The General Assembly1

On Tuesday, 17 September 1974, the United Nations Meditation Group held a special meeting at which Sri Chinmoy paid tribute to the two significant events which marked the day: the opening of the twenty-ninth session of the General Assembly and the commemoration of the death of former Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold.

The General Assembly begins today. It is a most significant event. The General Assembly is a family gathering of a very special family. Unlike most families, this family knows what to say, what to do and what to become. It knows how to love, how to serve and how to fulfil. What to say? The members of this family say that they wish to live together forever. What to do? They try to understand one another; they try to share with one another their teeming ideas and glowing ideals. What to become? They try to become a cry; they try to become a hope; they try to become a promise; they try to become a smile-a cry that elevates them, a hope that feeds them, a promise that reveals them, a smile that immortalises them. How to love? They try to love with their illumining souls. How to serve? They try to serve with their searching minds and their striving vitals. How to fulfil? They try to fulfil by steering God's Dream-boat toward the Golden Shore.

The General Assembly signifies interdependence. It represents a song of the community of nations, a song of group-souls. While singing this song, these souls will climb high, higher, highest until they one day reach the transcendental Vision of world union. While singing this song, these souls will march far farther, farthest until they one day reach the transcendental Reality of universal Peace. There is also another reason why this time of year is most significant. Thirteen years ago tomorrow, one of the great pilots of the United Nations passed behind the curtain of Eternity: Dag Hammarskjold died in a plane crash. But before his soul flew to the highest realm of consciousness, it left behind the quintessence of its love for humanity, its wish for peace within humanity and its feeling of oneness with humanity. Dag Hammarskjold was a man of God and servant of humanity. The body and soul of the United Nations treasure the quintessence of his love of truth, light, peace and universal oneness.

Here we are all seekers. We, too, belong to a family, a spiritual family. We are all praying for world peace, world harmony and world union in a divine and supreme way. Today the General Assembly begins with new hope, new determination and new aspiration to discover something more illumining and more fulfilling. We, too, the seekers of infinite Truth and Light, can begin today with new hope, new determination and new aspiration as we try to become more spiritual, more sincere, more dedicated. In this way we can serve the Inner Pilot of the United Nations and the Inner Pilot of the entire world-family in a most illumining and fulfilling way.

  1. SM 1. 17 September 1974

Comments about the Secretaries-General1

During a meeting of the U. N. Meditation Group, Sri Chinmoy asked members to relate briefly some of their significant experiences while working at the United Nations. Sri Chinmoy then commented as follows.

I have also served the U.N., for six years. But unlike you, who have served officially, I have served unofficially. With your kind permission I wish to offer two most striking experiences of mine. The first was when I met with Secretary-General U Thant in his office. His simplicity, sincerity, humility, purity and divinity made me immediately feel that I had found in him a true and genuine spiritual brother. In him I also discovered a heart of universal oneness. Then, a few years ago, I had the golden opportunity to pay my most soulful respects to the soul of Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold at his grave in Uppsala. While I was offering my most soulful love, appreciation and adoration to this divinely great soul, I discovered immediately the luminosity of his mind. In his mind I found the most illumining and fulfilling vastness. Two supremely giant souls — Dag Hammarskjold and U Thant, U Thant and Dag Hammarskjold. Inside the vastness of Dag Hammarskjold my heart felt the love of oneness, and inside the oneness of U Thant my soul envisioned the vastness. Their oneness and vastness and vastness and oneness make me feel and realise that this U.N. — their dream-fulfilling reality and reality-transcending dream — will forever and ever be cherished and treasured by the aspiring, self-giving and truth-loving humanity.

  1. SM 2. 11 May 1976

Meditation for Dag Hammarskjold1

On 17 September 1976, the anniversary of Dag Hammarskjold's death, the members of the United Nations Meditation Group gathered for a few minutes of silence in the Meditation Room of the United Nations. Afterwards Sri Chinmoy spoke about the experience.

This is the first time that all the members of the Meditation Group have gone to the Meditation Room and meditated together. This is a significant occasion for us. But something infinitely more important, this is our soulful tribute to the in mortal memory of the U.N. Pilot, Dag Hammarskjold. We went to the Meditation Room to observe the anniversary of his death. According to human wisdom, death is a halt, where all movements cease for good. But according to divine wisdom, death is a step we take while walking along Eternity's road.

We went there to observe the passing, or the extinction, of Dag Hammarskjold's body-consciousness. This is what the outer world will say. But the inner world tells us that we did not go there to observe the extinction of anything. We went to observe the illumination of a great soul, a sublime soul. His mind was illumined, his heart was totally awakened and his soul was fulfilled.

When we think of the Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold, we come to realise that in him the great battle, the agelong battle between mind and heart, had come to an end. In him, the mind and the heart became good, intimate friends. We all know that when there are two friends, both friends walk together towards the same destination. But in his case, we observe something extraordinary. The mind went along the road of illumination and the heart marched along the road of liberation. However, they were in perfect conformity to one another, in perfect understanding. We think that if two persons are true friends, then they must walk together. But this is not necessary. If there are two goals that eventually merge into one goal, then these subordinate goals must be reached before we reach the ultimate goal. Illumination was the first goal, which his mind wanted to attain, and liberation of the aspiring heart was the second goal, which his heart wanted to achieve. So his mind went to the illumination-shore and his heart went to the liberation-shore. Then from the liberation-shore and the illumination-shore, the mind and the heart together went to the Perfection-shore. The Perfection-shore is the ultimate goal of each human being.

