I always wondered how Deepika, my wife, manages to do so many things at home (where she is both the queen and the maid) as well as outside and yet remains pleasant most of the time. There is only one thing I have always pointed out to her that she needs to work on: Discipline. I always wished she were as “disciplined” and “efficient” as I am! I used to bug her to do things in the perfect way (read as “my way”). Finally Nature revealed the truth to me: Deepika is Devi. And, Devi does not need to have discipline (Thanks to Raam Vithala for the hint). Devi has abundant Energy and she is always willing to give her Energy indiscriminately. If we are disciplined enough to make the necessary adjustments and build our life around her, we are never short of Energy and life becomes effortless.
It was breakfast time that day. Children were under fire from Mom (of course for showing indiscipline , they are now 10 and 9 years old).
Siva: My dears, do you know about Ganges?
Children: Yes, the river in India.
Keertana: It is called Ganga Devi (goddess Ganga)…
Siva: Right. Have you heard the story that Ganga burst forth into the Earth from heavens and Lord Shiva had to hold that great force of Ganga with his hair locks?
Siva: Do you think that story makes sense?
Children were wondering…
Siva: I feel Ganga is an Energy first, then a river.
Children are surprised.
Siva: I heard, during the time Lord Shiva was born, people of planet Earth were struggling with deep ignorance, completely down in energy, doing all sorts of nasty things and suffering. Nature opened up a Great source of Energy for Shiva, which he could use for the benefit of mankind. I think that source of Energy is Ganga.
Children were listening carefully.
Siva: Suppose there are big mountains nearby and we have a huge river flowing down from the mountains into our area, and if we don’t handle it properly, what could happen?
Children: It will flood and drown us!
Siva: Right, what should we do to ensure the same river nourishes all of us instead of drowning us.
Keertana: Setup dams!
Siva: Right, we need to setup dams, canals, banks etc. Same with the Energy source called Ganga. It is like a huge river. Once Ganga flows in, if we are not prepared, it could finish us off. But if we learn to handle the Energy appropriately, it can do wonders for us.
Children were thinking…
Siva: My dears, here is the secret. Your Mother is like Ganga, the source of Energy for our family. To handle her Energy to our benefit, we have to be like….
Children: Lord Shiva!
Siva: Right, then we can have great fun. If we don’t handle her Energy properly….
Keertana: No good
Siva: Yes, we will be under her flood (or fire) and it is no good for any of us.
Krishna: What if Keertana is flooding?
Siva: Then You and me need to handle (her Energy) properly!
Mom brings in breakfast for all of us. I sensed Krishna does not like that dish much
Siva: My dears, Your Mom is Devi, Whatever food She Gives us is Prasad (divine offering). Have it with respect. Have as much as you can, but not too little.
Children finished their breakfast quietly and went to school.
This is an impromptu conversation I had with the children of our Telugu school in Tokyo after my visit to Sadhguru.
Siva: My dears, I want to tell you that I went to Hongkong last week to meet a great Master, Sadhguru.
Children: Who is Sadhguru?
Siva: Before I tell about him, I want to ask you a simple question. What do you think is the foremost purpose for any human being on this planet?
Child: To have self-control?
Siva: Animals have great self-control. Suppose I am a tiger and my stomach is full. Even if you sit beside me, I will not touch you. I will simply have a nice conversation with you. Such a great self-control! (children were laughing). Suppose I became hungry….
Children: You will eat us!!
Siva: Yes! Tell me what is our foremost purpose….
Child: To be silent and meditate?
Siva: We will be silent forever once we are dead! (children were roaring with laughter)
Child: To live?
Siva: That’s what plants are also doing! (laughs)
Child: To realize ourselves!
Siva: Right. We know very little about our own selves. Our eyes can only look outside, never inside. Do you think we can rotate our eyeballs inside and see what is there? (attempting to rotate my eyeballs inside)
Children: NOOO (laughs)
Siva: Yes, that is why our focus right from our birth is always towards outside (showing my palm to children to indicate “outside”). Only when a person somehow turns his vision inside (rotating my palm towards my face) can know about himself. He is called the Enlightened one. Sadhguru is the Enlightened one, the one who arrived home. He is helping millions of people to realize themselves.
Children were astonished.
Child: How do we know we realized ourselves?
