Is Karma About Reward and Punishment?

We all have a past. But do we all have past lives? Some of you would question past lives entirely. Afterall what proof can we have that we reincarnate? For those of you who believe in past lives or reincarnation, the questions are different. Why do we reincarnate? Are we supposed to suffer the consequences of our past life mistakes in our present? Are we here to reap the rewards that were pending from our past life? Are we here to even our accounts with someone we related with? Or are we here to reunite with specific soulmates?

Fortunately regardless of whether we believe in past lives or reincarnation, we all can agree upon one thing. That we are here right now….Our present moment is all we can be sure about.

The purpose of life itself may not be known to science, but all of us can know from our own hearts, who we truly are from deep within. Our behavior, thought-process, our skills and talents, our fears and choices, our likes and dislikes…..all are changeable with time. Therefore even if we have had a past, or who knows how many past lives, right now, we are something much beyond it.

It follows therefore that our future is not limited by or defined by our past but something that is being generated by our present choices. All that we have chosen so far whether in past lives or in the past of our present lifetime, up-to right now…has led us to only one thing. Our present!

Karma is another word for ‘work’, i.e. what we do with our life. Karma is not a synonym for past life energy following our present lifetime. It can simply refer to our deeds even in this very lifetime or even – right now.

The main thing to understand however is that it is no matter what our past deeds might have been like, the present moment is totally a new opportunity that we have to choose how we think or act. In other words, our karma is our own choice made entirely through our free will in the present moment regardless of our past.

We all know that every action comes with certain consequences depending upon various laws of nature and our world. However all the consequences finally boil to the way we feel in the end. Having material success might give joy for a while to some of us, while spiritual peace might lead some others to tremendous bliss. Our consequences therefore are not entirely about the specific reward or punishment that comes from outside but our own feelings and inner state in this very moment.

Our past might be something that chases us time after time until we are even and all our accounts sorted by providing us lessons after lessons in the form of our actions and consequences. Yet, ultimately we are all learning who we are through the various lessons that life puts us through. We all are learning certain core values such as peacefulness, love and kindness that make us an evolved human. These deep lessons need not come from anything or anyone from outside, they can simply emerge from our true self through quiet contemplation and meditation.

We can be free of our past and at peace with all there is regardless of our past deeds or past situations.  Moksha or liberation from our karmic cycles of life and death is possible regardless of religion or belief. The solution to all our past life or present life issues might simply be this: Forgive, Let-Go and Be at Peace.

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Five Steps to Exit the Matrix

We all live in the Matrix. It is a virtual ‘reality’ experience we all are having – an experience called life. All our thoughts, both conscious and subconscious are fed into this system that creates a new ‘reality’ for us from moment to moment, frame by frame and lifetime to lifetime. Its exactly like a multidimensional computer simulation that we experience with all our senses. The Matrix unconditionally serves our every fantasy and fear. All our negative or positive ideas create our lifetimes or alternate realities. While creating a better experience is possible, rising above the Matrix is possible too. For those who care for the truth, these are the five steps through which you can get unplugged:

