A reporter asked Maharishi, "Throughout history, man has gone through periods of misery and then joy, misery and then joy. And I was wondering whether it was part of Nature's plan that man should be miserable at times?"
Maharishi answered, "No, it is not the part of Nature; it is the part of our unnatural behavior. Nature has not designed this beautiful, perfect human nervous system to remain in agony. But if we eat something very hard, if we eat sand, and then the stomach will do quite a lot of revolting. And then the whole thing, hrrr.
"So there are certain things which are meant to be eaten, and other things are not for us to eat. They may be for horses to eat, for other animals to eat, but not for man. So each nervous system has its own function to perform.
"The human nervous system has the function to perform, and in performing, he has to enjoy the waves of happiness - great happiness, great joy, and great love. All of this is for man.
"But when we put some hard things, indigestible things, some poisons in our body, we strain our system of perception by extraordinary, loaded experiences. Then the system begins to break; and that is what we say, stressed.
"And these stresses cause abnormal behavior. And it is abnormality that comes to us as suffering. And abnormality is not designed or intended by Nature. Not knowing how to behave with this most precious and delicate machine, we start to misbehave with it."