Monday, August 30, 2010

Anything that uplifts you and connects you with the universal spirit is spirituality.

Bangalore Ashram, India
Q: What is intuition and how can one develop intuition?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Tuition that you get from inside is intuition. Only way to develop intuition is to become little quieter and listen inside.
Q: Can you please speak on success and failure?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Failure is a step towards success. Success is a measure of a part of your ability. You have expressed little bit of your potential and that is success.
Q: How to choose career?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Choice is yours, blessing is mine! It is tough time, and it is confusing to chose among engineering, medical, architecture, charted accountancy etc. especially when you are equally good in more than one subject. It is good to bake a little bit in that confusion. But it is important that you put in your 100 percent in anything you chose.
Many times it happens that you choose medical and later on you feel you should have opted for engineering, or you choose engineering and you feel you should have gone for charted accountancy. This is all illusion. Every profession is the same.
Q: Is every partner also the same? Does soul mate exist?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: First you meet your soul and then rest will follow. If you meet your soul, many will come and claim that they are your soul mates. Then you chose one of them.
Q: There is so many violence and natural disasters happening in the world. Why does God let this all happen? If God exists then why does all this happen?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You chop off some leaves and branches of plants. Don’t you prune rose plant? Does it die by pruning? It grows up. Same way nature brings all this from a bigger picture.
It is not always ripe fruits that fall from a coconut tree. Sometimes even small coconut drops off. Baby fishes are also swollen by big fishes in an ocean. So, these natural calamities are all part of the nature. If we exploit nature too much, more natural calamities occur. We are putting dynamites in the Earth. We are blasting it every day. Imbalance gets created and so Earth starts shaking. Sustainable development is what is needed today. We need to care for the planet.
Nature moves with the law. God means a rule, a law. Everything goes by that. This planet Earth has to be protected and cared for.
One is natural calamity. Another is man-made calamity. Man-made calamities can always be avoided. People are not valuing human life for a little piece of gold. Human values need to be brought back into society.
Q: How to get God answer your prayers?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Have faith that he will answer and will do whatever is good for you.
Q: Sometimes my parents say that I am so young and why I meditate at this age. What to say when being confronted with such types of questions?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: I did not have this problem!
What can be said in such a situation? You tell them that they are not young, so why don’t they do it. Once they do it, they will know that it is for you also. People often regret when they start meditating. You know, why do they regret? They regret thinking that why did not they do it when they were of your age.
Q: What is spirituality?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You are both matter and spirit. Are you only matter? Your body is made up of matter – carbohydrates, minerals, amino acids etc. Your spirit is made up of joy, peace, enthusiasm, intelligence and other distortions like anger.
Anything which enhances the spirit is spirituality.
Anything that brings energy in you is spirituality.
Anything that makes you intelligent is spirituality.
Anything that uplifts life force in you is spirituality.
Anything that brings care and compassion is spirituality.
Anything that connects you with the universal spirit is spirituality.
Q: Whatever you preach sounds very good. Bur at times I find it difficult to implement. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You do not do anything which is difficult. Easy go lucky. Spirituality makes everything easy. Everything in the ‘Art of Living’ makes life easy. There are certain things which are easy to begin with but later on turns to be difficult. There are certain other things which may appear to be difficult in the beginning but later on makes everything easy. Spirituality is the later one.
When you were kid, you were forced to brush your teeth. Suppose you had not undergone that, what would be the scenario of your mouth now? Half your teeth would have dropped. Like this you may find it difficult in the beginning but it makes things easy later on.
Q: Can you please talk on doubts?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Haven’t I talked about it earlier also? Doubt is just low energy. When you don’t have enough energy, this happens.
Your doubt is always on something that is positive. If somebody says, “I love you”, you doubt that. You never doubt anybody expressing hatred towards you. You doubt in love and not in anger. You doubt in your capabilities and not in your weaknesses. You are so sure of the things that you cannot do. You doubt in your own happiness. You don’t doubt in depression. You doubt in someone’s honesty. You never doubt in dishonesty of anyone.
So, like that if you see the nature of doubt, you always doubt the positive.
Q: Why to turn vegetarian to practice spirituality? Don’t I need proteins to follow spirituality?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: There is more than one reason for the same. There are different animal groups. Some are scavengers which eat dead animals. Some kill and eat fresh flesh. Some animals eat only vegetarian food. The most powerful land animal, elephant, is vegetarian. Horse, cow, Gorilla, Hippopotamus are all vegetarians.
So, you find this nature. Our system is made for vegetarian food. There are many logical and scientific explanations. People world over are turning to be vegetarian. You don’t want to make your stomach a burial land? You can change your whole diet and you will find how intelligent and genius you turn out to be. Most scientists, especially the genius ones like Einstein were also vegetarian.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Being young at heart means being enthusiastic, willingness to do anything and to create something new

