In conversation with

Karan Johar

Karan Johar

21 Questions



7:42 min

Religion versus spirituality


I think we bottle it down to some spiritual inquiries, some religious ones. There’s always been a debate about these two terms. Religion, and then spirituality. There are people who feel like, I’m not religious, I’m spiritual. And I’m not quite sure they know the meaning of that. But they use it because sometimes terms are just thrown around. To those people, who are at the crossroad between religion and spirituality, what is your answer to their dilemma?

6:09 min

What will you say to people who are desperate for any sign of hope?


I was at a crossroad about 13 years ago. And my father was very critically ill. And at that juncture of my life, and before that, religion was organized in my life. It was what was taught to me. It was what I thought the right thing to do was. When he was in his last stage, there were things suggested to me. Which were, to me now, completely ridiculous. Including going to a certain temple and feeding a cow of a certain colour. And doing a certain ritual at home. And all those things that one did without even thinking. Because as you said, when you spoke about the idiots on this planet, I was definitely one of those in that stage of my life. But sometimes you reach a critical stage where you seek any kind of desperate measure and you try to hold onto any hope. That even something that is advocated to you that goes against your train of intelligence or thought. To those people, what is your advice? Who have reached the end of the rope, and are hanging on, holding on to anything. Be it religion, be it spiritual, or be it an unfounded piece of advice.

3:21 min

Self Pity


When you speak about suffering. Sadhguru, it is definitely something that I believe, that self-pity sometimes is like a luxury spa. It’s somewhere where your comfort lies. Self-pity is, I believe, the most indulgent emotion. And it gets you nowhere, but makes you feel really good for a certain period of time. What is your take on something like self-pity?

8:02 min

Why is there a distance between the father and the son?


Which is what you said, to draw from within. To find your solutions. Because the most exciting line that I read was that, you know, life can’t touch you, can’t scratch you. It can’t harm you. You create your own energy in your own life. You’re in this universe, you’ve been brought into this world and it’s in your control what you do with it. Life has nothing against you. What you achieve and what you do is a result of your own actions, your feelings, the pleasantness that you create within yourself. Which to me was a very moving line because it simplified a very extensive and expansive feeling of anxiety, fear, and all the turbulence that humanity goes through on a daily basis. To me, three pillars of our existence are family, fortune, and farishta, which is what I believe is a result of god, religion, everything else. When we talk about family Sadhguru, there are few things that have always intrigued me. And I seek answers, or rather, validation from a higher energy, such as yourself. It’s like, I’ve always questioned why there’s an organic distance between a father and son. Why there’s always that angst in that relationship. And I’m sure there are many in this house that have experienced that emotion in their own homes and their own environment. Where do you think the origin of that distance came?

8:33 min

Why do we direct our negative emotions towards our loved ones?


The people you love the most, you kind of tend to dump all your anxieties, your anger, your fears, your insecurities, all onto that one source that gives you the maximum love and the one that you love the most. Why is it that we, as a human race, tend to do that? Tend to lumber all our negative emotions on our most positive light source.

15:43 min

How to deal with mental health issues?


What I believe surrounds us all is urban angst. That seems to be the terminology that comes out of mental health solutions, etc. And that seems to be trampened in many parts of the world now, including now slowly penetrating in India. When people deal with mental health issues like depression and anxiety. And those kinds of people seek certain chemical imbalance issues that are told to them. I really want to know, it’s such an order of the day today, I feel like it’s talked about like it’s a fashionable issue. But I think it’s a very serious issue when people talk about mental health issues like depression and anxiety and seek counselling to sort those issues out. And then the diagnosis at times is chemical imbalance and medication is given. I know you hate the word philosophy, but all your teachings are definitely about finding yourself and seeking that pleasantness from within. But to those who are not strong enough to achieve that and seek this assistance, what is your take on that?

7:05 min

Ego or self-respect?


What has always, Sadhguru, has also left me in wonderment at times, about the usage of two words, which I’m going to say to you right now. Terminology sometimes has a tendency of making you even receive an emotion from within. Two words being, ego and self-respect. Now these are two pillars of, what we believe, self-confidence. Which is unfounded, I believe. We always say, my belief has always been, maintain your self-respect. Keep that, your ego can be flexible because it should be convenient. Because I believe that your ego should be a function of your convenience. How true is that? Or maybe both are unfounded?

12:43 min

Is there a limit to love?


Is there a ceiling to extremity? To extreme emotion. Like, love. When you love something. Is there a time you have to stop? Is there any such thing as stopping the extent of your extreme emotion? And I feel that about even the negative emotions. When you love someone, how do you really stop?

4:56 min

Should we have low expectations from everything?


Well that brings me to I think, I believe the mother of a virus that plagues a large part of humanity, is expectation. I have a simple theory that I try to expect less because then I feel that I’ll be disappointed less. And I feel that to curtail your expectations is possibly the toughest thing to do because we constantly expect. From relationships, from the work we do, from high energies.

7:12 min

Is there an end to need?


