Likes and dislikes are not a problem


Listener: Likes and dislikes are hindrances but I still have likes and dislikes.

Speaker: Let’s go into this.

‘Likes and dislikes’ and whenever it is said that likes and dislikes are hindrance or that what you like and dislike is your conditioning, the easy and immediate conclusion is drop the likes and drop the dislikes. The moment you hear the sentence saying that ‘Likes and dislikes are hindrance’, the mind quickly conclude that it is being told to get rid of likes and dislikes. Now from here, one either tries the way of renunciation or self-control or one simply says that, ‘No! I have my likes and dislikes. I want to stay with them. I don’t want to leave them.’

In either of these cases, our concern is the object that we like, “I don’t want to drop it” or “I want to drop it”. You see the difference. Do you see this? Whenever this is said that ‘Likes and dislikes are hindrance’, by likes you assume that the object that you like is being referred to. Is that not the assumption? Let’s say ‘I like orange juice’. And it is being said that ‘Likes and dislikes are hindrance’, so you assume that it is being said that the orange juice is to be dropped. Do you see this? Now you may drop the orange juice or you may say, “No! Orange juice is very dear to me and I wouldn’t drop it.” Is the statement from “Patanjali” or, from this book, “The Lover You Have Been Missing” is about the object that you like or dislike?

I repeat this question. When Patanjali or when I advise you to be cautious of the likes, to observe your likes and know them, is it the object of liking or disliking that is central to the advice? Is the whole sutra dedicated to something external to you? No! We will go into it. The one who likes is always the subject in all wisdom literature, not the object of liking, the one who takes himself to be the subject, the one who “likes”, or the one who “dislikes”. And that one who likes or dislikes is also called as the “ego” or the false self.

The great sages has not advised you to drop the objects. That is fool-hardy. They have advised you to drop yourself. Dropping objects is sometimes easy, sometimes difficult, but always useless. Do you get this? Sometimes it is easy to drop the object. It depends on the kind of utility the object holds in your patterns of life. Sometimes it is quite difficult.

If somebody says the object is your body, then dropping the body would be quite difficult. But whether it is easy or whether it is difficult, it is always irrelevant. Never takes objects too seriously. It is the one who feels that he needs to be associated to the object is the subject matter of all our inquiry. Who is that one who feels that he needs to be associated to some object? What is this thing called the need to be associated to some object? Liking, attraction. Sometimes you also called it as love.

L: Desire.

 AP: Desire. The need to be associated with something. And the need to be associated with something is obviously coming from a perception that “that particular thing” would lead to a fulfilment of some kind. Do you see this? It is a certain fulfilment that you seek by liking something, and by disliking something, you seek to secure and imagine the fulfilment that you already have. You say, “This is something that I already have, and it provides me fulfilment and if I lose it, then along with it, I will also lose my..?

This is something that fulfils me, that gives me a certain completion, a certain meaning to me, and if I lose this thing, then along with the thing, I will also lose the…?

L: Fulfilment.

AP: Do you see this? So even when you are talking of things, you are essentially talking of your own fulfilment. No things would matter to you if it were not promising or threatening fulfilment. Who is the one sitting inside, who is continuously craving for fulfilment? Who is that one? He is the one likes and dislikes. He is the one who chooses. He is the one who decides. He is the actor. And his central characteristic is that he is always unfulfilled.  Even when he feels that he is fulfilled, he is scared that this fulfilment might be…

L: Taken away.

AP: Lost, taken away. And hence the fulfilment is always…

L: Partial.

AP: Partial, conditional, imaginary, and false. So both things taken together, the characteristic of this one sitting inside is that he is always unfulfilled.

When you are advised that drop likes and dislikes, you are being advised that drop this sense of unfulfilment.

We all carry this. We feel that a position, a job, a house, a woman, some knowledge, some place will provide us fulfilment. Don’t we? That is how we relate to others, in need of fulfilment, or in need of securing fulfilment. That is our fundamental objective, whenever we relate to the world, to the things, objects and persons in the world.

