Sri Chinmoy’s Interview with Joel Martin

On Long Island Cable Television


Video by Vasudeva Server


Joel Martin: Let me introduce to you now a man whom I've grown extremely fond of over the years and whom I love a great deal. His achievements and his accomplishments are amazing. They have been reported worldwide. We will talk about those achievements with a Guru, a genuine Guru — really genuine — Sri Chinmoy. And Sri Chinmoy, of course, is an international figure.

Sri Chinmoy, I’m so glad you’re here again. As a matter of fact, you were with me about a year ago. Now you’ve been weightlifting, and it’s gotten a lot of attention in the newspapers. That’s why I thought we could talk a little bit about your achievements — physical achievements — which are considerable. And we’ll see some videos of it because a little while ago, Guru, when I was showing some of the material to the people here, a couple of them said, “Ah, I don’t believe it; you can’t lift 4,000 pounds with your legs or 500 pounds with one arm.” But that’s what you’ve been doing!

Sri Chinmoy: I am extremely happy to be here, and I am extremely grateful to you for your encouragement. As you know, I am a truth-seeker and a God-lover, not a bodybuilder or a weightlifter. But my Inner Pilot wants me to be of inspiration in the physical world, so I am now in the weightlifting world.

Joel Martin: We have to expound. I have learned what the term 'Inner Pilot' means. But for the people that don't know, it's so important. When we first met many years ago, you explained to me all about the Inner Pilot. Could you do it again?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, my Inner Pilot is the God who is within me, and all the time I listen to His Dictates. When we pray and meditate, we get inner guidance. He who guides us is our Inner Pilot.

Joel Martin: So it's that inner voice, inner sense, or inner guidance that we sometimes ignore, unfortunately. You are wearing, I think, the emblem of the United Nations, if I see correctly.

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, this morning I was at the United Nations. I prayed and meditated there for about 45 minutes with delegates, diplomats and staff members.

Joel Martin: You do that regularly?

Sri Chinmoy: Twice a week — every Tuesday and Friday.

Joel Martin: You wear the most beautiful robes. Different colours have different meanings, yes? The last time we were together here you were wearing a red robe. This time you are wearing a sky blue, light blue, robe. Could you tell us the significance of that colour?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes. Sky blue has a very special significance in my life, for the predominant colour of my aura is sky blue. Sky blue signifies infinity in the occult world. So in the outer world, sky blue is my favourite colour, since in the inner world I embody this colour more than any other.

Joel Martin: People who watch me know that I've done many programmes about the occult and about psychic phenomena over the years. You don't have any quarrel with the spirit world or those things that we call psychic?

Sri Chinmoy: They are all my friends. I do not quarrel with them and they do not quarrel with me because everything that I am doing is for oneness, oneness, oneness. When I pray and meditate, I invoke God’s Compassion so that I can be one with the world all the time. My message to the world at large is the message of peace and oneness. It is the same message that I try to offer with my weightlifting.

Joel Martin: Since you mentioned lifting, I understand you recently lifted an eight-year-old elephant. What we can do now is see the videotape of some of your lifts so people will know that this is real.

There you are with a private plane. That was done out here in Suffolk County in East Moriches. The Newsday story where I read about it showed pictures as well. I think that’s better than 3,600 pounds.

Sri Chinmoy: This is a regular plane. The next one is a seaplane. It is heavier.

Joel Martin: But this weighed more than a ballpoint pen. I mean, this was heavy also. Wow! Did it hurt? I've got so many questions. What do you think about when you do that — is it total concentration?

Sri Chinmoy: Total concentration! I do not think of anything; I do not think of anyone. Only I concentrate most powerfully on my inner resources.

Joel Martin: You're not pushing for people to all lift elephants, are you?

Sri Chinmoy: I want everybody to be physically fit.

Joel Martin: Guru, what if somebody were to say to you: "All right, it's remarkable. You have lifted an elephant, you have lifted a seaplane, a boat, various weights. How does that further the cause of world peace, which is so elusive?"

Sri Chinmoy: You have just seen me lift the seaplane, the elephant, all that. People know that it is on the strength of my prayer-life and my meditation-life that I am able to do this. There is no other way. As you can see, I do not have big muscles and my physique is not that of a bodybuilder or a weightlifter. So I entirely depend on my inner strength, which comes from God’s Compassion and God’s Grace.

When I feel inner strength, at that time I have peace of mind and I do not want to quarrel or fight. We quarrel and fight precisely because inwardly we feel that we are weak. One nation declares war on another nation, not because that nation is far superior, but because that nation feels in the depths of its heart that it is weak. I know I am weaker than you, but I want to show you that I am stronger. Perhaps you have also the same experience; you may think that you are weaker than I am, but you quarrel with me to show your superiority.

