Listen to the live recording.
Duration: 30 min. 43 sec.
April 22nd, 19741
North Idaho Junior College, Idaho, USA.
Transcription from the original live recording.
0:05 Dear seekers, dear brothers and sisters, I wish to give a very short talk and then I shall welcome spiritual questions.
0:34 Here we are all seekers. Some of us may not be as sincere as others. Some of us may be curiosity-mongers. Some of us, at times, become doubters. Some of us, at times, become atheists. Yet we are all seekers. Just because we are seekers, at God’s Choice Hour, one day we shall realise God.
1:38 The motto of the state of Idaho is ‘Exist Forever’. Now, we know that the body does not exist forever. It exists only for sixty, seventy or eighty years, then the body plays its role; the role of the body is over. Something in us, within us, exists forever, and that is the soul. Just because we are seekers, we do believe in the existence of the soul. Now, how is it, the soul exists and not the body?
2:35 The soul exists forever precisely because the soul is the direct representative of God on earth. The soul has, right from the beginning, the message of Divinity, Eternity, Infinity, Immortality. The soul embodies Infinity, Eternity and Immortality, whereas the body of ours fails to embody these three divine qualities. The soul exists because... the soul exists forever because the soul is aware of its source, the ultimate source, God – the Eternal, the eternal Supreme Pilot.
3:51 Now, here our question is: does God exist?
3:59 The atheist in me will immediately say, “No, God does not exist. God does not exist; he cannot exist. And, therefore, I do not need Him.”
4:14 Now, the desiring man in me wants to answer this question, “Does God exist?” The desiring man in me in no time says, “Yes, God exists. I can see it, I can see Him, I can feel Him. How? When? When my desires are fulfilled, at that time, I imagine God according to my sweet fancy. But the moment my desires are not fulfilled, I immediately negate the existence of God. There is no God, no God. Now, the existence of God depends on the fulfilment of my desire. This is what the desiring man in me has taught me. If my desire is fulfilled, God exists. If my desire is not fulfilled, God does not exist at all. Or, I say God may exist for others, not for me. If we see... if I see that others’ desires are fulfilled, then God exists for them and not for me.
6:16 Now, the aspiring man in me has something to say with regard to God’s existence. The aspiring man says, in me, “God exists, even though I cannot prove it to the world at large. But I see it, I see, I feel His Presence. A day will come when I will be able to bring Him to the fore and show Him to the world at large – God exists.” Something within me tells me that God exists. When I become the aspiring man, something within me tells me God exists. And this aspiration, aspiring man, he feels the existence of God when there is an inner urge in him, there is an inner cry in him.
7:20 Now, as a human being, this moment I can be an atheist; next moment I can be an agnostic; again, I can be a desiring man; an aspiring man, I can be. Again, a dreamer; I can dream. I can dream all the time. Now, when I dream of God, I feel that God exists, but He is far, very, very far. I see a yawning gulf between my dream-boat and my reality-shore.
8:12 I can become a lover. When I become a lover of God, I see God is nearer than my eyes and dearer than my heart. And I can become a server. Why do I have to become a server of God? Why do I have to serve God?
8:42 I serve God, because I feel that I get the utmost joy in serving God. There are many things I have done, many things I have said, many things I have offered, but nothing has given me immense joy. Only my service to God has given me abundant joy. Therefore, the server in me feels that God’s existence is for His Happiness.
9:31 Now, as a seeker, I have three friends: concentration, meditation and contemplation. I ask my friends, “Friends, have you seen God?” They immediately say, “Yes, we have seen God. We have not only seen God, but we can make you see God.” Then I ask them how? My concentration-friend, my meditation-friend and contemplation-friend tell me that they work together, one after the other, in a successive manner, Like stepping on three rungs of a ladder – first, second, third. Or, just to take three steps – one, two, three.
10:36 My concentration-friend tells me, “Just take any object or subject, and concentrate on it. Don’t allow any thought to enter into your mind. No thought, good or bad, divine or undivine, don’t allow. Make your mind absolutely thoughtless. No wave of thought must enter into the mind.” And I listen to my concentration friend and I do abide by his dictates.
