A miracle experience with Sri Chinmoy
- Sri Chinmoy taught me that I am not the mind. I am the heart.
This sounds like airy spiritual jargon, so let me clarify.
I've written many times here about how I didn't get accepted into the college of my choice. That hurt me deeply, because I had always been praised for my good mind, and if my mind just wasn't good enough to get into Swarthmore (producer of eight Nobel-prize winners), then what good was I?
I stopped sleeping at night, and spent my time writing poetry that had no soul in it at all. I stopped eating regular meals and started to just binge on Hershey's Kisses and Snickers. I stayed inside all day, with the blinds drawn.
I had nightmares every night, of being stuck inside this huge subterranean sewer. Far off in the distance I would hear two pieces of metal being struck together, and I knew I had to run, but I didn't know where. Or sometimes I dreamt I was locked inside a huge computer, and the owner of the computer had some sick and evil humorous plan for me.
Then, one day, one of my few remaining friends, Sebastian, came over to my house to talk. We had had lots of intellectual conversations, and sometimes our discussions even touched on spirituality. We had a short talk and told some jokes and he invited me over to his house that night.
When I came over that evening, he dimmed the lights, burnt some incense and played for me some music by Devadip Carlos Santana and also Mahavishnu John McLaughlin. I didn't understand why, but the music comforted me. He also showed me a poem from the inside cover of one of the CD's. It was a poem by Sri Chinmoy and it was about love being mighty, devotion being mightier and surrender being mightiest (I'm paraphrasing).
Then he picked a book off his shelf called Beyond Within and gave it to me and suggested that I read it.
I don't know what happened, or how I started reading it. I just remember going home and looking on the back cover of the book and seeing Sri Chinmoy's smiling face. I had never seen someone smile like that before- with such confidence, grace, assurance and (I dare to say it) compassion. His eyes seemed to identify with all of the hurt and pain I had been going through, and actually *understood* me. I mean, I had spoken to lots of adults about my problems; they listened but they did not understand. But Sri Chinmoy's eyes, on the back cover of a book, understood me completely. I don't know how else to express this.
That night, I slept with the book on my nightstand, and when I felt afraid, or if I felt a nightmare was coming on, I clutched the book to my chest and I held it there. I did this night after night, and finally I started being able to sleep at night again and I stopped having nightmares. The book saved my sanity.
Those who Sri Chinmoy has helped with his clarifying and healing vision and consciousness, will think of him with gratitude, and will carry him in our hearts forever.
Many, many thanks to Michael for inspiring these sweet and encouraging recollections.
- Sweet story, Mahiruha. Which also inspires a sweet recollection for me about the book 'Beyond Within'.
This wonderful book, which is a compilation of some of Sri Chinmoy's earlier writings, questions and answers, poems, etc., was also used as the text book for an evening course in the Philosophy of Sri Chinmoy that we offered as the University of Connecticut in 1973-74.
There was a disciple named Brihaspati, an associate English professor at Harvard University who was inspired to organize this book, also writing the brilliant introduction to it. He then taught this course in Sri Chinmoy's philosophy at UConn where I was also attending full time along with a few other disciples at the time.
At the end of the course it was announced that Sri Chinmoy himself would come up from New York to administer the final exam. I think there were about 15 students in the class at the time. They must have studied the book fastidiously in the final week before Sri Chinmoy came up.
Sri Chinmoy traveled over 150 miles to get up there and we were prepared to receive him with all the students and lots of flowers. We even gave them the blue exam books that were so common back then. Seeing these books being handed out always seemed to trigger a Pavlovian nervous reaction to those who had to take the exam.
To make a long story short, Sri Chinmoy came in, meditated, and then handed a flower to each student, one by one, walking up to each desk as he briefly meditated in front of each one, blessing them in silence. And that was it, that was the final exam!!!
He did not expect from them any memorization of his philosophy or recitation of any of his poems or writings. Just being there to receive the love and blessings of the Master was a perfect 'score' to pass the course. This was the essence of his philosophy, of all the wordy details in the book: Love and Oneness.
To cultivate those qualities in our meditation and spiritual disciplines and to manifest and share them with others is the essence of his philosophy. To learn what God's Will is for us and to try to live it in our lives is more important than intellectualizing any spiritual philosophy or dogmatic creeds.
So to Mahiruha and others who have read this book and other gems of Sri Chinmoy's extensive library, we can pass 'the test' every day if we could assimilate the deep yet simple Truths inherent in the words and gradually grow into the Reality embodied within its wisdom, ie.,Beyond Within.
- Hi Mahiruha,
It is interesting that I have had very, very similar experience with Sri Chinmoy's smile in February 1992.
Before that time I have never felt such a pain in my life and I have never been so weak that I thought my life was ending, along with my mother's (my mother was very sick and she died in mid March that year).
I saw Guru's smiling face and it gave me comfort, it gave me a hope and for weeks I have been seeing Light from his face burning in my third eye. I felt protected, I felt life is not ending, I felt there is something in this world that is not darkness and pain.
On March 25th I was initiated in my dream and was outwardly accepted as his disciple.
Different and strange are God's ways to come and get his dear ones when they are in need and when they are ready for Him. But those of us who have strong minds and willpower are difficult to surrender to His Will and we are going through unbelievable pain to be able to open our hearts for a Higher Light. But God's Grace is all the time with a sincere seeker who wants to march along His Path, and it is not easy at all, but it is extremely beautiful. After so many years our lives proved it.
All the best,
Thank you for your interesting and kind response. It reminds me of what Sri Chinmoy once said, that the biography of a spiritual Master is written only in the inner world. Maybe it is only sincere spiritual seekers that can even begin to fathom the depths of a Master like Sri Chinmoy.
- The portion of your story detailing your experience with Sri Chinmoy's book, Beyond Within is compelling. From your story, I felt deeply the power of healing that was brought about by Sri Chinmoy's words and by his smile: which is to say, by his consciousness.
As if I was not moved enough, I then read Arpan's story of the final exam given by Sri Chinmoy on the book that you had mentioned. That was a wonderful story: quite magical in every way.
So a sincere thank you to both you and Arpan (who is an excellent historian).