Every human being is a seed.
I’m not a philosopher, because a philosopher would talk about... the philosopher would talk about the potential of the seed. I talk about the realization of that potential.
I am not a philosopher. I’m much closer to a gardener. Prepare the field of your understanding and then take this existence that you have and sow it in this field.
Give it the water of knowing—not believing, knowing. Give it the light of clarity and watch this seed bloom. This blooming is called peace.
- Prem Rawat
The challenge that faces us is a very different one, my friends, than we generally accept or understand. It is not about rich countries; it is not about good economics! It’s not!
Our effectiveness lies in not, solutions to our problems, but doing the right thing—and the right thing is peace. Not on earth! Because that sounds so good, right? “Peace on earth”—I mean, I’m, I’m called the “Peace Ambassador,” so I shouldn’t, I should not be saying, “No. Not peace on earth.” I should be saying, “Oh yeah, peace on earth, peace on earth. Peace, peace, peace on earth, peace on earth, peace on earth,” right?
I’ve traveled the earth. And I have found only one thing that is making no peace on earth. And you know what that is? That is the human being. If there is no peace on this earth, it’s not because of the crows; it’s not because of the alligators; it’s not because of anything else but human beings.
They are the ones polluting... "What about hunger?” People ask me this. “What about hunger?” And what about hunger? Do you think there’s a shortage of food? Forty percent of the food that is grown is wasted!
Because it is our shortfall in our own understanding... It is the shortfall in our own understanding; it is the shortfall of us not understanding our potential that we have!
Do you know...? Then, the example I’m about to give is for everyone sitting here. Do you know that once upon a time, you did something—all of you have done this. And this one act that you did require phenomenal courage, incredible drive, and hundreds of failures.
You know what I’m talking about, right? Walking—when you learned how to walk. Your legs were not strong enough to let you walk. Your muscles had to be strengthened—and you were going to do it.
Oh, by the way, how many books did you read on the subject of walking? None! How many classes did you attend? [Ind.: None.] None! How many tutorials did you get? None! There you were, all by yourself, learning to walk. you failed—but you never accepted failure. That was the only difference. Now when you fail, you accept failure. You got up and you fell! And you failed! Right? You failed!
What is the difference between then and now? Only one. Because you still get challenges like that. But there is one difference. Then, you failed but you never accepted failure.
That’s the only difference. The challenges that you face. They require phenomenal courage; they require phenomenal strength! You may not even have the tools with you! But you fail, and you accept the failure.
Same thing with peace! Same thing with peace! Peace is not a one-day event. Peace has to be nurtured every day. Every day, there has to be an introspection! Every day there has to be learning; every day there has to be growth—and every day there has to be understanding. And every day, the courage has to be exercised.
To be motivated, not by me or someone else—but to be motivated by you to move forward. To find your strength, not your weakness! To understand your self—you! Don’t you, don’t you remember what Socrates said? “Know thy self.” Know you! Do you know you? Do you make an investment in knowing the self? Or is it all about, “I want to know my friend; I want to know this; I want to know that”—but not the self.
So, is peace crucial to our societies, to our countries, to our existence, to our civilization? Unquestionably!
It is 7.5 billion people just like you and me that constitute the population of this earth. And if something has to change, the change has to happen from and to the individual.
You know, we have tried everything. We have tried so many things, over the past centuries—but one thing that has never been tried is peace on an individual level. I propose... You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to play detective here. I propose—everything else has been tried—this is the only one remaining... Well, let’s try this one. What have we got to lose? Nothing.
- Prem Rawat
My strategy is very simple. And my strategy isn’t to have world peace. I said it. “Aagh,” pin-drop silence. Because that’s not possible.
But this is what’s possible—you, be, first in peace with yourself. It’s just you. Nobody else is involved. You be in peace with yourself. And how can you be in peace with yourself? One—and that’s why we are here tonight: “Journey to the self”—you must know yourself.
And once you know yourself, you then must gain victory over the self. Not victory over your neighbor, not victory over that person, and that person, and that person, and that person, but victory over the self.
And when you are victorious over yourself, then you can be in peace with yourself. And when you are in peace with yourself, then you make peace with the world.
And when enough, enough people make peace with the world—because they have made peace with themselves—then, vaguely, the idea of world peace starts to come into view.
When every war happens and the innocent die.... Same way, when you are at war with yourself, the innocent moments of your life are being slaughtered. Because they’re innocent! They can be anything.
Never have I seen more innocence, in a moment of existence.... It’s, totally, as it comes to you, it’s innocent—just brings you possibility, anything you want—like a baby, like a baby.
You can mold it; you can fold it; you can destroy it; you can create a monster out of it if you wish. Or you can have it as the most tender-est, gentle time—the time with you, listening to that feeling which fills this heart and causes the gratitude to emerge.
