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Volume 6 / Issue 03 Mar 2018

Here – Yes Here


Born of bodily fluids
guaranteed of an earthly end
Promises of heaven have turned
mortal men into immortal menace.
Those who made up eternal
life will not value the bit
of life that is here and Now.

Life here distorted by promises


of hereafter. Just for you to
know, those who don’t make
it here shall not make it anywhere

It is Here and Here that


the Hereafter is hidden.

Grace & Blessings


EDITORIAL

Dear Readers,

In this month’s Lead Article, Sadhguru addresses the question “How to Deal
with the Loss of a Loved One?” A great chance to get a broader perspective
on this universally relevant matter before life confronts us with it. In “Why Go
to Kailash,” Sadhguru points to the ultimate reality of our physical existence
while explaining how to approach this ultimate destination of pilgrimage. On
a lighter note, in this month’s In Conversation with the Mystic article, popular
actress Rakul Preet Singh proves her inquisitive nature with questions such
as “Does the Law of Attraction Really Work?”

Our Mahabharat story “Arjuna Fights the Gandharvas” could be seen


as another example of cause and effect, how intentions to harm others
eventually backfire – in this case how Duryodhana’s plan to additionally
humiliate the Pandavas eventually leads to his own humiliation. Bowing
down, but out of one’s own choice, is one of the main qualities that Sadhguru
discusses in “Adi Shankara – What Makes a Great Being,” an excerpt from
Sadhguru Spot.

The event highlights of the past weeks span from the Arabian Peninsula,
across the Indian subcontinent, to Southeast Asia. As Yaksha and
Mahashivaratri 2018 happen after our editorial deadline, we’ll give a recap
of these immensely rich and deep events in the next issue. With the arrival
of the summer, boost your energy level and sense of wellbeing by adding
some “live food” to your diet! This month’s recipe, a “Green Gram Sprout
Salad,” is a fresh and nutrient-rich option. Enjoy!

The Editorial Team

Contact the Editorial Team:


Isha Forest Flower, Isha Yoga Center, Velliangiri Foothills, IshanaVihar Post, Coimbatore – 641114
forestflower@ishafoundation.org

For subscription inquiries, please contact our Subscription Office:


(044) 48611137, 96770 16700 – subscriptions.FF@ishafoundation.org
To change your mailing address online, visit: www.ishafoundation.org/ForestFlower

Disclaimer: Readers are recommended to make appropriate inquiries before sending money,
incurring expenses or entering into commitments in relation to any advertisement appearing in this
publication. Isha Foundation does not vouch for any claims made by the advertisers of products and
services. The printer, publisher, office bearers, editor-in-chief and the editor of Isha Foundation shall not
be held liable for any consequences in the event of such claims not being honored by the advertisers.

2 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


CONTENTS
LEAD ARTICLE MAHABHARAT

How to Deal with the Loss of


a Loved One? 08 Part 40: Arjuna Fights the
Gandharvas 11
IN CONVERSATION WITH THE MYSTIC
Does the Law of Attraction Really Work? 04
Rakul Preet Singh in Conversation with the Mystic

LEAD ARTICLE
How to Deal with the Loss of a Loved One? 08

MUSINGS
Why Go to Kailash? 11

MAHABHARAT
Arjuna Fights the Gandharvas 14

NEWS & EVENTS


Sadhguru in the Emirates / Pongal Celebrations at the Isha Yoga Center 15
Bringing Devi Home / Acknowledging Adi Shankara
Sadhguru in Pune / Sadhguru in Thailand
A Super Blue Blood Moon with Adiyogi / Exploring the Core of the Human Body and Being
Spiritual Wellbeing for Armed Forces

SADHGURU SPOT
Adi Shankara – What Makes a Great Being? 18

UPCOMING PROGRAMS & EVENTS


Isha Program and Event Highlights 20

ISHA RECIPES
Green Gram Sprout Salad 21

ZEN SPEAKS
Because I’m Here 23

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 3


IN CONVERSATION Does the Law of Attraction
WITH THE MYSTIC
Really Work?
Rakul Preet Singh in Conversation with the Mystic

In this engaging excerpt from an “In Conversation with the Mystic” event, popular film actress Rakul
Preet Singh quizzes Sadhguru about the “the law of attraction,” how to design one’s destiny, and how to
stop complicating life and start experiencing its beauty.
Rakul Preet Singh: Now coming to intention, when way, you send out positive signals…
you give your thought out to the universe, like the
law of attraction… Sadhguru: To whom?

