We, as a culture, do not know how to function smoothly within ourselves.
Via elephant sponsor Isha Foundation.
We need to get a grasp of our bodies, minds, emotions and energies.
When I first landed in U.S. a few years ago, one word that I heard everywhere was stress management. Why would anybody want to manage their stress? I can understand if we want to manage our money, our business, our family, our property—but why would anybody want to manage their stress? It is because we have established a whole culture of believing that stress is a part of our lives.
Stress is not a part of our lives. It is not the nature of work that we are doing which is causing the stress; it is just that we have no control over our systems. We don’t know how to function smoothly within ourselves. That is why we are stressed. In many situations, one person would be very stressed out and another person would go through it effortlessly? Stress is not coming because of the situation. Stress is coming because of our inability to manage our inner situation. If our minds, our bodies and our energies could take instructions from us and behave the way we want them to behave, would we make ourselves stressful, no matter what is happening around us?
We are making ourselves stressful because we have not kept control over our fundamental faculties within us. If we could experiment, keeping our palms facing down and breathing deeply, we would see breath will happen one way. If we turn them around, facing them up and breathing, we would notice our breath will happen in a different way. If our palms are facing down, the maximum expansion and contraction will be in our diaphragms. If we turn them over, it will be higher up, in the chest. Turning over our palms changes the way we breathe. This is not just about our breath, the way our energies function in the body is changing.
Our bodies, our minds, our emotions, and our energies—these are the vehicles through which we are traveling through our lives. Without any understanding about it, without any control about it, without any subjective experience about it, we are trying to live ours lives—it is an accidental existence. When we exist accidentally, anywhere we manage to get in life would be an accident. We need to do something about this. We need to get a grasp of our bodies, minds, emotions and energies. If this does not happen, we will live life by accident. We will always hope the situations will work out well. If we are seeking to expand the scope and play of our lives, if we are seeking challenging situations, then we have to do something about the way we function. Challenging situations mean we want to face situations that we have no clue about. If we are going to get stressed naturally, we will avoid those situations. When we avoid those situations, we will naturally avoid all the growth possible for our businesses and for ourselves.
When we fine-tune ourselves to such a point that the fundamental faculties functions so beautifully within us, naturally the best of our abilities will just flow out of us. When we are happy, our energies always function better. Ever notice when happy there is an endless energy? Even if we don’t eat, if we don’t sleep, it doesn’t matter; we can go on and on. A little happiness would liberate us from our normal limitations of energy and capability.
Yoga is the science of activating our inner energies in such a way that our bodies, minds and emotions function at their highest peak. When our bodies and minds function in a completely different state of relaxation and a certain level of blissfulness, we can be released from so many things that most people are suffering from. Right now, we sit in our offices, and there’s a nagging headache. The headache is not a major disease, but it takes away our whole capability for that day. Just that throbbing takes away everything. With the practice of yoga, our bodies and minds will be kept at their highest possible peak and we will be relaxed all the time.
Sadhguru J. Vasudev is a contemporary mystic rooted as strongly in worldly and pragmatic matters as he is in inner experience and wisdom. Named one of India’s 50 most influential people, he has addressed prominent global forums on issues as diverse as socio-economic development, leadership and spirituality. He has served as delegate to the United Nations Millennium Peace Summit and the World Peace Congress and has been a special invitee to the World Economic Forum (2006-2009), the Australian Leadership Retreat (2006) and TED (2009). His interviews are featured in The New York Times, BBC, Bloomberg, CNNI and CNBC. He is the author of several books, the subject of four books and co-author of the Amazon Bestseller “Midnights with the Mystic”. His public talks frequently draw crowds of over 300,000 people.
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