Watch the Video "The Impact of Indian Civilization", Sadhguru with Sanjeev Sanyal
In this episode of "In Conversation With the Mystic", writer and economist Sanjeev Sanyal and Sadhguru discuss India, its history and contribution to the world, and what lies ahead for the nation.
Sadhguru: Good evening. Good evening every one.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Good evening. Let me begin by welcoming you to Singapore on behalf of all the people here. It is a real pleasure, it’s a real honor to speak to you. Of course many of us have already seen many of your videos online and today of course another one just before this. Now, as you know the topic for today is: The impact of Indian civilization on the world.
Sadhguru: It’s your topic but you’re putting me in ______(Inaudible).
Sanjeev Sanyal: Ah yes I’m going to put you on the spot for it (Both laugh). And before we go beyond that, I’m going to put you on the… try and get you to… try and define what we mean by Indian civilization in the sense that… and particularly… what I… what I’m not trying to get into is of course this impact of Indian civilization on mathematics in ancient times, of software and today, but really the impact of Indian philosophy, our way of life on… on the world. And I’m going to start with asking you, how is the backbone of this civilization, whether you call it Hinduism or the Dharmic tradition, how is that fundamentally different from other ways of thinking about civilization?
Sadhguru: (Laughs) You use the word ‘backbone’ - that is the essence of Indian civilization. It doesn’t have a backbone, because what a backbone means is - the form is determined, your body takes on this form because the skeletal system is a fixed thing. You can change a little bit, you can make it big or small but the skeletal system is a fixed thing. Nobody has changed the shape of their bones out here. They only can put on some flesh or reduce some flesh. So backbone essentially means that you become a vertebrate. Vertebrate means you can only change your form marginally, not completely, ever. But the ethos of Indian civilization is it’s like an amebae. It can change, it can integrate, it can drop with impunity. So the essence of Indian culture is it doesn’t have… it is not a vertebrate, it’s an invertebrate.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Okay if you’re an invertebrate… but there must be something that gives it a certain cohesiveness surely otherwise to say that it is an amoeba, you know there is a danger here that we fall back on saying, you know, “Hinduism is a way of life” (Sadhguru laughs), ultimately, it means nothing so I’m going to have to press you on and try and get you to give me some things which I would say are more… I don’t know.
Sadhguru: See, this question is coming because both you and me and almost everybody here, whatever type of education they have received, fundamentally it’s Western. Largely that’s the only education system left except for sm… few small pockets. So when I say ‘Western’, I’m not talking about a particular nation or particular continent. We’re looking at that aspect of life or that part of humanity which wants their life in straight lines. When we say Eastern, we’re talking about that aspect of humanity which does not want to be put in-between two lines. So, because the very way of thinking has become purely logical irrespective of whether it makes life sense or not, being logically correct has become more important than having sense about life, how to conduct life. Everything is logically correct but nothing works. People are just breaking their minds trying to live their life, but it’s correct.
And today (Laughs), you know the food industry on the planet is 7.6 trillion. The pharmaceuticals are 7.2 trillion. They tell me by 2017 pharmaceuticals is going to become larger than food industry on the planet. This clearly shows that, our sense of trying to handle life in straight lines has not worked. Though we have great inventions, though we have all kinds of preventives for every kind of, you know epidemics and pandemics that we used to have in the past, still more people are sick than ever before. So this is what I mean by saying we are “correct” on everything but it doesn’t have any life sense. What we call as ‘India’ is a profound sense of life, but we are never correct about anything (Laughter).
Sanjeev Sanyal: I think basically what you’re describing is really a evolving eco-system. It’s a messy system…
Sadhguru: It’s like… it’s not messy, that is what a Western mind would think.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Okay (Laughter / Applause).
Sadhguru: It’s like a…the differences between that of a manicured garden and a forest. A manicured garden looks nice, but nothing except human beings walk on it.
Sanjeev Sanyal: So ultimately at some level it’s dead?
