When one knows only the external, then one lives only for the sake of the external

Acharya Prashant
5 min readFeb 24, 2023

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

Questioner (Q): Our education system is at fault because it has been designed to make you a worker, not to live life the way it should be.

Acharya Prashant (AP): Yes, yes. It is designed to make you into ‘something’. In some places, it is designed to not to make you into a worker, for example, there are many countries where the system is designed to ensure that women do not become workers. But, if it doesn’t want to make them workers, it wants to make them somebody else, a housewife, let’s say. So you must become something. If not a worker then a housewife, but you need to become something. A system is quite full of intent, it must make you into something.

And it does succeed in making you into something. To that extent, it does a good job. Our education and knowledge have been helpful to the extent that we are sitting here comfortably, there is light, the temperature is being maintained, and the recording is happening, to that extent, our knowledge is helping us, surely. But there are things more important than air conditioning, aren’t there? Or would you rather like to spend your life with an air conditioner? (Smilingly) There are many who probably might.

I’ve heard many nerds say that if they have an internet connection and a good machine, then they really do not want human company. (Smilingly) We appreciate such people, don’t we? And they really rise, often. They rise at least as long as the rise is within the technical domain. They do rise.

When one knows only about the external,

then one lives only for the sake of the external.

When I know only that which is visible through the eyes and can be touched through the skin, then I live just for the sake of it. I live just to consume it. I want to consume a man, I want to consume a woman, I want to consume the rivers, the mountains, the animals, the birds, I want to just consume everything. Because if it is outside, then my only relationship with it is that of separation. It is outside, it is different, separate. And my education has told me that to be worthy you must acquire stuff from outside so I…