Yogi Amrit Desai Transcript

Yogi Amrit Desai Interview

Rick: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer and my guest this week is Yogi Amrit Desai. Welcome, Yogi.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Thank you Rick. It’s nice to be with you.

Rick: Yes, good. A student of yours named Kim set this up and she’s been watching my interviews and was very helpful in getting this organized. I want to say for starters, I’ve never said this at the beginning of an interview. But I get very uplifted and elated doing these interviews. It really sort of attunes me to a deeper level. But at the same time, at the end of them, I always have a sort of a sense of misgiving that I feel like I haven’t adequately probed the depth of the person that I’m talking to and really gotten down to the root of understanding their perspective. Maybe that’s just a limitation inherent in human communications, but I always try to do my best to ask questions that are as deep and meaningful as possible and are as useful as possible to the people who are listening. I always feel like I fail at it to some extent. But I fail as well as I can.

Yogi Amrit Desai: I think I can help in that as much as I can.

Rick: Okay, good. And as you know, the subject we’re talking about is really something that one has to experience and words always fall short of doing justice to that experience. So we’ll just both fail well together here. Good. So in preparation for this, I’ve listened to quite a few hours of your talks. I think it was mostly at a conference at Omega Institute, and I’ve really enjoyed listening to those. There’s a sort of an honesty and a humility that comes across, which you don’t always hear with teachers. In fact, I heard you admit to even at one point sometimes teaching above the level of your experience, but striving to continue to mature in that experience. And that’s a kind of a rare admission for most teachers, so I really appreciated that. Now, many people listening to this might know nothing about you, and there’s a very long bio on your website, which would be too long to read. But I thought maybe I’d just give you the opportunity of saying whatever you feel is really relevant, the main points you would like to say about your background and how you came to be doing what you’re doing and so on.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Well, I was very deeply inspired in my life when I first met my guru at the age of 16. And he was a great, highly developed spiritual master and a great yogi. His name is Kripalu, and I followed him since my age 16. And when I came to America, even though I’m an artist, I studied art, my heart was in yoga. So even after I graduated from the college, I started teaching yoga. And it was coming so much from my heart that it has grown to be one of the largest organizations in North America. So it has developed all along the way. So in the beginning, I was teaching in Philadelphia, where I went to school. And after, in own amazement, by 1970, I had trained 50 yoga teachers and had 150 yoga classes in all the surrounding areas of Philadelphia, perhaps the biggest in those days. That is, I’m talking about 1971. So it did grow to be, and then from there on, I noticed that I was not able to teach the depth of yoga that I knew yoga can give, that you cannot deliver in the class no matter how much you teach. So then it grew into Kripalu Center, a yoga center, yoga and program center outside of Philadelphia. And it grew so big that we had no room. So I opened another yoga center in Pennsylvania, in Summit Station, Pennsylvania, where it grew to be the staff of 150 volunteer residential staff. And it was, and we had so many programs that started filling up. So more people wanted to come and study in-depth with me. So I moved to Shadowbrook, Lenox, Massachusetts, and there we bought a very large property of 350 acres on large Lake Mahkeenac. And we had, we bought a Jesuit seminary, which was four stories, each story one acre. So like, it was four acres of one building. So we had a staff that grew to be 350 full-time volunteer staff and we could accommodate 300 guests. So it did become one of the largest, and I attribute that to the message that that was, that people received so much in-depth that they were coming. Because when I came from India, I didn’t know how to advertise, I didn’t know how to give lectures, I didn’t know any of those things.

Rick: So yes, and it must, so it must have been that people were having good experiences and telling their friends and it just naturally grew, right?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, and then I was invited on many television shows, radio shows, as well as many conferences, so it grew naturally.

Rick: Yeah, and of course this was the 70s. And Maharishi Mahesh Yogi was in his heyday, and you know, Swami Sachidananda, and a number of other teachers, and the whole thing was kind of blossoming.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, it was. I think that’s about, perhaps I was one of the earliest teachers, and there were definitely some others that I may not have known. But I came in February 1960 and there was hardly any interest in yoga. But my love for yoga so much that when I was invited to demonstrate yoga in an international conference. It was like a newspaper man, and television, they were so impressed that I got a very good upstart.

Rick: Yeah, now as most people know, yoga means union, and it doesn’t just mean the union of the nose with the knee, or the hands with the toes, or anything like that. There’s a deeper meaning to that. And these days of course, you know, there’s a lot of talk of non-duality, and awakening, and enlightenment. And all sorts of people are having awakenings, some quite spontaneously, without ever having practiced anything. They just wake up one morning and their kundalini is awakening, or you know, something’s happening. Others, after a certain degree of practice, maybe this epidemic of awakening that seems to be taking place is resulting from the kind of ground that you and other teachers plowed back in the 70s.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, I think that is so true, that many people, the young generation that was interested in drugs as well as spirituality, the teaching that came from the East, that exposed them to the whole new dimension. They could feel and experience, and that gave them the insight there is more to life than what we can see, feel, touch, and taste. So, and that means the hippies really, in those days, they were experimenting with another dimension through the drugs. And when I came, I told them that this is not the right way. Then that is when the yoga, many people came to yoga because they had experience, and they also could see that I could provide them the similar experiences through meditation and Amrit Yoga. So, a lot of people were attracted because my teachings were experiential. They were not just philosophical. And Rick, you just mentioned that some people, many people are having spiritual experiences of kundalini awakening. But one has to understand that the kundalini experiences, that if you have, but you don’t know what it is, you think, most people think it is the sickness. They go to the doctor, they go to psychiatrists, and they do not know anything about it. So, there are many cases that have come to me, when people have that awakening. They don’t know what is happening to them. And then somebody suggests their name to me, and then, and that several times it has happened.

Rick: Yeah, well, people get in touch with me because of this show, you know. And, I mean, one woman got in touch with me a few months ago. And she said, “I can barely type because my body is thrashing around so much from this kundalini thing.” And she didn’t know anything about kundalini when it first started happening. She thought she was having convulsions or something.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yeah, exactly.

