/If you stayed up very late the previous night and are very tired when your alarm goes off, is it better to sleep longer and meditate after your accustomed time?/
You have to know how often you do it. If you are doing it every week, this is not good. But once in a blue moon it is all right. In school you study for months, and then you get a holiday. But if you want to take a holiday every day, then how will you make progress? If you have meditated for months at a particular hour and one morning you are exceptionally tired, all right. But if you go to school at a different hour every day, then how can the teacher be pleased?
Opportunities do not come every day in your life. Spirituality is like an opportunity. If you miss one meditation, you have to feel that you have really missed something, that you have travelled one step less than you could have. When you do not meditate regularly, your consciousness loses some of its capacity, and the road becomes very long. Once you relax, ignorance covers you. If you fail to get up once, then on that day ignorance has conquered you.
Suppose you go to bed at three o'clock, and when it is time for meditation you are not able to get up. But who asked you to go to bed at three o'clock? You will say it was unavoidable; you had to do something most important. But while you are up late doing that important thing, please make yourself feel that at six o'clock there also will be something unavoidable and important that you will have to do: you will have to get up to meditate. If the thing that you did late at night was so important that you could not avoid it, then I wish to say that your meditation is infinitely more important; nothing can be more important than meditation.
Sometimes our fatigue is real; sometimes it is all mental. Even if you sleep for ten hours, sometimes you feel extremely tired. Many people sleep much more than they actually need to. Often it is your mind that makes you feel you are tired and exhausted. The mind is so clever. It will make you feel that if you can sleep for only five minutes more, then you will feel much better, If you are supposed to get up at six o'clock, the mind will tell you that if your body can sleep one minute more, then you will feel better. But if you give that one minute to the body, immediately the mind will ask for five or ten minutes more, and before long it will be seven or eight o'clock. So the best thing is not to listen to the mind at all.