23 June 2013 - QA 18

Dear Gurudev, Muslims in Pakistan are peace loving people, so how can we eliminate terrorism from Pakistan?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:

To prevent terrorism, we need to see how we can establish communication and bring some sense into the minds of terrorists.

Second is, we need to accept diversity and enjoy diversity. Diversity is not a matter of conflict or contention, it is a matter of celebration

Everybody is different. Everybody is wearing different dresses, and everybody has their own lifestyle. One should accept diversity and have the vision of a global family. We are all one world family with different languages, different religions, different cultures, and different nationalities. This celebration of diversity needs to be inculcated in young minds. Once they know this, there is no way they can become extremists or terrorists.

Terrorism comes when they think that only they have the key to the heaven. This is a misnomer or misconception that has put them in that position.

I have dealt with people who are in the terrorist and extremist mindset. There are two types of extremists, one is religious extremists and the other is ideological.

The Maoists in India have a cause and they are ready to put their life for that cause. The only thing they do not understand is that bringing pain and suffering to others is not going to help them reach their goal or bring them any happiness. We need to bring this education of diversity to people, have an open communication with them and prevent people from falling into this trap of ‘I am only right and everybody else is wrong’ attitude.

If these people do a little bit of breathing, relax a little, and see the beauty in creation, the beauty in diversity, I am sure they will change. And I have seen many of them change their way of thinking. They have some wrong indoctrination, some unknown fear, or have been victims of some sort of violence. This could be cause of them taking up such extreme ideology which is self destructive.