Acharya Prashant: Ambition and anger

Acharya Prashant: What is your name?

Listener: Kshitij Aggarwal.

AP: The question asked by Kshitij is why do needs often dominate ambition?

And he surely thinks that it is quite unfortunate that needs to start dominating ambitions. The reason is simple, he probably gives a lower priority to needs and higher priority to ambitions because he thinks that the ambitions are his. He has kept ambitions very close to himself. He believes that they are his own.

So, he deeply wants the ambitions to be fulfilled. But finds that instead, something else has to be done, first of all, we will understand this conflict. And we all face this conflict, this conflict is not only in Kshitij’s mind, this conflict in the mind of every single one of us. But we are all confused, we rarely know, what to do. There are always one or more options in front of us, and we are unable to see clearly which one is suitable. Right?

This happens not only once in six months, at the time of admissions or at the time of choosing a job, it keeps happening daily, day in and day out. What is this conflict? you will have to understand.

Kshitij,

Our mind is dominated by ‘external influences’ which we have so far called is the development of ‘Ego.’

Our mind is not our mind, our mind is a collection of all external influences.

Our mind is divided into many many segments and many parts, and there are so many different forces that are controlling these separate parts. So, one part is being controlled by parents, one part is being dominated by media, one part is being dominated by society, one part by peers, one by corporations, one by thoughts of career, one by XYZ, and very very large number of parts.

Now, these different parts are your different masters. It’s like a person is tied to fifty different ropes being pulled by fifty different people in fifty different directions. Will that person be able to move towards any definite direction, any one direction.

Continue reading

What do you want, a thousand idiots surrounding you or five real friends with you?

Why should I crave for recognition from somebody else? Remember, the one who will give me recognition, sanction, will act on his own values. He will appreciate only that which he thinks, is appreciable. If everybody thinks that ‘black’ is appreciable then what will I need to do to get their appreciation? I need to become black, wear black, demonstrate black, right? Is that not so? To get popularity and fame among people you have to do what the people like, right? Is that not so? So who is the master and who is the slave?

Remember, the common characteristics of masses is mediocrity. And to become popular among masses, you have to fall to mediocrity. Without becoming mediocre, it is impossible to become popular.

Excellence never becomes very popular.

Popularity means becoming a slave to others and secondly popularity means becoming a slave to others who are very mediocre. Not only are you a slave, you are a slave to an idiot. How does that sound? 

Following is always easier, right? Going up against the gravity is always a little more difficult. What do you think, the followers follow the leader? No, the leader follows the followers.

Popularity means I do not have an internal locus of control. I am constantly looking at others, trying to please them.

You do what you must do. You do that which brings peace to you. And let me tell you, when you are doing ‘that’, which stems from your peace and which brings peace then a few people will come to you, few people will recognize you but those will be real people.

What do you want, a thousand idiots surrounding you or five real friends with you?What do you want?

An authentic man can never be attracted towards a fake person. That is the reward of being real. When you are real, not only you enjoy being with yourself but you also find that your environment is full of the best that world can offer.

Do not make those decisions considering that how they would be perceived by society or friends. Do not make those decision considering what the convention has been. Look afresh at them. Don’t go by the traditional definitions of good-bad, right-wrong, big-small, acceptable-unacceptable. What comes from your intelligence, only that is acceptable. Everything else is totally unacceptable.

Should one strive for fame and popularity?

AP1

 

Question: Is it important to do something big in your life or more important is to do something big in any small work that you do?

Acharya Prashant: What’s your name?

Listener: Abhinav Gupta.

AP: Sit Abhinav. Is it important to do something big in life or is it preferable to do better in something small that you pick up? Abhinav, I need to understand your question. What do you mean by something big in life?

L: Something big in life means that if someone is Sachin Tendulkar, everyone needs to have same identity as Sachin Tendulkar or anyone can be…

AP: What do you mean by Sachin Tendulkar?

L: Sachin Tendulkar means that he has a big identity as a cricketer.

AP: Who gave that identity?

L: sir, we gave the identity…

Continue reading

With the sky in the Heart, Chasing horizons is Joy

WhatsApp-Image-20160704 (12)

Question: Sir, do you ever get tired of all those questions that people ask you?

