Editor's preface to the first edition
— Sri Chinmoy"
There is no one who has never felt an inner thrill at the fresh beauty and special charm of a small child. "A lovely child," says Sri Chinmoy, "attracts our attention. We love him because he conquers our heart. But do we ask anything from him in return? No! We love him because he is the object of love; he is lovable." What is it in a child which makes him irresistible to us, and inspires us to offer our love selflessly? It is the divinity in him, the soul, which glows luminously in the first years of life.
Jesus said, "Unless you become like children, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven." The soul itself is a divine child, a part of the Supreme, its eternal Mother and Father. This is why when we live in the soul, we see that the soul's qualities make us childlike.
Just as the human child trusts in every person he meets, so the divine child, our soul, sees good in every human being.
Just as the world appears radiantly beautiful to the innocent vision of a human child, so the soul sees God's Light streaming forth everywhere in His creation.
The human child sees the world only through the eyes of his parents, believing implicitly in all they say. The divine child in us sees reality only through the eyes of the spiritual Master, knowing that his words embody the highest Truth.
For a human child, his parents are his whole world. Apart from them, he is lost in a wilderness. In the same way, the soul of the disciple knows that without the protection and guidance of his Guru, he would be lost completely.
As a small child cries to his mother for food when he is hungry, so the soul cries to God for the food it needs: His infinite Peace, Light, Bliss and Love.
To the spontaneous trust of a child, it has never occurred that his parents could fail to fulfil all his needs. As surely as the sun will rise every morning, every day his mother and father's devotion will be there for him. In the same way, it has never occurred to the divine child that God could ever cease to love us. The soul knows and always feels that the Compassion and Concern of the Supreme are eternal and unconditional.
A human child gets boundless joy in offering to his parents whatever he can create from his child's capacity. He feels that there is no one else on earth to whom he can offer his gift with joy. Our soul rejoices in offering our life's achievements, however small, to God, confident that whatever is offered freely and with joy is received by God with all His Delight and Gratitude.
A child's heart is purity, trust and affection. Like Gopal, whose brother was none other than Lord Krishna Himself, the childlike soul approaches God with utmost faith and simplicity. He has never learnt to tremble before God in reverential awe. His loving nature brings him swiftly into the sweetest and most intimate relationship with the Supreme. He comes to know the One who has brought him into the world not only as Mother and Father, but as his eternal Friend. It is this Friend whose company delights him, who saves him in every danger, who comforts him in every sorrow, and in whom alone he can confide the inmost secrets of his heart. When the divine child, our soul, makes friends with the divine Child who is God, God becomes our dearest Playmate, and His Play with us is endlessly fruitful, significant and fulfilling.