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Sri Sri and the most wonderful job in the world


Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was an exceptionally precocious adolescent, who showed a keen interest for the spiritual world early in life. He completed his degree in science and Vedic literature by 17. He was young, but already felt that a special destiny awaited him: “At 17, I felt the whole world was my family. I had that strong aspiration that people celebrate life and live in harmony, specially where there was conflict,” he recalls today.

But there were obstacles. His mother’s relatives would berate her: “What has happened to your son? He talks philosophy, he does not behave like a normal person…. You better find him a job and get him married quickly.” Sri Sri would also spend hours performing elaborate pujas, an art he had mastered very young. So again, people would tell his mother: “Don’t allow your son to do so much puja, he may go mad and crazy. He will not study properly.” Sri Sri recalls that every time he would sit for meditation, his mother would hurry him up saying: “Not yet over? You are taking too long. Come on. Study.” The young Ravi Shankar would somehow escape sports classes, come home and do something else. Then his mother would scold him again: “Why did you come so early? Go and play football.” But the young Ravi aspired to bigger things; he would look at his feet and think: “These feet cannot kick anybody, let alone a ball,” and refuse to go.

To please his mother, he even went for an interview with a bank. But as it turned out, he interviewed the interviewers instead of the other way around! They asked him what he was doing. When they found out that he taught meditation, they got so interested that they wanted to know more. Sri Sri sat down and showed them a simple meditation technique! He was selected and sent a round-trip ticket to New Delhi. He never went.

But shortly thereafter, he met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, whose Transcendental Meditation (TM) was already known the world over. Maharishi was at that time conducting Veda and science conferences all over India and bringing scientists and Vedic scholars together on a single platform.

Sri Sri was very young, but Maharishi recognised his abilities and put him to work. He was thus sent to various places to give talks on the Vedas and science. But he had a problem: “I looked so young,” he smiles, “that people did not take me seriously.” Thus, he started growing a beard, “to look a little mature”.

He thought at that time that he had the most wonderful job in the world: Maharishi would send Ravi Shankar to represent him at various maths (monasteries) and ashrams—including the Ordaining Ceremony of Guru Mai Chidvilasanand by her Guru Baba Muktanand. “I went to Ganeshpuri (located near Mumbai) with two truckloads of sweets!” he recollects. Baba Muktanand received him and the group of pandits accompanying him very warmly.

Later, Maharishi dispatched Sri Sri to different European countries to  expound on the Vedas and science. At that time, he thought that to work tirelessly to set up Veda, science and ayurveda, the ancient and unique Indian medical system, was a pioneering job. Indeed, all his life, Sri Sri would keep his commitment to ayurveda, later establishing an ayurvedic college in his headquarters in Bangalore, from where hundreds of doctors graduate every year. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar also became one of the best-known spiritual leaders of India, and founded the Art of Living movement, whose volunteers make it the second largest NGO of the world after the Red Cross. LikeOutlook, Sri Sri thought big and made it big!

Source : OutLook India 

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Posted by on October 29, 2012 in Art of Living News

 

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Art of Living and Punjab govt tie up to fight drug addiction


The Punjab Government will soon launch a joint venture with the Art of Living Foundation — a non-Government organisation — for helping the Punjabis to get rid of drug addiction in the State.

With the debate over gravity of drug menace in Punjab gaining momentum, the state government will launch a programme with the Foundation in Amritsar on the pilot basis, and make an attempt to take out the Punjabis from the clutches of the deadly drug menace.

Under the programme, 11 teams will cover the nine constituencies of Amritsar parliamentary segment by going house to house, and doing door to door survey of the entire area.

“The programme will be launched in Amritsar as a pilot project between November 15 and 20 under which nine constituencies will be covered by 11 teams of the Art of Living Foundation. The programme is expected to go for around four to six months during which house to house survey will be conducted,” said Chief Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Navjot Kaur Sidhu.

She added, “All the houses in the area will be thoroughly covered and the families will be asked if there are any drug addicts and they want to get rid of it.”

Sidhu informed that the Foundation has courses and programmes for drug rehabilitation, which are running across 157 nations. “These courses will be absolutely free. And under this, the various activities like yoga, pranayam, various kriyas, satsang will be done and psychiatrists will also be there for any kind of counseling,” said she.

The teams will train the medical officers, and the leaders will also be appointed among the participants who are active in learning to run the programme at later stages.

She maintained that the programme will not only be carried out with the assistance of health department but also the Police department which will work in tandem with us. “We will also visit the sensitive areas like that of Maqboolpura where drug problem is very serious. For such areas, police will be with us. As 11 teams are coming for nine constituencies, the extra ones will focus on such sensitive areas,” said Sidhu.

Maqboolpura village in Amritsar is known for drug addicts, deaths related to drugs, widows and orphans of drug addicts and poverty caused by most employable males getting hooked to drugs — indicating the severity of the drug menace. It is also known as a village with no men — which is also true to some extent.

“If they are taking drugs, we will provide them with sterlised needles to save them from HIV or Hepatitis, we will also provide them medicines that are alternative to the drugs and then those medicines will also be available with the Medical Officers and educate the addicts to take that, free of cost, instead of drugs,” she said, adding that the funding of this programme would come from the funds by the MNCs, or from her or her MP husband Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the founder of the Art of Living, is also expected to be the part of the programme and may visit the state at the concluding ceremony. “He has given clear instructions that the teams will not come back till all the houses are covered,” she said adding that she would ensure that he visit the state for the programme.

Source: Daily Pioneer

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2012 in Art of Living News

 

N E Exodus: Art of Living Ashram turns a safe haven


The mass exodus of thousands of north-eastern people from various parts of India, coming on the heels of Assam riots and consequent displacement of hundreds of thousands of families, is a huge blot on the country.

