At the core of the great mysteries is the fact that we can’t really know the answer to questions like “why are we here?”, “do our souls go on?”, “what’s the deal on karma?”, etc. until we die. Unless you believe that death is the end in which case you go to your grave not knowing any answers and that’s that. I wind up sorting through the wildly disparate theories as to why we’re here and feeling a little lost. In the end I figure the best I can do is decide which theory makes sense to me and then live my life in accordance with whatever practices and principles apply.
Among the various traditions, it seems to me to divide in several directions. There are those who believe the point of being here is to figure out how to transcend the physical and move back to being Consciousness. Others believe we have one life and how we live it determines whether our souls achieve heaven or hell. Shamanic traditions seems to me to be about learning how to expand into spirit enough while on earth to live in harmony and understanding with all life and the Spirits, with not so much emphasis on how your life on earth will impact what happens to you after death. In New Age writings there are theories that range from All That Is wanting to have the challenge of being physical to the physical world being some kind of test to see if we can figure out how to go back to being just consciousness to Earth being some sort of playground that All That Is created for us to figure out how to be spiritual beings in physical bodies while having fun.
I’m inclined toward believing that Consciousness had some reason to want to try out the physical realm and that the idea is to learn how to be our Divine selves and at the same time negotiate the physical plane. Many traditions seem to believe that whatever is enjoyable about life on earth – food, wine, etc. – is here just as temptation to lure us away from godliness or distract us from Buddha nature. I can’t imagine that to be true; to me the challenge is just to lift my consciousness enough to live as a spiritual being while enjoying the pleasure
of being in body on earth. Yes, food and wine and other pleasure can take you away from your divinity if you are so caught up in them that you can’t see anything else but I think it’s possible to do practices and clear your mind and lift your vibration and still enjoy your life. I’m trying to live an ordinary life in a spiritual way.
To me it is important to decide what you believe because a great deal about your spiritual life is going to be shaped by what you believe about why you’re here. None of us will know whether or not we were right until we die but I think we have to live with some kind of faith about where we’re going and why in order to find inner peace.
I’m interested to hear what others think about this one, so discuss!