When we observe a thing with our physical eyes, with our naked eyes, we see a loss and gain, failure and success. But when we use our inner eye, our third eye, we see that there is no such thing as loss or gain, failure or success. On the physical plane, definitely it is a terrible loss for such a great soul, such a good soul, to leave the body in a plane crash. What an unfortunate experience for humanity to have. But from the spiritual point of view, it was not an accident, but a glowing reality that was entering into the ever-glowing, illumining and fulfilling Reality. Here we are all seekers. Dag Hammarskjold was a seeker in the purest sense of the term. He was a seeker of the highest order. His heart cried for the satisfaction of mankind. His mind cried for the illumination of mankind. His body, his physical consciousness, is nowhere to be found-it is all in the elemental sheaths. But his soul is not only in Heaven, it is also on earth. The soul-bird flies from Heaven to earth, from earth to Heaven. When it comes to earth, it comes with new hope, new light, new illumination, new compassion and new consolation. Then it becomes one with us. And when it flies to Heaven, it carries our inner cry, inner thirst and inner hunger. It also carries our insufficiencies, our weaknesses, our misunderstanding, our lack of sympathy and oneness. It carries to Heaven all the darkness of the unlit, strangling world that we live in or have created for ourselves. Each time the soul of this great seeker, Dag Hammarskjold, comes down, it brings down for us at the United Nations and for seekers all over the world the hope that awakens mankind, the consolation that sustains mankind and the compassion that eventually lifts up humanity's fate to the golden Heights of Tomorrow's Dawn.

  1. SM 3. 17 September 1976

Inner Flames at the United Nations1

Inner Flames signify aspiration. Aspiration illumines the undivine in us and fulfils the divine in us. Our doubting mind is the undivine in us. Our loving heart is the divine in us. The doubting mind unconsciously and consciously tries to destroy the whole world. The loving heart consciously and unreservedly creates a new world: a world of hope, a world of light, a world of delight.

Aspiration is the inner cry. Both God and man have this inner cry. With His inner Cry, God claims us. With our inner cry, we follow God. God's inner Cry is for our perfection and our outer cry is for God's satisfaction.

We, the members of the United Nations Meditation Group, are each inner flames, and we are each trying with utmost humility and sincerity to be of service to each member of the United Nations, to the dream of the United Nations, to the pristine purity of the United Nations. Our capacity is very limited, but our willingness, our eagerness to be of service to each member, to each ideal of the United Nations, is sincere. And this sincerity will one day be proved and marked. Here at the United Nations, all are inner flames. No matter what an individual's post is, whether he holds the highest post or the lowest, he is undoubtedly an inner flame, for his is the cry which is genuine. Each individual server of the United Nations, irrespective of his nationality or religious and cultural background, is undoubtedly an inner flame. And each flame serves the community of nations according to its capacity and according to its receptivity.

The original and pioneer flame was President Wilson. His dream of the League of Nations has blossomed into the United Nations. Once it was a tiny plant, but now it has grown into a huge banyan tree. It was the plant that embodied the inner flame and now, as a huge banyan tree, it has countless flames.

God and Truth are one and inseparable. Truth and Light are also one and inseparable. Truth, when it starts manifesting itself, takes the form of Light and this Light illumines and fulfils the seeker in us.

The seeker in us always wants to satisfy the little world and the big world. The world that we claim at the beginning of our life — our home, our parents, our brothers and sisters, our relatives — is the little world. But as our vision increases, as we look around and see a bigger world, an unhorizoned world awaiting us, at that time we claim the big world as our very own.

Each individual who has come to serve the United Nations represents his own country, his small world. But when he becomes part and parcel of the United Nations, the big world, at that time he is for all, for the entire humanity. He started his journey with his own country and then he arrived at the goal of goals: universal oneness.

The United Nations wants to solve all the world problems. It is more than eager to solve all the problems that the world could ever imagine. In various ways it is trying to solve the world's problems lovingly, devotedly, soulfully and unreservedly. A problem indicates confusion, a problem indicates the dance of ego, a problem indicates human weakness. Each problem can be solved and will be solved by only one thing and that is the message of union. This union comes to the fore only when we kindle the inner flame. We, as seekers, know perfectly well that it is the inner flames that are burning inside all the members of the United Nations that are inspiring the members to solve all the problems of the world.

Today's meeting is honouring the General Assembly. At the General Assembly each individual nation comes to offer its light, truth, willingness-capacity and sense of oneness. Each country embodies truth and light in its own way. But each country feels and knows in the inmost recesses of its heart that the light and truth it embodies cannot be sufficient. Therefore, it tries to accept and receive light from other countries. Similarly, each flame that each individual embodies cannot be sufficient to solve any world problem or to illumine world-ignorance. What is needed is the unification of all the flames that are here, there and everywhere. So all the flames that are here have to be collected so that they can muster their joint strength. At that time, the ignorance-dream that separates one country from another, one man from another, can no longer last. It will be replaced by Wisdom-Reality. And what is Wisdom-Reality? Wisdom-Reality is the song of oneness. This song of oneness is founded only on self-giving, which is nothing short of truth-becoming. And truth-becoming is oneness with the all-embracing, all-loving, all-illumining and all-fulfilling Reality.

The higher reality is the soul in us; the lower reality is the body-consciousness, which we are right now. The lower reality aspires to grow into the higher reality. The higher reality inspires us. A great many individuals think only of the lower reality, the body-reality, as the United Nations building, where thousands of human beings are serving the one cause. The building-reality, the body-reality, of the United Nations immediately captures their minds. The outside world does not easily think of the soul-reality, which is the real reality of the United Nations. But it is the loving souls, the illumining souls of the United Nations that guide the body-reality, or try to guide it. The day will come when the outer world will realise that looming large inside the body-reality is the soul-reality.

We the seekers and members of the United Nations Meditation Group are trying to serve both the soul-reality and the body-reality according to our very limited capacity. Our capacity is very, very limited, but our sincere efforts we place at the Feet of the Inner Pilot of the United Nations. This Inner Pilot is our fate-maker, the Author of all Good, God. It is the Creator in God and the creation-fruit that is all light and life and perfection.

  1. SM 4. On 20 September 1976, Sri Chinmoy opened the U.N. Meditation Group's Second International Conference for the Opening of the General Assembly with the following lecture

The face of truth1

A seeker wishes to see the face of truth in spirituality, in religion, in love, in brotherhood, in every field of reality, in every branch of the reality-tree. But unfortunately, the face of truth is not to be found there. The face of truth is found only in longing, in the longing for truth. Not only the face of truth, but the very heart of truth, is to be found only in the longing itself. What is truth? Truth is the longing, the birthless and deathless longing which we have and which we are. This is the only truth nothing more, nothing less.

