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Volume 5 / Issue 06 June 2017

My Day is Taken
My day does not belong
to Me. Today is My day
but does not belong to Me.
Yesterday, Today and the
Next day do not belong to Me.
Yes My day is taken to
unveil the most obvious,
as most are oblivious of
the Beautiful nature of
Being Human. The
boundaries of the Body have brought
bondage to the Being.
Knowing the Being that
we are, is all there is to see.
Yes My day is taken.

Grace & Blessings



Dear Readers,

In this issue, we offer you Sadhguru’s insights on a wide range of topics, from
concerns of a social nature: “Let Them Talk,” “When You Feel Let Down,” and
“The Importance of Being in the Right Company” to matters of or related to
sadhana: “Not the Body, Not the Mind,” “Creating Your Own Shrine at Home” and
the Lead Article “Transform Your Energies, Transform Your Life.”

Much has happened again in the last few weeks: Sadhguru has received the
Padma Vibhushan, India’s highest annual civilian award from President Pranab
Mukherjee; Adiyogi at the Isha Yoga Center now holds the Guinness World
record as the largest bust (sculpture); not to speak of a flurry of Isha events
and programs in India and abroad. We’ve picked some of the highlights for you.
The article “Population Matters – For a Sustainable Future” is excerpted from
the recent conversation between one of India’s most successful entrepreneurs,
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, and Sadhguru.

Also in this issue: In our Mahabharat series, Bhima enters “A Life and Death
Fight” with the die-hard Jarasandha to clear the way for the Rajasuya Yagna of
the Pandavas. “Obedience: Not a Solution” is an excerpt from Sadhguru Spot,
in which he shares his observations on obedience versus joy as the basis of
our relationships. With this month’s recipe, a tangy sweet “Malaysian Fruit and
Veggie Salad,” contributed by one of our volunteers, the diversity of Isha finds a
culinary expression.

The Editorial Team

Contact the Editorial Team:

Isha Forest Flower, Isha Yoga Center, Velliangiri Foothills, IshanaVihar Post, Coimbatore – 641114

For subscription inquiries, please contact our Subscription Office:

(044) 48611137, 96770 16700 –
To change your mailing address online, visit:




Transform Your Energies,

Transform Your Life 07 A Life and Death Fight 16


Population Matters – For a Sustainable Future 4
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in Conversation with Sadhguru
Transform Your Energies, Transform Your Life 7
Let Them Talk 9
When You Feel Let Down 10
Not the Body, Not the Mind 11
The Importance of Being in the Right Company 12
Creating Your Own Shrine at Home 14
Obedience: Not a Solution 15
Part 31: A Life and Death Fight 16
Events in Pictures 18
A New Birth of Freedom 19
Isha Yoga – Program Highlights 20
Malaysian Fruit and Veggie Salad 21
Zen in a Cup 23



Population Matters --
For a Sustainable Future
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in Conversation with Sadhguru

Sadhguru and Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, one of India’s most successful self-made women and the
founder-chair of the country’s leading biotechnology enterprise, Biocon, met on 22 April 2017 in
Bengaluru for an interactive conversation about some of the most pressing issues for humanity today.
In this excerpt, they discuss matters of environmental degradation, population, consumerism, and
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw: So, how do we get a
sense of civic-mindedness in our country? Many
Where’s Our Civic Sense?
of us try to do it, but we finally give up. How do we
deal with all these issues?
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw: Since everyone here
is from Bangalore, I want to come to something
Sadhguru: Recently, a certain photograph has been
that really just plagues us every day, and that is
going around on WhatsApp, that on Hanuman
we’re seeing debris all over the place, we’re seeing
Jayanti, somewhere on the Mumbai-Pune road,
polluted lakes – we’ve got a lot of problems in this
someone had served a proper meal for over a
city. And everything has to do with us. We can’t keep
hundred monkeys. They’re all sitting in one row
asking the government to do everything – after all,
and eating from their banana leaves. So someone
it’s Swachh Bharat [Clean India Movement]. We all
asked me, “Sadhguru, how is this possible? Have
sort of accepted the fact that by 2020, India must
they photoshopped this?” I said, “No Photoshop.
become a clean country. And yet, three years later,
This is all it takes. If you make sure everybody is
if you look at what we are actually doing, we are
well provided for, they will get civilized.” Right now,
not changing our habits. We still keep chucking
everything is scarce. When everything is scarce,
litter all over the place; we pollute lakes. No one
people are elbowing each other and doing some
seems to have any civic sense in this country.
nonsense. A little more space is needed for human
beings. We are nice, but we are just too many.
Sadhguru: They are making the lakes look like
In the beginning of the twentieth century, our
number was only 1.6 billion [world population].