  1. See the Signs: There are signs everywhere that tell you that you are plugged in to the Matrix. You may have experiences of synchronicity – each of your thought is inevitably connected to the entire world through the Matrix. Your dreams are connected to reality and transcend time, giving you glimpses of past or future. See the world as fractals – they are everywhere, in clouds, in shorelines, in the soil, in mountains, in the seashells and pine-cones, in vegetables and flowers, even in your own body. There is nothing where you cannot see nature’s design or sacred geometry indicating the mathematical factorials encoding all creation. Most of all notice how everything is energy and how your thoughts are materializing into your life everyday by themselves as per the inbuilt rules of this ‘program’. Pay attention.fractal-gold.jpg
  2. Meditate: You will need to learn how to get unplugged yourself instead of waiting for someone else. Meditation requires nobody and nothing except you. Breathe naturally, closing your eyes helps initially, find the space between your thoughts and stay there in the silence of ‘no-mind’ for as long as you can. Do this daily for half an hour at least and increase the time. You will get better at being free of thoughts and your mind. See the blank space of your inner self and be with your inner self which is not your mind or your thoughts. Let go of the outer layers of physical senses, emotions, mental ideas and desires. Experience just being. It is possible and necessary.buddha-1.jpg
  3. Master Reality: The more you spend time with your inner self of no-mind, the more control you will have over your mind and hence over the matrix of reality. You will start playing with reality as it twirls around you folding into the shape you choose. Your life situations and experiences will be at your command. You are only practicing and sharpening your skills. Be detached from the desire of any outcome. Both mental and physical actions are karma and they return. Be pure and positive because harming anyone, even yourself will only get you entangled in further karmic cages making it very hard to be free. Be unconditional in what you create; even if you create something positive expect nothing in return to keep yourself free of karmic webs. fractal-a
  4. Rise Above the Illusion: All the people, events, things around you will be revealed as your own mental projections, conscious and subconscious. You can enjoy this experience of ‘reality’ through money, fame, romance and fun…yet no matter how much you acquire, these will be mere illusion and nothing more. The reason why enlightened masters have no fascination for increasing their bank-balance, sensual pleasures or popularity is simply this. The truth is only found within and it far more joyous than anything outer can ever be. No amount of money in the matrix can buy you freedom. Talking negatively and being unhappy or depressed is worse as it drops your kundalini shakti or inner power down. Keep rising above the illusion while being supremely happy and self-content for no external reason whatsoever.fractal-1475802_960_720
  5. Allow Truth: You do not have to be anxious to be freed of the maya of life. Wishing to be free of desires is also a desire. Thinking of being free from the Matrix is also a thought that plugs you in further. To be unplugged just let go and that is all. Simply be in meditation. Allow this moksha to happen by itself whenever it has to. Have no expectations of how, when and what it will be like. Surrender to your truth. You will be established in a state of self-awareness and meditation even in your day to day life after practice of meditation. It may feel safe to stay in the comfort of the matrix, yet be fearless because truth sets you free and a cage even if golden and beautiful will still be a cage. Be with your inner self and allow your liberation to simply happen whenever you are ready – any moment…even right now. universe-1044107_960_720swatiprakash  Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

Debunking Nine Common Myths about Vegetarianism

We have all heard strong arguments, not just from others but from ourselves in the past when we were thoroughly defensive of non-vegetarianism. We justified meat eating primarily because of old beliefs and habits carried through generations. Thankfully the right awareness can be spread for the benefit of all concerned so that we can be on a path which is peaceful while not falling for the same old traps again. Here is how:

MYTH 1: Vegetarians Kill Plants

It is true that plants have life like animals do and there is no saying that plant life is less valuable than animal life. The fact is that plants do not usually die when you consume their parts. The plant does not even die when you pick its fruits. Their life energy is still intact and not lost making fresh fruits a ‘sattvic’ or positive diet. In contrast eating an animal involves killing them. By taking away their life prematurely we were consuming dead or ‘tamasic’ energy. In contrast plants retain fresh life energy regardless of your harvesting them. In-fact there are perennials that keep growing and providing harvest year after year and annuals would have dried off anyways at the end of the season even if you did not consume them, though many of them reseed and grow again. zucchini-572542_960_720

MYTH 2: Plants Do Not Want to Be Eaten 

Plants automatically shed their ripe fruits without any struggle when the fruits are ready. These fruits, including most vegetables are meant to be consumed so that the left-over seeds can be spread around or replanted. Even if you consume some of their leaves and seeds, as compared to animals, plants can regenerate and heal. To avoid overcrowding and to help them grow better they require thinning out, spreading, harvesting and trimming. In-fact they grow better and healthier through right gardening. We can understand the needs of plants, knowing what sort of care they want and refrain from harvesting them too early. When the time is ripe they will be happy to be picked. aubergine

MYTH 3: Plants Hurt Like Animals When We Cut Them

Plants are so calm and silent from within and outside, that their thinking and therefore suffering is negligible as compared to animals. In strike contrast animals feel tremendous pain and suffering. Spend some time out in the garden trimming leaves and picking fruits. Then spend the same amount of time in a slaughterhouse. Feel the difference? Because meat eaters purchased meat over the counter they do not see the pain and forget the part they are playing in taking innocent lives. Yes, plants do have sensations. They can sense light and grow towards it. They can sense approaching pests and protect themselves. It is said they grow better when we sing to them, so they must hear us too. Some can respond to touch. But please do not imagine that they suffer like animals when being cut. fields

