Understanding comes first, then thoughts

Acharya Prashant
7 min readAug 3, 2017

Thought by its nature is fickle. Thought by its nature rises and falls, moves into its opposite, changes shapes, forms. No thought can ever be stable.

My question to you is, is thought your master? And if thought is indeed your master, if you have submitted yourself to thought then, by all means, keep following your thoughts, and that is what you will get. A life in which you will be thrown around along with the thoughts. A life that will be as anchor-less as thoughts are. A life that is as easily influenced by the environment as thoughts are.

Thoughts will remain, thoughts are defined to remain. Thought will move according to its own mechanism, according to its own construction. Why do you want to stay pack to the thought? It’s like riding a horse and saying, “Oh! The ride is bumpy.” Will the horse move like a Lamborghini?

You chose to ride the horse, you selected the horse. Now you are saying, “Oh! The shock absorbers are not quite fine. Hitting my bums!” You have chosen your preferred partner and that partner according to you is? The thought. Thought will do what thought does. Why is your relationship based on thought? This will be the punishment of having the relationships that are based on thought. This will be the result of having relationships that are based on calculations because thought calculates. This will be the result of relationships that are secured, predictable, well thought out.

If a relationship is based on thought, it will suffer all the travails of thought. Instead of asking the horse to behave itself, why don’t you just get down? But no, you are taking the horse to a personality development class. You are saying, “Please train the horse, the thought to behave properly.” Let’s take the horse to some ashram, where they will teach him some fine etiquette. Cultured thought, gentle horse!.

Even a saint’s thoughts are as fleeting as yours. Because thought is thought. Doesn’t matter whether it is thought in your mind or in the mind of a Kabir or in the mind of an Ashtavakra. Thought will remain thought. The difference does not lie in the nature of thought. The difference lies in whether you are accepting thought as your master. Kabir’s thoughts are of the same quality as yours, the same fundamental at least. But Kabir is not a servant to