Author Archives: Acharya Prashant (आचार्य प्रशांत)

About Acharya Prashant (आचार्य प्रशांत)

The author, or more accurately – the medium, engages himself in leading Advait organisations, conducting clarity sessions, leading reflections camps in the Himalayas. In this process, he has been creating a greatly useful and unique body of spiritual literature, at par with the highest mystical words that mankind has ever known. Read more about him and his work: prashantadvait.com/about

The relation between religion and spirituality || Acharya Prashant (2018)

The relation between religion and spirituality

Question: Acharya ji, my sister believes in Christianity, and she has also changed her religion. Now, she says that I am on a wrong path. What is the right path? How are religion and spirituality connected?

Acharya Prashant:

When the subtle becomes gross, rather the subtle is turned into gross,

then all these religious prejudices are born.

So, when someone says, “Jesus,” then someone must ask, “Who is ‘Jesus’? What do you mean by ‘Jesus’? The son of Mary? Who is ‘Jesus’?” When somebody says, “I have found my path,” the question to be asked is, “Whose path?”

From the gross, the inquiry must move to the subtle.  And that is also the relation between Religion and Spirituality. The Truth is subtler than the subtlest.

Spirituality is subtle, Religion is gross.

We get attracted to names, forms, conventions. Jesus is not the name and form of ‘Jesus’. Who is ‘Jesus’? And if you look at the Bible closely, then there is enough in the Bible, to clearly see, and demonstrate, that those who are ardent evangelists, are the ones, who have probably missed Jesus the most.

There are two kinds of missionary zeals. One is – when you have really dissolved, really found, and then what you have found, disseminates itself from your being, or rather non-being. This is Love. You are like the Sun, you must radiate. This first form of zeal is Love.

And then the second form of zeal is, when you have not found, and you know that you have not found, and because you have not found, you are insecure, and to cover-up your insecurity, you want to gather numbers around you. Because insecurity requires a crowd. Insecurity requires that there must be more like you. Insecurity has a need to prove itself.

So, to convince yourself, that you are not as much in a debauched state, as you really are, you turn outwards. This is ‘evangelism’. You are trying to convert the other, because you are yourself not converted. And there is a great difference between love and evangelism.

In Love too, you bring something precious to the other. But, in Love, you bring something precious to the other, for the sake of the other. In evangelism, you bring something to the other, for your own sake, because you know fully well that you are insecure. Because you know that you are stuck somewhere, and are lonely.

“I am the only one who follows a particular religion in the family. So, won’t it be great if I have some support? Won’t it be great if my numbers multiply?” The question to be asked is, “Do you have the real thing?” And I am not saying that one has to follow only path to get to the real thing, or for that matter one has to follow any particular path to get the real thing.

So, it’s not the question of paths, it’s the question of whether you have IT. If you have IT, then your approach, then your relationship with the entire family, would be very different. And if you don’t have IT, then you are just acting as an enemy, by trying to convert someone to your side. 

It’s not then about Christianity, or Hinduism, or Theism versus Atheism. It’s simply the question of whether one has it. Do you have it? And if you have it, then please tell me what does ‘Jesus’ mean to you. Who are you? Who are you?

When you say you have found your path, whose path? This question of identity, will befuddle and anger, many a zealous evangelists. When they say that they have found God, the only question that you have to ask is, “Who has found what?” And this will irritate them so much.

When Jesus says, “I am the life, the light and the way,” what does Jesus mean by ‘I’? Does Jesus mean, the body of Jesus? Then what does Jesus mean by ‘I’? In fact, the best way to tame a Christian , is to read the Bible. The best way to show to a Hindu, that he is ignorant, is to read the Gita. 

Chances are, the Christian would be the one, who has no relationship with the Christ, whatsoever. The Hindu would be the one who has no relation with Krishna, in any way. So, when they say, “Come to Jesus,” say, “Yes, I will come to Jesus, directly, through the Bible.” And go to the Bible, and meet Jesus.

And I assure you, Jesus is tremendously beautiful. But when you will really be with Jesus, then Christians will not like you, because they do not want you to be with the Christ. They want you to be a Christian.

