DAR Constitution Hall
What is stress? When there is too much to do with too little time, or we want a lot but we don’t have enough resources, this causes stress. Also if the resources are there but our ability is not, then also we get stressed. So, how can we manage stress and live more in the moment? With certain energy you can do this. When you meditate, you can increase your ability. When you meditate, you are able to get rid of stress. Eliminate stress by bringing more energy into the body.
Now love is our very nature. You know, I can stand and talk to you for hours about love. It doesn’t mean anything. We can read love through our lives, not through books. You can listen to someone speak on love, but if you have a puppy, the puppy goes mad jumping all over you the moment you come back home. This says much more than reading books all night about love. We can read through our presence and our own lives. Here, I will come to meditation and breath. By doing breathing exercises, we can make our lives so positive. Many of us have had the experience of going to meet somebody and wanting to avoid them. Some people you meet and you just don’t feel like talking to. You feel compelled to avoid them. WIth some Others you feel like conversing. People will have the same experience of you also. Without reason they may avoid you. You want to connect to a person but your stress has created such vibes around, that people are repelled. Here again you must do a bit of pranayama, Sudarshan Kriya and yoga to increase the positive vibes around you.
There are so many stories to tell. A teacher was in Botswana and some four terrorists came there. They wanted to steal everything. They were so aggressive yet the teacher looked at them with such positive vibes and said, “hey, my friend what do you want? Some money? Ok, we’ll give you money.” The calmness and serenity in them shook the terrorists. Usually, what they have seen is people panicking. Here someone was looking at them with a human eye. They just took some money and left with it. They didn’t harm anyone. And I tell you, I have so many people emailing me such stories. There are stories of robbers having a change of heart. So, in a similar manner people who are antagonistic towards us can be positively affected if we ourselves live in a space of love and free from stress. I tell you, it is not too easy. It’s challenging but we need to move in that direction. We should first extend peace and compassion to others. Nature has put compassion at the very core of every human being. Love is the central point for each one of us. Stress is only at the periphery. Negativity is only the circumference. We should dream for a world which is free of violence and hatred. Let us all believe in that first of all. Otherwise, we become paranoid. When we become fearful, we lose our strength. The times when you are afraid are when you need more strength. Yet that is when you don’t have it. It is like forgetting your wallet at home and you are in a shopping mall. Suppose you are in the shopping mall and you don’t have a credit card or any money. What do you do? You will look at everything and come back with nothing. But each one of us has this power of love. We are in no debt. There is this amazing unconditional love but we have no access. We have not had access to that somehow. It’s like having your wealth at home without having the key to the almirah (the place where you store your treasures). You have lost the key but you say “oh, I have that there.”
So, we need to wake up to the power that we are made up of, that is love. Like our body is made up of amino acids, carbohydrates and protein, our spirit is made up of love. It is love that gets distorted and becomes all other negative emotions. Why do you get angry? Because you love perfection. When you love perfection, you can’t but get angry. Why are you jealous? Because you love somebody so much that you want them all for yourself. Jealousy is another distortion of love. Greed is your love for objects. You love things more than you love people. This is called greed. If you love your own glorification, it is arrogance. You love yourself more than anybody else. So, love gets distorted and manifests in all of these negative emotions. It is wisdom which can keep love pure. Love without knowledge or wisdom is misery. Love plus wisdom is happiness. It is as simple as that.
Just a few moments every day reflect on your own life. What am I? Who am I? What do I want? Where do I want to go in my life? You may not get an answer for any of these questions but certainly the question itself is very valuable to you. We can use them to sharpen our mind a little bit and connect with our spirit.
The term for spiritual practice,sadhana, is evolved from money. “Dhana” means money and “Sa” means true wealth. That is the real currency you can use anywhere. Money is important in life but keep money where it belongs to. Do not keep it in the head or in the heart. We often misplace money. We keep it in our head while our pockets are empty. Keep money in the pocket but don’t keep thinking about money. You know, how someone becomes rich? Someone becomes rich when they do something useful for society. How did the cell phone companies become rich? They made something which everybody needs. The newspapers make something that everybody needs. So, you too should do something which is useful for everyone. Then you will become richer. If you keep thinking about yourself all the time, you will only keep thinking. That’s it. If you selflessly serve and leave your needs to society, society will take care of you. You will not experience lack even for one day. Do service without worrying about money or your own needs. Society will take care of it, or by trusting in God. It comes to the same thing. You trust in God and ask whatever you need. Those things will always be taken care of when you have confidence and deep faith. And if you do something that is useful for people, you will automatically make money. If people need milk, you supply milk. If people need groceries, you supply groceries. Work on that which is most needed in society and your needs will be met.
Mahatma Gandhi believed in non-accumulation. In fact it is one of the principles of yoga. You don’t need to accumulate a lot if you are dedicated to service. We need to do something. Pick a goal and it will bring more meaning to your life. When you are working with an idea rather than money as your main goal, you will see that money will anyways come. In the 'Art of Living' we never take money factor into the plan. We just start a project and find that the money somehow comes. Whatever is needed, and when it is needed, it comes. You don’t need to have too much but you should not have any lack. Pranayama and meditation make your life such that there is no dearth of anything. You lack nothing. There is a proverb in India that says - you are aspiring for nuts but they come to you when you have lost all your teeth. What’s the point of getting nuts when you don’t even have teeth? You need to get something when you need it. Right? If you have money to buy sweets, a great air-conditioned room and wonderful home and bed, but you are an insomniac and have diabetes, then what is the point of that? So we must create that positive energy around ourselves. This cannot happen just by worrying and thinking.