Why can’t I leave my comfort zone?

Question: When I look at what I am doing, and why I am doing it, honestly, it gives me fear. I don’t want to take action, because of the fear of the new.

Speaker: There is no fear of the new. There is only the fear of leaving the old. The old is giving you comforts, and it is as basic as that! It is so obvious, direct and ground level, that no explanation can be given or needed. It is the most gross thing that is there. It has to be obvious. Read more

How do I get rid of my bad habits?

Question: I want to get rid of my bad habits. I have tried all the things to get rid of them, but I am still unable to do that. What is the reason?

Speaker: How do you know whether a particular habit is good or bad? How do you decide?

Listener 1: It has been told to us earlier, that what is good and what is bad.

Speaker: You have been told earlier that what is good and what is bad. That is the way we go about deciding everything – what is right, what is wrong, what is fair, what is unfair – on the basis of criteria that has been given to us in advance. That this is good, this is bad.
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How do I get rid of my restlessness?

Question: Restlessness doesn’t really leave me. Why am I so restless? How can I get rid of my restlessness?

Speaker: Cars these days come with the auto-pilot feature. You can put the car on the cruise mode, especially on long drives, and the driver can relax. There was a research conducted on the vehicles that have this auto-drive feature.  It was found out that people who buy cars having this facility do not really use it. Read more

Why do I get jealous?

Question: Sir, when two people are at a same level, and if one of the two moves ahead, the other is mostly not comfortable of this fact. Whereas had the same person, been a stranger to him, the second fellow would still have been comfortable. Why is it so that knowing someone, leads to problems including jealousy?

Speaker: There is very little left to be answered here. The fact has been rightly stated. It is just that you have known the fellow since a period of time, and now the fellow is changing. Obviously you cannot ignore the fact that you have known him. Obviously there are images from the past, and compared to those images the fact of today is different.

I am not asking you to forget the images of the past, I am not asking you to look at that man in a new light, I am not asking you to look at him as if you are looking at him for the first time today, because that is probably not possible for you. You have been too close, too intimate for too long to look at the man afresh. Yes, you have a past, and yes the changed man is standing right in front of you. Now if you really love the man is not this a cause worth celebrating? Isn’t this a development to be rejoiced!

Do not forget that earlier he was with you. Because you will not be able to forget! But today, if he is unlike you, should you not celebrate this fact? Or would you rather mourn and complain and be jealous. If jealousy is arising in you, it’s a fair opportunity to reflect on the quality of the relationship that has already been there. jealousyI have been with somebody, and I do not like the fact that he is refining. Now has this a relationship been of love? Had it been of love, I would have been happy. I would have said, “Great that you are moving ahead. I love you even more now. I loved you then, and you are far more lovable today!”

Or would you rather regret and rue? Your child gets seventy marks in one examination, and in the next examination he gets eighty, do you feel disappointed? What do you say? It’s great that he is improving. Then why do you feel disappointed when your spouse starts getting ten percent more in the exam of life? He is improving, he is a better man. Celebrate!

But you can celebrate his refinement, only if first of all you value refinement. (Sarcastically) “I loved you for your crudeness, I loved you for your ignorance, I loved you for your violence, I loved you for your servility, and I do not value freedom, refinement or wisdom.

When I do not value refinement or wisdom or freedom, how will I love a wise, refined and free man? How will I love?”

Somebody getting ten more marks is a very gross event. It is obvious and visible that from seventy, there is an increase to eighty, and I wanted that increase. Right? But if you don’t want that increase, then that same increase can be a cause of regret. “Oh, I didn’t want that increase, it has increased.” Marks increase from 70 to 80, you celebrate! But if your weight increases from 70 to 80, you don’t really celebrate that much. It’s a question of value. You value marks but you do not value weight. You start calling yourself ‘overweight’.

Do you value ‘wisdom’? Do you value ‘peace’? Do you value ‘understanding’? Do you? And if you don’t value these things for yourself, obviously you cannot value these for your husband. First of all you have to value these for yourself. A wise woman would thank the heavens that the husband is gaining in wisdom. A free mind would fill up with gratitude that the partner too is gaining freedom. So, remove the spouse from the question, remove the other person from the equation. Look at yourself. “What do I value? What have I labelled as important in life?”

