How to Be in Sync with Everything
Sadhguru looks at how to make the most of your time, energy, and experience of life. Unity and interconnectedness of existence are not just philosophical concepts. With an arithmetic example, Sadhguru illustrates striking parallels in design between the most minuscule (in this example, your breath) and the largest (the length of the equator). He explains how you can gradually, naturally sync your breath with existence and enhance your quality and experience of life.
Time Is TickingSadhguru: This is something you may not want me to say, but every moment of your life, you are getting a little closer to death. We will bless you with a long life, but death is getting closer by the day by the minute. The two most significant dimensions of our life are time and energy.
If you manage your energies well, because of the enhancement of energy, in your experience, time will also be enhanced. If your experience of life becomes sweet, the sweeter it becomes, the faster time seems to be rolling away. You wake up in the morning, and before you know, the day is over – that means you are doing well. If time sits heavy on you, if it does not go, that means you are doing very badly. It is important for you to get some understanding of how time plays within your body, or how you experience time, as a human being, at this time, on this planet.
The Human–Earth Synchronicity
Many dimensions of your body are in sync with the fundamental aspects of time-making on this planet. The most fundamental sense of time is of course, the planet is going around the Sun – that is a year. The Moon is going around the Earth – that is a month. But our most fundamental sense of time comes from the revolutions of the planet. It spins once and we call it a day.
The length of the equator is 21,600 nautical miles. These 21,600 nautical miles amount to the number of breath that you take in a day. If you divide this by 1440, which is the number of minutes you have per day, you will get 15. That means if you are breathing approximately 15 times per minute, you will be exactly in sync with the revolution of the Earth. If your heartbeat is in the range of 70 to 72, then your heart is also in sync with the breath, and the breath is in sync with the revolutions of the Earth. This is a simple way of bringing an absolute sense of harmony in the physical system. If you do this, the compulsiveness of the body will go away.
Compulsiveness or Consciousness? It’s Your Choice.
A whole lot of people spend their entire life making arrangements for the compulsions of their body – what to eat, where to sleep, whom to sleep with. This is just attending to the compulsions of the body. The compulsive nature of the body is there; you cannot deny it, but how much time and energy do you want to dedicate to this dimension of your life? I want you to look at this with a sense of openness. I am not interested in making any aspect of your life ugly or meaningless, but the problem is, every moment of your life, you are getting closer to your death.
Life is a limited amount of time. For this reason, it is important to address this question, how much time and energy in your life is dedicated to satisfying your physical and psychological compulsions. If you try to reduce the compulsions of your body and mind without being in sync with the basic forces in nature, then it looks like you are sacrificing or renouncing everything. This is not Sanyas.
Living for Life, Not for Body and Mind
Sanyas means to consciously choose to keep the time you spend on the compulsions of the body to a minimum. This comes from a certain dimension of intelligence. This is not renunciation, sacrifice, or giving up life – this is absolutely pro-life. Because you are for the life that you are – not for the body that you have gathered, not for the mind that you have gathered. You are not going to become a sanyasi tomorrow, and I do not want you to. But arranging your life a little better, syncing your life with the natural cycles of life around you, syncing your life with the planet itself, which has made this life the way it is, is important.
For you to come to a certain state of equanimity, for you to live in some sense of inner harmony, for you to be in absolute harmony with all the inputs with which you are living – like water, air, food, fire, warmth, and of course life energy, we have taught yogic practices. But with so-called education, people have gotten into this madness of “What will I get?” People think life is about getting something.
Competition versus Competence
When you make life into a mere transaction, then being in harmony does not arise, because right from childhood, from kindergarten, you have been told to be competitive. To be in competition means you have no sense of your own competence. Maybe you could fly, but you are happy that you are walking one step ahead of someone else. What a tragedy it is! Competition means you will lose all sense of harmony within you, because there is no sense of anything about you – it is always about how someone else is doing, compared to you.
Enjoying other people’s failures is sickness. But right from kindergarten, you have been trained to believe you must be number one. I do not know why everyone is aspiring to be the smallest number. At least you could upgrade yourself to a zero. If you are always in a mode of transaction in life, if it is “What will you get?” all the time, this will not allow you to be in sync with the natural elements that make you.
