Question: How can one have inner peace in the outside world?

Sri Chinmoy: For that one has to meditate regularly. Before you enter into the outer world, you are at home, in your own room. You stay at home and you sleep for five, six or seven hours At that time you are the boss. There is nobody to interfere. There is nobody entering into your mind. If you want to, you lock the door, you bolt it from inside and do not allow anybody to come in. This is in your outer, earthly existence: you have a room and you do not allow anybody to enter into it. Similarly, you can close your inner doors, the doors, let us say, of your senses when you have fully strengthened your inner being. Your inner being can be strengthened as you strengthen your muscles. If every day you take exercise, you will see that your muscles become strong, stronger, strongest. In the spiritual life also, before you enter into the turmoil, the hustle and bustle of life, at home you should meditate regularly for fifteen minutes or half an hour.

Now, each time you meditate, please try to feel that you have gained some strength, inner strength. And this strength is something solid. It is not your mental fabrication. You meditate for ten minutes and then go out. If you see two people who are fighting, your inner peace may not enter into them, because they are now in another world; but your inner peace has enough strength to protect you. You will not be affected. That doesn't mean that you are very cruel or indifferent to them, you are worse than these people who are fighting. It is not that you are not sympathising while they are being hurt. No. They are fighting, they are torturing each other, but you will see it as a scene in a drama or a play. Your inner being, which is the real reality inside you, will not be affected. On the one hand, you will see that they are doing something wrong. On the other hand, you will see that you are not doing the thing yourself. If we do not follow the spiritual life, what will happen is that immediately we will take one side. "This fellow is sincere, this fellow is not the culprit, the other fellow is the real culprit." Or, we will have a kind of undivine quality within us. We will notice that this undivine, aggressive quality is coming forward. We feel that if we also had strength, we would strike somebody. When we see undivine people, if we are not spiritual, or even if we are spiritual, sometimes our undivine qualities come forward. But if we are really spiritual, our own spiritual qualities come forward and these divine qualities, like a thief, want to enter into those who are using undivine qualities, quarrelling and fighting.

When we come out of the house into the world, we have to be well protected. Not with armour. No We will be protected with divine thoughts, divine ideas, a divine Goal. The moment we have a goal, we shall walk only towards the goal. We have a destined goal and we are running towards the goal. There are many people who are watching us, and sometimes they are mocking at us. They say that our speed is not satisfactory, or in various ways they mock at us. This world is like that. If we are not one of them, immediately they will think that we are indifferent or we are insane. But if we know that we have a goal of our own, and we are running towards the destined goal, no matter what they say or what kind of life they are leading, we will not be affected. The divine in us will protect us and at the same time if the divine in us wants to offer a little Light to those who are wallowing in the pleasures of ignorance, they will get some light from us.

But early in the morning we have to meditate. Everybody has to meditate. This early morning meditation is of paramount importance for a spiritual seeker. If we go out without morning meditation, we are bound to feel, if we are conscious, that we are facing a roaring lion. But if we go with a very sound, solid meditation, after we have had a very good meditation, we will feel that a dog is following us, our most faithful dog. Our inner being will be surcharged with indomitable Peace, Light and Power. If we don't go with meditation, the roaring lion is going to devour us. If we go after having a most successful meditation, inwardly we will see that the world of aspiration or even the world of suffering, depression, and despair sees something in us. It tries to follow us, sometimes with reluctance, sometimes with joy, sometimes with greed, but in some way or other it tries to follow us like a dog.