Question: For spiritual beginners, it seems that it is necessary to make some compromise between their family life and their spiritual life. Do you think that this compromise will always have to exist, or can it be transcended by some other kind of relationship?

Sri Chinmoy: In the beginning, if your eagerness and love for God are not intense, if you feel that you can live with God, but not with God alone; if you feel that other human beings are also necessary for your happiness, then you have to make a compromise. Otherwise, you will not be able to remain in the spiritual life. But if you feel that you can live only in God's Luminosity, if you feel that you cannot live even for a second without Him, then go to Him and do not think of compromise. He will take care of you and He will also take care of the members of your family.

If God wants you to run the fastest, at that time you have to know who is dearest to you — God or the members of your family. Right now you are making a compromise so that your near and dear ones can be happy. But you know that your capacity is very limited, whereas the One you are approaching has unlimited capacity. You do not want to neglect your family, but you have to know that you do not have infinite capacity to make your mother or father or brother or sister happy. In trying to please them, you reach a kind of compromise. But if you reach the Source with your intense inner urge, then you can ask the Supreme, your Inner Pilot, to take full responsibility for your near and dear ones. And He has infinite capacity to make them happy.

Who looked after your near and dear ones twenty or thirty years ago, before you came into this life? And in fifty or sixty years, when you go away from this earthly scene, who will take care of them? Right now, we feel that we are indispensable. But when we enter deeply into the spiritual life, we feel that only one person is indispensable, and that is God. If you need God badly, He will allow you to go to Him directly. He will give you the capacity to deal with the members of your family without having to compromise your spiritual life, and He will give your near and dear ones the strength to lead their own lives without hampering your spiritual progress.