Is freedom possible, with responsibilities of family and society?

Acharya Prashant
6 min readOct 18, 2020

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

Question: We have so many liabilities and responsibilities of family and society. Is freedom possible? What is real freedom?

Acharya Prashant: What is the family? Is the family an aggregation of people? Or is the family a net of relationships?

The family is a net of relationships. When you say family, you are reminded of certain people, and when you are reminded of certain people, if it turns off your mood then you blame those people. You do not see that it is your relationship with those people that is turning you off.

A face is just a face; a man or a woman is just a man or a woman, a body is a body. There is nothing in a face, a face is just a particular geometry, a pattern, a picture, an object, a thing. There is nothing in a face that can really turn you off. It is the meaning that face holds for you which turns you off. If a face flashes in your consciousness and along with the face echo’s the word bondage, then you will be scared and wary of that face.

What if the face flashes and it's just a face? No feeling or reminder of bondage flashes along with the face. Would you still dislike the face? Would you still call the face liability or a problem? And if a particular face means bondage to you, tell me why did you accept to be bonded or enslaved? No one can hold you captive without your consent.

Every instance of bondage is a business deal,

it’s a commercial transaction.

You are accepting slavery so that you may get something in return.

So you sign a particular deal and later on, you are cringing. How fair is that? I am not even asking you how wise is that?

Aren’t you been unjust to the other person? The two of you are in an agreement, the agreement is, “I will surrender my freedom, and in return, I will get some pleasure from you, some security some gratification.” This is an agreement, you have signed this agreement. And now the two of you are proceeding on this agreement and then you complain, you say, “the other one has started lording over me the other one is an exploiter”.

Acharya Prashant