Should Mothers Work & Pursue Careers?

June 14, 2019

4 min read

Summary: If there is a financial requirement in the family, women should work and contribute to the needs of the family. However, if the need is because of social compulsions and not financial, then it's not needed that every woman should work. In the last 40-50 years this idea has come, that you are a real woman, only if you earn. This is borrowed from a man's mind and is not needed. Woman should see how to enhance the feminine. Sadhguru shares his experience of his mother, and how she made a difference in his family.

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Should Women Work & Pursue Careers?

Q: Nowadays, there is sometimes a disdain towards women who are housewives and are not employed. Even when we have young children, this attitude persists. What should one do?

Sadhguru: Generally, people work for financial needs. If you are working out of a passion for what you are doing, that is different, but most people work for financial gain. So, if there is a financial requirement in a family, women going to work or pitching in by working from home is perfectly fine. The question is not about whether you should work or not. The question is about whether there is such a need or not.

If the need has become social rather than financial, I don’t see a need that every woman must work. The idea of creating so much technology in the world is that someday, we create a world where neither man nor woman needs to work. We can live on a vacation! But many people work because they are in a mode of compulsive action. They don’t know what else to do with themselves. That is an unfortunate way to be. Coming to women in particular, this idea that every woman should work has gained great momentum in the last 40 to 50 years. It has come because of a certain element of exploitation that happened to women because of their financial dependence on the man. As a reaction to that, women thought the only way is to go to work. But I think it is only in some families that such exploitation happens. It is not true with many families. The idea that you are a real woman only if you earn money, has been borrowed from the man’s mind. In the name of women’s liberation, women have taken on men’s values. This is true slavery. If she wants to become free, a woman should not take on man’s values. She should see how to enhance the feminine into a flower-like, fragrant existence on the planet. This is something only she can do.

Looking at Life Beyond Your Wellbeing

The world becomes beautiful not because you earn money. Whether it is an individual’s life or a family, community or the world, it becomes beautiful because there are a few people who exist out of their love, truly wanting to reach out and do something beyond their personal wellbeing. That is what makes the world beautiful.

In terms of my personal experience, my mother never went to work outside, and my father would have never thought that she should work. But was she a useless person? Absolutely not. Without her, what would we be? Her dedication, the way she gave herself to her children and husband, is what has made us who we are.

A deep sense of concern, care and looking at life beyond your own personal wellbeing was something that was instilled in us simply by looking at her. There was no way you could miss it because her life was never about herself. With great joy, day or night, she served her family. This was not slavery, this was done out of absolute love. If you told her that she was being exploited, she would have been immensely offended because for her, it was such an experience of love to expend herself in doing what she was doing.

The world becomes beautiful not because you earn money. Whether it is an individual’s life or a family, community or the world, it becomes beautiful because there are a few people who exist out of their love, truly wanting to reach out and do something beyond their personal wellbeing. That is what makes the world beautiful.

A family is the smallest unit of community in the world, and if this does not happen in a family, it will not happen anywhere in the world. If a child is not exposed to this sense of love and dedication right from childhood, it will not happen.

Making a Difference

This does not mean a woman cannot do this if she goes to work. If there is a need to work, she has to do something about it. Once again, to take my mother as an example, she did not go to work, but she made sure that whatever could be done at home was done, so that it need not be bought in the shop.

Throughout my childhood, until I moved out of my family situation, I never slept on a pillow without a little bit of embroidery. She always made sure there would be at least some embroidery – maybe a little parrot or a little flower. Without this, my life wouldn’t be the same. She could have bought it in the shop. My father could afford it, but she made sure that she did that little thing. That was her way of pitching in. Whether you make money or you save money, it is still a contribution to the family. So, how a particular woman functions is an individual aspect. But no one needs to develop a philosophy that all women should work or all women should not work.


Ranveer Singh – How Do I Get Rid of My Phone Addiction?

August 24, 2018

4 min read

Summary: Ranveer Singh: Sir, I feel technology is constantly evolving, and I have a feeling that mobile phones have really changed the way we are. They have a huge bearing on pretty much everything. I sometimes wonder whether human beings were ever meant to communicate like this. I could be hanging in a jungle in Africa talking to somebody who is at the North Pole. I can actually see their face! And with that, now comes along social media. It is really changing things. Kids who are eighteen, nineteen now are much more into it. They know how to use these things much better. I was born when there were still landlines, so FaceTime is still a trip for me. So what is your take on mobile phone technology and social media? Is it the new evolution, like this is what human beings were, and now we have a cell phone and that is the extension of us?

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Don’t Blame Your Phone If You’re Addicted to It

Ranveer Singh: Sir, I feel technology is constantly evolving, and I have a feeling that mobile phones have really changed the way we are. They have a huge bearing on pretty much everything. I sometimes wonder whether human beings were ever meant to communicate like this. I could be hanging in a jungle in Africa talking to somebody who is at the North Pole. I can actually see their face!

And with that, now comes along social media. It is really changing things. Kids who are eighteen, nineteen now are much more into it. They know how to use these things much better. I was born when there were still landlines, so FaceTime is still a trip for me. So what is your take on mobile phone technology and social media? Is it the new evolution, like this is what human beings were, and now we have a cell phone and that is the extension of us?

