Teenagers killed in Oslo by Christian Fundamentalist Anders Behring Breivik – What now? – 25 Jul 11

On Friday, news reached the whole world about a horrible event in Norway’s capital Oslo. A bomb in the middle of the town and a shooting on an island afterwards killed more than 90 people. This number is currently at 93 but still rising as many people remain missing, who may be dead and others lay injured in hospitals, still at the risk of their lives.

These news shocked the world. We often hear of terrorist attacks in countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan, the Iraq or Iran. This bombing and shooting took place in Norway though! This Scandinavian country is a generally peaceful country and has not seen this kind of violence since World War II! Of course people were shocked and the first suspicion on everybody’s mind was that it was a terrorist group, such as the Taliban, some fundamentalist Muslims who are fighting their Jihad. People got nearly used to this explanation whenever something tragic like this happens.

When the truth made news around the world, it shocked everyone even more: it had been a local man! One man, planting a bomb and then shooting more than 80 people, most of them between 16 and 22 years old! His name is Anders Behring Breivik. His family is in shock, too, as we all are. He started shooting in a political gathering, in the youth camp of a party and when the teenagers and young adults ran away, he chased them, shooting them down. The only word that comes into my mind in answer is just: sick.

The reason however is again similar to the terrorist attacks we have experienced in the past. With one difference: now we have a Christian fundamentalist with anti-Islamic sentiments. Again, religion is the reason, mixed with politics. He was arrested and his statement is that his actions were cruel but necessary. He believes there needs to be a revolution and if he had not started this massacre, nobody would ever have known about his ideas. He wrote a 1500 page manifesto about his ideas, political and religious. On his Twitter page one could find only one message: "One person with a belief is equal to the force of 100,000 who have only interests".

Anders Behring Breivik does not feel guilty. Neither do Islamic terrorists. There is not really any difference. Christianity, a religion that emphasizes altruism and charity towards others also has sick followers, just as every other religion. He was against immigrants and foreigners in his country, a right-wing extremist, nationalist, fundamentalist. These ideas in his mind justify killing innocent children.

We need to see that these ideas and this hate can grow in any society and wherever there are people who are not tolerant and who support this feeling of hate and violence towards others. There are people in every country and in every culture who have such ideas, who are extremists and fundamentalists. This man wrote that he spent a whole year of his life intensively playing war games, violent video games. He had a complete plan of action, posting pictures like the one above online beforehand so that the media could easily find them and enough information about him. He has learned the violence through such games and must have had enough input of hate against others to do this. He killed so many young people, only because they belonged to a party that supports immigration and living together with people of other nations and belief.

Today he will speak in court about his reasons for this attack. He has told the world before, though, that he does not feel guilty. What will happen now? How will the society react? This event should make government, media and the public aware that there are extremists and such ideas everywhere and everybody should be responsible for discouraging any similar views in order to avoid similar events in future.

My heart goes out to the families and friends of the victims, to those who have been injured and hurt and to the whole Norwegian nation. The children whom he killed may have had many dreams for their life which lay in front of them. He destroyed them violently and with full awareness. And why? For religion and politics. Do we really still need religion, seeing the effects it has?

We have to keep on working on spreading love and making people understand that there is no reason, religious, political or personal, that justifies such violence. Let your children grow up without learning violence in video games. Teach them instead to play with each other, not against each other. Show them that a child of another nation and maybe with another language is just as valuable as they are themselves. Send your love towards those who suffer now because of one violent and hating man. Pray for them and also him to find peace.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Transcendental Meditation and Yogic Flying – 17 Jun 11

I recently gave a chakra workshop for the first chakra, the root chakra. I talked about knowing one’s roots, told how important it is to be connected with mother earth and explained the necessity of being grounded.

I mentioned a few examples for people who are definitely not grounded and told the group that there are many yogis who are actually trying to fly. They believe this would in some strange way bring peace to this earth. The movement that created and spreads this theory was founded by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. He developed a meditation technique called ‘TM’, Transcendental Meditation, which is supposed to make you fly.

On my journeys in the west I have heard of Transcendental Meditation and have met many people who teach or practice it. They are all fascinated about flying but when you ask them whether they have had success in flying, you always get the answer that they have seen pictures or know someone who has seen someone else fly. I never met anybody who could fly himself or had even seen it himself.

Whenever I heard about this idea, I had to smile and thought about how many ways there are to fool people.

