JO LEINEN

JO LEINEN: Honorable member of the European Parliament: Greetings from Germany, from a little town directly on the border to our neighbor in France.  It is winter, very cold, a lot of snow, but lot of supporters of The Art of Living here in this room, and they greet you. Now my question – there is a lot of stress, a lot of violence in many countries we heard about, and in Europe, we see economic crisis.  You can see it in a lot of countries that aggression; people are desperate, its growing, and the response of government is very often hopeless and helpless.  They don’t know what to do, whereas you have successful programmes. How can we bring amendments to your programmes to parliaments, to national governments but even then at the international level, from the European Parliament up to the United Nations? That would be my question. Do we have a plan?

SRI SRI RAVI SHANKAR: We need to create peace ambassadors or peace healers in the society, counselors in every part of the society. When we see due to economic reason or social reasons people's energies going down, they can come and enthuse them, bring a sense of more community living, bring festivities back together in society; help people to reduce tension and depression. I know depression is a big issue in Europe, especially when the economic level is going down; but when people understand they are not alone and there is a whole group of people who are there with a good heart, and they are going to support them, then there is strength. That awareness you need to create, and of course, one has to learn how to go deep inside. When one goes deep inside; anxiety, frustration goes away; intuitive awareness or abilities dawn. When we are more intuitive, we know what is going to happen; and how we can manage any crisis that would come in front of us, confidence and strength comes up naturally.  So that’s why these spiritual practices would help, would go a long way to help our people. Plus social activities - more festivals, more sports; see when there is sports event, then people forget about the crisis they are into. That little distraction from a crisis can be brought up by music and sports, but more important I would feel, is bringing that inner strength.