Starting from my childhood to now:
1. My Dad (Late Mr Raj Kumar Sobti) and Family — My dad was a KarmYogi. He believed in Truth, devotion and doing karma. Always helping people — friends, family, students (he was a Teacher and do iron trading business on side). Many students he taught free of cost because they don’t have money. Some of these students are doctor and at right place in their life’s. My dad was a Yogi (never believed in materialistic things and sometimes given more to people what he should logically) and he practiced Truth , Karma , Equality and Devotion. He created the system post retirement in our GuruMaa’s Balaji Temple in Prashant Vihar, Delhi and was instrumental in building up the temple. He had shown all of us the path of life and how to live like a yogi in a materialistic times and world. He told me to speak with my cousins — Naresh and Naveen Jand who has interesting take on leading life and spirituality and my uncle Aul is wealth of knowledge and wisdom about personal and professional life. At the same time, I saw my Nanaji (Late Mr Ram Pratap) and Naniji devotion towards God and helping the needy. Nanaji has introduced Raja Bhaiya to my dad whom he considered his Guru toward life. I reach out to Raja Bhaiya for guidance often. Raja Bhaiya, his wife and his respected father and mother are enlightened beings.
2. Guru Maa (Guruji Sumanji) — My mom made me meet her in 1996. I was not regular to meet her or go Pooja on Tuesday and Thursday. In one instance where I had eaten a rotten fish and had severe effect on my body and my medical case was looking hopeless. My mom took me to her and she said you will be fine but just don’t eat NON — Veg food for a month. I said Yes and she gave me a Vaabuti to eat. I now connect this incidence with details shared in the book “Autobiography of Yogi” that masters share their energy and healing with you and Vaabuti or anything is the instrument. I never eaten non-veg there after till now and one day I was going on my bike and realized on my own that I am in much peace with myself and thoughts and cherished that experience forever. This was first major step of my spiritual journey of Bhakti or Devotion. This is was Hanumanji. I used to regular with Tuesday and Saturday Aarti and woke all night on all the nights (24 hours bhajan and pooja at our mandir). My Guruji is very generous and always be doing lot of social work — Weddings of needy, Free food for poor etc we were in distribution of this food and learned a lot of things — seva , how to keep others above you and non-discrimination (you don’t see the person you are serving to ) etc. I learned bhakti / devotion from my GuruMaa.
3. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar — I saw a paper pamphlet in my house about this Art of Living course happening close to my house. I got enquisite on the word “ART OF LIVING “and decided to join the morning batch of the course. This is for the first time i connected with my inner self. I loved it and requested my wife to join it and she was reluctant. I almost did the DDLJ style (SRK-Taking Kajol on shoulders) and made her reach the evening batch venue. She did the course and loved it. Learned two important things which i remember when today:
a. Accept the person and the situation as they are — You can’t change another person and can’t change the situation. In case of person you change your response and in case of situation you have to take action once you accept the situation
b. Be Always Happy — Fake it till you Make it — This is powerful is you start practicing it.
Two major things happened after doing the Art of Living course:
a. We were able to conceive our second child — We were trying for many years to conceive but not happening. I think the course helped us to calm down (me and my wife)
b. I lost my Dad within few months of the course — While I was coming back in the Ambulance to home his body — somehow the statement stuck of my mind — Accept the situation. I think God prepared me to handle the death of father otherwise I didn’t how to handle myself at that point. I accepted that he is no more before reaching home with body and meeting other family members — this helped me to handle myself and my mom and other family members
4. OSHO — I was introduced with OSHO during an office conversation with Rajesh Gurnani. He started taking me about life in a very interesting manner of a piece of paper. He recommended that I should listen / read about OSHO and given me few lectures. I had at least 2 hours’ drive every day and I started listening to material shared by him. I listened this for years. Two people and life journey stood for me: Guru Nanak Dev ji and Gautam Buddha. After few years I went to OSHO ashram pune to experience the learnings i have after listening to OSHO. It was incredible 4 days of life. My son had also come along to me in Pune and was staying in my friend’s house so I left within 4 days — else i would stay there for many more days. Looking forward to going again for a longer time. Lot of people have mis-understood OSHO and especially the Netflix documentary is not the right reflection of the man and what he has done for mankind upliftment.
