AUM 1316-1318. From Sri Chinmoy's forthcoming book, Problems! Problems! are they really problems?

Question: I work in a warehouse and the atmosphere is very unspiritual. How can I keep the undivine consciousness from my job and the outside world from interfering with my spiritual growth?

Sri Chinmoy: For an aspirant, especially in the beginning, it is advisable to do some work which is congenial to his spiritual growth. You have told me that the place where you are working now is not at all spiritual, that you are the only person there who cares for the spiritual life. Everyone else there is enjoying the animal life. If you have come to the point where your spiritual life is the most important thing to you, then I wish to tell you that you should give up that job. If you leave this job, what are you going to lose? If you take some other job, you may get less salary, but what will you gain? In terms of money you will earn less, but in terms of peace, light and bliss you will earn more, much more.

If you were well advanced in the spiritual life and had been meditating for many years and already you had achieved some peace, light and bliss in your outer nature and in your inner life, then I would advise you to act like a lion and not be afraid of anything. With your divine capacity you would face the world bravely. But this is a time of preparation in your life. You are not yet surcharged with inner light, peace and power. The day will dawn, in the near or distant future, when you will be able to stand and fight like a divine soldier, but right now it is necessary to adopt a temporary means of release from unnecessary outer attacks. This is not a permanent escape. Only, at this time you are not ready to wrestle successfully with the worst forces of the outside world. You are not strong enough inwardly. But the day will come when, no matter where you are working or who your associates are, you will be able to stand on your own spiritual strength.

Now you have two enemies. One enemy is outside you and visible in the form of outer disharmony and ignorance. The other enemy is your own ignorance and imperfection. You have to fight with your inner enemy constantly, twenty-four hours a day. From that enemy there is no possibility of release until you have conquered it. So for the time being you have to pay the utmost attention to perfecting yourself in the inner world. You can certainly find some job which will not stand in the way of your new spiritual experiences and realisations. In this way, you can minimise the obstructions and attacks of the outer world, and this will help you immensely in your inner life of aspiration.