Question: How can one transcend the self-indulgence that interferes with duty?Sri Chinmoy: Let us not try to use such a big, illumined word as transcendence when we speak of self-indulgence. Self-indulgence needs severe punishment. Ego and ignorance we have to transcend; limitations we have to transcend. But self-indulgence occurs in the gross physical consciousness, and here we have to be extremely strict with ourselves. When a child does something wrong, the mother punishes him. We also have to feel that when we cherish self-indulgence, we are doing something that deserves immediate punishment. We have to know that self-indulgence is a kind of crime that we are committing against our soul.
You may say that by punishing yourself you do not illumine yourself. But we feel that there is something called light and something called night. Self-indulgence is night. First we have to separate ourselves from night. Then we can enter into a room that is lit to some extent. From there we can go into a room that has more light and then to a place that is fully illumined.