How to deal with limitations of those around us? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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Question: We come here and listen in the session but once we go out after the session the world is the same with its limitations. We listen and understand but the limitations in the outer world do not change.

Speaker: We all are limited but as I move into the world, so-called other world, I only encounter limitations. The help that we are searching for is not always forthcoming. Why do I need to be dependent upon somebody else? We have already said that life itself is the biggest help. Others are limited but it depends on you whether you allow others’ limitations to become your own limitation. We might be living in the world of the blind but that does not mean that we too close our eyes. Yes, of course there is great pressure upon us.

You know there is a story. There was a village and there was only one well from where everyone drew water. Some mysterious fellow came and put some poisonous drug in that water. The water in the well became polluted. So, whosoever drank the water of the well became mad. Everybody in the village drank that water and went mad except for one man. He looked at the people around and he looked at the water. He thought that drinking this water would make me insane. He said that I would not drink this water. But everybody around him was mad, just as everybody around me is limited. All the mad people would say that we are fine. They made a society called as ‘society of normal people’. And of course all these normal people were mad people. This society declared that there is only one mad person in the village and that one man is the fellow who did not drink the water, who was not mad. This sane fellow started facing a lot of difficulties because wherever he would go, all the mad men would treat him with disrespect. Life became very, very difficult for him.  The only way that was left in front of him was? What was the way that was left for him?

Listeners(everyone): To drink the water.

Speaker: To himself drink the water. So, one fine day he decided that if he wanted to live them, then he would have to become like them, mad. Because only a mad man can survive in the society of mad men.  He said, ‘Let me also become mad then only I can survive’. So, he decided that he would go to the well, drink the water and then become mad. So, in the morning he goes to that well, draws some water out and just as he is about to drink that water, sun rises. Its early morning time. The Sun is rising. The first rays of the sun are illuminating the sky.  It is a beautiful morning and he sees that a few birds are flying. And something strikes him. He throws away the water and runs away from that village. Runs away, never to return. Runs away, never to come back. Tell me what did he see? Why did he run away?

He ran away because he saw that the existence has imposed no limitations on me. That sky is open and vast. The rays of the sun are for everybody. Look at these innocent birds, how the entire sky belongs to them. They are not limited to one village. They do not say that we are bound to live in the society of mad people. He throws away the water and flies away. He runs away. And that helped him keep his sanity. The sky is open for you. Just fly away. And that is why the birds are so happy and joyful. We talk of life and its openness to us at all time. The sun is prepared to help you, the sky is prepared to help you, the birds are prepared to help you. But are you prepared to take the help? Everything is giving you the message. But are you listening to the message? Life is an open book. Are your eyes open to read it?

Yes, the world is limited but then you choose your own world. What will be the society of terrorists be like? Would you find monks in the society of the terrorists? What would you find? With whom would he sit? With whom would he eat and drink? Other terrorists. That is his world. If you are a terrorist, your world will be full of terrorists. If you are a monk, your world will be full of monks. You change, your world will change. When you are prepared to fly, you will find that the world is full of other free beings. But for that, you will have to first discover your own freedom.  The world is not full of only limited beings. There is not one world. There are multiple and multiple worlds. You choose which world do you want to live in and that depends upon who you are. What your self-concept is. Understand and change your self-concept. You are free. All your limitations are self-created, imaginary, mental. Just get rid of them.

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yog’ session. Edited for clarity.

Watch the session video: How to deal with limitations of those around us? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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