There is a metaphysical axiom that says, “Man always follows the highest path for which he is really certain.” Most likely, you are following the highest path of which you are really certain ... and the result is your current life, just the way it is. If your life isn’t the way you want it to be, suspend your beliefs for a few minutes and explore with an open mind:
THE SEVEN KARMIC PATHS
1. NO PATH: This path is best expressed in poet William Blake’s words: “The road to excess leads to the palace of wisdom.” Those on this path eventually, through experience and pain, will perceive what has value and what doesn’t. Those on this path judge everything from a perspective of self, and often they have difficulty judging what action will result in harmony as opposed to disharmony. The No Path people appear to have little sense of balance and are usually unwilling to accept responsibility for their own lives.
2. BEGINNING PATH: These people are more responsible, but they enjoy having things “handed” to them. They want everything done “their way” and are materialistic and pleasure oriented. Chances are, those on the Beginning Path will be unlikely to have much interest in anything they can’t eat, touch or enjoy.
3. INTERMEDIATE PATH: Those on this path are beginning to realize that there is an alternate reality. They might become interested in spiritual matters, but tend to be drawn to dogmatic thinking. While they are less “self” oriented, they usually remain very materialistic and pleasure centered.
4. BALANCED PATH: Those on this path have an awareness of karma and carefully consider their actions because they are aware of the ramifications. They are beginning to comprehend unconditional love and seek to detach from the standard illusions about reality. They begin to recognize that life can be experienced as a hostile separateness or a tranquil oneness. Those on the Balanced Path don’t repress their natural urges but refrain from excess.
5. HARMONIOUS PATH: These people require their outer life to be in harmony with their inner beliefs. They “live” their spiritual and self-actualized philosophy. They are beginning to incorporate unconditional love/acceptance into their lives and have risen above blame and judgment. They accept “what is” and are well on the road to developing “detached mind.” Most of those on this path practice meditation in some form.
6. FORCE-OF-WILL PATH: This path incorporates extreme discipline. It is the path of those in Zen monasteries, Yoga devotees and some priests ... plus many others who center their lives around their spiritual faith. For many, this means extreme dietary practices and celibacy. The argument for following this path is that it is a rapid way to advance spiritually. The primary argument against this path is that it is undesirable to “drop out” of the “real” world and to repress your natural urges and desires, for in doing so, they will increase in intensity. Even if you manifest the self-discipline to deal with them in this life, you may generate a “karmic charge” that will have to be dealt with in a future life.
7. BODHISATTVA PATH: Those on this path are beyond seeking. They are truly “in the world, but not of it.” Only those who are highly evolved are capable of walking this path. They are living examples of “detached mind” and are dedicated to assisting others to find their way out of the darkness and into the spiritual light.