Start­ing off the New Year, REV DADA JP VASWANI speaks about de­vel­op­ing self-con­fi­dence, the sig­nif­i­cance of pray­ing, the mean­ing of Sad­hana, and re­spect­ing par­ents.

Citadel - - SPIRITUALITY -

You speak about be­ing the ac­tor and spec­ta­tor of our lives. How does one bal­ance do­ing the right ac­tions, and the need to step back, pause and re­flect?

It is an art that the guru will teach you. If you wish to learn math­e­mat­ics, you go to a teacher of math­e­mat­ics. If you want to learn cook­ing, you go to a chef. This is an art that you will ac­quire through as­so­ci­a­tion with those who have mas­tered the art. I may add that this art is not taught; it is to be caught through as­so­ci­a­tion with the masters of hu­man­ity.

How does one de­velop selfconfidence?

We have two selves, the higher self and the lower self. We are in love with the lower self. We have mag­ni­fied the lower self out of pro­por­tion. It mis­leads us. En­rico Caruso was one of great mu­si­cians of the 20th cen­tury. Ini­tially, peo­ple were dis­ap­pointed by his singing, but En­rico did not give up. He re­peated this pos­i­tive af­fir­ma­tion again and again, “You lit­tle me, get out of me; you big me, get into me.” In the mea­sure we hand our­selves to the higher self, in that mea­sure self con­fi­dence will come to you.

What is im­por­tant, prayer or good karma?

Prayer is also karma and prayer is the best karma we can do. We must make prayer part of our daily life. We need that strength, that wis­dom to do that karma. Wis­dom is light, which helps us dif­fer­en­ti­ate be­tween good and bad karma. Strength gives us shakti to move on the path of good karma.

What is the mean­ing of ‘Sad­hana’?

There is the art of liv­ing, which ev­ery hu­man be­ing has to ac­quire. You are not born with it; you have to ac­quire it. It is learnt through ob­serv­ing. Man is built of three things: mind, body, and soul. There­fore, there are three types of sad­hana: si­lence; sanga (as­so­ci­a­tion) - be care­ful of the friends you keep; and sewa (Ser­vice) - ev­ery day, I must for­get my own com­fort and try to bring some com­fort to oth­ers.

Are all Gods the same, or is there any dif­fer­ence?

All Gods may not be the same, but the one you be­lieve in should be the only God for you. If you be­lieve in Guru Nanak, Guru Nanak should be ev­ery­thing for you. Through him, you will get the bless­ings of the Supreme God. A woman came for Guru mantra. She was given the name Ram, but she didn’t feel right to re­peat it, be­cause her hus­band’s name was Ra­manand. So she started re­peat­ing her son’s name, ‘Triloka’s fa­ther, Triloka’s fa­ther.” By do­ing this, she still reached the Higher Realm.

How does one help a per­son who is feel­ing sui­ci­dal?

You should ex­plain to him that sui­cide does not solve prob­lems. We get mes­sages from the other side; they say to us, ‘Tell the peo­ple never to think of com­mit­ting sui­cide. We thought our prob­lems will be solved if we com­mit­ted sui­cide, but we find that our prob­lems have now be­come worse.’ Sui­cide is not a so­lu­tion; it is only dis­so­lu­tion. Once the peo­ple un­der­stand this, they will not think of com­mit­ting sui­cide. Life is a gift, which God has given to us; only God can take it away from us. We do not have the right to take away the life of any liv­ing crea­ture, ex­cept in self-de­fence. There­fore, even eu­thana­sia is not cor­rect. Tak­ing one’s own life be­cause the body is suf­fer­ing ter­ri­bly; even that is not per­mit­ted.

As chil­dren, we feel that our par­ents are not able to un­der­stand our feel­ings and emo­tions, which cre­ates a com­mu­ni­ca­tion gap. We feel our par­ents are in­ter­fer­ing. How do we re­solve this?

If only you ex­plain to your­self that the great­est gift is the gift of the hu­man birth, and this you have ob­tained through your par­ents, you will have great re­spect for your par­ents. Once you have re­spect for your par­ents, you will be able to un­der­stand them bet­ter. I have been given this hu­man birth be­cause of my par­ents. It is they who gave me this hu­man birth as a gift; oth­er­wise I could have been born as a cow, as a dog, as a mos­quito, as an insect. And it is a gift, which not all the wealth in the world can pur­chase. In due course, I will re­al­ize that what my par­ents have said is cor­rect; I am not on the right track. I read of a great man who wrote: ‘When I was 20, I thought my par­ents were stupid, I was the only wise one in the fam­ily; when I be­came 30, I be­gan to re­al­ize that there is some lit­tle wis­dom in what the par­ents say, but most of the wis­dom is with me; when I be­came 50, I re­al­ized that my par­ents were wise, I was fool­ish.’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.