AMBASSADOR OF PEACE
Well, you’ve been for fifty years now, spreading the peace word, the peace message around the world….
Yeah, I started going there in ’78….
Prem Rawat & Antonio Mateus
What is not working?
Well, it works. Spreading of the message actually works—it makes a profound difference in people’s life. What doesn’t work is all the systems that are there in this world that I see are failing people—but people just keep believing in those things instead of understanding themselves….
You know, and I was in South Africa—and it was really amazing. Because people would—I was talking about peace and I was taking calls. And people were saying, “It’s not possible.”
Because one gentleman said, you know, “When I have a young daughter and she doesn’t see the difference in the black, white—she just plays with everybody, enjoys her time.” But this is something that is learnt.
And he said, “But peace is not really possible.” And I said, “Well, hang on. If this is a learnt behavior then we can unlearn it. You know, and why do we keep learning it and passing it on? Unlearn it; understand that every human being on the face of this earth is the same.”
We all have problems. Our problems are not new. Nobody has new problems. Somebody before us had exactly the same problem, felt exactly the same way—and here we are in this time, in this moment, repeating what has been repeated again and again and again.
When do we break out of that cycle? And when do we accept, “Here I am. I am alive. I’m here. I have good in me; I have bad in me”?
And so, once we start to break this habit that we have found ourselves in, I think we will see a new day—and have a new appreciation for the message that I have. Because I am not the only one with this message. This message has echoed for centuries across the world—starting from Socrates, “Know thyself.”
And even before that, “That there is something that is to be understood about each human being.” [Antonio: Umm.] And so, every human being really has fifty percent good, fifty percent bad. And if they have only nurtured the bad, then that’s what’s going to be prevalent. And if they nurture the good, then that’s what’s going to be prevalent.
And we have to understand that. We can’t start putting everything in a box. All our lives, well, that’s what we do—we put things in a box. We see a guy with a big scar on his face: dangerous. He could be the sweetest person on the face of this earth. But that’s not what we see; we see the scar.
We see somebody is tall; somebody is stronger than us; somebody is weaker than us. I mean, every day, every day: “Box, box, box, box.”
We’re human beings; we’re on the face of this earth. We’re not better than a lion. We’re not better than a giraffe. A giraffe can do things we can’t do; a lion can do things we can’t do. A lion has one advantage over us. He’s ferocious, strong—but when he is full, he will go, and not be aggressive, lie down and take it easy. We, when we are full, keep on being greedy.
To make war costs a lot of money. War isn’t free. It takes weapons; it takes training of the weapons; it takes a lot of effort to get into a war. For peace, you don’t have to do anything. It doesn’t cost any money—you don’t have to do really, anything—just let human beings be; give everybody some elbow room—and let the kindness be there. And things will work.
But all of this stuff that we have got going on—the terror, the fear, it has always been played upon, on us. You know, the fear of heaven and the fear of hell. Actually, “the allurement of heaven,” I should say, and the fear of hell: “You do this; you will go to hell.” “Go?” Go where?
What is hell? When you’re not in heaven—that’s hell. And when you’re in heaven? What is happening? You are in light—you’re in an understanding of yourself. You have perpetuated kindness. You have perpetuated the courage instead of fear. You have perpetuated knowledge instead of ignorance. You love clarity. You think first and do later….
Because most of the world does first and thinks later. I mean, when I go to people who have been incarcerated in these institutions, this is what I tell them. I said, “Remember? You did first and now you’re thinking. And you’re going to be thinking for a long time.” [Antonio: Umm.]
But if you would have just thought first—and then acted, you wouldn’t be here, sitting here, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking, thinking.
So, you know, the possibilities are there—but why are we not perpetuating kindness; why are we not perpetuating understanding, and why are we not perpetuating the elements that are going to see us through the problems that we have?
These problems that we have are not problems that somebody dropped on us, on our laps. These are problems that we have created. All the problems that you see are problems that we actually have created.
The good thing about that is, since we created them, we can undo them. That possibility exists. But it takes consciousness; it takes courage; it takes understanding; it takes clarity to do that.
Along these fifty years, you met so many world leaders—that you lost count, for sure. How would you evaluate? Most of them have that sense of wisdom—or you are not very positive about that evaluation?
I remember one person—but he was not a leader; he was a farmer.
You remember one…?
