Sri Chinmoy: I have answered this question many, many times. Again, I would like to be of service to you.
This hall has quite a few doors and windows which we can close at any time. When we meditate, we close all the doors and windows of our inner life. There is a saying that we are always at the mercy of thoughts. In a fleeting second, a thought can bite us from this side or that side. There is no end to our thoughts. But when we meditate, we shall not allow an iota of thought from any corner to attack us. The highest meditation will be without any thought whatsoever. When there is no thought, we use the term ‘trance’.
After our meditation, we have to enter into the outer world, we have to be with our friends, we have to be with our society, we have to deal with outer activities, we have to go out and work and so on. So what do we do? When we meditate, we have to enter into our highest meditation. Each one has his own highest meditation. My highest meditation need not or cannot be the same as yours. Once we feel that we have reached our highest, we have to remember that we have friends in our inner life, just as we have friends in our outer life. By ‘friends’ we mean good thoughts, uplifting thoughts, good ideas — ideas that we shall help this person and that person, and that we shall become a better person. These friends we shall allow to enter into us.
So, when ideas and thoughts come, first we keep all the doors closed, and then we allow only good thoughts, the thoughts that will help in raising the consciousness of humanity. If you see that there are good thoughts, you will allow them to enter. The other thoughts you will not allow: thoughts that come to you as negative forces or that give you the feeling that you are superior to so-and-so or that you can try to lord it over others. One kind of thought is a desire-thought, and the other is an aspiration-thought. Desiring thoughts will always try to separate you from others. They will make you feel that you are higher than the highest, and that others always have to be at your feet. But aspiring thoughts tell us that we can all grow together. In a garden there are many plants, most beautiful plants. They are all growing together and giving so much joy to the gardener and also to those who are coming to see the garden.
Once again, first you have to keep your mind absolutely quiet, tranquil and vacant, and then you will allow only the thoughts that are going to raise not only your own consciousness, but the consciousness of all those who are around you. You will allow the thoughts that will help you to go from your own heart to cover the entire length and breadth of the world. But before that, you will allow absolutely no thought. This is the highest meditation. First you reach your own highest meditation, and then you let in only the forces that will help mankind and help you to become a better citizen of the world. This is how I meditate and my students meditate.