What is meant by genuinely speaking and hearing?

Acharya Prashant
4 min readMay 16, 2020

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

Acharya Prashant: What is going on, when apparently this process of speaking and hearing is happening? What is really going on? Obviously, someone is talking and someone is receiving the sound, but what is really going on?

Listener: An interaction, an exchange.

AP: If it is really a good interaction, then it is a change in the quality of the mind itself. The way the mind is conscious, that changes directly. Sitting there, you are transported to another place. One can equally say that one is brought back to That place. Both are right ways of expressing it.

It is as if another reality, more real than the chair you are sitting on, suddenly presents itself. It is not as if the chair disappears or the voice disappears, or the surroundings and the sensory perceptions disappear. They all remain. But consciousness becomes sensitive to a quality which is not per se there in the chair, or in the soup, or in the light. Something which the normal world cannot provide. Even if the normal world is ideal and perfect, still it cannot provide.

It is like being in two places at the same time. The second place, the more important place, envelops the first one, colors the first one, and takes the first one in its lap, in its ambit. So even though you might be just sitting on a chair, but just sitting now has a special quality about it. And there is another one who is sitting on the next chair, and who is not quite engaged. He would not be sensitive to that quality.

Is that quality an experience? Yes and No.

You surely sense that something different is going on, yet you cannot put your finger on it. You cannot name it or put it in a boundary, or define it. So you cannot technically call it an experience. Because experience requires the validation of memories. This ‘Something’ is fantastic, but fantastic not because the past experiences declare it fantastic. It is fantastic in a brave way, in a daring way. You will have to search for the word fantastic. It won’t immediately come to you.

It is more of a feeling of awe. Something that sets you afire, sets you alive, but at the same time, strikes you cold. It