Sunday, May 17, 2009

Does Wisdom Erase Karma?

There is an esoteric school of thought that states that the attainment of wisdom negates the need for karma; an intriguing notion to say the least. But how true is it with respect to the laws of karma and the subtle balance of enlightenment and universal truth? Most people understand karma as the law of cause and effect; what goes around comes around; you must reap what you sow; or for every action there is an opposite but equal reaction. All of these statements are true in their own right. When you dig deeper into the mechanism of karma and how this balancing energy interacts with our lives and choices however, the revelations can be quite intricate and nuanced. There are many schools of thought as to the process that karma uses in determining a person’s destiny or fate based on choices and decisions in one life to the next, and many religions certainly have unique perspectives on just how this works.

There are some spiritual schools of thought that state that there are over 150 different types of karma, all working in concert to determine the course of ones spiritual evolution. But for this discussion, we are only going to focus broadly on four types of karma. In the Hindu (Vedantic) tradition which we will use here, they are identified as:

1. Sanchita Karma – This is considered the sum total of all the accumulated actions that you have created in all of your incarnations. It contains the vast stores of cause and effect choices you have made throughout your conscious existence.

2. Praarabdha Karma – This is considered a subset of Sanchita Karma, but with emphasis on actions that were set in motion in this life and the carry over from the last life. For example, certain conditions you might be dealing with in this life that you might feel is an unfair challenge or burden may in fact be the balancing of actions taken from the last life.

3. Kriyamana Karma – This is considered in the nomenclature to be instant karma. Its immediate cause and effect relationship is helpful in that it allows the conscious observer to connect the dots between choices and outcomes. It is daily karma, and helps one navigate through the waters of enlightenment to determine if he/she is on the right course or not. This is the karma we are most consciously aware of.

4. Aagami Karma – In some respects this is a subset of Kriyamana karma, but with emphasis on the future. It is the direct effect of actions taken now that serve as the determinant for reactions experienced in the future. This is in constant flux by virtue of choices and possibilities. What you do now determines what happens next.

This last one is very interesting because in some respects, it can be considered the karmic off-ramp by which parallel universes of possibilities exist. All of our choices and options create endless possibilities of alternate reality; but this is another topic for another time.

It is important to put things in perspective here by stating that we are the sum total of all of our experiences. Who or what we are now has been determined by the roads we have traveled before and choices that we have made leading up to what we remember of our infinite divine origins, now. All of these types of karma serve to monitor, assess and quantify our existence and growth. It is the karmic record keeper of our existence in the inner and outer worlds.

This brings us back to our original question; can wisdom erase karma? The truth is that karma to a great extent can be corrected. Expansion of awareness provides an option as to whether or not one has to go through (or continue to go through) an experience or not. Having said this, it is also important to realize that actions set in motion must inevitably run their course, like the waters of a river must inevitably flow to the sea. But our thoughts and actions now, along with the wisdom gained from our experience paves the way for what will occur in our future. So in truth, wisdom and karma are necessary pieces of the same intricately complex puzzle.

So as we come to understand in our daily spiritual evolution, nothing is cut and dry. The edges of truth become more rounded and the relativity of existence becomes more apparent. Considering this in combination with an understanding and recognition of reincarnation (please see A to 1 blog, Life, Death and Reincarnation - Feb. 18th, 2009) and the awakening to our true existence becomes one of infinite conscious expansion. It’s all about remembering who and what we are in context to our divine mission and expansion of universal awareness. Our existence is but an intricate droplet of awareness and experience necessary to All That Is in Its desire to gain experiential knowledge and infinite expansion. We are It, It is us, and we are one. Source cannot experience anything outside of itself, for there is nothing outside of it; it is all. Our infinite cycles of life, death, reincarnation, and the karmic underpinnings that make up experiential recognition of omniscience already attained is what we’re here for. Pretty cool gig when you think about it, for we are all part of the whole. No experience necessary, for that’s what the job we’ve been given is all about.