With youth: Before you declare somebody asleep, wake up!

Acharya Prashant
3 min readNov 17, 2022

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

Acharya Prashant (AP): Amit says, ‘Assuming that I have to go to a place where there are all foolish men, how can I retain my individuality there?’ First of all the individual does not have to go anywhere. ‘Have to’ implies compulsion. ‘Have to’ implies that there is somebody else who is your master. If he goes somewhere, then it is out of his own understanding. He truthfully understands why he is going somewhere.

Amit, how can you say that there are foolish men somewhere unless you yourself have understood that they are foolish? This understanding that others are foolish can come only from your own intelligence. Isn’t it possible that you already are with foolish men but you cannot see that they are foolish? Isn’t it possible that you are already surrounded by foolish men but you do not know that they are foolish? When you have not opened your eyes, how it is possible for you to see this?

Suppose six men are sleeping in a room. Is it possible for one of them to know that the other five are sleeping? A sleeping man cannot know that others are sleeping. Similarly, a foolish man can never know that others are foolish. To know that the others are sleeping, you must first be awake. Am I right?