Sadhguru: You’ve been reading all these Rakul Preet Singh: To the universe.
American books!
Sadhguru: Which direction? Up or down?
Rakul Preet Singh: I’ve read Inner Engineering as
well. I’m just curious about things like the law Rakul Preet Singh: That’s what I’m asking. How
of attraction, where they say that anything that does the law of attraction really work?
you ask, believe, and sent out to the universe in
a constant direction, will happen. Because they Sadhguru: It doesn’t work!
say that you design your destiny, you design
your life. Like you just happen to say that with Rakul Preet Singh: It doesn’t work? So what works?
your conscious efforts, you can have control over How do you design your destiny?
your life. I mean you are sending out a positive
signal; great. Sadhguru: The law of attraction is something that
happens between opposites. Whether it is two
Sadhguru: No, I did not agree with that. You made magnets, male and female, North Pole and South
a theory – there are lots of holes. Pole, this and that – it is always between two
opposites. Now you are talking about the universe
Rakul Preet Singh: Okay, so you do not agree. My – so that means you are an alien to this universe?
question is, if you want your life to be in a certain
4 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018
Rakul Preet Singh: Part of the universe. Now you wish for something…. I want you to know
this, for most people, at least fifty percent of what
Sadhguru: If you are part of the universe, what is they wish happens. It is just that they are focusing
there to be attracted about? on a few things that did not happen. In a reasonably
well settled society, even ninety percent of what
Rakul Preet Singh: Well, why do they say that you you wish happens – it is the ten percent you are
can design your own destiny? complaining about. You never enjoy the ninety
percent because this ten percent did not happen
Sadhguru: You can! You can determine your the way you wanted.
destiny; you should – that’s what being human
means. See, if you had come here like any other So already, to a large extent, you are in control of
creature on this planet, they have compulsive your destiny. A little is going off, but that little can
cycles they live by. It’s okay for them because bother you. It’s like, let’s say, you have to drive a
that’s all they are capable of. Actually, if you look hundred kilometers. Ninety kilometers, you went
at your life, you are not doing anything greatly properly where you want to go; at the ninety-first
different from what the other creatures are doing. kilometer, you crashed. That’s why people are
They are born – you are born. You grow up – they complaining. I’m not saying they are complaining
grow up. They reproduce – you reproduce. They for nothing. Just before reaching, something
die – you die. Nothing very different, but we can crashed. So they still suffer for that. This is because
conduct these same simple things consciously. not all situations will ever happen the way we want
That is the significant thing about being human. it, because a situation is not just you – so many
Let’s say you conduct your hand consciously, people, so many forces are involved. All of them
now this hand will do what you want. Suppose need not happen my way. But if I’m happening my
you conduct your thought consciously, now your way, I’m blissful. Whether the golf ball flies straight
thought will do what you want. If your thought or goes into the mountains – I’m still blissful.
was doing what you want, how would you keep
yourself – blissful or miserable? Rakul Preet Singh: Right. As long as you are
playing golf.
Rakul Preet Singh: Blissful.
Sadhguru: Even if I am not playing. [Laughs]
Sadhguru: If you are blissful, would you go in
search of happiness? Rakul Preet Singh: Right. So now, as long as things
happen your way, and you’re on your own path and
Rakul Preet Singh: No, if you are blissful, you are you are blissful and…
just satisfied….
Sadhguru: No, no, no. I’m not saying as long as
Sadhguru: If you are blissful, your life would not be things happen your way, you will be blissful. If you
in pursuit of happiness. These things that people are blissful, it doesn’t matter which way it happens.
think are the greatest things in their life – to be Whichever way it happens, you are blissful.
peaceful, joyful, nonsense – wouldn’t mean a Essentially, the world has put the cart before the
thing to you when you are blissful. If your thought horse. Right now, you are sitting here. Is it easier
and emotion were taking instruction from you, to take charge of yourself or to take charge of all
would you keep yourself in the highest level of these people?
pleasantness, whatever that is?
Rakul Preet Singh: Myself.
Rakul Preet Singh: Correct.
Sadhguru: Yourself. You must first do that now,
Sadhguru: Yes. If that happens, your entire life which is simple and easy. If you take charge of
process will come to a total ease. Right now, you yourself, let us see how much cooperation you can
are like a crouching tiger – you always have to get get from these people. When you’re in pursuit of
something. There is nothing to get. If you sit here, happiness, what this means is you want all of them
your life is complete – now it’s at total ease. When to function the way you want. When we say, “If this
it’s in this kind of ease, it will become perceptive. happens, I will be happy. If that happens, I will be
Just pursuing a profession, making money, or even happy,” it means the world, the universe should
being joyful or being loving or falling in love, nothing respond your way.
means anything to you, because just sitting here,
the highest level of pleasantness is happening to Rakul Preet Singh: That’s not what I am saying, no.
you. So, what would you do with that life? Naturally, I don’t believe in that because that’s trying to put
you would explore something that is not in your conditionality into everything that you know. What
perception right now. This is how spiritual process I was saying was, to give a very basic example of
begins; this is how you take charge of your life. what you are going to do in life, let’s say someone

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 5


wants to be an actor, or someone wants to be a Rakul Preet Singh: Not that law of attraction….
cricketer. I mean the one where the universe gives you what
you want.
Sadhguru: Let’s say it did not happen. “It did not
happen” means what? People did not like your Sadhguru: Where is the universe, I am asking!
acting; the selectors did not like your cricket –
something like this. What you wanted did not Rakul Preet Singh: Right, we are a part of
happen. Can you still sit here blissfully? That’s the the universe.
question.
Sadhguru: When the seven sages, who are today
Rakul Preet Singh: Not a lot of people. known as the Saptarishis, asked Adiyogi, “Where
does the universe begin? Where does it end? How
Sadhguru: That is why I am saying, when you big is it? What is it?” Adiyogi laughed and said, “I
expect everyone should like what you are doing, in can pack your entire cosmos into a mustard seed.”
some way, you have to take charge of their minds. That’s a very efficient packing. What you think is
In some way, through your movies or whatever, you time and space is based on the nature of your mind.
are taking charge of their minds. You are doing If you transcend the limitations of your logical mind,
what appeals to them, and that’s why it’s working. what is there is here; what is here is there; what is
So, which is easier, taking charge of yourself or then is now; what is now is then; everything, time
taking charge of others? Yourself. If you take and space, get mixed up in your perception. When
charge of yourself, now you are not in pursuit of this happens, you won’t be talking to the universe.
your happiness; you are not tensed about anything; Those who are not on talking terms with their
there is no sword hanging over your head. You will neighbors talk to the universe. [Laughter]
do everything to the fullest, to the hilt.
A Different Level of Freedom
Whatever happens, you’ll still be fine – this much
you know. Now you’ll naturally do everything Rakul Preet Singh: I think anyone talking to you
wonderfully well, because there is absolutely or listening to your speeches or following you
no concern, since you are not a vested interest feels that life is really simple and beautiful and
anymore. You will do what is needed, without any full of love. Everywhere, things around us exude
effort. What someone else thinks is a great circus love; things around us have life. But how difficult
and a feat, you will do joyfully, playfully. is it for people to understand that life is simple,
and why do you think the smallest things have
been complicated by human race so much – be
it relationships, be it marriages, be it love, be it
work – there are just so many superficial things,
and people are missing out on small joys of life.
They just don’t live life the way it’s supposed to be.
What is it that you would say would be step one for
everyone to at least start looking into that direction
of feeling that life is beautiful?

Sadhguru: Life is neither beautiful nor ugly nor is


it love nor hate. It is just that you can be beautiful
within yourself or you can be ugly, you can be
loving or you cannot be loving. “Everywhere, love
is exuding” – no! This will take you to a La La Land.

