Barkha Dutt In Conversation with Sadhguru
Barkha Dutt: Good evening everybody. I hope you can all hear me right till the back? Yes. I think Chiki also… already did the business of introducing Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, who’s been described in many different ways in my profession, by people from my profession, we’ve called you a maverick, (Sadhguru laughs) we’ve called you a monk on a motorcycle, we’ve called you a glamorous, flamboyant guru but for your devotees you are simply Sadhguru. And yet Sadhguru, at a time when faith seems to be in collision with so many other questions that come up as a matter of individual liberty, I think this will make for a very interesting and important conversation for our times, so I would like to thank you for being part of this conversation.
Let me start with the spiritual and I hope what you say today is also addressed to the skeptics. I count myself among a skeptic, who if told that another human being possesses some sort of godly power, I would perhaps as the first instinct, not believe it but I find interesting about what you’ve s… some of your sayings, as captured by Arundhati Subramaniam in this book, is that you’re actually saying that what we experience beyond our five senses, anything that we experience beyond the five senses can be called God, can be called power or can be called yourself. So if God doesn’t necessarily exist, why do we need gurus, why do we need Sadhguru (Laughter)?
Sadhguru: (Audio check) Do you drive in Delhi?
Barkha Dutt: Do I drive?
Sadhguru: Mhmm. (Indicating agreement)
Barkha Dutt: Unlike you (Sadhguru laughs) - I have a fear of wheels (Both laugh).
Sadhguru: So if you drive in an unknown terrain…
Barkha Dutt: Yes.
Sadhguru: …you use these days a GPS.
Barkha Dutt: Yes.
Sadhguru: Usually, a strange woman will tell you, “Turn right,” you turn right. She says, “Turn left,” (Laughter) you turn left. She says, “Make a U-turn,” you make a U-turn (Laughter). Why? Simply because you are… you’re not familiar with the terrain. When you are in an unfamiliar terrain, it is sensible to take instructions. (Laughter/Applause)
Barkha Dutt: So are you… Are you saying gurus are the new GPS (Laughter)?
Sadhguru: Not new, not new, long time ago we’ve been. (Laughter/Applause) For a very long time, way before the GPS came (Applause). GPS means what – Guru Positioning System. (Laughter/Applause)
Barkha Dutt: But you know, I have to say that while I don’t drive, I’ve often sat in the car and heard that girl’s voice on Google Maps and often Google Maps…
Sadhguru: You can actually, you can actually…
Barkha Dutt: …does not… does not adv… does not give you the right advice.
Sadhguru: You can change it to a man’s voice if you wish.
Barkha Dutt: Okay (Laughter/Applause). This beginning of this conversation perhaps underlines that you are atypical. You are atypical of what we imagine gurus to be. We expect people who don’t crack jokes, we expect people who don’t have a zest for life. Somehow, all of our spirituality has traditionally been centered around giving up, around abstinence of some kind, around abstaining from pleasures, from denying creature comforts. Why do you believe that the material can co-exist with the spiritual?
Sadhguru: It’s… It’s not that I believe, it’s only because you have a body which is your physicality, you have a life within. If you did not have a body, if you’re disembodied, I’m not going to talk to you (Laughs) because with disembodied beings you don’t have conversations, okay? I know people…
Barkha Dutt: People do talk to ghosts.
Sadhguru: People are trying to do that these days (Both laugh). Because they’re not on talking terms with the living (Laughter/Applause), they choose the dead (Laughter) because you can make the dead speak whatever you want. The living will speak what they want, it’s a big problem (Laughter). It’s a very serious problem in a conversation because I will say what I want to say ___ (Unclear-but?) if I was dead, you can make me say whatever you want to say.
Barkha Dutt: But can an…
Sadhguru: Because you can do both sides of the conversation.
Barkha Dutt: But if your philosophy – you hate the word philosophy I know – if your technology of Inner Engineering - and we’ll talk more about that in just a moment - is available to all of us to, in a sense find strength within ourselves, Sadhguru, then does that mean that the atheist and the agnostic and the skeptic can also embrace spirituality? Is Inner Engineering only for those who believe or is it for anyone (Sadhguru laughs) who asks questions?
Sadhguru: The previous question is a loaded one, still not answered fully.
Barkha Dutt: Yes, I know (Sadhguru laughs), I haven’t… I haven’t given up on it yet (Sadhguru laughs).
Sadhguru: Coming to this, see you’re putting atheists and agnostics and skeptics together – it’s a wrong classification. Atheists and theists are together, they’re one kind.
Barkha Dutt: Because they both have certainty.
Sadhguru: Both… Both believe something that they do not know. Both are not sincere enough to admit that they do not know. This is the biggest problem. The biggest problem in the world is people are still not straight enough to come to a place, “what I know I know, what I do not know I do not know” because they have not realized the immensity of “I do not know.” “I do not know” is the basis of longing to know and seeking to know and the possibility of knowing. The moment you destroy “I do not know,” you destroyed all possibilities of knowing. So this is atheism and this is theism, they’re not different, they’re in the same boat, they pretend to be different. One believes positively, another believes negatively but they both believe something that they do not know. One (Fumbles) person, a well-known person in the country who goes about claiming he’s an atheist all the time, one day comes up to me, somebody just introduces me first time, I say nothing. He says, “You know, I believe there is no God?” I said, “I don’t even believe that” (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: Do you mean Javed Akhtar (Laughter/Applause)?
Sadhguru: I… I’m not…
Barkha Dutt: That was a good imitation, so I guessed (Laughter), it wasn’t difficult.
Sadhguru: I am not (Laughs) taking names, I am saying the thing is you also believe something, you don’t seem to understand that. The most important thing is to come to this place of being utterly straight and sincere with life – what I know I know, what I do not know I do not know. If you come to this much, if you closely pay attention to everything around you, you will see with all this scientific exploration, we do not know even a single atom in its entirety, that’s the fact.
Barkha Dutt: So what is it that you know Sadhguru (Sadhguru laughs)? Why are millions of people your devotees because you just said that honesty…?
Sadhguru: They usually don’t…
Barkha Dutt: …is about admitting…
Sadhguru: They… They don’t claim that they are my devotees, you know.
Barkha Dutt: What do they say then?
Barkha Dutt: What do they say then?
Sadhguru: Usually they claim they’re meditators, volunteers, and stuff (Laughter/Applause).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, volunteers then (Sadhguru laughs). But there must be something they think that you know because you just said that life is actually about admitting what you don’t know. The corollary to that is there are things that you do know. We do know we’re sitting at the Habitat Center Amphitheatre at this moment in Delhi – that we know. What beyond this Sadhguru, do you know and what do you not know (Laughter)? I’ve asked you like is there a question of _____ (Unclear) existence now (Both laugh).
