Is There a Spiritual Purpose for the Negative Power?

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by Waynesrhythm, Apr 23, 2009.

  1. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi All,

    I’ve been considering this post for quite some time, but haven’t been sure about how to approach it. I finally decided to just sit down and “give it a whirl” and see how it progressed. I should mention at the outset that much of what I’ve written will contrast significantly from the Christian perspective on this subject. It will also likely be quite different from anything anybody may have read. Not sure if that leaves me between a rock and a hard place as there may not be anybody who will be happy with my little dissertation. :)

    I would expect however, that anybody who reads further will take it all with a grain of salt. I should mention also that I’m not posting this to try to convince anybody of anything. For those who have read some of my previous posts, you may recall that I feel that unduly trying to influence another’s beliefs without their permission is against the spiritual law.

    My hope then, is that there will be some appreciation for a presentation of a perspective that may be unfamiliar. And whether is makes sense or not, will be accepted as an interesting perspective that some people ascribe to. I personally find this perspective to be the most plausible of all the ones I’ve come across (and I’ve come across quite a few in my time).

    Also, I would describe what I’m writing as somewhat of a synthesis of the words that have been written on this subject from the many books on Eckankar I’ve read over the years. I don’t have the time or energy to go back and review all of this material, so please accept this as just one person’s synthesis, and not necessarily truly representative of Eckankar’s position. I do think however that they are fairly close.

    Which brings to mind one more item. I believe that all outer teachings (including those of Eckankar) are fallible, and should be read and evaluated with a certain degree of flexibility. This is in contrast to the infallible inner teachings/guidance (directly from Spirit) that I believe is with all people at all times. For example, an outer teaching can encourage us to “love our neighbor as ourselves”. But how do we know if we’re perhaps being less than kind, or less than tolerant, or less than patient... in any given moment unless we have Spirit guiding us through every moment of our daily lives? So with this introduction to what follows, hopefully you’ll know whether it’s in your interest to read further.

    Best to All, Wayne


    Spiritual Purpose of the Negative Power

    Apparently, Souls were created in the higher worlds (where there is no time) with a specific spiritual purpose. To sum it up succinctly, it was to help our Creator carry on the work of creation. Quite a lot could be added to this, but that would be a whole other topic. Souls were apparently quite self-centered in the beginning, and had no interest in serving life or serving others; only wanted to enjoy the delights that surrounded them (could his have been the Biblical Garden of Eden?). So it soon became apparent that Soul, because of its immaturity, was not able to comprehend its spiritual purpose.

    It was determined that a training ground for Soul needed to be established, so as to give it the spiritual direction and education it needed. And so the worlds of positive and negative were formed. These worlds were designed to give Soul a vast array of both positive and negative experiences, and in the process, prepare us to return to our true spiritual home. With a new found discrimination and sense of purpose, Soul could then become a true co-worker with its Creator, fully capable of taking up the spiritual responsibilities that it was initially unprepared to do.

    To make these lower worlds run properly, an entire hierarchy of beings was prepared to implement this grand strategy for Soul’s education. One being was to be put in charge of all others, and was instructed on how to take up its spiritual mission. This being is known by various religions as the negative power. Other names have also been ascribed, including the Devil by Christianity.

    This being’s mission, in short, was to trap Soul in these lower worlds, and keep it here as long as possible, trying to keep it oblivious to its spiritual destiny. Soul’s mission on the other hand, was to learn the lessons available, become strong, and eventually escape these worlds and return to its spiritual home. The long duration of time, coupled with its many varied experiences, would eventually give Soul the spiritual strength to do so. A primary strength to be learned was to give unconditional love to others at all times (not necessarily a warm, personal love).

    Given the vast array of experiences that would be necessary, certain principles were set up. Of primary importance was the necessity for Soul to see and understand the consequences of its actions (thoughts, words, deeds, etc.) This has been referred to as “as ye sew, so shall ye reap”. Others refer to it as the principle of “what goes around, comes around”. It’s also commonly known as karma. It’s all pretty much the same. This principle is so important, that it would be a disservice to Soul to try to unduly interfere in this dynamic. Because doing so would deprive Soul of the very lessons it needs to continue on with its education.