Sadhguru: It is alive but latent. If you don’t tend to it for three months it’s all gone. A forest is not like that, no tending is needed. If you come back after a million years it still thrives. But one who thinks in a linear fashion, a forest seems to be messy, forest seems to be chaotic. It’s not chaotic, there is a very profound order, but that order is not in straight lines because it’s an invertebrate order, now that you’ve brought the spine into this picture (Laughter).
Sanjeev Sanyal: So I think that’s a fabulous way of thinking about it because basically what you’re describing is a continuously churning but there is an order in that churn, in a sense it’s an act of seeking of innovating, it’s a civilization really, it’s a risk taking civilization would you say, a civilization that thinks of adventure?
Sadhguru: Now you’re being an economist (Laughter). If you use the word ‘adventure’, usually it means that you’re taking risk with your life. You’re doing something risky which is a danger to your life but if you manage to come out of it it’s an adventure, if you don’t manage to come out of it, it was a stupid action, all right? That’s how it is. If you successfully come out of a dangerous situation it’s called an adventure. If you don’t come out you’re just stupid (Laughter), isn’t it? So if you do a stupid act successfully, you’re adventurous.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Or you’re a risk taker? (Laughter). Or you’re a risk taker?
Sadhguru: You’re talking in economic terms?
Sanjeev Sanyal: Hmm? It could be an intellectual risk or a it could...
Sadhguru: Intellectual, see…
Sanjeev Sanyal: I mean after all, science is also intellectual risk.
Sadhguru: No, intellectually there is no risk, that is the beauty of intellect. You can do whatever you want, there’s no danger (Laughter). In your mind, you can do whatever you want, there is no danger. That is what… That is where the Indian ethos comes from. Human intellect was expanded in such a way, they looked at everything in every possible way because there was no danger. They did not believe in putting their physical body into danger because this (referring to the body) is not something that you can create. If you destroy this (referring to the body) it’s over. But in our minds, every concept we have, every philosophy we have, every idea we have, every ideology we have, we can crush (claps hands) it right now this moment, next moment you can come up with a whole new world.
So our sense of adventure was purely intellectual but the Western sense of adventure was all physical. Physical adventure can be… cameras can capture it, you can make a movie out of it. Intellectual adventures cannot be captured like that. Even if it is expressed in some form, in the form of literature or philosophy or whatever, very few people will get it, all others will ignore it. Everybody can… you know large part of the world… I… I was surprised to know that whatever this one... you know one mad wrestling matches are going on on the television…
Sanjeev Sanyal: WWE
Sadhguru: Yes whatever, some crazy stuff, it’s not even real and it’s most unaesthetic. But I heard this is the most popular channel in Indian right now.
Sanjeev Sanyal: It is, yes. Even my sons watch it (Laughter)
Sadhguru: This is the most unaesthetic thing. it’s popular because physical things are something that everybody can identify with or... instead of saying everybody, even the grossest mind will understand physical things but intellectual adventures it will take a some level of appreciation, some level of refinement within you to understand the intellectual adventure. When I say intellectual adventure, let’s look at it like this – it’s not now, even five thousand years ago, if you go back to the times of Mahabharat, what they’re speaking even today in modern times most people cannot come to terms with it. It’s that revolutionary. But, these adventurers were done. People ignored everything. If you say for example, five thousand years ago Harappa, Mohenjo daro, what did you read in your book… textbook? - They had very organized drainage system. This is all the British could notice that they had organized drainage system because London did not have drainage system at all (Laughter). But to build a city like that, how people should have been? What should their thought be? How should they be thinking? What were they doing? What was their trade? No, nothing about that, nobody read anything about that. Everybody reads, “Very good drainage system Harappa, Mohenjo daro had.” All of you must have read this, isn’t it (Laughter)?
Audience: Yes. (Interviewer laughs).
Sadhguru: And is it …is an entire civilization about drainage system, I’m asking (Laughter)?
Sanjeev Sanyal: No, I think that you bring up a very interesting point about civilization is more than, of course, the drainage system but it’s about a certain spirit.
Sadhguru: I’m sure in the minds of the people who lived in those cities, drainage was the last thing on their mind (Laughter).
