The source and the manifestation-the progeny
and the material, the body
and the actions of the body-the kala,
are all one.
Acharya Prashant: The source and the manifestation-the progeny and the material, the body and the actions of the body-the kala, are all one.
The ‘source’ refers to the origin of it all. ‘Kala’ refers to activity or movement. ‘Sharir’ obviously refers to the body or the material. The source, the material and the movement all are one. They can be one only if you stop expecting that the source lies elsewhere. Please understand what is being said. If the source is one with the rock as well as the movement of the rock, then do you need to transform the rock into a temple? If the source is one with all this, then the source is just one with the fact of all this. Then you don’t need to have a creator God.
Dattatreya beautifully puts it in the Avadhoot Upanishads. He says, “Where do I go to salute anybody?” Kabir says that, “Kabir is through with it.” Now God is chasing Kabir! Kabir is through with chasing God, “Maala pherun na jap karun, munh se kahun na Ram; Neither do I pray with the beads, the ‘mala’ nor do I engage myself in any ‘sadhana’, ‘tapa’ or ‘japa’. Nor do I keep taking the name of Ram. Peechha mera Hari karen main paaun vishraam; Now God chases me and I just relax! I am not chasing God.”
You chase God when you think that God is somewhere else. The saint is the one who has stopped chasing God. The general perception is that the saint is the one who is chasing God. No. We are the ones who are chasing God and, where do we chase God? In expectations of the beyond. There has to be something ahead of this.
Any Guru worth his name will only talk of cessation of activity, not more activity. And if you are coming across somebody who is teaching you more activity, then I heartfully request you to drop that teaching. Be it Bhakti, Advait, other streams of Vedanta. Be it Jesus or the various prophets or poets Hafiz, Meera, Rumi nobody has ever talked of doing anything.
Listener 1: But you can do something like that yourself.
A.P: You anyway are doing much. Are you not tired of already having done so much and constantly doing so much? You talk of doing as if doing something new!
Doing continues to happen irrespective of your support. Why do you think that you are the mover of the universe? “If I don’t do anything then nothing will happen.”
Doership is an illusion.
Why do you keep believing in it? When you stop, then great activity happens. The Upanishads say that not moving is faster than the fastest. Doer-ship is an idea. You want to believe that you are the doer so that you can take credit and feel good about yourself. That’s all.
L1: Are we really living life if we just let things happen the way they are happening?
A.P: What do you mean by living life?
L1: I am not talking of Buddha-consciousness. Just living life.
A.P: So live life.
L1: So it is required to participate in it.
A.P: So participate. Who says that your doer-ship enables participation? Your doer-ship only blocks participation.
L1: Even if I get out of this, it’s not going to happen here anyway.
A.P: Participation is happening, you are blocking it. Get out!
L1: I was not here yesterday.
A.P: Where does “here” mean? Does it mean this physical location? These coordinates? That is the meaning of “here?” Where is the meaning of here? What does it mean to be “here?” “Here” means God, “here” means Truth. When you say, “here and now”, what you mean is that you are in God. To be ‘here and now’ means to be in God. This in turn means not being in yourself.
One of the verses in the Quran says,” Let me ease you into the easiest.” The moment you make it tough, by asking for a method, that is when you are becoming Godless. It is so easy that you keep missing it.
L1: If I accept it, it is bound to happen even if it happens, it doesn’t happen.
A.P: The only thing that you can really know is that knowledge is useless.
L2: We see that, the so-called simplicities are sometimes so complicated.
A.P: Because, complications have given us a lot of material comfort. All your material comforts come from complex things-like a vehicle, a building, an organized structure of society, organized institutions of living. Then you start having fear of the simple. The one who lives in the simple has a general distaste of the complex. He then won’t say that he needs the most sophisticated of gadgets to make his life worthwhile. Complications, the compels, the product of thought have given us a lot of material progress and that is why we have become so afraid of simplicity.