Sadhguru: Now, what do I know? I don’t know anything except this one (Referring to oneself). I know this piece of life from its origin to its ultimate. Everything that I need to know about this life, I know. And I see every other life is actually the same thing, if you look deep enough. So in that context, because today modern science is coming to this, there is a… a theory which is evolving, which is called as constructional theory - what they are beginning to say is whether it’s an amoeba or a grasshopper or a earthworm or a bird or an animal or an elephant or you or me or the whole cosmos, the fundamental design is same. It is only a question of complexities and sophistication of the same design. So this is something always the yogic science has been saying, that if you know… you know anda you know pindanda, (Laughs) you know? If you know the atomic, you know the cosmic because the fundamental design is same, it’s only a question of complexity and sophistication of what’s happening. So fundamentally, if you know this piece of life (Referring to oneself) you know everything by inference.
Barkha Dutt: But when you say this piece of life, do you mean yourself, do you mean this moment, what do you mean by this piece of life?
Sadhguru: You are a piece of life, aren’t you? Are you life or are you… are you media (Laughter)?
Barkha Dutt: Are they mutually exclusive?
Sadhguru: No, no, because people (Sounds like: are/have?) mediums, that’s why I’m saying (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: I would hope I’m a flesh and blood person unless somebody knows better (Laughs).
Sadhguru: Flesh and blood you gathered, isn’t it?
Barkha Dutt: Yes.
Sadhguru: What you call as my flesh and blood, you slowly gathered over a period of time. If this much accumulation of flesh and blood, this much impressions have to be gathered, there must be something more fundamental, isn’t it?
Barkha Dutt: Do you think of yourself as a yogi, a mystic or a guru?
Sadhguru: I’ve not wasted time thinking about myself (Laughter/Applause).
Barkha Dutt: What would you rather be thinking of?
Sadhguru: I don’t think usually. Really. For me, see th… This whole thing, because of the type of very mediocre education that’s being delivered today, we have raised thought to heaven unfortunately. Thought is a simple thing. I know this is against everything that you believe in because you are also a believer (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: No.
Sadhguru: Believer in thought.
Barkha Dutt: Yeah.
Barkha Dutt: I believe in being able to ask questions.
Barkha Dutt: That’s what I do for a living.
Sadhguru: Oh (Laughter)! That’s good.
Barkha Dutt: So I must believe that it is possible to ask questions.
Sadhguru: You… you ask questions for a living, my life is full of questions (Laughter/Applause). Now… now the thing is what you call as thought is coming from the limited data that you have gathered from the experience of your life. Every person is the same thing. How much ever we have gathered, it’s still too small compared to the size of this cosmos and the way the phenomena of life is happening. From this limited da… data, you can recycle things and generate thought. Or in other words, nothing new ever happens. Same permutations and combinations of the same thing will go on forever.
The essence of what we’re teaching in the name of Inner Engineering is to engineer yourself in such a way, every moment of your life is a new possibility. If it has to become a new possibility, what is needed is perception. When I say perception, people think opinions. No, I am talking about perception, as you see here (Gestures), similarly enhancing your perception so that you perceive life. Right now when we say thought, emotion, we’re talking about expressing life. Expression is not so important, once in a way we can express but perceiving it is important because this phenomena is too fantastic, it’s not a small thing. The greatest phenomena that’s happening here is life itself. So if you want to know this phenomena, the only way you can know, the only doorway for you to know life is yourself. See, right now can you see me?
Barkha Dutt: Yes, I can.
Sadhguru: Can you… Can you use a finger and point out where I am? (Barkha Dutt gestures towards Sadhguru) Oh, you’re wrong. You know I’m a mystic from South India (Laughter/Applause). Now this light is falling upon me, reflecting, going through your lenses, inverted image in the retina, you know the whole story. Where do you see me now?
Barkha Dutt: Still in the same place.
Barkha Dutt: I do.
Sadhguru: You see me the way I’m projected in the firmament of your mind. You cannot see me here (Gestures) in the very nature of your visual apparatus. Where do you hear me right now? Within yourself. Where have you seen the whole world? Within yourself. Now if there is a grasshopper here, he doesn’t see me the way you see me, he sees me differently. He sees the whole world differently. Now you… you can think, “Oh, he’s no good.” This is the fundamental problem that we think his perception is no good. No, no, his perception is very good for his survival. Your perception is very good for your survival but it’s not good enough to know the nature of life.
Barkha Dutt: But I…
Sadhguru: So now, “what do I know” means I have enhanced… enhanced my perception the way it is important to know the nature of life, not just for survival.
Barkha Dutt: But if Inner Engineering as a spiritual technology is something that works, I ask you again, why do we need gurus? Because that means the answers are within us.
Sadhguru: You’re speaking so much language, did you learn A, B, C, D ___ (Unclear)
Barkha Dutt: I think so.
Sadhguru: Do you remember when you’re four years of age, that damn “A”, how complicated it was?
Barkha Dutt: Yes.
Sadhguru: ___ (Unclear) two versions to it. You had to write it a hundred times to get the damn “A”. Today you can close your eyes and write. So it doesn’t matter how simple something is, without a certain guidance, could you have picked up A, B, C, I’m asking? No. Similarly, when something new you have to approach, if you don’t have the right kind of guidance, you won’t pick it up.
Barkha Dutt: Tell us a little bit about yourself. Your story is well-chronicled but what is of interest to people is that you started off as…
Sadhguru: I haven’t read that book, I don’t know, I hope she’s written nice things about me (Referring to Arundhati Subramaniam’s biography of Sadhguru called “More Than a Life”).
Barkha Dutt: She’s written a very brilliant, Arundhati’s… Subramaniam has written a very brilliant, very brilliant book.
Sadhguru: No, she’s brilliant but what’s she written about me (Laughter/Applause)?
Barkha Dutt: I… One of the things that she has said is that you give great space for dissent, you like a good argument, that you’re not an… you’re not one of those dictatorial gurus (Sadhguru laughs).
Sadhguru: I don’t know where is a dictatorial guru, I think the… most people have not met a guru, they have just seen calendar images and made conclusions. I don’t think they have met any genuine guru. There are a whole lot of people who should have been temple priests who are good entrepreneurs and they’ve become gurus today – that’s different, okay? (Laughs)
Barkha Dutt: Temple priests…
Sadhguru: No, no, see…
Barkha Dutt: … who have become good entrepreneurs.
Sadhguru: No, I’m saying…
Barkha Dutt: Just another word of… way of saying they’re charlatans.
Sadhguru: That’s a strong word. Maybe that’s enterprise (Laughter). I am not a (an?) enterprise. So because I am not an enterprise, I want everybody to ask whatever the damn question they have, it doesn’t matter how ridiculous or how intelligent, how nonsensical it is, it doesn’t matter. If the question means something to you, it means something to me. It doesn’t matter how brilliant it is, if it doesn’t mean anything to you, I am not willing to listen to it.
Barkha Dutt: But you’re saying that many, many people are… who are positioning themselves as gurus are really only elevating themselves and fooling people. I’ve…
Sadhguru: (Laughs) No, I didn’t say…
Barkha Dutt: Okay, I’m saying that.
