The real cause of human poverty || Acharya Prashant (2014)

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Question: Whenever I visit any temple, I see a lot of children begging on the roads, outside the temple. I give them some money, and also think, that what can I do for them. I often feel, that had they been literate, they would have not been begging like this.

If we are not literate, then what can we do to know ourselves?

Acharya Prashant Ji: First of all, the need for your normal, conventional education, and it’s relation to poverty.

Where does ‘poverty’ come from? Do you see anything in entire existence, that is poor, except human beings? There is the grass on the ground, is it ever poor? When there is rain, it is green. And when the Sun would be beating hard, the grass would just hide beneath the surface, with it’s roots intact, only to emerge back again in the rains. There is no poverty. It does not cry that – “I am short of resources.”

Birds, animals, trees – nothing is ever poor. Nobody needs to go out, fight, earn, save, secure the future. Not at least as much as human beings do. Nobody has as much knowledge, as human beings have, and yet it is only the human beings, that are dying of starvation, of poverty, of war, and of ten other things.

Hundreds of millions of human beings have died, because they did not receive enough food. You would have not heard of hundreds and millions of animals dying this way. They don’t.

So, where does poverty come from?

Poverty is not at all natural.

Poverty is just the dual opposite, rather the dual partner, of greed.

If a few humans are seen begging, it is not because there is something wrong with them. It is not because they did not go to schools and colleges. If you pay attention, it is really because, there are few handful of other humans, who have out of their greed, hoarded all the resources with them.

I do not know whether you are aware of this, but more than ninety-five percent of the world’s wealth, resides in the hands of less than 1%, or 2% individuals. When all the resources have been taken over, by just a few individuals, is it not obvious that starvation will be there, and rampant poverty will be there?

Trees and animals, and everything in nature, takes only as much as it really needs. Go to a jungle, and you would never find an obese animal, a fat animal, because no animal ever eats more than what it really needs. You will never find that a tree has saved, hoarded, for the next fifty years, for the next seven generations.

It is only human beings, that collect, hoard, and that they glorify as ‘savings’. And why is that so? Because there is deep security in the human mind.

Work has been done by economists, who studied the famines and food shortages. And they found out that, the food shortages are not really from the supply side. They are more from the side of distribution. Enough food is there, enough food is there. It is just not reaching everybody. Why is it not reaching everybody? Why is it not reaching everybody?

Similarly, is there really shortage of space for kids to study? No. Every kid can have space in the school, but the school will not admit the kid. The school has enough space, but the school won’t admit him. Why would the school not admit him? Because the school must take the fee.

And why must the school management take the fee? Because it has to pay somebody else. And why must somebody else be paid? So that somebody else may be paid. And ultimately, where is the money going? In the pockets of the few greedy, and insecure individuals.

It is because of these handful of people, that the entire world is suffering. But again, that does not mean, that we are apportioning the blame on somebody. Those handful of people, are able to exist and prosper, only because the remaining ninety-nine percent of the population supports them. Not only supports them, it actually respects them, worships them.

Your great corporate icons, you do not understand that it is they, who are responsible for your poverty. And remember, poverty is of two kinds – absolute, and relative.

Absolute poverty is when your basic needs are not being met. Absolutely, not many of us are poor, because our basic needs are being met. We have food, clothing, shelter. But, relatively, each one of us, is very-very poor. Each one of us, lives in a complex, that we have lesser money compared to somebody else. And that is why, there is this thirst to acquire more and more.

You look at the large buildings, and the great palaces that these people have raised. And what do you feel? I must also have this. This is called ‘relative poverty’. “Oh, I am so poor, compared to him.” Now, no animal is poor, compared to another animal. At least not in the degree, one human is compared to another human.

So, is poverty something, that existence gives you? Or, is poverty something that you bring upon yourself? is poverty something, that existence gave you, or is poverty something that society has given you?

Listeners: Society.

Acharya Ji: If existence were to be blamed, then ask yourself, “Why is nothing else so poor?” The rose is shining so majestically, without earning anything. The animals are leaping, and playing, so beautifully, without going to work. And, man is being told again and again, that unless you make a career, you will die of starvation.

We have not seen rabbits, and lions, and elephants, die of starvation, because they don’t wear a tie and go to offices. In fact, they are so healthy. They live their full, natural life. They don’t get heart-attacks. They don’t suffer from aids and cancer. They don’t have to go to psychologists to get treated for depression, unless they are in contact with human beings.

They don’t do MBAs, and they have no bank accounts. Yet they are all so happy. Look at the flowers in your campus, and look at your own face. Whose face looks happier? And why is your face so sad? And not only not is it sad today, it is going to be remain sad till death.