If somebody said to me, “In your fifty years, (other than your father, your family, your friends, or people that, you know, you keep talking with, and so on), who did you meet that you only met once—once, that you still remember? For a brief period of time—but you still remember?” It’ll be this farmer.
I was driving in India. They had packed the lunch; they forgot water. So, we had the lunch and now, even thirstier—and it was really hot outside.
So we saw a farmer, ‘side of the road—and he was throwing this bag, (it’s made out of skin), into the water and then pulling it up and watering his plants. And we went up to him. And we said, “Can we have some water?”
And he was so kind. He said, “Of course, of course,” and he gave us water. And he said, “Come! Come—I have a little hut over there—and I have some dry bread and some pickles, (this is all I have), but please, I want to offer this to you.”
His kindness. His kindness—I mean, there I am in a car…. Obviously, I’m better-dressed than him—but his kindness. That he knew that I am a human being too—that I may be hungry—and he offers me whatever he has.
Obviously, it takes him hard work to get even that little bread and make the little pickles…. But he gives freely of what I would consider was probably the most valuable thing to him—but he gives freely—[Antonio: Umm.] generosity.
I was very young when this happened—and I have never forgotten. And when I talk about him, I see him. I know he’s dead now—he was old then—but he will never die because he lives here. He’s alive; he’s well.
And I travel the world and I see how kind…. When that good is there, how kind, how beautiful it can be.
Mmm. So, “If I dedicate my life making people around me happy, I will have much better chances of being happy than if I try to be happy myself”—do you subscribe to that philosophy?
Well, we are dependent upon other people for certain kinds of happiness. I mean, this is true—when a father comes home and his children run up to him and say, “Papa, papa, papa, so great to see you, so great to love you”—your wife is waiting for you and she can say, “Oh, so glad to see you,” or your friends, “And so glad to see you.”
But a real happiness comes from you—your happiness really comes from you. It cannot…. Other people cannot be the catalysts for it. Because if other people are the only catalysts for that happiness and if they, for some reason, disappear, (for whatever the reason is), you will find yourself very lonely.
I always say this. You know, a man with crutches—say, they can’t walk properly or whatever—you have crutches. And you take away that person’s crutches—and that person will fall. You really have to learn how to stand on your own legs, not on crutches.
And trusting and doing everything outside, loving people, there’s nothing wrong with that—and accepting their love, there’s nothing wrong with that. But there has—there is a love inside of you for this time that you are here, that you’re alive—and you have to understand that love. You have to accept that love.
“You are alive”—this is your truth. [Antonio: Umm.] This is what’s really happening in your life. It’s not your business; it’s not your job; it’s not this…. You are alive. You were born—and you’re going to die.
But you have been, (as we mentioned), for half a century spreading the peace word, the message around the world. What tickles you?
What tickles me—is my heart. It’s my heart. And what is a heart? That’s where the clarity resides; that’s where the courage in a human being resides; that’s where the Divine in a human being resides—that’s that place. It may be no physical place—but it is the combination of all that is good in me, the perpetuator of good in me.
Being alive is not complicated. Being happy is not complicated. Looking forward in your life, having courage, having hope, having beauty in your life is not complicated. It is not complicated. Having peace is not complicated.
It is war that is complicated. You have to feed greed; you have to feed unconsciousness; you have to create weapons; you have to create countries; you have to make rules; you have to make prisons; you have to have people who are important and people who are not so important. You have to do so much to get to the point of where we are today.
And if human beings can understand—they’re human; they have kindness in them; they have good in them…. And you don’t have to do anything; you don’t have to make weapons to have peace; you don’t have to create wars to have peace. You know, it’s simple—it’s all you have to do.
It’s like, there was a competition one time between the wind and the sun. The wind said, “I am more powerful.” The sun said, “Well, I am more powerful.” So they said, “We should have a competition.”
So the wind said, “Okay, I will go first. And the challenge is, there is this man walking on the road. Whoever can take off his jacket, make him take off his jacket, wins.”
So, the wind went first—it blew. It blew—and the guy hung onto his jacket even more. It blew stronger, and he hung onto his jacket even more. The wind blew even more, and he hung onto his jacket even more.
Finally, the wind gave up, looked at the sun: “It’s okay; your turn”—and the sun just shone. And it got warm. And the guy took off his jacket.
That, to me, is what we are about. It will happen. If that light comes into our lives, if we allow that light to shine, this is what will happen. It’s not complicated. It is really, really not complicated.