Zhang Defen：Since you mentioned yoga, I do have two questions bout yoga. In China, the mainstream yoga practitioners, they are more seeing yoga as a physical exercise to help them, like, to get them slimmer. no, that's in everywhere, get weight loss or enhance their health.But, for advanced practitioners, they may want to see how their practice can go inward to change the inner world. So, do you have any suggestions on that? How do you do yoga from outward to inward?
Sadhguru : The word "yoga" means union. Are you breathing right now？You are.But most of the time, most human beings are not conscious that they are breathing.Breath means, on one level, you are in union with the rest of the atmosphere，that's what it means. If you breathe, you are breathing in the world in many ways. Today, there is substantial evidence to show that there is enormous memory in the air that you breathe,it's gone through so many things.Everything is there in some sense. So when you breathe, you are in union with the atmosphere around us. When you eat, you are in union with the earth which you walk upon. When you drink water, you are in contact with everything around you. But it's not in you experience. If, for example, if you are conscious what you exhale these trees are inhaling, what they're exhaling, you are inhaling.Suppose, you were conscious, not in your mind, not as a thought but as a living experience.You understood, you experienced that one part of your lung is actually the tree.If you experience this do I have to teach you what is the right thing to do about the tree? Do I have to tell you? NO.
In United States, generally, these thing sare referred to as woods, because they need furniture at home.Their homes are built with wood, so they need wood. So whoever came here, first they saw the tree, and they called it a wood. If you have no compulsions about furniture, if you really looked at a tree, and inhale what the tree is exhaling, you would see it as a part of your life. And it is. Will you realize this after all the tree sare gone, and your life is going? or will you realize it now? This is the question. This is not just about I am not talking about ecology. I am talking about fundamental life-making material，the water that you drink, the air that you breathe, the food that you eat, the earth that you walk upon. These are all life-making material. This is your life, spread out there. When you gather it, you think it's me. When it's thrown around, you think it's not you.
Yoga means, you are experiencing every thing as yourself or in another words, breaking the boundaries your physical boundaries that you are in. But now a whole lot of people are using yoga to consolidate their boundaries. They think they are doing yoga to build abs. So instead of opening up your boundaries of your body, you are trying to consolidate the boundaries of your body.This is like using an airplane to dig into the earth. You know? If you want to dig into theearth, also there are burrowers which rotate, so you get an airplane where propellers are rotating and you are trying to dig into the earth, you will realize that it's not made for that purpose and obviously you will be frustrated. And that's all that's happening, right now. Every day, you get up, and twist and turn, after sometime, you'll get bored and say hell with it , and you will do something else after sometime. Only if you use an instrument for the purpose for which it is created.If I ask you to unscrew the screw of the furniture, if you try it with your hands, all your nails will go. I'd allow you to use your teeth, they will also go. But if I give you a simple screw driver,you will get it out, isn't it? I give you a screw driver, you don't know what to do with it, so you put it into your ears and turn it. Damage might happen, wellbeing will not happen. But the screw driver can be fantastic, if you know how to use it. If you don't know how to use it, it works against you.So I'm using a very simple basic example, but yoga is a very complex, very verycomplex instrument or a technology. Far more complex than most people everimagine, If you use it well, you can make the entire cosmos happen within you. This is what it means, yoga means union. Union means, if you sit here, removing the boundaries of your physical nature, you can sit here experiencing the entire cosmos within yourself. But now, you are using the instrument of yoga to build a wall that nobody can crack.
Zhang Defen：So how can yoga create something like that?