    Interestingly, in the beginning Soul had no karma/sin. But since the lower worlds revolved around the above concept of “as ye sew, so shall ye reap”, it was determined that, in order to get Soul started in this learning dynamic, it would be assigned a “primal karma”. That is, a set of circumstances to get the learning started. Creating further karma, and eventually resolving it would become the cornerstone of the continual learning of spiritual principles.

    Apparently, this “primal karma” proposition was eventually taken up by some religions as “original sin”. It seems that the “original sin” concept is closely tied in with certain feelings of guilt that are often felt by some who believe in it. A better understanding of the “primal karma” perspective might possibly help dispel these kinds of feelings for those who experience them.

    The so-called “negative” experiences that Souls experience are very important. If we didn’t have these experiences, we wouldn’t be able to learn the valuable lessons we were sent here to learn. An example that comes to mind: What if, before being born into a given lifetime, we decided we would like to learn more about compassion (just one of many spiritual values). And so we put in a spiritual request for help us in this regard. And God, (the Universe, or whatever name is comfortable for various people) decided to give us certain health challenges to help facilitate this request.

    While health challenges may be uncomfortable to deal with, they do often bring about the desired spiritual results. Difficult issues of all kinds, including health, usually end up being the very experiences we need to help us on our journey. I often think, if they weren’t so beneficial, why would God have allowed them at all? There’s a passage from one of the books in Eckankar that I think ties in quite nicely with some of the things I’ve been writing. It goes as follows:

    “”“”“ The physical world is a world of turmoil and strife. Never shall there be any peace in it ... It is so designed ... that the worlds shall have nothing but strife for the good of each Soul who must dwell therein. For these worlds are the testing ground of Soul: the place it must spend its long periods of existence, creating perfection and spiritual maturity. ”“”“”

    In the end, it seems all Souls follow a common spiritual journey. All are destined to finish their lower world education, and eventually return to the higher worlds (where eternity prevails, and the lower world dynamics of time and space no longer exist). As we take up our new spiritual responsibilities, apparently the memories of our vitally important lower world experiences begin to fade away as if they were a long ago dream. But its this “dream” that is all important at this moment, and it is incumbent upon us all to make the most of it while we are here. It’s not always easy (in fact I would say, seldom is it easy). But it seems the difficulty of our journey is likely due to the significance of our high spiritual destiny.

    Thanks for reading, Best to All, Wayne

    P.S. I read an account once of a person who was able to have a meeting with the being in charge of the negative power. She apparently used the opportunity take him/it to task for being responsible for so much of the misery in the world. As I recall, he responded by saying that she was giving him far too much credit. All he had to do was sort of get things started, and then “stir the pot” once in a while.

    I actually got a bit of a chuckle out this account. But I feel there’s an important principle at play here as well. It is not a battle with this particular being that is important. It is each Soul’s battle within itself to choose what is going to take root in its life. An immature Soul is often quite willing to act on any impulse that comes along. But in the end, the responsibility for our actions always ends up with us, not outside of ourselves. Life is a continual journey of facing ourselves.

    And as we go along on our journey, we learn to take responsibility for ourselves and our actions. I think we eventually learn higher and deeper perspectives regarding some of our difficult learning experiences we face. Instead of asking “Why is this happening to me”, we instead learn to ask “Why is this happening for me?"[This Message was Edited on 08/22/2011]
  2. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Rainbow,

    Yes indeed, taking responsibility for what comes into our lives does take getting used to. It's even hard when we KNOW we should be looking within ourselves instead of blaming outside influences. But doing so does eventually free us from the victim mode mentality.

    I like your mentioning the "Positive side of the Negative". I agree, and feel that this particular perspective is actually quite refreshing. I always had a hard time believing that in the beginning, something went terribly awry, and a fallen angel somehow severely disrupted God's original plan.

    Thanks much for your reply.

    Warm Regards, Wayne[This Message was Edited on 04/23/2009]
  3. vivian53

    vivian53 Member

    You wrote a very interesting post. I'm glad you decided to give it a whirl. Ditto all your disclaimers, no need for me to repeat.

    I often ask myself why we suffer.

