Are we as humans becoming weaker? As technology lulls us into using our body and brains less and less, Sadhguru explains, we are growing weak at an alarming rate.
Sadhguru: Oh definitely. It is not because our genes have become weak we have become weak; because…because we have become weak the next generation will be weaker, unless they really strive.
There is substantial scientific evidence to show within a single generation the genetic structure of a particular family or whatever can deteriorate - there is enough evidence to show that. Of course it can always be revived, but will revival happen is the question. When you are going to have an electric car to drive from your sitting room to bedroom, or you drive your bed wherever you go to the office… (Laughs) it may happen. Maybe you drive in your bed to your office and work there and sleep there and because everything is touch of button, or touching buttons also will go away probably if you verbally say it, everything will get typed and all the work gets done. And you don’t have to use either your body or your brains in any great length - definitely in a single generation we can fall dramatically. I think it's happening at an alarming rate. If you look at the children today simple things that all kids would be capable of when we were growing up, today it's like circus for a whole lot of children. Only very athletic ones can do it.
I was speaking to a group of… very elite group in Chennai. Today these young couples and others who are very well-to-do and in industry and things, they all pride themselves that they are all doing fitness, they are walking on the treadmill. Some of them are cycling and of course they are all…all the ladies are wearing zero size whatever stuff, they think they are fit. So I asked them a simple question “suppose all you guys are walking on the street, if a tiger came or a flood came or something happened, how many of you can just climb this tree and save your life? How many of you can do this? Only the menial laborers! Those (Laughs) who are doing laborer’s job on the street, somebody who is building the road or somebody who is digging a hole somewhere, only that guy will save himself, none of you will be able to climb a tree.” They said yes. Then that means what? This is not fitness, you can only walk on treadmill and wear zero size by eating only salads. If you eat anything more you’ll have indigestion. This is not fitness. You think you are fit if you look trim and fit into a particular kind of thing. No, the very sinews of life within you have become weak.
I know this very well because I find it's almost impossible to initiate - I would say among the people that I meet - there may be people in rural areas who’re capable of this but among the people who come to us, ninety percent of the people are unfit for any kind of strong… any kind of strong Kriya Yoga because they don’t have the body to do it. They may have the wish to do it but they don’t have the body to do it. Their…their fundamental physical structure… They may look okay, they may look reasonably fit, they can walk, they can do things but they are not fundamentally strong within themselves, the basic structure is not very strong. That weakening is happening dramatically and as these technologies make you do less and less both in body and brain, I think it is a very serious affair, very, very serious affair. It is the survival - probably that is how we will decimate ourselves, not by bombs or fire or riots or whatever. Probably we just kind of peter out that we won't have the strength to exist by ourselves, and I don't know…
Right now I know a whole lot of people beyond eighty, eighty-five are on kind of different types of life-support. This need for life-support, the age at which life-support is needed - I am just thinking, I’m… I don’t have all the facts on this but I am thinking in fifty years’ time if we continue like this, the age at which human beings need life-support may come down dramatically by ten, fifteen years than what it is right now, and that is serious weakening of human structure. And the next generation that that generation reproduces will definitely inherit that and the genetic structure if it weakens over a period of time is definitely of concern.
So one of the things that we need to do - the reason when we set up the yoga center in America we set up a thirteen hundred acre ashram. Everybody said, “This is crazy Sadhguru, we must buy twenty-five acres next to Atlanta (Laughs) and do the ashram.” I said, “The ashram…the purpose of the ashram is not just to have a center and meditate and whatever, it's to regenerate life.”
I am not just saying one ashram is going to save this but it is needed; in many, many places this needs to happen that we have to go back to the land. We have to live with the five elements, we have to be exposed to the earth, we have to be exposed to the sky, to the rain - these things need to happen.
Without being in communication with all the five elements, without being in communion with all the forces of life… all the forces of life are not just within your body, it's just all over the place - without rapporting with it, without confronting it, without every day being in touch with it, life doesn’t happen strong. We need to live strong. That is the purpose of yoga, not just being frail and eating vegetables and closing your eyes, that’s not just that.