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Question: Acharya Ji, how to come out of stress, worries and anxiety?
Acharya Prashant (AP): The stress, the worries that you keep, are all petty worries. They are like the worries of the man caught in a burning house, and trying to save his shirt. And he has a thousand worries, because in the burning house there are many shirts, many trousers, utensils, a lot of homely and worldly stuff.
What this man lost in his attachment for miscellaneous stuff, is forgetting is that he must have a single objective; instead of entertaining multiple small worries, he should take on One humongous worry. Saving your shirt is a small affair, saving yourself is the real deal.
But look at your condition, your mind is occupied with a thousand things in the burning house, the one thing that you are not bothering about is – saving yourself. So if you want to get rid of several worries, take on one, single, big worry.
That alone would help.
Man is born in a battle field, man will have to deal with challenges.
Now it is upon you that which challenges you choose to deal with.
One could either fight several, miscellaneous, petty, worthless wars that cannot be really even called as ‘wars’; call them ‘skirmishes’, ‘squabbles’.
Or one could devote himself to the One, mighty project that befits life.
And if you are not committed to that one, single project, then it is obvious that your time, attention, energy will all be dissipated in a thousand directions. You will not even realise, and life would bleed out of you, like a man who has a thousand cuts on his body, bleeds to death.
None of those thousand cuts might be significant enough to cause you deadle harm on their own, but taken together, they are fatal.
Question 2: Acharya Ji, I read a quote which said, “By beliefs the mind becomes strong, and Samadhi gives the being the wonderful knowledge, and he attains salvation after destroying sinful and holy actions.”
How can the actor destroy his own actions?
Acharya Prashant: Your attachment to action. Your attachment to action.
When you (emphasising on the word ‘think’) think that a particular action can help you attain salvation, then that action becomes very important for you; you become the actor.
Destruction of action means – destruction of the actor, destruction of doership itself.
Questioner 2: And the destruction should happen despite it being called ‘sinful’, or ‘holy’; both kind of actions?
Acharya Prashant: What is being said is that, there are many actions per se that are considered holy, pious, for example, religious ceremonies. The author of these lines is insisting that nothing is of use to you, if it does not fulfill the basic criteria. The basic criteria is – Is it making your daily life better?
Just calling a particular activity as ‘virtuous’, or ‘holy’, or ‘religious’ will not suffice. You have to ask: “What am I getting out of it?” You have to be very business-minded in Spirituality.
Question 3: Acharya Ji, recently I am associated with an organisation working on environment protection. I think that the loss of environment will really appear in the next 20-30 years, but not right now. I don’t feel worried about climate change. Is that okay?
Acharya Prashant: Read. The temperature of this city is already higher than what it should be; it wouldn’t be higher in the next 20-30 years, it is already higher today.
Questioner 3: People are already adapting to it.
Acharya Prashant: Are they? Read how many people are dying, and by how many years has the average life-expectancy already reduced? Already reduced. What do you mean by adapting to higher temperatures? The A.C. runs on 24 degrees, you turn it to 22 degrees, that is your adaptation? Will your lungs adapt to more sulphur dioxide? What are you talking of? Would your brain adapt to lead and arsenic?
Do you know how long does biological evolution take to adapt to something new? It takes millions of years. You won’t adapt so quickly, and you won’t survive a million years to adapt.
Question 4: Acharya Ji, what is the significance of fasting in Spirituality? Or is it just a ritual?
Acharya Prashant: As long as there are patterns related to the body and mind, it is important to challenge and break those patterns. Otherwise there is nothing special about fasting. Fasting is important because you are all the time clamoring for food. So to break that habit, fasting is needed.
If that habit is not there, fasting is not needed.
Watch the session video: Worry about this one big problem || Acharya Prashant (2019)
The transcription has been edited for clarity.
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