    Many things you wrote I don't quite understand and have puzzled over. If the Creator made Souls to help Him why didn't he make them perfect from the start? If all the power in the universe is in your hands why not save everyone the trouble and heartache?

    I sometimes wonder if humans don't just believe these types of things to soothe themselves. To help make some sense out of the senseless. It is reassuring to me to think there is a reason for all the suffering, that it at least does some good in the end.

    So are you saying the Creator had to make, out of love for the Souls so they could come home to him, an evil one?

    Must we go to the school of hard knocks and learn everything by trial and error to be good Souls? Do we have to have a hard life to be kind and love? To the latter I think not.

    That said, I believe the suffering I have gone through has indeed made me a better person. I understand others so much more now. I always had the compassion though it is much deeper now.

    It does remind me about what is written in the Bible about the Devil and the hierarchy of Angles and the Garden of Eden.<Lydia1 talks about it in her post about why we suffer.BR>

    "Strife for the good." It reminds me of when my parents spanked me. They would always tell me it hurt them more than it did me. As a child I didn't believe them, as an adult and parent I understood.

    In order to maintain my mental health I have to ask myself what I can learn from my problem or event. Like Rahm Emanuel said about letting no good crisis go to waste.

    Wayne thanks for sharing your beliefs. I am still working on mine.


    PS Rainbow you have some good points as always. Cate, what can I say? You are just too much fun! LOL<I find myself agreeing with almost everything you said and love the>[This Message was Edited on 04/24/2009]
    [This Message was Edited on 04/24/2009]
  4. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Good Morning Everybody,

    So good to hear from you all this morning.

    Rainbow, RE: """Always, I think we should be gentle with ourselves, throw blame and guilt to the Wind, and just be happy being ourselves right where we are at, at this very moment in Time."""

    I couldn't agree with you more. I sometimes struggle with being gentle with myself. One of the things that helps me is to remind myself that it is the negative power that often tries to use self-blame and guilt to hold us back on our journeys. I feel I’'ve learned to deal with it better as I become more adept at recognizing these types of tuggings and understanding where they're coming from.

    Cate, LOL, I loved your poetry this morning. I chuckled all the way through. It was actually quite impressive. Not everybody could pull something like that together on the spur of the moment. And in such an endearing manner. :)

    I'm also very pleased that you are taking everything I wrote with a grain of salt. It is exactly what I had hoped for. I tried to share some of these concepts as well as I could, but there was no way I could clearly write in a manner that would adequately convey what I had read years ago.

    In the passage you mentioned that seemed to imply a mistake, just wanted to mention that it was not really the way I had intended it. I think a principle that may apply here is that, according to my understanding anyway, life in the spiritual realms is similar in some ways to life here in these worlds.

    Let's say an inventor starts tinkering with a new idea, and starts to collect his ideas and creative insights so as to perhaps build a reasonably working prototype. It can be a fairly long and laborious process, as adjustments are continually made along the way.

    Perhaps similarly, my understanding is that it actually took a fair amount of trial and error to create the physical bodies that would endure the dynamics of the worlds of positive and negative. Continuing modification was done in order to finally produce the bodies that would withstand the various forces involved.

    I believe that may also touch on why Souls were created to further the work of creation. Apparently, so much more could be accomplished. I've read that in a sense, God needs us as much as we need God. Thus the term "co-worker with God" that is often used. To take this a step further, my understanding is that Soul exists, because God loves it. And our spiritual destiny includes developing the capacity to love God as much as God loves us. Lots for me to mull over in my spare time! :)

    Dear Vivian, you bring up such good points. RE: """ If the Creator made Souls to help Him why didn't he make them perfect from the start? If all the power in the universe is in your hands why not save everyone the trouble and heartache? """

    I have struggled with this myself for many years, even after reading some of the explanations. I would ask myself, "Couldn't there have been an easier way?" I've finally come to accept that they're probably wasn't. And the main reason for me keeps coming back to Soul's immaturity. I believe there was perfection in the creation of Soul, but the factor of Soul not having the necessary experience to have good discrimination resonates well with me at this time.

    RE: """ Do we have to have a hard life to be kind and love? To the latter I think not. """

    I agree with you on this count. I believe living a hard life can help us develop or unfold spiritually, but I do not believe it is a prerequisite. But I suspect that it can often be helpful in overcoming spiritual obstacles that we have to overcome.

