Why do I feel lost? Why does nothing appeal?

Acharya Prashant
8 min readNov 27, 2020

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

Question: Why do I feel lost?

Acharya Prashant (AP): Because you are asking this question.

We ‘think’ that we are lost, equally, we ‘think’ that we are not lost. The same place from where the thought, the perception of being lost, or not lost arises, that place is the same place from where this question arises.

There sits someone who firstly, thinks himself to be so knowledgeable that he can pass a judgment upon his situation. He thinks that he knows who he is and what is his situation is, and his location. He declares, announces, sometimes he says, “I am fine”, sometimes he says, “I am not fine”, sometimes he says “I am lost”, sometimes he says “I am home.” Are any of these judgments or questions or announcements valid, in absence of mental activity?

You woke up this morning, before waking up into this particular state of consciousness, were you asking this question? Anybody here who asks in his or her sleep, what is meant by being lost, how does one reach home? Are any of these questions relevant then? Is even the deepest spiritual inquiry relevant in a moment of relaxation?

When you are really alright, do you bother yourself with these questions?

Let me invert the whole thing.

We say that we are not lost, hence we are asking what is meant by not being lost, or we are lost, hence we are asking why we are lost.

Let me assert, that we feel lost because we ask, the way to home. It is not the situation that comes first or gives birth to the question. Rather, it is the question that gives birth to an assumed situation.

By asking a question, which is based on a supposition, I am validating the supposition.

It is like asking, were you ill again yesterday?

Do you see the assumption explicit in the question? What is the assumption?

Listener (L): That you are someone who often falls ill.

AP: So, you have given yourself an identity. So, it is in fact an assertion, rather than a question. Now when you ask, how do I reach home? Do you see the…

Acharya Prashant