Question: Guru, one thing I've wondered about for a long time is the high population in the world now and the pollution. Is there something that these problems are going to teach mankind?

Sri Chinmoy: As seekers, we feel that we should not worry about these things. We should worry about our inner illumination. Over-population is not good; pollution is not good. But why are they happening? Because people are ignorant. We have to go to the root-cause of world-problems, and the root is human ignorance. If we can go to the root and remove this ignorance in just one human being — ourselves — then there will be one rascal less in this world. Today if there is one rascal less, tomorrow there may be another rascal less, and in this way it will go on.

If we think all the time of over-population, pollution, and other world-problems, if we use our time to pay considerable attention to them, then when we go to the other world, what will happen? God will not ask us, “Do you know anything about the population problem? Do you know anything about pollution?” He is not going to ask that. He will ask us, “Did you think of Me? Did you meditate on Me?” God will never ask us impersonal questions. He will ask us what we have done for Him. We have to be ready to answer Him properly. This is not a selfish attitude. When I become good, automatically there is one more positive force and one less negative force on earth. If I can transform my own ignorance into light, then the quantity of ignorance on earth has already decreased.