Sadhguru: Every machine we have created is just about extending our faculties in some way. We have visual capabilities, so we have a telescope and microscope. We can speak, so we have a microphone and a telephone. So when I spoke through a landline, it was okay. Now I have a mobile phone, which is far more comfortable, but that is not okay? No, it is perfectly okay.

Compulsiveness is what we need to handle. Technology is a tremendous enabler – no one should complain about it.

About thirty-five years ago, I was always on the road, driving all over the country building Isha Foundation – village to village, town to town. I would only have certain days when I could use the telephone. I do not know whether you have seen those horrible blue boxes – those telephone booths – local, STD, ISD. On the highway, I would find one blue box. That would be my day to call.

I never had a telephone book, but I very easily remembered eight hundred to nine hundred numbers and names. So as soon as I got there, I would pull out five thousand rupees and give it to that guy. He would not understand why, but I would say, “Just keep it. This is a down payment.” Normally, a call would cost five, ten rupees. I gave him five thousand rupees – he does not know what is coming!

I would go into the booth with the black, horrible-smelling phone. Some of them had it serviced with some perfume, but the rest had everyone’s bad breath in it. Then I would call and call for four, five, six hours. I would make all the calls I needed to make for the month.

Other people who wanted to make phone calls would come there, gesticulating at me for not coming out, but that guy took care of them because I had already paid him five thousand bucks. I would finish all my calls, get into my car and drive on. Even my fingers used to hurt a lot at the end of all those calls.

But today, if I just speak someone’s name, my phone automatically calls.

Ranveer Singh: Yeah!

Sadhguru: It is a done thing. I hugely appreciate the technology. Some people are complaining, but they are not complaining about the technology. They do not know that what they are actually complaining about is their own compulsiveness.

Compulsive usage is not a problem with just the phone. If they start eating, they do not know when to stop. If they start drinking, they do not know when to stop drinking. This compulsiveness is there in all aspects of their life. Now the gadget has become a drug. But it is also keeping lots of people out of drink.

Ranveer Singh: At least there is something good about it.

Sadhguru: Compulsiveness is what we need to handle. Technology is a tremendous enabler – no one should complain about it. Otherwise, we must put you in that blue box with a black phone. Then you will understand!


What is The Significance of Cleanliness?

May 5, 2017

3 min read

Summary: Cleanliness is an important aspect for individual wellbeing, and for one's spiritual growth. Sadhguru says - "The kind of forms we build, the kind of forms we hold around us and the kind of structures we live in have a phenomenal impact on everything that we are". He says - "If our surroundings are not pleasant upon our senses, then the images that we create in our mind, the projections that happen upon the seat of our experience turn unpleasant."

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

The Significance of Cleanliness

Sadhguru: Shaucha, or cleanliness, is an important aspect of one’s spiritual development. Cleanliness is not just about the body. It is also about our surroundings. Everything that we perceive through our sense organs can either create filth or wellbeing within ourselves.

The kind of forms we build, the kind of forms we hold around us and the kind of structures we live in have a phenomenal impact on everything that we are.

Whatever we perceive, if it is pleasant upon our senses, we experience it one way. If it is unpleasant upon our senses, that becomes filth in our experience. If our surroundings are not clean, or in other words, if our surroundings are not pleasant upon our senses, then the images that we create in our mind, the projections that happen upon the seat of our experience turn unpleasant. When you create unpleasantness like this, going into blissful states of experience and consciously generating the nature of your experience becomes difficult.

Whether you are miserable or joyful is determined essentially by what you are doing within yourself. A spiritual process essentially means everything that you are, happens consciously – your experience of life is determined by you. If this has to happen, it is important that our sense organs do not perceive something as unpleasant.

As you make your bed…

I am sure that in every culture, you have been told at some point – if not by your parents, at least by your grandparents – about how to keep your clothes and bedclothes. In India in particular, they say that if you leave your bed clothes crumpled and unfolded, ghosts will come and gather. When you sleep, they will sleep with you and trouble you. I think in English there is a saying, “As you make your bed, so shall you lie upon it.” This is essentially about the forms around you. Today, scientists tell us that the whole existence is just one energy manifesting itself in a million different ways. As energy has generated forms, forms can in turn generate energy. And every form around you is generating a certain type of energy.

The kind of forms we build, the kind of forms we hold around us and the kind of structures we live in have a phenomenal impact on everything that we are. If there is a little more awareness about the way we sit, the way we arrange ourselves and the way we keep things around us, we can create the spatial arrangement in a way that is conducive to looking inward, and which makes our spiritual process much easier. If you want to drive from point A to point B, you could probably drive through anything, but if a proper road is laid out, you would get there easily. In that context, if the spatial arrangement around us is organized in such a way that it is conducive for inward looking, it will happen much more easily.


What Is The Best Way To Wake Up?

May 15, 2017

8 min read

Summary: It is very important to wake up to the right kind of sounds. Sadhguru tells us that in many ways, coming awake is like being reborn. So, the context you come out of sleep, will determine about the nature of how your day will go. Sadhguru says - "What kind of sounds you come awake to will determine the context of the day and the future of your life in many ways. Actually, to come awake to silence is the best thing to do, but if you have doubts whether you will come awake or not at the right time, then at least use the right sounds to wake you up – not a ringtone which will just shock you out of sleep. It must slowly bring you out of sleep."

