Question: Does outer success ever help our inner perfection?

Sri Chinmoy: You have to know what actually happens as a result of the success. If outer success glorifies you, if it aggrandises and feeds your ego, if it gives you the feeling that everybody is touching your feet, and now you will be able to lord it over the world and dominate the world, then it cannot help in your perfection at all. It is useless. But if you take the experience as a rung of a ladder, and feel that there is again another rung and another; if you feel that there is no end to the rungs of the spiritual ladder, then naturally this success will help your inner perfection.

What you call success actually is an inner experience God is having in and through you. If you see outer success in this way, then you know that the experience is bound to help you in your inner, spiritual life, for God feels that from this experience He will be able to have inner perfection. But success which is a divine experience is not the kind of experience which makes you feel disproportionately great and superior to others. If you have that kind of feeling, then your outer success is a terrible failure and a great obstacle to your inner perfection.