Q: WITH ALL MY EFFORTS I cannot control my mind. It is so restless.
A: NO DOUBT, to control the mind is difficult, but it is not impossible. By regular practice it can be quietened and brought under restraint. Therefore perform a little Japa (repeat a holy word or mantra) and meditation every day without fail. The nature of the mind is to run away like a restless boy. Drag it back whenever it seeks to go out, and immerse it in the thought of God. If you can continue this for two or three years, you will experience a joy unspeakable. Your mind will be calm and docile. In the beginning, meditation proves very difficult and dry. But if you force yourself, as in taking a medicine, you will find in it a perennial source of joy, pure and unalloyed. How hard students work to pass their examination! God-realization is far easier than that. If you call upon Him with sincerity and an unperturbed mind, He will surely reveal Himself to you.
Q. ALL THIS IS NO DOUBT encouraging! But at times when I think that with so much meditation I have not made any progress, everything seems vain, and a horrible despondency overwhelms me. I despair of success. What shall I do then?
A: NEVER DESPAIR. There is no cause for despair. The law of karma is irresistible. If you do a good deed, it will produce a good effect. With sincere devotion or without it, in any way you like, if you chant the holy name of God, it will always bring you good. The result is inevitable. Therefore, shake off all your despair and push on in the struggle with strictness and regularity. Then peace will surely come and dwell in you. Through meditation, not only does the mind become peaceful but the body also improves and diseases lessen. Therefore, even from the standpoint of good health one should practice meditation.