Question: In the book Yoga and the Spiritual Life, you talk about the soul being the eternal instrument. You also speak about the individual soul being connected to the universal soul. Could you please say more about that?1

Sri Chinmoy: In America, usually we use the term "soul." But in the Indian philosophy we use the term "Self," or "Cosmic Self." One is the ordinary self; the other is the Absolute Highest, the Cosmic Self or the Transcendental Self. When I say that the soul is eternal, infinite and immortal, I am speaking about the Cosmic Self.

We have many, many divine beings, but one divine being is much more prominent than the others. That divine being we call the soul. That divine being has an assistant, which is called the psychic being. The Mother of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram spoke about the psychic being. The psychic being is like a child all the time. The soul grows, but the psychic being, which is the soul's representative, is like a little child. It is like a most, most beautiful baby that is only two or three years old, whereas the soul is like a youth of seventeen or eighteen years. Again, the Cosmic Self may be like a person who is fifty or sixty years old.

In general, we use the term "soul" when we speak about our inner existence. We know that there is something deep within us which is not the vital, not the mind and not the heart. But if we are speaking about the soul that is eternal, infinite and immortal, that has to be the Cosmic Self.


  1. OGT 24. Sri Chinmoy answered this question on 29 January 2000 in Brasilia, Brazil