11:21 Then my meditation-friend offers me his advice. My meditation-friend asks me to empty my heart. He says, “Your heart is full of fear, impurity, insecurity and ignorance. Just empty it, empty it.” So I empty my heart, and immediately I feel tremendous joy, and the Eternal Guest, God, comes in and He sits on His Throne.
12:15 My contemplation-friend now tells me, “Have you ever played hide-and-seek?” So I said “Yes, I have played.” So here also, as soon as you try to contemplate, try to feel that you are playing a game of hide-and-seek from the beginning. You and your friend, you and your intimate friend. Now, this moment you hide and He seeks after you, and next moment you hide and He will do the same, so you play hide and seek.
13:02 Now, how long can you play hide-and-seek? For fifteen minutes, half an hour, an hour, then it is all over. Then you become real friends; then you become real lovers. Or, for some time you become the lover and your friend becomes the Beloved and vice versa. So when we contemplate, the seeker and God become lover and Beloved, or two Supreme Lovers, or two Supreme Beloveds.
13:43 Now, I ask my friends, “From whom you have learned?” Who taught them the existence of God? Who showed them the existence of God? They tell me that their parents have shown them the Face of God, the existence of God. Their parents have taught them all about God.
14:17 I ask them who their parents are? They said, their parents are aspiration and will-power. Aspiration is the mother; will-power is the father. Now, aspiration is our conscious oneness, identification and oneness, with the ultimate Reality. This knowledge or wisdom we acquire when we become the aspiring heart. God sees that our will-power is our soul’s light. When we become one with the soul, when we become the soul, we see that it is the soul’s light that can show us God. As heart’s identification with the supreme Reality can show us God’s existence, even so, our soul’s light, which is our will-power, can show us God’s existence on earth.
15:49 Now, in the spiritual life, aspiration and will-power go together, like mother and father. We need both mother and father.
16:06 Now what is aspiration? What does aspiration do? Aspiration is our inner cry for the Highest. And what does aspiration do? Aspiration helps us in minimising and in diminishing our desires. Once our desires are diminished, we feel peace within and without. We feel joy, delight. We feel that our source is delight, and we are in delight, and into delight we shall retire.
17:00 Ānandāddhyeva khalv imāni bhūtāni jayante
Ānandena jātāni jīvanti
Anandam prayantyabhisaṃ viśanti
17:14 Thousands of years ago, the Vedic seers of the hoary past sang this message:
17:20 From Delight we came into existence.
In Delight we grow.
At the end of our journey’s close, into Delight we retire.
17:34 Now, will-power. Will-power is something that expedites our journey. We know that there is a destination, there is starting point. Now, if we take help of the Indian bullock cart to reach our destination, it will take us years and years to reach our destination. But if we take help of the modern supersonic jet plane, it is a matter of a few hours. Now, with our will-power, adamantine will-power, we accelerate our progress.
18:26 Now, while we are proceeding along the path, concentration comes and energises us. Like a divine bullet, it makes us feel that we can run the fastest. And meditation comes and tells us that we have to dive the deepest. If we dive very deep, then there our Goal abides. Contemplation says you don’t have to go anywhere. You don’t have to go deep within. You don’t have run, just stay where we are. Only give to God what you have. What you have is inner cry, and what you are is ignorance. Give and become. It is in your self-giving that you become God.
19:35 Now, in the spiritual life, a seeker feels that he can exist without everything. There comes a time in a seeker’s life when he feels that he can exist without water, without food, without even air, but he cannot exist without God. At that time, God the Reality just comes and stands before him.
