Why does one run away from the Reality? || Acharya Prashant (2015)

To personally meet or connect with Acharya Prashant: click here.

Listener: We say mind should be at the right place. What is that extent to which the mind should be at the right place? Does it vary? Sometimes it is near the right place but after two-three days it is away. And then again, it comes near the centre.

Speaker: Praveen(referring to the questioner), man as he is thinks of himself as two. Thought creates the second one. Man thinks of himself as two, thought creates the second one. The first is not created by thought. What is this two-ness in man; one that man really is, second what he thinks himself to be.

First that he really is, cannot be captured in thought and is neither a product of thought, nor can thought, know anything about it. Out of these two, the second one too has a life of its own.  Obviously it is an imaginary life because it has been created by thought. But it does have a life and this second one is very significant because, it is the second one that suffers. It is for this second one, that the Guru (Teacher) exists. You understand this importance of the second one, which is fake, illusory, just thought. It is so important that the Guru needs to help it. It is nothing yet so tremendously important.

This second is in a very peculiar position, on one hand because it is a product of thought; it does not think of itself as product of Truth. So it does not acknowledge the supremacy of Truth. The second one is the product of thought, it is ideas, it is all that your mind does. So it will not surrender, it will not accept the supremacy of that which cannot be thought of. Do you look at impossibility of this acknowledgement? How can thought say, “That my father is non-thought”? So it will not acknowledge its own source. On the other hand, if it does not acknowledge, it suffers. Because thought is so incapable that on its own, it always remains miserable. On its own it only moves around in a cycle of suffering. Thought never comes to an end. Don’t you know that? It cannot ever come to a point of self dissolution. Thoughts can only get dissolved in ‘no-thought’ but ‘no-thought’ is not acknowledged by thought.

Truth is no-thought. Thought does not acknowledge Truth. Try it out. Thinking and thinking, you will never come upon the Truth. Thinking and thinking, you will never come upon silence. Thinking and thinking, you will never know Love. Thoughts only beget and further more thoughts. Now the Truth is calling and this second one has to go to the Truth but it cannot surrender because no logic will tell it to surrender. Or let me put it this way, no ordinary logic will tell it to surrender.

Ordinary logic will only tell this second one to stay away. But mercifully you are two, which means you are not only the second one. Which means you do have the capacity to operate from the first centre also? It is a very important question, if we are two and if we do have the capacity to operate from the first centre, how do we operate from there?

There are two answers because we are two. If I am speaking to the second one, my answer is, “just say yes”. Because you are the decision maker; because you keep choosing. The first one anyway never chooses, he is choiceless. He already knows so much that he does not need to choose. This second one is always confused because it keeps thinking, right? Because it keeps thinking so it has choices and confusion. Because it has choices so my only advice to it can be, “just choose rightly”. Go to the first one surrender. It will say, “But give me some kind of logic and this and that”. So my answer will be, “Anyways all your logics are rotten, what will you do with more logics? I am recommending you directly. Just go to the first one. Make a choice. Say yes”. This second one says, “No! No! Simply saying yes is not possible. Give me some nice arguments so that I can convince myself because I need arguments.”

So I say, “Alright! I will give you loads of arguments. But all those arguments are just rubbish. They do not mean anything. If you want to hear to arguments, come on Sunday at 9 am (referring to this session) and I will give you tons of arguments”. That is what I keep doing.  I keep giving you arguments to do that which cannot be done on the basis of arguments. But such is your mind that it needs some kind of convincing. So I am convincing you all the time. But no convincing, no amount of convincing can really convince you. Still you want that, so let’s play a game. That is one way, “just say yes”. And when you cannot “just say yes” then take all these arguments. And on the basis of these arguments, say ‘yes’. This is one kind of an answer.

The other answer is, “You cannot say ‘yes’ because you are born out of a ‘no’. So saying ‘yes’ is outside your capacity. Saying ‘yes’ too will happen only if, somebody outside of you would be helping you. On your own, you don’t even have guts to say ‘yes’. On your own, you will never say ‘yes’. Your very existence is a ‘no’. To be born is ego, how can you say ‘yes’? You will be able to say ‘yes’ only when an outside, something of the beyond, is helping you. That help is called Grace. Pray for it. Let the mind pray. Let the mind just say that “It may have the sense, to not to act arrogant, to not to take its own choices too seriously”.

