On leaving behind money for one’s children, and other responsibilities

Acharya Prashant
12 min readAug 24, 2021

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

Questioner (Q): Acharya Ji, should one not leave money for his children? Is that not my responsibility towards my family?

Acharya Prashant (AP): By giving them X or Y tangible things, would you really be able to do them some good? You have a son, and that son becomes an aggregate of influences and a bundle of conditioning. What will he do with all the money that you leave behind for him? What will he do with that money?

Q: I cannot answer this.

AP: You must answer this. Unless your son has a clean mind, what will he do with whatever you leave behind for him? Yes?

Q: Maybe, do the same that we all had done.

AP: Use all your money for his own destruction. The more would be the money that you leave for him, the quicker would be his destruction. And if you have really been a loving father, would your son really be in a need of money? First of all, he would need very little money. Secondly, he would be empowered enough to earn on his own and probably give a little to you as well. If money is the gift that a father leaves behind for the son, then it’s a very petty gift — and in fact a dangerous gift. In fact, only a loveless father would think of primarily money to bequeath to the son.

You talked of responsibility. Do you relate to that woman in love or in responsibility? When you look at her, what are you reminded of? Love or responsibility? Is your wife a duty to you? She probably is. And that’s so tragic. It need not be like that. If your son is a duty to you, then both you and your son are locked in a mutually destructive relationship. I’m again asking you: the woman that you live with, eat with, sleep with — is she a duty to you? Is right action about fulfilling your duties, or does it come from another center? And even if she’s a duty to you, how do you know what your right duty is? How do you know? How do you know what is the right action with respect to a person in a relationship at any given moment? How do you know how to act rightly?

If you can’t give intimacy to your son, would it pay to pay him a little more pocket money? Would it? If you have…