Our Autumn 2023 Issue is out now! Prem Rawat is an Indian international speaker, peace educator and author.
His most recent contribution to the written word is his highly acclaimed book entitled, ‘Hear Yourself ’.
Keep reading to enjoy the full piece…
JOURNEY INWARD TOWARDS THE DIVINE
by Alison McEvoy
Prem Rawat took a “little break” with us recently. It was a reminder to me to more regularly take a break from riding the wheel of Time, allow the mind space to roam into deeper terrain and perhaps find some new direction when stepping back into the current of life.“Really, this is about taking a little break. And in this little break, to understand what this life is all about. Not from the day you were born to the day you’re going to go – but the fact that you are alive, and what does that mean? To you?–as a human being? Not as a bird, not as a crocodile…”
Part of the power of Prem’s discourse lies in the process his words take us through – a process formally known as ‘de-familiarisation’. He extracts us, with his words and questions, from our so-close- we-cannot-see-it connection to our daily life. It’s a ‘can’t see the woods from the trees’ type situation that we so easily slip into with the daily shape of our existence. Prem Rawat’s discourse however, has a magical quality of suddenly lifting us up and above, out and beyond, so that we SEE; “You’re here! You exist! And this is the only thing that has been constant since you were born – existence…There was a time you couldn’t walk. There was a time you couldn’t speak. You had to learn that. There was a time you couldn’t even drink soft drinks; you made bad faces at it. But true knowing then you slowly learned how to tolerate them. You didn’t even know who your relatives were; they were taught to you, “Oh, that’s so-and-so and that’s so-and-so… But through it all, you have existed. And so, what does it mean to exist?” Can you feel it? The space that is created, the wonder, the curiosity that starts to grow as we begin simply to notice the nature of things… Being a parent to a young child brings this into focus almost every day. My toddler often asks me, “What makes us get old, mammy?” “Time…”, begins my answer, and every time I say it I have a moment of awe at the nature of time and my inability to properly explain such a mystery of Life.
Once we enter this space beyond our familiar connection with things, we have the potential to change our minds. To create new connections with life. We can do this again and again, as many times as we so wish. “Every single human being… you have the capacity to experience the Divine.” Prem Rawat declares that this is his intention. To encourage and enable his listeners and readers to know Life for themselves, with eyes wide open, rather than continue to live in hand-me-down connections to, and beliefs about, life and self. “So, here I am – with this book, ‘ Hear Yourself ’…. the noise that deafens you – between the ears. The noise – that some people might call “indoctrination.” And it’s very curious when you look at the meaning of indoctrination; “Something is said to you again and again and again and again till you believe it. Till you believe it” – not know it, believe it. And this sound echoes between the ears, “This is how it is. This is how the world is. This is who I am. This is who that person is, and this is who that person is.” “And my purpose here is not to indoctrinate you. Quite the reverse; I want to reverse indoctrinate and I want to make not a believer out of you, but a knower… I want you to know! Not believe – I want you to know…This is not about a lecture. This is about a reality of existence.”
Knowing, in Prem Rawat’s meaning, is first-hand experience. Not what we have read, been taught or told, but rather primary, direct experience, through one or more of our five senses, with the object we wish to know. The ‘thing’ which we are closest to, the ‘thing’ through which we know the world, and thus we must first explore and discover, is our Self. Socrates, an ancient Greek philosopher known as the ‘Father of Western Philosophy’ wrote, “To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” Prem Rawat’s message echoes along this vein of timeless wisdom. His words carry an energy which shocks us out of our complacency, and inject us with a determination to know. “When does it matter to you – that you feel, not occasionally, but feel real peace in your life? That you are awakened to the possibility of understanding the value of this breath? Not somebody’s theory. You.” As a former student of philosophy, I know that when you give yourself to this process, life changes forever. Immediately after my degree, I spent the next two years in another country attending yoga and meditation training at an ashram. I wanted direct experience. I wanted to know the vehicle I was in and come face to face with the unique perspective and prism towards life that is ‘me’. It was the most meaningful, challenging and illuminating time of my life. Prem Rawat inspires people along this journey, and with humour to boot: “…life is yours. The Divine has chosen to keep company with you! Do you want to give attention to that? At all? Or are you too perplexed with everything else that’s going on in your life?” “Every single human being, whether you have the capacity to fly an airplane… whether you have a capacity to sail a sailboat – you have the capacity to experience the Divine. It doesn’t matter who you are. And that’s powerful.”
“ENTER THE WORLD OF THE DIVINE”
Along the journey Prem Rawat describes how realising all the things about yourself, other and the world which you have been told and believe – rather than feel and know – leads us to turn inward, to the source of feeling and knowing which is the Self. On this inward journey we discover the breath, our energy body, and so much more. The deeper we go, the closer we get to an experience of the Divine spark at the creative core of our being. “It is when the lips are closed, and the attention is to the inside, the heart is open, that Divine love begins to flow. And when it does, it’s like a rain. And then it begins to rain. And when it does, every fibre of a being is drenched in that love.” “…some people struggle with that idea. “If the Divine is in me, how come I don’t feel it?” This is what they say. “If the Divine is in me, well, how come I don’t feel it?” Because all you have done – is identified the Divine with your ideas, not with the Divine. The day ideas don’t matter to you, you will feel the Divine. The day that my tongue has no words for that love, I will be talking about the real love.