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
So now let me tell you about the good and the bad. The good is like this—like a pyramid. Just a little bit at the top, and a lot the further down you go. The bad is like an upside-down pyramid. You see all the consequences; you see all the problems; you see all, “Oh, this is terrible, oh....” But if you get down to the bottom of it, it’s just one little thing.
And the good is the same way, but upside down. You hardly see it, that it’s good. It’s so little on top; you hardly notice there is anything good. But keep digging; it gets better, and better, and better, and better, and better.
Next time, look carefully—because that’s how you keep missing the good and falling into the trap of the bad—because the bad is huge. It comes with its problems blaring right in your face. And how does it resolve itself? It turns out to be a little thing, tiny little thing.
Tiny little thing. The good? Inversely? All you get to see at first is this tiny little thing, but if you accept—and most of the time you will overlook it, what is the good.
Let me give you an example; this will maybe clarify the two pyramids. You wake up in the morning—you wake up in the morning, right? You come to your kitchen or family breakfast area, and there is your family. And you notice that one of your kids, he’s just angry.
“Dah-deh-deh-deh-deh-deh, dah-deh-deh-deh-deh-deh, this is wrong; that’s wrong; I don’t want to go to school; I’d, I’d, I’d, I’d, I hate school; why do I have to go to school, Dad?” You’ve seen all this. Get to the bottom of it: “I didn’t do my homework.”
The good? You come downstairs and that child says—now in good mood because you let them stay out of school, so they could finish the homework, and then they can—“Good morning, Dad.” There is your opportunity, in that “good morning, Dad.” If you took it: “How are you today?” you have just converted raw strings into metal chains of relationship, of love.
But most of the days, you just, “Yeah, good morning.” You missed it; you have missed it. Somebody says to you, “I love you.” And what are you good at? “I love you too.” You, you just missed it. Just missed it.
And here comes a breath into you, and maybe you took that one minute, sat down somewhere, and you went, “Hmmmh, hmmm....” Just that one breath—you missed it. You missed it, because now you’re thinking about this and you’re thinking about that. But you just could have sat down, as you are, as you did and understand you have the gift of life.
And you keep going; it’ll get more and more and more and more and more and more and more, and you will begin to fill with gratitude. And from then on, it’s like fireworks. “Vvrr-vvrr-vvrr-vvrr, vvrr-vvrr-vvrr....”
The bad, we go for; good—we have not learnt how to detect that little, little, little thing of good. So, your dharma, or dharm, begins to be that duty that you have to the self, to not miss those little things in your life—the opportunity to fill your heart with gratitude, the opportunity to acknowledge what you have been given.
Aren’t you good at knowing when the problem is coming your way? “Aye-aye-aye-aye!” Are you also that good at knowing when the good is coming your way? Because if you were, you would realize, it’s so much good just keeps coming, and coming, and coming, and coming, and coming, and coming. That’s life!—the gift that you have been given.
- Prem Rawat
The beginning of the year, I was in England—and I had to do a lot of driving. Usually I spend more times in airplanes than cars. Well, England changed that; I spent more times in cars than anywhere.
And—ah!—London gives a new meaning to the word “traffic.” I mean, you’re driving only two kilometers, so, and it’s going to take you forty-five minutes. Absurd! So, I’m sitting in the car, and this and that, and then nothing much to do. Music is playing; I’ve figured that out. You know, I got a nice playlist, so…“and maybe I can listen to it....”
I see this man. But first, actually, I saw this lady. So, the car was parked here, and this lady is coming. And she’s got a bicycle, and one hand is holding the handlebar—she’s walking—and she’s, with the other hand, going, “dah-dah....” And she’s talking.
And I looked at her. And it’s like, I felt sorry for her. Because, with one hand on the bicycle handle, and then talking. And there was nobody else there except her. And I felt sorry for her; it was like, “Looks like she lost her marbles.” And then when she came closer, I realized she had her Bluetooth headphone on, and she was on the phone.
Well, that made me feel a little old. It’s like, “Geez! You’re not with the program, sir.” Because, believe me, when I was growing up, you see somebody just talking to themselves on the roadside, you knew they’d lost their marbles. Those were the only ones.
There was a guy in Dehradun who was like that. Sometimes you would see him at the crossroads, doing “police work,” you know, just “handling traffic.” And then sometimes you’d see him somewhere else, and sometimes you’d see him somewhere else, and....