Zhang Defen：Because, for example, we are in a mountain pose, and if we do it as just asana or we do it as you said as a tool to feel the nature, feel that we are part of the nature or we are one with the nature.Can you tell the difference? what is the trick, is it in the breathing,or how to do it？
Sadhguru : First thing is, there is no trick.The problem is in the transmission, the way it is transmitted. See, if I give you a flower, it's alive, full of life.You will have to care for it in a certain way.When I find you don't know how to hold a flower,there are people like this: I give them a flower, they will grab it like this, those who don't know what it is, they will grab it like this. Flower will die right in their hands. So then, what to do?Then we will give you a plastic flower. All over China, a lot of plastic flowers in every hotel room I go, I see plastic flowers everywhere. Because for people who are unconscious, plastic flowers are the best. Plastic flower only looks like a flower,but it's just a piece of plastic, it's not a flower. A plant is there, what is the peak of itslife? Flowering, isn't it? It's the peak.Flower is a representation of the peak that that life can attain to.But, you make a plastic flower and give it, because it's convenient, you can hold whichever way you want to, you can beat your children with it, if they are not obedient. Now, you have a piece of plastic, which you think it's flower, so this is what is happening to yoga.
Without the subjectivity, just the instructions are going, so you have a still birth. Isn't it better not to get pregnant, than to have a still birth? So if fitness is what you are looking for, please go swim in the Yellow River, play tennis, climb a mountain, do something for fitness. Yoga definitely gives you fitness not just physical fitness, it gives you fitness in all levels but that is not the reason why you practice it. You practice yoga, because you want to become one with everything. So in the transmission, there must be subjectivity. Right now, we have become slaves of objectivity, because we are not using any other form of intelligence within us except the intellect. If you use only the intellect, is it true that intellect is useful only if it is sharp like a knife? You want a dull intellect or a sharp intellect? Sharp. So it's a knife. Now, you use a knife to stitch, you will only tear it further. Knife is not an appropriate instrument to stitch. If you want to stitch, you need something else but now you are using a knife to stitch, it's not going to work.So yoga, unfortunately, it's going through this phase around the world that only the physical aspect, a still born child is being delivered. People think they got a baby, they don't have a baby, they have a dead baby. It still looks like a baby of course, but it's not alive, it's not going to grow. If you have a plastic flower, it's not going to blossom, isn't it? So this is not going to blossom, maybe you will get abs, if you stretch and turn enough. But you are strengthening the wall, instead of opening up the wall. Now I am only talking about the wall of your body, not the China Wall.
Zhang Defen：OK. So the critical point is not how you do it, but how it is transmitted to you?
Sadhguru : Both, it's equally important. How it transmitted is vital, but how you receive it, it's also important. how you practice it, it's also important. Without bringing those dimensions into the process, if you just bring a bunch of instructions then it becomes a very objectified yoga. With this, you may get physical fitness, but that's like using an airplane like a bullock cart. That which can fly, you make it crawl around, what is the use? If you see a bird, whose wings are damaged, and it can not fly will you feel sad about it? Yes? But if you see a buffalo without wings, you won't feel sad about it, isn't it? Because a buffalo is only supposed to do that. But when you see a bird which could fly, and now it cannot fly that saddens you, isn't it? If I was capable of becoming sad looking at the yoga in this world, I would have become sad but I've become incapable of becoming sad, so.
Zhang Defen：So what is Isha Yoga different from normal yoga ?
Sadhguru : Subjectivity. Isha yoga is never taught by a professional teacher, never. Unless they hold it above their life,unless they hold it more important than their life. I will not let them teach Isha yoga.Not as a profession, not as a hobby, not as an entertainment, no. You must hold it as something more important than your life,then only we will let you teach, because only then we can load subjectivity into the yoga that is offered. Otherwise, you will become professional, If people pay you more, you will do a little more. If people pay you less, you will do a little less. It will not work like that, once the calculation comes in, it will not work. Right now, which working the way it's working, because it's delivered through dedicated people who are willing to give their lives for it.
Zhang Defen：So when we practice Isha yoga, we also have to give our life to it, that's the correct way to practice it?
Sadhguru : If you give your life to it, it will enhance your life in a way that you've not even imagined possible. But I am not demanding that out of every practitioner, but those who wants to deliver, must hold it that way, otherwise, it won't work.