On Shanti Mantra: Live to express Fullness, not to gain it

Acharya Prashant
21 min readAug 17, 2021

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

Om! Puurnnam-Adah ||

That is that, full, complete, ultimate.

Puurnnam-Idam ||

This is that, full, complete, ultimate.

Puurnnaat-Purnnam-Udachyate||

Full expresses itself, as fullness. Puurnnasya Puurnnam-Aadaaya ||

From full, all fullness arises.

Puurnnam-Eva-Avashissyate ||

And full, remains full. Full complete ultimate.

Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih ||

Acharya Prashant (AP): So, is it not wonderful that ‘this’ and ‘that’ are being addressed together? The Rishi begins by saying, “‘this is full’ and ‘that is full’.” First of all, it has to be understood that ‘this’ and ‘that’ cannot pertain to the beyond. ‘This’ and ‘that’ cannot pertain to anything outside the mind. What are ‘this’ and ‘that’ then?

‘This’ and ‘that’ are everything that the mind anyway daily experiences. In terms of matter, they are the thing and its absence. So there is a ball kept somewhere; ‘this’ is the ball, ‘that’ is the absence of the ball. In terms of time, their cause and effect. In terms of thought itself, they are what occupies the mind and what remains hidden. So ‘this’ and ‘that’ pertain to all pairs of duality.

The Constitution of the mind is such that it does not look at both ends of duality together, ever. It only looks at one end. And the one end that it looks at is always found incomplete. When the mind is in pleasure then at that moment it forgets about pain. But because pleasure and pain invariably go together, so there is a hidden sense of incompleteness which the mind can make no sense of. Mind says it’s a good occasion, there is pleasure all around then why am I still suffering? I am still not feeling ok.

It is because we never look at ‘this’ and ‘that’ together. When we are looking at ‘that’, then…

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