By Shivi Verma
Shivi Verma meets Sohrab Ardeshir, a popular actor who is also known for channelling various New Age masters
When I first spotted Sohrab Ardeshir at a spiritual festival in Goa, happily swaying to the live music, I thought him to be one of the many hi-flying participants of the event. Flashes of his appearance in various ad films and movies crossed my memory. His quintessential appearance in films and advertisements as the doting, quirky, good-hearted patriarch have won him many admirers. His Hindi films include Fanaa, Mangal Panday: The Rising, Socha Na Tha, and Little Zizou. He has also worked on several international projects, including Woody Allen’s Bullets over Broadway, Such a Long Journey and The Letters (a new Mother Theresa biopic). He has acted in theatre and appeared in over 70 commercials. But that he also had a starkly different profile was a revelation to me when I found him channelling ascended masters and conveying their message to his audience at a workshop in the same festival.
Eager to know more, I met him at his beautiful residence in Bandra where he lives with his elderly mother and a pet cat and dog. He came across as an affable, warm and very unassuming person whom anybody would love to befriend. An excerpt from the interview.
How did channelling happen to you?
I had settled in New York, and was busy working a day job and studying theatre at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute. I had just begun to break into theatre and film there, when personal circumstances brought me back to Mumbai.
My mother had allowed a friend of hers, who was a medium, to hold meetings in our house. Out of curiosity I began to attend these. One day, when she was in a trance, the master indicated that I had the makings of a medium, and would I like to train? I impulsively said yes, out of a sense of curiosity and adventure.
As my training continued, I began with a small meeting of my own, with just three other people. I now hold regular Thursday channelling sessions, with upto 60 attendees at a time. Most mediums worldwide generally work with only one guide or entity. I have the joyous privilege of working with as many as desire to speak through me depending on the energetic calling of the group, and the subject matter for the day.
How does it feel?
When I am channelling, I lose all sense of time. I experience the masters’ expansiveness, joy, wisdom and depth. It is an indescribable experience.
In the past, most mediums were taught to be ‘empty vessels’ for the master energies to take over. At that time, I would barely remember a word of what I had channelled. Over time, with the evolution of energies and of the human race, we mediums are now taught to be equally present with the master energies. We are no longer encouraged to hand over our power to anyone else, even a master. Mediumship brings with it great responsibility. One should not allow one’s own biases or inclinations to influence the output.
What according to you is spirituality?
Spirituality is about embracing each and every part of your life fully and joyously, learning to live in the moment, and discovering how magnificent you are. I practice what I call ‘Living meditation’.
If, for example, I choose to ‘living meditate’ while walking down a particular street, I then suddenly become aware of the energy of the ground beneath my feet. I experience how my body is feeling. I allow myself to notice things around me that I would not have otherwise noticed. If someone passes me by, I energetically embrace them and pick up their mood. Through this process, one can achieve the same results as in traditional meditation. Yet I, personally, find it much more fulfilling.
Has spirituality changed you?
I would like to think that this work has made me an even more tolerant, accepting, and non-judgmental person than I was before. It has brought a sense of wonder and excitement into my life. I call my one-on-one meetings ‘growth and development’ sessions. Here, I cannot possibly be judgmental, as time and experience has taught me that each person’s growth path is individual and unique. Some people, for example, grow best through multiple relationships; others through a singular, committed union. Some people’s structures best evolve through several job changes; others are meant to stick to one endeavour. I act as a catalyst, helping them align with the calling of their own higher soul.
Has it changed the way you handle relationships?
Most definitely. It helps me ‘read between the lines’, and look at the bigger picture, rather than getting caught up in the trauma of an earthly situation. When dealing with people, I attempt to listen to the subtext of what is being said, rather than just focussing on the words themselves. I am by no means ‘perfect’. I see myself, and all others, as ‘works in progress’. I constantly review my old patterns, and belief structures, tweaking some, and turning others on the head.
What do you mean by perfection?
To me, perfection is embracing every aspect of the self, including those that you do not like, and understanding their validity in your growth and evolution. They are all facets of the diamond you are, and it is only after you embrace those aspects of yourself that you do not like, that you can begin to change them. One of my clients stated that he hated his quick and volatile temper. He wanted me to help him ‘cut it out’ of his structure.
I explained that energy cannot be severed, as it just flows. I urged him to first acknowledge the validity of his hasty temper, and list for himself, how it served him. He initially resisted, but gradually accepted that it raised his vibrations, helped him speak his truth (instead of suppressing it), and actually shook up the stagnant energies of his own family. As he began to befriend his temper, he found, over time, that he was able to choose when to lose it, and when not to. Now it no longer controlled him; he was in charge.