It’s like, “Oh! Okay, don’t be so judgmental, you know. She’s just having a phone conversation.” And then I see this other guy, and he comes through—and he’s zipping right along! He’s got a white stick. And then I realize he’s visually challenged.
And he’s got a white stick, and he’s just going, “Teh-teh-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-the,” and he’s just clipping right along. And he’s—there are other guys—he’s walking faster than them.
And then of course, the car inches, and I get to watch him. He’s walking faster than the car, believe me. And then the car catches up, and he overtakes. And I realized something.
He’s not looking for obstacles! He’s not looking for obstacles. He’s looking for a clear path. And so far he has a clear path in front of him, he’s good. That’s what he’s searching for. He’s not searching for obstacles; he’s searching for a clear path.
And an obstacle comes, it will—he will feel it, and now he knows that that is not a clear path, and again he will start searching for where there is a clear path. And so, he’s searching for a clear path.
Let me ask you, in your life, you search for obstacles or the clear path? No, you don’t; that’s the problem. I wish you did. You look at the obstacles and go, “Oh, my God!”
Right? Somebody gives you the bad news? You see the obstacles; you don’t look for the clear path; you have no training in your life for “clear path.” You have training to look for obstacles. You know what a problem is. You don’t know what a problem is not.
So, all your life you have been looking at obstacles, “Is that a problem? And is that a problem? Is that a problem?” Why do you look at your watch? To know what time it is? What do you care? It’s relative to something else. “Am I late? Is it time to go on? Is it time to have dinner? Is it time to go to sleep?” Relative to some thing: “Is it time to wake up?”
When you just—when you wake up at night, you look at your clock. Why? Why? Oh, if you’re awake, get up! “Mmmmh, it…” Waking up doesn’t work like that. Waking up works like this. “Okay! I’m ready to get up—but only if it is the right time.” Because, what if you’re up at two o’clock in the morning? Now you’ve got a problem! “And, aaaahhh, God, it’s only two. [snore] Go back to sleep!”
The sum of your life is searching for problems. You’re petrified of problems; you pray for no problems; your prayers are associated with problems. What is the problem with success? “Problems” is the problem with success! Success is not so easy, because there are problems in the way of success.
Problems, problems, problems, problems, problems, problem—no wonder they come your way—all our way. Because we have almost got signs everywhere, “If you’re not a problem, go away.”
And your life becomes completely relative. Isn’t that how you judge your happiness? Isn’t that what “good times” and “bad times” are all about? Rough—what defines a rough patch in your life? “We’re dealing with problems!” Easy patch? Where the…even the problems pity you.
Change this equation. Look for the clear path, not the problems.
For a person who is visually challenged, they don’t see the obstacles. “Obstacles” is not an issue. So far they can find the clear path, it doesn’t matter how windy it is; it doesn’t matter how straight it is; it doesn’t matter how smooth it is; it doesn’t matter how rough it is. So far it’s a clear path, it’s good to go. Find the clear path in your life.
There is light! There is light. Find the light. It’s in you. This last little statement, “There is a light, and that light is in you,” is the statement that has been most repeated by the sages, saints, and all those who wanted to leave the most important message for mankind, that would help us all. The most important message, and that is, “There is a light, and that light is in you.”
Light that candle inside of you. There is a law, the most powerful law there is—amazingly powerful. If you bring a lit candle and an unlit candle together and touch them, touch the heads, this is the law: “The lit candle will light the unlit candle.”
Not the other way around—where the unlit candle will put out the lit candle. No, the law is, “When those two meet, the lit and the unlit, the lit will light the unlit.” And you know how long this law has been in action? When human beings figured out fire, that’s how it happened—a little fire could start a fire in an unlit pyre. Power!
This should be your hope. Not dreaming about accomplishments, not dreaming about all those other things that we dream about. But the hope is to understand this law and practice this law every single day.
Not easy, but easy if you are the seeker of the clear path. Difficult, if you have learnt how to identify obstacles—because obstacles in themselves do not provide the clear path. For that, you have to search.
And so, even a person who’s visually challenged clips right along. Poles—going, whisht! London lights on bridges, right? Not a problem! It’s not a problem. Other people—not a problem. “Tshu-tshu-tshu-tshu, tsch-tshu-tshu-tshu, tsch-tshu-tshu-tschu, tsch-tsch-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-teh, teh-teh-teh-teh,” and, “whsheeeow!”
Why can’t that simplicity be in our lives too?
— Prem Rawat
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 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