The smaller the domain of your self-concept, the larger the damage you cause to all || Acharya Prashant (2015)

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

Question: How are all the mischief-makers, all the cunning people, able to devise mechanisms that actually ‘work’ in the world? If they do not have any clarity, how are they able to succeed?

Speaker:  What do you mean by ‘work in the world’? What do you mean by that?

Somebody is a car manufacturer. First of all, the extraction of raw material, the preparation of steel, itself is something that consumes a lot of energy, generates a lot of pollution, adds to the global warming. Then he comes up with a product that has a questionable, limited, and dubious utility. You see people driving a car which occupies a lot of space, alone. So the SUV may be an eight-seater, but only one person will be travelling in it.

So this is the kind of product that they come up with. And then all kinds of mechanisms are employed to sell this product. A car is projected as something essential to a good life-style. All ways are adopted to sell cars. A lot of marketing, advertising, tempting, is involved.

Would you say, “The whole thing is working”? Working for whom? Would you say, “The whole thing is working”? You go to the market, and the market looks like ‘working’. Working for whom? It is working; it appears so, but for whom? Who is benefiting? Who is benefiting?

What do you mean by ‘working’? You go and you tempt somebody to buy your product, and would you say that your system is working, because your system is able to entice people, to tempt them in, to seduce them in? Is that what you call as ‘working’?

But yes, the system is ‘working’, in a very-very hideous way. It is working in the sense that, it is working, if we accept that the objective of the system was to promote just misery. Then it is ‘working’, because it is succeeding in its objective. Because that is all that system is giving, to everybody involved in the system; misery.

So there is only one way we can claim that the system is ‘working’, if we agree that the very objective of the system was to propagate and enhance suffering. Then yes, the system is working. In no other way can we claim that the system works.

Never think that there is the ‘exploiter’ and the ‘exploited’. There is only the ‘exploited’ and the ‘exploited’. You may be going out to sell an unworthy, misery furthering product or service. Do not think that you have made the fool of the customer. You have made a fool of yourself. And on the other hand if you are able to sell a product which gives joy, and alleviates suffering, then you have given something of value, not only to the customer, but also to yourself.

HelpJust as there is nothing called as ‘the exploiter’ and ‘the exploited’, there is always ‘the exploited’ and ‘the exploited’, similarly, there is nothing called as ‘the redeemer’ and ‘the redeemed’. There is ‘the redeemed’ and ‘the redeemed’. By helping others, you help yourself. By sinking others, you sink yourself.

But because we are so very drunk, that it does not become obvious to us, so we think that the system is ‘working’ for the evil-doers. No, it is not working at all. And I am not saying, “What goes around comes around.” No, nothing of that kind. What I am saying is that – the moment you go out to cheat somebody, you have already created suffering for yourself. In fact, this very thought ‘to exploit someone’ cannot arise without your own suffering. It is only when you are not joyful, that you want to exploit somebody.

So for whom is the system working? Are those people really free? Do they know love? Is the simple happiness of life available to them? Are they at peace? Is it possible to design their kind of products, and advertisements, while being at peace? Is it possible to have that kind of ‘fire’ to sell, while being at peace?

And it is not that you do not know that your product is harmful, right? You know that, more than the customer does. The tobacco-seller, the cigarette-manufacturer, knows about the ill-effects of his products, more than the smoker does. Does he, or does he not? And knowing what he knows, if he still proceeds with doing what he does, can he be at peace? Can he be at peace?

As a teacher, if you are teaching something to your student, which you know is of very little value to him; don’t you see that you have already created so much suffering for yourself? But you will not factor that in, in your salary. You don’t even know how to calculate rightly.

You will get an X amount, and you will not be able to deduct amount, due to – ‘suffering’. “Well, compensate me for my suffering. Deduct at least half of my salary, for the suffering this earning has caused me.” You won’t do that, right? You will say, “Oh! My methods are working. I am cheating on people, and I am able to make a fat buck, which proves that my devices, my mechanisms are working.”

Are they ‘working’?

And you will hear this very often. “Oh! This is now how the whole thing works.” Ask them, “Does it work at all?” I am not asking, “How it works?” I am asking, “Whether it works?” How will have enough people who will tell you, “You know, this is not how the whole game operates. Let me tell you how the whole system operates.” Is it operating at all? Does the damn thing move? Don’t tell me the mileage of the car. (Laughingly) Tell me whether it starts at all.

This car that you are trying to sell me, this thing does not move at all. It doesn’t work. And if it moves, it only moves in the reverse gear. It goes in the direction opposite, to where it was intended to go. If it was intended to give me happiness, it only gives me misery.

It doesn’t ‘work’. If you find people claiming that it ‘works’, then they are cheating you. If you find people with smiles on their faces, and festivities in their homes, kindly know that they are suffering within, and this entire show is to cheat more people, to exploit more people. This entire show is to further their cunningness.

It doesn’t ‘work’, it cannot make you happy. So the biggest lie, is these ‘happy’ faces.

Watch the session at: The smaller the domain of your self-concept,the larger the damage you cause to all The transcription has been edited for clarity.

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  1. Thanks for everything Shri Prashant, do you have idea about pendulum dowsing, let me know please Always love David

    Sent from my Sony Xperia™ smartphone


    1. There are various opportunities to connect to and meet Acharya Prashant. These are:

      1. Meet the Master:

      Meet the Master program is rare opportunity to meet Acharya Prashant personally, either physically or online. To meet the Master, send your application, write to or contact: Ms. Anoushka Jain: +91-9818585917.

      2. Advait Learning Camps:

      Advait Learning Camps are monthly retreats organized under Acharya Prashant’s guidance. These camps are about spending four days and three nights in the lap of nature, while reading, reflecting, learning and evolving. So far, scores of ALCs have been organised in places like Rishikesh, Mukteshwar, Jim Corbett National Park, Chopta, KainchiDham, etc.
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      To join in, send your application, write to or contact: Sh. Apaar: +91-9818591240

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      5. Blessings from Beyond:

      Weekends with Acharya Prashant brings you the unique opportunity for a 2 day 2 night stay with the Master every month at Advait Ashram, Greater Noida. The getaway involves two mystical days of dynamic activities, explorations of the self, sports, meditative reading, deep reflections, midnight walks and more.
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