Pournami – An Opportunity to Rise

Sadhguru speaks about the significance of the full moon and the impact it has on the human system. These days have always been held as sacred in the Indian tradition, because whatever the quality of a person, it naturally gets enhanced on a full moon day or pournami.


Sadhguru speaks about the significance of the full moon and the impact it has on the human system. These days have always been held as sacred in the Indian tradition, because whatever the quality of a person, it naturally gets enhanced on a full moon day or pournami.

Sadhguru: So, how are you today? After all, moon is a satellite for this planet and helplessly strung to this planet and making its rounds. So, what is the significance? Why these full moons and no moons are held significant? Probably many of you know that…you may not know – I hope you do not know this by experience. You should know that if someone is mentally disturbed on a full moon day, on a new moon day they get little more disturbed than usual. You’re aware of this? Hmm? Happens to you? (Laughter) Sir, yourself, you just be with me, don’t worry about the camera. (Laughs) So, it doesn’t happen to you but it does happen to somebody. So, it is not that moon instigates madness, it is just that when the moon takes certain positions it heightens whatever you are. If you are loving you become more loving. If you are joyful you become more joyful. If you are blissful you become much more blissful. If you are little insane you become much more insane. If you are meditative you become far more meditative. It just enhances everything that you are. So, we considered these days important so that you consciously create the right kind of quality in you so that it gets enhanced. Today is Poornami, in the morning you get up and you be in a certain way, you create a certain quality in you so that by evening that quality is enhanced. So, whatever the qualities that you are, so that you start engineering it more consciously then being a victim of unconscious eruptions within yourself. So, the moon is not…does not make you mad or meditative, it just enhances whatever you are. You know, even the ocean goes mad? If you… if you are a swimmer on the beach it’s madness for you but if you are a skipper of a large vessel it is a boon for you (Laughs) but something is happening. The very ocean is trying to rise. When the very ocean is trying to rise, the situation may be conducive for you also to rise probably, if you are willing to make use of it. And moon’s influence on human life is far more than that.

There are many ways to look at this… One thing is, the cycles of the moon and the cycles within a feminine body are very directly connected. The very fundamentals of your reproductive nature – that means the very fundamentals of our birth – is somehow connected to the cycles of the moon. Every…not in the eastern part of the world but generally in the west every religion and every French religion has their own doomsday theory. Some people believe the… (Laughs) the most popular one is there will be hellfire or there will be a flood. Some people believe everything is going to get frozen in the ice but everybody has their own doomsday theory, somewhere there is a kind of a fetish about this. You want to know the yogic doomsday theory? You want to?

Participants: Yes

Sadhguru: There are disciples of doom. (Laughs) Human existence on this planet will go away not because of a flood or a fire or anything else. It is a scientific fact today every year the moon’s orbit is moving away from the earth by about an inch and half – it’s a scientific fact. They say approximately in another 28000 years’ time… in 28000 years’ time the moon will slip out of the orbit because if calculating one and half inches per year, if it travels a certain distance the earth’s gravity will not be able to hold it and moon will slip out. Once the moon slips out, the woman’s body will lose its cycles and women will become infertile and human beings will not be able to reproduce and they will just peter out. Planet will do great, (Laughter) okay? You and me gone but the planet will do great, no question about that. So, the influence of the moon on our daily life is…there is a large influence, that is why in the eastern cultures, particularly in India, we drew two kinds of calendars. For mundane affairs we have a solar calendar. For all the other subjective aspects of our life we have a lunar calendar.

To do anything with yourself, to be aware where the moon is could be useful because it creates different types of qualities and energies in the system. If one is aware he could make use of it. In English language moon is lunar. If you take a step further you become a lunatic. (Laughs) So, generally the influence of the moon is considered illogical. Anything illogical generally in the West got labeled as madness or insanity, but here we always saw the limitations of logic. Logic is very useful to conduct the material aspect of your life. If you want to do your business, you want to build a house, you want to do all the things in the world you have to be logical; there is no other way to conduct it. This is the problem with us – to conduct the outside we call the divine, to conduct the inward we try to go at it logically; it…both won’t work for us. This is one of the biggest problems in India is the country is still in God’s hands, this is the biggest problem. Unless you take it into your hands it’ll never happen the way we want it. It’s right now in God’s hands. Maybe this is what he wants but this is not what we want, isn’t it? If you want your life to run according to your agenda you better take your life into your hands, isn’t it? If you don’t mind going by God’s agenda that’s fine but that’s not true. Even if you go to the temple you are going there only to advise God what he should do today. (Laughter) Yes or no? No? I hope he doesn’t listen to you (Laughs) because if he’s seeking advice from you and running this planet I don’t want to be here. (Laughter)

