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Dubai: The UAE is rightly poised to take leadership in ecology and environmental preservation in the region, Sadhguru said in Dubai. The Indian mystic and global visionary was addressing a select group of elite gathering at an event hosted by Gulf News in Dubai on Thursday. Sadhguru is in UAE as part of his cross-country bike tour to create awareness on soil degradation across the world, touring some 26 countries from the UK to India.

Sadhguru said the UAE has become the 74th nation that has signed an agreement with his movement for the preservation of the soil.

Reception to his campaign in the UAE has been fantastic, he said. “And you have a wonderful minister who is super involved. And Cop 28 is coming. UAE is hosting it. With all these, UAE should become a leader in the sector,” he said.

'Murder of the soil'

Starting off the talk with a chant, Sadhguru explained the rationale — and urgency — behind the Save Soil movement for about 45 minutes. He raised the following key points:

  • 85 per cent of the nations in the world treat soil as an inert substance...however, it is full of life.
  • Due to neglect and exploitation, an average of 27,000 species of microorganisms in the soil are going extinct each year.
  • It has reached a level where individual efforts can't rectify the damage.
  • A collective movement spearheaded by communities and nations is needed, and that's how Save Soil movement has started.

Twenty-one (21) per cent of oxygen is in the atmosphere due to photosynthesis, but we have removed 85 per cent of plants that generate oxygen. We are creating more carbon dioxide because we only focus on data.

- Sadhguru

“Twenty-one (21) per cent of oxygen is in the atmosphere due to photosynthesis, but we have removed 85 per cent of plants that generate oxygen. We are creating more carbon dioxide because we only focus on data,” said Sadhguru, and internationally-renowned speaker and bestselling author.

Programme to save soil

“We are proposing an incentives-based programme to save soil,” he said. Farmers should be rewarded based on the organic content in the soil, he explained.

According to Sadhguru, the soil should have a minimum of three per cent organic content in it. But unfortunately, not a nation has the minimum required organic content in the soil, he said.

“Separate soil from other issues, as the first measure to prevent degradation. And environmental solutions should be faster than the issues. A farmer should get an incentive for having organic content in the soil,” he said.

Sadhguru came out strongly against the current trend of "organic" food.

“Organic food in the present sense is nothing but a marketing term. It doesn't mean anything. Food should aptly be classified on the basis of the level of organic content in the soil they are cultivated. The higher the content of the organic matter the more should it be valued,” he said.

The event was co-sponsored by Danube Group, i-Nova Molecules, Nalsoft, Mamaearth and Arpan.

Don't wait for tomorrow: Sadhguru
You have only limited time, Sadhguru reiterated, “Use it for things that matter”. Life and death are a package, a combo, and use the time you have wisely, make it interesting, profound and impactful, he advised.

Instead of sinking into mental suffering, change that one person that you can change: you, Sadhguru said.

Success is worldly and it depends on the circumstances and things around you, but happiness or pure bliss is in your control and within you so make that happen, he told the guests.

And don’t wait for tomorrow, he exhorted, “make it happen now”.

Weaving from topic to topic that affects the core of human life, he said human beings are beautiful by themselves, if only they understand themselves.

Watch: Sadhguru on Save Soil at Gulf News event

Sadhguru – a yogi, visionary and social reformer currently on an environmental mission across the globe – addressed a select group of guests from across the UAE at a Gulf News event in Dubai on Thursday. Check out the highlights of the evening.

Dubai-based singer Shweta Subram, known for singing in the song 'Jalebi Baby', on hosting the event.

Malayalam actress and Dubai-based RJ Nyla Usha speaks after listening to Sadhguru on the 'Save Soil' campaign.

Because of the nature of the demographic, the UAE has a little complex requirement in terms of food. But anywhere on the planet, wherever there is sunlight, you can produce food.

UAE should take leadership in ecology in this region. The reception here has been fantastic.

We have written to more than 700 political parties asking them to make soil a part of their manifesto. And we are hopeful of having positive results.

When it comes to ecology and environment, national boundaries do not mean anything. Because Nature transgresses all human made boundaries.

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Sadhguru answers questions from the guests. Image Credit: Jaya Chandran, Online Editor / Gulf News

'Organic' is just a marketing term these days. It doesn't mean anything anymore. Agricultural products should aptly be classified as per the level of organic content in the soil. The higher the content the more should it be valued.

World food programme is saying six nations will go into famine mode. How are you going to solve this? By bringing food from outside? How long can this go on?

I have a strong feeling about the future calamity but I may have no scientific data. Then what is my locus standi to say all these this? I am an earthworm. I am close to the ground and observant.

We can print an apple in a 3D printer but can't eat it. The material to eat has to come from the soil. The fundamental nutrients and basic minerals have to come from the soil.

Murder of the soil: 85 percent of the nations in the world treat soil as an inert substance. An average of 27000 species are going extinct each year. It has reached a level where individual efforts can't rectify the damage.

21 per cent of oxygen is in the atmosphere due to photosynthesis, but we have removed 85 per cent of plants that generate oxygen. We are creating more carbon dioxide because we only focus on data.

- Sadhguru | A yogi, visionary and social reformer

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Humans become beautiful beings by being themselves, if only by understanding themselves, said Sadhguru Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

When you are a tiny speck on the planet you think you are too important. This is a major problem with today's world.