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Suprabhatam and the Sounds of Waking

Q: I have heard that waking up to the sound of a ringing alarm is not a good way to start your day. Is it better to wake up to a certain kind of music? Would that set up a better ambience within ourselves before we face the day?

Sadhguru: Waking up to an alarm is not just about the sound. If you are in deep sleep and a loud sound goes off, it is the suddenness of the sound. Fortunately, most people today are setting alarms on the phone where you can easily format it to the music that you like. In India, there is something called suprabhat. “Prabha” literally means a dawn or light. In English, we could say “suprabhat” means “good morning”. “Good morning”, said not in words but by a certain format of sounds.

These have been formatted for different deities in the country. It has mostly disappeared these days, but otherwise, at least in most of the villages and small towns in India, this would be the first thing you heard in the morning. Everyone woke up to this. Essentially, the idea is to wake up to the right kind of sounds.

Waking Up is a Rebirth

I don’t know if there is a machine that does this, but maybe with electrodes attached to you, we could measure the reverb created in deep sleep, in light sleep – which may happen early in the morning when there are certain dream states – and when you wake up naturally. If this could be measured, we could test the efficacy of these suprabhatams or different mantras – how they will wake you up and in what context they will wake you up.

Coming awake to an alarm bell with a sudden start is not the best way.

In many ways, coming awake is like being reborn. In sleep, you are dead to the world, and now you are coming back again. When you are coming back, with what context you come out will determine many things about the nature of your day. In what direction your life will go today will be determined by the context in which you come out. I am sure most Indians of the older generation would have noticed this – when their grandmothers and mothers woke up in the morning, they always got up with “Shiva, Shiva” or “Shambho” or “Hara, Hari” – whatever their expressions were. But there is also a way of sleeping in this reverberation.

A Test of True Transformation

There is a beautiful incident that happened in the mid 1800’s. In the present state of Madhya Pradesh, there was a spiritual movement known as Mahima. Today, we have named our meditation hall in III in Tennessee as Mahima. The word “Mahima” literally means grace. At that time, it was a very large spiritual movement. I have visited some of their ashrams in that region. These ashrams could easily accommodate over three to four thousand people, but there are only about five or six sanyasis there now. But at that time, it was in full swing. These spiritual aspirants grew into a powerful sect. The movement was supported by the king of the local area because the spiritual pursuit was always considered the highest pursuit.

Your whole life may be pretentious, but when you are asleep, you cannot pretend. That is the only fortune for a lot of people.

At the same time, when an administration – or anybody for that matter – sponsors something, they try to get some benefit out of it. For Isha, I have set a pitch where no one’s names are ever written on any of the consecrated spaces for whatever contributions they make. Similarly, the Mahima people did not yield to social pressures. They were focused on their spiritual process. And the yogis grew with a great sense of humility and pride. These are two strange combinations.

The king was supporting this, but a few people around him were disgruntled because these yogis were not doing anything for them. They did not come for the naming ceremony of these courtiers’ children, or their house warming, marriage ceremonies, death ceremonies – nothing!

So these courtiers raised the question, “Why are we supporting these people? What is the use? It is a waste of money because, if you look at them, they do not even look starved. They look well-fed, they look strong, and they do not bow down in front of the king – they walk with pride. When we give money to somebody, they must be subservient to us. But these guys are living their own life.”

They put this thought in the king’s mind and put pressure on him that the treasury was wasting money on these people. So the king called the guru who was heading the sect and said, “My ministers and others feel that we are wasting money on you. I have great respect for you, but there is pressure that we must stop support and sponsorship for you because you people do not look spiritual. Our idea of spirituality is you must be subservient to us, but you are not fulfilling that.”

The guru said, “Is that so? We will do one thing. You come with me one night, I will show you. Then you can make your own judgment.” So, a little late in the night, the guru and the king in disguise left the palace.

The guru first took him to the minister’s home – the minister who was heading this campaign against the spiritual movement. Being summer, the minister was sleeping in the open corridor of his home. The guru took a pail of water and, hiding behind a bush, threw the water on the minister. When the cold water hit him, the minister woke up with a shock, with obscenities pouring out of his mouth.

The guru and the king quietly left the place and went to the home of the commander-in-chief who was also against this spiritual movement. Because these monks looked like an army by themselves, he felt threatened. There, once again they did the same experiment and even greater obscenities poured out of him.

Then the guru took the king to the ashram where all the monks were sleeping. He threw some water on one of the monks. One got up, “Shiva!” Another got up, “Shambho!” The guru said, “This is it. This is the transformation they have achieved. Deep down, they have become this.” Your whole life may be pretentious, but when you are asleep, you cannot pretend. That is the only fortune for a lot of people. At least when they fall asleep, they cannot keep their act up. You can fool the whole world when you are awake, but when you are asleep, you are who you are.

