Is it compassion to suffer with the suffering one? || Acharya Prashant (2019)

Is it compassion to suffer with the suffering one

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Question: Acharya ji, would it be an act of compassion, to suffer with the one who is already suffering?

Acharya Prashant ji: It depends totally on you. There can be no principles in this matter.

The one who is suffering, is suffering, because he is deluded.

Remember that suffering is always a choice.

The one who is suffering, because of delusion, he has chosen suffering. He must be having his reasons. Every one, who chooses anything, always has some reason to quote. The fellow who is suffering, surely must be having some reasons to offer. And now, you too start suffering with him. You too have a certain reason to offer. The reason is compassion.

What do you think, the other fellow, the one you intend to help, is an utter fool? He too has his reasons. You know what he is suffering for? If you will ask him, “What are you suffering for?”, he will say, “Love.” So, he is suffering for love, and you are suffering for compassion, and seeing the two of you suffer, a third one comes to rescue both of you. And what is he suffering for? Wisdom.  And then a fourth one? What’s his reason? Responsibility. And then a fifth one? We never suffer without reason. It’s just that our reasons are a bit stupid.

Nobody likes to be proven stupid in front of the mirror. We always find something, to justify ourselves.

If we are in sorrow, we would always have an excuse to offer.

Rare is the one who admits, that his sorrow is his own doing.

Very rare.

And this rare one, is the spiritually initiated one.

It might surprise you, but most of our suffering, is an effort towards goodness. Be good, do good. Be nice, help others.

Listener: So, to stop suffering, we must stop doing good to others?

Acharya ji: Examine what your goodness is all about. But, see how you come up with another display of the same tendency. You would remain stubbornly fixated to your definitions of ‘good’ and ‘bad’. If pointed out that goodness is not working out for you, you would say, “Ah! Should I turn bad then?”

A drunkard is hobbling, and stuttering, when he is moving to the left. How would he move, when he moves to the right?

Listener: Same way.

Acharya ji: But you just don’t want to change your fundamental condition of drunkenness. You just want to change your direction. Yes! Instead of then stumbling towards the left, you would now be stumbling and falling towards the right. The hurt and the sorrow would remain the same, because the internal condition as remained the same.

‘Good’ or ‘bad’, how do they matter, if the one, deciding goodness, and badness, is not examining herself deeply and honestly enough. It is easy, and it is possible. And all of us, deserve it.

Here is a little bit of advice.

If you find that you are hitting against people, hitting against the poles, stumbling against stones, falling into ditches, have a bleeding knee and a bleeding nose, the entire being is bruised, don’t change direction.

A change of direction won’t help.

It is not the direction that has gone wrong.

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

Watch the session:  Is it compassion to suffer with the suffering one? || Acharya Prashant (2019)


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Acharya Prashant, with students: Is the ego a gift from God?

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Acharya Prashant: Himadari’s question is, “Does ego have a negative impact on one’s life?”

Himadri, we found out that ego is a disease. What effect can ego have upon you, except a negative impact? There is no positive impact that the ego can have.

We have been saying all along that ego is slavery, ego is lifelessness. Are these not clearly negative? Do you know what ego means? Ego means that you will be always afraid. Those of you who have experienced fear. Fear of any kind they must know. That all forms of fear come only from the ego.

Don’t you see directly that ego is such a terrible thing? It makes life hell. Because ego comes from the outside and you start internalizing it. You also realize that it can also go back to the outside. So, you are always afraid. You always think that someone can take it away from you. Your sense of self is given to you by a group of people. So, those group of people will become your master. You will remain always afraid because they can take back their acceptance. You are at their mercy.

When you come over to speak on a podium. Don’t you see why you are so terribly nervous? Many of you? Would you be nervous had you been told to speak in a vacant room, just in front of the mirror? You won’t be nervous. Right? But you are nervous in front of the audience. Why? Because your self-image comes from that audience. If the audience tells you, “You are wonderful.” You start believing that you are. And you are afraid that now the audience may say that I am a coward. So you start shivering. All forms of fear come from the ego. From a borrowed sense of the self. There is no other cause of fear.