- Prem Rawat
MC and host: [Sara Powell]
I just want to get straight stuck in if I may. Something that we’ve had a couple of questions about, and something that really spoke to me from what you said, was “the noise”—that chatter that is constantly there. And I wondered, “What’s the best strategy for coping with it? How do we quieten it down, the noise?”
Well, these are the questions you have sent—I mean, over 200 questions came in—and some of you who have, probably, cell phones that are from different countries, probably are still coming in through, you know, because they go round robin, yeah....
Yeah, you’ll be getting them till Wednesday, yeah!
And, yeah, exactly. So, the question is, where does this noise come from? I mean, who is the perpetuator of this noise; who is the generator of this noise, and where is the stage that it ultimately plays out on?
So, the stage where it ultimately plays out on is you! But where does it come from? Well, it is something that started a long, long time ago, right from your parents.
Because, whose voices are there? They are included too, and the friends are included, and the boss, and the friends, and the friends of the friends, and the, everybody who has two-cents-worth of advice, and it just gets recorded,
But then the question becomes, “Why did it get recorded? Who had the record button pushed in?” Right? And we allow this to happen. We don’t think we have a choice. Because we don’t live our lives by that tactile feel.
I was watching a show where they were showing this person who was challenged with the sight. And as he moved around the room, he had to feel everything—and where it was and how it was—and there were no assumptions.
And we, the ones who have eyes, are most likely to have that chair pulled out from underneath us or even miss the chair. But not this man, because he knows he has to have that feel. Every step that he takes in his life is taken deliberately. Not just, “Uh, let me see what’s over there.” Do we live our lives like that?
You know, and maybe the noise is a consequence of living a very unconscious life. That if there was a conscious life, then you would say, “Okay! Since I have a tape recorder....” Don’t fault the tape recorder, by the way. That’s really good that you have a tape recorder. It’s the content of the tape recorder that’s bad.
“So, can I put in nice stuff? If I’m going to have noise, let me have some really lovely noise, something that inspires me, something that gives me courage....” Because we all need courage. That’s why courage is there—hmm—because we need it!
Because in life, the mountains that you have to sometimes cross, that we have created for ourselves, are no ordinary hills. Mind you, they are indeed mountains of extraordinary proportions, and it requires nothing shy of courage to even take on the challenge to do so.
So, you know, this is, in a way, what I do. Because, you look at the Peace Education Program—and when it goes to the prisons, their voice, their tape recorder is going, “I am here, and it’s the fault of that person, and that person, and that person, and that person.”
And they go through the Peace Education Program, and they start to realize, “Hey, look at yourself.” And when they do, then they realize that they are standing at a threshold where they can change.
And it is no mistake or an accident that people who go through the Peace Education Program—at least, the inmates who go through the Peace Education Program—have the lowest rate of return back into the prisons.
So, we’re not inmates, are we? I mean, we’re not in a prison system, are we? The prison system you are currently in.... The other prison system, they’ll get out after two years, three years, four years, five years. The prison system you are in, you don’t get to get out till you die—sorry. Huh! You’re in for life.
Folks, it’s really time to start creating your heaven, because there are no options here. The wall is there—and there are no options! And getting rid of that noise and putting the nice noise on is up to you. It truly is—because you’re the one who is doing it: who’s buying into this noise and keeps: “Ah, push play again, please.” And, you know, and has it on “repeat,” so it just keeps repeating and repeating and repeating and repeating.
Life has the possibility of creating your own playlist—your playlist that you like. Do you want to accept that challenge? You know, the issue isn’t just the noise. We can replace it with something beautiful, something wonderful, something you like. Not what I like—you like! Because I want to create my playlist of something I like. You create your playlist, something you like.
- Prem Rawat
To be interested in peace ... to be interested in finding fulfillment in one’s life—that’s why you’re here. And that, to me ... deserves ... sincerest congratulations. Because that is a human being ... looking ... for the highest attainable ... thing that a human being can do, to be fulfilled.
To be ... human ... is ... the highest achievement a human ... can achieve. Simple as that—to be human.....
I say to people all around the world ... “Look, heaven is right here! Heaven is right here! And if you haven’t found it, you’re in hell!” (That’s my definition of heaven and hell.) It’s ... it’s not about getting baked.... It’s not about getting fried; it’s not about getting toasted; this is not a cooking show. [laughter]
There is a heaven ... and if you are not in that heaven ... then you’re in the other place. It’s as simple as that!
If you haven’t found your heaven now ... here! ... then you won’t even know what heaven is. Because it is here ... that you have ... that expression!—expression ... of life; this is what peace is.
(Yeah so, I know, I know-I-know-I-know—when I say the word “peace,” the first thing is like, “some vegetable ... like an okra ....”) [laughter]
No, that’s not peace. A person in peace is highly dynamic! A person in peace is highly dynamic. And they make that effort ... the effort ... to be ... a fulfilled human. No more. There’s nothing greater as a gift ... that you could be given.