Question: If we long to achieve Nirvana — that is, the total annihilation of the soul-existence — instead of aspiring for the manifestation of the Divine on earth, is that also an attitude of the deceptive vital?

Sri Chinmoy: There are different approaches. Some individuals make progress little by little. At each stage, they try to embody or manifest on the outer, material plane whatever they have inwardly acquired or achieved. These follow a prescribed course, step by step. Others wish to attain the Goal without any effort. In particular, they do not like the aspect of service on earth for humanity. They do not like the path; they only long for the Goal.

In your case, you have followed our path for some years and have made gradual progress. When you follow our path and have made some progress, the hostile forces — even the deities — bring down the Goal right in front of your head. It is a kind of temptation, let us say. It is like a parent who brings a toy which is up near the ceiling right down before the child's face. When the child grabs for it, the parent pulls it away thinking that the child will not value it. But a day comes when the child grows taller and gets a ladder that reaches the ceiling and he is able to get the toy by himself.

You have to understand this kind of temptation on three planes: the vital plane, the mental plane and the psychic plane. You have to know the difference between the formations of the vital, mind and heart. Temptation in the vital is deception. Temptation in the mind is illusion. But temptation in the heart is ultimately illumination because the heart sees through the illusion and the fantasy of the mind and envisions the Reality itself. The heart will only feel gratitude to the Supreme for bringing the Goal in front of it without any effort on its part. The heart says, "Supreme, I thank You because, out of Your infinite Compassion and Concern, You have given me the vision of my Goal.

What can you do when the Goal is in front of you? You may try to grasp it; that is the human reaction. The divine reaction is to be ready to drink the Nectar, but to wait for God's chosen Hour. At God's choice Hour, the illusion of the mind and the deception of the vital have to go. At that time, the heart knows that the Goal is being offered by the Supreme Himself.

When you have the vision of Nirvana in your mind, you take a mental delight in everything. You may say: "Oh, how divine! Everything is full of such peace, light and bliss, and I will have it all at my disposal." But with the heart it is a different story; there is no mental fantasy in the heart. In the heart you don't think; you just grow into the Goal. You don't think about the Goal; you just do what is necessary to achieve it without looking and measuring how far you have to go. For you know that the Goal is always inside you. So when the vision of the Goal comes to you, forget about the mind and the vital. Immediately change teachers and go to the heart.

Sri Chinmoy, The giver and the receiver.First published by Agni Press in 1987.

This is the 721st book that Sri Chinmoy has written since he came to the West, in 1964.


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by Sri Chinmoy
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