Sri Sri: First there should be commitment to the greater good of the society. I don't have to say that you have to be committed to your own greater good. You already are. If at all you want to take a commitment, make a commitment for the larger benefit of mankind, that one commitment is good. And that too is already there. When we are free from stress, we are naturally committed to the betterment of the society. There is still more work to be done in societies where violence is handed over from one generation to the next. They especially need education about non-violence.
Sri Sri: Teach them how to make one new friend each day. Don't give them all these violent video games to play with. There is an ‘Art of Living program’ for children - Art Excel '(All Round Training in Excellence). Children really enjoy the program as they learn through games. In Europe it is known as NAP, Non Aggression Program. Children who are very aggressive become happy and friendly. For parents we conduct a program called “Know Your Child.”
Sri Sri: You must tell yourself that you are an instrument. You are a part of the universe. Let things come and go and they will be no burden to you. It is certainly possible and you also have that capability.
Q: How realistic is it for a person to become enlightened in one lifetime?
Sri Sri: You don’t have to be very special. You can have it right now in this room.
Q: How can I most effectively support the cause of the world peace?
Sri Sri: I will leave that question with you because there are so many ideas. Be of service. These questions do not have one single answer.
Q: Does one need to have a Guru or spiritual leader to seek enlightenment?
Sri Sri: You are asking a question and you want an answer. You want medicine and anyone who gives you medicine becomes a doctor. The seeker wants an answer, wants someone to tell him, to guide him. If someone says, “I’m not a patient but I need medicine,” and someone says “I’m not a doctor but I’ll give you medicine,” what do you call both? Anyone can tell you what you want to hear but a little guidance does help. Someone should be there to give you assurance. When you learn swimming and the trainer says “Go ahead”, you get that confidence to go. Someone who has such confidence can become your guide.
Q: Can you please speak on the nature of sexuality?
Sri Sri: Preaching what you don’t know or what you don’t believe in is not the right thing. People who have experienced deep understanding do not place judgement. With spirituality you have to go to another level of experience. Honor sex but move onto a higher place.
Q: Why is it becoming increasingly important to save the planet earth?
Sri Sri: Because we are increasingly exploiting the planet earth more than what it can recuperate from. As individuals we can each do something to help the planet. You can be part of some service project like planting more trees, creating awareness about not using plastic bags. You can meditate everyday and put your attention on these issues. When we have an intention and put our attention on that, it will start manifesting. We don't use the mind power that has been bestowed on us by nature. It is the greatest gift we have been given.
Q: How can senior management get the most out of their teams for maximum performance?
Sri Sri: The Art of Living Foundation teaches the APEX course in corporate environments. It has been appreciated all over including the World Bank.
Q: How can one have a successful relationhip?
Sri Sri: Now I am not an expert on relationships. I would advise one thing for men and one for women. Women should never step on the ego of a man. The whole world may call him stupid but you must always say that he’s the most intelligent person. You shouldn’t question his abilities. Tell him, “You are the most intelligent person. Just because you don’t use it, doesn’t mean you don’t have it.” If you keep calling him stupid, then he will become that. Don’t ask for proof of his love for you. Take it for granted that they love you. If someone has to prove their love for you every day, he will be exhausted! We shouldn’t express our love too much. Very often the problem is that we express our love too much. If you keep the seed hanging on the surface, you’ll never see the roots. But if you bury it deep inside, then also it doesn’t sprout. Keep the seed planted. That should be how you express your love. Keep the dignity of love.
Now one suggestion for men is to never step on the emotions of a woman. If she complains about her mother, sister, family and so on, never join the band wagon. You will see she will suddenly switch side and You will be the target! Don’t stop her If she wants to do some meditation, go to a place of worship, do some spiritual practices. If she wants to go for shopping, give her your credit card. You will have peace at home.