What follows is a true story from an Isha Meditator, however her name has been changed to protect her privacy.
The first time I heard of Sadhguru was in October 2016, when my son sent me a video of him on WhatsApp. In the video, Sadhguru explained how parents should bring up their children. I thought it was a sarcastic message from my son, but the video touched me so much and I wished I could turn the clock back to when I first became a mother. I then went to Youtube, typed “Sadhguru”, and watched another video. The next day, I watched another video. It went on like this for days and there were times when I would watch his videos all day long.
Something was gripping me, something was pulling me towards Sadhguru. I was totally in awe of what Sadhguru had to say because it made so much sense. A longing arose within me to deepen my contact with him somehow. So I googled him and found about Isha Foundation and Inner Engineering and immediately joined a class in October 2016.
After every class I would go home and cry because my longing to know more about him and about myself started to take deeper routes. Somehow I wanted to meet him personally to see if he was real. Then there came an opportunity – Mahashivratri 2017.
I knew it was impossible to attend this event because I am a Muslim. My husband, who is an open-minded person otherwise, would surely not allow me. I was crying inside, and couldn’t bring myself to even ask him about this possibility. After a few days when I couldn’t hold myself any further, I nonchalantly asked my husband if I could go to the ashram for seven days leading up to Mahashivratri. Then I sat with a lower head, waiting to hear him say, ‘No!’
“You can go, if you wish.” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! I was really on cloud nine, and immediately made my travel plans a month later. Being in the Isha Ashram for seven continuous days, that too during the Mahashivratri celebrations, was an experience that I can’t even begin to articulate in this sharing. But it still didn’t satisfy me and left me longing for even more. I really didn’t know what to do with myself. Soon came a situation that settled me for good.
There was a problem with my practices schedule. Since my job required a lot of travelling, I couldn’t keep up the practice twice a day for a mandala. I used to feel very guilty about it but was unable to do much about it. Then came the Ramzan month – a perfect time for me to make up for that. I was fasting for 30 days – so no problems with the empty stomach condition. And, I don’t travel during Ramzan, so no excuses either. The forty days of practicing Shambhavi twice daily, and Ramzan, had a tremendous effect on me. It rendered me composed, balanced, and I realized that the only company that I had been seeking was myself!
To show my gratitude and longing to share, this year I got trained to teach Upa-Yoga. I gave my first IDY session today in a colony near my place. There were a few glitches but it was a successful session. It made me look even deeper into myself. Moreover, seeing the response from the participants left me with a profound sense of fulfillment. All participants were overwhelmed and each of them came personally to thank me.
It is impossible to put my experience of finding Sadhguru and a genuine path of Yoga into mere words. It can only be experienced.
– Aaliyah, Upa-Yoga Teacher, Andhra Pradesh
Editor’s Note: Check out the 5-minute tools of transformation that Sadhguru has created for Yoga Day, that anyone can practice. You can also join or host a workshop, or train to become a facilitator.