So, when it comes to subjective dimensions of life, if you are not willing to step beyond the limitations of your logic then nothing ever will happen. If I ask you to close your eyes and do something very simple, you sit here and calculate “Okay, if I do this what will I get? What will happen? This, this, this…” – nothing will ever happen to you! If anything beautiful has to touch you in your life, if meditation has to touch you, if love has to touch you, if bliss has to touch you, you must be illogical. People who seem to be little crazy – I won’t say insane, little crazy – they seem to be having a better time with life. Don’t you see this? Everything is logically correct but you have a long face because everything is correct with you. (Laughs) You are correct but life doesn’t work like that. If you wake up in the morning… tomorrow morning when you wake up, lying down in your bed, think 100% logically. Do not think of all those beautiful moments in your life, do not go back to any experience which matters to you, do not think of the birds in the sky, the sunrise, the flowers in your garden, your child’s face or a loving moment in your life, don’t look at any of that, just think logically. Now, you actually have to get out of bed, that’s not a small feat. Hmm? Is it a small feat? It’s not a small feat. And then you have to go to the toilet, then you have to eat, work, eat, work, eat, go to sleep. Again tomorrow morning same thing.

Cut out the experiential aspect, think of your life 100% logically and see you have to do the same damn things for the next 30, 40, 50 years, and if you do yoga, it gets elongated. (Laughter) It gets stretched further, you know. The same nonsense everyday, everyday, everyday just think logically, is it worth it? Is it worthwhile? Is it worthwhile? No. Moments of extreme logic are moments of suicide and all of you have been committing suicide like this but you don’t do anything these days in one shot, you do everything in installments. You are committing suicide also in installments. I want you to just look back – if you are unable to look back, when you go home today I want you to rummage into your old pictures and see when you were 5, 6-six years of age how your face was, it was like this… (Gestures – Laughter) Now, (Gestures) (Laughs) it’s getting longer and longer.

I was speaking to a group of people at the Princeton University and I saw a huge crowd, faces were particularly long. You know, in the universities somehow the faces are longer; maybe it’s the weight of knowledge or something. (Laughter) And then I asked ‘What’s happened? All these people over 30 years of age, why are they all carrying these long faces like this?’ One lady stood up and said, “They’re all married.” (Laughter) Oh, I thought people are getting married to multiply their joy. If they are getting married to multiply their misery I think we need a law (Laughs) to stop this because every human being on this planet either consciously or unconsciously seeing how to live joyfully in his own way, isn’t it? Whichever way he knows best, in that way he is attempting. Isn’t it so? Without exception, every human being is striving to be joyful. Some people might have given up but even for him that’s the aspiration. When everybody’s striving for…to live joyfully, if you are walking on the street infecting people with misery with a miserable face it must be on the penal code, isn’t it? No? No? You are working against humanity. (Laughs) If you walk on the street with a miserable face you are actually sabotaging the fundamental aspiration of human beings. Isn’t it so? It should be on the penal code or no?

Participants: Yes.

