Divine Guidance and Karma


Yogananda says: "The life of an advanced Kriya Yogi is influenced, not by effects of past actions, but solely by directions from the soul." This implies that a true kriya yogi is in complete control of his destiny & can direct the events in his life. Yet some gurus could accurately predict future events in their disciples' lives (disease, death, etc.) implying those events were pre-destined, i.e.: the yogi didn't have complete control over these occurences. So I am very confused, please can someone explain?

—Uchandra, USA



An advanced kriya yogi being influenced by directions from the soul precludes ego-directed actions. So the concept of being “in complete control his destiny” doesn’t apply in the way we understand or experience that.

A true guru can perceive the subtle workings of karma in the life of a disciple and thus might be able to predict certain key events in the disciple’s life. Such things are karmically directed but are not in conflict with an advanced disciple’s being influenced by soul wisdom.

Until we become a param mukta (siddha), a jivan mukta, one who has achieved nirbikalpa samadhi (oneness with God) will have the effects of past karma and past life identities to unravel. At that point, Paramhansa Yogananda taught, such a one might not care to rush things as that soul is already free.

It is difficult for us, caught as we are in the meshes of ego, to extricate the ego as the motivating force for our actions. “Directions from soul” means that one acts in harmony with inner, divine guidance. It does not, by itself, mean there is no karma from past actions.

Besides, it is important to understand what an “advanced” kriya yogi is. While Master did not, to my knowledge, give any specific explanation of this term, you can be sure that it is a high state of consciousnesss, not necessarily achieved by most kriyabans after but a few years of kriya practice.

There is, therefore, no inherent conflict between acting from divine guidance and still having the effects of past karma.



Nayaswami Hriman