Questioner: Sir, would you suggest asking for guidance? If so, then who are you asking and about what?
Acharya Prashant: It doesn’t matter who you ask for guidance. It doesn’t matter what you ask when you are asking for guidance. It is sufficient, totally sufficient that you have realised that you need to ask. Now you may even go and ask a stone, it doesn’t even matter! Now you go and ask a fish and it doesn’t matter. What is important is that your head has bowed down. You have realised that you cannot make it on your own; that you are so limited; that you require something far bigger than yourself, far purer than yourself.
Now that something for you can be anything, but the head should be bowed. And that is why in India, distinctions have not been made. It doesn’t matter that you pray to a tree, to a cow, to cow-dung, to the river, to sky or to a cat. Just pray! Just pray! Whatever you get in front of you, kneel down in front of that. It’s the kneeling down that is important, not what you say after kneeling down. You may say anything after that, sing a song or recite the alphabets. It doesn’t even matter. The alphabets will become a prayer. You may say ‘Abra ka dabra‘ and that will become the holiest mantra. (Smilingly)
Kneeling down in front of the lousiest dog you can even see, and say ‘Abra ka dabra‘, and you are Home.
That’s Spirituality – realizing the limits of our ways, realizing that this head can point to the heavens only when it first kisses the earth.
It must bow down.
It doesn’t matter what fancy prayer you say. Don’t say any prayer, just remain silent or blabber like a six-months-old. The blabbering of the six-months-old becomes the holiest prayer. God answers such stuffs. And he never answers all your organised prayers. The orchestra has been set up, the priest is ready with his fancy clothes and a time has been appointed, people are coming and NOW the prayer will start.
God says “duh” to such prayers.
Outside somebody is whispering to an ant, ‘Abra ka dabra‘, and he is Home.
Listener 1: There are so many people who are bowing their heads, praying, but still they are not awakened.
AP: They don’t ever bow down their heads.
If you decide when to bow down your head, then have you really bowed down? If your head is bowed down only at pre-determined places and at pre-determined times, only in front of pre-determined people then have you bowed down?
It is still your own head deciding when to bow down. So the head is still very erect. The head has decided that only in that grand temple, in front of a grand deity, or the grand guru will I bow down. So who is winning? Whose will is prevailing? The will of the head. Then how has it bowed down?
Bowing down of the head must be very spontaneous, immediate, without thought. And only then it has bowed down. It cannot be an organised activity. You cannot say that “Every day at 9 am I bow down my head”.
The more the head keeps down, the more you rise.
Do you get this?
L2: Yes. This is beautiful.
AP: Not only to hear but more to live.
AP: The mind is very deceptive. It’s a monkey, a cunning monkey. Even in surrendering, it ensures that its own will prevails.
“I will come and surrender at a time, place of my convenience.”
Now is that surrender?
AP: Surrender is only when it extracts a price from you; only when it is not convenient, not pleasant, not thought of, not planned!
~ Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: Before you look up to the heavens, learn to kiss the earth
Read more articles on this topic:
Article 1: How to surrender?