Siva: Suppose you want to go to Calcutta, the most difficult part is how you go there. Once you reach there, somehow you will know. Maybe you will find people speaking Bengali, maybe you will find the boards on which it is written “Calcutta”, or you can ask someone on the road…. (laughs)
Child (wondering): Uncle, how to go to a place about which we have no idea about?
Siva (clapping): This is a beautiful question. Do you know a GPS?
Children: Global Position System.
Siva: Yes, it helps us to go anywhere in the outside world. Similarly there is a GPS for us to go within the inside world.
Children (surprised): What is it??
Siva: This GPS is called Guru Position System. A Guru is the guide for us to go IN. (The journey inside us is mysterious, that’s why the one who arrived is called a Mystic)
There was pin drop silence.
Siva: You should have asked the question “How do we know if Sadhguru realized himself or not?”
Children: YESS (that’s the question!)
Siva: We can somehow know if we realize ourselves. How can we ever know if the other person realized himself and can be our Guru?
Child: By feeling?
Siva: Heart has feelings, Mind has thoughts and doubts. Both the Heart and Mind need to be convinced fully to accept anyone as our Guru. A real Guru will be ready to spend all his life to answer your questions and doubts.
Children (surprised): Did you ask Sadhguru all the questions you have?
Siva: I have been following his videos and books for several years. So many people have already asked him all the many questions I had. My mind was convinced that Sadhguru realized himself.
Child: If we realize something inside our body, that should come out of our body, right?
Siva (stunned, recovered): A doctor can cut our body open and find what is inside, blood and bones…. (laughs). But yes, there is much more than blood and bones inside us. That cannot be expressed in words. It is like a light and it radiates from that person. That is exactly what I felt when I saw Sadhguru. His eyes and his presence are so deep that I could feel he has arrived home. That’s how my Heart was convinced too.
Child (stunned): Did Sadhguru help you realize yourself?
Siva: He gave me a tool to realize myself.
Siva: Suppose you want to open a screw that is so tight. Can you open it with your hands and nails?
Siva: Right, we might lose all our nails, but the screw would not come out. But if someone gives us a screw driver, does it help?
Siva: Same with our journey inside. A Guru cannot take us IN. But he can give us Tools that we can use and go IN by ourselves.
Child: An iPhone?
Siva (ouch!): This tool is not visible to our eyes. The journey inside needs tremendous amount of Energy. Sadhguru gave me, and over 2500 other people too, a Tool called Shambhavi that rises our energy levels so high. It is energy that matters. Suppose I am high in Energy, I hug Keertana and say all the nice things. If I am down in energy, I can be very nasty with her…(I made a fake shouting at Keertana and children laughed a lot).
Child: Is Sadhguru Extraordinary?
Siva: Yes. He is Extra-ordinary. That means he is more ordinary than any ordinary human being……
Children were looking surprised…
Siva: Sadhguru said one thing about himself. He said he can simply sit wherever he is for 24 hours without getting bored or distracted (in fact he said he can simply sit “till he drops dead”). Is it not very very ordinary? Can you stay silent for 24 hours without getting bored or distracted?
Siva: Let’s try being silent for 5 minutes…..
Child: Can we sleep?
Siva: NO! Keep your eyes open, heads down, do not get distracted or bored. Simple BE.
We all tried and found it tough to stay silent without getting distracted or bored for 5 minutes.
Siva: Now you know! A person who can be silent for 24 hours without getting bored or distracted is either enlightened or dead.
Children were laughing loud….
Siva: Silence with awareness is Enlightenment. Silence without awareness is….
Children: Death! (or deep sleep)
Siva: Right. Which way do you think I want you to be silent?
Children (shouting): The Enlightened way!
Siva: Right. And the secret is, greatest of the creations happen through us only when we are silent and aware. If we are not creative, do you think the world would remember us long after we leave this planet?
Siva: Right. There was one man who got enlightened 2500 years ago and the world still remembers him. Who is he?
Siva: Right! And there was one man who got enlightened 2000 years ago and the world still remembers him. Who is he?
Children: Jesus Christ!
Child: But, Uncle, I heard Christ was a messenger of God.
Siva: Do you think he was a postman?
Children were laughing…..
