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Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev a

Shanmugam P
Table of Contents
1. Who is Sadhguru?
2. My Review of Sadhguru
3.Source of Sadhguru's knowledge
4.Did anyone get enlightened through Isha Foundation?
5.Sadhguru and his pseudoscientifc claims
6.Sadhguru criticized by Nirmukta
7.Sadhguru vs Javed Akhter
8.About Adiyogi
9.Sadhguru doesn't want to say 'I don't know"

I dont think that labeling any person with just one word is appropriate.
Because any human being acts in different ways in his entire lifetime, sometimes
he is a saint, sometimes he is just a regular guy and sometimes he is a conman
I think the best question to ask would be Is he enlightened?. Because he
claims that he is enlightened and he is also offering his programs to help people
towards their own enlightenment.
And here is my answer:
There is no way to find out But I can raise certain questions about it which
will make people to doubt his enlightenment. Because, even though there is no
foolproof way to test someone's enlightenment, there are many things that I have
seen over the last 13 years which made me to think "probably he is not
enlightened. He probably just went through a couple of spiritual experiences,
read a lot of books and made the whole thing into a business."
I have done two programs in Isha and have gone to ashram many times
I myself have defended Sadhguru and have fought with my own family many
times I was ready to contribute anything for Isha.. I bought both linga bhairavi
gudi and dhyanalinga yantra.. Only recently many things have raised question
marks about him (For example, in an interview in news 18, Sadhguru was
frustrated with interviewer for calling him Jaggi, and asked the interviewer to
call him sadhguru)..
The objections which are usually raised when people say such things:

1. Usually people will say just try the program and see if it works
for you.. This is tricky, because the programs will work and offer
you a lot of beneifits. The programs are based on techniques
which are available already. Om chanting has been prescribed in
Upanishads.. Shamabhavi is nothing but the three bandhas,
pranayama, shambhavi technique in vigyan bharav tantra etc
And some advanced programmes resemble dynamic meditations
of Osho and Vipassana So, the programs will work and there
are lot of people who teach such techniques all over the world.
You really dont have to be enlightened to teach that.
2. If the programs are working, then why judge? You cant find out
if someone is enlightened by their behavior. Yes, I agree.. But
then where do we draw the line? Does it mean that we have to
accept everyone who claims he is enlightened?

Sadhguru is talented. He is a skillful person with good oratory skills. He has

also done a lot of good things for people. So, certainly, people will easily get
impressed and get emotionally attached to him. So, my answer is not to label
him as fraud, conman or anything negative. My answer is only to address this
question is he enlightened?.
This is very important to address. Because I spent Rs.11,000 on dhyanalinga
yantra and rs.22,000 for linga bhairavi gudi only based on my faith on sadhguru.
I am sure many people have such faith. This faith allows them to do whatever
they can for Isha, sometimes even to the extent of taking brahmacharya. Of
course, there is no compulsion and it is not easy to get brahmacharya from Isha.
But when someone takes brahmacharya, his entire decision is based on the belief
that Sadhguru is enlightened and somehow being in the presence will help them
for their own enlightenment.
This book is a compilation of various answers that I wrote in Quora and some
posts that I wrote in my blog. Most of the answers received good responses from
people. You can stay up to date with my articles through my
blog: http://nellaishanmugam.wordpress.com

- Shanmugam P
1. Who is Sadhguru?

Let us first look into the meaning of the word Sadhguru before we talk about
the actual man who calls himself Sadhguru.
Meaning of the word 'Sadhguru'
Sadhguru (usually written as satguru in English) means a true guru. The
word Sat means truth and Sadhguru literally means a real guru or true guru.
I will tell you what other mystics have said about a satguru.
The first person who used the word Satguru was Kabir. He describes the
nature of Sadhguru in his song:

He is the real Sadhu, who can reveal the form of the Formless to the
vision of these eyes;
Who teaches the simple way of attaining Him, that is other than rites
or ceremonies;
Who does not make you close the doors, and hold the breath, and
renounce the world;
Who makes you perceive the Supreme Spirit wherever the mind attaches
Who teaches you to be still in the midst of all your activities.
Ever immersed in bliss, having no fear in his mind, he keeps the spirit of
union in the midst of all enjoyments.
The infinite dwelling of the Infinite Being is everywhere: in earth, water,
sky, and air;
Firm as the thunderbolt, the seat of the seeker is established above the void.
He who is within is without: I see Him and none else

Songs of Kabir LVI, I. 68 - Translated by Rabindranath

Tagore New York, The Macmillan Company (1915)

Ramana Maharshi many times insisted that the real guru is within.
He says the following:

The master is within; meditation is meant to remove the ignorant idea

that he is only outside. If he is a stranger whom you await, he is bound to
disappear also. What is the use of a transient being like that? But so long as
you think you are separate or that you are the body, an external master is
also necessary and he will appear to have a body. When the wrong
identification of oneself with the body ceases, the master will be found to
be none other than the Self.

When Osho talked about real and pseudo masters, he many times talked about
how to identify a sadhguru. And he said, anyone who calls himself as guru is
not a true guru:

Ego should not exist in any state of the medium in relationship to you.
So the real guru is one who does not become a guru.
The definition of a sadguru, a perfect master is one who does not
become a guru. This means that all who call themselves guru do not
have the qualification to be a guru.
There is no greater disqualification than a claim of guru-ship: that shows
the presence of ego in such a person, and that is dangerous.

In Search of Miraculous

Here are a few other quotes of Osho that describes a satguru and distinguishes
from a false guru:

SATGURU means the real Master. ASATGURU means the pseudo-

THE SIMPLE WAY -- not complex methods, not yoga postures, not
very complicated rituals. He teaches simple ways, very simple, that
anybody who wants to do it can do it right now. His ways are so simple
and spontaneous that you will be surprised why you did not discover them
yourself. They are so simple! Once the Master has taught you, once you
have known the beauty of them, once you have tasted a little, you will be
simply surprised why you could not discover them -- they are so simple.
The real Master is not technical, he is simple -- because there is no
technique to achieve God. God is not somewhere at the end of a technique,
no. God is already available to you. You are in God;you just have to shake
yourself a little so that you can become a little more alert. Just a little more
alertness, that's all.

The Divine melody, Chapter 1

You usually find crowds around the pseudo-guru. Whenever you see
such a crowd, beware! For a crowd is always of deluded people. You will
find very few people in the right place, near a sadguru. And they are
extremely hard to find. You will find only a selected few whose aim is to
attain God. A crowd is always made up of desire-ridden people.

The True Name, Vol 2, Chapter 6

The business of God is just such a business of selling invisible

hairpins. Since nothing is visible it is paradise for cheats; that is why we
find that the more religions a country has, the greater the hypocrisy
prevailing in it.
Our country is proof of this. You will not find more hypocrisy or more
humbug anywhere else in the world. Nowhere else in the world has
religion been studied as in India. This led to so many sadgurus in this
country, but each sadguru led to ninety-nine pseudo-gurus. You get so tired
of all the deceit and fraud, the tyranny and chaos, you come to feel that this
whole business of God is one big swindle, a racket. Best to keep away
from it all!
Nanak says false people spread false tales and tall stories. And as
your faith in them gets stronger, the stories get taller still.

The True Name, Vol 2

Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev

Image Source: Attain Golf Enlightenment: Meet The Real Guru Of Golf -
Golf Digest
Now, I will talk about Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev (the man who insisted that
he should be addressed as Sadhguru and not as Jaggi in a Tamil Interview
in News 18 channel)
Wikipedia describes him as follows:

Jaggi Vasudev (born 3 September 1957), commonly known as Sadhguru,

is an Indian yogi, poet and mystic.He founded the Isha Foundation, a non-
profit organization which offers Yoga programs around the world and is
involved in social outreach,education and environmental initiatives
He was conferred the Padma Vibhushan award by the Government of
India on 13 April 2017 in recognition of his contribution towards

He is a very influential person in India. An excellent orator and a multi-

talented person. He offers many levels of programs collectively called Isha Yoga.
He is well known for giving scientific explanations for ancient rituals and
ceremonies.(Those scientific explanations are not really scientific yet. There is
no evidence so far in science for his claims) He always has a thousands of
people gathered around him during his talks.
His Inner Engineering program offers the following benefits (according to
Isha website):


Optimize health and vitality

Reduce stress
Promote mental clarity and emotional balance
Increase and maintain high energy levels throughout the day
Reduce sleep & rest quota
Prevent chronic diseases like asthma, allergies, sinusitis,
hypertension, diabetes, obesity, rheumatism, arthritis,
epilepsy, back pain, skin and eye ailments, migraine

Increase ability to handle stressful situations
Enhance focus, concentration & memory
Raise productivity and efficiency
Improve communication & inter-human relationships
Maintain optimum levels of performance throughout the day


Establish a positive & open approach towards life

Evaluate personal values and life goals
Generate inner peace and fulfillment
Transcend limitations and fears
Live & experience each moment to the fullest

By the way, Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev himself gives his own meaning for the
word Sadhguru. He says that the word literally means 'uneducated guru'.
2. My Review of Sadhguru

I first saw him in 2004, in a satsang at marina beach, Chennai. I was pulled to
attend the satsang after seeing several banners with his photo and a title
in various places in Chennai.
The reason for my attraction towards him was this:
I had been reading books of Osho already. My life was a complete mess and I
was at the verge of committing suicide before I started reading Osho. But after I
was introduced to his books, I understood that liberation from my suffering was
possible and it opened a new door to me.
When I was in need of an alive enlightened master to guide me, there he
was, with a big beard like Osho and claiming to be enlightened.
What happened in the next 10 years was a trek from the valley of insanity to
the peak of sanity, peace and consciousness. I dont want to go into all that now,
you can read the complete story here: The Journey of a Seeker My Story
Let me start with a quote from Osho and a quote from Sadhguru:

I have not told you to believe it; I have not told you to disbelieve it. It is
my experience, I am sharing it with you. You don't have to believe it, you
don't have to disbelieve it. You have to inquire into it. You have to go to the
same depths, to the same heights from where I am speaking, to the same
center of your being. Then you will understand it, not believe it. You will
know it. Existence needs you, otherwise you wouldn't be here.
- Osho, I Celebrate Myself: God Is No Where, Life Is Now Here -
Chapter 4
The only option is that you have to believe or disbelieve what I say. If
you believe me, it does not get you anywhere anyway. If you disbelieve
me, still it does not get you anywhere.
If you believe me, you will fool yourself because without really
knowing, you will simply pretend to know. If you disbelieve me, you will
destroy the possibility to know something that is not in your experience.
Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev

This is exactly what appeals to people, and this is exactly what I liked about
Osho. After hearing Sadhguru echoing Oshos message, I became pretty
convinced that I found a living guru.
While I used the word guru for respect, I actually treat both Sadhguru and
Osho as my friends.

I have been saying that I am your friend, and you are my friend for a
very strange reason that may not be obvious to you
- Osho - Beyond Psychology
So, yes, we are friends. As friends, we have disagreements too.

Here is a quick overview of Sadhguru:

He is a talented man, a great orator and he has a lot of passion about life.
His humor sense is something that I always admire. He is creative,
intelligent and he has a passion for business and architecture. He has been
an inspiration and reminder for me for my own spiritual path.
Whenever I used to go home from Isha Yoga Ashram after my weekend
visits, I used to see this big board on the left side that says, A Silent
Revolution of Self Realization. I like this idea because that is exactly
what was happening inside me. :). And he was inspiring this silent
revolution inside me with his talks.
He is a great driver. He is extremely good at driving a bullock cart, a
bike, a car and a helicopter!
He likes India a lot. I can say this for sure And he also likes Lord
Shiva. He is also culturally biased in his thinking because of his love
towards India.
He loves to trek, travel, talk and play outdoor games. He likes to meet
people. He loves Osho, he will probably reveal it one day.

About Isha
It is time to talk about Isha, the foundation he has started. Reviewing this
place is like reviewing him. Isha foundation, near Coimbatore is one of the
beautiful and peaceful places that I have ever visited. Whenever I go there,
I at least spend half a day there.
Here are some tips for visitors. The best time to visit the ashram is either
in the morning between 7 am - 10 am or in the evening after 4 pm. Make
sure you take a bath at Theerthakund and spend some time there for 2030
minutes. It certainly refreshes your body and mind and makes you ready
for meditation. You will be given some rules before you enter
Theerthakund. Please respect the rules..
I love to sit in the steps (the ones facing Velliangiri mountains) behind
Theerthakund for a 5 to 10 minutes. It offers a wonderful view of
mountains. Once you start walking, you will come across a small bridge
and you can see beautiful gold colored fishes swimming in the water
underneath. Try to be with those fishes and flowers for a few minutes. It is
a wonderful experience..
After witnessing the huge Nandi and passing through the pathway in the
left which is full of trees , you will enter Lingabhairavi temple. It is another
work of art. Sit there for 1520 minutes but dont close your eyes! The
place is the treat for your eyes The experience is unique! Dont miss the
sweet payasam (a sweet Indian drink) which you can buy for Rs.10 outside
the temple.
I used to sit in grass outside the Linga bhairavi temple for few minutes
as well. It is a difference experience.
In a few minutes, you will be stepping inside the dome of Dhyanalinga.
Shush! Dont make noise, clear your throat before you enter so that you
dont disturb the ambience and silence of the place when you are inside.
This place is best experienced in its silence. The lighting of the place and
beautiful Linga will take the thoughts of the external world away for a
while. Here is where you need to sit and close your eyes. (My sons name
is Lingesh by the way. I named him after Dhyanalinga. And I got a
permanent tattoo of Linga in my right shoulder, it is an expression of my
When you are inside the campus, walk slowly. Because, each step and
each sensation is worth the experience!
Isha Yoga centre is available in Google street view for you to
explore: Google Maps . But I guess it was made long back. The place is a
lot different now.
After visiting such a place, how can a poet like me control his urge to
compose a poem? I wrote 10 kural venbas in Tamil when I was immersed
in crazy devotion. It is from my heart, not from my head:



The meaning of the above poem may not sound like what you hear from
Sadhguru, because these lines are the outcome of some old memories that
were formed when I was 8 years old, which got triggered at the
remembrance of Linga Bhairavi. That is why I said that it is not from my
head but from my heart. Yeah, I know that the tone of the poem sounds a
little religious; that is how I was when I was young.
Right now there is a huge Adiyogi statue there. I havent visited the
ashram after its construction. But I know it is mind blowing.
Sounds of Isha
Sounds of Isha, as described in their youtube channel, is Isha's own
home grown, anomalous group of 'musicians
I am a fan of Sounds of Isha. The music that they make is awesome. I
like the songs in He devi and I love the Uyir nokkam song. You can
enjoy all songs from Sounds of Isha here: Sounds of Isha
I love this song so much, listening to it is always an experience:
The above are the things from Sadhguru and his organization which
have deeply touched me. If you ask me whether Sadhguru is enlightened, I
would say I dont know
I have accepted Sadhgurus advice whole heartedly. So I dont and cant
blindly believe in anything, period! I either know or I dont know. There is
no place for any beliefs.
I went through the official draft policy document for Rally for Rivers
(started by Sadhguru) yesterday. It is a 761 page pdf file with detailed
description of action plan to save our rivers. I was pretty impressed. I wish
all the best for its success. You can read it here: Draft Policy
Recommendation - Rally For Rivers
The movement wants you to give a missed call to 80009 80009. If you
havent done that, please do so. Let us hope for the best!
I have also criticized Sadhguru. Before I talk about it, let me say
There is a psychological phenomena which is the root cause of some
issues and the reason why people dont take criticism in a healthy way. It is
called splitting. People always view something or somebody as either all
good or all bad.
When I see other criticisms about Sadhguru online, they usually belong
to two categories:
1) Completely bashing against each and everything Sadhguru does with
a tone of hatred. They cant find even one good thing about this man.
2) Elevating Sadhguru to Gods status, saying that he is infallible and
blindly repeating everything he says without any second thought or
You can see a very good example of splitting in a lot of Indian Movies.
The characters of these movies are either all good or all bad. You cannot
see those characters in real life. I dont believe that there are good men and
bad men. There are just human beings who act in a certain way according
to their nature, nurture and situation. Every human being at times ends up
in doing something that is extremely good and at times does something that
is extremely bad.
My main objective these days is to increase awareness about the fact that
bridging science and spirituality is a possibility. These criticisms about
things that Sadhguru said also serves that purpose. I am doing things
gradually but certainly doing all that I can do. You can read my post
regarding science and spiritual enlightenment here: Is There a Scientific
Evidence for Spiritual Enlightenment?
You may say, No, Sadhguru is enlightened, he cant be wrong in
anyway.. As I said, whether he is enlightened or not, I dont know. But
even enlightened people are fallible.

