Question: I am studying to be an actor at the Drama School here at Yale. Is it possible to follow the spiritual path and also have this earthly value, or must I totally devote myself to the spiritual path and be devoid of everything else?Sri Chinmoy: This is a very wrong conception of spirituality. True spirituality never, never negates our earthly life and our significant earthly values. True spirituality only simplifies our earthly life; it purifies, illumines our human existence. We are now in ignorance. We know that we are caught in the meshes of ignorance, but spirituality shows us how we can come out of ignorance, how we can free ourselves from the bondage that we have consciously or unconsciously created. If you want to be an actor, spirituality will never prevent you from being one. On the contrary, spirituality will inspire you in your acting line. Spirituality never negates. It is like your private tutor. It will teach you privately and secretly to be successful and meaningful in your outer, as well as your inner, life. Nothing has to be given up. Everything has to be changed and transformed. If you give up, then what are you going to achieve? If you give up this world, what are you going to do? It is here on earth that you have to realise God, reveal God and fulfil God.
Sri Chinmoy, AUM — Vol. 4, No. 6, 27 Jan. 1969, AUM Centre Press, 1969