Now you tell me, “Whether it is positive or negative?” Yes, what is it?

Listener 1: Sir, if it is always responsible for fear and other things. So, should one be egoistic?

AP: You tell me.

L1: I am asking you.

Read more

Acharya Prashant, with teachers: Are you the suppliers for society’s demands?

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Acharya Prashant: The first question that a teacher must ask himself is, “What does he mean by change? Is he going to teach the habitual subjects, the habitual ways? Is he going to prepare the student to become another social machine? Right?

It seems that the end result of all habitual teaching is nothing but the production of a human being who fits in nicely in the social machine.

Let’s try to see. Let’s try to understand what is it, that we are producing in our classrooms.

There is the activity of teaching going on. It starts when the student is how many years old? “When the process of teaching starts? How old is the child when his teaching process starts?”

Listener: Five years.

AP: Right. Organize teaching?

L: Three or four years.

AP: 3 years or 4 four years. And goes on till the age of?

L: Till the death.

AP: Organise teaching?

L: Twenty.

AP: Twenty to twenty-five.

Let’s see clearly that a period of at least twenty years is being dedicated to the student who is emerging out of our education system. Are we one of this? Are we clear on this? For twenty years, the time has come to prepare a student who eventually comes out of our system as a product.

Now, what are we doing? Are we acting as suppliers? Please be attentive because we are trying to understand what is meant by saying are we preparing a child to be a cog in our social machine. We want to understand what does it mean? Twenty years we teach him and what is happening twenty years later?

We are supplying to the child back to the society. Correct? So it enters us in a process and then he leaves us and then he enters the society. Right? The society wants a certain kind of output from the teacher. Is that true?

L: Yes.

AP: The society wants a certain kind of output from the teacher that becomes such and such personality. Right? And what is the teacher doing? The teacher is supplying to the society what it wants from the teacher.

Read more

Acharya Prashant: How to really listen to the Guru?

Question: In one video, you said that to listen to Krishna, you need to be Arjuna. To Listen to Ashtavakra also you need to be Janak.

To listen to you, what should the person be?

Acharya Prashant: The person should not be insistent on being the ‘person.’ That begins with not seeing the speaker as a person and not imagining the listener to be the person. If here a person is speaking sitting on this chair, then surely there is another person sitting on another chair who is listening. Now, listening cannot really happen. Because persons cannot really relate to each other.

A person is a limitation.

Limitations can associate with each other. But limitations cannot relate to become limitless.

You take one limitation and you associate it with another one, you do not get limitlessness. What you get is another limitation.

One person listening to another person will not listen to the Truth. He will come to some opinion, some conclusion, something of the mind or attitude. But he won’t come upon Truth or silence.

To listen to me you need to forget all about yourselves. And you need to forget that what you are listening to is a person’s personal viewpoints.

If you will insist on saying that what is coming to you is somebody’s personal opinion, then no person ever has the obligation to be non-resistant to another person’s opinions. Opinions by definition are meant to be analyzed, judged, dissected, then partially accepted or rejected.

You will have to see that that which speaks from this chair is the same that listens from that chair, or listening simply doesn’t happen.

Till the time there is A speaking to B, listening cannot happen.

Only Truth listens to the Truth.

Only that within you can listen to me which speaks from within me. And they are one. Which means that there has to be a certain unity between the ‘listener’ and the ‘speaker.’ I said,

to listen to Krishna you need to be Arjuna. But it’s not really Arjuna who listens to Krishna. It’s Krishna within Arjuna that listens to Krishna. No Arjuna can ever know Krishna. Even to look at Krishna, Arjuna requires eyes that are bestowed upon him by Krishna.

You’ll have to give your listening a total chance, a total freedom. And that is a very impersonal freedom. You’ll have to simply drop giving importance to all that is personal about the speaker.

Read more

Acharya Prashant: Is liberation possible for a householder?

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Acharya Prashant: Pradeep Ji is asking, “Dear Acharya Ji, I don’t know what kind of wound I am carrying inside me, that I am having a constant feeling of ‘leave me alone’, towards the world. From morning till evening, I am running like crazy, driving to office in mad traffic, followed by corporate pressure to do things unwillingly. Bearing stupidities of people around.

