Latha: How do we realize that every situation is an opportunity for learning?
Amma: We should see that learning has no beginning and end. Learning is a process. When you see learning as a process, you will come to know the difference between studying and learning. Life is not an object of study, but rather, life is a stream of constant learning. But this learning is different than intellectual knowledge gained by study – which makes you knowledgeable, but which is limited in breadth and depth, requiring that you study more and more and more, without end. For study, you need the head, you need thinking, you need the intellect, you need analysis, you need memory. In contrast, learning is an experience. Life itself is an organic process, not a machine. You cannot predict anything in life – there is only one opportunity in life: to live is to learn and to learn is to live. Learning and living are the same. If you want to really live life then learning happens. You must engage your total being to learn, and in doing so, learning makes you subtler so that you can see things more deeply. This clarity of perception will transform your experience from knowing about life to truly living life.
Both the question and answer are within you, and in every step, you are answerable, in every step you are a solution. Learning always keeps you in the center of the situation. The moment you are in the center of the situation, you are the solution, you are in freedom, and nothing can control you. However, when you are in the periphery of the situation, you waste your time and energy studying and analyzing the situation, which will never answer your questions. You may think of hundred ways to solve your problem, but the problem remains unsolved because studying and analyzing the situation creates conflict, and a never-ending list of do’s and don’ts, right and wrongs. Learning is beyond all conflicts. Learning is not a subject, nor an object. Learning is life, and living life is learning, and though it is a process with no end, you see the end in you. In learning, you become one with yourself. There is fulfillment in learning, and you feel that you are growing with every step you take. In learning, you feel that you are in an ever-evolving process of becoming life, beyond life, an infinite life that encompasses everyone and everything. Learning fulfills you totally; studying does not. Therefore, approach a Guru to learn with your full being; don’t go to study or understand his teachings.