Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


Question of Dragi: It’s a personal question that I have from many, many years, and still I don’t have the answer. If one can personally decide his future or he experiences some influences?

Swami Tirtha: Both. Depends on how strong we are, how determined we are. If we are beginners and not powerful enough, then our karma will have full control over us. If by spiritual practice and divine mercy – both elements are there – you become strong then you can influence your karma. But again if you are fully dedicated to Krishna, I mean really a surrendered soul, then you don’t mind if the wind blows you here or there. But this is a different level than the first one where you have no influence on your karma. This top level is when you are not interested anymore to influence your karma.

But we can say that there are external factors and also there are personal contributions to our fate. So, if by chanting the maha-mantra and doing some service we invite more and more divine powers to our life, then we can change the scale of our karma. Let’s say, if that according to your karma you have to experience stomach cancer, but then you change your lifestyle and from a materialistic person you become like a devotee that means you will change your diet also. So, what is written in your karma will manifest but to a much lesser degree. Maybe you will not get cancer, but you will get an ulcer. Something is there, signal is there because something must happen, but not the heavy punishment, so to say. Why? In that respect we can say that karma is like a teacher. Because we live in the world of action-reaction. So, whatever you do, you have to pay the price. But as in a classroom there are many different students – one is obedient, the other is stupid, or aggressive – the teacher has to use different methods to control them. For the aggressive the teacher uses the stick to control. For those who are obedient a few words are enough, and for the elite he will give only support and the best of his knowledge. In this way our karma uses different ways to fulfill what is necessary, but if we show more obedience to God, to Krishna, then karma will have less effect on us. Because what is the meaning of surrender: “I’m ready to listen to you”. So if somebody is ready to listen, that means less impact is necessary to reach him. Something else? Yes!

Question of Neli: Is it like this that the fear is the only thing that we have to fear of?

Swami Tirtha: Also we have to fear of forgetting Krishna. But actually instead of cultivating fear better we cultivate affection. Because there is no end for the reasons why to fear, but in the same way there is no end of the list why to be affectionate. So, the choice is up to us which list we choose – the list of fear, or the list of affection. With the same efforts we can be upset or satisfied, right. Better we use our energy in a proper sense. Therefore it is said you have to decide whether you want to achieve the position that you are right, or you want to be happy. This is the equation.



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