Rick: And she started doing research, and one thing led to the next, and she realized what was going on. And then she ended up talking with a couple of people and things kind of settled down. But I’ll add you to my list of people to refer such people to when they have this, because it does seem to be happening. I don’t know if it is happening more than it did decades ago. But maybe we just know about it more because of the internet. But there does seem to be a kind of an upwelling of people, of awakenings and not only in terms of kundalini. Sometimes kundalini symptoms are minimal or non-existent, but there’s just this sort of awakenings people have.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, and that most people do not understand even what kundalini is. They know about the external symptoms rather than really how to guide it to its unformed and evolutionary passages. So that’s what, because my path is kundalini yoga. But most people who even call kundalini yoga do not know what that means because they have limited understanding about it. So this is the one that comes from a highly realized master, my guru Kripalu, who meditated ten hours a day for 34 years of his life. Ten hours a day in three different segments. Not only that, but he practiced complete silence for 12 years. So his kundalini was awakened and he had known all the different levels of it. And he trained me particularly and gave me shaktipat. Not only that, but he gave me special blessing to impart shaktipat and help people to evolve on the most evolutionary stages that people do not use or don’t even know.

Rick: Perhaps you should define shaktipat in case some listeners don’t know what that means.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Shaktipat is a very ancient tradition in India. The guru who has reached to the higher levels of consciousness, he has so much mastery over the life energy field that he radiates that energy as a luminous aura and oozes the light of consciousness that oozes out of their body through their eyes and through their every expression. Such a master can also hold the field such that it has a very high frequency and a person is ready, receptive and open and enters that field. They will begin to feel that impact of their energy field. And that is, that means, you cannot give it. It is the, it’s between the giver and the receiver who receives it. When they enter into the synergy field, they experience something so non-mental that happens in a non-mental transmission. It is direct energetic transmission.

Rick: Good, that’s a good definition. It’s funny, because in spiritual circles these days there’s this whole movement that is sometimes referred to as Neo-Advaita where people are kind of aligning themselves with the teachings of Ramana Maharshi and Nisargadatta and so on. And there is in some cases a bias against practice. Some teachers go so far as to say that practices can only reinforce the sense of a practitioner, you know, reinforce the ego. And I tend to disagree with this having been a practitioner of meditation myself for 44 years and I feel like it’s always been beneficial and kind of attuned me more and more and more with cosmic awareness rather than being locked into individual awareness. But perhaps you can just give your opinion.

Yogi Amrit Desai: I think there is a whole secret dimension of how to practice where the doer, the achiever, is no longer an obstruction and you tune into the pranic energy field. That pranic energy field prompts your action and movement and makes it manifest in the form of postures, pranayamas, locks, meditations. Everything happens non-directed, mentally or emotionally. So that is called actionless action and that is what I teach and that’s what I teach people. How to enter into that paradoxical experience where you are moving and you are not moving at the same time. Why? Because the ego mind that is usually moving is absent and Shakti, the divine energy that is activated, performs the action non-mentally. So I actually teach there and I’m just about to give a seminar in Nepal with me and Pinar Desai. We’ll be giving shaktipat experience and that is where people, when they come, they have most extraordinary experiences of going beyond their past and future, time-bound body-mind consciousness. And they can experience how to go beyond, feel it, experience it and know what is being done through your body. You are not the doer or an achiever or a performer.

Rick: Is Pinar Desai related to you?

Yogi Amrit Desai: No, we are close friends.

Rick: Just same name.

Yogi Amrit Desai: We have seminars together on shaktipat and we had one shaktipat session in Orlando, almost attended by

Rick: Okay, so perhaps I could reiterate what you just said to make sure I clearly understand it. I think what you’re saying is that if a practice is primarily based on individual kind of effort, it may in fact reinforce or aggrandize the ego and individuality. Whereas if a practice is natural and effortless and kind of enables one to surrender to a much deeper intelligence, then that practice will have quite the opposite effect. It will tend to attune one to that intelligence and, you know, align one to that, which of course would be very beneficial for life.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, I think you describe it extremely well. But most people, when you say go down and let the higher intelligence guide you, but that’s what people do not know, whether it is intelligence that is guiding or your mind that is dominating the intelligence.

Rick: Right, you could just be indulging in individual whims and what not.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, so that is the unique teachings that I bring from my guru who reached to the highest and it is the dimension of energy that most people do not know how to get in touch with and how to impart it. And people practice into in the form of what you call the Reiki, as well as pranic healing. But they do not know the deeper secrets, even though it can be used superficially through the particular external creation. But that is, once you know the secret of how to enter into the pranic intelligence, you are in connection with the cosmic intelligence and there is no, the mind is so minuscule. It can do so little compared to what that energy can diagnose and prepare the postures, movements, pranayamas, locks, in such a way that it can dismantle many body blocks that are held in your karma body, you know, in your emotional body, in your past.

Rick: When you say locks, do you mean L-O-C-K, like a padlock? Is that, was that bandhas, is that the word?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, bandhas are called locks.

Rick: Right, so it’s just an aspect of the yogic practice.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yeah, and that is the way to move the energy by biological locks by which you can shift the energy movement so that it can go very, where Shakti wants it, and to dislodge the blocks that mind or the modern diagnosis cannot even detect that that is the block. But Shakti knows and when you go from the energy to this consciousness, you open up the holy door to divine passages that are not accessible through the, through the learned practices. This takes you into unlearned, direct intuitive manifestation of the higher forces.

Rick: I kind of like to think of spiritual practice the way you teach it and others teach it, if it’s effective, as being like a scientific experiment, you know, where the instrument instead of being a microscope or a telescope or something is your own nervous system and you’re just kind of learning how to fine-tune that instrument more and more so that it can, you know, probe or come to experience subtler levels of reality.

Yogi Amrit Desai: You said very extremely well, Rick.

Rick: Thank you.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So that is true because what, this is the part that is unknown to the scientific world or an average person. Yogis have always known how to get in touch with that higher power that manifests through your life energy and just like this life energy works on two different levels. On a subconscious level, which we call biological prana and superconscious level we call soul. Soul is the source of subconscious prana. Soul is superconscious. So entire creation is a manifestation of this combined co-creation of the subconscious and superconscious. So human beings have ego mind that is acting as domination over the subconscious. But subconscious is not automatic. So science called it autonomic nervous system. But yogis knew that it was an access to the higher power. So this is the part, so the scientists didn’t know, so they said when they looked at it they said this is all happening automatically. So they gave it the title autonomic and closed the folder saying we now know it’s automatic. That is where yogis discovered that it is a link to the supreme state of consciousness if you know how to connect with it. And that is my fundamental of my teachings.

