The meaning of the term Karma differentiates depending on the school of thought/ religion utilizing it. However, if we try and look at the conceptions closely we could see the resemblances of these meanings.
Karma in its simplest sense reverberates the saying, “What goes around comes around”; it is the belief that whatever we do has an equivocal effect. If we look at it from a spiritual level, it is said that Karma is a concept that constitutes our deeds, it is a universal law that governs our lives, claiming that for whatever action or decision we commit, it would reap for us a tantamount consequence in our current lifetime if not the next one.
Karma does it always have to pertain to something bad, as penance for our wrong doings. We could also look at Karma as simply how our lives work. It is also the case that Karma may happen in order to teach us a lesson we have yet to realize, it may also enlighten us, guide us in our future actions. In accepting the Karmic ways in which our reality works, we come to a better understanding of our free will, in a sense that we come to be autonomously responsible for what we do. The events that may happen in the course of our lifetime would be born out of causal events we have willed into existence.
Come to think of it, the most important acts we commit are always towards people, it is an inescapable fact that we would at some point connect our lives with the lives of other people. Karma is present in each and every link we create in our social sphere, even if such links may be perceived as shallow for us, how we react to such connections can be well change and affect other people. This often reminds me of a similar line of thought, the chaos theory; it states that a flutter of a butterfly’s wings may result to chaos on another end of this world. Perhaps this wouldn’t make sense right now but look at it this way.
People are connected in a web of networks, at some point two very separate lives would intersect no matter how remote they are from one another based solely on a certain link they share in common. Think of it as the theory of “six degrees separation”. We could be active or passive participants in these connections, either way we’ll have our actions would have a certain effect on it. In the things that we have direct contact with people, strangers, lovers, family, or friends, we engage in the process of Karma, knowingly or unknowingly, we could change the course of other people’s lives.
Connections are so powerful, underestimated to a point wherein we assume that only the closest ones are important. Take for example, not letting a person go before you at the pharmacy, even if your just buying cough syrup, and that person ends up losing someone just because s/he was two minutes late. It could also be that you were able to teach an ex-lover the value of him/herself by dumping him/her. When you meet a stranger in the park, and you offer a smile, you might have just sealed your faith with your future partner in life.
The Hotdog vendor, the dime you give him might win him the lottery. There are so many ways in which we can influence and change the lives of people, as Peter Parker said in Spiderman 3, “Our lives are made of choices, and we could always choose to do what’s right”, or in this case, even if we can’t control the outcome of the things we do, we could always act to touch others with goodness of intent, faith, and will.
Perhaps the sartorial indulgence bothers me a lot, simply because I personally don’t see why I worry too much about how I look. There’s always the knowledge that people shouldn’t be judged based on appearances but then again, at some point we can’t help not worrying how others perceive us, even if it’s just the jeans were wearing. Trivialities can hinder the soul.
Ellen A Mogensen, Past & Now Forward Holistic Counseling, (2006), http://www.healpastlives.com/future/rule/ruescape.htm, July, 30, 2007
Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, Life and Death: Ways to Overcome Bondage of Karma, in The Global Oneness Commitment, (2006), http://www.experiencefestival.com/a/Life_and_Death/id/218227, (July, 30, 2007)