What is rebirth? What takes rebirth?: Acharya Prashant

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What is rebirth What takes rebirth

Question: What is re-birth? What is transmigration of soul? What travels after death? What carries forward?

Acharya Prashant Ji: ‘You’ do not carry anything. A few things must be clearly understood. ‘You’ as a ‘person’ are not a very important carrier. That which carries, is the total stream of mankind’s consciousness.

(Referring to the people sitting in the audience) Her mind, her mind, his mind, your mind, his mind, her mind, the mind of the kid, the mind of the old man – we all are carrying remnants, carry forwards from our collective past. That is what is carried forward.

See, it is like this. There are waves in the ocean. One particular wave, is carrying, a little sugar, a lump of sugar. Now the wave rises, and falls. What happens to the lump of sugar? It gets distributed throughout the ocean. Now it belongs to everyone. That is how things are carried forward.

What you do in your life-time, has gone to many, many, many.

Through every single action of yours, you are impacting the entire mankind.

In other ways, you are responsible for forming the mind of entire mankind.

In turn, your own mind, is being formed by the entire mankind, because you are an active recipient as well.

The subtle becomes the gross. The more the mind is impacted at some point, many, many years later, that also changes your body. Have you seen that when you are angry, your face changes? When you are in love, your eyes change. So, the subtle has a way of changing the gross.

If you are impacting the mind of the mankind, always you are also impacting, even the form of the mankind. That’s how it happens. Otherwise, all that is ‘personal’ about you, gets burnt down in funeral pyre. There is no way, something can get carried forward from there. All is reduced to smoke and ashes. Nothing remains. But, what you have done in your lifetime, that remains. And that is going to affect all future generations.

Take it this way.

Suppose you are a teacher, and you have taught hundreds and thousands of students. And you are a good teacher, just for the story’s sake. Good teachers are rare. Now the students have really imbibed, what they received from you. You can say, that the rubbish in the minds of the students has been cleared-off, by your teachings. Either way.

You die, and one of your students gives birth. You die, and one of your students becomes a father, or a mother. The kid that is born, would be raised by your student. And, because your student has been a good student, and he has really imbibed your teachings, so those teachings would go to the kid. The kid would have the same, pure quality of mind, as you had.

In a poetic sense, you can say that you are being re-born as that kid. In a poetic sense, as a metaphor, now you can say that the teacher who had died, has been re-born as the son or the daughter of the student. But the re-birth has not taken place, because something arose from the dead-body, and entered the womb of the student. The re-birth has taken place, because of the stuff that has taken place, during your active life-time. Not after your death.

Whatever one person does, impacts the consciousness of entire mankind.

And that is how re-birth takes place.

And, therefore, re-birth is taking place every moment, because I might do something just now, which may cause you to transform. Now, haven’t you been re-born? That’s re-birth. And, you have been re-born, not because my soul entered you. You have been re-born, because the Truth transmitted to you, via me.

The opposite is also possible. You might be otherwise an innocent person. But you acquire bad company. And the bad company overshadows all your innocence. Now, you have been re-born, because the innocent one has died. The innocent one has been died, and someone else has been re-born.

That’s how it happens – through your actions.

You see, subtle truths cannot be conveyed very subtly, to everybody. And therefore they were figuratively, communicated. So that people somehow, at least partially, get a grasp on them. Therefore, you must not be too concerned with the literal meaning. Go deep into the myths of transmigration and such things, and figure out what they really would mean.

You know what, it is also possible, that the kid which is born to the student, has something in his eyes, that resemble the dead teacher. That doesn’t mean, that the dead teacher has physically fathered the kid. It’s just that, all eyes that are peaceful, have something in common.

All eyes, that are peaceful, have something in common. So, when you would look into the eyes of the newly born kid, you would be reminded of the dead teacher. And you would be then justified in saying that the dead teacher has taken re-birth, as this kid.

Questioner: Then why do we have such rituals after death like Tehravin, on 13th day, etc.?