And there is tremendous difference, in being with the Christ, and being a Christian.

So, how to deal with your sister? Go to Jesus, he will tell you. Your sister wants to take you to Jesus, I too am encouraging that. Kindly do go to Jesus, but go directly. Go to the Bible.

Yours truly too has spoken a lot on Jesus. Why don’t you share one of those videos with her? Support is available. Fire!

Listener: Some say that even Christ was not a Christian.

(laughter)

Acharya ji: Jesus is beautiful, Krishna is beautiful. Go to them.

Listener: Are they not same?

Acharya ji: In form and name, obviously not. In essence, obviously yes.

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

Watch the session:  The relation between religion and spirituality || Acharya Prashant (2018)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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Conflict among parents, and effect on child || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Conflict among parents, and effect on child

Question: Acharya ji, what happens when parents are in conflict? What happens to the child? How can two people, the husband and the wife, love the child very much, but between them there is a lot of conflict?

What is the impact on the child? And how can the parent help the child to be a stable adult?

Acharya Prashant: It’s a double calamity. You see, first of all, there is this basic thing regarding company. Let’s say there is only one child. So, there are three people – the man, the woman, and the child.

The child has the company of the man and the woman. The man and the woman, constitute, let’s say fifty to eighty percent of the child’s company. Except for the neighboring playground, and the school he goes to, who is the one who provides him company? These two, the man and the woman.

So, it is these two, that he principally, got for company. And when you are in the company of people, who are always fighting, what effect will it have on your mind?

Forget that those people are your parents. Any two people. If you are in a railway coach, and that too, in an enclosed cabin, with two fellow passengers, and it’s just a journey let’s say ten hours long, and those two people are constantly squabbling, what would it do to you?

Listener: Irritating, Frustrating.

Acharya ji: If you are very patient, you will try to sleep. If you are little less patient, you will try to calm them down. If you know even lesser patience, you will pull the chain. And if you are totally fed up, you may as well not decide to wait the next station.

(laughter)

If even ten hours are intolerable, with two quarreling people, how does it feel to live with two quarreling fools, for an entire lifetime? Forget that they are your parents, any two persons. I said that even strangers, fellow travelers in a train. It’s a very-very bad thing to happen, to anybody. And worst, if it happens to the impressionable mind of the child.

When you are fighting, you become very-very self-centered. Extremely selfish. When you  are fighting, then ego is aroused to unimaginable levels. You forget all about anybody else. In the moment of aggressive excitement, you are totally yourself, you are totally the little self, you are totally the petty ego. And then the others’s welfare, the other’s concern, cease to matter. 

When the woman is fighting the man, and vice-versa, then it becomes immaterial to both of them, what is happening to the child. The woman has to win, the man has to win. And in the process of winning that petty battle, what is happening to the kid, becomes insignificant.

Listener: What is the solution?

Acharya ji: We have to see what is happening. Next thing, is the issue of identification. First thing was of company. Next is of, identification. Not only is the kid in bad company, he is deeply identified with these two quarreling people.

One is his or her mother. The other is his or her father. And what does identification mean? I am – that. This is what identification says, right? That am I. In the heated moment of the quarrel, what is the mother? The mother is pure aggression. What is the father? The father is pure hatred. And the kid is saying, “That am I,” because the kid is identified with the father and the mother.

So what does the kid become? Aggression and hatred. And the mother and the father will not even realise it. They will say, “We were fighting. We didn’t do anything to the kid as such.” You did do, and you did a lot. You destroyed the kid.

Listener: So, is it better to separate?

Acharya ji: And take the kid along.

Listener: The kid will live with at least one of them.

Acharya ji: Would one of them live and survive loneliness? No. That one of them, will surely, pull into his life, somebody else. It may not necessarily be somebody from the opposite sex. But that fellow is surely not going to live a vacuous, and vacant life. He would find something, to get involved in, because the fundamental, petty ego, remains the same, even after separation.

Separation does not transform the ego. Divorce is not enlightenment. Or is it? So you are still the same. Kid is still with one of these two fools. In fact, it might make it worse for the kid, because now there is nobody else to fight with. So the kid gets all the aggressive attention. You know, you can’t beat up he wife now. And the hand is itching. So, it’s the kid.

