The speck of dust and the sky, you are both || Acharya Prashant on Rumi (2018)

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Questioner: Pranaam, Acharya Ji.

Rumi says ‘Wisdom tells us, we are not worthy, love tells us, and we are. My life flows between the two’.

Taruna asks, Acharya Ji could you please elaborate on the above. I feel that my life is a little short of love and self-acceptance. Am I just over-judging myself or is there any way, I can actually enhance self-love?

Thank You.

Acharya Prashant: That’s Rumi’s way of bringing out the difference and the oneness between the seeker and the sought, between the lover and the beloved, between the bhakt and bhagwan. Kindly, do not read his words to mean that love and wisdom are exclusive of each other.

I repeat, what he has said, ‘Wisdom tells us, we are not worthy, love tells us, and we are. My life flows between the two’. Kindly do not take these words to mean that wisdom and love are mutually exclusive. They are not. What is he saying here, he is talking of the last dichotomy, and we live in. And that dichotomy is the difference, separation between our fact and our destiny, our life and our destiny, our periphery and our center, our performance and our potential.

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Acharya Prashant: Attention wipes your sins away

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Question: How is the karma of the past linked to my current state of mind?

Acharya Prashant: What you call as your current state of mind is always a friction, a conflict, a tug-of-war, between two opposing forces. One is the ‘force of the past’, one is the ‘force of conditioning’, and the other is ‘the call of peace’. The call of the untouched, the call of the core.

What we call as the mind is nothing but a sandwich between these two. But it is not a normal sandwich, it is not a normal conflict, it is a conflict between two parties in which the first party is the first party, and also the power provider to the second party.

Are you getting it?

So, there is that which you can call as the core, and then there is that which you can call as conditioning, or illusion, or Maya. What is happening in the mind? A tussle between the call of the core, and the lure of the Maya. But in this, we will remember that Maya is not really a power opposing the core, because Maya itself is being powered by the core. So, two parties are in conflict. Yes, there is a tussle, yes, there is a tug-of-war. But, it is a special conflict in which one party is powering the opposite party as well; that’s why it is called ‘Leela’. I want to have a good time, so you know, I am powering the other party.

Sometimes, it happens, when you are very playful. Let’s say you want to have a race, a sprint, with someone, who can’t run too fast. So, what do you do? You run slow, or you give him a lead. You say, alright, I will cover 100 meters and you have to cover only 60 meters. So, you are powering the other party, because you want to just have a little bit of fun. That kind of a war it is. But nevertheless, it is a war, and the mind is a battleground.

When you say, ‘Is my state of mind, a result of my karma, my past?’ Yes, it is.

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What is Godlessness?

Man in that sense is way behind words because our resistance towards free fall is both biological and social.

Even if you find discontentment in an animal’s eyes, it is just biological. Man’s discontentment is far deeper. An animal would appear frustrated if it cannot get food, or if it is physically confined. Man is frustrated for a billion more reasons, a billion more idiotic reasons.

To live in dissatisfaction is to keep crying.

Even if you find discontentment in an animal’s eyes, it is just biological. Man’s discontentment is far deeper. An animal would appear frustrated if it cannot get food, or if it is physically confined. Man is frustrated for a billion more reasons, a billion more idiotic reasons.

The skin is so protected that it cannot take any sun. However, it looks cute, like rabbit fur, feels nice and soft. You can play with the kid as if the kid is a toy and parents Love that, their personal toy. So the more toy-like the kid is, the more you feel satisfied as a parent. See, no scars and the shade is uniform. No dents. Regularly maintained and serviced. Weight is perfect. Refueling is done at regular intervals. Paint is so original.

Godlessness means Lovelessness, Joylessness, Freedomlessness.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant on Rumi: Fall in faith, and you will be given wings


 

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

“Birds make great sky-circles of their freedom. How do they learn it? They fall and falling; they are given wings.”