Sadhguru: Then who… whom to keep out of the prison? (Laughter) We must build something for people who are joyful. (Laughs)

So, if you have to step out of your logic, unless you do it in a certain way, it sounds senseless because right now your idea of sense is only logical, isn’t it? But please see, the most beautiful moments in your life have happened to you only when you kept your logic aside a little bit. Yes? Logically examine your love affair and see, it’ll be the most stupid thing you can do, really. Yes or no? Maybe it’s the most beautiful thing in your life but logically dissect your love affair and look at it, it is the most idiotic thing you can do but it might have become the most beautiful experience in your life. So, the logical dimension of life and the experiential possibility of who you are-are diametrically opposite. So, in yoga we look at you as two aspects – the sun and the moon. You have seen the symbolism? You have heard of the word Hata… Hata yoga? Hata means… ha means sun, ta means moon. So, these are the two dimensions. There are various symbolisms for this. You have seen Shiva being represented as half man, half woman, all these things to suggest there is a logical dimension to you and there’s a dimension beyond that. If you do not explore both you will be an incomplete human being or you will be only half alive. Many of you studied science in school, college? You did dissection, you cut open those cockroaches and frogs? Hmm? You pinned them in the hair and you open them up because you wanted to look at their heart. Nobody else opened their heart to you (Laughter) at that time…at that time I’m saying. (Laughs) And being half alive is a very painful thing. Isn’t it so? Yes? If you are dead it’s good. If you are fully alive it’s fabulous but if you are half alive everything is a torture.

Just look at human life on this planet and see, is there some aspect of life that human beings are not suffering? Hum? Is there some aspect of life that human beings are not suffering? If they are poor they suffer their poverty. You make them affluent they suffer that. If they are uneducated they suffer that. If you make them educated they suffer that. If they are unmarried they suffer that. You get them married… (Gestures – Laughter) If they don’t have children they suffer that. If they have children they suffer that. So, it looks like you are suffering every aspect of life, so let’s offer you death today – you will suffer that. So, what to do with you? So, you are suffering every aspect of life means…it does not mean there is something wrong with life, it just means you are only half alive to life; only one part of you is alive, the other part is yet to become alive. Being half alive is always torturous. It doesn’t matter where you are, in what kind of situation you are, if you are half alive it is torturous, isn’t it?

So, when we say a spiritual process or yoga or whatever, what we are looking at is how to become a fullfledged life process, not a half life process. Just the body is alive, that’s not good enough. Everything in you should be aflame, only then you will see…, whether something is happening or nothing is happening, it’s worth being here. If you sit here, it’s worth being here. If you open your eyes it’s worth being here, if you close your eyes it’s worth being here otherwise whatever is happening it’s not worth being here simply because only a part of you is alive, the other part has… is yet to come alive. So, the moon… today being a full moon, the clouds are hiding it but don’t worry, whether you can see it or not the influence of the moon is very much there. Because, on a no moon day or a new moon day the influence of the moon is far more than on the full moon day. So, whether you perceive something or do not perceive something is not the issue; the influence is anyway there. It happened like this – two morons were planning a vacation and one of them said, “Don’t you think it’ll be really exciting if we have a vacation on the sun?” The other one thought and said, “Yes but I think it’ll be very hot.” So this one said, “Don’t worry, we’ll go in the night.” (Laughter) So, just because you can’t see something that doesn’t mean it’s not on. You can’t see the air that you breathe but it’s very much on, keeping you on. Isn’t it so? So, the cloud is on, you can’t see the moon, you don’t worry, the full moon is on. (Laughs)

And when you go logically with your mind, the logic is always trying to make a deal with everything. “What’s the best thing for me? What’s the best thing for me? What’s the best thing for me?” People… let’s say you are on the verge of getting married “Who is the best man for me? Who is the best woman for me? Who is the best one?” You search the whole world – you won’t find the best one because there isn’t a best one. Even people who are married to gods… even Krishna’s wife complained. She had more complaints than anybody else. (Laughs) There is no best one. If you put yourself into something, it could become a wonderful thing but it’ll not be the best one because the logical mind is always seeing how to have a good deal with everything. But there are certain aspects of life where you cannot make a deal. The subjective dimensions, there is no deal. If you try to make a deal, nothing will work for you.

