Saraswati shares her wisdom
The ever-positive Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati enjoins us to dive within to overcome fear, spread love, and be compassionate. Only then can we usher in the dawn of true spirituality
For readers of Life Positive, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati is a familiar name. They have read about her spiritual journey often in Life Positive. (How she came to India as a tourist and became a permanent part of its spiritual essence- when she felt inexplicably pulled by a divine voice and call.) A few lucky ones have also had the opportunity to listen to her enlightening discourses organised by The Life Positive Foundation and otherwise too.
A bundle of joy, energy, optimism, and positivity, Sadhvi Bhagawati is a living example of how life is supposed to be lived on the earthly plane, without getting attached to anything material, while performing one’s duties religiously. She is involved in many acts of selfless service that involve promoting hygiene, sanitation, education, and awareness amongst the weakest sections of society.
Recently, she launched her new book Come Home To Yourself, which was reviewed by Life Positive. Chairman Aditya Ahluwalia met Sadhvi Bhagawati during one of his visits to Rishikesh and spoke to her at length about her outlook, philosophy, and spiritual belief.
You lead the life of a renunciate. Your book Come Home to Yourself beautifully elucidates your crystal-clear understanding of life and its purpose. We want to know if you have resolved everything in your life or you still feel emotions like fear, rejection, anger, and dejection? If yes, how do you handle them?
I think, for me, personally, life would feel really boring if I had fully resolved everything. As the years go by and as I resolve more and more, I find deeper and vaster peace and joy and grounding. Nonetheless, whenever something does come up, I actually find it very interesting. Now it’s not like “Oh God, I wish I didn’t feel that. Why do I feel that? That’s horrible!” Emotions of fear, pain, anger, and frustration—any of these experiences come up. I stop and think “Wow! That’s really interesting. Why, after such a long time, am I suddenly feeling anger (or fear or resentment) and where did it come from?” This question opens up a beautiful door and a beautiful pathway that takes me deeper into the Self. So, no, I haven’t fully resolved everything, and actually, I am fascinated by all of those opportunities to look more clearly and drop more deeply into a new and as yet undiscovered aspect of myself.
In the book, you mention about Chidanandaji’s unfazed demeanour at the time when the aeroplane he was travelling in met turbulence, almost about to crash. What is the secret to acquiring this level of fearlessness and trust in God?
Fearlessness can only happen when you know that you are being held and carried by the Divine. As long as we think everything is up to us, naturally, we’ll be afraid. But the minute we realise that we are being held, carried, and cared for by divine intelligence, which is loving and compassionate, we can let go of fear because we know we are in the arms of the Mother. It’s like children who fall down and get hurt. The minute their mother comes and picks them up, suddenly, those tears abate. They may have skinned their knee, hurt themselves, there may still be blood coming out of their leg, but nonetheless, in the arms of the mother, those tears stop. And so, in life, things will happen: we’ll fail, we’ll lose; but if we realise that we are in the arms of the Mother, then that fear and pain won’t take over us. We’ll be able to move through whatever happens in life, from a place of anchored, grounded faith.
What is unconditional love? Is it possible to unconditionally love even those who have grievously hurt you? For example, how can survivors of acid attacks and rape practise unconditional love?
Unconditional love is only possible when what we are loving is the soul, the spirit, the essence. If what we are loving is only the form, then that love will never be unconditional. Because that form, the body-mind complex, will eventually do or say something that we don’t like, will hurt us, or make us angry. And if what we’ve loved was their good behaviour or their sweet words, then when their behaviour no longer counts as good to us and when their words feel bitter instead of sweet, our love will fall apart. So, that’s why, when we really love, we need to love the essence, the soul, the spirit; otherwise, our love will fluctuate according to the behaviour we encounter. This isn’t love. This is a contract, a business. For love, it has to be love of soul, of spirit, of content rather than form.
When you ask about people who have been hurt by other people, loving someone unconditionally does not mean everything they do is fine. It doesn’t mean I love, like, or even approve of everything they have done. People may have done things that are absolutely wrong, inappropriate, hurtful, violent, or sinful; but my love for their soul from my soul should still be able to exist. It doesn’t mean I am going to choose to live with them or to ever see them. What it means is that I don’t move through my life carrying anger, grudges, and pain for what they have done. It means that I’m able to sink into my essence, my soul, and love them on the level of their soul, their spirit, their essence; not the level of their behaviour.
Why does our mind exert such a powerful influence on us and our life decisions? Despite all the religiosity present in the Indian subcontinent, why are people not guided by their higher Self and are mostly in the grip of their minds?
Most people, sadly, live in their minds—their thinking minds—and the dilemma that comes with this. The mind is a wonderful tool. You need to solve a math problem, you need your mind; you need to figure out directions, you need your mind. But the mind functions only in separation, and this is the dilemma—living in separation. The separation that we feel from our own selves, from God, from our loved ones, our family members, our communities, and Mother Earth is what’s killing us. When we forget how to go from the mind into the heart, we lose the opportunity to connect, and this is why it is so important to drop into our knowing, intuitive heart. Not the emotional heart. That’s actually the mind. The heart is actually quite stable, quite deep. The heart knows, feels, and understands. And so, we need to drop into that place of oneness for all of our relationships to connect with each other. As long as we hold ourselves, God, our family members, and our community at arm’s length, judging them with the mind, we’ll always stay separate. That separation is the root of everything, ranging from depression, violence, and divorce, to wars, environmental destruction, and everything in between. So, we need to remember to drop from the mind into the heart. The mind can never really know the capital-T truth; only the heart can know it.