Rick: So autonomic, isn’t that the nervous system that controls the breathing and the heartbeat and stuff like that?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, and that is what I call autonomic nervous system operates in the field of polarity. So through breath in and breath out. And it also operates through the birth and death because when unmanifests, that is omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent, divine that we call God. When it manifests, it manifests through the polarity in our body and in the body of entire creation. So once you know how to get in touch with that life force that operates in Polarity, so when it operates in polarity, it has the positive and negative, yin and yang, male and female principle. They are in co-creation where one does not exist independent of the other or one part of polarity is because of the other part. They have no independent existence. So that is what is built into our biology. So, but mind can select one side of that polarity and create duality out of it. And then polarity that is in harmonious co-creative interplay turns into conflict. That’s what human beings suffer from. So all human suffering comes from ego mind introducing conflict into the polarity which is, by which the body’s wisdom manifests into harmony. And in body, it is called homeostatic process. That means where the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, they are functioning perfect co-creation of life and life-giving functions of respiration, digestion, elimination, circulation. All functions are carried out by that biology, polarity of expansion and contraction. Action and reaction are equal and opposite. But human mind wants to pursue the more of indulgence in pleasure and therefore it gets too much. It goes against the polarity of the body by eating the food that is not in harmony with the other side or indulging in sensuality which is creating imbalance in the body. That means body-mind means polarity and duality are in perpetual conflict in people’s lives.

Rick: Interesting, yeah. It’s almost like the same principles of polarity and balance or imbalance and so on, they exist on many levels or many strata simultaneously. And you see it, like for Instance, you can take it to the political field where people are adamantly at war with one another over certain principles and points about the economy or whatever. And in every case, it almost seems like it’s a matter of lack of comprehensive awareness which is able to incorporate all the polarities and paradoxes within it. Instead, one gets locked into a particular channel to the exclusion of all others and then usually feels like my channel is right, everybody else’s channel is wrong, you know, the old blind men and the elephant argument.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Exactly, that’s true. So how I explain it, the duality, no matter what you are facing at any given moment in your life, you are in reaction to whatever you are facing. So there is a perpetual conflicting relationship with whatever is in the present. So that is called reaction. So reaction, the subject is separated from the object by thinking to get what they can. They try to find from the object that can only be found from within. So that means it is duality. So what I say is how to turn that duality relationship with objects and situations and relationship we face from moment to moment, how to turn it into polarity. So when you are in reaction, turn it into response. You become more objective and you reflect in yourself as to why am I in reaction, rather than why is he pushing my reactive version. So button pusher is not a creator of the button. So karma buttons are there, we have created by our own reactive perceptions and actions of reality. So when you, when anytime somebody pushes your button, what I teach is “don’t get rid of button pushers, get rid of your button.” When you have no buttons, there will be no button pusher in the world.

Rick: Somehow or other what you have been saying reminds me of the Gita, you know, where in the beginning Arjuna is all incensed and wants to get out there and fight. And then Krishna reminds, calls him Partha, which reminds him of his mother. And then he feels this wave of love for his mother, and he kind of then sits down and thinks, “I can’t fight these people.” And then so he is kind of caught in this dualistic situation and doesn’t know which course of action to take. And of course I am not trying to teach you the Gita, you know it better than I do. But then the crux of it is, you know, Krishna gets him to the point where he is established in yoga, established in union, and from there performing action, and all the sort of the dualistic conflicts have resolved themselves.

Yogi Amrit Desai: That’s right. And that is what I am talking. So it is very interesting. Rick, you picked up that point and explained further how Krishna is teaching to go into, from the field of duality, into the polarity where you see everything through consciousness rather than through “I like it, I don’t like it,” and turning the other side, your enemy or your friend. Because enemies and friends, they live in you in the form of your pre-programs, likes and dislikes. When you are with a person who likes you and you like them, then you think they are your friends. But when you don’t like them, you think the same person becomes your enemy. Why? Because it changes you, not outside of you.

Rick: I think one thing I always find helpful is to put this in a, to keep taking it out to a broader perspective, and that is that, you know, ultimately are we these individual persons, you know? Or are we that intelligence which is kind of fundamental to the universe? And if that is what we are, then as individual persons we are just kind of, you know, we are unique expressions. But if we can kind of incorporate that universal awareness, then somehow our individual personhood reflects it and becomes more all-embracing, more equanimous, has a kind of more all-encompassing, all-embracing nature to it, forgiving, accepting, as opposed to going into conflict against this or that or the other perspective. A little long-winded, but you know what I mean?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right. So actually, at the core, we are impersonal beings. We are soul beings. And soul is omnipresent.

Rick: Wouldn’t you say being, singular? We are one being.

Yogi Amrit Desai: One being. And we say God is omnipresent, that soul is omnipresent.

Rick: Right.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So when we identify ourselves with our own mind-made sense of self, then we begin to feel as an individual, separated from the whole. And the whole practice of yoga and jnana yoga is how to disengage from that identity which separates you from the whole. And all suffering comes from separation from the whole that I am within us.

Rick: Do you feel that separation is natural and inevitable as a certain kind of phase of life that perhaps in order to find himself, God has to lose himself in the parts? It’s like a game, hide and seek, you know, where he kind of like fragments himself, all the parts lose their awareness of the whole, and then each part kind of gets inspired to come back and find it. Or is there anything that could actually be done to circumvent that so it wouldn’t be lost in the first place and need to be rediscovered?

Yogi Amrit Desai: You ask a very significant question. That to me, the man has evolved into the “I am.” And once the “I am” is born, the God is born.

Rick: God, G-O-D?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes. When separation is born, the inspiration for unification is born with it. So in the entire creation, if you see it as a tree of creation, evolving tree of creation, mineral life, plant life, animal life, there is no “I am.” But that “I am,” which is the seed of the tree of creation, reappears in the fruit of the tree of creation. And that fruit is the “I am” again. So the same “I am” that is at the cause and core of the entire creation reappears in every human being like a seed consciousness. This is about the story of Adam and Eve. R Right.

