Question: When a person asks you a question, you listen to him carefully, even if he speaks for a long time and is boring or talks nonsense. Why listen to the person’s opinion, and for what? One can tell that it’s important for you.
Answer: At times, I suddenly interrupt someone. I feel what a person needs to experience: either a somewhat scornful attitude from my side or on the contrary, collaboration, support, and respect, which would help him either from the good or the bad side so that he would consequently begin to respect himself, and so on. There are many reasons for my differentiated relationship towards everyone.
You observe me among the three hundred students with whom I have been building spiritual relationships throughout many years. These are not everyday, ordinary relationships, but on the teacher-student level.
I have a very strong motivation to push a person, to direct him, to lead him out of a state of descent, or on the contrary, to support, to strengthen him, to not let him descend—today, and tomorrow it may be different. All of this is very much “alive” and it is dictated by one’s inner situation at a given moment, meaning in what state a person is in and what is happening to him. It’s impossible to give a formula for this.
The motivation comes from inner feelings. Like an artist in a theater, getting into character, reckons that he has to perform one move here and another one there, and they let him do this because this comes from within him. It’s the same here.
Question: At the courses of integral education, is it important to listen to a person’s opinion, let him have his say? How is this regulated?
Answer: It depends upon what stage the group is in. If the group is at the beginning stage, the chatter may take hours. The group is being built gradually, people are getting used to each other. At first, we do not forbid breaking the group into parts or pulling it together. If the people become tired, we take breaks so that they can have a cup of coffee, smoke a cigarette, and so on.
Besides, at the very first lessons, entrance and exit is free for everyone. Suppose a person wants to relax a little, or something is pressuring, obliging, or stressing him, or maybe he remembered something that the situation may have brought up. A very smooth, liberal relationship is necessary here.
The only condition is that a person must not bother others. This is obligatory. That’s why all telephones are switched off so there won’t be any external distractions. We are trying to smooth out everything as much as possible. In everything else, each person enters the study in his own way and at his own rate.
From “A Talk on Integral Education” #13, 12/18/11