Question: If the teacher leaves the body should you try to maintain contact with him?

Sri Chinmoy: It depends on the relationship that the teacher and the student have established. Suppose your teacher has passed away and you didn’t have any close connection with him. You can say that your teacher was very great, but what kind of connection did you have with him? If the teacher has ten thousand disciples and you are not one of the intimate disciples, then you cannot expect anything from him just because he is very great. You have to know what kind of connection you had with him. Was he close to you? Did you ever have any personal contact with him, or any serious conversation with him? Did you have any inner contact with him when he was on earth? These are the things that you have to take into account. Otherwise, just because he is great does not provide any assurance that you can maintain any inner connection with him, if he did not make any solemn promise to you that he would take responsibility for your inner life. Let us say, your father was a very great doctor, and now he is not on earth. If you are suffering from some ailment, will you think of your father in Heaven to cure you? No. Somebody may be infinitely inferior to your father in the medical profession, but you will go to him for immediate cure. He will cure you because he is still on earth.

But if you have a Master like Sri Krishna, the Buddha or the Christ — a Master who is fully identified with God-Consciousness — then when you meditate on them, you are offering your very existence to the Ultimate, to the Almighty Father. Otherwise, there are many spiritual Masters on earth who have realised God, but if you have not established any strong inner connection with them while on earth, it will be difficult, if not impossible, to maintain any connection once they leave the body.