How to judge rightly? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

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

How to judge rightly

Question: Acharya Ji, what is the meaning of non-duality? Does it mean that we have to drop our judgments?

Acharya Prashant Ji:

Non-duality does not mean that you have to drop judgments. Non-duality means that – the ego is always judging, and that is inevitable.

Ego is always acting as a judge. And as long as ego is there, it would continue to judge. You cannot tell the Ego, “Kindly don’t judge.” That is so idealistic, that it is stupid. You are telling the lion, to not to eat meat. That won’t happen. You are  telling the ego to – not to judge. That won’t happen. The ego would keep judging. That’s it’s prakriti, it’s constitution.

Now that the ego is known to judge, there is only one hope left for the ego. And that is – that the ego judges rightly. Judge rightly. If I tell you, “Don’t judge,” then you will end up either disappointed, or a hypocrite.

If you are honest, you will find, that in spite of your efforts to not to judge, you are anyway, always judging. So, you will be disappointed. And if you are not very honest, then you will falsely declare that – you do not judge. And therefore, you will be a hypocrite. It’s better then, to know, that given how we are, we are continuous judges.

Judge rightly!

What does it mean to judge rightly?

In every situation, see where fear is, see where temptation is, see where limits are.

See where the blind force of habit is.

Don’t go towards that direction.

That is what is – ‘right judgement’.

If habit, time and tradition are taking you somewhere, pause!

If the habitual rush of tendencies is taking you somewhere, pause!

That’s enough.

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

Watch the session: How to judge rightly? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

To personally meet or connect with Acharya Prashant: click here

Donate via PayPal:

(In multiples of $10)

$10.00

What are dark suggestions of consciousness? || Acharya Prashant, on Rumi (2017)

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

What are dark suggestions of consciousness

Sometimes I forget completely what companionship is!
Unconscious and insane,  I spill sad energy everywhere.
My story gets told in various ways: a romance, a dirty joke, a war, a vacancy.
Divide up my forgetfulness to any number, it will go around.
These dark suggestions that I follow, are they part of some plan?

Friends, be careful.
Don’t come near me out of curiosity, or sympathy.

~ Rumi

Question: Acharya Ji, what are these dark suggestions? Are they part of some plan?

Acharya Prashant Ji: All the miseries, the gloom of life, that is these ‘dark suggestions’. By ‘dark suggestions’, Rumi means the urge, the tendency, the motivation, to remain in darkness, to act out of darkness.

And there is a lot of that darkness, in our life. We follow that, as if somebody, is instructing us, or advising, or compelling us, and we are following his suggestions.

Now, Rumi is saying, “Are they a part of some plan?” And that is also the question here. Are they a part of some plan?  Yes, there is a plan. The plan is that – you have to ‘look’ at those suggestions, and get rid of them. Somebody suggests you something, by following his suggestion, you find that your misery is deepening, your darkness is deepening, what do you do with the suggestion? You dismiss it.

Do you dismiss only the suggestion? No, you also dismiss the one, who has been suggesting. And you have been following these suggestions since long. Sometimes you see how much pain comes out of these suggestions, sometimes you don’t that. As a result, you feel, that some of your motivations are good for you, and some are not.

You feel some of your actions are good, and others are not. You feel some of your thoughts are good, and others are not. Isn’t it very common to see people distinguishing between positive thoughts and negative thoughts?

We are prepared, at most, to dismiss some of your motivations, our urges.

But, even when we dismiss them, we dismiss them relatively.

We dismiss the ‘bad’, in relation to the ‘good’.

Which means every time we dismiss the ‘bad’, we end up accepting something else as ‘good’.

Every time you dismiss something ‘bad’, you end up accepting something, that you call as ‘good’. 

So the rejection is never total.

In fact, it has not been the rejection at all. It is a zero-sum game. Something has been rejected, and in it’s lieu, something else has been accepted. So the center from where all these suggestions come, all these motivations arise, that center remains untouched, scrutinized.

Dismiss the very center. For that, you will need to dismiss, not only that which appears problematic, but also that which appears auspicious. Then the plan will fructify.

We don’t enable the plan, to achieve it’s results.

The world is a plan.

What is the objective of the plan?

That the plan must be seen through.

That the plan must be dismantled. 

