Preguntas & Respuestas con Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Q: Dear Guruji, is it true that it is not the devotee who chose the Guru but the Guru chooses the devotee? If yes, then what took you so long to choose me?
Sri Sri: : Ha, Ha, Ha!! Let’s not go in the past! Let’s look ahead, having great times. Great days, yes?
Q: Can you give me a suggestion – how to be calm when your spouse is always mad at you?
Sri Sri: : Well, an answer coming from me won’t be authentic! There are many experienced (spouses) ones here, you can exchange notes with them! But if someone gets angry so often then you get used to it, and it doesn’t bother you so much anymore, isn’t it? But if they are sweet and then get mad at you then you get more bothered about it, right?
There is a very popular story in India. A gentle man got married to a woman who was very shrewd. She would do everything against his will. Whatever he will say, she would do just its opposite and he was so bothered and sad about it. Divorces were not that common those days in India, so he was stuck with this situation. Then, when you are stuck in a situation, you go to a wise man, so he went to meet a yogi.
The yogi whispered something in his ears and three months later when the yogi met this gentle man again, he was beaming with happiness. He came and told the yogi- “Your formula worked, now we have peace at home!” The formula was-whatever he wanted, he said just the opposite to his wife! So if he didn’t want to wear a green shirt that day, he would say- “ I want to wear a green shirt”, and she wouldn’t do that for him anyway! So, you only need to know the pulse and do accordingly.
If your spouse is all the time angry, then I know you might have experienced and found how to handle it , and how to increase or reduce the volume, right? Interesting!May be (with such people), you should try this for one month or two months, and take them by surprise. If they are angry, praise them, and love them so much. Don’t be too predictable with anger.
Q: Dear Guruji, I heard and understood the truth, but it is not my experience, please help me realize the truth . Yours truly.
Sri Sri: Good! Good to be in space of, “I don’t know”, then you have a chance of knowing. If you think, you know then you are stuck with the concept. In the Upanishad, it is beautifully said, “one who says, ‘I don’t know’, he knows, and the one who says he knows, doesn’t know!”
Q: Because I travel a lot to places where vegetarian food is hard to find, and I have to eat with office colleagues. I eat wrong foods and find energy is really low. What to do in such situations?
Sri Sri: You know when people have some allergies, they don’t eat those foods for which they have allergies just because of company. Suppose you have milk allergy, and because the company is all drinking tea and milk, you’ll not say, ‘Ok, I’ll also drink.’ Because you’ll suffer. Right?
So similarly, you can choose your food in any company, you can say, ‘Ok. I am going to eat only chips, or vegetables, or bread..’ You are not compelled to eat non-veg if you don’t want to. Ok? Or unhealthy food. You don’t need to drink Pepsi or Coke if you don’t feel it’s good for you. Right? See, when people drink lots of Pepsi and Coke, it burns the lining of the stomach and the intestine.
Later on you develop so many problems. All these carbonated drinks should be avoided. Someone had demonstrated, in a cup of Pepsi they put a tooth, a tooth which had fallen, and it dissolves! If teeth can dissolve (which stay for a long time in nature) in Pepsi Cola then.. It is so corrosive. And that corrosive fluid can cause so much damage to our intestine, our brain, our nerve cells. So, we must keep healthy eating habits and propagate them.
Today is much better than 30 years ago. 30 years ago, when we started, people were very allergic to vegetarianism and spirituality. But today, it has become a fashion. Because we make a trend. And we create a trend and keep it moving.
Q: I want to serve you. Where do I go?
Sri Sri: There are so many opportunities here. Bad Antogast needs several people who would like to do some service.Come to the German Ashram.There are other places also.
Q: Dear Guruji, recently scientists have said that they can create life in a laboratory by manipulating and intervening the genes. Isn’t this contradictory to spirituality and religion, with man creating life and giving consciousness to innate objects?
Sri Sri: : Not at all. You have heard this saying – ‘God made man in his own image’. Right? So, whatever God can do, man can do too. God made man, created him as his own image. It is written in the Bible. Right? There is a story about it in Mahabharata epic also, written some 5000 years ago.
