Who Is Sadhguru The Famous Indian Yogi And Mystic

Who Is Sadhguru The Famous Indian Yogi And Mystic


Sadhguru, Jaggi Vasudev, is an Indian yogi, mystic, visionary, and best-selling author who has captured the world’s imagination with his deep wisdom and spiritual insights. He founded the Isha Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to human well-being, which operates globally. As a tireless advocate for individual growth, environmental sustainability, and social change, Sadhguru’s life and work serve as a beacon for people seeking to navigate the challenges of the modern world through spirituality.

Sadhguru’s Early Life

Sadhguru, originally named Jagadish Vasudev, was born on September 3, 1957, in Mysore, Karnataka, India. His father was an ophthalmologist with the Indian Railways. Due to the nature of his father’s profession, the family moved frequently, allowing Sadhguru to experience a variety of settings and cultures across the Indian subcontinent.

From a young age, Sadhguru showed a marked inclination towards nature and often spent hours in the forested areas around his home. He was also an avid adventurer, learning horse riding, trekking, and snake catching. This connection with the natural world would manifest in his ecological initiatives as a spiritual leader.

As a child, Sadhguru displayed a precocious curiosity about life and an innate love for learning. He would often confound his teachers with unconventional and probing questions. Despite his intelligence, he was more interested in nature and the cosmos than in formal education.

In his youth, Sadhguru developed a keen interest in motorcycles and often traveled long distances on his bike. These journeys played a significant role in shaping his perceptions and understanding of the country and its people.

My Guru Sadhguru ji
My Guru Sadhguru ji

At 25, he had a profound spiritual experience atop the Chamundi Hill in Mysore. He describes this transformative moment as an experience of “absolute clarity,” where he saw the world in a completely new light. This experience led him to seek understanding and pursue intense yogic practices. After a year of meditation and practice, he taught yoga to share his inner experience.

In 1982, he started his first yoga class with seven participants in Mysore. Over time, he began conducting yoga classes across Karnataka and Hyderabad, traveling on his motorcycle and earning the name ‘motorcycle yogi.’

This period of his life marked the beginning of a journey that would take him from being a young man in Mysore to becoming a globally renowned spiritual leader.

The Isha Foundation

The Isha Foundation is a non-profit, spiritual organization founded by Sadhguru in 1992. With its headquarters at the foothills of the Velliangiri Mountains in southern India, the Foundation operates in more than 300 centers worldwide, offering yoga programs and initiatives aimed at personal growth, social transformation, and global harmony. The Foundation runs on the efforts of over two million volunteers from various walks of life, making it unique in its scope and function.

The Foundation offers a variety of programs aimed at individual transformation through yoga. These programs are not based on beliefs or ideologies but on powerful methods for inner transformation, including meditation and pranayama practices. The best-known offering is the “Inner Engineering” program, which teaches participants ways to cultivate physical, mental, and spiritual well-being.

To improve the quality of life in India’s rural areas, the Isha Foundation operates several programs to enhance health, education, and living conditions. It includes the “Action for Rural Rejuvenation” project, which provides comprehensive health solutions and community revitalization programs.

Project GreenHands (PGH) is an ecological initiative designed to increase the green cover in Tamil Nadu by planting trees and promoting environmental consciousness.

Rally for Rivers is a nationwide campaign to save India’s rivers from depletion by revitalizing them through tree plantation.

Isha Yoga Center

The Isha Yoga Center is the spiritual headquarters of the Isha Foundation. Located at the foothills of the Velliangiri Mountains in Coimbatore, southern India, this center is more than just a yoga institute. It is a space for inner transformation and spiritual growth, encompassing various facets of holistic well-being. The center spans 150 acres and offers all four major paths of yoga – karma (action), gnana (knowledge), kriya (energy), and bhakti (devotion).

Dhyanalinga: The Dhyanalinga is a unique and powerful energy form sitting under a pillarless 250,000-brick dome structure. It is a meditative space that does not ascribe to any particular faith or belief system. Sadhguru consecrated the Dhyanalinga after three years of intense prana pratishtha (energization of divine energies). It allows one to experience life in its totality, transcending the limitations of the five senses.

Adiyogi Statue: Standing 112 feet tall, the Adiyogi statue depicts Lord Shiva as the first yogi or Adiyogi. The Guinness World Records recognized it as the “Largest Bust Sculpture” worldwide. The statue is not worshipped as an idol but as a yogic tool to enhance receptivity.

Theerthakund: Theerthakund is an underground water body energized by Rasalinga, a solidified mercury lingam—a dip in this vibrant water balances physical and mental well-being before entering the Dhyanalinga.

Suryakund and Chandrakund: These are energized water bodies created for men and women, respectively. They facilitate the harmonization of energies before engaging in intense yogic practices.

Spanda Hall: This 64,000-square-foot hall is where advanced yoga programs are conducted. The hall is specifically built for people who want to delve deeper into the meditative aspects of yoga.