So, why I’m… I am preparing you to be able to simply sit for a few minutes, simply sitting here, nothing need to happen, simply sitting here. “What will I get?” You won’t get anything, is it okay? Hmm? It happened once – a hotshot CEO from United States, who was the biggest marketing company for tea in United States, got a bright idea. So, along with his secretary he hoped on to…those were the days when Concorde was flying between US and Europe. He hopped on to a Concorde and four and half hours he was in Europe and he got an appointment with Pope. He went to Pope and said, “See, Holy Father” – pacing up and down because they can’t sit, you know… hotshot. (Laughs) So, pacing up and down said, “Holy Father, I have a deal for you.” “What is it my son?” He said, “If you can just do one line, just 10 second shot, I’ve come with my camera, you just have to do a 10 second shot. All you have to say is ‘Dear God, thank you for the daily tea.’ Just that’s all, 10 second shot. I will donate quarter million to the church. I am sure you can use it to do God’s work.”

Pope looked at him and said, “Quarter million is more than welcome but I don’t think I can say this.” Then he started pacing up and down little faster and said, “Okay, half a million, let’s go, let’s shoot now,” pulling out the camera. He said, “Son, I don’t think. The deal is very attractive – half a million dollars for 10 seconds but I don’t think I can do this.” “Okay, hey Pope man, look here…” from Holy Father… (Laughter) “Look here, this is it, this is the last offer, one million dollars. 10 seconds shot, just say it.” Pope looked at him and said, “No, I cannot do this.” Then he said, “That’s it!” He threw his hands up and walked out and they hurriedly got into the Concorde and biting his finger nails off, he looked at his secretary and said, “I wonder how much the bread people are paying.” (Laughter)

So, everything is a deal, it doesn’t work like that. No deal… “Okay, I have come, what will I get?” You will get nothing. Can you simply be here, that’s the question. So, the moon represents that illogical dimension of your life where you do things, simply. Nothing need to happen, no calculation about what should happen. Why this moon or the lunar got extended into being a lunatic is because certain societies in the world considered anything illogical as insanity. Here in India we refer to the moon as soma. Soma means intoxication. There is a huge difference between intoxication and insanity but people who have not been intoxicated they will always think intoxication is insanity. So, shall we get drunk? (Laughter) Oh, these people should have been somewhere else in the evening. (Laughter) You see Shiva carrying the soma in his head… as a decoration on his head and you have heard all those stories, he’s always intoxicated. This does not mean he was going to the local bar. Just on the moonbeams – if you know how to use this, the full moon day is a day when you can get really intoxicated.

You know, when we first started the center in Coimbatore, we’re into the forest, in the reserve forest and we put them through certain processes where people are absolutely drunk! No wine, just divine. (Laughter) Completely drunk to a point their legs are rubbery, they can’t walk straight. Three days, four days they are like walking around like this. So, the Coimbatore society gets suspicious about us. We still don’t have a gate to the ashram, anybody can walk in but they won’t come in. They come with binoculars and sit in the mountain and keep watching (Laughs) and they go back to the city and report “These guys are on some kind of a drug because this is not even alcohol – they are having a better time than that.” (Laughter) So, the word soma means absolute intoxication and this is not from outside, this is from within.

A certain scientist…an Israeli scientist who worked in United States for more than 26 years has been researching on the impact of marijuana on the human system and after much research he came up with this, that there are millions of cannabis receptors in the human brain. Nobody…this information was passed through all the neuro scientists’ community – nobody could come up with anything…a reasonable explanation. Then some anthropologists came up with an explanation “Maybe at some point in history the whole humanity was smoking marijuana, (Laughs) which is not true because in many parts of the world that weed never existed. But wherever you see, in every human brain there are millions of cannabis receptors.” So, after doing much research they found out, after 32 years of work he came up with this that if…when you are in a certain state within yourself you produce certain chemistry within yourself which will cause this high within you and the brain is constantly waiting, hoping that you will produce the chemistry of blissfulness within you. So, these chemicals which are produced in your system, he was given the honor of naming them. Usually they name it after themselves but he wanted to give a name which matches with its experience and after searching much then he came to India and then he found this word Ananda and he called it Anandamide.

