The Power Of Decision

April 6, 2013 Comments Off on The Power Of Decision

Many are the karmic consequences of using, selling and encouraging others to use illegal drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamines, barbiturates and psychedelics like LSD and mushrooms. The karmic chain works like this. Suppose someone sold drugs to another and that person overdosed and killed himself. The karma would be murder. Maybe the law wouldn’t call it murder, but the karma would be murder. This means that the person who sold the drugs would be killed in his next life. One act creates another act and that act comes back on those who helped create it. Similarly, if movie actors cause others to hurt themselves or kill another person, commit robbery, anything like that, because of what they’re acting out, that karma comes back on them, as well as the director, as well as the writer. It’s pretty messy business to fool around with the law of karma.
I tell young people who are tempted to use drugs that the power of decision is a very great power. Very few people know how to use this power, but everybody has the power of decision. It takes a little bit of willpower, it takes a little bit of research, and we are going to give you some ammunition to help you make the decision to be free from drugs.
The consequences of illegal drug use are that the drug user becomes a criminal. His home or car can be confiscated under drug assets seizure laws. His parents’ home or car can be seized. He can be arrested for driving under the influence of controlled substances. People may steal drugs from him, putting him and his family in danger. Eventually, he can’t earn enough to buy the drugs he needs. He can’t even steal enough. He has to deal, to sell drugs, to support the habit. And to deal, he must recruit new users. Drugs make him meet people he would never meet otherwise, not-so-good people–sellers, dealers, junkies. It puts him into a lower realm of life. He may become violent. He has to get a gun to protect himself. More danger follows. The government has to deal with him, as he has become a criminal. It’s very expensive for society. He can’t behave normally. He does harm to his body. He does harm to his mind. He becomes paranoid, always looking over his shoulder, fearful that bad things are going to happen. As a student, he can’t study well anymore, and he probably won’t graduate–he gets no education, therefore no career and no steady job. He does things he never thought he would do: rob, steal, lie, forge, pull away from and humiliate his parents, pull away from his teachers, create abnormal relationships with friends, girlfriends, boyfriends, ruin his reputation, even go into prostitution.
I warn youths, you might think it won’t happen to you. Well, everybody who takes drugs says, “That won’t happen to me. I can handle it.” Every junkie on the street has said that at one time or another. Why do we have groups talking about how to handle drugs and drug rehabilitation centers, which are very expensive for states, counties and private organizations to run? Because you cannot handle it. No one can handle it. It all starts with that first puff of a joint, the first time you cross the line into what’s not legal. One drug leads to the next, which leads to the next and the next. It’s the Narakaloka, active every day in the lives of the people on this planet who use illegal substances. So don’t get started.
Drugs may seem like an escape from the problems of life, but it is not a solution to them. In Hindu, Jain and Buddhist thinking, all this adds up to bad karma, then a bad birth. You can’t escape from karma. It will always catch up with you–if not in this life then in the next. But we can’t just say no because somebody has told us to say no. We need to meditate, we need to think upon the consequences, of what will happen to us, of using these terribly dangerous, illegal substances.

Talk to young people in your community. Tell them, “Think about it. Only you can make the decision. No one else can make it for you.” You can’t convince a young person here on the island of Kauai to surf on a fifty foot wave. Youths also don’t drive a hundred miles an hour down the winding mountain road from Kokee. Why? Because they know the consequence. They are well educated. They know the consequence and, be they 12 years old, 16 years old, 20 years old, 24 years old, they make the proper decisions about such things.
The issue is training people to make the proper decisions so that they are law-abiding citizens because they have decided to be law-abiding citizens, so that they do not take drugs, because they do not want to alter their mind, because they do not want to lose their standing in the community, because they do not want to lose the functioning of their physical body. The power of decision is a great power to pass on to the next generation. – from Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, from: Living with siva

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