Question & Answers with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Q: Can you talk a little about the Soul - the self or Atma?
Sri Sri: It is step by step experiential understanding. Before going to atma, the self, you have to know the five elements of creation. What are the tatvas? Prithvi, ap, tej, vayu, and akash - Earth, water, fire, air and ether. Then comes the mind, buddhi (intellect), memory, ego, and maha tattva (self).
Q: Is there such a thing life after death? If there is no life after death what is the meaning of our existence?
Sri Sri: It is good to have some suspense!
Q: Sometimes it seems all this is untruth, we running after things knowingly or unknowingly. Sometimes I feel I am compulsorily driven away with the flow and that distresses me. What is it that doesn’t change? What is the truth?
Sri Sri: Truth cannot be spoken. Only in Silence, in deep meditation you can experience the truth!
Q: Are there fixed number of souls? If yes, then how come so many people are getting reborn on the planet? Why is population increasing in the world?
Sri Sri: Hmm! There are so many animals getting extinct also!
Q: Dear Guruji, when we take responsibility, how can we tackle obstacles?
Sri Sri: The test of your peace is only when there are obstacles. Be thankful for obstacles
Q: Why aren’t you hitting the world just like that? Why so slow?
Sri Sri: You all need a job too!
Sri Sri: The product really works well! Just last week I went to Kerala. They had organized 19 appointments in a day. I cancelled some of them before I went there. Yet, I ended up attending 22 appointments. I thought I would get irritated, but I surprised myself and didn't. Each one of us has tremendous energy within us. One single cell can light up the entire city of Bangalore for 24 hours.
Q: Guruji, telling the truth causes problems outside and telling lie creates problems inside? What to do?
Sri Sri: Solve the problem. Problems are to be seen as challenges. Someone who is brave like challenges and you are brave, I tell you.
Q: Krishna tells Arjuna - Don’t think you’re killing them - they’re already dead. If a terrorist also gives you the same reason in the name of their faith or religion, what would you say?
Sri Sri: These are completely different situations and you cannot mix them up. A terrorist does with hatred, with ignorance, right? You cannot take a policeman or an army man and a terrorist as same. They both shoot with guns, but a policeman does it for a different reason and a terrorist does it for an entirely different reason. The intention, the state of mind, is totally different. That is why Arjuna was told, “Fight the war for justice, but not with anger, hatred, jealousy or greed. Do it to protect the dharma, the righteousness.”
Q: How does God see the world?
Sri Sri: God cannot see two. For God there is no you and I! He can only see himself in everything and everyone!!