Question: Sometimes when I meditate, I feel that I am about to go through some experience, but nothing happens. What is the cause of that?1

Sri Chinmoy: The reason nothing happens is that you have not reached the proper height. You are just on the verge of it, but you do not quite reach it. It is like lighting a stove. When you turn on the gas, you have to turn it to a certain point before the flame comes. You may come almost to that point, but then you stop. If you had gone just a fraction of an inch further, you would have succeeded.

It is the same with your meditation. If you had gone just a little bit higher or deeper, you would have had your experience. But your attention was diverted or something made you pull back. Something inside you failed to maintain the level of your aspiration and your consciousness fell. It is as if you were climbing up to the highest branch of a mango tree, but all of a sudden somebody called you from below; so you forgot about the delicious mango at the top of the tree and you climbed down. This is what it is like when your consciousness falls. But if you can maintain your height and not respond to any call from below, then you will reach the Highest and you will get the experience.

While you are praying and meditating, imagine that you have a bicycle inside you. When you ride a bicycle, you have to pedal all the time; otherwise, you will stop making progress and just fall down. While you are meditating you have to aspire all the time; otherwise, you will fall. You cannot pause at one point. In the spiritual life, movement has to be constant. Either you move forward or you move backward. If you try to remain motionless, the ignorance of the world will pull you right back to your starting point.

While you are aspiring, you have to make yourself conscious at every moment that what you need is not success but progress, progress, progress. Progress itself is an active form of success. When you start meditating early in the morning, if you think, “Today I have to get the highest experience or I will feel miserable,” then you are making a mistake. If you cry for success, then God may give you the experience that you call success. But He will not utilise you as His chosen instrument because you are trying to get something from Him. But if you cry only for the opportunity and privilege of becoming His instrument to serve Him in His own Way, then God will most assuredly give you the progress that you need to fulfil Him.

If experience is your aim, until you actually reach the height from which you can get the experience, please continue to aspire intensely. But if your aim is to become an instrument of the Supreme, if progress is your only concern, then you are bound to get all the experiences that God has in store for you even if you do not climb to the top of the tree. Right now it is you who are trying to climb up to a great height in order to get an experience. But it is very easy for God to bring the fruit down and give it to you if such is His Will. So if you can please God, even if you remain at the foot of the tree, God will climb up on your behalf and bring the experience down.

  1. MUN 246-247. 28 September 1973.