Question & Answers with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Q: Can you give me a suggestion – how to be calm when your spouse is always mad at you?
Sri Sri: : Well, an answer coming from me won’t be authentic! There are many experienced (spouses) ones here, you can exchange notes with them! But if someone gets angry so often then you get used to it, and it doesn’t bother you so much anymore, isn’t it? But if they are sweet and then get mad at you then you get more bothered about it, right?
There is a very popular story in India. A gentle man got married to a woman who was very shrewd. She would do everything against his will. Whatever he will say, she would do just its opposite and he was so bothered and sad about it. Divorces were not that common those days in India, so he was stuck with this situation. Then, when you are stuck in a situation, you go to a wise man, so he went to meet a yogi.
The yogi whispered something in his ears and three months later when the yogi met this gentle man again, he was beaming with happiness. He came and told the yogi- “Your formula worked, now we have peace at home!” The formula was-whatever he wanted, he said just the opposite to his wife! So if he didn’t want to wear a green shirt that day, he would say- “ I want to wear a green shirt”, and she wouldn’t do that for him anyway! So, you only need to know the pulse and do accordingly.
If your spouse is all the time angry, then I know you might have experienced and found how to handle it , and how to increase or reduce the volume, right? Interesting!May be (with such people), you should try this for one month or two months, and take them by surprise. If they are angry, praise them, and love them so much. Don’t be too predictable with anger.
Q: I want to serve you. Where do I go?
Sri Sri: There are so many opportunities here. Bad Antogast needs several people who would like to do some service.Come to the German Ashram.There are other places also.
Q: Why does a desire arise? Where does it come from? What is the purpose?
Sri Sri: All desires have got one goal, and that is happiness. If a desire brings unhappiness, it has not reached its goal. The goal of desires is to bring happiness. So, that is the purpose.
Where does it come from? It comes when you are not aware of your Being, your Self. Desire is your wanting to stay in the moment. Desire is to experience joy. Joy is only in the moment. And when you are in the moment, there is no desire. When you are joyful, when you are satisfied, there is no burning desire at that time.
Q: Is anger related to ego? Several Rishis in the Hindu tradition have been known to be very short-tempered. How did this affect their peace?
Sri Sri: Not several. One of the Rishis is known for his anger. But always good happened through his anger. That’s why I say, even the anger of a wise man does so much good, and love of an ignorant person causes more problems.
See, an illiterate mother, an uneducated mother, she doesn’t like her children going to school because the young ones cry while going to school. Then she says, ‘No, no. Ok, don’t go to school.’ They say they don’t want to study, and she says, ‘Ok, don’t study.’ Her love for her children has spoiled their whole life. Isn’t it? So, even the love of an ignorant person does harm. And even anger of a saint always does good.
There are so many stories about one sage, his name was Durvasa. In India, if someone is very angry, they say ‘Oh, he is a Durvasa!’ means he is someone who gets angry at the drop of a hat. But he would come back to normal state immediately. This is to say, don’t feel bad about yourself if you have anger.
Even a Rishi had some anger. So, you don’t have to be too hard on yourself by blaming yourself. That is just to give you self confidence. To make you feel, you are ok, inspite of your little bit anger. That is only one rare case. That is to say that enlightenment is unconditional. It is what? It is unconditional. You can’t put any condition on that freedom. Just to tell you, there is no conditioning. So it’s possible to get angry also. And, sometimes anger can also do good.
To be continued in next post..
Q: Guruji, when you meet terrorists and naxalites, don’t you get frustrated with their attitude and lack of knowledge?
Sri Sri: : This is like asking a doctor- Don’t you feel sick of seeing the sick patients?!!
Q: Please can you teach me how to be connected to the faith?
Sri Sri: Trying to connect to the faith is trying to connect to the air around you. ‘I want to be connected to the air.’ My dear, you can’t be but! You are already connected. Relax.
Why do you try to connect to air? Are you getting what I am saying? Doubt as much as you can. I would say, you should doubt as much as you can. A point comes when you no longer can doubt, the truth will stand up. Truth can never be destroyed by doubt. Do you understand what I am saying? Truth will stand. Doubt can cover it, delay it for some time, drag on for some time, but it can never destroy the truth.
Therefore, when people have doubts, I say, ‘doubt as much as you can. One day those doubts will fall off.’ If you are lucky, it will fall off immediately the way it comes. Unlucky ones hang on to it for a little longer time. That’s all. Unlucky ones will carry the garbage on their back for some long distance. Lucky ones know that they carry garbage and throw it right there. Two steps, and they drop their garbage. Otherwise one carries on the shoulder for a long distance.
Catch more from the same conversation in the next post..
Q: Dear Guruji, I don’t want to get married but I find living alone very difficult too. No one to talk to or do things with, I end up watching too much TV. What to do and how to cope?
Sri Sri: Ya, when you are living alone, this will be the problem. That is why the ashrams are created, where many people are there and they have so many things to do together like everyday satsang. Everybody is busy taking a project and working on a project. France needs help. You can come and join the French team.
Q: Why is it that people who are not on the same path don’t understand us and take it against us? I don’t understand.
Sri Sri: Let them talk. So what? Take it. It doesn’t matter. We don’t insist that everyone talk only good. By their talking, you don’t become negative.
So, don’t be football of others’ opinion. Let anybody say anything. It doesn’t matter. When you are clear in your heart, and what you do is right, what you want to do is right, you just do it. What do you say? (Clapping from the audience.)
Q: Because I travel a lot to places where vegetarian food is hard to find, and I have to eat with office colleagues. I eat wrong foods and find energy is really low. What to do in such situations?
Sri Sri: You know when people have some allergies, they don’t eat those foods for which they have allergies just because of company. Suppose you have milk allergy, and because the company is all drinking tea and milk, you’ll not say, ‘Ok, I’ll also drink.’ Because you’ll suffer. Right?
So similarly, you can choose your food in any company, you can say, ‘Ok. I am going to eat only chips, or vegetables, or bread..’ You are not compelled to eat non-veg if you don’t want to. Ok? Or unhealthy food. You don’t need to drink Pepsi or Coke if you don’t feel it’s good for you. Right? See, when people drink lots of Pepsi and Coke, it burns the lining of the stomach and the intestine.
Later on you develop so many problems. All these carbonated drinks should be avoided. Someone had demonstrated, in a cup of Pepsi they put a tooth, a tooth which had fallen, and it dissolves! If teeth can dissolve (which stay for a long time in nature) in Pepsi Cola then.. It is so corrosive. And that corrosive fluid can cause so much damage to our intestine, our brain, our nerve cells. So, we must keep healthy eating habits and propagate them.
Today is much better than 30 years ago. 30 years ago, when we started, people were very allergic to vegetarianism and spirituality. But today, it has become a fashion. Because we make a trend. And we create a trend and keep it moving.
Q: Dear Guruji, is it true that it is not the devotee who chose the Guru but the Guru chooses the devotee? If yes, then what took you so long to choose me?
Sri Sri: : Ha, Ha, Ha!! Let’s not go in the past! Let’s look ahead, having great times. Great days, yes?