I know where you are

At the store, we had a red phone for Guru to call if he was looking for Ashrita. If it rang five times, then I was supposed to pick up the phone.

So this particular day, I told Guru I did not know where Ashrita was. And then Guru said, “But I know where you are. You are inside my heart. You are inside every heartbeat of mine.”

The Master’s heart
Is made of affection.

Sri Chinmoy 1

The first time that I really understood that I had a soul


After three months of coming to the Centre, I decided I would go to New York to meet Guru and see if I was meant to be following his path. The evening I arrived, I went to PS 86, the public school where Guru was holding a public meditation that night.

At the end of the evening, I stood in the corridor and Guru walked past me. When he walked past me, he stopped and gave me this very, very beautiful smile. When he looked at me, I knew he saw everything about me. He looked at my spiritual heart and his eyes kind of flickered very momentarily, very briefly, when he looked at my spiritual heart. He did something occultly or psychically, because I felt this, like a little warm explosion in my heart centre. All my worldly troubles all fell away, and I suddenly felt immensely happy.

That feeling of being unburdened by my mind and free of all my troubles stayed with me for about three or four days. That was the very first time that I really understood that I had a soul, that I am the soul. That was the beginning of my journey.

The Sunshine-Smile
Of my Lord’s Heart
Feeds my heart’s prayer-cry
Before I start my daily spiritual journey.

Sri Chinmoy 1

Just go with it and jump!


One funny anecdote I would like to add is that I remember having an experience that was steering me towards something that I never expected or looked for, whatever I had imagined my life to be. It was towards something truly spiritual.

At first I really tried to suppress it and fight it because it was scary.  But the moment I did that I would get so sick in my stomach that I could not function.  And the moment I surrendered to it, I would have waves of joy. 

Then I thought there has to be another way to go about it.  So I would suppress it and fight it again and I would be sick to my stomach. The moment I surrendered to it, again I would feel peace and joy. 

So the choice was very clear. I said okay, “I don’t have a choice here, let’s just go with it and jump.” And I did jump.

One Voice, One Divine Choice

One voice, one voice, one divine voice,
One choice, one choice, one supreme choice,
Have made my life
Divinely soulful,
Supremely fruitful.
One voice, one divine voice,
One choice, one supreme choice.

Sri Chinmoy 1

“Where there is heart, always there is a way.”


Guru was going through New Zealand on his way to Australia. We all went out to the airport knowing Guru was there, because we could see into the transit lounge. We looked over a high wall and we could see Guru and the disciples. One of the disciples saw us and told Guru that we were all there in the lounge.

Guru walked out through the way that people are meant to walk in. He walked out that way past the customs and the immigration, as though he was completely invisible. We were all completely amazed. Guru gathered us around and he gave out prasad to everybody.  He said to us, “Where there is heart, always there is a way.”

Then he walked straight back in again with no passport and no documents, as though he was completely invisible. It was most extraordinary.

The power of the heart
Is unlimited
In every sense.

Sri Chinmoy 1

With Guru on my birthday


I had some other experiences with Guru—twice for my birthday. Guru used to celebrate birthdays, mainly for the close disciples, the inner circle of people very close to him—usually not for people like me. I was not well known on the path.

The first time was during the New York City Marathon. Guru was friends with Fred Lebow, one of the founders of the New York City Marathon. We ran this marathon until the year 2000. Disciples used to meet in New York in November for this race. This is also the time of my birthday. I was born on the 6th of November.

There was a kind of celebration at this time and Guru was teaching some songs in the morning. I was seated in the benches beside another French disciple. Guru called the good singers to go down to start learning the songs. I am a good singer, but when Guru teaches songs, you have to write down the words, and sometimes it is difficult to catch the words and then to memorise them. I didn't want to go down. I hesitated to go down and stayed in my seat. But my friend beside me said, "No, no, it is your birthday today. You have to go down. You have to go down and at least participate."

Sri Chinmoy performs on the world's largest organ

Guru always wanted to play at the Sydney Opera House. For Guru, there was something very magical about that building. Guru liked the building very, very much. Guru said whenever he hears the name Sydney, he thinks of the Opera House. We knew that Guru would love to play the organ, so we got permission somehow, I don't know how. It was a miracle that we got permission for Guru to play the organ.

