I thought this was kind of interesting, because I just today received a letter from Argentina—and so I’d like to read it to you; I brought it with me.
“Dear Mr. Prem Rawat, we’ve been watching the Peace Education Program for three months running. And we would like to thank you, because your message helps us know ourselves. When we listen to you, we forget that we are in prison. Thank you very much.
“With respect and love, we would like to invite you to this prison unit. It would be an honor for us to meet you in person and talk with you about what we have learned. Kind regards, Men’s Prison, Buenos Aires, Argentina!”
So, there I am at this prison; I said, “Okay, you know, you realize, God is the only one in this entire creation that can’t go from here to here.” And you should have seen their faces; it was like, “Huh? Of course God can go from here to here.”
I said, “No, it’s impossible for God to go from here to here. Why? Because if God leaves here to go here, it’s not possible, because he will always be here. And he is already here, so how can he come here? Can’t go from here to here!”
And when they heard—it was like, it takes a little while, right? Just, “dit-dit-dit-dit-dit, dut, dah-doo, dut, dit-dit-dit....” And then it’s like, “Damn, he’s right!”
Because I’m using that same logic. The problem isn’t the logic. The problem is the thing that created that logic—about “going,” about “coming,” about creating—not God creating us in his you know, shadow, but we creating God in ours. And giving God exactly the same attributes of jealousy, fear, anger, everything else.
“If you don’t do what I tell you to do, I’m going to destroy you.” Well, excuse me, that was the plot all along. So, what’s the news here!? I mean, isn’t that, in the creation, how it’s laid out? “I was, I’m going to be born, and one day I will be destroyed.” So what is this thing of “destroying?”
And it’s like, “Oh, well, if you don’t do these things, they’ll send you to hell.” Well, why do you have to send anybody to hell; it seems like we can create our hell right here all by ourselves; you don’t need a separate department. We, when everything is perfectly good—but there we are, suffering. And you wonder why. “Why are you suffering?”
“Oh, this happened, and then that happened....” So? So? Are you not concerned about what opportunity you have right now? Why are you attached to what happened yesterday—when yesterday has graciously said, “I’m out. I’m out of your life. You will never be able to get to me again!” And you’re like, “Yeah, well that doesn’t matter.”
You’re trying to contemplate, “What’s going to happen tomorrow; what’s going to happen tomorrow? What’s going to happen tomorrow? What happened yesterday; what happened yesterday? I don’t like this guy. I don’t like that guy. I, da-da-da, what’s going on here? Yeah.
“How, how come I’m not with that woman? How come I’m not with that man? How come I don’t have that car? How come I don’t—I’m not rich like that?” Day and night! “How do I get out of my problems?”
So, you see this letter, and the reason why I brought it is that they’re in the prison. They—and it’s not like, “Oh, we heard you and we got out. You know, there was a seven-question quiz and we passed from everything you had said, and then now we’re out.” No, they’re still in prison.
But when they listen and they savor that clarity, the bars are lifted; prison is opened. You’re no longer a prisoner; you are free. And that freedom is felt from within you. It is not sitting there and daydreaming, “Oh, yeah, I’m free.” Reality and dream are not colliding.
Because—and many times I’ve seen that first event that I—the transcript from that first event ever, when I was four years old—the satsang I gave, or the talk I gave. And it’s like, “You have to realize what this opportunity is”—this is that four-year-old talking—“you have to realize what this opportunity is, what you have been given here.
“And in realizing that opportunity, you shall find peace; you will find peace. In acknowledging that, you will get peace. In that clarity, you will find your freedom.”
Because freedom is not an independent state. Freedom is not an independent state; it is merely for those ties, those bonds that bind you to be severed. And when that happens, when that process happens, when those ropes, those anchors that bind you, when they are severed, you automatically go into freedom. It’s, that’s it; that’s how—the only way you can get there.
But the question is, who binds you to these? You do. Other people offer you the rope, but you tie the knot. And who suffers? You do. And then you hear me say, “Cut it,” and you go, “Oh, that’s really difficult.” It wasn’t so difficult tying the knot, was it? Was it? It’s like, “Oh, yeah, okay, another rope. Wow, this is good; this is good.”
Because, you see, when you come to the realm of Knowledge, this is what’s really awkward about it—and really, really—and I have seen this since I was very, very young.
