Friday, July 30, 2010

Celebrating devotion

Gurupurnima is called the day of the Master, but it is actually the day of the devotee.

There are three types of people who come to the Master - the student, the disciple and the devotee. A student goes to a teacher and learns something, gets some information and walks out of the school. The student is the one, who collects information, but the information is not knowledge, it is not wisdom.

Then, there is the disciple; the disciple follows the example of the Master. But a disciple is with the Master for the sake of learning wisdom, for the sake of improving his life, for attaining enlightenment. He is trying to bring a transformation in his life.

And then there is a devotee. A devotee is not there even for wisdom. He is simply rejoicing in love. He has fallen in deep love with the Master, with Infinity, with God. Students are in abundance, disciples are a few, but the devotees are rare.

One of Buddha’s disciples named Sariputra achieved enlightenment. Soon thereafter, Buddha told him, “Now you go ahead, go into the world and preach, teach, and do the same work I do. Carry on my work.” As instructed, Sariputra left Buddha, but he was crying. People asked him, “Why are you crying when you are enlightened?” He replied, “Who cares about this enlightenment? It could have waited. I would have waited. I didn’t even bother about it or ask for it because the joy of being at the feet of Buddha was so great. Being a devotee was so great. I cry now because I miss it. I would have preferred that to this enlightenment.” He said.

Who is a Guru? A Guru is just like a window. Guru simply means one who brings more joy, more alertness, and more awareness into your life. A Guru is not one who holds any authority over you. A Guru is not one who dictates terms to you. Rather, a Guru encourages you to be in touch with yourself. A Guru reminds you to live in the present moment, and a Guru takes away the guilt, agitation, sorrow, and anguish, which allows you to be yourself. That in the true sense is the meaning of Guru. A Guru does not simply fill you with knowledge, but he kindles the life force in you. In the presence of the Guru, you become more alive. The Guru invokes not only intelligence but also the intellect in you. Knowledge may not invoke intelligence, but in a state of intelligence, knowledge is inherent.

In the Upanishads, five signs of sadguru are mentioned. In the presence of a sadguru knowledge flourishes (Gyana raksha), sorrow diminishes (dukha kshaya), joy wells up without any reason (sukha aavirbhava), abundance dawns (samriddhi) and all talent manifest (sarva samvardhan).

Once you have found a sadguru, remember that he or she is always there with you, watching and giving you wisdom. Spiritual path is not only a path of learning more; it is also a path of unlearning. Learning has no end; unlearning has an end. The true path is one that takes you home and kindles that deep love in you.

Love is not just an act. It is our very nature. It is what we are made up of. Love is something that even the Divine rejoices in. The infinity longs for you as much as you long for it. It is waiting to receive you. It is as anxious as you are to be near. So when a devotee flowers in this planet, infinity is very happy.

Understand that you are the number one devotee, and feel grateful for the great knowledge you have received from your Master. Turn back and see how they changed and developed in the last one year. Assess what you have learnt and how have you grown in knowledge. This Guru Purnima rise in devotion.

- His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Youngsters come together to clean Delhi

Young Delhiites hanging out in a crowded market on a Sunday is a common sight. But the West Patel Nagar market in the capital saw the unusual sight of youngsters in their vibrant attire cleaning the market with brooms in their hands and masks on their faces.

Numerous other crowded markets were also cleaned by the volunteers of the Art of Living NGO. Each drive lasted for around two hours with the timings varying between 9.30 a.m. and 1.30 p.m.

'This is a follow up of the Yamuna campaign and our main motive is the 'Clean Delhi-NCR Drive' which will take place Sep 6-12,' Rajeev Dhall, Art of Living's area coordinator for central Delhi, told IANS.
The initiative was started with the 'Meri Dilli Meri Yamuna', a campaign to clean up the Yamuna river in March this year by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of Art of Living. Hundreds of NGOs, organisations and corporates were part of the initiative.

Read More

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Art of Living Foundation > Iraq: Women's Empowerment Programs

Art of Living Foundation > Iraq: Women's Empowerment Programs What is offered? The Art of Living offer a Women’s Empowerment Program in Iraq addresses women’s emotional and psychological needs and gives them the skills they need to achieve economic stability for themselves and their families.Trauma Relief Workshops to release stressThe women undergo trauma relief workshops to release the build up of stress, fear of attack and lack of security. They also release the trauma from the loss of friends and family members and the responsibility of often being the family’s sole breadwinner and caregiver.Vocational Training to build confidence and economic independenceOnce they can establish a sense of stabilty and inner peace for themselves, they are able to implement the skills that they learn in vocational training programs and have the confidence and enthusiasm to change their lives and care for their families. They have the tools to achieve an economic status where self-sustainability and community leadership are possible.Vocational Training Programs are offered in:* Tailoring* Computers

Sunday, July 18, 2010

MCM holds four-day Yes + workshop to beat stress

MCM DAV College for Women today organised a four-day Art of Living Workshop for its students. The YES+ course by the foundation which highlights on youth empowerment and skill development started with an insightful lecture delivered by Ramnik Bansal, an international faculty from the Art of Living Foundation. The lecture was attended by more than 800 students with much enthusiasm and keenness.