Rakul Preet Singh: No, I mean everyone is lovely


here; I don’t have a problem with anyone, but not
everyone is going to look at it that way.

Sadhguru: Now I must tell you something. This


happened: a young widow went to the cemetery
Rakul Preet Singh: Right. Well, you just completely to visit the grave that she was dedicated to, but
negated the fact that there is a law of attraction. she had a seven year boy. That boy, who was
There is nothing like that. just learning to read and write, ran all over the
cemetery, reading all the inscriptions. He came
Sadhguru: No, there is. I’m sure a lot of people are back to his mother after twenty, thirty minutes and
attracted to you. said, “Momma, where do they bury all the horrible
people?” It is not true that everyone is beautiful –

6 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


people can be extremely ugly. If you are beautiful, continuous problems; the worst kind of drama was
you can transform even that ugliness to some happening, a completely disastrous life, but he
extent. Will everyone come your way? No, they will remained balanced. He did his administration and
not. If they don’t come your way, will you become whatever work he had to do with such balance and
ugly? No. That is the important thing. efficiency that after thousands of years, when we
talk about an ideal nation, we say “Rama Rajya.”
The essential thing is this: whatever happened
in his life, if just one of those things happened to
someone, most people will crack up. He was facing
serial disasters, but still he was doing everything
to the best of his ability in the given moment and
fulfilling his duties, whatever he had to do.

It is this absolute freedom he had from the drama


that was happening around him. This is mukti. As
he was alive, he was free – this is jeevan-mukti. It
is that freedom that we are bowing down to, not
his being a king or a god or whatever. Because the
man remained free of the extreme drama that was
When things don’t happen your way, are you still continuously happening around him.
capable of being a beautiful human being? That
is all you have to fix. If you fix that one thing,
everything is fine. When nothing happens your way,
are you still a beautiful human being? This is the
only thing that this culture has ever worshipped.
You know, Rama is hugely worshipped. He had

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March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 7


LEAD ARTICLE

How to Deal with the Loss


of a Loved One?
Questioner: Sadhguru, I lost my wife five weeks tells you that you are going to die tomorrow, then
ago. She was such a good person. Why did this everyone comes and shows you their best face. If
have to happen to her? you say, “I’m going to die after fifty years,” most
people won’t care. But we don’t know whether it
will be in fifty years or tomorrow. You know you will
Sadhguru: When we lose someone who is dear
die and they will die. You just don’t know when.
to us – either by death, disease, or desertion –
So, shouldn’t you show your best face to them?
whichever way we lose them, the biggest problem is
I’m showing my best face to you because I know
that they leave an empty space, the space that they
you will die. Sometimes, I know when you will die.
had occupied in our lives. We need to understand
Many times, I don’t know when you will die. I’m just
the very nature of life is such that you and your
making sure I show my best face to you because
loved ones have to die at some point. Who will die
you are a dying person.
first is the only question. This may sound brutal,
but that is not the intention. It is very important
to come to terms with these things. Otherwise, This is true for every human being. This is true for
we will tell ourselves pretty things that will solace every life. Who knows when the tree outside your
us for today, and tomorrow morning, reality will house will die. Or when you will die. You don’t know.
torment us again. Again and again, we will do the So, when people dear to us pass away, one thing is
same thing. they are dear to us because they have enhanced
our lives in some way, maybe in many ways. If
people around us have enhanced our lives and we
It is important for us to know that we and those
cherish them, we must cherish them joyfully – we
around us are not going to be here forever. Nobody
should not rue their exit. We should value them for
is going to be here forever. When we are here, we
the enhancement they have brought to our lives;
must show everyone our best face. Because all
for the sweetness and tenderness they may have
of them are dying. The problem is only if a doctor
shared with us. In some way, at least sometimes,

8 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


they made you feel complete; they made your life This is all in preparation for your exit. Your load
feel complete. Let their memory always bring tears gets reduced a bit, so that when you go, you will
of joy and love to you, not of grief. go more easily. This is not some philosophy –
this is the way life is happening. Because you
refuse to look life in the face, you make up your
They mattered to you because in some way, they
own images in your mind. And you want to make
were wonderful to you. Let the memory of them
these psychological pictures into a reality. The
bring back those wonderful aspects to you, rather
psychological drama you create will never become
than drive you into grief and depression. Driving
reality. You have to draw the curtain someday.
yourself into grief and depression means you have
The sooner you are disillusioned, the better. You
not come to terms with the most fundamental
may come to your senses, or you may become
aspect of life – mortality. Whether they are good
depressed. That’s your choice.
or bad, they all will die. This is not to ridicule your
loss. I understand what your deceased loved ones
mean to you. But I want you to remember them When life disillusions you, you may sit up
for all the wonderful things that they were. Not for and become enlightened, or you may become
making yourself feel terrible about their exit. If you depressed. If all the illusions go away, that is
had died before them, you would have left them in a called self-realization. Right now, you are hanging
bad place – so, please stand up as a human being. on to illusions, valuing them and being identified
with them so much that you are fighting to keep
them. This is maya – it goes on as if it is real, until
Whatever wonderful things that happened to you
suddenly, it is gone. In a way, you always knew it.
in some way, have to find expression. If they have
From the moment you were born, your clock has
done wonderful things to you, if they have meant
been ticking, and one day, it will stop.
many wonderful things to you, please express that
to those who are still living around you. This is how
life goes on. When I say “life,” I’m talking about life
per se, not what you do. You generally think life is Driving yourself into grief and depression
your family, your work, your business, your wealth, means you have not come to terms with the
whatever else you possess. But these are all
most fundamental aspect of life – mortality.
accessories of life. You brought in money, wealth,
relationships, children, thinking it will enhance
your lives in some way. You gathered so many
accessories, and you got so involved, attached, Well, we try to stretch it. We try to slow it down. We
and identified with these accessories that you try to make best use of the time we have. We try to
never experienced this life that you are. make it as profound as possible. It is very important
that life touches you. If life should touch you on a
deeper level, you have to put down the world that
Most people believe life is the collage of things that
you have made up in your mind. If you don’t put
they have gathered. When a piece of the collage
down your illusions, the most profound dimensions
falls off, you suddenly feel as if life is gone, which is
of life will never touch you. Only drama will go on.
not true. Even before certain people came into your
This is not only a question about somebody’s
life, you were alive, you laughed, you knew joy. You
death – this is about your fundamental ignorance
added people believing it will enhance your life, or
about life. It’s time you come to your senses.
maybe there was some need to fulfill – all that is
okay. But now, because of your identifications, you
think a piece of life is gone when a certain person If all your illusions break right now, if you are
is gone. The reality is the piece of life that you absolutely disillusioned, you are also enlightened.
are is still there – the accessories are falling off But you do not allow yourself to be disillusioned.
over time. As you age, your grandfather will die, If one illusion breaks, you make up the next one.
your father will die; sometimes, your spouse will There is a story about Narada. One day it happened,
die. Some people will lose their hair. Some people Krishna and Narada were walking. They had just
will even lose their head – this is not a joke. Some passed a village. In the jungle, Krishna sat down
people will lose parts of their bodies. Some people and said, “Narada, I’m feeling very thirsty. Why
will lose relationships. Some people will lose don’t you get me a glass of water?” Immediately
things, power, position, or money. Narada said, “No problem. I’ll just go to the village
and get you one.” He went back to the village and