Some seekers are of the opinion that truth is not to be found here on earth, that truth belongs to the hoary past, that it is a memory of the past which we are carrying and dragging. But this is not true. Truth was there before, truth is here now and truth will also be present in the future.

The truth of the past is the truth-beauty in God's cosmic Vision. The truth of the present is the truth-duty in God's cosmic Realisation. The truth of the future is the truth-infallibility in God's cosmic Manifestation.

Here on earth, a seeker notices three kinds of truth: peripheral truth, median truth and core truth. Peripheral truth says that there is no love. "Love is the essence of life, but there is no love on earth."

Median truth says love and be loved. "I have mankind. Therefore it is obligatory on the part of all human beings to love me."

Core truth, the truth of the inmost reality, says, "I love God the Creator, for He is none other than Love. I love God the Creation because it is nothing other than love."

Truth needs a possessor, a revealer and a fulfiller. The truth-possessor is he who is at least a few centuries in advance of his time. The truth-revealer is he who stands in front of humanity, facing humanity. He enters into humanity's countless needs and transforms humanity's needs into deeds. The truth-fulfiller is he who lives only for humanity, for humanity's sake. Unless and until each human being becomes a perfect instrument of the Absolute Supreme, the task of the truth-fulfiller is not complete.

A seeker of the highest, ultimate Truth, a seeker who has established his constant oneness with the Absolute, can at once be a truth-possessor, truth-revealer and truth-fulfiller on the strength of his oneness with the perennial Source, his oneness with the Transcendental Light, the ever-transcending Transcendental Light.

Here we are all seekers, seekers of the United Nations, for the United Nations. The United Nations itself is both the seeker and the truth. When we look at the body-reality of the United Nations, we see that the United Nations plays the role of the seeker. But when we look at the soul-reality of the United Nations, then we see that the United Nations is nothing short of Truth and Light and Delight.

The seeker in the United Nations is becoming and growing into the truth-reality, and the truth-reality is constantly unveiling its hidden treasures — its immortalising, all-illumining and all-fulfilling treasures. These treasures are concern, sympathy, union, oneness, justice-light, perfection and, finally, satisfaction in all that the United Nations does and all that the United Nations is going to do. The United Nations is growing into the perfection-tree that will offer its branches of concern, sympathy and oneness to humanity.

When we seek, we long for a reality. When we long for a reality which is other than our true self, this reality will always remain a far cry. If we live in the body-reality and, from the body-reality, if we want to reach the soul-reality, then we shall never succeed. But if we can dare to say and feel there is only one reality — the soul-reality — which is founded upon our oneness-reality, our universal oneness-reality, our transcendental oneness-reality, then only can we safely say that inside our longing itself is the birthless and the deathless Truth. Then we can say that our longing itself is the everlasting Truth, the immortal Truth, the eternally transcending Truth, the infinitely fulfilling Truth.

  1. SM 5. 24 September 1976

They say and we say1

They say that the United Nations is a mere dream. We say that it is a dream that can grows into reality. Dream is the seed-essence. Reality is the fruit-substance.

They say that the United Nations is not independent. We say that there is no necessity for the United Nations to be independent, for the United Nations lives in the illumining heart of humanity and lives for the aspiring life of humanity.

They say that the United Nations is not powerful. We say that unless the world has given the United Nations the opportunity to show all its strength, outer and inner strength-but especially inner how can it say that the United Nations is not powerful? The world knows what the outer strength is. But what is the inner strength? The inner strength is revolution. The possessor of inner strength revolts against disappointment-bondage. He revolts against ignorance-night. He revolts against imperfection-mortality.

They say that the United Nations is not stable, that it is constantly changing its policies. We say that if a new policy embodies more light, more perfection and more satisfaction, then naturally it is the bounden duty of the United Nations to adopt the new policy instead of unwisely clinging to the old policy. reality is constantly unveiling its hidden treasures — its immortalising, all-illumining and all-fulfilling treasures. These treasures are concern, sympathy, union, oneness, justice-light, perfection and, finally, satisfaction in all that the United Nations does and all that the United Nations is going to do. The United Nations is growing into the perfection-tree that will offer its branches of concern, sympathy and oneness to humanity.

When we seek, we long for a reality. When we long for a reality which is other than our true self, this reality will always remain a far cry. If we live in the body-reality and, from the body-reality, if we want to reach the soul-reality, then we shall never succeed. But if we can dare to say and feel there is only one reality — the soul-reality — which is founded upon our oneness-reality, our universal oneness-reality, our transcendental oneness-reality, then only can we safely say that inside our longing itself is the birthless and the deathless Truth. Then we can say that our longing itself is the everlasting Truth, the immortal Truth, the eternally transcending Truth, the infinitely fulfilling Truth.

  1. SM 6. 24 September 1976

They say and we say1

They say that the United Nations is a mere dream. We say that it is a dream that can grow into reality. Dream is the seed-essence. Reality is the fruit-substance.

They say that the United Nations is not independent. We say that there is no necessity for the United Nations to be independent, for the United Nations lives in the illumining heart of humanity and lives for the aspiring life of humanity.

They say that the United Nations is not powerful. We say that unless the world has given the United Nations the opportunity to show all its strength, outer and inner strength-but especially inner-how can it say that the United Nations is not powerful? The world knows what the outer strength is. But what is the inner strength? The inner strength is revolution. The possessor of inner strength revolts against disappointment-bondage. He revolts against ignorance-night. He revolts against imperfection-mortality.

They say that the United Nations is not stable, that it is constantly changing its policies. We say that if a new policy embodies more light, more perfection and more satisfaction, then naturally it is the bounden duty of the United Nations to adopt the new policy instead of unwisely clinging to the old policy. They say that the United Nations is losing its moral authority. We say that if it is true, then the world is losing its sanity very rapidly and heading towards an explosion of a devastating character.

  1. SM 7. 15 October 1976

The way ahead1

"The way ahead may be difficult, but the future of mankind is bright."