Sanjeev Sanyal: No, I agree with you and in fact, one of the interesting things about Indian civilization is that this… this… this… this intellectual adventurism or culture that you just described was enormously attractive because it spread across the world, taken by Indian merchants. Of course we now live this part of the world, we’re in a city called (sounds like - Singaporera) ‘The Lions City’…
Sadhguru: The very name is….
Sanjeev Sanyal: …And in fact, you know, the largest Hindu temple in the world is not in India but in Cambodia - Angkor Wat. And all the way across through to Korea where in fact many people may not realize but Koreans say that their civilization starts with a Korean prince marrying a princess from Ayodhya.
Sanjeev Sanyal: So this is certainly a very attractive…
Sadhguru: Don’t tell me North Korea came from north India and South Korea came from south India? (Laughter / Applause).
Sanjeev Sanyal: Well …evidently… evidently, they think their civilization started from central UP. So…(Laughter)
Sadhguru: No, no, no, no, no.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Nevertheless, the point I’m trying to come to is that certainly this way of thinking that …
Sadhguru: Central UP is yet to be civilized (Laughter).
Sanjeev Sanyal: This way of thinking that we had at a certain point at our… in our history, we seem to have in some ways lost it along the way. But do you think in many ways this sense of intellectual and cultural adventure is coming back?
Sadhguru: You cannot say it’s coming back. It can be brought back. Is it coming back? I don’t think so, not in a large scale, very small pockets here and there. Should it come back? If you are interested in true well-being of humanity on the planet it must come back because from simplest things, everything that we have done in the world today, the style of… or the mode in which we are doing today, for example, one biggest thing that everybody’s talking about today is about your subject, economics. The economic engine of the planet is driven all by more and more and more but physical world is a world of limited quantities. More, more, more is only destructive. More, more was possible… was thought of by a certain group of people in the world when they believed they will enslave the entire world for their well-being. When that was the basis, more, more, more was possible, you could always make other people have less, less, less and you have more, more, more. There is no question of entire population on the planet having more, more, more. It’s totally out of question because there is no more.
So these… these flaws if they have to be fixed, genuinely, before… you know (Laughs), India is getting rapidly Westernized, okay. Many parts of India… urban India is more West than West, all right (Laughs). It’s more American than America, many people in the country. So before it becomes an all-encompassing thing, we must bring it up not for the sake of preserving a nation’s culture… I’m personally not identified with a particular nation or any geo… piece if geography or history for that matter but this is the only culture which has nurtured seeking.
It is…if you look at fundamentally why India was recognized as one country, though at times politically it was nearly five hundred entities, at the same… in spite of that people from outside recognized this as Bharat or Hindustan or as one nation and people within the country also felt they’re one nation though they were revel… ruled by various Kings is just this -always this land has been a land of seekers, never a land of believers. Fundamentally the difference between seeking and believing means – seeking means you have realized that you do not know. ‘I do not know’ is the basis of seeking. Believing means, what you do not know you have chosen to assume and concretize your assumptions and put God’s seal on it, finished. Wa… once you put divine seal on your stupidity (Laughter), you can never come out of it, okay. Yes. Once you get heavenly approval for all the stupid things that you do there is no way out for you, you’re stuck.
Here, this is a culture where even if God appeared or somebody appeared whom you believed is God, still they cannot give you commandments - this is the thing to do. Well, for example, the most famous book probably is ‘The Gita’ (referring to the Bhagava Gita) in India. Well, he’s (referring to Krishna) supposed to be God himself, whatever he says the other guy is arguing and arguing endlessly, asking a thousand questions because even he cannot give commandments to him. It has to make logical sense to him, otherwise he’s not gonna take it. This is not today’s culture. Five thousand years ago this is the way we have been. This is the way we are right now, but today because we have been …you know twent… two hundred fifty years ago or three hundred years ago we were the strongest economy on the planet. Everybody wanted to come to India because it was the richest nation. Well last ten, fifteen generations we’ve fallen on bad times. Because of that nobody listens to what you’re talking. Slowly it will change, because in the world, if your voice has to be heard, first thing you must be successful. There is no substitute for success unfortunately. It doesn’t matter what brilliant things you’re talking about. Unless you are speaking from the platform of success, nobody is willing to listen to you.