I get out of the office as if I came out of a madhouse, tired and frustrated, and it’s already night. I eat and sleep. And the roller-coaster starts again. But since I need to run this crazy race, I feel that my blood is sucked by parasites, and there is a wound, a cry from inside, that I am carrying.

I cannot get rid of this wound. I want to jump off this train, but I can’t, because of these responsibilities. I feel I am a dead machine, thrown on an assembly line, or the other things inside me, drilling holes, hammering, and finally thrown out.

I can’t leave the family, as they are dependent on me. And I am too in, some or the other way, dependent.

Acharya Ji, in such a situation, what should I do?

—————————–

Pradeep Ji, the way of instantaneous freedom, instantaneous departure, is not for the householder.

The ‘Law of Karma’, and the result of Karma, ‘The fruit of actions’, always holds good. Cannot be violated. One is held to the past, by a thousand actions, memories, and the pending fruits.

Immediate and quick liberation is then possible only through total psychic departure.

A kind of a Spiritual death. That is often unlikely. Keep working, you will have to go step by step.

Read more

Consciousness is a ‘kite’

Question: How was the Ego created? 

Acharya Prashant: Ego was not really ‘created.’ Ego is being created all the time.

Ego is a belief in ignorance and hence knowledge.

Consciousness is a ‘kite’ that feels it is flying freely. It does not know that it is being controlled by the Master, sitting deeper than its flight. The controller of all thoughts is the ‘deep mind,’ the ‘latent tendencies.’

Why do different people have different thoughts upon being subjected to the same stimulus? It is because their ‘deeper patterns’ are different, it is because their ‘deeper tendencies’ have been differently created.

What is it that determines our actions, our thoughts? What is it that determines the whole movement of activity that we see around? Whenever action happens from where does it arise?



Read the complete article:  How was the ego created?

How was the ego created?

Question: How was the Ego created? 

Acharya Prashant:

Ego was not really ‘created.’

Ego is being created all the time.

Would silence ever ask this question? So ego has been given a fresh breath of Life, when one professes ‘ignorance’ or ‘knowledge.’ If you ask something about ego, if you say what is ego? The answer would be this, “the one who is asking.” The question itself is ego. How was the question created? By asking. How was the ego created? You tell me, you asked.

How did you come to believe? How does you continuously keep believing that you do not know and secondly the knowledge is important? In this moment from where did, this thought arising you that you did not know? And this beautiful moment of Silence, what makes you think that something additional in form of knowledge needs to be added?

If two people are sitting together in intimacy. Is the moment not already complete? Do they further need to beautify the moment by adding questions to it? Ego is this that which feels that knowledge is needed, that which feels that the world is incomplete, that which feels that it needs support. A beefing up, a furtherance, that is Ego. If you are silent there is no ego because you will not be asking about the genesis of ego. And remember that any question you ever ask is ultimately a question about the Self.

You may ask a question about nuclear technology but if you go deeper into it, you will discover that it was the question about the ‘Self.’ Ego is that which feels that the Self is not yet fully revealed. So, knowledge must be further used to know it, explore it, to reveal it.

Ego is a belief in ignorance and hence knowledge.

If it is not there, it is just not there. Then even the question that from where did it come is just not there. Moment this question, springs up in the mind, that is the moment the ego is born. The moment when that question receds goes off to sleep, is the moment when the ego to is put to sleep.

Read more

Real destiny is Peace

Destiny, really means, that, which is unavoidable, that which, cannot be changed.

Destiny is not the ‘fruit of action,’ but because we live in our limited prospective, so we take the results of our actions as our destinies.

Your real destiny is the Truth, the ‘real destiny’ is ‘peace.’

Remember that even when you trying to get the Truth or Peace, it is Truthand Peace that drive you.

Your destiny is the great silence, that is where you are and if you do not consciously acknowledge that, that is where you have to reach. Nothing else is your destiny.

Destiny is related to the word destination. And what does destination means? The finality. The climax. The highest. The ending and the dissolution. You are already there.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: Destiny is That which is unavoidable


 

Acharya Prashant: Destiny is That which is unavoidable

Acharya Prashant: What do you mean by destiny?