When you are given a riddle, a puzzle, what is the objective? The objective is not that you remain forever caught in the riddle. The objective is that the riddle must be solved. That is the plan. The solution is the plan. The dissolution is the plan.

Let the plan materialise.

Rumi has said, “Dark suggestions.” I will add ‘bright suggestions’ to it. Whether it is the ‘dark suggestions’ you follow, or the ‘bright suggestions’ that you follow, see where are all of these suggestions coming from. Suggestion is motivation, suggestion is the motivation to act.

See where are all the dualistic, contrasting inclinations arising from. Sometimes you want to eat, sometimes you don’t want to eat. Sometimes you love, sometimes you hate. Is there really dimensional difference between our ‘love’ and ‘hate’. Are they not just two sides of the same coin? Is love always not prepared to quickly turn into hate?

Look at your enemies today. Do you have strangers there? All your enemies, are but people, who did not fulfill, or could not fulfill, the expectations that you had from them, as friends. The dark and the bright, are not merely co-existing, they are existing as – each other. You may even say – ‘because of each other’. Though that is not precise.

But it is not false, if you say, “Darkness exists because of so-called brightness. And brightness exists only in relation to the darkness.” They all arise from the same center. And they both remain protected, because they both appear different. Had they both appeared same, both would have disappeared.

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

Watch the session: What are dark suggestions of consciousness? || Acharya Prashant, on Rumi (2017)

To personally meet or connect with Acharya Prashant: click here

Donate via PayPal:

(In multiples of $10)

$10.00

What is secularism? How to become secular? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

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

What is secularism How to become secular

Question: Acharya Ji, please tell us how we can keep a fine divide between the religious and the secular, and grow holistically as an individual and as a society?

Acharya Prashant Ji: There is no divide between the religious and the secular. True religion is about eliminating all divisions.

How are you trying to have a division between religiosity and secularism?

What do you mean by ‘Secularism’?

You mean that no person should be blinded by his creed or belief. No person should just turn unjust, or biased, or prejudiced, because of his ideological or religious inclinations.

But that which you are trying to achieve through Secularism, can actually be never achieved through Secularism, because this, that you are trying to achieve – an unbiased and just mind – is exactly what religion and only religion can deliver you.

So, Secularism is self-defeating.

You have to understand this.

When you say that you want a secular person, or a secular state, what is it that you want? You want someone who is not prejudiced, not blinded by belief, who can keep a distance between his duties and his conditioning, who must know what the right action to do is, in spite of what his religious condition is. Right?

You want a person who does the right thing, irrespective of whether he is a Hindu, or a Christian, or a Muslim, or whatever. Right? That’s what you want to achieve through secularism.

When you say that X is a secular person, what you mean is, that he is prepared to read the Quran, even if he is a Hindu. And that he is prepared to respectfully go to the Upanishads, even if he is a Muslim, right? When you say that a country Y is a secular state, what do you mean? You mean that in that country, people are not discriminated on the the basis of their professed religious association, right? If this is what you want, then you should be deeply religious.

Who teaches you equanimity? Religion.

In Secularism, you want to be equanimous. But who teaches you equanimity? Religion.

In Secularism, you want a certain detachment. But who teaches you detachment? Religion.

In Secularism, you want to be respectful towards divergent opinions. But who teaches you to be respectful towards divergent opinions? Religion.

In Secularism, you want not to hurt the other, even if the other is holding beliefs, that go against yours. But who teaches you ahinsa (non-violence)? Religion.

So, truly religious person, and only a truly religious person, can be secular in real terms.

In other words, if Secularism is dear to you, you will have to turn to Religion.

If Secularism is in strife with religiosity, it means both are misplaced. The Religiosity is fake, and the Secularism is shallow.

You need not teach a truly religious person to be secular. In fact, ‘secular’ is such a small and shallow word, in front of religion.

If one is deeply religious, truly religious, then one is not only secular, one is way-way beyond secular.

Secularism only wants you to tolerate differences.

True religion, celebrates differences.

So, when you will talk about Secularism to a truly religious person, he will laugh. He will laugh, not because he opposes Secularism. He will laugh because he has gone..beyond Secularism.

There is Communalism.

Higher than Communalism, is Secularism.

And much, much higher than Secularism, is Religiosity.

