Question: Acharya Ji, Pranaam! While reading and meditating on Nitnem, something happened within me which is difficult to explain. And this happening is same while we were reading Ashtavakra Gita and Upanishads.
These words do not create any images, but they take away my chains and cut me down. Whatever we see around, most of the combinations of the alphabets a-z in this world, all that is, is just with an agenda – to protect our ego, or fear, or greed. But when these same letters a-z, combine to produce the Japuji Sahib or Ashtavakra Gita, why is there a magic?
Acharya Prashant Ji: There is just a magic, Sandeep! The ‘why’ is not necessary. But if you are asking, I will speak on it.
There is a Sacredness, a Trueness, that is at the root of the world.
The world keeps changing, coming and going, the Trueness remains.
The world is many things.
To the Lover of the Truth, the world is an expression of the Truth.
To the hater of the Truth, the world is a competitor of the Truth.
Do you see how the meanings of the world can change, according to the mind that is looking at the world?
If you are the lover of the Truth, the world is a manifestation of the Truth.
If you are a worshipper of the Truth, then the world is an offering, a gift, a prasad from the Truth.
Whereas, if you are a hater of the Truth, somebody who loves to say that the Truth doesn’t exist, then the world is a substitute to the Truth.
If you hate the world, if you hate the Truth, you would say, “There is no Truth. There is only the world, the material world.” So what does the world become? A substitute, a competitor.
It depends on who you are.
Those who love the Truth their world becomes truthful, everything in their world gets arranged to serve the Truth.
It comes from the Truth, it serves the Truth.
It serves the Truth, so more comes from the Truth.
More comes from the Truth, there is more to serve the Truth.
The Truth is served even more, there is even more that comes from Truth.
And all this expression is material. But that expression is merely a result of the commitment, of the expressing one, to the Truth. It is not merely their words that are now arranged, configured, in the design of Truth, in the light of Truth, by the virtue of Truth. Everything, even their body.
Just as their words take you beyond their chains, even their body, their eyes, their looks, will take you beyond your chains. It is obvious, is it not? If the words of Ashtavakra have so much power, what power would be there in sitting next to Ashtavakra? Words are material thing, are they not? And the body too is a material thing. In fact, the words require the body to emerge.
If the words are so beautiful, there would certainly be great beauty, in sitting next to the ‘person’ of Ashtavakra. The way they wear their clothes, the way they eat, the way they work, everything would be a Scripture, provided you know how to read. It is because everything that they have, everything that they are, is first of all an offering to the Truth. They have not kept anything for themselves, private, reserved, personal. All is there to serve the One. The One.
When all is to serve the One, then all gets arranged, aligned, in the music of the One.
It depends on what you want to do with your earthly existence.
It depends on your fundamental concept is.
If your concept is – “I am false, because I am incomplete. I am false because my daily inadequacies prove to me that I cannot be the Final One. My daily existence is the proof that this little structure cannot be the finality’ – if this is your concept, then you will surrender this little, incomplete thing to that which is complete, because the complete is that which you are anyway craving for.
Nobody has to teach you that. It is your basic urge. You are seeking completeness. And if you are seeking completeness, then why not submit the incomplete, in the service of the complete?
Is that not common sensical?
Your brain, your intellect, your decisions, your life, your body, your past, your experiences, your knowledge, everything keeps failing, everything is incomplete. And there are abundant and daily proofs. Are there not? On one hand you know that, on the other hand you also know that the incomplete one does not satisfy you.
Anything that is limited and bounded, does not quench your thirst. So you know that you want something big. You want something big, you have something small, what to do with the small thing that you have? Use it to reach the big thing that you really want.
Logical, obvious, common sensical!
You want thousand, you have hundred. What to do with the hundred? Invest it in a way that it would become a thousand. It is a very gross way of putting it, but may be the only way it would make sense to you.
You have hundred, but you are not happy with hundred. What do you want? A thousand. What to do with the hundred then?
Acharya Prashant Ji: Invest it in the service of the thousand. What are the Saints doing? They are targeting a billion, a trillion. A billion trillion, a trillion trillion – using just hundred. That’s some smartness. Those are the really smart ones, not these dudes that are hanging around, wearing the tags of smartness.
Somebody gets fifteen percent return on his investment, and you start calling him ‘smart’. Somebody makes a million dollars, and you say, “Wow! Really smart chap.”
He is dumb.
“Fortune 500. It is really something big!” They have wasted it. Buggers, you have lost it! You know what, you have just lost it.
Change your concept of smartness.
When your concept of smartness changes, then you know who the real dude is.
If you are dumb, then you will just admire a few other dumb people.
If you are intelligent, then you worship.
You worship the really smart ones.
They are called ‘Saints’.
That requires you to be super-smart.
Dumb people will admire only dumb people!
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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