I am not the pope of the Vatican - I am not infallible. I enjoy

fallibility. And Buddha was not infallible and Jesus was not infallible.
Only these stupid popes, they started claiming to be infallible,
because they wanted to dominate, they wanted to exploit people. I
have no desire to dominate anybody, I have no desire to exploit
anybody. I have no desire at all.Fallibility is natural; infallibility is
unnatural. Even God has committed so many errors!-
Osho, Dhammapada Volume 8

In the upcoming chapters, you will read my criticisms about Sadhguru
Jaggi Vasudev.
Criticism itself is not bad. But taking criticism personally and reacting to
it is not healthy. As Osho said in Satyam Shivam Sundaram,

When I am gone I hope there may be still courageous people in the

world to criticize me, so that I dont become a hindrance on
anybodys path. And those who will criticize me will not be my
enemies; neither am I the enemy of those whom I have criticized.

I am not an enemy of Sadhguru, I am his friend. And, Osho, Sadhguru

and I will be three best friends forever!
3.Source of Sadhguru's knowledge

Somebody asked the following question in Quora:

Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev claims that he has not read any of the scriptures
or vedas and yet he knows everything about them and recites all the
shlokas and mantras written in them. It's not just that he seems to have
knowledge about everything be it life, love, universe, relationships, science
etc. How is it possible?

How is it possible? It is impossible. If you want to recite a mantra, you will

have to learn it somewhere by reading it or hearing from somewhere You
dont get a mantra mysteriously revealed to you just because you are meditating.
(Note: Quora is for sharing knowledge. But sometimes, totally misleading
information are given as answers, out of bias. So, my answer is typically to
refute some of the views presented in the other answers)
Then why do they say that Vedas are revealed to Rishis?
It is just metaphorical. If you compose poems, you will know that it feels like
getting revealed from the inner space, beyond your thoughts Creativity brings
words like a stream of river when composing a poem, as if they are revealed
from a hidden veil behind our mind. I am sure this is the experience of most of
the people, while writing poems.
After going through many Vedic verses, anyone with unbiased mind can
understand that they are anthologies of various poems created by various Rishis
during various times. When we say Vedas came from Brahma, it is just an
eulogy, a poetic figure of speech to praise the Vedas. Of course, we can say that
many Rishis expressed their experience in deep meditation as a poem. But that
doesnt mean that they heard those verses mysteriously and it doesnt mean that
anyone who goes into deep meditation can hear verses from Vedas.
You can find a proof for this in Rig Veda itself:

"As a skilled craftsman makes a car, a singer I, Mighty One! this hymn
for thee have fashioned.If thou, O Agni, God, accept it gladly, may we
obtain thereby the heavenly Waters". Rigveda 5.2.11
The writer of this poem says that just like a skilled craftsman makes a car, I
am making this poem for you.

So, What is the source of Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev knowledge?
Reading and probably some listening.. What else could it be? But I can
certainly say that he didnt read any scriptures directly, and he is quite honest
about it as well. Instead, He has read many books of Osho. Most of what he says
is a direct repetition of Oshos quotes, views, opinions and anecdotes. Even his
word choices are the same.
Osho is totally independent in his choice of words. For example, once he said
that there are only two paths to liberation, Samadhi and Prajna. This is Oshos
own choice of words while expressing the distinction between Shamatha and
Vipasana of Buddhism. In English, it means concentration and insight.
It is true; As far as I have seen, practices in Vedanta, Buddhism and many
other spiritual traditions are either of developing concentration or of developing
insight (inquiry or awareness of moment to moment experiences including
breath, sensations, thoughts etc). But Oshos choice of words here is unique to
Osho. But since Sadhgurus source of information mainly comes from Oshos
books, you can see him repeating the same words in one of his lectures. You can
read it here: Path of Samadhi and Pragna Talks by Sadhguru and Osho (the
whole Samyama program is based on these two practices and some mantra
chanting; the practices are indeed powerful)
Sadhguru has never read Bhagwad Gita directly as he himself says. But
he has certainly read Oshos commentary on Gita. It is a very long one, but
he has at least read a few parts of it. How do I say so? Because, Gita has been
interpreted in various ways. Shankara interprets in one way; Ramanuja in
another way and Madhva does it in a different way. But Sadhgurus
interpretation of certain parts of Gita is exactly the same as how Osho interprets
If you call Sadhguru a philosopher, he would not like it. Why? Is Philosophy a
bad word? No.. The word just means love of wisdom.. Do you think a love for
wisdom is bad?
Sadhguru doesnt like the word philosophy because Osho didnt like it. But
Osho uses the word philosophy to mean how people intellectually try to
understand the non-dual reality and try to make concepts out of it without
realizing it in actual experience.
Philosophy actually has a wider scope in meaning. For example,
epistemology, a field that studies how knowledge is acquired is a subset of
Philosophy, All of our Indian schools of thoughts have epistemology. Sadhguru
keeps saying that you should know the truth by direct experience and not by
believing someone else words. This is epistemology, which is also philosophy(it
is called as pratyaksha paramana). So, whether you use the word philosophy in
its literal meaning or with the wider meaning, there is no reason to say i dont
have a philosophy, dont call me a philosopher unless he has read Oshos talks
and influenced by them.
Sadhgurus comments on Freud are exactly the same as Oshos. Many of his
comments about Psychology and science in general are from Osho. Sadhguru
once said psychologists only studied sick people, they never studied meditators
, which is also a comment made by Osho. But it is wrong. Psychologists have
studied a lot of meditators. William James, one of the earliest psychologists have
studied meditators extensively and wrote a book about religious experiences.
Also, recently in the last 20 years, thousands of psychologists are studying
meditators and have written books about enlightenment. Dalai Lama is working
with American psychologists to help them with their research. The problem is,
Sadhguru probably never updated the information he got from Oshos comments
on Psychology. He is not aware that Psychology as it exists today is a lot
different and advanced than how Psychology was during the time of Osho.
Sadhguru once talked about a rosebud experiment conducted in De la warr
laboratory. You will find articles about the lab and its experiments, but you will
not find the rosebud experiment in any of them. But you can find it in Oshos
Sadhguru talks a lot about emptiness, Shiva and his 112 techniques. Yogic
culture doesnt use any word that literally means emptiness.. This concept of
emptiness comes from Vigyan Bhairav Tantra, a text that was made popular by
Osho. It was in this text 112 techniques are described and emptiness is
mentioned. Osho talks about Shiva a lot in his commentary. Sadhguru, when
talks about Shiva being both good and evil, both light and dark etc, adopts the
same style and views expressed by Osho. (Dont tell me that mystics talk the
same way. Ramana didnt describe Shiva like this, Ramakrishna didnt describe
Shiva like this). It is in this commentary, Osho says that Shiva didnt have any
philosophy, he only had methods Sadhguru took that view to describe himself
I dont have any philosophy, I only give methods
Sadhguru often says dont believe me, dont disbelieve me.. This is often
quoted by many people who love Sadhguru. After all, it is unique and great,
right? Neither Ramana nor Ramakrishna nor Shankara said it this way. But Osho

I have not told you to believe it; I have not told you to disbelieve it.
It is my experience, I am sharing it with you. You don't have to believe it,
you don't have to disbelieve it. You have to inquire into it. You have to go
to the same depths, to the same heights from where I am speaking, to the
same center of your being. Then you will understand it, not believe it. You
will know it. Existence needs you, otherwise you wouldn't be here.-
Osho, I Celebrate Myself: God Is No Where, Life Is Now Here - Chapter

Sadhguru even gave a lecture with a title Sexuality and divine (available in
dvd) similar to Oshos controversial discourse series From Sex to
Superconciousness.. Sadhgurus unique way of interpreting Krishnas life and
his motivation to give a series on Krishna also came from Oshos famous series
Krishna and his philosophy. Look at the examples of mystics that Sadhguru
quotes: J.Krishnamurti, Mansoor , Gurdjieff and Rumi. All of those people who
were commented extensively by Osho. Do you think Sadhguru came to know
about Gurdjieff through mystical vision?
Let me elaborate on another hilarious example. This one is my favorite:

There is an Upanishad called Chandogya upanishad, one of the oldest

upanishad which is famous for the greatest statement in spirituality: Tat
tvam Asi - You are that. It was an instruction given to Svethakethu by his
father. Svethakethu is also mentioned in Brihadaranyaka upanishad and
Kausitaki upanishad.
Hi father asked Svethakethu the following question when he comes back
from Gurukula after learning Vedas:
have you, my dear, ever asked for that instruction by which one hears
what cannot be heard, by which one perceives what cannot be perceived,
by which one knows what cannot be known?
Then he begins to give him a long discourse which you can read
here: Oldest Teaching Of Advaita Excerpt from Chandogya Upanishad
There is also a different guy called Sathyakama mentioned in the same
Upanishad. His name is not mentioned in any other Upanishads. He is sent
by his Guru Gauthama to tend four hundred cows, and come back when
they multiply into a thousand.
As you see, these are two different stories of two different people.
But Osho, when talking about Svethakethu, mixed these two stories as
one and told as the story of
Svethakethu: http://www.osho.com/iosho/library/read-book/online-library-
Osho often mixed names like this. But he has said many times that he
may not be factually correct. He just quotes those stories to make his point.
I never found that as a problem. Because I only focused on the essence
But Sadhguru, when narrating the story of Svethakethu in a podcast,
narrated it exactly the same way as Osho and also made the same mistake.
He also merged Sathyakama and Svethakethus stories into one. Do you
think this is a coincidence?
He also named the podcast as Svethakethu and cows while it was
Sathyakama who actually went to tend the cows. You can listen to it
here: Svetaketu and the Cows
Sadhguru said that he never read any spiritual books and all he knew
about spirituality came to him as a mystical transmission when his guru
touched him with his walking stick. If it was true, he should have got the
right story from Chandogya Upanishad. Instead, how did he get the Oshos
I know there are people who think in a different (and weird) way They
may say Thats probably because both Sadhguru and Osho had a mystical
vision to know that the version in Chandogya upanishad is wrong!
Please dont say that. Commentaries on Chandogya upanishad were written
by many mystics including Adhi Shankara, who was praised by both Osho
and Sadhguru.

Here are a few more examples..

