How to achieve Success?

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Success tips: 1 - Don't commit to a plan, evolve your plans as situations change. Tip 2 - Don't let your passions poison you. Top 3 - Every cell in your body is doing more than your intellect. Everyone can learn to access this intelligence.


Duration: 14 min


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10 min read

How to achieve Success?

The following is an unedited transcript of Sadhguru's video. For better readability, breaks and highlights have been added by the editors.

Small things or big things, it doesn’t matter. In every single act, a human being longs to be successful. Life is an infinite number of doorways. If you are very diligent, you will open a few of them. If you’re brilliant, you will open many of them. But if you’re truly vibrant, then they will open for you.

The process of being successful becomes so complex for people, that why they’re working towards it is generally completely forgotten and they will start evolving concepts of success, all kinds of concepts – ‘What is being successful?’ Can I tell you a joke? You’re looking so serious.

There was a man in India, whose name is Shankaran Pillai. Okay? It’s like John Smith. His son came to United States. Obviously, an Indian young man means he is a software engineer. He went to Texas, Houston, and started working there. Then he fell in love with a white American woman. He struggled because back home this love affair is a crime. He struggled and struggled, then one day told his mother, then the mother informed the father and the father exploded. He went back home to convince him, didn’t work, because in India if you have to get married, they’re tracing your family tree for five thousand years. They are looking at the genetic purity of the person that you’re marrying.

So, “Somebody from somewhere else, a white woman from America, how can you marry her? What do we know about her genetics? Where does she come from? What is her lineage?” So, no way to convince, he came back, and of course, when he came back, again he fell in love and they went ahead. Then the father disowned Shankaran Pillai, just disowned his son, “I have nothing to do with you.” But, years went by and they had a boy, and the boy’s picture from the day he was born, it was on the Facebook, and the wife sticks it in his face, and the little baby and it is growing up every day, and all the things. Slowly, you know, you have disowned the son, but the grandson is a different matter.

Slowly, within a matter of one, two years he completely fell in love with this little baby that he has not seen. Things happened and people started coming from America, those who’re traveling “Oh, you must see your grandson, you have not seen him? Oh! You must see him, this is the fruit of your life.” Slowly it caught him. Then he decided, he is not going to see his son’s face, he’ll come to America and only see the grandson’s face. Of course he is not going to look at that white woman.

Then he came to America and a seven-year-old boy, full of energy. They’re living on a small ranch. He is all over the place, doing all kinds of things. He completely got washed away by this little fellow. Then this little boy one day said, “Grandpa, come, I’ll show you my archery skills.” He took him to the barn inside and he went into the barn and there he saw eight targets, all of them with the arrow in the bull’s eye. Shankaran Pillai looked at it and then he thought “Oh, this is my grandson.” He thought of all the great legendary archers of India, you know, Arjuna and Ekalavya and he saw the future, all the Olympic gold medals falling from the sky.

Then he asked, “From what distance did you shoot?” The boy said, “From twenty yards.” “What? From twenty yards, eight targets, you shot them dead-on bull’s eye? How do you do this?” Then the boy said, “Grandpa, I first shoot and then paint the target.”

These concepts about being successful can be very crippling. And I have continuously been with people, they’ve reached a certain point of success, and their concepts of success – their life is not fitting into their concept of success, and it’s breaking it and they think something is going wrong. It is not going wrong, they’re just getting better. Situations are pushing them on. But their concept is breaking up, so they’re suffering their success. You will see any number of people going through these kind of things.

Plan is just essentially an exaggeration of what is today

When we talk about success, I am sure all of you must be already having plans as to how to unfold this success in your life. Hmm? You made your plans? Plan is good, but plans again can get caught up in things because you plan from what you know today. Nobody can plan from something that you do not know. Your plan means it is an exaggeration of today as a tomorrow. Right now, you are here at a certain level. Now you think, my plan means, this must be ten times more in this many years or whatever or hundred times or million times or whatever.

But plan is just essentially an exaggeration of what is today. Maybe there is a certain logic to it, maybe there is certain understanding of the logistic attached to it, but essentially it’s exaggeration of today. That means, in many ways it’s ruled out whatever other possibilities which are not yet in your experience.