Yogi Amrit Desai: When God tells Adam and Eve not to eat the forbidden fruit of good and evil. So in the entire creation, until the “I am” is born, there is no good or evil because everything is a creation of subconscious field of unified energy of consciousness and energy together, Shiva and Shakti together. But when it manifests into human being as “I am,” the male “I am” and female “I am” appear to be separate. So every male has a female energy, every female has a male energy. So that is where there is a separation of male and female. And therefore, the whole humanity is at the stage of evolution where we are looking for the union externally. And that is why we have so much attraction on the external male and female level. But that attraction doesn’t exist in animal life. So in animal life, there is no male-female kind of attraction.

Rick: Male zebras run after female zebras and so on and so forth?

Yogi Amrit Desai: They do, but you are right. They have male and female biological attraction, not psychological. It doesn’t come from “I am” that is deficient in Myself. So I want to find a relationship that will make me feel whole and complete.

Rick: So the zebra isn’t trying to compensate for some inadequacy. The zebra is just being a zebra doing its natural thing. But human beings use the same impulse to try to compensate for inadequacies.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Inadequacies.

Rick: Which are totally unrelated to procreation or anything.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So that is why you can see that animals, they do not get excited before the mating season comes and say, “Hey, there is a mating season coming. Let’s lose weight.”

Rick: “Let’s go buy some beer.”

Yogi Amrit Desai: So they don’t do that. And when the mating season is over, they do not say, “I wish it was a little longer.” Because they are not going through the medium of the mind to seek more fun and more excitement, because they feel depressed and lost without the relationship. Because their relationship is driven by hormones, not mentally. But in human beings, mind is driving the hormones, sexuality. But that is the separation that happens within human beings. And so that’s a level of evolution. It’s not a sin, but if you do not evolve and experience the inner union, you will have to suffer from the conflicts that are created by seeking from outside that can only be found from inside.

Rick: Right. Yeah, that’s well put. You mentioned your own guru practicing ten hours a day for so many years. Some people say that at a certain stage practice is naturally going to drop off, it’s no longer necessary. It’s like just as a boat is no longer necessary when you’ve reached the other shore of the river. How would you answer that in light of your guru’s experience or your own or whatever?

Yogi Amrit Desai: So that shore is so far, because you are learning how to enter into the eternal dimension of the soul or God, that is. So when you enter eternal, there is no shore. There is no arriving, because there is no such a place in a spiritual level where you arrive and you say, “You arrived.” No. This is called union. It’s merging into oneness. When you merge into oneness, it’s not arrival. That’s called merging into oneness.

Rick: And so would you say that, I’m not quite sure how you answered my question. You’re saying the shore is so far that most people are probably going to keep on practicing all their lives. Or are you saying, like taking your guru as an extreme example of a really accomplished yogi, did he reach a point at which practice was superfluous? It was unnecessary because the merging had taken place so what was the point of doing ten hours of anything anymore?

Yogi Amrit Desai: No, this is called merging experience. And when you merge, and when you feel that “Thy will be done, my Lord, not mine,” means I don’t want anything, because I am everything. I am that I am. The final realization. That means they have arrived, but it is not a shore, it’s oneness.

Rick: Right, well, a shore is just an analogy, you know, both going to a shore. But let’s say your guru, in his case, arrived at that oneness, however, emerged, however we want to put it. And for him, was practice therefore unnecessary, irrelevant, or did he continue to practice even having merged?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Because he wasn’t practicing, like I explained, with the mind over prana, but prana was guiding him and taking him wherever he needed to go in his next level of unfoldment. And obviously he was unfolding with every practice. But that is intellectually understood but I cannot explain what he was experiencing, why he was continuing the practice, where he was going, and what he was experiencing.

Rick: That brings up an interesting point too, when you say “next level of unfoldment.” Because I am under the impression, just from everything I have experienced and observed, that as long as you are breathing, there is possibility of further unfoldment. And you may be well established as pure being, pure consciousness. You may have been that established as such for decades, and yet there is still room for refinement, a subtler perception, whatever. There is still a horizon that can be reached.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, because self-realization means it is knowing that it is unknowable, so therefore you are not knowing it as a separate human being about something that is outside of you. You are simply merging into your own self, which is the self of all.

Rick: Yes, you are that. I am Tat Tvam Asi. And so having merged in that way, yet that isn’t necessarily the end of it. There is still possibility for further discovery, further refinement, etc.

Yogi Amrit Desai: My guru’s guru was Lord Shiva himself.

Rick: I heard you say that. How do we know that he was Lord Shiva, or how would someone even know that there is a Lord Shiva?

Yogi Amrit Desai: He didn’t know that he was Lord Shiva until he met him again, as he promised, when he was in Rishikesh doing his sadhana. He was in the woods to collect some tooth brushing kind of a stick from a particular tree.

Rick: Neem.

Yogi Amrit Desai: And now it is called Babul tree. There is neem tree also. So you know about it. So when he was there, suddenly his guru appeared in his divine body. It was just floating.

Rick: Your guru’s guru you are saying?

Yogi Amrit Desai: My guru’s guru, yes.

Rick: I see, I see.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So whom he had met in the body, came in the divine body to give him further instruction.

Rick: I see.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So he then was, the secret was revealed, because when my guru met his guru in the physical body in Bombay, he asked, my guru asked his guru, “How old are you?” He said, “I am a year and a quarter.”

Rick: A year and a quarter?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes. He said, “You must be kidding, because you look like 60 years old.” So his guru said, “You will find out the secret.” So when he saw his guru again, he found that out, that he had adapted somebody else’s body to come and teach him for a year and a quarter in Bombay, give him the secrets of yoga, and then he said, “I’ll see you again.” So the adapted body was only a year and a quarter old.

Rick: Interesting. In other words, we call this a walk-in in the nest. It’s referred to as walk-ins, where some highly, in fact there’s a story of Shankara, where remember when the king dies and Shankara takes over the king’s body and does this whole thing for a month? And then his disciples kind of get him out before the queens come and burn it. And so it definitely has its precedent in yoga.

Yogi Amrit Desai: This is very real. This happened just last generation.

Rick: Yeah, yeah.

Yogi Amrit Desai: And I met such a great guru like Kripalu at the age of 16, and he had just recently met his guru at his age, 19. And he made him to go through definite kriyas, like

Rick: Wow.