Siva: Hundreds of Enlightened ones have walked on this planet since ages. Many chose to remain unknown too. But everyone of them left this planet a bit more beautiful than it was before they were born. After you grow up, you will find your Guru. Make sure you ask him all the questions till your Mind and Heart are convinced. Take your own time to decide he or she is indeed your Guru. Do you think it is enough if we are convinced 90%?
Siva: Right, it is not enough.
Siva: No. Nothing less than 100% (conviction) will do. Also, once you are convinced, you should use your Tool 100% as described by the Guru. That is the way to Enlightenment. It is my wish that everyone of you becomes enlightened. That’s all for today!
This was the most satisfying conversation for me till date. The enthusiasm and the glow I observed in children’s faces during this conversation was unbelievable and unforgettable.
Two conversations given below. Here goes the first one, the shortest, yet the most effective.
Children came to me complaining against each other.
Keertana (exclaiming): Papa, I want Krishna to accompany me in going to the shop. I need his help, but he is not willing to come…
Krishna (exclaiming): Papa, I don’t want to go there now. She is pushing me….
Siva (expression-less): This is a matter of your relationship with each other. I don’t want to interfere.
Children were stunned, went back, discussed between themselves and sorted out the matter. Krishna accompanied Keertana as per her wish:-)
Here goes the second one. It was breakfast time. Mom made Upma (a delicious dish made of broken rice or wheat and vegetables, easy to cook during busy times).
Keertana (disappointed): Again!! Mom made Upma today also!!
Keertana: Yes Papa, Mom made the same Upma yesterday also!
Siva: Your Mind says “Same Upma”. That is called “Mental reality”. But the Physical reality (actual reality) is different, it is not the Same Upma because the ingredients used are different.
Siva: Yes, Mom made Upma with broken rice yesterday, but she made it with broken wheat today. Also the kind of vegetables used are different too. Just because we call it Upma, our Mind thinks it is the same Upma. Mental reality is a false reality many a time.
Keertana: What if Mom makes Upma with the same ingredients, say she uses broken rice and the same kind of vegetables for several days continuously? Can you eat it (without getting bored)?
Siva: If that is the case, I think our Body would thank us a lot!
Keertana (surprised): What?
Siva: I heard, if we eat the same kind of the (healthy) food everyday, our body develops the technology to digest that food very easily with less effort. And that saves our energy and we would be more active all the day!
There was complete silence. Children finished their breakfast and went to school:-)
Children are not looking for answers to their questions, they are looking for better clarity (of the situations).
Every action has got an equal and opposite reaction (total outcome is always zero). We just need to point that other side out for children. They will attain to clarity themselves and their questions would simply dissolve.
This is what my Master does for me when I ask him questions:-)
Keertana was down with fever that day. She was concerned as children got their first trip to their cousins in USA scheduled that week.
Keertana: Papa, do you think I will recover from this fever in time?
Siva: Yes. Your Mom, Krishna and Me will give 25% of our energy to you. You should be OK by tomorrow morning.
Keertana was surprised.
Siva: We are ONE family. A family is like ONE body. Everyone of us is like a part of our family-body. Say Krishna is our hands, I am the legs, Mom is the stomach.
Keertana: What about face?
Siva: Ok, you are like the face.
Keertana seemed happy.
Siva: Every part is important. If one part is not in good shape, other parts feel it too. Now you are sick, therefore automatically the Energy from the other 3 of us will flow to you.
Keertana was silent. She went to bed that night skipping her dinner. As usual we did not use any medicine, we used cold pack on her head. She got up in the morning, still looking down, yet she wanted to go to school.
Siva: Take bath first, then we will see.
Keertana took bath and she was looking OK. We found her Temperature was normal too! We were jubilant.
Keertana (pondering): Papa, are you OK?
Siva: Yes, why?
Keertana: You lost 25% of your Energy, right?
Keertana: How will you get back your Energy?
Siva: No problem. I meditated more last night and must have got my Energy back.
Keertana was looking happy. She went to school normally and had a perfect day.
Right on the day of their trip to USA, Krishna was down with fever. Keertana was stunned on realizing this, and was overheard saying that we got to meditate more that day. This time around, we used fever medicine for Krishna and they had a smooth sailing.
If we think someone is part of our family, Energy transmission takes place automatically whenever needed, however far we live. We can call it Love.