MYTH 4: Humans Were Designed to be Meat Eaters

Humans are most similar to the genus Pan consisting species of primates such as Bonobos and Chimpanzees that are primarily fruit eaters. Our teeth, our digestive system and our mind are well tailored for a plant based diet. Even if we once were omnivores and hunter-gatherers in ancient times for reasons of non-availability of adequate plant foods in certain regions of the world, today we have evolved highly. Today we can grow and trade varieties of plant food in almost all countries regardless of climate and weather. We are the only specie to have maximum choices in every aspect of life, unlike other animals who work with their natural limitations. We can now choose to eat plants and be less harmful to other species.bonobo-810549_960_720.jpg

MYTH 5: We Need Animal Foods for Our Health and Nutrition

Plant foods with minimal fortification provide all of the dietary nutrients we need, minus the disease causing properties of animal based food. Most allergies, ailments and cancers can be prevented with herbs and raw vegetables. Plants provide us fibers that help us eliminate toxins and keep our gut clean. Plant vitamins are essential for protecting ourselves from harmful germs while minerals help in our nourishment. They are also rich in proteins and calcium. Through higher spiritual awareness we can also learn to live without too much food and to be healthy from within. There is an inner power that creates everything in the world which meditation connects us with and our body receives energy directly from the inner spirit in increasingly higher proportions with spiritual growth.

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MYTH 6: Carnivorous Diet is Part of Ecological Balance, So Why Not Be Meat Eaters

It is true that Lions, Sharks and many species consume meat and nature designed them to be this way in order to keep earth in balance, just like herbivores kept plants from growing too thick. These species were not given a choice. Yet as Human beings we have been given choices and free-will by nature herself. Nature has allowed us to decide and choose whatever is least harmful for all concerned. The human mind is far more flexible and capable of directing our own evolution further into time. Unlike other animals, humans have a chance of approaching towards the spiritual goal of Moksha or liberation from cycles of karma. This can be achieved by learning to be as detached and harmless as possible. foodweb

MYTH 7: It Is Impossible to Never Harm, So Why not Eat Animals

Yes we may be unknowingly harming many small or invisible microbes and insects in our day to day life. This does not mean that it is alright to kill animals for food just because you have been killing various lifeforms inadvertently. When it is plain and obvious that they are being tremendously harmed for the sake of food, you can be kind and considerate enough to avoid eating them, thereby discouraging this age old yet unnecessary practice. Animals clearly feel emotion and have their own families. Killing animals for entertainment, religious sacrifice, medical testing, fashion or any other reason can be equally cruel just like killing them for food when it is very easily avoidable. chicks-1572370_960_720

MYTH 8: Organic Plants Are Expensive and Unavailable

It was animal based and artificially processed foods that were a reason for increase in health problems and associated costs. It is also well known that animal farming so far led to increase in carbon emissions, stressed our resources and hurt our planet. Cultivating plants is far less expensive and less polluting than raising animals for dairy or meat. For the sake of a healthier and prosperous planet we definitely need to go organic and vegan. While it is true that pesticide and chemical laden plants can be harmful for health, organic plants are not as expensive and hard to obtain as once thought. When their demand rises organic farming will become more widespread and affordable too. Most importantly think of all the medical costs savings and better economic productivity when with reduced animal farming and increased organic plant farming. animal-farms

MYTH 9: Meat Eating is Part of Being Natural 

Being natural and returning to our roots is not about going backwards to mid-way in evolution when we were cavemen or hunters. Being natural is about being in touch with our inner self or true nature as a spirit being which is our original self. When we meditate, we stop complicating our minds with all the consumerism inducing messages given through the centuries of false conditioning and artificial stress. We consumed a variety of harmful snacks, fast-food, meat based and processed products because we were busy in our outer or material world without being mindfully and peacefully present in the moment. To be in alignment with our inner nature helps us do what is truly right and meant for us. Our body, mind and spirit respond with well-being as a result. animals.jpg

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swatiprakash  Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and can be followed on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

Seven Reasons for Being More Spiritual

On one hand we have seen people who are purely materialistic and for whom the physical world observed through the five outer senses is all there is. Yet, on the other hand we have spiritualists who believe that the outer perceivable world is mere illusion while the truth is hidden within. In this internet driven corporate world, why should you try learning and practicing spirituality at all, when success is measured through the size of your material achievements? Well, it turns out that those who are purely material are prone to losing their health, wealth, happiness and success all too easily, while those who are spiritual seem to have blissful lives even with a modest lifestyle.

