Question: When we try to help others, sometimes a kind of barrier builds up in ourselves and also in those we try to help. Could you speak about this?1

Sri Chinmoy: Our world still is not ideal. At times unconsciously, if not consciously, the world exploits and abuses mankind's divine qualities. So we have to be careful. We have come into the world to aspire and, at the same time, to illumine the world. But we have to know who is worthy and who is unworthy. In one sense, everybody is worthy because we are all God's children, only some people are ready and some people are not ready to receive what we have to offer.

When we try to awaken the consciousness of people who are not ready, when we try to serve the Divine in them, their vital may immediately feel a great resentment. This resentment takes the form of a wall that comes between them and, let us say, our searching mind or striving vital. Our searching mind has found some truth inside the heart and it wants to offer this truth to others. Our vital is divinely striving to give them the light with which we have been entrusted. But just because many people are not ready to receive, we feel a strong, solid barrier between what we have realised and what we are able to give.

The human heart sometimes makes us feel that it is so big that it is ready to help everyone. But this is absurd. There is something called God's Hour. God's Hour need not and cannot be the same for each and every individual. Today is my hour, tomorrow is yours and the day after is somebody else's. It is not that some people are bad or that God does not like them. No! He loves all equally, but for some the hour has not yet dawned. On the one hand, God is Transcendental, all Divine and absolutely Supreme. On the other hand, He is progressing in and through each individual life at every moment. In the finite, He is singing the song of His own Infinity in order to divinely and supremely enjoy Himself. In the process of evolution, He is going to perfect everybody. But He knows His own development; He knows how much He wants to achieve today in and through you and how much He wants to achieve today in and through me. We cannot expect each individual to receive the same kind of treatment or same amount of light because God Himself has not given everyone the same capacity and receptivity.

If we try to increase somebody's capacity or receptivity by virtue of our own will, we are doing the wrong thing. That person will not welcome us and there will be confusion. In this confusion frustration will loom large. Earth will eventually receive our light, but right now earth is not ready. If the Supreme tells us that someone needs more sleep, that we should not awaken him, then we should not approach that particular person. But if the Supreme within us tells us that we have to serve Him in someone even though that person is sleeping, even though he is unwilling and reluctant to receive our light, then we shall do that too, because we are His instruments.

Every day we have to think of ourselves as a little child of five or six years old who only does what his Eternal Father asks him to do. We have to let God's Will flow through us. Then He Himself will tell us who is the right person to help. In this way we shall go to the right person today, and tomorrow we shall go to someone else who will be the right person then. If we approach the right person at God's choice Hour, then there can be no barrier or partition between us and the other person because the right person is always ready to receive us and welcome us. Not only will we be welcomed, but we will also see that God is fulfilled, we are fulfilled and the world of aspiration is fulfilled in and through us.

Sometimes we see a partition not between us and the person we are trying to help but in ourselves. We feel this partition in ourselves because we are not always one hundred per cent consciously one with our Source. We are of the divine and for the divine; we are of the Supreme and for the Supreme. But even though we are very sincere and devoted, it sometimes happens that when we give, we expect something in return: either recognition or progress in the lives of the persons we have served. Even if they do not recognise or acknowledge our self-giving, we immediately expect some success or, let us say, some kind of gradual growth in their life of inner aspiration. We are giving, giving, giving; but if we do not notice the world receiving, then at times we become frustrated. We feel that earth does not deserve us and we wonder if we are doing the right thing. We may even doubt our own sincerity.

This occurs when we are identified with our mind or our vital. When we are identified with the soul, we do not expect anything from those we are trying to serve. We are only doing what we have been inspired and commissioned to do from within. What happens is that one moment we identify with the soul and the heart and the next moment we identify with the mind and vital. The soul and the heart are on one side and the mind, vital and physical are on the other side. Between them there is a barrier. At this moment we call the mind the sole reality, the next moment we call the vital the only reality and the following moment we regard the heart as the only reality. They are all realities, but the only real Reality is God, whose direct representative is the soul. Just as the soul is the representative of God, the heart is the representative of the soul. The heart and the soul are trying to perfect the mind so that it can represent them. Then, when the mind becomes illumined, the mind will try to have the vital as its representative. Similarly, the vital will try to have the body as its representative, and when the body becomes pure and the physical consciousness is aspiring, then the body also will become a perfect instrument.

Reality is complicated and uncertain in ordinary earth-life, but on the higher planes it is extremely simple and most fulfilling. Let us say that we are looking at a flower and that this flower is reality for us. On the physical plane, the flower-reality is what we see with our eyes. But as soon as we go a little deeper within or come up to a higher level of consciousness, the reality is not the physical flower but its fragrance and beauty. Here on the physical plane, the flower is the reality and the fragrance, which is the inner reality, we cannot appreciate. And the beauty, which is still higher, we do not notice at all. So what we call reality on the physical plane need not and cannot be the same reality that we experience on the inner plane.

Again, there are many things that we see on the physical plane as real, which are absolutely unreal. When a thought comes from the mental world, it is absolutely real and concrete for us. But when we go deep within, immediately the thought vanishes; like a drop, it melts into the ocean of the Will. So what is a reality on the physical plane is not at all a reality on the inner plane. On the inner plane, the reality is Divinity, Immortality and Perfection. On the inner plane, only what is eternal and fulfilling is real. So there is a great difference between reality on the physical plane and reality on the inner plane.

When we feel a barrier between one reality and another reality — between what we have to offer and what we are able to give, or between our mind-reality and our heart-reality — at that time our spiritual life becomes a barren desert. Not only seekers but almost all spiritual Masters have gone through this barren desert at one time or another. Even spiritual Masters of a very high order went through periods like this when they could not meditate. Or, when they entered into the world arena to offer their peace, love and light, they felt a kind of frustration because their light was not accepted and the progress they expected from humanity was not achieved.

Here we are all seekers. If we find ourselves in a barren desert, we can do one thing. We can offer our gratitude to the Supreme, our Inner Pilot, for giving us the divine aspiration to be of service to Him in mankind. There is no power either in the outer world or in the inner world that can ever be as strong as our soulful gratitude. If even for a fleeting minute we can offer God our soulful gratitude, then immediately the barrier that exists between our mind and our heart will dissolve. For the power of our gratitude immediately makes us one with God's Reality.

When we look for gratitude in the mind, it seems like something dry, silly and unnecessary. When we look for gratitude in the vital, we see that it does not even exist. And in the physical, gratitude is all the time dormant. But if we live in the aspiring heart, we not only discover gratitude but see it as the most powerful reality. If we can become one with the Supreme on the strength of our gratitude, there can be no dry periods; there can be no wall, no barrier, no undivine forces that delay our progress.

When we have gratitude, we are like a flower that is blossoming petal by petal in the Heart of the Supreme. This flower is full of fragrance, which constantly illumines, energises and fulfils the human in us, the Divine in us and the Supreme in us. And when our gratitude-flower blossoms, at that time the dormant, sleeping humanity also begins to blossom. Why? Because our gratitude will have entered into God's choice Hour. When we enter into God's Heart with our gratitude, He expedites His own Hour for His children. For He feels that some of His children are more than ready to serve and please Him than His other children who are still sleeping.

In your case, the Supreme has made you a chosen instrument to illumine and increase the aspiration of countless people. If you play your role as a conscious instrument, then you will become a river that is flowing with all its light, love and dynamic energy towards the sea of enlightenment. When you and the rest of humanity have become one, and when you enjoy this oneness divinely, there can be no partition, no barrier, no desert, but only ever-increasing bliss and ever-transcending freedom.

  1. MUN 306. 3 May 1974.