1. Here is an anecdote given by Sadhguru:

When you sit in front of a living Guru, you have many problems,
judgments, likes and dislikes, because invariably you end up looking at his
personality. People have left their Gurus for all kinds of frivolous things.
This happened with J. Krishnamurti, a realized being and very wonderful
man. There was a certain lady who was very close to him and deeply
involved with his work. She was always around him and traveled to many
places with him. Once when he was in Amsterdam, Holland, he went into a
shop to buy a tie for himself. He was so meticulous about choosing a tie,
because he was very conscious about everything and also what he wore.
He could throw the tie away if he wanted to, but when he wears it, he wants
it to be in a certain way. So he went into the shop and spent nearly four
hours picking out one tie. He pulled out every tie in the shop, looked at it,
put it on, and then said, No. It took him four hours to select just one tie.
This woman watched and watched and watched, and as minutes passed, in
her mind his enlightenment receded. She thought a man who could be so
concerned about what kind of tie he wears couldnt be enlightened, and she
left him. Many such stupid things are done because of your judgments.
Source: http://www.dhyanalinga.org/difference_qa.htm
How did Sadhguru came to know about this incidence? There is
absolutely only one way he could have known this. You cannot find this
information anywhere except in Oshos talks. Osho knew this because
the lady herself told Osho about this incident. You can find this
anecdote from the book The Book of Wisdom by Osho.
Here is a link to that excerpt:
2. Sadhguru once told a story that supposedly happened when Aristotle
met Heraclitus. Heraclitus was trying to empty the ocean with a spoon. You
can read the whole story here:
But Aristotle lived between 384322 BC and Heraclitus lived between c.
535 c. 475 BC. There is no way that this meeting took place.. Obviously,
it seems there is some mistake
How did Sadhguru know about this anecdote?
Obviously, you cannot find the story of Aristotle meeting Heraclitus,
except in a book of Osho. The story is from the book Hidden
Harmony Chapter 5, by Osho.
Here is the link: http://www.osho.com/iosho/library/read-book/online-
So, did Osho make up this story? No The story actually happened in
St. Augustines life. Osho simply mismatched the names because memory
doesnt work perfectly all the time. Sadhguru has simply narrated this story
that he read from Oshos book, without realizing that Osho used wrong
names by mistake.
3. In the same link, you can find Sadhguru criticizing the statement I
think, therefore I am made by Rene Descartes.
But as far as I know, the first person who ever criticized this statement in
the context of spiritual enlightenment was Osho. And, Osho actually made
a mistake in interpreting Renes statement.
Just by reading that statement, anyone can misinterpret that as Thought
is the basis of existence, you cannot exist if you dont have thoughts.
But that is not what Rene Descartes intended to say. He said that you can
doubt any belief or concept but you cannot deny your own existence. The
doubt implies that there is a doubter. A doubter has to exist to doubt. If you
dont exist, you cannot doubt, and you cannot think. So, if you think, that
actually means you exist. That is what he meant by saying I think,
therefore I am.
Here is more clear interpretation of the statement that I found in a forum:
I think, therefore I am is a crude mistranslation of Descartess
proposition. It misrepresents the essence of Descartess philosophy because
most philosophers now regard the process of thinking as a kind of invisible
mechanical action (i.e. stimulus-response).
Historians, philosophers and many scientists have repeated this
mistranslated phrase for more than three hundred years. But Descartess
meant something entirely different, as can be seen when cogito ergo sum
is read in context.
The Latin word, cogito can mean I think, I know or I am
aware; ergo always means therefore in any context. However, sum can
mean I am or I exist. To suggest that, I know, therefore I am would
be wrong as its possible to accept wrong knowledge as correct.
If you read Descartess Philosophical Writings in context, it becomes
obvious that he was concerned with awareness rather than with thinking or
knowing and with existence rather than being.
Properly translated, Descartess phrase should therefore read: I am
aware, therefore I exist a subjective rather than a mechanistic
generalization. No machine can be self- or globally aware, no matter how
many sensors are attached to it.
In fact, the philosopher Spinoza translated cogito ergo sum as I am
conscious, therefore I exist. Even thats wrong, although its closer to the
truth than the usual lazy mistranslation which has unfairly earned
Descartess the reputation of being a crude reductionist.
Its true that he stated the obvious: that physiological functions are
pseudo-mechanical. But he also insisted that man was much more than a
machine because of his subjective awareness of the self and of the
How will a teacher find out if a student has copied another student?
If both made the exact same mistake, then one person must have
copied another.
Sadhguru simply used Oshos example without realizing that Osho
himself has interpreted it in the wrong way.
4. Sadhguru once said that seventy percent illness are created by the
Is it a fact? How did he come up with 70%.. Why not 72%? Why not
Because, Osho also said the exact same
thing: http://www.osho.com/read/featured-articles/body-dharma/the-mind-
5. Read the following excerpt from Sadhguru:
So, this isthis whole idea of right and wrong, good and bad is all
human nonsense. Existence is not human centric. They have always told
you many religions of the world have been going about telling people
You are made in Gods own image and once you are in Gods own image
naturally the place that you live They believed this for a long time, isnt it?
Even now they are insisting. Youve heard of this guy Copernicus?
Copernicus was one of the first guys who came and said, Earth is not the
center of the universe; not only not the center of the universe, it is not even
the center of the solar system. And he promptly died. Thats not bad thing;
its a good thing because the next man after him, when he uttered the same
thing the local church decided to skin him alive. They wanted to peal his
skin off and the skin would not cooperate. So, they decided to burn him
alive. The next significant man who has uttered the same thing was
Galileo; he said the same thing. Then they got ready with the skin peelers.
Then he said, No, no, no, no; earth is the center of the universe and the
cosmos. What is my problem? (Laughter) As you say earth is not only the
center of the solar system and not only the center of the universe; it is the
very center of the cosmos. Anyway I do not know what is the center of the
cosmos, you want to assume. I want to save my skin. That much I know.
So, today science has proved to you that definitely earth is not the center
of the solar system, in the universe you are just a miniscule. Tomorrow
morning if you and your planet disappears, if it evaporates nobody is going
to miss it. Hmm? The whole solar system evaporates tomorrow morning it
will be just a small vacant place that nobody is going to miss in the
existence, nothing is going to happen. Yes? God wont come rescuing you.
Itll just pooff it will go. This is a good thing. This whole idea that I am
made in the image of God has left man so crude and he has been walking
upon this planet so wantonly without any concern for any other life on this
planet, simply because he believes he is in the image of God. If you knew
that your life is as significant or as insignificant as that of an ant it is
From http://isha.sadhguru.org/blog/video/are-you-looking-for-solace-
Now read this excerpt from Osho and you will find that the above
excerpt is the exact rephrase of what Osho said. It sounds almost like
Sadhguru had just read this before coming to the discourse:
Human beings have thought of God in human terms. It is natural. We
have said that God created man in His own image. If horses could think
they would deny this: they would say that God created horses in His own
image. Because man has created the philosophy, he has made himself the
Even God must be in our image. He must have created us in His own
image. Mans ego has asserted these things. This is not knowledge, this is
not knowing this is simply an anthropocentric feeling.
Man feels himself to be the center. We have thought that the earth is the
center of the universe and man is the center of creation. These conceptions
are false imaginations, dreams of the human ego. God has not created
anybody in His own image because the whole is His image. The trees, the
earth, the stars; the animals, men, women everything that exists is His
image, not just man.
Then too, we have divided the world into good and evil. The world is
not so divided: good and evil are our evaluations. If man did not exist on
the earth there would be neither good nor bad. Things would exist, things
would be there, but there would be no evaluation. The evaluation is mans:
it is our imposition, it is our projection.
From The Eternal Quest by Osho
6. Both men surprisingly had the same views about nations:
Someday, we must overcome the idea of a nation. Such a silly idea
someone draws a line and that becomes so immensely important. These
boundaries have become meaningful only because there is such inequity in
the world. If there was no inequity, if for example, Mexico and the United
States both had the same level of economic prosperity and wellbeing,
would one side be guarding the borders with guns, barbed wires and all
that, and would the other side be digging tunnels to get here? No. Whoever
wants to go in either direction could do so no one would care. But in our
lifetime, we may not see the abolishment of national borders. Europe has
done reasonably well, but it looks like they are beginning to step back from
the European Union because those who have, do not want to share with
those who do not have.
By Sadhguru From http://isha.sadhguru.org/blog/lifestyle/does-it-
Osho said the same thing:
NATIONS HAVE BECOME out of date but they go on existing and
they are the greatest problem. Looking at the world with a birds eye view,
a strange feeling arises that we have everything just we need one
For example, in Ethiopia people were dying one thousand people per
day and in Europe they were drowning billions of dollars worth of food
in the ocean.
Anybody looking from the outside will think humanity is insane.
Thousands of people are dying and mountains of butter and other foodstuff
is being drowned in the ocean. But Ethiopia is not the concern of the
Western world. Their concern is to save their economies and their status
quo. And to protect their economic structures, they are willing to destroy
food which could have saved the lives of thousands of people.
Problems are worldwide solutions have also to be worldwide.
And my understanding is absolutely clear, that there are things
somewhere where they are not needed, and somewhere else the very life
depends on them. A world government means looking at the whole
situation of this globe and shifting things where they are needed.
It is one humanity. And once we think of one world, then there is only
one economy.

From Hari Om Tat Sat by Osho

7. Here are a couple of comparisons as well:
Sarada giving the knife to vivekananda:
Alexander and immortality:
Osho https://oshostories.wordpress.com/2012/05/09/alexander-and-
Sadhguru http://isha.sadhguru.org/blog/yoga-meditation/history-of-
8. Have you heard about a story told by Sadhguru about Ramakrishnas
obsession over food to keep his body alive? Try as much as you can to find
out the source of the story and you can only find this story in Oshos talks.
I have read in many places Ramakrishna liked certain fruits and sweets.
But the conversation between Sarada and Ramakrishna regarding the
obsession over food and Ramakrishna saying that it is necessary to keep
his body alive seems to be just an imaginary incident created by Osho.
Even if it was true, it is highly unlikely that both Osho and Sadhguru
somehow independently got access to this information which is not found
in any other sources.
I have all three volumes of Gospel of Ramakrishna which is the most
honest account of Ramakrishnas life incidents. When you read the book,
you will feel like watching a movie. Everything that happened was exactly
recorded by the author and there is not even a single place where it is
mentioned that he had an obsession over food and he was often checking
the kitchen to find out what is cooking. But Ramakrishna always used to
ask for a glass of water which was necessary for him to come out of

1. Sadhguru has read or listened to Oshos talks
2. He made the same factual errors that Osho made when quoting
Oshos words
3. But he claims that he knew all this when his guru touched him
with his walking stick.

Osho is that magic walking stick which touched Sadhguru!

I commented on one of the answers in Quora for the same question, written by
a long time follower of Sadhguru and the writer blocked me. I was not abusive
but did sound assertive and suggested him to not to be blind. I didnt expect such
a behavior from a person who is associated with Isha for a long time. Even
Sadhguru advises people to not to be blind and not to talk about something that
is not in your own experience, doesnt he?
Here is an excerpt from Sadhgurus book Enlightenment - An Inside Story

Questioner: What is the difference between mind and atma?

Sadhguru: Oh! (Laughs). Which atma are you talking about? What
atma have you experienced? You know the function of the mind to some
extent, but atma what do you know about it? You are talking about
stories that other people have told you. To put it very bluntly, the
moment you start talking about what is not in your experience, you are
just lying to yourself, is it not? So don't talk about atmas. About mind, we
can see.

Somebody tells you that it is possible to know some objective truth through
meditation. But is it in your experience? If not, then why talk about it? Dont you
want to take Sadhgurus advice. If you really respect Sadhguru, then the best
thing to do is to just do your Sadhana and not talk about something that is not in
your experience.
If telling you this truth bluntly hurt you too much to the extent of blocking me,
then I apologize.
Many people may object to this by saying that enlightened people talk the
same way and talk in the same language. So, let me answer to that objection
There is a difference between some similarities and exact imitations.. Many
people who have read a lot of both Oshos and Sadhgurus work can see that
Sadhguru has indeed read Osho.
Yes, enlightened people speak the same language, but not in the exact same
way.. You and I may speak the same language, but if I do a mimicry of your way
of talking, that is different.
All human beings look alike because they have two eyes, a nose that looks
different from a dogs nose, a neck that is much shorter than a giraffe's neck,
have no tail and have a much sharper intelligence than a crow.. The same way,
all enlightened people say the same thing to a certain extent because they have
tasted the same non-dual reality and they are looking at the world and people in
the perspective of non-dual reality as well.
But, identical twins have extraordinary resemblance with each other. This is
not the same level of similarity that you see in all human beings in general.. The
same way, Oshos talks and Sadhgurus talks (most importantly the oldest talks
of Sadhguru) have the kind of similarity that identical twins have.
4.Did anyone get enlightened through Isha Foundation?

Let me first tell you something that Sadhguru says, which is very important
for you to know:

"If you are not aware of this, for over 90% of the people, the moment of
Enlightenment and the moment of leaving the body are same. Only those
people who know the tricks of the body, who know the mechanics of the
body, who understand the nuts and bolts of the body, can hold on to it.
Of the people who manage to stay back, a majority of them spend the
rest of their lives in silence. Only a very few are stupid enough to try to do
something with people around them because it is so hopeless talking about
another dimension which is not in peoples experience. These people are
trying to be logically sensible, but it is quite a hopeless thing

It is also written in cover of the book Enlightenment - An inside story

And in the same book he also says the following:

Have you noticed in India, most of the Enlightened beings died very
young? Any number of them, by the time they are thirty-two, they are over.
Have you noticed this? Because, retaining the body needs lots of tricks.
Realization is one aspect, but what the science of this body is, is another
aspect. If you do not know the science of the body, if you do not have a
grasp and control over the science of how this life and body are functioning
in tandem, you cannot retain the body.
So you will have to play some tricks to retain the body. Various kinds of
tricks are played by various Masters, but generally, only those who are on
the path of Kriya generally manage their body; others cannot hold on to
their body.
This is the reason why generally, when people attain to a certain peak,
we will not let them reach the ultimate peak; we peg them down there. I
have lots of people around me like this they are just one step behind.
They are in a certain exalted state, they have grown close to it, one more
step means they will leave, but we will always hold them down there, so
that their physical bodies run their full course. They have much more sense
than other people, they are good manure for the world so we want them to
be useful in the world. We want to enslave them and use them for
everybody's wellbeing, otherwise all the beautiful people will leave.
So we don't let them go, climb the final step, until their bodies wear
themselves out through the natural process of living. When they go
beyond a certain age, then we take off the peg then it is up to them.
Until then we fix them down, because if full Enlightenment happens they
will not know how to sustain the body unless they put in an enormous
amount of study. You don't like that? Personally, even I don't like it, but I
have some social responsibilities. (Laughs).

So what do you get from this? In spite of the practitioners of Isha yoga being
kriya yogis, they will still leave the body (die) when they get enlightened. But
Sadhguru will not let them die but peg them down so that they dont reach
enlightenment. Or he will let it happen only when they reach a certain age. But
for some reason, Sadhguru was not able to do this for Viji, his wife.(He wasnt
able to peg her down and she left her body before the consecration of
But I know how Sadhguru got such an idea about enlightenment. He got it
from Osho:

Most of the people who have become enlightened have died either
immediately or within a few minutes or a few hours. The experience is
so great, and the shock to the system of the body is unabsorbable. Out
of thousands, perhaps a few have survived. And there are reasons why
they survived.
But they suffered tremendously from sicknesses. These are not
sicknesses taken away from disciples, these are sicknesses intrinsic to the
experience of enlightenment. Enlightenment means suddenly becoming
aware that you are not the body, and a distance is created. The old identity
that, I am the body, was keeping you together. You start falling apart.
Mostly, the shock is so much that people have died.
- Osho from Hari Om Tat Sat

In the above excerpt, Osho has stated that most of the people die during the
moment of enlightenment and only very rarely few people survive. Sadhguru
simple repeated Osho as he always does.
But Osho is known for his contradictions. What Sadhguru didnt realize is that
he stated the exact opposite which is published in a different book:

Try to understand this. A jivanamukta will live in a state of liberation

but around him the activities of his body and mind will continue. Nothing
new will be fed, but until the old feelings are exhausted the activities will
Understand it this way. Suppose you decide to leave your body by
fasting. You wont die the very day you begin your fast, it will take at least
about ninety days it may take even longer, but ninety days are a
minimum before death can happen. Why? You fasted today, you should
die today. But no, your body has an accumulation of flesh from the past
and it will take about three months for that flesh to be consumed. You will
have become just a skeleton of bones by then, all the flesh stored in the
body will have been consumed. This is how when you fast for a day you
lose weight by nearly by a pound. So the fatter a person, the longer he will
last when fasting, because he has a larger accumulation of fat. Thus one
goes on losing a pound or so every day, and you will not die while the
stock of accumulated flesh lasts. It will take about three months.
Similarly, when the consciousness is fully awake, one should attain to
mahanirvana, the ultimate merging, at once. But that does not happen.
Once in a while it has happened that way, but such events are very rare
as good as non-existent that a person has died immediately upon
becoming enlightened. It would be as if someone was already a skeleton,
there was nothing at all of any accumulation, and the person died the very
first day he fasted. It would mean that such a person was just ready to die,
he had no savings at all. But it is difficult to find such a person; even a
hungry beggars body keeps savings, some accumulated stock necessary
for any emergencies.
Such a coincidence may happen sometime that a persons actions
also come to completion at the same moment as enlightenment. It is,
however, a very rare phenomenon.
Normally they have stayed and lived for many years after
enlightenment be it Buddha or Mahavira or someone else.
What is the reason for continuing to live? because liberation has
already happened. It is the burden of past action, its momentum, that goes
on pushing the body ahead on the journey for some time. When that
momentum is dissipated, jeevanamukti, the liberation while living, will
become mahanirvana.