L: Is this the same with the enlightened persons?

AP: I do not know about enlightened persons. But I know what is going on with the unenlightened ones, with the common folks. People like me. I know what is going on with them, so I would rather talk about that, the common phenomena, the everyday stuff in the mind. I do not know what is enlightenment? I do not know whether likes and dislikes exist then? I would rather talk about this, this that which we call as life.

So this one who is sitting inside is the unfulfilled one. Is he not?

L: Why are we calling him “ego”?

AP: Because we call him as “me”, “I”. The word ego means “I”. With this unfulfilled one, we identify deeply. We feel he is us, he is “me”. Because we say he is “me”, so we call him the “ego” or “I”. Ego means “I”. Are you getting this? So what are we to drop? The object that promises fulfilment or the being that sits within and is always unfulfilled?

That feeling, that belief that ‘I am unfulfilled’ that is what is advised to be dropped. That deep notion that there is something wrong with me, that there is something missing in life, that there is something to be gained, that there is something outside of me so big that it will provide a final purpose meaning and completion to life.

And don’t we feel that way, all of us? We feel an inner void and then we start looking outwards to fill that void. Have you not experienced that void? In fact all experiences are nothing but experience of that void. What we call as human experiences, are all experiences of that void. If that void gets filled, then we call it a pleasurable experience.

Pleasure is the feeling, the thought that the inner hollow is getting filled, that you are getting healed. And pain is the experience that the inner hollow is being deepened. And these are the only two experiences that we have. There is no third experience. All human experience can be distilled down to, brought down to these two fundamental thoughts. One says, “I am reaching there.” The other says, “No! I am not reaching there.” But both these thoughts assume that ‘I am away from fulfilment’.

You can very easily talk of variety of experiences and you can quote at least fifty different words from dictionary that denotes different shades of experiences. But I insist that all experiencing has to do with that hollow. You are being advised to drop that hollow. That hollow is a fiction. It does not exist. You just feel that it does exist. You have been taught, trained to think that it exists. And you have internalized that notion so deeply that now that hollow rules your life.

Every step that you take, small, big, in this sector, in that sector, in this zone, in that domain, doesn’t matter which part of life you are referring to, all steps essentially becomes an exercise in seeking an imaginary cure to an imagined disease. That is what we call as the movement of human life. It is such a funny thing. One could call it absurd, one could call it tragic, and one could call it comical.

Firstly, you assume that there is something wrong with you and then you spent your life trying to correct the assumed wrong. How can you correct something that is not wrong in the first place? How can you lose something that you never have in the first place? That feeling is being advised to drop.

How does one drop it? The answer lies in seeing that ‘How does one hold it?’ How do you hold on to that feeling? We hold that feeling by continuing to act in ways that reinforce our feeling of incompleteness. The more we invest our lives in achievement, in security, the more we convince ourselves to believe that there is indeed something wrong. The argument runs something like this. ‘I have invested a lot, in securing myself.’ Now I have invested a lot in securing myself – time, energy, attention, life itself. When I have invested a lot in securing myself, it becomes very important for me to maintain that I was insecure in the first place. Do you see this?

A man believes that he is being sieged from all sides. I am under a siege, so he invest a lot in armouring his house, in buying a lot of weapons, in may be hiring soldiers and mercenaries, he invest a lot in all this. In fact, he invests himself totally in all this. He invested nothing but this. Let’s say he has invested twenty years of his life in this, shielding his house, screening each and every door and window, buying expensive ammunition.

If someone now comes and tell him, that why you are doing all this? There is no enemy. Then it would prove that all his life has gone waste. So the more you have invested yourself in these absurd endeavours, the more difficult it becomes for you to drop the one who was threatened and unfulfilled. Because now you say that to drop it, is to drop my whole effort and I am attached to my effort. I feel it was my investment, how can I let it go waste?

