Your pious deeds will not help you

Acharya Prashant
6 min readJul 29, 2023

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

अलमर्थेन कामेन सुकृतेनापि कर्मणा ।

एभ्यः संसारकान्तारे न विश्रान्तमभून्मनः ॥ 10.७ ॥

alamarthena kāmena sukṛtenāpi karmaṇā

ebhyaḥ saṁsārakāntāre na viśrāntamabhūn manaḥ || 10.7 ||

Enough of prosperity, sensuality and pious deeds. The mind did not find repose in these in the dreary forest of the world.

~ Ashtavakra Gita, Chapter 10, Verse 7

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Questioner (Q): “Prosperity, pleasure, pious deeds enough, in the dreary forest of the world the mind finds no rest.” Here, the word ‘pious deeds’ does not seem to belong to the family, which the word ‘prosperity’ and ‘pleasure’ belong to. As per my understanding, ‘prosperity’ and ‘pleasure’ seem to belong to the materialistic part of life, while ‘pious deeds’ seem to belong to the Truth. Please help me understand what Ashtavakra means by the word ‘pious deeds’.