Acharya Prashant: Which aspect of the mind do you get rid of, or what kind of threat to the mind do you ward off by being in the forest?
Yes, everything that the presence of the other person gives you. So the forest does not have to be a literal one. By being in the forest, it is not literally meant that you have to be in the woods. Proceed by way of negation.
Being in the forest indicates psychologically not being with people. Psychologically not being with corrupting influences. I repeat this because when I say not being with people psychologically, that does not mean that you don’t have to be with anybody at all. Even in the jungle, the Sage is with the seekers, so there are people to be with, right? So being in the jungle does not completely exclude the possibility of being with people. Rather it completely excludes the possibility of being with the usual, normal, ordinary commoners. Theirs is the company you have to guard against. In fact, you cannot have the company of the Rishi, if you have the company of the commoners.
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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