The other day with my calf muscles I lifted up an elephant which weighed 3,600 pounds. In terms of strength, a human being is no match for an elephant. Just because the elephant knew we could do nothing to it, it behaved well. So he who is really strong will not fight. For a human being, the only way to become really strong is to pray and meditate. When we pray and meditate, we develop inner strength, and this inner strength is nothing other than peace.

The reason I have entered into bodybuilding and weightlifting is to inspire everybody to pray and meditate so they can bring to the fore their own inner strength. If everybody brings to the fore his own inner strength, the world will eventually be inundated with peace. Peace is oneness, oneness is peace. If I am strong and you are strong, then definitely we have established our oneness, and this oneness is nothing other than peace.

Joel Martin: It's not that long ago that you began weightlifting, and you are 55 now. Before that, you had been running for a long time?

Sri Chinmoy: I’ve been running for a long time, but owing to a knee injury I had to give up running. Then, last year, on the 26th of June, I embarked on this weightlifting project with a 40-pound weight. Our philosophy is progress. Recently I lifted up 503 pounds. I started with 40 pounds with one arm, but only a few weeks ago I lifted up 503 pounds.

Joel Martin: With one arm?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, and I weigh about 160 pounds.

Joel Martin: So that's better than three times your body weight.

Sri Chinmoy: Yes. Again, it is all due to Grace from Above. This is my offering to the world at large. I want to show that if we pray and meditate, we shall acquire inner strength, and this inner strength is bound to give us peace of mind. If we have inner strength, we are not going to fight.

Joel Martin: But somebody can also say that if I lift weights and get stronger physically, then why do I have to be concerned with peace? I can use that strength to be aggressive.

Sri Chinmoy: If you get strength from your prayer-life, you are not going to quarrel. If I get strength only from the physical — by taking exercises and so on — I may become aggressive. Boxers and wrestlers are only trying to destroy one another. But if I get strength from my prayer-life and my meditation-life, I will not use it for destruction. If I have a knife, I can use it to stab you or to cut a piece of fruit to share with you. If I am wise, I will use it to offer you a piece of fruit. A knife has strength, but what matters is how you use it. Similarly, an individual can use his strength for the right cause — to offer peace to the world at large.

Joel Martin: We have a short intermission here, and then we will have some photographs and visuals of what Sri Chinmoy has done in terms of weightlifting. Sri Chinmoy, internationally-known Guru. We will talk more about his weightlifting and his work for world peace through physical strength and meditation...

Back with you on the Joel Martin Show. Speaking to you, Guru, makes me feel genuinely uplifted — really! I don’t lie and I don’t fake. I’m sincere, and Guru Sri Chinmoy is a man I’ve followed for a very long time. We met back in the mid-1970s. He’s very sincere, completely genuine and fascinating. And his work for world peace has been through music, it’s been through writing, it’s been through art, it’s been through sports and now, in the past year and a half, it’s been through weightlifting. He’s trained his body to lift incredible amounts of weight — elephants, boats, planes, all kinds of things to show what the mind can do. And he does it for world peace. Can we look at some of the visuals now? You’re going to see some of his recent achievements, some done here out on Long Island, some in other parts of the country. He’s been all over the world.

Here, Guru, we’re looking at you lifting I think about three times your body weight. This is 450 pounds. Where is this wonderful gym?

Sri Chinmoy: It is in my house.

Joel Martin: You've turned it into a gymnasium! How many hours a day do you spend on weightlifting?

Sri Chinmoy: Between three and three and a half hours every day — morning, afternoon and evening.

Joel Martin: Okay. I want you to see the next one. This is the calf-lift, is it? And you are lifting some of your students.

Sri Chinmoy: Most of them weigh over 200 pounds. There were five individuals.

Joel Martin: Those numbers — 1,384 pounds — represent a lot of weight. That doesn't affect the old leg injury?

Sri Chinmoy: No, fortunately.

Joel Martin: Fortunately is right. I think also we're going to see the sailboat. This weighed how much?

Sri Chinmoy: This was 4,000 pounds.

Joel Martin: Unbelievable! And when you document these lifts, obviously the reason is to show people that it really happened.

Sri Chinmoy: There were many people there to observe and prove to the world that this is something authentic. We want to inspire people. We would like to be of service to people, and we would like this service to be genuine.

Joel Martin: This was the seaplane that you lifted at East Moriches last Sunday. You see the numbers 3,632 there, folks? That's the weight of the plane, not its license plate!

Sri Chinmoy: There were five passengers inside, including the pilot.

Joel Martin: I can't even get myself out of bed in the morning. Are you saying that the average person — people like me and people who are watching — can do this?