So, test tube babies are not new phenomena. Queen Gandhari , from one embryo, had put pieces in hundred pots and created hundred types of kids. But what quality the kids came out with, that you all know! So, there is a big question about the risk, but this is a fact that Gandhari created 100 children in hundred pots. So, test tube babies or creating life in lab is not a new phenomenon. It was done some 5000 years ago also!
Q: Why does a desire arise? Where does it come from? What is the purpose?
Sri Sri: All desires have got one goal, and that is happiness. If a desire brings unhappiness, it has not reached its goal. The goal of desires is to bring happiness. So, that is the purpose.
Where does it come from? It comes when you are not aware of your Being, your Self. Desire is your wanting to stay in the moment. Desire is to experience joy. Joy is only in the moment. And when you are in the moment, there is no desire. When you are joyful, when you are satisfied, there is no burning desire at that time.
Q: Please can you teach me how to be connected to the faith?
Sri Sri: Trying to connect to the faith is trying to connect to the air around you. ‘I want to be connected to the air.’ My dear, you can’t be but! You are already connected. Relax.
Why do you try to connect to air? Are you getting what I am saying? Doubt as much as you can. I would say, you should doubt as much as you can. A point comes when you no longer can doubt, the truth will stand up. Truth can never be destroyed by doubt. Do you understand what I am saying? Truth will stand. Doubt can cover it, delay it for some time, drag on for some time, but it can never destroy the truth.
Therefore, when people have doubts, I say, ‘doubt as much as you can. One day those doubts will fall off.’ If you are lucky, it will fall off immediately the way it comes. Unlucky ones hang on to it for a little longer time. That’s all. Unlucky ones will carry the garbage on their back for some long distance. Lucky ones know that they carry garbage and throw it right there. Two steps, and they drop their garbage. Otherwise one carries on the shoulder for a long distance.
Catch more from the same conversation in the next post..
Q: Guruji, when you meet terrorists and naxalites, don’t you get frustrated with their attitude and lack of knowledge?
Sri Sri: : This is like asking a doctor- Don’t you feel sick of seeing the sick patients?!!
Q: What do you say about doubts? Should we have no doubts?
Sri Sri: : No, I never said you shouldn’t have doubts, you should have doubts, have as many doubts as you can, for truth can never be concealed by doubts . Yes, doubt can’t defeat the truth, so you doubt as much as you want, but finish it quickly otherwise you will be wasting so much of time. Have as much of doubt as you want and then get over it.
I remember one incidence which happened in Sweden. There was a public meeting/ gathering and a journalist was sitting right behind. He came forward to me and said- “I want to ask you a question”.
I said- “yes, go ahead.”
He asked, “Are you enlightened?”
I said, “No”.
But he insisted, “No, please tell the truth. I know, you are always making fun, always kidding, please tell me the truth”.
I again said, “No”.
You see, my answer of NO should have finished the conversation there, but he won’t listen and kept insisting, “No, no, you are not telling the truth, tell me the truth, are you enlightened? I want to know the answer right away”.
See when you say , ‘no’ –it finishes , there is no need for further proof or explanation, chapter over, but this person won’t take ‘no’ for an answer. I said, “So what takes you not to take a ‘no’ for answer? You should be happy with the answer now”.
But he said, “No, I don’t believe it!
I said, “You see, there is something inside you which is telling you something, some deeper inner feeling saying –this is not correct, right? So you have the answer then!”
So often, you listen to your own inner voice but doubt it from the surface mind but deep inside your heart and mind are saying something, you feel something different- a gut feeling and that is what you always rely on and not on what someone else says, isn’t it so? If someone says, “I love you”, do you take them on face value? No, you look at their face, you look at them and even without looking at them, you feel something deep inside. So, what I am telling you is generally true. And every one has this faculty of intuition and what can overshadow this faculty is your greed.
Greed can overshadow the faculty of your intuition, being over ambitious can overshadow your intuition. Do you understand what I am saying? Wisdom gets covered with greed, feverishness or with over ambition. So, doubt as much as you can!