22 Jun 10
Bangalore Ashram, India
(Sri Sri welcoming Yes plus youths to the Ashram)
All of you have come home. There is a lot of fun and knowledge for you here. There are many surprises waiting for you.
Youth means enthusiasm, fun, ready to do anything, to create something new - these are the qualities of a youth. And all of you have these qualities.
It is important for our society that this youthfulness finds place in millions of hearts. We have to multiply rapidly on this front. Even if 10 enthusiastic youth come up in a village, they can bring a lot of change in that village. They will remove any corruption and fanaticism prevailing nowadays.
I will give you two examples.
There was a woman in Mumbai who knew French language. She came to me and said, 'I know French. Please send me somewhere for service.'I said,'Ok. You can go wherever you like, and we will make the arrangements.' She went to the Ivory Coast. There were strong conflicts between Muslim and Christian groups. There was a lot of tension in villages. She organized an ‘Art of Living’ course for all the people in one village. Then she organized a course in another village where people from the opposing group lived. She got both the groups together. Christians went to the Muslim village and built a school there. Muslims built toilets for the Christian homes. Like this they became useful to each other and the whole conflict was resolved. One, two, this problem was resolved in 10-15 villages. In 2008, the government of Ivory Coast rewarded the ‘Art of Living’ for the outstanding work. We will see a film about this in coming few days.
Many of you would have heard of Khakiyavadi village in Nanded district in Maharashtra. There is no board for any casts. There is just one board which says, 'Divya Samaj Nirman' (Divine Society).One-two people took the responsibility, and they organized Nav Chetna Shivirs and meditation camps for 600 families in this village. Earlier, it was a notorious village, but now satsang happens there every day. There are no druggists or alcoholics in the village anymore. There is no liquor shop in the village. Every home has a smokeless chullah (smokeless stove). The whole village is organic. There is a shop where there is no shopkeeper. Prices are printed on commodities. People pick up what they need and put the payment in a box. It has become a model village. It was such a notorious village, and now it has become a model village. The Government has given them the honor of a 'Clean and model village' and also given them monetary reward.
A few enthusiastic youths changed the face of Dharavi slum also. It is the largest slum in Asia. A quality school was also started there. Children, who used to wander on the streets, study there and pass with first class marks.
Delhi youths will also share their experiences of 'Meri Dilli Meri Yamuna' programme. Even government is also surprised with their enthusiastic work. There is still a lot to be done by them.
Each and every youth has this enormous power. Our youth will have enthusiasm and awareness. There are many who are angry and enthusiastic, which is very easy to be. But we want our youth to be enthusiastic and aware at the same time, who joyfully accomplishes the goal. What the goal is – Uplifting the society. Nobody should be suffering from starvation or depression. Nobody should be denied justice.
Our Yuvacharyas went to get license for a factory. They refused to pay any bribe. Without any anger and with full confidence they said, “Sir, we move by principles of the ‘Art of Living’ and we will not be giving any bribe. We can come to you for 50 times if you want, but we won’t pay any bribe.” That man very easily gave them the license. I would want all of you to move ahead in teams like this.
You all have time here to develop a multifaceted personality. Gain as much talent as you can. We need to enhance our talents along with Yoga, Pranayama and meditation. We will do that. Debating groups, journalism groups... Some people should frame talk shows. Those who do not know public speaking should speak in public; those who are bad singers should come and sing in mike. We keep on doing what we know, and there is no joy in that. Venture in that which you do not know. Let those, who don’t know how to prepare food, cook food. Then it may be a problem for them who know how to eat! This way we should take it as a challenge to practice that which we don’t have in us.
How many of you felt energized just after entering the campus? Many of you have travelled for long and come here. Many of you have travelled for three-four days. How many of you feel that this is unusual that entering a place makes you refreshed. You know, why does this happen?
(Because of you, Guruji!)
It is because people have been meditating here. Meditation keeps the energy high in the whole surroundings. This is the effect of meditation, knowledge and devotion. So, we need to keep this energy high, and to do that you don’t miss the morning exercises. We will have different types of yoga for you – sports yoga, village women yoga, Dance yoga, Animal yoga and philosophical yoga. We can avoid any arguments, back biting or criticizing. If you feel any such thing in your mind, you can write it down and put it in botheration basket. Suppose somebody in your room is snoring! You definitely cannot live for three-four days with somebody who is snoring. Either you take ear plugs or we will put all snorers in one room, and we will have an orchestra! There is nothing wrong in snoring. Don’t feel guilty if anybody does that. If there are many snorers, we will allot rooms for them. Only one thing which needs to be considered is that all snorers have to go to bed at the same time. Then only symphony will come along! (Bubbles of Laughter)
None of you is a guest here. All of you are hosts and you must act like hosts, and not guests. This is your place. You have to create a homely atmosphere. It is already there but you need to get that to yourself. So, everyone is a host, only I am guest here! Feel absolutely relaxed and at home. You anyway know that, no body needs to tell you that.
Those who want to write poems and articles should do all these things here. Rest of everything is a surprise for you!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

