Times Now TV channel interviews yogi and mystic, Sadhguru, alongwith actress and director, Nandita Das and ad man Prahlad Kakkar, and explores the question "What is spirituality?"
Sadhguru: Spirituality does not mean any particular practice. It is a certain way of being. To get there, there are many things to do. This is like a garden in your house. If the soil, sunlight or stem of a plant is in a certain way, it won’t yield flowers, you have to do something. You have to take care of those things. So if you cultivate your body, mind, emotions and energies to a certain level of maturity, something else blossoms within you – that is what is spirituality. When your rationale is immature, it doubts everything. When your rationale matures, it sees everything in a completely different light.
Whenever any human being experiences something bigger than himself, the traditional way of looking at that is, "this is God…" The whole idea of God is just that - anything bigger than you. It could be a human being or an experience or some aspect of nature. But is this spiritual? No, this is just life. When I say "just life", I am not trying to dismiss it as a small thing. It is the greatest thing. Only when life becomes an overwhelming, powerful, blissful experience for you, you want to know what could have created this.
If you want to know the process or the source of creation, the most intimate part of creation for you is your own body, isn’t it? There is a captive creator here, trapped within you. You shouldn’t miss him here. If you don’t miss him here, if you know the source of creation within you, you are spiritual.
Does Belief in God Make You Spiritual?
An atheist cannot be spiritual. But you must understand that even a theist cannot be spiritual. Because an atheist and a theist are not different. One believes there is God, another believes there is no God. Both of them are believing something that they do not know. You are not sincere enough to admit that you do not know, that’s your problem. So theists and atheists are not different. They are the same people putting up an act of being different. A spiritual seeker is neither a theist nor an atheist. He has realized that he does not know, so he is seeking.
The moment you believe something, you become blind to everything else. The whole conflict on the planet is not between good and evil as they are trying to project it. It is always one man’s belief versus another man’s belief. The need for belief is more psychological than spiritual. You want to cling to something, you want to feel secure, you want to feel like you know it all. That is coming from a very immature mind. What is the problem if you don’t know anything about this existence. You actually don’t know anything. It’s beautiful! And you see how to make yourself beautiful and joyful within yourself, which is within your hands.
What is a Spiritual Experience?
Going to the ocean or to the mountain and seeking an experience may be beautiful, you must enjoy the world the way it is, but you must understand, the fish in the ocean doesn’t think it’s a spiritual experience, nor does the mountain goats think the mountain is a spiritual experience because they are there all the time. If you bring them to the city, they may think it’s a spiritual experience. It is the breaking of the barrier within you – something broke within you. You were in a shell. This broke and became a bigger shell. What I’m saying is, if you get used to the bigger shell, it feels the same way as the previous one.
So if you want to become boundless and you are trying to attempt it through physicality, you are essentially trying to go towards boundlessness in installments. Can you count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and one day count to infinity? You will only become endless counting. That’s not the way. Through physical means, you can never reach towards boundless nature. Every human being is looking to become boundless. If you give him whatever he wants, for three days he is okay. The fourth day he is looking for something else. Somebody may label it as greed, I just say this is life process in the wrong direction. If you want to know boundless nature, you must experience, you must perceive something which is beyond the physical. Something you might have touched when you jumped into the ocean, when you saw a mountain, when you sang a song, when you danced, when you closed your eyes, in so many ways it could have happened to an individual. You touched it, but now the question is of sustainability.
A Simple Practice
One thing is, we can put you on to something very simple, which is subjective. Any subjective technology cannot be taught to you in uncommitted atmospheres. So if you are willing to give yourself a small space of time that is very committed and focused, we can put you on a simple practice, where investing just 21 minutes a day (Inner Engineering), you can start your day with a very phenomenal spiritual experience within you. A very powerful experience that leaves you peaceful and joyful throughout the day.
Apart from that, to sustain it, one simple thing every human being has to do is, make your sense of involvement indiscriminate. If you look at a person, a tree, or a cloud, you are equally involved. You are equally involved with your own body and the breath. If you have no discrimination as to which is better, and you are equally involved with every aspect in life, then you will be constantly spiritual. Nobody needs to teach you what is spirituality.
Editor’s Note: Sadhguru offers Isha Kriya, a free, online guided meditation that helps bring health and wellbeing. Daily practice of this simple yet effective 12-minute process can transform one’s life.