It is so rare, to find an really joyful man. And, it is equally rare, to find a sad flower. The flower may be this small, but it would still be laughing. And man, would be sitting in this large a car, he would still be sobbing that – “The car of the neighbor is bigger. That corporate honcho has a private jet, I only have a  Mercedes. I am so poor.”

So, who gives poverty to you?

Does existence give poverty to you?

It is the society that gives poverty to you. And even if, absolute poverty is eradicated, relative poverty would always exist.

Because that is the nature of our culture, of our education, of all training and conditioning.

Isn’t it ironical, the kids that you are talking of, are standing in front of a temple? And that temple must have been built, for a crore, or a five, or may be fifty. So, was there shortage of money? Money is there, but where is the money going? Where is the money going?

The kids are standing on the highway. Do you know how much does it cost, to build one kilometer of the highway? So, is there shortage of money?

Poverty is the companion of riches.

There cannot be riches, unless there is poverty.

Look at your corporate structures, for example. They are shareholders, then there is the CEO, and the COO. Then there are the managers. And then there are the workers. Come what may, the workers would always be getting, less than one percent share of the profit. Right? Who would always be getting a huge disproportionate share of the profit? The shareholders. Right?

So, the more this firm progresses, who will progress more and more.

Listeners: The shareholders.

Acharya Ji: Whose poverty will deepen more and more?

Listeners: The workers.

Acharya Ji: That is the nature of your economy. This fellow, the worker, will gain five rupees. This fellow, the shareholder, will gain five crore rupees. When he will gain five crore rupees, that five crore will be used to make things, even more expensive. You see, when there is somebody, who is prepared to pay fifty rupees, for a twenty rupee thing, what will happen to the price, of the twenty rupee thing?

You are there, and your neighbor is there. You are the worker, your neighbor, is the shareholder. In front of you two, is the seller. You can spend twenty rupees, but you cannot spend more than that. Your neighbor bought something, and the seller was selling it for twenty rupees. Now, your great neighbor, the share holder, comes out, and says, “I am prepared to pay fifty rupees for it.”

Now, what is the price of thing increased to?

Listeners: Fifty rupees.

Acharya Ji: Now, can you purchase it anymore?

Listeners: No.

Acharya Ji: Is this not artificial poverty? There was no poverty. But, poverty has been artificially created by somebody, who has an obscene sum of wealth.

You are alright with a bike. But then you see a four-wheeler, and the bike is not alright anymore. And then the poor ‘Alto’ sees a ‘Corolla’, and it becomes ashamed. Then the ‘Corolla’ sees a ‘BMW’, and then ‘BMW’ sees a Jet. And then ‘Jet’ sees a ‘Spacecraft’ to Mars.


And everybody becomes the poor.

Who suffers?

The poor kids in front of the temple.

Because everybody must have his pound of flesh, so the one who is the most vulnerable, will be left begging.

A day may come, when out of economic progress, these kids may have enough to feed their stomachs. But, remember, with this kind of a system, they will never have enough to feed their souls.

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity. Watch the video session: Acharya Prashant, with students: The real cause of human poverty

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One day, we will have such a Temple || Acharya Prashant (2019)

One day, we will have such a Temple


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Question: What is a ‘Temple’, and what purpose should it serve?

Acharya Prashant Ji: A ‘Temple’ must definitely, have elements, that elevate your consciousness.

Being at a place, being with elements, being with people, being with structures, being with sites, scenes, sounds, that remind you of the beyond, that take the lowly consciousness to a high point, where it becomes receptive to signals from the sky.

That’s a ‘Temple’.

Are you getting it?

So, a ‘Temple’, first of all, must have those elements. Secondly, wherever those elements are present, that place is a ‘Temple’, even if, you call it by some other name.

So look at the effect, the whole situation, the arrangement, the whole architecture is having on you. Is it taking you beyond, the mundane things that keep circulating in your mind?  If ‘yes’, then it deserves to be called, a ‘Temple’. If ‘no’, then it is just another place – entertaining probably, imposing probably, but not elevating.

The aspect of elevation, is central.

‘Temple’ is a place, where you are elevated.

If you are not being elevated, the place is not a ‘Temple’.

And, if you are being elevated, in some place, that place is most definitely a ‘Temple’.

Are you getting it?

So, ideally, today’s temples must be great centers of learning. Temples must be spiritual universities. A ‘Temple’ cannot be just a place, where there are some stone carvings, and such things. Real Education must have to be imparted in temples. That’s elevation of consciousness.

Temples have to be centers of, not only scriptures, they must also be centers where education is imparted in arts, and sciences. Because, unless you are scientific, it will be very difficult for you, in today’s age, to be really spiritual.

