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JLF 2017: Indulge in activities not activism, says Sadhguru

In a largely apolitical conversation, Sadhguru talks awareness and awakening through personal anecdotes

Jaipur Literature Festival 2017 Updated: Jan 19, 2017 19:22 IST
Satarupa Paul
Sadhguru in conversation with JLF Festival Producer Sanjoy K. Roy during the session, Inner Engineering: A Yogi's guide to Joy, at the Jaipur Literature Fest 2017 in Jaipur.
Sadhguru in conversation with JLF Festival Producer Sanjoy K. Roy during the session, Inner Engineering: A Yogi's guide to Joy, at the Jaipur Literature Fest 2017 in Jaipur.(Saumya Khandelwal/HT PHOTO)

“For the first time, a change of power is taking place without spilling a drop of blood. Don’t interrupt the process,” Sadhguru said at the 10th edition of the Jaipur Literature Festival. The biggest crowd-puller on the first day of the festival today was possibly the session where the spiritual thinker was in attendance. Held at the Front Lawn of Diggi Palace, the session saw followers, fans and curious attendees alike flocking to the venue.

In conversation with the festival producer, Sanjoy K Roy, Sadhguru talked candidly about his life before he found awareness and awakening – keeping the conversation largely apolitical. Only towards the end of the session, when it was thrown open for questions from the public, did he elucidate his political beliefs. “How does the political scenario of the country affect your thinking as a spiritual leader?” was the question asked. To which Sadhguru replied, “It’s highly democratic right now. At no time has a change in power happened without bloodshed. But this time, it has. To oppose it, would be to oppose democracy.”

Sadhguru also talked about how “the time has come when every person has started to think for themselves.” “You reject what doesn’t make sense to you. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re right and what you’re rejecting is wrong,” adding, “Earlier people used to engage in different activities. Now everyone involves themselves in some activism or the other. Indulge in activities, not activism.”

Sadhguru said that the time has come “when every person has started to think for themselves”. (Saumya Khandelwal/HT Photo )

Most of the session was, however, to do with finding enlightenment. Peppering the conversation with personal anecdotes, he talked about his travels across India, and “not in the way you usually travel.” “I would be welcomed into anyone’s house whose door I knocked on,” he said. “I would share their food, sleep on their bed and leave the next day, without even knowing their names.” He also talked about chicken rearing and “going off to the Chamundi Hills every other day because there was nothing else to do”. He recounted how it was during one such visit to the Chamundi Hills that he found enlightenment – “when I sat at one spot for four hours, with my eyes closed and tears running down my cheeks continuously.”

Sending the crowd into peals of laughter, he told Roy he could tell what problems he would face based on the way he was sitting. Sadhguru also talked about how the body and the mind can be trained to be happy. He said, “Joyful is a state of mind. You can tell your brain to be happy or sad. It’s up to you.”

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