Every action brings about a reaction
We are to understand this principle, this law. If we understand this principle or Law of Karma, then we can come out of it and go back home. Otherwise we'll keep on coming and going and coming and going. So each cause has an effect. Every action brings about a reaction. Uproot the cause and the effect disappears. This has been done by the Masters who have transcended these laws. But all others are bound by the bonds of karma, which is the root cause of physical existence. Of course, these are very good actions, the reactions of which have given you the manbody. But still we have to be very careful what we do: either we are trying to go back down or back home.
There are three kinds of karma
One kind is called Sanchit. "Sanchit" means "which are stored as yet," not fructified. So suchlike karmas, you see, from hundreds of births back, are just in store, not yet touched for reaction.
Ever since we have left the house of our Father, ever since we have been sent to the earth, we have been coming and going. Action and reaction has been going on. Some has been paid off by Pralabdha karma. Pralabdha karmas are the karmas which are in fruit, which are fructified, and on which our present existence is based. First, we have got the manbody. That is the result of very high karma, good karma.
So pralabdha is the karma on which our present life is based. It is what is called "fate" or "destiny." Fate or destiny is a reaction of our past karma which is now in fruit. The third class is Kriyaman, the actions that we do daily. Man is free within certain limits and bound within certain limits.
When you sow a seed, it will bring forth similar seeds
There is action-reaction; then again a reaction; and the thing goes on like that. There's no end to it. After sowing the grain, a man cannot stop having the harvest – the fruit will come. So there are many actions. Actions are of one kind, but there are three aspects to them. There are certain actions which we are doing now, daily – fresh actions; fresh seeds are sown, you might say. Some have already been sown and are bearing fruit. Others have been sown, but are not yet bearing forth fruit. So there are three kinds of karmas or actions.
Is our destiny predestined?
Our present life depends on those reactions of the past karmas which are bearing fruit. They are called pralabdha karma. On that karma our length of life is based. According to that, some people get children, some die, some are ugly, some are old, some have a give-and-take. This is based on those karmas or seeds which have grown in the past and are now bearing forth fruit in action. This you cannot change.
We are independent within certain limits to do some actions, and we are also bound to some extent
When a railroad line is laid down, the train will run over it. Before you lay down any railroad line, it is up to you to lay it down this way or that way. But once it is laid down, the train will have to run over it. So, as I told you, some karmas are bearing fruit; some we are doing fresh; and others have not yet borne any fruit – that will come up in due course.
So we are independent within certain limits to do some actions, and we are also bound to some extent. Action, reaction, action, reaction goes on – there's no end to it.
How to overcome the karmas
When a Master meets someone, he does not touch the present reactions which are coming up; for our life is based on that. He lets it alone, he lets it go on. For the future, Master lays down a line of conduct. For the present which is bearing fruit, he gives food to the soul so that it will become strong and there will not be any pinching effect. And for those which are not yet bearing forth fruit, he gives the disciple a contact with God within. By coming in contact with God within – when his inner eye is opened – he sees that He is the doer of all; that we are mere puppets in His hands. He becomes a conscious co-worker of the Divine Plan. The result is that there is no I-hood left. And all those actions which were sown in the past, and are still awaiting fruit, are burned away. Who is there to bear their fruit? So this is the way in which you can escape from the reactions of the past.
When you come in contact with God – when you become a conscious co-worker of the Divine Plan – all karmas which are in store are burned away; just as if you roast seeds in the oven, they won't grow. And this is the way in which all the karmas are wound up. That is why it is said: "What is the use of going to a Master if these reactions are not ended? If you go to the feet of a lion and are afraid of jackals, what's the use of going to a lion? This is how the karmas are wound up: first, by prescribing a certain conduct of life; second, by an inner, higher contact.
Sant Kirpal Singh
This book explains in detail the theory of karma – action and reaction – and the way to escape from the endless cycle of transformation.
we are greatly fortunate that we have got the manbody. Manbody is the highest in all creation, next to God. Even the angels bowed down to the manbody when it was made. All scriptures tell us that due to the reactions of very good actions of the past, we get the manbody. So really we are very fortunate. Our good actions have fructified, and we have got the manbody as a result thereof. It is a golden opportunity in which we can pay off all reactions of the past.
Question: Please explain why the enactment of the drama of life.
Sant Kirpal Singh: It is all an expression of the inexorable Law of Karma. Desire is the root-cause of all bondage and re-births. Unless one becomes a Conscious Co-worker of the Divine Plan by complete self-surrender and annihilation of ego, the goal of spiritual perfection cannot be attained. Please refer to the "Wheel of Life" for exhaustive explanation.
The One who is commissioned by the Godpower, he comes with the Word. Word is a fire, a holy fire. That will burn all the past karmas, they are the storehouses of karmas. And they are burned and the soul will leave the body like you remove the hair from the butter. It is so easy. Because what is needed? First it needs the right understanding.
Q. How does reincarnation figure numerically? For instance in plant and insect life, does each flower or bug have an individual soul? What about a worm that divides itself, or a cutting from a plant or tree that takes root and becomes another plant or tree? What is the explanation regarding soul in each case?
A. The entire universe is humming with one life impulse call it as one may. Each flower and each fruit when on the parent tree or shrub is activated by the self-same life principle, but when it is plucked or falls down, it begins to shrivel up and decays. But the life concentrated in the tiny seed at the core remains intact and once again springs up into form and colour when the seed is sown in proper soil and nurtured carefully. Similarly the freshly cut-branch when engrafted or transplanted from one soil to the other, carries with it its power to grow anew with the sustenance it draws from nature. It is only the forms and colours that change and not the life principle which remains eternally the same. Some worms, when cut into two, retain the life current just for a while and eventually it disappears.
Q. Do you think my husband who passed away last May has reincarnated yet?
A. It does not fall within the purview of sacred teachings to discuss or disclose the Divine disposition about the reincarnation of those souls who have passed away. Suffice it to understand that unions and separations in this physical plane are veiled and governed by the inexorable law of karma. There is nothing ‘premature’ as the Divine machinery works with meticulous precision and nothing happens haphazardly, although it may look to us as such. Just as a man standing at the power-house can see quite distinctly as to how the smallest cogs and spindles are working, but the person who cannot look beyond these small units cannot understand as to how these are being operated by the Divine will of the Lord. Reincarnation is a spiritual phenomenon which cannot be understood adequately by limited human intellect.
In the Gurmukh's company this game of life can be won, and the winner returns to his home. Those who unfortunately never meet the Gurmukh, continue round and round the everlasting circle of births and deaths. Kirpal Singh
At the time of initiation Master burns the old karmas with the fire of the Word and makes the disciple free from the old, old reactions and further draws the line for the future. In Golden Age many concessions are withdrawn, and the disciple has to be very conscious. If one creates an action (not positive), he is at once bound with the reaction, and with the reaction one is bound with the past and future again. Though there is a concession with the one who lives and does for Him, still he has to bear it either on his own physical body, mind, or on the environments of home and home-affairs, in accordance with the nature of action.