In fact, I have this vision. Vishranti (Monthly Spiritual retreat) was organised in Udaipur, in the month of February. I was with Anshu (one of the volunteers), on one night, till 2 a.m., and we saw a temple on a hill-top. And I said, that one day, it is possible, that we will raise a Real Temple. Not the one where we go, ring the bell, and get the prasad. Not a temple where all kinds of superstitions breed. But, a temple that would be a center of real scientific research, a place where fine arts find great expression. A place where human consciousness is refined, broadened, elevated, in all possible ways.

I remember, I said to him, “In a temple, there must be a center of contemporary studies, where one is taught about all the current worldly issues.”

A ‘Temple’ must really be a university, in purest sense of the world.

Great creativity, must arise out of a ‘Temple’.

A ‘Temple’ must be a place where great ideas must be discussed.

A ‘Temple’ must be a place of great conversations, and healthy debate.

Great scholars from all directions, and dimensions, must converge in the ‘Temple’.

When people go to a ‘Temple’, they must return enriched.

You are able to listen to a profound lecture, or to an animated debate. You come to know of things, that you anyway do not know. Economics is being discussed, geo-politics is being discussed. The recent, cutting-edge research and advancement, are being discussed. There are physicists, there are medical-researchers, there are geologists, there are cosmologists.

And, they all are present in the ‘Temple’.

That’s what a temple must really be like.

And, obviously, when I say that, the foundation of the temple, has to be mystical.

I am only talking, of those things, that are currently missing in temples. I must correct myself. Actually, mystics too, are currently missing in temples. So I must talk of them as well.

So when consciousness is raised, only then it becomes capable of transcending into the mystical dimension. Consciousness, under the burden, with all its shackles, cannot fly away, cannot gain freedom, from the worldly entanglements.

First of all, it must gain clarity, with respect to the world. When there is clarity and knowledge, with respect to the world, only then there is a possibility, of going beyond the world. So, a temple, must first of all, be a place of knowledge, then a place of learning, and then a place of mysticism. It has to be a composite thing.

One day, God willing, we will come up with such a ‘Temple’.

Let’s see.

How would it be, to find a lab of nuclear physics, in one quarter, and an aggregation of the world’s best dancers on the other side. Both in the same campus. How would it be?

Live long everybody, to see that day!

I hope, I also live long enough, to see that day.

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

Watch the session:  One day, we will have such a Temple || Acharya Prashant (2019)

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An IIT – IIM education must widen your choices, not limit them|| Acharya Prashant (2012)

To personally meet or connect with Acharya Prashant: click here.

Questioner (An engineering student): Acharya Ji, what made you inclined towards Spirituality, after education from premier institutions like IIT-D and IIM-A?

Acharya Prashant Ji: A couple of decades ago, I was on that side, where you all are sitting now, in another engineering college, IIT-Delhi. We too used to take a lot of things lightly. We too would fool around in lot of sessions, tutorials, lab sessions. But we also knew what is not trivial, not casual.

Once in a while, such a thing happens, and then we should be awake to the happening.

We will be together.

So, one of the members of your organizing committee, immediately asked this question, when he met me. His question was: After IIT, after IIM, after Civil Services, and after a few years of successful corporate life, why this?

I said, “Let me first look at the anatomy of your question.” Your question pre-supposes, assumes, a couple of things. The first is: Education gives you a few specific directions to move in. And that is why, you are surprised, even shocked, that someone is breaching those directions, violating those directions.

Before we discuss the breach of violation, it is more important that we see whether education is supposed to be a liberating force, or a constraining force.

If you look at people, who are not educated, you will find them captivated, you will find them option-less. We could even say, ‘enslaved’. They can say, “Because we are not educated, because we did not have that kind of luck, or merit, so we are forced to take up, just these kind of jobs. Our spectrum of choices, is very narrow.” That is what a person with little luck, or ability, or understanding, would say.

Now, if you go into an institution of higher learning, even a couple of such institutions, and then you would say, “I cannot find the entire life open for me. I cannot see that all kinds of possibilities, and opportunities open up for me, irrespective of the direction they come from. Then what is the use of such education?”

Is education there to widen your choices, or is it there to constrain your already narrowed down choices?

If the purpose of education is to liberate, then why should you feel that after your educational degrees, you must follow a particular kind of script? Why must you move in only pre-determined directions?

The questioner is surprised at me taking a particular direction. I am surprised that why do you do, what you do.

A particular company arrives in campus, for campus placement. When I was a consultant, in corporate sector, then I would go for the campus hiring, to the best of institutions. And it would be quite amusing, as well as insightful to observe them.

So, four hundred students from fourth year, would have applied for the same job. And if you ask them , “Why have you applied for the same job?” half of them would directly say that this particular job is their dream job, and other half would indirectly imply this job is their dream job.

I would listen to them with patience, but at some point during the discussion, I would start laughing. I would ask them, “How is it possible that all four hundred of you, have the same dream. Is there any individuality, or are all of you, meant to follow the same current?”

