The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question (Q): Acharya Ji, what does it mean to be close to the center? And how can one be located close to the center?
Acharya Prashant (AP): Frustration is in some way the holiest of experiences. We need more men, more women who are frustrated. Alright! I’ll correct myself — we need more people who acknowledge their frustration because frustrated everybody anyway actually is. But we don’t acknowledge our frustration; we rename it; we glorify it; very artificially we sanctify it. Unless you are frustrated from the world, how will you ever accept the reality of your relationship with the world? But we keep frustration in abeyance. We latch on to hope. Frustration keeps eating at our insights. We keep on getting hollowed from within, but we don’t acknowledge.
In order to escape from the fact of our frustration, we create alternate worlds: we create worlds of responsibilities; we create worlds of duties; we create worlds of absorbing daily routines; we create huge business empires that demand our constant involvement. Because unless you create alternate worlds that you can escape into, how will you be able to deny the existence of the elephant in the room? Frustration is like a great elephant in the room and you want to somehow deny its presence. The only way is to remain lost, deliberately lost in sleep, in dreams. So, we create a dream world. It’s a very defeated exercise, always shambolic. Yet we indulge in it. Deep within, we all know the fakeness of all our worlds.
Spirituality is just about acknowledging what you already know of. We are not born to be frustrated. It is not our destiny to live in a tepid way. It is not at all necessary that our face remains wrinkled, furrowed.
It is so difficult to come across a simple plain forehead, is it not?
All you see are lines and furrows. Is that really our destiny? Is that what a child is born for? It is easy to give that up which you anyway should not have carried with you. We think of it as very difficult; it is not.
Saints have cried for entire long nights. What else is it? Holy frustration.