Q: What is innocence? What takes away innocence?
Sri Sri: For innocence you would have to know there is no other.
Q: Please speak on love. Also, how is discipline best exercised?
Sri Sri: Here again you cannot force yourself to love something or not love something. Just relax and be yourself.
Discipline can only be required in three situations. You don’t need discipline when there is love. When you love something you don’t need to discipline yourself to do it, right? The second situation is when there is fear. If you fear you are going to have nervous breakdown that fear will make you do what is required. Third is greed. If someone offers you one million dollars to do something thing for one week, you would not miss one day of doing that thing. So greed, fear and love keep you in discipline.
Q: Can you speak on the subject of marriage and our attachment to this idea?
Sri Sri: I’m not so qualified to speak about marriage; I have no experience of it! It is an important institution which teaches you how to accept and move on in life, how to care for and share with another and to be shared and cared. I can give you some tips.
At the end of the talk, Sri Sri invited everyone to visit India.
Q: How can one see Shiva in everything and everyone?
Sri Sri: ‘Shiva is everywhere’ is spiritual truth, and another is practical knowledge. Both have to be considered together. One who is too much stuck in social behavior, does not get anything. So is true for one who is too much stuck with the concept of meditation and spirituality.
If a thief comes to your house, you cannot let him do whatever he wants considering him to be a form of Shiv .(Jokingly) Then let the Shiva in the form of police handle this form of Shiva.
You cannot justify intake of drugs or alcohol, saying Shiva is present in these also. Our body is such made that if you increase awareness and prana(life force), you experience divinity. And if you decrease these, you experience inertia.
Where prana is there, that is true beauty or Shiva.
Sri Sri: One should ask, what is that which is nor Shiva? The whole world is filled with Shiva. Shiva – whose body is in the whole universe. It was very difficult for artist community to portray Shiva in a picture, because Shiva is beyond imagination. For this reason Shiva was given blue color. Blue signifies all pervading, infinity which has no limits. It has no shape. The ved(Ancient Indian scriptures), the knowledge has no shape. But it infiltrates each and every particle of the universe.
‘Saam sada shiv’ – Shiv tattva includes both shiva and Shakti(Male and female energy). Parvati is not different from Shiva. Parvati is that which is born out of celebration. Celebration cannot be there without Shiv tattva. It is impossible to separate Shiva and Shakti even for a second. If Shiva is everywhere, how can Shakti be there beyond its scope. Puranas include various stories of Shiva with a vision that even a child could understand something about this tattva.
You all experience three states of consciousness – awake, dream, and sleep. The fourth state which is called ‘turia’ ,that you experience in deep meditation, is Shiva. When you experience that state, innocence blossoms. And without innocence you cannot dissolve in that tattva. Hence, He is called Bholenath.
Q: When one achieves higher levels of consciousness, what is the effect on the body and how does the use of the body change?
Sri Sri: There’s this proverb. ‘You chop wood and carry water before enlightenment and you chop wood and carry water after enlightenment.’ Our consciousness impacts our body and our body impacts our consciousness. It is a very dear relationship.
Q: What is the significance of the story of poison getting stuck in Shivji’s throat?
Sri Sri: It has a deep meaning. Poison spreads with speech. Mind gets agitated with speech. All riots happen because of harsh words and lack of right knowledge. Shivji is also called neelkanth – which signifies when Mahadev drinks poison, it doesn’t reach his whole body. When there is fight between right and wrong thoughts, a poison is generated. Shiva tattva has power to hold on to that poison. Even if you have to criticize, do it from your lips and not your heart. When you do it from your heart, it harms you. When it is from the level of lips, somebody is benefitted in the society. You cannot have flowery speech all the time. That would be cheating yourself and others also. You have to show mirror to people. But that should not be from the level of the heart. Even if Shiva gets angry, that is not from inside. Same peace is there inside. It is like kids getting angry with their mother. In no time they retain their smile. This is innocence. It is the grownups who hold on to fights for long time.
Q: What makes a child learn wrong language?
Sri Sri: Every child is born innocent. But they learn abusive language from environment. Initially they only imitate their parents or people in their surroundings. But then it becomes a habit. Whatever you give comes back to you. That spoils your mind only.
Q: Do you believe our world leaders can create peaceful and loving solutions to world problems or are they economically motivated by a select group of individuals?
Sri Sri: I think you have given the answer in the question. Both question and answer together. I find there are many good world leaders who want to do something for our society but they feel constrained. They feel helpless. Many times they cannot do what they want to do because they are trapped in a system. The system doesn’t allow them to do what they want to do. And there are others for whom their position or party matters more than the welfare of the people. Their eyes are on the next coming election, the needs of their political party, their political agenda rather than the larger interest of the people in the long term. Even if they think of the bigger issues they are unable to take action as their political agenda stands in front of them.
A ruler cannot become a reformer. Rulers do not work with reform. And those who work with reform cannot become rulers. They have different roles. Reformers and rulers should work together.
Q: What does it take to accomplish ones destiny?
Sri Sri: Faith, faith that you can accomplish your destiny.