Sri Chinmoy: Certainly! If I can lift, then what is wrong with you? It is all because of prayer and meditation.

Joel Martin: I pray and I meditate.

Sri Chinmoy: You pray, and that’s why you have peace of mind and your health is getting better. The last time I came here, you were not well physically. This time you are better, and I am so happy.

Joel Martin: I had a back injury last time.

Sri Chinmoy: Prayer-life solves all our problems. Only we have to have implicit faith in our own prayers.

Joel Martin: That's true. I'm going to come back to that. I think we have one more visual. This is where you bettered the one-arm press of 450 pounds and lifted 503 pounds. You don't lift that much every day, do you?

Sri Chinmoy: Every day I try. Now I’m practising to lift 604 pounds. I have failed 40 times. When I was trying to lift 300 pounds, I failed 212 times. God was teaching me patience. So, 212 times I failed, but I continued, and on the 213th time I succeeded.

Joel Martin: You said something before about faith in our own prayers. Let's come back to that point because it's so important.

Sri Chinmoy: Many people pray, but they do not have faith in their prayers. Doubt interferes. People say, “Perhaps God is not pleased with me. This morning I told a lie. Yesterday I quarrelled with my friend, so why should God listen to my prayers?” Because of this kind of thing, people do not have faith in their prayers.

Joel Martin: Guru, excuse me, but why should God listen to our prayers? Doesn't He have better things to do than listen to me?

Sri Chinmoy: Who created us? Since God created us, will He not take care of us? If you have a dog, it is your bounden responsibility to take care of the dog. So, like that, God is the Creator and we are His creation. We are helpless. If the Creator does not take care of His creation, then how can we live on earth, how can we survive?

Joel Martin: We are going through a terrible problem everywhere in this country, with young people using increasing amounts of drugs. What has gone wrong that so many people are turning to that path, which is obviously a destructive one, rather than following your advice, which is obviously the best advice?

Sri Chinmoy: People want something that can be achieved in the twinkling of an eye. They do not believe in discipline or patience. If we lead a disciplined life and have patience, then we are bound to get all good things from our life.

Joel Martin: Well said. I've got to ask you, before we conclude, Guru, where does this go? Do you have an ultimate goal with all of this?

Sri Chinmoy: I do not have any set goal; my goal is self-transcendence. I always try to transcend myself. I do not compete with the rest of the world. I compete only with myself, and I try to become a better human being. This is my ultimate goal. Every day I pray to become a better human being so that I can be of better service to mankind.

Joel Martin: Most of us, I guess, at one time or another are so much more concerned with the things that are around us than with the things that are within us. Maybe that's where most of the confusion is.

Sri Chinmoy: Unfortunately, we look around most of the time instead of looking deep within. If we can dive deep within, then we will get the answers. The world around us is full of temptation. The world within us is full of illumination. If we can bring to the fore our inner illumination, then the outer world of temptation will be transformed into the world of illumination.

Joel Martin: You've done thousands of paintings, poems and musical compositions. Are you still doing these things?

Sri Chinmoy: I am doing everything. This morning I composed quite a few songs. We only increase our capacities. If I do something new, that does not mean that I will give up the old things. My poetry, my music, my art are all my friends. Weightlifting is like a new friend. I will not give up my old friends because I have a new friend. No, only I shall have more friends.

Joel Martin: And you're not here to say you're better, but to encourage us to do the best we can.

Sri Chinmoy: I am not competing with anybody. Only I have come here to offer my inspiration and my aspiration.

Joel Martin: We're out of time. Thank you so much. It's been terrific to see you again. I didn't even get to ask you what the white flower means. It's for peace?

Sri Chinmoy: Absolutely! A flower signifies purity, and white means divinity. When we have purity and divinity, then we have peace within us all the time.

Joel Martin: Guru Sri Chinmoy, I thank you very much. Sri Chinmoy — of India, living now in New York and frequently on Long Island, an international figure — has been with us for this half hour. It has been a very interesting half hour, and I thank you very much for being with us. Until next time, thank you, Guru.

Published in Aspiration-Body, Illumination-Soul, part 2


Sri Chinmoy’s Interview with Bill McCreary

at Aspiration-Ground in Jamaica, Queens, New York



Bill McCreary is an Emmy Award-winning News Broadcaster, and  Host and Executive Producer of ‘The McCreary Report’, Channel 5, WNYW TV, New York. 


Bill McCreary: How are you, sir?

Sri Chinmoy: I am fine, thank you.

Bill McCreary: It has been a long time since I saw you last.

Sri Chinmoy: It is a matter of the right hour, the right moment. We try and try, but when the right hour will come we do not know. We call it God’s Hour.