Recently friends recommended a documentary about this movement and we watched it together. It is called ‘David wants to fly’. I would really recommend this film to anybody who would like to understand more about Transcendental Meditation by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

In this movie, there is a young student who searches inspiration for his first movie and finds out that one of his idols, the Hollywood film producer David Lynch, is a follower and big fan of TM. He gets in touch with him and with his interest manages to get close into the group, travels to meetings of the organization in the US, to India for the guru’s funeral and to see what is happening there. He slowly discovers that there are many aspects of this organization that are not really as nice as it sounded in the beginning and his interest in meditation shifts towards an interest to find out more about these dubious parts of the organization.

The movie shows the two former Beatles members who are still alive, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, at a program organized by David Lynch. I mentioned two days ago already that they were connected with this movement and helped it to become popular. Hundreds or thousands of people went to the Ashram that they had been to and this was Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s Ashram.

The student directing the movie, David Sieveking, has interviews with many different people and this makes the documentary really very interesting. The organization has a hierarchy and everybody who pays 1 Million Dollar is eligible for a course to become the ‘Raja’, which means king, of a country. In the movie you get to see several of them and I really had to laugh, seeing that they have a special getup, with a crown on their head and playing to be kings. The king of Switzerland was asked in an interview why Maharishi Mahesh Yogi never demonstrated publicly that he could fly. The answer was that he was too humble.

The training for learning to fly is to sit in Padmasana, the Lotus Seat and jump. At this point of the movie we all could not stop ourselves from laughing. It looks very funny how those students jump as high as they can, as if they were frogs, and also as fast as they can and get honoured for being the best although nobody manages to actually fly.

Another interview showed a more serious aspect. They talked to a man who had donated more than 150 Million Dollar to this movement and was disappointed that nothing actually happened with this money. He expected a big center to be built where the 10000 yogic flyers would meet and create world peace. I did not quite understand how this should happen anyway but this is what the basic idea had been: defying gravity and floating in the air for world peace.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi himself said he had renounced the material world and lived in abstinence in order to be a real spiritual man and yogi. He was however not always very strict with this idea. The documentary shows the interview with a woman who had sex with him and talked freely about it. For her it was as if she met Jesus until he started to be interested in others at the same time. According to her, when she asked what would happen if she got pregnant, he answered ‘Get married to someone, quick!’

After watching this movie I wondered about who would give money to this nonsense? Who would like to become a king of a democratic country, who would be interested to learn flying? There obviously are people who do! They told they needed 400 Million Dollar for building a TM center in India and 200 Million were already collected. This center was never built but they had made the money.

I just and only want to recommend everyone to stand with both feet on the ground of this earth. Why do you want to fly? God gave this job to the birds, let them fly around while you use your legs! Work on peace in your own heart and you will do a much better contribution to world peace than by jumping in the Lotus seat, waiting to actually levitate someday.

Celebrity Followers – Free Advertisement and Popularity for their Guru – 15 Jun 11

Celebrity Followers

In the series of different followers, I will today describe the last type of followers, celebrity followers. They are popular people, known for their skills in one area and they follow a certain guru. Through them, their gurus become popular, too, and they turn out to be celebrity gurus.

There are different levels of celebrity gurus and there are many different levels of celebrity followers. There are many gurus who are celebrities in their religion, culture, country or state and a few of them are known internationally. The followers can be local politicians and higher politicians, film stars known in one country and film stars known internationally, sportsmen and women, musicians and more. With all of these celebrities you need to realize that they, too, are only human.

A famous example of western followers are the Beatles. Especially George Harrison is known to have been a follower of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and TM, his meditation technique, the Transcendental Meditation. They are celebrities but I can tell you for sure that many people in India, who have nothing to do with western music, don’t even know their names.

In the same way there is Sachin Tendulkar, currently known as the best cricketer of the world. He is famous in India and in countries that play cricket and he was a follower of the recently passed-away guru Sathya Sai Baba. There are however many people who have never heard of this man.

I know of Sachin Tendulkar since he is playing cricket, 20 years ago but I heard of the Beatles for the first time when I came to the west.

