Tag Archives: thoughts

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)

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In all that you want, Liberation is all you want || Acharya Prashant (2019)

In all that you want, liberation is all you want

Question: Acharya ji, only sometimes do I consciously know that I really want liberation. How to increase one’s quality, so that this want is continuous?

Acharya Prashant: Only sometimes do you use the word ‘liberation’. At other times, you use a lot of other words for liberation. So the mistake is mostly, semantic. You just need to expand your vocabulary, and remember that every word in dictionary, is a synonym of liberation.

Right now, when you think of liberation, you say, “I am thinking of liberation.” But when you think of having a Pizza, then according to you, you are thinking of something other than liberation.

The desire for food, and the desire for liberation, are according to you, diverse things. And from that divergence, is arising your question. You are saying, only for let’s say an hour a day, am I consciously thinking of liberation. For the remaining twenty-three hours, I am thinking of miscellaneous things. A, B, C, D……and L is for Liberation. And the other twenty-five letters are all for various miscellaneous things in the world, that occupy and attract us.

So, you just have to tell yourself, and deeply-deeply remember, that A=B=C=……X=Y=Z. And all of them equal L. L is for Liberation.

You cannot think of anything, but liberation. All thoughts are thoughts of, liberation in disguise. It is the limitation, and constraint in language, that only sometimes do you call liberation as ‘liberation’. At other times, you name the desire for liberation as a pizza, or money, or clothes, or relationships, or a book, or something else.

Man moves for one central purpose. And that purpose is…?

Listeners: Liberation.

Acharya ji: Liberation. It’s just that he does not consciously know, rather admit and acknowledge, how liberation thirsty he really is.

We keep denying to ourselves, that there is just one thing that we want. We think that we want multiple, various things. No. We want just one thing. The various things that we go to, are nothing but mediums to go that one single, final thing. If this much can be remembered, then all the mediums will become useful.

Then all the mediums will become godly, divine, because they will become a medium between you and the divine.

If you can remember, that this is a medium, then it is divine.

But if this becomes the end, if this becomes a purpose in itself, then this becomes an obstruction.

Why do you breathe? Breathing is for the sake of liberation.

Why do you see? What are these eyes looking for?

What is this mind anxious, and waiting for?

Why do you think that these eyes are constantly looking out at the world? What are they searching for? Have you never thought of this?

You come to a crowd, and have you seen how your eyes scan the faces of strange, unknown people?

Listener: Yes.

Acharya ji: You want to see that one special face. We all are looking for that one, final thing. These eyes, are always scanning, scanning. That’s why these ears are always….But that one, final sound, is not heard.

That one, final experience, remains elusive. We exist for the sake of That. That which is liberation. We breathe for the sake of that. We come to tomorrow, so that tomorrow, That may come. So, it is for the sake of That, that time exists. It is for the sake of That, that all future exists.

Do you see how liberation-minded we are? We eat, breathe, live liberation. And then innocently we say, “Why are we not liberated?”

The mistake has to do with linguistics, not with reality. And man’s language, and man’s thoughts, go together. Thoughts are diverse, so is language. Language means separation and diversity. This is ‘this’, and that is ‘that’. This cannot be that, and that cannot be this. Every word points at one particular object, which is not the next object, so no liberation.

In the world of thoughts, there is no liberation.

In the world of remembrance, there is liberation.

Remember, all the thoughts are from and for That. That which is – liberation. And that is liberation.

If you try to find liberation in thoughts, it is not there.

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

Watch the session: In all that you want, Liberation is all you want || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Books by the Speaker are available at:




Truth is not the thought of truth

Who is a sage? A sage is the one who is extremely sensitive, who is able to catch even that which we normally ignore.

The saint is one who has realized that life is not also hell but just hell.

Because in thinking and concluding thus, you’ve missed the happening.

Gratefulness is not the thought of gratefulness. Joy is not the thought of joy. Truth is not the thought of truth.

Gratefulness means not having any sense of like or dislike.

The spiritual man is neck deep into action. He is not an escapist.

Because all your imagination proceeds from the centre of what you currently have made yourself to be, what you currently are.

Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: How to get rid of pain and suffering?Acharya Prashant: How to get rid of pain and suffering?


Acharya Prashant: How to get rid of pain and suffering?

Question: Explain ‘bad.’

Acharya Prashant: OK. Let’s take something which you call as ‘bad.’ We will begin with that. Tell me anything which you call as ‘bad.’

Listener: Inadequate idea.

AP: Too abstract. I’ll then have to make it more abstract and Do you call a disease as bad?

L1: Yes.

AP: OK. A disease is bad only when you experience the pain and suffering associated with it. Only when a disease shows up in medical report. Let’s say there is a wound here. The wound has become infected and it is oozing puss. Now, you’ll say this is bad. Won’t you say that? Don’t be so guarded as if you want to block my next step.

L1: I just…one might say it’s bad, yes.

AP: What would you call as bad? Because I have to start from there. What do you see all around that you would call as unacceptable? Is there anything that you dislike?

L1: I’m just grateful.

AP: Then, then everything is alright. You are home.

L1: I’m celebrating.

L2: If I see somebody beating a child, I call it bad.

AP: Yes, yes. I like honest statements. He’s saying he’s grateful when somebody beats up a child.

L1: I’m not saying this, I never said that

AP: Then, why not say that when you find somebody raping somebody you don’t like it. Do you like it?

L1: I don’t like it.

AP: Yes, just say that. See, living in the fact means an honest acknowledgment of what life for you really is like. Do you really like it if you’re beaten up? Then why not simply say that. Why put it in abstractions?