Sadhguru: I’m saying (Laughter)…
Barkha Dutt: But…
Sadhguru: (Laughs) The thing there is there is a vacuum, somebody is trying to fill it.
Barkha Dutt: Yes. And Sadhguru, you have been…
Sadhguru: Are they qualified to be that? Questionable thing.
Barkha Dutt: But a very genuine concern – and you have been on some of my television programs where we have spoken about this – is whether god-men are often con-men? And how does this lady here (Gestures towards somebody) know the difference between who’s a god-man and who’s a conman and is a human being capable of being a god-man? Do you think of yourself as a god-man?
Sadhguru: (Laughs) Why are you underestimating that lady (Laughter/Applause)?
Barkha Dutt: Okay, let it be my question (Sadhguru laughs). How do I spot the difference between a god-man and a con man if I don’t even believe that humans can be godly? I think humans can be brave and wonderful and inspiring and… But I don’t think that they have magical powers.
Sadhguru: See, did you ever see God having magical powers?
Barkha Dutt: No, I’ve never seen God.
Sadhguru: No, then why are you saying he must have magical powers (Laughter)? So first of all, this god-man is essentially a media-coined word. Nobody claims that he is a god-man, okay? Some are goddamn men, that’s different (Laughter). Nobody… I don’t think anybody has personally claimed, “I am a god-man.” I have not met anybody like that. Now, that is a… That’s another kind of profession, putting labels on everybody, you know (Laughs). Leaving that alone, what is it? This is a culture - you must understand this, it’s unfortunately all mixed up today – this is a godless culture, you must understand this. There has never been an idea of a god in this culture. Only in competition with what came from outside, because we saw they could rule us, they were dominant and we thought we have to imitate their ways, we also started making it up to some extent, not successfully though. Yes, but we know the technology of god-making. When I say technology… We are using the English word “god” but that word doesn’t exist in India, here we call them devas.
What a deva means is – see today media is projecting Tendulkar as a cricketing god. It’s very appropriate to this culture because if somebody excels beyond a certain level in any field - he may be a sportsperson, he may be a warrior, he may be an artist, he may be anything - if he excels beyond what normally average human beings think is possible for them, he goes, they recognized him as a deva and he’s worth looking up to because he becomes a guiding light for them. That’ll anyway happen, whether you like it, you believe it, you don’t believe it.
Barkha Dutt: Sure.
Sadhguru: In every field, somebody rises, he becomes the light for the rest of the people.
Barkha Dutt: Yes.
Sadhguru: So similarly, in the inner spaces… When I say the inner spaces, the quality of your life is not determined by what kind of house you live in, what clothes you wear, what car you parked outside, what things, jing-bang happening around you, no, this moment how joyful, peaceful, blissed out you are within yourself. Now if I sit here, we’re sitting here in the same space, breathing the same air, probably we ate the same kind of food – I don’t know what you eat (Laughter) – but if I sit here now with my eyes closed, the way I am within myself, I will not exchange this (Laughs) for anything in the universe.
Now, when people see, no matter… The number of things I’m managing is insane. Everybody thinks, “Sadhguru, is it possible? You must go crazy someday.” All volunteers, over three million volunteers, enterprises, businesses, okay, projects, mega-projects on the street, all kinds of activity going aroun… around the globe. If anybody has to go nuts, it’s me, okay? Because all run by volunteers. Run by volunteers means nobody is trained for the job and you can’t fire them for inefficiency because they’re volunteers (Laughter). All right (Laughs)? And anytime, they come in anytime and do great things, anytime they’ll walk away, all right? And nothing should collapse. Till now, I must tell you this, as we are sitting here, this day, probably little over three hundred and odd programs, Inner Engineering programs are happening in the world. Never in the last thirty-three years, one program has been abandoned or has failed (Applause). That…that takes enormous management but nobody will ever see me getting angry or miserable or tensed out or stressed out.
Barkha Dutt: You’ve never lost your temper?
Sadhguru: You want me to now (Laughter) (Laughs)? Do I look like I’m incapable of that? It’s not that, it’s not that I’m incapable of anger, it's just that I have never given that privilege to anybody. I’ve not given this privilege to anybody – they can make me happy, they can make me unhappy, they can make me angry, they can make me miserable, no. I kept (Applause) these privileges to myself.
So people… you’re talking about miracles or whatever. People ask me, “Sadhguru, everybody… in very ashram, miracles are happening. You are beating all the miracles down. If we say something happened, you make us look like fools.” No miracle. I say, “What? You want me to pull a pigeon out of my pocket” (Laughter)? If I pull a pigeon…
Barkha Dutt: But there are…
Sadhguru: No, if I (Laughs)…
Barkha Dutt: …gurus…
Sadhguru: If I…
Barkha Dutt: …who claim to do that, who have been challenged by rationalists…
Sadhguru: No, I’ll come to this. If I pull a pigeon out of my pocket, I have a shitty pocket (Laughter) and you have a bird (Both laugh) – what are you going to do with this? You come to me, I will show you the miracle. I have thousands of people, who are working seven days a week, sixteen to eighteen days… eighteen hours every day. In the last two… five-ten years, not a single moment of irritation, agitation, anger in their life. This is a miracle (Applause), this is a miracle we want to manifest. You don’t want a miracle? ___ (Unclear)
Barkha Dutt: I agree, this is a miracle.
Barkha Dutt: And not that pigeon. Do you have a pigeon in your pocket (Sadhguru laughs)? Okay (Laughs).
Sadhguru: I told you I don’t like a shitty pocket (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: I know (Laughter). Now, you were thirteen… In Arundhati’s book, I read that you were thirteen when you first quite accidentally discovered yoga. You were children playing in… at the bottom of a well, that’s what the book says (Sadhguru laughs). Tell us, how did you discover yoga?
Sadhguru: Oh (Laughs). I told that because that’s how it happened to me, I said that to her, I don’t know how she’s written, I’ve not read it (Barkha Dutt laughs). I said that to her because I want people to understand - the nature of the universe is, even if you do… for the wrong reasons, you do the right thing, still it works. If you do the wrong thing even for the right reasons, it still doesn’t work. People need to understand this because the whole world has invested on goodness. The goddamn goodness is killing the world. There’re too many good people and these good people are the biggest problem. It’s always a good Indian who wants to fight a good Pakistani, good Hindu wants to fight a good Muslim, good American wants to fight with just about anybody (Laughter). The more good you are, the more fighting you are. The more good you think you are, because goodness is always in comparison…
Barkha Dutt: Don’t forget the good journalists who promote these fighting everyday on channels (Laughter).
Sadhguru: I… I think… because your goodness comes by comparing yourself to somebody. If you were alone on this planet, you wouldn’t know whether you’re good or bad. What we need on this planet is sensible human beings. Little more sense we could do with, isn’t it, for sure, in every aspect of life? Engineering essentially means you could have built this structure whichever way you want but you’ll have to keep looking up, when it’s going to crash on your head. Engineering means you put it up in a sensible manner, the way it stays, without anxiety about it. Similarly, Inner Engineering means you engineer yourself in such a way, you can go through the process of life without being anxious about your suffering - “What will happen to me?” There is no such thing because you engineered yourself well. Whatever the hell happens around you, within yourself you are the same thing.
