Question: How do we know if our actions are ego-motivated or whether we are following the message of our soul?
Sri Chinmoy: We can easily know whether it is the soul operating in and through us or whether it is ego operating in and through us. If we execute the message of the ego, consciously or unconsciously it will bind us; whereas, if we execute the message of the soul, immediately we will feel a sense of freedom. At that time we are not bound by our action; only we know we have done the right thing.
If we carry out the commands of the soul, then no matter what the result is — whether success or failure — we will be satisfied. When the soul asks us to do something, we will not be attached to the result. Even if the result comes in the form of failure, we will be satisfied. This is because in divine action, our attitude is of paramount importance, not the result. Our attitude should be one of giving. We will only give, give and give — according to our soulful capacity. Then it is up to God whether He blesses us with success or failure, whether He gives us Peace, Light and Bliss or not. If we feel this way, we are bound to be satisfied with our actions.
But if ego has compelled us to do something, if the ego’s desire is not fulfilled, we will be disappointed and upset. Even if our ego-centred desire is fulfilled, we will not feel a sense of abiding satisfaction; for immediately another desire will come into existence. Our ego-hunger will increase and we will say, “No, it is not enough.”