Sanjeev Sanyal: the idea of seeking is quite an interesting one, taking that in some sense it’s a very post-modern, in fact post-industrial idea (Sadhguru laughs) about how to think about the world which is essentially that… we poke every assumption of our lives, or ideologies and we try and dissect it. Now, there is one danger in this, in that it can lead to you becoming negative or even to begin to think that sort of mysticism is some sort of a monasticism i.e. meaning… that is surely not what you are trying to say here – it’s not a self-denying way of life that you are describing?
Sadhguru: Tell me, if you don’t take out your twelve cylinder car today and you choose to go on a bicycle, is this… is it self-denying? Or is it eco-sensitive? It depends who is looking at you, right? Somebody chose to sit in a place under a tree and he was happy sitting under a tree. Why do you call it self-denial? He might have found something that you’re not imagined possible. He has found something which you cannot even imagine, that’s why sitting under a tree he’s fine.
Sanjeev Sanyal: So many of these ideas that you are telling us I believe some of it came to you while you were bi… you mentioned bicycles but maybe on a motorbike, crisscrossing India. It would be wonderful if you could give us some sense of what is it that you… that really you found as you crisscrossed this country that inspired you to begin thinking like this.
Sadhguru: Initially I did most of south India on my bicycle.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Oh on a bicycle?
Sadhguru: Initially. I did southern India on my bicycle. I was… I was planning a… hmm, an expedition on my bicycle to Moscow.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Okay.
Sadhguru: Okay (Both laugh), but then my father, little lost his mind thinking how I will go to (Laughs) Moscow on my bicycle. Two of my friends went, they came back after nearly four years. ______(Inaudible).
Sanjeev Sanyal: Wow, they actually made it?
Sadhguru: They made it. They went to Moscow they went all over Russia, they went through all this… now all those you know, the twenty and odd central Asia countries and they came back after four years. Well I got, kind of (Laughs) sabotaged (Laughs). Anyway, my travels… I was… I was just flipping through your geography, history book, you know. This geography and history is a little… I had a joke for you, it’s okay?
Sanjeev Sanyal: Yeah, yeah. Sure (Laughter).
Sadhguru: A novice bank robber wanted to try it on a gas station first. So he walked into the gas station, pulled out his gun and he said… he put his gun to the sales person and said, “All the cash, otherwise you’re geography.” (Interviewer laughs). He (referring to the Salesman) said, “Come on, you mean history, isn’t it?” He said, “No!” Don’t change the subject!” (Laughter/ Applause). When I was reading your book I thought of this, okay (Laughter). It’s a... it’s a geography book but it’s history (Laughter). You’re not changing the subject, it’s the same subject. Geography and history is the same subject, that’s the point of your book in many ways. So for me, all these travels I travelled without any purpose. I was not going to any particular place. I simply rode across India. For me, because I… I never thought, nor do I even today, think in words, I only see pictures and videos in my mind always. Even today, what I did those many years ago, I remember every feature of land. It’s very difficult to explain this, I’m not talking about some great mountain or river or a waterfall, not like that, those definitely I remember. I’m talking about every corner, ones (one?) little outcrop, one little bird was sitting on the tree, one small this, one anthill here, one there - it’s just in my mind. This is the biggest pleasure for me when I want I playback (Laughs). Just simple terrain, the land just took my heart away, just looking at the land.
Then came people for me, okay. Because in my mind, in my experience ev… everything I look at it, is all first of all is geometry for me. If I look at a human being, I… first thing is I look at the various aspects of geometry and if I look at them right now I will tell you in ten years what problem they will have because if their geometry’s okay or not okay, it’s so visible. The very way they sit and stand you can see what are they going to get or not get because geometrically, whether it’s right or wrong. The entire physical existence is a consequence of geometry. Only what is geometrically right will last. What is not geometrically right will not last. How long something lasts simply depends upon whether it’s geometrically correct or not… I think they were showing those buildings. It’s all about geometry for me. And the very word yoga means this, that you align your physical geometry with the cosmic geometry, suddenly what is there is here also for you because you’re properly aligned.
