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Question: I really believed that I had all things that happened to me, that it was terrible. Oh! that I was so unlucky. Oh! everything happened to me. I really believed that, until.
But, I mean, I still cannot not feed my mind. But I am at a point that I see that it is all fantasy, that it’s my mind. So I hope that I already make some steps. I mean, I see. You know, I say it, or go to bed and it starts again.
I don’t believe it anymore, the mind. But how to handle it? I am still learning. But I am already that I say, “Oh my God! here he is. Oh, here he is. Here he is. That little language. But now the other steps. Ya?
AP: There are no other steps. If there are five steps, you need to remember all five. Do you want to take that much of burden? Really? You want to remember steps, just as you learn the alphabet, and mathematics, and geography, and science? Do you want to remember the steps as well?
Listener 1: No, let me say…no.
AP: Then just walk around like a girl. Why not?
Listener 1: Ya…here I am OK. Ya. Let’s enjoy…life.
AP: You are seriously considering being not serious. Right?
Listener 2: Ya ya…she is on the phase.
Listener 3: Please can you repeat it.
Listener 1: Sometimes I don’t understand it. Or I don’t…
AP: I said you are very seriously considering, being not serious.
Listener 1: Ya…
Listener 3: So, where are you? Very serious!
Listener 1: Ya.
Listener 3: Ya…ya…that is the strategy for me, that’s the improvement.
AP: You know, it is the most difficult thing for us to believe. Right? If I come here, I will sit on this chair and declare that life means obligations and responsibilities. And you must do this, and if you don’t do this, you will be fried in hell. Then you find it so credible! You say, “Yes…Yes…tell us more about it. Tell us the next thing we must do.”
Listener 2: Next step.
AP: Next step…yes, yes, yes. I need to learn…yes. Is that the whole package? Do I need to do more?
Listener 3: How many hours a day? (adding to Acharya ji’s questions)
Listener 1: Yeah.
AP: But sitting here and simply expressing that you are not born with obligations, you don’t have to DO anything to improve yourself, let the game play out.
Things change, stuff happens, what appears not good, starts appearing good.
But in the middle of all these changes, you are still perfect!
You may gain weight, you may lose weight. How does that diminish or enhance your value, your core value, does it? And have you not seen people, who link their self-worth to their weight? And the weight is a number, just as your bank balance is a number. Right? Just as your graduation degrees are a number.
In middle of all your troubles and problems, kindly do not feel small because you are NOT! Never let anything diminish you, never let anything become too much for you.
Even in the movement of your physical death, you must know the tract, “Its OK. Am I to die the next minute? Can I take a nap before that? Fine, thank you.”
“One hot cappuccino, please.”
Listener 3: One last cup of coffee before I go…
AP: And why one say the last cup of coffee? That unnecessarily… you know… that…that…ya…..ah… yes, yes…yes.
Listener 3: Yeah…That’s right…
AP: That makes it so very…
Listener 2: Dramatic…
AP: Dramatic, then melodramatic rather
Listener 2: Before I go…
AP: Like if I had at shows.before I go… one last one… ya. Can I have one last kiss, please? You know… like you have… you know.
Ya…one cappuccino. And you say that with…all…your verve. And if he doesn’t serve it right… you actually curse him…you better… What do you think, I am going to die?
Listener 3: Where is my cappuccino?
AP: So you can get away with it..eh?
NOT let even death make you feel small.
Listener 1: Even death let you feel…?
Listener 2: Make you feel small (Adding to Acharya ji).
Listener 1: Thank You…yeah.
AP: You will consider it. OK.
Listener 3: Still considering…
Listener: Ya… I am not saying. I mean…Yeah, they told me that was going to die very soon. And I felt nothing anymore, nothing. But now — I mean — I recuperate myself. But that is what is. You know when — also did — that take you all over then all of a sudden you feel nothing anymore.
AP: You felt nothing, right? Now throw away that nothing as well.
Listener 1: But now, better.
AP: You throw away that better as well. The sun rises, the sun sets. Are you obliged to feel anything about it? Are you obliged, even to feel nothing about it?
Listener 1: No.
AP: Let it be there. Ya… fine… ya. Yes…death is coming…so what? So what? What do you have to lose?
Listener 3: Even, how you think about this, is a thought.
AP: Thought. Yes, death is there. That tree is also there. So what? Death is there and you are stupid. Both are facts. Now tell me what to do? That’s what you must tell the doctor. Right?
Death is as much of a fact, only as much of a fact as your stupidity and my prettiness. Now tell me, what must I do? Yes? Fine! Yes…you have given me two months to live. Fine. Who knows the doctor himself might pass away for two months.
