The temple and the shrine
Editor's noteOn 23 June 2000, Sri Chinmoy was interviewed before his Peace Concert at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in New York City. Following are excerpts from the interview.
The physical and the spiritual, the temple and the shrineSri Chinmoy: You can easily do what I am doing! I am much older than you are. Now, how do I it? I am a man of prayer. I believe in prayer, and I pray and meditate. I pray and meditate not to become a weightlifter or a bodybuilder, or a musician, a singer or an artist — far from it! I pray to God to manifest His Will in His own Way. When I pray for His Victory on earth, He inspires me to do certain things. I lift weights in order to please Him in His own Way.
I am now nearing sixty-nine. When I pray, I get the inner message that I should be of service to my colleagues who are over fifty or sixty. Some of these people have given up hope. They feel that their lives have ended. But God wants me to be of service to them. He wants me to say, “You can have new hope, new inspiration, new aspiration and new promises to do something great and good for the benefit of mankind.”
Interviewer: When you do things, like tonight having a concert or with your artwork or even with the weightlifting, is there an overriding purpose, an overriding message behind everything that you do?Sri Chinmoy: There is only one message: God wants me to inspire people in each and every walk of life. According to my capacity, He is trying to inspire humanity. When I play music, when I sing, when I do artwork or weightlifting, I have the same message: I wish only to be of service to God the Creation. He is God the Creator, and He is God the Creation. You are God the Creation, and I am also God the Creation. God the Creator wants me to be of service to Him, to God the Creation in each and every human being.
Interviewer: I saw in a book pictures of you with Nelson Mandela and with Mikhail Gorbachev. What is the connection between your ability to lift tremendous poundages of weight and world peace?Sri Chinmoy: There is a very close link. Let me answer this question in two parts. First of all, I meet with world luminaries. They are known as great politicians, supreme politicians. I am not a politician. Politics is not my forte. I go to them as a student of peace, and I feel that, deep within, they are also longing for world peace. I go as a student of peace, and they are so kind to receive me as a student of peace. We are aiming at peace. They have a genuine hunger for world peace, as I have, so we talk about world peace. There is no world politics involved.
I lift heavy weights, and I pray and meditate. What is the link between the two? Again, there is a very close link. The physical and the spiritual must go together. We believe in the soul. Inside the body is the soul. Inside our inner existence, we feel the Presence of God. Inside the church is the altar. In India we have temples. Inside the temple there is a shrine. If there is no temple, there can be no shrine. If there is no church, there can be no altar. If there is a church with no altar inside, it will be of no value. The altar has to be inside the church. Both are interdependent. They need each other. The church needs the altar; the altar needs the church.
Similarly, the physical and the spiritual must go together. The spiritual is inside us, so the spiritual has to come to the fore to be of inspiration and guidance to the outer life. I try to keep them together. They depend on each other. Like the church and the altar, like the temple and the shrine, the physical and the spiritual must go together. I give due importance to the physical and the spiritual at the same time.
There was a time when I was a good athlete, according to our Indian standard. In my youth, in my adolescent years, I disliked weightlifting vehemently. I was of the opinion that, because weightlifters are muscle-bound, weightlifting would decrease my speed. But now my opinion has completely changed. Here in America and elsewhere I have been seeing that sprinters are very, very strong and muscle-bound. Their muscles are extremely powerful, and they are running faster than the fastest. In the olden days there was a theory that if your muscles were developed, it would slow down your speed. At that time I was an excellent athlete, but I did not do weightlifting at all. Now I do not run, because my right knee is badly injured, but I lift heavy weights. As I said before, I depend on inspiration. I do things in accordance with the Will of my inner Guide.
Interviewer: I have to ask you: what is the hardest thing about lifting an airplane?Sri Chinmoy: If you are one with God’s Will, with God’s Grace, nothing is impossible. The other day I offered the following prayer:
My Supreme, my Supreme, my Supreme!
Mountains appear only to disappear
The moment God’s Grace descends.
My Supreme, my Supreme, my Supreme!1
Mountains are obstructions. When God’s Grace appears, these obstructions disappear. If I am serving God’s Will consciously, prayerfully and soulfully, and I am aware of it, then I feel there is no such thing as impossibility. Impossibility is in the mind. The moment we go beyond the mind, there is no such thing as impossibility.
The mind is constantly contradicting its capacities. This moment the mind may tell me that you are a very good man; the next moment it may tell me that you are a very bad man. The third moment the mind may identify with the heart, which says, “Who am I to judge someone? This gentleman is also God’s Creation. If I am good, he is bound to be good.” The heart tells me that you are bound to be good, because you are also God’s Creation. If you are God’s Creation, how can you be bad?
This moment the mind will judge someone as a good person, and the next moment it will say that he is a bad person. In this way the mind weakens us. But the heart says, “That person is God’s Creation.” My heart tells me, “The gentleman who is interviewing me is also God’s Creation, so he is as good as I am.” Then there is no contradiction in my being, and I have inner strength.
The mind contradicts itself, but the heart does not contradict. The heart wants only love. In the heart there is only a positive feeling. When there is a positive feeling, there is no difficulty. But the mind says, “You are good, you are bad, you are this, you are that.” The mind has no right to judge. We have not come into the world to judge other human beings. We have come into the world to love and be loved. And if we love, how can we judge someone?
TMS 4,2. Sri Chinmoy, My Morning Soul-Body Prayers, Part 14, 20 June 2000. New York: Agni Press, 2000.↩
Interviewer: Do you have any future goals, things you are planning to lift in the future?Sri Chinmoy: I have no goal of my own! I have many, many students, as you know. Sometimes, by way of a joke, I tell them that my goal will be to lift five hundred pounds, let us say. But my goal entirely depends on God — I use the term “Supreme.” The Supreme sets my goal. Today if He asks me to stop lifting weights, I will be quite happy. But if He wants me to continue, I will continue. I do not know how far I am supposed to go, and I am not concerned about it. I feel that, since He is inspiring me, it is His problem, not mine. I will continue as long as I feel from within that it is His Will. If my Inner Pilot commands me to continue, I will continue.
Failure and success I place at the Feet of God. I have only two experiences in life: success and failure. There is no other experience; either I succeed or I fail. If I can place at God’s Feet both my success and my failure, then I become very happy. Otherwise, when I fail, I shall blame God; and when I succeed, I shall say God is very good. Again, it may happen that we extol ourselves to the skies when we are successful, and we blame ourselves when we fail. Then we give up everything. But that I do not do. Because I am a man of prayer, I place both my success and my failure at His Feet with the same peace and love and joy, for that is the only way we can make progress.
If you know the meaning of Bengali wordsA few years ago I did say that if you know the meaning of Bengali words, your singing can be much improved, because you will be able to draw feelings from the words. That is absolutely true. Again, something else is equally true. There are some superlative Tamil singers and other singers from South India and elsewhere, like Subbulakshmi — she is absolutely the queen — and Lata Mangeshkar. They do not know the proper meanings of Tagore’s songs, but they are such super-excellent singers. When they sing Tagore’s songs, even without knowing the meaning of the Bengali words, they far, far surpass many of the Bengali singers who know their mother tongue well and sing well. Subbulakshmi and a few other singers from South India and other places do not know Bengali well, but they sing Bengali songs extremely well! First of all, they are blessed with super-excellent singing voices. Then, they have created such a devoted inner feeling for the songs, on the strength of their love for the songs. When they sing Bengali songs, they sing far, far better than many of the singers who know Bengali well.
Among our disciple singers, I have already declared that our Adarsha from Scotland stands first. He is really the best singer. Among our singers, I declare that the best is Adarsha. Does Adarsha know the meaning of all my songs? No, no, no! But when he sings, he absolutely melts my heart. Even our World Harmony Run song — “Run, Run, Run, Run, Run, Run” — how soulfully he sings! This song is for enthusiasm, energy and dynamism. It is all dynamism, but how soulfully he sings it! When he sings my songs at Christmas time or here in New York, as soon as he starts singing, it melts my heart. Now, if we ask him what is the meaning of this word, what is the meaning of that word, he may not be able to say. But he has such a devoted feeling for the songs, and his soul’s identification with my songs is so powerful. There can be many, many qualities in one voice. Adarsha’s voice has tenderness, softness, soulfulness and power. Is he a Bengali scholar? Does he know anything about Bengali? No! But he sings so soulfully.
Again, there is another theory, as I said a few years ago: if you know the meaning of a word, you can imagine it. When you sing the word akash, you can imagine the sky. You can immediately imagine the sky or the ocean while you are singing these words. It is absolutely true that if you can have the image right in front of you, it helps considerably. If you are singing the word pakhi, and you know that it means “bird,” then immediately if you send your imagination to identify with the bird, it definitely helps. Again, sometimes such a silly thing happens. If some singers sing akash and they imagine the sky, they get lost in thinking about the sky, and then the melody itself they forget. They enter into the meaning of the word and the melody they lose. It does happen.
Both the theories are equally important. If you do not know the meaning of the words, but if you can bring your soul’s identification and extreme devotedness to the song, you can sing extremely well. We have quite a few excellent and very good singers. I deeply appreciate them when they sing. I do not think any of my disciples know the meaning of each and every word when they sing, but some of the singers do sing very, very well. Some of our excellent singers and very good singers do very, very good justice to my songs. I will never say that if they had known the Bengali language, they would have sung better. I do not think that is the case.
Again, both approaches are correct. If you know the meaning of the Bengali words, it can be of great help; and if you do not know the meaning, you can also be very, very, very successful in singing my songs.