Now, what is more surprising: that intelligent, empowered students, are all following the trend, or that a few break away? Breaking away should be the norm, breaking away should be the trend. Breaking away should not be the exception.

In fact, I should be the one, who should turn around, and ask the premier students, in the premier campuses, in the country and the world, “How is it possible, that after all your education, you constrain yourself to a narrow pattern of working and living? How is it not possible, that you branch out in all directions? How is it so, that an already chained life, becomes all the more chained, after going to an IIT, or an IIM?”

A fellow, who has not had the best of education, would say, “I can accept any job. I can start any kind of business, because I do not have any background in anything.” But I have seen, not only as a matter of principle, but actually practically, that unfortunately it so happens, that we become even more constrained, limited, in our decision-making, because we have been empowered with an elite degree.

That must not happen. That assumption is invalid.

If life has given you power, use it to blossom.

Use it branch out.

Use it to express all your creativity.

Do not feel pressurized.

Do not feel limited.

You are not obliged to follow the trend.

You must, first of all, try to gain maximum clarity, as to what is right. And then, the only remaining task, is to commit yourself wholeheartedly, to what is right.

Know what is right.

Do what is right.

Nothing else matters.

Most people do not know what is right. Obviously, they lead their lives in ignorance, in darkness – a drunken kind of living. And then, there are others. Others, who have the intellectual capacity, to know what is right. And it is absolutely tragic, that such people, in spite of knowing what is right, do not ‘do’ the right.

Now, this would be very impotent life.

One could have been forgiven, had one been totally in the dark. Had one not known at all, what to do. But, if you know, and still do not ‘do’, then your life itself is a punishment. You would be leading an incomplete, and compulsorily blind life.

A man, with eyes, who has been forced to act blind, his suffering is limitless.

So, please get the first assumption, out of your mind. If you will go into it, if you will question it, then it will be easy for you, to surmount it.

The second assumption that you have is that – somehow technical or managerial work, is superior, in it’s class and dimension, compared to Humanities, and specially compared to Wisdom and Spirituality. No, if such is the opinion that you carry, then this opinion is misplaced.

I understand why this opinion gets the better of us. It is because, whatever happens in the field of Science and Technology, is quite tangible, quite direct, quite measurable, and precise. Whereas, what happens in the field of mind, in the field of words, rather than numbers, is intangible. Often hazy.

But just because something is intangible, it does not mean that it is valueless. It only means that it’s value is subtle. Something may have a gross value, (referring to a bottle kept on the table, in front) this may have a gross value, but there are other things that have a subtle value. Things like Joy, things lie Understanding.

I can hold this bottle in my hand, I cannot hold understanding in your hand. You cannot hold love in your hand. You cannot hold clarity in your hand. Just because there are certain things, that are not material enough, to be formed, to be weighed, to be experienced through senses, it does not mean that they are valueless.

You are right now listening to me. Even ‘listening’ cannot be held like this bottle. But then, if you are listening, you very well know the value of listening.

All education, all civilization, all progress and advancement, is for welfare.

And what is ‘welfare’?

That which gives man peace.

Yes, material welfare does give man peace, and is quite important. But there is another more important, and dimensionally higher component of welfare, that needs to be addressed. As engineers, you work for welfare – others’ welfare, and your own welfare.

Spirituality too aims at welfare. And what spirituality can accomplish, the other fields of human endeavor, cannot.

So, it becomes obvious now, why one can move into the field of understanding life, if that can be called ‘a field’, at all. Life itself is the field, because it is a terrific field, because it is the most important field. Because that work is more important, than the work of an engineer, or a manager.

That does not belittle the work of the scientist. It’s only to say, that – the work of the scientist, is ultimately, to bring welfare and peace to man.

Science addresses only that, which is measurable, numerable, experiencable, perceivable through senses.

And there is a lot, that involves human welfare, but cannot be the material subject of any science, any technology, any mathematics.

That must be addressed, otherwise, science will remain blind.

Otherwise, the products of science, the entire area and produce of science, will be channelized, only towards devastation.

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

Watch the session: Acharya Prashant, with students: An IIT – IIM education must widen your choices, not limit them

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Teach this to today’s generation || Acharya Prashant (2018)

teach(To receive regular updates on WhatsApp regarding wisdom articles by Acharya Ji and to get an opportunity to connect to him directly, click here)

Acharya Prashant: Rabbits are merely Prakriti, so they are conditioned to procreate.

If we want this generation to not to procreate what must be taught to them?

That you are not just Prakriti.

This is the education that you need to disseminate.

