Peace Is the Way - Deepak Chopra

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Peace Is the Way - Deepak Chopra

Tackling world peace Deepak Chopra’s way

It’s an incongruous image: Deepak Chopra, a leader of a spiritual movement that has introduced millions of American to be benefits of positive thinking, waving a cell phone in the air as he lists its capacities for destruction. I could be sitting anywhere in the world and move a few electrons from here, and I’ll interface with the power grid for the entire state of New York, “he says, “Or I’ll interfere with air traffic signals so no plane can land at JFK. What is military power going to do then?” Chopra hasn’t snapped.  He’s explaining what he sees as the ineffectiveness of conventional warfare in an age when terrorists can wreak havoc with-out a single armed troop. What’s need instead, he says, is a return to the ancient principle that peace begins within; Just as individuals can now perpetrate mass violence, individuals must also take responsibility for creating world peace. 

That’s the message of Chopra’s new book, “Peace Is the Way,” which offers seven daily practices that he says will create inner peace and, by extension, a more placid world.  Is it naïve to think enough people will adopt his ideas to make a difference? “We have to try.  If you ask anybody on the street, “Do you want peace of  mind in your life and in your relationship? nobody is going to say no,” he says. “Magnify that a few million times – that’s what we need.” It’s that steadfast optimism that has become Chopra’s trademark.  He has made a career of purveying hope, earning an estimated $10 million (D7.6 million) to $15 million (D11.5 million) by selling 20 million copies of his 40 books and operating a successful wellness center in California. His legions of fans include the Dalai Lama, former Nobel laureates Desmond Tutu, Betty Williams and Oscar Arias, and former U.N. Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, whose endorsements fill the first few pages of “Peace Is the Way.” True to his image as an unflappable guru Chopra – who’s about 58 but doesn’t remember exactly when he was born. It may surprise some, but Chopra is writing from personal experience.  In the mid-1980s, when he was chief of staff of New England Memorial Hospital near Boston, chopra was on the brink of an emotional breakdown.  He drank, smoked and was a self-described caffeine addict.  In the desperation, he turned to yoga and meditation to relieve his stress. He also traveled to India, where he was born and earned his medical degree. There, he met Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, a meditation teacher and spiritual leader who famously served as guru to the Beatles in 1960s.  the Maharishi introduced Chopra to Ayurvedic medicine, which uses herbal mixtures to stave off illness.  After returning to the United States, Chopra founded an Ayurvedic health center in 1985, the same year he quit his hospital job. As Chopra’s fame and financial success grew, he began to serer his ties to the Western medical establishment, letting his medical establishment, letting his medical licenses expire in Massachusetts and California.  The estrangement was mutual.  Some mainstream doctors dismissed Chopra’s mind-body approach as ineffective in treating disease, and in the early 1990s he was accused of making a backhanded pitch for his health center when he wrote an article in the Journal of American Medical Association about the benefits of herbal medicine.  Today, he maintains his goals are altruistic, and says he channels much of his earning to charity.

 

Source: Kathmandu Post, 25/1/2005

 

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