Grace trumps karma; and love is the only way we may unhold our hands from the karmic wheels, moving towards real freedom, embodying the highest expression of our heart.
Historically, the word grace had several meanings. In Christian religion context, it usually refers to the notion that God might grant us something unexpected, a gift, to bless us or save us. In Buddhism, a similar state exists, known as flow or grace, where we allow the natural flow of the universe, like water, like Tao. In Hinduism, devotional or bhakti literature references grace as the ultimate key to spiritual self-realization. And if we look at the word itself, grace has its Latin root of gratus, meaning grateful, which assumes a level of humility, kindness and compassion. These are energies of love and the higher soul, and the high heart – and as such, they are the pathway towards real soul growth.
In times of strife or hardships, as human beings we usually have two approaches that we can cultivate. One is to gain back control and power over the situation: things get messy, run away; injustice strikes, start a fight; someone betrayed you or took advantage of you, seek revenge; love didn’t work out, look for a new lover. This path is tempting indeed, especially if we’ve been deeply disappointed or hurt by someone. Anger rises especially if we’ve been struck down by injustice. What’s even more tempting is that power is effective. In this approach, the intention is to control; if we gain control over the thing, then we’ll be in charge and it won’t hurt us or disappoint us again.
The second approach is grace. In the Old Testament we have the eye for an eye concept, which is essentially karma. And in reality, karma is always happening as each action carries a reaction, like ripples in the water when a stone is thrown. And then – in the New Testament we see the teachings of the heart more clearly as spoken, shown, lived and taught by Jesus Christ, a great master and teacher of love. He did not say that the cosmic or higher order of karma is not existent, because eye for an eye is happening regardless, nor does he go against the word of God, but he shows us the turn the other cheek approach, which is essentially: heal the heart through forgiveness. It is about opening the palms so that we let go of the karmic wheel that bounds us because we are holding on too tight. What he essentially taught us was how to transcend old karmic cycles, and move into a new state of consciousness that may only be reached through the opening of our heart.
The higher order of action and reaction will always be in balance, as it should and as it will, but it is not up to us to take out our own swords of justice. We could, and we often do, but that only perpetuates cycles. They do this, you do that, then you react and do again, and then they do, and on and on and on. You can, thought most don’t, choose the path of the heart and let it go. Things come into balance always, but you can free yourself rather than take on more karma.
Forgiveness is a difficult thing but it is what opens us and frees us again. The one that forgives opens their palms and finally releases burdens and hurts that were poisoning them; and also, through their opening they release the other person also, who may still be holding onto them through their actions or unwell mind and actions. Forgiveness has its own timing and it should not be forced nor should anyone tell you to just “let it go”. It may take you years, it may take a lifetime, and for each person the pathway towards it will be different and unique. And there will be obstacles and bumps along the way, you’ll have to go through many emotions and phases, so lean into prayer, lean into God, and don’t be too hard on yourself. And remember that forgiveness isn’t an excuse for someone’s wrong doings or hurts, it is only a release – which means releasing yourself and moving away.
I often think that the beginning of forgiveness is the time when we finally no longer have anything much to say when we think back to that person or situation; when all that’s left is a kind of sadness or compassion for them. And we know forgiveness has already come, and perhaps even passed us, when we feel an energy release, like something has washed over that memory; so we just don’t feel much, only a kind of peace when they pop into our minds. Essentially, forgiveness is an acceptance of our human fragility and powerlessness, and an acceptance of the humility of our human condition; it is a surrender that may leave us feeling empty, because we’ll no longer hold something over someone to have a sense of control. Grace is like water. We are no longer stuck in ice, we’ve released ourselves and now float in freedom, in the rivers that are now refreshed and our heart is now open.
I was recently watching The Sound of Freedom, which deals with the real stories of child trafficking, and later on came across a comment in some spiritual forum: “Do some souls choose to incarnate to experience these abuses?” Just the question itself makes me cringe, but it is one of the common questions along the lines of “why do good people suffer”. I don’t know why things happen the way they happen, for we are merely humans who will never know it all; but if someone begins telling you things like “you are suffering abuse because of past life karma and what you did to blah blah blah so now it’s payback” you need to get the hell away from them.