So every time I launch one mega-project, you’ll say, “Sadhguru, if it doesn’t work?” If it doesn’t work, what (Laughs)? If it doesn’t work, what? If everything that I’m doing, if nothing works, I will still die blissfully. This is guaranteed. I want to make sure it’s guaranteed for every human being so that they can live their life without the fear of suffering. Right now, instead of seeing how suffering should go, people are busy romanticizing suffering. The moment you romanticize suffering, it’s very clear you are not interested in human well-being, you like drama.
Barkha Dutt: Hmm. You often spoke about how economic leaders are going to be the future of the world, you’ve been interacting with CEOs. It’s rare to find a spiritual guru who’s also quite openly capitalistic. Are you a capitalist?
Sadhguru: What is that?
Barkha Dutt: Who believes that wealth creation is for the greater good (Sadhguru laughs) of people and society.
Sadhguru: See, a whole lot of people are attached to poverty right now because without poor people, without hungry people they cannot survive. I am not one of those. I want to see that… six hundred million people on… in this country are postponing their dinner tonight. But we are postponing major decisions in the Parliament every day, all right? I am not a part of that, I want things to happen because I know what it means to postpone a dinner. I don’t want that to happen to pe… people. Children are postponing their dinner tonight, probably a hundred million children in this country have postponed their dinner to tomorrow and that’s not a joke. So, these jokers who identify themselves with this or that are going on playing their joke on the people, every day.
So capitalism is an ancient word, it no more exists. We are talking about a market economy. When only a few families had access to capital, it was capitalism. It is no more capitalism. Any… If you have a good idea and you know how to execute it, there is capital for everyone, all right? So, we have tried communism, it’s a wonderful idea but that must happen willingly. If you enforce it, it’s the ugliest thing. We have seen it… We have seen a major demo on the planet, when a… most ugly things happened, you tried to enforce it. Karl Marx might have known lot about economy. You know, I was… I… When I was fifteen, I was all gung ho about Engels (Referring to German social scientist Friedrich Engels) and Karl Marx and stuff. But he did not understand human nature, I realized that when I was sixteen. Thirteen, fourteen, I was all fired up reading up all the communist literature from Russia (Laughs) but by the time I was sixteen, I realized these people don’t understand what is human aspiration.
Without understanding what’s human aspiration, you try to build a society, you try to build a nation, it’s a disaster, okay? Cruel disaster. But maybe it will work when really a country or a society is in total dumps. You have to force it out. When you have to force it out, it works but after that it won’t work. In a way, if you come to the ashram - nearly four thousand people are living in the ashram – well, you can say it’s communist but by willingness, it’s not by, “Okay, I did so much, so I get so much” – no. Everybody gets what they need. So this is not enforced, this is by choice. If by choice you’re willing to share, how fantastic it is; but “I have nothing, you have something, I want you to share” - how ugly it is!
Barkha Dutt: What is it with Sadhguru and motorcycles (Laughter)?
Sadhguru: These days, I’m on four wheels (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: But you haven’t given up (Sadhguru laughs) your love for bikes or have you?
Sadhguru: It’s just that when I was… I started, you know, trekking in the jungles when I was ten, eleven. I would be gone. If I had ten rupees in my pocket, I would organize my food and I’m gone with this little note in the house. I can imagine my parents (Laughs)… I… I always wished I shouldn’t have a boy ever (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: Girls can run away too on bikes.
Sadhguru: They run later (Laughter/Applause). They don’t run at ten, eleven (Laughter). And they’re on a pillion… they’re usually pillion and if they find a good rider, no problem (Laughter). That is a different issue. I’m saying the thing was, it’s not about the motorcycle or this or that, it is just that I was a cloud of million questions all the time and wherever I looked, nobody had a sensible answer. Everybody has standard answers that they’ve heard from somewhere, nobody has a genuine experiential answer. So there’s a restlessness to explore just about anything. When I was ten, eleven years of age, I would be gone into the forest for three, four days. Once food ran out and I couldn’t survive, then I would come back.
So, initially lot of excitement but later on they kind of settled down, they knew I’ll get back. So when I became fourteen, fifteen, I cycled across South India, not because I ___ (Unclear-was one?) cycling enthusiast, not like today, wearing a helmet and suited booted for cycling – no, simply I cycled because cycling is little faster than walking. The moment I became seventeen, I still didn’t have a license but I found a motor to my cycle, which became a motorcycle (Laughs). So that because it went little faster. It s… it supported my restlessness to know something I didn’t even know what the hell it is. I didn’t know what I was looking for but I had questions about anything I looked at. Everything in the universe looked like a question mark to me.
Barkha Dutt: But the question about the motorcycle is really to ask whether the motorcycle, the Land Rover or Land Cruiser, which one is it now? Land Rover, Land Cruiser, (Sadhguru laughs) I’m not sure, but whatever, the four wheels, the helicopter, you… I think you once said somewhere that I like… that whether if it moves on land, water or air, I like it.
Sadhguru: This is not… One thing is I like anything that works and machines work (Laughs). The more efficiently (they?) work, the better they are and why it’s important is, after all, what is the quality of an individual human being? How smoothly and how efficiently your body, mind and everything functions is the quality of a human being, isn’t it? So machines always excited me, whether it’s a s… bicycle or motorcycle or because of you know lack of the necessary… probably the fitness that I was at that time, I crisscrossed India on a motorcycle, today it would be hard, so you get into something little more comfortable.
Barkha Dutt: But you know while that makes you a very interesting character to observe, did you ever worry that you’d be labeled or dubbed a Richie Rich (Referring to the cartoon character) person’s guru? This is you know… This is the Sadhguru who…
Sadhguru: See, the thing is…
Barkha Dutt: …flies his own planes…
Barkha Dutt: …who likes his BMW, who like his game of golf, who likes having a little Frisbee match on the ___ (Unclear)
Sadhguru: (Laughs) L… Let’s… let’s come to that. See, the thing is I would… I wouldn’t mind… I even… Sometimes we… I… I ride a bullock cart, nobody reports that though (Laughter). I… I… I love to handle the bulls and I… I still drive that sometimes. But now you… I want to have a conversation with you, this afternoon till two o’clock, I was in Jodhpur, I could have come by bullock cart or a camel cart, (Laughter) you had to wait for five days (Laughter/Applause). I came on time, you must appreciate that (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: So it’s about efficiency is what you’re saying?
