Question: In the morning I usually spend half an hour for spiritual practice. How much time should I allot to chanting and how much for meditation?Sri Chinmoy: If you have only half an hour at your disposal, then in the beginning you can chant for ten minutes. Chanting is also part of prayer and meditation. We cannot separate them. After chanting you can pray for five minutes, and after praying you can meditate for ten minutes. Then it has become twenty-five minutes. For the last five minutes, you should read spiritual books. That will help you. After meditating, slowly we have to enter our outer life. Meditation takes us deep inside. But we have to keep a balance. We have to go to work and engage in outer activities. So to convince yourself that you have chanted, you have prayed and you have meditated, this reading is absolutely necessary. But only spiritual books, nothing else.
For ten minutes please chant, for five minutes pray and for ten minutes meditate very deeply. Then for five minutes, please read spiritual books. This way you can spend your half an hour. Do not think that meditation is superior and chanting and prayer are inferior — no, no, no. You have to feel that you are entering into a temple. These are the steps that have to be taken. The first step is chanting. If there is no first step, you cannot go to the second and third steps. Do chanting first, then prayer, then meditation. Then, to convince yourself that you have chanted, you have prayed and you have meditated, it is advisable to read spiritual books.