By Sri Harold Klemp
The great benefit of the ECK teachings is that they offer spiritual freedom.
Each religion holds out some promise to its followers. The word of Christianity to its people is the redemption of sins, a problem that stems from Adam and Eve, who disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden. Yet for their error, all future generations should carry the blame. A Christian, lost spiritually at birth, has the stigma of this original sin automatically fastened to him. Original sin means inborn guilt.
By contrast, the ECK teachings speak not of guilt but of responsibility. People are where they have put themselves.
How Karma and Reincarnation Lead to Spiritual Freedom
The theory of one lifetime per person is an example of an immature theology, for it does not account for the fact of reincarnation and karma. These two parts of the ECK teachings put the responsibility of a person’s life directly where it belongs—upon the individual.
All people make their own world.
Where does spiritual freedom fit into the ECK teachings? God had placed each Soul upon earth to gain the spiritual purity and experience It needs to become a Coworker with God. From the very beginning, many lifetimes ago, Soul made blunders. It was like an infant first having to find out how to crawl, then walk, while learning its place in the family and society.
Growth and development are a natural part of the divine order.
The ECK teachings say that people create karma, a debt with Divine Spirit, by ignorance of divine law. Time and experience will teach them better. However, it usually takes lifetimes to work off primary, daily, and reserve karma, because people forget their divine nature.
This forgetfulness shows up in anger, vanity, greed, and other harmful traits. The result is more karma.
For that reason, we speak of the wheel of karma and reincarnation. More karma brings on more lifetimes. However fast people run, they must go even faster to stay ahead of their deeds, which threaten to catch and swallow them. Is there no end to this cycle?
Soul’s Wake-Up Call
There surely is. After an individual has passed so many lives in one religion or another, been whipped this way and that by life, it eventually dawns on him there is no way to beat the game alone. All running gets him is more running.
At this point, a change occurs, perhaps as spiritual doubt. Or maybe it’s a vision…, a strong and unforgettable dream, or an out-of-body experience. That experience is a wake-up call from the Mahanta, the Living ECK Master.
From that moment on, they become the seekers.
Yet they may spend the rest of this life in the church of their youth, too scared to leave it for a path like ECK, which gives them more satisfying answers.
They are still the seekers. Perhaps in the next lifetime they will find the courage to say, “What am I doing here? What is the meaning of life?”
Eckankar can show all people the most direct route home to God. Yes, there is a quicker exit from the wheel of karma and reincarnation, but most people will settle for a longer, more difficult way home.
What about spiritual freedom?
It is Soul’s final release from the Law of Karma and reincarnation. The ECK teachings say that to live a karmaless life, one must do everything in the name of God.
At first, the Dream Master is the teacher. This teacher is the dream form of the Mahanta, the Living ECK Master. God has given him the spiritual power to act as both the Inner and Outer Master for those who want a more direct way out of these lower worlds. A guide and wayshower, he carries the key to the Light and Sound of God, two necessary parts of divine love.
The Path of Truth Starts in the Heart
Love is the force that returns Soul to God. For the path of truth starts in the heart, and the journey home to God begins with meeting the Mahanta in either a dream or in person. The Spiritual Exercises of ECK give strength and comfort, for these simple daily contemplations give one a stronger bond with the Divine Being. We call the path of ECK the Easy Way.
So the main benefit of ECK is spiritual freedom.
The entire aim of life is to find that freedom. Though the earth may shake and tremble, the person who loves God above all else will endure with peace of heart and mind.
—Excerpted from ECK Wisdom on Karma and Reincarnation