Bill McCreary: What is the procedure for your lifting?

Sri Chinmoy: If you could kindly be on the stand, we shall sing a song called “Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart.” Then I shall lift you with one hand. You have inspired millions and millions of people over the years, so I would like to honour you. I feel we all belong to a oneness-family. Since you are my brother, I feel that it is an obligation on my part to express my loving joy and gratitude to you for inspiring the world.

Bill McCreary: The first thing is, I have to be weighed in. Oh, oh, I have shoes and a heavy wallet!

Sri Chinmoy: Also, the apparatus weighs 13 pounds.

Bill McCreary: So now it is 223 pounds? 223 — that’s my old address on the Lower East Side! Are you ready? What is this for again? Oneness of heart?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, oneness of heart. You have inspired countless, countless people over the years and today I am trying to honour you with my heart’s loving joy and gratitude. I feel that this is one way I can express my inner love and gratitude to you for what you have done for countless people. I am lifting you with my oneness-heart. In the oneness-heart there is peace, abiding peace. If we can bring to the fore our oneness-heart, we shall not quarrel, we shall not fight, there will be no third world war. You and I and all of us are trying to create this peaceful family with our oneness-heart.

[Sri Chinmoy lifts Bill McCreary.]

Bill McCreary: That was quite a lift!

Sri Chinmoy: Would you like to be lifted with the other hand?

Bill McCreary: No, one lift is fine, thank you. Can I come down? So that was a lift for peace?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, oneness-peace and world-harmony. With your aspiration and inspiration, you lift me up. With my aspiration and inspiration, I lift you up. Together we lift up the consciousness of humanity.

Bill McCreary: I really appreciate it.

Sri Chinmoy: I am so happy and honoured that I was able to lift you. This is my dedicated service to your own most exemplary service to mankind.

Bill McCreary: Thank you. Now I would like to talk about some of the things you do. You hold meditations at the U.N. You have been doing that for the last seventeen years. And now you are also doing it for the Congress down in Washington. Would you say that so far your efforts have been effective or ineffective? After such a long period of time, have you started to see some change?

Sri Chinmoy: I am a believer, I am a God-lover. And I feel that prayer — not only my prayer, but the joint prayer of humanity — is helping mankind considerably. We are progressing. But this progress is not so visible in the outer life. In the inner life, the progress is definitely tangible.

Bill McCreary: So you see a link between the outer world and the inner world?

Sri Chinmoy: Yes, there is a great link. The inner life and the outer life must go together. If I pray early in the morning, then I will have good thoughts towards others, I will have love for them. If everyone does the same, then there will be no quarrel, no fight. Everything has to come from within. From within, it comes without. If we have peace of mind, a moment of joy deep inside us, then this joy we express outwardly. Whatever we have within, we manifest in our outer life. If we have anxiety, worry, insecurity and other undivine qualities, then this is what we will manifest outwardly. But if we pray and meditate early in the morning, inwardly we become good citizens of the world. Then in our outer activities we will try to express our inner good feelings. This is how we can establish a oneness-family.

Bill McCreary: Has this philosophy been accepted by other people? Some critics would say, “He is Indian and they have ways of doing these phenomenal things.” So are you saying that a person should become a meditator and then he will be able to lift weights and such?

Sri Chinmoy: I am not telling people to meditate in order to lift up weights, far from it! Only I am asking people, I am begging people, to pray and meditate so that we can all have peace of mind. If we have peace of mind, then we will develop inner strength. And if we have inner strength, then we shall not quarrel, we shall not fight. So my prayer-life is not meant for weightlifting. My prayer-life is to become inseparably one with the rest of the world.

Inner strength helps us at every moment to become good human beings. I pray and meditate in order to become a good person and not to become a bodybuilder or a weightlifter. If someone can become a good person from his prayer-life, then he can inspire somebody else to become a good person and that person, in turn, will inspire somebody else. Our philosophy is self-transcendence. If we have just a small fraction of peace, then we have to try to develop more peace, abundant peace, boundless peace. This is our way of thinking and our way of becoming.

Bill McCreary: You have lifted many people.

Sri Chinmoy: Today, with you, I completed 549. My goal is 700 and, in a few weeks, I do hope to complete 700. Recently I lifted some great Olympians — Carl Lewis, Calvin Smith, Roger Kingdom and others. They are immortals in athletics. I was there at the Olympics. How much joy these athletes gave us all! I wanted to do something to add to their joy and this is the only way I could do it. They have given joy to countless people and I feel that if I can offer a little bit of my dedication through their joy, then I am blessed.

Bill McCreary: Thank you so much, Sri Chinmoy.

Published in Aspiration-Body, Illumination-Soul, part 3