In this article Naja Li presents a crucial distinction between earth and spiritual life. She discusses why ‘Things don’t happen for a reason’ and considers a historical framework for understanding the Li tradition.
For a start help to know that in my writing the word ‘spiritual’ refers only to the journey of the soul. This journey follows a predictable course in which a soul may leap from birth to birth before becoming as one with light. In order for this to occur, the soul must join the path of love and this is the path of Li.
The crucial distinction to be made is this: earth events are not touched by this path; the lives of people and what they do are not a reflection of this journey. On earth people may choose to open their hearts and join the path to be as one with light, but this will not change earth events.
Why ‘Things don’t happen for a reason’
As was told to me,
The reason people think that ‘things happen for a reason’ is because they have listened to an imperfect form of the message. For things do not happen for a reason: man was not meant to suffer. There is no god, there is no meaning in creation. These are the inventions of weak minds and poor imaginations. There is no spiritual teaching to say that we are other than one. One path, one love, Li.
At just about this point, I can hear you say ‘What about Karma?’ And indeed whilst there are different mechanisms relating to the consequence of action, Karma has no direct earthly effect. A full description of the consequences of action can be found in Naja Li’s Guide to Dying.
For Karma affects only the ability to be reborn. The theory is that if your heart is not pure then you cannot be reborn into a position of good station – and it may also cause unfavourable rebirth. All sickness is Karma too. However because the ability of Karma to impose its will depends on the moment of birth, a favourable rebirth secures both better chance to reach your spiritual destiny and the potential for better health.
A historical framework
House of Li is emphatically concerned with the spiritual journey and, above all, with providing a means by which those of lesser fortune can reach their spiritual destiny. Li places the ancestors at the centre of this philosophical framework and teaches of their role in mitigating the effects of Karma. For although the ancestors cannot interfere directly in earth events, they can smooth the path by enabling favourable outcomes. As I am told, ancestors have the power to make people see, to show them things that are significant, and in this way be present in people’s lives. The closest analogy I can think of here is of the curling broom that influences the path of the stone without ever touching it.
When you consider how the entire philosophical endeavour of the Li tradition is dedicated to honouring the ancestral tradition and add this to their vehement opposition to any kind of fortune telling tool beyond face reading, you get an interesting glimpse into the real politik of these spiritual masters. Was Li marginalised by a culture that valued fortune telling tools such as I Ching divination? Did the tradition of Li die because it opposed a regime that demanded spiritual Masters apply themselves to predicting earth fortunes and not to helping people die?
For the Li tradition certainly did die and with it, seemingly, the awareness of the path of the ancestors as key knowledge within Feng Shui. For more information about how this knowledge were applied see Naja Li’s Guide to Love. This book, amongst other things, explains the origin and purpose of Feng Shui and provides a philosophical framework by which we can understand the contribution of Li within the broader tradition.
Wishing you Health and Happiness,