Acharya Prashant: Suppose at this moment you are disturbed, then future is created for you. How? You say, I am disturbed right now so I must have Peace in the future. So, now, you want Peace, and disturbance has created a future. Now, if your intellect is sharp, if the mind is in the proper place then you will say that Peace will come from the Truth or from the Guru; you want Peace and it will come. Future has still been created but you are finding the right door to Peace.
But, if your intellect is not sharp, if your tendencies are hazy, stained then you will say, “I will find Peace in the future through money, through pleasure or through miscellaneous other things”. In both the cases, a future has been created. The lack of Peace has created a future in both the cases. But in one case, the future will extend no more because you will go directly to the Truth or Guru. So, the search for Peace will stop there. And, in the other case, the search for Peace will indefinitely continue because you will be searching for Peace at places where it cannot be found.
More important is the carefulness that this birth or that birth, past life or future life, these words are not to be taken literally; they are symbolic. They are not meant to indicate that you will die and when you will reincarnate somewhere. When you will die then everything that is personal about you will be finished. So, no human being reincarnates. We are born as bodies, we accumulate stuff from the world, and when we die all this body-mind thing disappears totally.
Listener: And, this death might still happen while we are in the body. As you said it happens all the time.
AP: So, really, death is happening continuously and the one who realizes that, is no more afraid of death because he says that I am anyway moving into the new continuously so why be afraid of death; death is continuously happening.
The realization that death is continuously happening is called total Death.
Now, you have died totally to all your notions, principles, abstractions, dreams and beliefs because all of them rest on the assumption of continuity of life. Now, you have realized that there is nothing called continuity of life. And, if you see continuity then what you get is a continuous suffering.
Freedom from suffering is freedom from time; freedom from future, freedom from continuity. So, you just let stuff be completed in the moment so that the mind gets very little to carry forward into the future.
Mind must be given very little to carry forward into the future.
Whatever you are in, be into it so completely that there is not much need to do something about it in the future.
Be totally honest with your presence with whatever you are in, whenever you are in.
L: I was reading an article from your book on the discrimination between the essential and inessential? How to discriminate between the essential and inessential in our daily life decisions?
AP: Your Peace is essential, you cannot live without that.
Everything else is inessential, everything else can be taken very lightly.
L: It’s so difficult because I can have certain ideas from the past experience about the actions which would give me peace.
AP: No, not a question of give me or not. All ideas are about the future.
Right now see whether you are in Peace and if you are in Peace you are in the essential. And, right now be in touch with yourself. If you are not in peace then you are carrying something inessential, so drop it, leave it. Don’t be too concerned about it.
Another way of saying this is that whatever you can do away with, whatever you can drop is inessential. Peace, anyway, cannot be dropped — it is your nature. Peace and Truth are not stuff to be dropped, so they are essentials. One quality of the inessential will be that you will be able to drop it.
The essential — you will not be able to drop even if you try to drop it. Even if you say “I want to drop the essential, I will not carry it anymore,” still, you will find yourself coming back to the essential; still, you will find that in spite of your efforts to drop, it is still present. The inessential — you can drop and once dropped, it gets dropped, remains dropped.
So, what you are calling as death, you can better call it as cleansing, a dropping of the inessential, just a cleansing. After one is cleaned, one emerges healthier, more pure, and more beautiful.
~ Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
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Book of Myths:
This is the most challenging book one can ever come across. It will questions all the popular beliefs one harbours. Never imposing itself on the reader, at the same time the book facilities a thorough enquiry of popular knowledge which is blindly accepted as an obvious fact. It demolishes our so called holy concepts.
If you are someone who has read anything on self-help or on spirituality this book is a must for cleaning of spiritual information.