L: In India, when someone married, I have heard they make promises to be married for seven lifetimes. Is that has a relationship with what you are saying?

AP: Yes, of course. It is there in every relationship; your relationship with your thoughts. You have nurtured your thoughts; you have developed your ideologies since long. Now to drop that ideology means to drop all that effort and energy and time.

L: So, one should not have these thoughts and ideologies…

AP: Do not conclude yet. May be there is something else coming up. Who knows?

You have been in a relationship since ten years; a lot just gone into that relationship. Now you say how you can drop it? There is a lot of investment. There is a lot of “you” in that relationship. Now even if the relationship pinches, hurts, with a terrible load, yet you feel with dragging on with it. The one who is unfulfilled is also an idiot. He wouldn’t drop his unfulfilment.  He is so identified with it that it is no longer about saying that ‘I am experiencing a lot of unfulfilment.’ The statement has now become ‘I am the lack of fulfilment.’ Do you see this?

The distance between you and that feeling has just disappeared. Now you are no more an observer, let alone a witness of that feeling. Now you are that feeling. You are not saying that, ‘Okay! I am experiencing a feeling that there is something wrong with me’. Now you are saying, ‘I am the one who is having a “hollow”. I am the one.

Now this is a statement of complete identity, a total union with rubbish. Do you see this? That is how we hold on to the hollow, by thinking of how we have nourished the hollow. We say, “So much has gone into maintaining this hollow, now how can I drop it?” It is like saying that so much has gone into earning a disease, now the disease is my property. How can I drop it? But that’s how the argument runs and it must be a potent argument because it seems to rule the world. Sitting here, we find it stupid but you look at the condition of the world, then you say it is not stupid, it is supreme.

If you do not clutch it desperately, this feeling of hollowness will disappear on its own. Mark these words.

If you do not keep nurturing it, if you do not keep providing energy and sustenance to it, this hollow would vanish on its own, which means no method is needed, no trick, no clever effort, no time is needed. It goes away on its own, because it is not real, what is not real, needs no effort to be defeated. What is not real is by definition waiting to disappear. You are the one who is not allowing it to die. Do you see this? So do not ask, “how to drop?” Just see how you hold it and when you see that you hold it because you feel that you have invested in it, because you feel that you are identified with it, and you see that to identify with the hollow is to be identified with your suffering, then it goes away with its own.  Can a dead man walk? But a dead man can surely walk if someone alive is determined to carry him along. Then dead man do walk.

The ego is the dead man. But not only we see that it is walking, it is not only running, it is actually running the world. The dead one is walking, running and running the world because something that is alive is providing this dead one with a lot of fodder, with a lot of food, nutrition, energy, movement. Drop that support. The dead one is tired of being pushed, dragged, and carried. Even that dead one wants to disappear.

If you ever meet the ego and you ask it, “What is your one wish?” It will say, “I want to die. I want nothing more than dying. Please, please let me go away. Please let me sublimate.’ You think the ego is your enemy. No! You are the enemy of the ego. You are not allowing the ego to pass away, to relax. You are maintaining the ego. You are unnecessarily pushing it. It wants to retire now. It wants to settle down and sleep deeply. You are the one who keep it active. Stop keeping  it active. Stopping is the only method.

All other methods talk of doing, moving, acting, and these doing, moving, acting, itself is your bane and hence all methods are bound to extend your misery. All methods use the disease itself as the medicine. They offer you more of the disease in name of the medicine. They are bound to fail. Stopping is the only method. How to stop? By seeing how you continue. When you see the foolishness of continuing, you stop. When you see the tired you are of running, you stop.

Do you see this?

L: But it is not so easy…

AP: Not so easy for whom?

L:  Like for young people. If I talk about love, in my country, we have a high percentage rate of divorce but still if somebody is young wants to married and don’t find his suitable girl it will be very heavy on his mind. So it will be very difficult to drop this craving.