The event presented an opportunity for the students to learn various life skills like leadership, confidence, relationship building, and academic excellence. The lecture also focused on developing essentials of healthy living like physical well being, emotional stability besides teaching Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s very popular ‘Sudarshan Kriya’ Bansal, who immediately developed a rapport with the young audience, said, “It is very essential for students to delve deeper into learning of life skills and it is highly appreciable how MCM DAV college encourages and supports value education.” Read More from Indian Express

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Our Connection to Nature-by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar on July 12, 2010

The realities explored in science and spirituality are often assumed to be unrelated to one another. Both find their basis in a spirit of inquiry. Modern science is objective analysis, while spirituality is subjective understanding. Science explores the outer world with a series of questions beginning with the basic query, “what is this? What is this world all about,” while spirituality begins with the question, “who am I?”

In the ancient world these two forms of knowledge were not in conflict, but were understood to have a deep and subtle connection. Man’s knowledge of himself complemented his understanding of the universe and formed the basis for a strong and healthy relationship to the creation in which he lived. It is the disconnect between these two types of knowledge which is causing many of the challenges that we face as a global community today.
Read More

Friday, July 16, 2010

Relax With Some Help from the Guru of Joy

We’re all a little stressed and could use an opportunity to rejuvenate.
Fortunately, some of the people who know how to teach use to slow down, focus on traditional relaxation methods and live a stress-free life are coming together right here in Hartford next weekend.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, who Forbes Magazine deems one of the five most powerful people in India, is coming to Hartford.

He is known as the “Guru of Joy” and founded the ‘Art of Living,’ a foundation that works to reduce violence and stress, reaches out globally wherever there is trauma and disaster and educates and strengthen individuals and to create a violence free world. Read More

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Internationally Renowned Humanitarian Sri Sri Ravi Shankar in Chicago to Address Educators

Local educators and government officials will be gathering on the night of Friday, July 16th to hear the solutions offered by the International Association of Human Values (IAHV) to Chicago’s growing problem of youth violence, substance abuse and a system where over 50% of the students do not graduate from high school. The private event will be hosted by Bill Herman, National Director of the Youth Empowerment Seminars (YES!) for Schools Program in North America in the presence of IAHV’s founder and global humanitarian Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

Yoga and Meditation Camp held for female inmates in Punjab Jail

The ‘Art Of Living’ Foundation, Bangalore run by Sri Sri Ravishankar conducted the Prison Smart Course in Women Hostel of Central jail. More than hundred female inmates participated in the course and found it very usefull in fighting stress by meditation and yoga, as stated in a official press release.

Speaking on the occasion, Programme Coordinator Manmeet Pal Kaur, emphasized the need of yoga and meditation to ward off stress and depression. Yoga was essential in maintaining the spiritual health of an individual in this world of loneliness.
Superintendent, Central Jail, Amritsar G.S. Sidhu, called upon more and more jail inmates to join yoga and meditation courses which can help in de-addiction and remove sense of guilt for being in the jail.

He said it was the policy of the Government to organise ‘Art of Living’ courses in all jails of the state so that inmates can lead a better life when they are released from Jail. He said in future, many more such courses to be organised in the Jail. Read More

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

‘Present generation gains wealth but loses health'

COIMBATORE: The present generation is stressed out in its pursuit of wealth.

In the process, it loses health, Chairman of Art of Living Arun Madhavan said here on Sunday.

In his acceptance speech after receiving the Dynamic Indian of the Millennium Award from K.G. Foundation, he said “the generation in a hurry” was looking for instant relief from all problems.


It was to be noted that even doctors and paramedics were nowadays being increasingly exposed to stressful working environment.

As for the healthcare delivery system, the cost of hardware, software and manpower to run healthcare units had risen exponentially, beyond the reach of common man.

Mr. Madhavan spoke on the relevance of time-tested techniques to keep the mind clear and calm.

These included simple breathing techniques, singing and phonetic vibrations through chanting of mantras.

In order to commemorate the Doctors' Day Celebrations and also in order to recognise doctors for their distinguished contribution to healthcare, the K.G. Foundation honoured 71 of them from various parts of the State with the “Doctor of Excellence” award.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Guruji visits Jharkhand

BANGALORE: Sri Sri Ravishankar was on a oneday visit to the Jharkhand on Friday. He was the guest of honour at the Bokaro Steel Plant where he addressed the administration and staff on stress management. Urging people to create a harmonious working environment, he said, "To create a successful working environment you need to be stressfree."
Read More