Today we’re 7.5 billion. In India, in 1947, we were If consciousness rises, you will make different
only 33 crores. Today, we are 134 crores. In seventy choices. We have hundreds of couples who are
years, a fourfold increase in the reproduction Isha full-time or part-time volunteers. None of
is irresponsible. But this has not happened them have children. They have chosen not to have
just because of excessive reproduction. This is children of their own, because I’m giving them
happening because of a great increase in life thousands of children – millions if they are ready.
expectancy. In 1947, the average life expectancy of Where is the need to biologically identify with a
an Indian was twenty-eight years. Twenty-eight – child? I’m thinking of something very audacious for
you heard me. which I’ll become super unpopular. [Laughter] I’m
thinking of instituting an award for all those young
Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw: Now it’s sixty-eight. women who are healthy, who are capable of having
a child, but choose not to have one. [Applause]
Sadhguru: Which is a wonderful thing to happen.
But what this means is we postpone our death. Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw: Well, you’ve got a good
Simple arithmetic: if we postpone our death, endorsement for that.
should we not also postpone birth? There was a
time when most young women in this country were Sadhguru: Because, whether you realize this today
getting pregnant by the time they were fifteen or or not… You think the problem is parking, garbage,
sixteen. Today, it’s been pushed to around twenty, or healthcare – no! The problem is population.
on an average. We have to push it to thirty-five.
[Applause] Since you raised the gender issue – if
a woman does not deliver a child till she is thirty- Is there a Cure for Consumerism?
five, one thing is, most of the time, she will get well
educated, she will get professionally established,
and maybe she will get wisdom and not have a Questioner: Namaskaram, Sadhguru. Hindustan
child at all. [Laughter & applause] has always been a self-reliant place. But today,
everyone has become a consumer. Consumerism
You have to bring the human being to an inner is increasing day by day, and along with that, the
piles of garbage, the pollution of rivers. Can you
state of wellbeing where if he or she sits here,
advise us on how, in this age, we can become self-
life is complete.
reliant again?

There’s nothing bad about a child – we all Sadhguru: You will never ever succeed in controlling
were born that way. It’s just that we are not an human aspiration, but you can control human
endangered species. If you were a tiger, I would say population. [Applause] Right now, the United
let us have fertility clinics. But we are human, and Nations and others are making a prediction that by
we are reproducing too well. When I see the fertility 2050, we will be 9.7 billion people on the planet. I
clinics, my heart sinks, because this stems from a want you to imagine your life in Bangalore City. We
fanaticism that only what comes out of your body will have to live with forty percent less resources
can be yours. Why can’t others be yours as well? than we have right now. When I say resources, I’m
This is what being human means. This is what not talking about oil, gold, diamond, and things like
humanity means. If you are willing, you can live that. I’m talking about food, water, air. In a minute,
here without any sense of boundaries. Boundaries you are probably taking something like twelve to
are not fixed upon you by nature. You are fifteen breaths. Try to make do with ten breaths,
unconsciously, compulsively setting boundaries and see how it feels.
for yourself. That means you have not explored the
dimension of being human. You are still trying to That’s how you will be feeling in 2050, unless
operate like any other creature on the planet. we consciously control the population growth. If
we fail to do that, nature will do it to us in a cruel
If you explore the dimension of what it means to manner, and maybe fix it. But is it not an insult
be human, you will see inclusion does not mean to our humanity and our intelligence if we do not
biology – inclusion means consciousness. take corrective action, if we allow nature to do a

7 | ISHA
June 2017
cruel correction rather than we doing a conscious to do. They will not do it because it’s compulsive.
correction? Right now, if they want to be happy, they have to do
so many things.
Above all, in order to fix this, one thing that’s very
important is – though people think these two You have to bring the human being to an inner
things are not linked – if you become meditative by state of wellbeing where if he or she sits here, life
your own nature, if you sit here, if you feel complete is complete. Right now, all of us are sitting here
by yourself, outside you will do only what is needed in the same hall, breathing the same air, probably
– nothing more, nothing less. Right now, you are we eat the same kind of food. But how I am within
in a compulsive state. In this state, you can’t stop myself in this moment, I will not exchange this with
the consumerism. When I go to California and I anything in the universe. If you offer me the entire
am staying in some house, of course they have a world, I will say “no deal.” If you were like this,
Tesla. So, when we go to the program, I am driving would we have to talk to you about consumerism?
a Tesla. Nice electric car. You would do what’s needed. You would never do
what’s not needed.
When you come back and park the car, you will
see a line of garages. All these beasts are sitting I want all of you to go and check at home. How
there – [Hummer] H1s, Ferraris, and Lamborghinis. many things in your house have you not used in
Then what about the Tesla? This is just to go to the last one year? Most probably, you will never use
the office and make a statement. When no one most of it again, but it will be there. Someone will
sees it, you start a twelve-cylinder car. So, don’t have the trouble of disposing this off after you’re
try to control human aspiration. Otherwise, people dead. Please give it away. All those things that you
will become more and more devious. If we control have not used for one year, just give them away.
human population and make people joyful by their [Applause]
own nature, then they will do what they really want



Transform Your Energies,

Transform Your Life
Sadhguru on Prana and Its Role in the Kriyas

Whatever you do in life, how your body, your mind, direct different aspects of the human mechanism.
and your whole system function is ultimately Through yogic practices like the Shakti Chalana
determined by your vital energy or prana. Prana is Kriya, you can to take charge of the pancha vayus. If
an intelligent energy. Since prana has the karmic you gain mastery over these five vayus, you will be
memory of the individual imprinted on it, it functions free from most ailments, particularly psychological
in each person in a unique manner. By contrast, ones. This is something that the world needs today.
electricity does not have memory or intelligence. Unless we act now, in the next fifty years, the
It can light up a light bulb, run a camera, and do a number of people who are psychologically
million other things, not because of its intelligence imbalanced, disturbed, or deranged will increase
but because of the particular device that it powers. many times over, due to various factors in our
In the future, there may be smart electricity too. lifestyles. We are handling many aspects of our
If you manage to imprint energy with a certain lives in a grossly negligent way, for which we are
memory, you can make it behave in a certain way. going to pay the price.

