Joy is the pleasure of ascension || IIT Delhi (2022)

June 18, 2022 | Acharya Prashant

Questioner: Is pleasure a necessity for humans? Do we as human beings need pleasure for survival, to be sane?

Acharya Prashant: What is pleasure, first of all? See, we all operate at a certain level of the mind, call it the level of consciousness—you can take that as our current level, this is where we stand—and our potentiality is huge, tremendous. So, you stand here, and your potentiality is huge. Now, what will happen when you connect these two points of different potentials? What happens when you connect two points having potential difference?

There is a flow—it could be the flow of water or flow of electrons, let’s say electrons, current. This flow is called pleasure; something is happening. “I was at this lower level, I have been connected to something at this higher level, and so there is a flow and I am hopeful, I am liking that experience; something is happening.” Now, this is the right kind of pleasure—the pleasure of ascension, the pleasure of rising up, the pleasure of flying high.

Unfortunately, for us human beings another kind of pleasure is possible. You connect this level of your potential to a place that has only a lower level, and still what you would experience is a flow; there is a potential difference, no? If you are connected to something lower than your existing state of consciousness, even then you will have a flow. This flow, again, is pleasure. This is the kind of pleasure that sinks you—for example, the pleasure that you


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