Part V

SCA 426-435. Excerpts from an interview given by Sri Chinmoy for a reporter from The New York Times on 3 April 1997 at Annam Brahma Restaurant in Jamaica, New York.

Interviewer: Sri Chinmoy, I was watching a video where you spoke of oneness and your drawings. What do seven million birds mean when you speak of oneness?

Sri Chinmoy: To me, each bird signifies a new hope, a new inspiration, a new journey. Each bird, according to me, embodies oneness. Birds fly in the firmament. They are free. While they are flying, we see that they have an inner openness and an inner oneness. If we have openness and oneness, like the birds, we can enter into various fields of activity.

If you say that I am a jack of all trades and master of none, I will fully subscribe to your view. I draw, I sing, I write, I do weightlifting and quite a few other things. In my case, my life-tree has quite a few branches, but I do feel the oneness of the branches with the trunk, with the tree proper. Each branch has its own significance. Each branch can offer something new, although it belongs to the same tree.

I am a student of peace, and I try to learn my subject by offering it to the seekers who are also longing for peace. I feel we are sailing in the same boat. A student always wants to learn. If he becomes a teacher or a professor, he may not be inclined to learn anymore. But if he remains a student, then he constantly learns new things.