How can we come to terms with the pain and injustice happening to others in this world and over which we have no control? It is painful to watch others suffer.
There are two types of pain and suffering in the world: one, that over which we do have control, and the other, over which we don’t have control. There’s a beautiful saying: ‘God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.’ Because most of us tend to be at one end of the pendulum. We consider ourselves doers—the ones who try to fix everything—which is a beautiful intention, but the problem is that we can’t. And so we end up very frustrated because we are trying to fix everything, whether it’s someone else’s addiction, someone else’s bad choices, someone else’s suffering of their own mind (which they won’t let us help them with), or something happening in the Middle East, or terrorism of countries, races, and religions that are not ours. These are things we don’t have control over and so, if we attach ourselves to changing them, we feel frustrated and also lose a lot of energy unnecessarily.
But the other end of the pendulum is also just as dangerous. And it afflicts people who tend to consider themselves spiritual. They tend to think, ‘Since I don’t have any control over anyone else’s suffering, I need to just find peace in myself.’ The peace that we are supposed to find in our self is not that which makes us sit back while others suffer. It is not peace when you watch somebody fall and don’t bend down to help them up. It is not peace when you build mansions while others live in shacks, or eat caviar while others starve. That’s not the spiritual peace that we need today. This is not enlightenment. The peace that we need today is the peace that enables us to be clear vessels and vehicles of the divine flow, without our ego coming in the way. You realise that when you are bending down to help someone, it’s not you helping someone, but the Universe using you as a tool. Whether you are feeding people, giving them education, medical care, it’s not you serving others, but someone who is so blessed to be able to serve as a vehicle, as a tool of the divine flow.
Even though the New Age seems to have arrived and more and more people are gravitating towards yoga, meditation, and being environmentally aware, the planet still abounds in ignorance and ego. In such a scenario, how is it possible to usher in the Golden Age that we dream about so much?
That Golden Age, that heaven on earth, is ours to create. But the dilemma for most people is that we want our personal Golden Age, our own heaven, but we don’t want to actually do anything to create it. We all understand that we can’t have a Golden Age while people are suffering and dying of hunger. And yet, are we prepared to make choices in our own diets, in our own lives, that actually would enable people of this earth to be fed? We understand that we can’t have a Golden Age while women and children are suffering in sweatshops. But, are we prepared to stop clamouring for more and more and cheaper and cheaper and cheaper? This requires companies to employ slave labour, to give us what we want at only the price we are ready to pay. This is why that Golden Age isn’t coming as quickly as we may like. We’re not actually prepared to make the choices that are required. Everybody wants an honest politician until they’ve got some work for which they are willing to slip someone a few rupees to get it done.
In order for us to usher in the Golden Age, we have to stop being the obstacles to it. If the world turned vegetarian, not one person would have to die of hunger or sleep hungry. We produce enough grain to feed 10 billion people a day. There’s only seven billion of us on the planet, and yet, tens of thousands of children die of starvation. But we’d have to be prepared to make that choice. If we insisted that everything we bought was organic, fair trade, and came from a factory with a certificate that showed that its waste was not going into our soil or into the Ganga, or polluting our air, then factories would have to stop polluting the air and water. But it might cost us a little more.
Are we prepared to make those choices? I want the best for me, the biggest piece of the pie for me, but that inevitably means less for others. So, heaven on earth, the Golden Age, cannot be created as long as I am thinking only about myself. My sense of self must expand, and it must expand to include the children who are dying of hunger, the women who are working in sweatshops, the trees being cut down in the Amazon, and the indigenous people who live there. When my sense of self expands to include all of that, then I, actually, can be an agent of ushering in the Golden Age. But until then, we are still going to keep living in the evil age.
Do you have any message for the readers of Life Positive?
The most important message is that life is very short. We have very few years in this body. You have no idea what body and what circumstances you’re going to get next time. This, right now, is our chance, our opportunity. It’s been given to us as a divine gift for our awakening. That’s why we take birth in human form. It’s to be able and to be conscious of ourselves so that we have the chance, the possibility to experience enlightenment, to wake up. Use it. Don’t lose this special opportunity by going astray, thinking that your whole life is about how much money you can make or how famous, popular, or beautiful you can be. Death will come too soon. Every moment is precious. Stop fighting amongst yourselves. Stop criticising your family members and yourself. Stop judging people. Stop wasting time gossiping and being negative. All of that is such a waste of our precious time. Use the moments of your life—grab them! They are your opportunity and everything you need is already with you. There is no job, no relationship, no possession, no nothing that you need for your awakening, your enlightenment, your moksha that you don’t already have. You need to just turn inward and find it. So, stop wasting time. Go inward.
Life Positive follows a stringent review publishing mechanism. Every review received undergoes -
Only after we're satisfied about the authenticity of a review is it allowed to go live on our website
Our award winning customer care team is available from 9 a.m to 9 p.m everyday
All our healers and therapists undergo training and/or certification from authorized bodies before becoming professionals. They have a minimum professional experience of one year
All our healers and therapists are genuinely passionate about doing service. They do their very best to help seekers (patients) live better lives.
All payments made to our healers are secure up to the point wherein if any session is paid for, it will be honoured dutifully and delivered promptly
Every seekers (patients) details will always remain 100% confidential and will never be disclosed