Listener: Blessed, that which is blessed or that which is decided, or pre-decided. I think it is from the law of karma.

AP: No Karma is pre-decided, so destiny obviously cannot be related to karma. That which pre-exists, pre-exists karma also, so karma cannot be the decider of the destiny. Obviously.

L: I heard of the three types of karma – Agami, Parabda, Sanchitta.

AP: All three have a background.

All three have a background, Agami, Parabda, Sanchitta, all three have a background. And all three have their respective fruits. When you say destiny is something that is preordained, then obviously it has to go, prior to karma and even the cause of karma.

Destiny, really means, that, which is unavoidable,

that which, cannot be changed.

That which is inevitable. That pre-exists everything that happens. And that will exist post all happenings. And what is that? Nothing, but emptiness, Truth. Which was there before the beginning of time and which exists, even after, the time has withdrawn. That alone is destiny, nothing else.

I repeat,

Destiny is not the ‘fruit of action,’ but because we live in our limited prospective, so we take the results of our actions as our destinies.

No,

Your real destiny is the Truth, the ‘real destiny’ is ‘peace.’

The proof of that is unless you get that real unless you get Truth and Peace. You will not relax.

Read more

The real meaning of Saadhna

The real meaning of Saadhna is to dissolve that which stands between you and Love. I talked about sending a loving invitation to the mind. Now the invitation is always there because you are not the one who will send the invitation. The invitation is from the center. The invitation is from the heart. The invitation is from a permanently standing invitation. It is an open invitation. The mind could have come anytime. But the mind doesn’t come. So, there is surely something that blocks the mind from accepting that invitation.

Saadhna is about melting that wall which blocks. And hence Saadhna cannot be limited to a particular activity. And hence Saadhna cannot be a matter of discipline, because of the blockage, is the blockage in life itself. So, Saadhna has to be twenty-four hours, seven days a week. Right now, let’s say, I am calling you in love and there is something that blocks you. Now would you remove this blockage by going back to your room? When is the time and opportunity to fight the blockage?

Now. 

So, Saadhna has to be…? 

 Now.

Or, would you wait for the right time for Saadhna that I practice my Saadhna between 7am and 9am in the morning? That is what my guru told me and I practice my Saadhna by doing this and that. Now the invitation is now, the blockage is now; the Saadhna is two days later. What are we talking about? The disease is now. Would the treatment take place at the next birth? Are you getting it, sir?

All the symptoms of the disease are visible only in the daily, ordinary living. The way you talk to the waiter in the restaurant, the way you deal with the shopkeeper; the way you throw your garbage, the way you talk to a man of a different ethnicity. That is when you come to see of your own internal resistance. Don’t you? How else will you come to know yourself? Will you read of yourself in some book? Will some book tell you about yourself? You know yourself only through the direct facts of your daily life. Don’t you?

The way you pick up a mug, the way you eat your food, the way you rush towards the bath – that is how you see yourself. That is how you see all that which blocks you, all that which separates you. Your fears, your goals, your hopes, your baggage’s – everything is visible in the way you take the next step. The way you pick up the bottle of water, it’s all writ large there. Now tell me what is Saadhna?

What is Saadhna then? Does it mean a yoga mat?

Here! Here! This is Saadhna.

But if you have been convinced that your Saadhna will be next morning then you will miss this moment. And that is the reason why we keep missing this moment because we are complacent. We say what is the point in accepting the invitation right now? The real thing is going to happen tomorrow morning at 7am. Now the lover is calling right now and you are saying I will respond then. Now the moment is gone; the party is over. Then there is another invitation and another blockage. But you are not open to looking even at that because then you are dealing with an imaginary lover.

Are you getting this? What is discipline? What is Saadhna? What is it that you need to know? Do you need to know esoteric practices or do you need to know your life? Do you need to know why the stars are configured in some way or do you rather need to know why you purchase a kurta of a particular shape, size, color, texture, dimension?