If a singer sings one word incorrectly, and the person does not know Bengali, it will not affect him at all, because he does not know even one word of that particular song. For him it will not be a problem. If a Bengali-speaking person, while he is singing, sees that a word is written incorrectly, his mind will come forward. Then his heart will not be able to carry the melody. But in the case of my disciples, even if several words are wrong it may not affect them, because they may not know the meaning of all the words. If somebody knows Bengali well and there is a wrong word, then his mind will stop there. He will think of grammar. Then the poor fellow will suffer. If he knows Bengali well and if one word is printed incorrectly in Tagore’s music, let us say, he will stop there and say: “What is this? How can it be?” Again, for those who do not know Bengali at all well, their main problem is to learn the words and sing the melody correctly and soulfully.
Even if you use a wrong word, even if you mispronounce some words, I assure you that the soul of the song will not be displeased. The soul of the song will only observe your devotedness, your soulfulness, your concern for the song to be sung well.
In a sense, if you do not know Bengali well, it is a great blessing. If you know the language well, your mind can come into the picture and interfere. If you do not know the meaning of a particular word, or if you sing a wrong word, it will not affect you at all, and neither the soul of the song nor God Himself will be displeased with you.
24 April 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
The physical aspect of lifeI wish to say a few words about the physical aspect of life, which, to my great sadness, many of the disciples are ignoring. Some disciples once upon a time used to run, do sports and take physical exercise, but now they have given up. They are not doing the right thing. At least do stretching exercises. I spend thirty-five minutes a day stretching, stretching! Please take exercise. Otherwise, age will descend upon you sooner than the soonest.
Some disciples I am observing. Once upon a time they were really smart, active and dynamic, but now they move like many octogenarians. The Mother of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram once said she saw some young boys and girls who were perhaps on the right side of twenty-five, but they looked like eighty-year-olds, in their posture and in their movement.
Dear ones, you do not have to be the champion supreme. Only keep your body fit. Physical fitness, again and again I am saying, is of paramount importance. Health is God’s Wealth! All our scriptures say that when health fails, everything fails. Once the body fails, there is nothing left. You will have no inspiration, no aspiration, no dedication, no enthusiasm, no dynamism. Keep the physical always in good order, in perfect order — not for the sake of competition, but for the sake of completeness of the physical existence.
I am also trying to be very strict with myself. In the physical aspect it is very difficult, very difficult. In the spiritual aspect — that is, prayer and meditation — I do it, I do it. After God-realisation, some people enjoy a pension or a vacation or retirement. In my case, I do meditate for hours, and I am deeply involved not only in the inner world, but also in the outer world. I am involved in many, many worlds apart from the inner world, including the heart of the political world, the soul and heart of politics. In your case, I am requesting you to be involved in only two worlds: the inner world and the outer world, which is your physical body.
Here is Trishakash. He has swum the English Channel. I am very, very proud of him, very proud of him! Among the older members of our spiritual family, Trishakash has to be really appreciated and admired for keeping physically fit.
Some people think that, as long as they are thin, they are physically fit. I do not agree with them. You may be thinner than the thinnest, but you can be attacked by a good many undivine forces. Thinness does not mean physical fitness — no! People may be thin, but they can have many problems. Again, I am not the one to say that carrying extra weight is not a problem. It is a real problem. When you do not feel well, you eat more, people say, to get rid of your miseries. But you cannot get rid of your miseries in that way, alas.
24 April 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy made the following comments after the disciples sang his song Madhurata jetha nai.
"Life" with a capital "L"Over fifteen years ago, a disciple came to our April or August Celebrations. After arriving on the plane, in a matter of an hour or so that disciple came to our function at a school and sang this song. The body did not sing, the mind did not sing, the heart did not sing; only the soul of that particular disciple sang this song, Madhurata jetha nai. I could not believe it. Only the soul was singing the song, using a human voice.
If somebody in our spiritual family has done something extra-extraordinary, I will never forget it. Unfortunately, that disciple left our path. This is called life — Life.
My best mentor always used to say that Life has to be written with a capital “L”. If you write Life with a capital “L”, in that Life only you can forget all your sad experiences. If life is written with a small “l”, it is very difficult for that life to endure heavy, heavy sadness and suffering. But if Life is written with a capital “L”, that Life can devour or swallow everything that is unhappy, undivine, even hostile. It can either devour or swallow all the experiences that we have received from the negative forces.
24 April 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy encouraged his disciples from Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore to think of new ways to inspire seekers.
Swim in the sea of light!Please try various methods to inspire seekers, including running races and also swimming races. In Australia, Switzerland and a few other countries, our disciples have swimming races. If you have a swimming pool, you can have races of 100 metres or 400 metres or one mile. You can rent a swimming pool for a day.
Do you not swim? I want you to swim in the sea of light! You have joined the spiritual path, so you are not swimming any more in the sea of ignorance. Now you are supposed to swim every day, every hour in the sea of light!
Easily you can have short-distance races in a swimming pool. You can have races for different types of swimming strokes.
Cycle races I do not advise, because accidents can take place. But there will be no problem with swimming. I would like to hear from you that you will have swimming races. Swimming, swimming!
25 April 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
This is their love for meToday is our Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore Joy Day. We have practically two thousand divine “soldiers” in our Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore Centres.
Out of two thousand, very few disciples from Oneness-Dream-Boat-Shore have been able come to New York over the years. Even when I went there, many disciples could not come to see me, because they could do only one thing; they could not do two things. If they had come to see me, they would not have been able to support the activities during my visit. They decided to send love-offerings instead of spending money to travel and see me. Some of them perhaps will never be able to see me in this life. This is their love for me; this is their heart.
6 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
Whenever you can, do bring prasadWhen there are a good many items of prasad, I get tremendous joy — really I do! Whenever you can, if your finances permit, do bring prasad — not only for a spiritual anniversary, not only for your birthday, but also when you feel that your consciousness is very high, very high. Again, even when you feel that your consciousness is not high, you can bring prasad. Then your consciousness will go up! You do not have to tell anyone about your consciousness-standard.
While taking prasad if you can give me a beautiful smile, even if you are in a low consciousness, your consciousness will fly up like a rocket. And if you are in a very high, giving consciousness, then I assure you, you will fly high, higher, highest. Please remember this!
Today one singing group performed so well. We deeply appreciate and admire their performance, but they forgot to bring even one item of prasad. Their leader has told me that they will bring something tomorrow morning. Very good!
7 May 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Those who pray and meditate at the United NationsI am so proud, so proud of my disciples who are working at the United Nations. They carry my vibration, my consciousness, my light. When the disciples go to meditate at the UN in my absence, it gives me such joy. I take such pride in these Meditation Group members. They go to meditate in my absence; they think of me, they meditate on me. At that time they get my blessings, they get my light, they get my gratitude and gratitude and gratitude. Inwardly they get my blessings. They love me and they are carrying my mission at the United Nations in my physical absence. They have such love for me, and they listen to my request. They do it so faithfully.
All those who pray and meditate at the United Nations in my physical absence rightly deserve my appreciation and admiration, plus gratitude and gratitude and gratitude.
8 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
DisciplineDiscipline! Perhaps I was born with discipline. In India I lived a disciplined life. Here in America also, if I did not believe in discipline and regularity, I could not accomplish so many things every day. Punctuality I miss sometimes, but regularity really saves me.
Regularity is of paramount importance for all my spiritual children. Again, punctuality is infinitely better; but if you fail in punctuality, at least stick to regularity. We need regularity, regularity, regularity. There is no other way to accomplish something great and good.
8 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
When I saw my paintingsI went to our San Diego Centre. And what did I do there? As soon as I saw some of the paintings which I did in 1976, I cried and cried with joy. I took pictures of four or five framed originals. I could not believe I was the artist! They were so beautiful, so beautiful!
There were six or seven paintings that made me cry and cry. My soul, my heart and my entire existence were absolutely overwhelmed. You cannot imagine what I felt when I was looking at those paintings.
Our San Francisco Centre also has quite a few originals. My boss at the Indian Consulate, Mr. Mehrotra, was transferred to San Francisco. He came to our Jharna-Kala gallery there, and he was so deeply moved. Then I invited him and his wife to eat at our restaurant. They sat with me, and I started painting in front of them. I gave them the painting that I had done right in front of them. It was a really beautiful painting! Mr. Mehrotra was very happy, and I was also very happy.
14 May 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Mountain-climbers, always take a guide!If our mountain-climbers do not have a guide, they must not climb! Recently, three climbers I almost lost. Three divine soldiers, three of my spiritual children I would have lost, had God’s Grace not saved them. Believe me, believe me, it was not only a most serious accident; it was a life-taking experience
Always take a guide, take a guide, take a guide. Today you three are alive. Our Beloved Supreme, out of His Infinite Bounty, has saved you. My soul is always in you, in you, in you — in all those who have accepted me sincerely and soulfully. Today you are alive. In the future, no matter where you go, you need a guide, you need a guide. It was a life-threatening experience that you gave to yourselves. Please, please, please take my words seriously.
Today I am so happy, so happy to have you back in my presence. Never, never, never climb without a guide.
15 May 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Poems on the wallI am making a confession. Usually I do not believe in confession; I believe in forgiveness and illumination. Seven or eight, or perhaps even ten poems I have “copied.” Copied from where? Copied from the wall!
It was around eleven or twelve o’clock at night in Pondicherry. My brother Chitta and I stayed in the same room. We had turned off the light. He was in his bed and I was in mine. He was fast asleep. All of a sudden I saw that the room was illuminated. There was a long wall on my right side. Right near my feet was the entrance. What did I see? A full poem, in Bengali words! The poem was written on the wall, but there was no name. It was so beautiful! Then I meditated and meditated. I knew that those words had come from another world. Some poets, I have heard, have had the same experience.
I copied several poems and I claimed them. Those poems came from the poetry-world. From this world, poems or words can come into your heart or into your ear. One of the poems I still vividly remember: Srashta amar jagater jyoti. That poem came from the poetry-world.