Divorce, and separation, are obviously not the solution.

Solution lies in basic, inner transformation.

And that inner transformation will become easier, if the parents see that they have some love for the kid. 

You know, sometimes it is easier to do for others, than for yourself. It is easier to say, “I will accept defeat, not because I feel like getting defeated, but for the sake of the kid.”

“For the sake of the child, I am prepared to accept the defeat.”

The important thing is to realise that it is not for no reason, that most of the world’s population, is already distorted, by the time it reaches adolescence.

This organisation has worked a lot, with teenagers and young people. And let me tell you, by the time a boy or a girl reaches seventeen, there is ninety-five percent chance that he or she is already a very difficult case, almost beyond redemption. Such is the distortion of psyche, that happens due to a bad childhood.

In fact, if there is one unpardonable crime, it is bad parenting. 

You are not even killing someone. You are disfiguring someone, and sentencing him, to live an entire life. How does it sound? It is like chopping off somebody’s limbs, and ensuring that he lives. And lives an entire life, without limbs.

In fact, it is probably possible to live an entire life without these physical limbs. But it is far worse, living an entire life, with a distorted mind. And the parents, and to some extent, the society and the education, they very badly distort the minds of young people.

And it is also something very curious, very regrettable, that often it happens, that the more ignorant a person is, the more desirous he is, of having kids. It is not always the case, but it is found very frequently.

In fact, if a proper scientific survey is done, may be a statistical correlation can be established. The ignorance quotient, will be directly proportional to the number of kids one has.

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

Watch the session:  Conflict among parents, and effect on child || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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On distraction of mind || Acharya Prashant, with youth (2019)

On distraction of mind

Question: Acharya ji, I am unable to concentrate on anything. For e.g., I get easily distracted while studying my Maths book, and get attracted to playing online games.

What should I do then?

Acharya Prashant: You see, two types of things attract us.

One – where the attraction is tremendous. And the attraction is so tremendous, that you get totally lost in the thing that attracts you, and you are left with no space, or desire to enquire further.

Now something really spectacular, something really eye-catching, something really interesting, is attracting you. This attraction becomes so dominant on us, that we do not even want to ask that what that thing is, and why this thing is attracting us. And whether that thing holds any importance in our lives.

What the eyes see, becomes so heavy, that it totally occupies the mind. And the mind is then not free at all, to ask any questions. You could even say that we become dumb. We become dumb. But it’s a very pleasurable dumbness, because we are, as we say, enjoying that state of being attracted.

The one who is getting attracted, is getting totally lost in the thing, that is attracting him. And because he is totally, completely lost, therefore nothing is left of him, to make an inquiry, to ask a question.

What question?

“Why is this thing is attracting me?”

“Is it really important for me?”

“What would this give me, after the initial period of attraction?”

“Would I be left with anything substantial, for five minutes, or let’s say five months?”

“There would be a lot of pleasure, but what after these five minutes? What after these five minutes, and what was before these five minutes? What really happened, that this thing became so tremendous on me?”

These are important questions, but we are left with no space to ask these questions. Because the thing, the attractive thing, or thought, totally overpowers us. It overpowers us, it controls us. It has taken us in it’s arrest.

Now, we are left with no capacity to ask an intelligent question.

These are the first kind of things that we come across – attractive things. Attractive things, where the possibility of asking question, or inquiring, is impeded.

And, in contrast, there are other kinds of things, that do not look attractive on the surface at all. The moment you look at them, the moment you hear of them, the moment you think of them, no interest arises within. In fact, a disinterest may arise.

You may say, “O! What is there in it?” Or you probably don’t say anything, and just want to ignore that object. You would say, “It’s not exciting.” And now, what happens in this case? Please see.

It’s a step-by-step thing. It’s a scientific thing. Because you have already said that this thing does not interest me, therefore you are left with no possibility of asking a question. The matter has been closed, so why ask a question?

In the first case, why was no question asked? Because the thing appeared so attractive, that you were left with no time, space, or desire, to ask the question.

You didn’t ask, “What this thing really is?”

“It appears nice and beautiful, but what is it really, and what would it give me?”