Osho simply confuses people so that people dont believe in anything.I have
elaborated why he contradicts himself many times: Shanmugam P's answer to
Why did Osho give contradictory statements at different times? .
But what Sadhguru says is not true at all. Let me explain a few things first.
I myself went through a transformation in 2014, but I dont call it
enlightenment. I have a reason for it. When I use the word enlightenment, it
only points to a concept you have about enlightenment in your mind. But what
happened to me blew my mind and it was nowhere related to whatever I thought
about enlightenment.
The words like ecstasy, bliss or peace are not the right words to describe the
reality that I am living in right now. Thats why Lao Tzu said The Tao that can
be spoken is not the eternal Tao.. The more complicated theories are used to
describe the absolute reality, the less they sound like the experience of it. My
seeking completely ended in 2014. There was nothing to seek anything any
At that point, I could no longer doubt Am I enlightened but I doubted Is this
enlightenment?.. There is a difference between these two questions..
The first question Am I enlightenedimplies that there is still a personal
limited self which is asking this question. But whatever happened to me
completely broke the mental boundaries between me and the world There
was no one to get enlightenment in the first place. But I still couldnt stop
wondering Is this enlightenment. This second question is related to the concept
of enlightenment that I had all along. It didnt fit with that concept at all. So
many things happened after that and I couldnt understand why.
Usually I was very happy and energetic at work and I received some
compliments from my colleagues like You are the happiest man in the world,
You are the only one here who is working joyfully, You are the only one who
comes to work happily and goes home happily
But I also went through some occasional mental pain and I was also faced
with some old patterns of thoughts from time to time. In fact, at one point, there
was an extreme mental anguish which lasted for a couple of months. But none of
them touched my inner core and none of them left a trace in my psyche. I
couldnt explain these moments of occasional mental pain because neither Osho
nor Sadhguru explained anything about what happens at this stage. And I never
labelled my way of functioning as enlightenment because it is just a word and
it didnt mean anything to me.
After 2014 , the next three years passed like a cakewalk, as if nothing
happened. Except for those occasional painful moments, my life was certainly a
blessing. But I didnt think anything about spirituality those days.. The extreme
mental anguish that I talked about which lasted for a couple of months actually
happened during September 2016. Only at that point, I actually started thinking
what exactly happened and where I can find some explanation for it. I studied
the scriptures that I never studied before. It was fun because nothing was serious
in my life after the transformation. It was as if I had taken a permanent vacation
from life. When I studied Advaita Vedanta, I could relate with it because it
described what was happening to me more than any other tradition could
I read Adhi Shankaras Bhasyas and I came across the following:

"No wrong notion arises for the enlightened person. For in his case there
is no reason for it.... Sometimes, however, memories which appear like
erroneous cognitions may arise from latent impressions left by
erroneous notions that had arisen previously, and may occasionally
produce the delusion of erroneous cognition. It is the same as when one
who has correctly learned the directions of the quarters is (even afterwards)
occasionally visited by a wrong notion of them (which does not seriously
affect his correct conviction). If one who had attained right knowledge
could have erroneous ideas exactly as before, that would undermine all
confidence in right knowledge and the whole enterprise of inquiring into
the meaning of the Vedic texts would be rendered vain. "

- Brihadaranyaka Bhasya I.iv.10

Even though I didnt label myself enlightened (I couldnt label myself
anything), the above was the only thing that could explain what was happening
during those occasional periods of mental pain. When I went through many
scriptures in Vedantic and Buddhist traditions, I could realize one thing: Many
things about enlightenment has been generalized for all people based on
their observations on a very few human beings.
Also, none of the scriptures I went through said that enlightenment and
death happens at the same time.
That is when I realized the importance of some empirical approach towards
enlightenment. I did my own research and I began posting many things in my
blog. You can read the following posts in the same order. :

1. The Journey of a Seeker My Story

2. Spiritual Enlightenment Is it a Myth or Real?
3. The Theory of Enlightenment by Scientific Method
4. Is There a Scientific Evidence for Spiritual Enlightenment?
5. Buddhism and Vedanta are the Same A Detailed Comparison
6. Which Philosophy Personally Appeals More to You, Buddhism or
Advaita Vedanta?

But remember, I dont like to say that I am enlightened. I usually avoid that
word. Because what happened to me cant fit with thousands of definitions
which are available for enlightenment and thousands of concepts that people
have about it.
But this much is true: I feel complete, satisfied and one with existence without
any duality, without a sense of an other. There is no feeling of an independent
existence; I feel limitless with absolutely no conflict and my life flows like a
river. I still retain imperfections, my genetic traits and I am completely fallible.
This way of living is quite ordinary and simpler than how enlightenment is
usually described. There is an innocence of child in my experience of
When anyone asks me about it, I usually just describe what happened to
me instead of associating it with a word. And Sadhgurus many comments on
enlightenment sound quite foreign to my reality. The way I perceive the reality
agrees with what Osho said (after weeding out the contradictory statements and
mainly based on what he spoke in his final years) . It perfectly agrees with the
core of Vedanta and Buddhism.
5.Sadhguru and his pseudoscientifc claims

Sadhguru has made many pseudo scientific claims and has been criticized by
many people who are experts in Science. He gave a speech in IIT chennai where
he answered a question. I have included the transcription of the talk here:
Questioner: You said that water has some memory. Is there any viability to
bring that memory level to our life or something? Is there any scientific evidence
or spiritual evidence or some other evidence is available for that? Basically, as
Im a chemist Im telling this.
Sadhguru: Okay. Today, is it okay if I walk down into you? Today,
particularly in the last four-and-a-half years, phenomenal amount of research has
gone into water and water potential. This started off inadvertently because of
the the way the usable water in the world is receding per person. In India, for
example, in 1947 how much water an average Indian had, potable water, today
we have only twenty percent of that. They say by 2025 well have only seven
percent of what we had in 1947 per person, per capita water, only that much will
be available. So because of this, lot of research has gone into water. It went
mostly from this line, but slowly they went deeper and deeper into this and they
find which you must be being a chemist you must be very much aware of
this without changing the chemical composition of the water, you can
rearrange the molecular arrangement in such a way that the water will behave
completely in a different way than the way it does, to such an extent, its
sensitive to this extent, that if I take a glass of water in my hand and just look at
it in a certain way and give it to you, well-being will come to you. If I look at it
another way and give it to you, you will fall sick tonight. This is no more
superstition, this is science.
Ill tell you an incident that happened. About seventeen years ago I announced
a ninety day program. Ninety day program for what? The most fundamental
aspect of yoga is considered as Bhuta Shuddhi. Bhuta Shuddhi means Bhuta
means, you know what? Pancha bhutas, the five elements in nature earth,
water, fire, air and space these are the five elements in nature. It is these five
elements which is the basic components which make this body, which made this
planet, which has made the whole universe, isnt it? The whole existence, in a
way, is a play of these five elements. So Bhuta Shuddhi is about cleansing these
five elements within the system. How these five elements behave within me will
determine the quality of who I am based on this, the basic form of yoga is just
Bhuta Shuddhi; everything else is an outcrop of that, taught in various bits and
pieces by many people without understanding the whole the homogeneity of
what it is, but essentially its about taking charge of the five elements.
You practice Bhuta Shuddhi for a certain period of time and you achieve what
is called as Bhuta Siddhi, that means you have total control over the five
elements, to such an extent, there is any number of incidents where at the time of
death or at the time of leaving their body, a yogi goes into a room, people lock it
from outside, he goes in and after a few days they open and hes just not there
because he de-materializes himself, he doesnt want to trouble you with a
funeral, he doesnt want anybody to carry him to the grave, he just
dematerializes his own system.
Seventeen years ago I announced one program for the first time, ninety day
program. Why ninety days is, approximately between forty to forty eight days
the system goes through a certain cycle on the elemental level; this is called a
mandala. Every forty to forty eight days, there is a cycle where the system goes
through this cycle. So this is the reason if you go to any Ayurvedic doctor, or a
Siddha vaidya, he will always give you a medicine for forty days or forty eight
days to make use of that cycle, natural cycle in the body. So I said two mandalas
minimum. Three would be good, but if I say three, many things will happen. I
said, Minimum two mandalas if you do sadhana, you can gain control over your
system, those who want to come, you come, and I left the town because I know
lot of drama will happen. Now in a family, husband wants to go for ninety days;
wife will do kathak. Wife wants to go for ninety days, husband acts like
Rajinikanth in the house angry man, walks up and down like a hero, so many
things, drama will happen, so I dont want to be there. I said, Those who want
to come, you come, its up to you.
So after that I came back, you know, to a particular family that I know well.
You know, its a normal part of our hospitality, when somebody comes home,
first thing is you bring water. So this lady in the house brought water for me and
shes like Kali suddenly, not just kathak, shes like Kali. I looked at her shes a
nice lady, today shes in the Kali form so I looked at her and she offered water
to me and I said, Amma, I dont need this water. I dont need to drink this water.
Youre like Kali right now, I dont need Kalis prasadam right now, Im fine.
She said, Why, will I poison it? I said, No, you dont have to poison it, its
already done. Then I told her, You take a sip from this glass. She took a sip
from the glass, then I said, Give me the glass to me. I held in my hands for two
minutes and I just gave it to her, You drink it now. She drank one sip and burst
into tears and started crying, she said, Its sweet. I said, Thats all the
difference it is.
Now your body is over seventy percent water, if the water in this system
behaves in a sweet manner, will you be at least seventy percent sweet? Hmm? If
the air and earth behaves sweetly within you, will you be at least ninety percent
sweet? Space is never bothering anybody, isnt it? So the essential science of
yoga is about Bhuta Shuddhi, taking charge of the elements within the system.
Once you have control over the elements in the system, you can also influence
the elements around you. Essentially your whole work with life, your whole
work in the world is just with the elements, always, in a very basic form, isnt it?
So if you have certain mastery over this, you will what you want, you dont
even have to think about it, your intention you dont have to generate a
thought, just before you intend, that is how life will work out for you.
So success is not an uphill task. If you raise this to a higher place, if you raise
this to the highest place it can reach, then everything is downhill. Downhill you
can run easily or uphill you can run easily? Definitely downhill, isnt it? So is
there any scientific evidence? Theres substantial scientific evidence today about
how the molecular structure of the water can be rearranged without changing the
chemical structure, even with a simple thought or a touch. The problem is, your
grandmother told you this, didnt she? Didnt your grandmothers tell you you
should not drink water from anybodys hands, do not take food from anybody,
there is a certain way you must receive only if they have good intentions for you.
Did they tell you these things? But when your grandmother said it, the problem
is if it goes from the East it is superstition, if it comes from the West it becomes
science. Thats where it is. That has to change. Your generation of people, thats
your responsibility to change that, that even if it goes from the East, if it is
science its science.

I answered a question in Quora which was asked about the claims made
by Sadhguru. Here it is:
(Here is the link for the actual question: https://www.quora.com/What-are-
I am going to answer this question with a totally different perspective. I am
going to be neutral throughout this answer and I have made some suggestions
too. I request you all to read the complete answer.
There are a lot of great answers from people like Asher Nitin who are well
versed in science; there are also answers from people who love Sadhguru , who
wants to prove that Sadhguru was right. They are not able to stand negative
criticisms against their beloved leader who has been their inspiration; They have
no doubt that the guidance from their leader has been life changing for them.
But as a consequence, I see that Sadhguru lovers have taken some of these
answers very seriously and personally, feel offended and even write comments
like Some sick dogs are barking at Sadhguru.
So, let me talk about it a little bit before I begin..
While I do understand your feelings, please remember that this kind of
abusive comments are not expected from people who are really practicing the
techniques from Isha. And I see this as a growing trend among some people who
support Isha. They constantly judge people, call them ignorant, arrogant,
stupid, fool, haters etc.
(Please note that I am not saying everybody does it. There are probably
thousands of people who have become peaceful, less reactive and more
compassionate because of regular practice.
In fact, I wonder if these people who use such abusive language ever practiced
the kriyas taught there. These people are probably the ones who just watched
some 1020 youtube videos of Sadhguru but never did any serious spiritual
Anyway, I would like to answer the question in such a way that the nature of
this answer does not in anyway belittle Sadhguru, ridicule or criticize him. I am
going to be as kind and as friendly as possible and I apologize in advance if this
answer hurts your feelings in anyway.
If your mind is not clear now and if you think that you cannot read this answer
line by line with neutral mind, then please dont continue. If after reading a
paragraph, you find yourself mentally preparing a comment for my answer
instead of paying attention to everything that is said and considering it, then
please dont continue. May be you can try later. The better time would be
probably just after you finish doing a session of Shambhavi Mahamudra. Dont
comment anything without reading and understanding the complete answer.

Here is my answer:
Let us Understand the Question that was put to Sadhguru First
First, if you read the link in the Isha website, you can see that the questioner
wants to know if there is some kind of evidence for the water memory so that it
can be verified:

You said that water has some memory. Is there any viability to bring that
memory level to our life or something? Is there any scientific evidence or
spiritual evidence or some other evidence is available for that? Basically, as
Im a chemist Im telling this.

Note that the questioner is not asking if water memory is true. The questioner
is asking if water memory has any verifiable evidence. I hope you understand the
difference; but let me give an example from our life to distinguish between the

What is an Evidence?
Let us say you have written an exam. You know you have written it very well
and you are going to pass the exam. You can tell others that you will pass the
exams and it is guaranteed. But there is no evidence yet. The evidence is
obtained only when you get the results in your hand.
Also, as you know, exams are written in controlled conditions so that no one is
allowed to copy, carry any written material, speak to anyone etc. And extreme
care is taken to make sure that the question paper is not leaked out before the
exams. All this is done so that the results of your exams are not influenced by
anything else.

Science- Experiments, scientific control and peer review
Same works for a science experiment. The experiments are conducted in
completely controlled conditions to make sure that there are no errors and that
the results of the experiments are not influenced by any other variables. You can
read more about it here: Scientific control - Wikipedia
Once the experiment is done, it has to be published in the appropriate journal
for peer review. For example, you can find a list of Physics journals here: List of
scientific journals - Wikipedia .
The results of the experiment can be challenged by future experiments
anytime. The results should be always reproducible. If the results are not
reproduced by future experiments, then it is not considered as evidence. (science
people, please correct me If I have made any mistakes or missed out anything
here. Feel free to suggest edits).

The Quality of online articles that claim scientific evidence
This is very important to understand. Because, not everything that you find
online is a genuine scientific evidence. Just because an article describes an
experiment done by a scientist and shows the results of an experiment, it doesnt
mean that it is a scientific evidence. That is why you can find a lot of things in
Google Search which seem authentic to many people even though they dont
have any strong scientific evidence.
If you havent read the above paragraph, please read. If you have read it,
then remember this for the rest of your life.

Sadhgurus answer
The scientific nature of Sadhgurus answer has been already analyzed
brilliantly by others. But some people still seem to think that there is a scientific
evidence for it (the comment Some sick dogs are barking at Sadhguru was
made by one of my Indian brothers, because of this misunderstanding). So, I am
going to address that alone here.
Here is what Sadhguru said at the end, about the evidence part:

Theres substantial scientific evidence today about how the molecular

structure of the water can be rearranged without changing the chemical
structure, even with a simple thought or a touch.

The nature of the experiments which were claimed to support water

1. Luc Antoine Montagnier is a French virologist who won Nobel

prize for discovering HIV virus. He published a controversial
paper called Electromagnetic Signals Are Produced by Aqueous
Nanostructures Derived from Bacterial DNA Sequences which
concludes the following:

Diluted DNA from pathogenic bacterial and viral species is able to emit
specific radio waves and these radio waves [are] associated with
nanostructures in the solution that might be able to recreate the pathogen.

