The Law of Karma: Each one need not bear the consequence of his own actions

Let us imagine two people: one is in distress because of his karma, the other helps him because he has the power to do so, and in this way the karma of the former is improved. Does this exclude the law? On the contrary, it confirms it. It is precisely the working of the law of karma which makes the help effective.

If someone has more power than this, he may be able to help two or three or four others if they are in need. Someone still more powerful may be able to help hundreds or thousands and influence their karma for the better. And if he is as powerful as Christianity represents Christ to be, he may help the whole of humanity just at a time when it is in special need of help.

But that does not make the law of karma ineffective; on the contrary, Christ’s deed on Earth is effective precisely because the law of karma can be built upon. The Redeemer knows that by the law of karma His work of redemption will be available for everyone. Indeed, He accomplished that deed in reliance on the law of karma, as a cause of glorious results in the future, as a seed for a later harvest and as a source of help for anyone who allows the blessings of redemption to act upon him. Christ’s deed is conceivable only because of the law of karma; the testament of Christ is in fact the teaching of karma and reincarnation. This does not mean that each one must bear the consequence of his own actions, but that the consequences must be borne by someone, no matter whom. […]

The world does not consist of single “I’s”, each one isolated from the rest; the world is really one great unity and brotherhood. And just as in physical life a brother or friend can intervene to help another, so does this hold good in a much deeper sense in the spiritual world.

Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 95 – At the Gates of Spiritual Science: Lecture Six: The Upbringing of Children. Karma. – Stuttgart, 27th August 1906

Translated by E. H. Goddard & Charles Davy

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