Questioner: Sir, is hyperactivity, a lot of energy, a good thing or a bad thing? And it is nothing but the urge to be more knowledgeable about the truth. Yes, I am obsessed with this word- Truth, since I was a kid. And also I can’t meditate to be very frank with you. And also I do not like to go to these courses where they teach you how to meditate. It’s just never made sense to me. So is there any way to be just calm and settled or you have to work really hard to achieve that stage?
AP: You never went to these meditation courses, right?
AP: Still you manage to have these corrupt concepts?
I thought people who only go to these courses become a little rotten. But even you are carrying a lot of concepts about it. From where did you get that?
Q: All these advertisements that tell you to meditate and then you’ll be happy, calm etc.
AP: So the courses on meditation are successful when they are able to enroll somebody and they are successful even when they are not able to enrol somebody. You still manage to imbibe the concepts that they are sending out and that they stand for.
Q: Yes and they are hollow because it is a temporary feeling. And when it goes on, then the restlessness goes on. But still, the question remains.
AP: All that you are saying is premised in the assumption that one must be quiet.
Now, why must one be quiet?
Q: I never got the answer to this question.
AP: Who told you that you must be quiet and look like that image of the saint?
Q: It’s just projected everywhere.
AP: And you didn’t enroll, and yet bought what they were selling! So, they are still successful. We must congratulate them.
Who told you that you have to look like the image of the Buddha?
Who told you that you must sit in a particular asana?
Who told you that you must breathe in a particular way and if you are not able to do that then there is something wrong?
Q: I actually enrolled into one. I had to tell this.
AP: Ah! In that case, you can also apply for a refund.
‘One is as one is’ You need not be the photocopies of a particular image.
Q: But it is so difficult to live in a world like this.
AP: When you look around, all you see is diversity, and all is diverse, yet rooted.
Look at these trees, are they all same? Even similar? No. But they are all rooted in the same Earth. You have all the right to be as you are. If you are noisy, you have all the right to be noisy. Have you ever heard how noisy is the Ganga in the hills? Now, if you want to couch it in spiritual terms then you’ll say, ‘No, it’s not noisy, it’s music.’ The fact is it is noise; a beautiful noise.
You can also be noisy and the noise can be beautiful if it is coming from the right place. Someone knows it and someone likes to keep to himself. Someone likes to run around a lot and someone doesn’t like that—all that is your basic conditioning. And it is through that basic conditioning, as you are, that you enter the Truth. Truth never demands that you become somebody else to be acceptable.
You are totally acceptable just as you are.
And whenever you say that there is something wrong with your personality or behaviour or mannerism, then remember that you are not trying to get rid of your personality, you are just trying to wear another kind of personality; that kind of personality which has been sold to you as the ‘right personality’. Now, there is nothing called a ‘right personality’.
As you stand with all your conditioning, with all your so called lacuna, you are still eligible for the Truth.
You may fall into the deepest abyss, and yet you can never fall so deep that you will be abandoned, for you’ll carry Truth with yourself even in your darkest hour.
Even when it is pitch dark outside and inside, yet there is light in your Heart.
So it is not a matter of behaving in a certain way, it is not a matter of carrying a certain persona. It is a matter of a surrendered mind, and the mind exists as a bundle of conditioning. Even if it surrenders, it has surrendered ‘as the mind’. The mind says, ‘I am surrendering as I am and I am surrendering for what I stand for.’ Which means it can’t take itself any seriously, it has surrendered its association, its seriousness that it had about itself. Now all that matters to the mind is the Truth.
But still, the mind being the mind, it lives in its tendencies. I have a certain accent of speaking, she has a certain colour of the eyes. The conditioning runs in the very body. How will you ever get rid of it totally? All you can do is that you can say that it does not matter so much.
Can you get rid of your gender? Can you get rid of your height? That’s how deep conditioning runs. The body itself is just conditioning, what else is the body? It will exist. Even in the surrendered mind, the conditioning will still exist. But the mind does not take that as valuable, for now the mind has found the utterly valuable. The mind says, ‘How does it matter what is the color of my skin or how is my hairstyle. How does all that matter?’
Now, does that mean that the skin loses its color? The color still remains the same but the color is now not something important. So you will retain your mannerism, you’ll remain all that which you have accumulated, at least a lot of it. Gradually, as it becomes less and less important, it keeps dropping. You’ll keep shedding it. It’ll keep dropping. But as long as you remain to talk, as long as you remain to ask a question, something remains. Do not despise that something. That something is your vehicle.
The Truth calls, but you go and open the door with these ‘legs’. Do not despise your legs. When the Truth knocks on the door, you hear the knock and you go and open the door. Do not despise yourself. Be comfortable in your skin. You are good as you are. Now with this feeling of being alright with yourself, see how you are living.
Be honest. That is surrender.
We talk so much about observing one’s life.
Observing one’s life is not about scolding oneself or belittling oneself.
A lot of that happens in the name of observation.
You observe and you say, ‘Oh! I am such a rascal! I am so mean, so pity, so self-contained.’
No, observation is not that.
Observation is not only choiceless, it is also judgment less.
You observe, you see; you do not say that because my observation is not tallying with my expectations so I will despise the observation itself.
Something nice happened today: Our friend Devesh touched a particular plant and he got some rashes on his skin. The skin got blistered, and then there was a man selling his wares by the roadside and we all went to him with Devesh and showed his skin to him and he said, ‘Alright! And then he brought few leaves of another plant and rubbed them on Devesh’s skin and then he was alright.’
Now does that mean that the second plant is a virtuous plant and the first plant is an evil plant? I ask you – Does that mean that the second plant is a virtuous plant and the first plant is an evil plant? Both have a right to exist. In fact, I am certain that if you totally eliminate the first plant then the second plant too will not survive.
So you may be A, you may be B, you may be C or the opposite of C, you are alright.
Even when you see the deepest flaws within yourself, never take yourself to be existentially a reject.
Had you been rejected by God, you would not have been there. Neither as a body nor as a consciousness and obviously not as understanding.
Have this deep rooted confidence, have this reasonless sureness that I am alright.
And that reasonless sureness enables you to shed all that which needs to be shed.
It is a little paradoxical, but take this-
‘Only when you have no resistance towards what you are, then you are able to change fearlessly.’
Ordinarily, when we do not like something then we change it but in spiritual terms, in Real terms, only when you like yourself totally then change happens.
You change your clothes when you don’t like them. But in the case of the self, the Ego, the mind, it is different. Have a total non-resistance towards everything, and then change is so quick, and you wonder, ‘I was alright with it and yet it is changing.’ The change is happening because you touched it with love. If you touch it with hatred it will stay. The Ego is obstinate.
So, be in total fondness with yourself, and see how all that which is rotten just drops. You are saying, ‘I am the superhero.’ Now how can the superhero act like a coward? So the cowardice will drop. This is the rough example but take the hint. Because usually when you say that you are a superhero then the images of the superhero appears in your mind. So, this is just an indicator. So when you know that you are a superhero and when you know that you like yourself so much then you’ll not allow yourself to act like a wimp.
Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: Even in your darkest hour, the Truth shines in your Heart
Read more articles on this topic:
Article 3: How can I know the Truth?
Books by Acharya Prashant