13 April 2014 - QA 2

Can an atheist attain enlightenment?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

Definitely! But he won’t remain an atheist after that.
Look, an atheist can attain knowledge but he will not be able to remain an atheist forever after attaining knowledge. That is why communists run away from us, because they feel scared.

If you are a man of principles, then what is the problem in meeting someone else? When we are not convinced about our own principles, when we don’t trust ourselves, then we worry that we might lose our principles by shaking hands with someone else!

In other countries, when people greet each other, they greet with one hand, saying, ‘Salaam’, or offer a handshake using the left or right hand. But here in India we greet with both hands and say, ‘Namaste’. It becomes a greeting when both, the left and the right hands join. When the right hand is not so ‘right’ and the left hand is not so ‘left’, then it becomes a greeting (meaning the coming together of two opposites in harmony).

But in other countries, the ‘right’ and the ‘left’ don’t meet at all. They speak ill of each other at a distance.

Even here, the people aligned to the ‘right’ (here referring to the right wing politicians), and the people aligned to the ‘left’ (referring to the Leftist or Communist political parties in India) don’t even meet. Why? It is because they fear that doing so will destroy what they have established so far.