(Extracted from talks at Vikasa, Rishikesh, December 2016)
Q: Can you talk about how karma gets generated and also how one gets liberated from karma?
See let’s take a simple example. You are a child, let’s say, we have been children. We play with toys. It generates karma right? Action means karma, that is all. So you do things, with that you want this, you want this, you want this, this this…if you logically project it, how should your whole life be? More and more of toys, whole life, right? I remember having imagined as a child, “I want this, I want this.” If I go into a store, I would want the whole store, not one thing or two things! My sons are much better! (Laughter) When Deepavali arrived I would want sacks of them, I would dream about sacks and sacks of crackers, store crackers…I would dream about those, but now I don’t dream of it. So what has happened? There is a shift that has happened. You pursue it up to a certain point but you will see that it is not a logical projection. It does not work that way. There are gradations, there are flips, that happen. You will come to a certain point and there will be an inner flip where you will be free of that, which you have created until that point in time. You wanted that so much and that has created karma. But you will come to a point where it does not hold the same meaning to you as it held earlier. So that is when you are free of your own actions. That is an inner response. See it is not always to do with the outer conditions. Outer conditions might remain the same or it might actually work out as you imagine, but at that time when it happens, sometimes it might happen that you are free of that. What to do? You are free of that. If you are sensible enough, you will recognize it and take your life from there. Most parents don’t recognize it and hence, it is like,”Hey, you told that before, now you are saying this.” This is not about jumping inconsistently. Or impulsively. It is not about that. You come to a logical point where actually you will be free of that. All your projections, how you relate to it, you will be free of that. It is not something that can be explained, but it happens. Actually you can work towards it also, these are all tools that make you enhance that, where you will have jumps, so many jumps in one lifetime. That is very critical, to the path of evolution. You will go from tamas, rigid attachments, to action and then to sattva, where it is like free! Relationship to action. It will give you a lot of maneuverability within. Outside it might be the same. So it is not to do with outer circumstances, so much as it is to do with inner growth. That cannot be recognized by anybody other than those who have already seen it. They would be able to see,”Ah! Okay” And that sight is not to do with this. You can see, who is what. So that is called cleansing of sins. And that is enhanced by these theerthakshetras, tapo bhumis. It is like you go to an appropriate environment, it resonates and you get a boost. It is not always your effort. You get boosts, you get blessings, such things also work. Such things also happen. For instance, Ma Ganga is known for bestowing her blessings. So that is very critical.
Q: So on the one hand, there are people like us who play with toys and we get over it when that flip happens. On the other hand there are people who get addicted to certain things lifelong (like cigarette smoking). What determines one individual going in a downward spiral and another going up the path of evolution?
So that also is a logical projection. We see and evaluate people by their outward actions, like cigarette smoking, or drinking and so on. If you take even addiction, only some are addicted lifelong. Not everybody. At some point in time, they will feel,”Che!” and a virakti, that will detach them. They will actively strive to avoid that company which locks them in those circumstances. See, it is a locking pattern that emerges. You get out of those patterns, you will see, for example, back home, you might have been locked into drinking tea and coffee, here (in Kriya Babaji’s ashrama) you don’t get that. You are temporarily out of that pattern. That is a temporary thing. But the more it happens, the more you will see, you will grow in strength. Maybe temporarily it happens, you go back, you continue that. But you have had a glimpse. You will no longer be the same. Your inner reality would have shifted. You will no longer be the same. That is very important. So it is not a logical projection, it does not work that way. But some are seriously addicted, and hence as a society we strive to increase the level of consciousness, you know, so that aspirations are elevated. The aspirations are also governed by the collective field in which we stay. You stay in a certain field, you will have a certain level of aspiration. You go back to a different field, your aspirations, if you are not well-built yet, well-integrated yet, your aspirations will shift accordingly. It is not wrong. That is why we call it sangha, association. Satsangha, association with wise and enlightened beings, becomes very important for one’s personal growth. Sangha dosha happens through association.
Q: What is sangha dosha? You pick up.…”Tell me who your friend is, I will tell you who you are.” (Laughs) The collective group with which you move constantly, mostly your superficial thought patterns, everything will be to do with that group. Mostly. But that is still superficial, it is not deep down. But mostly you will be that and hence you will think you are that. You are not that. If you get out of that group, actually you will see, that will fall away. That is why diversity of experience is so important to go deep within. You see,”Oh!” Of course, diversity does not mean jumping from here to there.