Skip to content

Spiritual Assignments

When a spiritual teacher accepts a student, a karmic bond is created. The teacher agrees to share their awareness, and the student agrees to complete the assignments given by the teacher. The assignments are designed to help students incorporate the new levels of awareness they are learning about into their lives. This process is facilitated by the teacher giving empowerments to the student, during which energy is transmitted from Eternity directly into the student’s subtle body.

Ideally, the student then uses this extra energy to follow through with their assignments, even when it is not clear to the student exactly how the assignment will help to stabilize this new level of awareness. Sometimes students get lost in their personal dramas and allow the energy to be spent in other ways. No matter how the student uses the energy from the empowerment, the assignment is still there to be completed. Fortunately, teachers are very patient. They have been known to wait lifetimes for students; as with all karmic bonds, death does not end the arrangement.

Near the end of his life, Rama gave the Kalachakra Empowerment and a special teachingKalachakra to all of his current and former students who responded to the invitation. During this event, he pointed out that we could use this technique and teaching to dissolve in Samadhi within 6 months, and Enlightenment within 5 years. Rama took contracts very seriously, so it was with great kindness he merely pointed out the option to us, instead of making it an assignment. He knew not all of his students were genuinely interested in dissolving into Enlightenment, and that many of them simply liked the feeling of being around the Light.

Of course, interesting things always happened at group events with Rama. He had this incredible ability to speak to us individually, even in a room packed with hundreds of people. This empowerment was no different, and people walked out with different details about the teaching. So, it’s possible some heard this idea of Enlightenment within 5 years as an assignment, while I heard that it was only an option. Years later, I met someone who had been at the event who told her students this special door to Enlightenment would stay open for only 7 years. Perhaps she used it as a method to inspire her students to work harder, since it’s easier to give 100% if you know it’s only for a short time. Or maybe that was what she heard, because that was what she needed to devote everything to the practice. If you were there, then only you know what the message was to you.

No matter who you study with, if they are an Enlightened Being, then when they speak to a group, part of your job as a student is to listen closely to what resonates with you. These things we hear from our teachers are important to contemplate on our own, especially if it causes any type of confusion, guilt, or pain. Sometimes we get lost in believing what others tell us they heard, instead of trusting ourselves. Beneath that resistance to trust is our way to Truth.

Ultimately, the awareness all spiritual teachers share is the wisdom of listening to our own heart. While we can hear about the practices and techniques a teacher followed to dissolve into Enlightenment, there is no fixed, works for everyone, Path. Each assignment leads the student closer to understanding this truth, and helps to develop trust in both the Teacher and in one’s own highest self. In the end, we all must find our own Path home.

Stairway to Enlightenment


To be notified of new blog posts, please join my Happy News Mailing List.

My work is entirely funded by my readers – by you. If you like what you have read, if you find insight or inspiration in these words, please help pay for this website by contributing any amount through, or visit my Support page to learn how you can help keep the work going with a one-time gift or as an ongoing Patron.


Published inBuddha Lessons / MindfulnessRama


  1. Brian Brian

    Thank you Jenna. You are the second teacher I’ve heard mention this empowerment. Each time it feels as if I’m in the room with Rama and everybody else and I can feel the transmission, the power behind it, still moving us toward enlightenment like a giant wave of light.

  2. davide khalil davide khalil

    I recall Rama sayting that the devotee agrees to loan their inner satguru (guru within) to reside in the outer guru for a time. And as such, the instruction of the master is the voice of the inner guru and terrible karma to ignore. In this guru yoga, every vibration that goes towards the guru comes back 1000 times, so the only appropriate energy is nothing or love. Some folks never learned that and had a hard time for it… never slam anger at your spiritual teacher, it will only make you sick and cause you health problems.

    Yet the kalichakra was a deep empowerment to the spirits of his devotees, that all the past was erased, as “how else could you be enlightened?” (given the karmic ripples of lifetimes and lifetimes working against) Awakening was not a mechanical choice, rama set it up in all his devotees hearts to *love* enlightenment so that they would come in to it fully and naturally as the ground of being in the cycle of their lives. And then he left returning the satguru back inside his devotees… where he is within, as yearning as love, as multidimensional empitness.

    Rama several times mentioned that the universe is a giant enlghtenment school, and there are infinite courses, and that at the root of it was the devotees intention, whether they are willing, not by force of ego, but spirit – to surrender their individual will that used to motivate them. Adyashanti has good advising on this diminishing of the will. The process is deeply 360 – as he puts it, enlightenment is a destructive process – all the illusions get destroyed, the illusion of self too. Around Rama, it was possible to see enlightenmetn as additive, that the ego becomes enlightened, rather than the ego finally surrenders to what already runs the joint… that satguru. And then the only judge of that razors edge is conscience and knowing… the books peter out with their advise for the subjective.

    • Jenna Sundell Jenna Sundell

      Thank you for sharing your experiences and remembrances!

      I don’t recall Rama talking about erasing karma, but I know others have spoken about it. However, when I met with a psychic astrologer once after Rama passed, the astrologer looked at me strangely and said I had no karma after 1995. He was at a loss for what else to say, and read my birth chart, but continued to to look freaked out the whole time.

      I do remember Rama saying at the Kalachakra empowerment that there is no karma. At the time, I didn’t get what he meant, but now I do. 😀

  3. Michael Michael

    Thank you Jenna for sharing this with us.
    What does this mean to those of us who were not present for the empowerment with Rama but feel a strong connection to him?

    • Jenna Sundell Jenna Sundell

      It means the pathway to Enlightenment as taught by Rama and carried on by his students is available. 🙂

Comments are closed.