If your time has come, “just say yes”. If your time has yet not come, then pray that your time comes.  This is the only method. These are the only two methods.

Listener: Sir, at times logic really works and pears within and stops the mind. So it really helps.

Speaker: It does not help at all. But you feel consoled, so it is alright. You being what you are, you require a lot of consolations. You see at 9 am (referring to the beginning of this session) itself, I can just say, “Say yes. But you require four hours”. And at the end of the fourth hour, what do I say? “Just say yes”. Why did you make me spend so much of energy? I am saying the same thing that I was saying four years back as well. I have nothing new to say. But you want argument after argument and if you think that my arguments are helping you, you are mistaken. It is something else that is helping you; maybe my presence is helping you. My arguments don’t help you. All these arguments are just consolations; they do not take you to the Truth. They kind of console the mind but ultimately what helps you, is Grace, not these arguments.

Even these arguments can penetrate you only when you open up and you will not open up on your own. The same argument will appear deeply acceptable to one of you and other one in the same setting, can reject that argument.  Now why does one accept and why does the other one reject? Grace. Both are conditioned; there is nobody who is not conditioned. So it is not out of their conditioning that they accept or reject. Out of conditioning you can only reject. Acceptance cannot come out of conditioning. You will say, “But sir people are conditioned differently”. People are conditioned differently so they will find different reasons, to reject. If people are conditioned differently that does not mean that one will accept and one will reject because of their conditioning. No. You all are conditioned differently, so you will find different, diverse and various reasons to reject my arguments. If ever you happen to accept what I am saying that will not happen because of your conditioning that will happen because of Grace. So pray.

 One of you will say, “You know what he is saying, is not very logical”. The other one will say, “See, how arrogant he is”. The third one will say, “Why should we believe him”? The fourth one will say, “No but this is not what my elders have taught me”. The fifth one will say, “I am feeling so sleepy”. You will have different reasons because you are conditioned differently.

One day suddenly you may find yourself accepting. That day, not that you will have new reason, actually you will have no reason. You will be accepting unreasonably. And only when you are unreasonable then you can accept, otherwise you will not be able to accept. That unreasonableness is not a property of thought. It is not the matter of conditioning, is not the habit of the mind. It is something of the beyond. And it cannot come to you out of your doing. So, pray.

You will be able to accept this Guru, only when your own internal Guru helps you. Ask your heart to help you, only then I can help you. Otherwise, I am powerless. I am just a person.

Listener: Sir, generally what happens that these Gurus say ‘yes’, it seems yes it is okay and it is right. But it is the helplessness or beyond control that later one finds it very difficult to go with it. Again these questions are there. What happens by that process that these questions, these unanswered questions are no more there. So it can be said that it is a step toward no-mind.

Speaker: You can keep taking a thousand steps but you will never be able to reach the boundary of the mind. With every step you are only creating more mind. Because every step is a movement and mind is a creation of movements. Mind is movement itself. With more and more steps you are creating more and more mind. It is not that you are reaching towards the end point or the boundary of mind. All of these are false models, whosoever has given you. That there is mind and mind is like a room and one day you can reach the boundary of the room. No, the room itself is created by the movement of the mind.

Kabir has put it so beautifully, “Daudat daudat daudiyaa, Jitani Man ki daud.
Daudi thakaa man thir bhayaa, Vastu thaur ki thaur
(The mind made you run.You ran as far as the mind could fare. Tired of its flight the mind grew still. And the object was right there)”

The more you are moving, the more you are running, the more mind you are creating. It is a great fallacy to think that by moving you can move towards the centre or towards the boundary. No. All your movement just creates more mind stuff because movement is thought. What else is movement? Let nobody think that anything that you do can take you towards redemption. Stop and you reach. All of these are mere consolations that I am making gradual and steady progress. There is no gradual and steady progress. There is only gradual and steady consolation. And there are lots of people who can give you consolation by telling you that now you have improved. Now from the first level of consciousness you have reached the third level of consciousness, so you are making some progress. All of that is rubbish.


Listener: What I wanted to say is that not gradual in steps because gradual steps is also a statement of fear or escape. I was saying at times it goes beyond mind. I am telling from my experience that till there is a question in my mind and my question is not answered, till then I cannot have faith. I would forcibly try to be faithful but it does not happen.