Acharya Ji: No Upanishad says that. No scripture, worth it’s name, says that. The Puranic literature, that talks of such stuff, is stories and fancies. It is not serious metaphysics. It deals with a lot of imagery, a lot of fables, a lot of things that are there, just to involve you, engage you, even entertain you.

One has to understand the difference between the Upanishads and the Puraans. They are not in the same dimension. You cannot take Isavasya Upanishad and Garuda Puraana, and compare them.

The stuff that you are talking of, would be found in Garuda Puraana.

Questioner: Yes.

Acharya Ji: It’s alright. Read that. But understand that, in the light of the Upanishads. If you want to read the Puraanic literature, read it in the light of Upanishads. Then you will not be misled.


Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity. Watch the video session: Acharya Prashant: What is rebirth? What takes rebirth?

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Why does one have ego? || Acharya Prashant, on Saint Lalleshwari (2019)

Why does one have ego

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Probing inside, I came

Seeking the moon within me:

Sifting the chaff from the grain.

I went seeking

The like, Alike,

Thou art Narayan.

Thou art Narayan, then,

Why this will-o-wisp.

~ Saint Lalleshwari

Question: Acharya Ji, why do I  have ego?

Acharya Prashant Ji: Do not ask, “Why does the will-o-wisp, or the ego, or your personal center still exist?” If you ask, “Why does it exist?,” the answer is: your birth.

It exists because, you do.

When was the ego born?

When ‘I’ was born.

As long as you keep taking yourself, as the born one, as the one who took birth one day, and who would die one day, the ego is definitely going to remain. 

So, if Parmeshwari (the questioner) asks that why do ‘I’ have ego, do you see what comes before the ‘ego’?

Listener: ‘I’

Acharya Ji: What is the question? Why do ‘I’ have the ego? ‘I’ doesn’t even need to have the ego. The ‘I’, is the ego. Till there is Parmeshwari, there is bound to remain the ego.

Don’t you see what ‘Parmeshwari (the questioner)’ means? A body that is separate from the universe. That is ego – as someone who is localised, temporally, and spatially. Parmeshwari is in this hall at Twelve noon. Had she been the Truth, she would have continued, wherever she was. But at 3 p.m., she would be at the banks of river Ganga, not here.  So she is localized. She is localized. Similarly, spatially. At Twelve noon, because she is here, so cannot be at the banks of Ganga.

This is what is ego – a thing of time and space.

A thing that is severely limited by time and space.

And therefore suffers.

And is therefore debilitated.

Even if you want to, you cannot be at the banks, at this very time. And that you see, is at the center of a lot of your suffering. Were you not limited in time, you would have immediately gone back to the past and corrected it. But you are limited in time.

If you are here, you can neither be in the past, nor in the future. If you were not limited in space, then you would have controlled the entire universe, by being present wherever you wanted to. Or maybe by being present everywhere in the universe, and therefore, being the universe itself. But you cannot do that. And therefore, you suffer.

Do you now see what desire is? All your desires are limited to time and space. You could also say that, all your desires are related to your limitations in time and space. All your desires are related to your limitations in time and space. 

Had you not been limited, what would have you desired? If you are the entire universe, at all times, what is left to desire? Therefore, as long as, there is ‘this(the body)’ there would remain the will-o-wisp.

Now you have to see, what do you want to do, with this necessary limitation. That’s the human condition, you know. This necessary, this inevitable limitation. That is why, those who have known, the saints, they have said, that it was not the great thing that happened to you – the human birth.  But now that it has occurred, you better make the best use of it.

But it would have been far-far better, had you never really been born. Now that you are born, strive to come out of this incessant cycle of birth, and re-birth, and death. In fact,  that’s what is liberation. That’s how the orient has known liberation – liberation from the cycle of birth, re-birth, and death.

Because the moment you are born, that is born, from which you seek liberation.

The moment you are born, you are born along with that, from which you seek liberation.

So, why be born at all?

Listener: But we have taken birth now.

Acharya Ji: Yes, so now you better use it to the fullest. Live in a way, that is directed towards freedom. And it is equally, rather much more possible, to live in a way, that strengthens your bondages.

