Being Human is a Possibility, Not a Limitation

During this conversation with Sadhguru, renowned cardiac surgeon Dr. Devi Shetty asks for advice on performing well amidst worries about the patient and consequences to his life and family.


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During this conversation with Sadhguru, renowned cardiac surgeon Dr. Devi Shetty asks for advice on performing well amidst worries about the patient and consequences to his life and family. Sadhguru explains, as long as we are doing our best, being “just human” is truly a great possibility.


Full Transcript:

Devi Shetty: As a doctor, as a surgeon, we are involved with major surgical interventions. Unfortunately in our business, this is the only business in the world where a customer can die.

Sadhguru: No, no, taxi drivers

Devi Shetty: It’s however much you try Sadhguru to dissociate ourselves, when you are operating you need to concentrate and do the job but what comes to your mind is the young wife, young children waiting outside. The margin of error is very small – few millimeters here and there. Then you think what are the consequences on them, then you start thinking about when you are a kid, if something happens to your father where you would have been. We are after all human beings, we are always torn between what we do to somebody and what happ… what could have happened to our own life? It’s a constant tension, how do we overcome it? I’ve been in this profession for more than thirty years, still I haven’t yet mastered the art of dissociating myself from the patient’s life.

Yes, when you are given a certain responsibility which could determine the shape and scope of people’s lives…

Devi Shetty: Yes.

Sadhguru: …it’s a big thing to carry on one’s shoulders. But the important thing is that somebody has chosen to place such a responsibility in our hands, it’s a tremendous privilege. If we execute it, can we do the best? We can never do the best but we can do the best that we can do – always with life. Is it the best? No, we are doing our best. If we lack in that then we have a serious problem. But if we’re doing our best in everything that we do, we know it is not the best but it’s our best, we’ve not spared anything, that’s good. And above all when you refer to yourself as human being – “after all we are human beings,” this is a big problem. This will reduce our best – that is people are always using the word human being as a limitation, as a compulsiveness, as a small thing. We are not referring to the word or term human being as a possibility. Instead of saying, “we are just human beings,” why don’t we say, “we are human beings” we’re great, we are doing so many things, we can replace the damn heart

Devi Shetty: Yes.

Sadhguru: Isn’t it?

Devi Shetty: Yes, yes.

Sadhguru: Now replacing a part of a machine is not a big thing. It’s like this, shall I tell you a joke? It’s okay? It just came to me when I saw you So a cardiac surgeon, took his Aston Martin which was givi… giving him a little bit of trouble, engine trouble to the mechanic. So he said by evening he’ll have it ready. After his hospital job he went there to pick up his car. It was not ready. The mechanic was swaggering around a little bit and he said, “Hey Doc! Why is it, I do the car’s engines, you do people’s engines” after all a pumping thing, you know…

Devi Shetty: Yes, Yes.

Sadhguru: “…why is it that you earn in millions, I just make a few bucks? Come tomorrow doc, we’ll fix it.” So the doctor looked at him and said, “Try to fix the engine when it’s running.” That’s a important thing, you got to keep it running and fix it

Devi Shetty: Yes, yes.



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