1 March 2014 - QA 9

Gurudev, what is action in inaction and inaction in action?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

It is very clear. This is the whole secret.
When you are acting with hundred percent attention, something in you tells, ‘I am not doing it, I am not acting. It is just happening'. How many of you have had this experience? (Many in the audience raise their hands). This is seeing inaction in action.

Sometimes you get angry, or you behave in some manner and you feel that you are not doing it, it is happening.
Someone comes in front of you and you just blow up, knowing very well that you are not doing it purposely. Something in that person triggers something in you, and you start behaving like that. How many of you have has this experience? (Many raise hands).
You wonder, ‘My God, I never wanted to do this!’ That is seeing inaction in action.
You act because that person had to get those words, or that karma from you. So he just pulled out those words from you, and you never really wanted to say it. That incident had to happen and it was a karma. This is a little higher knowledge.
Now don’t try to apply this knowledge to every mistake you do. You yell at somebody and say, ‘I didn’t mean it. It was karmic and you had to get it, so I had to yell!’ This is misuse of knowledge. Don’t do that. Don’t misuse knowledge in that sense.

Sometimes without your wanting to do an act, you do it. You don't want to do it, but you feel helpless, and you are just watching the act happening.

You see that you are not doing it, yet an action is happening, this is seeing inaction in action.

You are sitting with eyes closed and meditating. You are not doing anything, yet the vibration that you are generating from within you is changing the world. This is action in inaction.
You’re sitting and meditating, you’re spreading the waves of compassion, waves of pure love and devotion, waves of harmony, and that harmony is hitting others and it is changing their mind-set, it is changing the atmosphere, it is removing the negativity, it is making things more positive.
You’re giving blessing to people. With your blessing things are changing. This is action in inaction. You sit in samadhi, you sit in deep meditation, that samadhi is definitely creating a lot of action in the world. That is action in inaction.
This is very difficult to explain. I have made an effort to explain it with whatever little examples.