Greed versus Ease
If you are not in sync, your competence, your genius, your intelligence will never find full expression. It cannot, simply because you never come to ease. If you do not come to ease, you will not find full expression of anything. To be in harmony with everything around you, psychologically, there is only one thing you have to do: You must remove just one thought in your mind – the rest of the nonsense can go on. Only one thought – “What will I get?” If you take away this one thought, then you will see you will naturally be in sync with everything around you.
Sometimes you have done this. There was no concern about what you will get; you were absolutely in sync with everything. The moment “What will I get?” comes up, transactions start. Once transactions happen, we are only trying to be better than someone else. We are no more trying to be ourselves. The moment I want to be better than you, I cannot be myself. I will do a little more stupid things than you do, because I am in competition. This is, as I am seeing in today’s world, because of the kind of food that you eat, the kind of air that you breathe, and the kind of water that you drink.
We are spraying poison on the food that we eat, putting poison into the water that we drink, and we think we have found some great science. This is not science, this is silly nonsense. Unfortunately, we have made a science out of senselessness. On this planet, for all life – from a single-celled organism to the most complex form, which is you – fundamentally, the basic construction is the same. If something poisons a bacteria, it also poisons you. Maybe the dose is not strong enough to kill you – yet, but it is still poison. These poisons are crippling you. I am not just talking about physical health – you want this life to blossom to its fullest possibility.
You want this life to find freedom from everything. How is it possible when you are poisoned? If you lived in pristine natural conditions, the amount of practices, the amount of conscious effort that you have to make would be much less. But now we are living in these kinds of conditions. Because of this, being conscious and doing the necessary things to be in sync with everything around you, becomes all the more important.
Syncing Breath and Heartbeat
How to be in sync? Here is a simple thing you can do: If you cannot do it all the time, maybe once an hour, or at least every two hours, no matter how busy you are, you can take a minute. Go sit somewhere, and make sure your breath is in sync – approximately fifteen breaths per minute. Try to keep it that way all the time. You will see gradually, your heartbeat will also sync with everything else. This is very important for you to live as a normal human being.
If you want to be a yogi, you have to lower the number of breaths, but you cannot do that by force. You have to build up your lung capacity in such a way, you have to bring your body to such a level of relaxation that it will become slower by itself, naturally. In the yogic lore there is a colorful expression, which is not to be taken literally, but it is true in a general sense: If your breath becomes between eleven and twelve instead of fifteen, you will know the language of all the creatures on this planet, the birds and the animals. If your breath goes down to nine, you will know the very language of Mother Earth.
Becoming Sensitive Means Becoming Sensible
The meteorological department, for example, is trying to read what Mother Earth is saying in some way. In that sense, and in a deeper sense than that, you could know what Mother Earth is saying if your breath naturally becomes around eight to nine per minute. If your breath becomes six to seven per minute, you will know everything that is worth knowing – simply because all the unnecessary static that you are creating in your body and your mind is gone. Everything is absolutely clear to you as it is. Because neurologically, you are the most evolved creature on this planet.
As a Homo sapiens, as a human being, you have the highest level of neurological development. That means a human being is the most sensitive life on this planet. Sensitive means you are able to sense everything that is around you. Sensitive does not mean for everything, you will get hurt. Sensitive means you are able to sense all that is there to be sensed. If you are sensitive, you will naturally behave sensibly. If you are sensitive to everyone around you, you naturally behave sensibly. No one has to teach you any morals, ethics, ideas, spirituality, or scriptures.
How Yogic Kriyas Help
Even if you do not know the language of the planet or its creatures, at least become a sensible creature. If you do practices like Shakti Chalana Kriya and Surya Kriya on a daily basis, it will naturally happen. Do at least this much: try to sync the breath with the natural movement of this planet. If you do that, you will become a far more sensitive and sensible human being. A lot more sensible human beings on the planet are not only welcome but badly needed.
Editor’s Note: A version of this article was originally published in Forest Flower magazine, July 2019.