The following is an excerpt from a Q&A session with Sadhguru during a satsang at the Isha Institute of Inner-sciences in US. 

Questioner: There are people who say that Sadhguru Shri Brahma was the real Sadhguru. If that is so, what are we seeing today? Is there a real Sadhguru, and if so, who is he?

Sadhguru: These are all archival people. They have come with me for the second or third lifetime. For them, Sadhguru means he must be blazing, because that is how they knew him. Now when they see that he smiles, talks, and jokes, they think, “This is not him.” They talk about the one that they fell in love with. They are a little disappointed with this one today because their Sadhguru was so intense, fiery, and uncompromising. He would not even call anyone by name; he just said, “Hey!” These people like the rough and tumble so much that they think he is too soft and too public today. The public never dared to sit with Sadhguru Shri Brahma.

These are all fiery people who were sitting with a ball of fire – for them, that is Sadhguru. It is – I am not denying it. But what is wrong with this one ? That one was fantastic, but it failed in its mission. This one may not be so fantastic, but it has made it work. It is a conscious compromise.

Now, we are not trying to chase people away; we are inviting people, doing PR, going around the world talking to people who are lost in their own nonsense. When people who have been with me before see this, they cannot believe Sadhguru is being put through this, because that Sadhguru would have just looked and burnt people, had they behaved like that. This one is not like that. This one is willing to crawl if need be – as long as it works.

He took this form in this lifetime because he thought that this is going to work, and it did. By option, he works in both realms – sometimes, he becomes like this; sometimes, he becomes like that. That was a beautiful one; this is a smart one. You not only enjoy the warmth of the sun, you also like the coolness of the moon. Only when he was meditating, tears flowed from his eyes. Whether his mother, father, friend, or disciples died, no one ever saw him shed a single tear for anyone. Even when his own mission died, they only saw him more and more furious; never a drop of tear. Now I can shed tears with eyes open or eyes closed. I can hug you and shed tears. If someone dies, I can shed tears. If a tree is cut, I can shed tears. Or I can sit blazing without a tear in my eyes. This time around, I am more versatile, more flexible, because the nature of activity we have taken up is different from what we had taken up at that time. It is all right for my archival disciples who are still with me to feel that way. I am not saying this for self-aggrandizement, but it is important for any disciple to see that their Guru is the best for them. Otherwise, their mind will not stay focused. Unless you think that your wife is the best person you can have in your life, you will look all over the place. Similarly, only if you see, “There is no better Guru for me,” your mind will be capable of staying with it and benefiting from it.

That was a beautiful one; this is a smart one... This time around, I am more versatile, more flexible, because the nature of activity we have taken up is different from what we had taken up at that time.

If you keep looking here and there, if you go “Guru shopping,” you will not get anywhere. If you know this has something nourishing to give you, you must dig it all the way. If you shift every day, you will waste your life. You will be full of holes – no well; no water to drink; nothing to sustain you. These people are like that – though they know this one is the same in many ways, still, they feel their Sadhguru is the best Sadhguru. They need not appreciate me the way I am today. It is good for them to hold onto that because that will be their growth; that will be their wellbeing.