There is strength in peace. There is strength in calmness. There is strength in love… but it goes unnoticed. What you cannot win with a stick, you can win with love. What you cannot win with guns, you can win through love… and this power of love needs to be realised. The most powerful thing in the world is love! We can win the hearts of people through love.
The victory that comes out of ego is worth nothing. Even if you win in ego, it is a loss. Even if you lose in love, it’s a victory! Making people realise this innermost strength that we all have is the challenge!
You cannot talk about love when a terrorist is at your door, but is there some way in which we can transform the world? Is there any alternative method that can bring sense to people who do not listen to anything, other than force? We can start thinking along these lines only when we realise that there is enormous power in love and inner peace. When we are peaceful, we radiate that peace to the people around us and they also become calm.
In these times of war and disease in the world, it’s so important that we all meditate a little bit everyday. When we meditate, we nullify those vibrations, thereby creating a more harmonious environment around us. I would call war the Worst Act of Reason (WAR). In every war, there is some reason. Sometimes it becomes unavoidable, like an operation. If there is a wound or a cancerous cell in one’s body, we operate. After the operation, the nursing is very essential. We need to nurse that part which has been operated. It’s the same in the world and in the psyche of people; a lot needs to be done to bring peace, love and confidence into hearts and minds.
So our being peaceful in a meditative, prayerful state, will definitely help. Don’t think, ‘‘what can I do?’’ or that you are insignificant, when the world is in a problem. You too have a role to play. Like a tiny homeopathic pill, which has a 1/100th, or 1/1000th potency, makes an impact on a body, which is sixty to seventy kilos! In the same way, every individual — everyone who is breathing, talking, walking, thinking — has an influence on this cosmos, on this planet. So we can all radiate peace, good thoughts, good vibrations, good wishes and that will definitely make an impact on the planet.
I’ve seen this over and over again. When there is a conflict and you interact with both the groups engaged in the conflict, they soften up! When communication breaks down, it causes turbulence, which in turn causes stiffness and rigidity, but when you re-establish communication through love, through peaceful means, through patience — it does yield.
One thing that is absolutely essential to avoid such fanaticism or religious terrorism in the world is a multi-cultural, multi-religious education for children. It is because a child grows up thinking that other religions or cultures are bad or no good, that he/she is ready to give up his/her life for that cause; but when a child grows up knowing a little bit about all other religions, cultures and customs, then there is a sense of belonging with everybody.
So, whether a culture or a religion is rightly or wrongly used to divide people, it is not good. We need to unite the world, the hearts and the minds! Where is it that we can all unite? That is the meditative state that we are all born with — the simplicity that we are gifted with. So, I feel that when every child in the world learns a little bit about every other religion, the child will not have inhibitions or hatred towards other religions or cultures.
See, we accept food from every part of the world. We accept music from every part of the world. You don’t need to be Chinese in order to eat Chinese food! You don’t need to be an Italian to go to Pizzeria and eat pizzas, nor a Danish to eat Danish cookies! One doesn’t have to be an Indian to listen to bhajans or sitar music! Similarly, we need to learn to accept knowledge and wisdom from every part, and this is what has been lacking in the world.
We need to drive home this message because even if one part of the world is not adopting this idea, the world will not be a safe place as that little part or corner can breed terrorism. I would say you should take up a two-point programme — doing a little service in groups and/or as individuals, educating people on human values, friendliness, compassion, non-violence, non-aggression… Aggression has even come into the lives of children. There is a beauty in non-violence; there is a beauty in non-aggressive behaviour, which has unfortunately not been highlighted, either by our media or by our surroundings.
This is happening everywhere in the world. Children take pride in being violent. If they lose their temper, they feel that it’s normal — they take pride in it. One who is very aggressive in the classroom, gets more attention than one who is peaceful, isn’t it? So children grow up feeling, ‘‘If I am aggressive, then I have my say’’.
We need to bring back the pride in being non-violent. If we could instill that pride in being non-violent, in children, their whole life will take a new direction. A pride in being compassionate, a pride in being available and helpful to others around us should be our new motto.
I think we need to do something to bring back those human values in society and smile more! You look at a teenager or a boy or girl who goes to college — do they really smile? See the heaviness in their faces, the heaviness in their hearts. A child is so happy — walking, moving, jumping around and then that same child goes through college to become so sad, upset and depressed! Is this the purpose of our education?
You know, sometimes I feel like shaking everybody, ‘‘Aye! Come On! Smile!’’. I read some research recently that a child, a baby, smiles 400 times a day, an adolescent only 17 times and an adult doesn’t smile at all! If you smile, do you think something might be robbed from you! What is it that you lose? When you smile, others get and you don’t lose anything! We need to smile more! At least give yourself a big smile when you wake up every morning and look in the mirror!
Only a few people in the world cause terror, not the whole population. Of the six billion people on this planet, there’ll be a handful who are causing problems in the world. There are hardly a few thousand who cause crime and the whole world is affected. Don’t you think that with the same law, the reverse will also work? Just a few of us, a few thousand of us, being really peaceful and loving, caring for the whole planet — can we not bring a transformation?
When you point a finger at others, three fingers are pointing towards you! So if I say, ‘‘You are beautiful!’’ that means I am three times more beautiful! If I say, ‘‘You are ugly!’’ I am three times more ugly; but when I include you into me, then there is no you and there is no me. Then there is only one — that is ultimate victory!
Life is so short! We’ll all live another 20-30 years and then one day, everybody will be dead and gone! But we cry for what we have and we’re upset about what we don’t have, isn’t it? Is it worth living life like that? We ourselves get depressed and then depress everybody around us! We need to shake ourselves up! Wake up! And when we wake up from this slumber, then we have peace in our hearts and we can radiate that peace and love around us.