Acharya Prashant (AP): There are not many questions; there is just one question always.

I have good fun in answering the same question in multiple ways. Continue reading

The right action always looks strange, the wrong action always looks known

DSC_6270

Questioner: Is there any action that is bad?

Acharya Prashant (AP): No, there is no action at all that is inherently bad.

I repeat this with emphasis: there is no action that is inherently bad.

The only bad action is a misplaced action.

At the right time and right place, killing is wonderful. Coming is wonderful at the right time, going is equally beautiful at the right time. Beginnings are lovely and lovely are the ends. There is nothing that is inherently avoidable.  Continue reading

To change your relationships, let yourself change

Acharya Prashant (AP): One does not live with family, one lives in relationships.

Please understand this.

The son or the wife — as physical entities — can remain the same, yet the relationship can be different. So, one need not physically move away from them but the relationship has to be changed. Otherwise, the anger will not go.

Till the quality of my relationship with the world is the same, my quality of anger will remain the same.

Listener 1 (L1): But, my question is: the moment I am deliberately trying to change the relationship, just for example, somebody you think is a burden on you and that gives you anger. Now, one way of looking at it is move away from that, which you said that’s not the solution because you are seeing him as a burden in the relationship, that’s what is making you angry. There are many burdens in my life which I basically look forward as a pleasant experience, for instance when my child wakes me up in the middle of the night, I don’t get angry. It’s also a burden but I wake up with a whole lot of concern, good feeling and a fatherly love. So one way is changing myself from an old man to old man, to a man looking at an old man as a child, and changing that relationship. Maybe that is one way of doing it but then in that case, again, I am actually taking the help of another illusion to get out of it.

AP: No, not really.

L1: I am just thinking aloud.

AP: Yes, I am getting the gist of it.

Nobody will sustain a burden without getting something in return from the burden. One never gets angry at the other because he is a burden, it feels as if he is a burden on me, so I am getting angry at him  — it never really is the case.

One gets angry on himself for tolerating that burden.

And why does one tolerate a burden?

Because one is expecting something in return. There is some kind of a hidden greed. And, one gets angry at the greed. If the greed is not there, then the burden will also not be felt and the relationship will take a more healthy color. Why am I going to tolerate a burden? If something is a burden, I will drop it. But I never want the company of the person, I want something from him which I may not be getting, then the person becomes a burden. In a loving relationship, obviously, there can be no burden.

Now, what does it mean to change a relationship?

It does not mean to change something in the other person because the relationship is my relationship. So, my relationship cannot change without me looking at my mind. When I look at it, then my quality of relating with you changes. When I see that even as you are sitting here, somehow I am planning to get something from you, then I cannot continue with that kind of planning anymore. Are you getting it?

Being aware of oneself, one is able to bring about a mysterious change in oneself, an unplanned change, and that brings about change in relationships. What we always forget is: every relationship is my relationship. My relationships will only have the quality which is the quality of my mind. If I am violent, the fact will be that all my relationships will have a taint of violence in them — explicit or implicit.

First of all, I have to look at the quality of my mind, then the relationships change. Have you not seen this: ‘violent people are violent towards everybody’? They are not only violent towards their neighbour; they are also violent towards their dog or kid. And loving people have a quality that fuses out love not only to their wife but also to the entire world. You already know that. Right?

We have seen that and heard stories about that. We have also experienced it in ourselves at times, have we not? When occasionally you feel light and joyful, then don’t you feel like hugging even a stranger? Has it not happened to you?

L1: The world lits up!

AP: Yes, beautifully said. And when you are gloomy, then the entire world is dark. Even the most decorated places are simply dark. And that is spirituality — To look at oneself.

L1: It is a continuous twenty-four-hour self-correction.

AP: No, not self-correction; just a faint impersonal awareness. You cannot be doing it actively. If you say it’s a distillation, then one feels as if there is an entire system of process at work; it has to be very subtle.

L1: But that subtleness has to come from somewhere. How?

AP: That is a matter of Faith. That ‘somewhere’ is already sitting in our heart. It will come from there.