I like Sachin Tendulkar, he is a great cricket player, has extraordinary talent in his sport and he could be a wonderful personality, too. If he however follows Sathya Sai Baba, he probably has the same reason to follow him as any other person who follows a guru. He is a great cricketer but in his heart he is just a normal person. He is not God and he is not perfect. He may be perfect in this one area, in this one sport, but he has weaknesses just like everybody else. He has a need for something that he thinks can be satisfied by following a guru. He, just as thousands of other people, obviously wants to believe that Sathya Sai Baba can materialize gold and ashes.

In the same way, George Harrison could have been a great musician but he had the same weakness that thousands of other people have and think that flying through meditation is a great thing that we should achieve. They may be celebrities but they can be superstitious at the same time!

Maybe Sachin Tendulkar could think that he played great cricket because of the blessings of his guru. Maybe the Beatles believed that they played great music because of the meditation techniques of their guru. They can all believe this, it is fine but it becomes a problem when people start following these celebrities as Gods, too. People then forget that they are only human and that they are like us, normal humans. If you follow their music, follow their career and follow their films, you don’t need to follow their gurus. You admire a celebrity because of his or her talent and that is fully fine. Don’t think however, if they follow someone or believe in something, it is the ultimate truth. It is not like this, they could be mistaken, too.

Celebrity followers are always liked by gurus because they make celebrity gurus out of them. They get popular through the fame of their followers. Celebrity followers advertise them very well, just by visiting their programs. Who would not like to get this benefit?

Intellectual Followers – Giving their Guru a good Reputation – 1 Jun 11

Intellectual Followers

If you read about blind followers yesterday, you may have thought how stupid people are that they don’t even ask who exactly their guru is and what his philosophy is. You think, if they cared enough to know more about him, they would not follow him. There are however also followers who do ask – but still follow. I call these people intellectual followers.

They are doctors, professors, studied and intellectual people. Their guru was smart enough to feed their intellectual hunger with his talk. They are often interested in philosophy and questions about the sense of our being here on earth. These followers were usually lacking something which they could not find in their intellectual world.

In the intellectual world everything has a reason, everything has a consequence and everything can be explained. Sometimes they have the wish to believe in something supernatural. They want to be sure that there is something that they cannot explain with their intellect.

Many doctors turn to masters and gurus because they are frustrated about their helplessness. They have so many bad experiences and feel sad that they cannot save many patients’ lives. Why does God let these things happen to His children on earth? Is there a God at all? They are searching for an explanation and a reason which helps them do their work with full strength again.

More than for an explanation, many people are simply longing for more feeling. They want to come out of their minds and more to the heart. This is in itself a good thing but unfortunately they often end up with gurus who heartily welcome them at first but finally cheat them.

Obviously every guru would like to have such followers. Intellectual followers are very convincing to the general public. If a guru has followers who are judges, doctors, high politicians, professors, top bureaucrats and more people who are equally respected for their intellectual achievements, people trust them. If even those people believe in gurus, it has to be right.

In this way Sathya Sai Baba has gained a lot of followers – with the public approval by several well-known intellectual people. The former chief judge of India, P.N. Bhagwati was a follower of this guru for example. After the guru’s recent death, Bhagwati stated in Indian media ‘every of my decisions has been dictated by Sathya Sai Baba’. This does not fill me with trust in the Indian judicial system but it made many people believe even more in this magician. It is a shame for our country that a former chief judge of India gives such a statement. I have heard a similar statement from a politician who was professor at university and there are many more.

When these intellectual people hear someone speak against their master or guru, they don’t just ignore this criticism. They are open to hear it and consider it but they quickly find logical arguments against any criticism and somehow manage to explain the unexplainable. You know, if nothing else, supernatural powers are always beyond the laws of physics and nature. They are intellectual followers and find a reason and logic even for the fact that they place another person high above themselves.

Tomorrow’s description will be about another type of followers: proud followers.

God has no religion – just like me – 26 May 11

Someone asked me a question on my facebook page. I thought it could be interesting for more people, so I decided to answer it here in my diary.

“Swami, I have been reading your writing for some time now. I have also seen your profile and understand that you are a spiritual person and not religious. And I find that great. In reading some of the other blog posts you wrote, I saw that you don’t believe in worship of any man. I could not agree more. But I do not understand that you do not believe in Krishna and Ram. Do you believe in Christ? Or you don’t believe in Jesus Christ or Muhammad. Just trying to understand as I am a follower of your blog. Also I was showing my grandma your website and she said that some of the mantra that you have on your website belong to Hanuman. So I am confused. Thanks and regards Swami.”

