With youth: Ego thrives on appreciation and criticism

Acharya Prashant
3 min readNov 12, 2022

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

Question (Q): I was given a leaflet in which it was written that when one appreciates you, then ego is born and if nobody appreciates you then also ego is born. Yesterday I appreciated one of my friends that she has a good voice but she replied very calmly and I didn’t find any ego in this.

Acharya Prashant (AP): There are so many of you who will not get up and ask questions. They will wait till the crowd gets clear and I am alone here. Then they will come and ask the questions. Why would they do that?

Listener (L): Out of shyness in front of an audience.

AP: They are afraid that others may say that their question is stupid. Are you getting it? The fear of public speaking is considered as big a phobia as that of being caught in a burning room. Why? Because all your sense of what you are is coming from others. I come to you and tell you that you are wonderful and you start believing that you are wonderful. So, you are deeply afraid in asking a question as I may say to you that it is completely a stupid question. You will have to believe that as well. When I tell you that you are so smart and you believe it then you also have to believe that you are stupid. So people are afraid to come and speak.