The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Acharya Prashant (AP): The feeling, the foolhardy certainty that “I am the body” is the progenitor of all other bondages. I am calling it foolhardy because if you apply a little mind it is not difficult at all to see that you and the body really cannot be one, that the body as a machine and you as consciousness just cannot be identical. The very nature of the body, if studied, makes it clear that it is something a little alien to you. What remains a mystery, however, is the fact that you are apparently tied to the body. That is the mystery of mysteries. Given two such disparate alien entities, how did this unlikely union become possible? How did you end up in a knot with the body? Who caused this wedding? How have oil and water managed to mix together? That is the wonder of wonders. Getting it?
The body is a conditioned phenomenon, comes from two bodies much like itself, undergoes a predictable cycle of growth, development of all kinds, and then decay and death. That is all that the body knows; passing through its life cycle with very predictable characteristics associated with each phase of the life cycle. And that is how, you see, medicines can be, and are developed; all medicines are either fully generic or generic to an extent, right? There is hardly any medicine that applies only to just one individual. Have you seen how one medicine that will be effective on your body will be equally effective on someone belonging to another gender, race, continent, nation, age? So, all bodies are similar to each other to a great extent. There is nothing unique about bodies. Are you getting it?
Then you come to consciousness. Is there any medicine that is applicable to the body equally applicable to consciousness as well? Think of it. There is so much that can chemically affect the body. Does that same thing really affect your consciousness as well? Many of you will be prompted to say yes, but wait. Consciousness is affected by material or chemical substances only to the extent the consciousness is identified with the body. There are so many things that you can give to the body that will render it almost fully healthy. But can any of those things render health to the consciousness?