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Question: Donating body parts will really have any meaning in after life; negative or positive?
Acharya Prashant: What’s your name?
AP: Anubhav is asking, will donating body parts help me in the afterlife or help someone else in afterlife, in whatever way?
The question is, ‘Do we know this life?’ We are talking about afterlife as if life itself is very clear and intimate to us. We do not know this life but we are so very interested in other life, in some other world. Do you know life? When are you thinking of afterlife? Right now in this life. Do you know this life? What do you mean by afterlife and why must the mind jump to the thought of the afterlife?
What is life? Is life about eating, breathing, walking, sleeping, procreating? Is this life? Remember, if this is life, then very soon technology will come up with humanoids, with machines, with robots which will do all of these things. Breathing is a chemical-mechanical process. You can have machines that can breathe, very easily. Digestion of food, all the impulses in the brain – electrical, chemical processes. Any machine can do all of this. Walking, getting tired, procreating, you very well know of test tube babies. Machines can do all of this. If this is not definition of life then this life is not living at all because this life can be produced in a factory.
But most of us are only that: Very very mechanical people, very very programmed people. What is programming? Programming is when your reaction to a certain situation, to a certain input, to a certain stimulus has been determined in advance. That when such an input will come, you will give this kind of an output. That is called being programmed.
Two chemical never have a choice. You bring them together they will have to react given a certain pressure and a certain temperature. This is programming. The chemicals are programmed to react. Is that life? Iron is programmed to attract to magnet. Will you call iron and magnet alive though they are attracted to each other? Water is programmed to boil at a certain temperature. Now would you call that being alive?
But that’s how we live.
Two chemical react and we do react. The moment we sit next to some person, we react with that person. Don’t we? We have no capacity for independence. We have nothing called a free will. We very well know if someone utters this kind of words to us we will get angry. That is like pushing a button in machine. You push a button and machine will get angry.
Most people never live, they are actually never born. They think that they are alive but they are never alive. They die before being born. Such a strange situation. You are dying at the age of 80 and you are not born.
Someone called me up, I said, “What?” He said, “Today is my birthday. I know you don’t call me up on my birthday so I am calling you up. At least wish me.” I said, “All right, I am wishing you. I am saying would you keep celebrating birthdays or you will ever take birth?” How are you celebrating birthdays, you are not even born! How can I wish you? At least be born once. For 5 minutes! Your age may be 30, 40, 41 but you are still unborn.
The machine is moving around. It has no life in it. And that is the story of entire mankind. Machine are moving around with no life.
The female machines looks at males machines and is programmed to get excited. A greedy machine looks at money and programmed to get excited. Eyes and ears receive a certain kind of stimulus and they are programmed to react in certain way. Nose receives certain kind of smell and is programmed to react in certain way. Hindu machine hears the sound of temples bells and is programmed to react in certain way. Muslim machine hears the sound of the Azaan and reacts in a certain way. Now the Hindu machine will not react to Azaan, the Muslim machine will not react to temple bell.
The Male machine will not react to male machine unless under special condition. An Indian machine has a way of reacting to American machine. The American machine has a way of reacting to the Iraqi machine. The Israeli machine to a Palestinian machine and so on and so forth.
All these machines are thoroughly programmed, they are not alive, not at all. But they have been programmed to think about a lot of things and afterlife is one of those things. And it’s such a strange situation. A machine that is not alive at all is thinking about life and afterlife. Thinking about life and afterlife.
Thought is the movement of programming. Never say, “I am thinking.” You only think what you have been trained to think, either by the body, which is biological condition or through social input and education.
Thinking and understanding are two very very different states. Machines can very well think. Thinking is a process, an analysis, which draws from memory and uses that information, processes that information in a particular way. Any computer can do that.
Understanding is something totally totally different. A lot of you sitting over here would be hearing what I am saying, just hearing. A little better than them would be those who would be hearing and thinking deeply. But rare would be the individuals who would be in deep silence, really understanding.