Rabbits will reproduce because they are just Prakriti and that’s what Prakriti wants, more copies of the rabbit’s DNA; because more copies mean more chances of survival, it is like taking backup of a hard-disk, if there are two copies then chances of survival are double, one copy might get lost, then the other copy survives, and that’s why the rabbits procreate so copiously, so frequently because they are small and defenseless. They know that a lot of the baby rabbits will die, so lot of them are born so that atleast a few will survive, thereby, the species continue to just exist, existence is all that the Prakriti wants.

Teach the kids, Parmeshwari, that they are not just Prakriti.

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Acharya Prashant, with students: How to have confidence in oneself?


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Question: I don’t have confidence in myself. How to gain it?

Acharya Prashant: The question comes from an extreme – “I do not have confidence in myself.” But surely, this question addresses a pain that all experience in varying degrees, on various occasions.

There is nobody who does not feel short of confidence at one point or another. There are many, who keep feeling perpetually short. There are others, who feel confident most of the time, but find that their confidence is deserting them often when they need it.

You say you want ‘confidence’ in yourself. You want confidence in yourself only when you are in doubt. When things are just flowing smoothly, is there need for confidence? When there is no fear, is there need for confidence?

Confidence is a medicine.

Confidence is not your natural state.

Just as, medicine is not health. When you feel sick, then you ask for medicine and the role of medicine should be to make itself unnecessary. You do not want to have a medicine that you will perpetually need. What you must rather perpetually have, is a normal and ordinary state of health. What you must normally have is a state of fearlessness, in which confidence is not needed at all.

If you are requiring confidence, it means that something has already gone wrong.

Now, do you want to cover up what has gone wrong? Or do you want to directly address what has gone wrong? Because if the wrong stays wrong, then you will keep on needing confidence more and more, and more frequently.

When you are addressing your friends, do you require confidence? No! But when you are making a public presentation, then you require confidence. Do you notice that? When you are with your family members, do you require confidence? Hardly ever! But when you are in front of an interviewer, then you say that you require confidence.

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Acharya Prashant, with students: You are the mother of all importance


Acharya Prashant: All your student life, you have been talking and studying about this and that. The languages, Science, Social Sciences – History, Geography, Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry. Now, Technology.

But there is one entity that you have forgotten so much, that it is very difficult at this moment, to even remind you of that entity. That entity has never been in the domain of your education. You have studied about a lot of things, but there is one entity that you have never studied about. Never bothered to attend to.

What is that entity?

Listener: Personality.

AP: Personality?

You will get to study a lot of Personality.

In fact, you have been studying about nothing but ‘Personality’!

‘Personality’ by definition is nothing but what you gather from outside.

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Freedom is Health

Love is a relationship. A healthy relationship is LoveAny healthy relationship is Love, and a healthy relationship is possible only when you are healthy.

What is healthy being? A healthy being is one who is not restless, who is not continuously suffering, whose mind is not continuously wandering in tension, in misery.

You don’t need to become healthy, you are healthy.

What does Health mean? Health means that which you are without any education.

Even in your worst situation, even in your darkest hour, even in your last breath, you will not be able to force yourself to like slavery. It is impossible.

Freedom is Health.

Nobody can lose his or her NatureYou are Healthy.

Becoming is alright in small matters but in essential matters of life, becoming is a disease, unnecessary disease. A disease that is just an assumption but such a deep assumption that it ruins the entire climate of the mind.

Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: The relationship of the healthy being is Love

Acharya Prashant: The relationship of the healthy being is Love

AP: It’s so simple that you’ll be disappointed actually. It is not jazzy to hear or glamorous to look at.

Love is a relationship.

A healthy relationship is Love.

Any healthy relationship is Love, and a healthy relationship is possible only when you are healthy.

So, the relationships of a healthy being are called Love. The definition is so simple. You don’t find anything very embellished about it.

What is healthy being?

A healthy being is one who is not restless, who is not continuously suffering, whose mind is not continuously wandering in tension, in misery.

When you are settled within and you have a sureness within, then in all your relationships, this sureness, this power, this peace, this completeness shows. What I have that reflects in all my relationships. If I’m healthy then that health shines in all my relationships. That health is called Love.

Listener: Acharya Ji, I saw a video of you – only a healthy mind can enter into a friendship. So, how can we become healthy? What are the ways in which we can have healthy mind?

AP: Do you know what does this question imply? I want to become healthy. Are you sure the question is valid?

Listener: Yes.

AP: What’s your name?

Listener: Priya.

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What kind of education will help one know herself?

gen 1

Question: Our education system is not that sufficient in…. this is my question, what kind of education should be added in our education system that we know ourselves?

Acharya Prashant: Wonderful. What’s your name?

L: Gaurav

AP: Now, Gaurav wants to take it a step ahead. He is saying, “If that is not sufficient, if the existing education system is not sufficient then what else can be done?”

Gaurav, we are talking of self-education, the need to first and foremost, know the knower. We are saying that before you say that the pendulum corresponds to 2Л√L/G, you must ask who is watching the pendulum. The fellow watching the pendulum is as important as a pendulum, if not more. Right? So, we want to know ourselves, how do we proceed?