When you would be rightly valuing, not somebody else, first of all yourself, when you would be rightly knowing what is valuable, then you would value all the right things, all the right people, and all the right developments. Then you would not resist them. Then you would not wish that things would have been better, had this not happened. “Oh, you were better off earlier, why don’t you become the same old man? I miss what you were one year back.” Then these things will not come to your mind.

Have your heart at the right place. When somebody is waking up, and you are really friends with him, then wake up along with him. That is the only way to keep company, that is the only way to maintain the friendship. There can be no friendship between the running and the limping.

Listener: What if there are two people, both at the same level. One person who is known to me and if this person rises up, it causes a wrath of jealousy in me. However, the other person is not known to me, and if he rises, there is no jealousy. I even think that probably he deserves it. I might even be happy for him.

Speaker: Factually unfeasible. Movement means ‘comparison’. Movement is always from A to B. If you are saying that this person is showing a movement it means that you have known him in the past. You cannot say somebody is improving without having a standard to compare him against. How do you know somebody is improving? Only by knowing firstly what he has been. Do you understand what I am saying?

Listener: What about the relationship then?

Speaker: Ah, attachment!

It’s alright. Be attached, but to what? What are you attached to? I will not just announce that attachment is bad. I am saying that it is alright, be attached, but what are you attached to? There is something about the man that was there in him two years back that you are attached to. What is it that you feel attached to? His ignorance or his love?

If you are attached to his love then he is becoming all the more worthy of love, kindly be all the more attached. Wonderful! Divine attachment! But you will have problems if you are attached to his darkness. And what gets attached to darkness? Does light get attached to darkness?

It is your own darkness that is fond of darkness. So I’m saying, forget the other person. Look at yourself. Dispel the darkness within and then you will value all that is light. Being dark within, how will you value light?dispel darkness

If there are people in your life who are not happy with the fact that your eyes are opening up, that you are able to look at the world clearly then please know that this resentment is not coming from their light. It is coming from their darkness and hence this resentment cannot be made important. If your friends taunt you, when you turn up for the clarity session, then they are not your friends in the first place. Please understand this.

Friend by definition is a well-wisher. A friend by definition is a man who would celebrate if you are improving. Not a man who would be jealous and irritated seeing you walk the path of liberation. He is not a friend at all. But don’t condemn him, because if he is not a friend to you, firstly he is not even a friend to himself! He is his own enemy, how can he be a friend to you?

We make friends with so many people, without even asking, “Is that fellow a friend to himself first?” He is his own enemy, how can he be my friend? The one who does not know what is good for him, how will he know or like, what is good for you? He is bound to resent it. How can you give importance to their resentment?

– Excerpts from a Clarity Session held at AdvaitSthal. Edited for clarity.

Watch the session at: Why do I get jealous?

Read more article on this topic:

Article 1: Ego will not understand this world, but will demand a Reality beyond
Article 2: Place of ego either at the Master’s feet or in the Master’s embrace
Article 3: The ego hates light and truth

Only a Godless mind will be petty

यदि देहं पृथक् कृत्य चिति विश्राम्य तिष्ठसि।

अधुनैव सुखी शान्तो बन्धमुक्तो भविष्यसि॥

– अष्टावक्र गीता (१.४)

Translation: If you detach yourself from the body and rest in consciousness, you will become content, peaceful and free from bondage immediately.

Question: How to detach oneself from the body? Read more

To not to be spiritual is to be a social slave

Question: A simple rejection from anybody affects me completely. How to overcome this and what causes this disappointment?

Speaker: Rejection might be simple, but do you keep it simple? Do you allow it to remain simple? Do you know what ‘simple’ means?  Simple means, direct. Simple means, it is what it is. I do not add anything to it, I do not distort it, I do not take away anything from it. Rejection is rejection. But for you is it merely rejection? You make it a part of your self-assessment. It all pertains to the question, ‘Who am I?’ When there is no clarity on that question, then that question clamours to be answered. And it gets answered in very confused ways, in very distorted ways. ‘Who am I?’ The one, who will be accepted by others. ‘Who am I?’ One, among the others. Are you getting it? Read more

Quantifying yourself leads to jealousy

Speaker: How should we get rid of jealousy and anger? By deleting the word, ‘we’ from this. Why could not you ask, “How should ‘I’ get rid of jealousy and anger?”

Listener 1: Yes, Sir.

Speaker: Why this plurality? Why does ‘me’ become ‘we’? That is why the jealousy and anger are there. See ‘M’ and it has been inverted. The letter ‘M’ in ‘Me’ when inverted becomes letter ‘W’ in ‘We’.