So, obviously you see, that Communalism and Secularism are at odds with each other. But, not Secularism and Religiosity. It is naive to say that Secularism and Religiosity, confront each other. No!

Shallow belief, shallow communalism, that is what is at odds with secularism.

Secularism is a short-term treatment. You have bigots on this side, you have bigots on that side. None of the sides is prepared to listen to the other. It is in this kind of an environment, that Secularism is irrelevant. Only in this kind of environment.

So seeing that there are just bigots all around, you say, “Alright, keep religion to your houses. On the street, everyone has to follow secular principles.” So only in a very-very poor quality environment, does Secularism has some place. In a truly Religious environment, secularism has no place.

In fact, a truly Religious environment is so much better than Secularism, that if you impose Secularism on a really religious place, it would be a deterioration of that place.

So, it is great if you are not communal. If you are not communal, you are probably secular.

Now if you are secular, and you want to do still better, then move into Religion. Then you would forget everything about Secularism.

You would have transcended Secularism. You would have entered into something far more joyful.

————————————————————————————————————–

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yog’ session. Edited for clarity.

Watch the session video: What is secularism? How to become secular? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

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

Or, call the Foundation at 9650585100, or write to requests@advait.org.in


Support Acharya Prashant’s work:

  • Donate via Patreon: Become a Patron!
  • Donate via PayTm @ +91-9999102998
  • Donate via PayPal:

    (In multiples of $10)

    $10.00

Does positive thinking work? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

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

Does positive thinking work

Question: What is ‘thought’? Why is thought dualistic? What is ‘positive thinking’? Does positive thinking work? Why is positive thinking, a hype?

Acharya Prashant: Positive thought is never fully positive, negative thought is never fully negative. That is the meaning of the uncertainty, that always tags any thought.

What is ‘uncertainty’? ‘Uncertainty’ means, that when you are positive, you cannot be certainly positive. The doubt, that positivity is flanked by negativity, always remains. What do you call as a ‘positive thought’? A thought that makes you happy. A thought about your well-being, a thought that – you would be alright or better-off. A thought of hope.

But hope is not ever certain. Hope is always accompanied by fear. You hope that you might win, but somewhere you are also afraid that you might not. So, uncertainty is there. Similarly, when there is a negative thought, yet you keep hoping that the negative might be averted. Even in matters of despair, you are not fully certain. You keep clinging to some hope, howsoever unreasonable. This is what is meant, when it said that – thought is dualistic.

Total certainty is non-dual.

Non-duality is possible, only when the other side, any kind of otherness, totally ceases to exist.

When there is no ‘other’, there is no duality.

But where there is thought, there would always be the other side of the coin.

When you are being ‘positive’, then you are looking at one side of the coin, but deep within you know that the other side also exists, and is just waiting to show-up. A little flip, and everything would change, right?

So, thought never gives you total assurance. You remain a bit iffy. Everything remains dicey. You cannot fully relax. You cannot just go to sleep. It always remains important, therefore, to carry your defenses.

With thought, therefore, fear always is there. First of all, fear is there. And second, a continuation of thought is there. When something has not been concluded, it would continue. And with thought, there is never any conclusion, and therefore, an indefinite continuation is there.

You keep thinking. It is like an infinite snakes and ladders game. Just when you think that you are about to reach the conclusion, you land in the mouth of a giant snake, and you are back to square one. And now again you continue with your long, arduous journey. And back again, to the same old point, and then again, a resumption, and then again despair. But all this helps you to while away life.

Thought serves a great purpose, it eats away your time. Otherwise, time will become such a burden.

Thinking, thinking, you continuously think, and you comfortably let days, months, years, decades, slip away.  And then you are so thankful when the death arrives. Otherwise, living eighty years, and that too in awareness, would have been such a pain.

You will have, had to go through the rigors of right action.

Thoughts facilitate an avoidance of right action.

Thought is helpful. Someone comes to you and demands, “Now is the time to climb up the hill, are you ready with your trekking gear?” And you say, “No, I am still thinking.” So, all the effort and the pain, that would have come with climbing the hill, has been successfully avoided. You are still thinking.

Thinking is nice, scaling the heights is arduous.