I am sure that many, many poets have had the same kind of experience. Many, many poems, line by line, may enter into your heart, into your mind, and then you just copy them. In my case, the poems were written on the wall at night.
18 May 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Heaven and hell are side by sideI went to the hospital to visit my Chinese doctor. An Indian lady doctor was in the room. I said to her, “He is alive. Can you try again to revive him?”
She did not want to do anything. Then a disciple who was with me contacted another doctor who was the disciple’s friend, and he said something to the lady doctor. Finally she condescended to look at the patient. She did not take even a second. She said, “Oh, he is dead.”
I went home, knowing perfectly well that my Chinese doctor was still alive. If there had been a sympathetic doctor available who really trusted me, he or she would have examined the patient and tried to do something. But this lady did not care. What a sad experience that doctor gave me! This was the worst possible experience.
Again, I also had the best possible experience. Many, many years ago my dearest Brother-Friend Alexandr Razvin 2 was in the hospital, and I went to see him. He said to me, “Sri Chinmoy, do not worry! I have an excellent doctor, an excellent doctor! She will cure me.”
This doctor, who was also an Indian lady, immediately said, “Oh, no, no, no, no, no! Swamiji is the one to cure you, Swamiji is the one to cure you!”
Then the doctor asked me if I would be staying there for a few minutes. I said, “Definitely I will stay.” What did she do? She went downstairs and brought her husband. The husband fell at my feet. The doctor said, “He has been longing, longing to meet with you.” She was so happy! That was an excellent experience.
That Indian lady doctor gave me the experience of Heaven. How devotedly she spoke to me! She went downstairs and brought her husband because she knew that her husband had tremendous admiration for me.
Heaven and hell go together. They are side by side.
19 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
TMS 17,4. Alexandr Razvin, who served for many years in the USSR Ministry of Foreign Affairs and became Russia’s Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations in 1994, was a dear friend of Sri Chinmoy’s. He departed this world on 10 March 1998.↩
Never retire!I beg all the disciples, never retire, never retire! Retirement stands against enlightenment. If you retire, then your life-energy, your mental strength, everything disappears, unless you can be very, very active. Retirement is just the opposite of enlightenment. Never retire! Work as long as you can! By your own choice I never, never advise you to retire. But if the organisation has a fixed retirement age, you are helpless.
Those of you who are serving the United Nations, I will be very, very happy if you can continue as long as possible. True, the United Nations is not perfect. Is there any place that is perfect? Is anybody perfect in God’s Creation? In comparison to other places, the United Nations, as it is, is Heaven. Some individual bosses or colleagues may be undivine, but the soul and heart of the United Nations will always remain the goal of goals for humanity. Life is complicated; the mind is complicated. To transform the mind and the life of the United Nations, spirituality is needed.
Again, I am so grateful to my spiritual children who come to meditate at the UN in my absence. Those who come to meditate when I am not present deserve my boundless love, affection and admiration. Those who come to pray and meditate for fifteen minutes in my physical absence I can say are my true, true disciples. They value my inner existence; they value my God-realisation; they value me.
19 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
Those who stay to the very endAt our Aspiration-Ground, some disciples are very good. They stay to the very, very end of our functions. And again, to my greatest joy, there are some disciples who would be gladly willing to stay indefinitely. If I were to stay there for three hours or four hours, they would stay.
Some may say that those are fanatic disciples, or that they have nothing else to do. I do not see eye-to-eye with those critics. Only because of their love for me, because of their oneness with my soul, my heart and my life, those disciples are more than ready, more than willing, more than eager to stay at the Aspiration-Ground as long as I stay. Like that there are some super-super-disciples.
Those who stay with me, even when I cut jokes, know the meaning of satsang: meeting with spiritual people. Sri Aurobindo’s story, “The Ideal of Forgiveness,” perhaps you have read. Vishwamitra came to kill the sage Vashishtha. He was in Vashishtha’s presence for only a few minutes. When he saw Vashishtha’s forgiveness-capacity, he bowed and touched Vashishtha’s feet.
Then, when Vishwamitra wanted to be initiated, Vashishtha sent him to another place. There Ananta Dev told him that he had to hold the world. Then only Ananta Dev would initiate him. Alas, the whole world was collapsing on Vishwamitra.
Vishwamitra was praying to Ananta Dev to save him. Ananta Dev said to Vishwamitra, “Just tell me, were you ever in the company of a spiritual person?”
Vishwamitra said, “Oh, I was with Vashishtha for a few minutes.”
“Then think of him, and think of the incident.”
Vishwamitra thought of Vashishtha, and then the whole world became calm and quiet.
In India, seekers give utmost importance to the company of religious and spiritual people. I am your spiritual Master. Perhaps I am one step ahead of the ordinary spiritual people.
There are many, many seekers and disciples who do not feel that familiarity breeds contempt. That idea is not in their philosophy. They feel that, the longer they can stay with the Master, the more they receive. Even when he cuts jokes, when he is absolutely one with them and enjoying hilarious laughter, they feel that their souls are being fed, their hearts are being fed, their lives are being fed. I do have quite a few disciples like that. Again, there are those seekers who value their comfort more than their Master’s company. One hour of meditation is enough for them.
Everything is being recorded, recorded in the inner history: who cares for me, who loves me. Some disciples stay on the spiritual path for other reasons. But those who stay out of their heart’s love and their soul’s love are my true disciples.
Needless to say, here I end. I cannot say anything more.
19 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
Victory is meant for those who can tolerateYou have written to me about the difficulties you are having with your boss. You have to tolerate, tolerate, tolerate this boss. In a few months the boss will retire and disappear, so you do not have to worry.
Each time the boss treats you unjustly, just think of my affection, love, gratitude and pride. Immediately imagine me. Others also have gone through this experience. They survived, and you also can survive. You will survive. Survive, survive, survive!
Victory is meant for those who can tolerate. In my life, have I not been the example? Those who stand against spirituality may be impossible human beings, but there is a law of karma. Right now we may not see their karma, but from Heaven we are bound to see that they will reap the results of their actions, either in this incarnation or in their future incarnations. If we surrender to God’s Will, then God will definitely give us the capacity to see the experiences that God is going to give them.
Time is a great factor — time, time. Unfortunately, we have chosen time in our own way. Again, God has chosen time in His own Way. When it is a matter of our human time, everybody can escape. But when God’s Hour strikes, nobody can escape, nobody can escape.
Tolerance, tolerance, tolerance!
31 May 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
California was spiritually awakenedAccording to me, California is one of the very ancient spiritual states. Some of my Indian predecessors took shelter in California or gave light to California, so California, like New York, is a state that can take pride in Indian spirituality. California was spiritually awakened long before many other states. Long before I came, California was spiritually awakened.
One spiritual Master said that San Diego is the mind of spirituality. His Guru from the Himalayas told him that San Diego is the spirituality-mind. He came here because his Guru from the Himalayas asked him to discover the spirituality-mind and spread his Guru’s light.
My California children, I have come here to love you and inspire you, inspire you, inspire you. I have come to inspire you, my California disciples, with the hope that you will inspire your beautiful, powerful state. I will inspire you, and you also can inspire others. With that hope I come — not only to California, but to other states and other countries, only to inspire the disciples. I come to see my disciples in their respective Centres with the hope that they will inspire others around them.
We all need inspiration, inspiration, inspiration! Without inspiration, without enthusiasm, we shall never be able to become good seekers. If we really want to be good seekers and God-lovers, then inspiration and aspiration we must develop to our ultimate capacity.
3 June 2005 Ananda Fuara Restaurant San Francisco, California
I have faith in joy days!I have faith in Joy Days! Please see how often you can have Joy Days. When you have Joy Days, use your fertile brain to discover how you can spread your Guru’s light! During Joy Days you are happy and relaxed. When you are relaxed, you can think of spreading light, light, your Guru’s light. I will be very happy if you can have more Joy Days.
When there are Joy Days in Europe, sometimes 700 or 800 disciples take part. My joy at that time knows no bounds! I believe three times a year there are over 700 disciples present. Sometimes I call and speak to them. The other day, I think it was in Ukraine, there were more than 800 disciples present for Joy Days. I did speak to them.
In my physical absence, how many people take part three times a year! They all meet together for two full days.
Joy Days, Joy Days! Nothing gives me as much joy as Joy Days. When my children meet together to pray, meditate and play, they feed their souls, they feed their hearts, they feed their physical existence. What else do they need?
3 June 2005 Ananda Fuara Restaurant San Francisco, California
Those who value meI shall always say that those who value me, I also value. Not only that, but those who value me inwardly, outwardly, lovingly and self-givingly are the ones who are my true, true, true disciples. A million times I can say “true.” It is our mutual appreciation, mutual acceptance. There are many, many, many disciples, here, there and everywhere, who do value me. They offer their hearts to our spirituality. The more we can develop our inner hunger, the more we will be able to receive from Above.
Allow me to say one thing more. Many, many disciples came recently to Italy and France when I went there. They also come regularly to New York, twice a year, in April and August. Some of them come even four or five times a year. As soon as they have the necessary means, they come. And the same people came to see me in Italy and France. If this is not their spiritual hunger, what else is it?
3 June 2005 Ananda Fuara Restaurant San Francisco, California
The proper meaning of my writingsI wish to add something to my ancient talk about God the Doer that a disciple has just read out.
When we say, “I am not the doer; God is the Doer,” this statement has to come to us from our own inner, higher experiences. When someone says that he is not the doer, but God Himself is the Doer, this is appropriate only if that individual is a most sincere seeker, if he is to some extent spiritually developed. An undivine person may kill someone and say, “I am not the doer; God is the Doer.” Naturally, jail will invite that person.