Everything out there has a set of rules, and you have to buy, accept that set of rules. If you don’t, you’re not going to graduate.
What do you want out of your life? Do you want that clarity? Do you want that simplicity in your life? Do you want that beauty that is possible in your life? And I was saying, “This is what’s different about Knowledge.” So, here’s what’s different about Knowledge.
Everything else requires you buy into that set of rules. If you don’t buy into the set of rules, “no go.” So anything you come to, like, “Okay, I want to be this,” or “I want to be that,” or—“Okay, here are the rules; here are the rules; here are the rules; here are the rules.”
Knowledge: no rules. “Just get in touch with your thirst.” If you’re not thirsty, no big deal—till you are! And when you are, look me up. If you are, let me help you.
No rules! This is befuddling to people. “Whaat? No rules?” No rules. “If I practice, just...?” Excuse me. “If I stop practicing Knowledge, will I go to hell?” No! “What? No rules?”
And believe you me, people try to create rules. “There have to be rules, so let’s make some rules. How can we not have rules? If the Christians have rules, if Hindus have rules, if the Jewish religion has rules, if the Moslems have rules, we have got to have rules.” And it’s like, “No. No rules.” And then, like, “Oh my God. What am I to do?”
So people ask, “What’s next?” The answer is, you are. You are next. Because, instead of focusing on everybody else, and everything else that is none of your business.... Instead of focusing on everything else and everyone else which is none of your business—this is not why you’re here—you need to focus on yourself. That’s your business. And that should be the only business you have.
And you are next! And you’d better be next on your agenda, my friends.
- Prem Rawat
You have even made growing old a problem for yourself. It’s not a problem. That’s just what happens. You know, that’s just what it is.
Ask any person who has restored a car. When you’ve got a nineteen-twenty-nine Model T Ford, and you’ve restored it, don’t go driving it like you would have back in 1929, trying to, you know...?
What—what gave us the hotrods? It was prohibition. They were running—they were bootlegging; they were running all the booze in these cars. And they wanted these cars to be as light as possible, so they removed the hood; they removed the mudguards; they removed as much as they could, to lighten the car up, so it could outpace the cops.
And people liked that so much, that even when they stopped the prohibition, people kept the cars that way.
You know—you know, you won’t drive an old car like that. You drive it gingerly, nicely—because it’s old. It doesn’t mean you’re not going to drive it; of course you’re going to drive it. And that doesn’t mean you’re not going to appreciate it; of course you’re going to appreciate it. It’s beautiful in its own way.
I had one, and I used to sit down in it and just look at it, you know, it’s like, “Wow, look at this thing.” For the gas gauge, it was right on the dashboard in the middle, and it was attached to the gas tank; the gas gauge was actually attached to the—and you could see the gas.
And what it was, was a spline that was twisted, and on this spline was mounted the gauge—that went from “full” to “and half,” and all those markings. And there was a cork in it.
And as the gas went down, this thing rotated like this, because it always floated on top of the gas. When it got to the bottom, it said, “E.” And then when you filled it all the way up, it rotated like that; it went to “F.” And when you drove on the road, you hit a bump, and the gauge would go like that, because the gas was doing that.
And then, even though the concept wasn’t of a cruise control, but it actually had a throttle lever. So you got going, and you took it, and you put it where—because you didn’t want to push that gas all the way. But, just, you’re driving along, and you could tune the car. You could advance the timing, retard the timing. You could change the carburetor settings.
So, you got it going to about fifty miles an hour, and then you moved these levers to change the timing and make it a little bit richer, or make it a little bit leaner on the carb. And pretty soon, the thing will start accelerating. And you’d go one mile an hour faster, another mile an hour faster. And they were just a blast. You know, and you’d hit the horn, and it went, “Arrrarghk!”
But you would drive it very gingerly. And it’s like, “Oh, no, it’s a problem.” “What is the problem?” “Oh, I can’t—I have trouble walking; I have trouble seeing; I have....” Get a nice chair at home; park yourself; bring the TV really close up, to where you can see it....
What is the purpose—to be normal or enjoy your life? No, but you, everybody wants to be normal. “And, nah, no, no, keep the TV over there, and see if I can see it....” So you’ve got binoculars, uh-huh.... And what for?
