Question: How can the knowledge of spirituality help professional people in their effort to help mankind through their work?

Sri Chinmoy: First of all, let us try to know what spirituality means. Spirituality is not something abstract, something that encourages us to leave the world. It is not something that is only for the chosen few. No! Spirituality is certainty itself. And if it is true spirituality, then it always encourages us to accept life.

Each individual has something to do here on earth, so he consciously or unconsciously throws himself into multifarious activities. He wants to get everything done sooner than at once so that he can do something new, so that he can go on to something better, something more illumining, something more fulfilling.

Now, there is a short way, which we call the sunlit path, to reach our destination. You are sitting right in front of me. If I walk straight, I will undoubtedly reach you sooner than if I wander around, here making a left turn, there making a right turn, and only then come to you. The short-cut is the way of concentration. We have to concentrate on the thing that we are supposed to do. Each time we concentrate on something, we take away the confusion, pressure, anxiety, worry, unwillingness and stubbornness that is inside the subject itself, inside each undertaking. At the same time we offer our capacity, confidence and assurance to ourselves. We either bring to the fore our inner capacity, confidence and assurance from within or we bring them down from Above.

Each time before undertaking anything, if we can concentrate, we simplify the matter and at the same time we expedite the result in a satisfactory way. Concentration immediately clears the road. On either side of the road are doubt-tree, insecurity-tree, hesitation-tree, anxiety-tree, worry-tree. As soon as we concentrate we see the transformation of these trees. Doubt becomes faith, insecurity becomes security; anything that is discouraging becomes encouraging and helpful and lends us a helping hand as we move towards our destination.

So spirituality is the simplification of life, not the rejection or the negation of life. Spirituality is something that shows us the sunlit path so that we can reach our destination as soon as possible. No matter what we want to achieve from life and in life, spirituality is the best friend that can help us. It simplifies, purifies, illumines, fulfils and immortalises the thing that we want to possess or the thing that we want to grow into. Spirituality is not something uncertain, vague, meaningless or fruitless. No. It is something meaningful and fruitful, something that is constantly illumining us and fulfilling us. And inside illumination and fulfilment is the satisfaction that we want.

In our own profession if we want efficiency and perfection, then spirituality is the only answer because it clears the road of confusion; it purifies and illumines our mind. Once purification and illumination take place in our mind, we see that the goal is right in front of us. Then we see that the goal is within us. And finally we see that the goal is not only within us, but we are the goal itself. This moment we are the seeker running after the goal; the next moment we feel that we have become the goal itself. Spirituality is the only thing to make us feel that we need the goal, the only thing to show us how to reach the goal and the only thing to make us clearly see that we are nothing other than the goal itself.