Question: Sir, I have come here for the first time and I want to know you better and that is why I want to ask, why do you teach?
Acharya Prashant: Why do you listen?
L: Sir, actually I come here to be in the company of like-minded people.
AP: No, you do not come here for like-minded people.
What you are looking for is extremely difficult to confess.
L: Confess what?
AP: You have to tell.
L: But I am asking you that why are you teaching?
AP: I have responded.
If you can understand what is it that you want, then you’ll come to know that why anything else happens in this universe. Without knowing who you are and what you are looking for, how will you know anything else? Who am I? I am right now a person in ‘your eyes’ and unless you know what your eyes are, how will you know me?
Am I an objective entity?
Do I exist without you?
The person to whom you are asking this question is a person in ‘your eyes’. So you must first know what these eyes are all about. I have a particular machine. It takes the information and converts it into a code. Everything that enters the machine finally emerges as some incomprehensible code. Now, the code reads ‘CXXV -*D’
I want to know what that code means? Should I ask the code, who are you?
What should I first understand?
I should understand how the machine turns everything into a code. From where is the code coming?
Listeners (L): Machine.
AP: The Machine. So what needs to be understood — the code or the machine?
L: The Machine.
AP: You are the machine that is encoding me. So you need to understand yourself first.
L: I think you are going too deep for that.
AP: No, this is never too deep.
When you say too deep, it is always in relation to something. When I say it is too much, it is in relation to something. When you say too deep, it is in relation to the Ego. The moment you say you are going too deep, you are saying, ‘You are going too deep for the Ego to handle’.
And that’s exactly what I want.
L: If I want to strike a relationship with you, then I must know that you are not deceiving yourself in saying all this.
AP: Don’t you see that you are already in a relationship and now you are trying to strike a relationship. Did you listen to me without a relationship for so long? But that’s again the human condition: we want that which we already have. In a relationship, you want to now try to strike a relationship. There’s a video which says, In asking for a kiss you break away from the kiss.
A man is already lip-locked with a woman and then he remembers, ‘Oh! I must ask, whether I can kiss her’. So he says, ‘Can I kiss you?’ Now, what has happened? The kissing was there and now you have broken away. Already you were in a relationship for so long and now you are saying that you want to strike a relationship.
How were you listening to me without a relationship?
Don’t you see that that is the truest relationship that can be! And now the relationship you want to strike will be a relationship of your cultivation, will be a relationship of your own making, and that is just your ego.
Real relationships don’t wait for your approval.
They are. Natural.
They won’t wait for your consent.
“Let me go and ascertain whether the speaker is real, let me first ascertain that the speaker is not deceiving himself.”
Whether or not I am deceiving myself is determined by the immersion that you had in the session so far. How could you listen to me silently had it not been something that your inner most resonated with! And now after that, is it not an insult to yourself to ask, What relationship can I have with you?
It’s like having slept with a woman overnight and when waking up in the morning to ask – Can we have a relationship? What else was going on in the night? But we want that; we want things to be formal, we want to give names to stuff so that we can keep them in our mental domain. It’s a very good example.
Let things happen as they are happening.
Your attempts to verify or ascertain will only spoil the game.
And whenever you’ll want to verify, let me assure you of one thing — the result of verification will be the same.
Whether it comes as positive or negative, the result will be the same.
Do you know what the result will be?
The result will be that the verifier is supreme.
The result of the verification is – Yes. And you trust that result.
What does that prove? Whom do you trust?
Yourself — the verifier.
The result of the verification is – No.
Now, whom do you trust?
L: The verifier
AP: And who is the verifier?
L: Sometimes I have a gut feeling that something is wrong.
AP: There is nothing known from the guts, they only give you pressure.
There is nothing called knowing in the guts. It’s all in the mind. All these things — knowing guts, knowing instinctively, knowing intuitively, they are all nothing, they are just names given by the same ego-based cognition to itself. When one thing fails then you try another name. Firstly, you say, ‘Oh! I inferred’, but when the inference is proved wrong, then say, ‘Oh no it was intuitive’. So if inference doesn’t work, intuition would. But both are the same. Both are you.
The Real is neither in inference nor in intuition.
It is neither in the mind nor in the guts.
It just is.
L1: Sir if everything around is perceivable and understandable then why there is a need to follow other people and to read the mystics. For example: You yourself are an ardent reader of Kabir and all those saints. So, what is the need if you can yourself see and understand things from your own eyes and understanding?
AP: If you read nothing else then there is no need to read Kabir either.
You need to read Kabir because you read ten thousand other things.
Kabir, by himself, is nothing. He is a blankness. But kept with the rest of the rubbish that you read, Kabir is an annihilator. Relative to the rest of the rubbish, Kabir is like a cleansing agent, but only in relation to the rest of the rubbish.
Purely by himself, a teacher or a Kabir is just nobody, a blankness, an absence.
But He is useful when you are occupied with the rubbish of your world.
The rubbish, he clears it away.
And when there is no more of rubbish, He himself is gone.
The utility of the teacher is only because you have ten thousand other teachers — false teachers.
Had you had no false teacher, you require no teacher.
Do you know how many false teachers you have? Can you name them?
The man on the street, the hoarding by the road, the shopkeeper, the books that you read, your peers, your parents, religion, every cell of the body.
You have ten thousand teachers and you don’t even know that they are teaching you and conditioning you every moment. That is why a Kabir is needed just like an anti-venom, just like an antidote. Otherwise, a Kabir is not needed. If you are already in your perfectly natural state then you are already Kabir. Why do you need a Kabir then?
Kabir is needed only when you are displaced.
And we are displaced.
Let’s honestly see and admit that.
So, we need a Kabir.
Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
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