Yogi Amrit Desai: At the age of 19, just on water. So he purified his body, gave him the knowledge of how to awaken kundalini. And he gave him all the secrets and said how it will manifest in his life, how he will live his life as a householder, and he will become a monk. So he told his guru, he says, “I don’t think I’m ready for becoming a monk, because I’ll ruin your name, because I have worldly desires too.” So his guru said, “You will find out that you will be a great swami, an enlightened being.” So it happened according to his guru’s prediction. He was initiated by Swami Shantanand on the river bank of Narmada, just as predicted. So his life was revealed exactly as his guru had predicted. His guru actually could be in two places at the same time. My guru will go out for a walk with him and talk with him, and when he came back, people said he was there with them all the time. So this teaching that I’m talking about comes from that kind of a lineage of masters, just from his guru, Lord Shiva, to Kripalu, directly to me.

Rick: This discussion brings up some interesting points too. I mean, one is that often you hear stories of saints, after they’ve dropped the body, intervening in some situation. You know, Ramana Maharshi comes to many people in visions and so on. And some people find that puzzling because they feel like, “Well, isn’t the saint fully liberated, and isn’t it like the drop has merged in the ocean, and how can there be some subtle manifestation still, you know, where he’s going around, you know, presenting himself in visions to people and guiding people and so on? Wouldn’t he have just… wouldn’t it just be all absolute?” Do you have any response to that?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes. People who ask the question, they do not know what they are asking about. And therefore, they can ask any kind of question to which there is no answer to them, those people who ask it. But if they go to the next level, they won’t ask the question, they will know the answer.

Rick: I’ve even heard people… Oh, I’m sorry, go ahead.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Because they are talking about another dimension, which is not known to them. So they can create any doubt, any question, any problem, which doesn’t exist in reality. So that is why such questions cannot be answered to their satisfaction, because it has no answer, because the answer is not coming from the right place. So that is very important to know. So, because I say that it takes a thief to catch a thief. It takes an enlightened being to recognize the enlightened being.

Rick: And by the same token, it takes a thorn to remove a thorn.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes.

Rick: I’ve even heard… there was one guy I interviewed, and he even went so far as to say, “Well, there can’t be karma and there can’t be reincarnation because those things imply the existence of an entity, and ultimately there is no entity. Ultimately it’s all essence or oneness, and so how can there be some individuality to whom karma is going to be delivered and so on?” And personally I think that’s a confusion of levels, at which the level of total oneness is being confused with levels of manifestation, at which these things do take place.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Exactly. Then if you are on this level, on the physical level and mental level, and you ask questions about the levels you haven’t yet experienced, you’ll be asking wrong questions. You’ll have doubts, you’ll have fears, you’ll have attractions, you’ll have repulsions about the things that you made up in your mind because you haven’t been there yet. So that’s what happens.

Rick: But the funny thing…

Yogi Amrit Desai: So that is why I give an example, like if a Mr. and Mrs. Caterpillar are just crawling on the leaves, on the floor, and they are just taking a stroll, walking side by side, and all of a sudden a leaf falls from the top and says, “Honey, did you see that miracle?” Because they only see the linear dimension, they do not know the third dimension. The leaf came from the third dimension, so for them it’s a miracle. So they call it a miracle because it’s a dimension they cannot see.

Rick: And ironically it seems that not only can people be confused about levels that they have not yet experienced, but it also seems that conversely people can actually have a genuine awakening and be residing in a sort of a oneness state in which the sense of personal identity has dissolved and so on. And yet they can then be confused about the more manifest expressions. They can make judgments and conclusions about individual practices or about other teachers and so on that are really off the mark. But it’s almost like, I don’t know, it’s what Maharishi Mahesh Yogi used to call someone like that, a babbling saint who actually had achieved some level of realization, but his understanding wasn’t in line with the realization and therefore he would come out with misleading information.

Yogi Amrit Desai: That always happens. See, that’s why I teach a very specific technique of practicing yoga. That allows people to stay in touch with both dimensions, inner dimension and outer dimensions. So I call it inner dimension of yoga and meditation. So, because once you know how to live in the posture of consciousness, posture of consciousness, it manifests through the body as external, through body-mind as an external, as well as through the spirit as internal. So there are two dimensions. People try to just go for one or the other and they cannot achieve that. So I believe in how to be, how to do what you do externally, at the same time how to be in tune with the inner dimension of your being. So I call that integrative action. Integrative action means you are performing action outside, but it is with an intention to remain in an integrated, harmonious interaction with whatever you are doing. Therefore, external is also serving the internal.

Rick: Good. So it sounds like it would be fair to say that you like to have your students, their understanding and their experience keep abreast, you know, so that they’re not, the understanding is not outstripping the experience or vice versa, but the two stay integrated as one progresses.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right. Because then their focus is not just how to perform yoga postures perfectly and then when you perform perfectly, you got it. There is inner dimension as to who is guiding the postures. So if you are performing postures and feeling like you are not good enough, you should be more flexible, so and so is better than you, so the inner dimension is driven by ego mind and a body image and a self-image. So then it becomes ego posture. What I teach is how to put the inner dimension in the light of consciousness so that light of consciousness guides your action. So I call that inner dimension. And then it becomes meditation in motion.

Rick: So there are several main components of your teaching, as I gather. There’s Yoga Nidra, and there’s physical yoga postures, hatha yoga, and there’s a type of meditation.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, right.

Rick: Are those the three main things?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, but what you mentioned, Rick, is hatha yoga. I do not teach hatha yoga. I teach Ashtanga Yoga of Patanjali, as taught by the great master. When Ashtanga Yoga, people do not know that hatha yoga cannot be isolated from its spiritual inner dimension called Raja Yoga. So there in Patanjali’s The Yoga Sutras, they are meant to be done as holistic practice of all the Eight Limbs simultaneously. So that is why he called it Eight-Limbed Yoga. He didn’t call it eight-step yoga. It’s not a step ladder that you practice one step at a time. That’s why he called limbs of a body. So yoga, body of yoga, has eight limbs. You can focus on one of the limbs as main focus, but all other parts are taking participation and becoming holistic practice. So my practice as I teach, and I have many yoga teachers, you know, the yoga system that I developed has been taught by more than 6,000 teachers in 45 different countries around the world. Because this yoga, as soon as they hear and experience that, they immediately know intuitively this is real yoga. Because exercise, even though isolated from the rest of it, with the postures and pranayama, it has obviously great effect on health, but it is not yoga. Because when you practice yoga, you dismantle from the unconscious karma body that is living as perpetual conflict within you. When you dismantle that, then you are entering the unity between Shiva and Shakti within you. So then it is real yoga. Until then, with exercise you can get many benefits, but it only works on the symptoms of the real problem that lives within you as inner conflict between your unconscious body and self-conscious mind.