I wish to offer some soulful comments on this divinely illumining and fulfilling utterance made by our dear seeker-friend John from Portugal's Permanent Mission to the United Nations /(Mr. Joao Teixeira da Motta, Second Secretary of Embassy, Permanent Mission of Portugal to the United Nations),/ before the Second Committee of the 31st General Assembly on 14 October 1976.

Our John — I cannot pronounce his Portuguese given name, but I have taken his kind permission to call him John — is young in terms of earthly years, but old in terms of heavenly years-young in body, old in soul, ancient in spirit. He is short; that is his physical height. But he is tall, very tall in his spiritual height.

From the strict spiritual point of view, "the way" signifies aspiration-flame. Aspiration is the inner flame which ever ascends and transcends, and while ascending and transcending, it illumines our earthly life. The aspiration-flame shows us how to see the Truth, how to feel the Truth and how to grow into the Truth. It helps us see, feel and grow into God's transcendental Vision and God's universal Reality. There are two ways: the human way and the divine way. The human approach is the approach of separativity; the divine approach is the approach of unity in multiplicity and multiplicity in unity. There the Eternal can grow in the fleeting reality and the Infinite can grow in the finite.

The human way leads us to our destination. In this case the way and the destination are two separate realities. But in the divine way, the destination and the way are the same. Here there is no sense of separativity. Two thousand years ago the Saviour, Christ, taught us, "I am the Way, I am the Goal." He also declared, "I and my Father are One." In these two most significant utterances, we can easily see and feel that the way and the destination are inseparably one.

Again, on the strength of his boundless compassion, when he identified himself totally with earth's ignorance, it was he who said, "Father, why hast Thou forsaken me?"

When we speak about "the way ahead", we have to know that the starting point and the journey's goal, or the journey's close, are two different points. When we say that something is ahead, it means that the starting point is here and the reality that we are seeking, the culmination, is elsewhere. This is what our human eyes and our human mind teach us.

But there is another teacher that we can claim as our own, our very own, and that is our inner eye, the third eye, the eye of God-Light. This eye, which is between our eyebrows and a little above, has a different story to tell us. It tells us that God the cosmic Vision and God the cosmic Reality are one and the same, one and inseparable. When we think of God the Vision, we must realise that we are talking about the cosmic Vision, which embodies Reality itself. And when we think of God the cosmic Reality, we must feel that inside the cosmic Reality is nothing but God the cosmic Vision. The cosmic Vision is the Reality within us in seed form. And cosmic Reality is the Vision in its fruit form, which is for us. The cosmic seed is within us and the cosmic fruit is for us.

"The way ahead may be difficult." Anything that is as yet unachieved may appear difficult. Difficulty is an experience which we go through before the realisation-sun dawns on our devoted and illumined heads and aspiring and surrendering hearts.

"But the future of mankind is bright." The future is something that grows in the immediacy of today. The past has given us the capacity to become great. The present is giving us the capacity to become good. The future will give us the capacity to become perfect. Greatness, goodness and perfection. When we are great, consciously or unconsciously we want to rule the world and lord it over the world. When we are good, consciously or unconsciously we love the world according to the power of our willingness and our receptivity. When we are perfect, we try to love and serve God the Creator in His entire creation, in His own way. Two thousand years ago, the Christ said, "Let Thy Will be done." This is the supreme prayer; this is the supreme message that humanity has received from above through the Christ consciousness.

"The future of mankind." — Who is man? Man is God yet unrealised. Who is God? God is man yet unmanifested. When it is a matter of realisation, man has not yet realised who he eternally is. When it is a matter of manifestation, unfortunately God remains unmanifested. Therefore, man and God are two complementary entities. Man manifests God through his self-giving and God helps man realise who he eternally is through His own Self-giving.

"The future of mankind is bright." What is bright in our outer life? Inspiration is the only thing that is bright in our outer life. There is nothing else in our outer life that can claim to be bright. Inspiration is the only thing that has the light, so he who has inspiration is bright and nobody else. The possessor of inspiration is the only bright person in the outer life.

What is bright in our inner life? Aspiration is the only bright thing in our inner life. As inspiration is bright in our outer life, so aspiration is bright in our inner life. Without inspiration, the outer life is worse than meaningless; without aspiration, the inner life is worse than useless.

When we have inspiration, we feel that there shall come a day when our inspiration will show us God's Face. And when we have aspiration, we discover that a day shall dawn, at God's choice Hour, when our aspiration will show us God's Heart God's Face is Infinity's Beauty and God's Heart is Eternity's Duty.

  1. SM 8. 9 November 1976

Prayer for the New Year1

This will be our last meeting for this year. May we most soulfully invoke the presence of the soul of the United Nations to bless us and to guide us, and to illumine the road to world peace, world harmony and oneness-world, where God's Truth God's Light and God's Bliss shall reign supreme.

  1. SM 9. 14 December 1976

A visit to the United Nations Gift Center1

As far as I know, I was not scheduled to give a talk today, but with your souls' kind permission I wish to say a few words.

Dear friends, dear sisters and brothers, dear seekers, when I use the term "seeker," please do not be scared to death. Some of you are afraid of the term "seeker," while others may be attracted to it out of sheer curiosity. Still others may feel something haunting or illumining in the term.

A seeker may be aware of what he is doing, or he may be totally unaware of it. There are conscious seekers and unconscious seekers, but we are all seekers here. This world of ours is quite vast. There are many, many places on earth where you could have worked for your living and gained earthly and heavenly experiences, but you have chosen this particular place. Why? Some of you or even all of you may give outer reasons, but actually it is your souls that have brought you to the United Nations. Some of you may outwardly convince your minds that because of this or because of that you wanted to work at the United Nations. But I wish to say there is only one inner reason and that is that your heart cares for union and oneness with the world at large. Your heart of aspiration wants to be inseparably one with the rest of the world. Therefore, you found a job here or your soul decided on your behalf to accept a job at the United Nations. You represent not only this beautiful, meaningful and soulful gift shop; you represent not only the United Nations, but you represent also the Almighty Father's Oneness-Heart here, there and everywhere.

