Celebrate The Devi Within You

Radhe Jaggi

Indian classical dancer and performer, Director of ISHA Life Research Foundation

5 min read

She’s made a mark for herself ! She’s Stree Shakti Personified. Radhe Jaggi, a free spirited, kind dancer, brought up by the man who empowers so many around the world. She is the Isha Life – the life of wisdom, power & freedom. Read on to know how Radhe Jaggi strikes a balance between dance, mental health and how to channel positive energy.

What does Stree Shakti mean to U?

Stree Shakti to me means having the ability to care or devote yourself to someone or something unconditionally in URLife. This attribute is instilled in everyone. The energy is strong and at the same time has a certain softness which it adds to its strength making these characteristics extremely personal for many of us.

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How would you describe UR relationship with the 9 Devi’s?

Ever since the Lingabhairavi temple was installed at Isha Foundation, I definitely feel like I have a special relationship with her. I think everyone has a special connection and relationship with the nine Devi’s and I am one of the many people who are honored to have a connection with these powerful energies.

What role does performing arts play in one’s mental well-being journey?

Performing arts plays a significant role in my life. Being a dancer and learning about the traditional stories through dance is very special to me. I translate traditional stories passed down through generations with my dance and try to understand why a certain story has some sort of progression. The performances translate complex philosophical ideas through simple stories which even a child could understand.

When I perform or revisit my performances, I can say that I’ve chanced upon revealing new aspects of the story every time I perform. The outcome of my performances is also dependent majorly on my mental health/balance. If I have issues understanding something, then I’m able to go back to my dance and think about why we approach a certain aspect of our life the way we do.

Take this moment to upgrade UR strengths and interests UR invested in. I hope we all can come out stronger, focused and become the best version of ourselves.

What is UR fitness regimen or go-to exercise to stay mentally & physically fit?

My fitness regimen consists of yoga in the morning, I usually perform a practice known as ‘Angamardhana’ which can be quite hectic. It has to be taught in the right manner. I also dance many hours during the day and I think that takes care of most of my fitness.

How has dance helped your body, why do you consider it UR superpower?

Dance has helped my body in multiple ways, in fact dancers tend to get injured quite easily. But I feel because I’m a dancer, I’m a bit more mindful about taking care of my joints, muscles and tendons and ligaments. Yoga has definitely helped me a lot in taking care of my body. There’s a certain balance that comes with yoga, which helps my dance and there’s a certain freedom which comes with dance that I hope helps my yoga.

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What is UR relationship with food, what is UR diet like?

I love South Indian food, and I’m very bad at keeping a diet. I eat a mix of different grains and pulses. Thankfully our traditional home cooking isn’t limited to one or two dals, every day we use different dals and eat a lot of horse gram, sprouts, green gram and apart from sambar and rasam, we eat a lot of nutritious grains, ragi and it’s really just more of home food. I’m not really overly concerned about what I eat, as long as it is healthy and I’m able to do all the things I want and plan to. Diet isn’t something that I’m really strict about in my life.

What has dance taught U in life, how and what did it heal for U?

During the pandemic, dance has helped me ground myself. Even though I really missed performing and interacting with my audience. Having said that, this has really allowed me to go back to my old performances, that I might

have not spent enough time on. I also had the chance to get back to my old favorites, which I wasn’t able to perform in a long time.

Even though it’s been tough, I feel very fortunate because I was able to move back to Coimbatore and stay in the ashram. This has given me the opportunity to refocus certain things in my life. The pandemic has also given me the opportunity to also teach dance in ways I never had the opportunity to before.

It might be difficult for someone who is alone to constantly stay positive, but I think the best thing you can do is find something which UR interested in because you will never get this time again. Take this moment to upgrade UR strengths and interests UR invested in. This time has also helped me regularize and strengthen my own meditation and my own yoga practices. This is something that I’m grateful for getting to spend some quality time with my husband as we normally don’t get to do this. I hope we all can come out stronger, focused and become the best version of ourselves.

5 women U admire

I can’t name just five women whom I admire because there are many people who have helped me since a young age and play a mother’s role. Since a young age, many sanyasi’s have raised me many of my aunts have also stepped in. My dance teacher Leela Samson, is who I consider as a very strong woman. I’ve also had very good teachers in my school, a lot of them are very strong women. Many people who I’m not related by blood have also helped me become the woman that I’m today. I’m very grateful for all the women who’ve played a part in my life.