Question: Could you please tell me about your "Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart" programme?

Sri Chinmoy: There are so many ways to express one's oneness with the whole world. Each individual has a way. In my case, my Inner Pilot has told me to be of service in this particular way and that way is to lift some individuals overhead. In a football match, when a player scores a goal, he is lifted up by his fellow teammates. They do this to express their joy because he has done something good.

Here also, I see that there are people from all walks of life who have done many, many good things for the betterment of the world. I feel that it is obligatory on my part to be of service to them. I try to give joy to those who have contributed so much to the world at large. I lift them up, with either two hands or one hand. In this way, I have lifted 7,000 people over the years, and this includes many presidents, prime ministers and eminent figures, such as President Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, Ravi Shankar, Muhammad Ali and others.

I also lift children, who are the future, and I have lifted quite a few octogenarians. In Indonesia I lifted one lady who was over 100 years old. How many people can live over 100 years? Again, she has done something great; she has shown longevity.

In any way, if someone has done something unique, I try to honour that person. Nobel laureates, scientists, politicians —- we all belong to the same family. Some have already contributed their capacities to the world, and then I try to be of service to them by lifting them up and showing them my appreciation and admiration. And some are now budding. They are humanity's children. They are not fully blossomed, but they are the future, so I try to lift them and offer them my full support.

I do hope that I can be of service to the heart and soul of China while I am here.