SCA 1131-1132. These questions were asked on 24 July 1980.
Question: How can we prepare ourselves to be more receptive for our Wednesday night meditations?
Sri Chinmoy: Try to feel that every Wednesday night is a golden opportunity. Either you are going to miss that golden opportunity or you are going to avail yourself of it. Something most precious you will get or something most precious you are going to lose. Take it in that way. If you are wise, you will try your utmost to seize that opportunity. If you are a fool, you will neglect it and lose it.
For an hour or an hour and a half we meditate. Even for five minutes, if you can remain in your highest, you will receive something. You do not have to be receptive the rest of the time. You can receive a very large quantity in a small amount of time.
Always think that there is a place where you can get the most special thing. Now you have to value that special thing. The difficulty is that a rich man’s children squander their father’s wealth. The father does not mind, as long as they use it. But they misuse it; they waste it. Then the father says, “In time they will learn to use it.” But some will continue to neglect it, in the sense that they will not pay any attention to it. They want their father’s wealth, but they do not value it.
Money-power as such is not bad if it is used properly. Similarly, spiritual power must be used properly. But some people do not have a developed consciousness. That is why they misuse the inner wealth. What do they value? Their lethargy, idleness, ignorance.
Why do I love America? I always say that America is like a mad elephant going this side and that side, breaking heads, but at least it is trying to go forward. Instead, quite often it is going sideways. But the point is that if the elephant lies down and sleeps and snores, it is not going anywhere. It is better to make mistakes than to lie idle. Each time we make mistakes, we get a deplorable experience. Then we try once more to make progress. Again, we make mistakes. And again we feel that there is something higher and deeper. But if we do not value the spiritual wealth, then what do we do? We just sleep; we remain where we have always been.
To come back to your question, on Wednesday nights, before I come to the meeting, you can read some book and create a meditative consciousness. Very often before I come to the meetings the atmosphere is almost like an Indian marketplace. Everybody is talking and moving around. The disciples are like mischievous students. They are doing everything wrong but, as soon as the teacher comes, they fall silent.
If you go to the meeting before I arrive and remain peaceful, a peaceful atmosphere and consciousness will enter into those who are not disciplined. And if you can remain silent, I will be sincerely grateful.