So, if you generate a certain amount of Anandamide in your system, you can be fully drunk and fully alert at the same time. So, why Shiva is constantly represented as a drunkard and an ascetic at the same time is just this, because every moment he’s fully intoxicated, fully aware. Look into my eyes and see, always stoned but am I alert enough? Do I look alert enough or I… think I need a cold shower? (Laughter) Every human being is capable of this. So, what is the purpose of this? It is just that internally if you produce a chemistry of blissfulness without using any external means, because if you use an external means you get enslaved to that means. If that means is not available to you, you will freak. Without using any external means, within yourself if you can create a chemistry of blissfulness, now your concerns about your survival, your struggle, you being an issue will be gone. When you are no more an issue you can deal with the outside issues effortlessly…absolutely effortlessly. When you are an issue yourself, every small thing is freaking you out. Most of the humanity, what are they doing in their life? Just to earn a living, to reproduce if you wish, and to die one day – this is all they’re doing. Oh my! Just to do this simple act that every worm, insect, bird, animal is doing effortlessly how much nonsense human beings are creating around themselves! How much suffering! I don’t know to what extent you are exposed to human suffering. Everyday I meet thousands of people, it’s incredible! How many varieties of suffering human beings have invented for themselves is absolutely incredible. Actually you could find employment in hell as… you know, because if you are so good at torturing yourself, you could be very good at torturing other people. (Laughter) Isn’t it so? If somebody is so good at torturing himself, you think he won’t be good in torturing other people? For sure he will do it well. So, you have a job security. (Laughs)

See, what you call as human experience can be looked at in many different ways. To put it very simply, suppose you lost your peace today, what happens? You go home and yell at somebody, whoever is at home. If it continues you pick a quarrel with your neighbor tomorrow. If it continues, day after tomorrow you go to your office and yell at your boss. The moment you yell at your boss, everybody knows that you need medical help. When you yelled at your wife they thought it’s normal. (Laughs) The moment you yell at your boss, the moment you start yelling in a place where there is going to be serious consequence for you, everybody knows that you need medical help. They take you to a doctor. Initially, you know, he tries to talk you out of it, it doesn’t work then he throws a pill into you. A pill means what? A little bit of chemicals. If these chemicals go into the system you do become peaceful. Maybe not for good, for a certain period of time it does bring peace into your body and your mind. If it was not at all working all these millions of people wouldn’t be popping it, isn’t it? It does work. In a limited way it does work. Or in other words, what you call as peace is a certain kind of chemistry. What you call as joy is another kind of chemistry. What you call as misery is another kind of chemistry. What you call as agony is another kind of chemistry. Ecstasy is another kind of chemistry. So, there is a chemical basis to every experience that you go through but if you try to cause it from outside then it causes various problems in the system and it is not sustainable. There is nobody here who has not known joy in his life. Everybody has known joy in his life, otherwise he wouldn’t be alive by now. It is… the problem is just this – you are not able to sustain it 24 hours of the day, that’s the only problem, isn’t it? Yes? Are you completely bereft of joy in your life? If you… If you, it’s a language problem, you don’t want to say anything, you can just say Mmm. (Laughter) There is joy in your life. Isn’t it so?

Participants: Yes.

Sadhguru: Oh! (Laughter) The problem is it’s not sustainable. In 24 hours how many moments of joy do you know? In the last 24 hours how many moments of joy have you known? If you look at it, many people can count on their fingers. Many people have nothing to count… but when you were 5-6 years of age you were bursting with it, isn’t it? Somebody had to make you unhappy at that time, now somebody has to make you happy. I don’t see anybody old enough for this but suppose you owned a car in 1940s, then along with the car you need two servants because morning push start. In 1950s if you had a car, one help would do because crank start. Now, all your vehicles are on self start, isn’t it? But what is most vital to your life, your peacefulness, your joyfulness, your love, your blissfulness, everything is on push start right now. I am talking about upgrading technologies, are you okay? Hum? Isn’t it important that your joy, your love, your blissfulness is on self start? You can be the way you want to be whenever you feel like it? Hmm? Very important that it’s on self start? So, if you have to be on self start, the whole of you should be alive. Half of you alive, it doesn’t work.

There is a logical element to you which helps you to handle the material well. There is a dimension beyond logic, without it the subjective dimensions can never be accessed. The moon is a symbolic representation of that dimension.



Editor’s Note: Subscribe to the official Sadhguru YouTube channel to watch new videos every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Subscribe to receive Isha News weekly in your mailbox