~ Rumi

Question:  Shilpi has asked, RUMI says “ Birds make great sky-circles of their freedom. How do they learn it? They fall and falling; they are given wings.” Can you please speak more about this?

Thank you.

Acharya Prashant: Rumi says birds fall and falling they are given wings. Those wings are so perfect and powerful that birds make great sky-circles of their freedom. Birds fall and falling they are given wings. They are given wings; their fall is a Trust fall. We don’t trust that wings will be given to us, we want to earn our wings. We cannot allow ourselves to fall freely because we feel responsible for our welfare. We feel that we live in a hostile world, we have been born in an alien place, and unless we take of ourselves, we will be eliminated.

This universe, we take as a stranger. Existence, we take as inimical to us. Now obviously, then there is a constant tension to take care of ourselves. We will not let ourselves fall. What Rumi is saying must not be taken literally. It’s not as if birds fall and in the process of falling, they are blessed with wings. What he means is that there is no effort on the part of everything existential, be it a river, a mountain, a bird, a fish, an insect, and an animal. They live in a state of constant surrender. Even if they resist, their resistance is just biological. Their resistance is not social; their resistance is not one of knowledge but of instinct.

Man in that sense is way behind words because our resistance towards free fall is both biological and social.

We are born as someone who would be afraid and then we are terrified further by our social conditioning. When the child is born, the child cries. The beginning itself is not very auspicious, and to make matters far worse, the entire life we are taught to cry. Sometimes we are told to laugh, but that is the same thing. Laughing and crying are ends of the same duality.

To live in dissatisfaction is to keep crying.

That is what we are always taught, live as if you are hungry, stay hungry.

Even if you find discontentment in an animal’s eyes, it is just biological. Man’s discontentment is far deeper. An animal would appear frustrated if it cannot get food, or if it is physically confined. Man is frustrated for a billion more reasons, a billion more idiotic reasons.

The primary idiocy being, if I don’t take care of myself what will happen to me. The man extends this idiocy to others. I have to take of myself, I have to take care of him, him, him, him ( Acharya Ji pointing out to few listeners) and this we call as Love. Come all of you, my loved ones, I must save you from existence.

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Pure giving

The ego is interested in its own nourishment.

Because the ego wants only that what the ego values, not which is absolutely valuable.

Getting tired of getting hurt is a rare happening. Man is extremely resilient. We keep on getting hurt again and again, at the same place and yet we are hardly ever tired of repeating the same processes, the same actions that bring us to hurt.

You can call it a stage of demolition. The old patterns are seen as worthless and hence given up.

In the first level, the ego gives, and this giving is of a nature that strengthens the ego. In the second level, the ego gives up its trust in itself and hence gets diminished.

In the third stage giving up does not happen. The third stage is of pure giving.

You just give. Meaninglessly, purposelessly, reasonlessly. You don’t even give, you are just being what you really are.

And when you just start giving, since you are giving to yourself, you start receiving a lot.

Tremendously bored we are with everything, that even an invitation to get rid of boredom sounds boring.

Your mind is already afraid of death, and Rumi is just exposing, or at worst exploiting that fear.

Given the way we are, fear is our reality. Wherever there is body identification, there would also parallely be the fear of the loss of the body.

Everything is done for a purpose, for a reason, with the expectation of gain. And where there is the expectation of gain, there is also the parallel fear of loss.

Because an action that arises from fear can never eliminate fear.

Take care of the ‘first’ in the ‘first place.’ Do not let the disease guide your actions. Rather, the first action should be to eliminate the disease. And these are the only two ways of living.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant on Rumi: The three levels of giving

Acharya Prashant on Rumi: The three levels of giving

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Before death takes away what you are given,

give away what there is to give.

Rumi

Acharya Prashant: Here is something from Rumi: “Before death takes away what you are given, give away what there is to give.”

