earth revolves, Trees grows, Flowers blossom without expecting and that is seva. Something that you cant but do is seva. With seva, you get merit and you can get into meditation. You get more luck and come back to seva?
Question: What to do if you have a boss who doesn't recognize your contributions?
Sri Sri: Just smile

Monday, August 25, 2008

Skill and Manipulation

Question: What is difference between Skill and Manipulation?
Sri Sri: That is a good question.
In manipulation, there is bad/horrible intention.
In skill, there is good intention. In manipulation, there is guilt.
In manipulation, you are not honest to yourself.
When skillful, you get a pat from your heart "Go ahead...".
You are honest, when skillful.
In skill, your heart will not prick you.

But finally, ONLY YOU know whether you are skillful / manipulative

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Counting our karma

Question: In our childhood we heard that there is someone named 'Chitragupta' who is talking note of all our actions and is responsible for counting our karma balances. Is that true? Is there really someone who is watching us every moment?
Guruji: 'Chitra' means photo, picture and 'Gupta' means secret, hidden. The self who is witnessing the actions, the conscious mind is referred here to as Chitragupta. You know there is this saying which says, 'Under the foot-print of an elephant, all other marks dissolve'. Therefore under the Guru when you are doing your Sadhana and Seva and Satsang then everything else dissolves.
Similarly Chitragupta is not the (Malik) God, he is the (Sevak) servant.
But I tell you without self knowledge everything is false!!

Saturday, August 23, 2008


Sri Sri:Live as though you are nobody. Live as though you are a glow of light, and you will see, that bliss that comes out of it. You cannot even compare to any other joy through any senses.
No use in all these talks. Don't go on wasting your energy and time in talking. Be in silence. A thousand words cannot convey a glance, a look from your eyes. And even many thousand looks cannot convey one minute of silence. Just stay, silently.
The more "in" you are, the more consolidated you are, in the very core of your Being, the center of your Being, the more you speak the language of the Existence. You do so much good; you do so many wonderful things around you.Weigh your words before you speak them out. They are pearls of your life. Don't throw them; don't lose them for nothing