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 9


knocked at the door of the first house. The door
Then he clung onto his life. Out of sheer desperation,
opened, and a very pretty looking young woman
having lost everybody, he screamed, “Krishna!”
opened the door. Narada looked at her, and it hit
Krishna said, “Where’s my glass of water?” Then
him like a thunderbolt. He fell head over heels
Narada woke up and said, “But what happened to
for her. He asked the girl’s father for her hand in
me?” Krishna said, “This is maya.” Maya means
marriage. The father agreed. Narada married her.
you weave so many illusions in your mind that they
become more real than the real. What is happening
Once he got married, he had to build a small home in your mind, what is happening in your emotions
for himself and his wife, and he started plowing becomes far more real than the real itself. It is
the land. Then obviously, children came – one, like a cinema theater – lights turned off; you are
two, three, four, five. The children grew up, got watching. It is a two dimensional light and sound
married, and they themselves had children. Cute play. But you love the cinema stars more than the
little grandchildren were running all over the place. people you have lived with for twenty-five years.
Everything was going great. Just then, the river You have never even seen them in real life, but they
changed its course, and a flood came and literally are larger than life.
took the village. Narada with his wife, children,
and the little babies, climbed onto a tree and
What is happening in your mind is just like that – it
hung onto the tree. But the flood rose and rose.
is larger than life. But the lights will come on one
The cute grandchildren got washed away in the
day. Will it be the lights of enlightenment, or will
water. Narada cried bitterly. Then, one-by-one,
it be the lighting of your cremation fire – that’s
his children, their wives, all of them went away. He
your choice.
clung onto his dear wife. But after some time, she
also went.

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10 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


MUSINGS

Why Go to Kailash?
At the foot of Kailash, in Darchen, Tibet, in August 2017, Sadhguru addressed participants of
the Kailash Manasarovar Sacred Walks, in order to make it clear to them what a pilgrimage to
Kailash really means, and how to make best use of this most profound possibility. The following
is an excerpt of what he said.

This is not a tour. This is not an adventure trek. You come to Kailash for transformation, not for
This is a pilgrimage. If you are a trekker, you wear accumulation.
the mountain path a little more than it already is.
If you are a pilgrim, you don’t go there to wear the You know, people have bucket lists. They think they
mountain path – you go there to wear yourself have to do a few more stupid things before they
down. In some way, you must become less than die. They must go to Antarctica; they must see Taj
who you think you are. Only then, there is a Mahal; they must go on a safari in Africa; they must
pilgrimage. Otherwise, it is a silly trek, because go to Vegas without their family, and they must go
this is not much of a trek anyway. If you want to to Kailash with Sadhguru. We are not taking the
be a pilgrim, not a tourist, one thing is you must trouble and the risk of bringing you here to fulfill
control your cellphone use. If you wanted to see your bucket list. I have seen how just one moment
Kailash on your cellphone, I would have sent you a with Kailash has transformed thousands of people,
picture. Why should you come all the way to take a right in front of my eyes. That is why you are here.
picture? We will send you one hundred spectacular Keep your cellphone turned off. There is no need to
images of Manasarovar and Kailash, taken with the talk to your husband, your wife, or your business
best cameras, by the best photographers. I don’t every few minutes – they are glad you are gone.
want you to pull out your silly cellphone and keep Please allow them some freedom.
shooting Kailash. That is not the way of a pilgrim.

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 11


For over twelve thousand years, devotees have that is gone. Now you are going on the highway, by
been coming from India to Kailash. Today, you are bus. Just because it has become comfortable, you
all coming by bus. Imagine how one, two, or three should not miss the point. If people took so much
thousand years ago, someone from Tamil Nadu effort, thousands of years ago, obviously, it was
decided to go to Kailash – Tamil men who did that worthwhile. Today, it is easy for you. Comfort
not know anything below thirty degrees Celsius. should not make you constipated in the head. You
In Chennai, if the temperature drops to twenty- must make use of the comfort. You do not have
five degrees, everyone is wearing earmuffs. to worry about physical aspects – now you can
These people walked all the way to Kailash. No focus on what you need to do. We will give you a
down jackets, no North Face1, no South Butt; no simple process to make use of as you go up. Every
equipment – barefoot, maybe with a woolen rug, step, every breath, you must use it. This is not the
at the most. Imagine the journey – 3600 miles, time for social gatherings. Three days, just you and
across the Himalayas, not knowing the terrain, not Kailash. If you are like this, I will walk every step of
knowing whether they will ever come back or not. this journey with you.
I want you to understand the spirit behind it. What
kind of people would make this journey? It is not If you are a tourist, I have nothing to do with you. I’m
for a living, not to do business, not to earn money, also getting old; I’m getting a little impatient with
not to conquer land – just to earn Grace. idiots. This is a new phenomenon with Sadhguru.
Sadhguru has been meeting every kind of idiot with
enormous patience. But I’m putting my patience on
hold from now on. Only the deserving – otherwise,
let them find their way on their own. Too much time
is simply being wasted on stupid things. I want you
to make use of these three days. There is only one
thing – you and Kailash. My reputation is that I
have brought the maximum number of people to
Kailash. This year, fifteen percent of pilgrims going
to Kailash are from Isha, and everyone will come
back. I won’t let you die. But you must go like you
want to die into Kailash; nothing else matters.
Then things will happen for you.