When we say we are not the doer, this pronouncement has to come from the depths of our devotion-heart. We shall do something significant, most significant in our lives for God. Then we shall have to use our humility and devotion and say, with utmost sincerity, “I did not do it; God did it in and through me.” Then God will be very proud of us and God will increase our inner capacities to fulfil Him and please Him in more significant ways.
Alas, quite often we are apt to do wrong things, undivine things, absurd things, and then say, “I have not done it; God has done it in and through me.” That is the height of our stupidity.
One disciple who has been with us for at least fifteen years wrote to me that, for the last two years, wrong forces have been disturbing his mind and heart. At times he surrendered to those hostile forces. Now that disciple is in serious confusion. The justification came to the fore in his mind: “Guru has written in his books that we are not the doers; God is the Doer.”
Then again, when that particular disciple is in the heart, he is tortured by his conscience. Now he wants to know from me which is correct: the mind’s justification that God is the Doer and the disciple is not the doer, or the heart’s conscience. The disciple gets a little comfort on the strength of my repeated assurance that God is the Doer. Then again, on rare occasions the disciple takes the responsibility on his own shoulders, and he feels that he himself is to be blamed.
If you do the wrong thing, you must not blame poor God. And when you do the right thing, you must not say, “I am the doer,” “I did it,” “It is all ‘I and me, I and me.’ ” If you stay on our path, this much conscience and this much inner divinity you have to develop.
Let us not fool ourselves. Let us say, “If I cannot do the right thing, at least let me not do the wrong thing.” Yes, it is very, very difficult to do the right thing. But again, there is a middle course. If you cannot do the right thing, do not do the bad thing. Remain at least inactive.
I always say if you are being attacked by wrong forces, just count how many wrong forces are torturing you today. Write down the number! Tomorrow again count them. And in the meantime pray to God, “Please take away from me all these wrong forces.” If you pray to the Supreme, who is our God, and if your sincerity is involved, you are bound to see that the number of wrong forces has decreased. Tomorrow again, pray to the Supreme with utmost sincerity. You are bound to see that the day after tomorrow, and every day after that, the wrong forces that have been attacking you will decrease considerably. But they will decrease considerably only if there is an inner cry, if there are sincere tears in your heart.
If we want to save ourselves, if we want to please God, there is a way. God does not expect from us overnight perfection — never, never! That He never expects. He expects only progress, a little progress. When we make a little progress, it gives God immense Satisfaction. Even tinier than the tiniest progress if we can make in our spiritual life, God becomes extremely, extremely, extremely proud of us. But if we enjoy our stupidity, if we continue doing the wrong thing, if we are indulgent to the wrong forces and try to convince ourselves that God is the Doer, this self-deception is quite deplorable.
Dear ones, try to do always the right thing. If you are doing or you have been doing a few undivine things, count them. You can easily count them. You are not doing hundreds of wrong things in a day. You may do three or four wrong things a day, or even five, let us say. Then pray to God with utmost, utmost sincerity to take away those wrong forces that are disturbing you. I assure you, God is all Compassion, all Affection, all Sweetness and Fondness for us. If we pray with tears in our heart to God, definitely, definitely, definitely tomorrow we will see that a few wrong forces have already left us, or they are not allowed to attack us any more.
In one single day we cannot become perfect. But in one single day we can get rid of many uncomely, undivine, unspiritual forces from our system, from our spiritual life. Many, many wrong forces we can cast aside.
Please be careful when you quote from my writings. When I say something, try to dive deep within and get the proper meaning of my writings. If you use your own clever mind and that clever mind gives you justification for wrong actions, that justification will be a painful experience.
3 June 2005 Ramada Inn San Francisco, California
Only one thing: EagernessEach and every disciple of mine, if you want to prove that you are a good disciple, a real disciple of Sri Chinmoy, develop only one thing, not two things: eagerness, eagerness, eagerness. You do not need two things to please me. Only one thing is needed: eagerness, eagerness, eagerness.
Where there is eagerness, all the obstacles on the way we can surmount. And if there is no eagerness, that is worse than death itself.
4 June 2005 Ananda Fuara Restaurant San Francisco, California
My subtle body visits my disciplesMy subtle body has visited my disciples all over the world thousands and thousands of times over the years. You do not have to die to use your subtle body! You can easily use your subtle body when you are in the land of the living, at any time, at any given hour. The subtle body can be brought out of the physical body and, believe it or not, it can visit any part of the world. I have done it thousands and thousands of times, and many juicy stories I can tell. Either to your great astonishment or to your great disbelief, even while my doctors are massaging me, I can bring the subtle body to the fore and send it anywhere. I just send it like a messenger boy.
Avatars can do this; spiritual figures can do it. Just because we ourselves cannot do something, we must not say that it cannot be done, it cannot be done. If we stick to that theory, it will be the height of our stupidity. Just because with my physical eyes I cannot see South Africa, let us say, I cannot say that South Africa does not exist. A poor villager somewhere who cannot afford to have a telephone will be apt to say that South Africa or some other country does not exist. For that villager, the world is only his immediate vicinity, the few villages that are around him. Those places are real for him; about the rest of the world he will immediately say, “No, no, no, it does not exist.”
Many, many things, countless things we cannot do. Again, there are some exceptional human beings. They are human, but God has blessed them with spiritual power, occult power and intuitive faculties. They can do many things.
My dear children, just because you cannot do something, do not be inclined to disbelieve it. If you say, “Seeing is believing,” I wish to say that there are many, many things we have not seen but we believe. The mother says, “This is your father,” and the child believes her. Great scientists have ways to see and count the stars. Just because we do not have their capacities and facilities, we may not appreciate their discoveries. In every aspect of life there are so many things to believe or not to believe. But if we believe, then we get tremendous satisfaction. When it is a matter of the subtle body, please take it in that way.
Even right here there are quite a few disciples whom I have visited in my subtle body over the years. Some of you perhaps were at that time fast asleep. Again, some of you will not believe it, because on that particular day you were perhaps not in a high consciousness. When God wants to show us His Compassion, He does not have to wait for our highest consciousness. Yes, He can come to us when we are in our highest consciousness. Again, the same God can come to us when we are in our absolutely lowest consciousness.
We cannot bind God. We cannot say, “Oh, if we are pure, then only God will come. If we are not pure, why should God come?” That is a long-standing theory. But I wish to say that if God wants to visit us, He does not care for our spiritual standard or inner standard. He just does it, and He gets Joy. He has His own Way of accomplishing something, and everything is at His Command.
Out of His infinite Compassion, God wants to give little, little candies to the spiritual Masters so that they can share these candies with the seekers. Sometimes a spiritual Master shares the candies while a seeker is fast asleep. Then the seeker gets up early in the morning and says, “My God, how is it that today’s world is so beautiful, so pure, so refreshing? What has happened?” Why is it so? Because early in the morning God came and gave the seeker His Affection and Compassion, like a piece of candy. Then the seeker’s world became totally different — full of joy, full of love, full of satisfaction.
Either God Himself comes to us, or He sends the Master’s soul. In so many ways God can give us joy, in top secrecy.
5 June 2005 Ramada Inn San Francisco, California
Aspiration-Ground: All peace, all joy, all love, all onenessToday we shall be observing the twenty-fourth anniversary of our Aspiration-Ground. I shall be playing twenty-four songs to celebrate this most soulful occasion. After I complete a song, I would like the singers to sing the same song.
Today’s prasad items are offered by me. There are twenty-four items. My affection, my love and my gratitude are inside each and every item. My blessingful and grateful prasad today I am offering to you.
Today is the twenty-fourth anniversary of Aspiration-Ground, and for that I am offering my heart’s infinite, infinite, infinite gratitude to my Ranjana. This beautiful, soulful, prayerful garden is her selfless and untiring service to the Aspiration-Temple-Ground. She has created this garden with the help of some disciples who have been very, very dedicated. They have served this Aspiration-Ground over the years so lovingly and self-givingly.
Those who have worked here over the years in various capacities, today is your day. This is the place that you have made so beautiful, so soulful. In our way we have created the Garden of Eden. We do not know what the Garden of Eden looks like; we only hear about it. Only when we leave the body, when we are in the soul’s world, can we appreciate the Garden of Eden. For us, this Aspiration-Ground is all peace, all joy, all love, all oneness, oneness, oneness, oneness. To have this place to pray and meditate and get joy is indeed a supreme achievement. For that I am so grateful to you all.
Now I wish the boys to sing the “Aspiration-Comrade-Souls” song and the girls to sing “My Aspiration-Temple.”
All those who have worked over the years deserve my very, very special gratitude, gratitude and gratitude.
10 June 2005 Seeker meditation Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Shani brings renunciationWe all pray to the Cosmic Gods, “Please come and bless us, bless us.” But to Shani, or Saturn, we say, “Please, please, remain away from us, remain away!” He is also a god, but we pray to him to remain away from us. Why? Because Shani brings renunciation.
In India, people do not do anything sacred on Saturday, because they are afraid that Shani will cast his glance upon them. They feel that the best thing is to pray to other gods, “Please come and bless us.” To Shani they pray, “Please, please, remain away from us!”
Shani is the son of Surya, and Suryaputra is also Shani’s name.
10 June 2005 Sri Chinmoy’s home Jamaica, New York
Truth and powerThe other day a disciple gave me a videotape that he wanted me to watch. On two consecutive nights I watched. It was so fascinating! I saw so many new things about power that, according to me, are all true.
Power, I think, does not believe in truth. Truth tries to believe in power, because truth wants to abide in each and every human being, in each aspect of existence on earth, in all creations. In all creations, truth wants to live peacefully and self-givingly. But power only mutilates truth. There is no truth left; it is all power. When power reigns supreme, poor truth trembles.
