Why does one crave to become better?

Acharya Prashant
8 min readAug 20, 2021

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

Acharya Prashant (AP): There is a person who is dreaming about betterment and sitting at her place, she is visualizing how things would be after betterment. And she says that the visualization energizes her, and fantasizing about the endpoint makes her happy. This is the situation. Let’s go into it.

I think of betterment because I take myself as deficient, right?

Questioner (Q): Yes, sir.

AP: If I don’t take myself as incomplete or deficient, I cannot think of betterment. In contentment, it is absurd to think of further improvement. We are talking of the ‘I’ sense. The ‘I’ sense that takes itself as lacking in something. Because it takes itself as lacking in something, so it thinks of betterment.

What we miss here often, is that the thought and the thinker will always share the same quality; the action and the actor will always share the same quality; the imagination and the one imagining will always be of the same quality.

Now, if I say that I am imagining precisely because I do not like the way I am, I want to change because I do not feel alright with the way I am, then who am I in my own estimation? Somebody deficient, somebody incomplete.

If I am incomplete, then sitting where I am, what would be the quality of my action, thought, and imagination? They, too, would be of incomplete nature.

So, incompleteness is projecting more incompleteness for itself and then trying with all its might to reach more incompleteness. How will that help?

Let’s take the extreme and crass example of a drunkard. It’s an extreme example. I understand. So, just stay with it.

If one is drunk and one is thinking of improvement in his drunken state — When you are drunk, you think of a lot of things which you usually don’t think of — If one is drunk and one is thinking of improvement and one is thinking of improvement precisely because one is drunk, then what would be the quality of that dream or vision? I have already declared myself as lacking or poor or deficient. And if I am lacking or poor or deficient, how will I dream of a total and complete and whole future?

Acharya Prashant