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We have been taught to be dependent in a thousand ways.

Our entire upbringing and education has been such that we’ve been taught to be dependent in the thousand ways. We’ve been told, for example, that we must top the class. Now remember, to top the class, you’ve to be dependent on others. How? Because not only your performance is important, it’s also important that the others perform badly than you. So, there is dependency. “I might do very well but there’s somebody else who’s done better still. I can’t top.”

“You’re good only when the entire society and the entire group of relatives say that you’re good.” So, your being good is now dependent on the opinion of so many people. There is no absolute standard, it’s all relative. If they say you’re good, you’re good. And if the neighbor comes and says, “Mr. Sharma. Your daughter is disappointing.” Then both Mr. Sharma and the daughter are gone. Their day is spoiled. The daughter does not know herself. And even Mr.Sharma does not know, neither the daughter, nor himself. Are you getting it?

Parents tell their kids, “We will be proud of you when the entire world claps for you.” Now what is this? Do you want to ruin your child’s life? “Don’t do this. What will they say?” Is that not a statement that you’ve often heard? “Duniya kya kahegi.” Now you’re being constantly conditioned to become dependent.

Entire system of education, examinations, certifications, you’re only as good as somebody else says you are. There is always an assessing body outside of you. The result has been that even in this young age we’ve lost the capacity for self assessment. We’ve lost the faculty that can look directly at itself. You know yourself only via somebody, only through somebody.

If you’re to ask yourself “Who am I? How am I? Where do I stand?”, you’ll find that you don’t have any answer. And that’s horrifying. And if you have any answer that answer would surely be an answer given by somebody else. It would have been supplied to you by somebody else. Even supplied is a very soft word, it would actually have been implanted in your mind by somebody else.

Read the complete article: The deeper is your dependency, the deeper is your fear

The deeper is your dependency, the deeper is your fear

21125331_1485233508231414_8341813784503617778_oListener: Why are we always scared? In a class if I’m sitting and I’ve to ask question to our teacher, then why do we always think that what people will think of us if I ask this question?

Acharya Prashant: What’s your name?

L: I’m Kiran.

AP: Kiran. Sit Kiran. First of all it’s a little amusing that the one who’s confidently getting up and asking the first question is saying why am I hesitant to ask question. Kiran who’s hesitating to ask, you?

L: Now I’m confident to ask. But few years back I was not so confident. I just wanted to know that reason.

AP: Leave that Kiran. That Kiran is gone. This Kiran is no more nervous. Is she nervous? In front of everybody she’s interacting, sitting right in the front seat. The moment I say ‘Ask’, she shoots the question. If anybody is not nervous here it’s you. The others should ask, “Why are we hesitating? Why can’t we just come forth and speak?” Read more

To be integrated is to be one, and to be disintegrated is to be divided

To be integrated is to be one, and to be disintegrated is to be divided. Not completely in, not completely out. Not completely here, not completely there. Not joyful, not hopeless either. And the division is not merely two-fold. It’s not as if one’s mind is divided in two. The mind is divided into 20,000 parts. Each part running in a separate direction. And that is conflict, that is violence that is what the speaker refers to as the unspeakable sorrow. Because from the divided mind of the individual results divided relationships, divided societies, ultimately a divided world. And everything is just bits and pieces. That’s the pain, right?

Suppose you are sitting here, and you’re not completely here. Do you understand the agony of that, the sheer sorrow of that? Why should I move from that platform to this place, so that I can be, fully with you? And that alone can be peaceful. That is integration. Are we getting this? Being here, yet not being here, would be sorrow.

Now, what is education doing? Is it helping me as a teacher and the student be whole, be complete, be totally here? Or, is my education sending parts of me somewhere else.

Let me give you an example. Study today so that you may get a result tomorrow. What is being done to the mind of the students? Study today, so that you may get good results tomorrow. What is being done to the mind of the students? Please tell me. Where is the student? The student is here. And where are we sending his mind?

In Future.

What is important, that, there, in the future, the results. This is Disintegration. Unknowingly the teacher has disintegrated the student. Not that the teacher has bad intentions. He’s a teacher. Yet because the teacher has not taken care, to deeply inquire, what has resulted in is that you have broken the child or parents.

What is the child? The child is, the student is, what he or she is. And then there is the comparison. The comparison that begins at home, is institutionalized by the university. How? These are the toppers. Now, what else do the parents do? “The neighbor in so good at studying, you are not.” The University takes that forward in a more polished way.

Read the complete article: What is an integrated mind?

What is an integrated mind?

gen 1Question: What is an integrated mind?