What is the latest message from the masters?
Starting 2014, the energetic grip of any event of the past has been released. We are writing our life stories afresh and anew.
For example, a certain woman was raped in her childhood. The memory of this event will remain with her all through her lifetime. She presumably has grown and evolved from this event, and will hopefully continue to do so for the rest of her life. But the energetic stranglehold that this event has had on her is now released. So even now, if she feels unclean, frozen, or emotionally choked up, she needs to acknowledge that she is simply re-creating all of that ‘in the now’, and has not carried that forward from the past. We are so accustomed to playing victim to our past lives. Let us understand that now we have worked things through, and have the power to reinvent the self completely and totally. Many believe, for example, that if there is cancer in the family, they are predisposed to contracting it. Why should they? If they work on their issues, there is no reason for it to replay in their lives. But the strong belief that they will get it often creates it in the body. We have to now work at changing all these structures and beliefs at the mental, and the cellular levels.
How do you cope with health issues?
I am, thankfully, quite healthy, and exercise regularly. I am, however, prone to weight gain and have a repetitive lower-back issue. All health imbalances are a combination of physical, mental and emotional issues. One should address all these aspects when working on the self, or one never really gets cured.
I have identified that I tend to put on weight when I feel trapped, and lose weight when I feel free. The concepts of ‘trapped’ and ‘free’ are naturally mental ones, which have little bearing on actual circumstances. I have been working towards addressing these issues, and changing my mental space and concepts. Along with this, I do things to help the body, such as changing my exercise routine, and going on a food plan.
What is your daily routine like?
Very busy! Morning exercise, followed by a series of personal sessions on most days. Auditions. Shows. Occasional movie shoots. Voice-overs and dubbing on certain days. I am also a person who enjoys my personal time, as well as socialising. I enjoy reading, swimming, meeting friends, watching films and going to the theatre. I occasionally give workshops, both spiritual and acting ones. Theatre is my passion as well as my hobby.
How do you relate to technology?
(Laughing) You have found my Achilles Heel! I tend to be techno-resistant; yet so many of my channellings deal with the intricacies of science and technology!
I have understood that, on a spiritual level, technology is vital and essential for the growth and evolution of the human race. The Net, for example, is a magnificent gift to Earth by our Universal Friends (ETs). When used in balance, it can further our knowledge, wisdom and self-awareness. When used in imbalance, it can further our loneliness, isolation and destructive tendencies.
What is interesting is that, in a recent channelling, the masters helped us understand that today’s generation will respond more to abstract entities and masters, rather than the more familiar, traditional ones. They explained that there were formless energy masters of computers, science and music, with whom the younger generation instinctively connects. They don’t need forms, rituals and traditional practices of worship. We were urged to understand this, and accept it. Most youngsters today can use an iPad, even before they can speak. They understand it instinctively.
How is your relationship with money?
I have done a lot of work on this. I found, for example, that I was very cavalier about money. I didn’t really want to bother myself with it. I never bothered to participate in its growth and generation. I then chose to involve myself more closely with my own money. I took the advice of others. Worked towards housing it and growing it.
Everyone has the divine right to earn, live well, and enjoy the fruits of their labour. But money must flow like an inbreath-outbreath. Social responsibility is also our divine right. Few understand this.
For example, two people give the same amount to the same charity. The first person does so out of guilt, or because he wants personal acknowledgment of his greatness. This donation will somehow be misused, or will only bring further lack to both the donor and the recipient. The second person on the contrary does the same thing in the fullness of the self, because he joyously wants to share his bounty. This money will bear fruit. On a spiritual level, the money imbalances we see around us, such as scams being exposed, or corrupt officials being ousted, are necessary for the cleansing of the country. It is only after the debris has been brought to the surface that new energies can be instilled into our land.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Since Universal energies, and therefore the energies of the human race, are evolving faster than current-day technology, I would like to urge my friends to keep current with the times. Constantly review your beliefs, structures and thought patterns. Bring yourselves up to speed. Welcome internal change. Let yourselves grow and expand. Never lose touch with the inner child. Live in awe and wonderment.
Laugh a lot. When you fall, pick yourselves up, dust yourselves off, and carry on. Don’t take things too seriously. Be a surfer of life: ride the waves joyously.
Learn to like yourself, before you love yourself. Celebrate who you are!