Every day people come to this shop from various parts of the world. They come here to identify themselves with the large, larger and largest world. Let me give you an example. I come from a tiny, obscure village in Bengal, India. If I buy something from this place and take it back to my little home and show it to my friends, immediately a new world dawns before them — a world of vastness, a world of oneness, a world of satisfaction. The tiniest possible world is my village, Shakpura, in Bengal, India. The tiniest world comes into this shop and gets a gift which comes from another part of the world. Perhaps that part of the world where the gift was made may also be a small village. But my coming to this shop from one tiny place and your offering this gift from another tiny place makes a happy union between the two places.

We come to the United Nations to be united and to serve humanity with one heart, with one soul and with one body. In this way the little, little worlds become one with the big world; and again, the big world gives to the little worlds what it has and what it is. There are countless drops in the ocean. Each drop is a world of its own, by virtue of its very existence. When all the drops are together inside the ocean, they represent the world itself. So the ocean is the largest world and each tiny drop is also a world, but a little world. This moment the union of countless drops makes the vast ocean and the next moment the vast ocean feeds and nourishes the tiny little drops.

Here in this shop at the United Nations you have ample opportunity to unite the little worlds with the big world, the finite with the Infinite. Each little gift that you sell represents the beauty of the finite and, at the same time, welcomes the Blessings of the Infinite. By welcoming, by invoking and by imploring the Blessings of the Infinite, the little beautiful gift becomes immortal. Then it flies from one part of the world to another, from here to the so-called most insignificant village on earth; it covers the length and breadth of the entire world. The United Nations is extremely fortunate to have you and you are also extremely fortunate to have the United Nations, for from here you offer your heart's magnanimity and your mind's luminosity to the world at large.

In conclusion, I wish to say a few soulful words about your leader-boss, June. She has been with our little spiritual family for about a year. With all my heart's sincerity and my soul's effulgence, I wish to say that she is an extremely sincere, devoted and earnest seeker. In her there is a very rare and unusual combination of the aspiring heart and the illumining mind. There are many, many, many good qualities of hers which I am sure all of you know, for you work with her. But the thing that strikes me most is that she practises what she preaches. Her life of illumining discipline is at once the embodiment of what she has and is and the revelation of what she has and is. Some of you may think that she is a strict disciplinarian, but I wish to say that this very discipline she practises in her own life for the betterment of her own life and the world-body.

The word "discipline" frightens the physical mind and the human in us. But the divine in us knows that inside the so-called earthly discipline there is boundless joy and boundless satisfaction. Punctuality is discipline. We know that our goal, let us say, is three metres ahead of us. If we are punctual, then we go towards our goal. By virtue of the regularity of our course we cover one metre, two metres, three metres. Then we reach our destination. Until we reach our goal there is no satisfaction at all. When we reach our goal we get tremendous satisfaction. So satisfaction looms large inside discipline.

Punctuality is severe punishment if we remain in the mental world. But if we remain in the heart-world, then immediately we will feel that punctuality is just an outer means to reach our goal. It is like our legs. If we are supposed to walk, we desperately need our legs in order to reach our destination. So discipline is the way to reach our destination there can be no other way.

June's heart of aspiration and her life of dedication both are exemplary. In the union of her aspiring heart and dedicated life, she has been contributing something very soulful, meaningful and fruitful, both to the tiniest possible world, the tiniest village in a corner of the globe, and also to the largest possible world, to this earth-planet. Her dedicated service is undoubtedly satisfaction to the soul of the United Nations. All those who are working with her are sailing in the same boat. They are doing the same thing, pleasing the soul of the United Nations in a most significant manner. By pleasing the soul of the United Nations you are pleasing the Real in you, and this satisfaction is the supreme satisfaction of God, our Heavenly Father. Satisfaction He infinitely has and satisfaction He eternally is, and this Existence-Oneness-Reality of His He wants to share with us.

To Ms. Henneberger: My heart's boundless light and my soul's infinite blessing I am offering to you. What I said about you is all from the very depth of my heart. You are uniting the little world and the big world, the finite and the Infinite. It is a most significant achievement of your soul, far beyond your imagination, which we are placing at the Feet of our Eternity's Beloved Supreme.

  1. SM 10. On 11 February 1977, Sri Chinmoy visited the United Nations Gift Center, which was managed by Ms June Henneberger, a member of the UN Meditation Group. Sri Chinmoy meditated with the staff of the shop before their working day began and then gave a short talk. The transcript of his talk follows


On 29 February 1977 Sri Chinmoy gave the following talk on meditation, prefacing it with these remarks about his first meeting with the late Secretary-General U Thant.

Exactly five years ago I was extremely fortunate to see U Thant. It was a most memorable day for all the members of the Meditation Group. His blessing and his concern we have been carrying from the day I met with him. Today in silence I am offering and I am requesting all the United Nations Meditation Group members to offer their soulful gratitude to this great lover of truth and brother of humanity.

Every Tuesday and Friday we come here to pray and meditate on various planes of consciousness: physical, vital, mental, psychic and so forth. Then we offer the fruits of our prayer and meditation to the soul and the body of the United Nations. I wish to say a few words about meditation.

What is meditation? Meditation is not a kind of prayer of the mind and it is not a prayer in the mind. But it can easily serve the purpose of a soulful prayer for the mind.

We meditate for various reasons. Peace of mind we all badly need. Therefore, when we meditate, either consciously or unconsciously we aim at peace of mind. Meditation gives us peace of mind without a tranquilliser. And unlike a tranquilliser, the peace of mind that we get from meditation does not fade away. It lasts for good in some corner of the inmost recesses of our aspiring heart.

Meditation gives us purity. There are various ways to achieve purity. Some people advocate the traditional Indian system of breathing. By breathing systematically and also through some occult techniques of breathing in and out, one can definitely purify one's internal system to some extent. But this purity does not last permanently. However, when one prays and meditates soulfully and, at the same time, brings the soul to the fore, one is bound to achieve lasting purity. The purity that we get from our soulful meditation lasts forever in our aspiring consciousness.

