Vishwanath Iyer – Actor – Author
Through struggle and strife
The late Steve Jobs once told Salesforce founder Marc Benioff that intuition was a gift. Vish believes that this gift was always embedded in him through his yoga roots. It was those early days in every young man’s life - new place, new beginnings and new opportunities. But little did he know that he was going to face adversity head on. He says, “For my education in the US, we were promised a loan.
That loan didn’t come through, and here I was, alone in the US in my early 20s, with no money. The college had further asked me to take up some bridge courses before I could take up the full course.”
Vish faced poverty for the first time in his family. He says, “We weren’t very rich, but were sufficiently well off. I had never faced poverty in my life, and it was a tough experience. I would use the same shaving razor for over a year, use towels in the place of pillows and work at cafes to meet my ends. It wasn’t easy.”
“I didn’t want to ask for money from home because I’m a fiercely independent guy and had I asked for money from home, they would have asked me to come back. I didn’t want to go back either!”
It was around this same time when he got an intuition on what he was meant to do in life. He says, “I had a vision that I would help people with yoga through media - be it books, TV and movies. Here I was, with no money in hand, and I was getting these visions of helping people!” He turned to the yoga masters in the US, seeking refuge and a peace of mind. “I went to San Diego, where I learnt under many prominent yoga masters. I also taught meditation and helped people solve life problems through yoga practices.”
In this time, Vish made many friends, who would often pitch in with money, when he needed it. He says, “When I needed money, it was there.” These friends would pool in money for Vish’s further studies and Vish ended up with a dual masters in information science and business. He says,
“Everyone told me that becoming a software engineer was the easiest way of getting a visa in the US. So I took it.”
Vish would then embark on a journey that helped him find the love of his life, and the inspiration for his book.
A love story
Vish always wanted to work in the movies and he kept an eye out for opportunities that would allow him to do so. He found a movie studio nearby and he called them to see if he could audition. He says,
“They told me that auditions were closed, but they said that they needed an AD (assistant director). In movie terms, it means the coffee guy to the director. I just wanted to be a part of a movie set, so I signed up.” They worked on weekends, on the movie, and Vish was enjoying being a part of a movie set.
“It was warm saturday afternoon in San Diego. Everyone in the set were all sticky and caffeinated. I suddenly had this feeling of anxiety. I had no idea why I was feeling it. I turned around and I saw five and a half feet of gorgeousness. Every cell in my body knew that this was the girl I had been looking for all my life.”
This was round about the time his parents were looking to get Vish married. Nothing was working out. His yoga masters had taught him techniques, which involved living a yoga lifestyle. He says, “It is spoken about in the Atharva Veda , but in a very cryptic way. I learnt it from the masters and applied it to my own life.”
Find out more details at Vish's websites below