Question: How can we best tell the difference between true humility and when our ego thinks it is humble?

Sri Chinmoy: How can you know whether it is true humility or false humility? When it is true humility, you will get tremendous joy and you will feel that the person to whom you are bowing down is in no way superior to you. It is only that you see the Supreme in him. That is why you are bowing down to him. And while you are bowing down, you have to feel that it is like your hand touching your feet. You should not be ashamed of your hand touching your feet.

Now there are two ways. One way is touching your feet. We are not ashamed of touching our feet, no. But if we feel that the feet are something inferior to the hand, naturally we will feel that it is beneath the dignity of our hand to touch our feet. But when it is necessary, our hands do touch our feet.

Now, in touching my feet, I am getting joy. It is my foot; part of my body is touching another part. There is nothing wrong in it. I am getting joy. But when it is false humility, the moment you express your false humility, there is no joy at all, no joy. You don't get joy in your heart, you don't get joy in your mind. When you are offering insincere humility, your mind will be cursing you because it is all false. The mind will not get any joy and the vital will mock at you saying, "What kind of humility are you showing?" But when it is true humility, the physical, vital, mental, heart and soul all will participate in your action. And at that time you get tremendous joy. When you get real joy, it is true humility. When you are getting no joy or you are criticised by your own inner being or the members of your family, the vital, the mind and the physical, then you can rest assured that it is false humility.