The question says, “Statements like these are interpreted as being pleasure aversive, and we already are pain aversive, so together it means being life aversive. Is Rumi really talking about being life aversive?”

I’ll repeat the quote, “Before death takes away what you are given, give away what there is to give.”

‘Giving’ is the keyword. Let’s go close to it and understand it. ‘Giving’ happens at three different levels. All three are connected to each other, yet there is a dimensional difference between the three. The three appear to be progressively leading to each other, yet there is also a quantum jump from the first to the second and from the second to the third. The first kind of giving is the giving that we are all very familiar with.

You give somebody a hundred rupee note and then you expect in return a value of at least hundred rupees, right? And it is great if you give hundred rupees and are in return given a value of two hundred rupees. If you just look at the event partially, then giving is happening. Is it not? You are giving something, right?

Similarly, we give gifts to each other. We give compliments to each other. We give advices to each other. We even give help to each other. We see that happening all around us. What is common between all these types of givings? We are talking about the first level of giving. What is common between all these types of giving?

Listener: It’s given to someone else.

AP: Yes, and?

L: Expectation of a return.

AP: Expectation of a return. Now what kind of return do you expect? When you give something to somebody, what do you expect in return?

L: Something of same value.

AP: Something of value at least, or do you expect something valueless? Be with me, do you expect something valueless or something you deem as worthy?

L: Something we deem as worthy.

AP: Who decides whether what you are getting in return is indeed valuable?

L: Me.

AP: You decide. So you are the one who decides that you are giving away something that has value, let’s say a note or a compliment. And you are also the one who decides that what you are getting in return too is valuable, correct? Who is this ‘you’, who is this ‘me’ who decides what to give and what to get? And whether to give and whether to get? And whether the given and taken has value? Who is this entity that decides all this? That entity is called the ‘ego.’

The ego is interested in its own nourishment.

So, whenever it enters into a transaction with the world, whenever it enters into a transaction in a relationship, its objective is always to enhance itself. Which means that if it is giving hundred, it wants hundred and fifty in return. This is our normal day-to-day giving, which appears like giving but is actually a business transaction in which the ego wants to benefit and hence enhance itself. Are you getting it?

If you give something but get something in return which the ego does not like, then you will say that this is not a fair transaction. Take an extreme example. Let’s say you have become habituated to substance abuse, drugs. You take one thousand rupees and you give it to a drug peddler. And what you get from him instead is some sane advice and a copy of the Upanishads. An entire set of the principal Upanishads, that’s what he gives you the moment you hand over your thousand bucks to him. Will you say that you have been given a fair deal? Would you?

L: No.

AP: No,

because the ego wants only that what the ego values, not which is absolutely valuable.

It has to be valuable in relation to the ego’s configuration. I want that which I think is good for me. Now even if what you are giving me is beautiful advice and a copy of the scriptures, yet I reject it because I do not value it because this is not what I expected. Give me that which I want.

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Dancing emerges from nothingness

The dance of the jungle, the dance of the waves, the dance of the stars, the monkey’s dance, the elephant’s dance, the dance of the toddler that is the dance that a Rumi loves.

When a movement, when an action arises from nothing in particular, then it is called dance.

Dancing emerges from nothingness.

Perfection is not something that you aspire for or wait for. Perfection is not the opposite of imperfection. If perfection to you is the opposite of imperfection, if perfection for you is the end of imperfection or the transcendence of imperfection, then you can keep waiting for perfection as long as time lasts. Perfection is there in the middle of imperfection. In life as it is, nothing that appears, nothing that happens would ever be perfect. Now that can either make you cringe, or you can still dance in the middle of the disorder.

To dance in the middle of the disorder you must be able to look at the essence of things directly. Things are imperfect, their essence is perfect.

Imperfection if seen from the heart, if seen from clarity, itself shines as perfection.

Dance in the middle of chaos. Dance in the middle of deprivation. Dance in the middle of death and destruction. Dance exactly when there is no reason to dance.