When we pray, we feel either that we have done something wrong or that something can be invoked from above so that we do not do anything wrong. When we pray, we feel that the mistake-world is looming large. Either we have made a mistake by having done something or we have made a mistake by not having done something. Then our sincerity compels us to confess our mistake. So, prayer and confession very often go together.

But meditation does not believe in that kind of confession. Meditation says, "Why do you have to make a mistake and then confess it? Do not remain near mistakes. Remain millions and billions and trillions of miles away from mistakes. Then you won't have to confess anything." Meditation is not an escape exercise. When we pray, we try to bring down into us a higher reality or enter into a higher reality that will separate us from the world of suffering. We try to escape from the suffering of the world. But when we meditate, we do not try to escape. The seeker who meditates is a warrior, divine warrior. He faces suffering, ignorance and darkness, and inside the very life and breath of suffering he tries to establish the kingdom of Wisdom-Light.

The true seeker who meditates also knows that whatever he is doing is not for his own personal salvation. If everything that he is doing is only for his own salvation, then he and the world will always remain two different entities with two different ideals or goals. So, sincere seekers always try to assimilate world-truth, world-light and world-capacity and meditate for world transformation, illumination and perfection.

Real meditation never forces us to do something, to say something or to become something. It is the desiring vital or the desiring mind that enters into our meditation and forces us to try to achieve something. But meditation proper will never compel us to do something, to say something or to become something, for it knows that everything has to be natural and spontaneous. It only helps us enter cheerfully into the current of spiritual life.

Human life is beset with difficulties, dangers and so forth, but we can overcome these difficulties. We can take each difficulty as a powerful warning and we can take each warning as a blessing-light in disguise. The meditation-world invites us and leads us to the highest Reality. We see ahead a light, perfection-light. But as soon as we see this light that perfects us, we are frustrated. A red traffic light is frustration to us, especially when we are in a hurry to reach our destination. But we forget that it is the red light that saves our precious life from destruction. The red traffic light is regular and punctual. Regularly and punctually it is warning us, saving us. Similarly, regularity in meditation saves us, illumines us and fulfils us. The life of our outer smile is strengthened by the regularity of our prayer, and the light of our inner cry is increased by the regularity of our meditation.

When we meditate, we discover something and we invent something. From our regular meditation we discover faith inside us. This discovery we do not get from anything else. Immense, continuous, illumining and fulfilling faith we get only from our pure and sure meditation.

During our daily meditation we also invent. What do we invent? We invent gratitude. Our heart becomes the possessor of something which it did not possess previously, and that something is boundless gratitude. Each meditation creates a gratitude-flower inside our heart, and petal by petal this flower blossoms in worship of our beloved Lord Supreme. So we invent gratitude and discover faith from our meditation.

Meditation helps us hear the Voice of God. It not only helps us hear the Voice of God, but it also helps us listen to the Voice of God and the Choice of His Hour. After hearing the Voice of God, either we can stop or continue further and actually listen to the Voice. If we listen to the Voice of God, if we listen to the inner dictates at every moment, then the world of confusion that baffles us or that we ourselves create will no longer exist for us. The confusion-world we will no longer create for ourselves if we listen to the Voice of God.

There is a special way to listen to the Voice of God, and that special way is to meditate in silence. Silent meditation is the strongest force that can ever be seen, felt and executed. So silent meditation we must learn.

How do we meditate silently? Just by not talking, just by not using outer words, we are not doing silent meditation. Silent meditation is totally different. When we start meditating in silence, right from the beginning we feel the bottom of a sea within us and without. The life of activity movement and restlessness is on the surface, but deep below, underneath our human life, there is poise and silence. So, either we shall imagine this sea of silence within us or we shall feel that we are nothing but a sea of poise itself.

Then, if we start meditating, we are bound to hear the Voice of God and we are bound to listen to the Voice of God. Once we become accustomed to listening to the Voice of God, at that time we feel that there is no tomorrow. There is no such thing as the future, there is no such thing even as today; it is all now. God is now; His Vision is now. The eternal Now is the only reality. In the eternal Now we grow and glow; in the eternal Now we please God, fulfil God and become perfect instruments of God.

  1. SM 11. 29 February 1977

The Seeker's mind1

O mind, what are you doing to me? You are destroying all my divine possibilities. You are delaying indefinitely my supreme inevitabilities.

O mind, what are you doing to me? I thought that you would teach my vital and my body-the younger members of our family-how to enjoy the strength of vastness. Alas, instead of doing that, you are teaching them how to enjoy the weakness of meanness.

O mind, look, what are you doing to yourself? I thought that you were wise enough to see and feel the happiness that my heart enjoys by becoming inseparably one with the soul and its unfathomable ecstasy. Alas, instead of doing that, you are enjoying base jealousy towards the heart.

O mind, what are you doing to me? What have I done to you? My life-human life-is for happiness. The moment you think of me, all my happiness disappears. The moment I think of you, I suffer the same fate.

O mind, why, why on earth do you have to become so cruel to me? You torture me ruthlessly. I forgive you unreservedly. But alas, I fail to forget you, your jealousy, your meanness, your destructiveness. Deathless have become my excruciating pangs.

O mind, cruelty incarnate, you have bound me taut to your pitch dark, tenebrous and wee world. As if that is not enough, you are strangling me there. Death is undoubtedly preferable to the untold torture that you continuously inflict upon me.

Truth to tell, you have been punishing me since you have known me with your doubt-dart and suspicion-gun. In you meanness has reached its zenith height. In you jealousy plays with the darkest night. In you insecurity fails to see the face of purity's beauty.

O mind, you are nothing but your own unparalleled stupidity. Even when God Himself with His infinite Compassion-Light enters into your sordid existence-hole for its radical transformation and perfect perfection, you suspect God openly, strongly and unreservedly. Your fertile, nay, to be precise, futile imagination instigates you to think that God has an ulterior motive. Not only do you know what a suspicion-snake is, but you are nothing but that and that alone.