Sadhguru: Yes. So I l… I personally learnt to fly a helicopter where I don’t have the time for these things but I somehow fit in this and learnt because seventy percent of our work is in rural India. Tch, I thought this little helicopter could just… I could set the place on fire because I’m half the time stuck… Half my life, I’m on the road stuck in some traffic driving myself. All the time, behind huge… everywhere… there’s no place in the country where there’s no traffic jams, believe me. Even in rural India, there’re traffic jams. So I thought a helicopter would really revolutionize our work. I picked up the thing, I got my license, FAA license but in India it’s so difficult to get the license because many of these rules were made before Wright brothers (Referring to the brothers who invented the airplane) came (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: Well, according to some, the plane was also made before the Wright brothers came (Laughs). They say it was made in the Vedic ages, they…
Sadhguru: They're not very wrong. Conceptually, it was made. Whether physically they built or not, we don’t have proof for that. Conceptually, there’s no…
Barkha Dutt: Conceptually, it’s about imagination to think that you can move from place A to place B…
Sadhguru: No, no, no, no, no, no, no. (Overlapping conversation) You cannot conceptually imagine something entirely. Even if you imagine, you must be able to produce some k… You must understand the principles in some way, as to why something flies. If you don’t understand why something flies, it’ll be like that you know once it happened, a little turtle, very… with great effort, climbed a tree, went to the edge of a branch and jumped, fell flat, lot of pain. Slowly, again he crawled up, in another two days, again up, jumped, fell down, again up, fell down. After a few days, two birds who were sitting in the opposite tree, they were talking and they said, “I think it’s time we tell him he’s adopted” (Laughter). All right (Laughs)?
So I’m saying what cannot fly, you cannot make it fly. People thought in detail, as to what can fly, what cannot fly, conceptually they thought. Whether they built or not, we don’t know. And is it… is it… I mean, it is an established fact, they calculated the speed of light. Somebody, some individual cannot calculate the speed of light just like that if there was no whole scientific culture around him. No individual will just drop from heaven and calculate the speed of light, okay? There must have been a scientific culture, otherwise it won’t happen. But we need to understand there is a difference between science and technology.
Barkha Dutt: But there’s also a difference between science and mythology. Some things are just great stories - that doesn’t mean they actually happened.
Sadhguru: See for example, there are… there are images or there are sketches which show, which probably somewhere between three to four thousand years ago were made, where it clearly shows a turtle and a round planet sitting on it and going around. Turtle is the best example, best analogy for a planetary movement because a turtle cannot accelerate (Laughs). Sim… same speed, he just keeps going. So tur… a round planet on a turtle is the best way to describe how a planet moves around. And the very word for geography in this country is bhoogol, which means it’s a round planet. So it is not because of Galileo we know it’s a round planet, we’ve always known. How do we know? We can’t know just one scientific fact and not know the other aspects related to it. So this thing about anything Indian, beating it down, is because one thing is that culture has evolved because half the people, their brains are in Greenwich Mean Time, they’ve still not gotten out of the 1948, whatever happened. We struggled for independence, we came out, not just to send them out but to be who we are.
So, that problem is still there and now there are upstarts who claim all kinds of things. There has to be an even balance, not beating down this or pumping it up in a (an?) unrealistic way. But you cannot deny Indian mind has thought about things that nobody had thought about in those times. There is no question about that. But there is a distinction between science and technology. Science can evolve because of certain intelligence, technology needs material manifestation. Now we are trying to claim technology, which we should not. If we just focus on science, many things will be attributed to India for sure.
Barkha Dutt: We live in times when faith and spirituality have become very inflammable…
Sadhguru: Don’t put them in the same basket.
Barkha Dutt: Okay, let’s talk about faith first.
Sadhguru: Mhmm (Indicating agreement).
Barkha Dutt: We live in times when faith for certain has become a very inflammable, easily politicized conversation. If faith should have been personal today, it’s not. Today you actually have decisions taken in the name of somebody’s faith being injured. So you mentioned food right now, I read somewhere that you said there’s nothing religious about the act of food, just eat what you like.
Sadhguru: No, no, no, I didn’t say that.
Barkha Dutt: Eat what’s good for you?
Sadhguru: I said eat what’s good for you.
Barkha Dutt: Okay, eat what’s good for you.
Sadhguru: It’s a very different thing (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: I correct myself (Sadhguru laughs) – eat what’s good for you. But today we have a highly politicized conversation around banning beef in the name of faith. How…
Sadhguru: It’s definitely not good for you to eat it.
Barkha Dutt: Beef or any meat?
Sadhguru: I’ll come to that. Finish it, finish the question.
Barkha Dutt: Okay, okay. So I’m offering that as one example of how I see a politicized conversation taking place around faith. How do you reconcile the faith of a large number of people with questions of individual liberty? I know I have read that you like books written by Salman Rushdie. We were the first country to ban him again in the name of faith. How do we reconcile faith with individual liberty?
Sadhguru: See, it’s always been said “faith moves mountains.” Yes, but it freezes your mind. But the greatest crime you can do on this planet is to move a mountain. You should not move a mountain, it should be where it is, it has not just dropped from somewhere, it’s grown because of various forces functioning in a particular way, phenomenal activity has happened to build a mountain. You should never move a mountain but (Laughs) people with frozen minds always want to move a mountain, okay? Having said that, this needs to be understood - that when we say faith, it’s an import for this culture. We have never had faith in this culture. You must look back little beyond thousand years since we’ve been under occupation. Here, we have been told always, “Your life is your karma.” Karma means action. Whose action? Your action.
So what we are saying is your life is entirely your making. There is no someone sitting up there and managing this for you. This is entirely yours but for every action that you perform -whether physical, mental, emotional, energy-wise - whatever kind of action you perform, there is bound to be a consequence. If you’re ready for the consequence, do whatever. If you’re going to cry about the consequence, control the action right now. Based on this… Now you came to food, see the food consumption has been looked at very carefully in this country. If you just bring this back, the world will be healthy, do you understand? Here, we have identified different type of people, what they should eat. If you’re doing menial jobs, how you should eat. If you’re doing trading, how you should eat. If you’re into spiritual process, how you should eat. If you’re into education, how you should eat. Why this is is each person needs a different type of building of the body. You want to run hundred meters next to Mr. Bolt, what kind of food you should eat. You just want to work in Delhi, what kind of food you should eat. You want to think in a certain way, what kind of food you’d… you should eat. For all these, we have very clear prescriptions.
Now when it comes to food, what it means is, we are taking another life, whatever that is - it may be plant life, animal life, whatever - you’re taking another life, ingesting it and you have to make it your life – that’s the whole thing. What is your life, what is that life, if you look at it, all life on this planet is coming from the earth. This body (Gestures) is also the same soil, this (Gestures) is also same soil, if there is a (an?) earthworm, that is also same soil but see how it has become, how this (Gestures) has become, how that (Gestures) has become. If I give you… You like a mango or a banana?
Barkha Dutt: Mango.
Sadhguru: Mango. I know, (Laughs) you’re ru… you’re ruling the state right now (Referring to the Aam Aadmi party (translates as The Common Man party), currently in power in Delhi, the word “aam” means common and also mango) (Laughter). Now, if you eat a ma… mango, this mango becomes a woman in you. If I eat a mango, the same mango becomes a man in me. If a cow eats a mango, the same mango becomes a cow in the cow. Why is this happening? There is a certain information or software in you - whatever you eat it transforms it into a woman. If I eat, it transforms into a man. If a cow eats, that becomes a cow. So every life is happening the way it is happening because of a certain dimension of information or in modern terminology, let’s call it software. There is a certain software, which is an arrangement of information.