The Pancha Vayus If you take charge of your prana, whatever

the external situation may be, you will remain
There are five basic manifestations of prana in the psychologically balanced. Right now, a whole lot of
body. These pancha vayus – prana vayu, samana people are psychologically imbalanced, though not
vayu, udana vayu, apana vayu, and vyana vayu – everyone may have a medical diagnosis.


the breath for the full set of cycles.
Prana, Balance, and Health
That is why Shakti Chalana is always taught in
Suppose your hand does its own thing and pokes tandem with Shoonya. The Shoonya meditation
you in the eye, scratches, and beats you – that is is to bring yourself to a place where, if you close
a sickness. This is what most people’s mind is your eyes, the world is gone in your experience.
doing. Every day, it pokes them from inside, makes This is a blessing all of you should earn at some
them cry, bawl, or worry – in so many ways, it point. Only if you make yourself like this, are you
creates suffering for them. That means it is sick, capable of staying focused on something. Forceful
even if in a socially accepted manner. Every kind of concentration is not going to achieve anything.
suffering that human beings are going through day If you close your eyes, the only things that should
in and day out is created in the mind. This sickness
has set in, and it will multiply because of the social
structures, the technology around us, and various
Since prana has the karmic memory of
other influences. the individual imprinted on it, it functions
One who takes charge of one’s prana can be one in each person in a unique manner.
hundred percent assured to have unshakable Through yogic practices like the Shakti
psychological balance. This should also prevent Chalana Kriya, you can to take charge of
physiological ailments to a large extent, though the pancha vayus.
an element of risk remains due to various reasons,
including infections and all kinds of chemicals and
poisons that we are exposed to on a daily basis. exist for you are your breath, your heartbeat,
There is no absolute control over what we take processes in your body, and the workings of your
in through the air, water, and food, no matter how
careful we are about what we consume. How much
impact it has on us depends upon each individual.
Physiological health cannot be guaranteed
one hundred percent for external reasons. But
psychological wellbeing can be one hundred
percent guaranteed if you take charge of your
prana. If you are psychologically in an extremely
good place, a few physiological issues will not be a
problem. Most of the time, minor bodily conditions
are less of an issue than the reactions to them that
happen in your mind. How the pranas function
within you, how they transact with the rest of the
universe, how they enter a newborn, and how
they leave the dead, all clearly show they have an
intelligence of their own.

Shakti Chalana Kriya – Working with Your


It takes a certain level of attention and awareness

to know how the five pranas are functioning. The
Shakti Chalana Kriya is a fabulous process, but you
need to be attentive. It requires you to keep yourself
focused for forty to sixty minutes. Most people
can’t keep their mind on a full inhalation. Midway,
their thoughts wander off, or they lose count or
track. It takes months and years of practice to
come to a point where you can keep your focus on


prana. Only what is happening inside is life. What nature of life will you really get somewhere. The life
is happening on the outside is just imagery. Even within you is the only real thing – the rest are just
when you look at other people, you are not seeing projections. But right now, most of the attention is
them out there but the way they are projected on on projections, not the real thing.
your screen [in your brain]. With the Shakti Chalana Kriya, the transformation
happens gradually. Taking charge of your prana and
Staying Focused Is Key its different activities in your system is a fantastic
process. The Shakti Chalana Kriya works on that
Shoonya and other sadhana are towards that. How level. If you practice it, you are strengthening the
far you go is a different question, especially in very foundations of your system.
today’s world. I am not against what is happening
today in terms of life around. But unfortunately, to Shambhavi – Beyond Prana
be flaky is fashionable – profound is out. With such
an attitude, there is no way you can move your The Shambhavi Mahamudra has the potential to
attention to how life works within you. This does let you touch the dimension that is the basis of all
not mean that it is not possible for every human that is. But you cannot actively make it happen.
being – it is. It all depends on what importance You can only set the ambience. We always refer to
you ascribe to it. If you make it your number one Shambhavi as “she.” There has to be devotion for
priority, everything within you will organize itself Shambhavi to yield. You can only come in touch
accordingly. with the source of creation – there is nothing for
you to do with it. Shambhavi also has an element
If your priorities are in different directions, you will of pranayam in it, which brings many benefits.
go all over the place, not getting anywhere, in terms The important thing about the Shambhavi kriya
of life on a fundamental level. On a social level, you is that it is a tool to touch the source of creation,
may be getting somewhere. On a physical level, which is beyond prana. This could happen on the
your body is going straight towards the grave – first day, or you could be doing it for six months
at the most, you can extend the route a little. As and nothing happens. But if you keep it up, the day
far as your mind is concerned, it is going round will come when you touch this dimension. If you
and round. Only if you focus on the fundamental touch it, suddenly everything is transformed.

you thinking through what they may be thinking?

That’s not necessary. Just focus on what you want
MUSINGS to do. Let others think whatever they want. Maybe
they have nothing better to think about, so they are
thinking about you. It is largely in your imagination
Let Them Talk that someone is always thinking about you.

Most people are busy with their own problems.

They are not thinking about you, and that’s fine. It
Questioner: Namaskaram, Sadhguru. I tend to take
does not matter if someone is thinking about us.
what other people think about me too seriously.
Don’t worry about other people. You can’t fix what
How to deal with that?
they are thinking. So, why bother about that? Leave
their psychological problems to them. Don’t try to
Sadhguru: First of all, do you really know what’s
solve them. They can think whatever nonsense
happening behind your back? Or do you only
they want. Why should it affect who you are? If you
imagine what could be happening? Stop imagining.
think you are okay, it’s fine. If others think you are
If someone is thinking something about you, it’s
not, it’s their problem. If you are worried about what
their problem, not yours. Their thoughts are their
someone is going to think about you, you won’t
problem. Let them think whatever they want. Do
do anything in life. You can never get everyone’s
you think you are that interesting that everyone is
approval to do what you want to do. So, don’t worry
thinking about you all the time? And if no one is
about that. Just focus on what you want to do.
thinking about you, that’s utter freedom. Why are


