A question of answers

There's only one sure-shot way to get the right answer to all your questions...

Man holding auestion

We are looking for answers. all of us. Questions are millions, but the quest is one—to find the right answer. But when we find an answer, does it satisfy the quest? Put differently, is the answer ‘right’?

If you have been seeking answers to your many questions, but are not satisfied with the answers you’re getting, perhaps it’s time to change focus—from answers to questions.

Remember, the responsibility of an answer lies squarely on the shoulders of the question itself. Every answer lies within the question. If the question is not correct, the answer, no matter how profound, can never be right. How can wrong questions have right answers? So, if your question is a self-limiting one, don’t expect your answer to be a self-empowering one.

Take, for example, questions that start with ‘why’. Such questions are invariably backward-looking.

So, if you’re concerned about your excess weight and ask yourself, “Why am I overweight?” your answers might be “Because I eat too much” or “I am not active enough” or even “Because I am genetically predisposed to being fat”. Note that all answers begin with “because”, keeping you focussed on the cause and, in the process, only reinforcing the situation.

If you’d like to change something about your current situation, your question should reflect that desire. So, a self-empowering question would be, “How can I make losing weight exciting?” or “What are my options to lose the excess flab?” Questions like these open up possibilities and empower you to act in your interest.

But, what if the question is right and the answer still fails to satisfy the quest. The reason for that could be prejudice; often the questioner does not find the answers satisfactory because of his inability to listen with a clear, open mind. So even if the answer is right, it may appear wrong to the questioner because he doesn’t want the right answer… he wants an answer that he wants to hear.

In the final analysis, an answer must put the mind to silence. I like the way Sri Sri Ravi Shankar explains this: “Silence is the goal of all answers. If the answer does not silence the mind, it is not an answer.” So if your answers don’t quieten your mind, first check if you asked the right questions. Then, ask yourself if you’re listening without prejudice.

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Manoj Khatri
Manoj Khatri is a highly experienced wellbeing consultant. He is also a writer-editor and has written on topics ranging from strategic marketing and business management to art, culture and even philosophy. His more than 1250 published stories—articles, interviews, full-length features—have appeared in some of the leading newspapers and magazines of India. A certified cognitive behavioural therapist, he works as a personal counsellor too. He is the author of What a thought!, a critically acclaimed self-improvement book based on powerful ideas of some of the greatest thought leaders. Manoj runs Complete Wellbeing and believes that "peace begins with me".


  1. Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii this article is really nice, i like so much. I want to know the answer to my question, that is: what is the meaning of life?

  2. Ask yourself and you will get all the answers. Our subconcious is without any perceptional defects. We are naked in front of that. So, if we ask the answer to a question to our own self,we will most certainly get the right answer.

    The way is, get up early in the morning and close your eyes. think of the questions which are troubling you and ask yourself the answer.

    thats it.


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