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Meditation

When you soulfully meditate,
The first thing you get
Is peace,
And this peace
Marks the beginning
Of your heart’s journey
Along the path of perfection.

Sri Chinmoy 1

When we meditate, we make the mind calm, quiet and still — without thoughts. At that time, we have to be fully aware of the arrival of thoughts and allow no idle thoughts to enter into the mind. The mind is vacant and tranquil, with neither good nor bad thoughts; nothing at all. Our whole existence becomes an empty vessel. When this vessel is absolutely empty, with our whole inner being we invoke infinite Peace, Light and Bliss so it will enter into the vessel and fill it. This is meditation. 2

Meditation has two things to offer us: self-mastery and self-transformation. These two go together. When we meditate, immediately we have the beginnings of self-mastery, and when we have self-mastery, we see that we cannot cherish ugly or undivine thoughts; we cannot remain inside ignorance anymore. At that time we see that our transformation is taking place. Meditation is constantly giving us the message of self-transformation. 3

Video

Sri Chinmoy in meditation, Stockholm, 1990

The stages of Meditation

In meditation there are three stages: concentration, meditation and contemplation. Aspiration houses both prayer and meditation. If you have aspiration, that is the most important thing you need. This aspiration can be manifested in two different ways — either through your most soulful prayer or through concentration, meditation and contemplation. If you follow either path, you can reach your goal. 4

Concentration

For a beginner it is better to start with concentration. Otherwise, the moment you try to make your mind calm and vacant, millions of uncomely thoughts will enter into you and you will not be able to meditate even for one second. If you concentrate, at that time you challenge the wrong thoughts that are trying to enter you. So in the beginning just practise concentration for a few minutes. Then, after a few weeks or a few months, you can try meditation.

Concentration gives us the capacity of intensity, and meditation gives us the capacity of vastness and sublimity. If you feel that you are to some extent advanced, then without concentration you can enter into meditation. 5

Further reading: Concentration

Meditation

Why do we meditate? We meditate precisely because we need something. And what is that something? That something is the conscious feeling of our oneness with the Supreme. This need must be spontaneous, genuine and soulful.

God may be unknown but He is not unknowable. Our prayers and meditation lead us to that unknown. Freedom we cry for. But strangely enough, we are not aware of the fact that we already have within us immense freedom. Look! Without any difficulty we can forget God. We can ignore Him and we can even deny Him. But God's Compassion says, "My children, no matter what you do or say, My Heart shall never abandon you. I want you. I need you."

The mother holds the hand of the child. But it is the child who has to walk, and he does so. Neither the one who is dragged nor the one who drags can be happy. Likewise God says, "My divine children, in your inner life, I give you inspiration. It is you who have to aspire with the purest heart to reach the Golden Beyond."6

Further reading: How to start meditating

Contemplation

If we are concentrating on God, we may feel God right in front of us or beside us. When we are meditating, we are bound to feel Infinity, Eternity, Immortality within us. But when we are contemplating, we will see that we ourselves are Infinity, Eternity, Immortality. Contemplation means our conscious oneness with the Infinite, Eternal, Absolute. In contemplation we discover ourselves. When we contemplate, Creator and Creation become one. We become one with the Creator and see the whole universe at our feet, the whole universe inside us. At that time, when we look at our own existence, we don't see a human being. We see something like a dynamo of Light, Peace and Bliss. 7

Further reading: Contemplation

Sri Chinmoy meditates in front of the Daibutsu Buddha at Kamakura, Japan

Sri Chinmoy meditates in front of the Daibutsu Buddha at Kamakura, Japan

Common questions and answers

Question: How can we know whether we are meditating well or not?

Right after our meditation, if we have a good feeling for the world, then we know our meditation was good. If we see the world in a loving way in spite of its imperfections, if we can love the world even while seeing its teeming imperfections, then we know that our meditation was good. And if we have a dynamic feeling right after meditation, if we feel that we came into the world to do something, to become something, this indicates that we have done a good meditation. This feeling that we have to do something does not mean that we are feeding our human ambition. No! The moment we try to feed our ambition, it will entangle us like a serpent. What we have come into the world to do is what God wants us to do.

But the easiest way to know if we have had a good meditation is to feel whether Peace, Light, Love and Delight are coming to the fore from within. Each time Light comes forward, or Love comes forward, or Peace or Delight comes forward, the whole body will be surcharged with that divine quality. When we have this experience we know that we have done a very good meditation. 8

Further reading: Am I meditating well?


  1. Sri Chinmoy, Twenty-Seven Thousand Aspiration-Plants, Part 19, 1983.

  2. Sri Chinmoy, Meditation: God's Duty and man's beauty, Agni Press, 1974

  3. Sri Chinmoy, Canada aspires, Canada receives, Canada achieves, part 1, Agni Press, 1974]]

  4. Sri Chinmoy, Experiences of the Higher Worlds, Agni Press, 1977

  5. Sri Chinmoy, Meditation: humanity's race and Divinity's Grace, part 2, Agni Press, 1974

  6. Sri Chinmoy, A Sri Chinmoy primer, Agni Press, 1974, Agni Press, 1974

  7. Sri Chinmoy, Meditation: humanity's race and Divinity's Grace, part 2, Agni Press, 1974

  8. Sri Chinmoy, Meditation: humanity's race and Divinity's Grace, part 2, Agni Press, 1974

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