Thus, neither before nor after Initiation Science is there a contradiction between karmic necessity and freedom.
Once more, then: neither before nor after the entry of Initiation Science is there a contradiction between necessity — karmic necessity — and freedom. Before it there is none, because with everyday consciousness man remains within the realm of freedom, while karmic necessity goes on outside this realm, like any process of Nature. There is nothing in him to feel differently from what his own nature impels. Nor is there any contradiction after the entry of Initiation Science, for he is then quite in agreement with his karma, he thinks it only sensible to act according to it. Just as when you have built yourself a house and it is ready after a year, you do not say: the fact that you must now move in is an encroachment on your freedom. You will more probably say: Yes, on the whole it was quite sensible to build yourself a house in this neighbourhood and on this site. Now see to it that you are free in the house! Likewise he who looks back with Initiate-knowledge into his former lives on earth: he knows that he will become free precisely by the fulfilling of his karmic task-moving into the house which he built for himself in former lives on earth.
Thus, my dear friends, I wanted to explain to you the true compatibility of freedom and karmic necessity in human life. Tomorrow we shall continue, entering more into the details of karma.
Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 235 – Karmic Relationships: Esoteric Studies – Volume I: Lecture III – Dornach, 23rd February 1924
Translated by G. Adams, M. Cotterell, C. Davy, & D. S. Osmond
Previously posted on December 6, 2014