I replied this question by saying that I see Krishna and Ram as my very close friends. I grew up with them and each year I wish them a happy birthday. How could I forget them? Their names are on my tongue often. When I greet people, I say ‘Jaisiyaram’. There, too, the name of Ram is present. Sometimes you can hear me say ‘He Ram’, just as those, who grew up in Christianity sometimes say ‘Oh Jesus’ or those who grew up in Islam say ‘Insha'Allah’.

This does not mean however that I am Hindu. I am no more a Hindu. I come from a very strong religious background but I do not consider myself anymore belonging to any religion. I don’t do any rituals and I don’t go to temples for worshipping. I have also not changed my religion. I don’t believe in converting or jumping from one religion to another. I did not start going to churches, synagogues or mosques now. I have left religion.

Sometimes people then wonder, if I left religion, why do I write ‘Swami’ Balendu? If I am not a Hindu, why do I use this attribute? I actually don’t see this word ‘Swami’ in connection with religion. You can read about this question in detail in one of my previous blog entries.

I don’t want to be Hindu, Muslim, Christian or anything else. I just want to be Human. I encourage other people, too, to leave religion and become only human. I believe religion often had and has the effect of poison: it kills people, it separates them, it creates hate among them. Human is made by God and religion is made by man. God did not create people with different religions, he made us all the same.

If you ask me now why I then use the names of God or their Mantras if I don’t believe in any religion, I have to tell you that I don’t think any of those Gods has a certain religion. For me Ram and Krishna are not Hindus, Jesus not a Christian and Allah and Muhammad not Muslims. They are God and they are one. I say love is God. They all are love and they all are God, without any religion.

I grew up with Ram and Krishna as my friends. Later I got to know about Jesus and Muhammad and made them my friends, too. I believe they love me, too. We have something in common: they don’t have a religion and I don’t, either. I am not a religious person and I don’t seek God in religious icons or figures. I know God is love and lives in our heart. If you, in a prayer or mantra, mention the name Jesus, Ram or also Hanuman, another friend of mine, it doesn’t mean that you specify a religion you are praying to. You have God in your heart, no matter which name you say with your tongue.

Care for Love and Relations – You cannot replace Anybody – 25 May 11

In this picture, left to right: Balendu, Purnendu, Para and Yashendu

In our lives we meet many people, some are closer to us and some are not so close. Sometimes we don’t notice that we have many people around us who love us and whom we love. We are busy in our every day’s rhythm without noticing how important it is to have these people.

Give value to your relations and the people around you. See and feel their love and love them back. Store their love in your heart. Care for friendship, care for your relations, care for love.

It can happen that you sometimes need to let someone go, who does not want to be around you anymore and with whom you cannot share your way anymore. It can happen that these relations get stronger again after some time. Try not to poison a relation. If it doesn’t work, quit quietly. If you can, don’t create bitterness in between you. Anger, ego and other emotions sometimes create aggression but think how far you want to let these emotions take you. Who knows, maybe time changes and a bitter relation changes again for the better. Bitter and better is only one letter apart from each other. Maybe you don’t want that person in your life anymore. That is also okay but even then, don’t create so much bitterness that it becomes irreversible.

I have lost people in this way and I always try not to make it bitter. If it doesn’t work together anymore, I try to be in peace and retreat a bit so that our ways can separate easily. In this way I believe there is always a chance that we can find together again.

Sometimes it happens that you really lose people and it is not reversible in any way. Once someone leaves this world and his body behind, there is no coming back. And there is no replacement for anyone who left. If your husband dies, you can have a new husband. If you lose friends, you can make new ones. But you cannot replace the one who was there before. Who is lost is lost.

Today is the fifth year that I think of my sister Para on her birthday and she is not there anymore. Nobody can ever replace her. There were people before and after her death with whom I had the feeling of having a sister but after some times those people left my life, too. So there is no real replacement for a person whom you lost. But I have my memories of our love.

Your Tears are the Proof of Love inside You – 18 Apr 11

A few days ago I had a healing session which I would like to tell you about. The man who was with me said “I don’t have love in my heart. This is my problem.”

After saying this he started crying like a child. Tears were running down his cheeks and sobs shook his chest. After a while he said, still catching his breath “I don’t have love for my wife and not for my little son, either. When I hug them, I don’t feel love!”

