Category Archives: Sadhguru

SADHGURU 2016: A LEGENDARY YOGI

Reference: Inner Engineering (Content)

This paper presents the summary of Part two, chapter 2.7.1 from the book, INNER ENGINEERING By Sadhguru. The contents are from the first edition (2016) of this book published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York.

The summary of the original material (in black) is accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.

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A LEGENDARY YOGI

“Raghavendra Rao, the yoga teacher I met as a boy, led a life that would be considered superhuman by conventional standards. He was known as Malladihalli Swami because he hailed from the village of Malladihalli, which is in the southwestern Indian state of Karnataka. He was known to do 1,008 surya namaskars a day. Later, after he was ninety years of age, he brought the number down to 108 (not because he wasn’t capable, but because there was no time). That was his spiritual practice. In addition to being a yoga master, he was a wonderful Ayurvedic doctor. He was one of the few nadi vaidyas—traditional physicians who diagnose your ailment by feeling your pulse. He would not only tell you what disease you had today, but could predict what ailment was likely to afflict you in the next ten to fifteen years, and would teach the requisite remedial practices. One day in a week, he would be available in his ashram as an Ayurvedic doctor. Wherever he was, he would travel back to the ashram on Sunday evening to be there on Monday morning. If he sat down at four o’clock in the morning, he was there right through the day till seven or eight o’clock in the evening. Volunteers would come in shifts to help him, but he himself sat through the whole day. For every patient who came, he had a joke to tell. People would forget they had come for treatment. It was less like a doctor-patient interaction and more of a festival!

“This happened when he was about eighty-three years of age: One Sunday, late at night, he was at a railway station about forty-six miles from his ashram. He was with two companions, and they discovered that there was a railway strike. This meant no trains and no other means of transport. His commitment to his work was such that he left his two companions on the platform and just ran forty-six miles overnight on the railway tracks! At four o’clock in the morning he was at the ashram, ready to treat his patients. People at the ashram did not even realize that he had come running. Only when his other two friends reached there did they tell the others what Swamiji had done! That is how incredibly he lived. He lived up to the age of a hundred and six and taught yoga until his dying day.”

The above is the original text (as denoted by quotation marks) from the book. It narrates a wonderful story about Sadhguru’s boyhood Yoga Teacher. It highlights the dedication of that Yoga teacher to keep his schedule as an Ayurvedic doctor one day a week despite all his other work. On one occasion, the circumstances were such that he had to run forty-six miles overnight to keep his schedule the next morning. He did that at about eighty-three years of age.

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SADHGURU 2016: In Sync with the Sun

Reference: Inner Engineering (Content)

This paper presents the summary of Part two, chapter 2.7 from the book, INNER ENGINEERING By Sadhguru. The contents are from the first edition (2016) of this book published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York.

The summary of the original material (in black) is accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.

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In Sync with the Sun

The surya namaskar is a familiar sequence of yoga postures. It is neither just a physical exercise nor sun worship. Its objective is to organize the solar energies within you. The bodily cycles come in sync with the sun’s cycles. This produces an innate physical and psychological equilibrium that can be an enormous asset in one’s daily life. 

The word “cyclical” denotes repetition. Anything that is physical, from the atomic to the cosmic, is cyclical.  Between the menstrual cycle, which is the shortest cycle (a twenty-eight-day cycle), and the cycle of the sun, which is over twelve years, there are many other kinds of cycles. Yogic practice is always aimed at enabling you to ride the cycle, so you have the right kind of foundation for consciousness. The physical body is a fantastic stepping-stone for higher possibilities.

Samsar (संसार) is the repetitive nature of cyclical movements in this world. Being rooted in cyclical nature gives a certain firmness and steadiness to life. But once life has reached the level of evolution, it aspires to transcendence. It is left to individual human beings either to remain trapped in the cyclical, or to use these cycles to go beyond the cyclical entirely. Surya namaskar is an important tool that empowers human beings to break free from the compulsive patterns of their lives. 

Surya namaskar is an important tool that empowers human beings to break free from the compulsive patterns of their lives. 

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SADHGURU 2016: Sadhana (2-2:6:1)

Reference: Inner Engineering (Content)

This paper presents the summary of Part two, chapter 2.6.1 from the book, INNER ENGINEERING By Sadhguru. The contents are from the first edition (2016) of this book published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York.

The summary of the original material (in black) is accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.

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Sadhana

“The body responds the moment it is in touch with the earth. That is why spiritual people in India walked barefoot and always sat on the ground in a posture that allowed for maximum area of contact with the earth. In this way, the body is given a strong experiential reminder that it is just a part of this earth. Never is the body allowed to forget its origins. When it is allowed to forget, it often starts making fanciful demands; when it is constantly reminded, it knows its place. This contact with the earth is a vital reconnection of the body with its physical source. This restores stability to the system and enhances the human capacity for rejuvenation greatly. This explains why there are so many people who claim that their lives have been magically transformed just by taking up a simple outdoor activity like gardening.

