The only method to relax a restless mind

Acharya Prashant
9 min readMay 10, 2021

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

Questioner (Q): What kind of technique would you propose to someone whose mind is constantly racing and just being alone with the mind sometimes is torture to them. What would you suggest to empower themselves?

Acharya Prashant (AP): Your mind keeps racing, you find that a problem?

Q: I am staying with a friend who has been on a spiritual path for years but she says that meditation is torture for her. So, I suggested that she observe her mind in a neutral way and let it be. Because if she argues, her restlessness would only multiply. So far, my words haven’t been fruitful. So, what would your approach be?

AP: No, before having any approach I would like to understand the situation. How can I suggest anything without first knowing, what is going on? Let’s say, you are a father and you find your little son racing around. Now, is that a problem? Your little son is racing around on a busy road. Now is that a problem? What is the problem? The racing around. Is the racing around the problem?

Q: Danger?

AP: The danger. So, the thought that something wrong, something bad may happen, is the problem, right?

You have a pet dog. You find the dog racing away from your house. Is that a problem? I’m not asking a metaphysical question.

Q: My dog may not come back.

AP: Yeah, my dog may not come back. Is racing a problem?

Q: What if it never comes back?

AP: So, the mind keeps racing. Have you ever tried to see whether it really ever goes away? The mind keeps running towards what? And if it is running so hard why hasn’t it run away from you? It should have reached outer space by now. Should have been riding some satellite or something. The mind is obviously always running but towards what?

I’m again asking, is it running away from you? It appears as if it is running away from you but if it is really running away from you why hasn’t it gone away yet? Why do you still call it ‘your’ mind? Why? Just let the mind run away and see where it goes. Have you ever, in a friendly way, asked the mind where it really wants to…

Acharya Prashant