But God exists, and we do believe in the existence of God. God cannot be separated from Truth. Truth and God are the obverse and the reverse of the same coin. I am sure there shall come a time when Truth and God will be successful. Until then, man-made power, man-originated power, may lord it over us.
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
My cousin PushpitaThere are many, many people who do not believe in the soul. Let them be happy by not believing in the existence of the soul. We believe in the existence of the soul, and we get joy. This very morning I told a juicy story about a disciple’s soul.
Two or three days ago my cousin’s soul came to me. Her name was Pushpita. She was my mother’s sister’s daughter, and most of the time she lived at our place. She joined the Sri Aurobindo Ashram with my sisters Arpita and Lily.
Two or three days ago, very early in the morning, Pushpita’s soul came to visit me, and she looked so beautiful. Immediately I knew that she had left the body, and then she came to see me. In India it is customary for souls, right after they leave the body, to visit their dear ones. That is our Indian theory. If they have some very dear ones, they go to see them first. She showed me utmost affection, and she was blessing me. She was telling me that I used to always brag in the family, in front of my sisters and brothers, but not about my spirituality. She said to me, “You never bragged about your spirituality. Now I see that you are such a great spiritual figure.”
I said to her, “You were the first person to observe my occult power.”
She said, “What?” She had completely forgotten! I have told this story many, many times. She wanted to kick me playfully, and I asked her how she was going to kick me. She showed me. She lifted one leg, but then it did not come down. Luckily she was holding on to a pipe on the wall.
Pushpita’s affection for me was boundless. Our astrologer predicted that I would die as a young boy, in the water. My mother was horrified. Pushpita put me on her back and took me into a pond. She caught a tiny live fish, and she said to me, “If you can eat this fish, then you will be able to learn how to swim quickly.” I trusted her. That little fish entered into my body, and then for fifteen minutes Pushpita taught me frog swimming. She was very, very happy, and she made my mother very happy.
Alas, two years or three years later, the astrologer’s prediction almost came true. That story also I have told many times, about my experience in the Karnaphuli River.
When I met with Pushpita for the last time, I spent half an hour with her. She could not recognise me. In so many ways I tried to help her to recognise me, but she could not. A few weeks later she wanted to know why I had not sent the pictures that I had taken of her! I was taking pictures, but at the time she did not recognise me at all.
Pushpita was very fond of Mantu, and Mantu passed in February. Now this cousin has also passed. She was our dearest cousin. Her mother died three or four years ago, at the age of 104.
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy narrated the following experiences after offering the Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart Award to Dr. Marcia Keizs, President of York College in Jamaica, New York. Dr. Keizs is a native of Jamaica, West Indies.
My experiences in Jamaica, West IndiesWith your kind permission I wish to tell a few stories about Jamaica, West Indies. These are my personal experiences. I have been to Kingston, Jamaica, five or six times.
When I went to Kingston for the first time, all kinds of arrangements had been made for me to give a talk at the Unity Church. There were about nine hundred people in the audience. I happen to be a seeker, and I shall remain so forever. According to some people, I am a spiritual Master as well. By that time we had established a small Centre in Kingston. A woman who was Vice-President of Unity became my disciple, and the main minister of that church became my great admirer.
After my talk there were over eight hundred people who wanted to become my students, out of nine hundred in the audience! They all passed by me, and I had to choose. The ones that I accepted would be on my left, and the ones that I could not accept would be on my right. I chose about eighty from those who said they wanted to follow our path.
The following day they were supposed to come and meet with me, and we were going to discuss our path. Out of eighty, about forty came. I gave each of them a very, very short interview.
One striking thing happened. A young man sat right in front of me. I asked him, as usual, what his occupation was. He said, “I am a policeman.”
His name was Joseph. I said, “Oh, Joseph! You are the person to arrest me if I steal something.”
He said to me, “I cannot arrest you, even if you steal.”
“Because you have already stolen my heart. You have already stolen my heart, so how can I arrest you?”
That was my first experience!
Now, the second experience: A student of mine who was the leader of our Centre wanted me to give a talk on Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the Indian nation, at a university in Kingston. My student said, “It is Gandhi’s centenary!” He was well connected with one of the professors at that university, and the professor happened to be an Indian. The professor also insisted on my coming. I did give a very, very nice talk about Mahatma Gandhi, and they all liked it.
Now, my third experience: There happened to be another spiritual Master in Kingston at that time. In India, it is said that spiritual Masters grow like mushrooms. The way mushrooms grow everywhere, spiritual Masters also spread out all over the world from India! This other spiritual Master also had a few disciples. The spiritual Master used to smoke the Indian hookah, with a long pipe. When he talked to someone, he would speak in a normal way. Then immediately he would wash his face and wipe the hookah, because he felt that the other person had contaminated him. He said that he had become impure because he had talked to someone, so he had to bring back his purity.
My students said that this particular spiritual Master wanted to see me. He was ready even to come to me. I said that I would speak to him on the phone, and he agreed. One of my students was with him. My student said that, after he talked to me over the phone, this Master did not wash his face or his hookah. The Master begged me to come and see him. He begged me, and I did go to see him. Alas, alas — he wanted me to be a partner in his business! He was running a molasses business, and he wanted me to be a partner in his business from New York. He said that we would import and export things.
I had many, many experiences. This is the fourth one that I am going to tell. It was a deplorable experience. The leader of our Centre in Jamaica, West Indies was named Betty. I gave her an Indian name, a spiritual name. She was tall, and very, very nice. She brought me to the airport when it was time for me to leave, and at the last moment she gave me a beautiful rose with some little, little leaves. I put it in my pocket very nicely.
When I came back to Kennedy Airport in New York, the immigration officer suspected me. Then he took me into a tiny room with a red light. That red light meant that an individual had done something criminal. He wanted me to carry my suitcase. There was no problem. At that time I was physically strong; I was a great athlete and I did not have any problem, so I carried the suitcase into the tiny room. He opened the zipper. There was nothing there — only my clothes. He shrugged his shoulders. Then he noticed that, from my pocket, a few dry leaves had fallen into my suitcase. He said, “You see? This is marijuana!”
I said, “What is it, what is it?” I knew nothing about drugs!
Then he screamed, “You will be arrested!”
At the top of my voice I screamed, “Police, police, police!” Then, what did he do? He closed my suitcase and went away. Then I was able to come out of that tiny room.
This was my last experience here at Kennedy Airport after returning from Jamaica, West Indies. I had only a rose, a beautiful rose. These are some of my Jamaica experiences! I had many, many experiences in Jamaica — funny and serious. I had a few Chinese students there. They used to prepare Chinese meals. Here in New York I have been to many Chinese restaurants, but even now I would like to say that my students’ preparations were far better! Those students of mine came from China.
Many of my students from Jamaica, West Indies now live in Miami. My heart is full of gratitude to Jamaica. I had many, many friends, many students, many well-wishers. They all loved me, and I loved them.
I shall tell two more funny stories about Jamaica, West Indies.
A young man came to New York. His uncle had become my disciple, so the uncle spoke to his nephew about me. The nephew came to see me in New York, about thirty-four years ago. This young man was practically blind; his vision was very limited. He came with two pictures, and these were his girlfriends. One girl was black and one was white. As far as the outer beauty goes, the white one was more beautiful, but I always care for the inner beauty. The black girl was not outwardly beautiful, but her heart was very beautiful. I gave her a spiritual name that means “inner beauty.” The father’s name was Anthony, but I gave him a spiritual name that means “the light of the soul.”
In those days I was perhaps not as wise. Over the years God has injected a little wisdom into me. Nowadays when people present me with a choice, I am very clever. I say, “Whichever one you choose, I am one hundred per cent for that choice. You choose, and I shall be one hundred per cent for you. I shall pray to God and do everything to help you, but you have to make the choice.” In those days I did not have that kind of wisdom, so I chose the girl who was not outwardly beautiful for this boy. You can imagine what kind of trouble I received from the other girl when the boy told her that I had not chosen her!
That couple did get married.
Many years ago, when I needed a driver’s licence, I passed the examination the very first time. A few years ago I again wanted to have a licence. This time I made three attempts, but I could not succeed. It was a long, long story. Luckily, I finally got my licence. Since her husband was blind and unable to drive, this girl took the driving test six times. Each time she failed. She was so miserable. I said, “The seventh time God has to listen to my prayer. This time you have to pass. I will pray to God most sincerely.” When I deal with my students, I use my will power, occult power and spiritual power. But in this case I also used wisdom: I left the matter with God. I said, “I will pray to God most ardently. I am sure you will pass.” To my great joy and satisfaction, she did pass the driving examination, and she was very, very happy.
This couple wanted me to advise them about what kind of business they should have. I said, “You can run a restaurant.” Nowadays I advise all my students who want to run a restaurant that it has to be vegetarian. In Jamaica, West Indies, since everybody eats meat, I said that they could serve meat and fish.
A few years later, this couple was blessed with a child, a baby girl. When the child was two or three months old, I went to their place in Kingston. In those days I was all ready to go to disciples’ homes, wherever they were, but nowadays I do not do that. In those days I used to go everywhere. When people invited me, I went. The father said to me that on the previous night Sri Ramakrishna, the great spiritual Master of the highest order, had come to him and said that he had taken birth in the body of this little girl. The father only wanted confirmation from me.
I said to myself, “O God!” Sri Ramakrishna I know. I have inner contact with him, and I have such adoration and devotion for him. I could not agree with the father. I said, “Definitely not!” First of all, there is the gender. In world history, only five or six times, not even ten times, the gender has changed. Once the soul takes a masculine form, it goes on in a masculine body. Again, if the soul takes a feminine form, it goes on in a feminine body. Only five or six instances I know inwardly where the soul has changed its form. Outwardly we know only that it happened on one occasion in India’s Mahabharata.
