The very things that break down the structure of a family, a simple thing called “not listening”—that is the culprit in the whole world, in my opinion. The government doesn’t listen to the people; the people don’t listen to the government. Wife doesn’t listen to the husband; husband doesn’t listen to the wife. Children don’t listen to the parents; parents don’t listen to the children.
No listening. Why? Because there’s so much noise already going on, of everything that’s wrong. It is the Tom Thumb syndrome. We have become so small, and everything has become so big—that you no longer understand.
You don’t understand who you are; you don’t understand why you’re here; you don’t understand what your potential is; you don’t understand what the breath means; you don’t understand what your choices are. You have a choice. You can choose.
– Prem Rawat
Allow this heart to become a major player in your life, major player in your life. Let this heart be that place from where the spring exists, that the request for peace in your life comes from.
Peace is not that difficult. You know why? Fortunately, the people who want war are a minority! Of 7.5 billion people on the face of this earth, the people who want war—that is a minority that wants war. The majority of the people on the face of this earth want peace.
I think the cards are stacked in our favor. Play the game—not because of fear! Play the game. That’s what they want. Peace will be the finest achievement of mankind—not going to the moon, that’s old hat. Been there; done that. It will be peace that will be the noblest achievement of mankind.
– Prem Rawat
The amount of joy you have is boundless! This gift of breath that you have is relentless! And what is possible is beyond imagination. But do you fundamentally take and understand that or not?
Do an audit in your life sometime—all the things you go through, that go in your head, how many you know, because you know—and how many have been dumped into your head? It’ll drive you crazy! It’ll drive you absolutely crazy—you’ll be like, “Oh my God. Oh, oh my God! Oh my God.” You’ll be shocked.
So it’s just one series of misguided information on another, on another, on another, and another. And we actually have a word for it: “If it’s been said enough times it must be true!”
Then, my shoes are not black. And if thirty people say, “They are. They are. They are. They are. They are. They are,” do you think they’ll become black? But there are people who believe they will. Because “it doesn’t matter! This is what people have been saying, and so it must be true; it must be true”—even though it’s not.
So this is what it means to be aware, to be conscious, to say, “Wait, wait, wait, wait. Let me find this out. Let me feel this. Let me experience this.”
I say to you, “Peace is inside of you.” Do you agree with me? Do you agree with me because I’m saying it or because you have felt it? Clear as mud, huh? That’s it! That’s the point. Just because I am saying it...just because I am saying it doesn’t make it true. If you feel it, then it makes it true. That’s reality!
– Prem Rawat
A few years back, a scientist decided to do an experiment—and he took a huge mirror and he put it in the jungle. And of course you know monkeys are the most curious, right? So they came! And they stood in front of the mirror—and they started screaming! Showing their teeth, hitting the mirror—and freaking out. Then they would run away.
Then ... a big gorilla came, and he went in front of the mirror, and he screamed! And he beat his chest to say, “Who are you?”
And he was angry! He was very angry. And he screamed, and he beat his chest again—and he paced back and forth, and back and forth, and back and forth—why? Do you know why? Do you know why? [Audience: No!]
He did not recognize himself.
That gorilla he was seeing was not an enemy—it was him!
Are we seeing ourselves in the mirror, and not recognizing ourselves? When we kill each other, we kill ourselves! When we rob from each other, we rob from ourselves! Because you ... and you, and you, and you, and you ... are my reflection. You, and you, and you are each others’ reflection in that mirror.
When you become angry at each other, you become only angry at yourself! When you tell a lie, you tell a lie to yourself! When you harm each other, you only harm yourself! Because you do not recognize it’s you.
– Prem Rawat
In this life, you have an opportunity. You have a chance to do right; and first of all, you have to do right by yourself, and there are not too many people in this world who do that. They’re not fair to themselves. They don’t look at the opportunity as an opportunity.
They look at opportunity as something outside of themselves. Not that, I am an opportunity! I’m alive! I exist! And this means something.
But you wonder, where is the sense of purpose? When people wake up in the morning, what do they think of? What is the sense of purpose? What do you do? In each one of our lives, there may be these little variances up and down, or whatever it is, but what is the overall sense of purpose?
And a lot of people who are aged, they go, “Well, you know…” They’re busy hanging up. I see that, and it’s like, why are you busy hanging up? The breath isn’t hanging up on you. You’re hanging up on yourself.
The concept of retirement, the concept of aging, the concept of getting old… because the reality of getting old is this. You’re only as old as you really feel.
There was a time when you, even though maybe you were ten, eleven years old, there were things you could not do a certain day because you felt bad – right? Because maybe you had sprained your leg, or you broke your arm, and you couldn’t do something.
So, not being able to do something was always there, because it hurt to do it, or just, something wasn’t right. So that’s that part of it.
But, how old do you feel? And the reality there is very, very interesting. Because you don’t feel any older here [indicating his head] than when you were young. Because the brain actually doesn’t age the same way as people think. You know, your skin might not be renewing so easily or quickly…
So, what changes? The only thing that changes is other people’s perception of you, which only changes as you think the other people perceive you. “Oh, but the other people think I am old. Oh, well look what they said.” Or, “That young girl isn’t going to like me anymore”, that’s what it becomes.
We don’t look at our wisdom. We don’t look at our opportunity. We don’t understand that we had such a good life, and it is still the opportunity to move forward and to go forward.
But I see a lot of people and it’s like, “Oh, I’m getting old.” You cannot ever lose the fervor of being alive! That would not be fair to life, or to the breath. Your vibrancy, your existence, your need to be alive, respect it. Respect your life. Wherever you go, whatever you’re going to do…
And, don’t live your life by the perception that you have of what other people see you as. This is really, really unfair. Because you are who you are. Good, bad, right, wrong – you’re alive! The significance of everything that has been said up to this point is relative to that.
Do right because you are alive. This is your opportunity. Your opportunity. And how long does this opportunity last? It lasts till the last breath.
There are needs—and then there are wants. There are needs—and then there are wants. The world today does not know the difference between “want” and “need.” What do people need?
They need fresh air. You need fresh air. Why? Three minutes without air—pfft—you will die. There’s a Rule of Three’s. Three minutes—not fresh air, you’re in trouble. You need clean water. Why? Three days without water, you will die!
You need warmth, shelter. Three hours—hypothermia—pfft—you’re dead. Not want—need. Three weeks without good food?—and you’re dead. Not want. Need.
Why is poverty bad? It’s because it does not give people access to what they need. That’s why poverty is bad, and the world goes, “What do people want?” What do people want?! They want everything!
And they want way too much! And if the world was focused on making sure that the need of the people was met, this would be a different world—truly.
The difference between want and need? That’s why there is hunger in this world. Because of the want, all the food that is actually generated is wasted. It’s totally wasted. Because it’s this want! The need?—this food would never go to waste!
So, in a human being, same way, what do you need? And what do you want? You need to feel good. You need to feel content. You need—you need—to feel the equilibrium. You need to feel the serenity. You need to feel the stillness. You need ... just to feel good.
– Prem Rawat