Later I would expand this family-body concept from 4 of us to include relations, friends, school, workplace, community and so on till we include entire world. We came to this planet to expand our family through Love. Expansion is happiness. Expansion is Wisdom.
There are two kinds of people among us and accordingly there are two ways available for us to expand.
1) Some of us (usually Women) are kind at heart, therefore Love is natural for them. The more they include people in their family, the more they expand (and also become meditative).
2) Some of us (usually Men) are extremely smart. Meditation is the natural way for them. Meditation leads them to Love. And Love leads to expansion.
Here is how I introduced the concept of Gurupuja (respecting the people who guide us in life) to children and their friends on the occasion of Gurupurnima (the most auspicious full moon day of the year).
Siva: Before I tell you why we assembled here, I have a simple question to all of you. Who is a Human being?
Many children raised their hands.
Child: Someone who has got life?
Siva: Even plants have got life…
Child: Someone who can think?
Siva: Right. We think better than animals. Is that all?
Child: Someone who has got a face, two hands and can walk on two legs!
There was thunderous applause:-)
Siva: Our body and mind are the tools we are equipped with. Who are us?
Children were silent.
Siva: Here is the answer. A human being is a SEED, with unlimited potential. You know how a small seed can produce a huge tree, right?
Siva: Same with human seed too. We can grow big, huge. But the game here is, NOT all the seeds will grow big. Suppose I throw a handful of plant seeds on to the ground. Do you think all of them will sprout and grow big?
Siva: Right, some will sprout and some might simply be eaten by birds or goats (making a chewing sound)!
Children were laughing, while I put some black dots on the whiteboard at random places.
Siva: Do you see these dots?
Siva: These are the seeds. These are YOU.
There was pin drop silence.
Siva: We want you to grow big, NOT remain a seed or a sprout. How big you grow depends on two things: One, how big you would dream and, Two, how well you would realize your dream.
Siva (drawing circles around the dots): These circles are your dreams (see the picture in the comment section below). The bigger your (realized) dream is, the bigger you grow.
Smaller children were having great fun and were clapping while watching those circles. Everyone likes circles, because circles indicate completeness.
Siva: There are two kinds of dreams. One that you dream for only yourself, one that you dream for…..(expanding my hands)
Siva: Right, for everyone around you. Now comes the secret. If your dream is only for your self, you will have to work all the way to realize your dream. If you dream for everyone around you, your dream gets realized very easily. Whatever effort you put in, Nature will put in 10 times more effort to fulfill your dream.
Children were astonished.
Siva: You can have both kinds of dreams. Btw, how should you dream?
Children: To become great
Siva: No. You need to dream to DO or MAKE something great (happen). What you BECOME comes next.
(Note: I think Parents/teachers should never tell children WHAT to dream. If the parents are already working on great dreams, children will own those dreams automatically. Otherwise, we need to expose children to other people who are working on great dreams, so that children get inspired and create their own dreams and work on realizing them).
Siva: Btw, what does a seed need to sprout and grow bigger?
Children: Earth, water, air and sunlight…
Siva: Right. Similarly, you, the human seed also need them. Your Mother is your Earth and Water. Your Father is your Air.
Child (with a big smile on his face): Do you mean I drink my Mother?
There was huge uproar:-)
Siva: Yes, you drank your Mother’s milk at least.
Child (stunned, but the big smile is in tact): OK, what about my Father? Does he enter my nose and become my breathing?
Siva: Whatever your Mother does for you is visible. She gave you Body, so she represents Earth. She gave you Milk, So she represents Water too. But whatever your father does is not visible. That’s why he represents Air. A plant cannot survive without Air, right?
Child (convinced): Right.
Siva: Our parents gave us Earth, Water and Air. What else we (human seeds) need?
Siva: Right. Who is the Sun for us?
Children (in loud voice): Our Teachers!
Siva: Right. Your Parents and Teachers did so much for you so far. I can see you have all sprouted. They want you to grow bigger and bigger. They will keep doing their best for you to have great dreams and realize them. Today is the day we express our thankfulness to our parents and teachers for what they did for us. Your parents will first pay respects to their parents first. Then you can do the same to your parents and teachers.
We started playing Gurupaduka Stotram in the background and offered respects to our parents and teachers. It was a tremendously enriching experience for everyone present. Watch this video for a glimpse of it.