Have you ever asked yourself – if positive thought is really ‘positive’, then why are there ever any negative thoughts, after a positive thought?

If positive thought is really ‘positive’, it should have ended even the possibility of any future negativity.

But that possibility remains, and vice versa.

————————————————————————————————————————

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

Watch the session: Does positive thinking work? || Acharya Prashant (2018)

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

Donate via PayPal:

(In multiples of $10)

$10.00

The scripture’s final aim is to bring you to the living scripture

Where the light is, there the lamp is.

The Self and the Ego are not the two ends of duality. It’s non-duality talking to duality.

That is what happens when a teacher exposes the falseness of one’s existing religion. When the teacher exposes the falseness of one’s existing motivations! The teacher says you know, the route that you are taking will lead you deeper into darkness. And what is the immediate conclusion that the mind draws? The mind says, he does not want me to go there, it means that he wants me to come to him. He is telling me that all those shops are false. And that surely proves that he wants me to come to his own shop. That is a quick suspicion, rather conclusion, that the mind jumps into.

You will not have your lamp, where your forefathers found their lamp. You will have to find your lamp using your own eyes. And the only mark of lamp is, Light. Don’t disregard the Light. The Light is the only proof of the lamp.

Searching for Truth, but in the wrong way, and at the wrong places, and from the wrong center. That is what the ego does. It wants light. The ego too wants light. But it won’t get it.

The scripture’s final aim is to bring you to the living scripture.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant on a Sufi Story: The Lamp shop


 

Acharya Prashant on a Sufi Story: The Lamp shop

The Lamp Post

One dark night two men met on a lonely road.

‘I am looking for a shop near here, which is called The Lamp Shop,’ said the first man.

‘I happen to live near here, and I can direct you to it, ‘ said the second man.

‘I should be able to find it by myself. I have been given the directions, and I have written them down,’ said the first man.

‘Then why are you talking to me about it?’

‘Just talking.’

‘So, you want company, not directions?’

‘Yes, I suppose that that is what it is.’

‘But it would be easier for you to take further directions from a local resident, having got so far; especially because from here onwards it is difficult.’

‘I trust what I have already been told, which has brought me thus far. I cannot be sure that I can trust anything or anyone else.’

‘So, although you once trusted the original informant, you have not been taught a means of knowing whom you can trust?’

‘That is so.’

‘Have you any other aim?’

‘No, just to find the Lamp shop.’

‘May I ask why you seek a lamp shop?’

‘Because I have been told on the highest authority that that is where they supply certain devices which enable a person to read in the dark.’

‘You are correct, but there is a prerequisite, and also a piece of information. I wonder whether you have given them any thought.’

‘What are they?’

‘The prerequisite to reading by means of a lamp is that you can already read.’

‘You cannot prove that!’

‘Certainly not on a dark night like this.’

‘What is the “piece of information”?’

‘The piece of information is that the Lamp Shop is still where it always was, but that the lamps themselves have been moved somewhere else.’

‘I do not know what a “lamp” is, but it seems obvious to me that the Lamp Shop is the place to locate such a device. That is, after all, why it is called a Lamp Shop.’

‘But a “Lamp Shop” may mean “A place where lamps may be obtained”, or it could mean “A place where lamps were once obtained but which now has none”.’

‘You probably have an ulterior motive, sending me off to some other shop. Or perhaps you do not want me to have a lamp at all.’

‘I am worse than you think. I want to find out if you could read at all. I want to see whether a lamp shop exists where you are going. I want to see whether you can have your lamp in another way suited to you.’

The two men looked at each other, sadly, for a moment. Then each went his way.

Idries Shah, Tales of the Dervishes

Acharya Prashant: To make things simpler at the outset itself, let it be clear that the one coming to seek the lamp shop, is a seeker full of knowledge. A seeker from a distant land, who does not belong really to the land of meditativeness. Knowledge has brought him to the boundary of the land of meditativeness, but cannot take him any further ahead. On the boundary, he meets this second person who is a teacher, who is the resident of this second land, who belongs there.

So, one of the first things that this teacher asks this knowledgeable seeker is, that, ‘you have come so far, having read some book that told you that you must search for lamps in a lamp shop that is thus located. But has the book also told you, how to find the one who will take you to the lamps? And if your book does not tell you ‘that,’ then your book is useless. He says, ‘‘has your book taught you, whom to trust? Has your book given you the eyes to figure out the real teacher?’’