When Shiva dances the world collapses.

Real dance then is so similar to madness.

Stay with the truth and know that the world, the situations, howsoever good or bad they are, are nothing but an expression of the truth.

The existence of a thing indicates truth. The existence of the opposite of that thing also indicates the truth.

In imperfection lies great beauty.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant on Rumi: Dance amid your own blood!

 

Acharya Prashant on Rumi: Dance amid your own blood!

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Dance, when you’re broken open.

Dance, if you’ve torn the bandage off.

Dance in the middle of the fighting.

Dance in your blood.

Dance when you’re perfectly free.

(Rumi)

 

Acharya Prashant:  What is dance? Why is dancing such a favorite of the poets, the saints, the worshipers of freedom? Why? First of all, in the spiritual sense when one uses the word dance, then dancing does not refer to any kind of organized movement of limbs or the body. That would just be a rehearsed system of pre-scripted action, having very little to do with the heart. So we are not talking of the kind of dance one learns in dance classes. We are not talking of organized and named dance forms. We are talking of the dance of the butterfly. We are talking of the dance of the winds. We are talking of the dance of the stars. You look at the stars, how they all have been unevenly scattered on the dark plate of the sky, that dark canopy up there. No organization, no pattern, and yet they are so beautiful. One looks at the way trees, plants grow in a jungle. They have not been planted there in an order. They have not been planted in an order. And yet there is an intrinsic beauty. Probably the absence of order itself contributes to the beauty. Are you getting it?

The dance of the jungle, the dance of the waves, the dance of the stars, the monkey’s dance, the elephant’s dance, the dance of the toddler that is the dance that a Rumi loves.

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Acharya Prashant on Hafiz: Who is the lover the saint sings for?

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The subject tonight is love and for tomorrow night as well.

As a matter of fact, I know of no better topic for us to discuss, until we all die.

(Hafiz)

 

Acharya Prashant: Rumi, Hafiz, Meera, Bulle Shah, they sing of love, and in their poetry the lover often appears like a person. They talk of the lover, to the lover, in language that appears known and worldly. It is almost as if the man next door is composing and singing for his beloved who lives in the same town or somewhere afar. The whole ambience appears beautiful but not unknown. It is very easy therefore, to think that one person is singing for another person or one person is calling God, God as we know God. And is doing this lyrically, nicely, beautifully, heart fully. But the song, is something that we are familiar with. Read more

That which you desperately seek is made distant by your seeking

Mind makes God a problem. By keeping God away, it makes God a problem. Do you see this trick of the mind? It uses even God to sustain itself. It is such an ugly thing to do. You have made God into a problem.

You come and ask, you sit here and ask, “Sir, how to reach God?” What a problem. Now if reaching god is a problem then certainly you, the valiant one, you the intelligent one, you the heroic one are required to tackle the problem.

And then you also require some Guru or some shopkeeper to suggest the way to beat that problem. “You come, I’ll tell you how to attain Moksha in eight steps. It’s a three month course. And that’s the enrolment desk.”

Now unless there is a problem, how can a solution be sold? So if you want to sell something, first of all it is necessary to convince the other that there is a problem.

The wise ones who loved us, in their compassion have always told there is no problem, there is no separation. What are you trying all these methods, techniques, tricks, acrobatics for? They are not needed. You are making a fool of yourselves by keeping Love, God, Truth, Essence, Core – distant.

That which you desperately seek is made distant by your seeking.

Stop seeking and you are there. Instead you have been told that you must seek intensely so that you get it. I assure you that the more intensely you seek, the more intensely you remain the seeker. There is pleasure in remaining the seeker, there is respectability in remaining the seeker.

It depends on you, what do you want. The real thing, or the pleasure and respectability of remaining the aspirant.


