Question: Sometimes the outer conditions make it difficult to meditate.

Sri Chinmoy: Everybody has the same problem: it is too hot or too cold, or something else. Unfortunately, the world is like that. If you are inside the meditation room, it is too hot. Again, outside the sun is very bright. Either way there is a problem. The place is not good; the sun is bothering you; there is too much noise — in addition to the inner difficulties that you face! But instead of thinking of the difficulties, try to think of it the other way: think of the opportunities. One approach is to think of the hurdles that you face in life. Another approach is to think of the joy that you will get after crossing over the hurdles. You have to say, “If I cross over the hurdles, which I can and I must, then I will be so happy.” This way of seeing things increases your inner and outer capacity.

Sometimes the outer conditions make you feel absolutely miserable when you are meditating. You can easily surrender and say, “It is not my fault. It is nature’s fault.” In this way, you can justify your surrender very nicely. But the other way is to say, “If I can meditate in spite of this opposition, then I will become a better, stronger disciple.” Instead of surrendering to those obstacles, regard them as opportunities to make progress.

Spiritual people are supposed to be warriors. When we face obstacles, we have to conquer them. This has to be our attitude all the time. Otherwise, if we surrender to circumstances, we will never be able to do anything. So if you think of the happiness you will get when you conquer the obstacles that you are presently facing and if you can bring that happiness forward, it will give you added strength. And that strength will give you the capacity to meditate more peacefully.