“Am I being intelligent, by getting attracted towards it? Probably I am. Then I will allow myself to be attracted even more. But if I am not being intelligent by moving towards this thing, why should I hurt myself?”

That was the first case. In this case, again there is no inquiry. In the second case, why there is no inquiry? Because the thing appears so unattractive, that you say, “Oh! C’mon. Move on. I don’t want to look at it. It’s not exciting, I don’t like it. There is nothing in it. It does not arouse me, so I will not ask any question.”

Here again if you could ask, “What is in it for me?,” then the picture would change. You say that when you are with your Maths book, then you do not feel any urge or attraction. Then do something else. What is it that you must do?

Ask yourself, “In the first place, why am I with this Maths book? Why am I holding it at all? Is there a reason? What is the importance of this book?”

If this book really has some importance, then you will find that you are compelled to read. And if it has no importance, then you will throw away the book. Let’s see whether the book has some importance? All that you need to do is, ask a sincere question. Whether it’s the Maths book, or some online game, that is attracting you. Ask the same question.

“What is in it for me? What will I really get from this?”

“After the five minutes, or fifty minutes of interest, or disinterest, what would I be left with?”

Ask, “Is it so that I am being cheated? Is it so that somebody is making a fool of me, and exploiting me by giving me, a little dose of excitement?”

There answer would sometimes be ‘Yes’, and sometimes be ‘No’. We need not predict the answer. Let it emerge. Just as when you conduct an experiment, in a science lab, the result, the observation, emerges. You don’t want to predict it.

And you don’t want to conclude beforehand. You want to see what is happening, don’t you? Similarly, just ask this question, and see what happens. You may find that magic is happening.

Before you accept or reject something, before you get wildly drawn to something, or before you just ignore something and move on, pause for five seconds, just five seconds, and ask, “What is in it for me? What is the real importance it holds?”

Do not be carried away by emotions. Do not be carried away by thoughts. Do not be carried away by impulsive conditioning. Just wait for five seconds, and ask,”Is it important?”

And that is the most important question, most life-giving question to ask.

“Is it really important?”

You will find that you are able to avoid a lot of trash.

And you will find that now you are able to love and respect, a lot of valuable things, and people, in life.

The moment you ask this, “What is this thing, this person, or this activity, bringing to me?”

Would you do that?

The Maths book is not just a Maths book. It stands for something. There are benefits from reading, and there are repercussions of not being with it. Dwell over them. “What is Mathematics? Why should I read it?” May be you will find that Mathematics is nothing, that it is a foolish thing to read Maths. And if you find that, then feel free to throw away the Maths book.

But, in case you discover, that the thing, the person, or an activity, is indeed important, then obviously, we are all honest people. And having discovered that something is precious, we will want to keep it.

Having discovered that somebody is lovable, we would want to be with him. Having discovered that the field of study, is indeed important, we would want to pursue it, right?

Five seconds.

“What is in it for me?

“How does it hold any importance?”

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

Watch the session:  On distraction of mind || Acharya Prashant, with youth (2019)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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What affects you from outside is actually present inside|| Acharya Prashant (2019)

What affects you from outside is actually present inside

Question: Acharya ji, I am a doctor by profession. When i treat my patients, I too get depressed by looking at their suffering. What should I do?

Acharya Prashant: Keep doing what you are doing, or drop the intention to help people. The very intention to help people, indicates that you know of a state, beyond sorrow. Had sorrow been acceptable to you as a norm, why would you aim to pull other people out of their sorrow? You would say, “Sorrow is the norm.” If sorrow is the norm, why does anybody need to be helped?

The intention to help, itself is proof of your deep inner conviction, that sorrow is transient, that sorrow will go.

And sorrow must go.

But then, there is the heartfelt conviction versus the age-old habits of the mind. The mind is acquisitive. And it loves to acquire all kinds of diseases. So with sorrowlessness in your heart, you go to help others. And as you go to help others, you find that the same sorrow has started affecting you.

That’s bound to happen!

Keep doing what you are doing. If you think that by retreating, or giving up, you would be able to save yourself from sorrow, that is not going to happen. The sorrow that you think is an infection coming from outside, is not really coming from outside.

