This article springs from a group discussion about our free will. We understand that as far as our life destiny, and bearing in mind that the hells will ultimately be emptied, humans have two choices. The first is to become an immortal divine angel in the Kingdom of God or Celestial Heavens through the transformation of soul by the Divine Love. The second is to live forever (or as long as God will sustain this existence as inherent immortality is not a part of it) as a perfect spirit in the “Kingdom of the Perfect Man” having gone through a long process of soul purification. We know that Divine Love exists everywhere around us, but surprisingly not everyone will choose to pursue the path of praying for it with the desire of becoming at one with God – in fact most may not. We are told that everyone is free to choose what path they will follow – we all have free will.
I would like to take the issue of free will a little farther and pose the question, are we totally free to choose in all aspects of our lives, or does our free will exist only within certain bounds?
I’ll start with three key thoughts: Firstly, our understanding of God, God’s plan, and how God works with humanity is extremely limited. I like to compare our spiritual understanding to the light spectrum – we see a tiny, indeed infinitesimal, part of it, but there is an enormous amount we don’t see. Even the spirits in the Padgett messages say time after time that this is so and they cannot even communicate a lot of truths because of the limitations of human mind and language.
Secondly, our freedom of choice is never total, and is limited by such things as our heredity, environment, and circumstances. These include physical limitations of our bodies which with time deteriorate due to aging, illness, etc. We cannot control what happens to us – such as finding ourselves in a freak accident, war situation, being in the wrong place at the wrong time, or unexpected terminal disease.
We always do have the choice how to respond to our circumstances – lovingly or otherwise. However, in a moment of pain, shock or weakness, we may not respond as we would like to or would be able to under better conditions. We also have the choice of what we think and what influences we allow into our lives – be it through the media, people we associate with, or spirits we allow to influence our thoughts and actions. The key here, and again a choice, is to at all times maintain our contact and relationship with God and seek His Love, as this will enable us to be under the influence and promptings of Celestial angels to make right decisions – those that are in harmony with God’s Will.
We are always free to choose whether to live in harmony with God’s laws or not – whether to follow the path of love (natural love or Divine Love), or simply disregard the divine laws and reap the consequences. However, our choices depend on the knowledge we have – we may have made different decisions had we known better. Also, our early life circumstances may handicap us and hinder us from making optimal choices, as well as causing a lot of encrustations to our souls. In addition, we don’t live in a vacuum, but are interconnected with other humans and even the spirit world (the latter may occur without our conscious knowledge). The influences of others have an effect on what choices we make – whether good or poor – but ultimately we are responsible for our choices, lives and destinies. Many who have come through a horrible childhood or other extremely unfavourable circumstances have by God’s grace transcended their situations and become shining lights in a dark world inspiring countless others.
Thirdly, God has created our souls and has decreed a purpose for us collectively and, I believe, even individually – though the latter depends on our cooperation. Through His Spirit, we are given life and all that pertains to it. This includes a marvelous body, as well as all our gifts and talents. We are sustained by God’s Spirit as long as we are meant to live as humans in our physical bodies. We have no control over the length of our lives, and death is inevitable for all. (Some become so desperate of living that they resort to suicide, which is not a solution in the long-run, and its consequences will have to be faced later.) Through broken laws (not necessarily by the person involved or their parents), some are born with physical or mental limitations – limiting their choices, but even people like that in their physical life can inspire others in their own way if they follow the way of love rather than becoming bitter. In the spirit life, they can still fulfil their highest potential.
God has ultimately given us two choices through which to fulfil His purpose for us – two ways to achieve happiness. If we refuse to follow His Will, disregarding the laws He put into effect will exact unpleasant consequences here and hereafter. So our free will choices are influenced by what we ultimately want – happiness or suffering.
We are also told that ultimately the hells will be emptied. This means that somehow, there will be an increase in conditions and influences promoting more loving and harmonious lives on earth, so that souls passing into spirit will have a high enough development so as not to end up in the hell realms. In addition, those presently in the hells will somehow be more receptive to promptings to either work on their soul purification or to seek the Divine Love.
God is our Loving Father, Creator, Provider and Sustainer and really owes us nothing – not even life here or beyond here. Everything we have is a gift by grace. As being dependent on God for everything, we really have no right to expect, let alone demand, anything. The Bible uses the analogy (one of many) of God being a Potter and we being a clay – indicating that ultimately His will and purpose for humanity will prevail. Since we are not just meant to be automatons and are being given freedom of choice within certain parameters as shown, we really have a responsibility to love God and follow His Will – which is ultimately the best way for us. Yet, we are not forced to do that.
Through consequences for not following God’s Will (cause and effect), we will suffer, and pain and the desire to get out of suffering are likely to influence our future choices. Pain is our warning system to avoid more pain and suffering – though not all suffering is the result of our actions. God has designed the universe in certain ways based on physical and spiritual laws. As the Creator, He had every right to do that. As mentioned before, our understanding of higher spiritual things is infinitesimal, and while we are free to ask questions, contemplate and speculate, we must recognize that after a point, this can be counter-productive as in this life we cannot fathom even a tiny fraction of God’s thinking and plan.
Because of our Father’s infinite and unconditional Love, which He is offering us in order to be transformed and enabled to share eternity with Him, our best choice is to gratefully accept this gift and feel exceedingly blessed. As we do this, our understanding of His nature, purpose, and our relationship with him will also grow.
For related articles, see
Origins, History, Destiny
Human Self System
Soul and Spirit
Souls, Bodies and Soul Mates
Dual Nature of Humans
Two Ways of Life
Limitations of Material Knowledge
Photo Credit: Girinath Gopinath