Question: It seems that as life goes on, responsibilities multiply. Is there a point where a job, a house and all the other things become a burden on our aspiration?

Sri Chinmoy: No. Always think that each responsibility is an opportunity to please God. If you take responsibility as a heavy elephant on your shoulders, then you are doomed. You will feel that your responsibilities are killing you. Always we have to use wisdom. If you have ten responsibilities, then you have to feel that you have ten opportunities. If you can please God, our Beloved Supreme, in ten different ways, will He not be happy?

If you think of responsibility as a heavy burden on your shoulders, you will be miserable. You will say, “Others are better off. They do not have any responsibility, but they get the same smile from Guru. They do nothing, nothing. I am going to another city to lead a Centre and doing so many things that prevent me from being in Guru’s physical presence. Then he is smiling at others in exactly the same way.” These kinds of thoughts will torture you.

If you take responsibility as opportunity, you will say, “I am so lucky to have this opportunity. Who cares what others are doing? They are not qualified in this field. That is why Guru is sending me to this place and that place. If he has confidence in me, then I should also develop confidence that I can please him in his own way.” Every time a new responsibility comes, take it as a golden opportunity. When you say ‘golden opportunity’, then you are bound to get joy. Opportunity carries a sweeter than the sweetest feeling, whereas responsibility can carry a bitter feeling.

Your name means progress, faster than the fastest progress. How will you make faster than the fastest progress? By taking responsibility as such? No. Always take responsibility as opportunity. In my case, at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram I had only two or three responsibilities, but in the beginning that was enough to destroy my joy. To somebody I had to go each day and give a rose from the Mother. At first I did not like to do it, but later the divine in me took it as an opportunity. Then I had to distribute raw eggs from the Mother. It was my responsibility not to drop and break the raw eggs. These were the kinds of responsibilities I had. Now, daily hundreds of responsibilities loom large before me. I take them all as opportunities because the Divine in me really takes them that way. Similarly, in your case, take each responsibility as an opportunity. And if you have the capacity to please the Supreme in ten ways, why do you have to restrict yourself to only one?