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How to Deal with Friction in Life?

By Sadhguru Email By Sadhguru
June 2019
How to Deal with Friction in Life?

Questioner: Whatever I do, I face a lot of friction. What to do about that?

Sadhguru: I see this happening every day, to a large percentage of people. Let’s say some task has to be done. If it does not happen, the initial instinct in most people is to think it is because of some other person that it did not happen. They tend to point fingers at others. A whole lot of people look for some metaphysical reason as to why something did not happen. They are even blaming me, “Sadhguru, your Grace is not working.” From day one of the Inner Engineering program, or even from the free introductory talk, we have been trying to nail this one thing into your head: If something is not working, obviously it is not done well.

Maybe you are not able to figure it right now, but if something did not work the way it should, obviously something was not done right. But people look for metaphysical solutions. For a whole lot of people, this is what mysticism means: they complicate simple things in their lives and think that is mystical. No, mysticism means to make the most mystical things—things that you cannot perceive through your five senses or your fundamental logic—available in a reasonably logical way. To make simple things unavailable and metaphysical is not mysticism of any kind.

If in everything you try to do, friction is happening, obviously, you are the sandpaper. We could provide you a small piece of sandpaper. Every day, whenever you face friction with someone, scrape your skin. If you do not cure yourself quickly, you will not have any skin left. When you do not have any skin left, you will not look for any friction. You will walk gently. If you want that kind of treatment, we could do that. Otherwise, come to your senses. If wherever you go, friction is happening, obviously it is you.

Spiritual ST (Friction 06_'19)_400.jpg


One simple thing you can do to reduce friction is this: Whatever the number of words you are uttering in a day, an hour, or a minute—bring it down to fifty percent. A whole lot of friction will go down, simply because you are not blabbering. And whatever you see, whether you see a man, woman, child, cow, or donkey, you bow down. Friction will not happen that way. Bring this into you, not just symbolically—genuinely learn to bow down to a donkey.

There are two kinds of frictions: one is within ourselves. Outside friction is just an expression and a consequence. Inner Engineering means just this: that you can sit here without any friction. If you can sit here without any friction, outside friction will also go down. Still, when you meet a sandpaper, there will be some friction. So generally, we avoid sandpaper if we can, but sometimes we have to work with them. When you have to work with sandpaper, you need tact. This is something you have to learn.

Some people are very tactful when they meet sandpapers. They are so smooth that no matter how rough the other person is, these people will get their job done and leave. Working with sandpaper takes a little bit of skill and experience. There is nothing spiritual about it—it is a social skill. When the porcupine has its quills up, you must keep away a bit. When the quills are down, you can talk to it. It does not have the strength to keep the quills up all the time.

Otherwise, you must understand, your friction is just you.


Sadhguru is a yogi, mystic, and visionary, and a prominent spiritual leader. An author, poet, and internationally renowned speaker, Sadhguru is the founder of Isha Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to human wellbeing. (www.isha.sadhguru.org)


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