Many people who came with us have shared that


what happened to them in those three days at
Kailash was most incredible. It is my wish and
my blessing that you experience this. You may
Today, you fly in and drive. I have seen people not be able to decipher Kailash. But no one can
coming to the spectacular Manasarovar, from miss the power of what it is. If you go with a little
where you can see the south face of Kailash, and openness, with the necessary attention, without
they were all sleeping on the bus! It was not one conclusions, you cannot come untouched. You will
of our groups, fortunately. Such people are unfit to be profoundly touched. And after you come back,
be pilgrims. This is a crime. If you come to Kailash this much you must do: every day in the morning,
and you go up and down the mountain like the before you start your day, just close your eyes and
mules and the yaks, what is the point? You must whichever way you saw Kailash, without looking at
show some sign of being human. Being human a picture, bring the image back in your mind for three
means there is a longing to transform. Every other minutes. There will be a different level of power
creature can only adapt if situations change. Over to your existence. The only thing that ultimately
a thousand years, they may evolve. Only a human matters for a human being is the profoundness of
being is capable of aspiring to transform. That is your experience.
why these places of Grace became so popular, and
for thousands of years, people have been coming, Anything that anyone is pursuing in the world –
in spite of all the difficulties. whether someone is going to the bar and getting
drunk, or going to the temple, or meditating, or
When I came to Kailash for the first time, eleven using drugs, or getting married, or making money,
years ago, it was a different situation. Even just six or going to Kailash – it is because you want to
or seven years ago, there were no roads here. Just enhance your life. Drunkard or pilgrim, both are
to drive and find our own way was a completely trying to enhance their lives. The question is
different thing. It was an adventurous drive – one of only will it work or not. If you do the right thing,
the most fabulous drives you could have. But now it works. If you don’t do the right thing, it doesn’t
work. That’s all. But everyone wants to enhance
1
Pun referring to an American outdoor gear company their lives. This is a profound opportunity to come
12 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018
back in an enhanced way. Enhancement does not you are alive. How alive, how brilliantly alive, how
mean accumulation. When I came here for the first profoundly alive, that is all there is.
time with a group of Tamil people, the first thing
they started doing was gathering small stones at This is what Shiva means. When Shiva told the
Kailash, because they want take it back to Tamil Sapta Rishis to go to distant lands and spread the
Nadu, piece by piece. You know the story how message, before they were leaving, they asked him,
Ravana came to Kailash a long time ago, wanting “Suppose we are in difficulty, will you be there for
to take the entire Kailash to Sri Lanka. us?” Shiva looked at them incredulously and said,
“If you are in difficulty, I will sleep.” So, he will not
If you want, you can collect water. Do not pick up lift a little finger for you. Then why should you go to
pebbles and stones. If you do this, in a hundred Kailash? If you are looking for gifts, you must go to
years’ time, Kailash will be spread all over Tamil a shopping mall; there will be some discount sale.
Nadu. A pilgrimage is not about gathering things. What no one else wants will be available for you at
You can gather money, wealth, knowledge, fifty percent; you can get that. But if you want this
relationships, but your life will not be enhanced. life to be enhanced in such a way that just sitting
Whatever you gather is relevant only when you here is a full-fledged experience of life, nothing else
are in a social situation. Let’s say you have a PhD needs to happen. If you just sit here, this life will be
– what does the PhD mean to you when you are super enhanced. If you want to know the power of
walking alone in these mountains? Or let’s say you existing like that, then you seek Shiva. If you are
have one hundred kilograms of gold at home. When going there to ask, “Will my daughter get a medical
you are lost in the mountains, what does the gold seat, Shiva,” she is not going to get it, for sure.
mean to you? If you have to die tomorrow, the only
thing that matters is how enhanced and profound Don’t seek the Divine to get a salary increase.
your life is. Those things must happen with the four limbs
and a few brain cells that you have. You must
You must not forget that you are mortal. When take care of these things with your body and your
I use the word “mortality,” do not think only of brains – that is why they have been given to you.
dying people. You and I will die. I will bless you Don’t seek the Divine to get a little more money, a
with a long life, but you will die. Suppose today is little more of something else. Seek the Divine only
that day, what is it that you would want for your because you want to be much more than who you
life? Initially, you may think of this and that, but if are right now. If you want something more to enter,
you really let it sink in that you are going to die, there must be some space. If you are too full of
the only thing that will matter is how profound yourself, what is the point? By the time you reach
your life has been. This is a fantastic opportunity Kailash, you should not even know who you are.
to enhance the profoundness of who you are. Your money, your education, your family – leave all
Pilgrimage is about that. Pilgrimage is not about that in the little town before you go to Kailash. You
taking pictures. Pilgrimage is not about collecting must simply go there as life. If you go there as life, I
rocks. Pilgrimage is not about telling other people promise you, you will come back in such a way that
how you went to Kailash. This is about enhancing if people look at you, they will want to touch your
this life that you are, because that is all you have. feet. Please make it happen for yourself.
The rest is all your illusion. This is all you have:

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 13


MAHABHARAT
SERIES Mahabharat
PART 40: Arjuna
Fights
the Gandharvas
What has happened so far: The Pandavas are in a
forest exile for twelve plus one years. Duryodhana
and Karna wanted to go on a hunt to chase them
down, but, upon Vidura’s pleading, Dhritarashtra
did not allow this. Then Duryodhana tried to
engineer a situation where Durvasa would curse
the Pandavas and Draupadi, but this attempt
failed too.

