I was sitting one day on a balcony, having my lunch. And this hawk came by and flew pretty close. And he was slick. Graceful! And he came in, and he did a turn—I mean, a sharp, ninety-degree turn—and it was something to behold.
These birds, they fly thousands of miles without polluting anything. Nature did that—no exhaust, no depleting of fuel, no noise. Silent, beautiful, spectacular, compatible, sustainable.
So, what is life to you? Do you understand its nuances; do you understand its beauty? Do you understand its possibilities; do you understand its potential? We have the possibility to be in clarity. We have the possibility to be in peace. We have the possibility to enjoy ourselves on this earth, for as long as we are alive.
Because that’s what it means to be alive, to have aspiration. To recognize what it means to be alive. That, at the same time that I understand the vulnerability of my existence, I also understand the strength of my existence.
So why am I telling you all this? I’m not here to put fear of death in you. That’s not what the story, my friends, is about! If the story was about death, then what’s the point of talking for over an hour about life?
The only thing that remains is the celebration of being alive. And in that celebration of existence, of that joy, of that beauty, that love, the love for being alive becomes everything.
It takes courage to have hope. Many people in their lives, they see things not going their way; they start losing hope—and the next thing you know, calamity.
But it takes courage to have hope; it takes courage to have clarity. And when there is that courage, (ha!) this is what’s beautiful.
If you get angry, you know what you will be rewarded by? Anger. Just think about it, right? You get angry, you’ll be rewarded by anger. What is the reward of anger? Either you will get more angry…. Maybe you begin by being angry with your friend, and the next thing you know, you’re also angry with yourself, for being angry at your friend.
Anger rewards anger. Anger begets anger. Fear rewards fear—you get afraid of being afraid. And that’s when it really sets in. It’s more than the boogeyman in the closet. Now you’re afraid to be in the room; you’re afraid to be alive. “Oh my God….”
But what is the reward of hope? It brings you more hope. What is the reward of joy? It brings you more joy. What is the reward of happiness? It brings you more happiness. What is the reward of knowledge? It brings you more knowledge.
What is the reward of being content? It brings you more contentment. What is the reward of knowing? It brings you more knowing. This is how it is.
What is an obstacle? We think somebody else puts an obstacle there. But understand that it is… Everything that you do—everything that you do, everything!—is going to have positive and negative consequences. Everything.
You buy a car? You don’t think so, because you’re excited, getting a new car. And you see a need: “I need a car; I’m getting a new car. So exciting.” You don’t see the negative consequences of that car—you don’t!
You get married? Everything you do. Everything you do.
So, human beings dream, and they have their plan, and their plan is, “Yeah, we’re going to get married, and we’re going to grow old together,” and ta, da-da, da-da, da-da. Sometimes it doesn’t work like that.
Every one of these consequences is pre-charged in your actions. They may happen; they may not happen. But the fact that they can happen, you have just triggered it by doing what you are doing. I mean, everything has a consequence.
And we call these “obstacles, problems.” And you know… And so you get married; you have a child; you’re all excited about your child. And the child comes, and “Oh, it’s so cute, and….” And you have to realize what you’re in for. You think that child has brought you a lot of joy, but that child can break your heart!
You don’t think so…and you know, nobody brought it up to you, but absolutely. Every single possibility is now in that path; every obstacle…everything that can go wrong exists—and it can hit you.
And you have to have clarity. Without that clarity, you become weird. You become angry; you become frustrated; you become confused. You lose all sense.
First, before you do anything—I mean, you go anywhere, do anything, talk to anyone— “Am I clear?” And you have to have kindness. You have to have understanding. Then you function normally. And when you function normally, you feel good! You actually….
Well, what a consequence. I mean, geez! So, when you’re clear, you actually feel good. That’s what clarity does for you.
There was a guy, and his job was to go every day to the mountain. And he would cut a piece of rock. He would take the rock, bring it back home, and he would make little things from that rock. He would make mortar and pestle, small statues—and he would sell them. And this is how he made his living.
So, one day he was very sad. And he was walking along the street, and he was just sad with his situation—because he saw no future and he did not like his lifestyle. So, he, heard noise coming from behind the wall; he heard some noise coming. So he stood on his tiptoes and looked.
And it was a beautiful house! And they were having a party. And there were servants. And there were guests! And there was music! And people were dancing! And he went, “Wow! The person who lives in this house, he must be really powerful. I … I want to be like him!
So he looked up and he prayed. “God, I want to be like him.” It just so happened that that day God was listening. And God said, “Okay!” And he snapped his finger. And the man had become rich!
And he said, “Now, this is more like it! I like this. I am powerful! I have servants! I have a house! I have rich friends! Ah, this is really good!” And he was enjoying it.
One day a procession went by and he heard all the noise, so he came out of the house and he looked. And it was the king and he was going. And all the rich men were lined up bowing to the king. And he said “Wow! This king is more powerful than me! God, I want to be like the king.” Also that day God just happened to be listening. Just like that, he was the king. Big army, lots of servants, everybody paying respects to the king.
One day, he came out to his balcony in the morning and he saw the sun rising. And as the sun rose, all the birds started to wake up. All the animals started to stir. It’ s like, “Wow! This sun is more powerful than me!”
So he looks up, prays, “I want to be like the sun.” Just like that—he’s the sun.
And one day he’s shining really bright; it’s really hot—and he sees there’ s something between him and the earth and he looked, and it was a cloud. And the wind was blowing and moving the cloud. “Wow! The wind is more powerful than me! I want to be the wind.” He becomes the wind. He blows! Nothing can stop him—he goes wherever he wants! He’s blowing, blowing, blowing, blowing, and blowing!
And all of a sudden one day he’s stopped! “What’s stopping the wind?” He looks—and it is a big mountain. “Ah! I want to be the mountain. More powerful.” He becomes the mountain.
Very happy. Most powerful. Mighty! Strong! And one day he notices that somebody is cutting the mountain! And he goes, “Who can be more powerful than this mountain? Cutting the mountain?” And he looks and way down there … is a stonecutter just like him, cutting away at the mountain.
In this moment he realized that all along he has been powerful—but he did not know it. Same thing for all of us.