Kashi Vishwanath Temple: A turning point in Acharya Ji’s life

Acharya Prashant
3 min readJan 22, 2020

It was the summer of 1993. It had been a few months since his board results were declared. He was All India Rank 3 and the state topper. His name and photos were all over the newspapers.

But in spite of the worldly limelight, the 15-year-old boy was feeling a peculiar restlessness in the body and the mind. This was new to him; so new that it took him a few months to realise that the happening was unusual.

At 15, with success and adoration already coming one’s way, one is not supposed to undergo an intense unreasonable psychic turbulence. He would stay up all night and stare at the dark and gloomy night sky; he would scribble meaningless lines in his diary; be attracted to simple sounds as well as Shlokas; would skip meals, talk less and most surprisingly, visit and spend time in cemeteries and temples- places that boys of his age mostly don’t even think of.

All of this was happening rather suddenly. It was having an overwhelming affect on the boy. And he had no choice but to let the happening take over.

That summer, he happened to visit the Kashi Vishwanath Temple situated in Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi. This visit, the boy was unaware, was to bring a defining moment in his life.

Thinking that it would be just another ordinary visit to another temple, he entered the premises. Clueless about what awaited him at the courtyard, he casually looked around.

Around him were hundreds of excerpts from the highest scriptures, engraved in the walls and pillars of the temple.

He went closer and started reading. He read one excerpt, then the next one, and then the next. Each engraving on those walls pierced him so deep in the Heart that he lost all sense of time, and like some possessed, kept moving from one shlok, one verse to the other. Time stopped for him. The temple premises became the entire universe. He faintly realised that what he was reading right now had something to do with what he had been senselessly scribbling in his diary since a while. By the time he regained his usual self, many hours had passed.

He found he had taken pieces of paper, and scribbled down as many of the verses as he could. Face was laced with tears, though without…

Acharya Prashant