How many of you feel that without you doing any bad, you have gained enemies?
People become your enemies. You have not done any harm to them, any wrong to them and still they become enemies.
Similarly, you have not done any big favors to some people but they became your very good friends. Isn’t it?
How many of you have this experience?
See, this is it, people become friends and enemies by some strange karma, some strange law. There is some strange law due to which suddenly friends become enemies and enemies become good friends.
So, put all the friends and enemies in one basket and become free.
When you make a decision,
somewhere you get the gut
feeling that says, ‘Yes, this
One thing you should know
is that even if you take a
wrong decision, it always
leads you to growth.
See, what bothers your mind is either your friends, or your enemies. Isn’t that so?
When you sit for meditation, you should keep them all aside, your friends, enemies and everybody, put them one side, sit, relax, and become free.
What do you say? Isn't that correct?!
When your mind is satisfied, when it is quiet and happy, it gains a very peculiar power, i.e., the power to bless.
When you are happy and contented, you are able to give blessing to others.
If your mind is agitated and you have a lot of desires then you cannot give blessings. Even if you give blessings, it does not work that well. So, time and again, we must see to it that we have contentment.
When you are contented, not only your desires, but you can fulfill the desires of others as well.
Q: How do I know if I am making the correct decision? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: When you make a decision, somewhere you get the gut feeling that says, ‘Yes, this is correct.'
One thing you should know is that even if you take a wrong decision, it always leads you to growth. You become stronger, you learn a lesson somewhere deep inside. So that is why, don’t worry.
Q: Please speak about compassion. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: In life there are three things which are essential:
2. Dispassion, and
Passion is like breathing in, and Dispassion is like breathing out.
No one can say, ‘I want to only breathe in, I don’t want to breathe out.' Impossible!
So breathing in is essential, and that is Passion, for things in life.
Then, there is also a need for Dispassion. Dispassion means the ability to just let go of everything. Dispassion brings you relief and then Compassion becomes your nature.
So you must have Passion when you do work, Dispassion when you want to rest, and Compassion as your very nature. That is it!
Q: Please talk about Reciprocity. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Reciprocity is very natural.
At a higher state of mind, reciprocity is instantaneous. Only when someone is not sensitive there is no reciprocity.
Often people reciprocate the bad things. If you blame somebody, they are ready to blame you immediately. If you insult somebody, they insult you immediately, but it is not the same for the good.
If you do something good, not everybody think they should reciprocate the goodness. That happens only when the mind is at a higher state.
Often people reciprocate
the bad things. If you blame
somebody, they are ready
to blame you immediately.
But it is not the same for the
good. If you do something
good, not everybody think
they should reciprocate the
goodness. That happens only
when the mind is at a higher
Q: I am going through a separation. My wife and I have chosen different paths and live different lives. We both want our child to be with each of us. In this situation, what is the wisest thing to do? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: The child should be exposed to both paths, and allowed to choose.
If there is no understanding between the couple, it is definitely a strain on the child.
What both parents should keep in mind is that they should not go on blaming each other in front of the child. Putting the child against one of the parents is no good. That is a very narrow minded approach.
Q: Gurudev, sometimes what make me happy conflicts with the expectations of my family and friends. In that case what do I do? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, you need to balance both.
Balance between your search for happiness and the expectation of others from you.
It is a little delicate but you should definitely make an effort.
Q: Dear Gurudev, I sometimes feel I am very arrogant. How do I get rid of this arrogance. I have done The Art of Living Course and I am doing my practices. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: One thing you must notice, before also you used to be arrogant, but you were not aware of it. But now at least you have become aware that you are being arrogant. That awareness is there, 'Oh, this is happening.'
It is good to have this awareness. This is the first step to get out of it.
Second step is to have a broader vision of your own life.
The more and more you steep into knowledge, you will see that all these little games that the mind plays is like a child playing. Once you see this, you will not mind it, and so you accept it and move beyond it.
When you see that the mind is like a small child playing, you will see it from a bigger background, a bigger perspective.
Q: What is the need for meditation and relaxation? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: When you relax, the mind expands.
Have you noticed when you are happy what happens? Something inside you starts expanding.
And when you are unhappy what happens? Something inside you starts shrinking.
So when you relax the body, then the mind starts blossoming.
Q: Please tell us what is death? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: There is no need to define death. It is an obvious phenomenon.
We are born and we are going to die one day.
When we came to this world, the first thing we did was we took a deep breath in, and then we started crying. And the last thing we will do in this life is breathe out, and then others will cry.
If we don’t make others cry, then we have not lived a good life.
Balance between your
search for happiness and
the expectation of others
from you. It is a little
delicate but you should
definitely make an effort.
When the soul leaves the body with full contentment, with a lot of love and wisdom, then it is not compelled to come back. It can come back on its own will.
Q: Please let us know what is the biggest limitation for human beings? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Body has limitation, mind has limitation, but the spirit has no limitation.
When you think you are the body then you have limitation. Then you can do only that much.
When you think you are the mind, mind also has some limitation. But your love has no limitation. Your consciousness has no limitation.
See, how with one small cell phone, you can reach the whole world. You can reach any number of phone numbers with one call phone, isn’t it?
Similarly, our mind which invented the cell phone is much more powerful than the cell phone itself. You only need to make it available.