And then, the entire life becomes inverted. The absence of ‘I’ is the root of jealousy and anger. This ‘we’, is the cumulative mind, the collective mind, the social mind, the comparative mind that lives in ‘we’, that lives in a tribe. Jealousy cannot be there without ‘the other’.

Jealousy is born out of comparison. Jealousy is born from a mind in which many, many are living. To say that there are many, means that they are different entities. And to say that there are different entities, means you have already compared them. Can you say that ‘X’ is different from ‘Y’ without comparing ‘X’ and ‘Y’? ‘We’ means that different entities are present. And whenever there are different things, there would definitely be comparison and hence, jealousy. Read more

Is it selfish to think about myself? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Questioner: Is it selfish to think about myself?

Acharya Prashant: Nikita, first of all thinking and understanding are not the same. Thinking about yourself is selfish but more than selfish it is stupid. What will you think about yourself? We all do keep thinking about ourselves. But what can that be? All your thoughts are a product of your conditioning, they come from outside. To think about yourself is to think from the ego. To think about yourself means to remain caught in what the world has given you. Opinions, thoughts, religion, goals, targets, beliefs; that is all that you can think about yourself. So I do not know what you mean by selfish but I am sure that thinking about yourself is stupid. Read more

How to get rid of daydreaming? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Questioner: Sir, how to get rid of the problem of daydreaming?

Acharya Prashant: Are you day dreaming and knowing that it is day dreaming?

No! It’s not possible. You know that you have been dreaming only after the dreaming ceases. Right?

Now you are obviously helpless when the process of dreaming is on so I have nothing to say in that matter. You see if a sleeping person asks “how do I wake up”, now when he is sleeping, at that moment can he do anything to wake up? When you are sleeping, can you do anything to wake up? Read more

Pornography and guilt,physical and social conditioning || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Speaker: Rohit is asking, ‘What is it about pornography and various other kinds of expressions of suppression?’ Why is there so much in our lives that we hide, that is done behind closed doors hidden from someone, and yet we all know that it is a norm that everyone engages in all these activities? Read more

Discipline – that which breaks the patterns

Listener 1: Isn’t it contradictory that I need to discipline myself in order to realize Freedom?

Speaker: The one, who has a strong sense of bondage, only he needs to be freed; who else? The one who is abiding in freedom requires no freedom. Freedom is his very breath, so there is no question of striving after freedom.

So, when we say freedom, obviously there is somebody to whom freedom is applicable. Freedom word is applicable only to the bonded mind. Now what is discipline with respect to a bonded mind?
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Procrastination is the carrying forward of misery || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Question: Does procrastination imply that the priorities in the life are wrong?

Acharya Prashant: What is this thing about sending something, delegating something to the future. What is this thing about procrastination? Would you ever postpone something to the future if you are really in love with it? Would you do that? You would not do that, right? But then procrastination happens to be a way of life with most of us.

We will do it tomorrow!

What does it tell us about the quality of our life?

We are not in love with what we are doing. We don’t find joy in it and hence there is a tendency to lose time.
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How to obtain a satisfied future? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Question: In present college scenario there is one thing which is the academics, which I focus on or there is this equivalent pool of activities which will help me develop my personality, in a sense that if I get better in a specific activity, it might help me in future, in my life. So, in general I may have the belief that I am good in academics, I need to excel in academics but academics might not help me in my life, in my future. How should I balance and how should prioritize things? What is contentment? Is it right to compromise on contentment because I may do something particular today which will help me in future irrespective of whether it is making me happy or not? Is it the right way to lead life?
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Why does one want to dominate the other?

Question: Why do people dominate, in any sense, money, strength?

Speaker: The reason is simple- survival, physical survival. You look at animals. If you want to understand the human mind, look at animals because that is where we are coming from. In the group of animals, who survives?

Listener 1: The strongest, the fittest one.

Speaker: The strongest one, the one who can dominate. In a group of males, who gets the female? The one who can win and kill everybody else.That is what happens in the animals. Kill the others, dominate them, injure them and then you have the access to the female. That is why it is always called the survival of the fittest, the Darwinian selection, and all that. Because of this the off-spring that is born, is born out of the strongest male. So the species gets strengthened and strengthened.
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How am I supposed to feel after your session? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Question: How am I supposed to feel after your sessions?

