"Guru, all masters of holy tradition wear orange, why do you wear white?

Not all. One who does not wear clothes is also there! So, yes white has all the colors in it.

Usually the tradition is if you put on saffron you’re not supposed to go out of India, cross the ocean. But today many don’t follow that. It’s only a few people who follow that particular tradition. You can’t cross the ocean. Today they’re all doing it and that is good in a way.

These rules were made once upon a time when there were only ships. And they had to go by ship and they could not take bath every day. They cannot do their meditation in a ship. There were small boats, not even ships. And the boat would sail and take so many days. Anyone who would go on the boat when they come back they had to do some cleansing and all that. In the scriptures that is what was written. So they said no, you shouldn’t go on the boat.

Today that is not the thing. It is a home, it is a city inside the ship. So, those are irrelevant for today. This is what you have to see you know. Certain rules which are written, you should not just literally follow it.

Same in Judaism, it is said the day of silence is Saturday, Sabbath, means don’t do anything, rest. Six days you work, one day you don’t do anything. You just relax; with rest, prayer, meditation; because deeper the rest you take, better qualified you become. The quality of life improves; quality of your mind and consciousness improves. So for all this reason they said you should rest well one day. God rested for a day so you are also made in the image of god so you also should rest one day. That is Sabbath. But that is not what is happening.

You should not work means, you should not press the button in the lift! Suppose you are staying in the 20th floor of a hotel on Sabbath day. You cannot press the button you simply go on the elevator and it stops on every floor and it goes up to your 20th floor. I was in Jerusalem one Sabbath day. Nobody presses any button in the lift and it stops like a passenger local train at every floor. I asked you cannot sign also? On Sabbath you cannot sign also, you cannot touch a pen. These are all obsolete rules!

But you are still so busy and engaged. You are talking, and talking and talking and arguing and fighting also on Sabbath day but you cannot sign or press a button. It’s absurd!

This is where wisdom is needed. You need to look into these rules with common sense. We must induce common sense in all religious practices as well, it is important. Many times in the name of religion you shut off your common sense! It’s unfortunate; we need to changes these things. It will happen; people are more understanding.

How to increase will power?

Will power? Just relax! You know it’s lethargy that makes you feel I don’t have will power, isn’t it? You everyday decide, yes I’m going to wake up at 6am and do my pranayama and in the morning you say, ‘Oh it’s so cold, I’ll do it from tomorrow or tonight.’

It’s just because your system is tired, your mind is tired, body is tired and you eat the wrong things. Now I give you some idea, even to do that you will be so lethargic, why I should give an idea? At some time you get fed up and you jump out of your own bed and start doing exercise. So I feel that is better than giving you any advice, you be as lazy as much as you can afford. One day you’re sure to get fed up about being lazy. It can’t go on forever, got it?

Anything else said will be another burden and you will feel guiltier. You are lazy and someone says ‘Hey there is a fire’, and then how the fear of fire can take away all the laziness. Urgency takes away laziness. Or some knot in your heart gets opened, love comes welling up inside of you, then also laziness disappears. You are passionate about somebody or something, how you have no laziness then, you are suddenly awakened.

So either through love or fear or through greed you can overcome laziness. I don’t know a fourth thing, if you have any idea you tell me.

So if you are in deep love with something, laziness doesn’t come to you. In lack of these three things, you will procrastinate, that’s how it is. So if you procrastinate, fear will come sometime. Then out of fear you will start functioning. Or greed can come but I prefer being in love more than these two things.

So that’s why there is a tradition of promising someone who you love very much. You promise them something and you will see you follow it through. Say, you have promised your brother that you will pick him up or your niece that you’re going to meet her at the airport. Even though you feel so lazy in the morning to get up, you will just get up and run and go and greet them in the airport, even if it is in the middle of the night.

These days I have found a plane to go to India that reaches there in the morning at 9:30 you know. Bombay I don’t go at all; in Delhi when I go in the middle of the night the flight lands at midnight. By the time I come out it is 1:30am and there’s a huge crowd waiting at 2am at the middle of the night; elderly people, nursing mothers with babies. I just said ‘My God! Why did you come?!

In just 2 minutes they’ll see me getting in the car, that’s it. And in the airport it causes so much of a ruckus, so many people at the airport. Now I found a flight that reaches there 9:30am so I don’t feel so uncomfortable. I feel uncomfortable because they’re all standing there. An elderly couple, who are in their 80’s are standing there every time I go. If one night is disturbed like that, they must have such several nights where their sleep cycle is broken.

Like this there are so many people, three to four thousand people. I have stopped going to Mumbai because one day it took me two and a half hours to get out of the airport, giving darshan to everyone in line there saying come, come, come. And the security personnel were paranoid; the police had a headache, and those granite benches and tables at the new airport were all broken. Our organization had to pay some 30,000 bucks for damaging the airport with our own crowd. Yes, they broke the outside, chairs were broken, granite slabs were broken, and doors were broken. So I have said I will not land in Mumbai. This was in the middle of the night at 2 o’clock. Why I’m saying this? When there is love there is no lethargy.

