My first encounter with the names “Sadhguru” and “Isha Foundation” was from one of the volunteers. I kept receiving quotes and links in his messages. But I am yet to decide if these little acts of “social service” we do knowingly or unknowingly with a good will of course, of being the secret agent of a messiah helps or repels at the receiving end.
I noticed, in these cases you end up judging the master through the follower to some extent and get a completely different image. Whereas, if a follower has followed well, his ways of being itself becomes so refined that he himself becomes the quotation brought alive to demonstrate the viability behind the messages.
If any of you are in the same helpless situation silently receiving daily quotations of Sadhguru or any other master much before you wanted, I would say please forgive the sender for he knows not what he is doing and try keeping a clean slate for the master and his messages.
So, in my case, the days of the quotations were not the days of course, when I got introduced to Sadhguru in any way. It was when I started enjoying different talks in youtube while I painted, I came across Sadhguru in my own way.
I met him later when he came for a talk in NID, Ahmedabad, on 28th September, 2018, as part of his Youth and Truth Campaign. What we can learn from his content is abundantly available in the internet. But here are few of the many things that I felt we can learn by observing his practices.
LEADING BY BEING AN EXAMPLE
Many spiritual practitioners have spent their lives in quiet meditations unknown to the masses. We have a misunderstanding that they are selfish people caring only about their liberation and little about our betterment.
So, some of the people who were directed that way have decided to avoid the caves and deal with the masses instead. Out of them more than 80% turn out to be frauds increasing our suspicions of their motives and purposes.
Whatever less than 20% come out victorious over media’s lookout for stories and people’s judgement through their shallowness, manage to reach us with their messages. So, being a guru and that too catering to the mass is definitely not an easy job in any way.
In the presence of such a master who has taken that mighty challenge, we can observe what happens when a spiritual practitioner uses his energies in work just like us. How they accomplish the same tasks with much more refinement. It becomes a direct example for us to see how meditation and self-awareness keeps turning into gold whatever base metal is touched along the way.
FORMING YOUR STRATEGY WELL
“A person who has one eye on the goal has only one eye left to see the path clearly ahead. If you focus on the path instead with both the eyes, you will reach the goal anyway.” This was said by him to emphasize the process, which I will remember always.
As I listened to his ways of reaching out to the people who may benefit from his messages, I really appreciated how well he knew his process. His methods are modern and his messages are ancient and applicable still today.
His target groups are very well-outlined from influential politicians, to eager students, to the rich and famous, to the villagers and to the volunteers who can suit their areas of engagement. He has a great strategy to influence all the levels.
Many non-profit organizations dry out soon after starting with “good will” alone, without finding any alternate nourishment.
Many profitable organizations have meetings after meetings to develop a good strategy to expand their business. It is only when self-gain becomes the driving force instead of the gain of the masses, the strategy eventually destroys.
But if a good strategy is used thoughtfully for a good cause, involving money or without, it becomes an example for all of us to see what could be the positive definition of a “business”.
SUITING THE MODERN AUDIENCE
Very often in his talks he says, modern education is very centered around intellect which is just one dimension among many other dimensions in human intelligence. Yet, he uses this equipment with great mastery himself. That being the tool most developed in people these days, it becomes very easy for the audience to relate to his ways of conveying the messages.
His approaches are rational, witty and spontaneous resonating well with the intellectual brains. He, therefore, speaks the language the world understands the most today and by speaking that language so well, the message he conveys is, “it is not the ultimate”.
This I felt was a perfect way of suiting the audience and from there leading them ahead.
A MIND WITH A FOCUS AND ALSO WELL-SPREAD
He says again and again that whatever we do, we should do with absolute involvement. When he listens, he is very involved, concentrating not only on your words but also the gestures that come along with the words spoken. In that way, there is a certain wholeness in his way of listening that even catches what is unsaid with what is said.
He is also a very good speaker, needless to say. It feels like a bucket is going into the well, filling water and pouring out again and again. It makes you realize, to speak clearly that is exactly what one needs to do: access the well within as and when required through the bucket of intellect.
I noticed without losing any focus on the individual, he is also very much in command of the time and space. He also has a great capability of dealing with situations unwanted, first by outwitting that occurrence and then by smoothening out with humbleness.
FROM QUESTIONS TO ANSWERS AND FROM ANSWERS TO REALIZATION
India is a country of seekers and not believers, he often says. This is a country where questions were welcome always. Parvati asked so many questions to Shiva. Krishna was asked so many questions by Arjuna. This motivates the listeners and the readers to ask as well.
Because he wanted to encourage the people to ask questions once again and replace believers with seekers, he set out on his campaign. “How to remove negativity from our life?” is a question asked often. His answer mostly suggests that it is us who is choosing to be negative. If we choose bliss instead, we will have bliss always.
Then the follow up question naturally comes, “What would be the process?” At that point one realizes that the purpose of question is to lead to an answer and the purpose of an answer is to make one realize it is not the end. From that point onwards what can lead further are practices. And the practice is known as yoga, a way to connect the individual plug to the universal socket.
But the modern world is such that a preacher of yoga can soon be rejected as a religious man unfit in this world of scientific progress. So, it is important to take the people step by step to the borderline where going any further is not possible by the mind and intellect. That is when I heard him saying, “If you come to our foundation, we can show you the way.”
This approach first allows the space to the person to deal with his problem and then leads them to the solution provided by the ancient yogis and without imposing any of it before the person is ready to hear of it in his case.
I am very glad that a person like this is on earth at this moment. And I am very glad that I was fortunate to be in his presence.
As I sat close to his feet while he continued his informal session under a Neem tree, while the birds chattered away, I could see his eyes are heavy in water content. Sometimes the water rises a little more depending on the subject. That is the only way to know the emotional ups and downs playing the melody in the background, while the mind is doing its job like a trained servant, lifting the water from the well with a bucket and pouring out to quench our thirst and then throwing the bucket into the well again.
Links to know more about him:
His formal talk at NID: Sadhguru at NID, Ahmedabad