AP: You cannot drop the craving. What have we said for so long? The one who craves is fictitious. He is the one has to be dropped. You want to drop the desire but maintain the desired one. You want to drop what you like but you want to maintain the one who likes. Is it possible?

We go back to the orange juice. We are still not been able to drop it. You want to drop the orange juice but maintain the one who likes orange juice. Even if you drop it once, what is going to happen? Tell me.

L: After sometime, he will again have the orange juice.

AP: He will crave again and he will somehow secure orange juice.

We are not talking of particular likes and dislikes. We are talking of the one who likes and dislikes. Now that opens up a related question  ‘What to do with the objects one likes and dislikes then?’ Play with them. You have all the freedom to like something and dislike something provided, you do not think that what you like will give you fulfilment and what you dislike will take away something precious from you.

You have all the freedom to search for a man or a woman, or a suitable boy or a suitable girl. You have all the freedom to go and request a boy or a girl for relationship, marriage, if you want, provided you do not think that the relationship is going to provide you with something essential. You must know that a relationship is just a relationship. It cannot be a supplier of essence to me. I am alright with the women and I am alright without the women. I am essentially alright.

When you are essentially alright even without the women, then you are free to chase all the women in the world. Then you are free to marry not the one but as many as you like because the women now will not be burdened with fulfilling your hollow.

 You know what happens when you marry? Because you feel an inner compulsion, an inner drive to have someone who can fill up your loneliness, you have now burdened that person with so-called “responsibility”, to reduce your loneliness. And hence that relationship is bound to fail. That person never wanted to take that burden. Nobody can actually take up that burden. But you gave it to him. You loaded upon him. You said, “Now you are entrusted with filling up the hole that I have been digging for so long. I am the one who has been digging the whole and you are the one who will now fill up the hollow.” Now that person will fail. That person is bound to fail. That person has his or her own miseries, own hollows to fill. How can he contribute to your fulfilment? Are you getting it?

So go about liking and disliking with total abundant. There is no constraint at all upon you. The world is your playground. All the objects are your play thing. You like something, go ahead. You dislike something, avoid. But take both of these a little casually. You must know that even when you fail to avoid, you have not lost much. And you must know that even if you succeed in gaining, you cannot gain much. Why cannot you gain much? Why cannot you gain much? Because you already have it. This feeling that I already and unconditionally have it is the essence of healthy living. Without this you would remain a psychopath.

L: So, what are the aims in life that must be fulfilled?

AP: There are no aims that need to be fulfilled. Life is already fulfilled. There remains nothing to be added to it. You are talking about “Arth”, “Dharm”, “Kaam”, and “Moksha”?

L: Yes.

AP: Forget. What moksha do you want?  All bondage is an illusion. Now what liberation can you have? You are already the liberated one. All talk of liberation is bondage. Do you see this?

So we are saying that there is no need to drop particular and specific things. In renunciation, you drop the one who seeks, desires, aims, achieves, struggles, and strives. He is the one you dropped. So, really in renunciation, you drop the renouncer. Things are not to be dropped. Don’t get into that foolish business. Somebody is trying to drop some kind of food; somebody is trying to drop some kind of action. There are people who are dropping clothes, and there are people who are acquiring.

Now all this business of acting, behaving in a certain away, dropping this, acquiring that, is so non sensical because it is just a continuation of who you imagine yourself to be. He is the one who finds the extension in all this activity.

Drop the “one” and then you have the freedom to play with everyone. Drop that one, that mother of all illness. Do you know the mother of all illness?

L: Unsatisfied feeling..?

AP: Yes! That feeling of discontentment. Drop that. Drop that one and then play with everyone. Like it, dislike it, achieve something, drop something, plan for something, chase something, reject something, accept something, be attracted to something be disgust to something. Play the entire game, the whole range of experiences an emotion is available to you. Go through them. The whole spectrum is yours. Who is anyone to deny you any bit of it? Go ahead.  You know we are rarely able to go ahead.

