Interviewer: So as part of this inspiration, did you feel that birds were something you should draw?

Sri Chinmoy: For me, birds have a very special significance. They embody freedom. We see a bird flying in the sky and it reminds us of our own inner freedom. As I said before, I am a Truth-seeker and a God-lover. So I feel that inside each of us there is an inner existence which we call the soul. The soul, like a bird, flies in the sky of God’s Infinity. So the birds we see flying in the sky remind us of our own soul-bird flying in the sky of Infinity.

If we buy a cage and put a bird inside it, the bird is limited. But if we release the bird, it will go high, higher, highest. When the bird is flying in the boundless sky, there is no limit to its flight. When we live inside the mind, we are encaged by limited, earth-bound thoughts — undivine, impure, destructive thoughts. But when we live in the soul, we are able to fly in the sky of divine freedom. When we pray and meditate, we become simple, sincere, humble and pure. We learn to live in the soul. By praying and meditating, we feel that we can go beyond our ordinary, silly, earth-bound thoughts and fly in the sky of divine illumination and perfection.