So, you don’t like it when somebody beats a child right, Okay? Now, beating the child is a gross act. It is visible. Let’s say somebody is carrying a cane and spanking the child with it. It is visible. Stay with this…so, it is visible when the child is being beaten and these eyes can look at that visible, material act. Something goes up, something comes down, somebody cries. You can look at that, it’s a gross thing. It’s very difficult to miss it. Now, make it more subtle, bring it down a level. Suppose the violence is not so gross. It’s a more subtle violence. What happens in a more subtle violence? Come on, speak.

L3: Shaming.

AP: Shaming. So, now he’s not beating. He’s just accusing. He’s making the child feel ashamed using words. Now, words are also gross. A little less gross than action but the words are also gross because sensory mechanism can catch them. So you still call it violence. If you’re sensitive enough you still call it violence but somebody might say that no… no… no, beating was violence, this is just counseling. Right? You make it even more subtle. Now, the violent one is neither using a cane nor is he using words. He’s just using..?

L2: Ignoring.

AP: Ignoring. Wonderful. So using nothing or just using a glance. Now, it’s very subtle. Now, only the sensitive mind will say that it is violence. If you’re not sensitive, you’ll not even know that it is violence. But violence is continuing. Violence is continuing. It is just that now you are not calling it violence. Only 1% people are now calling it violence. What have you done? You’ve done nothing. You have just been apathetic to the child. Make it even more subtle.

L4: Thinking.

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What is the difference, and the relationship between, the brain and the mind?

Question: What is the difference, and the relationship between, the brain and the mind?
Acharya Prashant: Who is asking this question? You. You are the ego, the incomplete self-principle (I-, I minus). 
What is the proof that you, the questioner, are the incomplete self-principle, the ego?
The proof is that you are asking this question. If you were not incomplete, why would you ever ask a question?
Fine. Come back to the topic. So, what is the brain?
The brain is the body. Conditioned like any other part of the body. An evolutionary product. Thoughts, feelings, intuitions, impulses, all are conditioned processes of the body. That’s the brain.
The brain projects the world. The brain, body, and world are one. So are perceptions, emotions, thoughts etc. All the same. Prakriti.
You are the ego. I- (I minus, or the ego) seeks completion. It can attach itself to the body, and then what results is the suffering mind.
I- + Brain Body World = Suffering mind (normal mind)
I- + That(Good old Brahm) = Peaceful mind (no mind)
But the question is far from dissolved:
What is this I-, or ego?
Hint: It can not be in the same dimension as Brain-Body-World, because when I- combines with BBW, the result is disastrous. First of Buddha’s noble utterances.

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Who is leading you?

There is always the threat of our self-image being lost destroy and distorted.

“If others are telling you that you are a leader then who is leading whom? Are you a leader or they are leading you into believing that you are a leader?”

The others are always dominating the mind. Ask yourself that all you know about yourself how much is first hand? Of all the identities you carry how many intrinsic all yours and how many have been supplied by external situations, society, powers.

The more you are living with a borrowed self-concept with a borrowed self-image the more you will be afraid of the world. It’s a slavery.

The more you start looking at yourself with your own eyes, the less dependent you are on anybody else. The less dependent you are on anybody else, the less is the fear of losing your self-image.

You want to get rid of fear then reduce your dependency on others. Say, I have intelligence. I have my eyes. Let me use that to directly look at things.

What most of you call as your own, has not really been your own.

Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: You will always be afraid of the world if your self-image comes from the world

Acharya Prashant: You will always be afraid of the world if your self-image comes from the world

Listener: How to get rid of fear of losing my image in front of others?

Acharya Prashant: Sit, what’s your name?

L: Acharya Ji, Prateek.

AP: Prateek is saying to get rid of fear and then he specifies the fear of losing my image in front of others. Prateek if it is really your image how can you lose it? If it is really yours is it possible to lose it? But no, we all know that we are so conscious about our images and we feel so vulnerable about it.

There is always the threat of our self-image being lost destroy and distorted.

Why does that happen? That happens because our image is not ours at all. It’s a second-hand image. We do not look at ourselves directly. We look at ourselves through the eyes of others. It is another matter that others do not have their own eyes but as far as we are concerned, we look at ourselves through the eyes of others.

We think that this is my image but it is constantly supplied to us by somebody else. I was recently conducting an interview for hiring MBA students so, one of the candidates, he comes and I asked him that what are your quality is? What do you call as your strengths?

You know candidates are very eager to spin out their strength. So, I asked him what do you call as your strength? He said I’m a very good Leader. I said how do you know that you are a good Leader? The fellow said, “This is that nothing comes out of it.” I asked him, “Young man, tell me really why have you written that you have leadership qualities? What made you believe that you are a leader? He said, “Acharya Ji, the fact is everybody tells me that you are a good leader. Lots of people have already told me that you are a good leader and you make even for a better leader in the future so I have come to believe that I’m a good leader I have leadership skills.” I said,

“If others are telling you that you are a leader then who is leading whom? Are you a leader or they are leading you into believing that you are a leader?”

He didn’t get the point so I repeated what I wanted to say twice-thrice and then something started opening up. He said, “Yes if my very self-concept comes from others then surely it’s the others who are dominating. It’s the others who are leading me. I do not know myself. All I know of myself is what have given to me.”

I come over to the podium and I say something I really have no realization of the quality of my talks. If everybody applauds I feel good I must have said something good and if I am hooted I’m jeered then I feel, Oh! I must have spoken horribly. I come to the campus and people tell me, about looking smart, handsome. I swell up that yes, I must be looking good that’s why the compliment. And the same person in the afternoon tells me you are looking so dumb. What happened to you? Why are your face so fallen and I start wondering is it that might really be so. Every bit of our self-image is acquired from others. There is hardly a thing that we know about ourselves and the more our self-image is acquired from others is dependent on others the more is the power of others to destroy it, to distort it. That is the reason that why we are afraid.

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