Beyond The Rat Race

31 Mar 2015 Singapore

(An interaction between Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and the students, staff and alumni of National University of Singapore on 31st March 2015 at Singapore. Below is the transcript of What Gurudev Said:)

Before we begin, do you all feel at home here? You know, a true and authentic discussion can only happen in a cordial and happy atmosphere. So can you create a cordial and happy atmosphere?
I don’t want you to be sitting stiff like you are in an exam or an interview. I want you to be totally relaxed and feel at home because a true discussion and honest communication can only happen in a cordial environment. So why don't we take half a minute to greet the person sitting next to us, in front of us, and behind us? Can we do that?

We communicate more through our vibes than our words.


Do you find any person not greeting everyone? If you have found one, I'll give you a moment to shake them. I don’t want anyone to feel alone on this planet. We are all one family.

We should have a sense of togetherness. Even birds have a sense of togetherness, ants have it, and every living being has a sense of togetherness. They work together, live together, and be together. And we as humans are so divided into nationality, culture, religion, language, and so on. So can we create a sense of belongingness right here? Let's take just another 15 seconds to greet someone whom you've not yet greeted.

Ok, now I have a question for you. This is a question you need to answer for yourself. You do no need to tell me:
Did you really meet the person next to you, or did you do it as a farce?
You know, most of the pleasantries we exchange in our day-to-day lives are like that. Someone brings you a glass of water and you say, "Oh thank you so much". That "so much" has no meaning, and nor does the "thank you".
If you are in a dessert and there is no water and you are thirsty, and someone brings you a cup of water, then that "thank you so much" comes from the depth of your being.
Most of the greetings and pleasantries that we exchange in our life is from a superficial level. It’s like the airhostess saying, "have a nice day" when you get off the plane. It is like that. But the same words when it comes from your grandmother, mother, sister, grandfather, or uncle, it carries some vibes. Have you noticed that? There is some juice, there is some energy, there is some beauty about the same words. It communicates something.

We should learn how to cleanse our own vibes. This is very important.


We communicate more through our vibes than our words. Someone can stand up here and give a talk on love for two hours but you won’t even feel a drop of it. But a puppy that jumps on you when you come home, communicates all that to you in a minute. Or a baby just looks at you and you feel the love.
We were all born with this ability of honest and sincere communication of our being, our vibes, and our feelings. But somehow, we put a cover on top of it, and we suffocate and we make others suffocate. I am not saying that everyone does that, but generally, we do. And that is the reason why there is so much stress today. There is mistrust, there is depression, and what not. Friendships are getting broken.

(Suddenly) Are you all here?
(Giggles and "Yes" from the crowd)
Neither at school nor at home did anyone teach us how to handle our mind, how to feel the freedom from within, how to be loving or free, and have a sense of belongingness with everybody. Nobody taught me at least – at college, or school, or university, or even at home!
This is very important – we should learn how to cleanse our own vibes. We carry our vibes, and that’s how we communicate.

Suppose you go to an interview and you are tensed or angry, the interviewer will know how unstable you are, or nervous you are, or if you lack confidence. They pick that up, not from your words but from your vibes. And we are all capable of sensing vibes.
You may have observed that some people’s vibes just repel you. Tell me, would anyone here like to have vibes that repel. Not one would, right? But this happens when we carry negativity, and when we don’t know how to get it out of us. This is what we have to learn.
Then there are those who may not know so much, but they carry joyful, enthusiastic vibes along with them, and people would like to hire them!
Just think for a moment, if you are an employer, what type of people would you want to work with? Someone who is ready, enthusiastic, and full of energy, or someone who is nervous, not confident, and worrying about what he mugged up or didn’t?

Life is all about perceptions – how we should see things, where we should drop our judgments, and where we should have discrimination.


Life is all about perceptions – how we should see things, where we should drop our judgments, and where we should have discrimination.
Second is our expression. Are we able to express ourselves correctly? Each one of us has such wealth, beauty and goodness within us. But if we don’t express it properly, we will be misunderstood in life. This is what is happening all over the planet. We have not learned how to express ourselves, and we say others misunderstand us. We put the blame on others that no one understands us. Many girls here do that. Boys do not complain as much as girls about not being understood properly.
Today, like dressing is unisex, emotions are also unisex. Everyone gets the same feeling – even men say I am not being understood, at least by their wives or girlfriends.
So, expression is very important and here again it all boils down to that one principle – we all need to do something to cleanse our energy from negativity.

Conduct an experiment with yourself. Just complain or think negatively for one hour and see how you feel? You will feel drained, as though you did eight hours of hard labor. Eight hours of hard manual labor is equal to one hour of negative thinking, and if you keep thinking negatively the whole day, just imagine how much energy you are draining out of your system.

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