Hence, be cautious.


Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.

Watch the session:  Why does one have ego? || Acharya Prashant, on Saint Lalleshwari (2019)


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An unnecessary relationship

An addiction is defined as something that is external, very difficult to get rid off; nevertheless.

There are no good or bad addictions. An addiction is just what it is — “An unnecessary relationship.”

Addiction says that you need something. Need is the first addiction. Whatever you claim that you need that is your first addiction.

That which begins as ignorance and dreams, cannot end as understanding.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: Man’s most fundamental addiction


 

Acharya Prashant: Man’s most fundamental addiction

Acharya Prashant: Man’s most fundamental addiction is ‘man’ himself. ‘I am’ is the most fundamental addiction.

An addiction is defined as something that is external, very difficult to get rid off; nevertheless.

One can get rid-off an addiction. This feeling of taking oneself as one takes himself to be is the most fundamental addiction — the “I’’ tendency.

We are so staunchly addicted to it that it seems impossible that there can be oneself life without our conception of the “I.” It seems not only difficult but altogether impossible. It appears so difficult only because we are very deeply addicted. It is the addiction that starts with the first breath. It is the addiction that starts probably even before the first breath.

The tendency to take oneself as a limited being, as a body, as a personality, as a set of principals and concepts, as everything that one thinks himself to be. From that addiction, the hundred other addictions are born. That is why treatment of addiction is such a difficult thing because unless the ‘mother addiction’ is treated, treating the other addictions remains a problem.

It could be addiction of money, material, person, drugs, substance abuse, all kind of mental distortions. Whatever be the specific name of the addiction it invariably arises from the central mother addiction itself. That is why you remove one addiction and man finds himself trapped into another one. In fact, often addiction therapy is just about finding a suitable addiction. Don’t you see how addictions are commonly taken to be treated? A boy seems to be taking to drugs, the well-wishers would say, “well, let him indulge in sports” or if he is a little elder parents will say, “let’s marry him off.”

Do you see how one addiction is used to counter way another? It is because Man fundamentally can’t live without addiction. Because our fundamental definition itself is based on a great ‘attachment.’ Addiction is an ‘unnecessary attachment.’ For that which we are, it is totally unnecessary to be attached to that which we think we are. It is unnecessary but it becomes the foundation of life and that is all quite unfortunate.

There are no good or bad addictions.

An addiction is just what it is — “An unnecessary relationship.”

Whatever you can do without, is unnecessary and if it persists for long and deeply, is an addiction.

There is a lot that one can do without. The more you can do without, the better you do. The more you tie your existence to stuff, the more bulky, heavy, loathsome and tired you live.

Getting it?

Addiction says that you need something. Need is the first addiction.

Whatever you claim that you need that is your first addiction.

A need implies incompleteness. That which you call as ‘ego,’ is another name for an addiction to incompleteness, you may call it addiction to incompleteness or you may just call is incompleteness, they are the same thing.

Listener: Then addiction shows someway. For example, somebody is addicted to camp?

If someone is addicted to camps than he is not coming to camps at all then he is coming to some other place of his dreams.

L1: If somebody is addicted to some particular type of behaviors, can be his behaviors develop some understanding?

AP: Addiction in the beginning itself means that there is no understanding. What you are asking is similar to asking that if one dreams of camps, then will he benefit from a  camp? If one dreams of holy-scripture, then will he benefit from holy- scriptures?

The holy scripture is secondary, what is primary is the dream. Whatever is happening, is happening in the dream state. And in a dream state how can there be any understanding? It doesn’t matter whether you break your head with a brick or with a voluminous book? If you take a thousand page bulky book and bang it against your head, will it hurt less? The beginning of addiction itself is an absence of understanding. One must clearly see that the beginning of something cannot be different from the end of it.

That which begins as ignorance and dreams, cannot end as understanding.



-Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity

Watch the session: Acharya Prashant on Rumi: Fall in faith, and you will be given wings


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You are a man of patterns

You are a man of mind. You are a man of reactions. You are a man of patterns. Who wants to talk to such a man?

An ordinary man in the name of learning from failures, Just tries to react differently. The second time a similar situation arises. And this he labels as learning from failure.

Zen is your essential core that reacts not, that it’s his own master. Has it’s own way of living.

Two or three years are needed so that all the pre-existing answers get clear. Not that the new answer is needed but the old answer need to go.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant on Zen: Have you any God?


 

Acharya Prashant on Zen: Have you any God?

Acharya Prashant: Joshu went to Hermit and asked, “What’s up? What’s up?” The Hermit lifted up his fist and Joshu said, “Water is too shallow to enter here and went away”. Joshu visited the Hermit once again, a few days later and said, “What’s up? What’s up?” The Hermit raised his fist again then Joshu said, “Well given, well taken, well killed, well saved” and he bowed to the Hermit.

A few things Right-living, Wisdom, Spirituality, Zen are all about a non-reactionary way of living. A non-reactionary way of living. So, Joshu asks the hermit, “What’s up?” He isn’t parlance as indicated. It means, “Have you any Zen?” Now, Zen is not an object. Zen is not a part of ‘duality.’ The answer to the question that asks, Have you any Zen, can neither be ‘yes’ nor ‘no’ as such. When Hermit raises his fist. It is inferior to remain in silent. It comes across as a reaction to Joshu’s question.

The situation become such that Joshu’s question becomes actually a provocations, a stimulus to which the Hermit reacts this is not really the way of Zen. The question demanded no answer. The question demanded rather the stillness of Zen or the silence of Zen. The question, “Have you any Zen?” is aching to the questions — “Are you God? Is the universe same as or different from it’s source? Are you in God or God is in you? Have you any Zen? Have you any God? Have you the Truth? Have you Love?” All these are questions in the same dimensions. To such questions ordinary answers don’t suffice.

So, upon seeing the response of the Hermit, upon seeing the raised fist of Hermit. Joshu says, “The water is to shallow to enter here.” Zen is still an intellectual thing for you, ‘shallow.’ It is not yet reached your depth. Zen has not yet reached your depth. It has still not yet penetrated your heart. No point talking to you.

You are a man of mind.

You are a man of reactions.

You are a man of patterns.

Who wants to talk to such a man?

Joshu walks away. Who wants to talk to a monk? For whom, Zen is a matter of questions and answers. Then comes another day, Joshu goes to the same Hermit and asks the same questions.

Now, see what happens. The first time the Hermit has had an experience. The experience say that when somebody asks you about Zen and you respond by raising your fist, you get an insulting answer and the questioner walks away. That is what the experience of Hermit has been, right?

In one situation, the Hermit has given one particular answer and that answer has ostensibly not sufficed. The questioner has walked away dissatisfied. Not only has he walks away dissatisfied. He has blatantly on the face of the Hermit said, “The water is to shallow here.” Now, what would an ordinary man do then when faced with the similar situation again?

Read more

To help the other, you have to be a nobody.

I have often and repeatedly said that to help the other, you have to be a nobody. Now, that sounds quite theoretical and abstract. What is meant by this statement, that to help the other you have to be a nobody?

It means that you have to be a someone, a no one, who has no choices or preferences of his own, except the preference to love. Except the desire to be loving, all other desires are now gone. Or, at least all other desires are now secondary. The primary desire is just love. All other desires are subservient to it now. Which means, that I am not really bothered about what I am doing, as long as it is serving the purpose of loving. I don’t have any choices, preferences left now. I will not say that I will do this work only my way. Then how will I do this work, which way will I do this work? Now, I will do this work, your way. If I am nobody then I get all the freedom to act as per your wishes. Are you getting it?

In trying to help the other, often a big barrier is the helper himself. Because, the helper says, “I will help, but only in this particular way. This particular way which is the right way according to my ideology. I want to help you, by helping you behave as per my wishes.” Now, that’s a barrier.