Rick: Yeah, that’s a good point about limbs. I mean, you know, you don’t just grow one arm and then you grow the other arm and then you grow a leg. I mean, they all grow simultaneously to the same degree. And so would you say that in your practice as you teach it, samadhi grows to the degree that the other ones grow? They are all just sort of in-step with one another growing?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right. That is what happens when an average person is trying to meditate without engaging and working on the other blockages in their body, in their prana body, in their mental body, in their unconscious body. So if you do not learn how to remove those blockages, your meditation will take many, many, many years for you to enter into the self-discovery process, enlightenment process. So that is why I teach meditation differently. First I teach them how to detoxify your body and how to detoxify your emotion, emotional body that is built in your karma body, how to detoxify that so that you are living more in harmony within yourself. So when you are in harmony within yourself, you show up in harmony no matter who you are with or where you are.

Rick: Do you ascribe to, I suppose you ascribe to all the traditional scriptures, and taking Patanjali as a case in point. You know, if we look at The Yoga Sutras, I have heard you quote the first verse of it many times. How about chapter 3 with the siddhis? Do you have any particular attitude or opinion about siddhis? Is practice of siddhis a legitimate practice or are they a distraction or are they just a spontaneous manifestation at a certain level of development or what?

Yogi Amrit Desai: See, when you practice real yoga, then all the siddhis begin to show up along the way. They are the signposts. When you are traveling, when you get the signpost that says now 85 miles away, do you just sit there at the signpost? No, you just keep moving because you are still to travel 85 miles. So every siddhi is a signpost that you are moving in the right direction.

Rick: And I suppose people could get hung up at a signpost and say, “Oh, this is such a wonderful signpost, I am just going to stay here and hold on to this signpost.”

Yogi Amrit Desai: And think that is the destination. So in India, like when I was 16 years old, I started developing siddhis and one time, spontaneously from my sadhana.

Rick: Like what?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Well, one time I was standing on my balcony on the second floor and I saw a snake charmer, the street snake charmer. He was playing the flute and I know that they always take their teeth out so they cannot give the venom. So I decided to practice my siddhi on him and I said, “Now he will not be able to play his flute with which he charms the snake.” And to my amazement, he was bewildered. He started looking around, “What happened?” And then I was so proud and so excited, I went to my guru and I said, “Bapuji, Bapuji.” I used to call him Bapuji. “I experimented like this and it really worked.” He says, “I will never ever do that again.” And since then, there are many siddhis that come, but your siddhis become the powerful tool of ego mind and that’s what you’re trying to get rid of. So people try to show their siddhis to gain their popularity. And from there on, I just followed and as a result, my inner growth happened much more quickly.

Rick: Nice. I heard you use the word sankalpa, which you can define it. I’ve understood it as like an intention, like you make a resolve.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Resolve, yes.

Rick: I am going to meditate regularly, I am going to stop drinking, or whatever. You make a resolve, right?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, right.

Rick: And I also heard, this is related to that, I also heard you talk about some part of the practice where you use some affirmations or something, but it’s not just an affirmation like something you would put on your refrigerator or on your mirror to look at while you’re shaving. It’s more of something where an intention is entertained and then one drops that into the transcendent, and that really brings it to fruition. Maybe you could elaborate on that a little bit.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, many people have tried resolves to overcome their rigid habits of which they are so victim that they cannot get rid of it. So they can make 10,000 resolves and they will violate it every time. Why? Because their resolve does not go deep into their subconscious level to dismantle the pattern that lives in their unconscious. So what I teach through Yoga Nidra, and it is meditation-based Yoga Nidra, is how to go into “zero stress zone” where all the blockages that are existent on a physical level, mental level, emotional level, energetic level, all those blockages are temporarily crossed over. And at that time, any affirmations or prayers that you say gets answered by the higher power. Because otherwise, the blockages, no matter, there are many people who have great desires to change something. But they are wishy-washy. They wish it and they wash it away with their own doubt, with their own fears, with their own insecurity. So this system of Yoga Nidra that I teach has become so popular that people, many people who experience that, the therapeutic impact of it was enormous, enormous. So people started asking, they said, “We would like to teach this because I am practicing holistic health and I can use this to help my patients.” So now I have started training people professionally how to go into that deeply relaxed state and experience that level of oneness where every one of your prayers and affirmations gets answered. And that is why I also teach it to Alcoholic Anonymous. I have written a book on 12 Steps as to how, and there, 12 Steps are about how to connect with God. But most people, they go through that process, they do not connect with God. And of course, there are other aspects that really work with it, but they get rid of just the symptom of drinking, but they do not give up all of their addictions that come from the stress they haven’t yet resolved. So when you go to the 12 Steps, it should resolve stress from inside, not just the symptom called alcohol or food or sex or any indulgence that destroys their health and peace of mind.

Rick: Yeah, that’s interesting. From what I understand of Alcoholics Anonymous, they have this attitude that once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic, even if you hadn’t had a drink in 30 years. You still refer to yourself as an alcoholic. And that always seemed kind of funny to me, because it seemed to me that it should be possible to completely root out any such tendency once and for all. And then you wouldn’t be an alcoholic, and there would be no possibility of reverting back to it.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, means they have not changed their identity with their habit, they have changed the medium through which they had the habit.

Rick: I also listened to your daughter quite a bit on these tapes, and she is a chip off the old block I would say. She is very articulate and a good teacher. And I did hear her say at one point, “Well, I am not enlightened,” and I thought, “Hmm, she is his daughter and been with him obviously since birth,” and so on. So, it sort of raises the question of how do you define enlightenment? And do you feel like it is such a rare thing that only a handful of people in the world attain it in any generation? Or how high do you set the bar in terms of the use of that word?