The paper has been met with harsh criticism for not being peer-reviewed, and
its claims unsubstantiated by modern mainstream conventions of physics and
chemistry. No third party has replicated the findings as of March 2015.
Supporters of homeopathy claimed that this experiment supported
homeopathy but this claim was criticized by the scientists worldwide.
For example,
On 20 October 2010, Harriet A. Hall responded specifically to these claims by
homeopaths: "Nope. Sorry, guys. It doesnt. In fact, its findings are inconsistent
with homeopathic theory... Homeopaths who believe Montagniers study
supports homeopathy are only demonstrating their enormous capacity for self-
deception." She went on to analyze the studies and pointed out a number of
flaws, stating: "...even assuming the results are valid, they tend to discredit
homeopathy, not support it... Homeopathy is a system of clinical treatment that
can only be validated by in vivo clinical trials."
Please note that this paper is about bacterial DNA sequences and nothing to do
with water memory anyway. I included it because someone quoted it as a direct
evidence for water memory.
2. Jacques Benveniste
From wiki:
In 1988, Jacques Benveniste published a study supporting a water memory
effect amid controversy in Nature, accompanied by an editorial by Nature's
editor John Maddox urging readers to "suspend judgement" until the results
could be replicated.
In the years following publication, multiple supervised experiments were
run by Benveniste's team, the United States Department of Defense, BBC's
Horizon programme, and other researchers, but no team has ever
reproduced Benveniste's results in controlled conditions.
3. Masaru Emoto
I think Sadhgurus statement was mainly due to this guy Masaru Emoto.
Emoto claimed that different water sources would produce different crystalline
structures when frozen. For example, he claimed that a water sample from a
mountain stream when frozen would show structures of beautifully-shaped
geometric design, but those structures would be distorted and randomly formed
if the sample were taken from a polluted water source.
He did an experiment but he did not publish the result in any authentic
mainstream scientific journals. Also, it met with harsh criticism from scientists
stating that the experiment lacked controlled conditions, was prone to
manipulation or human error influencing the findings. Emoto was personally
invited to take the One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge by James Randi in
2003, and would have received US$1,000,000 if he had been able to reproduce
the experiment under test conditions agreed to by both parties. He did not
To conclude, there is not even a week scientific evidence for water
memory as of now contrary to Sadhgurus statement that theres substantial
scientific evidence today about how the molecular structure of the water can
be rearranged without changing the chemical structure, even with a simple
thought or a touch.

My opinion on this
As many people have said, we cant expect a yoga guru to be scientifically
correct. No one goes to Sadhguru to learn science either. In this particular
instance, the actual question that was asked to Sadhguru was that if there was a
scientific evidence for water memory and hence Sadhguru had to talk about
While we dont have any evidence that water has memory, Sadhgurus
statement that science does have evidence is obviously incorrect. This probably
came from what he has heard or read. And, considering a hearsay or a random
article as an authentic source is due to a lack of awareness on how scientific
experiment and peer review works. Not only Sadhguru, majority of well-
educated Indians are not completely aware of how to discriminate between a real
scientific evidence and false claim. (I learnt about it only last year, by the
way).This is just due to the lack of general awareness on this topic among
But I have also come across instances where Sadhguru voluntarily talks about
science and claims that many things the science is discovered now has been
already discovered by yogic methods. He may be probably doing this to create
more appeal to yoga and spread it to more people with good intention.
But this is what creates a lot of arguments and questions among people. First,
we dont have any evidence for the fact that any kind of factual knowledge can
be obtained through practices like meditation or yoga, even though we have been
hearing such stories since ancient days. This claim and claims to do miracles
have been misused by many fake spiritual leaders in our country which naturally
makes people to be extra cautious and even harshly criticize all spiritual leaders.
Until there is a solid evidence that such claims have any scientific basis, such
criticism will even continue in the upcoming generations. This will actually
make Yoga to become less appealing in the future. There is no way to stop it
unless we do something about it in this generation especially when an influential
public figure like Sadhguru, who claims to be able to do many things that a
normal man cannot do, is alive. I can actually offer a simple solution for that.
But before that, let me tell you something very important that many people are
not aware of.
Burden of Proof
This is an important concept to understand. Because, I have noticed many
people saying that If Sadhguru has made a claim, it is the responsibility of the
person who is opposing the claim to disprove it. In other words, they say If
you dont believe it, then prove that it is wrong..
It is absolutely necessary to correct this common misconception. Actually, if
somebody is making a claim, it is the responsibility of the person who makes the
claim to prove it. It is an universally accepted fact in philosophy, logic and
science. You can read the citations given for more details.
The Solution
Now, imagine if just one of the claims made by Sadhguru is proved to be true.
Just if one claim gets scientific evidence, it will create a lot of world wide
attention, appeal and a respect for what Sadhguru says. People who have been
accusing Sadhguru for different things may start to wonder, there must be a lot
of truth in what this man is saying.
I remember an interview that a reporter had with Sadhguru. The reporter
asked Is this Adiyogi statue that you have created has been created to seek
attention? For that, Sadhguru said yes and explained to the interviewer that it
has been created to attract worldwide attention to yoga so that a lot of people
will be interested in yoga. And he clarified that it has not been created for a
personal attention seeking but rather for a good cause, to create worldwide
attention to yoga. While it indeed created attention, it also raised a lot of
questions and accusations.
Well, there is actually a better way to create such an attention.He can start
with just proving one of his claims to science. Remember, this is not a problem
unless people make it a problem. It is actually something very simple to do.
Sadhguru has claimed many things which are extraordinary . He has done it
indirectly by quoting incidents where he could do things like that. I will quote a
claim mentioned in the same article that is given for this question, that can be
very easily verified with an experiment.

So this lady in the house brought water for me and shes like Kali
suddenly, not just kathak, shes like Kali. I looked at her shes a nice lady,
today shes in the Kali form so I looked at her and she offered water to
me and I said, Amma, I dont need this water. I dont need to drink this
water. Youre like Kali right now, I dont need Kalis prasadam right now,
Im fine. She said, Why, will I poison it? I said, No, you dont have to
poison it, its already done. Then I told her, You take a sip from this
glass. She took a sip from the glass, then I said, Give me the glass to me.
I held in my hands for two minutes and I just gave it to her, You drink it
now. She drank one sip and burst into tears and started crying, she said,
Its sweet. I said, Thats all the difference it is.
This is an extraordinary claim! But all he has to do is get a glass of plain water
from you, hold it in his hands for two minutes and give it to you. If it tastes
sweet, that is all there is to prove.
It can be verified with a scientific experiment very easily. Proving such a thing
has many advantages too. Other then getting attention, Sadhguru and Isha
foundation will gain more trust. It will stop people from turning way from Isha
just because these claims are made. It will stop unnecessary hot criticisms filled
with hatred and verbal abuses that we see all over internet. Sadhguru may win a
nobel prize and Isha people will love that. He may earn millions of dollars which
can be used for social welfare. Because we all know that Isha foundation already
needs money for upcoming projects and currently have to rely on donations
alone. In fact, many people who oppose him will start to trust that he is doing
everything with a genuine interest for peoples well being and willing to donate
even more. Tell me one reason why this is not a good idea!
If you understand this and are genuinely interested to make it happen, we can
find a way to pass it on to Sadhguru. You can republish this answer anywhere,
share this answer, upvote it or directly send an email to Isha. If each missed call
can count, each upvote can count too.
You can also retweet this:
Thank you for taking your time to read this.
And finally:
6.Sadhguru criticized by Nirmukta

Nirmukta.com is a website that promotes science, free thought and secular

humanism in India. Nirmukta wrote an article criticizing Sadhguru about the
comments he made on Higgs Boson in this
video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6H7-GKCDBQ
You can read the article by Nirmukta
here: http://nirmukta.com/2012/07/26/jaggi-vasudev-doesnt-understand-science-
A question was asked in Quora about this article. You can read the question
and the answers here: https://www.quora.com/There-is-an-article-on-Nirmukta-
Sadhguru-was-exposed-by-Nirmukta-community-genuine . I have included my
answer in this chapter.

Here is a part of what Sadhguru spoke regarding Higgs Boson:
They found or theythey seem to have found something near to what they
are referring to as god particle, you know this? Its called the Boson, which has a
mass which is of a certain significance. If you try to look at the whole universe,
you will not see anything. If you just look at an atom intensely enough and if the
atom yields to you, then you know how the whole universe is made.
Now, they are no more talking about atom, they were talking about subatomic
particles. Now they are not even talking about that. When two subatomic
particles collide, not atoms, when two protons collide, something spills out of
that, they want to see that. But when you say I am on the path of yoga, you
dont you are not even interested in the tiny miniscule particle; you want to
see the empty space which holds all this in place. That is their desire also but
theyve kind of given up on it. (Laughs) Thats their desire also that they want to
see what is it thats holding all this together. But they they dont have they
understand, they are sensible enough to understand with these two eyes, with
these senses we cant see it. The only way is to go to the nearest point and see it.
The nearest point is as far away as Timbuktu. Do you understand?
Right now I do not know if you are interested in these things but you must
know these things because it has a very direct relationship with yogic system.
There was a time when scientists believed they thought lets say if this is an
atom big enough for you to see? Okay If this is an atom proton, neutron
electron are all embedded in it like these dots. They thought it was like that.
Then by the time you came to high school, they wrote a different picture they
wrote one central circle which contains proton, neutron and electrons are going
around like planets in different formats. This you see in those pictures. But now
they know it is completely wrong and we have always known it is completely
wrong. Thats why text books never ever interested me. Because when I looked
at it it looked dumb.
Today, suppose suppose this (Referring to his cups lid) is the size of the
core of the atom, the electrons are, lets say somewhere approximately a mile
away, thats the kind of distance, you understand, within an atom. An atom is not
like this. No human being has ever seen an atom, do you know this? Forget
about a proton, neutron, electron. Nobody has ever witnessed an atom. Even in a
super electron microscope you cannot see it. In that, there is a housing where
proton, neutrons are there and the electrons are about a mile away, in
comparison, in proportion I am saying. So what is the maximum substance in
this? Emptiness, isnt it?
We always told you, the yogic systems always insisted that the microcosm and
the macrocosm are made the same way. If you know this piece of life (Referring
to oneself), you will know everything in the universe because thats how it is
made. When they say, if you know the way these Bosons behave and what they
are, they are saying we will know the whole universe, the way the universe was
made we will understand. But you dont understand that you are also a bloody
Boson. In the cosmic space you are just a Boson. So you are as much as a Higgs
Boson in the universe. If you observe this, if you pay enough attention to this
(Referring to oneself) you would know everything. But if you have not even paid
attention to anything around you, paying attention to within you will be out of

My answer in Quora:
I saw this question yesterday but I was waiting to read other responses before
I answer it. Because my main objective is to handle other peoples objections..
First of all, just try to understand the gist of the article.
Sadhguru is trying to create a knot between Higgs Boson and spirituality, and
also ridicules science. I dont see any reason to do that at all.
Let me quote what he says in the video:

"Right now I do not know if you are interested in these things but you
must know these things because it has a very direct relationship with yogic
system. There was a time when scientists believed they thought lets
say if this is an atom big enough for you to see? Okay If this is an atom
proton, neutron electron are all embedded in it like these dots. They
thought it was like that. Then by the time you came to high school, they
wrote a different picture they wrote one central circle which contains
proton, neutron and electrons are going around like planets in different
formats. This you see in those pictures. But now they know it is
completely wrong and we have always known it is completely wrong.
Thats why text books never ever interested me. Because when I looked
at it it looked dumb."

Now, I will give you a great spiritual exercise.. Try to read the above
paragraph in unbiased way What does he say exactly? He doesnt understand
what science means and doesnt understand how science works.. No problem!
We dont expect him to know that and nobody goes to him to learn science.
But being an authority who can influence people, if he ridicules science in
public without even understanding how it works, it will definitely invite
criticism. It is bound to happen.
Science has its own way. In fact, it perfectly follows Sadhguru Jaggi
Vasudevs advice of not believing in anything. Do you know there is no concept
called proof in science? There is no scientific proof, there is only scientific
evidence You can look up the difference in Google. When it finds a new
evidence that contradicts a previous theory, it considers the new evidence open
mindedly. There is nothing to be ashamed of. That is how scientific method
Please tell your Sadhguru that this dumb science and dumb technology is
what created a lot of things he is using now to spread his message. The dumb
technology has created Internet where he hosts tons of websites, conducts online
courses and webinars etc. The same dumb technology has created a mobile
phone that people are using to give missed calls to support Rally for Rivers..
So, obviously this is a careless statement made by Sadhguru in context of
Higgs Boson (I am not calling it careless because he doesnt know about
science and I dont expect that he should. I am calling it careless because he
ridicules science and calls it dumb in spite of having no idea how it works).
When an authority figure makes such a statement in public, it creates
unnecessary prejudice against science among his fans and followers.
But people have problem in accepting this as bullshit because they have
become blind followers of Sadhguru.And some totally irrelevant objections have
been given in the other answers.
So let me handle the objections one by one..
Objection #1: These things should not be understood with a logical mind
because intellect can take you only to a certain level.
This objection is very important to address. Because, people, without
understanding why and in what context it has been said, use this as a rebuttal for
everything; They use this whenever something is presented to them with perfect
logic and reasoning, as if they have some kind of aversion towards logic and
Reality has two important levels: Absolute reality and relative reality.
Anything that we do, know, sense or think is a part of relative reality. The
substratum on which everything happens is absolute reality. And this is
something purely subjective and nothing to do with objective world.
So, the subject is the pure witness that you can experience in its purity when
you go deep in meditation. When you say I just noticed this thought in mind, it
shows that a thought is also objective. It is an object which can be witnessed by
the pure subject. The same way, looking at your emotions, feelings, ego, defense
mechanisms, sensations of your body etc objectively is the first step towards
meditation. The subject we are talking about here doesnt have any attributes at
all. Because all attributes are objective.
This distinction of subject vs object has been mentioned in various ways in
our tradition: Purusha vs prakriti, Brahman vs Maya, consciousness vs matter
Creating a distance between the subject and the object, and observing your
mind non-judgmentally and objectively can make you less -reactive, improve
your well-being and lead you to the self-realization. Once your spiritual journey
is over, you no longer identify yourself with anything that is objective, which
eliminates suffering, the feeling of being miserable, diminished or victimized.
Instead of feeling yourself as a creature of limited identity, you feel yourself as
the whole that your body and mind is an integral part of. This takes a huge load
off your shoulders and you feel liberated. This, pretty much is the gist of true
spirituality. And I know a proper spiritual sadhana works because it worked for
Now, the nature of this absolute reality is something that is difficult to grasp
with intellect simply because of the following reasons

1. What we call as logic is not logic at all.. Its is extremely biased

and fallacious. So, with this erroneous thinking, you will only
come to wrong conclusions. With a mind that is identified with a
limited egoic self, you cannot imagine the nature of
consciousness in which all identifications are broken.
2. This is all about experiencing the reality without clouding it by
the conceptual framework that we have built all over our life. It is
about experiencing the reality without feeling that we are
different from it. This way of experiencing life can be better
understood by actually experiencing it. No amount of explanation
can give an idea about how a mango tastes, if you have never
tasted the mango.

