Bangalore, June 22:
Q: Dear Guruji, we have read that Ramkrishna Paramhansa was blessed by Vivekananda with Goddess Kali’s vision. Can people get the same experience today also?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: It is the other way around. Ramakrishna blessed Vivekananda. Many experiences happened. It was just the energy that transformed the whole atmosphere. Spiritual energy transformed the relationship and transformed the mind.
Q: Guruji, can a person get more than one beej mantra in his life time?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, no problem.
Q: Guruji, who was your first crush when you were a teenager?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: The first crush is continuing. It is the same Divinity, yes!
Q: I am confused most of the time about any decision in my life. What do I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Confusion is good, you are so lucky to be confused all the time. That means you are progressing. Confusion happens when a set of ideas break and a new set has not yet formed. But that’s a temporary state. When new ideas come, you move on to that and again confusion comes when that breaks. So you are moving ahead.
Q: How can I be a non-violent person when I live in a neighborhood where if I don’t carry a gun with me I will be shot dead? What do I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Violence does not mean self-protection nor does non-violence mean lack of self defense. You should be prepared for your self defense no doubt, but in your mind and heart you nurture non-violence. And you will see in the presence of non-violence, such strong non-violence, even violent people will drop their violent tendencies.
It has happened several times with me, when I was in Washington DC, another time in Los Angeles. On both occasions a gentleman wanted to attack me. He cursed me in the name of Jesus and said that this was all satanic, Yoga was satanic. As soon as he came, this tall hefty guy, I said, “Wait.” We didn’t have any weapons and we didn’t have any defense. He just went down on his knees and started crying. Everybody was so surprised, it was a satsang, like this, nobody expected a man to attack.
I just said, “Wait, wait,” and he bowed down and started crying. Later on he took the course.
You know, it is a misconception that could cause violence. It is stress and a sort of victimization that could cause violence. But when we believe in non-violence and we walk with that power in our hearts you will find a big change. There are so many such events.
A long time ago, I was in Delhi and Noida. Thousands of people came with torches to burn my car. I just showed my hand and said, “Wait okay, you can do whatever you want. I just want ten minutes to talk to you. But that’s it, in those ten minutes they all changed. In those days, in 1980, Noida was not developed, it was all a jungle, a village with dacoits. So we must believe in non-violence and I don’t mean you should not carry a weapon or learn self defense. Until you get so well established in non-violence you can have those arms, you can keep your self defense that is okay.
Q: I left my previous job because there was too much of jealousy and back-stabbing. How do I work with such negative people?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Skillfully. Negative people bring out lots of skills in you. You should thank them, they teach you how to deal with them, how to maneuver through all those situations and make you move ahead. And they push all the buttons and make you free from buttons
Q: Guruji, very often I get bad dreams. How to get rid of them?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Meditate and even before going to bed meditate and listen to some nice chanting, that will help.
Q: Guruji, my life has been difficult for so many years that I feel like giving up. My father says that someone has done black magic on my family. Do things like black magic exist and how do I get over them?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Do sadhana, seva and satsang, and no black magic can touch you. Chant the mantras, listen to vedic chants, Rudram, Om Namah Shivaya. All this will help.
Q: When I am in US I want to come to India and when I am in India I miss US, what do I do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Well, do exactly what you are doing, miss here and miss there but don't miss your meditations, don't miss your sadhana, seva and satsang. That will be everywhere.
Q: Guruji, in Mahabharata Krishna supported both Pandavas and Kauravas. Why did he not lift a weapon in support of Pandavas where as he send his whole army to Kauravas?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Krishna has his own ways, most mysterious, you can't understand. Better give up. Whoever is trying to understand Lord Krishna doesn’t, different people, different groups see different aspects of Sri Krishna. That is why he is called Purna Avatara, he is so complete from every side. Very, very unique.
Q: Guruji, the fact that meditation alters attitude is clear, does meditation alter aptitude as well?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, of course.
Q: Guruji, can you tell us something regarding Bhav Samadhi. Can we also experience it?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Yes, Bhav Samadhi. Just sit and completely dissolve in the music, in the feeling, in the connectivity, being full of bhav, with one’s feeling. When your mind is still and full, you feel like dancing in that moment. Thoughts cease, worries cease.
Q: Why do I have to choose between my parents and my love?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Tough question. You ask your own mind, “Why do I choose someone my parents dislike or why do my parents dislike whom I choose?” Walking a tight rope, right?
Q: Can a devotee’s love for the Divine reduce and if it does what needs to be done to change it.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: In time, it will become alright.
Q: What is the role of emotions, body, mind, anger?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Keep your body healthy and keep your emotions positive. Very simple. It is like asking, “Where do I put on my pants and where do I put on my shirt?” You put your shirt on top and pants at the bottom, not the other way around. So everything has its place: ego has its place, emotions have its place, our body needs to be healthy and strong. So you need to respect the laws of nature, okay?
Q: How do I know the path that I choose to take is the right one when there are so many different paths that I can take?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: When doubt comes, then know for sure it is the right one. Generally, we doubt only that which is true. All that is good, we doubt. If someone asks if you are happy you say, “Well, I am not sure.” But you are so definite about your unhappiness, right? Similarly if someone tells you that they love you so much, you will say, “Really?” And if someone says, “I hate you,” you never say, “Really?”
So most of the time, our doubts are about something that is positive. So when you are on a path that you like, the doubt whether this is the right path or not will come.
Q: How to forget betrayal? Someone has betrayed me long back and that man keeps coming to my mind. After doing yoga, meditation, pranayam, etc., I am able to get these thought occasionally. Earlier it was coming frequently. How to completely drive away these thought?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: It’s already less, isn't it? How much has it reduced till now?. Once in a while, it comes, right? So what? It doesn’t matter. The more you resist it, it’ll keep coming back. Just take it, it’s an experience in life.
Q: It is said that practice makes a man perfect, but nobody is perfect, so why practice?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Why practice? Because anyways, nobody is perfect. Yes.
You eat food, and then the stomach gets empty and then again, you eat and then again, the stomach gets empty and then again you eat. So then, why eat? If the stomach keeps getting empty, then no need to eat at all.
Q: Guruji, if someone is a compulsive liar and keeps asking for a second chance what to do?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: If someone is a compulsive liar, what to do?
Somebody asked me a question yesterday, “Guruji, are you angry with me?” I said, “No.” That does not mean you can go on lying. Now, I know some people do wrong things, say wrong things and misuse the trust of other people. They say, “I have just spoken to Guruji on the phone and he has said like this.”
I forgive and I don’t get angry but I feel compassion for them because they are putting mud on their own heads. They are causing trouble for themselves. So why should I spoil my mind getting angry with such people? I don’t feel angry but feel compassion that they go and create trouble here and there.
Pitaji had written a quote, ‘The world is full of people and mistakes. Forgive the mistakes and love the people.’ What a wonderful thing he has said!'
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