You relive experience with the remembrance of the experience

Bangalore Ashram, India
continued from the last post..
Q: I wish to spend some time with you, sit with you and talk. I want to travel with you. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Fulfill those desires which you can fulfill, and surrender those which you can surrender. Fulfillment of any desire requires effort and time. When you surrender, your desires automatically get fulfilled. Some desires are fulfilled after desiring for long time. And some are not fulfilled even then. Sometimes you find it good later on that some of your desires were not fulfilled. Have this faith that Divine knows what is best for you. Neither criticize desires nor get swayed with the desires. Is it ok? This is the middle path. As you become more aware, everything else automatically starts becoming peaceful.
Q: All people have so much faith in you. Suppose you say that you are not a Master, then what would happen to their faith? I am not saying this is the case but I am trying to frame a situation that took place in my life. How to react if somebody says that what you believe in is not right?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You have imagined a situation in mind, Faith is that which is not shaken by doubts. Doubts are like clouds in the sky, they come and go. Even if you undergo 1000 such situations, somewhere your heart tells you what the truth is.
If anybody tells you anything, would you believe it? If you have ache in your foot, would you believe that your foot is not aching even if I say that? There are some experiences in life which your heart refuses to doubt even if the whole world tells you to doubt that.
In a way it is good if you have doubts. You get an opportunity to grow strong in the fire of doubts. Withstanding doubt makes you strong.
Q: What does – ‘Dhiyo Yona prachodyat’ mean in the Gayitri Mantra?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Let Divinity flow through this intellect; let only good thoughts happen through the intellect.
Q: What do we mean by being a Yogi?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yogi means being like a child again. Same is what Ashtavakra is saying: No craving, no aversion, no attachment can cover self knowledge.
Q: What is the difference between desire and resolution?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: All the work in life happens through intention. You had this intention in mind to come here, and then only you could come here. If something keeps on bombarding your mind and doesn’t let you sleep, then that is desire. You should not think that one should have no desire in the mind. Resolve to accomplish bigger tasks. Take on greater jobs in your hands. But you should also keep those aside at times and relax for some time.
Q: How to be consistent?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Your mind gets focused with love. Greed and fear also focus your mind. I prefer love over other two.
Q: Your presence gives so much peace and joy. I want to always have the same joy. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: When you remember your experiences here, you relive that joy wherever you may be. All other experiences of the world get dissolved with the impression of devotion.