Three types of knowledge

There are three type of knowledge or information we get. One is through the five senses. You see and you get some knowledge, you listen and you get knowledge, you smell and you get information, through taste you get information, and through touch. The five senses bring you some knowledge, isn’t it? Most of our knowledge is gained by these five senses. Now this is one type of knowledge.
The second is through the intellect. The knowledge gained through intellect is superior to knowledge gained through the senses. Science is knowledge gained through intellect. See, what all you see from your eyes is the sun is setting, but what you learn through science is sun doesn’t set. It is the earth which revolves. You have not seen earth revolving through any of the five senses, but through intellect you understand that the earth is revolving and that it is revolving around the sun. This is the intellectual knowledge through intellect which is superior to the senses. Like in a beaker of water you keep a pen, what do you see? The pen is bent. That is the perception, but the intellect says no it is not bent it is an optical illusion. This is the knowledge through intellect.
Now these two levels of knowledge is much inferior to a third level of knowledge. That is intuitive knowledge. That is knowledge from the spirit, that comes from silence. It cannot be verified by the senses or the intellect. Knowledge which comes beyond these two is another level of knowledge. So life begins when we tap into that level of knowledge. Till that time it is existence.
Now how would you tap into this level of knowledge? The level of knowledge which is not through the senses, nor through the intellect. For that you have to let go of the knowledge of the senses and the intellect and relax. The moment you let go then what you gain through senses, the cravings and aversions they stop. All of our cravings and aversions are about the five sensory perceptions. It cannot be anything beyond that. Are you with me?
For some time you say, ‘Now I don’t want to see anything, I don’t want to hear anything, I don’t want to smell anything, I don’t want to taste anything, I don’t want to touch or know anything; I’m just going to be.’ Then intellectual concepts, judgments, decisions, to all that you say, ‘I don’t even need to know anything, I don’t care for anything.’
Letting go of concepts is the second step. How this should be? How that should not be? Things should be like this and things should be like that and blah blah blah and blah blah blah… all these intellectual perceptions.
Or am I doing the right thing? Am I on the right path? Am I on the right track? Should I go on and blah, blah, blah…All these things you drop and then silence begins and when silence begins then the knowledge from the third level dawns and that knowledge is called Ritambhara knowledge; the true knowledge that comes from beyond the intellect and that is the intuitive knowledge.
Everyone has got this ability and you have experienced in your life this gut feeling, knowledge from somewhere, which you cannot really make out what it is. Somewhere you feel this is the right thing to do and something happens in your tummy. And that knowledge comes up at that time but then we don’t honor it. Many times we stick onto the intellect or sensory perceptions.
Sometimes your intellect says this is wrong what I am doing, but you don’t listen to the intellect you keep doing the wrong things. How many of you have this experience? What you do? You stick on to the sensory and ignore the intellectual knowledge. And then what happens? You sometimes go beyond your intellect. Your intellect is saying something but your inner gut feeling is saying something else. And you’re feeling says no, there is something different, something more. And we ignore that and we stick onto the intellect. That’s how many times your judgements have been found to be a failure.
How many of you feel your judgements have been wrong? But sometimes, beyond your judgements you have seen and you have taken a step and have been happy about it. In spite of your intellect saying ‘No’, something says ‘Yes’. Something else triggers and that is what happens when there is faith and that’s when the faith comes up you know.

Sometimes your mind says no I want to quit doing all this spiritual practices, I don’t care for that, I don’t care for hopes. Many people do this, try to quit but something deep inside, the impressions, samskaras, some good karma, they just make you keep going and then you are back on track. And then you are happy. You feel, ‘Good thing I didn’t do it, I didn’t walk on my impulse.’ Those are the moments when something beyond your intellect has taken over and worked.

When we started Art of Living, in the very beginning I could see that there are millions of people going to come on this. I was just 22 or 23, something like that; just out of my teens. I said, ‘No I don’t want to start’. My intellect would say ‘No, so what? Someone else will come and do all this and take care of everybody’. I had no ambition, no desire to start any movement at all. I was happy, I’m happy now also, but I thought why would I take some headache, I don’t want to. I was a little shy also but my intellect was always saying ‘Oh no!’ 
But then everything kept happening because when the TM movement was there and they very much wanted me to be there. And they were all very friendly with me. So it was difficult for me to say no to my friends, and then all the elders there, and everybody, so I was sort of attached. I said no, I don’t want to start the Art of Living; fought and fought.
I had everything, I didn’t need anything. I had no lack and I have everything. I was flying around in helicopters in those days also. I had seen all the wealth I could see those days. And if I have to start something from the scratch, the intellect was saying ‘no’. But something beyond that was saying ‘yes’.

So I was in the railway station, it was in Hubli somewhere. There were two trains going, one to south and one to north. If I take the train to south that means I will not start this. In the same way, I was in the platform and on one side was this train and on another side the other train. I had tickets for both. (Laughter) I had committed for a program in north. If I go there north then it’s for sure that I’ll continue in the Art of Living. Start this whole thing. That was the most confusing time, conflicting time for me to get on to this train or that train. Then I jumped into the train which went to the north and let go of everything of the past; for no apparent gain. It’s not that I never thought what I will gain from this, no. In fact I thought, you are not gaining anything you are collecting more problems, trouble. There you could just be like a prince, very comfortable, somebody does everything for you.
Why I’m saying this? This is the levels of knowledge, the intuitive knowledge which is beyond intellect. Everyone who knew me those days thought I am gone mad, crazy. Here I’m going to be put as a successor or heir to a huge organization, empire. Everything was there, and I am just washing it all off and getting on to something which has no form, no idea. Not even an organization was there, nothing was there. Only I had 200 kids to take care of and a school which would go with me. I had no money; nothing, no resource, I had never worked and I had no skills. And people say these days it is difficult to take care of two children in a house. Those days India was undergoing a lot of crisis too. Many types of crisis and here I land up with 200 kids or 250 kids to feed and to educate; all these responsibilities. Intellectually it was completely insane even to think about it for anyone who has some sense. But there was another knowledge, which I totally honored and depended upon and I took the step. Do you see what I’m saying? Otherwise there was no way we would have a Montreal ashram or I wouldn't be sitting with you and talking to you.
This possibility is not there at all. So this is the third level of knowledge, that gut feeling, or intuitive knowledge. Now, many times, with your emotions, with your own cravings and aversion you can think, ‘Oh this is my gut feeling, this is my knowledge.’ No! This is called maya, you maya, don’t get into that. When can you honor the knowledge of the spirit or the soul? It is when you are absolutely still. Got it?

