Question: Can the result of karma give you a choice of future birth?
Babaji: The result of the karma means the result of the mind's acquired habits that is the actual karma. The mind absorbs imprints before the death. Based on the intensity of thoughts only, automatically the next life happens. You won't be able to plan, you have to practice. The mind thinks the same thing to which it is habitual at the time of death.
A popular story is told that there was once a miser, he was a merchant. He thought, “It is said that if you remember God's name before death, then you will gain liberation. Before death if I remember God's name, that is enough, no need for me to do more practice than that. So, I shall call all my children after God's names. When I am dying, I shall call them.”
So, throughout his life he remained a merchant, a very stingy miser, trying to acquire money all the time. So when he fell seriously ill he thought he might be dying. He called one of his sons that he had named Rama. His son came, but he did not die. He had named another one Krishna, so like this he called all his children, but still he had not died. He was thinking, “What shall I do?” Suddenly he remembered, and said to his children, “Look after the business well. Such-and-such a person has taken a loan from me. Don't forget to take that money back from him” and with that he died.
So the mind needs the practice. You see, just like Krishna told Arjuna, “No matter that I am giving you advice, yet I am sure that you will behave based on your own nature also”. A hundred times you go to listen to the lecture of the Guru like this, but when the time comes, your mind will behave the same way as it is used to. It is habitual. That is why practice is needed. If you practice the meditation thoroughly only then you will be able to change your attitude, change your mind set up, and when you realise the truth, then you will be able to control the mind's deceptions. Only because of the habits, the mind has gone out of control. The habits need to be brought under control. So practice.