There were about maybe one hundred disciples. It was not for the public. It was only for some disciples. Also, it was being recorded by the national radio. The gentleman who would show Guru the organ was a very famous organ player himself. It was arranged that he would also interview Guru for the radio program. Guru was very excited about playing this organ. It is the largest mechanical action organ in the world. It has ten thousand pipes.

There were many forces coming together. There was the building itself that Guru loved so much, then there was the organ, which was so special, and the occasion. Guru flew especially to Sydney from Melbourne just to play this organ.

Purifying your mind by serving your spiritual Master


On my first Christmas trip, which was in 1990, I went to Hawaii and then Bali with Guru. Every morning, early in the morning, we would wake up about 4:35. We would go down to the beach and wait for Guru, and Guru would practice throwing shot put. He had many special shot puts made from lighter ones to very heavy ones. The heavy one was very heavy, maybe 80 kilograms. Guru would practice. We would give Guru the shot put and then we would also pick it up. There was a line of us and we would take it in turns to give Guru the shot put and then also pick it up.

With the very heavy weights, you would have to go very close to Guru. I was not super strong. I'd have to go very close to Guru to be safe and to give it to Guru safely. You were very, very close to Guru when you would do this. As a guard, often you would have to work around Guru. You learned how to purify your consciousness, to be in a good consciousness because when you're around Guru, you're very aware of his consciousness and you want to be your best too.

A vision at 3 a.m in the morning


I was at that time still a ski teacher, so in February, I had to be one week with some children at a children's class. I was supposed to teach them skiing in the Swiss mountains. I was there in a nice wooden house in the mountains.

One night, I woke up at maybe 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning. It was pitch black. I was becoming very conscious. I had never been so conscious. In this vision, I saw Guru’s face, and from his third eye a streak of light came into my heart in a color like yellow or green, something like that. Now I know it's love, the colour of love.

It expanded and suddenly I was a pond of water. The water was falling down, a waterfall into the next pond, which was much bigger. Guru's face had disappeared, but I was the water of this pond and the next pond was very big. The whole pond fell down as a waterfall into a big lake. And that water again fell down as a waterfall into the ocean.

It was Christ himself who sent me to Guru

Sri Chinmoy meditates on the Christ, Christmas Eve, 2006

I was an ordained Christian minister serving at the Metropolitan Community Church in Manhattan. I had found my “church home” there, and loved the community as well as the opportunity to serve the poor and downtrodden—but I was feeling a lack of spiritual direction for myself.

I began to feel desperate spiritually. Where was I going to find a place to address my personal spiritual growth? How was I going to grow in my walk with God? I couldn’t live without a place to grow emotionally and spiritually. I felt like I was dying inside. I couldn’t stand it anymore.


Late one evening, I went into my bedroom and sat down to pray. I prayed to Christ and asked him to help me. I needed a new spiritual director. I needed someone who could guide and advise me in my spiritual life. Someone really, really far ahead of me, someone I wouldn’t catch up with in just a few years by learning all that they could teach me. I wanted someone so far ahead of me that I could spend a very long time learning from them.

The day my Guru accepted me as his disciple


During the 1970s, the early days of the Centre, if you wanted to be a disciple, Guru would interview you. You could sit down with him and have a face-to-face interview in which he would ask you questions and things. So on the first day I saw him, I was also introduced to Sevananda as one of the recent seekers. He said, “Okay, I told Guru about you, and he wants to see you tomorrow morning at 10:00.”

The next morning I came to the Centre. I was so excited, my heart felt like it was coming out of my chest. They asked me to wait in the library room and said they would call me when Guru was ready. So I sat there just feeling completely happy and thrilled. Finally Sevananda came in and said, “Guru will see you now.”

I went into the kitchen, which was very small. Guru, dressed in a t-shirt and shorts, was seated by himself at a tiny kitchen table, writing something while resting his head on his other hand. Sevananda said, “Guru, this is the boy I was telling you about.” Guru didn't look up right away—he just kept writing.