20:18 God exists. This existence of God depends on our faith in Him, faith in ourselves. Faith is the precursor; faith is the harbinger of a new dawn. Now, in the beginning, we find it very difficult to have faith in ourselves, whereas we find it easier to have faith in God. We don’t know who God is. But when it is a matter of God, we feel it is better to have faith in God since many people tell many things about God. But for us to have faith in ourselves is extremely difficult. But I wish to say, if you have faith only in God and not in ourselves then God-realisation will remain a far cry. Our faith in ourselves does not mean arrogance, pride and haughtiness, far from it. Our faith in ourselves means a vessel we have within us. We call it receptivity. If we do not have the power of receptivity, we will not be able to hold God’s Potentiality, His Capacity, His Divinity, His Immortality. So our faith is the vessel within us. It is our receptivity. And God’s Power, God’s Capacity, can only operate in and through us only when we have become receptivity itself.
22:06 Now, how do we increase our receptivity? If we want God’s Peace, Light and Bliss in infinite measure to enter into us and operate, how do we increase our receptivity? We increase our receptivity through conscious and constant offering of our gratitude, soulful gratitude, to the Inner Pilot. We feel that the power of receptivity that we have, it is He who has given us. We feel that the aspiration that we have has come directly from God.
22:58 In our family we have father, mother, brothers, sisters. How is it that I as an individual am praying, meditating, while others, the others, the rest of the family, is not praying? Just because God has awakened me from my slumbering life, I am now in a position to pray and meditate. So receptivity grows, increases, only when our gratitude flows.
23:43 God exists. His existence can be proved only when our receptivity is complete. Otherwise, if we cannot receive Him, if we cannot welcome Him, no matter how many times He comes in front of us, we will not be able to claim Him as our very own. Unless and until we can claim Him as our very own, we will not be able to prove God’s existence.
24:22 Now, we find it very difficult to imagine the vast as our very own. We are in the finite; we are for the finite. We feel it’s simply impossible for us to imagine the vast as our very own. This is the physical mind in us that makes us feel so. The mind in us always wants to experiment with the truth, or achieve the truth, by cutting the truth into pieces, in infinitesimal measure.
25:10 But the heart does not do that. The heart does not break the truth into pieces. The heart wants to see the truth in its entire totality. It wants to feel the truth, possess the truth, claim the truth as its very own in its entirety. How does the heart do this? The heart is very wise. Heart goes to its elder brother, the most illumined brother, the soul. The heart frequently enters into the room of the soul and when it comes back to its own abode, it comes with boundless light.
26:03 The heart, our heart, aspiring heart, is inundated with light and in the light when we accept someone, we accept him in his entire existence. For the mind to accept God or any reality as a whole is impossible. The mind limits; the mind binds. The heart expands; the heart liberates. But this is the physical mind I am talking about. There is illumined mind; there is intuitive mind. This mind right now is not in our possession. But when the physical in us, which we call physical mind, enters into the heart and the heart takes the mind into the soul, the mind becomes liberated; as the heart is liberated from the light of the soul, as the soul is liberated from the Consciousness-Light of the Supreme.
27:31 We are all seekers. For us God does exist. It is a matter of hours. He who has started running the race, has left the starting point, naturally will reach sooner than others. But spirituality is not a competitive game. There is no competition involved there. If at all we have to compete, then let us compete with our fear, doubt, anxiety, worries, and other negative forces. Let us defeat them. That means, let us transform them. If we can transform our fear into courage, doubt into faith, insecurity into security, impurity into purity, imperfection into perfection, then that is our success.
28:34 Again, in the spiritual life we don’t give importance to success; we give all importance to progress. Success lasts for a few minutes, a few hours, or for a day or two. But we cannot build our foundation on success because we are not sure that every day, or every hour, we are going to be successful. Today we are successful, tomorrow we may have to accept failure. But progress is something that we have all the time been making – progress. Right from the mineral kingdom we enter into the plant kingdom, from plant to the animal, from the animal to the human. Now we are trying to enter into the divine kingdom. So here is our constant progress. So when we think of ourselves as a song of progress and not as a song of success, then we realise God. God-realisation does not remain a far cry.
29:58 Here we are seekers. If we aim constantly at our progress – what we were yesterday, and what we are today, what we are going to be tomorrow. If this is our aim, if this is our goal, then God’s existence, God-realisation, are within our easy reach.
– End –
1 On this day, Sri Chinmoy offered three university talks in three different states – Oregon, Washington and Idaho.