The Sunlit Path
- The Sunlit Path
A talk by Sri Chinmoy at the University of California at Santa Cruz
October 17, 1969
In the spiritual life, the name of the sunlit path is Devotion. This
path is definitely the shortcut to God-Realisation. It is true that
God and His Mysteries are beyond the comprehension of speech and
intellect. But it is equally true that God is easily accessible
A true devotee gets great joy when he feels, ¡°All this am I.¡±
He gets greater joy when he feels, ¡°All this art Thou.¡±
He gets the greatest joy when he feels, ¡°Thou art the Master; I am
only the instrument.¡±
He who follows the Path of Knowledge says to God, ¡°Father, I want
He who follows the Path of Devotion says to God, ¡°Father, I need
The former says to God, ¡°Father, I own You.¡±
The latter says to God, ¡°Father, You own me.¡±
A real devotee is a true lover of God. Impossibility has no meaning
and can never have any meaning in his life.
As in other paths, in the sunlit path the devotee learns that it
does not matter how long he prays and meditates, but how he prays
and meditates. If he prays and meditates upon the Divine sincerely
and unreservedly, then he prays and meditates ten times at once.
When an aspirant starts his journey along the sunlit path, he says
to God, ¡°Father, give me.¡±
At his journey¡¯s close he says, ¡°Father, receive me.¡±
We all know that the abode of gratitude is the heart. Strangely
enough, gratitude often manages to hide from its abode. But in the
sunlit path soulful gratitude is always visible, looming large in
the aspirant¡¯s heart.
Self-love mars the fertile soil of aspiration and renders it
sterile. But devotion toward God kindles the mounting flame of
aspiration, creating a new world for the aspirant in God, and a new
world for God in the aspirant.
Devotion is blessedness itself. This blessedness is the self-
dedicating love turned toward God, seeking to serve Him constantly
and unconditionally so that He can be fulfilled both in heaven and
There are countless people on earth who not only claim to pray, but
actually do pray. How is it that they get practically no result from
their prayers? The answer is simple and clear. Their prayer is not
snow-white. A snow-white prayer is the fount of a self-generating
energy, a self-transforming light and a self-fulfilling delight.
Like everyone else, a devoted aspirant has needs. But his needs and
God¡¯s Love and Compassion are always seen together. A real devotee
has come to realise that he loves God not to fulfil his human
desires but to fulfil God in God¡¯s own Way. For an unaspiring
person, life is punishment, pure torture. For an aspiring soul, each
moment in life is an opportunity for self-illumination and God-
fulfilment. In the sunlit path of devotion, the aspirant knows that
just as he is hungry for God¡¯s Infinite Compassion, even so is God
hungry for his constant feeling of conscious oneness with Him.
When the body is dirty, soap is necessary to clean it. When the mind
is impure, tears of repentance are necessary to purify it. When the
heart is impure, the need for devotion is paramount. The heart¡¯s
impurtiy is the most dangerous disease in the spiritual life.
Devotion is the only medicine. Devotion is the only cure.
The Brahman is by nature indivisible, a complete whole. But through
maya, its self-limiting force, it has broken itself into infinite
pieces. The aspirant¡¯s all-surrendering devotion can easily make him
whole again, divinely complete and supremely One.
- Over the years, I have heard a wide variety of inspiring stories and experiences by disciples of Sri Chinmoy. We will be endeavouring to publish a small percentage of these at:
It is often said 'as there are so many seekers, so there are as many paths' Reading accounts by fellow spiritual seekers makes you aware of the tremendous diversity of spiritual experiences on this sunlit path.
For example, I love the story from Guntitha http://www.thesunlitpath.org/stories/if-he-is-not-my-teacher/49/ which explains how a Catholic nun (Dodula) saw so much in Sri Chinmoy - just through meditation on his picture and reading his writings.
To the outer mind, some of these stories appear miraculous. For example, Sevananda's account of his mother's illness http://www.thesunlitpath.org/stories/he-is-so-beautiful/33/ is just one of very many which reflect Guru's inner vision.
But, sometimes my favourite 'miracle' stories are those which illumine how difficult and unhappy experiences can be radically transformed through the shortest of meditation or briefest of glances. After all what is a miracle if not the transformation of human nature / human consciousness?
"...I am an insignificant human being. For years and years I have cherished my friendship with teeming doubts. But now I have a new friend: a blossoming faith. For me to transform my life of doubt into a life of faith-is this not a miracle, a happy miracle?..."
- Sri Chinmoy
Excerpt from Aurora Flora- "What is A Miracle?' http://www.srichinmoylibrary.com/books/0488/1/13
As Prachar, comments in http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration/message/24148 it all depends how we look on the world. - As the saying goes, a saint will see good in everyone. A thief will only project their own darkness onto others. It was Sri Chinmoy's capacity to uplift the fickle human consciousness which was really his enduring miracle.
When we read Nayak's post on God, etc, http://www.thesunlitpath.org/articles/god-e-t-c/70/ I think we can all identify with that experience of how meditation and the inner connection can illumine the darkness of our mind. As Doris mentions in her recent post, it is amazing the strength and transformation that can come from a good meditation amongst fellow seekers.
The blog will feature 2 or 3 articles a week. We hope to publish a wide diversity of articles from Sri Chinmoy's many hundreds of students across the globe. Occasionally we can't resist reposting old gems, such as Nayak's, that have somehow got hidden in an archive. But, mostly, we will be publishing new writings on the ancient and eternal quest we are all share.
p.s. : Nayak - I look forward to your promise of more writing.
p.p.s. Priyadarshan, I'm thrilled to see there is internet access in deepest, rural, Italia. Short messages can be encouraging too! But don't eat all the pasta!
- Thank you for sharing about this Tejvan. I do not recall hearing about this new initiative prior to reading your message pointing it out. Then again my memory could just be failing me. :-)
I look forward to reading more stories there. It seems that many students of Sri Chinmoy have literally countless "miracle" stories and sweet memories -- of course before -- but even just as much since Sri Chinmoy's Mahasamadhi (passing from the earth plane) as well.