The husband and wife were quite displeased with me. They left our path because I was unwilling to say that Sri Ramakrishna had descended into the body of their daughter.
Again, it was this fellow, our first disciple in Jamaica, West Indies, who made the fervent request for me to give a talk on Mahatma Gandhi at Kingston University.
Some funny stories never end! I did not know anything about this couple after they left our path. We were not in contact. Then, about ten or fifteen years ago, I went to Toronto, Canada to give a Peace Concert. A few thousand people were gathered together. At the end of the concert, one of my disciples said to me, “The previous leader of your Centre in Jamaica, West Indies, is here. He would very much like to see you.” I knew who he was, so I said, “Do invite him to come.”
The fellow brought his child; the wife did not come. The daughter was now grown up. She was at least ten or twelve years old, and she was quite stout. Inwardly I blessed him, and I said how happy I was to see him. Then I was looking at the girl, whom I had not seen since she was two or three months old. My mind does not function in the usual way right after I have given this kind of spiritual concert; it takes a little time for me to come back to the ordinary life. I said, “Who is this girl?”
The fellow said, “You cannot recognise her?”
I said, “No, I cannot recognise her.”
“This is Sri Ramakrishna.”
I bent my head. Then I requested my attendants, “Please, please bring the next seeker.”
This is how the story ends!
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Success-world and progress-worldTonight I would like to give a special prasad, because today I lifted one hundred pounds ten times. The weight was placed behind my back, and from there I lifted it.
As you know, I am an advocate of progress. I do not know what success is! Let us say that I want to be very tall — that is my goal. Perhaps I feel that I am very tall. Then I look around, and I see somebody who is eight feet, two inches tall. The moment I extol myself to the skies for my success, I just turn around and God gives me the experience of humiliation. This is the success-world. As soon as we become proud of ourselves, there is somebody else right in front of our nose to surpass us.
The progress-world is totally different. It is my individual case. In the progress-world, I am the one to measure my progress. If I have been doing something for some time, and if I can excel, then I get tremendous joy. In the progress-world, we deal with our inner self, our inner life. Here there is no competition; there is only great joy if we can do a little better. If we can make a little progress, then we are not competing with anybody, so we will not be doomed to disappointment.
The success-world is absolutely bound to be full of miseries. But in the progress-world, everything is between me and my inner life, my inner existence, my inner world, so there I do not have to compete with anybody.
Age descends upon us, but if God’s Grace descends faster than age, then we can accomplish many things.
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Cheerfully and willinglyAlways in life you have to surrender to God’s Will, either happily or unhappily, willingly or unwillingly. If you do not do it willingly, God will compel you to do it unwillingly, because it is His Plan for you to do it. Again, if you surrender unwillingly, then you suffer, and problems will arise.
I have lifted 7,500 human beings — all and sundry. I have also lifted one thousand lambs and one hundred cows. Did I not do it willingly? If I had done it unwillingly, by this time my arms would have been broken into pieces. I do everything willingly, plus cheerfully. Cheerfully and willingly I do it. I cannot do it unwillingly, because my unconditional surrender became complete many, many, many, many, many years ago.
Even if we do something unwillingly, we may get the result, but we will never get the utmost satisfaction. How many times will we be able to exercise our unwillingness? Would I have been able to use unwillingness to lift 7,500 human beings? No! I had to be willing, willing, willing, willing, willing. Many Presidents, Prime Ministers and other important people I have lifted. Again, I have lifted people who are not so well known, including many children. Children are the future of the world. Who is known, and who is not known? In the Heart of God we are one.
Everything we have to do always willingly, willingly, willingly, willingly, plus self-givingly. Then there will be no problem. It will be all joy, all joy, all joy.
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
If God wants you to be firstAt the Ashram I ran 100 metres in 11.7 seconds. One disciple is defending me like a lawyer — he is saying that I could have gone faster, but I ran barefoot on a cinder track.
The second time I became decathlon champion, the Ashram blessed me with long-jump shoes. Somebody had given them to the Ashram for whoever would become champion. Since I became champion, I got those long-jump shoes with spikes. I could not use them! It was too difficult for me.
The first and second times I became champion, I got a real gold medal — all gold. On it was embossed a turtle, or what I called a tortoise. The significance of a turtle is Immortality. According to our Indian standard, I was something in the sports world.
From Tagore’s Shantiniketan, a sprinter came to the Ashram. We had the same time for 100 metres: 11.7. But his position was considered better than mine, so he stood first. Our time was the same, but his upper body bent more than mine, so he got the prize, although my leg came forward. There were all kinds of rules and regulations. They looked at the upper body, the chest. Then, in the 200 metres, I defeated this runner. He was two metres or so behind me.
Before the 200 metres, at least three or four hours’ rest we got. At that time I congratulated him very sincerely.
He said to me, “Did you ever study geometry?”
I said, “A little.”
“No, you have not studied geometry!”
“Why do you say that I have not studied geometry?”
He said, “When you run, you do not run straight. Your toes point slightly towards the right. If your feet had been pointing straight and your toes had been pointing straight, you could easily have defeated me. It is all because you have not studied geometry!”
While I was warming up, he saw me running, and what he said was so true. Many people told me the same thing. My feet did not point straight ahead. They pointed a little towards the right. This fellow told me to correct my footing, but it was too late; I could not correct it. He was such a nice fellow. My toes were not pointing straight; that was why I lost to him, he said. But in 200 metres, in spite of my toe difficulties, I defeated him.
The first time I ran 400 metres, my time was one minute flat. Then I went to 55.2 or so, and then 54. There I remained for years. I ended with 53.6. I do not know my disciples’ timing, but I think three of our boys have defeated me. But 53.6 for 400 metres is not bad! And I started with one minute flat.
In 800 metres, I was fifty or sixty metres behind, or even more. Fifteen hundred metres I used to practise once a year. There was a stupid idea that when you ran that far on your heels instead of on your toes, your sprinting would suffer. Such wonderful theories we had! Now I laugh and laugh at those ignorant theories.
I was good in everything. I was excellent in 100 metres and 400 metres. My worst performance was in 1500 metres. Before 1500 metres came hurdles. All great hurdlers take three strides. Alas, my strides were so short that I used to take five strides instead of three. But I was the fastest sprinter, so somehow, because of my speed, I used to get very good points, although my style was not to my satisfaction.
My long jump was very good, and my shot put was excellent. My discus also was not bad, but when I think of some of my disciples’ discus throws, I just bend my head as much as possible!
If you want to be a very kind-hearted human being, you try to sympathise with others’ sadness, with their suffering. But even if your intention is absolutely sincere and pure, if God does not want to fulfil your sincere desire, what can you do? This will be the last story about my Ashram sports-life today.
In 1959 I had the strongest desire to become last in a race. After being first for so many years, when I used to see people were coming second, third and fourth, although we were all being brought up in the same place, I felt miserable. I said, “Let me have the experience that they have every year. I want to be last.” So what did I do? By that time I had some capacity, or you can say magic power, to give myself fever. Very nicely I gave myself a very high fever. I could not even see properly!
Then I went to the sports ground, which we called the playground. We were supposed to do a warm-up, so that we would not get muscle cramps. I said to myself, “Here is the golden chance. If I do not do the warm-up, then naturally I will get a cramp and fall down. People will sympathise with me and I know I will become last.”
Usually I used to warm up for twenty-five minutes or half an hour, or even more. On that day I did not do a warm-up at all. People were saying, “What are you doing? Why are you not warming up?”
I said, “No, no, no—it is not necessary today.” Perhaps they thought that I had become very haughty, very proud. Without warming up I knew what the result would be. I was able to foresee that somewhere after 30 or 40 metres I would get a cramp and fall down. I was all ready.
The starter said, “Get on your mark, get set, go!” Alas, I do not know how, but something came forward in me, and I ran the fastest! The second runner was six or seven metres behind me. I had no cramp at all! What could I do? I wanted to become a great saint by experiencing the sufferings of the second, third and fourth runners. I did not warm up at all, and I had a high fever.
I said to myself, “You want to become a great saint. You want to experience everybody’s suffering. It is all pre-planned. You are absolutely cocksure that you are going fall down across two lanes and you will be last.” All these things were entering into my mind. I thought that I would really create a sensation. But it did not work! I became first. I will never forget that experience.
Surrender, surrender! Our philosophy is to surrender to God’s Will. If God wants you to be first, well and good. If He wants you to be last, well and good. If you want to be very kind-hearted and self-giving to humanity, that is good. From the spiritual point of view it is very good. But if God does not want you to have an experience of failure, no matter how hard you try, you will not get this experience of failure. Again, if you die to have the experience of success, if you do absolutely everything and you are sure that you will become first, but it is not God’s Will, then you will become last, last.
I shall tell you an amusing incident. A very, very close Russian friend of mine came to visit me. I was at that time over sixty, and he was forty-two. He challenged me to run, and I challenged him! It was a friendly challenge. I was thinking of my golden days when I was sixteen, seventeen or twenty years old. I was invoking those days to get inspiration to run fast. He was laughing because he was only forty-two. Then I asked him if he was a sprinter. Very affectionately he said, “No, no, but it is so easy to defeat you. You are an old man!”
I laughed and said, “All right, I am an old man.”
Again I recalled my golden running days that were buried in oblivion. Since this friend of mine had not been a sprinter, I was sure that I would defeat him, although I was older by many years. Alas, God smashed my pride! He finished our race two metres ahead of me! I thought that I would defeat him, but God said, “Now the time has come for you to be humble,” so my friend very nicely defeated me.
Once we enter into the spiritual life, we cannot make any decision for ourselves. Once we make our surrender complete, if a stupid desire enters into us to show compassion in our own way or to show off, nothing works, nothing works!
