Mr. George Riddell: Now, according to Yoga, when your physical being ceases to exist or when you do what we call "die", what happens to your spiritual self?

Sri Chinmoy: When we die, our physical body, the physical sheath enters into the physical world and is disintegrated by burial or cremation. The vital sheath enters into the vital world. The mind enters into the mental world. Then slowly the soul goes back to its own region. There, usually, it stays for a few years… it depends on the individual soul… according to its necessity and according to its preparation. Now after taking rest for some time, the soul feels that the time is ripe for it to enter into the world once again to fulfil its divine mission. God-realisation takes a good many incarnations.

Before the soul enters into creation, it tries to observe the environment, the situation and the family from above; which family it is going to accept. Then the soul goes to the Supreme for approval. Sometimes it gets this approval; sometimes the soul comes into creation merely with the knowledge of the Supreme. Again it starts its journey, it tries to unveil the inner Divinity and at the same time, it tries to manifest the Divine in the field of creation. So this is how the process of reincarnation continues.

We believe in reincarnation. We know that we have millions of desires to be fulfilled. At the age of four I had many desires; at the ages of ten, twenty, thirty, forty, sixty, these desires are not yet fulfilled. Neither we nor God will be satisfied unless we are fulfilled. First we get our fulfilment in satisfying our desires in the ordinary human life. Then we have our fulfilment in achieving our higher aspiration. Right now, we want money, name, fame and all this. Later we try to achieve Light, Peace and Bliss with our spiritual aspiration. In one incarnation, in one short span of life, we cannot do all that. We need many incarnations. That is why, according to our Indian philosophy, reincarnation is a positive fact and a positive truth.

Sri Chinmoy, AUM — Vol. 3, No. 9,10, Apr. — 27 May 1968, Aum Centre Press -- Santurce, P.R., 1968