19 July 2013 - QA 1

Gurudev, I want to be honest with my parents about my sexuality. Yet my fear of losing their love and support has been stopping me from being honest with them. Do I need to be compassionate and not burden my parents? Please guide me to a solution.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

You don’t have to label yourself as gay or a lesbian. You don’t need to put on a label. These are tendencies which come and go.

You should label yourself as Divine light. This label is much better than putting a label about your sexuality because it may change.

Many people get married and after that they discover that they have different tendencies. And for many gay people, sometime later, even their preferences change. I have seen many gay people and lesbians getting married, settling in life and having kids. I have seen the other way also. So all possibilities are open. What is the need for you to right away label yourself? There are some who are bisexual.

What are you going to achieve by telling your parents? Is it going to make them any happier? When they are not going to be happy, what is the point in telling them about it? You think about it.

Honesty is one thing. First you should be honest to yourself. What is your state right now? Be honest with yourself. You don’t have to pretend and be what you are not, at the same time you don’t have to put a bomb where people cannot accept it. Tell them gradually. Prepare them.

You have to study the situation. How fragile are your parents? How unhappy are they already and how much more unhappy they will become by your saying that? Is it worth being that honest to them and making them miserable? You need to judge all these pros and cons.

Suppose your parents are forcing you to get married then you tell them, 'No, I have no interest in this, I have a different interest'. Otherwise why do you have tell them?

Be honest at such times, otherwise you will make another person's life (who you marry) miserable. If your mother is already very aged and is burdened with a lot of other things and you be honest just for your pride and tell her something, and she loses her night’s sleep and it affects her health, what is the point. What does it serve?

In the ancient system it has been beautifully said, 'Satyam bruyat priyam bruyat na bruyat satyam apriyam', speak the truth but speak the pleasant truth. Don’t speak unpleasant truth and don’t speak pleasant lies.

Something may be pleasant, but if it is a lie, don’t speak that. Don’t speak unpleasant truth or pleasant lies. This is the ancient path. The perfect balance.

So use your sense of discrimination and gently prepare them if you want to tell them, and if it’s going to serve some purpose.

Rise above the body consciousness. Know that you are light. You’re scintillating consciousness. Every cell of your body is awakened with consciousness, light, love and life. Focus on that.