But here is where we draw the line. Dont try to understand the absolute
reality by reasoning alone. Thats it, period! This doesnt apply to anything
that we see, feel, know etc in the relative world.
So, if you are talking about anything in the relative plane, reasoning and logic
are the best tool we have.
But what people are doing here is to use this as a defense mechanism to
defend Sadhguru, every time any one comes up with any kind of criticism that
sounds reasonable.. Probably, the first thought that comes to their mind is This
guy is an idiot, he doesnt know anything about meditation and I know better
than him
Please note: The kind of things Sadhguru is talking about, like consecrated
spaces, leaving the body during samadhi, trying to give a pseudoscientific
explanation for something etc, all fall under relative reality, not the absolute. You
cant really talk much about the absolute reality but you can only use the words
as pointers to turn your mind inward. The analogies like finger pointing to the
moon and blind man and elephant (which is my favorite one) is applicable only
for absolute reality.
Now, if you carefully read what Sadhguru says in that video, you will notice
that what he says doesnt make any sense at all. On top of that, he ridicules
science. Shouldnt he have clear understanding about what Higgs Boson is,
before he even talks about it? When almost each and everything that we use
today is a product of science and technology, ridiculing science is an insult to
people who are working hard in the field of science with a lot of passion. So, this
will definitely invite criticism. If you still dont realize the significance of
science and technology, think about everything that you use in your day to day
life: Microwave oven, air-conditioner, fan, cell phone, internet, laptop, bus, car,
train, aeroplane, camera
Dont ever start a debate between spirituality and science. It is meaningless to
even argue which is superior. Science has its own purpose and meditation has its
own purpose. Both are complimentary to each other and thats why Sadhguru can
conveniently give a webinar, tweet a message instantly in Twitter to thousands of
his followers and reach anywhere within time by using an aeroplane or his own
Dont ever discourage or insult anybody who tries to use his logic and
reasoning. Reasoning takes an important part of spiritual sadhana as well.. Ever
heard of Gnana Yoga?
In Sadhgurus own words:

Fundamentally, if you want to pursue gnana, you need a very alert,

sharp intellect. Every day and every moment you must slowly sharpen your
intellect to a point where it is like razor sharp. It misses nothing. It can go
through anything, but nothing sticks to it, it is not influenced by anything
that is happening around. This is gnana.

2. Objection #2: Science doesnt have all the answers..

Thats right, but is there anybody in the world who has all the answers? The
truth is, nobody has all the answers; science admits it.
But just because science doesnt have answer to something, if you think that
you should accept a statement that was made out of the blue by a spiritual
authority as an answer, then you have become a victim of a very serious fallacy.
Because, if you think deeply about it, you will understand that it is ridiculous.
Let me state an example to show you what will happen by going by this logic:
Imagine that Sadhguru says one day There is a blue elephant roaming in a
forest near the north pole of the exoplanet Gliese 687 And science says We
dont know much about Gliese 687 yet Now, will you go ahead and believe
Sadhguru because Sadhguru has an answer to something that science doesnt
have answer for? Will you insist science to disprove it? Do you realize how
ridiculous it would be?
Somebody said the following:

For example, science cant tell you what love is, though it can tell you
what happens in your brain when you are loving some one. It cant tell you
if a painting is good or it cant tell you if doing some thing is morally right
or wrong.

Why would anybody expect science to tell them what love is? If you are a
human being, you will know what love is.. Science has its own purpose. Why do
you expect science to tell you if a painting looks good or bad? If you have eyes,
you will know. Why do you expect science to tell you what is morally right or
wrong? If you have enough compassion, you will understand that you should
treat others the same way you want to be treated by others. You will understand
that since suffering is bad for you, causing suffering to others is not good as
well. Simple!
But this sounds like a kids game to me Science is inferior because science
cant create poetry, science cant create music and so on.. As I already told you,
assigning inferiority and superiority to abstract things like science and poetry
comes from the wrong ideas of human minds. Let alone science, you are truly
spiritual only when you begin to see that nothing is inferior or superior to
Please understand. It is human beings who use scientific method to gain
knowledge about objective world. It is human beings who create poetry and
music. Science and poetry are just abstract concepts that we use in life to talk
about what human beings do.
Let me quote another objection raised here:

If Sadhguru says a buttery is beautiful, these folks will cut open a

butterfly, analyse every cell and say that they couldnt find anything

So, you are saying that all scientists are robots who dont know anything
about life. You are saying that scientists cannot enjoy beauty, they cant love
nature, they cant enjoy life because all they are doing is just dissecting and
analyzing 24/7. Do you see how ridiculous that is?
A scientist is not an alien being who is programmed or designed to always use
logic and intellect 24/7. He is a human being just like you and me, who falls in
love, enjoys nature, admires beauty and even make poetry or compose music.
Science is just a method to acquire knowledge. To tell you the truth, the same
principles that are applied in scientific method if applied for our psyche becomes
a perfect spiritual sadhana. That is why even Sadhguru wants to call his program
Inner engineering..
I have handled these two objections mainly to show you how these rebuttals
are completely irrelevant here.
The questioner asks the question The way Sadhguru was exposed by
Nirmukta community is that genuine?
The straight answer is Yes.. I dont endorse each and every view that is
stated by the writer of the blog. But what he says is understandable.
Quantum Mechanics is something really very deep. And it is a totally different
dimension. The subjective experience which feels like everything is one and
connected and the objective analysis of the structure of matter are two different
things belonging to two different dimensions
There are some metaphysical theories that were created by our ancestors
based on this subjective experience alone. They say that everything comes from
consciousness. But this is just a theory made only by speculation that was done
based on their experience. Whether it is really true or not can be verified only by
scientific method
If you really know about what our ancestors said, then you will notice that
they actually had contradictory theories.

1. Vedanta says that everything originated from

consciousness and consciousness is one. Multiplicity is an
illusion. Just like different objects made of clay consists one
material which is clay, the whole world is created from Brahman
and is Brahman itself.
2. On the contrary, Yoga and Samkhya says that everything
originated from Prakriti, the unconscious principle. Prakriti is
one but Purushas are many. (In other words, consciousness is not
one, but there are actually multiple conscious beings.)

Do you notice the clear difference between the two metaphysical theories?
They differ in two major things here.

1. Samkhya and Yoga say that unconscious principle is the cause of

everything whereas Vedanta says that a conscious principle is a
cause of the universe.
2. Vedanta says that there is only one consciousness whereas
Samkhya and Yoga say that there is multiplicity in consciousness.

But both insist on discrimination between subject and the object, ie. brahman
and maya or pursha and prakriti So, in the aspect of spiritual sadhana they
agree but they dont agree in terms of the metaphysical theories.
I can understand why this difference happened. Vedanta talks only from the
experiential perspective. It is true that in experiencing the reality non-dually, you
will feel that everything is one. But Yoga and Samkhya went one step further,
used inference, and said that there are multiple conscious beings even though
everything seem to be one in experience.
(It is interesting to note something here. Sadhguru always says that he doesnt
have a philosophy. But he actually picked up this line from Osho. Since he tries
to imitate Osho in everything, I am not surprised about this. But Osho really
didnt have a philosophy. He actually walked the talk. You cant find the same
with Sadhguru, because he repeats the word yogic tradition quite often. He also
said that he chose yoga as a way to guide people. Clearly, he is talking about the
traditional school of yoga. Yoga literally means union; in that sense, it can be
used to define any spiritual path. But when you talk about traditional school of
yoga that goes back to patanjali and nandhinatha, you need to understand that
this school doesnt accept the metaphysical theory of advaita vedanta. Still,
Sadhguru seems to be talking about the vedantic metaphysical theory. Why?
Because Osho also talked about the same Poor Sadhguru! He hasnt read any
scriptures; He has only read the books of Osho. What can he do?)
So, a scientific research on this subject is actually complimentary. Scientists
are already researching on the hard-problem of consciousness which can reveal
many things once solved. This is nothing to be ridiculed of or laughed at,
because a solid evidence creates more appeal and adds strength to a theory.
Without evidence, it is only a belief.
The main problem we people have is that we first divide the world into
scientific and spiritual. Out of our identifications, we create two groups: A
spiritual group and a scientific group. Then we tend to identify with the spiritual
group and start showing in-groupout-group bias.
When you do this, you have taken a complete U-turn from spiritual sadhana.
Getting rid of identifications is the main thing in a sadhana. But we do just the
opposite. We identify ourselves as spiritual or meditative people and then we
ridicule scientists saying that whatever you are revealing now has been already
revealed by our ancestors.. Our ancestors are really brilliant and you people are
stupid.. We are superior than you!
This serves only one purpose We just want to brag (and we dont even
seriously think how much truth there is to what we brag about)
Please dont misunderstand I love my culture and my nation. I am deeply in
love with many contributions of our ancestors in science, music, literature,
spirituality and so on. But we should not become blind and obsessively try to
prove others that we knew everything all long. That is not true at all!
I have put together a detailed article on how spirituality and science go
together here: Is There a Scientific Evidence for Spiritual Enlightenment? . This
is an attempt to show how science is complimentary to spirituality and how both
can be bridged.
Also, another purpose of my answer is to make people aware of how they
blindly follow their authority even though they may deny it.
I would love to discuss this point made by Rohan
Here is what he said in the answer:

Due to the nature of science that is limited to the physical, it may not be
possible for non-physical truths that are included in spirituality/meta-
physics to ever become part of science.

He has given me a chance to explore another interesting thing which make

people into believers.
The above point is made based upon the premise that there is some kind
of truth which can be known through spiritual practice alone.
Now, if you are not a blind follower of anyone, then how do you know that
this is true? Have you ever found out any truth in relative plane so far by going
into deep meditation? Is this in your experience? (refer to my distinction
between absolute and relative truth in the first part of my answer)
It is very clear that this is just a belief. Again, I am not being so blind and
deny that it is completely not possible at all. But, right now it can only exist as a
belief for you, right? And there are lot of reasons to suspect that it may not be
When we speak about things, we need to be very precise and clear on what we
are talking about. What exactly is the nature of the truth that can be discovered
only through spirituality?
I will give you some of Sadhgurus own advice here:
Here is an excerpt from Sadhgurus book Enlightenment - An Inside Story
Questioner: What is the difference between mind and atma?
Sadhguru: Oh! (Laughs). Which atma are you talking about? What
atma have you experienced? You know the function of the mind to some
extent, but atma what do you know about it? You are talking about
stories that other people have told you. To put it very bluntly, the
moment you start talking about what is not in your experience, you are
just lying to yourself, is it not? So don't talk about atmas. About mind, we
can see.

As he says, the moment you start talking about what is not in your
experience, you are just lying to yourself, is it not?
If you have found out some truth through spiritual practice, then please share
that knowledge here If such a thing never happened for you, then why are
you lying to yourself? ( Sadhgurus words, not mine)
Let us look at the premise again:
There is some kind of truth which can be known through spiritual practice
What kind of truth? And when a spiritual authority tells you something and
claims that he found this truth through deep meditation, how would you know
that if it is really true or something that was just made up by him?
This is something for you to contemplate on.
Update : 4th Oct, 2017
There have been comments stating that many useful discoveries have been
made in Ancient India. While many people have made their own interpretations
for certain ancient verses to suit the discoveries of modern science, I agree that
there has been genuine discoveries made in Ancient India in Geometry,
Mathematics, Astronomy and Medicine. But how were these discoveries made?
By using empirical approach with pure reasoning, logic and creativity.
I was only refuting the premise that these discoveries were made because of
some mystical vision. Also, any discovery that is made in any part of the world
in ancient times is far beyond the discoveries made by modern science. We have
a more refined, more controlled scientific method now.
Many people who follow or support Sadhguru believe that Yogis found
out certain things about the world by going into deep meditation. This is
what is the reason for the whole debate that is happening here. It is very
important to understand this first before even attempting to refute my objections.
Consider the following questions and answers:

1. Is there any evidence that knowledge about objective world can

be acquired only through meditation and without using reasoning,
experiment and creativity? No
2. Is there any on going practice of making great discoveries and
giving some useful hypothesis based on that? No..
3. Has Sadhguru, who is a Yogi, given any hypothesis about
objective world (using meditation as the only tool) that can be
proven by direct evidence? No..

Then what is the point of the whole discussion? What are the people who are
blindly supporting Sadhguru trying to prove here? Can we put aside our personal
biases and use critical thinking for a moment?
But I am not rejecting the premise altogether. I am only expecting an
evidence. If some kind of scientific knowledge can be obtained by meditation
alone, then we will have verifiable, reproducible theories for everything by now.
Just because I was saying this, In many places I was accused that I am a
shame for India and I am someone who is not acknowledging the pride of India.
Even though I have already mentioned that I love my culture and nation, let me
show you how I celebrated Navarathri 2016, one year back. (It was just to honor
our nation. It was not a prayer but an expression of love. It was not out of a
superstitious belief but out of my overflowing passion for my country):
I have also suggested a way to end this debates by providing a simple
solution. Please read this: Shanmugam P's answer to What are scientists
opinions on Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev's IIT Madras talk about water having
memory and his abilities to manipulate its taste via telekinesis?
A Summary of Everything
The whole issue could have been avoided by not talking about Higgs boson..
He could have avoided a lot of criticism about him by just not talking about
Higgs boson, especially when he doesnt know what it is..
I can tell you very confidently that meditation has got nothing to do with outer
world and any knowledge that has to do with outer world.. I have been
meditating for more than 15 years: it has given me ultimate well being and
peace, it made me to look at things the way they are, it made me to look at
reality in a totally different perspective and more. But if I want to know about
Higgs boson, I have to study the appropriate science text book and I cant know
it with any kind of meditation, period..
Here is what he is trying to do in that video: He claims that emptiness is the
basic essence of existence, that our yogic system already knows it and that
scientists have been wrong from the very beginning.
First of all, I know that Yogic culture doesnt mention a word that literally
means emptiness , as the essence of existence Yoga says that world
originated from unconscious principle, prakriti.. But the concept of emptiness
does exist in Buddhism as well as Vigyan bhairav tantra and it is actually similar
to what we call as Brahman in vedanta.. (Sadhguru must have picked it up
from Oshos commentary on Vigyan Bhairav Tantra).
But this concept of emptiness actually means empty of any attributes which
is purely subjective.. It has got nothing to do with objective world. When we say
nirguna Brahman, it means Brahman without attributes This pure witness
which is empty of attributes can be tasted in deep meditation and it has been my
own experience. But people, including Vedantins fail to understand that it is
subjective only and nothing to do with outer world. You go through this
emptiness whenever you sleep but it is experienced without
consciousness..When it is experienced consciously it is the peak of meditation.
The main reason for this confusion is caused probably by people who
interpreted scriptures without tasting meditation. It has been happening since the
ancient days.. There has been lot of misinterpretations and interpolations which
has changed the whole meaning of the scriptures. Vedantic scriptures are poetry ;
when we interpret a poem, we need to understand that they tend to have
eulogies, metaphors and other figures of speech.
Obviously, no yogi has talked about atoms, the mass of its nucleus, behavior
of electrons in quantum level etc. Just by taking a statement that says emptiness
is the essence of everything and saying that we know everything all along is
-.. (You can fill in the blank with any word you like, by putting
yourself in a scientists shoes)
And people who try to support Sadhguru in this particular scenario dont
understand another problem. The more they try to justify this, the more others
will think that Isha followers have become totally blind and have been
brainwashed..I can understand their emotions, but this is not the time to let the
emotions cloud their thinking. They will not only fail in their attempt to justify it
but they will also bring more bad name to Isha.
And in order to justify it, sometimes they talk about the limitation of logical
thinking. As I have mentioned in my answer, when we want to know anything
about the objective world, logic and reasoning are important.
Let me finish this by adding a quote from Osho, because I know that most
of the people who like Sadhguru also like Osho:
NOT ALWAYS If you are a scientist you have to think Logically; there is no
other way to think. You have to move logically, step by step. That is the only
way to deal with the objective world. I am not against logic.
If you are working with the objective world, logic is the only way, doubt the
only procedure, questioning the only method. But if you are dealing with the
subjective, then you have to reverse all the processes -- then to be illogical is the
way, to be non-questioning is the method. Trust is the whole process, the whole
These are two dimensions of your being: outgoing, ingoing. When you are
going outwards, it is one kind of movement; when you are going inwards, the
road is the same but it is a totally different kind of movement -- your direction is
opposite. When you are going closer to the object you have to be logical; when
you are coming closer to yourself, you have to transcend logic.
And reality is both: objective and subjective. So the whole man will be logical
when he is dealing with objects, when he is working in the lab, when he is a
mathematician or a biologist or a chemist or a physicist or a physician -- he will
be utterly logical. But logic will not be his only way of life. When he comes out
of the lab, with his children, with his wife, with the friends, he will not be logical
-- he will be loving. Logic knows no love. And when he is sitting in prayer or
meditating, he will forget all about questioning. He will fall into a deep trust
with existence.
The real man is capable of both. Up to now there have existed only half men.
One who is logical becomes incapable of going into the direction which is not
logical; he is obsessed with logic. Then he is not using logic, he is obsessed with
logic; then he is not the master, logic has become the master. He is encaged. He
will remain half. He will miss the other half which is very valuable, immensely
valuable -- more valuable than the logical because it is inner. He will not know
anything of his subjectivity: he will not know who he is.
7.Sadhguru vs Javed Akhter