Friday, August 27, 2010

A Time to go Inwards

Guruji has indicated that the next few months, upto around the middle of October are not so good and He has advised that we keep three things in mind
1. No adventure trips at all. No trekking, rafting, mountain climbing, etc
2. Cut down on partying and night outs
3. Drive slowly, carefully and don’t leave your house till you have finished your Sadhana
For these few weeks, please be more sattwic, eat at home more, not outside as much as possible…

What i see in this, is it’s an opportunity for all of us to go more inwards. Clean up our life and start up some really good habits. Do all your Sadhana, Surya Namaskars, Padma Sadhana, Sudarshan Kriya, Sahaj. Also do chanting, Om Namah Shivaya and the Guru Pooja if you know it.

Start to read the Bhagavad Geeta and the Yoga Vasishtha … You know you have been wanting to do it, instead of that trek, sit home and read these books. Doesn’t matter if you don’t understand or it is too deep for you, just reading will open something up in you… Read these books just after meditation.

Go Inwards.
Be safe…
Jai Gurudeva!

Truth can not be conveyed on the the level of brain

Bangalore Ashram, India
Q: What is the difference between religion and spirituality?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Spirituality joins everything. Different beliefs are there like somebody may be Vaishnav, somebody may be Hindu, somebody may be Christian, but spirituality is experience. I often say, religion is like a banana peel and spirituality is the fruit inside.
Q: Saints say that suicide is a crime. Then what is jeev Samadhi?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, suicide is wrong. Some saints take jeev Samadhi. They can effortlessly separate their mind and soul, and continue to live like that for 20 years or so. Saint Gyaneshwar and some other very great saints did that in the past. I am not in favor for it.
One commits suicide out of sorrow, and tries to destroy the body. One tries to commit such a thing burdened with the sorrow, and in search of happiness. But committing suicide is like you removing your coat when you are feeling cold. There is only repentance after suicide, and one keeps on struggling to get a new body. Don’t try to finish this body, and also don’t hold on to it very strongly.
Q: Even after doing Advance course, I have negative emotions like anger, jealousy and greed. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You have already assumed that you have all this. Now imagine what the case would be if you had never done meditation. These emotions were happening in you earlier also, and these are happening now also. But now these lose their grip on you very quickly. May be, few more Advance courses and you find that you are out of the grip of these emotions.
Don’t assume that you have all these negative emotions in you. If you assume this, same will start manifesting. Where are these emotions right now? You are pure in the present moment. Have faith in your innocence in the present moment. Gradually, you will experience that all these are not present in you, and you would start feeling how beautiful you are from inside. You have heard this earlier, but now you would experience it.
Q: You are not only a Guru, a Spiritual Master, but you are also so skilled in management. How come you manage everything?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Guru is not a physical entity, but Guru is embodiment of knowledge and discretion. Guru is pure consciousness. There is no difference between universal consciousness, Guru and the Self. You should also be a Guru to someone. What does it mean to be a Guru? You don’t expect anything from them, and do whatever you can to uplift them with the feeling of love. Start with the one, then two, three…..10. ‘I am for you; you don’t need to worry’ - Then you would also be able to say this for everybody.
Q: How does one get rid of lust in the mind?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: If you suppress lust totally, you won’t be able to rise high. Also if you indulge too much in it, then also it is not going to work. Adopt the middle path. You can progress on the path being a family man. Neither you should force celibacy on you nor should you indulge too much in it. If you see the faces of people who visit these night clubs, you will not find even a glimpse of happiness on their faces. It is like sadness and heaviness are dropping out from their faces.
Q: There are so many definitions of Saints. In reality, whom do we call a saint or a Yogi?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Saint is one whose consciousness is complete. Manifestation follows their words. When such a person speaks, it is not only on the level of mind. Those words have depth. It is more beneficial to directly listen to master’s words because He is speaking life’s experiences only. Experience kindles experience.
We communicate more through our presence. If our presence doesn’t have that love, then the words spoken carry no effect. And there is no need of words where presence carries love. Whatever we convey, it is through our whole existence. It is like when a child cries or laughs, it is coming from every cell of his/her body. This is indication of a yogi – He/She speaks through existence.
Truth can not be conveyed on the level of brain.
Q: Money cannot bring us happiness – this knowledge happens after accumulating money or before it?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: If you are intelligent, it happens before. And if you are little less intelligent, then it happens afterward. An intelligent person also learns from others’ experiences. But this realization is only authentic if you can experience someone’s experience as your own. It doesn’t carry any value if a beggar says that he has abandoned everything. How can a beggar abandon anything? He has not earned anything at the first place. Also there are some people who do not understand this even after accumulating a lot of money. But this doesn’t mean that you should not earn money. If you are too feverish for money thinking that only it can bring you happiness, then either earn money and see yourself, or learn from others’ experience.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Geeta will give you solace when life seems to be a battle