To help someone, you have to be a no one which means that your own dislikes and likes relegate to the background. Now, you look at the other. Now, you look at the others conditioned mind. Obviously the other is conditioned. Obviously the other is trapped, that is why he needs help.

So, you look closely at the mind on the one you intend to help. And you say, “I have no preferences, openly on a clean slate I will see, how this person can be helped? I have no ideology. I am not approaching this person with a preset agenda. Instead, I am seeing, that if this person is conditioned, what is the contour of the conditioning? What is the whole landscape of the city that he has built inside his mind? What are the patterns of his or her conditioning? And to liberate her, I will use those patterns. Now, in using those patterns the barrier is your own patterns. Because you say that if I use those patterns, then I am doing something wrong, something immoral. Or, at least I am doing something that I don’t stand for. That does not correspond to my ideals.”

The real helper is a man without ideals. The real helper is free to help. That is what is meant by being without ideals.



Read the complete article: One is enslaved with her own consent

Do we need to drop the family?

When you say, “Family,” are you talking really of persons, or a network of relationships? It appears as if we are talking of persons because the moment somebody says, “Family,” he says, “Father, mother, sister, brother.” So, what do you name? Persons. So, we get into an illusion that the family is made up of persons, but if we go a little closer to it, a little deeper, we will find that the family is not really persons. The family is relationships. The view that you have of the person is the person. Is the person anything except the meaning he or she holds for you? And the meaning that that person holds for you is your relationship with him.

There is a girl, there is her father. Is the father the same to the world as he is to his daughter? Had it been about the person, the person would have been an objective entity, same to the entire Universe, right? So, it’s not the father, it’s the relationship between the father and the daughter that defines the father in the daughter’s eyes, and the daughter in the father’s eyes. 

So, what do you mean when you say, “Do we need to drop the family?” Obviously, you do not need to drop the persons. But, don’t you need to drop all the poison that is there in relationships? Must you drop the persons, or must you drop all the harmful aspects of the relationship? In other words, the person remaining the same, can’t the relationship change? And obviously the person has to remain the same, one is not going to fetch a substitute pair of parents. They are not readily available, are they? The persons cannot be changed, not in most cases.

Then what do we mean by family, what do we mean by improving the family environment? Obviously, it means that the relationship has to change. If you are relating in fear, in anger, or in greed, then that aspect of relating needs to be dropped. And, that can be dropped only when the need to have that aspect is first dropped from within yourself.



Read the complete article: One is enslaved with her own consent

Time will not help

Never rely upon the argument that time will heal things, that time will bring the Truth to the trapped one. Time will not bring the Truth to the trapped one, Grace may. And Grace is not dependent upon time. You cannot say that if I spend two years, then Grace befalls. So, avoid spending, even the next minute inside the trap. The more is the time that you spend inside the walls, the more difficult it will be for you to bring down the walls.

The conventional logic that one will ultimately get fed up of slavery, does not work. Nobody ever gets fed up of slavery, never. In fact, the longer you remain a slave, the deeper becomes your adjustment to slavery. Now, you are a well-adjusted and apparently satisfied slave. So, do not think that time can help. Time will not help. Time will only thicken the walls. Time will only raise another layer of dust upon the mind. Time will make your vision, even more blurred. This is not a disease that time can heal, for this is a disease that time itself has given. Kindly do not wait for tomorrow, time will not help.

If all this gives us, even the slightest indication, that we might be trapped, then do not wait. We have already waited long enough. Far longer than we should have.



Read the complete article: One is enslaved with her own consent

One is enslaved with her own consent

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The discourse began with a spontaneous play on the theme of FREEDOM. Enacted by volunteers of PrashantAdvait Foundation.

Acharya Prashant: Can anyone tell the storyline, please…

Listener: There is this girl and she sees, there was this group of people who were saying “Azaadi, Azaadi (Freedom, Freedom)” inside the walls. So, she was very fascinated that what is Azaadi, what is freedom. So, when she asks them the meaning of freedom, they say, family, religion, jobs and social media are providing us freedom.