Life went on in the forest for the Pandavas. come to harm us. We have to be alert. Or the best
Duryodhana was very frustrated that his father thing is we take the offensive – we go finish them
had cancelled the hunt. Then Karna told him, “See, first.” Yudhishthira said, “That is not our dharma.
they’re already vanquished – we don’t have to go We have accepted to stay in the forest for twelve
and kill them. If you kill them, you will spare them years – we will just do that. Our brothers might
the suffering. When a man is defeated, the worst not have come to attack us. They have not done
thing that can happen to him is that the victor gets anything. Why should we assume that they
to strut around him. So let’s go and strut around. will do this?”
Let’s enjoy our victory; let them suffer their defeat.
Let’s just go visit them, express our sympathies for In the evening, a Gandharva whose name was
them, and let’s enjoy it. Why go and kill them.” So Chitrasena came with his retinue to the camp of
they came up with another plan. the Kauravas, and a kind of altercation happened
between the Kauravas and the Gandharvas. The
Duryodhana went to his father and said, “Father, Gandharvas disarmed the Kauravas in no time,
I think it’s time we count our cows.” It’s part of and bundled up Duryodhana, Karna, Dusshasana,
pastoral societies, because the greatest wealth and Shakuni. They killed a few soldiers and roped
that they have is their cattle. “We have millions up the rest of them and everyone else, except the
of heads of cattle, so it obviously can’t be kept in women. The news about this event went to the
one place. So once in a way, we have to go out and Pandavas. Immediately, four of the brothers burst
count our cattle to see how much wealth we have.” into celebration. “I’m sure they came with evil
No one had any objection against cow counting. intent. They had something on their minds. They
So Duryodhana, Karna, Shakuni, and Dusshasana, got it – that’s good.” But Yudhishthira said, “We
along with their wives and a whole retinue prepared cannot allow this. They are our brothers. We must
to camp somewhere and count the cows. It was an go and fight these Gandharvas, because they have
outing for the whole family – work and pleasure. shamed our brothers.”
But of course, they wanted to count cows close to
the forest. Bhima was furious. “You’re talking about shame?
Do you know what shame is? Do you have anything
They went and camped not far from where the like that in you?” Big arguments, but as an elder
Pandavas were, with a full retinue. They had brother, Yudhishthira said, “No, go and release the
everything with them – cooks were cooking, Kauravas. Whoever the Gandharva may be – fight
women and children were there, they had music; all him.” Bhima resisted vehemently; Arjuna also was
kinds of things were going on. Nakula, who was out not willing to go. Then Yudhishthira said, “What
in the forest, heard noises, came to the edge of the greater pleasure is there for a man than being
forest and looked at the Kaurava camp. He went magnanimous to his enemy? Go enjoy yourself!
back and reported what he had seen. Immediately, Why are you guys resisting what I am telling you.”
Bhima and Arjuna picked up their arms. They Then they suddenly realized, “Yes, this is a great
said, “They have not come just for fun. They have chance. We going and liberating them is going to
be good.”
14 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018
They went to save the Kauravas. As they got there, bound, and the Pandavas had to come and release
they found Duryodhana, Dusshasana, Karna, me.” Whatever they said, he refused to go back to
Shakuni, and many others, lying on the ground, Hastinapur. He asked all of them to leave, and he
with their hands and legs bound. The Gandharvas stayed back alone on the bank of a lake.
were having fun, eating their food, and kicking
them around. They had no respect for Kshatriyas, Duryodhana acted like a madman. For more than
because they did not belong to this land. Arjuna set a month, he rage around in the forest, screaming,
out to fight with the Gandharvas and got into action yelling, wanting to die, not knowing how. Then he
in such a way that Chitrasena was defeated. Later decided he wanted to leave his body. Whatever
on, Chitrasena would become Arjuna’s music and little sadhana he had learnt, he crossed his legs
dance teacher at Indra’s palace. Since Chitrasena and sat down praying. After a few days – his body
lost the fight, before he went away, he gave started decimating – a demon appeared. She was
Arjuna gifts. taller than the palm trees, and said in a booming
voice, “Narakasura’s spirit has entered Karna, so
The Pandavas freed the Kauravas, cutting the don’t bother. Whichever way, one day, Karna will
bonds on their hands and feet, looking at them kill Arjuna.” Once Duryodhana heard this, suddenly,
with magnanimity. This was the most horrible enthusiasm to live entered him again. He sent
moment for Duryodhana. After the Pandavas left, word for people to come, and then he went back
he cried bitterly. He said to Karna, “I don’t want to Hastinapur.
to live anymore! I want to die.” Then he called
Dusshasana and urged him, “My brother, go In the fight with the Gandharvas, as always, Arjuna
back to Hastinapura. Become king in my place. had been pure action. The way the Mahabharat
Rule wisely, with Karna and Shakuni beside you. described him is that when Arjuna went into action,
Always provide a sanctuary to your friends and be when he took the bow and arrow into his hands,
generous to your brahmins. Mix justice with mercy he became like a blur. You could not see what his
when you judge a crime. There is no one better to hands were doing – his action was so fast and so
teach you discernment than our uncle Vidura. You perfect. That was the only fulfillment he knew in
go. I’m not coming. I’m done with this. I cannot life, when he was using his arms. Otherwise, Arjuna
live with this shame that my hands and legs were was a quiet man.

Event Highlights NEWS AND


EVENTS

Sadhguru in the Emirates


Dubai, 12 Jan: Sadhguru’s recent Mystic Eye event
in Dubai drew an impressive number of 6000 United
Arab Emirates residents. The faces of the audience
that packed the Dubai Festival Arena reflected the
ethnical and cultural diversity of a country where
foreign nationals make up over three quarters of
the population, with over two fifths being of Indian
nationality.

Abu Dhabi, 13 Jan: An interactive session with


Sadhguru at the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi was
attended by dignitaries of the UAE government,
including H.E. Dr. Thani Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister
of Climate Change and Environment for the United
Arab Emirates, diplomats, and leading members of
the Indian community.

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 15


Pongal Celebrations at the Isha
Yoga Center
Isha Yoga Center, 16 Jan: This year’s Pongal
celebrations in front of Adiyogi saw an exposition
of various indigenous cattle breeds, who all live at
the Isha Yoga Center’s Maatu Man (cow shelter).
Sadhguru explained in a Spot post why preserving
the last surviving indigenous cattle breeds is vital,
saying, “In terms of health, in terms of cancer
prevention, and above all, for our children to grow
up well, and to fertilize the land, these indigenous
breeds are very important.”

