Indian spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar led a meditation session with US lawmakers on Capitol Hill that House member Jan Schakowsky termed as a “beautiful and self-empowering experience.”
The event highlighted how meditation can help resolve several concerns particularly Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among America’s veterans and youth issues.
“The secret of meditation is in letting go,” said Shankar to the gathering, which also consisted of war veterans and policy leaders.
“Stress arises when we have too much to do, and not enough energy or time to do it. We can neither change time nor the number of things we need to do.
“So, the only option is to increase energy levels. And this can be accomplished through breathing techniques and meditation,” he said.
Shankar’s “Project Welcome Home Troops” (PWHT) programme in the US has helped more than 1000 veterans experience reduction in PTSD symptoms, and re-adapt to civilian life, through breathing techniques and meditation.
The event also highlighted the Indian guru’s youth programmes, which aim to equip youth with practical tools and life skills to manage stress and emotions.
When asked about the secret behind his philosophy, Shankar said, “What we really look for in life is happiness. Societal progress should not only be measured based on GDP but also GDH (Gross Domestic Happiness).”
“When an individual is able to deal with his/her negative emotions in a healthy way, he/she can be truly happy,” he said.
Among over a dozen lawmakers attending the meditation session was the lone Indian-American House member Ami Bera.