One could call him a spiritual teacher rooted in Advait Vedanta. Or one could call him a most contemporary representative of all the spiritual traditions of the world. Equally, one could call him breathtakingly original and beyond any tradition.
But the most appropriate way to know him would be through his work.
His work is founded on compassion and expresses itself as demolition. In classical sense he is a most orthodox spiritual teacher, in the contemporary sense he is a veganism promoter, an environmental activist, a science activist, a campaigner against superstition, and a champion of essential human freedom.
The sections most benefited by his work include:
Animals: Given that the overwhelmingly biggest threat to animals of all kinds comes from ignorance of man about his own body and self, reforming man’s mind is the best way to save animals. It is estimated that millions of animals, especially animals used as food – chicken, goat, sheep, cows, buffaloes, fish – have been saved due to Acharya Ji’s work. Besides, a large number of wild animals too have been saved. With his teachings over the years, lakhs, if not millions, of people have adopted vegetarianism or veganism and have chosen an awakened lifestyle involving environmental consciousness and a low carbon footprint. Many see him as the spiritual face of the vegan movement.
Youth: Youth, especially in India, face multi-directional challenges coming from the conditioning acquired from family, society, education and media, career challenges, dilemmas about physicality, love and relationships, and deep existential questions about the meaning and purpose of life. They are in delicate situation where the chances of making suboptimal decisions and life taking unhealthy turns are quite high. Acharya Prashant has been unique in addressing the energy and conflicts of the youth. There are so may who remain indebted to him for having received lifesaving clarity at critical junctures of decision making.
Women: Women throughout the world, and especially in India, continue to be recognized as the largely disempowered half of mankind. While there have been concerted efforts in social, political, economic ways to instill women with due agency and power, yet nothing is really effective without the inner dimension of clarity and freedom. Acharya Prashant's work has been to awaken women to their true identity beyond the compulsions of the body and the conditioning of the mind. Countless women today - from the teenage schoolgirl to the septuagenarian homemaker - owe their sense of liberty and clarity, and the courage to rise against external oppression and internal debilitation, to the teachings of the Master.
Spiritual seekers: There are spiritual seekers for whom spirituality is a mere entertainment, or a respectable name for medieval superstition, or an escape from the bare realities of life, or mere esoteric rituals and exercises. They want superficial treatments to deep underlying life problems. Acharya Prashant has been well-known to vigorously shake such people out of their psychic stupor. Then there is the odd genuine seeker who has already tried hard to go into the recesses of his mind and the reality of life, and is prepared to work hard for his liberation. Fed up of self-imposed bondages, he does not want more delusions in the name of spirituality, and is prepared to pay the price for freedom. Acharya Prashant comes as a rare and real friend to such seekers.
Prashant Tripathi, known as Acharya Prashant, was born in 1978, at Agra, India. Eldest of three siblings, his father was a bureaucrat and mother a homemaker. His childhood was spent mostly in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
Parents and teachers found in him a child who could often be quite mischievous, and then suddenly, deeply contemplative. Friends too recall him as having an unfathomable temperament, often not really sure whether he was joking or serious. A brilliant student, he consistently topped his class and received the highest commendations and prizes possible to a student. His mother fondly remembers how she was honored several times as “Mother Queen” for the academic performance of her child. Teachers would say that never before had they seen a student who was as brilliant in Science as in Humanities, as adept in Mathematics as in Languages, and as proficient in English as in Hindi. The then Governor of the state... Read more