Bangalore Ashram, India
18 June 2010
Q: These practices bring so much inner comfort. If I do a lot of practice, will it make me more happy?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Don’t do too much of practice. Move ahead gradually. Do only as much as needed. Do that much to which your body gets accustomed to. You should not start doing 10 hours of practice all of a sudden.
Q: What is the difference between Ashtavakra Geeta and Bhagwad Geeta?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: One was sung in a royal palace and other in a battle field. You yourself see now what the difference is. It is like a song having different tunes. Both have their own value. When life seems to be a battle, Bhagwad Geeta will give you solace, and then Ashtavakra Geeta.
Q: My husband has yet not done the ‘Art of Living’ course. I want him to experience the same joy and knowledge. I have persuaded him by all means. Please guide me what to do now?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: You pray. It will happen.
Q: I started doing spiritual practices when I was 17 years old. I have tried many practices. After long practice of meditation, I have had many out of body experiences. At certain stage, my mind became dysfunctional and I was frightened. Can you please guide me?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Some people try different techniques, they try to learn everything being taught anywhere, and end up making a chaos out of it. That is why, all this happens. The path which is being guided here is very safe. Do as much as needed. If you try to follow all kinds of techniques, it creates a problem.
Q: Will I have more experiences?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Experience happens on its own, but don’t hanker for experiences.
Q: How to keep the God and world together?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: How can you keep them together? They are already one. Where is the question of combining them? In the nature of form, it is world, and same is God in its formless nature. You don’t have to do anything to bring them together.
Q: How can I be a selfless devotee? I have been doing business with you till now. What step should I take to be the same?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: This wish has arisen in you, so take it for granted that it has already started. I don’t mind even if you do business. Anyway, you would be getting much more than you give. Live joyfully. You wouldn’t encounter any loss even if you do business.