Krishna and I were taking a shower that morning. We were talking about the river Ganges.
Siva: I have always heard there is great energy in the water of river Ganges. I also heard, if we remember the Ganges at the time of taking a shower, energy of the Ganges enters the water of the shower as a blessing.
Krishna: Even the dirt of the river Ganges might enter the shower… (ouch! we talked about the pollution of river Ganges too)
Siva (recovered): You may be right too. I must tell you something. There are two kinds of realities, one that is visible, and one that is not visible but can only be felt. Both are important.
Krishna (after a pause): And what about dreams?
Siva (stunned): You are right. We can say dreams are the 3rd kind of reality.
We finished shower and went for breakfast. Keertana was already there.
Siva: Krishna, I want to show you something and you need to tell me what you see.
Krishna was excited. I took him near to Keertana, pointing to her face…
Siva: What do you “see”?
Krishna: It’s a face!
Siva: Yes, that is the visible reality. If you cut open this face you will see…
Krishna: Blood and bones….
Siva: Right. Now tell me what you “feel” when you look at this face.
Siva: I see a Devi.
Krishna: You should add an L to it. Devi+L = Devil.
There was huge uproar……it was unexpected!
Siva (recovered): Devil is not Devi plus L, it is Devi minus L.
Krishna was surprised.
Siva: L means Love. And Love means Great amount of Energy. Devi has got so much Energy that she can shower it on you if you treat her properly. If you treat her improperly, that Energy would be turned against you, then Devi minus L would be Devil for you.
Again there was uproar……Mom was laughing too…
Siva (pointing to Mom): Krishna, now look at this face, do you see a Devi or a Devil?
Krishna was simply smiling, he would not say a word. He must have felt the question was so meaningless that it didn’t deserve an answer!
Children came across the words “Nyaya” and “Dharma” during the weekend Telugu classes.
Siva: My dears, do you know what is Nyaya?
Keertana: Yes, Nyaya is Fairness.
Siva: Right, what about Dharma?
Siva: No, Truthfulness is Sathya (when our thought, word and action are consistent, we are in Sathya).
Keertana: Then, what is Dharma?
Siva: Dharma is FULLness.
Siva: Yes. Suppose Krishna bought 4 ice creams, say each costed him 100yen. Say he is enjoying the first ice cream, while we are looking at him. Say we three ask him to give us the remaining 3 ice creams, and he says NO. Did he do right or wrong?
Poojitha: Wrong, he could have given the remaining 3 to us!
Keertana: No, it is fair, it bought them with his own money!
Siva: Both of you are correct. Keertana is right from Nyaya (Fairness) point of view. Poojitha is speaking from Dharma (FULLness) point of view. Let us see. Suppose Krishna finished having the 1st ice cream and he really enjoyed it, had a “AH” feeling. Now say he decided to have the 2nd one too. Do you think he would have the same level of “AH” feeling?
Keertana and Poojitha: No
Siva: Say, now he finished 2nd one and having the 3rd one too. Does he have any “AH” feeling with this?
Keertana and Poojitha: No.
Siva: Say, now he finished 3rd one too and having the 4th one….
Poojitha (exclaiming): He is already FULL!
Siva: Exactly! If he is already FULL and still does not like to share the ice creams with us, he is probably wrong from Dharma point of view. But, can we decide if he is FULL or not?
Siva: Right, then who can decide if Krishna is actually FULL or not?
Keertana: Only Krishna himself (his Heart, to be precise).
Siva: Right. Nyaya belongs to Mind, Dharma belongs Heart (Heart is one’s own Nature). Which one is important? Nyaya or Dharma?
Nyaya (man-made law/rules) is a Social phenomenon. Mastering Nyaya makes one powerful socially (Lawyers, for example!).
Sathya (open-minded/truthfulness) is a Personal phenomenon. Sathya is a great weapon and can lead us to success, whether it is Personal (realizing higher and higher truths, ask any Meditator) or Professional (good example is Japanese work culture). Further, all the scientific advancements are based on Sathya.
Dharma is a Natural(Universal) phenomenon. Dharma includes Nyaya and Sathya too. One who follows Dharma will be powerful, successful also be Joyful! (Look at any enlightened Master)