CHAPTER II - Karmic Law - The
Spiritual Law of Cause and Effect
KEY TO HAPPINESS
Be not deceived; God is not mocked:
for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. - Gal. vi. 7.
T here are many
persons who consider life to be like a game of cards, the player having at birth dealt out to
him haphazard advantages and disadvantages, such as position, fortune,
good or bad health, which are modified later on by luck and the
individual's exertions. They consider the practical and successful man
is he who, by skilful use of these cards, pushes himself to the front in
the battle of life, and attains the largest amount of wealth and
The student of
psychic law and spiritual philosophy takes a different view. He looks on
this earth as a great school existing not for the acquirement of riches,
but for the training of immortal spirits, who are clothed in human form
during earth life. He knows that the world is a school in which there
are a variety of courses of training, the pupil being placed at birth in
that class for which his previous existence, actions, and capabilities
fit him, in fact in the position where he will get the lessons he is
most in need of for his spiritual progress. And that in addition to the
human there are also sub-human classes and courses of training, where
spirit, less evolved, is slowly educated, the object of all being spiritual evolution to higher
states of consciousness.
Science tells us
that the earth has evolved in the course of long ages from a ball of
fire mist to its present solid condition; that the origin of vegetation
and animal life can be traced back to the elementary state called protoplasm. As Man had no
hand in the evolution from that state, it is clear that it proceeds under
Divine laws. In addition to this immense Physical evolution advancing
under physical laws there has been, and still continues, a spiritual
evolution or unfoldment under the spiritual laws that govern the
progress of improvement in all forms of life, not only in the mineral,
vegetable and animal kingdoms, but also in the higher race of spirits
now occupying human bodies. They have
long ages, so naturally there is a great difference in the spiritual
advancement made by individuals, who are therefore now born in this
world, with different capacities and talents, to continue their
of these laws broadens one's views of life, and one ceases to believe in
Luck, Chance, or Accident, because even in well-arranged human
business such things are not permitted. How much less could they occur
in a world designed, organized and ruled by the All-wise Creator. It is
in truth a perfect world, little as it may sometimes so appear to
superficial observers, who seeing plagues, explosions and other
disasters, ignorantly exclaim, Accident, or Chance.
A few years ago
one often came across the expression Visitation of God in connection
with death, when the cause was obscure; now with more knowledge we
should in similar instances give some scientific explanation; the
student of Spiritual Laws, with still greater knowledge, would believe
that the real cause of death was that it was the Karma of the individual
concerned to die in that particular manner (Karma, or the Law of Cause
and Effect, being one of the Divine laws of the great School in which
In discussing this
subject, I propose to make some comparisons between the well-known
natural laws and the spiritual laws, including Karmic Law, so little understood in
The word Karma is
taken from the Sanskrit, and literally translated means action. It is
used in our language in two senses, one when we speak of a personal
Karma, referring to events that have happened or are going to happen to
an individual and which are due to Karmic law; the other is when we speak of the
Law of Karma, a spiritual law of Cause and Effect, which operates so that
there is no such thing as Luck or Chance or Accident. Everything that
happens occurs only in accordance with such law, and is the inevitable
outcome of previous causes, this world being ruled by Divine justice.
That all suffering, and what is commonly called Luck and
Accident, are the result of actions in the past all selfish or unkind
actions being repaid sooner or later to the uttermost farthing.
the working of this Law, one must bear in mind the object of human life,
viz., the training of immortal spirits.
Now we do not
educate a child by making everything pleasant and easy from the child's
point of view. On the contrary, it is arranged that the breaking of
rules causes punishment, and we know that it is kinder that the child
should suffer and so gain knowledge and the good sense not again to go
against the regulations.
seeing only the punishment, might say, How unjust! or What bad
luck! but that would only be said from seeing the result, without being
aware of the child's previous actions, which, being contrary to the rules of the
School, inevitably led up to the punishment.
In Scripture this
law is summed up in the sentence, Whatsoever, a man soweth that
shall he reap. All kindly and unselfish actions produce good Karma, not
always immediately, but quite certainly; all unkind and selfish acts
store up bad Karma; both sorts, good and bad, being repaid at some time or other, not
necessarily in the same kind of events; for instance, if to-day we ill-treat
some one, it does not mean that at some future date we shall receive
exactly similar ill-treatment, but that the quantity of pain or pleasure
we meted out will be meted to ourselves. In the words of Sir Edwin
It knows not wrath
nor pardon, utter true
Its measures mete, its
faultless balance weighs.
