Question: Is it feasible that the man-power and money-power of the disciples could be directed towards helping people in an obvious physical way, such as in the event of natural disaster or poverty?

Sri Chinmoy: A natural disaster and poverty are deplorable. To help people who are suffering in a natural disaster, who are suffering from poverty, is undoubtedly good. But for whom? For those who have not accepted the spiritual life in the proper sense of the term. To be a philanthropist is a good thing. To offer help to the needy is a good thing. But to listen to the dictates of the Supreme is not only infinitely more meaningful and fruitful, it is also the only thing that a sincere disciple should and must do. Disaster and poverty should be averted by human efforts. But the ignorance of millennia can be removed or illumined only by the intense inner cry of the disciples. And that inner cry, if God feels that it is in order, in particular cases, the man-power and the money-power also should be added to the inner cry in order to make it strong, stronger, strongest. Money-power and man-power should be used only to add to the aspiration-power. But it is the aspiration-power that eventually has to totally remove ignorance. When ignorance goes away, then poverty disappears and disaster disappears.

In every case, the wrong forces or unpleasant experiences that we get are due to ignorance. So the seeker must use his money-power, man-power, everything, for one cause, and that is to increase his own aspiration. If his aspiration increases with the help of his money-power, then only will ignorance be conquered and illumined. Then, once ignorance is conquered, at that time all the problems, poverty, suffering and so forth will be totally removed. So, aspiration-power is the only thing that can solve the disciples’ problems.

Those who are not strictly spiritual, who are not disciples of any Master, should follow their own wise morality. Helping poverty-stricken people and disaster-assailed people is a good thing. Undoubtedly it is a good thing. But disciples, sincere seekers of the highest Truth, have an infinitely higher message. Their message is to become totally one, inseparably one, with the Will of the Supreme. Only by becoming totally one with the Will of the Supreme can they illumine ignorance and manifest God’s Wisdom-Light and Vision on earth.

Sri Chinmoy, Dipti Nivas, Agni Press, 1976