It is time to rally around our North Eastern brethren and open up our hearts and homes to assure them that they have a million homes in India. They are not alone and don’t have to flee.

This was the message taken by Art of Livingteachers Sanjay Babu, Neelam Kochchar, Deepa Dave and their team of volunteers to the thousands of panic- stricken North Eastern people at Bangalore Raliway station ready to leave in the next train to the North East.

Sanjay Babu explained, “There were many distributing food and water at the railway station to the insecure north eastern crowd. But none could assure security to them. We were sent by Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankarji to assure them that they are safe and there was no need to panic and flee from Bangalore.”

The Art of Living teachers reached out to thousands of fearful north eastern workers and students of Bangalore and persuaded them to stay back instead of fleeing. Those who were fearful of going back to their residences in Bangalore were offered a home in the Art of Living Ashram. Around 200 north eastern people are now safely living in the Ashram premises till they feel safe to go back to their homes. In fact, thanks to the feeling of security given to them by Gurudev, many of them are already feeling confident of returning to their jobs in Bangalore.

Over 33,0000 people are reported to have left Bangalore because of direct and indirect threats to leave the city before August 20. Many also left because they were being called back by family members in Assam so that they could, “protect their house together or die together!”

Sri Sri and a few of the N E people at Ashram

Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has encouraged the north eastern students in Bangalore to continue their studies. If they need help, Sri Sri University would come forward to enable their education. The workers have been assured that Art of Living would help them find jobs. Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, has been engaging the people of North East since many years through personal interactions and many service initiatives. 121 children from Nagaland, Meghalaya and Assam are staying & getting education at Art of Living Ashram since six years.

Only a genuine peace maker like Sri Sri can remove the mistrust and fear that has engulfed Assam in recent times.

During his recent visit to Assam (watch video) in the aftermath of ethnic clashes, Sri Sri was heard with eager anticipation by the people from the both sides of the divide.He effortlessly got the Bodos and Muslims to see reason and talk in conciliatory tones thus sowing the seed for reconciliation. But the question remains whether the rulers of the day will be interested in watering the seed?

 

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Three villages shimmer in the gloom of Assam Riots


The recent spate of large-scale riots in Assam, according to conservative estimates, has claimed 58 lives and rendered 400,000 people homeless in various districts of the north eastern state. We, as members of the Art of Living Family, and believers in the principle of One World Family, extend our sincere sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims.

Relief work is the need of the hour after the violence

The primary aim of Art of Living volunteers right now is to provide help and assistance to the displaced people from 400 villages who are staying in relief camps in Assam. The 124 teachers of the Art of Living in Assam along with thousands of volunteers have jumped into relief and rehabilitation work for the lakhs of people taking shelter in 270 refugee camps.

Amid all this bloody carnage, a gleam of hope is emerging from three villages which have become islands of peace in riot-hit Assam. Two of these villages Borlao and Borpara, where Art of Living has been carrying out its community development programs, saw absolutely no incidence of violence. The folks in these villages took the initiative to guard their villages themselves. They did not allow any outside person to enter the village. The three villages are from Chirang and Kokrajhard – the worst riot affected districts. Considering that the village inhabitants are a mix of Bodos, Muslims, Asamese and Bengalis this is an exceptional display of solidarity against forces of division. 164 children from these villages receive free education in the Art of Living tribal schools in Chirang and Kokrajhar.

Tribal schools of The Art of Living in Chirang and Kokrajhar

164 children receive free education in Art of Living Tribal Schools of  Chirang and  Kokrajhar

The surrounding villages, where Art of Living has not yet started its work, succumbed to the fury of violence unleashed by escalating ethnic tensions between indigenous Bodo community and migrant  Muslims  from Bangladesh.

It has been proven repeatedly that spiritual education is the only long-lasting basis for a sustainable, peaceful and responsible living at individual and community level.

Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji, founder of the Art of Living has appealed to all in Assam not to retaliate irrespective of your community and ethnic background. He said, “There are good people in every community. Art of Living will do the work of applying balm to the hearts and minds of traumatized riot victims.”

As fellow human beings and citizens of India it is our duty to reach out to the people of Assam and do our best to bring normalcy in the lives of displaced people. We hope the government takes speedy and definite steps to resolve the fundamental issues that led to the riots before they snowball to uncontrollable dimensions.

 

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Art of Living courses around the World


Click on the links listed below to know about the upcoming Art of Living Courses around the World

Art of Living International Centre  Canada

Art of Living Canada

Art of Living Los Angeles

Art of Living San Francisco Bay Area 

Art of Living Atlanta

Art of Living San Jose

Art of Living  Philippines

Art of Living UK

Art of Living Ireland

Art of Living South Africa

Art of Living Australia

Art of Living New Zealand

 

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Upcoming courses announced in India


Click on the links listed below to know about the upcoming Art of Living Courses in India

Art of Living International Centre Bangalore 

Art of Living Bangalore

Art of Living Pune

Art of Living Coimbatore

Art of Living Chennai

Art of Living Mumbai

Art of Living Ahmedabad 

Art of Living Trichy

Art of Living North Kolkata

Art of Living Jodhpur

 
 

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Welcome to Art of Living Blogs!!!


Welcome to the blogsite “Art of Living Blog” – a blog journey from where you are to what you are.  We hope, you enjoy reading the blogs submitted here by Art of Living Bloggers. You are welcome to express yourself freely in a word, sentence or a paragraph.

If you want to contribute to the blogs drop an email to aolbloggers@yahoo.com

Happy blogging!

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2012 in About Art of Living, Others

 

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