When You Feel Let Down

Questioner: How do we deal with it, when a person As you mature, you need to learn to keep your
who we thought would never let us down does let thoughts and emotions sweet by your own nature.
us down? If your thoughts and emotions are pleasant, you
can share them with other people. But if without
Sadhguru: The problem is wrong assumptions. the other person, your thoughts and emotions
You are making assumptions about others, about will get bitter and terrible, if someone has to offer
yourself, and about creation. You got a little too life support every day, they will get tired. If others
romantic and thought the relationship happens constantly have to keep you happy and loving, it is
by itself. Relationships need to be managed. The a burden on them, and they may run away at some
question is, are you a good manager or not? Still, point. When they escape, you think it is betrayal.
however good a manager you are, things can Again, these are all your emotions. In the larger
happen. About someone letting you down…You context of existence, you are just a piece of life.
may have unrealistic expectations about people.
I know the question is coming from a certain
experience, and I am not trying to belittle the pain. I
know what it means to you as an individual. But at If you get carried away by your own
the same time, you need to understand you came thoughts and emotions, you forget about
alone into this world, and you will go alone. You the fundamentals of the relationship, and
entered the relationship because you needed it.
you forget to manage it well.
No matter how much drama you create around
it and what assumptions you make about the
relationship, it is about trying to fulfill your needs. You are making deals and relationships with
Whatever relationships you have formed in your people for various purposes. This not only applies
life, you have done so to fulfill your needs, be they to the relationship between husband and wife, but
physical, psychological, emotional, financial, social, also relationships with business partners, friends,
or whatever else. If you keep that in mind, you will children, parents, and so on. Always remember you
approach your relationships with a certain humility. have entered the relationship to fulfill your needs.
If you get carried away by your own thoughts and They may have entered the relationship for their
emotions, you forget about the fundamentals of needs, but that is not your business. Your business
the relationship, and you forget to manage it well. is to understand that they are valuable to your life.
That is when things can go wrong. They are adding value to who you are. When you
are aware of that, you will manage the relationship
If you are disillusioned with something or someone, in one way. If you think you are of great value to
it means you come to reality. This may sound cruel, someone, you will manage the relationship in
but this is how life is. All people that we hold dear another way, which may not allow it to last long. Or
will go, or we will go. Even if you hold hands and you may be doing all the right things and still it may
die together, you will still go separately. These are go wrong. Whichever way it is, it is your business to
your emotions. When you form a relationship with make yourself into a pleasant and wonderful piece
someone, it is an agreement between the two of of life. With or without someone, please make it
you to help each other experience some sweetness happen.
of emotion.


Not the Body,
Not the Mind
Sadhguru on the Subtleties of Isha Kriya

Questioner: Through daily Shambhavi practice and

almost daily Isha Kriya, practice, I am beginning to
experience my body and mind as not me. How do
I distance myself from my body and mind, all the

Sadhguru: When you say, “I am not the body; I

am not the mind” during Isha Kriya, it is not a
philosophy or an ideology. It is not a slogan that
you keep shouting within yourself, and one day
become converted. This is just a subtle reminder.
You must add it to the breath. Do not use “I am
not the body; I am not the mind” to try and psych
physiological process to happen. Even after a
yourself. You are just adding a certain element to
person is medically dead – the movement of air,
your breath. Otherwise, you are not able to notice
the heartbeat, and the brain activity have stopped
your breath. We mentioned this in the Isha Kriya
– he is still breathing for some time, in the sense
instructions. Right now, you are only able to watch
that the koorma nadi is still on. That process is
the sensations caused by the movement of the air,
still going on, but it is not able to pull in air and
not the breath itself.
push out carbon dioxide. It is like an old siphon
that is still pumping, but the liquid does not flow,
When you are inhaling, not necessarily is only
because there is a little leak or whatever. Similarly,
inhalation happening – exhalation could be partly
the koorma nadi process is still on, but the oxygen-
happening as well. Similarly, when you are exhaling,
carbon dioxide exchange has closed down.
not necessarily is only exhalation happening –
Suppose the stock exchange closes down, in most
inhalation could be partly happening too. But you
people’s understanding, the entire economy is
will not figure this until you notice the way of the
finished, but you can still buy bread locally. Maybe
breath. Though in many ways, physiologically, the
you don’t pay in cash but in kind, but the economy
breath is the basis of your life, most human beings
is still going on, though not at a level that could be
have never really experienced their breath. Those
measured. Similarly, the koorma nadi can still be
who become conscious even just of the sensations
on while the exchange of air has already stopped.
of the air passage claim all kinds of transformations,
and that’s true. Your sensations are the outermost
We are talking about becoming aware of the
layer of who you are. Knowing the sensations is
breath, which means you become aware of the
most fundamental. Whatever you touch, whether
link between you and your body. If you take away
you sit or stand, there are sensations. The breath is
your breath, obviously, you and your body will fall
a more profound and subtle dimension, which will
apart. Travelling along the breath will give you
not come into your experience easily.
access to that dimension. If you learn to hold your
body a little away from yourself, you will know you
When we say breath in the sense of koorma nadi,
are not the body. If you are wearing loose-fitting
we are not talking about the oxygen-carbon dioxide
clothes, you know these clothes are not you. If you
exchange. That is happening as a consequence
are wearing really tight-fitting clothes, after some
of what we refer to as shvasa. Along with the
time, you don’t know whether they are you or not.
transaction of air that is coming in and going
You experience your skin as “yourself.” Some part
out, there is another level of transaction for the
of your skin will disappear in no time, but still you