Yogi Amrit Desai: To me, the enlightenment means living in light consciousness. So, light that never has to fight the darkness, whether it is coming from within you or outside of you. That means you live in the total state of surrender. “Thy will be done, my Lord, not mine.” That means you are enlightened, you accept whatever you see unconditionally, because all the conditions that are held in the darkness are now removed by the light.

Rick: Well, you may not wish to answer this, but would you say that that is the way your life is now?

Yogi Amrit Desai: My life is always moving that way. That does not mean I do not face darkness with darkness. It can happen, but that is not a problem. For light, the darkness is not a problem. But as soon as I resist darkness, I made it a problem, because I live in light. So darkness is not a darkness for me.

Rick: So it sounds like you would say that enlightenment is not some static finish line where it is reached and that is it. It sounds like you are saying it is a matter of, correct me if I am wrong, I am just trying to interpret what you said, where it is a matter of a deep level of attunement such that one is living in and as light or as consciousness. And yet in that state there is always the possibility of some kind of darkness arising.

Yogi Amrit Desai: It can come at any time, at any stage, but when you live in light you do not judge yourself or judge the other or judge the situation you face in life. You just simply, means you are in light therefore it is not even an issue that it is right or wrong, good or evil. That is what God said to Adam and Eve. “Do not choose good or evil.” And good and evil occurs only in the mind of man and it has no existence anywhere else. That is the meaning, do not eat the fruit. And Zen Master will say that “the moment you choose, heaven and hell comes apart.”

Rick: So you are saying that � if we could keep using the word enlightenment, that it is a choiceless state in which “thy will be done.” Is there still an individuality but it has kind of taken a back seat and is not driving the car anymore or is there actually even no individuality and it is just “thy will is being done” because thou is all that there is?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right. So there is no individuality and any individuality that is separated from the impersonal unity is in conflict with the unity, which is not outside but it happens inside of us.

Rick: So then in this enlightenment, as we are trying to define it, it is just the impersonal unity without any remnants of individuality.

Yogi Amrit Desai: And if the remnants are there, that is not a problem for an enlightened Master. People may see it as that, but for an enlightened master who does not judge himself as being separate from the darkness, the darkness is okay in its place. I am okay because I shed light on it. So light and darkness, they never fight. If you notice at dusk or dawn, you will never find light having a conflict with the darkness. It is just like light comes and darkness recedes. So when you are enlightened, you bring light to everywhere where there is darkness, including in yourself, called enlightened state.

Rick: And so in that enlightened state there may be some remnant or faint remains of individuality. But it is not a problem. It is not in conflict, it is not running the show, it is just some leftover tendency that perhaps keeps the body alive.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Exactly, leftover tendencies. They come, but once you are enlightened, it does not mean the leftover tendencies will not come. So when they come, the light handles it, not the ego-mind. So ego-mind represents the darkness itself, and everything it fights with darkness is very much like darkness fighting with darkness. It is almost like hiring a thief as a policeman.

Rick: I am hesitant to bring this up because I do not want to spoil a perfectly good interview. But you have been very honest yourself about that difficulty you went through back at Kripalu. And you actually won the respect of the spiritual community at large by the very mature and honest and open way with which you dealt with that, apologizing to people and getting some counseling or whatever you did. And when I first heard about that I thought, “Wow, that is great,” because whether you know it or not, just about all of your contemporaries had similar problems. Many of them managed to keep it secret throughout their life. But it always puzzled me, not in your case in particular, but just the general principle of why this seemed to be the norm almost. It is not the exception, it is the rule. And is this a cultural thing, where people come from India and they are just not used to Western culture, and they kind of get presented with temptations that they did not face in the ashram, and maybe parts of themselves they had not looked at begin to get activated? It has caused a lot of confusion for a lot of people. And many people have become disillusioned, and perhaps even walked away from the spiritual path when they have encountered this kind of thing with their particular teacher or other teachers. So is there anything you care to say that would just shed light on the whole phenomena, and maybe what you learned from it?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Well, there is a, there is, what most people do not understand is that when you practice real yoga, you purify your body. And all the functions in your body function so well that your body produces more sexual energy than every person’s body. And with it you are supposed to also develop consciousness that learns how to manage the downward and outward flow of energy by turning it into inward and upward flow. So then people who do not know how to use it, convert that flow, then that makes it hard. So my guru said that the average person who faces this kind of a problem is so little compared to a yogi who struggles with it for not just one lifetime, but lifetime after lifetime. Because that is the whole thing about yoga, is how to produce more, not only produce more, to abuse it by going outward and downward through the, through wasting your sexual energy. So it is the technique of inward and upward flow. And sometimes you fail, sometimes you succeed. So most time I am successful, but sometimes I can fail. Is that crime? No, it’s not. It’s just a part of life. But people do not understand. And very recently the New York Times developed an article about another yogi who had a similar issue.

Rick: Oh, I saw that. I didn’t read the whole thing.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So that explains the same thing that I just said. So this is widespread common understanding that yogis should be totally realized, means their sex is gone and they are the highest because sex is no longer there. That is a misnomer, I will tell you. And it never works that way.

Rick: Sometimes these yogis are claiming to be life celibates and advocating celibacy and so on. And then it turns out they had something going on, you know. But what you are saying, I guess, is that one should do one’s best if one is going to be living that life and being a yogi, and that perhaps even great souls who have powerful darshan and great wisdom and so on and so forth could have more sexual energy than they are easily able to sublimate and it could get them into trouble. It sounds like that is what you are saying.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, yes, and those are the obstacles on the way, and you know that it is an obstacle. So then people in the West, they have no real understanding, so yogis are humans.

Rick: Sure, yeah. That is an important point. So often gurus are made into demigods or something, and then people get so disappointed when the guru doesn’t turn out to be absolutely perfect in terms of their concept of perfection.

Yogi Amrit Desai: So what I say is that is why their expectation failed, guru never failed. Guru is also failing and succeeding, but there, for them, their expectation failed. So that is why I say marriage never fails, expectations do.

Rick: Well that is one thing I like about you that I said in the very beginning, which is that you don’t seem to be trying to pretend to be something that you are not. What you see is what you get, and you are not claiming to be infallible or some lofty kind of thing that no human being could ever live up to.

Yogi Amrit Desai: That is why I used to often say that I am a disciple first. Guru is the role I play to support the disciple in me.

