Preguntas & Respuestas con Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Q: Please speak about wealth.
Sri Sri: As per the ancient scriptures, there are eight types of wealth. Wealth is not only money. Of course, bank balance is wealth, progeny is also a type of wealth, so is health. If you have the confidence that you can create wealth in any situation, even when the economy is not doing well, you will have courage. That courage and confidence is a wealth. The ability to make friends is a wealth. Knowledge is also wealth.
The goddess of wealth, Laxmi, is floating on the lotus. She moves with the wind. The Goddess of knowledge, Saraswati, is on a rock. A rock is stable. Once you have learnt knowledge, you have learnt it for life. Wealth is not an end in itself. It is the means to an end. Wealth, happiness and life are to be shared with all those around.
Today, many people have lost faith. When you lose faith, it takes you within. Every crisis is an opportunity. When all doors are shut and you have nowhere to go, that is when you go within.
Many hurdles and crises come, but you must keep your intention strong. You have to have vision. When you look around, people who break your trust will be few. Those whose values falter will be few. Though sometimes you may shake, but hold on to your vision and mission.
If you don’t want others to cheat you, why should you cheat others? Money is essential, yet you cannot sleep well having only money. Half our health is spent on getting wealth and then we spend half our wealth to get back the health.
Q: How do you define success?
Sri Sri: Success is measured by the smiles you have had from the heart. It is the confidence you have to face challenges. When everything goes well you can easily smile. Success is when everything falls apart and yet you can smile. One who manages all challenges that life gives is successful.
Q: As there are no Maya dates in the calendar in the Mayar civilization after 2012, what is going to happen after that? Is there some danger to human civilization?
Sri Sri: No, the world is going to continue the way it is. It will even get better. There will be shift in the consciousness of people. There will be more compassion and human values, and all the consumerism will take a back seat. That’s what I think.
Q: what is the purpose of life?
Sri Sri: One who knows won’t tell you, and anybody who tells you doesn’t know. It is very important question. Keep it with yourself. You should keep yourself asking this question. This very question will clear the entire cobweb around you, and will keep you on track of what you want and where do you want to go.
Q: What is causing so many people fall in depression?
Sri Sri: If we keep thinking what about ourselves all the time, we will get depressed. You should see what you can do, and how you can contribute to the world.
We all have to work towards having a stress free, violence-free, drug and alcohol free, and healthy society.
Violence free society, disease free body, confusion free mind, inhibition free intellect, trauma free memory and sorrow free soul is the birth right of every individual, and that’s what I have been telling around the world. We are all one family; we all belong to one family.
Q: How do you deal with people who think they are right all the time?
Sri Sri: They may be saying that but they realize when they have taken a wrong step. They cannot justify that they took a wrong turn but they know it. They don’t have courage to admit the wrong thing. So you be compassionate to those who say that they are right all the time.
Q: Is spirituality really related to science?
Sri Sri: Yes, Spirituality is saying ‘who am I?’ and science is saying ‘What is this?’ Objective analysis is science and subjective understanding is spirituality. And they go hand in hand. In the East they were never in conflict with each other.
It is said in Bhagvat geeta -Gyan Vigyana triptatma which means you should satisfy yourself through both subjective and scientific knowledge. You will find fulfillment only when both science and spirituality go together.
Q: Who are you and what is your mission?
Sri Sri: I will give this question back to you. And that is my mission - to put this question back to you. Who are you? When you ask yourself who you are, the journey has begun. The spiritual journey just begins with these two questions. Asking others is futile. You ask yourself ‘ who am I?’ and ‘what do I want to do in my life?’.
Q: Can business be a force to promote peace between nations?
Sri Sri: Three dimensions will bring peace. There should be spirituality in politics, corporate social responsibility in business and secularism in religion.
This is deeply ingrained in our minds.Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela are examples of secularism in religion and spirituality in politics.
Q: My mind conflicts between spiritual world and material world. How to overcome this?
Sri Sri: As such there is no conflict. You have to balance your life. Some breathing exercise and yoga would help you long way. Along with this some social work activity - what we call seva in India. We earn and then we spend on our selves. Isn’t it good to give at least 3 - 4% of our earning to those who are in need of it? There are 300 million children in the world who need education. You can also participate in the project. One day in a month, take a time of in a group, and go and help clean the environment. Strengthen the environmental programs and social service activities.