Coming face-to-face with sorrowed people, it is your own ancient sorrow, that wakes up. Had it not been present in the recesses of your mind, it couldn’t have affected you. Seeing the agony of others, you are reminded of your own.

And it’s great, if hidden angst, hidden sorrow, come to the fore. Now, at least consciously, you know that it exists. Otherwise you can live in the delusion, that you are sorrow-free.

Do you see how the whole thing operates? When you decide to help others, it is yourself you end up helping. So in your own self-interest, continue helping others. Who said that it is going to be easy?

The doctor must know that he himself is the most difficult patient to treat. So difficult, that he can’t treat himself directly. He will have to treat himself, via other patients.

Listener: Acharya ji, sometimes my patients get angry and jealous because I don’t show sympathy towards them, even if I know their suffering.

Acharya ji: Every trait that your patients are displaying, is present within you as well. Had it not been present within you, you wouldn’t have been affected by their behaviour.

If somebody’s anger perturbs you, that is proof of your own anger. If you can identify jealousy in somebody, it is proof that you know what jealousy is. The highest point of sainthood is, when you lose the capacity to even detect disease. That is total freedom from disease.

If you can, still detect disease, it means that disease is still present in you, even if in the most rudimentary way.

You go to one who is totally free, and you talk of anger to him, he won’t really know what you are talking of. That is freedom, absolute.

The totally free one has forgotten, totally forgotten. That’s why he doesn’t experience fear. He has lost a particular faculty. It is as if he cannot see. It is as if he cannot think. Therefore, so many thoughts just don’t come to him. That’s freedom absolute.

Even if you try to introduce, a lot many thoughts to him, you will find that he is just incapable of receiving those thoughts. It is not that he is resistant to those thoughts. Kindly know the distinction.

It’s not that the free one is resistant to thoughts.

He has simply become innocent of thoughts.

He cannot have a lot of those things, that we have, even if he wants to.

It’s not a decision that he makes, to not to be angry. It is now beyond him, to be angry.

He has become incapable!

Now seeing others, he may enact anger. But still, he can never really be angry. It is now, outside of him, to really harm anybody. Funnily enough, even if decides to harm anybody, he will end up doing good.

Even if, with a lot of conscious determination, he one day decides – I have to hurt this one, this one seriously deserves a slap – you would find, that he is only delivering healing, through the slap. And that’s powerlessness. He is now powerless, in a way of saying.

On the other hand, if you find that you have make a decision to be good, if you find that badness is still a real threat to you, then you must know that you are still not totally free of badness.

That which affects you from the outside, is actually present inside.

Otherwise, it couldn’t have affected you.

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

Watch the session:  What affects you from outside is actually present inside || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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What is the ego tendency? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

What is the ego tendency

Question: What is ego tendency? What is maya? Why does the mind get distracted? How to be attentive?

Acharya Prashant: You see, we often say that suffering is when things start cluttering the mind. Kabir Sahib says, “Maya is that, which occupies your mind.” We need to ask, “To whom is the occupation?”

Let us say a girl keeps dancing in your mind. To whom is she dancing? Who is watching her? To whom has she come? Has she come to a nobody? Has she come to an empty house? She is dancing in your mind. To whom has she come? Had you not been there, would she have come? That’s the ego tendency.

Whenever you see something, you must that, that which you are seeing, is for you. Otherwise, it wouldn’t have been there. Your universe is, for you. Otherwise, it is not there. That girl has come to your mind, for you. You go away from yourself, the girl too wouldn’t be there.

Listener: What is this ‘going away from oneself’?

Acharya ji: First of all, you are attached to the brain. ‘I’ tendency attached to the brain, is called ‘mind’. And therefore she comes to the mind. To merely the brain, she will not be a big trouble. But to the mind? She is a big attraction, or distraction.

A male dog does not keep dreaming of the female dog. That does not happen. But a man can keep dreaming of a woman, for fifty years.

You are so attached to the brain, that now there is all kind of mischief. So, now when things start appearing to you, when things start becoming important to you, when things start occupying you, you must ask, “To whom have they come?”

