The Theosophical Forum – April 1941


John Stuart Mill says somewhere that "the interference of human will with the course of Nature is not an exception to law" — which may prove helpful to those who get themselves into a boggle over the question of free will and karman. It is quite an orthodox Theosophical tenet that every least operation of Nature is ultimately analysable into an act of will. The universe, we say, is an assemblage of living souls interacting with each other. What else, then, can Karman be but a manifestation of the action and reaction of the wills of living beings? When met with a manifestation of the effects of Karman (supposing it to be of the kind we do not relish), we can say with Faust: " "Tis thou, proud heart, "tis thou hast willed it so." In other words, we are but finishing something we had begun.

As to destiny and fate, see what is said in The Secret Doctrine, II, 605, where the author is speaking of Μοίρα, Fate [Karmic Ego], whose business it is to lead the man to the end appointed for him. She explains that Moira is destiny, not "Fate'; and it is clear that this Destiny is the will of the true Self in man, so that destiny is equivalent to self-realization in the highest sense of that word. So we can say that our destiny is our will, so long only as we do not mean the will of any lesser ego in our compound nature. Destiny, then, may be said to be a force outside of man, in one sense; while, in another sense, it is the will of the man.

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