Before we enter into the spiritual life, ambition is a great help. But once we enter into the spiritual life, ambition becomes a great obstacle. Sri Aurobindo said that first ambition is a help, and then it is a hindrance. Ambition has to surrender to aspiration. Now that we are aspiring wholeheartedly to become good citizens of the world, desire-life and ambition-life will make our existence miserable at every moment.
Our aspiration-life is all up to us; others are not involved. It is between ourselves and God. If we sincerely aspire, He will bless us with His inner Light, Peace and Bliss. But if we remain all the time in the desire-world after we have entered into the spiritual life, then we are bound to be miserable.
11 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Age does not matter, unless...This afternoon Garima gave me a book to read. The title of the book is Age Doesn’t Matter Unless You’re a Cheese — a super-excellent title! 3 Two or three wise sayings I read out, and I got immediate inspiration to write a book with a similar title.
This is the title of my book: Age Does Not Matter. 4 I shall read out a few pages. The first page reads:
“Age does not matter,
Unless you love to surrender
To your age.”
During my birthday week we shall publish the book.
15 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
See your Master in everybody's heartWhen it is a matter of sleepless selfless service, I have a disciple for whom there is no day, no night. Whenever I need something, he is ready. And what is absolutely unbelievable is that he does this kind of service not only for me, but for all and sundry. If anybody wants his help, he is always ready. He does not judge whether the request is coming from a first-class disciple, a second-class disciple or a third-class disciple. As soon as anybody needs something, he is ready, ready. I wonder how many disciples are of that type. Some may perhaps grumble, fumble and stumble if they are asked to help so many individuals.
To this disciple I wish to say, “Continue, continue! Inside everybody’s heart, see me, see me. See your Master in everybody’s heart. Then you will be able to keep up your exemplary service.”
19 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy expressed his gratitude to the disciples who had enthusiastically sung many of his songs during a bus trip with their Master to Buffalo, New York.
My heart-money from my soul-bankAll of you I thank and I thank
and I thank and I thank,
and I withdraw all my heart-money
from my soul-bank
to offer to you.
25 June 2005 Bus trip to Buffalo, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy made the following comments while planning a series of concerts in each of the five boroughs of New York City, including the Bronx.
The Bronx: Two sweet incidentsI shall tell two sweet incidents about the Bronx.
A very, very stout lady from the Bronx came a few times to the Indian Consulate when I was working there. She immediately became like my grandmother! She took me to her place and gave me so many things to eat. She became my real grandmother. That was my first Bronx experience.
I had a very, very devoted disciple from the Bronx in the early days. I gave her the spiritual name Ballabha. She used to come to meditate at my place in Manhattan. In those days there were about fifteen or twenty disciples. I used to stand in front of each and every disciple offering a rose. First I would give the rose and then I would look at the person and meditate. I was standing and they were seated. It was very nice.
One day this lady invited me to come with a disciple to her place in the Bronx. Can you imagine, she had kept all the roses, dried, in a jar. So beautifully she had decorated the jar. The dried petals of all the roses that I had given her she had kept. I was extremely, extremely moved.
Then she started talking about her brother. Again and again she was using the word “belligerent, belligerent!” Perhaps I had heard the word before, but it was not striking a chord. She was telling me, “My brother is belligerent, belligerent!” That word, “belligerent,” I learnt from her.
26 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
My path and my songs are inseparableReally good singers, I wish you to pay attention to my life-activities. We have had many favourite songs over the years. There are at least thirty songs that I compose each year that are very soulful, beautiful and powerful. These songs I take as part of my meditation, so you also may kindly take my songs as my meditation. If you take my path seriously, you have to give tremendous importance to my music-world, my song-world. Some of you are excellent singers. If you take my path seriously, then pay attention to my songs. My path and my songs are inseparable. My music, my songs come directly from my heart and from my soul. Kindly pay attention to your spiritual life in all its aspects.
Singing, singing, singing! There are some seekers and God-lovers who are not Tagore-worshippers, but how soulfully they practise and practise Tagore’s songs! In the same way, daily you can spend half an hour singing my songs.
Those who have the capacity, I beg of you to pay more attention to my music-world. There are many who cannot carry one single note, so I am not asking them.
No laziness! Please take everything seriously.
29 June 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
The most kind-hearted stewardessOn July 2nd I gave a concert in Guatemala. 5 Over three thousand people came. And how many disciples worked to organise the concert? Only six disciples! Six disciples worked so hard to bring three thousand people.
I wish to tell one special experience.
I boarded the plane in New York. A few minutes later the stewardess came up to me and asked, “Would you like to have some assistance when you come out of the plane? Will you need some assistance?”
I said, “No, I do not need it.”
“You do not want some assistance?”
“No, I do not want it. I will be able to manage.”
“Please tell me if you want some assistance. I will arrange it for you.”
I thanked her and said, “No, it is not necessary.”
She was very, very kind.
The food was non-vegetarian, and I did not take anything to eat. She asked me, “What would you like to have?”
I said, “I cannot eat the meal. I am a vegetarian.”
“Oh, I am sorry — there is nothing vegetarian. But can you have a bagel?”
I said, “O my God, that is something that I do not like! My teeth do not permit me to eat it.”
She brought me a very soft corn muffin and a few pieces of fruit, and she apologised that there was nothing else. I thanked her and said, “I do not need anything else.” Then she went away.
A few minutes later she came with the immigration form and gave it to me. After ten minutes she came back and asked me, “Have you filled out your form?”
I said, “No, not yet.”
“Do you want me to fill it out for you?”
“No, thank you, I will do it.”
Twenty minutes later again she said, “Shall I ask one of those who accompanied you to fill it out? Or let me do it.”
I said, “No, I will manage it.” I was at that time writing my Service-Trees. I had written around forty poems by that time. I have come back to New York with about eighty-two Service-Trees poems. The stewardess would never let me write my poems! She came again and asked me, “Have you done it? Have you filled out your form?” I said, “I have done it, I have done it!”
Then I told her, “You are a very, very kind-hearted stewardess.” She was so thrilled! She put both of her hands on my right shoulder and pressed it quite hard, and she said, “You are a very, very good man.” I called her kind-hearted, and she said I was very good! When she was showing me such affectionate concern, I was inspired to say, “I am a musician.”
“You are a musician?”
“Yes, and tomorrow I shall be performing in Guatemala. If you are free, do come.”
“Where is the concert?” “My students know the name of the hall. There are a few here on the plane.”
She could easily have forgotten about it, but she went to look for one of the disciples in another cabin and she got the name of the hall.
I never carry with me my credentials, my résumé or the book with photographs of my meetings with important people. Some people have written that I am a saint! I requested one of the disciples, “Please bring me something that I can show the stewardess about my qualifications.”
Alas, none of the disciples had anything! There was only something about my 12,000th Bengali song. Now, what would I say to this lady about my 12,000th song? What a disappointment!
When we arrived in Guatemala, Immigration was quite far, at least 150 or 200 metres. The way was not straight; it was zigzag, serpentine. Ahead of us there were many, many people. I think a plane had arrived just ahead of us. One of our boys was with me all the time, right behind me. The stewardess came to that area for some purpose and said goodbye, again smiling at me.
Ten or fifteen minutes later she came back with the Annam Brahma bag! This is the bag with my refreshments. She had gone back into the plane and she had got it from my seat. Is there any other stewardess who will run and run and run to bring my bag? The disciple who was accompanying me told her that another disciple was responsible for carrying that bag. So she took it back again, looking for that disciple.
Where can one find such a kind-hearted lady?
I gave one disciple the job to trace this stewardess. In the evening she tried very, very hard, and early the next morning she made about fifty calls. Some people in the airline office on the American side, alas, were on the verge of nastiness. In the Guatemalan airline office, people were very, very kind, but they were not able to help us. Kindness was available — nothing more.
Our disciple went to the airline office. At long last she found a sympathetic woman who happened to be the supervisor. When this lady saw that our disciple was imploring their kindness, she made a phone call to the stewardess. Unfortunately, the stewardess was not carrying her mobile phone. She had gone to attend a class, and they could not reach her. Then the supervisor phoned the mother of the stewardess! The mother said she had already got a ticket for a concert, which happened to be our concert, but she had lost it! She wanted to come to the concert, and a free ticket was necessary. Tickets were available at two or three places, and people had to come and collect them. It was all confusion; confusion-clouds were thickening!
Then the supervisor brought a photograph of the Pope, the one who recently passed on, with this particular stewardess. The supervisor brought it with such joy and pride, because one of her workers was able to have a picture taken with the Pope.
Finally the supervisor was able to get in touch with the stewardess, and she got the message that the stewardess would definitely, definitely come to our concert.
Now the confusion increased! The stewardess wanted to go to the airport to get a ticket for the concert. She said she did not have a ticket, and she thought she had to get it at the airport, which was so absurd!
Everything finally went well. I had invited the stewardess to come to our concert at a quarter to seven. The concert was supposed to take place at seven o’clock. Long before a quarter to seven the stewardess and her mother came in. The mother came up to me for my autograph. Her daughter said that afterwards they would not be able to see me. Once the concert was over it would be impossible for them to come and see me.
They were acting like my family members! The stewardess had also brought her daughter. The daughter’s name was Natalia. She was with her mother and grandmother. She was not in a happy mood. I gave the grandmother my autograph, and I wrote down her name. Her name was Lupe. She spoke very little English. I wrote something nice and then I drew three or four birds, as usual. She was so thrilled! Then I gave a small medallion to the grandmother to put on the granddaughter.
When the grandmother put the medallion around the little girl’s neck, immediately she entered into the seventh Heaven of delight! She had a medallion, and she was so thrilled, so thrilled! Then I asked the grandmother to put a large medallion around her daughter’s neck. She did it, and the daughter also put a medallion around her mother’s neck. They were all very, very happy.