You must ask, “So many unwelcome guests have arrived. But who is the host?” So many unwelcome guests have arrived to the mind. The mind is the house. So many unwelcome guests have arrived to the house, but who is the host?

And then you will hear a resounding voice, “I am.” That’s what Nisargadatta teaches. The guests are surely all bogus. But who is the host? I am. Had I not been the host, the guests would not have arrived. So don’t blame the guests.

Don’t chase away the guest. Because even if you chase away the guests, you still are. You go away from the house, the guests too will go away. Which is the house to which firstly you came, and then the guests came? The body.

First of all, you are very attached to the body. And then, therefore, the girl starts circulating in the mind.

Listener: When you say that you leave the mind, what is this ‘leaving’? How can it happen?

Acharya ji: I don’t need to be here. I don’t need to be here. Right now you are in the house, just as a patient is in the hospital. A patient does not visit the hospital on his own, in his bliss. The patient needs to be in the hospital.

Similarly, you need to be in this house, that’s bad. Very bad. You have turned yourself into a patient, needlessly.

Had you been a visitor, a casual visitor to the body, an occasional visitor, it was okay. But you are here, as a new visitor, to the emergency. As a new enrollment in the trauma centre. Freshly admitted.

Listener: So is the detachment possible, of a patient with the hospital?

Acharya ji: You tried a lot of mischief, and you held yourself very wise. Now ask yourself, “Is the hospital any good? Am I being treated?”

First of all, you needlessly got admitted. And now kinds of things are being performed upon you. Are you liking it? Somebody is holding you to the stretcher. Two nurses who think that you are a helpless baby, are trying to nurse you, in your own personal ways.

One is may be the mother, and the other is the wife. They are trying to nurse you all the time. And one fellow, who considers himself a master surgeon, is rushing towards you, with a large saw. And now that you have started yelling at him, another one is dipping your face in anesthesia. They are trying to make you unconscious. Do you like this hospital?

Listener: No, but what is the choice available to me? Where to go?

Acharya ji: All places are within the hospital. There is nowhere to go to. That is your ‘to go to place’ – nowhere to go to. As long as hope remains, you will get relieved from Fortis(name of a hospital), only to get admitted to Apollo(name of another hospital). Your entire journey will be from one hospital to another hospital, from one trauma centre to another emergency ward.

Quote from What is ego tendency.jpg

You don’t need to be ‘anywhere’. You don’t need to be ‘anybody’.

There is nobody to hold onto, and there is nothing to defend.

You don’t need to protect anything. 

You don’t need to safeguard anything.

There are no vulnerabilities.

You are not hurt.

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

Watch the session:  What is the ego tendency? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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Begin from where you are, and what you realise || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Begin from where you are and what you realise

Question: Acharya ji, I am only a beginner on spiritual path, and my experience complicates things. Which tool can I adapt for myself, to take the right decision?

Acharya Prashant: The response is hardly spiritual in the classical sense. I will not say that for life’s decisions, kneel down in front of the unknowable. I will not say that what you need, lies beyond the grasp of your mental faculties.

I am saying – live by what you already know. First of all, you have no other option. Secondly, what you already know, is very sufficient, to make a beginning. And you said that you are a beginner.

The trouble with most of us, is not that we do not know some transcendental, ecclesiastical Truth. The trouble is: we just don’t live by that which is within our mental province.

It is not as if we have come to the boundary of our knowledge, and our limited realisation. We haven’t. If we come to our own boundaries, then the beyond, cannot be far enough.

The boundary of the little self, is where the Truth stands to greet  you.

So you don’t have to really search for the Truth.

You just have to come to the boundary of your own province. 

Come to your own boundary, and there you will find something, of the beyond.

But, do we care enough to come to even our own boundaries? I am not telling of leaping out of your self. You don’t need to leap out of your self. But, at least, putting in a very cliched way, do the best you can.

If you cannot go beyond your self, at least, do the best you can. And when you have come to the utter limit of your personal resources, there you find something, a bit magical happening.

Our situation is strange! We do not do, what we can. We cannot challenge ourselves enough. We do not make the best, utter, and desperate use of our own, personal, limited resources. But we want some kind of a helping hand, to descend from the heavens.

