Though an editing team checked Prem Rawat's stream of consciousness rant they apparently believed there was no need to remove his diametrically opposed statements.

With all our inventions, we are so trapped that we have forgotten our basic fundamental desire to be content.

What is your own idea? It is the same one you've always had - to be happy.


volume 6

The Sugar Ant and the Salt Ant by Prem Rawat

We tend to analyze everything.

But when I feel thirsty, I don't want an analysis of water. I don't want descriptions of water. All I want to know is how to get water so I can quench my thirst. That's the point - to quench the thirst.

Whatever we do - whether it is exploring space, mapping the bottom of the ocean, flying a kite, bungee jumping, learning how to cook, designing new airplanes, inventing new technologies - we do because we think it will benefit us. And we have a bad habit of jumping into things without ever looking back and asking, "Did this really benefit me?" We just go on with new invention after new invention.

I look at pictures of myself when I was a baby and wonder, "Where did he go? Did he die?" It's a weird question, because I know that baby was me and that I am alive. But I don't look anything like that baby. So, looking from there to here, I can't help but ask, "Where did he go?"

We think we are the sum of all the things we do, and yet that picture of me as a baby was just one snapshot in a life - my life - which now I understand is never constant. A picture of me three years from now will look different. Ten years from now, it will look even more different, and twenty years from now, it will look very, very different. I am constantly changing. I may not perceive the change as it happens, but I am changing.

So who am I? Who are you? We have a singular quest to better ourselves - to evolve, to move forward, to improve upon all that can be improved. To make it better.

My message is about the possibility of the ultimate betterment of a human being - not of mankind, not of a country, not of a social belief, but of a human being. And it is not through religion or doctrine, not through ideas or concepts. Neither is it through hearsay or repetition or through the "sheep effect.- It is through each individual exploring and finding the beauty within themselves. And all that is asked of a person is to clean their plate.

TWO ANTS

Once, two ants met. One ant lived on a hill that was made out of sugar. The other ant lived on a hill made out of salt.

So the ant from the sugar hill said, "Why don't you come over one day, and you can taste it and see if you like it?"

"Where are you from?- asked the salt ant.

"I live on the sugar hill."

"Sugar hill? What is sugar?"

"Oh, it's this wonderful, sweet-tasting stuff."

And the salt ant said, "I've never heard of that. I'm from the salt hill. I eat salt, and it makes me thirsty. But this sweet stuff sounds pretty good!"

So the salt ant decided, "Yeah, a new taste. That's a good idea."

They agreed on a date. The day came, and soon the salt ant was getting ready to go. "Hmm,- he thought, "I'm going all the way to this sugar hill. What if I don't like it? What if it tastes terrible? Then I'll be hungry. I know what I'm going to do. I'm going to bring some salt with me, so I'll have it in case I don't like sugar.- He put some salt in his mouth and took off.

When the salt ant arrived, the sugar ant was glad to see him. "Hey, how are you doing?"

"Oh, I'm good. I just can't wait to taste the sugar! It sounds great."

"Here. Taste it."

The salt ant put the sugar in his mouth, chewed on it a little bit, and said, "It tastes just like salt."

"Really?!"

"Yeah! It tastes just like my salt-there's no difference. I guess you call it ‘sugar' here, and we call it ‘salt' where I live. It's the same thing!!"

The sugar ant said, "I don't think so. Open your mouth. Let me take a look."

Sure enough, in the back of his mouth, there was some salt. So the sugar ant said, "Let me have that,- and he took it out. "Now, taste the sugar."

"Wow! Unbelievable. It's so different, so amazing! I love this stuff!! I'm moving!"

This would not have been the outcome had the salt remained in the salt ant's mouth. That's why I say, "Clean the plate and taste the dish as it should be tasted- not mixed with anything else. Taste it so you will know what its flavor is."

I am talking about something that is not a blend. It is not about your accomplishments. It is about you-you being alive. I know one thing, and it is almost ridiculously simple: The coming and the going of the breath is the most amazing thing happening in your life.

"What?" you might ask. "It isn't my new job? My new wife? My new husband? My new girlfriend? My new dog? It isn't my new car, my new suit, my new house?"

No.

You might think, "But there are a lot of wonderful things in this world.- Yes, I agree. There's a lot of beautiful scenery- beautiful mountains, clouds, lakes, oceans, beaches, and palm trees. There are beautiful fruits, flowers, birds, animals.

But you can only see, feel, touch, smell any of those because breath is coming in and out of you. Without the breath being present, someone could place as many flowers as they wanted under your nose, and they would get no response whatsoever.

WHAT IS GOOD FOR YOU?

