The material, the thought, and the thinker are one || Delhi University (2022)

August 30, 2022 | Acharya Prashant

Questioner (Q): I am troubled by nihilistic thoughts. I feel that nothing in this world has any real existence or importance. Sometimes when I study, I start questioning its importance and start thinking that I should abandon the studies. I sometimes think about abandoning the material world altogether, but I am very nihilistic towards the teachings of the saints also, although they have denounced materialism. People say we have to be successful and I question that as well.

This nihilism towards everything has brought me to an existential crisis. What is the point in doing anything? Should we just abandon everything? If not, how can I be free of these nihilistic thoughts?

Acharya Prashant (AP): You said you think of or feel like abandoning all that is material. In this context you named the saints as well. Now, the thing is, not only is the visible world material, even the thoughts in one’s head are all material. It is just that the world we experience outside of our body is easy to be experienced and certified as material: you can touch it, look at it, experiment easily with it, and rate it as material. But even your


Acharya Prashant is an emerging champion of socio-spiritual awakening in the world today. An alumnus of IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad, and a former Civil Services officer, Acharya Prashant is an acclaimed Speaker, Vedanta Teacher and author of over 50 books. Apart from that he wears various hats: a veganism promoter, an environmental activist, a science activist, a campaigner against superstition, and a champion of essential human freedom. Know More