So in the beginning it works for others, it doesn’t work for you because with you always there are some cravings, some aversions. Some cravings, some aversions and so you may get confused. So these hollow and empty meditations you do are all are very, very useful in getting to that level of knowledge, which is beyond the senses and beyond the intellect. Now how can you explain this to anybody? That’s big trouble, very difficult to tell somebody, ‘Oh there is one level that’s beyond your logic’. If you say that they will think you are crazy or denying intellect but it’s neither. Neither are you crazy nor do you deny the intellect. You go simply one step beyond and recognize something beautiful. This is the area where the entire cosmos works. All the knowledge in the cosmos is present there. Every invention has happened from this area.
The initial intuitive invention comes from that. Then intellect plays on it and develops it further. All great music or poetry has come from that area; every one of them! So one practical benefit from this is you now understand your intellect is judgmental and you don’t depend on it too much. Got it?

One of the steps is you see, ‘Oh yes my mind, it goes on saying something or the other and I don’t care, I don’t mind that’. You don’t get swept into these mind games. You become a witness to them all. Have you noticed it’s already happening with you? At home when there is some argument, or among the friends there is some argument, something happens. Sometimes you take one step back and say, ‘Oh come on, I have seen many of this. It’s not going to let this affect me.’ How many of you have started noticing this happening to you? There is a gradual progression for that. It’s happening in everyone’s life. Just this awareness, it will happen even faster. It will happen faster, just awareness about it.

Difficulty in relaxing

You are having difficulty in relaxing? Then be tense more and more and more. How long can you be tense? Some point you have to give up. That’s relaxation. 

So if you have difficulty in relaxing take a deep breath and don’t breathe out, hold on! You will know when to let go. And when you let go and breathe out, relaxation happens.

How to deal with a negative environment

There is a beautiful story. There was a small hill in a garden and it was situated in one of the very well known famous cities of those days. So it was a beautiful garden with fruit trees, lots of fruits and flowers. And there was a gardener in that garden and the gardener would go on top of that mound and he would invite everybody to come. From there he could see the people walking in the streets.
This was in a town called Ujjain and he would invite everyone, ‘Hey come, we have so many fruits, all of you come. Why don’t you enjoy the beautiful flowers and fruits? Please come and take. I just want to give them away, come.’ And the people would come and he got down that hill his mind would change and he would chase them away and say, ‘how dare you come to me, this is trespassing’, and he would chase them away. 
The people would get shocked and they would go and he goes back to the mound and again he begs, ‘Oh please come, please come’, and he would apologize, whatever it is. But again same story, he would chase them away after going down the hill. So people in the town who knew him they termed that he’s a crazy guy. He’s not sane because his behavior didn’t sound like he was sane. 
But then the wise people in those days what they use to do is whenever someone is insane or would do something wrong, they would get together and find out in what space is he in? So then one wise man said, dig the mound and let us see what is inside. So he got the order from the king to dig up that mound. So when they dug the mound they found a big throne, a golden throne that belonged to a king called Vikramaditya!
This king was such a generous king. Even today, an era in India is in his name, Vikram Samvat. So it is the 2068th year now, about 50 years ahead of the Christian era. It is 50 years ahead of AD, means he was 50 years before Christ. So today in India it is not 2011, it is 2068 or something like that.
So this Vikramaditya was such a pious, such a generous king of such good character that he was sitting in that throne for as long as 50 to 60 years. He ruled the country sitting on that throne and so the vibrations still existed. And so whenever the man went on top he became so generous. He got into the generous space. And when he came down he became nasty. So the space you are in matters.
You may have noticed in your own life, some places you get jittery and angry. How many have experienced this? What has happened? In that space there are people who have been angry or agitated. So you move into that space and it affects your whole behavior. And when you’re in good company what happens? You feel so much lighter, uplifted inside, totally at ease and at peace. Hasn’t this happened to you?
So the company matters, really matters. That doesn’t mean you should avoid people because they are not good company. You also should be strong and instead of running away from negative influence you must positively impact any negative environment. And sitting and doing your meditation, hollow and empty, these long meditations will help you be very strong and stable in that space. So wherever you go you carry your space and you make an influence rather than you get affected. Not be a ping pong ball but be the bat so you can influence the space around you.
This you must strongly know, so that you don’t run away from a situation unless or until it is so bad that it is swallowing you. Then you gently move away, don’t run away. Are you getting what I am saying?

