On Yog Vasistha Sara: Does Spirituality advice men to renounce women?

Acharya Prashant
18 min readDec 7, 2021

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

Yog Vasistha Sara, Chapter 3, Verse 18:

“He who does not, like one blind, recognise(lit. leaves far behind) his relatives, who dreads attachment as he would a serpent, who looks upon sense-enjoyments and disease alike, who disregards the company of women as he would a blade of grass and who finds no distinction between a friend and a foe, experiences happiness in this world and the next.”

Question (Q): It gives some characteristics of the liberated one. It says, “He disregards the company of women like he would a blade of grass.” So, is that true in the reverse, for a liberated woman?

Acharya Prashant (AP): No. This has to be understood very clearly. “The liberated one disregards the company of woman, as he would disregard a blade of grass as insignificant, as nothing, as immaterial.” It is very proper, hence, to ask about this, because it sounds a little prejudiced.

When a saint says something, he must say it in our language. He is compelled to speak in words that the commons use, for the simple reason that he is communicating to commons. He must use the same language. When he will use language, language will point to objects. We must not think, however, that he is talking about objects.

When a saint says, “Sky,” he does not mean the same thing that we do, when we say, “Sky.” When a saint says, “Truth” or “God”, he is not pointing in the same direction in which we point, when we say, “Truth” or “God”. When a saint says, “Understand”, he does not mean ‘analyze’, or ‘conclude’. When a saint says, “Woman”, he does not mean the same thing that we do, when we say, “Woman”. Because we believe ourselves to be material bodies, hence when we say, “Woman”, all that we intend is, “Another material body of a particular gender.” The moment you say, “Woman”, what is it that comes to you? A material image, which is feminine. When a saint says, “Woman”, it…

--

--