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Acharya Prashant: Progress—that’s the religion of today. Everyone wants a good life, everyone wants comforts and everything. In fact, all the old religions have been defeated. Christianity has been defeated, Hinduism has been defeated, they all have been defeated. This one religion has defeated everything.
Greed is today’s religion.
If you fight this new religion called greed, and why must you not fight it? We are fighting religions that are anyway decadent, that are anyway taking their last breath.
What is the point in fighting these moribund religions?
Listener 1: But how do you fight it? It is so strongly prevalent and running away is not an option.
AP: You have to demonstrate it, you have to be it, otherwise there is no dearth of talkers. Waging one’s tongue is so easy. You have to really demonstrate it. Your life has to be the proof.
When you say that it is possible to challenge the false, then your life has to be a proof of that challenge. And when you come up to people not only with your words but with the backing of your life, then people appreciate it, then you are credible. Otherwise, you are just talking, so it has to begin with you. First of all, you have to be that who can be the messenger, who can be the Teacher.
L1: So you have to first be in that position so as to explain the people about it otherwise you are just repeating knowledge.
AP: Yes, and in repeating the knowledge, you are only perpetuating misery because they already have a lot of knowledge. And do you know what happens if you are not living what you are saying? Then you produce more and more cynicism in people, people say, “You see another one of the fake ones and because I see only the fake ones hence it is proven that Truth does not exist.” So, instead of being a teacher of Truth, you become a messenger or rather a proof of the false.
Do you see this?
You go to someone and say, “What I am saying is coming from honesty.” And the other one is able to detect that what you are saying is basically dishonest. Then what have you proven to him? What have you really proven to him? You have proven to him that dishonesty rules. So, he goes away more convinced that dishonesty is God; dishonesty lords.
This is quite bad.
L1: So you have to first live that life yourself and prepare yourself before you teach anybody else.
AP: Yes. But even in that also there is a little bit of trap.
If you keep waiting for the day when you will be perfectly there, then you’ll be waiting till infinite time.
While you are very right that you must not open your mouth till you are there but at the same time, you cannot wait to be there to open your mouth because you can keep waiting and never be convinced that you are there. So, one has to start where one is. One has to know that being a human being, one is limited, one’s expression is limited, one is vulnerable to several things and yet one says that serving the right cause, being devoted to the Truth is the best that one can do in this life, with this life.
So, one starts as one is. But one does not claim that one is perfect. One goes out and just bares his mind and says, “You know, this is how it is and this is how I am and you and me are one; and let us talk.” One does not say that he is perfect and the other one is not. One goes to the audience, one goes to the world with a certain humility. One says that I know that I am not yet there, still, I know that I cannot wait. The task is so important, so urgent that I cannot wait, so I’ve come to be with you.
It is your humility that will work. It is your humility that does the trick.
Nobody can ever take it from someone who pretends that he is there. It is your determined humility. You are humble and yet you are determined to put it across, to do the right thing, to learn, and you are vulnerable. And you do not sit high up there on some pedestal. You do not claim a false position, and yet you do everything that is necessary. You do not say, “Oh I am a commoner, how dare I open my mouth! how dare I act like a teacher!” You teach but in humility.
Not upon them, not all over them, not on top of them. And it is so difficult to be with someone. Being on top of someone is very easy.
L2: We have always been told to respect Teacher, but we never feel like respecting many teachers because we don’t see any purity in them.
AP: I want to ask, “Can there be respect without closeness?”
If you can’t really love someone, how will you really respect him?
L2: I was always told to fear God but I always used to ask, ‘Why fear God? You love the God, he won’t do anything bad.’
AP: On one hand the God is the mother; the father and on the other hand you say that you should be God fearing. How can the two go together?
L2: Fearing and loving cannot go together.
AP: And it’s so obvious, is it not?
Does it require a lot of brains to detect this falseness?
Yet, people are carrying on with this.
Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
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