IIT Delhi: Joy is the pleasure of ascension

Acharya Prashant
7 min readJun 19, 2022

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

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

Acharya Prashant (AP): 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 potential 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…