Maintaining Awareness

What kind of sounds you come awake to will determine the context of the day and the future of your life in many ways. I have said this many times – in the night, when you are falling asleep, if you can transit in awareness from wakefulness to sleep, your whole life will be transformed. There is a tradition of chanting a mantra as people fall asleep, wanting to come to that place, but in the beginning you may see you are chanting the mantra and you fall asleep, but you never remember when you fall asleep. It will take a certain amount of awareness to come to this state.

Actually, to come awake to silence is the best thing to do.

Yogis sometimes go to extreme levels to maintain this awareness but this can be done in better ways – more sophisticated ways – which we have explored in many ways. Maybe most people have not made use of it.

But an easier thing to do is to maintain an awareness when coming awake. It does not have the same significance as when going to sleep, but coming awake is an easier thing to do because it happens in a gradual way.

The Best Way to Wake Up

Coming awake to an alarm bell with a sudden start is not the best way. The kind of food that you consume, the kind of thoughts and emotions that you process within yourself, and the level of vibrance that you have managed within your body will determine how much sleep you need. Whatever amount of sleep you need, you know how much you need, so you go to bed early enough so that you come awake naturally. Suppose you have a doubt whether you will come awake naturally or not, if you have a certain chant, if you have identified one of the Vairagya chants, you can use it.

Today you have all the gadgets to do this, but still I would say the body should have completed its natural requirement of sleep. Actually, to come awake to silence is the best thing to do, but if you have doubts whether you will come awake or not at the right time, then at least use the right sounds to wake you up – not a ringtone which will just shock you out of sleep. It must slowly bring you out of sleep.


What Does It Take To Live Better?

October 20, 2017

3 min read

Summary: Living better is not about what you possess, but about how you are. Sadhguru says - "You can have a thousand things and be confused about what to wear or use today. Or, even if you have just one thing or nothing, you can be blissed out within yourself. Which is a better way to live?"

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

What You Should Do To Live a Better Life

Q: Namaskaram, Sadhguru. You said that we should take away this calculation of “what about me” from our lives, but every action I undertake in life is for my benefit, directly or indirectly. Even if I try to remove the calculation, it will be because it is essential for me in order to live better. So how do I go about this?

Sadhguru: This is a very calculated question! You said you want to live better. I have seen a lady, who I knew very well at one time, wanting to go somewhere one evening, and standing in front of her elaborate wardrobe, crying and biting her nails because she is confused as to what she should wear that day. I told her, “It is very simple. You must give away all these clothes and just keep seven. Sunday this, Monday this, Tuesday this…”

I am not saying everyone should have only seven pairs of clothes. All I am saying is that if you can gracefully walk through the material in the world, it is fine. But if you are going to carry the material world on your head, possessing everything that you touch, you are not going to live better.

How Are You?

There is substantial scientific evidence for this. In the evolutionary process itself, only those creatures flourished that learned how to cooperate and think of each other’s wellbeing. Those which only thought, “I must survive at any cost,” did not survive. Over a period of time, they perished. If you look around, you will see, people who are thinking, “I must get this, I must get that,” they may be getting a lot of things, but you will not see joy on their faces.

You can have a thousand things and be confused about what to wear or use today. Or, even if you have just one thing or nothing, you can be blissed out within yourself. Which is a better way to live?

Everything you possess is dug out of the planet. Unfortunately, in today’s world, most people think living better means they have to dig up everything in the planet and carry it on their heads, where if someone breaks one window in the house their heart will break. Living better is not about digging up the planet and heaping it on your head. That happens when you go to the grave. People will put mud on your head when you are dead. When you are alive you are supposed to walk upon the planet, not carry it on your head.

Evolving for Our Sake and the Planet’s Sake

Our ideas of living better have to evolve, for our sake and the sake of the planet. To save the planet, people are saying you must use this kind of fuel, drive an electric car and all kinds of things. These are minor adjustments. If you really want an ecological transformation on the planet in this generation, you must turn the whole population into spiritual seekers.

They must understand that living better is not about what they possess but about how they are. If they understand this much and start living that way, there is no problem. Even if ten billion people live on this planet, which we are expecting by 2050, there will be no problem if people understand that better living is about how you are within yourself, not about the things that you possess.


How Much Sleep Do We Really Need?

November 17, 2017

2 min read

Summary: Body needs restfulness and not sleep. When there is residual stress in the physical body, it falls asleep. There is no need to promote sleeping for certain specific amount of time. Sadhguru says - "There is no need to fix how many hours to sleep. When you feel sufficiently relaxed, you must come awake. If the body and mind is kept in a certain level of alertness and awareness, you will see once it is well-rested, it is eager to come to life".

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Sleep and Restfulness

Sanjoy Roy: In your book Inner Engineering: A Yogi’s Guide to Joy, you talk about sleep, our obsession with the need to sleep, and so many other things we get obsessed with.

Sadhguru: The body does not need sleep – it needs restfulness. In most people’s experience, sleep is the deepest form of restfulness they know, so they talk about sleep. But essentially, the body is not asking for sleep, it is looking for restfulness. When you perform lots of activity, a residue of physical stress will build up in the body. So at some point, the body wants to fall asleep.