Times are as naught,
to-morrow it will judge,
Or after many days.
By this the
slayer's knife did stab himself;
The unjust judge hath lost his own defender;
The false tongue dooms its
lie, the creeping thief
And spoiler rob to render.
Such is the Law that moves to
Which none at last can turn aside or stay;
The heart of it is Love, the end of it
Is Peace and Consummation sweet. Obey!
All actions cause as it were a
Karmic debt, which may be paid to us either in a lump sum, or perhaps in
small amounts spread over a period of years. Kindly acts for many years
might be repaid in some piece of good fortune, or sudden recovery from
illness, or perhaps in freedom from small worries, or in good general
health. The Karma of cruelty might necessitate the loss of a
limb or constant ill-health. The important point is that all misfortune,
ill-health, and unhappiness is caused by the working of laws set in
motion of our own free will, by our own thoughts and actions, and that
an end can be put to all this misery when we
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Karma can be created which will balance against old Karma of the
If this were the
whole of the Law, it might produce the feeling that we are in the grip of fatality; but it
is not so, there is the good Karma due to unselfishness and kind thought and
action to be considered, for by a most merciful arrangement the Karma
due to these is greater than the Karma due to their opposite because
Good, acting in the finer matter of higher planes, has more effect than
Evil, which works in heavier and lower planes.
We know from
science that if a projectile is discharged from a properly aimed gun, it
will hit the object aimed at, unless in the interval between leaving the
gun and reaching the target, it is interfered with by some new force,
such for instance as another projectile striking and diverting or perhaps stopping it altogether.
Or, to take another example, if a stone is thrown straight up in the air,
then, after an interval (provided it is not acted on by some fresh forces) it
will return and strike the thrower with exactly the same amount of force as
was expended in throwing it. One of the laws of Science states that
action and reaction are equal and opposite.
spiritual cause and effect of selfish or unkind thought and action is
equal and opposite. For any action causing pain to others entails that
an equal amount of pain will return to the actor at some future time,
unless in the interval other forces are brought to bear on the matter.
Suppose that after
wrong action, the man sees his error, and does all in his power to
mitigate the wrong, then the bad Karma, due to the original act, would
be very much modified if
not entirely counterbalanced by good Karma of the
All actions, then,
are the cause of our happiness or misfortunes and unhappiness, the Karma generated
being placed to our account, totalled up and paid off, either in the
present or in some future life. When this occurs in the present life, the
world looking on, and seeing only the final act of the transaction, says, What
luck! How fortunate is so-and-so! or He is born lucky! Now any
one who understands the law can, by right action, to a great extent
arrange his future. It is true he does not know what bad Karma, due to
the past, still remains recorded against him, but he can make sure that
he generates no fresh bad Karma in the present. When sickness or suffering
reaches him he knows that he is but
paying some old
debt, and that if he is patient under the trouble, that particular
account may be finally settled.
revolutions, it always happens that numbers of innocent people living
harmless lives are suddenly seized, ill-treated, and cruelly put to
death. Again, in legal records there are instances where it has been
discovered, too late, that innocent persons had been condemned and
executed for crimes which they had not committed, and though this sort
of blunder is less common in the present day than formerly, yet apparent
injustice frequently happens in our ordinary disasters, as, for
instance, when in a railway smash people are pinned in the wreckage
and slowly burned to death,
in collisions at sea, in fires, etc.
Now all these
cases must either be accident, or events happening in accordance with
God's will. If accident, then one is forced to believe that the
All-Wise, All-Loving, All-Powerful Creator does not care, or does not
always trouble to rescue individuals involved in catastrophes which one
can only suppose He had not foreseen, or was powerless to prevent. Is it
not a relief to turn from such ideas to the logical and reasonable explanation offered by
consideration of Karmic law?
The tangle at once
straightens out, and one realizes that the victims under consideration
were foredoomed to their violent deaths, not by an unjust or careless
God, but by their own individual deeds, and by the way they had in the
past ill-treated or caused suffering to others. Retribution, certainly;
but justice acting under a Divine law which makes no mistakes in its
awards or punishments.
It might now be
said, if everything that happens is due to Karma, then there is no need
to take any precautions for safety in everyday life, for one might
fearlessly walk into the midst of the traffic in a London street or
uselessly expose oneself to bullets in battle; then if it was not one's
Karma to die a sudden death
or to receive injury, one could not be hurt; if on the other hand death or injury
were owing, it would be as well to get it over and have done with it.