For forty years the Zen practitioner practices ‘not to practice’. The master keeps on sending him back till the time he insists on doing something. He looks at effortlessness. That’s the essence of non-doer ship.
L3: Non doing through doing.
AP: Yes! So that doing is anyway always happening. You are not really required to meddle with it. That is Zen. You know that famous Koan right? Lot of Zen-masters have been archers. So the hand stretches the bow, the arrow leaves by itself, the target gets hit by itself. And that is Zen. And then you say that I have to pick it up, and then you are also saying last time I have failed, and this time I have to prove a point. And then what happens? The arrow misses.
Krishna says to Arjuna, “Forget all your man-made religions. Man made religions are all those duties that you have given to yourself. He is saying forget shame. Totally leave everything.
All that you think that is essential for you, drop it and come only to me.
Do not use models, because whenever there is a model, it would have its limits. Go directly into relaxation.
L1: So, how do you look at us?
A.P: You are wearing this color, sitting here, holding this pen, all the ordinary things that you are doing. I do not look at you in any special way! I don’t think that you are God, the father, nor do I think that you are consciousness personified. I don’t even think that you are a bundle of evil. This is just a body. Now that is so disappointing because that is so simple! You expected some great divine statement but I don’t have any!
L1: Yes, I know we are zero!
A.P: Anybody here thinks that they are zero?
L1: You have no expectations!
A.P: I have great expectations! If you go from here muddled and disappointed I will get hurt and feel bad.
L1: Let me say something. Being muddle-headed is you are not letting others live.
A.P: Wherever it is coming from, if it happens, I feel bad. I get hurt. I want to buy something; I don’t want to buy something. I also cannot manage everything. I want to lose weight, say 5 kg. But I cannot manage that.
I am not intelligent, I am stupid. I am just as you are. Why must you want to put something special somewhere? If you are intelligent, I am intelligent, if you are stupid I am stupid. You eat, I too eat. Yesterday they made me sit there beside the beach. I caught cold today. Now what kind of enlightened man is this (pointing towards himself).
I am greatly attached. I will keep insisting that I am like you.
It is an age-old conspiracy. The other person is special, that is why he can live like that. But I am not special. We all are one. All the teachers and gurus have been saying that they are very special and they do not feel any hinderance or attachment or appetite, desire or attraction. I do feel however I am not.
L2: What is Dharma?
Not letting yourself come in the way of Truth, not letting yourself be bigger than the truth-that is the only dharma. Dharma is not a set of actions; dharma is absolute non-action. Dharm – It means bearing, to bear.
Dharma, to take something on yourself.
Dharma and ordinary Dhaarna are way different. Ordinarily when you are believing in something, it is dhaarna. Dhaarna is almost like wearing something. Dharma is about un-wearing. Wearing only yourself is dharma. What is it that will be expressed through me? That is dharma. It is very close to right living and right action; right action without the actor.
-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity
Connect to Acharya Prashant:
1. Advait Learning Camps (ALC): Advait Learning Camps are monthly 4-day retreats under the guidance of Acharya prashant in the Himalayas. To participate in the camps, Contact: Sh. Anshu Sharma: +91-8376055661 or Sh. Kundan Singh: +91-9999102998
2. Course in Realization (CIR): Course in Realization is a seven-day scriptures based learning program led by Acharya Prashant. To join, either physically or online, contact: Sh. Apaar: +91-9818591240
3. Month of AwakeninG (MAG): Attend Satsangs from Home! MAG is an online series of discourses on handpicked topics by Acharya Prashant on practical and relevant topics like Love, Fear, Achievement etc. To join the online discourses, contact: Smt. Anoushka Jain: +91-9818585917
4. Meet the Master (MTM): Meet the Master is an opportunity to meet and seek detailed guidance from Acharya Prashant, either in person or online. Contact: Smt. Anoushka Jain: +91-9818585917