I looked at him and said “I don’t believe you. If you have no love, how come you are crying so much when even only thinking of this? I don’t believe that you don’t have love. Maybe you only have lost your connection. If you did not have love, how would you be longing for love and crying for love? This is the proof that you have love. You only need to reconnect with your feelings.”

I think this can be a problem of many people. He has love inside himself but he doesn’t know how to give them love. He is missing the feeling of being able to give love to those whom he actually really loves. It is all in him, otherwise he would not be crying. He just wants to pass his love on and doesn’t manage.

If you find yourself in the same situation as this man, do what I told him, too: connect yourself with your love. You believe that you don’t even have love inside yourself. But if this grieves you this much, there is love, so go out and search for it. Or rather, go in and find it! Meditation is a good way to discover your feelings and to come from head to heart. Stop thinking so much about it. Love is not about what you should say or which gifts you should bring. It is not about bringing your wife red roses or buying a new piece of jewelry. It is what is in your heart, the essence of what you are. Feel how you have not only yourself there, in your heart, but also your wife and children, your family and friends. These are the people you love.

Discover your feelings and connect with your love. And then, when you have thus discovered your love, express it. When you hug your loved one, feel how love is flowing in between the two of you. Enjoy this feeling of simply being in love.

We enjoy being with friends again today. In the morning we left Wiesbaden and sat in a train to cross half Germany and reach Tornesch, where we will spend the coming time with Regina, Celina and Jens. It was an easy and smooth journey and we are happy to be here again.

Gurus Cashing in on the Wish of People to be the Chosen Ones – 27 Mar 11

I finished the program in Rajasthan with much success but without giving initiations on the last day. I came back to Vrindavan but left a question in people’s minds: “Why does Guru Ji not want to give initiations anymore?”

Some people thought they knew the answer. Maybe I only wanted to give initiations to special people, only to a few chosen ones.

This was not a fully unknown concept in the world of gurus. There is a short poem in Hindi:

Bhagati firati thi duniya jab talab karate the ham|
Jab se chhoda hai ise bekarar aane ko hai||

The simple meaning is: when you try to get something in the world, it runs away from you but when you don’t take interest, it comes to you.

There are many gurus and religious leaders here in India who know how to implement this poem in a way that gives them more success – a bigger amount of money and a higher number of followers. They say ‘I don’t have money, I don’t want any money and I never even touch money!’ but you will find that they are some of the richest gurus of all. Many also say ‘I don’t want any followers or disciples’ in order to show that they don’t have any ego. They want to show that they don’t participate in the competition of who has most followers. It is another type of ego, the ego of being the most humble one. In reality however they simply find another way to make disciples.

There is a traditional way for gurus of making someone their disciple. This initiation is a kind of ritual with much ado and in which they give a mala and a mantra to the disciple. Some gurus say publicly that they don’t do this but then those who come close to them and whom they actually want to make their disciples get the feeling of being special. Someday they just wave them aside from everyone else and give them a Mala or any other symbolic item, saying ‘This is for you’. And they may add a mantra saying it could be good for that person to say it. This person will feel like a chosen one and will definitely have the feeling of having a guru. Those disciples additionally say that their guru is special and not like all other gurus.

This usually makes an even stronger bond because you feel you are really special and uniquely chosen by a guru instead of receiving an initiation as one of thousands. It gets more difficult for the guru to do this, especially with a growing number of followers but they try their best to make everybody feel like standing out from the crowd. Gurus in every culture and country have made this principle to cash and turned it into money.

So when I announced that I would not give any initiations, many people remembered the time when I was in their town before, four years ago. In that time I had given initiation to everybody who wished for it. Now, after the cave, I obviously only wanted to give initiation to a few, chosen disciples. There were many who were ready to be the chosen ones and decided that they would have to find a way to get closer to me first and then wait for me to give them another kind of initiation. Maybe they would get an opportunity by coming to my Ashram, they thought. This kind of story did not take a long time to spread and this is how, just a few days after my program in Rajasthan, we welcomed and accommodated several Rajasthani people here in Vrindavan at the Ashram.

They had not really understood my intentions and what I really wanted. At the Ashram, too, it was difficult to make them understand. While they were here, I talked a lot with them, explaining that I really did not want to have any disciples anymore. They wanted to see the world through their own coloured glasses and were not ready to see what was in my heart and my mind. I am not sure what they thought of me in that time. Maybe they were disappointed because I did not make them ‘the chosen ones’. Maybe they felt it was not the right time and they would just have to come closer and try approaching me again another time. I doubt that any of them really could understand the change that I had gone through.