So, garner focus in your life; garner clarity in your life. Collect that joy in your life. Those are the things that are real. Everything else comes, goes, comes, goes, because it’s only a...it’s only a dream.
Sometimes the dream is good, and then sometimes the dream is not so good. Those who don’t go jumping up and down when it is good and lamenting when it is not so good, have a smoother sail in life.
If you get off that tack and you start seeing reality in what is a dream—no problem: reset. No problem! It’s not like, “Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh-my-God; oh-my-God. God’s going to take off points for that. There goes another day in hell. I mean, and my goodness, you know?”
No! No, no, no, no, that’s all fear. Hell is right here; heaven is right here. If you’re not in heaven, guess where you are? It’s as simple as that! It’s simple math!
It’s simple math. It’s a simple math. “Know. Know”—not believe. Know where you are, always. It’s all you need. All you need.
- Prem Rawat
My Version of Divine
I don't know what concept you have if I use the word "Divine." I don't know what it will conjure up in your mind. I don't know. A 65-year-old man with gray hair, maybe older. 100-year-old man, gray hair. Long white beard, long flowing robes.
I mean, you know, don't let all your imagination come from just one painting. I asked somebody the other day. I said, "You know if you had to be an age for the rest of existence— I mean for the rest of existence for everything—what age would that be?" 70? 80? 90? 100? And the conclusion was 25.
I mean, that's young. You can see things; you can hear things, you can actually go for a walk and come back. You can actually remember things.
You know, when it starts to get to like the 50s, forget it. Memory goes south—I mean it's like "huh?" And you say to yourself, "I will remember that. That's important, I will remember that." Fifteen minutes later, "What was it that I was supposed to remember?"
This is 50. You remember that you were supposed to remember. A little bit further down the line, you don't even remember what it is that you forgot. All you remember is, you forgot. What? You don't know. And once you get close to 70, you don't really care what you forgot, what you remember, what it is, what it isn't. It doesn't matter.
So somebody in their imagination portrays the divine as 100 years old. Wshh! I mean in one way that would explain a lot of things. "Gee! I forgot I was supposed to save those people down there. Ugh! Well, anyways. You know, at a 100 I don't even know what I was supposed to remember."
You go up there, and it's like, "But God, you know, I was calling you." "You were?"
But here, my version of the divine is very different: that it is that power that creates. And it is that power that destroys and it is that power that makes sure that everything happens—not just here on earth, but in the entire universe. It is the power that makes the sunshine. It is the power that contains everything.
Undefinable? Absolutely. Un-comprehensible? Absolutely. And within you? Absolutely.
- Prem Rawat
You know, you come here; you sit down and you listen—and things start clicking, maybe? And some people are like, “Well, it doesn’t click for me”—because you haven’t made it your business! You are not your business; that’s why it doesn’t click. You’re still caught up in everybody else’s business, which is none of your business.
“How can I,” people go, “how can I have a happy home?” Why are you trying to make your home happy? If there is ever a reason why your home is unhappy, it’s because of you and you alone—because you’re focusing on making your home happy. Home doesn’t need happiness. You need happiness. If you focused on yourself to become happy, your home would automatically become happy.
“How can I make my kids happy?” The only reason why they’re unhappy is because of you. There’s no other reason in this whole world. Because you keep poking your nose where it doesn’t belong. And they want you as far away from them as you can get. And Mars is not far enough.
Nobody is interested in figuring out, feeling in their lives the blessing of coming and going of this breath—but we want the new iPhone. The latest and the greatest gadget—and just like I was saying, when the guy has nothing to say, changing the microphone isn’t going to help.
That’s why, in social media, so much anger prevails. Because the word “social” means “how we get along together.” This is how we don’t get along together. And everything gets manipulated. And then there are the social media experts—and if you’re not one of them, pfft, forget it. And they can make and break the fortunes of millions.
Greed hasn’t gone; nobody has captured greed. They have given another avenue to greed, to proliferate, to go. Meanwhile, whether the greed, no greed; anger, no anger, and just, social media, no social media, new iPhone, new Android phone....
So, stop the noise by hanging onto the clarity, not losing it. How quickly can you lose the clarity? I go that-a-way; you go that-a-way; you walk two steps—gone.
Is that how vulnerable you are? Then where is your strength? Then where is your strength? Where is your strength? Your strength is in that tolerance. Your strength is in the kindness.