Here are 7 powerful ways that spirituality can transform our lives forever…in a way that materialism never can:

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  1. PROTECTING FROM THE NEGATIVE: At the base of it we all have to deal with our fears that manifest in the form of various negative situations and experiences around us. Spirituality teaches us that everything that happens on the outside has an inner cause,even those things that seem to be happening to us through others. Therefore if anything negative has been observed anywhere in our life, the source is most likely to be an inner fear that caused it. Release that fear and replace it with trust…that’s the way to peace. Being spiritual helps us by transforming our fears into love because we know that everything has its source deep within us. This way no matter how much the negativity that surround us we know that if we find peace within we shall be  just fine.
  2. ATTRACT POSITIVE EXPERIENCES: Just as we know that fears caused our sorrows, we know that positive thoughts and emotions will bring us positive experiences with equal certainty. Spiritual secrets can surely help bring us more abundance, real love, lasting peace, joy and success in anything that is positive for our whole self. The moment we shift our focus to inner peace and start feeling better it begins to create all good things that our soul truly desires us to have. We might find that we are effortlessly attracting a better quality of friends, relationships, opportunities and situations than ever before and we accept them with open arms.
  3. PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT: It is ignorance that makes us feel vulnerable, pitiable, sad, hurt or victimized. A spiritually aware and enlightened soul knows that every moment there is infinite energy within at all times. The awareness of what lies within us expands our inner power to the extent that we can help ourselves anytime. Whether it is our physical or monetary health, career or personal goals, there is less of dependency on others and more self-reliance. We know that an inner switch can change everything for the better and that we can manifest our life with our own choices at any point of time as we keep brimming with limitless positive energy.
  4. DEEPER HEALING: Spiritual energy connects our mind, body and soul together seamlessly as we know that everything is ultimately woven with threads of spiritual energy alone. Since this positive energy is the source of all there is its enhanced flow can heal everything at every level of our being. The moment we shift our focus to the spiritual through meditative state, an enhanced flow of spiritual energy is triggered and staying in this peaceful radiant state continues healing us from inside out. From physical to social life, from home to all of earth, spiritual healing helps everything and everyone in a tremendous way.
  5. AWARENESS: Learning the truth and sharing the truth that we have learnt help us in expanding our consciousness and that of the universe. The remarkable fact is that as our consciousness expands it helps in expanding the consciousness of everything around us too. This consciousness when awakened is the power that transforms the entire world for the better. Whether through books or discourses, workshops or seminars, we know that amazingly wise teachers and masters will find us eventually and we will be equally enlightened provided we follow and practice what we have learnt with total dedication.
  6. SIDDHIS: Once we attain a higher state of consciousness and learn more about who we are, it increases our magickal and psychic powers in several ways. Through spiritual practice and inner focus we awaken our natural yet latent superpowers that are a necessary part of our spiritual awakening. We not only realize but actualize our multi-dimensional, infinite nature. In time we know that there is absolutely nothing that can be called impossible because we become masters of the illusion of life, rising above all of it. We are no longer limited by anything around us and ready for the next level of awakening.
  7. MOKSHA: The highest possible reason for being spiritual is that it sets you free from all illusion. Contrary to what you might have been told before, relinquishing desire may not lead to liberation but to deeper blockage or repression. The right way to be liberated from all desires is to find a deeper contentment. At this greater level of spiritual progress there is little else that you would seek. Imagine that you could have just about anything in the world right now…yet you feel that you have everything already…in-fact in a very real way, you know that you already ARE everything. With nothing more to want or seek, nothing left to crave for, you are ready to be permanently liberated from the illusory nature of the world process and be one with your ultimate truth.

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swati

Swati Prakash is a spiritual author and teacher. Her writings can be found on www.amazon.com/author/swatiprakash

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