13 | ISHA
June 2017
are yourself. Even if you go into little deeper layers will come, then a flag, then an emblem, then you
of the body, still you are yourself. will become a nation of your own. And then you will
have a national bird!”
Do not use “I am not the body, I am not the mind”
as a slogan – it will not work like that. This was “I am not the body, I am not the mind” should
given to you as an aid to bring awareness to the happen in a very subtle way to bring the breath into
koorma nadi or the breath. Shouting slogans is your awareness. With that thought, you are simply
a way of manipulating crowds on the street. You adding a little fragrance to your breath, so that
cannot do anything inside with that. When I go to you can notice it. It is like lighting incense to see
new places in northern India, it is very common that where the air is moving. If it’s moving gently, you
people want to shout, “Sadhguru maharaj ki jai!” otherwise wouldn’t know. Just like that.
I immediately stop them and say, “First, a slogan

A Powerful Guided Meditation
Rooted in the timeless wisdom of the yogic sciences, Isha Kriya is a simple yet potent
process created by Sadhguru. Available for free as a guided meditation with an instructional
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For more information, visit, download the Isha Kriya app on
Google Play or iTunes, or watch the Isha Kriya video on YouTube.

The Importance of Being in the Right Company

Questioner: Sadhguru, I share an apartment with
other people, and whenever I’m away for longer
Most human beings are – knowingly or unknowingly
– shaped by the company that they keep. They just
periods of time, I sublet my room. All kinds of may not realize to what extent. It is not only your
people are staying there – once a girl who turned family and friends who have an impact on you but
into a drug addict, and different couples too. I’m your social exposure in general. I would say your
wondering to what extent this could affect me. social exposure has shaped almost ninety percent
What’s your take on that? of your personality. Choosing your company is
not about being discriminatory but about being
Sadhguru: Do not underestimate the influence of discretionary as to where you want to be and with
the company that you keep. Even if you do not whom you want to be. It is definitely not ideal to
drink and do drugs like they do, just being in their be among people who are so compulsive in nature
company impacts you on a completely different that you can consider them as addicts, no matter
level. Gautama the Buddha described the ultimate what they are addicted to.
truth, the one who transmits truth, and the sangha
or the kind of company you keep, as equally Your whole effort is to move from compulsiveness
important. He is socially correct but existentially to consciousness. Being among people who are
wrong. Actually, the first priority should be the very compulsive is not supportive. You have not
sangha or the company that you keep, then the yet reached a place where you can be among the
Buddha or the one who transmits truth, then the most compulsive people and still be absolutely
dhamma or the ultimate truth. conscious and unaffected on the level of your


system. You may or may not get addicted yourself important until you come to a place where even
– I hope you won’t – but it definitely influences if you go to hell, you will come out untouched.
you in so many ways. If external influences did not Right now, you tend to get carried away. Don’t
have an impact, why would anyone make the effort overestimate yourself.
of building an ashram? It is one big headache to
maintain a spiritual place, which is like an oasis Creating the right kind of space – and if necessary
in a churning ocean. To keep it like an island that moving away from negative influences – is very
remains untouched by what is happening around important for your growth. This is not only about
takes a lot. avoiding people with a drug addiction but with
any kind of excessive compulsiveness. People
are dedicated to their compulsiveness. If you look
at the way many so-called normal families live –
Most human beings are – knowingly or “normal” in the sense that the children are not drug
unknowingly – shaped by the company addicts, the husband is not an alcoholic, and the
that they keep. wife is not a shopaholic – the way they exist is so
anti-consciousness. If you can transform them,
that’s great. If you cannot transform them, the best
thing is to step away. For almost all human beings,
On an average, about seven- and-a-half thousand the kind of company they keep shapes their lives.
people are visiting the Isha Yoga Center every day. To what extent may vary from person to person,
To welcome them, to let them be part of it, and not but it definitely determines a lot of things.
to become them is a great challenge. We need solid
people. Otherwise, everyone tries to bring a bit of
their home, their street, and their town and make
it a part of the ashram. People try to introduce Creating the right kind of space – and if
their whims and fancies, their likes and dislikes. necessary moving away from negative
Almost everyone who comes tries to exert some influences – is very important for your growth.
influence upon the ashram. Some ask about doing
or having things in a certain way – others just do
it. To politely or sometimes forcefully refuse their
influence is not easy. The idea of an ashram is Maybe right now, what kind of company I keep does
to maintain a space that is dedicated towards a not make any difference to me. But the company
purpose. I kept in earlier times definitely determined who I
am today. If I kept the wrong kind of company then,
Wherever you live, you need to maintain your space things would surely be very different for me now.
in such a way that it is dedicated to the purpose What was relevant for me then is relevant for you
for which you are living. Your private space should now. It is very important for your growth that you
reflect where you want to go, rather than someone either cultivate the right kind of company or make
else’s compulsive ways of living. This is very choices not to be in the wrong company.