L: I have a notion that when someone drop all this…

AP: Did we say that you have to drop “all this”? Or are we saying that you have to drop that “one”. Sir, you have to listen with caution.

L: That he would be like Ramana Maharishi? He also did not marry and…

AP: Have we said that? Have we said that? In listening, one does not compare. We are talking of our own lives. We are not talking of someone we never met, never know. All that you have is stories about that person. And if you are living in those stories and living in those fancies, go close to yourself. You don’t come here to talk about your neighbour, the sinner and the sage. You come here because there is something that is the matter with you. Take care of that.

We are not dropping all that. We are dropping that feeling which drives us because we have allowed it to drive us. We have energised it to drive us. We are saying we do not want to fuel it any further. Whenever we will see that we are acting out of that feeling, that feeling has become our centre, our driver, we will refuse to energize it anymore. Even that refusal is not something that you have to decide upon. The moment you observe yourself acting that way, the refusal just comes by itself. The keyword is “on its own”.

It is called grace. It happens on its own; without your effort, without your interference. It happens.

L: Sir, but in first place, why don’t we have firm faith on us that we are complete?

AP: No! Faith is not about believing that you are complete. Faith is about not having the need to believe that you are complete.

Usually, we live in the belief that we are incomplete. When somebody says, no, no, no, that belief is false. Then we switch to its opposite belief. The opposite belief says, “I am complete.” None of these is faith. Faith is about not having the need to believe anything about yourself. Why must I believe in anything about myself? I am what I am. I am what I am. And I need no further description about myself. ‘Am I incomplete?’ Who bothers? ‘Am I complete?’ Who bothers?

Neither am I incomplete nor do I bother to say that I am complete. Whatever I will say about myself will create a definition and hence a restriction upon myself. ‘Who am I?’ (Sarcastically) ‘Stupid question.’ Don’t want to look into this. I am what I am. Secure in just being; being without definitions, being without appendages, being without desires, being without needs. That total sense of sureness. So sure that it doesn’t even bother to check that why it is so sure.

That is Faith

L: Sir how does that happen?

AP: How does it not happen? You tell me. It is your intrinsic nature. How it is not happening with you?

Never asks anything about the cause of the essential.  It is an improper question. Never ask, ‘How does faith happen?’ You are asking about the cause of faith? You are asking about the cause of God? Whenever you are asking for a cause, always ask of the cause of false. Never asks what is the cause of the Truth? Truth is its own cause. Faith is the cause of faith. So the question like, ‘How does it happen? How to reach liberation?’ is a misplaced question.

Ask, “How it is happening that we think that we are not there?” Ask, “How it is happening that we think that we have lost it?” Now that is an appropriate question. Are you getting this? That question is very appropriate. You must ask, “How is it that I become a believer? How is it that the one that I am comes to have a self-definition, a belief?” The moment you start believing something about yourself, you believe firstly that you are away from faith. All belief is fundamentally this belief. All beliefs are fundamentally the belief that you need to believe.  Without having a need to belief, would you believe? Now there is a need to believe only when you don’t have faith.

So comes in belief, and with beliefs comes in the one who believes and the believer does not know faith. Do you see this?

How to have faith?

Being yourself you want to have faith. Remaining a believer, you want to have faith? Remaining a believer you want to have faith?

That is the import of your question. That is what we want. How to have this? All the questions that deal with methods and “How tos?” are essentially the questions that says, “Okay! Here I am. And I am as I am, sitting deep in my hollow, believing deeply in my complexes and now tell me that remaining this, remaining in that hollow, how do I reach out to the stars?

So all “How tos?” are just questions of deception. When you do not want to do something, then you ask how to do it? Do you see this?

L: Then we should drop this dissatisfaction?

AP: We don’t drop it.

L: I mean we should fill the hollow?

AP: No! You cannot fill the hollow.

You are still talking of the language of the one who is a believer in the discontentment.