Three types of space

Today I want to tell you about three type of space. One is the external space, in which all the five elements are there. Then there is the second type of space that is inner space, where thoughts come and emotions come. That’s inner space. When you close your eyes, what do you feel? That is inner space. And then there is the third space. That is the space of energy where there is no thought, no emotion but you just feel energy. In deep meditation you experience that, isn’t it? Or after kriya you experience that space, there are no thoughts, nothing but space.
The three types of space exist. One is called the bhut akash the outer space, second is chit akash the space where thoughts and emotions all these come and third, chid akash, space of consciousness. Consciousness itself is another space deep within us. These are the three type of space.
So we seldom understand; pay attention to these three different spaces. Whenever you are frustrated what do you say? ‘Give me some space.’ That is it, ‘I want my space. I want to be by myself.’ It’s very important. All inventions come from these three types of space. In the chid akash, in the consciousness it’s already there.
All knowledge there comes to chit akash through thoughts and emotions. Songs come as emotions, science comes as thoughts and ideas and then they get manifest in the outer. Meditation is recognizing these three spaces. So that’s why sometimes you sit and watch the vast space, put your attention there so the mind also becomes blank.
For how many of you it has happened? On a nice day cloudless sky, when there are no clouds, just bright stars are there. Just lie down and just keep gazing at the sky. When you gaze at the sky what happens? That space gets created inside too. A sort of emptiness and you get into a meditative state. So, all the thoughts, ideas, everything we do remains in this space. Maybe in the future sometime someone will come with the device to try to tap the akashic record. You can find out what happened in 2010, 2011. What knowledge came, where and who was thinking what all that can be recorded sometime in the future because time has inscription of all ideas.
See, in a cell phone you send a message, how does it go and reach another cell phone? So far away and exactly the same words and the same fonts get printed there. From the time you press the button here to send, it reaching there, how did it travel? In space! So the space in which all your telephonic conversations travel, all the messages travel, was recognized some thousands of years ago.
So the nature of space is knowledge and sound. ‘Shabda gunaka mahakaasha’, a Sanskrit saying; nature of light is sight, sight is connected with light; sound is connected with space, taste is connected with water and touch is connected with air. You know when you have to feel the touch, air has to be present. Inside water you do not feel the touch, have you noticed it? It’s different. Inside water you can’t feel it soft or hard, you can’t feel it. Rather whatever is the temperature of the water you can feel. Touch is related to the air element, and sound is related to space. So in the space everything is there. Like objects you’re thinking is there in the space. Sometimes you go to a place and you get thoughts and you wonder, ‘oh why did I get these types of thoughts’, do you see what I am saying?

Why do souls take bodies?

One is you come to cleanse yourself. Another is you come to cleanse others. Two options; one is you’re a prisoner and you experience your sentence, whatever 6 months, 8 months, 2 years, 3 years or 20 years life imprisonment. Another is you are a jailer and take care of them and bring them out. These are the two options that I know of. And how you choose your parents depends on the energy field that you are.

When someone leaves the body the last thought matters. If the last thought is about chicken you will find yourself in the poultry farm. So there are many stories in India about what your last thought should be. It should be of something wonderful, of service, of love, of compassion or something bigger. Think about God; think about some generous act or good people. And also first thing in the morning, there is a word in India which is very commonly used, ‘Pratha smarana’.

Pratha smarana means one who is worth remembering first thing in the morning. You don’t remember your enemies in the morning, but remember the wise people. So you should aim at becoming pratha smarana. Everyone should become the one that could be remembered first thing in the morning so that everyone feels fresh and energetic the whole day. That’s a wonderful thing, isn’t it?!

That word is so beautifully called; people whom you can remember in the morning. And whomsoever you remember in the morning, the same person you’ll remember last in the night also. So whatever is your last thought in the night will be the first thought in the morning. I think this is in all traditions.

Just before going to bed, mums tell kids to pray, isn’t it? Pray before going to bed. It’s an ancient tradition all over the world I suppose. Just pray, think about nice things when you go to bed. And when you wake up first thing look at your hands and what do you say? ‘Oh let me do good things with my hands this morning’. You look at it, feel let my luck be good, let my lines be favorable and let me do good things. Let there be knowledge, let there be good work happening, let there be good wealth coming to my hands; this is the morning prayer.

The ancient Vedic prayer is. ‘God of the wealth is in the beginning of my palm, residing in my palm. God of wisdom is residing in my palm. God’s valor is residing in my own palm. So let the good things happen through me’. This is how we are supposed to wake up and look at our hands.

How can one stop playing the role of a victim?

You have already done it now. By not wanting to be a victim, you are already not a victim anymore. Got it? 

You know, when you go out to vote, you have already voted, so relax. You know, I’ve seen people ask, 'How? How? How? How?'. A student keeps asking and the teacher keep saying, 'Do! Do! Do! Do!', and both the student is tired and teacher is tired. 'How? What I should do? What I should do?'

And teacher says, 'Do this! This! This! This! This!' So you have to do this and this and this and this but oh my God! But then, ’How? How? How? How? How?’ (Laughing). 

Relax! Don’t ask me how. Then I’ll be in trouble. You are in the train and train is moving. You are in the plane and the flight has taken off. No point in running in the flight from this end to that end, you are not going to reach any faster. Got it? Did you get the clue? Relax!

Art of Living teachers - exponents of love or advertising executives?