Creating Your Own Shrine at Home
Questioner: Sadhguru, what can we do to create an cloth – you can choose whatever is best for you,
environment in our home that is conducive for our according to your convenience and aesthetics.
growth? This will enhance the energy of the space. If you
can cover the walls and partitions of this space
Sadhguru: If you are living in a family situation
with lots of loose material, such as raw silk, it
with a few other people, it is best to create a space
will reverberate and hold the energy much better.
for sadhana that is kept in a certain way and not
In this way, you can create a cocoon of energy.
used for any other purpose. If you have a yantra
“Can’t I do without that?” You definitely can. It is
or a sannidhi, that’s great. Otherwise, at least keep
just a question of energy efficiency. If the sides are
a picture, light a linga jyoti or an oil lamp, and put
covered with raw silk, the space will be much more
a little flower there every day. If you can create
energy efficient.
a dedicated, cared-for space, it can be a lot of
support – a little shrine in your own place. A shrine
is not about looking up or looking down. A shrine is
a possibility to look inward. In this way, you can create a cocoon of energy.
The sadhana you do can transform the space.
Through the sadhana, something within you should
shine. When you shine, you are enshrined. To invest When you meditate at home, and you sit in a
in that little space will definitely pay in a big way in space that is a cocoon of energy, it takes much
your life. There are certain ways to create a shrine. less for you to get into a meditative state. The
Whether you have a yantra or just a picture, make instructions for Shoonya meditation are that you
sure you always have an oil lamp burning. Beneath can sit wherever you want – even at the airport, for
the yantra or picture, you can keep a raw silk cloth example. One reason is because Shoonya is of a
that is not dyed or sanforized. If the silk is raw, the certain nature. Another reason is that when people
way it came out of the cocoon, the fabric is alive begin to meditate, we don’t want them to give it up
in a way. If you use a raw silk cloth, it reverberates because they can’t set a certain atmosphere. When
much better than if you use a synthetic cloth or it comes to Shoonya, the idea is “Do it anywhere,
something else. but anyway do it.” Not having a raw silk cloth
Another option is to keep everything on a large should not be an excuse for you not to meditate.
copper tray or a woven copper cloth. Between the But if you create a certain atmosphere, it is more
three – the raw silk cloth, copper tray, or copper energy-efficient. Things will happen so much
easier if the place is kept in a certain way.

Obedience: Not a Solution

Excerpted from Sadhguru Spot of 26 Apr 2017

On this Spot, Sadhguru shares his observations on obedience versus joy as the basis of our lives, our
family relationships, and society as a whole. He says, “There should be no compulsion to break the rules
of the past, nor should there be a compulsion to do things the way they were done in the past.”

Obedience, particularly to elders, is often projected a society and culture to become stagnant and
as a traditional value. I would say unquestioned decline over a period of time. Only if the young
obedience is the downfall of a society and culture. generation does something that the parents never
Obedience means there is an authority. It may be imagined possible, can a society evolve.
a parent, a priest, God, or a scripture. Obedience
is based on the assumption that whatever the
authority says is right. If you make authority the
Love, affection, and respect must be earned.
truth, it destroys human intelligence. Truth should
be the only authority. The next generation should
do something that we could not imagine possible. Now, should we follow the precepts of the past or
We produce a next generation because we think do something new? There should be no compulsion
it is a new possibility. If it is not a new possibility to break the rules of the past, nor should there be
but only takes instructions from us on all levels a compulsion to do things the way they were done
and only does what we want, it is no good as a in the past. It is important that every generation
new generation. There is nothing “next” about it. looks at what is really needed and what is not.
It is just a graveyard of the past popping up in the If you do not discard the garbage that builds up
future, which is a waste of life. at home, after some time, your whole house will
be a garbage bin. Every day, you must throw out
Those who, because of their authoritarian nature, the garbage – only then will the house be clean.
are not able to earn the necessary love and affection Similarly, in our lives, we must throw things that
from their children demand obedience. Love, don’t work, on a daily basis. If we as individuals and
affection, and respect must be earned. Especially as a society don’t do that, we become stagnant,
in a parent-child relationship, this is important. stuck, and nothing works.
The moment you demand obedience, you claim
authority. If you claim authority, you will always be Breaking the mold need not come as a big upheaval
resented. If there is resentment in a relationship, it in society. The revolution can be in the way we
becomes ugly. An authoritarian approach causes think. We need to constantly look for better ways of


doing every aspect of life – right from the simplest, your body and your brain function at their best only
most vital ones. If you are looking for the best way when you are joyful. If you want your body and
to sit, to breathe, to eat, and to manage your body, brain to work well, the first thing is to become joyful
you will start doing yoga. That is, you will start by your own nature. Most people haven’t taken
approaching your physical and mental wellbeing care of these basics. Instead, they are in pursuit
in a scientific manner. Truth is something that you of happiness. They think happiness is something
realize. If you invent it, that’s called a lie. they have to achieve at some point, maybe towards
the end of their lives. That’s a misconception.
Being joyful by your own nature is the very first and
Truth is something that you realize. foremost thing. If you are in pursuit of happiness,
If you invent it, that’s called a lie. you are encumbered by compulsions. If you are
joyful, you are not encumbered by anything.

If you truthfully look for the best way to do If you are joyful, you can see things the way they
something, you will arrive at a science. Otherwise, are and come up with better solutions every day. If
you may try to weave a philosophy around it. The your perception is clouded by prejudiced opinions,
philosophies of the past may have made sense at how will you find a solution? When you are joyful,
one time. Over a period of time, what used to be you find solutions. In joyfulness, there is flexibility.
a philosophy turned into a precept, a law, a belief Solutions evolve out of flexibility.
system, and ultimately, a religion. Instead of that,
we should come to our senses about everything. Love & Grace,
But, will we arrive at an ultimate answer for
everything? Maybe not. Realities are changing.
One fundamental way to approach life is this: there
is substantial scientific and medical evidence that

PART 31 Mahabharat SERIES

A Life and Death Fight

What has happened so far: King Jarasandha

planned to conduct a yagna in which he wanted
to sacrifice one hundred Kshatriya kings in order
to sabotage the Rajasuya Yagna of the Pandavas
and prevent them from achieving the status of
emperors. The only way to stop Jarasandha was to
kill him. Krishna came up with a ploy. In the guise
of Brahmanas, Bhima, Arjuna, and Krishna set out
for Magadha, Jarasandha’s kingdom.