    I had a thought before I sat down here to write this morning. Wouldn't it be fun if the four of us could somehow miraculously get together and sit in some kind of circle exploring some of these "big" issues. I could easily imagine us all have a great time, a get together filled with love and humor. Anyway, just one of my pleasant thoughts this morning. :)

    Warm Regards, Wayne
  5. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Jam,

    Looks like you sent your message while I was composing mine. Good to hear from you. I think you make a good point about "chalking it up to living on this earth". It really sounds like a good attitude to have.

    I sometimes think that some of the trials and pains we endure here are meant as reminders to not place too much emphasis on the physical body. After all, it's only transitory.

    Best, Wayne
  6. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Cate, Hi All,

    Cate, I hope you weren't putting too much pressure on yourself to come up with a brilliant essay. I certainly wasn't expecting one. I'll appreciate a nice easy read of some of your random thoughts over a brilliant essay any day of the week. :)

    I thought I would share a little story here before turning in for the night. I got a knock on our front door this past Sunday morning. My first thought was that it would turn out to be a Christian missionary and started to brace myself for a hard sell.

    Well, it turned out to be two young women (mid-thirties or so) with their Bibles. I only spoke to one, but it was probably the nicest encounter I've ever had with a missionary. She spoke softly and kindly, and we had a very pleasant exchange for about two minutes. And in those two minutes, I think it would be fair to say that we began to like each other.

    After a brief time, I politely told here we were very comfortable with our own spiritual orientation. She mentioned that she was always happy to hear that people were living and following a spiritual path, and inquired if our spiritual path was based on the Bible. I said that in some way yes, and in some ways no. That I tended to pick and choose what in the Bible was appplicable to my own belief system. She was unfazed by my answer, and accepted it fully. (I was surprised.)

    As we said our farewell greetings, I noticed that she had such a nice light in her eyes, a kindness in her face, and a love in her heart. Clearly, from my obsevations, she had achieved a special spiritual contentment in her life.

    I'm sharing this story because I think it demonstrates that while I never was able to find a spiritual contentment through Christianity, others clearly have. And I think this holds true for all religions; you have those who are shining lights, and then you have those who are, how shall we say, bad apples.

    I tend to think that, from a spiritual perspective, it probably matters very little what we may or may not believe (such as my little disseratation above). What I think does matter is what kind of ideals we choose to live by, like love, kindness, generosity, patience, etc.

    Cate, thanks much for your invitation to stop by for a spot of tea. What a nice, friendly, neighborly gesture. I'll have to check my schedule. :)

    Wayne[This Message was Edited on 04/25/2009]
  7. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Good Morning Cate, Good Morning Rainbow, Good Morning All,

    I really like some of the comments that you made about Christians, Christianity, and Jesus. I concur with them all. I actually feel that Christianity is a very stabilizing factor in our society. And I'm continually impressed with those who truly live their Christian values. I especially enjoy meeting young Christians who have a real love for their religion.

    I am like both of you however. I really can't accept the Bible as completely accurate in the many accounts of what happened and was said thousands of years ago. I do think Jesus had an important spiritual mission to fulfill. But I believe that if we were given an opportunity to ask Jesus about some currently accepted Christian principles, I think he would quite likely respond by saying something like "I'm afraid there's been a misunderstanding".

    As far as outer teachings in general go, my take is that unless they lead a person to connect with Spirit within, they are of limited value. Which is why I believe there are so many different teachings out there. One religion will work incredibly well for one person, but not another.

    My understanding is that the outer teachings of Eckankar will not be the same in the future as they are today. Quite simply because there will continue to be huge changes in consciousness as time goes by, and people in the future will not be able to relate well to teachings that are more applicable to current times.

    Rainbow, I also like your tweak on the old Essene saying, "Peace be with you". I seem to remember that Jesus was involved with the Essenes for a period of time. Would you know whether that is accurate or not?

    Cate, the "we" I referred to in my post is my Partner of 14 years (this lifetime). We both have had past life recalls in which we shared significant life experiences together. Maybe I'll just share a couple.