Such ideas would be erroneous in the
extreme. It must be remembered that although we are continually making
Karma by our actions, yet the totalling up of accounts, and deciding
when and how reward or punishment shall be meted out, is not in our
hands, but arranged by Higher Powers. To carelessly walk into traffic or
otherwise tempt Providence (as the phrase goes) might provoke a small
cycle of Karma, the cause, the idiotic action, the effect - death or
Any one who
behaved in such manner would justly be said to be a fool, richly
deserving all that happened to him. But if before crossing the street,
the usual common-sense precautions had been taken, and then injury or
death occurred, that would be Karma.
understanding of this law produces a very tranquil state of mind,
because it is realized that although our duty under all circumstances is
to perform Right action regardless of personal risk or inconvenience,
we must remember that the result of such action is not in our hands.
The Law is
absolutely just and is administered by higher powers; if therefore our unselfish endeavours
to assist others do not meet with success, we should not be discouraged.
Our action in rendering help to the best of our ability was absolutely
right and our duty, but it may be that the individual we tried to help
has some bad Karma the working out of which necessitates his
present misfortunes, or even loss of life.
There is no need,
however, to strain oneself in considering whether or not to give help,
for fear of interfering with the Karma of others. Do what you feel to be
right, and leave the result to God.
Viewed by the
illumination of the Divine Law of Karma, several orders recorded in the
New Testament which are generally ignored as not practicable, become
It is written (St.
Matthew v. 44, 45, and St. Luke vi. 27, 31) Love your enemies, Pray
for them that persecute you, As ye would that men should do to you,
do ye also to them likewise. Directions quite contrary to our methods
of dealing with our fellowman. But in view of the Law of Karma, what
wiser advice could be given; for going to war with your enemy must be the greatest folly,
since by the working of the Law, all the pain and misery so caused will be
recorded and will in due course return home to those responsible for
So it is wiser to
find some other way out of difficulties, no easy task, but becoming more and more possible as
Federation, Arbitration, and other common-sense methods are seen to be
preferable to the expense and discomfort of killing, and so come
into more general use.
Now the ordinary
man or woman may think, I personally have nothing to do with the great
questions on which hang the decisions of Peace or War. But is not this
an error? for it is the thought of the people that influences the
leaders, and so directs their decisions; therefore it is
one wishes to avoid making bad Karma, to have clear and good thought on
This spiritual law
of Karma is one of Nature's laws; it is one of the laws made by the
Creator, just as He has made the physical laws - such as the laws ruling the forces of
electricity, fire, or water. So when one is asked, How do you know of this law?
What is your authority? How do you know if it is true? the answer is much the same as if
one were asked the same
questions about some physical law, when the reply would be that the law
was discovered by men who gave time and study to the subject. To
investigate, you can either go to some place where the science is
studied and put to practical use, or you can learn from books or teachers and experiment for
yourself. If, in your experiments, the result always comes out in harmony with the
law, you may feel assured that the Law is truly stated: In the same way
the truth of this spiritual law can be tested.
It is often stated
that spiritual matters are mysteries which are not intended for comprehension, and so
they are not studied. It is not many years ago that the same was said
about physical science-that we are not intended to understand physical
laws, and that it is wrong to pry into the secrets of Nature. Many,
therefore, looked on scientific investigation as a dangerous
playing with the forces of evil.
science has gone ahead, and the idea that we must not investigate is now
seen to be nonsense. So also it will be with spiritual science. In the
East the subject has been studied for centuries, where there is a mass
of most interesting information, much of which can be tested by
observation; in this way various spiritual laws have been formulated.
The law of Karma is one of these.
We must remember
that when a scientific man speaks of a scientific law, he does not mean
that our knowledge of the law is perfect. He accepts it provisionally,
always on the look-out to modify it when new facts are discovered.
definitions are only human attempts to put into words as accurate a
statement as possible of what we have discovered about certain laws, and
they are always open to revision. For instance, the laws of Chemistry
have been modified since the discovery of radium, and, as our knowledge increases,
scientific laws are brought nearer and nearer to the truth. So with the law
of Karma, as knowledge increases, modifications in the details of our
human interpretation of it will occur.
It is very
important to understand
natural laws, because
understanding brings power and safety in everyday life, as well as
increased confidence and comfort. Instead of fearing the forces of
Nature, they are diverted to our convenience, and we utilize these
forces, as in steam power, motors, electric light. Knowledge gives
power. Ignorant people fear the forces of Nature. Savages, seeing an
eclipse, are terrified, and attribute the phenomenon to the action of
evil spirits; but educated people have no fear, because they understand
the cause and the law which is manifested.
