Who is sitting within? What does it want?

Acharya Prashant
7 min readMar 21, 2021

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

Questioner (Q): How do I know what is sitting in my subconscious? What does the thing within want? Hence, how should I make my choices and decisions?

Acharya Prashant (AP): You have no perception beyond what you consciously know. You can only operate within the zone of your consciousness. How then do you know what is there beneath the shallow depth of the conscious mind? To know that, again you have to just watch what is happening in your consciousness. You have no option. Because what is happening in the conscious mind, is arising from the subconscious or unconscious, whatever you want to call it. Are you getting it?

So, we talked of that well. You are throwing light into it. That light goes only up to a certain distance. And whatsoever you can see till that distance will give you a fair idea, a good indication of what is there beneath the illuminated area. You will have to make wise speculations. You have to keep watching what is available to be watched and from that, you’ll have to infer about what is not available to be directly watched. Are you getting it? And if you can see what is arising from the subconscious, you will also know ways to penetrate deeper into the subconscious.

Watch your actions. See, what they are pointing towards. Watch your thoughts, see what they are pointing towards. And the thing with the subconscious is, if you can decode it, you have illuminated it. It remains in the dark only because you are in the dark about it. It’s the same thing, right? The more you know about it, the more it gets illuminated. So, know more about it. How do you know more about it? — By doing what is available to be done. All you can watch is your actions, thoughts, emotions, tendencies, reactions, biases, beliefs; watch these.

Watch the movement of life in general and you will come to see what is there, beneath the surface. But you will have to be inquisitive. You cannot just accept or dismiss things as usual. All the things that are apparently usual, contain valuable information at their source or origin or in their depths. We breathe, don’t we? Is breathing a conscious decision? There is nobody who wants to question “why we breathe?” Well, there are people who…