    Alea had a recall where I was a reporter with a newspaper based out of Ohio, and was given the assignment of going to Oklahoma to report on the westward migration that was going on. I met her during this assignment, fell in love, and the both of us went back to Ohio where we married, had a family, and lived a good life. I suspect this lifetime also gave me an opportunity to work on some of my writing skills.

    I had a recall where I was a young Warrior (around 12-13 years old) in a Native American tribe, perhaps in the 1700s. Felt like it was in Kansas or Nebraska. I became aware that a young girl around 6-7 wanted to follow me around and spend a lot of time with me. Which was somewhat disconcerting for a young Warrior. But I actually did like her company, just had to be discreet about it. Didn’t want to get teased too much by the other young Warriors. :)

    Jump forward another 7-8 years, and I'm now about 19, and this young 6-year old girl is now a beautiful young Indian maiden, around 14 or so. So beautiful, sort of took my breath away. I could see she was being prepared for a big upcoming event, which I quickly was able to discern was her wedding, to me.

    There's been other lifetimes, but won't elaborate further. But our experiences reminds of a main message in the book "Journey of Souls", written by a psychologist who hypnotized people to have them view what their life was like "between lives". This author wrote that, based on his clients’ reports, Souls group together and often spend many lifetimes with each other, in various different relationships. And often the significant relationships were find ourselves in this lifetime were pre-arranged prior to coming into this life.

    When I shared this recall with Alea, she commented that it made sense to her. That she recognized we were meant to be together in that lifetime before me, just like in this lifetime. Seems like us men can be slow at things sometimes. :)

    Alea and I currently have a warm, loving comfortable relationship. My health issues have probably been the biggest challenges we’ve faced. I think I’ve been good for her in a way. She’s been able to work on qualities like patience, tolerance, understanding, etc. Qualities she would not have had to work on so diligently had it not been for living with me. :)

    Peace be with Us, Wayne[This Message was Edited on 04/25/2009]
  8. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Good Morning Cate,

    Loved your comments on Jesus and Siddhartha. I hadn't really thought of them in terms of bucking the orthdoxy of their day. But it sure rings true. Sounds like they both tried to point out that finding our individual path is far more important than trying to fit into any particular religion or philosophy.

    I think if any particular religion can help or support us on our own spiritual journeys, that is wonderful. But if membership in any spiritual organization becomes a substitute for undertaking our own individual path, then I think it can be a hindrance. I would guess that when the times comes time for us to meet with our Creator, face to face (if you will), we will likely be there on our own. Not with our fellow congregants beside us.

    Not sure if this will help with your request for us to help you not to think too much. :) BTW, I really appreciate the sense you have for history, and your ability to put things in historical context.

    Peace by with you, my UNorthodox friend. :)

    Wayne[This Message was Edited on 04/26/2009]
  9. bigmama2

    bigmama2 New Member

    cate- i looved your poem above- very witty!

    rainbow -"search for truth" i also love that!

  10. soulight

    soulight New Member

    It reminds me of "The Screwtape Letters" by C.S. Lewis. The wording just sounds very similar. Thank you for posting this . I love things that make me think.
  11. Debra49659

    Debra49659 New Member

    "I don’t think it can be overstated the importance of so-called “negative” experiences. If we didn’t have these experiences, how would we ever learn? I’ll try to give just a single example. What if, before being born into a given lifetime, we had determined that it would be in our best spiritual interest to learn more about compassion (just one of many spiritual values). And so we put in a spiritual request for help us in this regard. And God, (the Universe, or whatever name is comfortable for various people) decided to give us certain health challenges to help facilitate this request.

    These health challenges may be uncomfortable to deal with, but they do often bring about the desired spiritual results. Difficult issues of all kinds, including health, usually end up being the very experiences we need to help us on our journey. I often think, if they weren’t so beneficial, why would God have allowed them at all?"

    "And as we go along on our journey, and learn to take responsibility for ourselves, I think we eventually learn a higher perspective regarding some of our difficult learning experiences we face. Instead of asking “Why is this happening to me”, we instead learn to ask “Why is this happening for me?"

    Wayne these are two very powerful statement/questions....I need to think about this a bit.
    Oh and Cate....loved that poem:)