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In Resplendent Riyadh

Jun 19, 2022, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

May 12 - Day 52

When it comes to hospitality, the Arabs are second to none. Arab hospitality is a globally acknowledged art form- the Arabs are almost obsessive about how they treat their guests. They leave no stone unturned in making guests feel welcome and attending to their every comfort. No detail is too small, no task is too onerous if it serves the guest’s happiness and comfort. And for Sadhguru, Riyadh rolls out the red carpet like there’s no tomorrow.

Marhaba! from the heart of the Middle East. It’s day 52 and we’ve just driven through the furnace of the Arabian desert and reached the regal city of Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia.

As Isha volunteer bases go, Saudi Arabia has probably the smallest one – just a handful of volunteers. But no one would believe that from the reception and turnout Sadhguru gets in Riyadh. “Effusive” would be understating it. You’ve probably seen Sadhguru’s reception by the Muslim World League and their wholehearted embrace of the #SaveSoil Movement. MWL is a highly respected non-governmental body and it has the ears of the Islamic world like few other organizations have. What MWL says matters in more ways than one can articulate adequately and their message is loud and clear: We love you, Sadhguru, and we will do everything in our power to help the Movement to Save Soil.

Riyadh is a very grand looking city- like a decked bride. The aesthetics are hard to miss, especially in a largely desert landscape. Beauty is valued and respected. 

Everywhere he goes, Sadhguru is received like Royalty. Outside his hotel, a lone burqa-clad lady waits patiently to catch a glimpse. There’s an intensity about her that’s unmissable. She’s determined that she will not turn back without seeing Sadhguru.

When Sadhguru emerges from the hotel in his riding gear, she’s just at the entrance. She steps forward and takes his hands, her eyes brimming. Sadhguru pauses a moment, pats her hand and walks to his motorcycle. Even in this fleeting exchange, there is such a palpable unity that transcends social prescriptions of culture, language, and gender. There is compassion and acknowledgment – a moment that cannot be articulated in words. 

She later shares with a team member: This is a dream come true that I got to see Sadhguru. I have been following up since he left from London, and every day I check where he is now. When I saw him my heart was beating so fast.” And it is thousands of such moments that are building this Movement into a global force with a life of its own.



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