Bringing Devi Home


Isha Yoga Center, 16 Jan: On the night of
16 January, which was an Amavasya (new moon),
a few hundred devotees from India and other parts
of the world participated in a Yantra Ceremony,
which allowed them to receive a personalized
Linga Bhairavi Yantra from Sadhguru and create a
consecrated space in their homes and offices.

Acknowledging Adi Shankara


Omkareshar, 22 Jan: Sadhguru was invited to
speak at the culmination of the Ekatm Yatra at
Omkareshwar. The yatra, which aimed at collecting
metal pieces for an Adi Shankara statue, started
on 19 December 2017 in Indore and went across
Madhya Pradesh, covering over 2000 km. In his talk,
Sadhguru described what Adi Shankara stands for
and why this is still relevant for the nation and the
world today. To find out more of what Sadhguru
said, check out the excerpt from Sadhguru Spot on
page 18–19.

Sadhguru in Pune
Pune, 28 Jan: The Mystic Eye session at the
Balewadi Stadium in Pune afforded participants
the chance to spend three hours in the presence of
the mystic, ask their most burning questions, and
get a taste of meditation.

16 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


Sadhguru in Thailand
Bangkok, 29 Jan: For the first time in Thailand, Sadhguru offered An Evening with the Mystic in the capital
of the Southeast Asian kingdom, where ultramodern skyscrapers and iconic temples and palaces can be
found side by side.

A Super Blue Blood Moon with


Adiyogi
Isha Yoga Center, 31 Jan: This year’s Thaipusam
coincided with a super moon (a full moon that
appears to be larger than usual), a blue moon (the
second full moon of the month), and a blood moon
(a lunar eclipse). Isha brahmacharis, ashramites,
volunteers, and guests had the precious chance
to not only witness this rare celestial phenomenon
but be guided through it in the presence of Adiyogi
and Sadhguru. Sadhguru stated the relevance of
such astronomical occurrences in the Sadhguru
Spot of 7 Feb 2018 with the following words: “The
nature of life is such that the earth, the sun, and the
moon have a significant impact on the system. If
you are conscious of their ways, you can ride these
natural forces and make your life effortless and
easy. If you are not conscious, these same cycles
could crush you – everything will be a struggle.”

Exploring the Core of the Human


Body and Being
Visakhapatnam, 2 Feb: Sadhguru delivered the
keynote address of IACTSCON 2018, the 64th
Annual Conference of the Indian Association of
Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgeons (IACTS).
Leading specialists from India and around the
world had come together in a beautiful coastal
location of Visakhapatnam to not only exchange
and advance knowledge in their field but also
enjoy Sadhguru’s insights into the science
of yoga.

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 17


Spiritual Wellbeing for Armed Forces
Daman, 3 Feb: Sadhguru spoke at the 41st anniversary of the Indian Coast Guard in Daman and
acknowledged the service of these Armed Forces for the country in the following tweet: “Indian Coast
Guard have the ardent task of protecting one of the world’s longest coastlines. Their well-being should
be of paramount importance. –Sg.”

SADHGURU Adi Shankara –


SPOT
What Makes a Great Being?

In this Spot, Sadhguru describes what made Adi Shankara who he was, why his origin is a symbol for
the core nature and strength of this nation, and how what he stands for is relevant in the world today.
Sadhguru also draws parallels between contemporary science and what Adi Shankara said over 1200
years ago.
18 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018
Shankara was an intellectual giant, a genius of you are not seeing it the way it is. Here you are
linguistics, and, above all, a spiritual light, the pride with this seemingly solid body, but with the food
of India. The level of wisdom and knowledge he that you eat, the water that you drink, and the air
showed at a very early age, he was a shining light that you breathe, the cells of your body are being
for humanity. How do you produce such a Being? exchanged on a daily basis. The tissues and organs
In the brief span of his life, he walked the length in your body completely rejuvenate in a matter of a
and breadth of this nation. From the southern tip of couple of days to a few years, depending on the
India, he walked to its heartland, further up north, type of cells. This means after some time, you have
east and west. Where did this energy, this zest, and a completely new body. But in your experience, it
this wisdom come from? One aspect which is both looks like it is the same thing – this is maya.
important and symbolic is that Shankara came
from a village called Kaladi, which is a small town
today. Kaladi literally means “beneath the feet.” In This is going to be the greatest
the South, we are at the feet of Bharat Mata, and
this has paid off for us in so many ways.
treasure – this is going to be the future
of the nation.
There is a beautiful story from the Mahabharat that
probably most of you will know. When Arjuna and
Duryodhana went to seek support from Krishna Similarly, the way you perceive existence, the
for the Kurukshetra war, one of them stood at way you know the world through the five senses,
Krishna’s head, the other chose to stand at his is completely off the mark – this is the illusion. It
feet – that decided everything. That afternoon, is like a mirage. If you are driving on the highway,
when Arjuna stood at Krishna’s feet, he basically sometimes, far away, there seems to be water.
won the war. This is the fundamental nature of When you go there, definitely there is no water. This
our nation and culture – because we bow down to does not mean there was nothing there. There was
everything, we rise. We don’t rise by elbowing our some refraction of light that created this illusion.
way – we rise by bowing down. What is one thing seems to be something else.
What you think is “me” is actually everything – this
Bharat means we always learnt how to be at the is the maya. What you think is “the other” is actually
feet of the Divine. This is not a culture of pumped you. What you think is everything is nothing too.
up pomp, but a culture of natural piety. Whether it That is the maya Shankara is talking about. He also
is a god, a man, a woman, a child, an animal, a tree, said that by knowing the human system, one can
or a rock – we learnt to bow down to everything. know the whole universe. Modern physics is telling
Just with this one aspect, we could produce great you that the entire universe is fundamentally one
beings. By being at the feet of the Divine, we learnt, energy. Similarly, Shankara said that creation and
we evolved, we blossomed, and we became shining Creator are one. Today, after a long haul, modern
lights to the rest of the world for a long time. science has come parallel to what Shankara
and many sages of the past have stated with
Thousands of years ago, well before Shankara, utmost clarity.
right from the Adiyogi, many yogis, mystics, sages,
and saints have said this in so many ways. It is the This spiritual wisdom needs to come down from
intellectual clarity with which he expressed it, the the mountains into the cities, the towns, and the
zest and energy with which he spread it across the villages, and, above all, into the hearts and minds
nation, that make Shankara stand out. One aspect of people. It is time to bring back this culture, this
that is very important in today’s world is that all piety, this sense of humility that has paid enormous
this knowledge, all this wisdom came not by faith dividend for us – to learn to bow down. This has
or belief, but by realization. Unless the spiritual been our strength, this has been our way, this has
process is in some way in sync with fundamental been the process and the method of our evolution
human logic and current scientific findings, people and realization. This is going to be the greatest
will not take it. Future generations will reject treasure – this is going to be the future of the
anything that does not make logical sense to them, nation. If we do this one thing, the entire world will
and that is not scientifically correct. seek guidance from us. Let us reignite the spirit of
Shankara in this country and the rest of the world.
In this context, Shankara is very significant today.
There is some misunderstanding about what he Love & Grace,
said. I think we owe it to him to clear at least one.
A lot of people are saying, “What is this nonsense
that he said, ‘Everything is maya.’” The way it is
being (wrongly) interpreted is – “maya means it
doesn’t exist.” Maya does not mean it does not
exist. Maya means an illusion, in the sense that