Read more

Ego – A strange thing

The ego is a strange thing. When it gets hurt, then it gets bigger.

Whatever you do, even to diminish the ego, only nourishes the ego.

Nobody has lost and nobody has gained. Both have just been fooled.

The ego is an entity which increases, by any effort of yours. Even the effort, to get rid of the ego, nourishes the ego.

Non-resistance means getting rid of that ‘I’ that accepts or rejects.

Non-resistance is to drop the right to accept. If you are still accepting, you are still so strong. You are the authority. You are the authority, who accepts.

When you throw garbage out of your house, do you also throw out your television and your wife? You only drop things selectively. You only drop that, which you think is not valuable. But when the dropping happens by itself, then anything can get dropped.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: The difference between acceptance and non-resistance


 

Acharya Prashant: The difference between acceptance and non-resistance

Question: Its quite difficult to discuss about spirituality, because there are two worlds, the one we know, the spiritual one. When you say for example, in a spiritual way, when I do something to you, I do it to me because we are one. There is something, everyone experiences, When I give, for example, money to you, I am losing the money and you are gaining the money. And then we can…

AP: No… No… No…

We will proceed with this example, itself. Did we get what was said? What was said was that I had said, previously, that in the spiritual world, what one does to the other is what one does to the self, to himself.  Here, a counterexample is coming, he is saying, suppose he gives me, a coin, then I gain a coin and he loses a coin. Two different things are happening. What is happening to me is not the same as what is happening to him.  What is happening to me, is the opposite of what is happening to him. So he is saying that the spiritual world and the real world are different. They are not. This example is misplaced. We will see how.

Why do you remember, giving somebody a coin?

L: Because we are expecting something in return.

AP: When do you remember, giving something to somebody? When do you keep account and record of what you have given to somebody? Only then you remember it, right?

You are eating and your little child comes to you and you give half your bread to him, do you remember it? Do you remember it? But you are talking of this event, giving a coin, so surely you can talk of it only because you can remember it.  So when will you remember it? We are talking of the psychological happening, not the material happening. When will you remember giving a coin to somebody?

L: When it’s important.

AP: When it means something to you. So it is an act of ego, you are attaching value to the coin. The other fellow, if he too remembers receiving a coin, then what is happening there?

L: It has value for him too.

AP: It has value for him too. Now the same thing is happening, these are two ends of the duality. He is giving importance because he thought he, has lost something and he is giving importance because he thinks he has gained something. It’s the same psychological event that is unfolding itself. There, the insecure ego is feeling that it has lost something and hence puffing up. When you feel you have lost something, what happens to your sense of ‘I’?

You are sitting silently, by the river and suddenly you feel, that you have lost something, your wallet is missing. Now, what happens to your sense of ‘I’? Go into the event. What happens to it?

Read more

Are you able to break out of the circuit, or are you energizing the circuit even more?

Please understand something about duality and non-duality. The dissolution of something does not lie in its opposite. Something appears uncontrolled, you control it, you have just taken a phenomenon to its opposite, to its mirror image. You are going left, now you are going right. That is not dissolution. That is a continuation in duality. And, that is the mistake we make so often. We go for the opposite of something when we are tired of that thing.

Tired of left, you go to the right. Tired of the first floor, you go to the basement or to the second floor, or sometimes to the 50th floor. Tired of the metro, you go to the hill station. Tired of the car, you take the bike. Tired of animals in the office, you go and visit a zoo. Is that not how we live? And, we think this is change. Hopping from one pole of duality to the other pole, we think this is change. Traveling from the North Pole to the South Pole, we feel that we’ve overcome the gravitation of the earth. How does it matter that you have swapped poles?

Firing energizing emotions is one thing, and letting that same energy direct and control emotions, is just the same thing. You are just naming it differently, you are just naming it as the opposite. And the change in name will not help here; you need a change in the whole game. Is it not a part of being emotional that you must not be overly emotional? So, one is emotional and is angry, and suddenly he remembers that he must not be angry and he gets even more angry at having forgotten that he must not be angry, “How could I forget that I needed to control anger? Control yourself. Don’t be so excited.”