In the TRM (Teacher’s Refresher Meet) let the teachers sit and brainstorm and see what they can do. This is good; you need to balance, yes. You need to speak the language of the society at the same time the essence should not be lost, isn’t it!
You know what is very difficult? It is to put Art of Living in one category; very difficult. You know why? Because it is such a heterogeneous group, it is not a homogenous group. Not everybody is alike, not everybody is same. It is so heterogeneous that you find the most educated and the completely uneducated. You find the worst case and the best case also; you find people who have just come out of prison too. You find people of all strata here. 
People completely cuckoo will also be part of Art of Living. And if you see four or five of them who are cuckoo you can’t say, ‘Oh! Art of Living is all cuckoo.’ And you can’t say, ‘Art of Living is full of executive like people.’ No! Here we have the cuckoos as well as executives. An executive is also here.
We welcome everyone. And you know I am caught here because the first thing I said, ‘Accept people as they are’. And we have all sorts of specimens. Sometimes people ask me, where did you get this bunch of nuts? It's assorted nuts, we have all of them and we are tied up with them, and that’s it. We can’t do anything about it. Because I’m tied up with my own first course point, ‘accept people’, you know.
I’ve never preached anything that I’ve not practiced. This is a fundamental thing. One thing for sure is never say anything that is not in your experience or which you’ve not practiced, simple.
So you can never ever put Art of Living in one category. You can’t say Art of Living is all good people. No there are crooks also. And I tolerate them so that they can become better. If I also send the crooks away, where will they go and become better? I don’t see a better place. If I see a better place it would be a great relief for me. But so far I have not found any. If you find somewhere, someplace, tell me. I can pick them all and then show them the way there. So there are crooks. 
In the name of Art of Living there are people who try to be selfish and do things. But fortunately their numbers are insignificant, minimal. There are a few here and there that there is no doubt. So there are all types of people. So we must acknowledge that this is most heterogeneous group or place. So anyone holding any such concept in their mind, tell them you are mistaken. Saying, ‘Oh all are bad, you are mistaken in that’. It’s in your head. All are bad? Impossible!
Same with the society. Whatever is society is what we are. In society, it’s not that everyone is bad or everyone is good. There are all types of people out there, right? 
There is a proverb you must remember it’s a very nice proverb. When we were in school we learned it, even before we were teens we learned these things. ‘Adore the wicked first, and then thank the good man, for the wicked are teaching you at their own cost and the wise are only teaching you.’
So the wise that is teaching you is not teaching at his own cost, but the wicked is going down, falling into a pit and warning you, you better not fall. So you should first thank the wicked and then the wise. This was a couplet we used to learn in school. It is so, so good. 
It brings that acceptance inside you. It shields you from getting paranoid and angry. Do you see what I’m saying? Either you are paranoid about someone who is bad or you are angry. And then you become worse than someone who you think is no good. But when you know that they are teaching you some lesson, warning you what you should not do. It is such a shield, such a relief for your spirit to glow in its splendor. What do you think? It keeps the mind so clean.

Committing suicide because of physical suffering

Someone commits suicide because the body is in a suffering state that is okay. Suppose somebody is in deep, deep coma or has incurable diseases or something where the body is a big, big botheration, then I would say it is okay. 

That is my personal opinion. But even then it is not the best because anyway you have to finish that karma. Why not just prolong it, whatever another 6 months suffering. There’s no need even there to commit suicide.

But those people who go like that they come for short period to experience that period you know. That is the aborted children or children who are born dead. Sometimes these people have those sort of karmas in which in a short period they come to the world and they go and then come back again. 

Mainly we must realize that suicide is the worst thing and we need to help people who have that mentality. That is one of the major reasons that we should conduct Art of Living programs as much as possible. Wherever we can conduct that we should do. At least now they have something to hold on to. Do you see what I’m saying? When it starts, the breathing (Guruji breathing) and couple of bhastrika, it’s all gone!

Is there anything in reality called negative energy or negative vibes from other people that can affect us?

Listen, in the absolute sense, no but in relative sense there is. You can feel those things but it is not a permanent thing. It is limited by time. 
Like smoke comes; smoke is not a permanent thing. Smoke you could find in somebody’s farm when they are burning the leaves then smoke comes. But it’s not going to be there forever, you are not going to live amidst smoke 24 hours. Smoke comes and it vanishes.
When fog comes, planes wait for that little time. Once the fog is clear the planes take off. You think planes are worried about the fog? No. It’s just matter of time.
Similarly some negative energy comes, you feel it, you feel upset, you feel something in the stomach, you feel something in the body but it’s only for a few minutes and it just goes away. See it goes even faster with a few pranayamas, bhastrika and mediation. All this will chase away those negative vibes. Why do you have to be worried about negative vibes? You should never be paranoid about negative vibes. Negative vibes are just like passing smoke or fog. 
You know of course in L.A. there is smog but people don’t leave L.A. The city is not deserted. Millions of people live there. It just comes for a while and then disappears. And negative vibes don’t even come as regularly as the smog in L.A. They just are there for a few minutes, at the most few hours and then they go. And you have the key to get rid of them. Excellent!
And one more thing is salt. Bathing in salt or putting salt in the bathtub can also take away any negativity. You know why people feel so happy in the ocean? Because there is salt in the water that cleanses the subtle and not just the gross. But when there is mantra chanting it’s even more powerful than the ozone or salt in water. 
That’s the strange thing in India. You will find the beaches are empty, nobody goes to the beach. Do you know this? Nobody goes. Even if you go to Bali, the Balinese people are not fond of the beach. They don’t go to. Only tourists go into beaches. Same in India, you will find local people do not go to beach. It’s not a favorite spot. Maybe in evening they may just take a walk. If you are in Chennai it gets very hot so you get little breeze. They are not fond of salt water, going into ocean. People seldom do because there is no inner craving, that it gives more than the inland. Are you getting what I’m saying?
You already get so much energy so your system doesn’t crave to go near the ocean or take a swim in the ocean to feel better because on the land mantra chanting has been happening for millennia, for ages. So it’s still vibrant. So prana is already high. It’s not especially high along the coast.