Such statements or beliefs are absurdly irresponsible and basically, they give a free pass to wrong and unjust and pure evil behaviours, shame victims, and in general, they free us as human beings from responsibility and self-accountability. We forget we are human – and that we make choices about the kind of person we choose to be every day through our actions and words.
Let me ask this: Even if a soul came to you and said “please abuse me once we incarnate, I need to learn suffering through your hands and be a victim of child trafficking”, what will you do? It is you who still has to say yes and agree to this, right? So who are you? Who do you want to be? What do you when you hold power in your hands? This sick society and new-age bullsh*t have become so poisonous as to deflect self-accountability, and reflect blame and shame to victims, and to perpetuate and re-traumatize people; and to essentially, shift responsibility so that they keep their hands clean when they hurt people.
Even within relationship, as I often do synastry reports and yes, most are karmic – you do not have to stay in them. And even if you do because you love each other but are turning in that karmic wheel like house rats, or are bound by a karmic rope, well you can heal it. How? Only through forgiveness, gentleness, understanding, and grace. Only through a deeper self-awareness and breaking the patterns with more conscious actions and heart’s intention.
Grace has a certain movement and rhythm, and it truly is the highest expression of our heart and of our ability to love in this life. I often think of grace as the intersection where patience and gratitude meet. It may seem like too little, too small or just not enough – but that’s not true. I am not advocating us to be martyrs by always being “grateful” or allowing things and people to walk all over us, or take advantage of us. Anger is a needed and purposeful emotion; it’s a sign that our boundaries have been crossed, so it is absolutely natural to feel angry, though we must know how to channel anger in healthy way, rather than destruct everything and everyone around us. We need to have good boundaries and know our limits. But some battles are not worth fighting – because it doesn’t help anything anyway, unless of course we like turning in the carousel. One of the greatest lessons in life is understanding that true power comes from within; and that every single person does the best they can with what they have and are capable of in every moment of their life. There’s humility in this, and it deserves to be treasured.
When we allow our shadow side to take over us, to be tempted by the injustices, we might do a lot more damage, not just to others but also, to ourselves. Every single one of us has certain urges – and it is our purpose to resist these urges and do the right thing; to do it not just because, but because our soul and divine God spark within us asks us to.
I’ve known many people throughout my life, who out of anger, wrath, jealousy, envy, lust, pain and pride, have caused harm onto others – only to one day be consumed by guilt, shame, and the consequences of their actions, thereby destroying their own lives. When we seek revenge or payback, or want to abuse our power, what we are actually desiring is either “to do onto them as they’ve done to us” (i.e. we want to make them feel like they made us feel) or we desire to heal. When the intention is to harm another, regardless of the reasons why, it is immoral and it is never right. What we need to focus on is how to heal and move forward with our own life; we do this through grace and by transforming the emotions through the heart, and our mind’s perspective.
I once saw a painting of a woman holding a rose, the thorns through her fingers, as she was bleeding. Yet she didn’t even seem to realize this because she had gone numb to the pain from holding them so tightly for so long. Sometimes we need to remember to open our palms.
Grace trumps all, it trumps karma too.
Decisions are always there to be made, no matter what has happened in which life.
This is a very important aspect of karma and how its wheel turns. Some people believe that when someone comes into their life, someone who has done them wrong in the past and owes them karmic debt, even from five-hundred years ago, they are free to “collect back” and “return the favour”; they feel they can do them wrong also without any consequences. But that’s not how the wheel turns. Every time karma shows for us, in whatever shape or form, it is our own decision what to with it and how to respond.
We can choose to keep the cycle turning, or we can choose grace, thereby stepping into a new vibration, opening a doorway to a higher consciousness. Cosmic justice, the higher order of all and its hands of karma will take care of all people anyway and everyone will bear their cross with the consequences for their actions – we can never stray too far from who we are and what we’ve paved for ourselves. But it is in our own decisions, right now and every day, when we seemingly have the upper hand in something, when we have the more control and power over a situation, that we can reveal who we truly are. And to know who we are we must also know who we are not, and who we choose not to be.
Love always reincarnates as love; and greed always reincarnates as greed. It’s never a new clean slate – it is only a continuation. The paths can only change through our own decisions.
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