>What do you think?
I think that what is needed is time to wait and watch as your [spirit] guide suggested. There are a few reasons for my opinion on this.
As a mage, a person must remember that he is always responsible for his actions, and in some cases more so, because the average person does not have the advantage of some forms of knowledge that a magick practitioner might be privileged to. Every action creates a response in accord with the quality of the original action. If you send out negativity, you get an equal amount of negativity returned to you, for example. The universe is impersonal and always seeks to retain a sense of balance, and the macrocosmic forces that enact this balancing process never hesitate to compensate for the temporary imbalances that a magickian might create. The result of such compensation (whether immediate or later) is what's commonly thought of as a 'backlash'. Keep in mind that every time you perform an act of 'punishment' (on another person such as a 'criminal') you are creating an imbalance (depending on how you do it) in the energy of the universe that will eventually come back to you. Everyone 'gets what they give' so to speak. That is why I mentioned that everyone provides his/her own best punishment. By virtue of the fact that a person goes out killing people, he/she will ultimately receive the negative backlash for his willful unbalancing of the universe- either immediately or in time. I've watched it countless times and this impersonal faculty of universal 'adjustment' never fails to take effect, although the length of time may vary depending on other circumstances.
Because of this automatic balancing action of the universe, I believe it is never my duty to punish another for his 'bad' actions, as that would be imposing my Will and moral judgement upon another person. Obviously there needs to be policing action in physical society, but when it comes to magickal 'punishment' I refuse to take part unless an individual has wronged me personally in some way, and then the matter becomes one of self-defense. Even then, I make sure I only do as much as necessary to rebalance the situation and defend myself. Going too far and then unleashing cruelty upon even a person who has wronged you could overturn the scales of balance and then make you just as 'bad' or worse than the transgressor himself. Again, any negativity out will eventually become negativity returned. I would not want to become (a copy of) the very thing I have fought to obliterate, in that instance.
Just because you know that you can do something does not always mean that you should. A friend and mentor of mine once mentioned that there are some times when acting to prevent or change an event might not be the best course of action. This is the example he gave me as we spoke while hanging out at a night club once:
"Just because you can act does not mean you should. Take a look across the room at that pretty girl over there. She seems nice, right? She probably has a nice family or maybe a favorite pet and she may even be a really kind and generous person. You wouldn't want anything to happen to her would you?" he asked.
I shook my head to say no.
"Let's just suppose," he said, " that you found out psychically that some vicious psycho killer was going to meet her after work tonight as she walked on the way to her car and then abduct her. Then he's going to take her to his place where he'll torture her, fuck her in every hole, tie her up like an animal, mutilate her, and then eventually leave her for dead. Should you act?" he inquired with a serious expression.
I thought about it for a moment and wondered if this was a trick question. I then replied "Yes" and started to talk about how horrible it would be to allow something like that to occur if I had prior knowledge of it. He stopped me in mid-sentence and then said, "No…you should NOT always act. There are some things that are necessary that must occur even though they might seem bad to us. But if they don't take place, then some other aspect of universal balance will be thrown off, or certain things that ARE good won't take place because of a necessary element of negativity/destruction that failed to occur."
I was confused at what he was telling me, but because his past record of magickal service to his fellow man was pristine, I paid attention and asked him how such an awful thing could produce positive results.
"What if you knew that the girl was not going to die as a result of that torture?" he added. "And what if undergoing that experience and surviving would cause her mind to be psychically opened in such a way that she would become another highly skilled practitioner capable of great service to humanity? If that happened to be the case, then we would HAVE to allow this horrible thing to occur. That means that no matter how many seemingly innocent people that Psycho killed before he got to her, we'd have to allow him to do that too, especially if this final act was a necessary one; deemed necessary by 'The All' so to speak. The 'All' (Spirit, or 'god' or the eternal consciousness of the universe itself by whatever name you call it) plans and does stuff that even I can't anticipate," he chuckled, trying to lighten the mood some.
This blew me away completely. I'd never stopped to think about the effects of my actions on that level before, or rather the effects of my non-actions. I'd always just 'acted' previously and figured it was the best thing to do while dealing out my own brand of justice as I saw fit while believing it to be 'good' or 'right'. This was a hard concept to swallow but as I thought about it and compared it with past experiences it just made sense. I realized I had been making a moral judgement based on my own past experiences of personal 'abuse' or 'wrongs' against me, and had been trying to punish all those who I thought reminded me of those people who had originally hurt me. They had formed an outlet for me to redirect my stored anger over past physical harm or emotional pain.
On the issue of Innocence:
Who is to say who is innocent and who is not? This is a topic that's been raised a number of occasions with me in the past. When viewed subjectively, a child seems completely innocent since he/she is young and new to the world - untainted by life's vices and temptations. However, from an objective viewpoint (the most difficult view to learn to see from) that child might have been Adolph Hitler himself in a previous incarnation. If a child dies from a disease, often he/she chose to go through that experience prior to incarnation. If someone is killed brutally then what's to say that he/she wasn't just burning off some old karmic action? We can never be sure. In the case that a person was completely 'innocent' then what's to say the universe won't compensate him/her nicely with a future incarnation in a lovely environment? Balance is always carried out regardless of how things must seem upon first observation. This idea took me a long time to accept. That's why I no longer seek to punish anyone. It's not my job to do that, only to assist those that the 'All' deems necessary or beneficial for me to assist. That is what is often meant by the phrase "Thy Will, not My will, be done." The will of your 'higher-self' and particularly the will of the 'All' (remember by 'All' I mean 'god' or 'spirit' etc.) above that even should take precedence over the whims of the ego/human-personality. The spirit within knows best the things the human personality in the physical realm can never understand as our perceptions here are vastly limited and short-sighted.
Something else I was going to mention. Regarding your present situation with social upheaval and bombings etc., it may be that there are deeper problems than just a few 'wrong-doers' at work here. In most countries and areas where violence erupts via bombings or through religious conflict resulting in shootings and fights, there is often a vast rift among groups of people on a collective/group-mind level. Directing anger or self-appointed justice at a select few in retaliation may only add more 'pepper' to a soup that already has too much for example (figuratively speaking). Would you rather be part of a positive solution or contribute to the already existent problem of violence and negativity? You did mention that you wanted to use your powers for Good…well here's your chance.
You could try a more positive approach to fixing the deeper issues of your community. Either through helping to bring about social reform or political leaders into office who will instill proper government and social values which would eliminate future conflicts, or in helping to heal the division among presently conflicting groups (I think the latter idea may be more pressing at the moment). Since you are already part of the group-mind of humans who live in your area, it would be easier for you to have a greater influence over this much needed spiritual healing. Groups that are in opposition will need to learn to compromise and live together at peace with one another. Most conflicts occur between people when there is a lack of understanding or willingness to understand the other side's viewpoints. A complete lack of willingness to CHANGE is also a big factor, but no one can get along with the 'all-or-nothing' types of logic and expect to achieve peace. Of course, you'd have to work at this task in a non-manipulative way so as to avoid any negative energetic 'backlash'.
Hmmm this issue has caused me to remember how everything that occurs on one part of this planet affects every other part of the planet in some way even indirectly. We're all part of the more vast human and cosmic communities. It's too bad that so many are still not evolved enough to realize this for themselves. However, every new magickal adept who evolves also has a positive and beneficial effect on the collective human race-consciousness. That is what keeps me working since I know that by bettering myself I'm helping to benefit more than myself, even if only indirectly.