Cause of depression

Your hankering for pleasure is causing depression in you. Wake up and see all pleasures are momentary. How long will it stay? See they are so momentary, 5 to 10 minutes you find joy in them and it’s gone. 
Then what other things do you hanker about? Some people appreciating you? My dear, it has no meaning. People may appreciate you in front of you; behind you they may feel jealous about you. That’s what happens. They praise criticize you today, tomorrow they criticize you. So what? Do you see what I’m saying?
What are you hankering for? Appreciation from people? What is appreciation? Just a few thoughts that are passing through their mind and you think they are going to do it forever? They have limitations. So what? Good comments come; some people have bad comments, so what. They criticise you, so what? Those who criticise you are also going to die, so what? All finished! And you the one being criticised will also die one day. 
Why are we so much bothered about adulations, somebody’s appreciation, or criticism? Why can’t we just be our self? You know it takes such a big load off our head, not being bothered by anybody’s criticism, anybody’s adulations we are just ourselves, natural.
If you live so lightly where is the question of depression? Do you see what I’m saying? So those who get these thoughts of committing suicide, it is just your prana which is low, so do more pranayama and dedicate your life to a higher cause.
There are millions of people who are suffering more than you, look at them. One, when your suffering becomes smaller you will never think that you want to commit suicide, number one.
Second, you know that you are needed, you are useful. You have to do something in the world. Know that.
Third is, forget about what people think about you. People commit suicide because they think they lose their prestige, their status. What status? What is prestige? Who has time? Everybody is entangled in their own problems, their own mind. They can’t step out of their own mind. Where do they have time to think about you? 
You know, I remember a case of a very respectable lady in India. She was very proud of her family and her children. Her son went and married a girl from a lower class, lower strata of society. They are from a higher class and much wealthier and he married a girl from a very poor family and it was not a match; her shape and look was very different from his. It was very different. 
So the mother got so upset she said how can I go meet anybody. I cannot see anybody. And she went into such depression. I called her one day and told her, ‘Look, who has the time to think about you?’ The whole time she was like, ‘How can I show my face to others? How can I go to others weddings? They will all make fun of me.’ I said, ‘Who has time for you? It’s all in your head.’
She would not go to any other party, anybody’s wedding, nothing. She would sit in her own house; blame herself or her daughter-in-law or son for being very miserable. I told her, ‘No! You get up and go.’ You know it just needs that little push. Once she started going she found suddenly, she realized that ‘Yes, I was just caught in my own maya of my own mind.’ Everyone welcomed her properly, there was no need to put her head down and melt in such shame. These types of tendencies come because you think others are going to disrespect you. Many people do this.
Honour killing that happens in many places; it’s horrible. Honour killing is not because God is going to be angry with you. It is, ‘How to face the society, how to face people around you?’ This is what bothers many people and they commit suicide. I tell you it is worthless; what the society thinks of you is useless.
Recently it did happen, that one monk, a swami wanted to marry. I said, ‘yes, you can marry, no problem. I don’t mind what people think, don’t worry what people think. If you want to marry you marry.’
But I said, ‘You don’t remain a swami. You should write a one line letter that I don’t want to be swami because this life, monastic life is very difficult for me. So I would like to renounce this and not be a swami’, and everyone will accept. 
There is no problem. It’s okay. He couldn’t be a monk he married. So what? But he said, ‘No, no, I want to keep it secret. I want to be a Swami and also live somewhere else in Europe secretly, six months there and six months here.’
I said, ‘I won’t like that. I would not let anyone deceive anybody else. This is deception. On one hand you pose to be a swami and on the other hand you want to keep it a secret.’
I said, ‘I will not talk about that. Why you are worried what people think about it?’ Do you see what I’m saying? These are the things that arise because of a person's inner anxiety. So be natural and be open.
I don’t find it is difficult, I find it’s the easiest.

What happens if one commits suicide?

Suicide is the most foolish thing a person can ever do. It’s like someone is shivering in the cold and they went out and removed their jackets. What do you call them? Foolish!

You are already so cold. You are feeling cold in a heated auditorium, in a heated hall and you go out and say, ’I’m cold, I’m cold, I’m cold’, and remove all your jackets. Leather jackets, your t-shirts, and your inner garments, everything you are throwing out. Will the cold become any less? No!

People who commit suicide find themselves there because they are so attached to life. They are so attached to some pleasure, so attached to some fun and joy that they want to kill themselves. So when they kill themselves they find themselves in a bigger soup. 

‘Oh my God, this restlessness, these desires which has created such an intense agony inside has not gone. Body has gone but the agony has remained’. It’s only through the body that you can dispel the agony; you can get rid of misery. Instead you destroy the very instrument by which you can get rid of agony. That is why this knowledge is so important.

If people do pranayama, Sudarshan Kriya, meditation they will realize that, I’m not the body. So what? What is it that I’m hankering for in life? Hankering for love? Attention? Money? Pleasure? What is it that you are hankering for? These hankering are boiling desires and it’s creating this foolish idea inside you to commit suicide.

Dedicate your life for a social cause, for some higher cause. If you feel you have to commit suicide, I tell you I need you to do my work, so you better stay back. When you think only about yourself, me, me, me, me, what about me, then this is what happens. Depression comes in. Forget about yourself, you die for a cause but don’t kill yourself. It’s worth dedicating your life for something higher.

I need you. You come here do work there is so much work to be done; help me out. Know that you are useful to me. At least if everyone else says you are useless remember, no I am here born at this time because I have to be, I have some use and Guruji needs me, so I’m not going to commit suicide. Got it?

So, do my work, if you cannot do yoga, meditation, then sweat and do my work. And I have lots of work that I can give you. I can give some work for the entire nations and entire population. I have plenty of work to do. So whatever you need, a square meal I will provide you. You need a roof above you, I’ll provide you. I guarantee you, but don’t kill yourself. 

The human body is so precious you know! After so many different lives and different bodies we get human body, human birth. Being a frog, a scorpion, and being a chicken somewhere, being a mouse somewhere in some hole, and after being a cat jumping around here and there and a dog somewhere, and a bird somewhere, and worm somewhere, then you get a human life after going through all those births. It’s so precious.

Importance of the solar plexus

Solar plexus is the center of gravity of the human body. Your body can be balanced with a stick on your solar plexus. It will balance. 

And all the functions of the brain are done by the solar plexus, so it’s important. Your emotions get locked up there. 

And I heard from a doctor, a scientist, he said that the solar plexus is small, but in those who do yoga and who are yogis, who do a lot of meditation, it really becomes much bigger, almost 3 or 4 times the normal size. 