There are so-called experts who are promoting sleep. I think there is no need to promote sleep – people fall asleep when they are tired. But people are talking in terms of putting everyone to sleep for eight to ten hours a day. Suppose you live for a hundred years – if you followed the prescription of sleeping eight hours a day, eventually, you would have slept for over thirty-three years.

The aspect of restfulness has not been understood by people. Just try this simple thing today – check your pulse before and after food. Now if you learn Isha Kriya, a very simple practice that will just take you twelve minutes a day, if you do it for four to six weeks, and you check your pulse again before and after food, you will see it will be lower. This means you are going at lower RPM. If you keep driving your car at 5000 RPM, it will wear out faster than when you drive it at 2000 RPM. Similarly, if you are constantly going at a high pulse rate, you work yourself into the ground, and then you try to compensate for it with more sleep.

If you bring restfulness, you bring ease into your system. Once you sit here with absolute ease, the amount of residual stress that builds up in your physical body is very minimal. Almost twenty-seven years, I managed with two-and-a-half to three hours of sleep, on an average. These days, I am getting a little lazy and sleep four to four-and-a-half hours!

There is no need to fix how many hours to sleep. When you feel sufficiently relaxed, you must come awake. If the body and mind is kept in a certain level of alertness and awareness, you will see once it is well-rested, it is eager to come to life.


Why wearing natural fibre is essential for your wellbeing?

March 15, 2019

6 min read

Summary: India once used to clothe the world and Indian textile was exported across the globe because of its quality, designs and organic nature. Unfortunately, it was systematically killed, both by intent and neglect. And the world today has moved to synthetic and its is estimated 98% of all fiber will be synthetic in near future. This is already causing disastrous ill affects and fatal health issues as the micro-poly fiber has entered the human food chain. Today, Fashion industry is the second largest pollutant on the planet. It is time to revive natural clothing and Indian weaving culture. Read Sadhguru's view on why wearing natural fiber is important and what can be done to bring back the golden era of Indian textile and weavers.

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Saving India’s Incredible Weaves

Sadhguru: There was a time when almost the entire known world was aspiring to wear Indian cloth because we produced the best textiles. Indian textiles have clothed the world. You can still find evidence of that at ancient sites in Syria and Egypt, for example. Even today, when it comes to textile, though a lot has already died due to neglect and intent, there is no other place on the planet that has as many weaves and as many ways of dyeing and preparing a cloth as this culture has.
But during the two centuries before Independence, the British systematically broke the textile industry in India to sustain their cotton mills in Manchester. In sixty years, between 1800 and 1860, India’s textile export came down by 94%. One of the British Governor Generals in the 1830s says, “The bones of the cotton weavers are bleaching the plains of India”, because millions of weavers died.

The Art of Handmade Crafts

Having said that, we still have the skills. India has over 120 distinct weaves. Each district, each community and even specific families have their own methods of weaving and dyeing.

When I was seventeen, I spent some time at my uncle’s place where thousands of silk sarees were woven. Thousands of threads were intricately woven into geometrical patterns. As they weave, they would be making thousands of calculations in their mind, and I would see flowers magically blossom on the cloth. The amount of mathematics, hand skills, and awareness involved in making the cloth and designs is incredible. It is really magical.

When human ingenuity and human hands are involved, whether food is cooked or cloth is woven, it has a different quality. It is not just about your emotions. There is a different quality to what human beings have touched with a certain level of care, concern or focus.

Clothes for Comfort or Fickle Fashion?

But today, someone was telling me that if you take a photograph in any major city in India of people below their knees, over sixty percent of them are wearing American workmen’s clothes: blue denims, one color. And business people wear suits and ties in forty-degree centigrade weather. A tie is nothing short of a noose around your neck in our kind of climate. We should be wearing clothing which is more suitable to the conditions in which we exist and which allows us to be at ease.

In that sense, it is important that the substance you wear is organic. Just change to clothing made from natural fibers like linen, jute, cotton or hemp for three days and see how it feels. Your body will naturally come to ease.

But today, 60% of the clothing in the world is made from polyfiber. In a decade or so, they estimate that 98% of all fiber will be synthetic. Fashion is the second-largest polluter on the planet. Micro poly-fiber is entering our bodies, poisoning our soil and water, and entering the food cycle. We are eating it, breathing it and consuming it in so many ways. Studies show various health hazards, including cancers, linked to poly-fiber and synthetic clothing, and it is definitely impacting our children’s wellbeing. Some studies in the United States show that 90% of people have some amount of plastic in their blood.

From Plastic to Organic

It is time we revive natural fibers and the weaving industry. Families have passed down their unique system of weaving from generation to generation over thousands of years. But the way our education system is set up today, if a child goes to the loom to work and learn alongside his parents, the modern thinking is this is child-labor. To become a master-weaver requires dedicated time. You have to apply your mind from childhood. If you send the child to school for seventeen years and then expect him or her to pick it up, it is not going to work.

At least once a week, please wear something Indian. This is for your health, personal wellbeing and ecological wellbeing.

We are currently proposing a policy draft to change this outdated way of schooling. Fortunately, the government announced in August 2018 that in future, only fifty percent of the time in school should be academic-focused. The rest of the time should be focused towards sport, art, music, craft and a variety of other activities. Once this comes to fruition, children can pick up the handloom very early in life.