Speaker: No, you are very wrong because no question is ever answered.

Listener: I can say question disappears.

Speaker: Question disappears even without getting an answer. So do you see the falseness of what you are saying? The question disappears even without getting an answer. Not that the answer dissolves the question, question goes away even without getting an answer.  And if the question needs an answer then the question has not yet gone away. You may have had a tremendously beautiful answer and if you think that the answer has calmed the question, then the question is still there. Look carefully. No question can ever go away because it got a very nice answer. The question goes away only when the question, just goes away. So do not say I need answers, I need this, I need that, at times it happens. It is not a question of all that. If you are thinking of this time and that time? If you are thinking of getting more answers? If you are thinking in terms of situations? It only means that your time has not yet come. Because you must feel good about yourself, so you think you know sometimes my time comes, sometimes I feel alright and other times I don’t feel alright. No, it is not at all that way. It only means that you are as far away as you were at any other point in your journey. There has been zero movement.

Listeners: Sir, what should be done in this case?

Speaker: Stop doing what you are already doing. Look at your whole pattern, when I said, “You are as far away from Truth as you were at any other point”. Your immediate reaction is, “So what should be done”? Do you know from where this reaction came? A great belief in the second. That is what is meant by self observation, seeing from where do my responses come? You did not say, “Let me just fall silent”. You still came up with an arrogant statement of confidence; “So, what should I do next”? You did not feel like saying, “Oh my God! In spite of doing all that I did, if I am still in a wretched state, why should I do anything further? Let me just stop dead and pray. And prayer is not something of your doing.

When your doing stops, that is prayer.

Prayer only means I have realized, my doing will not help me. If you still intent upon doing, how can you pray? That is the thing with those who have been made to have a belief in methods. All methods come from the mind, the ego. To have belief in methods is to have belief in mind. To have belief in the method is to have belief in the second. What you are saying is, “I devised this method or I at least chose this method or at least accept this method. I am there. This ‘I’ is present. And this method that I am choosing or devising or accepting will help me get rid of the ‘I’. How can something that is the baby of the mind take you to the father of the mind? The method is the baby of the mind; it is the product of the mind. How can a product of the mind, take you to the source of the mind?

But you feel by doing some clever trick I can silence the mind. If somebody can tell me some kind of Kriya (action) or some kind of vidhi (method) or some kind of method, I can reach the Truth. It is like saying that by running within this room, you can start flying high in the sky.

Don’t you see from where all the methods come from? Where do the methods come from? And because of the obsession with methods, you are asking, “Sir what should I do next”? What is the next method? That is your real question.

What is the next method? No method.

Just fall down, just drop dead. That is the method.

Listener: Sir, what I understand is that on the road of looking, I cannot look rightly. Mind is full of thoughts, for me even looking is a dream. So at times it helps in the process of looking.

Speaker: Who will look?

Listener: Consciousness or awareness.

Speaker: What is consciousness? I said, one and two. Who will look?

Listener: One.

Speaker: Does One ever not look? It is always looking. So who will look? Two. It simply cannot look. But your hope is; two remaining what it is, someday it will look. Two will never look, two is blind. It is born blind, it will die blind. But your hope is, can we somehow maintain and preserve two and enable it to look? Don’t you see what you want? And don’t you see whose talking? Who’s talking? Two is saying, “Please do not kill me. One day I will be able to look”.

It is giving you a false promise. It will never look. You will die one day using all your cleverness and methods and hope. The One that looks is looking all the time, always, timelessly. But you will have to stop being two. You will have to drop your belief in two.

 Drop your belief in two, One is always looking.

Listener: Sir, as you said right now that you have to drop two. But till this age, I have always identified myself with two. Now I can’t say that I have a clear idea that what One is? And I have to drop two. So is it my cunningness that says that it is my gradual drop or it has to be a gradual drop?

Speaker: You have to understand the relationship between One and two. Two cannot exist without One. What is two doing all the time? Two is searching all the time. And what is two searching all the time? One. So what do you mean by, “I have no idea of One”? What else are you doing all the time? What is all your restlessness for? What is all your restlessness for?

Listeners: One.