Acharya Prashant: The integrated individual. The title itself says education integration. The words integration or disintegration were mentioned by you not less than six or eight times, do you recall? Let’s begin with that. What is meant by integration and why should we say education and integration. Is the relationship between these two?

 L: Yes

AP: Please tell.

L: When you concentrate in and then try to share your knowledge and try to improve the other person then you get integrated with the other person.

AP: In the very first paragraph the author talks of unspeakable sorrow. Unspeakable sorrow. What is this unspeakable sorrow? All sorrow, all suffering is the suffering of being divided. Let us look at ourselves or let us look at our students, and a very obvious truth of this will come to us. What does my student say? I wanted another department and I did not get it. I wanted an NIT or an IIT, I did not get it. The mind is divided between this and that, and simply put, this is this integration.

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Do you know why one wants to cry over spilled milk?

Do you know why one wants to cry over spilled milk? So that one doesn’t have to do the right action then and there.

The right action probably then is to clean up that which has been spilled.

You probably did not get exposure to wisdom literature as a child. But what prevents you now? Ask yourself even today. Are you reading well? What is your alibi today?

Maybe you could justify your situation ten years or twenty years back by saying that you were just a helpless kid and nobody provided you the exposure. But today you probably are not a kid. Why are you not then giving yourself the fullest opportunity to learn, know, discover, uncover?

When you give yourself the opportunity, you also know how to bring the opportunity to others. Millions and billions of kids are waiting for wisdom education. But that wisdom education can be brought to them only by somebody wise. So you have to first of all ask yourself: “Have I been siding with wisdom? Am I committed to discovering my wise nature?” When you discover your wise nature you’ll be able to bring wisdom education to everybody: to kids, to adults, to the entire world.

Read complete article: Can one get rid of mental patterns even at an advanced age?

Can one get rid of mental patterns even at an advanced age?

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Important takeaways:

Do you know why one wants to cry over spilled milk? So that one doesn’t have to do the right action then and there.

When you give yourself the opportunity, you also know how to bring the opportunity to others. Millions and billions of kids are waiting for wisdom education. But that wisdom education can be brought to them only by somebody wise. So you have to first of all ask yourself: “Have I been siding with wisdom? Am I committed to discovering my wise nature?” When you discover your wise nature you’ll be able to bring wisdom education to everybody: to kids, to adults, to the entire world.

Question: All the wisdom is available to us only after a certain age. But the dye is prepared early in the childhood. How does one change his dye at an advanced stage of his life?

Acharya Prashant: The dye is no good. The dye does not help you. The dye is such a lousy dye. The dye is such a misfit. When you watch the dye you do not want to confirm to the dye and that is freedom from the dye. Nothing else. You call it the dye, you call it your conditioning, you call it the various layers that you have covered yourself under. You call it your ideas, ideals, prejudices, whatever.

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Self-realization is an empty cup that is empty even of the cup.

We always exist in relation to something or somebody. So, if you want to know yourself, you just see, what is the effect that the other has had upon you and we then, are a sum total of all those effects.

What are we?

We are mental fragments, devoted to the nation, the society, the education, the upbringing, the commerce, the culture, the civilization. You want to look at yourself, you will have to look at the effect all these external influences have had upon you. We exist with respect to these influences. There is nothing in us that is not coming from somewhere or the other. So, to know yourself is to know these things that are coming from somewhere or the other.

“So, this part of me, well it is coming from religion; this part of me, well it is coming from ethnicity; this part of me, well it is coming from culture; this part of me, well it is coming from a gender; this part of me, well it is coming from my genes, this part of me, well it is coming from my education.” And, this way you can know all that you see yourselves to be. Are you getting it?

This way, you can know everything that you see yourselves to be. All the conditioned bit that we are; and remember that we are very totally conditioned. There is nothing in us that is not conditioned, every single cell in the body is conditioned. So, the conditioned bit that we are, can be known only by seeing the genesis of that conditioning.

If you can see where your conditioning is coming from, you have seen who you are. This is called self-knowledge. Do you see what Self-knowledge is? To know yourself, see where your actions are coming from. How do you know that? You watch your actions. You watch every bit of yourself, your activities from morning till night, your thoughts, your inclinations and you come to appreciate all the conditioning that has gone into making ‘you’. Right? This is Self-knowledge. Self-knowledge is obtained by self-observation.

Then there is something called, Self-realization. Self-realization is a little different from Self-knowledge, and also very closely related to Self-Knowledge.

You see, how deeply conditioned you are. The ‘conditioning bit’, amounts to Self-knowledge. And the ‘seeing bit’, amounts to self-realization.

I repeat, you ‘see’ how deeply conditioned you are. And everybody is deeply conditioned. As I said, every single fiber in the body is conditioned. So, you ‘see’, how deeply conditioned you are. The deeply conditioned part pertains to Self-knowledge. And the ‘seeing’ part — I am seeing how deeply conditioned I am — pertains to Self-realization.