Now, the idea is to eat as simple a software as possible. If you eat that kind of life, which is a very simple software, your ability to override that software and make it entirely a part of you is very good. As that software gets comp… complex, more and more complex, your ability to integrate it goes down. So, especially if it’s a creature which has some sense of thought and emotion, if it has emotion, then you should not eat it. This is the understanding. An animal, which has any emotion, displays certain emotions… especially if it displays emotion which is near to human emotion, you should not eat it because it will not integrate itself. That animal nature will start manifesting itself.
Or in other words, in India, today maybe in cities people do not know, you see in the villages, people have very intimate relationship with a cow. They have drunk the milk of that cow, their children are drinking the milk of that cow, there is a very deep relationship. If you do not know this, cow is one creature, if something happens to you and you are in some kind of grief or misery, you don’t have to be near the cow, wherever the cow is in your house, it will str… it’ll start shedding tears for you. You know, I’ve seen this with my eyes, I couldn’t believe – when somebody is dead in the house it… what does a cow know, it is somewhere, simply tears flowing. So when it’s… has such deep emotions, if you kill it, it’s like killing a human being, it’s murder or it’s cannibalism.
So because of that – this is not a faith thing, this is not a religious thing, we thought this is a fundamental sense. Why (Fumbles)… When we are hungry, why can’t I cut you up and eat you? What’s wrong (Laughter)? What’s wrong, I’m asking?
Barkha Dutt: But what you’re saying should be about many more animals than just the cow.
Sadhguru: Yes, yes of course.
Barkha Dutt: And when it becomes about only the cow, then there is a… there is certainly a perception…
Sadhguru: I… It is not…
Barkha Dutt: …that it is a political decision or a religious decision.
Sadhguru: No, no, I am not talking about the… whatever the laws that are happ…
Barkha Dutt: This is not about people getting up and saying, “It’s cruel to be… to be a meat-eater.” That would be a different argument.
Sadhguru: Hmm, I am not even talking about cruelty. Even cutting a plant is cruel, in my experience but you have to do it. But if you are conscious of it, you will do it to the minimum possible extent, not do it wantonly, that’s the whole thing.
Now, about this political ban about cow slaughter or whatever, this has many things. One thing is there is a sensitivity, once you drink milk from the cow, she is like your mother. Killing your mother and eating her up is something people cannot digest in this country. Still eighty percent of the people belong to that category and they’re… they’re hugely… there’s a huge emotion, such a (an?) emotion, which because they’ve always been made to be docile in a certain way, they have not violently rela… reacted to it but in some places it has happened, in villages and other places. There is already a beef ban in many villages just by norm, not by any law, that you don’t bring these kind of thin… things into the village.
I am not saying you must ban it or not ban it. I am saying the sensitivities of your population, you… without considering, you can’t go do this blatantly. Because it is growing, it’s becoming a growing business; India is becoming a major exporter of beef, that’s not right. Even if somebody ate something, it is up to them, it’s their personal taste, whatever but now you’re promoting it and you’re making it grow. There is serious concern but our people don’t express it, our people don’t go out on the street and not going to kill anybody because they killed a cow.
So ban is not what is needed, more education was needed rather than banning. But definitely, eating larger creatures… Why can’t you have a dog bet (pet?) and if you’re hungry cut it up and eat it today? Or why can’t you cut up your wife and eat her today? I mean it’ll all come to that one by one. This may look like an extreme argument but I’m telling you once… human mind is such, you give it little latitude, it will go on taking advantage of it, it’ll go, go, go, go. After hundred years, they’ll be doing something that you can’t imagine that a human being can do.
Barkha Dutt: But you haven’t spoken to what happens when faith… Faith repeatedly seems to come into conflict with individual liberty by the banning of books. There were people killed in Paris because they were seen to have mocked, you know of the Prophet Mohammed and so on.
Barkha Dutt: So where does this end? Where do we stop violence and politics in the name of religion?
Sadhguru: If you… If you want that to stop, you must understand this. You’re saying, “Today, today.” It’s not today. In the last 2,000 years, this is the history of the world, continuously it’s happening all over the world.
Barkha Dutt: So is that bombers are a new phenomenon?
Sadhguru: Well, you’ve forgotten about the Crusades and the other things, which have not been reported in history (Laughs). Hundreds of millions of people have been killed in the name of god, all right? It’s new to us here, but even here, thousands… hundreds and thousands have been slaughtered in northern part of India just because the faith that they belonged to when the invasions happened. Nobody writes about it because we never took the pen and wrote, somebody wrote history for us the way they like it. Because all history is sponsored by kings, they wrote the history the way they want and they said they are great emperors but what they did was absolutely terrible.
So you need to understand, faith is a new thing to us. When I say new, in this country which has 12-15,000 years of history behind us, 1,000 years is new for us, we’ve still not come to terms with it; we’re still struggling with it. But struggling within ourselves, not creating a struggle on the street because that’s not our nature because here always we’ve (it’s?) been drilled into us, whatever you do there’ll be a consequence for you. Even if you come back another life, another life, it won’t leave you, it’ll come back to you. Tch, this has been told… This controls people, this is a… This is a tremendous technology, please understand this, and it’s not simply a fake thing, it is a real thing. Everything that you think, feel, act, there is a consequence. Not because there is somebody thinking he must give… gift… give you a reward or a punishment. It happens in your own chemistry.
Barkha Dutt: How do we keep faith, which you say is new to us, separate from politics? You have… You have, in the past for example, I remember when Anna Hazare was lodging his anti-corruption movement, you did come and applaud it but you said that the Lokpal was not some magic wand, I remember you saying that. Do you believe that we are seeing a dangerous cocktail of faith and politics getting more and more mixed up?
Sadhguru: See, it is happening, I’m not saying no but it’s much less than ever before.
Barkha Dutt: Really?
Barkha Dutt: It seems to be much more than ever before.
Sadhguru: No, that’s because of you (Laughter/Applause). That’s because… That’s because if… if ten people get beheaded in some remote part of Iraq, you make sure the blood spills into my sitting room, because of that. Otherwise, you’re sitting here now, today… Let’s say 1,000 years ago, we were sitting here, 1,000 people got killed in Iraq, we will sit here peacefully thinking world is going really great, (Barkha Dutt laughs) spring-time (Laughter), everything is nice. So, this is because the dissemination of information, if ten people get killed somewhere, it’s a huge thing because it comes into our sitting rooms, bedrooms, dining room, everywhere there is a television, so it pours into our homes, so it is happening.
