Question: What is the purpose of reincarnation?

Sri Chinmoy: In one lifetime on earth we cannot do everything. If we remain in the world of desire, we will never be able to fulfil ourselves. As a child we have millions of desires, and even when we reach the age of seventy we see that a particular desire has not been fulfilled and we feel miserable. The more desires we fulfil, the more desires we get. We want one house, then two houses; one car, then two cars, and so forth. There is no limit to it. When our desires are fulfilled, we find that we are still dissatisfied. Then we become the victims of other desires or larger desires.

Now our dearest is God. Do you think that God will allow us to remain unfulfilled? No! God’s very purpose is to fulfil each individual, and Himself through us. He will have us come back again and again to fulfil our desires. If someone is eager to become a millionaire in this incarnation, and at the end of his journey he sees that he has not become a millionaire, then if his desire is really intense, he will have to keep coming back until he really becomes a millionaire. But by becoming a millionaire, he will see that he still remains a beggar in one sense, for he will have no peace of mind. But if he enters into the world of aspiration, he may have no money, but he will have peace of mind, and this is the real wealth.

If we go through desire, we see that there is an endless procession of desires. But if we go through aspiration, we see the whole and eventually we become the whole. We know that if we can realise God, inside God we will find everything, for everything exists inside God. So eventually we leave the world of desire and enter into the world of aspiration. There we diminish our desires and think more of Peace, Bliss, divine Love. In order to get a little Peace, a drop of nectar, it may take years and years. But a spiritual person is ready to wait indefinitely for God’s Hour to fulfil his aspiration. And his aspiration to achieve this Peace, Light and Bliss will not go in vain.

Now if our aim is to enter into the Highest, the Infinite, the Eternal, the Immortal, then naturally one short span of life is not enough. But again, God will not allow us to remain unfulfilled. In our next incarnation we will continue our journey. We are eternal travellers. We have to continue, continue until we reach our Goal. Perfection is the aim of each aspirant. We are trying to perfect ourselves in an imperfect world. And this perfect perfection we can never have in one life.

It is through aspiration and evolution that the soul develops the full possibility of realising the Highest and fulfilling the Divine. First the physical, the human in us, has to aspire to become one with the Divine in us — the soul. Right now the body does not listen to the dictates of the soul; that is to say, the physical mind revolts. The workings of the physical mind cover up the soul’s divine purpose, and the soul cannot come to the fore. At the present stage of evolution, most people are unconscious and do not know what the soul wants or needs. They have desires, anxiety over success, intensity and excitement. All these stem from the vital or ego, whereas anything done with the soul’s consciousness is always full of joy. At times we may hear the dictates of the soul, or the message of our conscience, but still we do not do or say the right thing. No, the physical mind is weak; we are weak. If we start aspiring, however, with the mind, and then go beyond the mind to the soul, we can easily hear and also obey the dictates of the soul.

A day will come when the soul is in a position to exercise its divine qualities and make the body, mind and heart feel that they need their self-discovery. The physical and the vital will consciously want to listen to the soul and be instructed and guided by the soul. Then, here in the physical, we will have an immortalised nature, an immortal life, for our soul will have become totally and inseparably one with the Divine on earth. At that time we will have to offer our inner wealth to the world at large and manifest our soul’s potentialities. It very often happens that realisation can take place in one incarnation, but for manifestation the soul has to come down again and again to earth. Unless and until we reveal and manifest the highest Divinity within us, our game is not over. We have not finished our role in the cosmic Drama, so we have to come back into the world again and again. But in the march of evolution, in one of its incarnations, the soul will fully realise and fully manifest the Divine in the physical and through the physical.