Question: Why does God choose a particular soul to be an Avatar?

Sri Chinmoy: God sees the soul. He has given capacity to the soul so that everybody has the possibility of working for Him. Now those souls who are meant to be Avatars are, fortunately or unfortunately, of a different mould from ordinary souls. Everybody will eventually become spiritually realised; everybody has to realise God. But we see that here on earth there is a commander-in-chief with his soldiers. The soldiers fight together to bring about victory. There are many soldiers, but the commander is only one. Today there may be one commander and tomorrow another, but at one time there will be only one commander. All the soldiers cannot be leaders at once. Always the soldiers work together and under the guidance of the commander they win the victory.

Now how does God choose? God chooses in this way: God has the vision; His is the eternal vision that sees the possibility. He not only sees but also gives the possibility. He creates the possibility in some souls to represent Him. God feels that He wants to create some paintings. He paints in different ways in order to please Himself more. That is to say, one painting He wants to be excellent and charming. He feels that if the other ones are just neat and nice, He will be satisfied. But with one of His creations He wants to reach the Highest. It is as if He has kept in front of Him a few ladders. He tells one of His children, "I want you to climb up this ladder. This is the highest." And to another, "Here is a ladder which is a little shorter. If you can climb this much I will be happy with you." And to a third person he gives an even shorter ladder and says, "If you climb up this much, I will be very happy."

God is equally satisfied with the Avatar if the Avatar is extremely devoted and surrendered and with the disciple of the Avatar if he is extremely devoted and surrendered. In a play somebody may take the role of the king and someone else becomes a servant. If the king plays his role most satisfactorily, the audience is satisfied. Again, if the servant plays his role well, the audience is so happy that it admires him like anything. At that time, the audience will never say, "Oh, he is playing the role of a servant; even though he played extremely well, we won't admire him." Instead, they will see it as a play, with the actors playing their respective roles. In God's universal Creation, God wants everybody to take part. One will be a king, one will be a servant, one will be a minister. If you play your role well and I play mine, God is satisfied. This is how God maintains His cosmic Game. Here each one of us represents God in a different form while playing in the cosmic Game. God will be satisfied, God is satisfied with each and everyone, provided he or she does her share. They need not be an Avatar. If the seeker becomes unconditionally surrendered to God, God will be pleased.