We can never get enough positive reinforcement as we find our way along the twisting road of our existence – especially in today’s challenging times! Maybe that’s why the most popular social media posts are motivating quotes and cute cat pictures. We’re hardwired for happiness and these texts and images resonate in a positive way to put a smile on our face and focus our attention in a more optimistic direction. And then there are those inspiring individuals whose words directly touch our heart and remind us of the possibility to feel a place of fulfilment within.
One such person is Prem Rawat, the renowned educator and internationally bestselling author. He’s been speaking on the subject of personal peace for over fifty years and has now gathered his practical wisdom into an insightful new book Hear Yourself – How to Find Peace in a Noisy World. It captures his down to earth approach for learning about one’s self on a journey that leads to clarity, contentment and kindness. His unique observations about life, conveyed with a special humor, helps us to tune out the noise from the countless inputs that are constantly bombarding us and more importantly, the seemingly non-stop internal chatter that also sidetracks us from enjoying each moment.
He describes in the book how we grow up surrounded by external distractions and were never shown how to connect inside. As we get caught up in the ‘busyness’ of life, trying to be successful, we don’t get to enjoy who we are. And using the analogy of on-line platforms he asks: “What is the world of social media insideyou like? Do you Follow you? Do you Like you? Do you know how to be your own Friend? If you can’t be a friend to yourself, can you really be a friend to anyone else?”.
One intriguing concept he uses to describes the process of discovery is “Our path will take us through mindfulness and heartfulness to peacefulness”. He explains that peace is not a luxury but a necessity and it’s something we all have inside that just needs to be uncovered. And when we connect with that, we can find strength to deal with life’s challenges and also start to influence those around us in a positive way, helping to create a better world.
The book is filled with many quotes and traditional teaching stories, touching on a variety of subjects that relate to what’s going on in the world today. Approaching the subject of inner peace from different directions, Prem shows that we all have personal resources that we can tap into to help see what’s important in our life and shift our focus from the noise that is constantly diverting our attention to a place of serenity. Some of the chapters reflecting this are: Unburden for Rough Times, Free Yourself through Forgiveness and Love in the Moment.
His father was a prominent teacher in India who shared a practical wisdom, descending from an ancient lineage. After his father’s death, Prem left his homeland at the age of thirteen to begin what has become a lifetime of travelling to carry forward the message that peace within is possible. I first met him when we were both teenagers in Los Angeles and his friendship, inspiration and support as a life guide over the years have been invaluable. His message of the possibility of personal peace has inspired me to live with a full heart in the middle of this sometimes-crazy world. And now with this book, his distinctive message can hopefully touch people that they may start a rewarding journey of self-discovery.