L: You will be contented..?

 AP: You are contented.

You are contented?

AP: Now no more question.

(Listener tries to ask more questions)

No, no. Wait. You see how even contentment is an imagination for us. And when contentment is imagination for us, then discontentment continues. Even after saying that, “Okay! I am contented.” You continue to ask more questions.

If you are contented, would you ask questions that believe in discontentment?

You know what you are trying to ask?

You were saying that because I am discontented, I move around a lot. Because I am discontented, I have movement, energy, objective and purpose. So if I am contented, then life will come to a point where it stands still?

L: Yes sir. I got it. But you said that we don’t want to do anything?

AP: When? Where? We want to do so much. Why would I say you don’t want to do anything? You want to do so much.

See, this is how the whole game proceeds. We imagine what contentment would be like. Then we speculate what would happen after contentment. Then we judge and declare that I will not like “that” would happen after contentment. Being what I am, I would not like what will happen after contentment. And then we conclude that I do not want contentment.

Do you know contentment? And if you know contentment, then you are contented, that’s the full stop. And if you do not know contentment, then you are the discontented one. How can the discontented one imagine anything about contentment?

But not only do we imagine, we also pass a judgement. We say, you know after contentment, “I will stop acting.” The one who becomes fulfil, “Why will he act? Why will he move? Why will he eat?”

What do you know about him? What do you know about contentment?

Contentment is God. To say, that you know what will happen after contentment, is to say, you know God.

 Have we not said again and again that with that contentment in your heart, you are free to play around in the world? Did we say you stop? But again you are imagining that inner stopping means an outer stopping as well. Do you see this? And that is such a prohibitive imagination? In fact it is a purposeful imagination? You are imagining this with a definitive and calculative purpose. You are imagining this so that you remain as you are. I am discontented and I am imagining that contentment is something dangerous. Hence I will remain what I am, which is discontented.

You see all this mental operation and you rely so much upon this mental operation. You trust yourself so much. Even if a sage is talking to you, you first go to a corner and take your own advice. You depend so much upon yourself. You depend on this foolish thing called mind. He is your friend? He will advise you and save you? You depend upon this lame and impotent thing called argument. They will redeem you? Or are they the disease? But we wouldn’t listen. We will lead the inner argument continue. We will fuel it. We feel you know that is the final judge.

“All right! Let me listen something from the speaker and then I will pass it through my own internal tests. “Okay! You give me whatever you are giving me. Bring that in. Now, I am a particular machine (mind) and I will pass all your stuff (teachings) through this machine and if this machine says that this stuff is acceptable and proper, and then I will take it.” Now this machine is a foolish machine. That stuff, is stuff intended to destroy this machine. And you are using this machine to judge that stuff?

But you know, your individuality is in stake? Then you say, “What does it mean then? Then I don’t have to test what you are saying?” Yes. It means that. You don’t have to test all this.

Enquiry does not mean verification. Enquiry does not mean testing. Enquiry means a deep, burning need for the truth. Do you get this? Enquiry does not mean that you will verify, test, and counter-check. Enquiry means I am enquiring about the Truth. I want nothing but the Truth. That is the meaning of enquiry. And when the Truth is your only priority, then you don’t bother yourself with this, stupid machine.

Are you getting this?

L: This reminds me of something. Yesterday I visited Mc Leodganj to see Dalai Lama. Before that, I have not seen him, know him. I assume a lot about him, but he was different. And I think the same thing I did with you too. I assume your…

AP: Yes! Of course. We use the mind to determine what the Truth must be like? We use our benchmarks to create an ideal of what perfection must be like? We use our imagination to paint what God must be like? Will that work? But that is the basis of all our work. Do you want it to be like that? You must see that all of this is so non-sensical. How can you take it seriously? It is a joke. And when you see that is it is a joke; then you are able to walk past it.

Spirituality means don’t take yourself seriously.