A debate was conducted between Sadhguru and Javed Akhter and it was titled
''Faith, Reason and Inner Engineering'. You can watch the entire debate
here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpL_kSEHOco . A question was asked
in Quora to review this debate. Following is my answer that I wrote in Quora:
First of all, I see a small problem in the crux of the whole debate. The debate
is titled Faith, Reason and Inner Engineering. Also, moderator Shoma
Chaudhury when introducing and concluding the debate makes it clear that the
debate is about faith and reason. She also seem to understand Sadhguru as a man
of faith and Javed Akhtar as a man of reason. (You can hear Sadhgurus voice in
the background correcting her statement when she concluded the debate)
But actually, by going by their own words, both Sadhguru and Javed Akhtar
are men of reason and are against faith. Both are in agreement towards how
belief implies not accepting that one doesnt know. Then what are they really
debating about?
The debate would make more sense when it is about whether spirituality is
necessary or not. I think that is how this debate should have been titled and
introduced. Because, that is exactly where Javed disagrees with Sadhguru. There
is no doubt that Javed Akhtar is an intelligent man and a great lyricist. But he
doesnt seem to agree with the fact that there is a way to get liberated from
human suffering.
Javed Akhtars views on spirituality
Here is what Javed Akhtar said about spirituality in another talk:

"Plato in his dialogues has said many a wise thing, and one of them is
before starting any discussion decide on the meanings of words. Let us try
to decide on the meaning of this word spirituality. Does it mean love for
mankind that transcends all religion, caste, creed, race? Is that so? Then I
have no problem. Except that I call it humanity. Does it mean love of
plants, trees, mountains, oceans, rivers, animals? The non-human world? If
that is so, again I have no problem at all. Except that I call it environmental
consciousness. Does spirituality mean heartfelt regard for social
institutions like marriage, parenthood, fine arts, judiciary, freedom of
expression. I have no problem again sir, how can I disagree here? I call it
civil responsibility. Does spirituality mean going into your own world
trying to understand the meaning of your own life? Who can object on
that? I call it self-introspection, self assessment. Does spirituality mean
Yoga? Thanks to Patanjali, who has given us the details of Yoga, Yam,
Yatam, aasan, pranayamWe may do it under any name, but if we are
doing pranayam, wonderful. I call it healthcare. Physical fitness.
Now is it a matter of only semantics. If all this is spirituality, then what
is the discussion. All these words that I have used are extremely
respectable and totally acceptable words. There is nothing abstract or
intangible about them. So why stick to this word spirituality? What is there
in spirituality that has not been covered by all these words? Is there
something? If that is so then what is that?
Somebody in return can ask me what is my problem with this word. I am
asking to change it, leave it, drop it, make it obsolete but why so? I will tell
you what is my reservation. If spirituality means all this then there is no
discussion. But there is something else which makes me uneasy. In a
dictionary, the meaning of spirituality is rooted in a word called spirit.
When mankind didnt know whether this earth is round or flat, he had
decided that human beings are actually the combination of two things.
Body and spirit. Body is temporary, it dies. But the spirit is, shall I say,
non-biodegradable. In your body you have a liver and heart and intestines
and the brain, but since the brain is a part of the body, and mind lies within
the brain, it is inferior because ultimately the brain too shall die with the
body, but dont worry, you are not going to die, because you are your spirit,
and the spirit has the supreme consciousness that will remain, and
whatever problem you have is because you listen to your mind. Stop
listening to your mind. Listen to your spirit the supreme consciousness
that knows the cosmic truth. All right. Its not surprising that in Pune there
is an ashram and I used to go there. I loved the oratory. On the gate of the
lecture hall there was a placard. Leave your shoes and minds here. There
are other gurus who dont mind if you carry your shoes. But minds?

Now, let me address something very important before I talk more about the
debate that happened. I have seen a lot of comments in that Youtube video
(Faith, Reason and Inner Engineering) attacking Javed Akhtar and labeling
him idiot and stupid. First of all, just because someone doesnt understand what
spirituality is, it doesnt mean that he is idiot or stupid. There are too many
factors into play, which makes a person to get frustrated with running on a
hedonic treadmill and search for a way to get liberated.
A lot of Jaggi Vasudevs own followers dont understand what spirituality is.
Before Osho died, he has said that only a very few people understood his
message. I read somewhere that J.Krishnamurti said something like Where did I
go wrong, why didnt these people understand me.. Many people who think
themselves as seekers actually start the journey with a curiosity or sometimes
even with blind faith.Many people think that being religious is being spiritual.
And all these people are not idiots..
A lot of you may have trouble explaining such things to your mom, dad, sister
and friends.. Would you call all of them as stupids? If you consider for a moment
that Javed Akhtar is also someone like your dad or granddad, you will not
indulge in personally attacking him while sitting in your arm chair.
What is Spirituality?
When you talk to the skeptics, it is very important to not to talk about things
which sound like woo woo or which are ambiguous. So, let me talk about what
authentic gurus actually mean when they use the word spirituality. We can take
two very popular words in our tradition to inquire into its actual meaning. One is
moksha which means liberation; the other is nirvana which means
extinction. Before I explain what exactly we mean by that, let me explain
another concept.
Human beings are always running on hedonic treadmill. What is it?

Hedonic adaptation is a process or mechanism that reduces the affective

impact of emotional events. Generally, hedonic adaptation involves a
happiness "set point", whereby humans generally maintain a constant level
of happiness throughout their lives, despite events that occur in their
environment. The process of hedonic adaptation is often conceptualized as
a treadmill, since one must continually work to maintain a certain level of

For most of the people, living our lives is like running on a treadmill. You
think you will be happy after getting a job. You feel happy for a while but then
you run for something else.. You may think marrying the love of your life will
make you happy. But the excitement of your marriage fades away and now you
want to buy a car. Then you want to buy a house.. But you never get the ultimate
satisfaction that you are aiming for. It is like a fire that is burning continuously;
the extinction of this fire is nirvana. It is a prison that keeps you trapped. The
liberation from this prison is moksha.
Why Javed Akhtar is not open to the idea that such a liberation is
From this debate and from other talks of Javed Akhtar, I have understood one
thing. He might have seen a lot of fake gurus. He might have noticed a lot of
cultish behavior from their followers too. Sadhguru also mentioned in the video
that just because one has seen some bad apples, that doesnt mean all apples are
But we also have to understand a reality. Most of the people today who are
posing as Gurus are frauds or somehow fooling themselves that they are
enlightened. Some of them may be intelligent , have good intentions and might
have even had some spiritual experiences. But they might have taken up a guru
role before the actual liberation has happened. Though there is no foolproof way
to find out if someone is enlightened, there are lot of indications that show that
someone is not, which will be obvious especially for people who are more
advanced in the path. After seeing the way such gurus are, it is not surprising to
me that Javed is not open to the fact that there is actually a way to get liberated
and that it is quite possible.
Because of this hardwired concept he has about gurus in general, I dont think
he will be ever open to something that comes from anyone who is called as a
guru. And a debate is certainly not a situation where such a thing can happen. He
may be more open to someone like J.Krishnamurthi. Or a better option would be
to gift him the book Waking up - Spirituality without religion written by Sam
Harris. :) I have read testimonies by some people who said that they were
skeptical about the truth of spiritual enlightenment but they became seekers after
reading this book.
Some comments about the debate and the points discussed:

1. I appreciate Javed for determining or mutually agreeing with the

meaning of the words in the beginning. Because, this is very
important since a lot of debates are semantic and happen because
of each person using a word to mean something different from
what the other person uses. A lot of confusion happens because of
confusions in the terminology. So, it is important for both the
parties to come to an agreement on what the words actually mean.
2. Sadhguru says philosophy is just a fantastic explanation of
aspects of life which can never be explained. He also says that he
doesnt have any philosophy. Thanks to him for mentioning what
he means by the word philosophy. This is again an example of
point 1, because he uses the word philosophy the same way
Osho used it. But coming up with such fantastic explanation of
aspects of life is only one aspect of Philosophy. Epistemology, a
subject that deals with how knowledge should be acquired is
philosophy. Scientific method that science uses is actually a
philosophy. Logic is also a part of philosophy.
3. Sadhguru says that there were no teachings in this country but
only methods. And he says that there were no believers in this
country but only seekers. This may sound good to hear but it is
not true. There have been countless teachings, philosophies and
even a lot of absurd ethics in this country. There has been
contradictory metaphysical theories in each school. What is
Manusmriti? It is not only a book of teachings but it had the most
cruel ideas about the caste system. The whole vedanta and
mimamsa schools are based on the belief that Vedas and
Upanishads are eternal , infallible and revealed through divine
revelation. I have talked more about it here: Shanmugam P's
answer to Which philosophy personally appeals more to you,
Buddha's Pratityasamutpada or Advaita Vedanta? . Also, there has
been countless wars based on the beliefs. For example, wars
between Shaivites and Vaishnavites, murders of countless jain
monks by the believers of Shiva etc. I am mentioning this because
many people who follow Sadhguru are so blind and they never
accept that Sadhguru can also be wrong.
4. After a few minutes have passed, you will notice personal attacks
from both sides. But do you see who started it? After Javed talked
about agreeing on terminology, Sadhguru ridiculed him for no
reason and commented about his intelligence. There is no reason
to do that. It doesnt look good for a man like Sadhguru.
5. Moderator asked a question to Sadhguru regarding the followers
who engage in wars and ready to kill. She is actually talking
about many people creating a cult of personality. I feel
Sadhguru should have addressed this issue because this is actually
becoming very ugly now. You can witness this in the comments
of that youtube video itself. I have talked more about this
here: Shanmugam P's answer to What advice would you like to
give to the followers of Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev?
6. She also asked regarding charging money for the courses and if
such courses are available for poor people. I dont have any issue
in charging money for the courses because it is difficult to
conduct courses like this without money, especially in metro
areas. But Sadhguru also mentioned that such courses are
conducted in rural areas for free. I have been hearing this quite a
lot, but has anyone questioned how true it is? How many such
free programs are conducted on a regular basis and how many
villages are covered? How often do they happen? Sadhguru
himself says that if one wants to attend such courses for free he
has to go to a village. But which village and when? No such
information is available in the course schedule of the Isha
website. I once sent an email inquiring the details but got no
response. Once you make a commitment to provide free courses
for poor people, there should be someway for those poor people
to find out about those courses. Dont you agree?
7. In the middle of the debate, you will hear Javed saying the most
anti-spiritual statement which is you are your mind.. :) You
cant really convince him anymore in a debate. :) But anyway, I
think the way Buddha approached this issue might have worked
in this scenario. Buddha didnt say You are not the mind, you are
not the body. He said, There is no you in the mind and there is
no you in the body. Buddhas approach was empirical and he put
it in a different way. And scientists and Buddha are in agreement
here. He said:

"Bhikkhus, feeling is not-self...

"Bhikkhus, perception is not-self...
"Bhikkhus, determinations are not-self...

But he never said what is actually You.. He left that to people to find out. He
was silent when people asked him metaphysical questions. He wont answer if
anyone asks What is the source of existence, why am i here
There is a beautiful parable called Parable of the poisoned arrow which is
about what Buddha said when someone asked metaphysical questions:

"It's just as if a man were wounded with an arrow thickly smeared with
poison. His friends & companions, kinsmen & relatives would provide him
with a surgeon, and the man would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed
until I know whether the man who wounded me was a noble warrior, a
priest, a merchant, or a worker.' He would say, 'I won't have this arrow
removed until I know the given name & clan name of the man who
wounded me... until I know whether he was tall, medium, or short... until I
know whether he was dark, ruddy-brown, or golden-colored... until I know
his home village, town, or city... until I know whether the bow with which I
was wounded was a long bow or a crossbow... until I know whether the
bowstring with which I was wounded was fiber, bamboo threads, sinew,
hemp, or bark... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded
was wild or cultivated... until I know whether the feathers of the shaft with
which I was wounded were those of a vulture, a stork, a hawk, a peacock,
or another bird... until I know whether the shaft with which I was wounded
was bound with the sinew of an ox, a water buffalo, a langur, or a monkey.'
He would say, 'I won't have this arrow removed until I know whether the
shaft with which I was wounded was that of a common arrow, a curved
arrow, a barbed, a calf-toothed, or an oleander arrow.' The man would die
and those things would still remain unknown to him"

Buddha was not interested in mystic musings. He was only interested in

showing people the way to liberation. It is because of the empirical approach
taken by Buddha, a lot of psychologists are interested in Buddhism more than
any other tradition.
Anyway, overall the debate was very entertaining and fun to watch. Javeds
posture and reaction was very funny. He seemed to be restless too. Needless to
say, Sadhguru made many insightful points in the debate.
8.About Adiyogi

Recently, a 112 foot Adiyogi statue was unveiled in Isha Foundation,

Coimbatore by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The beautiful statue was
designed by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev as a credit to the first yogi and as an
inspiration for the world. But who is the actual first yogi revered by yogic
tradition? Was it really the mystical Lord Shiva or someone else? Sadly, the
original Adi yogi has been forgotten and has been replaced by a carelessly spun
story by Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev.

Let me first quote the story as it is narrated by Sadhguru.