So then you have control over your parasympathetic nervous system and all those things. Also much more control over your body, your senses and your mind. That’s what a very well known doctor said, and it is also the experience of many people.

You need one desire in life to move on

Hang on to one desire you need in life. I hang on to the desire, let the whole world be smiling, I want everybody to be happy. More and more people rejoicing the spiritual path, becoming compassionate, non-violent, vegetarian, and caring for nature. These are so many such good desires which are there. Catch one of them and keep it.

You need one desire in life to move on. You don’t need to drop everything. But you need to drop everything at the time of meditation. When you come to action you hold onto one desire.

It’s like when you go out you put on your shoes but when you go to bed you don’t go to bed with your shoes on. Does anybody do that here? Or when you go for a shower you remove your shoes. Nobody takes a shower with their shoes on.

So when you meditate, when you are in the course, when you’re doing practices, at that time, drop the desires. But later on when you are working in the world, pick and hold on to one desire of welfare, or one world family, beautiful planet, the coming generation, any one, okay!

At work, not being aggressive is seen is not smart. How to deal with that?

Sometimes, sure you show some aggressiveness, you can act. See if you’re playing a part in a movie or in a theatre you can’t say I can’t do this, I can’t do that. If the act demands you to be a villain you have to act like a villain but not be a villain. Do you see the difference? You don’t have to think, okay everything will happen. No, not that way, instead you should think, ‘Okay let’s do it’. Go with the spirit of enthusiasm, with the spirit to do something. 
Never talk philosophy in the workplace if they don’t understand that. You know that everything is changing and everything will get done. But if someone says fix the electricity and you say, ‘Oh don’t worry things will happen in their own time, anyway I am not the doer. Just have trust. God is taking care of everything,’, then that is no good.
There is no water in the tank, ‘Water will come’. The bulb is fused, ‘Oh the fuse is gone, it will come, so what!’ Don’t talk like that.
The secret of non doer-ship should be kept within you but don’t talk to others about it. When you’re in action, put your 100% and act but don’t speak like that especially with people who don’t understand. Even with satsangis, you will irritate them. Even with people on the spiritual path, if you speak like that they get irritated, isn’t it?
Just imagine, you need ten volunteers in the kitchen, ‘Oh you know someone will do it, anyway you are not the doer so why bother’. Just imagine someone with that attitude, what would you feel? ‘Come on get to work.’ Right?
So, even within the path this attitude will irritate people. Now just imagine those who know nothing about non doer-ship, those who know nothing about meditation, those who know nothing about hollow and empty, what will happen to them? They will think okay he is a little cuckoo, right!
So be very normal and do your work. Also keep smiling and dancing.
One gentleman went to a funeral program or ceremony of his close relative. He said, ‘Guruji’, and he started dancing singing, ‘Radhe Govind’. ‘Guruji said everything is impermanent, so people die and they go and it’s all normal. We should just celebrate!’ And he started dancing. Because he is a man of little height, people could not say anything to him or shut him down. But they got thoroughly irritated they said, ‘Guruji, what is this guy doing? He’s quoting you. He said keep smiling all the time’.
I said keep smiling, I didn’t mean you go and give a big smile when somebody’s funeral ceremony is happening. Others are crying and he’s smiling, ‘Oh good, good, good, everything happens for good, everything happens for purpose.’
Don’t you think this is too much? How many of you think this is too much? There is something called discrimination, wisdom, you should use that. Yes it’s obvious, somebody very elderly passed away, that’s okay. But you should be sensible, sensitive to others’ feelings, others demands, others needs, yes.
In the same way, your office thinks you need to be aggressive you show them, be aggressive if you can. If it cannot happen at all, you give 100% then you just tell them it is just not in my nature.
If someone tells me to use foul language and scold somebody, I will tell them it is impossible for me, I can’t. All these 56 years I have not uttered a single foul word, never! I never made any effort, it just never came. It never has come even in the worst moment. The worst thing I have said is, ‘You stupid’, that’s all that has come out of me.
I can count on my fingers, six to seven times or eight times I might have said that word. Once one of my teachers was misusing the trust people had kept on him and he tried to exploit them financially and this and that and I said, ‘You stupid, you better don’t do this, you are not going to teach, you’re not representing me’.
So someone said you should use language and you should be strict with these people and I said I can’t. So similarly if they say you have to be too aggressive then you simply say I can’t, it’s not in my nature. That’s it!