Eventually they left the Ashram again and left me thinking how I should treat this kind of problem. I had an invitation by an Indian family from Bangkok to come to Thailand and I decided to accept it. In August 2001 I left to Bangkok with the thought on my mind that it would be good to have some distance from India for some time.

Prayers for the Survivors of Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan – 14 Mar 11

Of course the news of the earthquake, the following tsunami waves and the two explosions in the nuclear power plant in Japan have also reached us here in Vrindavan. We have been watching pictures and videos from Japan in the last days, wondering how much more suffering will come over the people. The first news was that of the earthquake. Already many people lost all they had. After that the waves and floods of the tsunami started carrying away cars, ships, houses, trains and everything they could find including people. And now thousands of people have been evacuated from the area around Fukushima, the nuclear station, where already two explosions made people fear radiation. Everybody is afraid that there may be another, bigger explosion and the radioactivity would leak.

It is even difficult to see these pictures, they just melt your heart and you can only imagine the situation of the people there who are suffering there. What can we do for them except for praying? We can only wish them the strength to bear it, stuck in the catastrophe, many without belongings, many without water and all in fear.

I have just seen one image, a hundred children standing on a school roof, the school surrounded by the waters of the Tsunami, waiting for someone to rescue them. They are alive but they have nothing to eat, nothing to drink. They are only standing there and waiting. There will be many stories which are much more painful than this and it just makes the heart sink.

We have seen the Tsunami in 2004, too, and many times in history nature has shown how powerful it really is. We claim to be powerful but in reality we are not. How much can change from one night to another!

This morning the whole Ashram family and all school children said a prayer together and in silence thought of all the people in Japan who are suffering, sending them our love, also to those who are providing help and trying their best to rescue others.

Pictures of land before and after the catastrophe

Foreign-Return Guru Back in India – 6 Mar 11

I landed safely back in India, was picked up by my brothers and came back home to Vrindavan. When I say back home, I mean the Ashram. You all know how the Ashram looks like today, ten years later, with two stories, painted and with marble floor and beautiful rooms. In that time everything was much simpler and very plain. There was the building of the cave and a few ground floor rooms of the main building with a big common restroom. Everything was raw, without any plaster or paint. There was a lawn and where there is now a marble way from the gate to the main building was only sand and earth. Cows walked around freely on the whole Ashram area.

We three brothers lived here at the Ashram, a little bit at the outer part of Vrindavan, together with a number of students who had come to learn about scriptures and spirituality. My parents and my sister still lived in the house where we children had grown up, in the middle of the town of Vrindavan. They slept there and the three of us brothers at the Ashram but we had made it our habit to have breakfast at the Ashram and dinner always together with the family in our old home.

So we were there, everybody sitting together and I told them of all the impressions from my first trip to Europe. I showed them the things I had brought, made gifts and was talking a lot with them. After my stories of the west and descriptions of Indian culture there, we also came to talk about plans for the next time as I was only going to stay in Vrindavan for one week. After that I would be in Rajasthan for a program that we fixed right after I had come out of the cave.

I could obviously not be sitting around at leisure in Vrindavan. I was the oldest son of the family and with my father already retired, I had the responsibility to earn money and take care of my siblings, parents and the students living at the Ashram. I was the one to earn for the family and I did not mind. I am anyway not a lazy person and would not have liked to sit around and do nothing while the others took care of the Ashram and everything going on there.

Then however again the question came: what exactly should I do? Should I just go on doing whatever I had done my whole life long? Being a guru, preaching and giving initiations? Well, I had not learnt plumbing but preaching, so I knew this was the way that I would go. As I mentioned before, I had a very religious mind-set and did my rituals and prayers with my full heart and belief. Somewhere inside of me however there was a voice that said ‘But you are not higher or better than all those people who are called your disciples!’

I knew that for all those people who practically worshipped me and listened to my lectures in awe as if God himself was talking, I was now even another step higher. I was ‘foreign-return’, a guru who is not only popular in India but all over the world. I was more valuable, more important, like an imported make-up box, made in France, is more valuable than any Indian make-up box could ever be. In their opinion I had climbed another step higher above them.

And while I was looking forward to the lectures and preaching about God, the scriptures and how you can live your life in accordance to all virtues mentioned there, I had in my mind that something needed to change.