So with Karmic
law: ignorant people live in a state of fear; they fear accident, bad
luck, misfortune to themselves, relations or friends, and when these
things happen consider them inexplicable - a bolt from the blue.
In the leading
article of a daily newspaper, speaking of the Titanic disaster, it was
said, The mystery of evil
is a problem that has exercised vainly the greatest intellects of
all ages. . . . In despair, we moderns have mostly given up the puzzle.
This is how people speak and think in a country which, though well
versed in natural law, is ignorant of spiritual laws. Those, on the
contrary, who have studied Karmic law understand and make use of their
knowledge to avoid setting in motion the forces that produce disasters.
The questions now
come: What is the good of these laws? What their purpose? Why
has the All-loving Creator placed us here surrounded by, but ignorant
of, the workings of such dangerous forces? Let me take an analogy from
ship life in the Navy.
In a ship there
are many rules and regulations. A youngster joins and finds himself
amongst strange and unfamiliar surroundings; he is ignorant of ship
discipline, until he learns it by the bitter experience of running up
against the rules and regulations. The object of the regulations is not
to provide the officers with the opportunity of serving out punishments,
but to make these young blue-jackets think before acting, and so train
them into useful seamen.
The objects of the
laws of Nature and of Karma are not that the higher powers may find
pleasure in punishing people, but to make us think, and to train and
evolve our spiritual faculties. What is the best way to train any one in
any branch of life? Is it a good plan for the teacher to stand near the
pupil and continually say: Do not do this, Do not do that, and to
be for ever correcting him in time to prevent mistakes? Practical people
know that such a scheme is useless, because the pupil
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gets into the
habit of relying on the warnings, and never learns to think and act on
his own initiative.
elucidates the point. In a ship where the executive officer interferes
continually with the details of every one's work, the result is that
after a while no one in the ship will act on his own responsibility, and
she becomes slack, inefficient and useless for training purposes.
The best result is
where the executive officer lays down good general orders, leaving
individuals free action, followed by praise or promotion for good work,
and punishment for bad work. This system produces reliable officers, and men
accustomed to think for themselves.
In one ship in
which I served, the officer whose duty it was to administer summary
justice in the small everyday cases used the following plan. After
affixing the blame, he would ask the culprit what was the punishment due
to him, and when the man said he did not know, would express
astonishment that any sensible person should have broken ship rules
without calculating the punishment due in case that he were found out.
Having rubbed that idea in, and ordered the full punishment prescribed by the
regulations for the offence, he would then inquire if the man thought it
sufficiently severe to prevent his again breaking that particular rule.
This plan worked
well, the men getting to see that punishment was not due to the
officers, but simply the natural effect of breaking rules. And it is a
like scheme, on an infinitely grander scale, that you find in Nature.
The Creator has arranged natural and spiritual laws; all ill-health and
events we call accident, bad luck, ill-fortune, are penalties due to our
having broken certain laws in the past, which could have been calculated
and avoided if we had had the wisdom to discover and obey the laws under
which we live.
When we see an
unexpected explosion, we say accident, but that is a mistake, there
is no such thing as accident. The explosion has happened strictly in
accordance with physical laws, and had we sufficient scientific
knowledge we could have foreseen the forces which were about to produce
it, and, of course, by suitable means might have prevented the
regards the immortal spirits that inhabited the bodies injured by the
explosion, did we possess the power to read the past, we might find that each of these had
(not necessarily in this earth-life) done some act or actions which, by the
law of Cause and Effect, necessitated
the suffering of
injury or death of the body at that time: and, as in the case of the
child punished at school, the lesson is of benefit to the immortal
accident is a misnomer, for there can be no such thing in a world
ruled by Divine wisdom. All Science demonstrates that nowhere in Nature
is there accident; all is order. Nowhere is there irregularity of action; fire does not cause heat one
day and cold another.
We who live in the
West have learnt much of physical laws, and as a result many things that
were once termed accident do not now occur, or if they do are attributed
to the true causes. In the East, where so much has been discovered of
spiritual law, many events unintelligible to us are accounted for.
In the case of the
Titanic - if that were an accident, could not the Allloving Creator
have sent another ship to the spot to prevent the loss of life? How easy
for Him to have caused a slight alteration of wind or of current, and so
prevented the collision with the ice, or simply arranged for another vessel to be nearby to
rescue every one.
