The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Questioner (Q): Being in the world around you and still how do you maintain equanimity of mind so that the world doesn’t bother you? You can still keep your equanimity while things are going around you.
Acharya Prashant (AP): You are traveling up a hilly road- a serpentine, treacherous road. Sometimes there are hairpin bends, sometimes there are sudden disturbances, even potholes are there. The light too is not sufficient. But your car is in the safe hands of a driver you trust. You look outside the car and the scene is continuously changing. The sun is about to set. So it is falling directly on your face. And then the car takes a turn, and it is suddenly darker and there is no sun. Suddenly there is a steep climb and then the climb is not so steep. It is rocky and then there is a vast swath of land which is just trees. So what you are observing is continuously changing. Do all these changes bother you? Do you wish that there should be no changes?
Q: There is change. But because of the faith in the driver, it doesn’t bother.
AP: You know you are in safe hands. So now the changes are not a botheration. In fact, now the changes are a delight. You say, “I am enjoying the scenic beauty!” Don’t you? When you come to a place like this (Dharmashala), you may look around, do you see the same things? Do you? There is the vast, open, blue sky. The hills are dark and crowded with trees at one place. At other places, there are no trees at all and only expanses of snow. Is it not so? Do these changes threaten you? Do you wish that all trees, all landscapes must be the same?
A few days back it rained. I was told that there was a hailstorm or something. And in the afternoons, it is quite sunny. Do you wish that it all remains the same, uniformly clouded or alternately, uniformly sunny? Now, these changes are a part of the delight of living. Day and night; both are welcome. Snow and sun; both are welcome. Water and heat; both are welcome. Both are welcome only when you are in safe hands. If you are not in safe hands, then you divide. And then you say only one particular kind of thing is welcome. And now what is welcome? “Only that which will keep me safe. Now the world is…