So, this is good because even a small thing looks magnified now in people’s experience but this has been happening always. It’s happening at its lowest level now. Here and there it spurts up, which need (needs?) to be controlled for sure. But what I see is, for the first time, for the very first time in the history of humanity, even if you… the numbers are not qualified because the population has increased, even in terms of percentages of people, how many people can think for themselves today is huge compared to what it was a hundred years ago or five hundred years ago or 1,000 years ago or 10,000 years ago. All these centuries, there would be one man in the village who thinks for you, who reads for you, who writes for you. You just have to do what you have to do, simple things. Today, everybody is able to think for himself or herself.
Now, human intellect is blossoming. I do not say it is blossoming in the right direction, with the right sense, no, insanely it is blossoming. It doesn’t matter, insanity will happen for some time, people will come to their senses. When something is new they’ll go crazy, after some time they’ll come to senses. Once human intellect blossoms sufficiently on the planet, then this looking upward for well-being will not make sense, believe me. Right now, from looking upward, slowly the world is tilting for… In pursuit of human well-being, people were looking heavenward, still many are, that’s different, but a whole lot of people have started looking outward. So if you look heavenward, hallucinations will happen, wars will happen because my heaven and your heaven different, you know? None of the heavens have anything for women, you better know that (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: I am definitely going to hell (Laughs). Anyway…
Sadhguru: So you believe in heaven and hell (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: I was being facetious, I was being facetious.
Sadhguru: Let me finish this.
Barkha Dutt: I was being facetious. I don’t know if there is somebody up there.
Sadhguru: That’s fine, that is fine. I…
Barkha Dutt: Is it a force, is it energy, is that inside me?
Sadhguru: No, I’m saying this… This thing about looking heavenward is slowly going away and in pursuit of well-being, people are looking outward. This is ripping the planet apart. Human pursuit of well-being is just destroying the planet. Now, the fundamentals of what we are transmitting… The fundamentals of this culture, which is essentially rooted in the yogic culture, what you call as Indian culture or Hindu culture is essentially a pure yogic science. In the form of culture, it finds many colors and distortions, which is what you’re seeing as the Hindu culture or Indian culture, whatever you want to call it.
Barkha Dutt: But they’re not interchangeable terms.
Barkha Dutt: Because we’re (Sadhguru laughs) a multi-religious country with many different cultures.
Sadhguru: (Laughs) We have…. I want you to (Laughs)… I want you to understand the word Hindu does not signify a religion. You ask them do they worship one god if they are Hindus. In the same family, they’re worshipping twenty-five gods (Laughter). They don’t… They don’t know which is the god, so they’re making sure worship everything (Laughter). Just in case something will hit, okay (Laughter/Applause). Now, the word Hindu means the land between Himalayas and Indusagara. This land, this subcontinent is Hindu. All people who are born here are considered Hindu because it’s a geographical identity. I know there’s a whole political issue, if I speak like this, they say, “Oh! He’s Hindu.”
Barkha Dutt: No, I mean people will tell you you’re echoing the RSS (Referring to a political party) chief (Laughter)?
Sadhguru: I don’t know what he said, I have not…
Barkha Dutt: He said all Indians are Hindus and there was a huge…
Sadhguru: Okay, I am not…
Barkha Dutt: …political outcry over that.
Sadhguru: Okay, all Indians live between Himalayas and Indian Ocean (Laughter/Applause).
Barkha Dutt: That’s okay.
Sadhguru: Those who want to jump into the ocean…
Barkha Dutt: That’s okay (Laughter/Applause).
Sadhguru: If you live bef… See, this is a dialectical culture, it expresses things in a certain way. Between Himalayas and Indian Ocean if you live, you are a Hindu. If you jump into the ocean and cross, you are a Lanka, okay (Laughter/Applause)? So, I don’t know what is the struggle about this. This is because there is such a narrow understanding of this. This is the debate which we have to change in the country - because somebody has absolute belief systems, we are trying to compare that to a culture where there is no such thing as belief. We have not ever been believers, we’ve always been seekers. This is a land where the highest value has never been God, always liberation, mukti - freedom is the highest goal. God has never been the highest goal (Applause).
So you… you put this in the same box as something, which just believes this is it or you’re dead – unfortunate, that’s not the way to look at it. This is what we have to bring back. If we really value human freedom, you must bring back this seeking for liberation. “I want to be free, not just from others but from myself and my god and my heaven and everything” because God has never been the goal in this culture, God is just another tool. When I use the word tool for a god, people get very hurt. They say, “Sadhguru, don’t say that, it hurts us.” I say, “That’s okay, you come to the ashram, I’ll give you some plumbing job (Laughter), all right?” See…
Barkha Dutt: That’ll hurt more (Laughs).
Sadhguru: No, no, no. “No spanner, no winch, nothing. Use your fingers, nails, teeth, whatever. Three days later, nails will be gone, half the teeth will be gone. Then I will give you a spanner. Will you worship the spanner or no” (Laughter/Applause)? We are who we are… As… as human beings, we are who we are only because of our ability to use a tool. Otherwise you are not even good as a dog. You can’t even fight a dog, isn’t it?
Barkha Dutt: So you’re against organized religion? Quite clearly, if god is just a tool and faith is not the same as spirituality…
Sadhguru: (Overlapping conversation) No, I… See… No, no, I’m not… I’m not saying I’m against this or that. All I’m saying is I want human beings to come to this much - if you know something you know it, if you don’t know something you don’t know it. Everything that you do not know you believe – this is a dangerous thing. Now, the fight on the planet is not between good and evil, this and that, no - one man’s versus another man’s belief. I’m saying why the hell do you believe anything? Because you’re essentially not straight enough to admit, “I really don’t know.” “I don’t know” people can’t fight. I don’t know, you don’t know – can we fight? “I know” is a fight. “I do not know” is never a fight, “I do not know” is a way of seeking. If we do not establish this seeking in every human being, that every human being is longing to know whether outside or inside, whatever, you are… Because this is the nature of human intelligence, it can’t sit quiet. It can only sit quiet if you freeze it with belief system. If you seal it with belief system, it can sit quiet. Otherwise the very nature of this intelligence is it wants to know.
Barkha Dutt: Okay, we’re almost at the end so I think I’m going take a few questions. Just two-three minutes of questions. I’m seeing lots of hands go up. The lady behind you, yes please.
Questioner: Namaskaram. Sadhguru, in one of your videos, you say that the problem with the world is that most people lack the intensity.
Sadhguru: ___ (Unclear-what?)
Questioner: Most people lack the necessary intensity.
Sadhguru: Mhmm (Indicating agreement)
Questioner: And then you say the way is dhyana. So intensity is more associated to fierceness in personality and dhyana is more associated to calmness. So they’re somehow counterintuitive. Can you elaborate a little?