In Pennsylvania, you heard of the Pennsylvania floods? Pennsylvania has floods, you know? It once happened, a big flood came and water started rising in a small town, and it rose up to the, you know, the houses getting submerged. So, two young boys got on to the roof of their house and they were sitting there. And then they saw a hat going up and down and up and down in front of the house. One of the boys asked, “What is that? Why is that hat going up and down?” So the other boy said, “Don’t worry. It’s my dad. Yesterday night, he got into a fight with my mom and took a vow, ‘Hell or high water, I am going to mow that lawn’.

It’s good to have a plan, but it’s more important that you have a purpose

So plans can be debilitating. It’s good to have a plan, but it’s more important that you have a purpose. If you have a purpose, plans will evolve, things will happen, plans will fall apart, new things will come up. Whatever has to happen will happen, if you hold on to a certain purpose. Other things will just serve that purpose. But, if you are very committed to a plan as such, then plan can become a blueprint for restriction. It is also a possibility. It’s all right to hold a plan, but you must hold a plan at a certain distance. You shouldn’t get identified with the plan.

The process of success – see, essentially success is a desire in every human being. You can put some fire into it and make it your passion. But if it becomes a need within you that you must be successful, otherwise you will suffer, then you’re heading for a problem, a serious problem. Our passions can turn into poison, if we start becoming resentful for the non-fulfilment of those passions. When I say turning into poison, today there’s substantial medical and scientific evidence to show that if you become resentful, when you resent something, when you’re angry with something, when you’re frustrated with something, we can medically today check – we can do a little bit of blood work and show you, you’re actually putting poison into your system.

These are poisons that you drink and you hope somebody else will die. Life does not work like that. If you drink poison, you die and it’s fair. It is very fair, isn’t it? If you drink poison, you must die. “I drink poison, I want him to die,” it doesn’t work like that.

So, these emotions always take away the fundamental ability – see, there is something called as a genius in a human being. Every human being has it, every human being touches it at some moment of life. But the question is, how often do you touch it? – that’s the question. You sparked once in your lifetime, that’s not good enough. You must be sparking all the time, isn’t it?

What is genius? There’re many ways to look at it. One simplest way to look at it is – when we say intelligence, we are always thinking logical thought. No. Logical thought will be meaningless probably in another twenty-five years, because your computer may be able to explore all the permutations and combinations of logical thought much quicker and better than you can do. So, touching the genius means there’s another dimension of intelligence within you.

What did you have for breakfast? [asking a participant]

Participant: Chicken and salad.

Sadhguru: See, he ate a chicken. Over the afternoon, this chicken has transformed itself into a human being. If you ask Charles Darwin, how long does it take for a chicken to become a human being, he would talk in terms of millions of years. Here he is, over the afternoon, he transforms a chicken into a human being. So, there is an intelligence here [within], there is a competence here [within], which is capable of what nature did over a million years, like that, over the afternoon. Only thing is this is an unconscious state of intelligence.

Whatever is unconscious, if the necessary striving is there, you can make it into a conscious process. In your conscious process, if this intelligence, even a drop of this intelligence is available to you, suddenly life will spark like it’s a magic. What everybody slogs for, you can just simply do it.

Now when I say intelligence, always people will think this [brain]. If you say intelligence and ask them to show in sign language, they’ll always say this [brain], isn’t it? They’ll not say this [finger] or this [palm]. But one cell in your body is doing more activity than your brain could ever do. One molecule of DNA is doing so many millions of functions in a minute that you can never ever figure it out. Yes or no?

So in Yoga, in the Yogic systems, in the Yogic sciences, we never look at anything as mind, there’s no such thing as mind. There is a physical body and there is a mental body. So you learn to think through your body. You know it’s a short session. It’s not area that we should enter right now, but I have to tell you this. There’re many things personally that I do at the same time. Now people come and tell me… just now, I am entering this session, somebody comes and tells me, “Sadhguru, this building plans have to happen” because we do everything ourselves. Now by the time I get out, I’ll have the building plan ready as I’m speaking here because twelve to fourteen channels actively keep going on in my head. It is not just in the head, you learn to think through your body. Learning to think through your body will never give you a headache, that’s the best part of it.

Now all these responsibilities and thousand things happening at the same time, won’t you get stressed? There is no such thing, because you use a deeper dimension of yourself and everybody is capable of this, and everybody has it. You may not have the same level of intellect as somebody else has. That is always subject to person to person. But all if you eat a carrot, you can digest it – that means you have another dimension of intelligence, yes? If you set up the necessary situation that everything that’s there within the system is available for you, success is an assured thing for that person.


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