Sri Sri's message on Rakhsha Bandhan given long back

Copenhagen, Denmark
20 Aug 1997
This full moon is dedicated to the seers -- the rishis. It is also called the Raksha bandhan. Bandhan means bondage, and raksha means protection. A bondage that protects you - Your bondage to the knowledge, to the master, to the truth, to The Self, all Save You. A Rope Can Be Tied To Either Protect Or Strangle You. The Small Mind and Mundane Things can strangle you. The big mind or knowledge saves you. Raksha Bandhan is that bondage that saves you.
You are bound by your bondage to the satsang, your bondage to the master, to the truth, to the ancient knowledge of the rishis, and that is your savior.
Bonding is essential in life. And let the bonding be divine in a life free from bondage.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rapid Fire with Sri Sri

Night Life: All nights are in Satsang. Appointment with the Divine.
Solitude: To be practiced amongst the crowd.
The forgotten language: Impermanence of Life.
The pathless path: Meditation.
Abhyasa(Practice): Is doing what you have known to be correct.
Desirelessness: is an outcome of Joy.
Holiness: Your very nature.
Apologizing: Brings comfort to the ignorant.
Insult: Experienced by one who has never gone in.
Stealing: Worth doing with great things.
Sensitivity: Makes you human.
The Unconsciousness: The mother of all problems.
Sermons: Fruits that nobody picks or claims.
Swami: One who has established in oneself.
Nightmare: Experienced by one who has never done ‘Art of Living’.
Political will: Serious deficit in resolving conflicts.
Ideology: Many keep it in their safe lockers, and never use it.
Cunningness: Has become so cheap in society where there is no spirituality.
Witness: It brings stability in emotions.
Assassination: Done by foolish people to bring suffering on themselves.
Justice: All that is – Just is.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Embodiment of knowledge is Guru

Bangalore Ashram, India
16 June 2010
Q: Dear Guruji, Guru Gobind Singh made warriors, each one of which was capable of handling many negative powers. What is your vision for the warriors that you are polishing?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: First, we are to fight against the evil of ignorance. There are so many problems in the society today – corruption, exploitation of environment, starvation, powers opposing spirituality, and anti humanity powers. These all have to be defeated.
Q: Is there anything beyond space?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Beyond space?me!
Q: I am in a dilemma. I used to revere Guru Granth Sahib as my Guru. But after meeting you, I have found the inner joy which I was looking for. Now I am confused whether to have faith in you as a Guru, or in the Granth Sahib?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Where is the dilemma? Guru Granth Sahib is a very sacred scripture. One should definitely respect it. Guru is not a person; Guru is knowledge, whether it is in a scripture, a person, or consciousness. That Guru tattva is to be revered and believed in. Our mind only creates complication, otherwise there is no dilemma. Guru Granth Sahib contains the crux of all scriptures. So, respect the scripture. There is no question of choosing here.
Mother is our first Guru.
School teacher is our second Guru.
Then music teacher is also a Guru.
And one who gives knowledge of the truth is Satguru.
When Guru tattva wakes up in life, it is not partially awakened, it stays completely. So, live naturally. Rejoice and live in love and joy.
Q: How can I get more happiness and joy from everywhere?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: This race of more and more is killing us. More and more and more – How can I get more? Relax my dear. We don’t even have enough time to enjoy what we have. We should think how can I be more useful to the society, how can I serve more? One who is always thinking of getting something is like a beggar. Everything comes to the one who thinks how she/he can contribute more to the society. There won’t be any lack for such a person.
Q: My sister called me in the morning. She was crying because her son is suffering from an incurable disease, and his condition was not well. I could not be physically present there. I closed my eyes and prayed to you. At 4 o’clock in the evening, she called me saying that her son is doing well. All I want to know is how it is possible that I am sitting here and praying from here makes things better there?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: This is a trade secret. It is easy to be popular but it is difficult to be a Guru. A Guru has responsibility along with.