So when I looked at the terrain, which at that time only India, now I’ve travelled all over, but at that time when I travelled it was all about geometry – how a little rock… I’m not talking about huge, massive, monumental rock, I’m talking about a little stone was sitting as was riding from the corner of my eye I saw that stone, that stone still lives in my mind. So this is how I just absorbed India into me.
Then it came to people. I just ride into some village, walk into some home, any home, I just walk in and I say, “I’m hungry.” They would look at me, “Who is this guy?” But, they said okay and they would arrange a meal for me. I would eat there and if I wanted to sleep there, right there either if they allowed me in the house or just outside the house I slept there and early morning I was off again. So for me, I didn’t… I never introduce myself nor many times I never asked their names nor did I exchange email ID because there wasn’t one at that time (Laughter). There was no need to again reach back and contact them nor did they have any need to know who I am, it was just like that. This is India. Just come together as if you belong to them. Tomorrow morning you’re gone, like you never existed. This is how I travelled. Very, very rare you know, in these entire travels I remember maybe five or six times I stayed in a hotel room otherwise I slept in anybody’s home or sometimes just outside in the town. In the center of the town I would sleep. People would come and ask, ‘Who?’ ‘What? This… I’m travelling like this.’ Somebody would take me and give me food. Because I am saving every rupee for more gas, more gas means more miles (Laughs). So my impression of India and people and the culture was – there are no lines. If you don’t carry lines, there are no lines.
A lot had changed since then, of course. So many things have happened, people are suspicious about each other, there has been terror attacks, there are bombs, everybody wants to frisk you from top to bottom now (Laughs). So many things, that’s because of the events that have taken place. Otherwise, this is India. Even today I’m sure it’s true in rural India, it’s still like that. You can walk in anywhere and it’s okay. If they are… what they have they’ll share it with you, it’s not some great meal they are serving you. If you approach in a certain way, everything is wide open because there are no lines in peoples’ minds. Lines are being… now being drawn because people are going to schools now, everybody’s getting educated. Educated means you become less and less inclusive. See this is the kind of education we’re getting. The more educated you become the less inclusive you become. There was a time… I’ve gone and stayed with families where family of over four hundred people…
Sanjeev Sanyal: Okay.
Sadhguru: In Karnataka in the wes… in the coastal Karnataka there are families where four hundred people in one family. And one more guest they don’t even care, okay (Laughter). You also stay and go, what’s the big deal? But today, gradually it came down, family meant you, your wife, your children, your parents, not her parents ever (Laughter). And slowly your parents went out, now just wife and kids. If you move West you will see kids also out as soon as possible and slowly husband and wife are live… In many homes I’m telling you, I’m not joking - there are people, husband and wife, married for many years, now separated but not legally separated, living in adjacent homes. Only when they want, otherwise separate homes because they can’t stand each other. This is the form of education we’re imparting on entire world where inclusiveness is not possible. Slowly you can’t stand anybody over a period of time because the way of thinking is becoming so logically correct. The more logically correct you are, you look at anybody nobody seems to be okay (Laughter). Really. You’re logically hundred per cent correct you think, you look at them, nobody is okay. If nobody is okay, it is not a question of correctness, it is a question of madness. The first sign of psychological disturbance is you start thinking nobody is okay except you (Laughter). We’re heading towards that big time. The… the statistics tell me that thirty eight per cent of the European population is psychologically ill. Every year, three hundred and fifty million Europeans go through serious psychiatric treatment. This is…
Sanjeev Sanyal: So… So what you’re describing is you know, continuous individualization into silos, and this is not just about individuals in silos but this is also a thought process, a wider thought process which is true maybe…
Sadhguru: No, this is essentially happening because your idea of intelligence has become purely intellectual. Intellect is like a knife, it’s like a scalpel. Whatever you give it, it will slice it into two and look at it, then it’s not happy, it will slice it into four and look at it, then it is not happy, it will slight (slice ?) it into eight and look at it, this is the way of the intellect. Intellect knows everything only by dissection, cutting everything into pieces. This is the way we have developed science, this is the way our logical thinking process is because we have come to this place that intelligence means intellect.