It won’t!

And this is good news. Because it means that each one of us, as he or she is, is fully capable of helping herself or himself. May be we cannot see, beyond the hills. But there is nobody who does not see clearly enough, to take even the next step. And that is all that you need. 

Inspiration, energy, and clarity- just to take the next step. What after the next? That’s not our business to ask. Sitting where we are, let us not demand the whole blue-print, the road-map of the entire state. Then we are transgressing.

One step is sufficient.

And that one step, each one of us, is endowed enough to take.

That one step happens to be so simple and obvious, that it does not appeal to us. We want things – big and glamorous. Just as in the material world, size and shine appeal to us. Similarly, in the spiritual domain, we want things – colossal, magnificent, sensational, to happen.

Instead of those things, if we are advised to take, one little, baby step, it appears like a bit of let down.

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

Watch the session:  Begin from where you are, and what you realise || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

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Why do you avoid me? || Acharya Prashant on Khalil Gibran (2018)

Why do you avoid me

“No man can reveal to you nothing but that which already lies half-asleep in the dawning of your knowledge.”

~ Khalil Gibran

Question: What is the role of a spiritual teacher is one’s life? How does life change in the presence of a spiritual teacher or a Guru?

Acharya Prashant: You already know. And I said that it’s a wonder how you pretend that you are ignorant. You already are fine, perfect, healthy. And you already know everything that even the best of teachers might teach.

The great wonder is not your ignorance, but the pretense of your ignorance. 

All that I have told you, is something you knew, even before me, even without me. I just spoke it out. I just spilled the beans.

The entire crowd knew that the king is naked. I am like that petulant child, who shouted out. But the king is naked. I wasn’t the first one who noticed it. Everybody knew! But you have your reasons to keep silent. I have reasons to shout out.

The difference between us is not that you do not know, and I do.

The difference between us is, that you act as if you don’t know.

And I do not want to act that way. 

You have dreamt-up some interest in remaining poor. And I am conscious. I do not know what that interest is. That is the difference between you and me.

You know, so many people are scared of coming to me, listening to me. Meeting me face-to-face is an absolute horror to them. Why? They haven’t yet met me, they haven’t yet listened to me, they haven’t yet had a face-to-face to me, why are they scared in advance?

There fears are well-justified.

They are afraid because they already know what I would say. It’s a funny thing. Often those who listen to me, do not know what I am saying. But those who avoid me, definitely know what I am saying.

Those who do not listen to me, know me perfectly well. Those who listen to me, may sometimes fail to resonate to me. But those who stubbornly avoid me, will vouch for my authenticity. They know that there is something really authentic here, that ought to be avoided.

We all know!

Whenever you will avoid me Deepika (the questioner), rest assured, there is something that you know, to be depraved. And you still want to do it. And you would avoid me, just because you do not want the pretense to be exposed.

The True Teacher, in that sense, is never a surprise. He is absolutely predictable. At times, I know, I have said that the True Teacher is absolutely unpredictable. But, from where I am speaking right now, the True Teacher is totally predictable.

You know that the Sun would give nothing, but the light. It’s a done thing. No exception or aberration is possible. So if you are fond of lazying around, and sleeping, you block out the Sun, don’t you? Why do you block out the Sun? Because you know for sure, that the Sun, would send down nothing but brightness, through your window.

Had there been some doubt, you would not have pulled down the curtains. Even before the sunrise, even before you are going to sleep, if you have decided to wake up late, what would you ensure? That the windows are all blacked out. Because, it is a matter absolute predictability, that the Sun would only send the brightness down the window. There is no doubt. The Sun is predictable! So you take counter measures.

Those who avoid the scriptures, are in some sense, great fans of the scriptures. They know how powerful the scriptures are, and therefore, they will not mess with them. We know. We all do this.

And I will never really be able to appreciate why we live, as we do not know. That would remain, a great wonder to me.

Always!

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

Watch the session:  Why do you avoid me? || Acharya Prashant on Khalil Gibran (2018)

Books by the Speaker are available at:

Amazonhttp://tinyurl.com/Acharya-Prashant

Flipkarthttps://goo.gl/fS0zHf

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