When Bhima, Arjuna, and Krishna, disguised as

Brahmanas, arrived at Rajagriha, the capital of
Magadha, Jarasandha welcomed them, as was
the custom of the time. They told him that Bhima
wanted to wrestle with him, without revealing their


true identity. Jarasandha looked at them and sized that in wrestling, they could not kill Jarasandha. So
them up. When he saw Arjuna’s hands, which were they suggested fighting with maces. But however
calloused in a way that is characteristic for an Bhima hit him, Jarasandha didn’t die. He just sat
archer, he said, “Well, looks like you are an archer. up again and again. Because he was older, he was
You are not a Brahmin, are you?” He also noticed a little more exhausted than Bhima, but he was
that Arjuna bore these calluses on both hands. able to take any kind of blow. Then Krishna told
Bhima, “Tomorrow is Amavasya. On Amavasya
Arjuna could fight or shoot an arrow with night, Jarasandha is going to acquire superhuman
either hand with the same accuracy. He was powers. He will kill you. Don’t think he is treating
ambidextrous – that is why one of his names is us so well for nothing. He wants us to enjoy the
Savyasachi. Being able to use the left and right hospitality so that we stay until Amavasya. When
hand with the same dexterity is a huge advantage Amavasya comes, he is unbeatable. And on that
in battle. Jarasandha said, “You are ambidextrous. day, which is tomorrow, he will kill you. Unless you
Who are you? The only other archer I have heard kill him today, tomorrow, you will be dead.”
of who is ambidextrous is Arjuna. I have not met
him, but for sure he wouldn’t come dressed as a Bhima went all out. But whatever he did, he
Brahmin. Anyway, you have come as guests.” And couldn’t kill Jarasandha. Then he looked at Krishna
he offered them the customary welcome and a and asked, “What to do?” Time was running out.
place in the palace. He asked them, “Are you sure Krishna took a leaf and tore it into two. Bhima
you can wrestle with me,” because as a wrestler, he knew of Jarasandha’s birth, how the two pieces
was considered matchless. of an infant were joined together. He immediately
understood what he had to do. He put one leg on
There were two kinds of wrestling matches in Jarasandha’s left leg, tore him into two pieces and
those days. One was as a sport where once you threw the halves down. But to his and everyone
floor the opponent, the match is over. Another else’s amazement, the two pieces rolled together,
was a life and death match where you had to kill joined, and Jarasandha sat up again. That was
the opponent in the ring. It would be the worst when Bhima felt his death was imminent. With
disgrace for the opponent to leave him injured and fearful eyes, he looked at Krishna again. Krishna
not kill him. You had to kill him. They asked for took another leaf, tore it, and threw the two pieces
the second kind of wrestling – Bhima wanted to into opposite directions.
wrestle with Jarasandha in a life and death match.
Still, Jarasandha treated them as his guests, with The next fight began. Again, no matter what Bhima
great honor and fabulous hospitality. The wrestling did, Jarasandha did not die. Jarasandha was just
match started after a few days. waiting for tomorrow. Then Bhima again tore him
apart, and this time, he threw the two halves in
Every day, in the late afternoon, they wrestled for opposite directions. People anxiously waited to
two and a half to three hours, till both of them were see if the two parts of the body would again come
exhausted. Then they returned to the palace, dined, together and sit up. Nothing happened. Jarasandha
drank, and partied together, and the next afternoon, was finally dead. Krishna crowned Jarasandha’s
they entered the ring again. Krishna told Bhima, son as king and invited him to join the Rajasuya
“The hospitality is so good here. Why don’t you Yagna.
stretch it out a little longer. We are really enjoying
this place.” The wrestling went on for many, many They released the ninety-nine kings who had been
days. Then at some point, Krishna said, “It’s time to imprisoned in Jarasandha’s dungeons. Then they
go back,” and he told Bhima to go all the way. But all traveled back to Indraprastha. They took half of
going all the way with Jarasandha was not easy, Jarasandha’s huge elephant army and loaded up
because he was going all the way too. They fought half of the gold and wealth that he had. With these
bitterly. Whatever Bhima did, he was not able to kill ninety-nine kings and these immense riches, they
Jarasandha. came back to Indraprastha. There was not enough
space in the treasury of Indraprastha to store all
Bhima was much younger and stronger, but he was this wealth – they heaped it up everywhere. Now
not able to take Jarasandha’s life. For twenty-six the Rajasuya Yagna could begin.
days, they fought for three hours daily. Then Krishna
said, “It’s enough. We must end it.” They realized To be continued.



Sadhguru Receives the Padma Vibhushan

On 13 April, Sadhguru has been conferred
India’s highest annual civilian award, the Padma
Vibhushan, for his contribution to spirituality.
President Pranab Mukherjee presented the award
to Sadhguru in a Civil Investiture Ceremony at
Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi.

Adiyogi – Guinness
World Record
The 112-feet tall face of
Adiyogi at the Isha Yoga
Center in Coimbatore,
Tamil Nadu, India, now
officially holds the
Guinness World Record
for world’s largest bust
(sculpture)! The record
was verified by Guinness
World Record officials on
11 March 2017.

Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw in Conversation with

On 23 April, Indian biotech pioneer and Biocon
founder Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw had an
insightful and lively conversation on the state
and future of the nation, environmental and river
conservation, gender equality, biotechnology and
ethics, and other subjects.

