If you live as the body, you will value only that which is related to the body

Acharya Prashant
11 min readDec 15, 2020

The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.

Question: Morally, we are supposed to obey our parents for several reasons, we owe them a lot. Is there any point where it is okay to defy them and take an independent decision going against their will and liking, when does this realization come?

Acharya Prashant (AP): See, it all depends on how one looks at herself.

Parents, spouse, relatives all are representations of the body in the world. Whose parents are we talking of? We are talking about parents of the body because that is what they give birth to — the body!

So, one could say — I am the body;

one could say — I am the mind; or,

one could say — I am silence, “I am That”.

For sure, I am not identified with the body or the mind, and what I am about, that I would not like to venture to comment. But, one thing is certain — I am not ‘terribly’ identified with the body.

If within, you are not deeply body-identified, then outside, you cannot be too identified with your parents. The ‘body-identified’ person will surely be deeply identified with those who are connected to his body.

With your husband or wife, you have a relationship of the body. Now, if you are body-identified within, then you will be identified with your husband also, outside. Within, you are identified with your body; outside, you are identified with the husband because with the husband you have a relationship of the body.

Same with parents, the parents gave birth to you — the body. The parents must be as important to you as your body is. And what I am saying works both ways. They have to have certain importance because for you, your body has a certain importance — you take care of it, you feed it, you maintain it, you walked on your legs to come to this place. So, the body has a certain importance.

To the extent the body has importance, parents too have importance. But, there must come a point when you have to say that ‘In these matters, I cannot listen to the body’; or, doesn’t there ever come this point?

Acharya Prashant