Self-realization is not objective; Self-realization is not knowledge; Self-realization cannot be wrote down, conceptualized, or summarized or expressed; Self-realization, or Self-understanding is just Silence. It is an absence of everything you thought yourselves to be. Everything that you thought yourselves to be, is bracketed under Self-knowledge. Your name, your gender, your caste, your religion, your profession, your family, your views, your ideologies – all of them come under Self-knowledge.

Self-knowledge is the result of observation of life. Self-knowledge means you watch how you behave, when you pass in front of a temple compared to when you pass in front of a railway station. Self-knowledge is to see, how your relationships are with the man who owes you money, compared to the man, to whom you owe money.

When you look at all that, what you get is, Self-knowledge. This is the way I am, this is the way my habits and tendencies are. Getting it?

And the power to see all this, the beginning of seeing all this, and the ending of seeing all this, the entire environment of seeing all this, that is called Self-realization. Self-realization is nothing because anyway the Self is nothing, the Self is all false. The Self is all nothing, the Self is all false, so Self-realization too is just nothing. Just Nothing. It is an emptiness. It is a peaceful silence. If you say you are Self-realized, and still you have something more to say about yourself, then all you have is a concept of Self-realization.

Self-realization is actually not a word at all because a word ought to have some meaning, a word ought to have some content, Self-realization has no content at all.

Self-realization is an empty cup that is empty even of the cup. You usually have cups that are empty of contents. Self-realization is a cup that is empty even of the cup.

Read the complete article: The right relationship tells you about yourself

The right relationship tells you about yourself



Question: Acharya Ji, J.Krishnamurti says, “In a right relationship, you come to know yourself.” Please explain.

Acharya Prashant: The question is, Krishnamurti says, “In the right relationship, you come to know yourself.” So, how does one know himself?

That which you have quoted, is in itself the solution. He is saying, “You know yourself in relationship.” What is it meant, when it is said that you know yourself in a relationship?

We always exist as somebody related to something. You take away everything outside of yourself, and it will become impossible for you, to say even one sentence about yourself. Everything and anything that we utter about ourselves is related to the world. And the world is supposedly, outside of yourself, is it not? Read more

What is knowledge and what is ignorance?


Question: Ashtavakra Gita, chapter 16 verse 1:

 “Son! Even if you read many scriptures many times, or you listen to them, yet you will not attain to your nature until and unless you forget all of them.”

Acharya Prashant: The mind proceeds on its spiritual pursuit, because it is fed up of itself. The mind does not turn towards the Truth till it has a certain belief in its own capability to heal itself. The mind tries its best. And when it sees that even its best is highly insufficient, then it turns to its concept of something beyond itself. So, that is the intention—to get relief, to go to a space that is outside of itself, contains a curative ability higher than itself. That’s what the intention of the mind is.

But then what is the mind?

The mind is all that which is accumulated in the mind. The mind is just its stuff, its content. Remove the contents of the mind, and nothing remains. The contents of the minds are also the container that contains them. This content of the mind is called knowledge. Mind is knowledge.

So, even when the mind tries to find relief from itself, it has no option, but to turn to knowledge, that’s what it does. It feels that by gaining another kind of knowledge it will be able to get peace. What it does not realize is that knowledge of any kind just becomes mind stuff. And mind stuff is mind. And mind is what the mind wants to get rid of.

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Do not link your students’ self-worth to anything


Question: I am a Maths teacher and I feel like I am forcing the students to learn something that they probably don’t choose to learn. Also, I feel that should I just give away this identity of a teacher because I have a feeling that this doesn’t suit me and I am feeling like I am forcing things like, “You have to learn,” “You have to do more work,” and I don’t feel quite at ease with it. So should I just drop my job? Read more

The world can redeem itself only by placing the highest value on the Guru


Questioner: The question is: Who is a Guru? Is a Guru different from a Teacher right? Can a Guru bring together — Knowledge and spirituality in one domain? And what is this contradiction between Osho and J. Krishnamurti?

Acharya Prashant: See, there has to be something which makes you feel that there is a difference between a Teacher and a Guru. What is that thing? Because language and dictionary will tell you that these two words are almost synonymous: ‘Teacher and Guru’. Yet something within you tells you that they are not. Indeed there may be a huge difference; a dimensional difference between these two.

Teaching, in the way we know it, in the way it is used in contemporary society, is analogous to filling up the brain, guiding the intellect in a predetermined direction. Now it’s a very important function: to bring a child or a young student up to date, to the point where evolution has brought mankind is important. If a child has born today, he must know the languages that are prevalent today. He must know the sciences, he must know the traffic rules, he must know the political environment, he must know computers and electronics, he must know the way the various societies are built and are operated. Read more