Soul choice: beyond karma

May 6, 2016

soul-choiceOne of the hardest concepts for many of us to grasp is the idea that in this incarnation we volunteered for the things that happen in our life. This is particularly hard to swallow for people who face unbelievable suffering and pain of any kind.

“Why would I choose this?”  “Why would anyone choose this?”

Those are good questions. The concept of soul volunteerism or soul choice is one I’m just now getting a hold of in my studies of all things spiritual. So when I read a piece that presents challenges in our lives in a manner that goes beyond karma, it gave me food for thought.

Many people believe it’s a random universe and the things that happen to us are merely “luck of the draw.” Including bad luck. “Just the way the cookie crumbles,” in effect.  But I’ve come to see it differently.

Is it chance? No.

What happens to us can go beyond just chance or an accident, and as the piece I’m about to link to says, there is always the opportunity to get meaning out of what happens to us. The meaning may also be for others. Two perfect examples in my own life were the long illnesses of my mother and a very best friend. These became opportunities for me to step up in a big way, in a selfless way, and give of myself to them. They were opportunities for my own soul growth. I can’t speak to what purpose their illnesses served for them, but I know what they served for me.

Here’s a piece called Touching Grace, from Peter Woodbury’s blog. (Just click the first part of that sentence if you can’t see the color change for the link.)  I first met Peter Woodbury when he presented at an afterlife conference I attended last year.  He’s a psychotherapist and hypnotherapist trained at Harvard and Boston University with a private practice in Virginia Beach. Spirituality and faith are tools for transformation, he believes, and that’s a point of view that I’ve come to subscribe to, as well. He’s teaching the three-course master’s level certificate program in Integrated Imagery that I’m taking through the online college Atlantic University. It’s affiliated with the Edgar Cayce Association for Research and Enlightenment in Virginia Beach and so is Peter. He also trained in hypnotherapy and past life regression techniques with Brian Weiss, MD and several other big names in that field.

Who is Edgar Cayce?

The piece refers to Edgar Cayce. I knew very little about him before my visit to the A.R.E. last year but I’ve become fascinated with this man, a devout Christian who used his special psychic powers to help others, back in a day when such things were considered almost witchcraft.  I added a day to my residency in Virginia Beach this month so I could spend it in the amazing library of his readings. I’m sure I’ll write more about him here in the future but you can easily do an internet search to lean a little about him.

One more thing, that I see as a companion to Peter’s essay. Years ago, I heard a song called What if She’s an Angel. It talks about the people in need we run into, and it had a huge impact on me. In fact, it taught me that angels are all around us if we only look and they present opportunities for our own soul’s growth:

What if she’s an angel/ sent here from heaven / and she’s making certain that you’re doing your best / to take the time to love one another / brother, are you going to pass the test.

Click this to hear it.

So please, come back here and tell me what you think. As usual, all viewpoints are welcome here as long as they are presented with courtesy. Thank you!



21 comments on “Soul choice: beyond karma
  1. ryder Ziebarth says:

    There are so many overlapping “circles” in my life that I simply cannot believe in cookies crumbling. I believe I have a path and a destiny to fulfill, without doubt. And angels? They are everywhere, and they drop in and out of my life regularly at the best and worst moments.I am with you on this and love these posts, Carol.

  2. Heading over to read Touching Grace. I studied Edgar Cayce’s work about 25 years ago in depth. I’ve had too many “coincidences” in my life occur that cannot be explained….I no longer believe in coincidences. There is a reason for everything that happens to us.

  3. I love the idea that there’s meaning in the life situations we encounter. I don’t think it’s possibly to learn or grow without introspection. I’ll definitely check out the article. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Going to check out the links —lots of good food for thought here, Carol . Thanks!

  5. PatU says:

    Once upon a time, I had a “reading” and was told that my entire life would be a struggle, that my purpose was to help certain people to work out their karma.

    Don’t know if that’s working, but gee, thanks.

    Can’t imagine choosing this.

  6. alison says:

    I think we definitely knew what kind of obstacles we were going to face. It is hard to grasp right now but I am sure that we understood it then. Why we have certain trials I am not sure but I do know that we definitely want to pass the test as it says in the song.

  7. Toni McCloe says:

    I love the song and I love the post. Life has meaning. We just have to look for it and be grateful for our experiences. That (experiencing life) is,I think, what it’s all about.

  8. christina aliperti says:

    I am one of those that believe nothing happens without a reason. There is a meaning to everything we encounter, there is a pattern that is being laid out and that pattern was designed long ago. It’s like a path we are meant to follow and it’s beauty is intricate because of everything that we walk through.

  9. Rosemond says:

    I’ve heard of Edgar Cayce but am not that familiar with his work, I am heading over to read Touching Grace. I need to learn more!

  10. There is purpose in our pain. To teach us something, to teach someone else. Not pleasant, but not without a lesson. Loved She’s Angel. I think I had heard it before. You never know who someone is or what they’ve been through when you see them. Important to keep in mind when we are quick to judge.

  11. Alana says:

    This is a tough one. My friend of over 50 years died last year. She had a host of health problems all of her life, and was not expected to live past age nine. Then she battled a cancer that her original oncologist gave up on. She lived some 30 plus years after that. Her last four years were hellish, being treated for another cancer that eventually took her despite heavy duty chemo and radiation. She also had horrendous family issues, including an estranged child who never contacted her even knowing her mother was dying. The thought of my friend choosing all this prior to birth is inconceivable to me. It is not true that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger (to quote a cliched saying that she believed in). I’m sorry. No, just no.

  12. Laurie Stone says:

    I also want to believe in karma, but then think about the Sandy Hook shootings. How could they ever be part of a plan? I just don’t know, but want so badly to believe. I truly do.

  13. KatR says:

    I don’t know if it’s karma, luck, the will of a higher power, or what. All I know is that for my entire life, I have come to notice that as soon as things are beginning to look up and it seems that maybe we may actually be able to get ahead a little, SOMETHING is going to break or go out or some other unexpected expense will pop up out of nowhere. Ever single time without fail!! Like this month for example. I thought that I would be able to actually put some money in our savings account for a change. But NO! The blower in our home’s central A/C unit has stopped working two days ago and needs to be replaced to the sum of several hundred dollars! sigh

  14. Very thought provoking, Carol. I do believe we can always learn or glean some good from most every situation… even if I don’t believe everything happens for a reason. Sometimes things just happen for no good reason because, well, shit happens.

    I do indeed believe there are angels all around us. Some evil, some heavenly.

    Off to read the article. Makes a little anxious inside… and I don’t know why. Hmmm…

  15. Leanne says:

    A little out of my comfort zone Carol but I definitely agree that there is a purpose to what happens to us in our lives. How we choose to respond to situations and to the pain of others goes a long way towards developing our wisdom and character. For me, it’s about becoming more Christlike, for others it’s something different but it would be nice to think we were all growing into deeper, better human beings.

  16. I have been reading all of these thoughtful comments with great appreciation. I so understand how difficult it is to think that anyone choose super-difficult situations. It requires a view from 20,000 feet, a belief that we are in this for soul growth, which is our reward–and that some growth is painful–it takes a certain faith, doesn’t it? Faith that our highest and best good is being looked after. In all of this, I am a work in progress.

  17. Nicole Escat says:

    Honestly, I don’t believe in luck, instead were blessed. That’s a good karma.

  18. I’ve always believed that everything happens for a reason! Whether it be fate or a higher power, if you will, but some things you just can’t chalk up to coincidence.

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