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Mystics and Mistakes

By Sadhguru Email By Sadhguru
July 2014
Mystics and Mistakes

If your experience of life transcends the limitations of sense perception—seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling—you are known as a mystic.

What is a mystic? There are only two kinds of people in the world—mystics and mistakes. To put it very simply, if you are seeing life just the way it is, you are a “mystic” in the world’s eyes. If there are large mistakes in your perception, you are a “mistake” considering yourself to be normal. This may sound cruel, but if you genuinely want to know life the way it is, the sooner you do away with all the nonsense in you the better. Your perception is changing at different times of your life. What you did yesterday or how you saw life yesterday seems to be a mistake. What you are doing now seems to be the right thing to you, but this can change anytime. What you have done today may seem like a mistake to you tomorrow, and what you do tomorrow will then seem to be the right thing. Isn’t this happening all the time? So, there is a big mistake about the way we are perceiving life. When this gets corrected, people think you are a mystic because you are beginning to perceive life in such a way that you cannot fit it into logic; it is way beyond logic. Logic is just a small part of your life—you can never fit life into it. You can fit logic into your life, but never life into logic.

If your experience of life transcends the limitations of sense perception—seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling—you are known as a mystic. You experience life in a way that others do not know. You make things happen in a way that others cannot understand, so they call you a mystic, which means they are also admitting that they are mistakes. There is nothing wrong with being a mistake, but not realizing the mistake is the biggest mistake.

At the moment of birth, your sense organs naturally opened up because that is what is needed for your survival in the world. But if anything that is beyond survival has to open up, it takes a little bit of striving. For example, suppose as an infant you were left in a forest without contact with human society. If something edible arrived in front of you, would you take it and stuff it into your ears? No, you would know where to put it. But would you know how to read, write, or speak the English language? No. That takes some striving. Today, language is just flowing out of you. But remember when you were 2 to 3 years of age and they asked you to write the letter “A” how complicated it was! You wrote the letter “A” hundreds of times before you got it right. Only because of that striving the language flows easily today. So anything that is beyond survival does not open up for you unless you strive.

In a society where the survival process is constantly being taken to newer heights of complication, there is not much room for large numbers of people to strive to know the truth about life—the basic nature of our own existence. In the last 100 years, in our excitement over the large number of people being able to do things that we have never been able to do before, we have gone berserk. Technology should not be about gadgetry, but about arranging our lives in such a way that the survival process is handled effortlessly, and there is time and room for humanity to explore other aspects and dimensions, which would not be possible if we were concerned about our survival. We have reached a situation in the world where, for a large part of the population, survival is organized like never before. It is time to invest time and resources to build infrastructure for deeper exploration of the human being, as that is where ultimate wellbeing is.


Named one of India’s 50 most influential people, Sadhguru speaks before millions annually around the globe, including to prominent leadership forums such as the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, TED, and the World Peace Congress. From ground-breaking yoga programs to projects for rural communities and the environment, Sadhguru’s Isha Foundation (www.IshaFoundation.org) serves as a thriving model for human empowerment, which is reflected in the Foundation’s special consultative status with the UN.


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