A Lovely Stillness Filled the Room

Nov 9, 2023

Periodically, PremRawat.com publishes first-person reflections from people around the world who are experiencing the benefits of practicing the techniques of Self-Knowledge as taught by Prem Rawat – a simple way to turn one’s attention from the outside world to a place of inner peace. This month’s reflection is from Dr. John Horton, currently residing in Los Angeles, California

When I first met Prem Rawat in September, 1971 at a university in Toronto, he was a teenager. I had just  finished an internship at San Francisco General Hospital after four years of medical school at Duke University. Before that, I had majored in Asian studies at Columbia College, studying the literature and philosophies of India, China, Japan and the Middle East.

I wanted to know how to find real contentment beyond what I conjured up in my head. I was curious about this young man from India and what he knew. Clearly, whatever he had to offer was not the result of years of study and tough practices. It was something else.

The next day about 25 people packed into a small living room where Prem Rawat entertained questions. I could see that he was very sure of himself, not learned in scriptures, or an authority on anything in particular other than his own inner life.

I felt charmed and impressed, but suspicious of any teacher. I did not want to create any unnecessary dependency on another person. I knew that what I wanted was my own experience, not a copy of someone else’s, no matter how gifted that person might be.

One thing Prem Rawat said that day gave me the comfort I needed to decide to learn what he had to teach.

I knew that what I wanted was my own experience, not a copy of someone else’s…

At one point during an animated question-and-answer session with him, a lovely stillness filled the room. There were no more questions being asked. Into that stillness, he said something I will always remember: “You are asking me questions because you think I know something of value. I do. How about I give you the same practice that was given to me? Then you can answer your own questions.”

Soon after that, I learned the techniques of Self-Knowledge that he teaches and have not missed a day of practice since. 

He and I are now friends, sharing a simple, clear practice of self-discovery. I still like to see and listen to him. I find him very gifted in describing what might be called “the nature of human existence.” He evolves and I evolve. It’s a good relationship without the risk of unhealthy dependency. 

What I have learned over the years in my relationship with Prem Rawat has informed my practice of medicine and I am ever grateful for that practical result.

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