Rick: That is very nice. I see quite a bit of Amma, the hugging saint, and she always says, “We should always have the attitude of a beginner.” I like that, I keep that in mind, I try to. Well, this kind of leads us into a topic that I think is very sumptuous and delightful, and that is the whole topic of devotion. What role has devotion played in your own path and in your teaching as you present it now?

Yogi Amrit Desai: The devotion is the natural manifestation of having elevated yourself from the three lower chakras energy flowing down and out. When you sublimate it and you turn it inward and upward, your energies begin to move into the heart and higher centers of integration. And that is where you experience the devotion naturally. The devotion is love for God, love for the divine being that you are. Right now, the devotion is destroyed when you are so totally devoted to your ego mind and to your unconscious body of karma. So almost every person, they live in perpetual protection for their self-image. And therefore all their attention and energy gets so consumed in the survival, reactive patterns for the self-image. They have no energy going to the self that they are. Because same energy is the channel for serving the ego mind and unconscious. And same energy is needed to serve the higher self that you are. So I actually teach how to convert that energy.

Rick: So you mentioned the three lower chakras. So are you saying that perhaps devotion really dawns when the energy reaches the heart chakra and begins to enliven that. And then devotion becomes a kind of a feature of one’s…

Yogi Amrit Desai: Natural. But if you can adapt devotional practices, you can also begin to develop the devotional part, but it is not as real. It could be emotionally charged devotion perhaps, but not real freedom from the duality of the ego mind.

Rick: Yeah. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi used to say that devotion is nice but it doesn’t really begin to develop until self-realization takes place.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Same thing I’m saying.

Rick: Once you know who you are, then you can really begin to appreciate other things.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Same thing I say to the devotees.

Rick: Right, yeah, exactly. But it is kind of inspiring to read these accounts in the itihasas and the Puranas and all of these highly devotional beings. It is a sort of a richness in their experience.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes.

Rick: I have been in India a few times. And even now on the street, there is a kind of a sweetness and a softness in the culture which doesn’t seem to be there so much. You come back from India and everything seems much more crude and gross and not so much heart by comparison.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes. That is true. So every time my disciples and students who have come with a tour with us, they say the same thing. They say, “This is so amazing.” Even the people who do not know when their next meal will come from. They are just so joyous and they are so happy. The beggars, their eyes are dancing and they are just so happy, but they are begging at the same time.

Rick: Yeah, yeah. I kind of attribute that to the legacy of Indian spiritual culture. It has kind of left an aroma on the culture, even though perhaps these days it is Kali Yuga and things are very kind of chaotic and crazy and so on. But you can definitely see the impact of all the great yogis who have graced that land.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, right. And I just see that what yogis have seen several thousands of years ago. Science is just trying to dig into it, just a little scratching the surface and knowing the rules and laws, but not experiencing the oneness. Because science cannot give you oneness. You can buy its research and get convenience in your life, but not enlightenment.

Rick: There are some scientists and also some spiritual people who are trying to bridge that gap. Like there is this conference that I went to last year and am going to go to again called “Science and Non-Duality” out in California. And you have all these scientists and then all these yogis and spiritual people and they are conversing about how their respective fields interface and actually are trying to say the same thing in different languages almost.

Yogi Amrit Desai: I like that. I think it is bound to happen more and more. So I really appreciate that how deeply you are interested and how much you have yourself studied and researched and practiced. So it is so good to know you Rick, and how we can do something more to bring this to light.

Rick: Yeah, and you haven’t really had a chance to talk aloud in detail about what Yoga Nidra is and all that. But I think if people come to your website they will find plenty of resources for understanding that. And I will be linking to your website from mine, and so anybody who wants to find it can. You can just say what it is also if you want, what is the website?

Yogi Amrit Desai: Our website is www.amrityoga.org.

Rick: Okay.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Amrityoga.org.

Rick: And you are based in Florida, but you travel around and people can come to Florida for retreats and courses and so on.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Yes, and I go when the large groups sponsor my seminar on Amrit Yoga, Yoga Nidra, and we have large Yoga teacher training programs. We have sometimes 60 and 70 Yoga teachers being trained at the same time.

Rick: Great.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Because people come from all traditions of yoga because what I say is, you can take this to the next level regardless of what Yoga you are practicing, if you add the inner dimension to your external practice. So we have people from all different traditions.

Rick: Yeah, and you sound very liberal about that. When I was listening to the recordings, if someone said, “Well, I’m teaching this,” or “I’m practicing that,” and you don’t give them a hard time about it, you say, “Fine, that’s nice, then incorporate this into it and it can only enrich it.”

Yogi Amrit Desai: Right, right. I always support all teachers and all traditions because there are people who can start at that so that they can come to the real Yoga. There is nothing wrong. Nobody has to start at the highest level.

Rick: Right. In fact, some people try to and then they just end up living with a concept of the highest level rather than the real experience.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Excuse me,

Rick: Gesundheit. Great. Okay, well, I’d like to thank you very much for this interview. It was very enjoyable for me, and I’m sure it will have been for listeners. Let me just make a couple of concluding remarks. You’ve been listening to or watching an interview with Yogi Amrit Desai, whose website I’ll be linking to and with whom you can get in touch if you’d like to find out more about what he teaches, take some of his courses and so on. This interview is one in an ongoing series, and I have one scheduled every week. I think I’m scheduled into October now. It’s difficult to prioritize people because there are so many interesting people to talk to. But if you’ve enjoyed this and would like to listen to more, you can subscribe either on YouTube or by going to www.batgap.com, B-A-T-G-A-P, where you can sign up for email notification. There’s also an audio podcast that you can subscribe to, and there’s a link to that there so that you can listen to these on your iPod. There’s also a discussion group that takes place on that site, and every interview has its own little discussion window. And people get engaged in talking about the things that have been discussed during that interview. So if that interests you, go there and you can participate. So thank you very much.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Thank you, Rick.

Rick: Namaste.

Yogi Amrit Desai: It was delightful to be with you, who carries the same energy.

Rick: Well, thank you very much. It was delightful to be with you as well, and I hope to meet you in person one of these days.

Yogi Amrit Desai: I’d love to have you around.

Rick: Great. Okay, so thanks to those who have been listening or watching, and we will see you next week. Bye-bye.

Yogi Amrit Desai: Bye.