My question is about those souls who are not bound to return into birth/death cycle and yet come to earth according to their own will. Who are these souls? Are they already liberated? Are they same as what we know as 'Avatars'? What could be their purpose of taking birth. I understand there can be many reasons and answers, but please share as much as your time and intuition permits.
May God bless you, Ananda family and everyone!
Swami Kriyananda writes in his book, Awaken to Superconsciousness,
Avatar means “divine descent into the material realm.” An avatar is one who, having attained final liberation, returns to this world out of compassion to help all humanity to fulfill its spiritual destiny. An avatar, as distinct from lesser saints and masters, has a universal mission. He (or she) also has the power to bring as many souls to freedom as come for guidance and enlightenment. His power is no longer circumscribed. Like the power of God Himself, it is infinite.
Our line of masters, Jesus Christ, Mahavatar Babaji, Lahiri Mahashaya, Sri Yukteswar, and Paramhansa Yogananda are all avatars who have come to uplift the consciousness of our planet and guide souls out of delusion in to eternal freedom.
Our most important priority is to attune our consciousness with theirs that we may be one in satchitananda (ever existing, ever conscious, ever new bliss) with them!