Yogi and mystic, Sadhguru, looks at what it takes to develop a relationship with Truth, and gives us four simple ideas to move towards the truth of life.

Sadhguru: Truth has a relationship with us, otherwise we could not exist. But as of now, you don’t have a relationship with Truth – it is a one-way love affair from the other end. Whatever you are going through in life, if you don’t have a love affair with Truth, it will feel like life is raping you on a daily basis. If you don’t have a deep involvement with something, you will feel stuck and miserable. One morning, you may wonder why even get up. But if in some way you touch something that is not created by you, if you touch Truth, suddenly you want to be up and on it.

#1 Kill the lies!

Developing a relationship with and moving towards the Truth of life means that which is a lie must be killed. Just spend a minute to identify at least one thing in your life that is not necessary and kill that today. When I say “kill,” don’t start thinking about your boss, your mother-in-law, or your neighbor. You must kill something about you that is unnecessary for your life. Something like “I will kill my anger” would be too general. If you kill something, it should be dead and not come back again tomorrow.

Identify something specific that you will be better off without, where you can take a concrete step today – it does not matter how small it is. Do not go for something general like, “I will not live in the past. I will not live in the future. I will live in the moment,” because this is not something that you can achieve by determination – this requires consciousness. Choose one specific little thing that you will not do anymore, no matter what. It could be something like, “I will not speak angry words.” “I will not be angry” would be a lie, because this is not yet in your control.

Decide for something that you can do and that you will do. This is how to transform your life – by taking small steps. But you should actually do it – it should not pop up again. If you want to move towards the truth of life, your investment in that which is not true has to be reduced. It may not all vanish immediately, but you must reduce it step-by-step.

#2 Break the status quo

Look at life in terms of what can be changed and do something about it. Crying about things that you cannot change is a sure strategy to remain at status quo. If you reduce the investment in falsehood, Truth will rise by itself. At least once a month, every full moon day, consciously look at this and identify one small thing about yourself that you want to change. Like, “Every time before I eat, I will spend 10 seconds in gratitude for this food which is going to become a part of me.” Or, “Every time I use anything that is an essential element of my life, like the soil, the water, the air, and everything else around me, I will save 1% of it.” Or, “I will see to it that I only put on my plate what I can eat.” These small things will change your life and set you apart.

#3 Devote yourself to something

The simplest ways to fix the fundamental fabric of your life and move towards Truth is, either you must choose awareness, which is much harder work, or you must choose devotion, which is easier but hard in a different way. Devotion is a heartless thing. Your heart is not yours anymore. You have thrown it across the universe, but the pangs of devotion burn within you all the time. If you keep the fire of devotion on, awareness will arise.

Essentially, devotion is a tool to become devoid of yourself. If the fire of devotion starts burning in you and I give you a little technique, it will function as a fantastic process. If this basis is not there, no technique or method will really transform you. Whether it is Inner Engineering, Bhava Spandana, or Samyama, just appreciating the method or technique is not enough. Only if you set the fundamental fabric of life in place, it will work wonderfully.

A lot of people have an allergy to the word “devotion” because they think devotion means going to the temple, church, or whatever. This is not what I mean by devotion. Has any man or woman ever done anything significant in their lives without being devoted to what they are doing? Without devotion, whatever you do will remain mediocre. Truly great things happen only out of someone’s absolute devotion to what they are doing.

This does not only go for the spiritual process. Whether it is science, sports, art, music, or whatever else – unless people dedicate their lives to it, nothing significant has ever happened. Whatever you think is worthwhile, whatever you see as the highest in your life, devote yourself to that. If you set this necessary fabric for yourself, I can make one stitch, and it will become a great design.

Poem

Lustful looks of one who lacks love.
Loving touch of a heart that is soaked
in the infinite will. The tenderness of
heartless devotion. Vast beyond the
measure of an ocean. Barrenness of
one who knows not the grace of love and devotion
All this and more are the ways of the creature called
human. Choose my beloved to be an ocean of devotion

– Sadhguru

Editor’s Note: Sadhguru offers Isha Kriya, a free, online guided meditation that helps bring health and wellbeing. Daily practice of this simple yet effective 12-minute process can transform one’s life.

This article is based on an excerpt from the December 2013 issue of Forest Flower. Pay what you want and download. (set ‘0’ for free). Print subscriptions are also available.