I had drawn about one hundred pages of birds. Each page had at least five, ten or twenty birds. They were beautiful! I had my drawing book with me. I was rapidly going through the pages to find the best one. One page had many colours — four or five — plus many, many birds. There would have been at least two hundred or three hundred birds. I tore out the page and wrote down the granddaughter’s name; the stewardess’s name, which was Maria; and the grandmother’s name. While I was writing the names, they were so happy! They said, “We will frame it! We will frame it!” I had not yet given it to them, but they were saying, “We shall frame it! We shall immediately frame it!”
Then I went into my little room to practise before the concert. After practising, I expressed the desire to have a copy of my picture with the Pope. I said, “How I wish I could show this lady that I met with the Pope so many times! I have many, many pictures.” Somehow one of our boys had come to learn that the stewardess had a picture of herself with the Pope. Then this disciple appeared with two pictures. In one picture the Pope and I were holding the Peace Torch, and in the other one, the very first one, he had his arm on my shoulder. He was showing me such affection. This is called good luck. I was so thrilled!
Then I requested one of the disciples to go and bring only the stewardess to see me, not her mother or her daughter. She was so happy and thrilled with my pictures, and I autographed them for her. Then she sat right in front of me. With such affection and love, and all divine qualities, she was looking at me — like my most devoted, most sincere disciple. She was so happy, so happy!
They understood what our concert was about, and they liked it immensely. During the video about my activities, I was told that the grandmother was speaking almost sixteen to the dozen, so her daughter had to stop her and say, “Look, look at this! This is an important person!” She wanted her mother to see me on the screen with all the important people.
After the concert I requested one of the disciples to bring prasad to the stewardess, her mother and her daughter. Very, very happily they went home.
That is not the end of the story! Yesterday our plane was supposed to leave for New York at five o’clock, and I went to the airport at around three-thirty or a quarter to four. The disciples were there at two o’clock or two-thirty, because I had so many musical instruments. They kindly checked those instruments along with their own luggage.
As usual, I started moving around the airport, browsing. I went to a shop where they sold mostly clothing. I selected something very nice as a gift, and I was paying the cashier. I noticed that somebody was standing on my right side. A disciple said, “Guru, look who is standing there.” Right beside me I saw that stewardess! I was very happy. She looked at me with very gentle affection.
I wanted to give prasad at that time. We had two items. I asked one of the disciples to invite the stewardess. She came up and took prasad from me for herself and for her mother and daughter. Then something unimaginable happened! I was about to enter into the last place where people sit before submitting their tickets. I was nearing that place, and whom did I see? The stewardess with her whole crew! All five crew members were standing with folded hands. I could not believe it!
She said, “This is my crew, this is my whole crew!”
She was standing there, almost blocking my way, with her hands folded. They were all standing before me with folded hands. It was unimaginable! I had pictures taken with them. They were so happy, and they were smiling and smiling, with such respect.
Is it not absolutely the best experience that I got from this stewardess?
She comes to New York quite often. She arrives at eleven o’clock at night and then she has to catch the plane to return at five o’clock in the morning. She is determined to come and see us here in New York, so one of these days she will come.
Her name is Maria. Her daughter’s name is Natalia. Her mother’s name is Lupe. They have already become sweet members of our family. No other stewardess has given me this kind of most sincerely affectionate treatment.
4 July 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
TMS 40. Sri Chinmoy’s concert was held at the Grand Tikal Futura Hotel in Guatemala City.↩
Tulips: Immediate joy!One or two years ago we received from Scotland a rose called the Sri Chinmoy rose. Now from Holland we have got a tulip called the Sri Chinmoy tulip.
I have very, very, very special love, affection and fondness for tulips. The very word “tulip” gives me such joy! Immediate joy I get, immediate joy, when I hear the word. And I have seen where they grow tulips by the millions.
Unmukta gave me a variety of tulips to choose from, and I selected this particular one to have my name.
6 July 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteSri Chinmoy made the following comments after seeing video coverage of the World Harmony Run.
The self-giving spirit that is circling the worldI had a dream, and the name of the dream was the Peace Run. This Peace Run, which we now call our World Harmony Run, is a dream, an ever-blossoming dream of our Source. This dream of ours will be valued infinitely more in the near future, and more so in the distant future.
We sang the song of God’s Peace. We are now running in the hearts, souls and lives of the runners. We are running in and through them. Each runner rightly deserves my most powerful gratitude. The Presidents, the Mayors and other dignitaries from various states and countries are helping us enormously through their stupendous encouragement. They are all peace-loving children of God. We are trying to serve God in a special way, and these peace-loving souls who are encouraging us wholeheartedly deserve my ever-blossoming gratitude.
True, our physical bodies have not been and will not be able to cover the length and breadth of the world. But the spirit that we have deep within, and the spirit that we truly are, has covered the length and breadth of the world many, many times. During my highest meditation, many, many times I have clearly seen that our self-giving spirit in all its beauty and fragrance has covered the length and the breadth of the world. Not only that, but something more: there are countless souls who have not seen the light of day, yet when they come into the world, they will feel, they are bound to feel this self-giving spirit that is circling and circling the world. The beauty, the fragrance, the light and delight of this spirit will kindle the flames of aspiration in the newcomers. They will also sing the same song of peace, universal peace.
Today’s chaotic world cannot forever remain chaotic. World harmony, world peace: these are not mere dictionary words. These are the realities, divine realities and supreme realities. For all of us who are aspiring to become good citizens of the world, our World Harmony Run is a supremely important inspiration to us all.
6 July 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Participate, participate!Dear ones, each time I complete one hundred songs in Bengali, I would like to invite each and every disciple to offer me a smaller-than-the-smallest gift. With your one-cent offering I will not become a multimillionaire, but I want you to participate in all my achievements. My task, to compose one hundred songs, is perhaps more difficult than yours! By my birthday I think I will be able to complete two hundred songs, so I kindly request two tiny gifts from you.
I want you all to participate, participate! Then you will value what I am doing. You will feel that you have taken part. In everything that I do, in my special achievements, I beg you to participate. Your participation in all my activities is of paramount importance in my life. You are my spiritual children. You participate, and you support me with your good wishes, your goodwill. I need your goodwill and good wishes.
So far about seventy songs I have composed. In a few days you will hear that I have completed one hundred. Talk about enthusiasm and dynamism! At the age of seventy-four I am practising it — not only preaching, but practising it.
13 July 2005 Aspiration-Ground Jamaica, New York
Editor's noteOn 6 August 1977, Sri Chinmoy asked his disciples what they thought was the highest reality the world had to offer. Many guessed, but none came close to Sri Chinmoy’s answer.
The only absolute certaintyFrom my experience, the highest reality offered by this world is uncertainty. In this world my own experience is that nothing is certain, absolutely nothing is certain. This is the highest reality the world has to offer. No matter what the world gives us, there is always uncertainty. The world’s achievement is not certain at all. In this world you can get the highest God-realisation; but from this world no matter what you get, you are uncertain, absolutely uncertain. From my own experience, uncertainty is the best superlative which this world can offer.
If you as a human being identify yourself with the world-consciousness, you may think that you are certain of what is going to happen; but the next moment you are absolutely uncertain. Even one second from now you cannot say what is going to happen. Today you are determined that you will not do this, you will not say this; but the next moment you may do something diametrically opposite. You promise that you will never be jealous of anyone, absolutely never. But what kind of determination do you have? From your repeated experience you should know that it is all uncertain. You promise that you will be a good human being, but what does your experience say? Your promise to yourself is uncertain; it does not last. It is good to keep that kind of promise, but inside that promise is uncertainty.
Certainty is a matter of trust, trust in yourself. If you trust yourself, then you know you will do this, you will say this, you will become this. You have certainty: you are positive that you will do this, you will say this, you will become this. But when you are not certain of your life, then distrust starts. If you cannot trust yourself, if you cannot trust your promise, then you break your promise. Again, once you break your promise, how can you trust yourself? Then once more you have to start from the beginning. It all stems from uncertainty. You have determination, but even inside your determination there is uncertainty.
Now I am talking about what you get from this world. But if you want to get something really valuable in this world, then God-realisation you can get; infinite Peace, Love and Bliss you can get. But you are not getting those things from this world.
If you are identified with this world, then you are giving the uncertainty-experience not only to yourself, but also to others. But again, if you identify with some inner force or with your Master or God, then everything is certain; it is going to happen. It may be delayed, it may be postponed, but definitely it is going to happen. Definitely you are going to be a perfect instrument; it is absolutely true. If you identify with me, then definitely it is a matter of time. It may be tomorrow; it may be in the distant future. But if you do not identify with me, then it is absolutely uncertain. Identification with me is the only thing that will give you certainty. The moment you lose that identification, the world will bring uncertainty into your body, vital, mind and heart, and even into your soul. The soul itself will suffer from uncertainty. The soul will say, “Will it really happen?”
To be one with me in the mind is always difficult, for the human mind is always doubtful; but even the mind will be certain if you identify with me. If the body is lethargic and the vital is aggressive, a dead elephant we can carry and a mad elephant we can control. But if doubt-cancer starts in the mind, it is very dangerous. When doubt-cancer spreads, that is spiritual death. Again, even doubt-cancer can be conquered if you become one with the Will of the Supreme in me.
If you are one with my will, then everything is certain, certain. But the moment you lose your oneness with my will, the story is finished; even your soul will suffer from uncertainty. The soul will be totally covered at that time by the body’s will, the vital’s will and the mind’s will. If oneness is missing, then it is all uncertainty.
If you identify yourself with the world, then you will always be uncertain. You cannot say that anything is definitely going to happen. Only constant oneness with God’s Will is all absolute certainty.
6 August 1977 Jamaica, New York