Story of AdiYogi as narrated by Sadhguru

When we say Shiva, there are two fundamental aspects that we are
referring to. The word Shiva literally means that which is not. On
another level, when we say Shiva, we are referring to a certain yogi, the
Adiyogi or the first yogi, and also the Adi Guru, the first Guru, who is the
basis of what we know as the yogic science today.
In the yogic culture, Shiva is not seen as a God. He was a being who
walked this land and lived in the Himalayan region. As the very source of
the yogic traditions, his contribution in the making of human consciousness
is too phenomenal to be ignored. This predates all religion.
Over 15,000 years ago, Adiyogi appeared in the upper regions of the
Himalayas. No one knew where he came from or what his origins were. He
just came and went into intense ecstatic dance upon the mountains.
People saw that he was experiencing something that nobody had known
before, something that they were unable to fathom. So they gathered
around him wanting to know what it was. But no one had the courage to go
near him because he was so intense, like a blazing flame of fire. So they
waited, hoping something would happen. Some people waited for months
and left and Only seven hardcore seekers stuck on. These seven were
insistent that they must learn from him, but Shiva ignored them. They
pleaded and begged him, Please, we want to know what you know.
At last after 84 years of intense sadhana,he decided to become a Guru.
On a full moon day which is known as Guru Pournami because the
Adiyogi transformed himself into the Adi Guru the first Guru was born
on that day. He took the seven disciples to Kantisarovar and started a
systematic exposition of yoga in a scientific manner. He began
propounding the whole mechanics of life to these seven people, not
intellectually as a philosophy, but experientially. He explored every nut and
bolt of creation with them. He brought forth yoga as a technology with
which every human being can evolve himself.
The transmission went on for a long period of time. After many years,
when it was complete and had produced seven fully enlightened beings,
who are today celebrated as the Sapta Rishis, Adiyogi sent each one of
them to different parts of the world. One went to Central Asia. Another
went to North Africa and the Middle East, where certain schools exist even
today. Another went to South America, and that is one culture that imbibed
it in a deep way and made something big out of it. One went to East Asia.
One stayed right there with Adiyogi. Another one came to the lower
regions of the Himalayas and started what is known as Kashmiri Shaivism.
Another one went south into the Indian Peninsula. This one is very
important for us because he is Agastya Muni. Of the seven Sapta Rishis,
Agastya Muni has been the most effective in terms of bringing the spiritual
process into practical life, not as a teaching, philosophy or a practice, but
as life itself. It is the benefit of what he did that the Indian people are still
enjoying because he produced hundreds of yogis who were like fireballs."
and it goes on.

First, it looks like Sadhguru has mixed two different stories and made them
into one story. I dont mean that Sadhguru would have intentionally done that.
Regardless of whether someone is enlightened or not, human memory has its
limitations. Sadhguru probably heard these stories long time ago and due to
memory errors, he might have made the two stories into one, which narrates
something that never happened. I dont blame Sadhguru, but the blind followers
who simply take whatever Sadhguru says as correct.
I think it is important to make a few things clear. Let me first discuss who this
Shiva is and a story from mythology that talks about Dakshinamurthy. Then I
will talk about the real Adi yogi, who initiated 8 sages and sent them to different
parts of the world.
Who is Shiva?
First, the word Shiva doesnt mean that which is not, as said by Sadhguru. I
have no idea how he came up with such a meaning. The word Shiva means
auspicious, which has always been used as an adjective in Vedas. The word has
been used for many deities, not just Rudra, the earliest form of Lord Shiva that
we know today. It was just a word used to honour someone. Slowly, the word
Shiva got associated with the Vedic deity Rudra.
Second, mythology is not history. The stories in mythology might have been
created for various reasons: to convey deep mystic teachings in the form of a
story, to help people to develop devotion for a personified form of the ultimate
truth as an aid towards self-realization, to entertain people etc. A puranic story
always has multiple contradictory versions, each of them created by people to
glorify their own favourite personal God.
Sadhguru has many times indicated that this Adiyogi is the same as
Dakshinamoorthy. But the story of Dakshinamoorthy and the story of the
Adiyogi who sent 8 rishis to different parts of the world are two entirely different
Let me narrate a puranic story. When Lord Brahma was doing his work of
creation, he created many sons from different parts of his body. Four of his sons
named Sanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana and Sanatkumara were born from the mind
of Brahma. These four people became Brahmacharis against the wish of their
father. It is also said that Brahma became very angry because of that, and out of
anger Rudra, the earliest form of Shiva was born.
But in Shaivite traditions, it is said that these four people approached Shiva
who then assumed the form of Dakshinamoorthy to teach them. He taught them
about Self-realization using chin mudra that symbolically shows how a person
realizes the ultimate truth. That was all his teaching! According to the story, he
just taught the essence of all the scriptures by a small gesture. Note that this
applies to all traditions, not just Yoga. Most of the Indian schools of thought like
Advaita, Yoga, and Samkya have the same essence even though they use
different terminologies.
There are different stories associated with these four kumaras. Some of them
are contradictory. Each purana has its own version. So, it is very clear that
Dakshinamoorthy is a pure form created for devotion and sadhana, not a
historical being who walked on the earth. And Dakshninamoorthy was not
shown as teaching traditional Yoga at all. He is clearly not the Adiyogi of the
yogic tradition. But this is not to deny the significance of Dakshinamoorthy in
anyway. He is a great symbolic representation of enlightenment.
Who is the real Adiyogi?
During 200 BC or 300 BC, a great yogi called Nandhi natha lived in mount
Kailash. He was a real human being who walked this planet and was the guru of
the great Patanjali. He initiated 8 disciples (Sanatkumar, Sanakar, Sanadanar,
Sananthanar, Shivayogamuni, Patanjali, Vyaghrapada, and Tirumular) and sent
them to various parts of the world including central Asia to spread Advaita
Shaivism. The whole Yogic tradition goes back to Patanjali whose Guru was
Nandi natha. Nandi Natha also composed a poem with 26 verses called
Nandikeshvara Kashika.
Even today, the Nandhi natha yogic tradition regards Nandi natha as the
Adiyogi. A school of this lineage called Adi Natha does regard Shiva as the first
yogi, but that was just a title given to Nandinatha, since Shiva means
Tirumular, a well known Tamil saint and the disciple of Nandhinatha was
actually the one sent by Adi yogi to south India to spread this school (not
Agasthiya). Shiva sending sage Agasthiya to South India to balance the earth
was just another puranic story and even that story doesnt say that he was sent to
south India to teach Yoga, as Sadhguru narrates.(Again, this is not to deny the
significance of Agasthiya; He was a great Siddha who made great contribution to
the world).
Vigyan Bhairav Tantra 112 techniques for Yoga
Sadhguru also says that Adiyogi statue is 112 feet high and this is to represent
the 112 techniques given by Lord Shiva. These 112 techniques are from Vigyan
Bhairav Tantra, which is claimed to be a part of ancient Kashmir Shaivaite text
called Rudrayamala. It was composed by an unknown author sometime around
8th century AD as a form of imaginary conversation between Shiva and Shakthi.
So, this Vigyan Bhairav Tantra is in no way related to the Adiyogi Nandhi
natha or a historical man called Shiva. The whole text of Vigyan Bhairav Tantra
was actually popularized by Osho all over the world. Vigyan Bhairav Tantra is a
very rare text which was translated to English by Paul Reps based on the
commentary given by Swami Lakshman Joo Raina, a self-realized mystic of
Kashmir Shaivism. The translation of Paul Reps was used by Osho to give his
own commentaries.
The credit of popularizing Vigyan Bhairav Tantra goes to these three people:
Lakshman Joo, Paul Reps and Osho. Without them, not many people would have
known about this valuable text.
As I already mentioned in my previous article The Journey of a Seeker,
Sadhguru uses so many anecdotes, information, views and ideas given by Osho
but never gives him credit. Osho was a honest and courageous man who created
a great worldwide awareness about self-realization. He was the first man to
popularize the fact that there is nothing wrong for a self-realized man to live a
normal life with all the luxuries of the world. If Osho didnt have the courage to
own 92 Rolls Royces and still claim enlightenment, we wouldnt be accepting
Sadhguru owning a helicopter or playing golf. It is easier to accept Sadhguru
now because we have already seen Osho like this. Osho did all the ground work
but the poor man doesnt get the credit.
The Adiyogi statue looks beautiful, there is no question. But he didnt build
this statue to give credit for whoever the adiyogi was. It is simply a statue of
Lord Shiva built to attract crowds and tourists. If Sadhguru is the kind of man
who gives credit to people, then he would have given credit to Nandhi Natha
(the actual Adi yogi) and Osho already.
9.Sadhguru doesn't want to say 'I don't know"

This is again another answer that I wrote in Quora.

Here is the actual Question:
"Why does Sadhguru seem to claim that he knows the whole thing?

I have seen sadhguru videos on Youtube and I was impressed by his

clarity of thoughts. But in some of the videos e.g.
He is giving the completely unrelated answer to the question that was
asked in this video. His answer was not even close to the realty what we
know about time travel from science. But I know he is not a physicist, so
he should accept it.
Apart from this incident when talk comes to science he seems to argue with
his own theories but that doesn't fit with the science argument. Yet he
seems to claim that he knows all about the Universe and Existence."

My Answer:

In the video, the questioner asks: Is time travel possible? Particularly when
you hear Babaji has been living for 1000 years in Himalayas?
First of all, it is not clear whether her actual question is about time travel or
Babaji living for 1000 years in Himalayas. Because, both are two different
things. Time travel is the concept of movement between certain points in time.
But Babaji is not believed to be doing a time travel; He is believed to have been
living throughout the last 1000 years with an astral body.
He begins to answer the question regarding how Babaji is able to live for 1000
And he starts by saying that he usually avoids talking about things which are
not in peoples experience. He says that it is because people imagine all kinds of
things and there is no limit to their imagination. That is 100% true. We create all
kinds of imaginary concepts and imagine that our kundalini is rising or that we
are able to sense a dead persons presence.
Osho has talked a lot about this and have explained how our mind plays
games. You may feel an ant crawling in your back and you may think that your
kundalini is raising! A lot of people in the world get into delusional states after
reading some books regarding some paranormal states and start to imagine
things. Also, in extreme cases, your brain can actually cheat you and even
convince that what you see is real. It is even possible to have a conversation with
God in a physical form. Sometimes the effects may be positive and you may feel
better. But if the effects are bad, they call it as schizophrenia. And you may start
seeing Babaji one day, a babaji who seem to exist only in your own perception.
(By the way, this you is not addressed to the OP in specific, I am just using the
word you for convenience)
After saying this, anyhow Sadhguru decides to talk about it.And he tries to
give the reason why Babaji can live for 1000 years. He says that these people are
able to retain their subtle bodies and recreate their bodies whenever it is
necessary. We have no way of knowing if this is true.
But anyway, if a persons goal is liberation, if he or she wants to end his/her
suffering, knowing why Babaji can live for 1000 years doesnt contribute even
one iota towards it. A person can be liberated and attain moksha without
knowing a single thing about any of these theories. The only purpose it can serve
is to fulfill ones curiosity, add another belief to his mind, give a feeling of
having known something new and give a temptation to repeat this to everyone
who doesnt know about it. If you add a thousand of such beliefs to a persons
mind, he will start to think that he is enlightened.
How did Sadhguru come to know about it? No one usually questions this
because they think that once they get enlightened, they will somehow mystically
know everything.
Such a question was put to Sadhguru once and this is what he said:

"This is not coming from remembrance. This was transmitted in a

different way. My association with my Guru was just for a few moments.
Somehow, he did not even want to touch me with his foot. He touched me
with his walking stick. What cannot be learned in ten lifetimes was
transmitted in one moment"

He claims that information and facts can be stored in energy and can be
transmitted, just like how data can be stored in a chip.
And Sadhguru would deny having read any books about spirituality. But, in
that video he actually goes on to talk about something that he might have read in
the past and vaguely remembers.
And you are right, he doesnt want to say I dont know here.. He would
probably never ever say I dont know even though that is the first advice that
he gives to anyone.
After saying that these people are able to retain their subtle bodies and
recreate their bodies whenever it is necessary, he explains that it is called
Let me explain a few things about the origin of the concept of Nirmanakaya.
Nirmanakaya doesnt really have a magical meaning. It is a term used in
Mahayana Buddhism. It talks about three bodies (Trikaya doctrine). But
nirmanakaya just means your actual bodies. Your hand, legs, eyes and everything
belongs to nirmanakaya. In other words, Nirmanakaya just means your actual
body, thats it! Nirmanakaya just means the body which is manifest or created.
(Nirmana - manifestation or construction)..
In Trikaya doctrine that developed in Mahayana, a Buddha is said to have
three bodies: Nirmanakaya, sambhogakaya, dhammakaya

1. Nirmanakaya: In this doctrine, nirmanakaya means the actual

physical body of Buddha

2. Sambhogakaya - Enjoyment body. (It is believed that a Buddha can choose

to appear in Sambhogakaya in some specific pure lands but not on earth.But note
that all these concepts are unique to specific sects of Mahayana Buddhism only)
3. Dhammakaya - Truth body. This is actually not a body at all. This is truth
itself. What we call as Brahman in Vedanta is called as Dhammakaya.
Dhammakaya is the Kingdom of God (The Kingdom of God is within you -
Luke 17:21).
It is your inner light (Be a light unto yourself - Buddha)
It is the true Sadhguru (the Guru is within - Ramana Maharshi)
We all know about the physical body. We really dont have to worry about the
second body (sambhogakaya). It doesnt matter. All we need to worry about is
the truth, Dhammakaya.
It is important to note here that Buddha never talked about sambhogakaya or
nirmanakaya. We dont have anything in Pali canon that says Buddha ever talked
about Sambhogakaya. But he did indeed mention dhammakaya, as per the Pali

He whose faith in the Tathagata is settled, rooted, established, solid,

unshakeable by any ascetic or Brahmin, any deva or mara or Brahma or
anyone in the world, can truly say: 'I am a true son of Blessed Lord
(Bhagavan), born of his mouth, born of Dhamma, created by Dhamma, an
heir of Dhamma.' Why is that? Because, Vasettha, this designates the
Tathagata: 'The Body of Dhamma,' that is, 'The Body of Brahma,' or
'Become Dhamma,' that is, 'Become Brahma
- Digha Nikaya III.84, Maurice Walshe, The Long Discourses of the
Buddha, (Boston, MA: Wisdom Publications, 1995) 409

(After reading the line I am a true son of Blessed Lord from the above quote,
I used to wonder if that is why Jesus said I am the son of God. There are many
books that say that Jesus was in India and was a Buddhist student during his
unknown years. Of course, we dont have a sure way of knowing. Many books
claim so many things about his unknown years)
The bottom line is, there are so many concepts that are talked about in
countless scriptures in many traditions that we really dont have to worry about.
What we have to know is within us, very close to us and it only takes to remove
the ignorance that feels like we are separate from the existence. Yes. It takes
years and years of practice but not years and years of knowing things,
accumulating information and wondering about Babaji or time travel.
Back to your actual question. Finally, Sadhguru completes with something
that is totally unnecessary. He says that finally scientists have come to a
conclusion that there are certain things which are illogical but scientists are not
willing to admit that it is illogical. Instead they choose to call it as Fuzzy logic.
Here, he not only doesnt want to say I dont know. He pretends to
know what he is talking about. Second, he tries to ridicule science and
scientists as he often does.
First, something that is illogical is not the same as something that is beyond
logic. The absolute reality is beyond logic. It is not some kind of objective truth
that can be attained by using logic and reasoning alone. We also need meditation.
But illogical is something that is totally nonsense or logically fallacious. And
fuzzy logic is entirely different from these two. It is definitely not in the scope of
Sadhgurus expertise to talk about and it is not even related to the question
asked. Why does he want scientists to admit something as illogical?
He will avoid a lot of criticisms about him by just not talking about these
things. In fact, that discourse in the video would have gone quite well
without having to make those statements in the end. Can you think of any
objection to what I just said?