Sadhana, seva, Sudarshan Kriya and meditation have changed lives of millions
“Are you happy Amma?” Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was to ask my mother when we went to seek his blessings at Art of Living International Centre, Bengaluru Ashram sometime in 2009. I had overcome my addiction to liquor through the breathing technique of Sudarshan Kriya and the supreme grace of the Master. Today I have been sober for more than 16 years, which astonishes my friends, colleagues and family.
I had sent a mail seeking an assignment, post my retirement from the Indian Railway Traffic Service. My mind was gripped with uncertainty. But the Guru knows it all and scripts the events accordingly. Only when one surrender unflinchingly does the grace flow. We need to expand our bowl for Him to shower blessings. He always says, “You will get what you need and not what you want.”
Back in Chennai I had undertaken the Happiness Programme conducted by the Master himself and was soon involved in seva activities. I could overcome the demonic thoughts by conducting follow-ups and organising a new programme called Har Ghar Dhyan. Through the help of the General Managers of Southern Railway and Integral Coach Factory, we were working on the courses for Railway personnel – officers and staff. Shortly, after a due selection process, I was posted as the CEO of Chhattisgarh East Railway Ltd and Chhattisgarh East West Railway Ltd and I am scheduled to upgrade my skills as a member of the faculty.
On 13th May 1956, in the bijou town of Papanasam in Tamil Nadu, a divine child was born to Visalakshi and R.S. Venkataratnam. He was named "Ravi", which means "sun" because his birth was on a Sunday, and "Shankar" after the eighth-century Hindu saint, Adi Shankara, whose birthday happened to be on the same day. Gurudev’s first teacher was Sudhakar Chaturvedi, an Indian Vedic scholar who was a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi.
Over the years the organisation has grown manifold and marks its presence in 180 countries across the globe. The bedrock of all the courses of the Art of Living is the Sudarshan Kriya. Alongside are yoga, pranayama, meditation and a host of seva projects.
The spiritual Master has focussed on sadhana, seva, Satsang, Sudarshan Kriya and meditation. These processes have metamorphosed the lives of millions of people in the world. There are innumerable accounts of His manifestations and reams have been written about them. Gurudev and the organisation have played an epochal role in troubled and violence-hit spots of the globe providing succour to people. “Happiness is an attitude. If you are used to being unhappy, even in the best of situations you will still grumble and be unhappy,” says Gurudev
(The writer is the CEO of Chattisgarh East Railway Ltd, East west Railway Ltd and is a faculty of the Art of Living)