L1: So, this violence will go?

AP: This violence will get dropped. Not only will this violence go, the entire family of other attributes related to this violence will go. For example, there can be no violence without expectation. So the entire family of mental diseases related to violence will just become ineffectual. You will lose interest in them. You know, violence stays because you clutch to it. You lose interest in clutching to violence.

L1: What you are saying is that there is an analysis, which every time is releasing me from the clutch.

AP: It is not analysis; it is just a direct understanding; it’s like just seeing the Truth of it without analysis, without comprehension.

L1: Then how can I practice that? How can I be that? If Truth comes on its own and hits me, it depends on the Truth and not on me.

AP: That is very very accurately put — It depends on the Truth and not me.

You know how peaceful this statement is? Let Truth do what it wants to do, let it not depend on me. So I can only surrender to the Truth. It depends on the Truth and not on me. So I can only just surrender. And that is Peace. What you are thinking of as a statement of misery is actually a statement of deep liberation.

L1: Every word of yours is very disturbing; it is neither giving me peace of mind, and it is a very elusive thing. Ever since I sat for the first session without even hearing properly, not engaging myself, then automatically some engagement happened! I was feeling sleepy.

AP: It happened without your wish. So it depends on the Truth and not you.

L1: Only in the second half, I started asking you questions.

AP: And now we have the third half, so to say. So it depends on the Truth and not on us. It is not our deliberate desire that we are sitting here. There is some other grand plan at work. Has to be.

L1: I wanted to go home!

AP: And I didn’t know I would be sitting under this tree.

Worries. Huge worries. You talked about anger, I really do get angry. It’s not that intense anger; it’s just that, there is something that remains even when the anger is there and that is everything. I am very sure of this: even in the deepest anger there is something that remains.

That is good.

Then anger is alright.

There is that untouched spot which anger cannot really spoil.

Anger is not an expression of That. In fact, anger is purified by its touch.

L1: What I have realized is that: ninety per cent of anger is really helplessness.

AP: Personal helplessness.

L1: It’s basically insecurity.

AP: What will happen to me? Why didn’t my desires get fulfilled? And there is another anger.

There is another anger: Someone is sleepwalking on the road and trucks are approaching him. And, with great energy and intensity, you shout out. You actually don’t shout out, you go and punch him in the face. That is another quality of anger. And you are angry but this anger is not personal. Nothing of your self is at stake. This anger has a different quality altogether.

L1: The Guru’s anger is a corrective anger. How can somebody be so stupid so as to not see that this is good for them? So Guru comes and hits and he hits deliberately sometimes.

AP: The Guru can be angry at himself also. How could I forget? How could I get displaced? Even that is possible; there can be a disappointment but whatever is happening is happening in a different space; not in a personal space full of personal insecurities, ambitions, and such things.

The entire story is being played out somewhere else. It is a story. It is a story played out by greed, anger, lust, envy, jealousy and the rest of it. Everything is there but the entire environment is a little different.

Spirituality, rest assured, may or may not bring about directly perceptible changes in somebody’s life; it does happen with some people that either they begin with something new, or drop something old, so it is quite dramatic. With some people, nothing really changes on the surface. They continue living, working, sleeping the way they were doing it earlier as well. But something else happens, minor tweak.

And that minor tweak changes everything.

It is a juice of life!


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

Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: To change your relationships, let yourself change

 


 

Further Reading:

Book of Myths:

myth-for-blog

This is the most challenging book one can ever come across. It will questions all the popular beliefs one harbours. Never imposing itself on the reader, at the same time the book facilities a thorough enquiry of popular knowledge which is blindly accepted as an obvious fact. It demolishes our so called holy concepts.

If you are someone who has read anything on self-help or on spirituality this book is a must for cleaning of spiritual information.

Paperback: https://goo.gl/VVD8Yg

Kindle: https://goo.gl/VsIucH

 

Had you had no false teachers, you would require no teacher today

5

Question: Sir, I have come here for the first time and I want to know you better and that is why I want to ask, why do you teach?

Acharya Prashant: Why do you listen? Continue reading