So, she also joins them but she doesn’t feel good there. So, she asks questions that I am not feeling free, if the family is freedom then why am I doing what my father says. Then a man comes and he pulls her out of those walls and tells her that the sky, mountains, nature, this is Azaadi.

But later on, he finds that the girl again goes to those chains. And when he again goes after her to free her out of those chains, then she herself kills the man. Read more

Start with your own welfare

It is not for social responsibility or for social welfare or for the progress of humanity that you probably want to have a child. Ask yourself is it not because of social pressure instead that you are feeling the need to confirm. Surely somebody is pressurizing you. It is the prerogative of the Buddhas and the Saints to think of human welfare. And they have gone to human welfare only after they have done themselves a lot of good. Only after their own eyes have opened up do they start opening the eyes of the entire world. Have your own eyes opened up? Then how are you talking of the welfare of the mankind?

Have you been able to come to your own welfare? Don’t you see it is such a bizarre situation? You do not know your own welfare but you are intending the welfare of the world and that too how? By having sex and getting a kid.

What exactly is the thinking? What is the logic? What is the inner argument? Are we living in an age where populations have been wiped out by war or plague? Are we living in a country where the birth rates are so low that the government has to incentivize births? Are we living as tribes in a jungle that are in a danger of extinction due to their underpopulation? Are human beings the threatened species on this planet? Then how exactly are you thinking of social welfare through reproduction?

Don’t you see that it is just absurd? Instead, the matter of fact might be that you are feeling pressurized by social norms or by somebody, in particular, maybe somebody of the household. Maybe neighbors, relatives, maybe one of the old ladies in the house who are constantly bugging you to become a father or a mother. Or, maybe the movies that keep on telling you that unless you are a father, there is something missing in your life.

If you really intend anybody’s welfare and welfare is wonderful, I love it and respect it when you talk about the welfare of others.

Start with your own welfare. See what life is like, understand what sex is? Understand what is procreation? Know what it means to bring a baby into this world. Know what human being is and what his relationship with the society must be? Know what is birth? Know what is bad for a human being? Only then you will know that in which lies human welfare.



Read the complete Article: Sex for fun, sex for social obligation

Sex for fun, sex for social obligation

SR Generic_ English

 

Question: “Acharya Ji, my whole life, I treated sex as fun due to my early age experience. I would treat it as fun-just to relax my body. But now, at my mature age, I feel that it’s a responsibility to have a son or a daughter for humanity, to strengthen our world. I feel I must procreate for the welfare of humanity. And I realize that at the time of such creation, both the partners must be aware of what they are creating- it must be for the betterment of society and not only for fun. Only then will one be responsible, otherwise both I and the society will suffer.”

Acharya Prashant: You are saying that in your teenage, in your early youth you had sex for fun and now you want to have sex in order to fulfill a social responsibility.

It is far better to have sex for fun than to have sex to fulfill some social obligation. Sex is something very intimate, it cannot be driven by the dictates of others, it cannot be driven by social norms, it cannot be a method to fulfill a responsibility towards others. Having fun and then moving on is a far more innocent and spiritual thing. Because in having fun, you are not aiming for the future, in having fun, you are not expecting a reward after the action. In having fun you will not try to hold the other captive, you will not say that you must now stay with me and fulfill your responsibilities and sign this contract with me that obliges you for such time into the future.

Read more

Acharya Prashant: Thought and the thinker are both not needed

Presentatio2

Acharya Prashant: Azaz is saying, “I think a lot in relationship, no matter whom I am related to. Even when I am sitting here, I am thinking a lot about how to frame a question. How to know the right response while being related? How do I know my right response while I sit here? Why is there so much thinking in me?”.

Thought arises as a conscious mechanism to solve something, that is not quite conscious. Thought is like a skin ointment, applied to a heart problem. Thought is a superficial way to solve a problem that is deeper than the surface. Thought always proceeds with images about the world. Thought always tries to find a solution, in the domain of space and time, reasoning, cause and effect, planning, events, addition, reaction, movement. Thought is like trying to find a solution through the leaves when the root is diseased. Read more

You don’t have to do anything to improve yourself

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 track, “Its OK. Am I to die the next minute? Can I take a nap before that? Fine, thank you. One hot cappuccino please.”