The Indian way of life, we have looked at human mind as sixteen parts. To make it simple I will make it into four here. This is called as Buddhi, Manas, Ahankara and Chitta. These are different dimensions. Intellect means only Buddhi is being used, which is a sharp knife. This sharp knife is a good instrument for you to survive in the world. It dissects everything and shows you. But right now you want to di… you want to know somebody who is dear to you. You can’t dissect them and know them (Laughs). You won’t have them, that’s all, if you dissect them.
This is what is happening, we are not understanding the distinction between intellect and the deeper dimensions of intelligence which functions within us. The intelligence within us is inclusive in nature. As you sit here you may hate the person you is sitting next to you, if you… okay I didn’t mean you should, that’s not an instruction (Laughter). You may hate the person who is sitting next to you but unknowingly you are inhaling what they are exhaling right now (Laughter) and you have no problem. Yes? You’ve no problem. Body has no problem because the deeper intelligence within you has no issue but if you just intellectually think, ‘Oh my god. I’m inhaling this person’s breath sitting next to this person,’ you can’t sit there anymore. Yes? You cannot sit there anymore. This is the nature of the intellect. It keeps on dividing, dividing, dividing. The other dimensions of intelligence have… are not made like this.
Right now, we’re able to live only because this is inclusive. What you exhale, the trees inhaling; what the tree exhales, you’re inhaling. This is how life is happening. Not just this, right now, what is happening in every sub-atomic particle in this body is reverberating across the cosmos in so many different ways. I’m not a… talking philosophy, I’m talking about physics.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Now this.. this sort of, inclusive way of thinking … hmm I think…
Sadhguru: No, no. You cannot think inclusively. If you don’t think you’re inclusive.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Okay (Laughter / Applause). That’s a fabulous way of thinking (Laughter). I mean basically (Laughs) of feeling it… I don’t know, what would be the correct word for it? Experience it, perhaps is perhaps the…
Sadhguru: People ask me, “Sadhguru, what are you usually…” Today morning I am doing an interview with some FM radio in India because it’s the Tamil New Year’s day is coming. “Sadhguru, what is your thought process all… most of the time when you’re not teaching or speaking?” I said, “I don’t have any! I don’t think. What is there to think? I don’t know.” I don’t think, that’s all. I… I just walk around joyfully with an empty head. That’s why I don’t have the burden of knowledge there is… I’ve never felt burdened by it because I don’t carry it first of all. I don’t have a single thought in my mind, most of the time (Laughs).
Sanjeev Sanyal: Never-the-less there is a certain art to it that must surely be, okay, you can’t put it down into certain steps maybe, in a silo-ed way. But if you had to sort of describe the way one sort of… if one had to dissect say a global problem or something, how would say this particular approach deal with it as oppose to the way we now deal with it which is to break it down to its sub parts, solve each little bit and put it back together.
Sadhguru: See the parts will never make the whole. Suppose I will get you a pair of kidneys, one nice very healthy liver, heart, this that everything. Okay, make it into ones… another human being and give it to me, let me see. It’ll not work like that, parts will… parts will not make a whole. Parts are there, yes. Now if you want help also, right now why I mention this, you know the health care b… industry becoming bigger than the food industry is simply because of this, because you have a kidney doctor, you have a lung doctor, you have an eye doctor, you have a knee doctor. It is not far where there’ll be separate doctor for your right eye and your left eye (Few laugh) because there is a difference between the two.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Yes
Sadhguru: There is a difference between the two. So tomorrow ifs… go on specializing, you will need hundred doctors to have a health check-up. By the time you get appointment from a hundred doctors, definitely you’ll be sick (Few laugh). So specialization is a good thing to a point but now we can’t stop it because see… we see one more thing and one more thing. If you divide the atom, there are too many things there so you will need specialists for all that. By the time you get there, you will get lost because the sophistication of the physical creation is such, for every atom you will need one specialist. And for every sub-atomic particle you need further specialist. So at that rate what will you know, I’m asking? You will not know anything.
