Connection between karma and species

QUESTION: Masters, I have two related questions: 1. Buddhism believes in reincarnation. It is possible for us to be animals in previous lives? 2. In terms of karma, is it true that a deed done with evil intention will eventually reap a negative consequence in the same lifetime? Will the negative karma be passed on to a future lifetime? Maybe if we have done much evil in this lifetime, we may be born into a poor family or be born as a disabled person, or perhaps be reincarnated as an animal the next time round?        ~Marilyn, Singapore

ANSWER: Our main message, which we are teaching through Masters of the Spirit World, is that of reincarnation. It is possible for a soul to choose to spend a life as an animal. (Our channel has chosen to experience lives as a dolphin, a black panther, and an eagle.) It is not a very common occurrence to go inter-species, but some souls wish to have the abilities that only come with an animal existence. The decision is completely made with freedom of choice, and has nothing to do with behavior in a prior lifetime.

Karma, as we use the word, does not mean retribution or punishment. Karma is the energy that radiates out from the event experienced by an individual. It is recorded in that soul’s akashic (celestial) record for future reference, but it does not predetermine future lives unless the soul itself makes the specific decision to make that energy a part of another life. This decision can be either conscious or unconscious.

A conscious decision to have the energy from one life affect another may come, for example, if the soul has experienced causing someone to become a cripple and has watched the problems the person had. The soul might then choose to see how it would fare under the same circumstances and would plan this into its next life.

An unconscious decision could occur when a soul has previously decided upon a particular life-lesson and then has not completed it during that life. It will then have the energy of that incomplete action still firing in its aura or energy field. This may cause a more difficult example of the same lesson to pop up in a subsequent life because it had not finished what it desired to accomplish.

Even with the unconscious uncompleted activity in the background, the soul may choose to skip a lifetime before tackling it again. Freedom of choice, not karma or prior intentions, determines your next life.