In the beginning phase of my spiritual life for some time I suffered from a discouraging bout of depression. It often felt as if a giant stone had firmly planted itself in my stomach and quelled every hopeful streak that entered into me. Life felt like an endless black night without hope or purpose. Although I had never been prone to depression before and could look back on a happy, cheerful childhood, I often felt like I would never be truly happy again.
Although my world seemed steeped in darkness during the time of my depression, I did meditate every day. I didn’t really feel that much was happening during those quiet sessions in front of my meditation shrine, but I was wrong.
One day I suddenly became aware of a little light going out from my heart. It was ever so tiny, but I decided to concentrate on it and did not let go. The little light felt to me like a lifeline, which I grabbed with both hands like the drowning man I felt myself to be.
Much to my surprise the light remained with me and I discovered I could muster it at will. It gave me a light and happy feeling inside. Whenever I focused on it, a little engine started humming inside me, working some unseen inner magic and clearing up the dark clouds that had been hovering around me for the past few months.
I finally understood what my teacher Sri Chinmoy meant when he spoke about ‘aspiration’, an inner flame or cry that climbs up and illumines everything around us. This little light in my heart must be aspiration, I thought.
Imagine my profound joy and gratitude when after about three days my depression had completely disappeared. I couldn’t believe it! And when those dark clouds cleared a powerful inner sun rose within me, filling me with a deep sense of peace, happiness, love and joy. I felt like I had woken up from a bad dream only to find myself in another dream – this one sweet, beautiful and full of happiness.
This episode proved to me that meditation has unlimited power to conquer all negative qualities in life. When you suffer from depression everything seems hopeless. It’s one of the hardest negative qualities to get rid of, since it saps the very essence of the life-force. But regular meditation brings in light – first a trickle, then a few beams, then a steady flow – and with patience and faith this light will eventually illumine the darkness.
Practice regularly, have faith and be triumphant.