Sadhguru at Raj Niwas in Puducherry

Upon invitation of Lt. Governor of Puducherry,
Dr. Kiran Bedi, Sadhguru spoke on 18 April at the
Raj Niwas, the official residence of the Lt. Governor
of Puducherry. The evening session at the beautiful
Raj Niwas garden was titled “Making of the Nation.”
Sadhguru and Isha volunteers were offered a
cordial reception, with Dr. Kiran Bedi describing
herself as Sadhguru’s “devotee and student.”


A New Birth of Freedom
An Inner Engineering Participant Shares Her Experience

There was a major earthquake in Nepal in April

2015 which took away the lives of around nine
thousand people and destroyed six lakh houses.
I was nine months pregnant at the time. I was
deeply tormented by the news and views of
destruction around me. Day upon day, aftershock
after aftershock, it felt like the tremors would never
end and would eventually kill us all. I felt helpless,
felt like I could not run any faster or breathe any
deeper to save myself and the life within me. Life
had no meaning or purpose, and existence did not
make any sense. I constantly questioned myself
why I had to give a chance to a life when death
surrounds it. I somehow felt dejected and rejected

Nineteen days later I gave birth to my child. Right

at the moment when she was born, suddenly all my
fears disappeared. It was miraculous. That heavy
stone-like anxiety suddenly vanished. I can vividly
remember that moment of magic when feelings
switched automatically from utter suffering to On the last morning of Inner Engineering, I woke
sheer joy. An overwhelming sensation of love up feeling extremely calm and wrote this from my
flooded inside of me. I realized how I could respond heart:
in any way to the situation, and I chose to react
with acceptance and love.
In each petal, in each wing and in each leaf

I have finally grasped, I can choose to In every rock, the sky and the sea
shower that immense love inside of
In every beaming eye and
me anytime to anyone.
In every beating heart
Almost two years passed. I had almost forgotten There is me
the freedom that feeling had given me. But now,
when I participated in the Inner Engineering Bound by the love of this moment
program, those very feelings swarmed back.
Sadhguru made me realize once again that I can Calmness of this moment is eternity
be a mother to all. What a beautiful realization. I
have finally grasped, I can choose to shower that I am grateful to everyone in my entire life who has
immense love inside of me anytime to anyone. I do intentionally, unintentionally led me to join Inner
not have to wait for another earthquake to bring it Engineering and experience this.
to me. I feel that power of choice, to be happy and
loving at all times. I feel a deep sense of calmness – Yatra Sharma, Community Architect and Inner
inside of me. Engineering participant, Kathmandu, Nepal



Date Program Place Contact

Karan Johar in 99676 51283
NSCI, Worli,
4 Jun 2017 Conversation with
Mumbai – India
Isha Yoga Center,
0422-2515464 / 94890 45084
5–11 Jun 2017 Ayur Sampoorna Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India
Isha Yoga Center,
12 Jun – 0422-2515464 / 94890 45084
Yoga Marga Velliangiri Foothills,
2 Jul 2017
Coimbatore – India
Isha Yoga Center,
Bhava Spandana 83000 93555 / 0422-2515300
19–22 Jun 2017 Velliangiri Foothills,
(For Ladies)
Coimbatore – India
Isha Yoga Center, 94890 45164 / 0422-2515300
22–25 Jun 2017 Inner Engineering Retreat Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India
Isha Yoga Center,
29 Jun – 94890 45164 / 0422-2515300
Inner Engineering Retreat Velliangiri Foothills,
2 Jul 2017
Coimbatore – India

Isha Yoga Center, 0422-2515464

3–5 Jul 2017 Ayur Rasayana Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India
Isha Yoga Center, 0422-2515464
12–18 Jul 2017 Ayur Sampoorna Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India
Inner Engineering with
Sadhguru Bangalore International
96323 33111
16 Jul 2017 (Three-day preparatory Exhibition Centre,
class is mandatory to attend Bangalore – India
this program)

Isha Yoga Center,

Yantra Ceremony with 94890 45136
22 Jul 2017 Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India

Joint and Musculoskeletal Isha Yoga Center,

24–30 Jul 2017 Disorders Treatment Velliangiri Foothills,
Program Coimbatore – India

Isha Yoga Center,

94890 45164 / 0422-2515300
27–30 Jul 2017 Inner Engineering Retreat Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India

Isha Yoga Center,

31 Jul – Diabetes Management 0422-2515464
Velliangiri Foothills,
4 Aug 2017 Program
Coimbatore – India

Isha Yoga Center,

94890 45164 / 0422-2515300
3–6 Aug 2017 Inner Engineering Retreat Velliangiri Foothills,
Coimbatore – India

Current at the time of print, however subject to change. For full program schedules and updates, please visit our



(Serves 6–8)

Salad: 1. Chop all the fruits and vegetables into large,
1 Pineapple (peeled) wedge-shaped chunks, approx. 2–3 cm in size.
2 medium unripe Papayas
10 small Rose/wax apples 2. For the dressing: In a small pan, add soy sauce
3 Green apples and palm sugar. Cook over low flame, stirring
1 Turnip (sweet turnip, Chinese turnip, Mexican continuously, until a thick syrup is formed. Remove
from heat. Add chili powder (optional), tamarind
2 Cucumbers
paste, grated ginger, and lemon zest. Whisk
2 raw Mangoes

6 Tbsps. Soy sauce 3. Spoon the dressing over the salad and gently
80g Palm sugar (grated) toss until evenly coated. Garnish with grated
2–4 tsps. Chili powder (optional) groundnuts and sesame seeds.
6 Tbsps. Tamarind paste
2 tsps. Ginger (grated)
2 tsps. Lime zest (sliced thinly)
Salt to taste

4-5 Tbsps. each of toasted sesame seeds and
grated, roasted groundnuts



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