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‘Young, free and single’.

These three words best describe

the mentality of today’s youth.

They are at a delicate transition

in their lives, expected by society

to be responsible and yet by that

same society trusted with

sponsibilities or allowed to think

for themselves. It is a period

where they have to leave their

childhood dreams and accept the

realities of life. If we can learn to

trust them, to respect their views,

to treat them as the young adults

they are - and at the same time

still love them as we did when

they were children, then may be

they will be able to accept these

realities and take on the task to

improve the world we live in.

If not, they may rebel against

society and in effect, against us.

We can see Swamishri preparing

yesterday’s children to become

tomorrow’s leaders...
    Swamishri With Youth

Every student faces a dilemma. He has to achieve a balance between the demands made upon him. The tension of exams, the pressure from the family to excel and of course, the temptations of society. Whatever he does, right or wrong, is ultimately reflected in his results. Teaching them the formulae and calculations of life, Swamishri educates them in how to survive in and out of the classroom...

    Question 3
Interview by the Bombay kishore mandal...

In today’s materialistic climate our age group is being blinded. Because of that, our progress, both in education and spiritually, is being hampered. How can we overcome this?

Swamishri : Today’s social climate is evil. Parents know it and even we know it. But only if we realise the greatness of religion will we be able to restrain our mind from being lured. We should have a firm conviction in our soul that we want to reap the benefits of religion. From the beginning we should concentrate on our studies and resist worldly temptations. If we keep the company of sadhus our mind will not wander. We should study three to four hours a day. This is our sadhana. To study. Coupled with this, if we can realise ourselves as the atma, we will have no problems. If we can reap the benefits of religion and not become entangled in worldly affairs, we will have no problems.

Sometimes, even though we may be in a group, we feel different and experience an inferiority complex. Why? How can we overcome this?

Swamishri : We should never think that, ‘I can’t do this’ or ‘I will never be able to progress.’ We should try our best. When others move ahead be pleased for them. We should look to Shriji Maharaj for strength to move ahead ourselves. It’s not like we can’t do it. Even we can progress. We should keep persevering. Look at Taltumbadiya Shastri; he was determined to become a scholar and he worked hard to achieve that. We need to dispel our inferiority complex. We have the shelter of God, so we will get strength and the blessings of Yogiji Maharaj.

At this age, Swami, we all have high ambitions...

Swamishri : [interrupts] In this world, ambitions have never lasted and never will last. The only ambition which is of any use is to do bhakti, and to please God and His Sadhu. We should also have an ambition to be good so that people admire us and we develop admiration for them... In whichever field we work in, we should always be honourable. Live according to the rules and regulations. We will only be of any use if we try to be good, and through trying we will find peace.

How did you progress?

Swamishri : If we remain smaller than everyone we become bigger than everyone. But those who try to become bigger than the rest end up becoming the smallest. We should never try to get ahead at someone else’s expense. Those who help others help themselves.

We feel that our parents are too old-fashioned; they feel that we are spoilt. How can we bridge this divide?

Swamishri : All parents are not as old-fashioned as we think. They only want to help and make us good. That’s why they continuously try to guide us. But we should make an effort to understand them. We should never forget all that they have done for us. If we remember that, we’ll be able to accept their views.

We know that we should not watch TV or eat out. Yet often we can’t help ourselves. And we also know that we should study hard, be firm in Satsang and obey our parents, yet we don’t seem to be able to do this. What should we do?

Swamishri : We don’t have the level of understanding which we should have. So even though we listen to such advice, we can’t adhere to it. We like to talk about how things should be. But if we can fix it in our minds that TV is like poison, that by eating out we become spoilt, then we will lose the attraction towards all these things. All our weaknesses and attachments will disappear... We have a fixed conception that snakes are poisonous. So we are scared of them. Do we ever try to catch them? Even if we see a snake in a dream we run from it. We shudder just on talking about them. Similarly, if we can attain complete knowledge of life, then we will develop an allergy towards worldly objects. We should know what’s true and what’s false. Because we don’t totally understand this we get up from here and still go out there seeking fun.

What expectations do you have for us kishores?

Swamishri : What should I expect? That you massage my hands and feet or my head? Not quite. I don’t expect you all to become sadhus either, but you should become good devotees. Study hard, serve the people and our country, be honourable, live according to our niyam-dharma so that whatever field you are in, you won’t have any problems. We want to build a good society. A society in which there is no corruption, only honourable people who do honest, hard work. It is Shriji Maharaj’s and Yogiji Maharaj’s wish that we study hard and come forward. So we should condition ourselves to be like that.

(12 February 1993, Bombay)

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