There is another way to know everything. Simply by embracing something, either by dissection you know or by embrace you know. You know life only by inclusion. Dissection is a exclusivity process, elimination process. But, if you want to know these people. you know them only by inclusion not elimination, isn’t it? So what is good for material things, you’re trying to make it happen for every aspect of life. Life does not work like that. If you give this flower to a scientist, first thing he will do is he’ll rip it apart (Interviewer laughs). Yes. That is the way he will study it.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Which will miss the point.
Sadhguru: Yes he will know all parts of it but he won’t know the flower. But the beauty of the flower, everything that you know… need to know about life… in a way, this flower is the peak of that plant’s life, isn’t it?
Sanjeev Sanyal: Yes.
Sadhguru: Instead of absorbing that, instead of including that within you… because every life’s aspiration is only to reach the peak of what la… whatever this life is possible, isn’t it? Whether you are an earthworm or a grasshopper or a flowering plant or a mango tree or a human being, the only aspiration is to become a full-fledged piece of life, isn’t it? By elimination will that happen? So now a global problem - if I don’t break it down, how do know? Only because you’re breaking it down, problems are multiplying. You know in India they talk about a certain… certain forces like Mahishasura or somebody. The stories are if you… if one drop of blood drops falls on the ground, one more guy will rise. Another drop falls, another guy will rise. That is what it is.
Sanjeev Sanyal: Raktabeeja.
Sanjeev Sanyal: It’s called Raktabeeja.
Sadhguru: Yes (Laughs). I’m saying the Raktabeej is all we’re doing. We’re only complicating the world like never before. We’re not solving problems, let’s at least admit that. We’re having sophisticated explanations for our problems. Problems are not gone, isn’t it?
Sanjeev Sanyal: So I’m going to change track a little bit here. You know most of us here live in Singapore. We have… many of us have children who we are bringing up in Singapore, outside of India and we want to take some of this line of thinking and pass it down to them. What are the you know, one or two things that you think are the critical parts of our culture and civilization, that I think we should try and get them to imbibe.
Sadhguru: I see both your boys are in kurta at least (Laughter). So, see we need to understand this - what we call as Indian culture is not a mode of dress, a mode of speech or a certain way of doing things. Fundamentally shifting life from belief to seeking. When I say, shifting life from belief to seeking - people feel their life is strong when they believe something. All these days they’ve been talking about believing in God. These days it’s become a fashion to say, ‘I believe in myself.’ You believe in things that you do not know (Laughter). You can’t believe in something that’s here, either you know it or you don’t know it, isn’t it? Yes or no? This is all the option is – either you know something or you don’t know something. Because you’re unwilling to admit you do not know, you say, ‘I believe in it’ because it gives you confidence but confidence without clarity. Confidence without clarity is a disastrous process. If you have clarity, you will see everything the way it is. If you don’t have clarity, at least you must have hesitation. But if you have confidence without clarity, you don’t see a damn thing but you’re dead sure (Laughter). There are too many people like this, believe me (Laughs).
Sanjeev Sanyal: But the opposite of that is there that if you see everything clear would you not get paralyzed (Both laugh)?
Sadhguru: If reality is going to paralyze you then you have to live in hallucination. When I say belief, belief need not be of any sense, you just believe because it gives you confidence. For a long time people have believed in somebody up there, managing your life Oopparwallah, if you’re a north Indian (Laughter). So, first of all we are sitting on a round planet and it’s spinning. If you’re looking up, you’re invariably looking up in the wrong direction. You’re on the equator in Singapore. You’re invariably looking up in the wrong direction at least if you look towards Delhi, maybe you’re looking northward, little bit (Interviewer laughs). So I’m saying, you are incapable of knowing what is up and what is down in this cosmos. Nowhere is it marked, “This side up.” Have you seen, “This side up” mark in the cosmos, in the Galaxies somewhere? No. You don’t know what is up or what is down. If you go further south, even people in Australia down under, they think they’re also looking up, isn’t it? So there is no up, down business.