That He did not do
so is a proof that the disaster was not what is called accident, but
an event that happened in accordance with the working of Divine laws,
both physical and spiritual, which cannot be evaded. To understand the loss of life and all
the suffering entailed one must search the Karmic laws, and for a full
explanation it would be necessary to know the complete details of each
separate life and perhaps of previous lives, until the actions that now
produced this Karmic result were ascertained.
Though this is
impossible, we may see that an explanation of every detail could be
found along these lines for this particular disaster, and for all those
that darken the pages of history.
I must point out some
characteristics of physical and spiritual laws.
1. All are
invariable in their action. This renders their comprehension possible.
2. Both physical
and spiritual laws express great forces which act without sentiment. In physical law
the motive does not count, nor in any way affect the result. In spiritual
law motive is most important, for it sets in action the appropriate
3. The laws exist
in all countries, whether the inhabitants are aware of them or not. The
physical laws are always in action in Nature, and so are the spiritual laws. Every day we
make good or bad Karma.
4. Physical law
is beneficent if worked with, but destructive if neglected or worked against, and effect
follows immediately on cause.
Steam is a good
servant provided the laws of steam pressure and the strength of boilers
are followed; but if these laws are neglected, an explosion follows.
Wireless telegraphy is useful, but if the operator disregards or is
ignorant of the laws of electricity he may be struck dead.
5. Karmic or any
other spiritual law is beneficent if worked with, but if we neglect it
the results are disastrous, as seen in the enormous amount of misery and
unhappiness in the world. Yet a beneficent arrangement in the working of
Karmic law usually provides a considerable interval of time between
cause and effect, which allows opportunity for thought and the undoing
of wrong action.
ship life we saw that the rules and regulations of a ship are to make
the sailors think before acting. The physical and spiritual laws of this
world are also to make people think and act wisely. The object of their
ship life was to train the blue-jackets into useful sailors; the object
of life on this planet is also to train us. God's plan for us is
Evolution - physical evolution under the pressure of physical laws
spiritual evolution under the
pressure of spiritual laws. Right conduct is in all cases that which works
harmoniously with these laws.
It is easier to
understand Karmic law if we accept the doctrine of Reincarnation, which
provides a logical and reasonable explanation for so much that is
otherwise unintelligible and apparently cruel and unjust.
It is to the
effect that each of our earthly lives is but a short period in the
much larger life of the human
spirit, that we come here for a course of training, and after an
interval (at the end of each life) spent in higher worlds, return again
and again to this planet, wearing different bodies each time, and living
under different conditions, in different parts of the world, until our
training is complete, and there is no more need for terrestrial birth
and death - when we shall be sufficiently evolved to exist in higher
The scheme is
often compared to the training of a boy at school who returns term after
term until his education is complete, and he is fit to
take his place in
the larger life of the outer world. The laws of Reincarnation and Karma,
taken together, explain the extraordinary diversity of conditions of
human life because our immortal spirits being in different stages of
development and training require different lessons. Thus are accounted
for in children genius, great intellectual powers, idiocy, or ill-formed
bodies from birth, these being cases of Karmic results from former
lives, and not instances of favouritism. The child born a genius is
probably one who formerly studied and acquired talent; the body deformed
from birth may be the dwelling of a spirit who in a previous incarnation
acted with cruelty or lack of sympathy toward others.
objection to Reincarnation is: If it be a fact, why do we not remember
former lives? And the simplest answer to that question is that we are
not yet fit to remember; because we are not sufficiently evolved to be
trusted with that power of memory. For if we did remember, how many of
us are strong enough to treat well and kindly those who in a former life
ill-treated us, when now in this life placed in our power? What chance
would the criminal have of making a fresh start, if at birth he were
recognized and all his previous misdeeds were remembered against him? Is
not the arrangement that a sponge is, as it were, wiped over the slate
of memory, a merciful and beneficial one? Later on, when more evolved
and likely to turn our knowledge to good use, we probably shall
where these spiritual laws of Reincarnation and Karma are generally understood, there is found
amongst the population a very much greater contentment and acceptance of
the conditions of life, and a much happier frame of mind than the
restlessness and discontent to which we are accustomed.