Sadhguru: People think peace means rest in peace (Laughter) because their idea of peace is death. Peace can be very intense. Peace can be tremendously intense because peace means the reverberations of life have become subtle and intense. Action means reverberations of life are not so subtle, it is at a certain level. So peace happens not because… Peace may happen if somebody is dead but to be alive and peaceful means you need to be highly intense state of energy, otherwise you can’t be peaceful. The reason why most people who don’t have any problems as such, you know after all they’re trying to earn a living, reproduce and bring up their children and die one day, just for that they’re freaking simply because of lack of intensity. Because life is happening at a low ebb, naturally everything is a problem. If it rises a little bit, suddenly you have a little clearer view of everything. For this, you need a higher intensity of energy within you and the yogic system is essentially focused towards that. Dhyana does not mean (Gestures) (Laughter). No (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, let’s take the next question, here, right here in the front row, yeah.
Questioner: Sadhguru, could you just wish my wife “Happy Birthday” (Laughter)?
Sadhguru: Why? You didn’t do it (Laughter/Applause)?
Barkha Dutt: Okay, we’ll…
Sadhguru: Happy birthday to you (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: We’ll take one… two more questions, yeah, right there, just wait for me to…
Sadhguru: There are vested interests, see.
Barkha Dutt: Yeah, there are (Laughter).
Questioner: ____ (Unclear-hello?) Sadhguru. What I get from Isha’s philosophy, if I may say there is, is that you need to see internally, in your interiority, you need to fix it internally before fixing your external situations. But is it also not right… is it also not very important to do the right thing externally, you know? Just to make myself more clear you know, if I be more precise…
Sadhguru: No, no, I’m clear, I get the question (Laughter). Why, do I look so dumb (Laughter)?
Questioner: Let’s say you know, if somebody…
Sadhguru: I got it.
Sadhguru: I got it.
Questioner: If somebody is born…
Sadhguru: I got the question (Laughter/Applause).
Questioner: Please let me finish (Laughs).
Sadhguru: (Laughs) I’m (Barkha Dutt Laughs)… Please… Please sit down. Isha’s philosophy is not about looking internally or externally. It is just that if you’re looking for mangoes, you look up the tree, you don’t dig the earth, all right (Barkha Dutt Laughs)? But if you’re looking how to plant a mango tree, then you dig the earth. You’re looking for mangoes if you dig the earth, will you find it, I’m asking? So if you… inner things- you must look inward, outer things-you must look outward. There is no such philosophy – “Look out or look in.” Wherever the damn thing is, look there (Laughter/Applause).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, we’ll take one more question. The girl here in the third row, yes.
Sadhguru: Like you know, Shankaran Pillai went for a job interview (Laughter) and they asked him, “Which is further, Mumbai or moon?” He thought profoundly and then said, “Mumbai.” They said, “How do you say this?” He said, “I can see the moon, I can’t see Mumbai” (Laughter/Applause).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, last question, yeah.
Questioner: Namaskaram Sadhguru. I just want to ask…
Barkha Dutt: Hold the mike closer to you.
Questioner: Yeah. I just want to ask you that everybody’s perception of good and bad is different and what do you think if we start manifesting our own good and bad, what’ll be the state of the society?
Sadhguru: Hmm, maybe you won’t have power tonight (Barkha Dutt Laughs). I think I already made this clear. The biggest problem with the world is there’re too many good people, not enough sensible people. Sense is life-specific, okay? Goodness need not be life-oriented, goodness may be going to heaven. And the moment – I want you to understand this dangerous concept, people don’t address this – the moment you believe… suppose I believe there is heaven and it’s a beautiful place and you can live in the company of gods, should I send you there today or no? If I really care for you, I’m saying (Laughter). Yes? If I really care for you and if I believe there’s a great place, should I send you there or not? This is a dangerous thing, do you understand? If you stretch it to its logical end, it’s a really dangerous thing. The moment I believe there is a fantastic place up there, I really love you and I want you to go there, you know (Laughter)? Tch, yes (Laughs).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, let me just end by asking you something that we haven’t spoken about and then I’ll hand it over to Chiki. You said you love machines.
Sadhguru: I didn’t say I love them (Laughter).
Barkha Dutt: Okay, you like machines.
Barkha Dutt: Or they’re useful.
Sadhguru: They work.
Barkha Dutt: Have our lives been overtaken by gadgets?
Sadhguru: Not mine.
Barkha Dutt: No?
Sadhguru: Definitely not, I use all the gadgets but they don’t overtake me. These are fantastic things in our life. Things… See, in every way, compared to how a human being was, let’s say hundred years ago, you’re almost superhuman. Tch, hundred years ago, if I could just pick up something from my pocket and talk to somebody in America right now, I would be superhuman. Why superhuman? If I said “I’m God” people would have believed me, hundred years ago. Five hundred years ago, if I just had a light bulb, I would have become God on this planet, I want you to know. Look at the things we have today, we are really superhuman. Once this kind of capability has come to us, little more sense has to rise, little more awareness and consciousness stu… has to arise. If this doesn’t happen, this capability will turn against us. This is what you’re saying.
Now gadgets are freaking people. Why? It’s a simple thing. You… If you want to use it, you can use it or you can keep it aside. Because you are in a compulsive state, if you start using a cell phone, you can’t stop it, even in your sleep you’re texting. See the boy is (Gestures towards somebody)… he’s in a… he’s not with me… he’s in… looking at me in the screen (Laughter). Now, this is the same thing. If food is good, if you start eating you don’t know when to stop. If you start drinking, you don’t know when to stop. If you start doing something, you don’t know when to stop. The same thing, it is not about the gadget, it is not about the food, it is just that there is not enough consciousness, there is compulsiveness. Everything is happening compulsively. Instead of addressing the root, you’re trying to kill the gadget. Gadget is a fantastic thing, every damn gadget has enhanced our life in a huge way, isn’t it? Don’t curse the gadgets. It is just that compulsiveness has to go.
Barkha Dutt: Well, on that note, I will say thank you for provoking us. As always, a pleasure (Applause) to have you, a pleasure (Sadhguru laughs) (Applause). Let’s have a big round of applause for Sadhguru here (Applause).
Chiki Sarkar: Thank you very much Barkha, thank you Sadhguru. That was a wonderful, wonderful conversation, I think you can see it from everyone’s faces. Books are on sale, volunteers from the Isha Foundation are also here if you have any questions and we will end this evening with music from the Foundation as well. Thank you very much, thank you (Applause). And I’m so sorry, there’s also a small present for you Barkha from the Isha Foundation, which I’d forgotten but if you… A little token of their thanks.
Sadhguru: (Checks audio) Because she will think I’m taking her into some faith (Barkha Dutt Laughs), I… I want you to… This is an imp… This is a kind of an abstract image of Adiyogi, the first yogi. Over 15,000 years ago, he explored the mechanics… of human mechanics, how a human being is made, what are the things you can do, one hundred and twelve ways in which you can take a human being to his highest potential. So, we’re doing many things to acknowledge him because many people beginning to believe that Madonna invented yoga (Laughter). So this is a… as a symbolism for that.
Barkha Dutt: Thank you… Thank you so much.
Sadhguru: (Talks aside –Will you give it? Yeah, please) (Applause)
Sounds of Isha music – Hindi song Zara Halke Gaadi…
Sounds of Isha music – Hindi song Jo Tu Saancha…