- Sadhguru | A yogi, visionary and social reformer
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A presentation on Save Soil in progress prior to Sadhguru's speech.

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Audio visual just before Sadhguru speech.

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Sadhguru being ushered in Image Credit: Biju Matthew, Online Editor / Gulf News

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Gulf News CEO receiving Sadhguru as he arrives for the event. Image Credit: Jaya Chandran, Online Editor / Gulf News

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Sadhguru arrives on his bike. Image Credit: Biju Mathew, Online Editor / Gulf News

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Sadhguru will arrive on his bike any moment. Image Credit: Jaya Chandran, Online Editor / Gulf News

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Guests are waiting for the yogi and global visionary to arrive.

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Gulf News CEO and Editor-in-Chief Abdul Hamid Ahmad receiving guests at Sadhguru event Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Sadhguru and Save Soil movement

“The healthier the soil, the healthier your food, the healthier your body,” Sadhguru said at a UN event in Geneva on April 5, while presenting the Save Soil initiative. That sums up the spirit behind the initiative. In fact, he insists more than the health, even our survival on earth depends on the health of the topsoil.

Save Soil is a global movement launched by Sadhguru to address the soil crisis by bringing together people from around the world to urge and support their leaders to design national policies and action plans toward increasing the organic content in topsoil. One of the main objectives of the movement is to show governments across the world that their citizens want policies that revitalize ecology and soil.

Soil degradation is the physical, chemical and biological decline of soil quality. It is well documented that agriculture, deforestation, industrialisation and other human activities have degraded and eroded topsoil at alarming rates. The destruction of the topsoil is fast reaching levels that could threaten food production, climate stability and even the presence of life on this planet, the campaign says. More than half of the world’s agricultural soil is already degraded and in the next 60 years, humanity will run out of cultivable soil, according to them.

Sadhguru has been at the forefront of efforts to save the environment, actively creating awareness and mobilizing thousands of people through his organisations Isha Foundation and Conscious Planet. The present campaign is the culmination of efforts that began way back in 1995.

‘Journey to save Soil’

Sadhguru has started on a 100-day Journey to Save Soil' over 30,000 km across 25 nations on a motorcycle to draw attention to the issue of soil degradation. The journey was flagged off in London on 21 March 2022 and will end in the Cauvery basin in southern India.

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Image Credit: Vijith Pulikkal/Gulf News

More from Journey to Save Soil

When was Isha Foundation set up?

Sadhguru set up the non-profit Isha Foundation in 1992. The organistation, which is managed and run by volunteers, aims to bring wellbeing to all around the globe. Isha is located at the foothills of Velliangiri hills in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India.

Most nations are treating soil as an inert substance. Soil is not an inert substance. It is a living system. It's also the largest living system that we know in this universe. We do not know any other system that is as large as soil.

- Sadhguru

How Sadhguru selected the Isha Yoga Centre

“When we started looking for a place to establish Dhyanalinga, they showed me any number of places all over Tamil Nadu. Whatever they showed me, I went on saying, ‘This is not it,’ “’his is not it,’ ‘This is not it.’ Everyone was driven to a point of frustration – ‘What is it that you are looking for?’

Image Credit: Vijith Pulikkal/Gulf News

Then, one day, we just happened to drive down to the place where the ashram is located today, late in the evening around 6:45. As we were driving down a bend, I saw the Seventh Hill. I just stood there for a few moments and I knew where I was supposed to go. At the time there was no road to enter this space where the ashram is. It was completely closed. We cut our way through the forest and when we reached the place I said, ‘This is it. We want this place.’”

Who is Sadhguru
An engaging voice at major global forums that address issues of socioeconomic development, leadership, and spirituality, Sadhguru has initiated several far-reaching projects focused on social revitalisation, education, and the environment.
Sadhguru – a yogi and visionary – has been named one of India’s 50 most influential people. Having touched millions of lives worldwide, his work aspires to provide people with the means to overcome poverty, improve quality of life, and drive community-based sustainable development.

Sadhguru musings

A handful of soil in a tropical country has eight to 10 billion organisms. So eight to 10 billion organisms and a handful of soil. It is the activity of these microorganisms which has made us the way we are. The whole source [of life] is in the first 15 to 18 inches of the soil.

- Sadhguru

Sadhguru and his passion for motorcycles

Sadhguru has spoken over and over again about his passion for riding motororcycles. Sadhguru’s love affair with the motor bike started in his youth and continues even today.

Image Credit: Vijith Pulikkal/Gulf News

This is what Sadhguru had said about his craze for motorcycles: “There was a time when I literally lived on a motorcycle. When I rode somewhere, I never checked into a hotel, I just slept on my motorcycle. I would just put my bag on the motor cross bar and the handle bar, lie down and have a sound sleep. People used to ask, ‘How can you sleep? You will fall down.’ I would say, ‘Don’t worry, I will not fall off a motorcycle. I may fall when I’m walking, but not off my motorcycle,’ because it was such a big part of everything that I was doing.”

Today, Sadhguru is crisscrossing the world on his motorcycle with the aim of saving soil.

Information about Sadhguru and campaign taken from Isha Foundation and official sources