Are you able to break out of the circuit, or are you energizing the circuit even more?



 

Read the complete article: How to control emotions?

How to control emotions?

21762214_1227353527370622_921021697824714700_n

L: Sir, how to control our emotions?

Acharya Prashant: So, Shantanu is talking about controlling emotions. Let’s say Shantanu is driving his car. Do you drive your car in a controlled way or in an uncontrolled way? Obviously in a controlled way. Now, what is all control about? You are taking your car to the right, and because you control it you decide that you will not take it to the left. What is all control about?

When you say that your emotions are running amok, uncontrolled, then that is movement, right? Something is happening. And when you say that you the emotional one is now controlling emotions, what is really happening? In the name of control, you are continuing. The driver controls the car; does the car, or the control change the driver? You are the controller; you will change the direction of the car. But, changing the direction of the car is not going to change you.

Read more

Do you have the Buddha nature?

Do you have the Buddha nature? Moo. Neither “Yes” nor “No”. If you say, “Yes”, then you mean that you, as you are, you as you think you are, have a Buddha nature. No, no way! The way we have built ourselves up, the way we have conceptualized ourselves, there is no possibility of Buddha nature. There is only the force of habit, conditioning, biology and evolution. All of them are ‘something’, none of them is ‘nothing’. All of them are space-time, none of them are beyond the mind.

So, saying “Yes”, would not be proper. When asked, “Do you have Buddha nature?” Saying, “Yes” would not be proper. This question is the same as you say, “Are you Brahm? Are you Atman?” Saying “Yes” would not be proper! Asking, “Do you have Buddha nature?” is the same as asking, “Are you the Atman?” Saying, “Yes”, would not be proper. Saying, “No” would also not be proper. If you don’t have Buddha nature, if you are not the Atman then you must be something other than the Atman? Which means something other than the Atman exist? Which means there is multiplicity of Truths?

Because, the Atman, the Buddha nature is the sole Truth. By saying that you exist and are yet not the Atman, you are saying, something besides the Atman exists. And thereby you are raising parallel rods! Parallel Truths. And if truths are parallel, they are just false.

The Truth, by definition, is the one that has no end, no substitute, no parallel. So, neither can you say, “Yes, nor can you say, “No”, all you can say is, “Moo”. This moo is such a beautiful word, language does not normally have it. But spirituality stretches language. It forces language to do things which language normally cannot do. That’s what saints do, that’s what seers do, that’s what Zen does – Moo is a classical example.



Read the complete article: The only right answer to all real questions

The only right answer to all real questions

himalaya2

A monk asked Joshu, “Has the dog Buddha nature?”

Joshu replied, “Moo”

Acharya Prashant: Moo stands for nothing. Everything about the dog and the Buddha is different. As long as you compare a thing about the dog and the Buddha, you’ll only find differences. As long as the dog is something or anything, as long as the Buddha is seen as something or anything, all you will see is differences. The dog and the Buddha are alike only in their nothingness. Has dog the Buddha nature? Yes, of course! The dog is Buddha when the dog is nothing. Read more

Pleasure is a forced concept

Question:  Both pain and pleasures are unreal. But why is pain more sought after than pleasure?

Acharya Prashant: Because pain gives the hope of pleasure, because pleasure is always a hope. And that hope is called pain.

You see, can you feel pain except in comparison with an imagined pleasure? You say that you are deficient in something. How do you know that you are deficient? How do you know that you are deficient except with an imagined fullness?

You have two units of a resource. You say, you know what, it is so less. How do you know it is less? Only by comparison of time with an imagined state in which you have ten units. That ten units you defined as pleasure. These two units, you defined as pain. Both of these have been put as quantities by the mind.  To go to ten units is to prepare to feel bad when you come down to two. To be at two is to keep crying till you have ten.

When you are at ten, you are shivering in apprehension that you may now fall to two. Look at the conditions of those who have the riches. They are so eager about protecting them. The fear that this may go away keeps assaulting them. So their hope lies in securing them what they already have.

