One of the things that I like the most is questions. This post is the answer to the following "Could you write about karma and lila? Is there a pre-fixed destiny?" Very interesting subject nowadays but let's take it easy. First, we must give a definition to each thing.
According to the Yoga traditions, our soul is eternal. It has existed since the beginnings of time and it has assumed different forms throughout. Its existence is cyclical because it follows the eternal process of birth-life-death-rebirth and this process happens according to the law of cause and effect. Now is when the word karma comes into the picture. Karma means action and we tend to use this word referring to all the actions and effects that our Self has experienced until now. Each of those actions is a seed that has the possibility of maturing (or not) depending of the circumstances that surround it. Within this context, we are talking about the past in its broader sense: it includes the life that we are enjoying in this very moment as well as all our past lives (remember that reincarnation lies at the philosophical foundation of Indian spirituality).
Lila is the divine play and it also influences our destiny. I might say that it is the element in life that creates a sudden change, that creates a shift in our personal story or a quantum leap in our evolution.
Let's consider a simple example. Let's say that you have a lifetime friend that you have not seen in a really long time. You used to live in the same neighborhood, you went to schools that were really close to each other, later on you happened to meet in college, etc. After that your paths took different roads and for many years each one of you had her own life going on. But all of the sudden, your friend was browsing different social networks with no intention of looking for you and your profile popped up in her screen. Surprise! She decided to send you a message. Well, all that you had in common is due to your karma, to the past actions of your souls. The specific fact about your profile coming up in her screen of her awareness is lila.
Many things in life happen in such way: karma, karma, karma, karma, LILA, karma, karma. Even that spark of divine play that seems to infuse a radical shift in ¬†your destiny is part of the currents of karma because it is going to generate other consequences as well. However, be aware! this doesn't mean that the Gods are playing dice with our lives! Sometimes it is not easy to see the relationship between things and the causes that created them. Let's say that there is a cause for everything, even when some times ¬†seems to be buried in the past.
Our present reality is the result of our personal trajectory and the effects of the collective karma. We are where we are because of all that we have lived until now. At the same time, the future will be the result of our present (and past). It works this way... like it or not. I am talking about a universal law here. Can you do something about it? YES. There is a balance between controlling existence through the understanding and application of the law of cause and effect -karma- and flowing with the mystery of the Supreme -lila-.¬†Many seeds mature ¬†in a way that it is easy to see this process; others do it as if everything was random. the later ones we might call syncronicity. Games of destiny that, for a reason that our mind can not really grasp, fill our lives with mystery and magic.
It is the whole of our actions, the awareness behind them and the intention supporting¬†them what makes some bloom and others not. The key is in learning how the laws of karma work and in not missing the ways of lila.
Yes, there is destiny. When you don't know how it works you make it unchangeable and fixed but, when you understand the mechanics behind it, it is possible to transform it. Since this post is already long, next week I will be writing about how to transform your past (yes, you can!) and about how to take care of the seeds properly so you can change your future path without relying on random chance.
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