Question: What is your theory about life after death?

Sri Chinmoy: The other day I gave a talk at the University of Kent, Canterbury. The subject of my talk was, "Is Death the End?" My philosophy, or my personal experience, is that death is not the end. Death is just like an ordinary road; life is the eternal traveller. When life is tired and exhausted, life takes a short rest. Then, after the rest, life resumes its journey. Death is not the culmination. Death is just like a room where you take your rest. Some people take their rest for a longer time in a particular room. Some people take a short rest, then again they start working.

It is like a living room and a bedroom. In the living room we have to work. We have to show our friends that we are alive. But, in the bedroom, in the sleeping room, we take rest. There we don't have to show our friends that we are alive. There we take rest for four hours or six hours or eight hours. Similarly, each individual soul comes into the world and plays its role within the physical sheath. This sheath is composed of five elements. Now, when we leave the body, let us say, when the bird flies away from the cage, this physical sheath enters again into the physical world, composed of the five elements. The vital enters into the vital world. The mind enters into the mental world. And the soul goes back to its own region. Then, after taking a short rest or a long rest, whatever rest is required for the individual soul, the soul comes back into the world. It comes with the permission or approval of the Supreme, once again to fulfil the Mission of the Supreme in the world. So death is not the end. It is only a short rest.

From the spiritual point of view, on the strength of my own realisation, I wish to say that death is not the end. It can never be the end. It is only a temporary rest that we need at the present stage of evolution. There will come a time when we won't have to take that kind of rest, when man will have abundant peace, light and bliss, when man will be surcharged with divine qualities. At that time, this temporary rest will not be necessary for the fully developed souls.