Likes, indulge in them. Dislikes, indulge in them but don’t take any of them seriously. Mind, do with it. Watch its antics; be entertained by its acrobatics. One does not say that a naughty monkey is ones enemy. Or do you say that? “Oh! Look at that one. He is my sore enemy”; and then you bring some neutron bomb to destroy the monkey and you go and consult all the gurus of the world, “How to kill the money?”

A monkey is a monkey; naughty, mischievous, sometimes troublesome, but also cute. Nice, friendly; if you are. Godly; if you are. That’s the mind; a naughty monkey. You do not run around doing Saadhna to domesticate the monkey. “You know my monkey, he does not obey my commands.” and then you are reading scriptures upon scriptures and referring encyclopaedia’s, “monkey Shastras”.

The mind is a monkey. Let it run around. It likes something that it likes and it dislikes something that it dislikes. You do not need to feel guilty. You remain the master. You remain a loving master. You remain a benevolent master.

L: Is it true that the mind has to die?

AP: No. It is not at all true; not at all. Let the mind remainLet the mind remain like the moon remains even when the sun is there.

Have you not seen that?

So the sun is infinitely larger, the supplier of light. And the moon is still there, or are you killing the moon. Are you saying that, “No, the moon is false because the light is actually coming from the sun.” The light might actually be coming from the sun but the little moon, is nice, like a toy. Let it be there. Why do you want to kill it? Sometimes, when the sun is hidden from you, the moon provides you light, even when if it is reflected light, even if it is not its own light. But when the sun is hidden from you, the moon provides you a little bit of light of sun. Or does it not? So let it be there. Why do you want to kill it?

L: May be when the mind is not there, then there will be fewer thoughts and you will be happier.

AP: Let there be thoughts. All thoughts are like the light of moon. In daytime, when the sun is out, what does the light of the moon mean? Nothing. There is such bright light of awareness, that now the moon is inconsequential. So, similarly, in the vast ocean of awareness, let your thoughts rise and fall. Let your thoughts be rising, falling and taking bath in the ocean of awareness.

Aware, still, and contented, you are free to think. Now think. There is no limitation upon thought. Think as much as you want to. Think whatever you may want to. But be contented. Don’t use thought as an instrument of seeking contentment. Thought will not get you That.

 Already contented, think whatever and howsoever much you want to. You have all the freedom. Think of this, think of that. Your entire imagination is free and fertile. Go ahead. Just fulfil the basic condition and then you have the Total freedom. Do you see this?  All this business of mind control, of not letting thoughts comes, just is another thought. They say, “Don’t think.” And what is this? Another thought.

 L: “Erase the past”, another thought.

AP: Another thought.

I am saying, think as much as you want to. Fill your stomach. Eat whatever you want to. But be contented first. Know that food cannot give you God. Now go to food. But if food has become God for you, then soon you will be crying out to God to save you from food.

You do not need control of thought. You just need to see that the thinker is a buffoon.

L: I read this book from Raman, in which he compares the self to a radio and I don’t remember what was the mind or the radio, but he said that if you take the radio apart, you will still not find the one who is talking there, and so somehow in the book he said that he is acting directly from the self without the mind or something like that.

AP: That’s a lot of mind.


Every single world is the mind. Every single thought, action is mind; all that which appears to be and not to be is mind. How will you get rid of the mind? Mind is nothing but the very appearance of the pure Self. When the great Self appears, it appears as the mind. Now what do you want to kill? In killing the mind, do you know who you are trying to kill?

God in all his playfulness is the mind. This world is the dance of God, and this world is the mind.

You want to kill the mind? You want to kill the dance of God? You think you can attack Shakti without provoking Shiva.


“No! We must kill the mind.” Now wait for Shiva’s response. They love each other.


All that the mind needs is union with Shiva. It does not need to be killed. You cannot kill it. In fact, talking of killing it is furtherance of the mind. Anything that you want to do with the mind is just more mind.