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 19


UPCOMING
PROGRAMS
AND EVENTS
Program & Event Highlights
Date Program Place Contact

1–4 Mar 2018 Isha Institute of


Bhava Spandana +1-931-229-0709
8–11 Mar 2018 Inner-sciences,
Program at iii bspregistration@ishausa.org
15–18 Mar 2018 McMinnville, TN – USA
Isha Rejuvenation,
0422-2515466
Isha Yoga Center,
4 Mar 2018 Holistic Cancer Clinic op.rejuvenation@
Velliangiri Foothills,
ishafoundation.org
Coimbatore – India
Isha Rejuvenation,
0422-2515464
Diabetes Management Isha Yoga Center,
5–9 Mar 2018 isharejuvenation@
Program Velliangiri Foothills,
ishafoundation.org
Coimbatore – India

Isha Life Health Solutions


9 Mar 2018; 044-28885333 / 83000 45333
Weight Loss Program (opp. Spencer Plaza),
23 Mar 2018 programs@ishalife.org
Chennai – India

Bhava Spandana Mumbai Bhayander (West), 98330 94058


10–13 Mar 2018
(Gents) Mumbai – India mumbai@ishafoundation.org

Isha Rejuvenation,
0422-2515464
Isha Yoga Center,
10–30 Mar 2018 Yoga Marga isharejuvenation@ishafoundation.
Velliangiri Foothills,
org
Coimbatore – India

Bhava Spandana Mumbai Bhayander (West), 98330 94058


15–18 Mar 2018
(Ladies) Mumbai – India mumbai@ishafoundation.org

Joint and Musculoskeletal Isha Life Health Solutions


15 Mar 2018; 044-28885333 / 83000 45333
Disorders Treatment (opp. Spencer Plaza),
29 Mar 2018 programs@ishalife.org
Program Chennai – India
Isha Yoga Center,
94890 45164
22–25 Mar 2018 Inner Engineering Retreat Velliangiri Foothills,
ieretreat@ishafoundation.org
Coimbatore – India
+1-647-797-3350
24 Mar 2018 Mystic Eye with Sadhguru Toronto – Canada
toronto@ishafoundation.org
Isha Institute of Inner-
31 Mar – +1-931-450-4849
Samyama (English) sciences, McMinnville,
7 Apr 2018 samyama@ishausa.org
TN – USA

Inner Engineering with +1-949-345-1746


21–22 Apr 2018 Long Beach, CA – USA
Sadhguru in Los Angeles LA@Ishausa.org

Inner Engineering with +1-484-254-6255


5–6 May 2018 Oaks, PA – USA
Sadhguru in Philadelphia philly@ishausa.org

Kailash-Manasarovar 81441 23123


11–31 Aug 2018 Nepal/Tibet (China)
Sacred Walks info@sacredwalks.org

Current at the time of print, however subject to change. For full program schedules and updates, please visit our
website: www.ishayoga.org.

20 | ISHA FOREST FLOWER March 2018


ISHA RECIPE

GREEN GRAM
SPROUT SALAD

INGREDIENTS METHOD
½ cup Sprouted green gram 1. Mix the sprouts, dates, raisins, carrots, and
(moong) – washed, drained coconut together in a deep bowl.
4 Dates – seedless, chopped 2. In a separate bowl, mix lemon juice, olive oil,
2 tbsps. Raisins – chopped and honey together to make the dressing.

1–2 Carrots – peeled, grated 3. Pour the dressing over the sprouts mixture and
mix thoroughly. Serve.
1 tbsp. Coconut – grated
Lemon juice to taste
A dash of Olive oil
Honey to taste

Notes:
• Instead of lemon juice, you can use orange or pomegranate juice.
• This green gram salad can be made in numerous ways. Pineapple pieces, pomegranate, and dry fruits
can be added for a sweet salad. For a salty salad, cucumber, tomato, raw mango, or mint leaves, make
for nice options.

You can find this and many other recipes in Isha’s cookbook “A Taste of Well-Being” – available in
major bookstores as well as on Amazon, Flipkart, and Isha Shoppe.

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 21


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ZEN SPEAKS

Courtesy Zen Speaks

Published by: B. RAJESH CHANDER on behalf of ISHA FOUNDATION


Published from 117/50, Luz Church Road, Mylapore, Chennai – 600 004, TAMILNADU

Printed by: S. PRAKASH; at FINE DOTS, No.15, Boo Begum 3rd Street,
Anna Salai, Chennai – 600 002, TAMILNADU. Editor: K. SEKAR

March 2018 ISHA FOREST FLOWER | 23


March 2018
March 2018

Whatever the number of wheels


Rolling on without respite.
Don’t you be crippled by impediments
Just roll on lovingly, joyfully.