Five levels of body that one exhibits

We all have five bodies. Our first body is our environment. If there is poison in the environment, this physical body cannot exist. That is called Annarasmaya kosha. Food is not only that you eat. Environment is also food. Air is food for our lungs. Water is also food. Heat or warmth is also a kind of food. If you are in a place where temperature is -40 degree centigrade, then no matter how much food you have but you won’t be able to exist. So, heat is food for our body. One of course is the food that we eat. Peace and joy are food for the soul. Our environment is our first body.
Second is Pranamaya kosha – the energy, life force. You can sense when energy is low and when energy is high. You go to a place where there is low energy, and you feel like running away. You go to a place of high energy, and you feel like staying there. How many of you had this experience?
You can feel the effect of eating fresh food and frozen food in your body. Fresh food has more prana, and frozen food has very little prana. Similary, you find a difference in eating fresh vegetables, and eating thoroughly baked and cooked vegetables. So, second is Pranamaya kosha.
Then is breath. You can nourish your body but if your body is not breathing, it will go under Earth or become ashes. Our physical body has value because of prana, because you are breathing. 90 percent of impurities in the body go out through the breath. Only 10 percent impurities are eliminated through urine, stool and sweat.
Then next is mind - Manmaya kosha, the thoughts in the mind. Are you aware of the thoughts happening in your mind?
Then comes Vigyanmaya kosha - Intuitive awareness or knowledge. That is fourth sheet of our body.
Fifth is the bliss. So these are the five levels of body that one exhibits.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Conversation between a child and his teacher regarding God.

Child: What is God? What is Divinity?
Teacher: Food is God.
So, the child went back and grew enough food. He understood the value of food and the effects of food on the body and mind. But then he thought, “food is not everything”. So, he again went to his teacher to ask the same.
Child: What is God? What is the supreme power that rules everything?
Teacher: The prana (Life force) is God. The breath is God.
The child went back and spent his time in understanding about prana - How life force is entering and leaving our body. He had understood it, climbed that step, and so he came to know that that was not all. So, he went to his teacher again with that authentic willingness to know.
Child: I have understood about Prana but I am not yet satisfied. Please tell me, what is Divine? What is God?
Teacher: The mind is God.
Then he spent his time studying and observing the mind, and found – ‘some good thoughts come in the mind, some bad thoughts come in the mind. There is mind sometimes and there is no mind at some other times’. After spending a good amount of time, he felt that there was something more, and mind is not all. So, he again went to the teacher, and asked the same question.
Teacher: Knowledge is God.
Then he contemplated about knowledge, but he was not really satisfied. Knowledge is of course very much needed to move ahead. But he still felt there was something more, there was no juice there. So, he went to his teacher for the last time and very humbly asked the same question.
Teacher: Bliss is Divine.
Then this boy went back, experienced bliss and all his questions disappeared by this time. He said that love and bliss is really nature of God.
Step by step, the teacher guided him on the path. That is why it is so important to take knowledge in the presence of a saint. It is more beneficial to listen from a Guru/Master because He doesn’t speak on the level of words only, but he speaks the very experience. Experience awakes experience in others. But the child never complained that there was something more to what he was told. He knew that a person who doesn’t know about food would not understand that bliss is God and same for other steps. A person having no food to eat cannot understand that bliss is God. That is why Food is important.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Should I have desires?

There are two schools of thought. One is you visualize dream and work for it. Other school of thought says surrender everything to God, whatever God gives you is the best, and God will take care of everything for you. Where is the compatibility? They appear to be completely opposite. One is your own visualization, your own dream and your perseverance, and another is having trust in God and leaving everything on God. They appear to be incompatible but I would say they are very much compatible. It is good to have an intention or a goal. You don’t keep on visualizing your goal 24*7, but continuing to work for that, you leave it to the Divine. Only the combination of two will work.
It is beautifully described in Scriptures: You take a vision or goal, and then you offer it to the Divine while working for that – “This is what I want and you know what is best for me. If this or anything better, I am ready to accept.”
Sometimes you don’t know what you want. If you know what you want, it is not difficult to get it. Half the time we are unsure of what we want. Often you find if you are persistent to get something, you don’t want the same thing the next week, the next month or the next year. So, before you take an intention, you expand your awareness.
So, put an intention in the universe - I want this or anything better.
Now, what is the difference between a desire and an intention? Suppose you want to go to Mumbai from Bangalore. You buy a ticket and travel for around three hours and go there. But you don’t keep chanting in your mind all this time that you want to go to Mumbai and you are going to Mumbai. You may even land up in a mental Hospital like this! Desire is the feverishness that clogs on to an intention. An intention is a desire free from feverishness. And then working towards your intention, this faith is to be there whatever nature brings back is for my growth.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The impression of devotion wipes away all other impressions from mind

