The Dehli-based lifestyle magazine, Joyful Living, has been featuring a column titled, 'Enlighten Yourself,' where members of the public send in questions to the publication, to be answered by Gurudev. Below is a selection of these questions and answers.

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Why do some people always try to find fault in others?
Pratichi Sharma, Naintal

There are five levels of consciousness. First, you are responsible. Second, we are responsible. Third, I am responsible. Fourth, nobody is responsible. And the last, nothing ever happened. People who always try to find fault in others live at the lowest (first) level of consciousness.


My sister is over-sensitive and cannot take any humour. How can I handle her?
Joystna Chakraborty, New Dehli

That is how she is. Better forget about handling her. Handle yourself... if you can.


I always like to talk about myself. Sometimes, it is to the extent of boasting about myself. Why is it so?
Garima Sonkar, Chadigarh

That is how you are. The only way out is: increase the level of awareness.


I keep coming across the word "I-ness" in spiritual books. What does it mean?
Reshmi Mehta, Bhopal

Each teacher uses the same words in different ways. Actually there is only "I" (call it God, Allah, Self, or whatever you like), but no "I-ness." "I-ness" is a delusion; "am-ness" is a reality.


Is being egoistic harmful?
Charulata Sen Choudhury

Ego is not harmful. It is a must for functioning. But being an egoist is certainly harmful to oneself, as well as to others.


What is the difference between self-confidence, self-esteem and ego?
Dr Ravi Verma, Haridwar

Self-confidence is a state of un-self-consciousness. Self-esteem is a natural flow of self-confidence. Ego is identified consciousness, when consciousness identifies with the body and believes itself as the body.


How can one be confident without being egoist?
Kuldip Ahuja, Nasik

Become un-self conscious.


What does spiritualism mean?
A H Thakur, Hyderabad

Spiritualism is a self-realising "Who I am"... or rather realising "What I am."


Is it possible to feel your chakras? If so, what do chakra activations feel like.
Ravi Malhotra, Dehli

Yes. Each Chakra has its own vibration, sound and colour. When a particular Chakra gets activated by a certain practice, the individual can feel the vibrations of the particular chakra or can listen to the sound or can see the colour.


How can I help my children in their growth and spirit?
Archana Sharma, Bangalore

Teach them courage not fear. Teach them how to thin, don't give them set beliefs and dogmas. Don't impose your ideas, concepts, let them explore and experience on their own.


Is there such a thing called evil?
Amaan Ali, Kolkata

Yes, if you believe in. Good and evil are beliefs which keep on changing all the time. They differ in each society, each race and each nation. What goes on changing cannot be true.


Why do some spiritual teachers empahsize the importance of communicating with yourself?
Preeti, Dehli

They know better. Ask them. First know the Self - rather be the Self - then the Self will communicate with you.


What is karma?
Rati Chakrobory, Jaipur

A theory, a dogma, a belief, a concept. When one accepts any theory or concept, it may be comforting. But if it is not based on one's experience, it has no validity.


How can I deal with negative situations?
Vivek Singh, Delhi

Resist not. Accept life as it comes. Change the attitude, don't fight with the situations.


How can I achieve my goals?
Kaliprasad Sharma, Noida

It is better live life as it happens. Learn to accept, enjoy, celebrate whatsoever is happening in this moment. Goal orientation involves future, future involves insecurity, fear.


How can I attain higher consiousness awareness?
Shabina, Ahmedabad

Meditate regularly.


How can I become more enlightened?
Aruna Kaul, Mumbai

Become more and more conscious of your acts, thoughts and feelings.


How can I overcome negative thinking?
Lalita Mukherji, New Dehli

Meditate regularly. Become more and more conscious.


If I get angry with someone, I start hating him/her. I can never forgive. I know it is wrong. Please help me.
Atul Sharma, Bhopal

Find the actual reason of your becoming angry with someone then the needful can be done. Anger is a nature's protective mechanism. It can help, it can harm. It is like a knife. Knife can be used to cut vegetables, but it can cut fingers also if one is not careful. It depends on the user.


I am very hot tempered. How can I control my anger?
Shihani Kulkarni, Lucknow

You cannot. The word control is very fanatic. First thing is: accept anger. Be acquainted, be friendly.


Why some people are superstitious and others are not? Are weak people superstitious?
Malini, New Dehli

That is how things are. That is how people are. Even so called bold people are also superstitious. Not to be superstitious needs great understanding, great intelligence. Only un-intelligent people are supersititous.

I always try to avoid people. Even dread speaking on the phone. It's not that I am inferior or unsuccessful. I am very bold, happy and successful in life and career. What is the reason behind this problem?
Madhuklika, Dehli

You must be having superiority complex. All so called successful people develop superiority complex and become self-centered. They cannot afford to mix with people.


Why do people believe in god when they cannot see him/her or has proof of his/her existence?
Ashoke Takia, Pune

It is their problem, not yours. Let them believe and console themselves. God cannot be seen by the eyes made of flesh. Only names and forms can be seen through these eyes. And your asking the question is enough proof of his existence. God cannot be something separate from you. You are God - un-realized, fast asleep. Wake-up and realize. He is not a person, He is a presence. Become fully aware of your own presence and you will realize, "what you are, the whole existence is." What appears is not, what is does not appear. Because you are, everything is.


I often have nightmares and wake up terror-stricken during the night. What is the reason?
M K Khanna, Mumbai

You must be quite afraid and suppressed person.


Parents always try to give good values to their children. Still all children are not of the same nature. Why is it so?
Srabani Sen, New Dehli

Trying simply means lack of understanding. And, anything done without understanding, never works. Good or bad - all values are man's creation and they are subject to change according to needs, circumstances, society, cultures etc.







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