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The Sri Chinmoy Library
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Politics and spirituality: can they go together?
First published by
. Published on srichinmoylibrary.com with the permission of Sri Chinmoy. This is the 334th book written by Sri Chinmoy after he came to the West in 1964.
Table of Contents
Part I — Politics and social action
Question: What shape is our manifestation taking politically?
Question: When people come to you with political problems, how do you advise them?
Question: Can a spiritual aspirant participate actively in politics?
Question: If someone is in the spiritual life and he wants to help humanity, should he get involved in politics?
Question: Since you are familiar with the United Nations, don't you feel that there is a lot of injustice that takes place there? They are just helping the rich countries to become richer and the poor countries to become poorer.
Question: But when you see that something is wrong there, don't you think that they must learn from your spirituality to do something more useful?
Question: What makes us believe that the Vietnam War was our ignorance?
Question: What do people see in Communism?
Question: Will there ever come a time when we won't have wars?
Question: Why are people getting worse instead of better?
Question: How is it that if the spiritual force is so strong, the world seems to be such a disastrous place?
Question: With all the great suffering and poverty in the world, should we not all be directing our lives toward social and political action? Otherwise, if we only develop ourselves in a spiritual direction, through meditation and prayer, are we really fulfilling ourselves fully?
Question: If somebody feels that he is doing something for his community or for mankind, but at the same time he feels that what he's doing is slowing him down in his aspiration, what should he do?
Question: Why have you come to the West rather than remaining in your own country where there are so many tremendous problems, such as the population explosion, and where, in fact, no progress has been made since the departure of the British?
Question: The world is like a Sahara desert. People in the world are but grains of sand. What part could a little grain of sand play?
Question: What can we do to help the world most?
Question: Guru, you have said we have to face the outer world with the correct attitude. What sort of attitude is that?
Part II — Material success
Question: What response would you give to a person who asks, "How does the spiritual life benefit the man on the street, the man who is more concerned about getting bread and maintaining his life?"
Question: Often in New York, I see people begging for money. If the person is blind or crippled, then I feel sorry, but I'm just not sure if I should give or not.
Question: Can we fulfil our worldly responsibilities at the same time that we are fulfilling our spiritual needs?
Question: Do you think one should work in the world or retire to an ashram to realise God?
Question: When you speak of accepting the world, do you mean we should just live our lives having only as much involvement as we absolutely have to, and ignore the things that are going on around us, such as politics?
Question: Is there any way to reconcile the spiritual life with material success?
Question: I don't feel that it is possible for me to follow spirituality without following through with the material world. Without it I have found spirituality quite empty, whereas when my physical pleasure in the world is heightened, I then find a higher approach to my spirituality. Must this material part be rejected, or can they balance each other out?
Question: If you work for a company and are selling a product, you are trying to get material gain for the company. How do you reconcile that and put your energies into it?
Question: Why do you not materialise more wealth if you have such power from God?
Question: Guru, when you give someone a blessing in the form of money, what is the significance?
Question: What should our attitude be towards our job in terms of our position as a disciple and the mission itself? Very often I wonder whether the work that I am doing has any relation to my being a disciple.
Part III — Health and physical well-being
Question: Is it true in your philosophy that the body always has to be a hindrance in the communication with God and can never be a part of your offering of yourself to God?
Question: How can we effectively channel physical energy into spiritual energy?
Question: If a person is overweight, does it affect his consciousness?
Question: Guru, I wanted to know if there was anything else we should do for the body in the spiritual life besides feed it? Are there any exercises?
Question: How important is it for a spiritual aspirant to get physical exercise?
Question: Do people really need more sleep when they are training for athletics?
Question: Do great athletes have a kind of unconscious aspiration?
Question: Does the concentration that the athletes use help them in any way spiritually?
Question: Suppose a race is very close and the capacity of two athletes is the same, but one of them is aspiring. Does Grace let the one who is aspiring win?
Question: Is there a place for any kind of feeling of competition in the spiritual life?
Question: Why are athletes so appreciated in today's world?
Question: Does it help an athlete to have a large number of his own supporters in the audience?
Question: Recently I have been reading in the newspaper about spiritual healing. Is this really possible?
Question: Could you say something about healing and spiritual development?
Question: Is there any way that we can avoid minor illnesses like colds?
Question: Guru, is there any reason why black athletes are so good?
Part IV — Questions on contemporary life
Question: Many say that we are entering into the end of this age, and that the world is going to end quite soon. I was wondering what you had to say about it.
Question: Nowadays there are so many young people going to ashrams in India, Tibet and other places. Are these people sincere? What are they looking for?
Question: I have a question on cleanliness. If people leave their houses untidy, does it affect their own consciousness?
Question: Guru, listening to the radio or reading a newspaper or magazine invariably brings my consciousness down, but sometimes there is interesting information. Is there a way the media can be divinised, or should we just avoid that type of media entirely?
Question: In the proper proportion would it be squandering the light that you offer us?
Question: Is it possible to hasten the pace at which seekers gradually move beyond such forms of distraction or entertainment as novels and television? If you burn all your novels, are you really overcoming what may be a genuine need at that time?
Question: Automobiles seem to play an important part in your mission and, at the same time, they are a source of problems and headaches. I was wondering what kind of attitude we should have towards our cars?
Question: Could you give advice to those who ride the subways when the vibrations seem dangerous sometimes?
Question: Guru, is there any way we can protect ourselves when out in the street?
Question: Why do we have time and space?
Question: Why does the universe exist?
Question: Aren't there other worlds and planets where people can take bodies?
Question: What was the best service the British did for India?
Question: What shape is our manifestation taking politically? ›
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