Do you know all your life is contained in your choice of this kurta? Do you know that this is not a random decision? The total history of mankind converged in that moment when you were making that purchase. All the dinosaurs, all the kings, queens, wars, kingdoms, grouse, meteors, satellites, all your ancestors, all came together in that decision; in that moment when your card was being swiped.

Now if you could pay attention to that swipe, then you know everything. 

No? You would rather read a book. Would you? I have nothing against the book by the way. But even when you are reading a book, are you reading the one who is reading? Do read books, but also read the reader.

Never slip. Saadhna! Saadhna! Saadhna! Continuous Saadhna. Life is Love and life is Saadhna and all is parallel and concurrent and much the same.



Read the complete article: How can one live without an identity or an ego?

How can one live without an identity or an ego?

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Question: To go beyond your past to get illuminated or whatever, you have to drop down your ego or your identity. But I am quite afraid of this because I am a psychologist and I know that identity is me and people without identity gets crazy. So, I am really afraid to do this step because I think then I will be nobody or I will be out of my mind or crazy. So for me, it is a kind of fear.

How can I leave myself, my identity, my ego? Is it possible to live without my ego?

Acharya Prashant: It’s a beautiful question to start this evening with. Could we all get the question? Clear to everybody.

So, while it is commonly, very infrequently said – it is an axiom in the spiritual world that one has to drop his identities. It is also equally a fact that when it really comes to dropping the identities or even thinking about that dropping, the mind experiences a certain fear. We want to take that up. What is meant by identities, fear elimination and what is this fear? Read more

What is it that one wishes to forget through sex?

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“When there are so many things calling, demanding your attention, you give complete attention to the thought of sex. What happens, why are your minds so occupied with it? Because that is the way of ultimate escape, is it not? It is a way of complete self- forgetfulness. For the time being, at least for the moment, you can forget yourself and there is no other way of forgetting yourself.”

        -J. Krishnamurti

Acharya Prashant: J. Krishnamurti says that it is the wish to forget oneself that makes one cling to the desire for sex. So, the questionnaire is asking that in contrast to what Krishnamurti says, is it not the fear of losing ‘me’ that drives all desires? And then she asks, “Or are these two things the same?” You must understand the question.

Read more

Your interference in an anomaly

In order to hide ones ignorance, in order to give a more respectable and acceptable name to ones basic tendencies, one starts talking of the simple and straight forward things in a convoluted and deceptive way. Man starts saying that he is not having sex to enjoy himself; instead he is having sex to fulfill his great duty of procreation.

Now there is no shame, otherwise man forever lives in guilt and shame. Man says,  “Because he have been taught in this way that sex is something abhorrent, sex is something animalistic, sex is something to be avoided, man is so afraid of his basic animal nature that he turns sex into a monster.

But, sex is irrepressible. So, then he starts searching for excuses to have sex. He says, “No, No, No, I am not going towards sex just for my physical or mental needs, I am going towards sex because it is my divine responsibility to have kids and further the cycles of this world. You are saying “Is it not necessary to expand the world?” The only thing that is necessary for you is to understand, “What this world is?” “Who you are in relation to this world?” and “whether you really are anybody?” that is the only thing necessary. Nothing else is necessary and when you have met that which is necessary, everything else is taken care of, everything else follows.

Don’t take miscellaneous stuff as necessary, don’t start treating trivial as central. Realize the ways of the mind, go close to the ego, and look carefully at the world. That is the only thing that is necessary and then all your decisions will be wonderful. Mind you, that the world knows how to take care of itself. Prakriti (Nature) was there before you and Prakriti will be there after you. You better not interfere. Your interference in an anomaly. Your interference is a problem.



Read the complete article: Having sex to further the world?

Having sex to further the world?

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Acharya Prashant: The next question says, “Sex is a problem, no doubt. When we think that it’s a physical, biological demand, then it’s a lust. But is it not necessary to expand the world? Is it not a natural gift to human species to expand?”

You are saying that sex is a problem when we think that it is a physical, biological demand. It is not a matter of what you think of sex, it is the matter of whether you think of sex? Is sex firstly not a thought for you? Or, is it something of the heart? Or, is it something natural? You are saying that sex is a problem only when we think that it is a physical, biological demand. What else is it for the majority of human beings? Read more

Conceive the child only in love

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

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

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

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

How to relate better to one’s wife?