Bangalore Ashram, India
11 June 2010
Q: You spend so much time for reducing terrorism; do I need to become a terrorist to get your time and attention? It would be nice to be transformed through you.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: A terrorist use gun to shoot, but you shot arrows of your devotion! Your devotion and love are much stronger.
I remember an incident when I was in Rishikesh. A devotee fainted and fell down. Everyone's attention was attracted by this. I knew that it was just a drama to attract attention. First I kept on walking, but when the drama continued for a long time, I went to that place. When I asked, she said, 'You don't look at me, so I had to do this.' You don't have to do such a thing to catch my attention! How do you know I don't look at you? When you are looking elsewhere, I look at you for sure. The goal is only one - to center your mind and consciousness in one place. When your mind is centered, calm and you are smiling, I look at those whose mind is still racing here and there and is not centered.
Q: When you are in front of us, you ask us to close our eyes and meditate, but we don't feel like even blinking our eyes (we want to keep seeing you). Don't laugh it off, devotees are perturbed.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Should I get you a mirror? Go within yourself and you find how beautiful you are.
Q: You say that there is no difference between you and me, then why do I feel sorrow?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: The sorrow is there because you have not fully realized this. Your heart and mind have not accepted this deep inside. As soon as you accept, the sorrow disappears.
Q: When God is everything then who does wrong actions? Why it is that someone is a saint and someone a thief?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:The way you act, God awards the fruit of the action accordingly. If you steal, God will come to you as a policeman. Your actions, good or bad, decide your experience of joy and sorrow. Joy and sorrow are the outcomes of your discretion; it depends on your discretion in performing actions. It is ok if you drink one glass of milk. But what happens if you drink three kilos of milk? Without the use of discretion, nectar can turn to be poison.
Q: My husband practices Sudarshan kriya but does wrong deeds. What should I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: How can this be? Then he may be doing Sudarshan kriya just as an excercise. Bring him for a follow up, or meditation camps. Or, may be what you see as a wrong deed is not perceived so by him. Talk to him.
Q: When children talk silly, parents reason with them to make them see their folly. But when parents start getting aged, they sometimes talk silly and don't respond to reasoning with them, what should a child do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Still keep serving them. Using a detached approach, try to understand why they are saying so. It may be the case that you find them to be right, though they may lack in right expression. Or, you may find their observation to be wrong. It is not necessary to do everything that they say because their understanding and life experiences are different from the child's.
Q: Does Bhakti (devotion) make an impression on the Chitta (subconscious mind)?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, of course. The impression of Bhakti wipes away all other impressions, all negativity of mind. Also the impression of Bhakti gets dissolved on its own. Like when you put a piece of alum to purify water, the water gets purified as the alum dissolves and disappears. The impression of Bhakti is just like this.
Q: Your naughtiness makes everyone dance. The whole world is going crazy. Tell us something about this naughtiness of yours?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Naughtiness is not to be talked about, it is to be done! Everyone has child-like qualities in them. Not childish but Child-like. When one is a yogi, this happens automatically. There is naturalness in life. Everyone seems to be one’s own. This happens naturally. Ego, any kind of self identity that one has, gets dissolved.
Q: How do we know that our past karmas have been burnt?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Just assume it. Just like assuming, 'I am free' makes one free. Believing that past karma has been burnt makes it so.