Those who really want to change their life, are prepared to pay with their death

Acharya Prashant
4 min readJan 3

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

Question (Q): I often find my life revolving around petty issues, issues around ‘me’, mine’. And there is a deep frustration because of this. I feel that I want something more. Is that just an ideology, or there is something more to it?

Acharya Prashant (AP): Life is not something, cast in stone. Life is not something, pre-determined or rigid. What you call as ‘life’ is a sequence in time. It is happening constantly. Not for a moment do you skip life. If life has a lot of ‘I’, ‘me’, and ‘mine’ present, that can be taken care of, any moment. The very realization stops that. And nobody else is enforcing it on you. If you feel that you are sick of it, it stops there, then.

Even this sense of helplessness — “What do I do if my life is like this?”- is just an inner ploy to continue things as they are. It is a very calculated helplessness; calculated and cultivated. There is nothing authentic about it. One is healthy, educated, and young, but one acts as if one is under so much pressure and compulsion. And what exactly is that ‘pressure and compulsion’? What exactly? Where are the facts? It is just that the training is so deep, and the desire to break out of the training is not so strong. Nothing else.

Listener 1 (L1): If one wants to change one’s life, one can only change it from one point to another. There is a limit to change. Is there any possibility that one can look at his limits, and go beyond them?

AP: It is not something as calm and composed, as you have just stated it. It is probably more intense, more throbbing, and more lively than that. ‘Going beyond’ requires the energy of your entire being. What you usually call ‘looking at something’, is just an intellectual observation. That does not suffice.

Intellectually, just as an idea or thought, we all know a lot of things. That knowledge does not really help in critical matters of life. It can help in coffee-table discussions. It can help you argue and make a point. It can help you spend a good evening. But it does not help you change the fundamentals of life. The fundamentals of life are changed when you are prepared to pay…