One thing I enjoy in life is making new friends, as it leads to new discoveries, a whole new perspective to life. It is decades of different circumstaces, different understandings leading to different discoveries that we gain in one new friendship. Now I look at shri shi Ravi Shankar as the first new friend that I have managed to make in this new place. I was starved for a friend in a new place and it was a wonderful coincidence that my husband should suggest that I do the Art of Living course as it fell exactly in the week that my parents came visiting us and so could take care of my kids while I attended the course. In the class I made a new friend... in shri shri Ravi Shankar though I have'nt seen him ofcourse . He has shared his understanding and self research in the study of breath.People were surprised that I a christian was attending a "Hindu" course. And I was so surprised about their surprise! What in the world is "Hindu" or "non-christian" about breathing a bit differently!! I was later again surprised when, while researching on the breathing techniques,I discovered that some christian sections do not consider it very proper to undertake these classes! I feel rather that it is essential to understand the one thing that we definitely do as living entities which is to breathe. If we can take medicines to relieve stress and depression and that is not 'non-christian', then definitely using understanding of breath to relieve depression and stress is definitely not non-christian. We attend anything in any class to take what we want and have the option to ignore what we don't subscribe to.
Another point that I would like to share is "my new friend's" understanding about the positive and negative things in life. He reiterates what Indian scriptures have to say, that there is no experience of positive without the experience of negative. Hence one cannot be without the other. Duality is the nature of everything.
Though difficult to remember in negative circumstances one cannot argue against the truth to it. In positive circumstances we recognize the coincidences etc that lead to the good events. In negative circumstances we wonder whom to blame for it.We think 'maybe if this had not been done, maybe if I had said something else, maybe if I had not surrendered to my feelings, maybe if my nature was different.. things would have been different?'. Why is it that we often accord God for the good in life and want to blame ourselves for all the Bad! A moment has a power of it's own that sometimes makes us react uncharacteristic to our nature but though what it leads to may be read by our limited mental faculties as negative,but if we are aware, we can realize that the negative event would have changed our direction to new discoveries in life, to new experiences, and all 'so very positive' which would have been inaccessible without the nudge of the negative.
It is therefore possible to feel blessed to have the negative in life, but it does not mean we would be smiling through that rough patch of negative. The same way that positive in life brings smile and laughter..negative brings tears and anger and suffering. But we have our knowledge, like a log we hold on to in the flood,to help us live and pass through the 'negative' gift in our life..