The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question: What is the most fundamental step in the liberation of the Self? Is the liberation of the Self a gradual process or is it instantaneous like switching on a light?
Acharya Prashant (AP): It is neither. Liberation is just another name for the Self. The Self by nature is liberated. Hence there can be no liberation of the Self. One is already and always liberated.
Liberation is what you really are. Even in the moment of your deepest apparent bondage, you are liberated.
Even if you believe yourself in all kinds of chains, you are still liberated. Bondage is just the thought of bondage.
And pay attention: bondage is equally the thought of liberation.
Slaves are those who believe they are slaves and slaves are those who believe they are free.
The beliefs themselves are the bondage, it does not matter what you believe in.
The fact that you take yourself to be a belief is bondage. I repeat- if you think you are a slave, it is bondage, and if you think you are free, you are in deeper bondage.
Whatever you think about yourself — is the bondage. Liberation is the great silence that you are.
It is a great peace that always remains, even if you act in noisy, chaotic, and violent ways. Bondage and suffering are the names of the same thing. You suffer in slavery precisely because, you are free, so slavery is artificial and false. You dislike chains precisely because freedom is your nature. So, no chains can ever be attractive to you. And even in the middle of thousands of such chains your heart is always free, had it not been free then it would have glorified those chains — and we do glorify chains and yet (smiles .. ) do not find peace.
This very lack of peace and restlessness that appears as these questions is the very proof of who you are: the one who must know because knowing is her nature, the one who must talk of slavery because freedom is her nature, the one who detests incompleteness because completeness is her nature. If you observe your daily life you would simply see what you are because in that it is…