5. The Sadhguru — One of my friends Nilesh recommended me to do Inner Engineering course of Isha Foundation in 2012 or 2013. I really enjoyed the inner science part of it and it started to open up my spiritual possibilities of journey within in some way. It started to make me fearless as a person. I was enjoying the change though not regular with practices. Then i wanted my son to experience the Nature Awareness course at Isha Foundation, Coimbatore. Booked the course and tickets. On the day of departure — my wife said i will here instead (we both can’t go at the same time because of younger son) . Paid hefty amount for cancellation and doing this booking at the airport. She went there and didn’t like the place and went to Bangalore to meet and stay with her childhood friend. On the last day — Raghav took her to Dhyanlinga and something changed in her at that moment (Dhyanlinga is a live Guru to everyone who goes in his presence). She then did inner engineering with Sadhguru in Bangalore (hugged him) and started to move very fast in her spiritual journey with Isha and Sadhguru. She has done Samaya and went to Kailash and Himalaya Trip with Isha (highest course by Sadhguru) and i still have to do my advance courses. I took a separate path of learning Surya Kriya, Anagmardhana , Yoga Asananas , Bhut Shuddi and among these Surya Kriya and Shambavi i do regularly.
The big shift happened with me during the Consecration of Adiyogi in Isha Yoga Center. There were 14K people from 60 countries who did this process with Sadhguru. I connected with Sadhguru beyond my 5 senses during this process and put this to words or any other forms. I think I took a major step inside and deepened my spiritual journey and opened me up further. Next 2 hours I did all other courses and started to explore how I can take Sadhguru to 7.5 billion people, at present we are 1 billion people plus through various ideas and interacting with Swamiji who also lead the business at Isha. I am not quite successful in taking this forward — but will make this happen for sure.
The other major experience happened when i did Shivanga Sadhana ( a 42 day practise ) for Shiva before Shivratri and cluminates by visiting Vellangiri Hills (Kailash of South / Seven Hills) and it intensified by Sadhana further. Sadhguru has taken third birth to spread this message (failed in first two), this time he is going to be successful in spreading his message towards living the life to full potential for each human being.
6. Avinash Anand Singh and Charu — Avinash is Coach and does a program on the power of manifestation. He teaches principles and power of manifestion through proven and his own techniques. Charu (his wife) does Angel workshops (where you can connect with your Guardian Angels). They both are gifted and connected with higher self and can able to connect you with them. You must speak with them and do a program. Through Avinash we knew about Neem Karoli Baba and in December 2019 we went to Khanchi Dham and very powerful experience. During one of course of Avinash I saw the book “Autobiography of Yogi” in his bookshelf. I had this book for my many years (gifted by Alok Kejriwal) and started to read it. This book is also a spiritual master’s in itself and have started to gift to friends and family so that they are able to connect with their higher self. The next step for me is to go Babaji’s cave in Raniket and go to Kailash.
7. Other people I met or know who are on path of enlightenment -
a. Vipul Mathur — We meet professionally and connected with each other. We did Isha Leadership Academy program together and connected more deeply. He introduced me to Avinash and my coach Mrs Harmeet Kaur.
b. My Coach — Mrs Harmeet Kaur — During the initial struggles of Entrepreneurship and loosing focus, Vipul recommended me to Coach (that is what I call her) . She works with her 6th sense with you and is magical. I will always be indebted to her and what we did with me at that point since I needed a personalized attention. I would have lost everything if Coach has not worked with me.
c. Sandeep Kochhar — During a Sunday morning conversation with Bishal (society friend) he told me there are 3 things important for entrepreneurial success : Strategy(business understanding ) , Mentorship and Focus Execution. I told him I have two but don’t have a mentor who guides. On Sunday evening I saw a post from Sandeep on Linkedin and connected with his story. We spoke the next day. Sandeep has power and gift to transform any person or business within 30 minutes and I am not joking here. He is powerhouse of energy, wisdom , experience and able to articulate through story telling.
d. Kiran Khalap — I have not met his man. I know him through Anirban Sir (I call him Sir because he is genius in Branding and forgot to be famous J ) . I watched Kiran’s interviews with Beer Biceps and Ted Talks and his body of work and approach. I looking forward to meet him and interact with him. Anirban Sir says he is enlightened from the age of 20 and I believe him
e. Ajit Bham — I met him in Isha Leadership academy and interacted with later on a project. I recently interacted with Ajit and saw that he is on deep path for his inner journey.
f. My Wife (Ashima Sobti) — I recently explored her wisdom when she started doing Ramayanji recitation at home during the lock down. I was surprised to find her wisdom which she inherent from her mom, dad and grandfather and other family members. She was always aware about energies from childhood. Sadhguru and her trips of Himalayas and Kailash helped as well to get the direction.
g. Tony Robbins — I saw his documentary on Netflix — “I am not your Guru” atleast 6 times. He is gifted and affective to solve human issue and create a change and make them reach that change.
h. Dalai Lama — I saw few documentaries about Tibet and Dalai Lama and believe in their holy practices and wisdom. I have been to Dharmsala and looking forward to going to Tibet to experience with Raghav (we watched these documentaries together). I think I go deeper once I have a personal experience with the master.
The idea of sharing these names with you is so that you can reach / interact with these people who are on path of self-awakening along with professional and family life. All these people who have helped/ guided me can help you and guide you as well. May you realize your full potential as human being.