Read the Complete Article: That which you desperately seek is made distant by your seeking

That which you desperately seek is made distant by your seeking

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“If the beloved is everywhere, the lover is a veil. But when living itself becomes the friend, lovers disappear”

~Rumi

Acharya Prashant: It is popular, conventional, and sweet to talk of the Truth, the God as the beloved and the mind, or the ego as the lover. That has been the norm in various traditions. That is how a lot of poets have expressed themselves. And the mind delights in thinking that way.

Here we are being challenged to look again and look sharply at the lover. When you say that you are the lover, or the seeker, or the aspirant, what is it that you are saying? I repeat, the lover is the one who wants it. The seeker is the one who is seeking liberation. When you say that you are the lover, or the seeker, or the aspirant, what is it that you are saying?

We like to say that, don’t we? We like to say that we are fond of the Truth, we like to say that we want the Truth. We like to say how is it possible to reach or achieve God or Truth. And that sounds nice, that sounds nice as an intention. It sounds nice. Because morality says that we are trying to do something good, we are trying to reach God; it ought to be nice. But in having that as nice, something important is being missed. What is that?

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On Rumi: To have knowledge is ignorance; to be free of knowledge is wisdom

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Do you think…

Do you think that I know what I’m doing.
That for one breath or half-breath I belong to myself?
As much as a pen knows what it’s writing,
or the ball can guess where it’s going next.

~RUMI

Acharya Prashant:  (Reading the poem)

That is the state of the liberated one. We often think that the liberated one is a knower; that he knows a lot; that he has some special knowledge, that is the way we refer to him. Gyani— the knower! That again is just an image, a stereotype.

The liberated one is actually a non-knower. He knows nothing, he is totally free of knowledge, totally innocent of knowledge. The

The Gyani (knower) really has no Gyan (knowledge). And you can be called a gyani only if you are totally free of gyan.

If you still have knowledge then you are just ignorant.
To have knowledge is ignorance.
To be free of knowledge is wisdom.

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Go mad, but go really mad. Don’t just pretend

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When I am with you, we stay up all night.
When you’re not here, I can’t go to sleep.
Praise God for those two insomnias!
And the difference between them

~Rumi

Acharya Prashant: Insomnia is a restlessness. Insomnia is a breaking down of the regular pattern of consciousness. Consciousness exists as the waking state, as the sleeping state, as the dreaming state. Insomnia here refers to a breaking down of the regular patterns of mind, which is a kind of madness. To a mind which thrives on patterns, a breaking down of patterns appears so much like madness.

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Can you see something more important than your tiredness?

Drum sound rises on the air, its throb, my heart. 

A voice inside the beat says,
“I know you’re tired, but come. This is the way.”

~ Rumi, The essentials of Rumi

Speaker: “I know you’re tired, but come. This is the way.” Apaar is saying, “After reading Rumi, a fear is rising. What if the way too is tiring? Then?”

When did Rumi assure you that the way is not tiring? In fact, all that Rumi is saying is, “You are already tired. That much is known.” You are prone, susceptible, vulnerable to tiredness. It is well-known. And somebody who is already tired is being invited to walk away. For sure, he will get only more tiredness. So there is no uncertainty.

You are asking, “What if the way too is tiring?” There is no doubt. Why are you feeling fifty-fifty? It is hundred percent certain, that only more tiredness is going to be there, only more tiredness. Rumi is honest. He won’t hide these things. He is saying, “It is tiring, obviously.”

But something more important than your weariness, your fatigue, something more compelling than your tiredness, would pull you. That thing has come in the shape of Rumi, for now. And that’s the whole beauty of it. Not tired, anybody would like to have a stroll. It is pleasurable. “I am not tired, and just have had dinner. Let’s go for a night walk.” There is nothing in that walk.

Walking 1But it becomes special when you are tired, and you have no reason to walk, yet you find yourself running. And you are not deceiving yourself; you are not hiding it from yourself that you are tired. “Yes, obviously I am tired. But there is something more important than this. I have to run.”

