Saturday, February 21, 2009

Karma and Intention

In a just universe, the Soul is never held responsible for any choice that it does not deliberately and voluntarily make. So, the Buddha pointed out that karma resulted, not from the results of our actions, but rather from our intentions. For the Soul can choose its intentions; it cannot "choose" the effects of its actions.

A good example is Jesus. Within a couple of centuries, his "followers," orthodox Christians, were cutting each others' throats. But Jesus received no karma for this, because he taught a message of Love, and he did so with a pure intention. For his intention was to plant and nourish the seeds of Love in the human heart. The fact that, in this complex cosmos, that did not work out, was not the responsibility of Jesus, and so, his Soul received no karma.

It is due to this principle that we do not have to live a "perfect" or flawless life to escape negative karma. We have only to live in pure intention.

This means that, if we intend to harm others, and end up helping them, we still receive negative karma. On the other hand, if we intend to help others, and our message is distorted by human nature, and people are hurt, we still receive the positive and beneficial "good" karma.

No karma results from the results of our actions. This is a serious misunderstanding we must clear up if we are to understand karma. For karma comes from only intentions, not just actions. And the Soul can always choose to live with good intentions, and thus, reap the rewards of good karma.

In this complex universe, there is actually very little that we can control; in fact, the entire mystical system of Taoism is founded on this single fact. But we are responsible for the one thing that we can control, and that is our intention.

We are not responsible for all of our own thoughtfeelings, for we cannot always control each and every microresponse. We are never responsible for the thoughts, words, or actions of others. We are not responsible for the physical world or its conditions; we are not responsible for even the condition of our local body. For the element of control is absent in every case, and where there is no control, there can be no responsibility.

Thus, the Soul is responsible for only its responses. (Easy to remember, for "responsibility" and "responses" share a root.)

Thus, the words of Jesus: "My load is easy, and My burden is light." The path of good moral judgment and good intention is much easier than that of "perfection." For, as imperfect human beings, the path of perfection is impossible for us. And, if karma resulted from the negative flowering of our behaviors, the situation would be hopeless.

Jesus made it plain that the cosmos, and the cosmic Mind behind it, are filled with forgiveness, mercy, and other aids for us. The cosmos is pro-human, giving us the benefit of every doubt; God always leans toward the side of mercy and forgiveness. The early Christian mystics wrote, "Mercy exults triumphantly over justice." So, the mercy of the One is even greater than Her perfect sense of karmic justice and balance. And we can all, and always, be very grateful for this.:)

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