Read Article: You were born with clothes; learn to die naked.

You were born with clothes; learn to die naked

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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)

AP: Ya

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…?

AP: Small.

Listener 2: Make you feel small (Adding to Acharya ji).

AP:  Yes?

Listener 1: Thank You…yeah.

AP: You will consider it. OK.

Listener 3: Still considering…

AP: 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…?

AP: Naked

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 well.

Live rightly.

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?

In fact,

You have expressed your gratitude really, if you live as you are this moment –

carefree

light

childlike

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.

Breathe properly.

Live rightly.

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: Acharya Prashant: You were born with clothes; learn to die naked



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Has there been something about this day which did not belong to time?

Time, as human beings have it, has only one proper function – to take you into the timeless. If time is able to take you into the timeless, then time is properly spent. Then you can say that you have lived a nice life; your life has not gone wasted. But if time has had everything related to time about it, and not the touch of timeless, then your time has been just…

Wasted.

It’s not only about a lifetime. It is about every interval of time.

So,

This day, today’s day, whether or not it has been of any avail, can be known only by one parameter-

Has this day had a touch of timeless?

Has there been something about this day which did not belong to time?



Read the complete article: How do I ensure that my life is not going waste?

How do I ensure that my life is not going waste?

Presentatio2

 “When the day is done and the light has failed,

I searched my pockets but not a cowrie find:

What shall I pay for ferry fee?”

~Lalleshwari

Acharya Prashant: What does going back mean?

Listener: Freedom from  birth and death.

AP: But if you have a desire to go back, then it requires something more than just sudden chance. Coming happens in sudden chance. It happened, right? None of us had — as we are at least consciously — wanted to be born. It happened. But liberation wouldn’t just happen. Birth, just happens. Death, just happens. But liberation, does not just happens.

Read more

Conceive the child only in love

Slide1

 

Question: Why is it important for a kid to be conceived in love?

Acharya Prashant: Because, when the kid is conceived in love, then you will not want to possess the kid. When the kid is not conceived in love, then you would want to own the kid. For the sake of the kid, conceive the kid only in love.

You see, what is happening. When you conceive the kid in love, then love is sufficient. Now you do not want returns from the kid. Now, you are not hungry anymore. The moment of love was sufficient. The love itself was sufficient.

Now you will not say that something is left unfinished and this kid is now responsible for finishing that. Now the kid is just a gift. Now the kid is not an organized activity. Now the kid is not an investment. Now the kid is not the output of your plan. If there was a plan, the plan was love. Read more

Why is it easier to believe in the world rather than the Truth?

Presentatio2

 

Listener: Sir, Why the Truth is so rare? Truth is something which is non-fictitious and this world is fictitious. And why the world is not so rare and Truth is rare?

AP: Are you asking, why you believe strongly in the world and not in the Truth? Is that what you are saying? – Because you have been taken in, because you have assumed a lot of things, because you do not inquire, as simple as that.

L: Why in the first place we ignore them? Why not in the first place we inquire them? They are the two sides of the coin, we could have like either.

AP: Had you been of the quality, who would inquire rather than believe then you would not have been ‘you’. The one who appears to be born as ‘Praveen’ had no option but to believe. Praveen was born with ignorance, with seeds of ignorance. Read more

You are always in Liberation

The whole thing about liberation is that it begins in an acknowledgement of one’s suffering. 

Unless one is sensitive to what is happening in one’s life, one is not going to be available to be liberated from what is happening in one’s life; one will remain stuck in it.

All that arrives is bound to depart. If liberation arrives in your life then liberation too is bound to depart.

Liberation will not begin for you. You are the one who ‘begin’ and ‘end’ in liberation. Whether you begin or whether you end, you are always in liberation.


Read the Complete Article: What is the meaning of Guru?