Isha Rejuvenation Center: This center offers a variety of programs that blend the ancient science of Ayurveda and Siddha with yoga to revitalize an individual.

Isha Home School: The school emphasizes student-centered learning in small clusters while incorporating Indian cultural elements and strongly focusing on holistic development.

The Isha Yoga Center stands as a doorway to inner dimensions, welcoming visitors worldwide seeking to experience the peace and tranquility it offers. Its meticulously designed structures and spaces provide an ideal atmosphere for exploring the self and the divine.

Global Outreach

Outside of India, the Isha Foundation has a significant presence in the United States, UK, Lebanon, Singapore, Canada, Malaysia, Uganda, China, Nepal, and Australia, where it offers yoga programs, hosts events, and takes part in initiatives to bring physical, mental, and spiritual well-being to all.

Through his teachings and public talks, Sadhguru has reached millions worldwide. His insightful and pragmatic approach to spirituality has garnered a global following. As the founder of the Isha Foundation, Sadhguru oversees an organization with over 200 city-based centers and millions of volunteers worldwide. The Foundation provides yoga programs and spiritual guidance and drives several social outreach initiatives. He has a substantial online presence, with numerous videos, blog posts, and online meditation practices available to the public. His social media platforms have millions of followers, providing daily insights and spiritual guidance to people worldwide.

Sadhguru has initiated large-scale environmental projects like Rally for Rivers and the Save Soil movement to protect and preserve natural resources. These projects have global implications and have been acknowledged and supported by various international entities. Isha Vidhya, an initiative of the Isha Foundation, is committed to raising education and literacy in rural India and providing quality school infrastructure. The lessons learned, and best practices from this initiative can be applied globally.

Millions of people have attended Sadhguru’s Inner Engineering programs, which teach yoga and meditation techniques. These programs focus on improving individual physical and mental health, and their popularity has resulted in a global community of practitioners. 

Environmental and Social Initiatives

Sadhguru’s environmental concerns led to the initiation of “Project GreenHands,” an ecological initiative that led to the planting of millions of trees in India. Another significant endeavor, “Rally for Rivers,” sought policy changes at the national level to revitalize India’s depleting rivers.

In the social sphere, the Isha Foundation has implemented several rural revitalization programs, education initiatives for underprivileged children, and empowerment programs for women.

He has engaged with leaders and policymakers worldwide, advocating for sustainable development, inclusive economic policies, and environmental protection. His input has been sought on various issues, reflecting the global respect for his insights.

Save Soil Movement

Save Soil Movement is an initiative by Sadhguru and the Isha Foundation to address the pressing global issue of soil degradation. It is a follow-up to their previous successful environmental campaign, Rally for Rivers. It aims to highlight and find solutions to the rapid soil degradation threatening food and water security worldwide.

The world’s soils have been severely degraded due to overuse, deforestation, overreliance on chemical fertilizers, and climate change. It’s estimated that a third of the world’s soils are moderate to highly degraded, a worsening problem.

Sadhguru’s Save Soil Movement aims to draw the global community’s attention to this issue, educate people about the importance of soil health, and mobilize action to reverse soil degradation. The movement promotes sustainable agricultural practices, such as organic farming and agroforestry, which help to preserve and enhance soil fertility.

The campaign also emphasizes the interconnectedness of all life and the environment. It notes that soil degradation is not just an agricultural problem but also threatens biodiversity and contributes to climate change. Healthy soils not only support plant growth but also absorb carbon dioxide, helping to mitigate climate change.

The Save Soil Movement encourages people to get involved in a variety of ways, such as by spreading the word, getting educated, participating in events, advocating for policy changes, and making lifestyle choices that are more soil-friendly.

The campaign seeks to bring about policy changes at the governmental level, as well as changes in farmers’ practices and consumers’ choices. Through these efforts, the Save Soil Movement hopes to contribute to the global efforts towards sustainable development and preserving our planet for future generations.

Sadhguru’s Teachings and Public Influence

Sadhguru’s teachings, delivered through discourses, public talks, and books, emphasize the exploration and development of human potential. He promotes yoga as a physical practice and a holistic approach to well-being. His discourses often merge science and spirituality, making ancient yogic sciences relevant and accessible to contemporary society.

He has been invited to speak at some of the world’s most prestigious forums, including the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, and leading educational institutions such as Oxford, Stanford, Harvard, and MIT. His influential TED talk has been viewed by millions worldwide.

Sadhguru’s work transcends traditional religious boundaries, drawing followers from diverse cultural, religious, and socio-economic backgrounds. His emphasis on self-transformation and realization resonates with a global audience seeking deeper meaning and purpose. Through his teachings, writings, and initiatives, Sadhguru inspires change, one individual at a time, demonstrating that spirituality can be a powerful force for personal and societal transformation.