Question: Can you tell us how a beginner can meditate on an aphorism like the one you just read out?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes. Today's meditation was:

I need an illumined mind to study God's entire Life.
I need a devoted heart to feel God's immortal Love.
I need a surrendered soul to realise God's infinite Joy.

Now, which are the key words? First, "illumined mind." The sophisticated mind, the intellectual mind, the doubting mind, the frustrated mind we see every day. But I used the term "illumined mind." What is the illumined mind? It is the mind that is surcharged with Light. The moment the mind is surcharged with divine Light, it is illumined. If there is no Light or very little Light in it, then it is merely the sophisticated, intellectual, doubting, frustrated and destructive mind.

The next key phrase is, "to study God's entire Life." Our human life is the short span of sixty, seventy or eighty years. But God's entire Life means Eternity, which has neither beginning nor end. To think of something beginningless and endless we need an illumined mind, for the ordinary mind cannot begin to comprehend these ideas. The ordinary mind cannot think of even two things at a time, not to speak of concentrating on two things at a time. But with the illumined mind, we can think of twenty things at a time.

These phrases have given you an idea of what you should think about — God's entire Life — and what you should strive for — an illumined mind. Allow these thoughts and aspirations to come into you and create a world of their own. Then you will see that you are meditating on something sublime. From reading something soulful and inspiring — this aphorism — you have received a clue about what is worthwhile to think about and also about how you should think about it.

"I need a devoted heart to feel God's immortal Love." Human love we know does not last. It is the experience of a fleeting second. But immortal Love, God's immortal Love, lasts forever and will always fulfil both you and humanity. Everybody's heart is good and pure. Our mind and vital may be bad, and they may obscure the heart. But the heart is always good. Very often we mistake the vital for the heart and say that someone has a bad heart. But this is not true. Everybody has a wonderful heart, but that heart functions properly only when it has devoted qualities, like a mother's heart. A human heart may be pure and sincere, but only when one has a devoted heart will one try to serve God, realise God and fulfil God. There are many people who do not utilise the heart to dedicate and devote themselves to the spiritual life. For these people, real progress is impossible. The heart that is not devoted will be constantly moving from one object to another. Only the heart that is dedicated and devoted can feel God's immortal Love.

"I need a surrendered soul to realise God's infinite Joy." Everybody has a soul, but unfortunately the face of surrender we have not yet seen. For a fleeting moment someone may surrender to somebody else: a wife may surrender to her husband, or a husband may surrender to his wife. But a surrendered soul is one that is totally surrendered, constantly surrendered, for an entire lifetime, if not for Eternity. God has and is all divine qualities, but His most important quality is Joy or Delight. If one wants to see God's infinite Joy, then one has to make complete surrender, total surrender, unconditional surrender. One has to grow into a surrendered soul. Unconditional surrender is not the surrender of a slave to the master. Unconditional surrender is conscious, willing and cheerful surrender. The aspirant surrenders to God's Will because he feels that by surrendering to God's Will, he is becoming one with God Himself. Conscious and unconditional surrender is what God wants from each person on earth. If the seeker can surrender himself entirely to God's Will, then he will feel God's infinite Joy in him.

I have explained this aphorism in my own way, but you can have your own way of interpreting it. After you have read some soulful spiritual writings, or the meditation for the day from one of my books of spiritual aphorisms, please try to meditate on them or allow divine thoughts and ideas to enter into your mind. Pick the key words or ideas, like, 'illumination,' 'God's Life,' 'devoted heart,' 'immortal Love,' 'surrendered soul,' 'infinite Joy,' and so on. Then open your heart and let the thoughts come. If you really focus on these divine ideas, undivine or silly thoughts cannot bother you, because your mind will be in the world of illumination. If you are sincerely thinking of illumination, only illumination can enter into you. If you think of a devoted heart, only devotion will enter into your mind and your consciousness. If you think of a surrendered soul, it is a surrendered consciousness which will enter into you.

Meditation can be done in this way for the beginner. If you are a beginner, at least you have started, so do not worry about your present capacities. No matter where you are, start. This is the first way of entering into meditation. Gradually the time will come when you will have no thoughts, no ideas, no mind during your meditation. Neither divine thoughts nor undivine thoughts will enter into you then. Only Reality, eternal Reality, will grow within you.