In Europe, where
Karmic law is unknown, the greatest fear is the fear of death, which is looked on as the
greatest misfortune possible. This is proved in everyday conversation,
in our newspapers, and in the way we speak of the departed and of death.
have the same love of life as ourselves, but do not dread death. The
Japanese showed this in many cases in the Russo-Japanese war, where men
went cheerfully to what they knew was certain death. Patriotism
certainly, but with the addition, I think, of the knowledge that death
is merely the passing of the spirit to new conditions, and that if the
Karma of the life has been good, the motives unselfish, and life's
duty done, then
the next existence must be happy, and death not a matter for dread, but promotion to a
Some one may ask
whether (if everything depends on Karma) the Creator personally attends
to every little event of life, adjudging the reward or punishment? My
answer is No. He has laid down laws, and there are great
Intelligences who administer these laws, who decide how much of what is
owing shall be settled during a life, in what form and when the reward
or punishment shall be awarded. In sea life the Admiralty or some high
authority lays down rules and regulations, to be administered by
officers of various ranks; the regulations decree a certain reward or
punishment, but the officers determine the exact amount and form, and
when and where it shall take place.
Now there are some people who think
that everything may be attributed to Kismet or Fate, and there is a good
deal in the idea if rightly understood, for we must remember that an
individual's Karma may be divided into two parts.
1. The Karma he is
due to previous lives, which turns
up in character and the conditions in which he is born, and in some of
the happenings of life. This, as in our present state of evolution we do
not remember former lives, may be considered as Kismet or Fate,
originally fixed by ourselves, but now beyond our control.
2. The Karma that
is made from day to day by thoughts and actions. As this amounts to
about three-fourths of the Karma that happens, and is quite under our
control, it is of the greatest importance that we should understand
about it - because it not only affects our
life, but also will turn up in
lives as good or bad Karma, exactly
as we now act.
And so we reach
the practical question. How are we to control our Karma? Karma is caused
by our actions. Our actions are caused by our thoughts. Therefore if we
control our thoughts, we shall control our Karma. Any one who
understands Karmic law and wishes to put in practice what he has learnt,
must first take in hand his thoughts and himself, for if thought is
right it will be an easy matter to make action right and the Karma good.
To some people the
idea that what one thinks matters, or that thoughts can be controlled,
is new; but directly the subject is studied it is seen that it must be
so. For example, the building in which the reader is
first in the thought of the architect, and without that thought it could not have been
built; it would have been no use to supply bricks and materials to the workmen
without the plans and directions; if the thought had been faulty and
incomplete, the building also would have been faulty and incomplete. It
is the same in all our industries.
The person who
does not control his thoughts, may be compared to an ill-disciplined
ship firing her guns, discharging projectiles without aim or method in
all directions, wasting ammunition, and a danger to every one. Whereas
the battleship with discipline and control fires only carefully aimed
and selected projectiles, and, knowing the range, every shot hits the
To control this
discharge of thought forms requires time, trouble and patience; one has
to be continually pulling up in one's thinking and asking oneself is
this thought going to do any one good? If not, it must be dismissed, and
a useful thought substituted, and the habit of selecting the things that one
chooses to think about must be formed.
must be continually scrutinized to see if they are in accordance with
Spiritual law. If not, the action must be altered; not an easy matter in
the case of long-established habits, but it can be done with
perseverance. And so, by control of thought and action, we gradually
learn to control our Karma.
Now after studying
these spiritual laws one looks for some personal habit to experiment
upon. Is temper under control? Are we quite truthful? Do we always play
the game? Do we treat others considerately and kindly? Do we try to help
others? Are our motives unselfish and kindly?
In applying this
law to everyday life, Motive, as already pointed out, is most important,
because Motive builds character as well as setting in action
Spiritual laws. An improved character will not result if every happening
is considered from the point of view of: What profit can I Karmically
make out of this, what good Karma can I store up? Such an attitude
would cause deterioration of character, as well as creating bad Karma.
For spiritual advancement and happiness cannot be bargained for.
The motives of our
actions must be impersonal; we must do things that are right, merely
because they are in accordance with right and truth, without any regard
to personal loss or inconvenience. This attitude
become so much a habit and part of our character that we always and without effort choose to do what
is right as a matter of course.
The great use in
understanding the working of Karmic law is that it makes intelligible events which
otherwise seem cruel and undeserved, it restores the sense of justice in God's
dealings with us, and with other Spiritual laws provides a ready test by
which in all cases we may decide with certainty the right course of
It is easy to find
many fields for work in altering for the better our thoughts, actions, and
motives - thus bringing our lives more and more in line with Spiritual
law, and in so doing not only evolving our own faculties, finding
happiness as well as making good Karma, but actually taking part in the
Divine work of Evolution.