The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question: What should be the place of our parent’s views in our decision-making?
Acharya Prashant (AP): Who will decide the importance given to anybody’s views? Parent's views or anybody’s views? Who will decide that? You will decide that. Even if I give you some answer right now, who will decide how much importance to give to my answer?
I am giving you a lot of answers. Who will decide how important these answers are? You will decide, right?
Already, so much has been told to you by families, society, your normal education, moral science, convention, and tradition. You already know that parent’s views are important. And this knowledge is coming to you from outside. When you were small, since you were small, you are being fed this knowledge. Now you want me to give you some knowledge, and this knowledge you’ll integrate with your previous beliefs and come to some kind of conclusion.
And you would be doing that. You would again be making the decision based on your own education, your own beliefs.
Would it not be far far better to just say that why do we need to decide at all? You’re asking how important are the views of parents, I’m saying, “Why do you need to have a decision in this regard?” Because you already have so many decisions ready-made with you, by way of knowledge. Why do you need to have one more decision coming to you from an outsider? Am I not an external agent? Am I not?
Just like everything else is external, am I too not external? If I give you a direct answer, a ready-made answer, I’ll be doing exactly the same thing that has been happening to you over the last many many years. So, as I’m saying, far far better it might be not to answer at all and to say, “We’ll see. I am young I have the faculty of intelligence, and be it parents or be it anybody else, and when something is being said to me, I’ll listen attentively and I’ll see. If it is worthy, surely I’ll consider it. And if it’s not worthy, I’ll not take it even if the president of the world is saying it.”
The question of parents comes to you like the question of authority. What to do when elders, when people sitting in…