A while back I saw a self-rating system for artists. It asked painters to rate themselves on a scale from 1–5 for things such as composition, use of color, drawing, and two or three other areas important to a successful painting. The purpose was to clearly identify areas of weakness so an artist could address and improve them.

How to Self Rate Your Spiritual Life, How Am I Doing SpirituallyIt occurred to me that this could be helpful in our spiritual life too. Here is a short list of areas that are important to success in our spiritual quest. Rate yourself from 1–5 in each area as a way to identify what to work on. You might want to personalize this list by eliminating some items or adding others.

__________         Meditation length

__________         Meditation depth

__________         Regularity of Energization and other techniques

__________         Devotion (active love for God and Gurus)

_________           Practicing the presence of God

_________           Joy level

_________           Aligning your daily life with your spiritual goals

I have purposely left the areas a little fuzzy so that you can define them yourself. After all, this is your spiritual life and this exercise is meant only to help you figure out where you might want to focus your attention.

A final note: There is always the danger, when doing an exercise such as this, of awakening the demon of guilt. Please repeat after me, “Guilt is a waste of time, guilt is a waste of time.”

God is dreaming this life through us and knows we are not yet perfect. We won’t surprise Him if we find that there are things we need to improve. The Masters don’t judge us, although we may project our own self-judgment on them. They are like the sun, always shining light and warmth. If we stay in the dark, they will just keep shining and waiting until we get tired of the shadows.

In joy,
Nayaswami Jyotish


  1. mm

    Again, a dear and brilliant post that just tickles in the reading of it! I’m going to work on my answers immediately and customize it accordingly. The final paragraph is very powerful. Thank you, Nayaswami Jyotish. . .

  2. Absolutely wonderful. I started this practice of analysis over 50 years ago, and it has immensely helped me.
    “Do your best and leave the rest to God” Paramhansa Yoganda
    “The Great Spirit
    Has given every soul a gift,
    Is giving every soul guidance,
    Will give every soul grace”
    from my book, The Cosmic Religion: Love God, Love Neighbor, Love Self.

  3. Thank you, Jyotish. Good to hear your advice and support for our spiritual work. And what you wrote was done so sweetly, it touched my heart. Many blessings to you and Devi

  4. Dear Jyotishji,
    These weekly letters are so very helpful.
    Its wonderful to have you both in India.

  5. I hope all is well with you and Devi in India :)
    To add emphasis to the quote/truth, “guilt is a waste of time”, another deep truth: “Forget the past! The vanished lives of all men are dark with many shames. Human conduct is ever unreliable until anchored in the Divine. Everything in future will improve if you are making a spiritual effort now!” -Sri Yukteswarji
    Joy to you friends

  6. Thank you Jyotish!
    “Then praise is sweet, and blame a dream, when Thy song flows through me, My Lord when thy song flows through me”
    P. Yogananda

  7. My stumbling block with this is that it seems virtually impossible to come up with answers to any of these questions that feel at all objective. Am I rating myself as compared with some most highly advanced devotee, insofar as I sketchily understand him/her? As compared with the “average” devotee? Compared with the full range of my behavior as I have so far experienced it? Taking into consideration my current circumstances–or not?
    I think I would trust almost anyone else’s rating of me more than I would my own rating of myself! How can we really know where we stand until we have reached the top?

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