And look at those who have two. Their desperation lies in having only two and then they live in ambition, the ambition of one day reaching up to ten. Ten does not give them security. Ten only gives them the additional responsibility of securing the ten that they have now got. They fully well know that time can take away this ten.  This ten does not belong to them. This ten is just accidental. Something may snatch it away. So even if you have ten, you still cannot have pleasure. Whereas, when you were at two, you said that ten will give me pleasure. Having come to ten, you find that ten cannot give you pleasure because the ten is temporary. Now what do you want to do? You want to secure ten. And no security is ever be permanent. You know that.

You very well know that all your attempts to secure something will fail. You cannot secure even your own body. How will you secure your riches? You do not know even whether the next breath would be there, How do you know whether the next moment all your stuff in the bank would be there?

That is why you keep still shivering. Both pain and pleasure are pain. Both pain and pleasure are suffering. It is not as if spirituality is about moving away from pain. Spirituality is about moving away from both pain and pleasure. And having returned to your innate fullness is the point of joy. That point where pain and pleasures are just visitors – they come, they go, I live in my house. The house is named joy.

L: So, pleasure is actually a concept.

AP: Of course!

L: It is not a reality.

AP: No, not at all.

L: It is a forced concept.

AP: Of course! Pleasure is a forced concept.

You know what! One of the biggest instruments of pleasure — you will be surprised to know this — even sex is just a concept.

All those things that you associate with pleasure, with pain, with hurt are all concepts that we have been indoctrinated into. Remove those concepts and then show me where is pleasure and where is pain? Then there is just life. Just life! Simple, total and joyful.



Read Complete Article: What is meant by living totally?

What is meant by living totally?

Slide5

Acharya Prashant: The question is that both of these statements appear to be imperative.

First, “Whatever you do, do it totally.”

Second, “Whatever you do, you remain unaffected by the doing.”

How are these two to be put together? Is there a contradiction? If yes, how is to be reconciled? What is meant by doing something totally?

We need to go into this to understand this.

Usually, when we say that something is to be done totally, we equate that with an expanse in time, an expanse in energy, instead of investing five units of resources in it, I invested fifty units of resources because I wanted to do it totally. Instead of going one mile, I went all the way for ten miles because I wanted to do it totally. So we equate this total-ness with a stretch, with an expanse. In other words, what we say is “doing something totally” means going as far as our desire, our motivation wants us to go, right?

Read more

While talking of the Buddha, keep eating your sandwich

Slide1

Acharya Prashant: Mind of the so called ordinary Sansari (worldly man), is full of thoughts about obtaining power, prestige, comforts, money and such things. And often the mind of the so called spiritual seeker is filled with thoughts of obtaining liberation.

Right?

The concept of liberation is such that it stands with the concept of addition and subtraction, which is the law of mind, and stands against certain other concepts. For example it says that if you have to obtain enlightenment then you have to drop certain things.

Gaining enlightenment, dropping certain things, are said to go together. Gaining enlightenment and dropping certain things have one thing in common: gaining and dropping. What is often ignored is that gaining and dropping are very well within the purview of mind. The mind  actually loses nothing, by adding another concept or by declaring another concept to be false. Read more

To call everything as one is not spirituality, but insanity

31635984251_60b775b9b3_o

There was a holy man who lived in a state of ecstasy, but was regarded by everyone as insane. One day, having begged for food in the village, he sat by the roadside and began to eat when dog came up and looked at him hungrily. The holy man then began to feed the dog; he himself would take a morsel, and then give a morsel to the dog as though he and the dog were old friends. Soon crowd gathered around the two of them to watch this extraordinary site.

One of the men in the crowd jeered at the holy man. He said to the others, “what can you expect from someone so crazy that he is not able to distinguish between a human being and a dog?”

The holy man replied, “Why do you laugh? Do you see Vishnu seated with Vishnu? Vishnu is being fed and Vishnu is doing the feeding. So why do you laugh, oh Vishnu?”

Question: Why can’t we see Vishnu?

Acharya Prashant: Because he is not to be seen. The story says, “Vishnu is feeding Vishnu, and Vishnu is watching. This is a gross representation. This is just very overt symbolism. Vishnu here stands for the essence. Vishnu here stands for the centre. You could call it—the Atma, the soul, the source, anything.

