Sri Ravi Shankar:
I used to think, “This ashram is going to be too small; there will be too many people here”. At that time, there weren’t so many people here. They would all look at me and think, “What is Gurudev talking about, it is very strange!”
We all have a responsibility towards the world, to share what we have. That is the only purpose of The Art of Living – to share, because we care. We care for the planet, we care for the people.
Recently, an NGO went to the Tribunal in India, saying that The Art of Living are polluting the River Yamuna with so many people coming and holding such a big convocation at the river bank. I thought this was the biggest joke of the year. ‘We’ are polluting the environment! Since it is the job of the Tribunal, they heard and then reprimanded them, “What were you doing all these days? When the stage is built, everything is done, and then you come to court?”
Moreover, one can’t pollute that river anymore, it is almost dead. The river has maximum pollution because all the drains run there. No birds come in that area, there are no fishes in the water.
The first day when we went to see the site, it smelt so bad, we had to cover our nose. One couldn’t even stand and breathe. As we started working, we got about 100,000 volunteer homes in Delhi to prepare enzymes. When we put those enzymes in the water, buffaloes started going in; earlier, no animal would even enter it. Today, the enzymes have cleared a lot of the odour, and the water is somewhat becoming alive again. We have not touched a single tree; we have not brought anything into that land, which was not already there. We just flattened it a little bit so everybody can sit.
We have obtained all the necessary permissions; we have all the papers with us, validated correctly. We have not violated any laws nor have we polluted the place because there is no chance to pollute the river anymore! Pollution is already at the peak, it can only be reversed now, and that is what is happening.
The beauty is, no Art of Living person is perturbed with this, everybody is happily doing their work, putting their 100%. Delhi is getting ready to receive the world.
This is the way of the world. In individual life also, you wonder why is somebody opposing you? Haven’t you wondered what makes a very good friend of yours, someone very close to you, turn against you? It makes you wonder, what on earth made this person do what they are doing? In the same way, there are people whom you have not been of any big help or service, but they turn out to be your best friends! They come to help you out. Some unknown person comes to you and helps you when you are in need. There is a different law that works in the universe. When you know that, nothing can perturb you, nothing will make you unhappy, then you maintain that inner poise and joy.
COURTESY OF: SRI SRI RAVI SHANKAR