Sunday, July 17, 2011

Nicole's Zen Moment - Karma

Every action of our lives touches on some chord that will vibrate in eternity. ~Edwin Hubbel Chapin

Karma - is the concept of "action" or "deed", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect (i.e., the cycle called saṃsāra) originating in ancient India and treated in Hindu, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh philosophies.

I believe in Karma. I do believe, without one shadow of a doubt, that what we put out there can and will come back to us, either in a positive way or a negative one. Every religion believes in this: perhaps it is that God will judge, or that "energy" remains.. whatever word you use for it - it does exist.

I chose to use the word Karma. I like it. I am careful to remember that what I do, can and will have an effect on me. Be it in the next life or this, I must chose the right path.

This week, many, MANY times.. I felt that twinge of wanting to seek revenge. Not in a "scary way," just in a "stick it to the man" sort of way. So many things came up this week to test my patience, my honor, and my integrity.. in other words, "it was just one of THOSE weeks."

Many, many times I recited the quote by Wayne Dyer, "How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."

So true.

Now back to the origins of the notion of Karma. They date back to the 1st millennium BC in Buddhism, however - many in western cultures or with a Christian upbringing have incorporated a notion of karma. The Christian concept of reaping what you sow from Galatians 6:7 can be considered equivalent to Karma.

According to karma, performing positive actions results in a good condition in one's experience, whereas a negative action results in a bad effect. The effects may be seen immediately or delayed. Delay can be until later in the present life or in the next.

"My actions are my only true belongings. I cannot escape the consequences of my actions. My actions are the ground upon which I stand." ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Also in the west, karma is often confused with concepts such as the soul, psychic energy, synchronicity (a concept originally from psychoanalyst Carl Jung, which says that things that happen at the same time are related), and ideas from quantum or theoretical physics (which most physicists would not grant as having any bearing on morality or codes of conduct, much less on supernatural notions). This mishmash of word associations is well illustrated by the once-common bumper sticker "My karma ran over your dogma."

At the end of the day, regardless of what is and what is not - I do believe that it is my responsibility to chose the right and just path. The best I can do is be honest, show compassion when needed, and chose my REACTIONS very carefully. I don't have to agree with what has happened, but it is not my job to punish those who chose to harm me.

Before you begin on the journey of revenge, dig two graves. ~Proverb

Have you take the time to think about your REACTIONS? Sure, we are sometimes the victim. But do we have to take the role of the Martyr to feel a sense of relief and power? Or is that our pride?

For me - I will try to chose the other path. The path of knowing that God, or the universe or whatever you chose to call it will handle other's actions. My reaction is the one thing I can control.

Charles Swindoll once said, "The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude to me is more important than facts.... We cannot change our past...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10 percent what happens to me and 90 percent how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our attitudes."


Lady Fabulous said...

I totally believe in Karma too!

Thanks for the reminder to act with proper intentions as much as possible ~ sometimes we all need a little push in the right direction!! ;)

Yenta Mary said...

LOVE the quote above about our actions vibrating through eternity ... it's so true! And yet, we so often just blunder along in the moment, rather than taking the time to strive for what's good and what's right and what we SHOULD be giving to the universe. Thanks for the reminder ... :)

Kaley said...

It's so refreshing to have someone actually understand what karma is! It's not a huge, you do this and next week you'll be paying for it sort of thing. It's far deeper than that. You mess up your karma bad enough and you come back as a hungry ghost, not that you end up having a bad week. While that can be attested to karma, chances are the bad things that are happening to you in this life are due to bad choices you made in a prior one. I think that is what makes karma so powerful to me. It's not that I will pay for this, but a later version of myself may pay for this. That one day the world may pay for my actions.

And it's so important to think of it in terms of the Noble Eight-Fold Path as well. It's not just restricted to actions, but thought as well. Just because I decide to not hurt someone, doesn't mean the fact that I had that urge to hurt them won't come back to me later on down the line. It will not be as severe, of course, but it will still have a negative effect.

I love the Buddhist/Eastern way of looking at things. Perhaps that's why I studied it in college. (^_^)b

Tamika D. said...

Lovely post!!


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