- Prem Rawat
Do I feel so fragile in my world that I feel that without the concepts, my house is weak? Is that why I need them?
Or can I be free? That word, "freedom"—freedom from what? Ask yourself, "Freedom from what?"
Now, you think.... When I talk about the inmates, obviously they see bars all day long. Goodness, the entire time I was in prison visiting them, that’s what I saw too—bars here, and bars there, and bars there and bars there, and bars there and bars there. It all kind of....
The only place where there weren’t bars was the front door—which only brought you to a little reception room, which was a waiting room. To go past that towards the prison, there were bars. And not one—two.
You came through one when they let you. Then you went to the security room, which was in the middle. And only when you had cleared security, that first door closed; second door opened, and you could go through. And then that’ll lead you to a hallway where they handed you your credentials, the one, the pass that you had to wear. This is the same in every prison.
Then you go somewhere else, and they have to open the gate—and they have to open, and a, “Who is it? Who is it?” And, “Who, what?” And, “You have to show your”—“It’s okay; I just was....” “Okay, okay, you can go.”
But one bar after another, after another, after another, after another, after another—well, you don’t live like that, do you? Do you? You don’t have any bars in your life, do you? Nothing that holds you back, right?!
So what’s the difference? You’re locked up too. You don’t think so, but you’re locked up too! And so far you’re locked up, there’s no difference between you and the inmates. The only difference is, they wear orange; you don’t. Unless somebody’s wearing orange here. That’s pretty much the color.
But when all that is gone, and when clarity settles in, heart becomes full, human beings are full of gratitude, then joy dances with you, and you dance with the joy! That elation wells from within—and it’s not conceptual. Not conceptual, not an idea, not a thought, but something very real, that you can begin to rejoice that you’re alive, that you breathe.
- Prem Rawat
In this life humility is better than pride—to be humble—because it allows you to see, to witness. That to be thankful is better than not being thankful—because being thankful allows you to see a part of your existence that you would have never seen.
So, these are the windows in our life. To try every day—simplicity is better than being complicated. Now one’s effort is to stay in that place. There is all too much in this world—everything, everything!—that pulls on you. It grabs you and says, “No, come here! Do this! Be like this.”
But to remember that that’s the true nature, the true nature of a human being. It is natural for you to have a heart full of gratitude. It is natural for you to be kind. It is unnatural to be angry. It is natural to be kind—that’s your true nature. It is natural for you to be humble. To be in pride is not natural. It’s not real.
Because when you go to that point where it is doubt instead of clarity, where it is pride instead of humility, things happen that you won’t like. And when you are in the place where there is the kindness, where there is the joy, where there is the gratitude—then what will happen you will like. There will be a simplicity.
So, when you’re with kindness, what do you feel? What does it feel? It feels comfortable. But when you are not in kindness, when you’re not in that humility, when you’re not in that clarity, when you’re not in that understanding, when there isn’t that openness, it doesn’t feel comfortable.
And now, that discomfort has been going on for such a long time that you start to get used to it. So then the only time you realize you were uncomfortable is when you truly do become comfortable, and that’s when you realize, “Oh my God! I didn’t know! I got used to it.”
I am not a doctor. I’m not a doctor, but I can tell you that, when it comes to the inner realm, you cannot start taking pills and not take care of what’s wrong. And what is wrong is the understanding. What is wrong—that the clarity has been lost.
When you bring in that clarity, there is a desire, there is a want to be comfortable. And those dynamics persist in our existence. When we lose that focus, we start to become uncomfortable—then everything else happens.
And so my point is, “Don’t lose that comfort.” There are too many things in this world that’ll distract you. This is what you learn. And you always have something to be thankful about.
When it seems like you have nothing to be thankful for, when everything hits the fan and it all goes crazy—I mean, and really, really crazy—like one of those days when you feel like you’ve been singled out for it? I mean everything has got you in the sight? Find something to be thankful for, find something to understand—and it will, like magic, reverse the trend.
So what I’m saying to you in a nutshell is, “Don’t compromise.” If there is a discomfort, it’s because there is a shift in focus on what you should be focusing on. And if that reality remains constant with you, then there will be a comfort. And that’s how you’re supposed to be. That’s how you are supposed to be.
– Prem Rawat