So, what is the importance of knowing yourself? I can give you the most beautiful map, very well illustrated; everything is there; everything is marked—and there is a very beautiful place on the map that you want to go to.
But what is the most important thing you need to have on that map? And that is, "Where are you on that map?" Because, "turn left, turn right, and go straight" is all relevant to where you are. But if you don't know where you are, what is "left?" What is "right?" What is "go straight?" What is "go around the roundabout"—it doesn’t mean anything.
And we forget! People are writing books; people are making lectures, and they’re telling everybody, "You know, we have to turn left; we have to turn left." And then, "Oh no, now we have to turn right." Whose "right?" Whose "left?" Which "left?" Where are we going? Which "straight?" Because it’s all relative.
Unless you know who you are, living in this world is going to be very different. Because one of the things is going to be disorientation because you don't know where you are. You're lost. That feeling of—yeah, somewhere here—"What I am about to do, is that right? Do people like me? Am I popular?"
This is all before you ever get to loving yourself. You are more interested in whether other people love you. You're not even interested in whether you love yourself. And it's disorienting; look at what's—what is social media all about? Approval from other people.
So, now I am bringing this message—it's not my message. Socrates said this a long time ago. Some of the hieroglyphs that were deciphered from Egypt also said the same thing: "Understand who you are; know yourself." Socrates echoes that—"Know yourself. Know thyself." Because the importance of knowing yourself is so important.
- 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
Human wisdom is about simplicity: If you are thirsty, drink water. If you’re tired, rest. If you’re confused, seek clarity! If you’re in the darkness, seek light. If you’re in sadness, seek joy. This is human wisdom! This is human wisdom. Does it work for dogs? They have their own! They have their own, and they absolutely stick to their wisdom.
They absolutely do. I have seen it. I have seen it.
Do crocodiles, alligators have their wisdom? Absolutely: “Lay low. Be incognito. Don’t let them see you coming, and attack when it’s too late.” Works for them every time.
They use their wisdom every single day. How do you use your wisdom? When you’re in darkness, look for light. Could anything be wiser than that? When you’re sad, look for joy. When you’re in joy, stay there.
That’s ... that’s the wisdom!
When you feel empty, find your fulfillment. Because that’s in you too.
So, do you know yourself? Or, do you know yourself in relation to the others? Because if it is in relation to the others, then you don’t know yourself. Knowing the self has nothing to do with somebody else.
Who are you? What are you? What is your gift? Why are you alive? You. Do you cast from within, from yourself, like light emanates? Does love emanate from you? Does kindness emanate from you? Emanate? Emanate—not forced, not hosed, but emanate—“emanate” means it just emanates.
– Prem Rawat
Who are we? Maybe I should talk about that. So, don’t think this is un- significant. We’re dirt. Why do you laugh? Because you don’t understand the value of dirt. Dirt is the most significant thing there is. Do you know? You know why?! Because the entire universe is made out of it.
We all are considered patriots if we sing praises of our countries. “Know the anthem.” I mean, in India they’re going through it; it’s like you know “You have to be able to say this; yes, you have to say this; you have to be patriotic! You have to…”
Courtesy of? All these countries, courtesy of? Dirt. You can’t have a country in floating ocean. All courtesy of dirt! So dirt is very significant! People have died protecting dirt! People have become heroes protecting dirt.
Civilizations were raised and razed—that’s a good one, huh?—raised and razed because of dirt!
And when the sun is finished glowing, what does it become? Dirt. What is gold? Compressed dirt. See, you’re catching on, how important dirt is. And guess what moi is made out of. Dirt.
And then, the most incredible pillar of this temple when it falls apart, what will all this become? It will become dirt.
So don’t laugh the next time you hear the word “dirt”—smile. Smile, because there’s nothing funny about it, but now you know...now you know how important this dirt is. And so, you are made out of the same stuff as the universe. “Wow! That’s impressive. I mean...”
Next time, “What is your lineage?” Same stuff the sun is made out of, same stuff the moon is made out of, same stuff the galaxies are made out of, same stuff the universe is made of—that’s my lineage. That is your lineage.
So now that we’ve put that aside, who you are—pretty impressive stuff.
Nothing trivial, incredible, incredible to get the dirt to talk, to walk, to smile, to think, to see, to have the nuances of expression on the face from slightly upset to slightly more upset.
Then, made out of that, and then to have this incredible thing called life.Life. You can love; you can hate, you can have fear; you can have joy. This...and just machine puts it all out. I mean, it puts it all out. If it’s feeling good, it’s like, “Good. Yes.”
- Prem Rawat
There is a saying, “If you don’t get what you want, you’re not happy.” It’s true! If you don’t get what you want, you’re not happy. “If you get what you don’t want, you’re not happy!” You didn’t want it, and you got it! And even if you get what you do want, you are not happy because you can’t keep it, because it changes.
You don’t want things to change, but things are going to change. You are changing, and you are changing all the time. Sorry. Everything around you is changing, and changing, and changing, and changing, and changing, and changing. Why? Because that is what it does.
But, because of this change, here we are today. Because of this change, here we are. Either love it or hate it, but change is here to stay. And this change is changing, not only this earth. This is the entire universe; it’s in the grip of change.
Constant. And there is a change in you! But for right now, this change is the coming and going of this breath. And it’s powerful! And it brings the gift of life.
– Prem Rawat