For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.Sir Isaac Newton
Why do you exist?
You wouldn’t exist if it were not for your parents, your parents’ parents, their parents, the evolution of mammals, the creation of the sun, gravity, etc… all the way to the Big Bang.
Ask why enough times to any question and they all lead back infinitely.
All events, then, since the beginning of time are effects of a single cause.
The Sixth Hermetic Principle, the law of cause and effect, states that all causes are an effect and all effects are causes. All universal phenomena abide by LAW and nothing is left to chance.
Throughout the ages, this principle has been revealed multiple times in Science (Newtonian Physics) and religion such as the Bible and Buddhism.
Although man cannot escape the law of causation, he can ascend to higher planes of consciousness in order to become a causal agent on the material plane of life.
All phenomena in the Mental and Spiritual realms precedes physical occurrences so tapping into those levels of consciousness allows a human to master the physical world and, in effect, become a cause.
The Universal LAW
Hermeticism believes that all universal phenomena is a mental creation of THE ALL.
THE ALL is simply a place-holder to explain that which is unknowable. In a sense, THE ALL is the Hermetic conception of God.
Hermetic teachers state that nothing can exist outside of THE ALL or else it would cease being everything.
All planes of existence (Physical, Mental, and Spiritual) are derived from the infinite source, THE ALL, so they abide by a singular LAW.
What is Chance?
Assuming the Hermetics conception of THE ALL is true, then there is no such thing as chance since all events occur within THE ALL — chance is merely a word for phenomena whose cause is unknown to man — causes that we cannot perceive — causes we cannot understand.
Interestingly, the word, ‘chance’, is derived from a word meaning “to fall” (as in the falling if dice).
However, with further observation, you’ll find that even the roll of dice is not left to chance. The numbers you roll depends on many causes running back further than the mind can conceive, such as the material of the dice, how they were positioned before picking them up, and the strength of your roll.
The Reality of Karma
By now, you may agree that all events are relative to another.
The Universe is an ocean of particles. Change one unit on the outer recesses of space and this will cause a series of events that affect all other units (no matter how subtle).
There is no great; there is no small; in the mind that causeth all.The Kybalion
The relativity of all things applies not only on the Physical Plane but the Mental as well.
All your thoughts and actions perpetuate through time and space, creating chains of reactions that exist forever.
This is where the concept of Karma comes into play.
Karma suggests that all your actions will have a direct effect on EVERYTHING in the Universe. What you put out you will get back — what you sow you shall reap, as the Bible saying goes.
A single action alone may not reap its expected consequence but like rolling a dice, the more times you roll the more likely everything will average out (the Law of Averages). So, it is in this sense that the Universe is fair — most people will get what they deserve on a long enough time-frame.
Karma also states that we are living through the effects of generations that came before us. This is true in the sense that negative and positive upbringing perpetuates from one generation to the next.
There is Karma existing within multiple generations, cultures, and humanity as a whole.
Free Will vs. Determinism
Everything previously mentioned begs the question of whether or not free will exists.
Some may read the above passages and conclude that humans have no control over personal drives and circumstances. While others, may still insist that we can consciously direct our lives.
Neither side of the debate is entirely correct. There are always two poles to every truth — each being but half-true based on the Hermetic teachings.
Man is both free and bound by necessity.
Most people go through life as slaves to the environment and their impulses.
These very same people may claim to be “free” to choose what they please but fail to explain where wants, desires, and preferences come from.
Whereas, the master is able to “Will to Will,” instead of being tossed about by every one of his thoughts, moods, feelings, and desires.
The master is able to escape cause and effect on the Material Plane by raising his conscious vibration to the Mental and Spiritual Planes.
Create from higher consciousness and you’ll be able to use higher against lower since the laws of the Spiritual and Mental worlds govern what takes place in the material realm.
In essence, you’ve become the cause rather than the effect — the mover rather than the pawn.
One Source With Infinite Possibilities
Even still, don’t forget that ALL planes of existence abide by the LAW of THE ALL.
Although the Master can rise above the Physical Plane, he still is subject to the ultimate law of the Universe.
However, by creating from higher consciousness, you become the cause of physical phenomena, transcending the principle of cause and effect in everyday life.
The ability to transcend the physical world, as the Hermetic teaching states, is the sole purpose of man, individually and as a whole.
So the question is, are you the cause or the effect?