Technique for cultivating self love

See, self is love. You think you don’t love yourself and then you try to love yourself and that is the biggest blunder.
Who says you don’t love yourself? It is just a concept when you think you don’t love yourself, and it seems to be very real. Just relax, drop this whole concept of self love and love for others. Love is not just an emotion, so just relax and be at ease yes.
Don’t judge your actions too much. When you go on analyzing and judging your actions too much, this is where you’ll end up. Either you’ll feel guilty or you feel upset and then you feel angry and all this paraphernalia comes along.
That’s why the concept of surrender is so useful. The concept of belonging to the Divine, belonging to a tradition or a master is so useful. The devotee can say, "If I have some lack, then it is for the Guru to make me right, that’s not my business."
It’s like you’re on a massage table and if there is some twist in your muscle somewhere, it is not your job, it is the job of the masseuse to straighten your knots. You don’t do anything about it. In this way, you’re on the table and trying to do something with yourself, you get so stuck.
So trying to repair the emotions, correct the emotions, this is all a useless phenomenon and it only makes it worse. Do you see what I’m saying?
There is a saying in Sanskrit; suppose you have a wound and you go on scratching the wound, it’s not going to get better. Every time you scratch it you make it worse. This is exactly what we’re doing, you try to get rid of this thing or that thing or feel better about yourself, love yourself or not love yourself. All this is useless. What you are doing here is the best, do yoga, meditate, become hallow and empty and everything else gets taken care of.
There is a story about Lord Buddha. One disciple came to Buddha and said, ‘my mind is all so much turmoil. I feel so guilty, I feel so bad, I feel so this and that’, and he just said a lot of things. And Buddha just told him to go and get some water from a pond.
So he went there and saw the pond was so muddy. He said, ‘Lord the water is so muddy, I can’t get it.’
So Buddha just smiled and so this man went on and on again. A little while later Buddha told him again to go get some water. He said, ‘But it was all muddy’. Buddha said, ‘No, go and get the water.’
So when Buddha insisted he had no other choice but to just go. When he went there, by that time the water had already settled and it was clear. He brought the glass of water and gave Buddha. Buddha looked at the disciple and smiled away and the disciple got the answer.
So when your mind is muddled, don’t try to do anything more. Just give it some time, leave it alone and it will settle, it will become clear.
Unfortunately we have so many books written, so many concepts on how to love yourself and make this mind and make the guilt go away and blah, blah, blah. I don’t think it will help in the long run, even if it has for a short time. I would say do Sudarshan Kriya, pranayama, and meditation. And keep doing it. Other than that, don’t try to love yourself.

How does a Guru deal with fanatical followers?

Listen, now focus on yourself. Why do you focus on what others do? There are so many people that do so many things in the world. It’s my headache and their headache, now why do you want to make that as your headache also?
I keep telling them don’t bow down and don’t bend down, but it is a cultural thing. In India they always do like that. When the person in the front bows down the people in the back don’t see it so they bow down. Then one above the other they keep falling.
Sometimes they grab my feet and then bang their head so hard on my feet. Sometimes I have to scream for them to stop. I have many marks that devotees have put on me.
I have tried educating people and it doesn’t work. You don’t have to copy them I tell you. And don’t be bothered by others I tell you. Otherwise you find that person is behaving this way and this person is pushing, this person is running, why shouldn’t all this be corrected? How much will you correct?
You know I see millions of people and everywhere is the same story. Do you see what I am saying? If you bring too much discipline where everybody is strict, people feel so suffocated. So I always preferred a middle path where it is not too much restriction and where it’s not free for all. It’s not the situation where it’s free for all; everybody jumps everywhere and does anything they want, no!
It’s the big problem and issue for me but we have to deal with it. Certain things are cultural things; certain things are peoples’ emotions. You know sometimes people see me, they come from a long distance and they want to shake hands with me, some want to come forward, you can’t blame them too. Some of them want a picture so they push everybody and they don’t see anyone, they just want to have picture.
I’m not just talking about here you should see what happens in India, or South America or Mongolia for example. I go to Mongolia, in the middle of the night at 2:30 in the morning, there is such a huge rush, everybody trying to get inside the airport. Security people were startled, what is this? But what do you do, I have not asked people to pull and push and just go forward. And if I say too much also it’s a matter of someone’s feelings, someone’s emotions, isn’t it?! Someone has come with a flower, a lady from a remote area in Mongolia and she just wants to give the flower into my hand. She must be in her eighties and I am so concerned someone will push her down.
Sometimes they light candles and then the people are walking around with all their garments and I say, ‘look out, light, light, light’. I was so concerned, they put the lights all along the stairways and people are just not aware. They’re in such joy, they’re in so much joy you know they lose track of their surroundings. They are sort of ecstatic and they don’t care about what’s happening to their garments, whether it’s catching on fire. So I am very careful, put off the lights and this and that. 
So peoples’ behavior is very different. I cannot control peoples’ desires and nor can you. So why do we get stuck with other people’s behavior all the time? Whether it is good behavior or bad behavior, there are people who blame you for nothing. What do you do? Nothing.
There are people who show negative emotions, I do nothing and they show positive emotions, and I do nothing because it is a way for them to express themselves so l let them be. As far as possible I will make some security arrangements. Here also people sat holding everybody back with a rope but it does not work for five minutes. In five minutes later only outside my kutir I already see there are lots of people. Now I don’t blame them.
I want to tell you one incident. I was going to Lucknow, the city in the north of India. So when I went there the chief of police came to me and said, ‘Guruji, there was chaos!’
There was chaos in the airport, a stampede but thankfully nobody got hurt or anything. But there was so much crowd. The police officer came and said, ‘Guruji I don’t know what effect you have. Till the time you came we had all agreed that we would all be in line in a row and we’ll be disciplined and you’ll be allowed to get into your car very smoothly. But the moment you come out, I was the first one to break the plan and everyone broke all the plans and had gone haywire.’
There was so much chaos I could hardly get into the car. My shawls were torn. Well but I was not upset, I am not at all upset. I’m not upset with these things because I know. I said, ‘I don’t blame anyone, it’s my responsibility.’
I know wherever I go the chaos begins. I don’t even have to go to a place, just the news that I am going to a city is good enough to create chaos. And many of you know this, who will host me there will be a fight on that, who will drive me there will be another fight on that, I have come to terms with it now. I just accept it; there is no point in getting upset for it.
And bliss comes out of chaos and wherever there is bliss some chaos does happen. This is a natural law; do you see what I’m saying?!
So you better focus on yourself and your knowledge. You don’t need to do what others are doing, you be yourself and you move on. If you can help others then help, otherwise finding faults in others, ‘Why are they doing like this’, and saying, ‘Why don’t you educate them?’
How much can you educate? Who to educate, how many can you educate, tell me? We gave the technique for everyone to practice and to be happy and that is good enough, you know. But there should be some freedom for people to express their emotions.