Fundamentally, there is always a need. A need for so many things, even when you’re in your professional process. Or where you garner wealth, or income. And you keep going. There’s a need to constantly get more than what you have. There’s no satisfaction and a place to stop. Is there an end to need? 

19:22 min

Rapid fire with Karan Johar


  1. What is the one thing that is essential to living a balanced life?
  2. What is the one thing we must absolutely do away with in order to lead a balanced life?
  3. First thing that comes to your mind when I say the following. The first thing. Organized religion.
  4. Marriage.
  5. Competition.
  6. Money.
  7. Love.
  8. If you could ask one person, alive or dead, one question. Who would you ask and what would that be?
  9. Best advice you have ever received.
  10. In an imaginary, completely hypothetical situation, if you had a day off with no commitments, no responsibilities, what would you spend the day doing?
  11. What is one thing you’d like people to remember about you at the end of your life?
  12. If you found a way to travel through time, where would you go?
  13. What is the first thing you notice when you meet a person? 
  14. Is it more important to do what you love or love what you’re doing?
  15. If you could be invisible for a day, what would you do?
  16. With due respect, what is your biggest weakness?
  17. One thing the world doesn’t know about you.
  18. And the one thing you wish you could change about yourself.
  19. The one thing you wish you could change about the world. 
  20. What would you consider to be your greatest achievement?
  21. Is there a song you love and can listen to all the time?
  22. I know you haven’t seen any of my films, but do you have a favourite film?
  23. Something you enjoy doing and wish you had more time for?
  24. Lastly, in a biopic made on you, who would play you?

13:01 min

How to raise your child?


It’s integral for me to share that the last week that I spent reading about you and hearing everything that you had to say. So many people questioned you, including Juhi who’s in the house. It’s been exhilarating, it’s been enlightening. More than anything else, I think it gave me a certain sense of understanding about where I am. Being at a crossroad of my life, emotionally, and also now as a new-found parent. I read some of what you had to say about even parenting. To me it was extremely enlightening to read that not to nurture the do’s and don’ts so strongly on your child. We all have theories of parenting. But I think just what I imbibed from what you had to say is, if I’m strong-willed and I exude a certain amount of pleasantness and I give out the right amount of energy, my children will emulate that, imbibe that. And I don’t have to constantly force feed that knowledge on them. They will imbibe it from my energy source anyways. That is what I drew. Am I right?

4:05 min

Where do I learn disciplined yoga that will help me achieve my goals?


So my question is, I would like to space dive. It’s basically going all the way up to space and diving from there. And the thing is, I’ve knocked on a 100 doors only to be turned down every single time. Even ISRO turned me down saying they don’t have enough funds. Space dive is important because India has gone leaps and bounds forward in space technology. But in human space technology, it’s way back. My question to you, Sadhguru, is my biggest weakness is I like to live in danger. My question to you, Sadhguru, is where do I find an organization that will help me with the disciplined yoga and meditation that will help me with this? And, where do I find a person, most preferably a movie director, who will fund this project. Understand the importance of this project. That India needs a human space program. Fund it and make a movie out of it, which has less drama, less songs, and more of how a person struggles to get a mission accomplished.

3:43 min

Karan, what inspired you to do this session with Sadhguru?


When I told my teenage daughter about this program, her immediate reaction was an excited wow. She’s here with me and this program is everything we thought it would be. Question for you Karan, what exactly inspired you to do this session with Sadhguru?

4:31 min

Can I please get a hug from you Sadhguru?


There are two questions. If the first one is answered, I don’t need the second one’s answer. It is a request. Can I please get a hug from you Sadhguru?

5:37 min

Working for joy or working for others?


My question is that when we cook, if we have to get joy, joy of cooking, then that joy is something which is internal. And I cook for my joy. But when you’re cooking for others, then you want to give them joy. And at times there’s a conflict. Who should win?

6:17 min

Does reincarnation happen?


I’d like to ask you a question because you’re a mystic. Even otherwise, please don’t say I don’t care because many people out here, I’m sure, don’t. My question is what do you think of reincarnation? Do you believe in it? And if so, can you elaborate on the subject and let us know what you were in your last birth?

3:51 min

What is the solution to life?


I’m stuck here and I want you to please guide me. Tell me in a child’s language, what is the answer and what is the solution. I don’t want to give importance to my own thoughts and emotions, tell me how. Just make me understand.

1:28 min

What is the greatest change I can bring to my life?


My question is, what can be the greatest change one can bring to our life? To make it more blissful in this birth.

3:51 min

How to not get attached?


So my question is, I get very attached easily. And now I feel I’m very attached to my responsibilities. So how do I break this bondage? And if I really want to do something for myself, not for anybody, just feel the joy that I’ve been listening to you. If I want to really, really feel that joy, how do I break the bondage of responsibilities and move ahead? And how do I overcome my attachments?

11:00 min

Sadhguru, when will you tell the world about yourself?


Sadhguru, you just mentioned that the world does not know anything about you. And that remains a fact. Even then, anybody from the world who comes in little contact with you can be so benefitted. So, when would you reveal? Or my question is, what does it take to become an Arjuna for the yogi of the highest order of our times. Our Krishna, for you to reveal.