Question & Answers with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
Q: Sometimes I think I live in a world surrounded by formalities and exchanging superficial words. But the question is I feel that there is more to it, life cannot be just being nice and living in this cordial way but there is more because I worry that when I die, I wouldn’t even remember where to start again?
Sri Sri: Now I understand there is a longing, there is emptiness, and there is a craving for something higher. Right! And that gives that pain. So, that pain to attain something very fast is in a way good, but what is needed along with this is a little patience.
Q: How do we protect our mind?
Sri Sri: That is a big job. In the Geeta it is said, even the most brilliant people are confused about what to do and what not to, and how to handle the mind. Protecting the mind is a very great task but to do it we need knowledge. Up to this moment, see all that has happened so far. It all gone! Finished. Wake up. When you are full of energy, prana, you suddenly see it all gone. Now! All that happened is ok. Think about what to do now. Sometimes 100 percent of what you do will be successful, sometimes not. A farmer knows that not every seed that he sows will sprout. He takes the seeds and throws them in the field, and does not worry that this seed will sprout, this won't. From now on, it a new chapter. Every day is a new chapter. Bring up this awareness again and again. The whole world is filled with my atma (soul) it all Me. It one Consciousness. This one consciousness works through one person in one way, through another person in another way. It is one ocean with many waves. If this vision comes to you even for just five seconds then there will be such a major transformation in your body and mind. Then a realization will spring in you Aho! All worries are washed off. Just for a second, recognize that it only Me in my enemy. I myself have started the Game. Understand this, but don't turn it into a mood making. Have this understanding only in the nivriti, not in the pravritti mode. If we bring advaita (non-duality) in vyavahar (behavior), we only create more delusion. In pravritti, see duality. Taking up of the human form is impossible without pravritti. How much pravritti and nivriti one should have is a very sensitive matter. When there is more pravritti, then one becomes too negative and one is asked to be in nivriti.In India, dand (punishment) is called shiksha(education). The word saja(punishment) comes from shiksha (education). Earlier, they would not punish someone out of anger but out of compassion. When there would be too much pravritti in someone, they would put him in a room (jail) providing food, sleep and rest. Like a doctor puts people in hospital when the body is sick, when our kritya (action) is sick, the karta (doer) is put in jail. When you have both pravritti and nivriti, you are successful.
Q: What are the differences between various religions?
Sri Sri: Religion has three components: symbols, customs and traditions, and values. There is no difference as far as values are concerned, because all talk about oneness. Customs and symbols are all very different; they have to be. This is what makes the world beautiful, because God doesn’t like uniforms! Nature has been created with such diversity- so many flowers, animals, people. Diversity is the language of God. In India, God can have any number of names and forms, and they all point to one Divinity. There is difference in one sense, and there is unity in another sense. Wise ones celebrate diversity,
Q: I would like to know about your views on this wonderful time on the planet when service is accelerated and technology is connecting the world, when we have the opportunity to make this world one world family, when teachings from the teachers like you are spreading all over the planet and we have a chance to evolve spiritually. At the same time, planet is facing dangers that the old ecological and political structures are not sustainable anymore. We are coming to a choice point where we are ending one paradigm and accelerating in a spiritual paradigm. Also so many souls are incarnated at this time. And wonderful events are happening like this to accelerate that. Would you please speak on that?
Sri Sri: I think I have said it all. All the lines between different disciplines are blurred now. I remember when I was in school there was a thick line of difference between physics and chemistry, and they were thought not to be connected. Today, whether it is astrophysics, physics, knowledge about the spirit or information technology, all have come together. Environment and spirituality are not two different things. Perhaps the ancient people of this country knew this. They worship the trees, mountains, rivers etc in nature. And it is true for all native civilizations in the world. They honored nature. They took care that they care for nature and progress and development was aligned with the sustainable conditions on planet Earth. The most needed thing today is – Globalizing wisdom. There are two types of calamities – one is natural calamities like earthquakes. And second is man - made calamities. Man - made calamities can be overcome by wisdom and a Cultural Revolution, and by spreading this knowledge of one world family. Natural calamities can be overcome by caring for the planet, planting more trees, preserving water, by spiritual energy and with the thought that you are one with the vishavatma(Universal soul).
Q: In a world full of jealousy and hatred, how do I go on a path of humbleness and serenity?
Sri Sri: Don’t label the world. Some people are this way, but don’t pay too much attention to them. Just move on. Let them get cooked in their jealousy. It is alright. That which you put attention on, will grow. Manifestation follows intention and attention. If your intention is clear, I tell you, you will move on. If someone is jealous, what do you do? Just move on. Your attention should be on something higher, on the blossoming of the self.
Q: How to choose right career path?
Sri Sri: Identifying your energy type is the most important. There are 3 energy types, predominance in creativity, sustenance or challenge facing ability. What kind of person are you? First identify that. Then it will become easy for you to choose a carrier. – Contributed By Yes Plus Teachers
Q: How do I know if I am doing the right job?
Sri Sri: If you had a million dollars in your bank and would still do what you are doing, then that means you are in the right place. - Contributed By Yes Plus Teachers
Q: People around me feel jealous due to my good performance. Please suggest what I should do in these circumstances?
Sri Sri: Ok! About jealousy! Just join hands with them or praise them. Another thing that you can do is not to take any notice of their jealousy at all. - Contributed By Yes Plus Teachers
Q: What does a person with passion and aptitude, but very less investment does?
Sri Sri: If you have a passion and aptitude then a lot can be done with less investment too. Whatever your idea is, you need to talk to experts and have a practical implementation plan for it. - Contributed By Yes Plus Teachers
Q: If one doesn’t want to do a full time job then what are the options available, as in business/franchise?
Sri Sri: Take calculated risks. Experiment and be ready to fail. Don’t be scared of failure. You don’t do business because you don’t want to do a job. You do business because you have a great business idea and you have a passion to pursue it. - Contributed By Yes Plus Teachers