Helpless, God enters into His own two birthless and deathless Realities-Transcendental Height and Universal Delight-to hear all at once one solitary message: "Endless patience, endless patience."

God the Compassion is not enough. God the Patience is needed, too.

O mind, you need some retribution which you so richly deserve. I give you my word of honour. And who is the witness? God the Pilot Supreme. Do you know what I am going to do? I shall compel you to be eternally one with my heart that enjoys inseparable oneness-delight with Infinity's Light, Eternity's Peace and Immortality's Love.

  1. SM 12. 26 April 1977

World Gratitude Day1

/The United Nations Meditation Group celebrated World Gratitude Day twice in 1977 — once on 12 September in a special programme in the United Nations Secretariat for delegates and staff; and again on 21 September in World Gratitude Days New York Headquarters when the Group's Director, Sri Chinmoy, was honoured at official ceremonies. The plaque, presented to him by Mrs. Edna Lemle, president and founder of the organisation, dedicated to promoting the cause of world-wide gratitude, cited Sri Chinmoy for having "enhanced the spirit of globalism with his compassion, his creativity and nobility of spirit." The first September 21 World Gratitude Day celebration was held 13 years ago.In 1977, citations were presented to nine religious leaders and representatives of organisations. Among others recognised were the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, whose Director, Dr. J. Ottley, came from Salt Lake City for the ceremony, Judith Hollister, founder of the Interfaith Temple of Understanding; Dr. Russell Barber, producer of the NBC television programme "The First Estate", and Rabbi Sally Prisend, the first woman in American Judaism to attain the ranks of the clergy. Past awards have been given to UNICEF (as an organisation) and to former General Assembly President Angie Brooks Randolph.

Following are the texts from both programmes, which included music and the performance by the United Nations Meditation Group singers of a song by Sri Chinmoy dedicated to World Gratitude Day./

Mrs Edna Lemle, President, World Gratitude Day: Welcome, Sri Chinmoy, Mr. Muller, Mrs. de Sola Pool, Kevin Keefe, the United Nations Meditation Group and all you good people who have come here to help us herald World Gratitude Day. I will begin by asking Sri Chinmoy to stand here as he did before and get everyone into the mood which is the absolute essence of Gratitude Day.

[Sri Chinmoy meditates facing the audience.]

Now look inward and find something to be grateful for and remember this feeling. Now open yourself up and share this emotion with everyone here. Know that everyone in this room is sharing the same emotion... I feel it! It surges though the room... Thank you. This is the basis of the day.

On September 21st gather together some friends and observe Gratitude Day by repeating this with them, it can be a simple gathering or an elaborate party, depending upon how you would like to do it. The important part is that each one gives thanks in his own way. To whom and for what is for each personal and private. It is the essential emotion that should be universally shared.

The official beginning of this world holiday was in 1965 at the East-West Center in Hawaii where a Thanksgiving Dinner was held for ninety Grantees who came for the most part from Oriental countries. We discussed the need for a globally unifying holiday and everyone was thrilled with my idea of Gratitude Day. Each person in the room pledged, therefore, to hold a Gratitude Gathering the following September 21st, when they returned to their own countries. That was the beginning. And since then Gratitude Day has been observed all over the world.

Each year the Board of Directors of World Gratitude Day presents an award to someone who we feel has done something outstanding in the spirit of Globalism. In the past we have honoured such distinguished individuals as Angie Brooks Randolph, first woman president of the United Nations General Assembly, Maurice Strong of Canada and the Nobel Prize Laureate, Rene Cassin. In addition we have honoured UNICEF and Japan, which, incidentally, was the first country to declare World Gratitude Day a national day of thanksgiving.

And so, I am most pleased to present this year's World Gratitude Day Award to Sri Chinmoy, who is most deserving of this honour:

WORLD GRATITUDE DAY is pleased to honour SRI CHINMOY who has enhanced the spirit of globalism with his compassion, his creativity and his great nobility;

Whose being and achievements reflect the spirit of our Proclamation:

WHEREAS, humanity has come to recognise devotion and allegiance to immediate family, to clan, to city, to state, and to nation, and now must experience the concept of Globalism; and

WHEREAS, words of praise and positive thoughts generate dynamic harmony, and

WHEREAS, decisions made from a grateful heart are endowed with intrinsic wisdom and engender prosperity; and

WHEREAS, gratitude, the opposite of "taking for granted," is a positive emotion which generates good will, is a basic emotion which is indigenous to all people, is a peace-engendering feeling;

AND WHEREAS, September 21 is a special day. It is an equinox: one of the two times of the year when the sun passes over the equator and night and day are everywhere of equal length and everyone is equal under the sun;

THEREFORE let us proclaim World Gratitude Day, a holiday for all peoples, a day of meditation for all religions, a day of celebration for all humanity, united by knowledge of simultaneously shared emotion, a day when triumph of the spirit can make a world community.

Sri Chinmoy, I think the world should be grateful to people like you. I am honoured to give you this award.

Sri Chinmoy: I am accepting this with my heart's boundless gratitude, and this gratitude is something that is glowing and growing within me. Every day I offer to the Beloved Supreme only one thing: gratitude. Man's greatest gift to God is gratitude. Man's self-giving and his gratitude are one and the same.

I am extremely grateful to you, Mrs. Lemle, for you are opening a new chapter in humanity's evolution. The world is in the process of evolution. You know the utmost significance of gratitude, and the awakened soul in you is awakening others. Gratitude is man's conscious oneness with his Beloved Supreme. I am sure that your soul has felt this supreme oneness with the Beloved Supreme and your soul has come to the fore to urge your illumined mind to offer this loftiest message to the world at large.

Gratitude in the inner world is nothing but self-expansion. It is through self-expansion that we become aware of our true reality, which is Infinity itself. Your contribution to the world at large, to the inner world especially, is momentous. As a seeker, I know that there is nothing on earth as valuable and significant as gratitude. In God's Eye there is nothing more meaningful and precious than man's gratitude. Therefore, to you, to the illumining soul in you, I wish to offer my boundless and ever-growing gratitude.