We are also looking at how to bring healthy natural fiber into school uniforms. Government schools in the state of Kerala have already done this. Private schools can also be encouraged and the message should be taken worldwide that all children should be clothed only in organic materials which are healthy for them. Outside of schooling, uniforms with traditional designs and organic fiber can be extended to government employees, tourist guides and taxi drivers.

Well-known fashion designers from India and abroad should be encouraged to set the standard and take up natural fiber. Personally, I dress in such a way that I am a representation of all these incredible weavers in this country, and I appeal to everyone, at least those who are affluent in India, that at least twenty percent of your wardrobe should be handmade – woven by people, not by machines. At least once a week, please wear something Indian. This is for your health, personal wellbeing and ecological wellbeing. At the same time, you are also supporting the future generations behind the art and craft of weaving.

Fashion for Peace

This year being the 150th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s birth, we have brought some top American designers together for an initiative called Fashion for Peace. This was not a fashion show where we walked the ramp. This was a place where we showed about fifteen to twenty top designers, the fabric of India. We have brought 110 varieties of weaves, so that they can see and learn to use the cloth in their designs.

We also want to connect the weavers to the market. To accomplish this, a platform, including an online portal, will be set up where interested buyers can buy assured quality fabric and clothing straight from the weavers.

We are also looking at how farmers can benefit from this. The trouble with food crops is that food is perishable, and farmers have to sell it immediately. But if around 30% of their land is converted to growing natural fibers, it will be a big financial boon for them.

Clothing the World

Though India was once famous for its textiles, in the last century or so, the world has not really seen Indian textiles. We are creating various initiatives to bring it back into people’s awareness in the nation and globally. There is a lot of talk about unemployment in India. But if we can bring back handloom, there will not be enough people to do it because of the immense demand that will be there. If we do the right things, India is poised to be able to clothe the world once again in a sensible and natural way.


Nag Ashwin – Why More Youth Today Are Consuming Alcohol and Drugs?

September 23, 2018

6 min read

Summary: The survival needs of people are now taken care of - so, naturally people will look elsewhere for involvement. If they don't find anything, they will move towards more pleasure and more intoxication. Another reason is that children are not getting enough attention because both parents are working. Also, this generation does not believe in 'heaven' - so 'morality' which used to work, will not work now. The solution is, to keep children involved in sports and activities that keep them engaged with nature. They must experience the pleasures of the mind, emotion and consciousness - once that happens, then indulging in pleasures of the body will come down. And children should not know affluence till a certain age.

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Why Are Youth Turning to Alcohol and Drugs?

Nag Ashwin: I’d like to know the truth about the increase in alcohol usage and addiction in my generation, the younger generation. People used to drink alcohol for ages, since prehistoric times, but this is the only time I feel that very young kids, kids in school, are starting to use substances as a safe haven, as an escape. That feels very scary and dangerous. I want to know why you think kids are using this, and I want to know what you think is the best way, or a more organic way to get people out of it?

Sadhguru: Namaskaram, Nag! I like your name. Cobras have always been very dear to me. If you do not know this, cobra venom is also an intoxicant if it is used in a certain way.

There are many reasons why the need for intoxication is going up in the society. One basic thing is, people are no longer fighting for survival. A large segment of the society has moved out of survival mode. When people move beyond survival, they must find other areas of interest and passionate involvement. If that does not happen, the need for pleasure and the need for intoxication will naturally go up in that given society. This is why it is very important that even if parents are affluent, their children should not know affluence until they come to a certain age.

The necessary sense of discipline, involvement, and engagement with life has to happen before wealth comes into somebody’s life. Otherwise, wealth will become a burden that you carry on your head. That is what is happening to this generation.

In this culture, even the kings sent their children to gurukulas where they studied with other children, and everybody lived with very basic needs. The necessary sense of discipline, involvement, and engagement with life has to happen before wealth comes into somebody’s life. Otherwise, wealth will become a burden that you carry on your head. That is what is happening to this generation.

Missing Activity and Attention

Another reason is that these days, largely, both parents are working. At an early age, the attention that the child needs is not being given. Naturally, various deviances are taken to. And there is not enough physical activity. When you do not enjoy the fitness of your body and the vibrance and vitality of your system, then the only other thing that you will enjoy is intoxication. And now, drugs are not only for intoxication; they also makes them feel vibrant for a few hours. So, massively, the generation is moving in that way.

One more significant reason why this generation is moving towards these drugs is that, in their minds, the heavens that were promised are collapsing.

One more significant reason why this generation is moving towards these drugs is that, in their minds, the heavens that were promised are collapsing. They may be still unable to articulate it very clearly. They do not have the clarity or the courage to say it. But for a long time, we have managed people by saying, “If you abstain from all these things, in heaven all of this will be available in huge quantities.” Now the heavens are collapsing, so they are trying to drink it up right here. Like this, there are many aspects. Fundamentally, there is no need for an individual human being to physically strive for his survival. That itself makes the need for intoxication greater.

Learning to Enjoy Other Pleasures

What are the solutions? It is very, very important for those of you who have growing children to involve them in sports and other intense activities which engage them with nature: trekking, mountain climbing, swimming, etc. They must become passionate about something like art or music. They must learn to know the pleasures of their intellect, their emotion, their consciousness.