To be alive is to understand. Not to hear, not to think. Even this mike is hearing what I am saying. The camera can translate my words from one language into another. What you usually call understanding is again a very mechanical process. You just translate my words into your language and then you say, “I have understood.” No you have not understood. You have just translated.
Let’s first come alive. Afterlife, previous life, keep these aside. Life is right now, not in the past, not in the future. Life is right now. Go deep into it. Be present into it. Maybe then you will not need to think about this and that.
When you are immersed in the present, maybe the need to wander in the future will decrease? Getting it?
The man says, “donating organs.” He wants to do good to others. Does he know what is really meant by helping? Does he know that? Has he really live the life free of violence? Has he ever know love? But no he is dying and he is wondering that I need to donate my organs to secure something in afterlife. Don’t you see that greed is involved here? The body is anyway dying. The kidneys, the eyes and the liver are anyway use to me? So why just burn them, why don’t use them to get some more profit? And what is the profit? Some virtue, some punya in the afterlife.
Will this work, can this work? Is life about this kind of business, trade, exchange? You see I am dead, my eyes are anyway useless, take these eyes and in next birth let the richest man be my father, so that I can enjoy all the benefits.
Whom are you fooling? Yes, you are trying to fool God. That’s the extent of human cunningness that you are trying to fool god.
L: Sir, but if someone genuinely donates his body parts as help to someone?
AP: Yes, but then the question of afterlife will not arise. Right? The question right now is what is the link between donating organs and afterlife. Then you are doing it out of your own joy. I want to give something and I don’t expect anything in return. And that kind of mind will not drop from the skies at time of death. You must live life like that. Your death will only be of the same quality like your life has been.
In Your entire life you have been programmed and greedy and violent, will you suddenly become compassionate and loving at time of your death. Is that possible? Violent life violent death. Peaceful life peaceful death.
L: Sir, you just said that we feel that we are alive but we are not actually alive, we are not yet born. Going by this how do we actually bring our ideas our option to society where even a different option and people are ready to kill you?
AP: What’s your name?
AP: Bilal you are not getting me fully. Bilal is asking that, “Sir, you said that we are not yet born, not yet fully alive”, so he is asking, “So Sir if we, then how to bring our thoughts and ideas to life.” I am not saying that your thoughts are dead. I am saying that you are not yet born. The disease is deeper. It’s that you need to fructify your thoughts. It is not that you need to implement your ideas.
Your thoughts and ideas both coming from dead conditioning and even if you implement them nothing will change. Even if you implement them nothing will change. Because those thoughts and ideas anyway don’t have life in them.
Do you understand life. Life is the action of spontaneous intelligence, not a carry over from the tradition. What you call as your thoughts and your ideas, please it’s a humbling realization, but do look at it. What you call as your thoughts and your ideas are not at all your thoughts and your ideas. They have entered in your mind from somewhere. No thought no idea is a fresh idea.
Understanding is fresh. Thinking is never never fresh. Thinking is like going around in a closed room. By going around in a closed room is where ever you go you stay in same room. And howsoever much you travel, you are never getting out if the room. Because you have said that this is my living.
This room is past. Thinking always goes around in past. In the world of objects, appearances, the world, that’s what the thinking does. So never take thinking too seriously. Never take opinions very seriously.
Immersion is a different thing. Meditative attention is entirely different identity. Do Not confuse thinking with them.
A simple thing, as I am speaking to you, if you are really with me you would not be thinking. And if you are still thinking, then you can never understand what is happening. Have some of you seen this? When you are listening intently, in that moment, there is no trace of thoughts. And the moment thinking starts there is only thinking. What is happening in present, that gets lost. Is that not so? Is that not so?
Thought cuts you away from reality. Presence brings you to the real. Sitting on these chair is not sufficient. Presence is an entirely different thing and presence doesn’t mean again that you are analyzing comparing what I am saying with something else. Presence doesn’t mean that you are thinking about it, you are dissecting it. Presence means just being, and that is just being fully alive, one with the happening, undivided.
-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity
Watch the session: Acharya Prashant: Will donating my body parts help me in the afterlife?
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