- Religion and Philosophy»
- Non-denominational Beliefs & Practices
Reincarnation: Living to Learn about Unconditional Love
Karma: Soul Education Not Retributive Justice
Karma is not retributive justice as many Westerners have speculated. Karma is much more invloved. It is an aspect of the soul's overall educational experience. It is not linear. It is multidimensional in nature. The author, Thanissaro Bhikkhu (http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/thanissaro/karma.html) says, "Buddhists, however, saw that karma acts in multiple feedback loops, with the present moment being shaped both by past and by present actions; present actions shape not only the future but also the present. Furthermore, present actions need not be determined by past actions. In other words, there is free will, although its range is somewhat dictated by the past. The nature of this freedom is symbolized in an image used by the early Buddhists: flowing water. Sometimes the flow from the past is so strong that little can be done except to stand fast, but there are also times when the flow is gentle enough to be diverted in almost any direction."
Our soul is infinite. Our body (at this stage in the development of life) is not. Our personality, including our ego, is not. Our soul entered the earth plane to learn---to be educated. The earth has much to offer, especially through our senses. But, even that has been misconstrued over time for our senses are not relegated to the five physcial senses. There are many more sensitivities to activate and use through self-awareness.
In keeping with the Buddhist's perspective, the personality does leave a little residue, for lack of a better word, on the soul that hints of the lessons learned and not learned in an incarnational lifetime. Edgar Cayce, the Sleeping Prophet, said God/Source/Divinity created mankind with free will. Afterward, the Divine created a "built-in" compassion system in all humans to thrawt chaos and total rebellion. The premise was to education each soul through a sort of grand scale empathy and sympathy. "What goes around comes around." Each human learns what it feels like to do anything he/she does to another.
The Golden Rule subverts negative karma and thus it is the most effective path to live without attracting pain and suffering that attaches itself to the soul's journey.
Our Childhood, Our Karmic Lesson
It is my belief that our incarnational karma manifests as our childhoods. Children cannot choose their parents once they are on the earth plane; however, all soul's choose their overall soul contract prior to incarnation---we may or may not select the actually souls that will travel with us throughout time. Carolyn Myss, medical intuitive and scholar, has done significant studies about soul development. She was raised by nuns who engrained her spiritual pursuits by leading through example. She has a book out called Soul Contracts. The information in the book is quite interesting and informative.
I believe that children endure the lives they were given because of their karmic bank account. All the pluses and minuses go into the account and a new incarnation is formed. Lives are complex. One cannot assume that because he/she is have great difficulties in this incarnation that he/she was evil in the life prior. Karma is wrapped in Source's grace ALWAYS. We may encounter pain and suffering in order to grow and develop spirituality. For example, I had a hideous job experience once. The position lasted for years and I was in a bind where I could not get out of it. It was miserable day in and day out. But I know that I learned some fantastic things through that experience. If I assumed that I was wrong somewhere along the way, I would lose the gift.
Karma creates a childhood that sets up the new level of our soul's growth. Every challenge, restraint, belief, joy, abuse, healing, etc. that we have defines our new identity while encompassing the residue from other lives that penetrate our experiences. We experience these penetrations because we are processing the whole of life---One Love---connection and love with all that IS. And at different moments we intersect, expand, and realize our oneness---our infinite unconditional, perfection in Love.
Children have limited choices. Yet despite this, God is ever present with each and every one of them. The Divine guides and prompts daily to help each child grow without karmic debt impeding that growth. Spiritual education is a sympathetic source to spiritual well-being. Some children are dedicated or Christened to pave a path early on. Some are not. The Divine knows the contract and sees it through from incarnation to incarnation. Yet, free will is always competing with God's grace and God will only intervene when we ask the Divine to touch our lives---or when God must redirect the energy on the earth plane for the greater good. Occassionally God will intervene because of grace alone.
After childhood, or the age of consent (perhaps 13 or so in some cultures), the "training wheels of karma" are replaced with free will. It doesn't happen immediately necessarily. Free will is a complex function of human kind. We must learn to use it AND align it to God's Divine will. Many religions teach, "Not my will but yours be done." This, when used out of conext, can be damaging to the solar plexus chakra. Every person is expected to learn how to use his/her will in conjunction with Source's. It is all part of the development of the human body/mind/spirit and soul. But humans have free will and they may delay the growth process by refusing to exercise their will effectively.
Negative karma can be eradicated. Sometimes it takes going through an experience or learning how to live differently to do so. Sometimes it is more involved. It is best to work on living by the Golden Rule whenever one deems it possible.
Reincarnation Beyond the Theories
For me, reincarnation is not theoretical. I have friends that I have known separate from this life. The richness of our knowing is deep. Instantly "gravitational" like pulls connected us. We knew one another even before we met. The energies were palpable.
As I grow in One Love, I find myself intertwined physically and spiritually with everyone I
meet. I get flashes of incidences throughout time. It started with images about me and expanded to others. It is sort of like seeing but inside of me rather than through my eyes---similar to a dream.
I have felt conflict come into my awareness and then resolve. i have had other situations play out over years or months.
My relationships have developed so that I pick up on connections quite readily at this point. Reincarnation is not an idea. It is real within my paradigm and the paradigms of my friends. Karma guides me. It shows me the challenges in this life and helps me to be empowered during such challenges. It defines my choices---my free will and makes the Divine accessible as well.
Karma shows me the incarnations that inevitably lead me unconditional Love---Heaven.