Yoga is a study of life, study of your body, breath, mind, intellect, memory, and ego.

Excerpts from an Interview from recent Punjab Visit

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: The leaders should have a broader vision. If leaders have really a broader vision, the summit in Copenhagen wouldn’t have blocked. They don’t care for the entire planet; instead they are only caring about the smaller perspective of their national interest. If their national interest is more than human interest or interest of the planet then they are at loss. So I want the leaders to take a lead, first of all curb the menace of depression that is setting in the world. 30% of Europe is suffering from depression, and the psychologists say that it is going to go up to 50%. In India it is normal but in Europe, it is around 30% to 38%.
It is very less in India, in the metropolitan cities it may be around 10% to 12% but not at all in the villages, maybe 2% or 1%

Interviewer: So the courses you have introduced definitely help in depression?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Definitely!

Interviewer: Scientifically, Has it been seen? Can we write it in medical journals?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yeah! It has already been published by NIMHANS (National Institute of
Mental Health and Neuro Sciences) and IAMS, they have published a paper on it.

Interviewer: Guruji, there are so many schools of Yoga, so many teachers who advocate different forms of Yoga, what exactly is Yoga, for layman who knows nothing about Yoga, what is it exactly? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yoga is a study of life, study of your body, breath, mind, intellect, memory, and ego. Study of your inner faculties!

Interviewer: There is another thing Guruji, there is violence at individual level also and at national, international level also but how do we tackle this?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
You know violence is a result of fermented stress. When stress gets fermented and it is not rooted out in its infancy, it either turns into societal violence or depression or suicidal tendencies. These are two things that happen. Stress comes up and then either one gets suicidal on one hand or they swing towards becoming violent and agitated. So yoga brings that balance to the personality; balance of body, mind and spirit. Yoga brings that equanimity and balance; decency in one’s personality. That’s why we say ‘Yogyatha’ for one who is qualified. The qualification to be called a decent human being comes to you through Yoga because then you can balance your emotions, you have a say over your behavior. It’s not like your behavior goes out of your control.

Interviewer: Guruji, one last question. The most important thing that you think we must imbibe in our life.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
Human values and we must value life and its main characteristic ‘compassion’ more than anything else.

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