“I will have this method to kill the mind”, this is just more mind. Why don’t you see that? The mind does not need to be murdered, it just need to be submerged. The mind is just like a lover, crying out for union with the beloved. What do you give it? Union or a knife.

The mind cries out, “I want to embrace my lover.” Let it be embraced. Let it be submerged. Isn’t it a very cruel, heartless, and violent thing to kill a crying lover? The monkey was crying, “Give me some food, and give me some food.”   And because it was hungry, so it was taking something from here, something from there. And what did you do? You shot at the monkey. How wise is that? The lover was begging, “I want to see my beloved, I want to touch him, I want to become one with him.” And you stabbed him. Is that Godly? Really?

All is Truth. Nothing needs to eradicate. All needs to be just aligned. And there is a great difference b/w eradication and alignment.The ego needs to be aligned with its source. The ego needs to be a servant or a lover of its master, the source. It doesn’t needs to be killed. The ego is all right. Likes and dislikes are all right. The body and the mind are all right. This feeling of being all right is the alignment. This thing that it is all right is not a statement, is a great silence. The moment it arises, “It is all right.” That is a situation of alignment, a oneness, a coherence, a harmony.

Enemies need mediators. Lovers don’t need mediators. A mediator is a method. Methods are applicable in this world of enemies, in this world of strife and conflict. But when the mind wants to reach the source, then it is about two lovers, who are essentially one. Now what will a mediator do? What will a method do?

Have you ever loved? Do you know love? Do you like a middleman in love? Do you like it?

L: No.

AP: Go directly. Go straight. Go without pretensions. Go naked.

L: Sir, actually perhaps this arises because we don’t know that the mind wants to meet the source.

AP: What else do you want to meet? What else are you crazy for? Without knowing the Self, would you be so deeply crazy for it?


-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity

Watch the session: Acharya Prashant on Yoga Sutras: Likes and dislikes are not a problem


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, ContactSh. 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

 To join any of the above programs, send your specified application to:

Books by the Speaker are available at:





2 thoughts on “Likes and dislikes are not a problem

    • Dear remembrance1blog,
      Greetings from PrashantAdvait Foundation!
      The reply to this comment is made by the volunteers of PrashantAdvait Foundation, who maintain the blog.

      Our likes and dislikes are totally conditioned, be it biological or social. One does not need to feel any kind of guilt about it. It is great to hear that the words of Acharya Ji are helping you.

      We are glad to inform you that seekers from all over the world get connected with Acharya-Ji through the following offerings by the foundation:

      1. Meet the Master:
      Meet the Master aka MTM is an opportunity to meet Acharya Prashant personally, either physically or online.

      To meet the master, send your application to or contact: Smt. Anoushka Jain: +91-9818585917

      2. Advait Learning Camps:
      Advait Learning Camps are monthly retreats organized by PrashantAdvait Foundation under Acharya Prashant’s guidance. These camps are about spending four days and three nights in the lap of nature, while reading, reflecting, learning and evolving.
      So far, scores of ALCs have been organised in places like Rishikesh, Mukteshwar, Jim Corbett National Park, Chopta, Kainchi Dham, etc.

      To participate in the camp, write an e-mail to, or call: Sh. Anshu Sharma at +91-8376055661

      3. Course in Realization:
      Course in Realization, a classroom-based learning program led by Acharya Prashant, is a humanitarian initiative towards disseminating clarity and intelligence in the world. In this course, a rigorous study of a scripture or a saint is undertaken each month.

      To join in, send your application to or contact: Sh. Apaar: +91-9818591240

      4. Month of Awakening:
      For those who cannot attend sessions physically, the foundation does online streaming of few selected sessions via Skype or Webinar. Known as Month of Awakening, this facility offers live streaming of sessions and helps seekers listen to Acharya-Ji while being where they are.

      To receive the blessing, send your application to or contact:
      Smt. Anoushka Jain: +91-9818585917

      PrashantAdvait Foundation


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