Speaker: If even this is to be told by someone else, then where is your freedom?

Listener: How do I know that I am rightly following everything that is being told to us in HIDP sessions?

Speaker: Let us first understand what is this thing about rightness?

You see when we understand the scope of this question, then we see how far his question goes. The question is, ‘How do I know that I am rightly implementing and understanding what is being told in these sessions?’

I will expand this question.

How will a young man know that whatsoever he does out of his intelligence is the right thing? Many of you say, ‘I am a slave of external influences, and I can see that. I have come to realize that freewill is not the one that I am functioning on and I am dependent upon external decisions. I can see that. But now when I want to reject all that and live my life on my own, on my freewill, a great fear arises’.

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The demons of the subconscious can be faced only in faith

Speaker: Mind has stored so much that it does not even know that how much it has stored. There are two portions of its storage. One part is where you know that I have stored something. The other part is where you have stored it but you have forgotten that it has been stored. Now what is happening? This is like a place where you keep all your stuff. You brought some vegetables, brought lots of vegetables, you are like the mind, accumulative, always in a hurry to accumulate, afraid that there might be a famine, there might be a curfew. ‘I will not get vegetables’. That is what the mind is always thinking: hold, store. So you keep on bringing vegetables even then when there no vegetables are needed. Your house is full of vegetables and because the refrigerator and other places can hold only as much of vegetables as there is space, you keep your vegetables at very unseemly places, under the bed. Wherever you find space, you put some vegetables. Read more

Motivation is slavery || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Acharya Prashant: The question is that it is alright to motivate somebody but for a real, permanent effect to take place, and for that the motivation should turn into a habit. What should be done to bring this into effect?

Firstly, why must you believe that the HIDP is about motivating you? And secondly, why must you believe that habits serve you well, any habit, what you label as a good habit or what you label as a bad habit? Do you see that there are two intrinsic beliefs hidden in your question?

First is, that you assumed that the HIDP is trying to motivate you and you have assumed that motivation works and the second assumption is, that at some point motivation must turn into a habit and that will make it work even more. I contest both these beliefs. Let us try to see.

What is motivation?

All motivation is external. Go into this. Motivation means an external force, an external agency, an external stimulus, is acting upon you and making you react in a certain way. Is that not what motivation is? So, someone comes and says a few words to you, those words have a certain impact on your mind and you start acting and behaving in a particular manner, and that is what you call as motivation.

Or you watch an inspiring movie or read a fancy tale and that has a certain effect on you, a summoning of energy, and you call that motivation and you are happy with it. But don’t you see what that does to you? That shifts the ownership of your energy to that external agency.

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An attached mind cannot love

Question: Sir, love is not attachment. Attachment means habit and if it is so, the person you love becomes an object. But if we are not attached to that person we love, then we see that person like others, and it is our habit to hurt others for our own profit. So, it is sure that we will hurt that person also whom we love because now we see that person like everyone else. So, if we are not attached to that person, how can we say that we are in love with that person?

Speaker: She is saying that normally people hurt those around them. That is what you call normal human life; keep hurting everybody. She says that if I am attached to someone I don’t hurt him or her, but I hurt everybody else. So, the conclusion is that if I am not attached to the object of my love, I will hurt him as well. Do you see the flow of logic in her mind? I hurt everybody and then there is one exception. Who? The person I love and I am attached to that person. If I am not attached to that person, then I will hurt that person also. So, this implies that if I hurt that person how is it love? Hence the conclusion is, attachment is love.
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Attention and time

Speaker: Is there any relation between reading in immersion and memorization? Is it necessary that whatever has been read in attention, will be remembered and can be recalled? Conversely, if something cannot be remembered, wasn’t there attention?

Let’s go into the relationship between attention and time. For too long, too many people have said that attention is to live in the now, and the matter has not really being understood.

Where there is a now, there would always be time, there would always be a past and a future.
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What is right and what is wrong? || Acharya Prashant (2013)

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

Speaker: Breaking the question into two simpler parts, one is- all of us have positives and negatives, strengths and weaknesses. How to enhance the strengths and diminish the weaknesses. We will look into this.
And second is- I know what is right but when it comes to the moment of happening, I can’t do much about it. I know that I am wrong, but I am short-tempered. I know that this the case, yet when it is happening, I find myself powerless. To how many of us does this happen?

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