Sadhguru: In the last few years the volume of rain in Tamil Nadu has gone up by almost 100%. Excessive rains will turn the land into a desert much faster than no rain. You see almost all the cities in southern peninsula have flooded in the last few years including major cities like Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai and Bangalore. This is something unheard of in the past. Because of global warming, the southern peninsula will get more rain as days go by unless the reversal happens; which I don’t think will happen instantly. Even if we take corrective measures, it will take years for it to reverse itself.

I want people to become sensible that even if calamities happen they know how to handle their life sensibly.

The one beautiful thing that has happened in this country is that since 1964 we have never had a famine. Before that every two or three years there used to be horrible famines which took millions of lives. This is not because somebody did a yagna or a pooja, but because our agriculture got a little more organized. Instead of calling for the Gods to take care of our crops, we started taking care of our own crops. That’s the reason why in these 40 years or so we have not had any famine.

After the Gujarat earthquake in 2001, wherever I went this is one question kept coming up, “Such a huge calamity, what can we do? Are the Gods angry with us? Is there some spiritual process we can do to avoid earthquakes in this country?” An earthquake is not a calamity; it is just a natural process that happens everywhere.

For example, in California tremors happen almost daily. Nobody dies; people have organized themselves sufficiently to handle those situations. In India, one quake happens, hundreds and thousands of people die simply because we have over-populated this place and are absolutely unprepared for such a situation.

A few years ago, when I was in Nashville, that afternoon a tornado struck Nashville city. It hit the very center of the town. Within the city over 800 big trees, large trees were uprooted in a matter of 10 to 15 minutes. Almost every building in the downtown area had its windows blown out. Hundreds of cars were piled up because of the wind. I was on the road. About half a mile away the tornado was moving, we could see it. It was just blasting through homes, blowing them away like match sticks. Seeing this I thought hundreds of people must have been killed today. All the traffic sections, everything on the roads, trees on the roads were destroyed; total havoc.

It is just that we should learn to handle our personal lives, social lives, national situation and the world situation more sensibly.

The next day when the news came, only about seven people were missing and in two days time all the seven people came back. Not a single person was killed. If such a tornado stuck Coimbatore city, at least 50,000 people will be dead for sure. This is not because they are doing good yagnas and we are not doing our yagnas properly, this is simply because people are handling things sensibly, that’s all. We are still thinking Gods will run our country. It is not going to happen. The creator has done a wonderful job with creation. You cannot complain. So perfect and so exuberant, you could not have imagined a better creation. Unless we take this country into our hands from God’s hands, till then these things will go on happening.

I don’t want to stop these calamities. I want people to become sensible that even if calamities happen they know how to handle their life sensibly. You don’t need any God to live well. You just need a little brains. If you’re seeking something beyond life, you want to go to the very source of life, only then you talk about the divine.

If you want to experience the divine, first of all you as a human being have to become absolutely alive. So my work is just to make you alive. If you become truly alive, then the divine in you also becomes alive. Then these calamities will not matter for you, you will know how to handle them. It is just that we should learn to handle our personal lives, social lives, national situation and the world situation more sensibly. That is possible only if you know how to manage your mind and body sensibly. Otherwise we will not know how to manage this world sensibly.

Editor’s Note: Our nation is facing a calamitous situation of rapidly receding rivers. Isha Foundation is proposing a comprehensive river rejuvenation plan to reverse this decline and revive our rivers. Join the movement to save our rivers.

Save Our Dying Rivers

Photo courtesy of ignis @flickr