Listener 1: Yeah.
AP: Remember that you were born naked.
Listener 1: That we are born…?
Listener 3: Ya…nice…nice
AP: Learn to die naked.
Listener 1: Oh! Yes. Without… this. You mean …without this.
AP: In fact you must die more naked than you were born…
Listener 1: Oh! how beautiful. That is beautiful what you say!
AP: We all are beautiful. Very very beautiful.
Listener 1: Oh..ya. Thank You.
AP: And let’s not make a big thing of this – thank yous’ and gratitudes’. I mean the wind blows and it pleases all of us. Does it not? So do the seagulls, the ocean.
We need not say an elaborate thank you to them. It is their nature to please…right? Yes? There is nothing extraordinary about what they give us. Do you go to the sun and thank him every day?
Listener 1: Today?
AP: The sun, you need to thank the sun every day for giving you?
Listener 4: Ya ya…I do. And it’s for some years. Every time when I am going to bed. Thank you.
AP: You know that’s just another myth that you must be full of this thoughtful gratitude…
Listener 1: Ya…gratitude…ya.
AP: The sun is you. You and the sun are together.
Now, whom are you thanking
You need not thank even God!
When we thank this way, as we have been taught to, you know what you are saying? You are saying, “You know,I was not qualified to receive your grace, dear sun…and thank you.”
Listener 1: So you say, we just thank the God?
AP: You don’t even need to thank God.
Listener 1: Oh…oh…also not.
AP: Did you send an application to God, to be born?
Listener 4: She doesn’t remember. (Laughter) So…
AP: You don’t need to thank even God. If you live with a smile, that is the only and the biggest thank you that you can send to the entire existence.
Live in love.
That is the only gratitude you can express.
Otherwise, you keep on saying, “Thank you, thank you.” You know people come here, people sit here and there are bigger gatherings that I address, and people express their gratitude in such a profound and overflowing manner. And the next day, on the streets, they are miserable again. What is the worth of such gratitude?
You have expressed your gratitude really, if you live as you are this moment –
If you can live this way, that would be the only expression of your gratitude. Otherwise, you need not express gratitude in words.
Prayer is not something you do with folded hands, “Oh lord, thank you for giving me my daily bread.” What rubbish. Are you telling him, he has an option to not to give you bread? Are you telling him that his love is to be doubted? When you really love someone, do you thank him for every small thing?
You must take God for granted, totally.
Listener 1: Oh really!
AP: You thank him or not thank him, he is anyway providing you with your breath. Now, what do you mean by thanking him?
Listener 2: You create a distance.
AP: You create a distance. You unnecessarily break away from him.
Let the mind be surrendered, devoted…
Let the mind be at peace.
That is the only gratitude that you can offer.
Take care of you.
Listener 1: But I realize, the western culture is to thank everybody. You know if he only does something for me, Peter, I say, “Oh! thank you Peter. Oh! so nice, thank you so much.” Ah! that’s the western culture. Thank you. A little bit more, I go on my knees, “Thank you.” It is the western culture. But, because we are afraid, because if I don’t thank him, next time…
Listener 3: He might not do it next time…
Listener 1: Exactly! And I thank my dear husband the whole day, “Oh, thank you. Are you there again to cook for me?” So, by today…yup… stop! (Laughter)
AP: No, seriously, only yesterday also, Kundan was saying that, all this really does not look good. This business of thanking elaborately and thanking for every small thing and pleasing and saying perfect, excellent and all that. I am not saying that it’s about one culture versus the other. I am not looking at it from the eyes of an Easterner. It simply looks so artificial.
Listener 1: Yes…
AP: You know, he does something for me, he must do it. Not for me, for himself. He loves me, that’s why he does it. Now, why must I thank him?
By ‘thanking’ him, I am only pushing him away from me. I do so much for everybody and I don’t even remember it and when you come and thank, it’s kind of…
Listener 1: Beautiful.
AP: Not beautiful. Not beautiful at all!
Listener 1: No.
AP: It is, in fact, an insult, you know.
Listener 1: I know, I understand.
AP: It is an insult. It is almost as if you kiss someone and he says, “Thank you.” What is going on?
How do you feel if after sleeping with someone, having intense, passionate sex, the fellow gets up and says, “You know what? Thank you so much. And to materialize his gratitude, he offers you twenty Euros. How really would you feel?
Listener 3: Oh my god!
AP: How? How would you feel? Seriously. What is going on?
-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity
Watch the session video: Acharya Prashant: You were born with clothes; learn to die naked
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