World Gratitude Day New York Headquarters

21 September 1977

  1. SM 13. Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium, 12 September 1977


Below are Mrs. Lemle's remarks when presenting the official award to Sri Chinmoy, and Sri Chinmoys reply.

Mrs Edna Lemle: Now we're going to conclude with an extremely special, unusual man. Sri Chinmoy comes from India. He makes everything seem possible. He is the head of the United Nations Meditation Group and he has people from the different United Nations countries meditating together. By golly, if you can do that, I guess you can do anything. And he is also a very creative man. He is a painter; he is a writer. I met Sri Chinmoy just last week when, Heaven-sent, he offered to have a programme to herald World Gratitude Day at the United Nations. Sri Chinmoy stood there and just meditated, and everybody felt it. He does, of course, so much; I have to strain to reach it.

He is currently having an art exhibit at Grand Central Station with his magnificent paintings. He has written 300 books. There are Sri Chinmoy Centres in 50 or 60 countries or places around the world. We're grateful for your presence, Sri Chinmoy.

(Reading from the plaque) "World Gratitude Day is pleased to honour Sri Chinmoy who has enhanced the spirit of globalism with his compassion, his creativity and nobility of spirit, whose being and achievements reflect the spirit of our proclamation.

Sri Chinmoy: Dear Mrs. Lemle, dear sister in the Universal Compassion-Heart of the Supreme, your searching mind's World-Gratitude dream is astonishingly beautiful. Your aspiring heart's World-Gratitude reality is supremely fruitful. I am extremely grateful to you and to the Board of Directors for bestowing upon me, upon my devoted heart, this signal honour. You have discovered in me a world-server. A world-server is he who is a God-lover. A God-lover and a world-server are one and the same. Just because God, out of His infinite Bounty, has granted me the opportunity and capacity to love Him, today I am in a position to be of service to humanity, His creation. Your discovery will be a great asset in my service to mankind. I shall try to serve more devotedly, more soulfully and more unconditionally this creation of our Beloved Supreme.

Here many religious faiths are proclaiming the oneness, absolute oneness of our absolute Pilot Supreme. An hour ago when I arrived here, my dear friend and seeker-brother, Dr. Russell Barber and my dear seeker-sister, Pat Parker, greeted me at the entrance. During our conversation, Dr. Barber said to me that he was very pleased that he and I were getting the award together on the same day. I said to him, "So, we are sailing in the same boat." He immediately and lovingly corrected me. He said, "Not exactly so. We are sailing towards the same destination but in different boats." Many roads lead to Rome. But here we are arriving at the same destination.

God is the gardener. In His garden there are many beautiful flowers. One flower cannot make a beautiful garden. Many flowers are needed in order to make a beautiful garden. Again, it is the garden that embodies the many flowers and the flowers' fragrance. So the one became many and, finally, the many are reaching the self-same goal and becoming one. We all came from the One, and now the one Tree is having many branches. But each branch knows that there is a trunk, a Source. God is evolving in and through us in various ways, in many forms and many colours and then He is returning to the one destination. So the One became many in order to enrich and fulfil and finally to reach one Goal.

During his short but momentous speech, dear Dr. Barber hat told us that the United States is next to India in spirituality. With his soul's permission I wish to correct his experience or his pronouncement. It is not because I am here in America that I feel bound to extol America to the skies where spirituality is concerned, but it is because I happen to be a seeker of the Absolute Supreme. Our Beloved Supreme has two most illumining and most fulfilling qualities or attributes: Peace and Power. They are inseparable. They are mutually illumining and fulfilling each other. India embodies and represents the Peace aspect of our Beloved Supreme and America embodies and represents the Power aspect of our Beloved Supreme.

Peace and power we can take as two legs of an eternal runner, who is eternally running along Eternity's Road to reach an endless destination an ever-fulfilling destination. At any moment when we observe the runner running, we will see one particular leg ahead. That doesn't mean that that leg is actually leading or winning the battle. No, sometimes the right leg is in front and sometimes the left leg is in front. We need two legs in order to run properly towards our destination. So peace is one leg and power is another leg. Neither of them is slower, or behind the other. Both of them are equally important. Each one is needed and each one is helping the other to run fast, faster, fastest towards the destination.

My gratitude-heart is my thoughtful inspiration. My gratitude-heart is my prayerful aspiration. My gratitude-heart is my soulful meditation. This inspiration, aspiration and meditation of mine have been helping me to become a devoted instrument of my Beloved Supreme. Today you are honouring me for what I have done to serve the world at large. My contribution is an infinitesimal iota of self-giving. Again, I have to say that there is Someone who is celebrating in the inmost recesses of my heart not only what I have done but also what I have not done. Out of His boundless Bounty God has helped me not to dine any more with ignorance-night, and He is very pleased that I have not done so. So not for what we do but also for what we do not do, God is equally pleased with us.

My inspiration-wings, my aspiration-bird and my soulful life I am offering to each seeker present here, especially to you, Mrs. Lemle. You are the head of this organisation, World Gratitude Day. Gratitude is our self-expansion. It is the liberation of the finite reality inside the infinite Divinity. When we offer gratitude to someone, in no way are we showing insufficiency, inadequacy or an inferior existence-reality to that person. He has given us what he has and what he is and we are giving him what we have and what we are. Let us take God, for example. He gives to us what He is: Infinite Compassion. This is by far the best Reality that He embodies. For us our best achievement is our gratitude-heart. Our gratitude heart will make us inseparably one with our Beloved Supreme. There is no other way. Consciously, soulfully and unreservedly we become one with Him only by the expansion of our aspiring heart.

Gratitude is what at every moment we must try to grow into in order to fulfil the divine in us. Gratitude is an earth-born and earth-grown fruit which not only nourishes the Heaven-born cosmic gods but also pleases most the Heavenly Creator, our Eternity's Beloved Supreme. Finally, I wish to invoke the presence of an immortal poet, Shakespeare, whose soulful prayer I wish to share with you all: "O Lord who lends me life, lend me a heart replete with thankfulness "