When one begins to enjoy the pleasures of the mind, of the sharpness of one’s intellect, of emotion, and of consciousness, then indulging in the pleasures of the body will naturally come down dramatically. So it is very important that children should be passionately involved in a variety of activities. This will bring down the need for alcohol and drugs.

It is very important that children should be passionately involved in a variety of activities. This will bring down the need for alcohol and drugs.

But we must understand that today, alcohol is being heavily marketed. The movies are promoting it, and everywhere it is being made into a social thing that unless you drink, you are no good. People ask me, “Sadhguru, you drink?” I say, “Yes, I drink water.” They look at me like I am a strange creature. “Just water?” Yes, the most fantastic drink you can have is water because seventy percent of this body is made of water, not alcohol.

Intoxication from Within

This human system is the greatest chemical factory. If you want intoxication, you can generate it from inside – a kind of intoxication which makes you inebriated and super aware at the same time. This is the kind of intoxication we should introduce to our children and youth. This is why we are striving to bring the technology of yoga into everybody’s life. If you go into certain states within yourself, you will know intoxication that no drug and no drink can ever create. At the same time, you will remain super aware, and it will do miracles to your health and wellbeing.

It is time that we learn to do things in a more technologically enhanced way. We have ways that people can turn inward and know the highest pleasures of life. We must make our youth experience this. Unless you give them an alternative, they will go back to the bottle or pill.

We have ways that people can turn inward and know the highest pleasures of life. We must make our youth experience this. Unless you give them an alternative, they will go back to the bottle or pill.

Right now, you need chemical help to be healthful, peaceful, joyful, or to experience anything within yourself. When a generation uses chemicals like this – if ninety percent of the people start using pharmaceuticals and other types of chemicals on a daily basis – then the next generation that we produce will be less than who we are in many ways.

This is a crime against humanity. All of us should wake up to this fact and do what is needed.


Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore – Is Over Exposure Of Technology Destroying Youth?

September 2, 2018

4 min read

Summary: Technology has made our lives easy and comfortable - but we are still complaining about it! The problem is not technology, it is just that people have not prepared themselves for the life they need to handle. Unless you make yourself capable to handle the various realities of today, you will complain. In the early years of life, the focus should be to enhance the life to a higher level of possibility. Once sufficient time is invested in inner development, handling the outside situations will be effortless.

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

How to Deal with Information and Tech Overload

Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore: The period of youth is defined by challenges, goals, achievements and ambitions. Many chase success as defined by others. In this hyper-connected, information-saturated era, there is the added stress of information overload and work-related burnout. Such stress takes away the happiness of our youngsters. We see more and more cases of depression amongst youth. How can the youth continually be happy in such challenging times? I want to know the truth about youth and happiness.

Sadhguru: Namaskaram Raj. In every generation, there is a set of people who are always complaining about something. Of course, there are also people who are making use of the situations of their times.

As a generation today, we have more conveniences and comforts than ever before. The world is not moving any faster than what it was a few thousand years ago – it is still spinning at the same pace. But we feel that the distances have been reduced simply because of technological progress.

Right now, people are complaining about technology which has made their life easy and comfortable. The problem is just that they have not prepared themselves for the life that they need to handle.

People who are complaining about information overload must visualize life a thousand years ago. You would not know what was happening just one hundred kilometers away. Even if something fantastic happened, or there was a great calamity, it would take one or two months for you to get the information. Today, whatever is happening anywhere in the world comes to you quickly.

We are technologically empowered like never before. This is one of the greatest privileges we have as a generation. Right now, people are complaining about technology which has made their life easy and comfortable. The problem is just that they have not prepared themselves for the life that they need to handle.

Enhancing Your Capabilities

I want you to just imagine if you lived a thousand years ago. In the morning when you woke up, you would need water for your use, so you would have to walk down to the river and carry two buckets full of water. Believe me, most of the youth today are not fit enough to carry two buckets of water for a mile. Physically, they are just not capable of doing it.

If you invest enough time in the inner development of who you are, handling the present situations will be effortless. Above all, you will not be complaining about the greatest gifts that have been offered to you.

If you were here a thousand years ago without technology, would you carry these buckets of water without complaint? You would definitely complain, because you are physically not capable. Similarly, if you have not made yourself mentally capable to handle the various realities of today, then you will complain.

You must engineer yourself in such a way that you are fit for life. In the early part of your life, the most important thing is not your ambitions, your desires or the lifestyles you aspire for. The only thing you should be concerned about is how to enhance this life to a higher level of possibility. If you invest enough time in the inner development of who you are, handling the present situations will be effortless. Above all, you will not be complaining about the greatest gifts that have been offered to you.

Never before could you fly from India to United States in fourteen hours’ time, or pick up your phone and talk to someone in any part of the world, or see a million things happening all over the world and even in outer space. You can see beyond your normal vision, hear beyond your normal sense of hearing, and experience things beyond your normal sense of experience.

