A colleague of mine shared this wisdom by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar with me, noting that following each of these would provide us with perspective. She went on to say that “we are so self-centered that we forget to relate to others and the resulting loss is our own…. ….Thank goodness someone with no axe to grind spends his gifts thinking about these things and shares it with others.” Reading though the piece brought gratitude to my heart and restored perspective to my busy mind. Read on!
Question: How to develop our personality
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: To develop your personality, you have to spend five days to have these five experiences to really blossom in your life. You can develop your personality with these five experiences. You have to sincerely play these five roles:
1. The first role which I would recommend to you is to be a school teacher. To teach lessons to children who are not learning, you need a lot of patience. Being a nursery or primary school teacher, even for one day, you will see how you have to increase your patience.
2. Be a Gardener or spend a day with a farmer. If you are sowing the seeds, if you are watering the plants, you will know how you must care for water, earth and environment. You will have a feeling for the environment. You will value food and you will not waste food. You know, what we do? We bring so much food, and we put in the fridge, and after few days from the refrigerator we throw the food. We are wasting millions and millions of tons of food every day. We should not waste food. This we will learn, if we spend one day being a farmer or a gardener.
3. You should spend a day in the mental hospital. Whatever people talk in the mental hospital, you don’t mind. If they scold you, if they blame you, if they curse you, will you mind? You don’t mind because this person is mentally sick.
You know, many people are outside the hospital, that does not mean they are mentally well. So, in life, you come across people who blame you for nothing, who are jealous or angry, who say things that make no sense. Then you know you will have patience to deal with them with a smile. You will not take the garbage inside and spoil your mind.
So if you spend one day in mental hospital, you will know how to save your mind. You will stop being a football of others’ opinions.
4. One day you must go to prison. Maybe it is shocking to you. You don’t have to do a wrong thing to go to a prison. Just go visit a prison, spend a little time with the prisoners. You will understand what compassion is. What helplessness is. Those people did a mistake without awareness. So you will know how you must have a say on your emotions.
5. There are terminally ill people in the hospital. Spend one day with them and you will realize how precious life is. And you will start valuing health. You will eat better, you will exercise. You will do all that is needed to be more vibrant in your life.
With these five days what would be the outcome?
I guess from these five days you will become more vibrant, more alive, more loving, compassionate and active. Many of us have a tendency to think a lot. Thinking and thinking, that is it. We don’t act. Some people simply act without even thinking. Both need balancing.
We need to have that balance of thinking and acting: a perfect coordination of our thoughts and actions. Sensitivity and sensibility – both need to be matured.