What is more important than this? Well, if there were a reason to walk, there could be a bigger reason to not to walk. Every reason can be defeated by a bigger reason, because reason always has its limits and boundaries. So whatever is done for a reason, can never be immense. It would always be petty. One reason would compel you to do something, another reason would come in your way, and tell you to not to do it.

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When you chase something, you will get its opposite as well

Drunks fear the police but the police are drunk too.

~ Rumi

Speaker: We are prone to thinking that a ‘thing’ is cancelled or neutralized by its opposite and our superficial experience in the world supports this kind of thinking. When cold water is mixed with hot water what you get is water that is neither cold nor hot. When a force toward the left meets a force towards the right, what you get is equilibrium. So it is no wonder, that we think that the opposite of ‘something’ neutralizes it, finishes it, dissolves it.

If the day is hot, we wait for the night. We say, “The day is so hot, the night might bring us some relief.” And when the night comes, we are glad to say, “The night brought us relief from the heat of the day”.

For us, a ‘thing’ finds its end, its deliverance, its solution in its opposite. If the day troubles me, then my deliverance lies with the night. If white threatens me, then my succor lies with black. If going upwards, I find suffering then the correct way for me is to go downwards. That is the way of the Samsara (World). That is what our ‘normal’, everyday experience has taught us.

But the wise man looks attentively at the world. He asks, “Is really a ‘thing’ finished by its opposite?” He probes deeply into life and what he sees is that the deeper is the pain, the more is the search and the memory of pleasure. And the more is the pleasure, the more is the urge to consume the pleasure out of a fear of pain.

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Respond to His call and He will take care of the rest

“I didn’t come here of my own accord and I can’t leave that way.

Whoever brought me here, will have to take me Home.

~ Rumi

Speaker: Now, Rumi is saying, “I didn’t come here of my own accord and I can’t leave that way. Whoever brought me here, will have to take me Home.”

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So, “I didn’t come here of my own accord”. The mind is a machine and no machine drives itself. The mind cannot know who is driving it? So, Rumi is just being honest and saying, “I don’t know, why is all this happening? I didn’t come here on my own accord.” And because I didn’t come here on my own accord, look at the man’s simple, innocent intelligence; he is saying, “For sure I cannot be the one who can achieve salvation for myself”.

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Free from lovers, You become free to love

“I am your lover, come to my side, I will open the gate to your love.”

~ Rumi

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Speaker: So yesterday night we were talking about the beginning of love. How does love begin? Who is this ‘I’? Who is this lover? What is Rumi saying?

“I am your lover, come to my side, I will open the gate to your love.”

Love is your very being. The moment, the day, the place, the point you come into being, love too comes into being. You cannot be without loving. It’s just that you do not know your lover. You do not know for whom your heart beats. You know somebody calls. Read more

The work of a saint is internal

Question: Dear Sir, a few questions:

1. Why am I so attracted to the personality and mannerisms of all my teachers, often curious about their lives than the truth of their teachings?

2. When I read Jiddu Krishnamurti(JK), am I conditioned by him?

3. Is JK’s method really ‘via negativa’ all the time? Why does he keep denying being a guru when that is all what he does? Read more

The Truth stands before me ~Rumi

The Truth stands before me,
On my left is a blazing fire, and
On my right, a cool flowing stream.

One group of people walk toward the fire, into the fire,
And the other towards the cool flowing waters.
No one knows which is blessed and which is not.

But just as a just as someone enters the fire,
That head bobs up from the water,
And just as a head sinks into the water,
That face appears in the fire.

Those who love the sweet water of pleasure
And make it their devotion are cheated by this reversal.

The deception goes further-
The voice of the fire says:
“I am not fire, I am fountainhead,
Come into me and don’t mind the sparks.”

~ Rumi

Question: I was reading a few of Rumi’s poems and came across this one. Need some clarity. Read more