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Question: If there is a fight going on with my wife, and she gets angry, and I too get angry. Won’t that create more friction?

Acharya Prashant: You know what, you don’t get angry when fighting with your spouse, because you assume that she is not as strong as you. Do you see that? You say, “She is the weak one, so let her be angry. I am the more responsible one, so it is upon me to not to get angry.” Is that not what the assumption is? Now see what is actually happening. You are assuming her to be weak and she is controlling you. So, who are you? Weaker than the weak. Do you see this? Read more

You do not need to remember God

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Listener 1: I have attended three of your sessions. In the first one you talked about listening. Now, one of your friends was saying that you came to the session and you couldn’t remember anything because you were just there. I started listening and to be honest I can’t remember anything and even with these videos of yours, I was watching and listening to them and it made sense but now I can’t remember anything.

AP: It’s unnecessary, it’s quite unnecessary. Little bit will go to the memory which is alright and rest of it you don’t really need to memorize.

L1: If I look back trying to remember then there are one or two important things that come out of the whole saying.

AP: You have to make an effort but it’s unnecessary, there is no need. Read more

If you want to escape, escape Totally

Listener 1: Traditionally this idea of  ‘hankering around and everything that goes on in the mind is nonsensical’ has led to escapism. People have started saying that the pains that I experienced, the pleasures I experienced, the responsibilities, the duties that I have, are all nonsensical; neither would I go into pleasure nor would I go into pain; neither would I take up any responsibility and so on so forth.

And that is what I see with myself. When you said that all is nonsense, a kind of a nice breeze, I mean passed in my head. I can see that was not of the lightness you are talking about. That is actually of, “oh, I don’t have to do all that.”

Acharya Prashant: You have not gone deeply in your experience. Let me say something –

Escape is not at all a dirty word, if it is total escape. Total escape is liberation. 

What most of us do is that we don’t escape ‘away’, we escape ‘to’. We don’t escape away from all, we escape to something. So then you hear a teacher saying that all is nonsense then you don’t mean “all is nonsense.” Then you mean that — Okay that means my responsibilities are nonsense, my studies are nonsense, my commitments are nonsense but fun is not nonsense, sex isn’t nonsense — all that which gives me pleasure isn’t nonsense so let me escape away to that.

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When you are sure of yourself, you feel less angry at others

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Listener (L): Sir, there are certain reactions within that I can see but cannot control. For example, whenever my wife speaks anything about business, I just go mad. I’ve tried to look at it also and at times, I see that and I relate that to she feeling that I am incompetent but somehow I am not able to help it. That reaction is so instant that the moment she says something about business and I just shout, I just scream.

Acharya Prashant (AP): When you feel more sure of yourself, then this tendency will reduce. Read more

Continuous Stress

Mind lives in knowledge and if there is something that cannot be captured in mind as knowledge, then mind will have to surrender to it. So we all live as if knowledge is most important. We all live as if our well being depends on that which we know and hence we remain tense. We remain eager for information, we remain eager for our well fare. We are never able to relax and let go of this responsibility of fending for ourselves. We continuously burden ourselves with this responsibility.

We say, “Our well being depends on our efforts, our smartness, our intellect and endeavors.” With that burden – which is an immense burden because we know that ultimately we will not be able to take care of ourselves because death beacons, with that impossible responsibility – we live.

The result is a continuous stress.

The only way the mind can relax is by leaving itself to something bigger than itself; something in a bigger dimension than itself.


Further Reading:

The Flying Kiss to the Sky

cover_fksA Flying Kiss to The Sky, is a collection of excerpts from various discourses of Acharya Prashant, arranged in a special order which makes it the ideal first book, for all who want to come close to the facts of their own lives.

The book is divided into three parts, each part helping the reader to appreciate the working of his own mind and hence, the world in more clear and precise terms. Its unique one-page-one-chapter format makes it even more simple. It won’t be wrong to say that it is a book for all: Reader, or non-reader; Professional, or Spiritual.

Paperback: Advait Publications Page