With Vishnu at the centre you are free to look at the world as it is. With Vishnu at the centre you get the fearlessness, the courage, the directness to not to load your prejudices, biases, and fears upon what you see with your eyes, and what you sense with your entire mental apparatus. What does this mean? This means that you do not need to label anything as Vishnu. Forget about labelling everything as Vishnu; you do not need to label anything as Vishnu. The wall is a wall, not Vishnu. The chair is a chair, not Vishnu; a boy is a boy; a woman is a woman; the earth is the earth; the sky is the sky; and there is no need to call them Vishnu.

Read more

What is meant by ‘Advait in Everyday Life’?

 

Question: What is meant by Advait in Everyday Life?

Acharya Prashant:  Advait in everyday life, what is it that we call as our everyday life? This sleeping, this waking, this trying, this reaching, this hope, this despair, getting ready, achieving, not achieving, this is what we call as our everyday life. Right? Finding, losing, meeting, leaving, holding, dropping…what do you see in this?

Listener 1: We see “I”.

AP: Yes, it is there, but what do you see about the nature of this “I”.

Alright, let me look at this present day itself, when we are talking of everyday life. We all are wearing clothes which we hopefully put on this morning itself, right? Have there been any clothes ever that you put on but never take off? We all are sitting here, wearing something, is there ever something that you wear but never unwear, never take off? Has it ever happened? Has there ever been a place that you go to but never return from? You have come here, what would happen to this coming? The coming will change into departure. It’s a matter of time. Right? This session began for you. Right? Has there ever been a session that begins but never ends? Please, has there been? What do you see about the nature of our everyday life?

Read more

The still mind and the One

The still mind and the One

दहनपवनहीनं विद्धि विज्ञानमेक
मवनिजलविहीनं विद्धि विज्ञानरूपम्।
समगमनविहीनं विद्धि विज्ञानमेकं
गगनमिव विशालं विद्धि विज्ञानमेकम्।।

Understand that it is neither fire nor air. Realise the One.
Understand that it is neither Earth nor water. Realise the One.
Understand that it neither comes nor goes. Realise the One.
Understand that it is like space pervading everywhere. Realise the One.

Avadhuta Gita, Chapter 3, Verse 44

So what is being said? You tell me.

Listener 1: It is said that in all differences in all forms in everything realise the one. They may appear very different but that is there whether you are seeing or not seeing.

Listener 2: The One refers to Self.

Acharya Prashant: It means that whether you are seeing this or that, you continue to firstly see the essence of this and that, fire and water, earth and sky, black and white, hot and cold, pleasure and pain, coming and going. These are pairs of dualistic opposites. Whenever we look at a thing, we look only at the surface of the thing, we look only at the form of the experience.

So, if one looks at a tree, or a pillar, one looks only at that. One says this is a tree or a pillar, higher than just-looking at the object of consciousness is to look and remember the two ends of consciousness parallely.

Read more

Live to express Fullness, not to gain it

Om! Puurnnam-Adah ||

That is that, full, complete, ultimate.

 

Puurnnam-Idam ||

This is that, full, complete, ultimate.

 

Puurnnaat-Purnnam-Udachyate||

Full expresses itself, as fullness.
Puurnnasya Puurnnam-Aadaaya ||

From full, all fullness arises.

 

Puurnnam-Eva-Avashissyate ||
And full, remains full. Full complete ultimate.
Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih ||

 

So, is it not wonderful that ‘this’ and ‘that’ are being addressed together? The Rishi begins by saying, “‘this is full’ and ‘that is full’.” First of all it has to be understood that ‘this’ and ‘that’ cannot pertain to the beyond. ‘This’ and ‘that’ cannot pertain to anything outside the mind. What are ‘this’ and ‘that’ then?

‘This’ and ‘that’ are everything that the mind anyway daily experiences. In terms of matter, they are the thing and its absence. So there is a ball kept somewhere; ‘this’ is the ball, ‘that’ is the absence of the ball. In terms of time, their cause and effect. In terms of thought itself, they are what occupies the mind and what remains hidden. So ‘this’ and ‘that’ pertain to all pairs of duality. Read more

International Women’s Day: Together they suffer and together they will celebrate

WhatsApp-Image-20160603 (1)

There is nothing called woman’s liberation in isolation.

Woman is oppressed and the man too is oppressed, albeit in a different way.

Woman’s liberation is man’s liberation.

They will always be together.

Together they suffer.
And together they will celebrate. Read more