Life curve must be y = x + sin(x)

Acharya Prashant
5 min readAug 17, 2020

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

Questioner: Acharya Ji, we keep experiencing highs and lows in life. I have been facing this problem that my ‘lows’ become very low. How to ensure that the ‘lows’ in life do not become very low?

I remember you have explained this very beautifully in one of the sessions with the help of a curve, a diagram, and that image has stuck in my mind. You said that such ‘highs’ and ‘lows’ would exist, but the actual movement must be upwards and not downwards.

Please throw some more light it.

Acharya Prashant: Are you talking of the spiritual journey?

Questioner: I am asking about life in general.

Acharya Prashant: My response would only be in context of spiritual movement.

Questioner: Yes, yes, Acharya Ji.

If you could please speak more on this, it will be helpful.

Acharya Prashant: This is the super imposition of two curves.

This is the curve Y= sin (X). It never really attains any height. It moves centered on the Y-axis. The ‘highs’ and ‘lows’ are pre-determined, and dualistic in a sense. You know of the Sine Curve, Y=sin(X). Now add to this the Curve Y=X. How does the curve Y=X, look like? It is the straight line passing through the origin, at forty five degrees to both the X-axis and Y-axis.

These two when added, give the curve that you are talking of.

Y = X + sin(X).

What does the addition of these two curves mean? Man is both prakriti (nature) and something else. Prakriti is Y=Sin(X). You are confined within duality. Ups and downs, ups and downs leading to nothing. The ‘Up’ will not remain up forever, the ‘down’ will not remain down forever. Crests and troughs, crests and troughs — that is prakriti.

In a state of endless movement — day and night, summer and winter, dry wand wet, here and there, yesterday and tomorrow. That is Y=Sin(X). Man is usually just prakriti. So his life too remains confined within the limits of that curve.

A lot seems to be happening, nothing really happens. The curve of life seems to be going up, going up…