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How to have no regrets? || Acharya Prashant, with youth (2013)
Author Acharya Prashant
Acharya Prashant
4 min
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Question : Sir, I often get affected by others. I depend on others to tell me what is right and what is wrong, and when that happens I often find myself regretting later. Later, I feel disappointed that why did I allow myself to be affected by others ‘ opinions, words, actions and whatsoever. How to have no regrets?

Speaker : I would be very happy even if there is a single individual who understands what this ‘right and wrong’ are all about.

You see, we talked of two layers of education. Similarly, there are two layers of ‘right and wrong’. The first layer deals with ‘right and wrong’ which are specific to time, place, country, occasion and many other variables. Such ‘rights and wrongs’ keep changing. What is right in one country is wrong in another country, what is wrong in one house is right in another. At the same place, what was right few years back is considered wrong now.

For sure, there is nothing sacred or unchanging about these ‘rights and wrongs’.

The first layer of ‘rights and wrongs’. They are man-made, they keep changing. There is no point holding them as sacred. There is no point asking somebody that am I right or am I wrong, because all that somebody can give is his opinion. And these ‘rights and wrongs’ of the first type are nothing but opinions of people.

One religion says that something is right, the other says same thing is wrong. One religion says sacrifice animals, the other religion says that it is evil to kill even a small insect. In the same country, what is wrong in one state, is right in another. This first layer of ‘rights and wrongs’ is all man-made, somebody’s opinion, somebody’s thought. There is nothing absolute about them at all, and hence there is not much worth in them.

There is another type of ‘right’, another type of ‘wrong’, that comes not from the society, or law, or convention, or religion, or anybody else. That right is your own intelligence.

To act with your own intelligence is the only absolute right. And to not to live in your intelligence , to live an unconscious life is the only absolute wrong.

We have no understanding of this second layer of ‘right and wrong’. We live in the first one. We think that just because something is acceptable in the society, or is alright in the law, so it is right. And we think whatever is not acceptable in our homes, or in our corporations, is wrong. That is very-very superficial. I do not say that violate the law, but know in your heart, know fully well with great clarity that all that is man-made. There is nothing absolute about it. There is nothing sacred, nothing fundamental about it.

Life must be lived in your own light, in your own intelligence and that is ‘right’, and that is the only absolute ‘right’. And the only mistake that a young man and a young woman can make is to live life according to others. That is the only wrong that you can do. Avoid that wrong for your own sake. And then you won’t have to regret later on.

Excerpted from a ‘Shabd-Yog’ session. Edited for clarity.

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