Upgrading Yourself

The technology around you is phenomenally upgrading itself every few months or years. It is time you upgrade yourself. Inner Engineering or yoga means you focus on enhancing this life. If you enhance your activity without enhancing this life, of course you suffer the activity. It is like taking an old, junky car on an F1 track – it will fall apart. That is all that is happening to people.

Instead of educating our children just to make a living and find a job, we have to educate them first of all to enhance themselves. Tools for self-transformation are the most important requirement of this age because external situations are largely going to be handled by machines. It is very important you are a little smarter than the machines you handle.


Do I Have To Be Cunning To Be Successful?

April 18, 2018

5 min read

Summary: Have you ever been in a dilemma - if I am not cunning, will I make it in contemporary society? Because those who are, seem to be making it faster. Sadhguru tells us that in some situations, you can not get away from being cunning, like when negotiating between two nations. But to work smoothly in the society, most important is that you create a confidence in everyone, that they can trust your integrity. It is true that you can make some money by being cunning, but is it worth the amount of effort needed in your mind? To live in ease, you must create an atmosphere of trust around you. Sadhguru also shares his profound wisdom, on what really is life's takeaway!

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article originally published on isha.sadhguru.org

Which Is the Way to Success: Being Cunning or Earning Trust?

Q: Namaskaram Sadhguru, I would like to be honest and straight. But I find that people who are cunning make it faster in the material world. So what do I do about it?

Sadhguru: We do not know what is the nature of your work, what kind of transactions you are involved in. In some transactions, cunning is the law. Suppose you are involved in negotiating between two nations. Being straight is not going to work. Cunning is the law, isn’t it? It is always about outsmarting the other. Is it the right thing or the wrong thing? This is not for me to decide or you to decide. It is a reality of our times.

Make a Living or Make a Life?

If I am cunning, will I succeed? Try and see. You may get cornered. If you cross some lines, you may get imprisoned. If you do not get imprisoned, you may get shunned by other people. Before you try anywhere else, try this with your family. It is better to experiment in a safer atmosphere! Every day, deceive them with something. For some time, they will be fooled and you will get a few things. After some time, when they know what you are doing – which they will know – you will see that slowly you do not belong to the family any more. They may tolerate you for some time, but you will never be included. If it crosses certain limits, they know what to do with you.

When it comes to give and take, if you are very clever, you can take more.

Creating an atmosphere of trust, creating this confidence in everyone that, “You can trust me. Maybe you cannot trust my judgment, but you can trust my integrity” – if you create this, you will see your life will become smooth in the society in which you live. Maybe you will make a little less money than someone else, but your life will become smooth. Otherwise, so many things will be after you.

When it comes to give and take, if you are very clever, you can take more. Some people, with their extra cleverness, may manage a better life than someone else. You may make a living. You will never make a life out of it. People of good times, you know what’s happened! Do not succumb to that.

Know the Ease of Living

When you lie, when you cheat, you may make some money – I am not questioning that – but considering the amount of effort needed in your mind, it is not worth it. Suppose you tell one version of something to one person, another version to someone else and a third version to a third person, do you know how much extra work you have to do in your mind? If you want to know the ease of living, it is important that you maintain a trustful atmosphere around you. Otherwise life gets super-complicated and many people go crazy after some time.

In a love affair, you give everything that you can. You don’t care a damn whether you get something or not.

In recent times in India, a lot of people who lived flamboyant lifestyles are either in prison or in hiding here and there. At one time, people thought they were having a good time – not anymore. Things will catch up with you. Even if the outside does not catch up with you, even if you successfully manage the outside, the inside will catch up with you.

This unnecessary extra activity in your mind itself will catch up with you. Your entire life will become a transaction. That means you are a marketplace. A marketplace is not a beautiful place. Maybe there is profit, but it is not a beautiful place because it is about how I can give less and take more. This is not a love affair. In a love affair, you give everything that you can. You don’t care a damn whether you get something or not. And there is beauty to this. There is life.

Life Has No Take-Away

Above all, how profound is your experience of life? How much you have gathered would matter only if you could transport it with you when you die. I was speaking in London and a very prominent group of people were there. After I spoke for an hour-and-a-half, one man said, “All this is okay, but what is the takeaway?” I looked at him and said, “At the end of your life, whatever is the takeaway, that is the takeaway here also.”

There is no takeaway with life. Have you been touched by this life or not? Have you known tears of much tenderness? Have you known love?

In some communities in India, during burials, if a person weighs around fifty kilograms, it is a rule that we must put one hundred kilograms of salt beneath the body and above the body, so that every bone will dissolve and become a part of the earth as quickly as possible. But in Western societies, people are boxing them up so that maggots can eat them from inside! They do not want to merge. First, the wood has to melt. It will take a long time. These days it is chemically-treated wood, so most of them will never merge with the earth. Especially if you make a golden casket for yourself, you will never merge. And of course, somebody is going to steal it after some time and throw you all over the place!

Do not get too smart with life. You got ten rupees more than someone, but you missed life – I do not think it is smart. You wore more gold chains than someone else, but you missed life – there is nothing smart about this. This is the dumbest thing you can do.

There is no takeaway with life. Have you been touched by this life or not? Have you known tears of much tenderness? Have you known love? Have you known joy? Have you known ecstasy? Above all, have you known the innermost core that is making all this happen?


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