Question: Could you explain the difference between meditation and thinking?

Sri Chinmoy: There is a tremendous difference. Meditation and thinking are like the North Pole and the South Pole. Of course it depends on who is meditating. My meditation will be different from yours, and yours will be different from your neighbour's. A rich man eats delicate food and a poor man eats coarse, simple food. But in either case, there is still no comparison between meditation and thinking. In meditation we try to go beyond the mind. The mind is restless and agitated. This thought, that thought, worries, plans: this is what fills the mind. The mind usually leads nowhere. Even a disciplined mind gets no truth or knowledge from itself. The mind is like a cage. But in meditation we try to get to a plane beyond the mind where Knowledge, Light, Peace and Bliss abound.

Even reflection, which is a quiet kind of introspective thinking, is far from the disciplined vastness of meditation. Only in meditation is the divine Bliss to be found. Meditation is liberation from the mind. The mind is limitation. The mind is bondage because it can never get away from the forces which make it work. The mind has its purpose, but in the spiritual life, we have to go far above the mind where there is eternal Peace, eternal Knowledge and eternal Light.