We haven’t been getting much American news here in the UK, so I haven’t been commenting much on current issues. But apparently one Todd Aikin, Representative from Missouri said something outrageous and stupid about rape that, in turn, inflamed the debate on abortion, so I thought it might be appropriate to say something here about abortion.
It is a real pity that abortion has become so terribly polarized. We don’t hear much from people who might wish to find some middle ground, although I am sure that they would be in the vast majority. I do, however, think that in the way we think about it and how we treat people who are faced with the decision offers us a great opportunity to exercise compassion and understanding.
The truth is, neither side can claim to know the answer to the basic spiritual questions that are at the core of the issue. While science tells us all about the intricacies of fertilization and cell division, it has nothing to say about the process by which a soul enters the body, and what happens to it if the pregnancy is terminated.
No one else knows the answer to that question either, and there is very little discussion about it. The churches have their dogma, but they are no better informed regarding the truth than anyone else. Both sides take positions on it based on assumptions that have no basis in fact, but which support their own prejudices.
This is exactly what I am about to do since I don’t know either. All I can do, like everyone else, is come up with a story based on certain assumptions and inspired guesses about how we transition between the spiritual and physical realms through the processes of birth and death.
But before I do, I must say this. Abortion is an extremely important issue and is worthy of our deep consideration on ethical, social and spiritual grounds. There’s no question in my mind about that. So I do not enter into this discussion lightly. I also think that here are karmic implications for both the man and the woman who decide to abort, depending on their motivation at the time.
I am also mindful of the fact that I am a man and as such I have no way of knowing what it is like to have the spiritual responsibility for giving life to a soul that requests to come through. Only a woman knows. Men need to honor this and have enough humility to admit that they are not privy to the same knowledge as women, and should be willing to defer to feminine wisdom when it comes to the process of giving life.
But, that said, I can easily imagine the soul might be disappointed if the woman it chooses to incarnate through says, “No, not right now.” After all, that soul may have given a lot of thought to why that person was the ideal parent to experience life through. It may even have been an agreed soul contract between it and the soul of the mother.
But, disappointment notwithstanding, I cannot imagine that the soul is mortally wounded if the mother says ‘No,’ even if it has already anchored itself in the form we call a fetus. If it was aborted, it would not be extinguished any more than a soul who, as a baby died a SIDS death, or the soul of a soldier killed in battle would be snuffed out. The soul cannot die. It simply goes back home to the spiritual realm, in all probability, no worse for wear but perhaps having experienced something instructive and valuable. And who is to say that the soul did not choose to have the abortion experience in order to balance the energy of having been a woman who aborted a fetus in a previous life.
This is not to say, however, that a woman and her partner who is, or should be, party to the decision should enter into this decision without a lot of careful and thoughtful consideration. There probably was a good reason why that soul requested passage into the human experience through her and this has to be honored.
But the prospective mother has a soul too, and her soul’s wishes need to be honored, as well. I think it is possible that the Spirit World, not really understanding how difficult life can be down here in the dense vibration of the physical realm, can sometimes put too much of a load on the shoulders of a soul who has taken on a body. I’m sure everything looks very easy from up there. I think they also understand that a soul who is in a human body is entitled to say “No” to whatever task he or she is being given at any one time. After all, it is a principle that we have free will and sometimes that freedom is exercised by saying “No” to a soul who is asking to incarnate through that woman’s body.
And it need not necessarily be a total rejection. How often do we say to someone who wants something from us, “No, not now. Ask me again later.” In other words, we might say to the soul, “Thank you for choosing me, but I’m just not ready for this now. Try again later when I am stronger and more prepared. I love you.”
Again, as a man, I cannot say how any woman should go about making the decision, but I would respectfully suggest that it would be helpful to have a conversation with the soul that is knocking on the door. Talk to it and explain why you wish to refuse to be the conduit this time, and let it know that you are truly honored to be asked, and that you love it dearly even though you are saying “No” on this occasion. Wish it well and tell it you hope to connect with it in another way if and when it incarnates. Then, be quiet and listen. Let the soul talk back to you. Maybe it will lovingly release you from the obligation and may tell you why you are so special and why it initially chose you.
Having had this kind of dialogue with you and feeling your love, might be enough for the soul and satisfy its need to connect with you. Maybe, too, it will enable it to move on and find another woman to incarnate through. No harm done. All is well.
Excerpted from my forthcoming book, Expanding In Love, A Handbook for Radical Living.