Question: We're interested in hearing a little more about what made you decide to come to the West.

Sri Chinmoy: For me, there is no India, no America, no Europe; there is only God’s House, God’s Mansion, God’s Palace. At one moment God asks me to stay and work in a particular room of His House, which is called America. The next moment He can easily tell me to go and work in another room, which is called India. The following moment he can order me to go and work in England or Germany or some other place. My task is to accept His Command cheerfully, readily and willingly at every moment. My task is only to be at His Feet and surrender my very existence to Him unconditionally.

I do not obey God because I am afraid that He will punish me if I disobey Him. No, I listen to God’s Commands because I love God. His Love-aspect is drawing me towards Him like a magnet. If God asks me to go somewhere to work for Him, out of love I will go. For me, God is God because He is all Love, not because He is all Power. The Power-aspect of God does not enchant me. What can be more powerful than Love itself? Human beings are all the time giving importance to power. But when we accept the spiritual life, we come to realise that it is the power of love that we need.

So for me, there is no India and no America. For me there is only one thing: God’s Command. When I pray and meditate, I receive this Command or Message in the inmost recesses of my heart. Then I try to be of service to my Lord Supreme happily, cheerfully, willingly and, most importantly, unconditionally. Only if we serve God unconditionally can we be really fulfilled. No matter what we have, no matter what we grow into, no matter what we become, we can never be satisfied unless and until we are able to love God and serve God unconditionally.

You are physically in Hawaii, but God is asking you to serve the whole world from here. In my case also, physically I am based in New York; but spiritually, by virtue of my aspiration, I am not limited to New York. My aspiration takes me everywhere. When we live in the world of aspiration, we are everywhere. But when we live in the world of desire, we are nowhere, because desire is all the time binding and limiting us.

When I was born, my whole world was my father and mother. Then, when I grew a little older, my tiny village was my whole world. Then my town, my city, my province and my country became my whole world. Each time I became more awakened or developed, my consciousness expanded. Now if you ask me, “Where do you live?” the human in me will say, “I live in New York.” But the divine in me will say, “No, I live inside the heart of aspiring humanity. My real home is inside the heart of my spiritual brothers and sisters, just as they also live inside my heart.”