Speaker: And you are saying, “One I do not know, I am only two”. What is the only job of two? What is two doing 24-hours of the day? What are you doing 24 hours of the day? Looking for contentment, looking for something that will make you peaceful and silent. Two and One have a deep relationship. Two cannot live without One. At the same time two is deeply afraid of the One. Two is searching for One all the time. But coming close to One, it is deeply afraid because One is so lovely that you cannot stay separate from One. When you come close to One, you feel like merging in One.

Two is saying, “I want One”. Why is two saying that I want One? Because One is lovely, very lovely. But One is so lovely that when two goes close to One, two does not feel like keeping even an inch of separation. Two seems like coming so close that it will dissolve in One. So, two is also afraid. It wants One and parallelly it is afraid of One. What do you mean I do not know One? What else do you know of? All the time you are frustrated. Don’t you see why you are frustrated? You want One. That is your deepest thirst. Nothing else will quench you.

Listener: Sir, when you say taking a medicine for treating of the disease everything is happening into itself. And any movement from two to One can happen with Grace. So does this cleansing process like the activities that you have prescribed, does it helps the movement?

Speaker: It helps. But the help is not something of your doing. Understand this. Whatever will really help you, will not be your doing. And whatever will be your doing, will never help you. Whatever auspicious is happening in your life is not at all happening because of you. And whatever stinks in your life is because of you. All your methods have only given you a huge stink. Praying is what removes that stink.

And, what is prayer? Prayer is not really an action. Prayer is just the bowing down of this arrogant head. I have failed and I am bound to fail but I am glad that I am failing. This is prayer. Because only when I fail? ‘I’ will succeed. My final failure will be ‘my’ success.


Listener: Sir, coming to Clarity session (referring to this session), that will not help but they will provide an environment where Grace can fall upon.

Speaker: Because Grace has already fallen upon you, so you come to Clarity sessions. There is no way you can come to me without your inner truth helping you. It is extremely difficult to come to me. If you have come to me you have already done something wonderful. If you are coming to me there is already some mighty hand that is helping you. Otherwise you cannot come to me. Yes, you can go to a shopping mall without the help of One or you can go to anyone else with all your two in store. But to come here is impossible without Grace.

This is not a method. You are not doing it. You are simply not a participant in all that which is happening here.

Listener: Sir if we stop coming here.

Speaker: You have already stopped. Have you left any stone unturned in preventing yourself from coming here? You come here without your consent. You come here because you are compelled to come, and that is called Grace. Left to yourself, would you come? Honestly, left to yourself, would you have been here today or yesterday? Would you have been here? So, you are not coming, you are being pulled. Let none of you be under the illusion that you come here walking on your two feet. You don’t come here walking on your two feet, you are pulled. Left to yourself you will never come and left to yourself you will always be desperate to come and yet never come.

 Listener: Sir, when you say that the only function of mind, the best that it can do it that it can look at itself. What does that mean?

Speaker: It means exactly that, look at yourself.

Listener: But it cannot look.

Speaking: In real looking, the looker is not there. So the mind is looked at, so the mind is not looking. Whenever the mind will look, it will only look as opinions, as perceptions. You will look and you will distort, you will never really be able to see. You will only look through your conditioning because that is the stuff of the mind. And if you are looking at something really, please acknowledge that it is not the mind that is looking. Whenever real looking will happen, don’t give the credit to yourself. You are not looking.

Listener: Sir, real looking bypasses the mind.

Speaker: Real looking looks at the mind. In bypassing the mind, where will it go what else is there to look at. Yes you have bypassed the mind. Now, what will you look at?

Listener: Sir, like I am thinking something and I am deeply engrossed in thinking. Then suddenly I am out of that thinking. So this sudden change of state, what is this? And how does it suddenly becomes One?

Speaker: No reason. If you somehow imagine up a reason, you will only want to repeat that reason. And in repeating that reason the one who is repeating, becomes all powerful. It is like now I have a button through which I can switch on and switch off. Switching on I become faithful and then there are moment when I want to switch off and do all my miscellaneous rubbish.

It is so difficult to acknowledge this, right? So difficult because it leaves you very powerless. My methods will not work. Out of my own doing I can’t even come close. So there is nothing left for me to do.

 You are actually very useless. You are just a load upon yourself.

 Kindly get rid of yourself that is the only way of helping yourself.

View the session at: Why does one run away from the Reality? The transcription has been edited for clarity.

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