If you have a bad memory, the problem is you don't know what you forgot. In certain circumstances, this can be blissful, but it's mostly the other way around. All that is truly good for you, you forget. All that is truly bad for you, you remember like it only happened two seconds ago.

Do you know what is good for you? Before you answer this question, I want to remind you that when you were very young, you knew what was good for you. You didn't think of it that way. You just went about doing it. What was it? You wanted to be happy. You really didn't care about anything else. You just wanted to be happy. That's all. It was a simple time.

It didn't matter if you were born into a poor family or a rich family. You just wanted to be happy. Then slowly, slowly, a lot happened. Step by step your attention was diverted from happiness to becoming a slave of the world. You were being tempered so that the world would be able to withstand you and you would be able to withstand the world. Responsibilities, discipline, and all that. Do this, do this, do that, do that. But you were not being disciplined toward what was your innate feeling from the beginning before anybody got hold of your brain.

I see this happening everywhere, and it irks me, but I can't do anything about it. A lot of people think things are not so bad. I'm not here to judge, but in my opinion, if ever a report card was given out on this world, it would have an F on it.

THE ANIMAL KINGDOM

I was watching a TV show where they depicted all the things that happen when they film the show. One guy was trying to get friendly with an elephant, and the elephant just picked him up with his trunk and shook him. Now, I'd like to see that guy pick up the elephant and shake him. There would be no contest. Porpoises can swim faster than we can. Sharks have evolved a perfect set of teeth. They don't ever have to see a dentist. If a tooth falls out, it's not a problem-a new one will grow. And sharks don't even need teeth-they can gum you to death.

We needed to invent an airplane to fly, but birds and insects didn't have to invent anything to fly. And we're so proud because we invented the GPS (Global Positioning System). Our sense of direction is pathetic. A pigeon that has a brain no bigger than our earlobe doesn't need a GPS. It has one built in. In the old days, people actually used pigeons to carry messages. Wherever they went, when the pigeons were released, they knew how to get back home.

Communication? We have invented cell phones. The whales must look at us and say, "I can talk halfway around the world, and it's free. I don't need cell towers; the signal is always there."

With so many of what we think of as our inventions, we are just barely reaching the minimal mark of the animal kingdom. And yet, most of those creatures feel free to do what they have to do. With all our inventions, we are so trapped that we have forgotten our basic fundamental desire to be content.

NO INTERPRETATIONS

In your life, you need peace. You need to be content. You need to be happy. You need to feel like the child that you once were, that you still are! No matter how many turns you have taken in your life or how many changes have happened, these fundamentals have not changed. If you need to discover something, discover your thirst to be happy and content.

Discover the joy that resides in the heart of every human being. Be fulfilled. Not by questions but by answers. For some people, this sounds strange. "What? No questions? Just answers? Aren't questions and answers always paired?" No. They are not. That's why people never find the answers. They just keep finding more questions.

Do you know how much interpretation goes on in the world? I watch the news, and they give me interpretations. They should just show me what happened and let me figure it out myself. But they say, "This is what was said. Let me give you my interpretation. This is what was meant." And I say, "Do I look deficient to you? Like I can't make up my own mind? Like I don't have a brain? Like I can't think?"

The whole point of what I talk about is for you to be able to drink the water yourself-not for somebody else to drink the water and tell you how good it was. You are the one who is thirsty, and you need to drink the water yourself. No explanations, no interpretations.

The whales must look at us and say,

"I can talk halfway around the world, and it's free.

I don't need cell towers; the signal is always there."

YOUR OWN IDEA

There are a lot of ideas piled on our shoulders that are not ours. They were placed there by other people. We love to pass on our ideas to others: "This is what it is; this is how it is.- Let go of these ideas. They are not yours. What is your own idea? It is the same one you've always had-to be happy. That's your idea. And you don't have to let go of that.

Maybe you have figured this out, but certain things make you feel really good. And if you made a list of all those things, guess what would be on the top? Peace. Peace makes you feel the best. Watching a good movie? That can make you feel okay. Comedy can make you feel good. Some people like massage. That makes them feel good. Some people like to eat ice cream.

But of all the things that we do in our lives to feel good, peace makes us feel the best. Contentment makes us feel the best. There are many things in this world that have strings attached. Contentment doesn't. Peace doesn't.

Sometimes people fall in love, and they go around saying, "I'm in love; I'm in love." Two months later, they say, "I hate that person." It can all just reverse itself.

Peace is not like that. Peace is always good. Where is it? It's already within you. Let me show you how to dig a well to access the water so that whenever you are thirsty, you will be able to quench your thirst.

I know one thing it's

almost

ridiculously

simple

the coming and going of the breath

is the most amazing thing happening in your life