“Today, the many artificial ways in which we distance ourselves from the earth—in the form of pavements and multistoried structures, or even the widespread trend of wearing high heels—involves an alienation of the part from the whole and suffocates the fundamental life process. This alienation manifests in large-scale autoimmune disorders and chronic allergic conditions.

“If you tend to fall sick very easily, you could just try sleeping on the floor (or with minimal organic separation between yourself and the floor). You will see it will make a big difference. Also, try sitting closer to the ground. Additionally, if you can find a tree that looks lively to you, in terms of an abundance of fresh leaves or flowers, go spend some time around it. If possible, have your breakfast or lunch under that tree. As you sit under the tree, remind yourself: “This very earth is my body. I take this body from the earth and give it back to the earth. I consciously ask Mother Earth now to sustain me, hold me, keep me well.” You will find your body’s ability to recover is greatly enhanced.

“Or if you have turned all your trees into furniture, collect some fresh soil and cover your feet and hands with it. Stay that way for twenty to thirty minutes. This could help your recovery significantly.”

The contact with the earth is a vital reconnection of the body with its physical source. This restores stability to the system and enhances the human capacity for rejuvenation greatly. That is why spiritual people in India walked barefoot and always sat on the ground in a posture that allowed for maximum area of contact with the earth.

DRILL: If you tend to fall sick very easily, try sleeping with minimal separation between yourself and the floor. Also, try sitting closer to the ground. You will see it will make a big difference. 

DRILL: Go spend some time around a tree that looks lively to you, in terms of an abundance of fresh leaves or flowers. If possible, have your breakfast or lunch under that tree.

DRILL: When you sit under a tree, remind yourself: “This very earth is my body. I take this body from the earth and give it back to the earth. I consciously ask Mother Earth now to sustain me, hold me, keep me well.”

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SADHGURU 2016: Morsel of the Earth

Reference: Inner Engineering (Content)

This paper presents the summary of Part two, chapter 2.6 from the book, INNER ENGINEERING By Sadhguru. The contents are from the first edition (2016) of this book published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York.

The summary of the original material (in black) is accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.

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Morsel of the Earth

The physical body is just a fragment of this planet. Whatever happens to the planet happens to the body too. Therefore, the body is influenced by other planets in the solar system, and by the universe itself. It may just happen to be beyond most people’s perception.

The fact that we view the ingredients which constitute our body, like earth, water, air, and food, as commodities, is a fundamental mistake. The truth is that our body Is an organic part of the life process. If it is to rain today, some change will happen in the body. Simply by observing a completely different level of the human system and its ongoing transaction with the planet, the air, and everything around, you can predict the impending rain even if the sky, at the moment, is clear. 

At the magnetic equator there is no pull toward north or south; and this promotes a certain balance and equanimity in the life of the spiritual seeker. This equanimity can be a powerful device to liberate oneself quite literally from the limitations of the physical world. A few thousand years ago, yogis pinpointed the exact location of the magnetic equator and built a whole string of temples along this area for those who sought ultimate spiritual union.

This kind of spiritual system makes use of natural phenomena to support human efforts at spiritual growth. You can go slowly, step-by-step, accepting all natural assistance available to you. The other alternative, of course, is to withdraw from external life situations, and focus solely on the inner journey.

Another path in yoga is to make use of natural phenomena, such as the magnetic equator, to support human efforts at spiritual growth.

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SADHGURU 2016: INTENSITY OF INACTIVITY

Reference: Inner Engineering (Content)

This paper presents the summary of Part two, chapter 2.5.2 from the book, INNER ENGINEERING By Sadhguru. The contents are from the first edition (2016) of this book published in the United States by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York.

The summary of the original material (in black) is accompanied by brief comments (in color) based on the present understanding.

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INTENSITY OF INACTIVITY

If you want to know effortlessness, you need to know effort. When you reach the peak of effort, you become effortless. Only a person who knows what it is to work understands rest. When someone is constantly giving a hundred percent, a point comes when one surpasses all limits and reaches total effortlessness. Effortlessness means transcending the need for physical action.

Zen actually involves tremendous activity because it is not divorced from life in any way. In performing activity, such as arrange pebbles in a Zen garden, you reach a state of non-doing, where you transcend the experience of being a doer. It is in such states that you have a taste of the beyond. 

In yoga, you arrive at the same state through the intensity of inactivity of a yogic posture, and it is a state that can be sustained longer. Meditation is a natural consequence of the intensity that has been achieved. It is the intensity of simply being. It is in these absolutely non-compulsive states of existence that the necessary atmosphere is set for the blossoming of an individual into a cosmic possibility.

Meditation is not an act, but a natural consequence of the “intensity of being” that has been achieved—your humanity simply overflows.

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