Struggling for Recognition

January 30, 2018

What would it feel like if we just stopped seeking recognition? A podcast from Satsang with Shambhavi

first words from the podcast

Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche was a great Nyingma teacher. He said, “Some people spend all their energy and even risk their lives to achieve fame. Fame and notoriety are both no more than an empty echo. Your reputation is an alluring mirage that can easily lead you astray. Discard it without a second thought like the snot you blow from your nose.”

What this does NOT mean is that we should just behave however we want and not care what anybody thinks of us. It does NOT mean that we should do stuff to try to have a bad reputation. It means don’t seek recognition. Don’t spend your energy deliberately seeking recognition, or deliberately defending your reputation, or worrying at all about your reputation any more than you would worry about snot that you blew out of your nose.

For those of us in this culture, that is a very tall order. Even though some of you might not be seeking fame, I would dare say that every single one of you is overly concerned about what other people think of you and about building a certain kind of reputation even in a small sphere of people. You all spend an incredible amount of energy trying to be recognized in some way that you find positive.

I want to pose the question—what would it feel like if you just stopped seeking recognition? It doesn’t mean stop trying to be excellent. It doesn’t mean stop trying to be thorough in what you do. But what if you simply stopped seeking approval or seeking recognition—what do you think that would be like?


Satsang with Shambhavi is a weekly podcast about spirituality, love, death, devotion and waking up while living in a messy world.