How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
The word “Karma”, is a word everyone knows, but what does it actually mean? Karma is simply something that exists within us, which moves us all and is made up of events that have happened, or will happen to us. How can things that happened to us make Karma?
Here it is important to understand that anything we did is effectively saved in our consciousness and reappears. We save everything we do in our consciousness; this is the fundamental point to keep in mind when considering Karma.
This consciousness works as a spirit and when the spirit comes to the time of death it detaches itself becoming independent and separates from the body.
When this consciousness which was in the spirit disappears, it will be reborn again. Just because consciousness has disappeared, does not mean things that happened in the past will disappear altogether.
When consciousness disappears, everything that happened to us will remain latent and reappear; these things that are latent in all of us will continuously cause a reaction and influence our life and being.
Karma is always there and influences our lives – This is the essence of Karma. To understand Karma fully, we need to understand the concept of reincarnation.
Reincarnation simply means that everything is repeated. Something which exists continuously therefore leads to repetition. Past, present and future are therefore interwoven. Our lives are influenced by this law and every creature on the earth is born and then dies and is reborn.
If we were born into the world and we die we don’t disappear we continue to exist and effectively reappear, something is saved in our consciousness that does not disappear but continuously remains. Therefore, what happened to you in present your past life will influence your future life. This is referred to as the Law of Cause and Effect.
Karma will exist in you by cause and effect. As long as this Karma exists a person will never be free from the control of Karma and its influence. Karma is not a fate, we all act with free will and create his own destiny. According to the Hinduism, if we sow good in our lives we will reap good; if we sow evil we will reap evil.
Karma refers to the totality of our actions in our present and previous lives and these actions effectively determine our future. The conquest of karma relies on intelligent action and dispassionate reaction. Not all karmas rebounds straight away against individuals, some accumulate and return unexpectedly in our present, or future lives.
Karma is considered entirely impersonal and should not be seen as a punishment or retribution, but an extended expression of natural acts. The effects experienced, can to be mitigated by actions and are not necessarily fateful, but are influenced by positive action.
The Consequences of Karma
For every action you take as we have seen there will be a reaction in the future. This is the law of Karma. Whatever activity we do, good or bad, will bring us good or bad reactions. For every action you take, you will face a reaction in the future, in your next incarnation. If you perform good actions, you will face good reactions in the future; if you perform bad actions they will see you face bad actions.
This may come in many different forms:
If you take good actions you may benefit in terms of, good health, wealth, personal fulfillment etc. If you take bad actions, you will face bad reactions in the future. The bad reactions may come in the form of ill health, poverty. Personal un-fulfillment etc.
When we suffer in our present life, we are facing the consequences of the bad reactions to our bad actions we took in the past.
Our actions include everything we do in our lives, including our physical deeds, words and thoughts. There will be a reaction to all of these, that is the law of Karma.
Actions, which can result in bad Karma, are: Violence, ignorance, cruelty, untruthfulness, greed etc. Actions, which build good Karma, are the opposite: non-violence, generosity, charity, self-control, truthfulness, simplicity, forgiveness and an absence of ego. Our destiny is effectively in our own hands and we are all held responsible for all your actions.
The reason why some good people suffer all their life is, they maybe good now, but they are suffering because they are facing the consequences of the actions they took in their previous lives. As they are now taking good actions they will face good reactions, in their next life.
On the other hand, the reason why some really bad people enjoy a good life despite being bad can be explained by the fact they are now facing the good reactions to the good actions they took in previous lives.
However, because they are taking bad actions now, they will face bad reactions in the future and suffer. As a consequence if a person takes good actions in life and builds good karma, he or she will be born into a better life in the next incarnation. A person is born again and again and faces the consequences of his or her own actions.
Karma and Our Law and Order Systems
Why do we have the police, judges, courts and jails? We have a system of law and order in each and every country, which makes us responsible for our actions, if not we face the consequences of our actions under the law. Without Law and Order systems, life would be reduced to anarchy.
People could kill, loot, steal, rape and destroy property and people, would not be held responsible for their actions. We have the human Law and Order System in every country and the citizens of each country are held responsible for the actions they take and those who break the law are punished.
Just as we have the Human Law and Order system in countries, God has a Law, the Law of Karma. We are held responsible for all our actions under this law, the differences between the human system and God’s system are:
With Karma, we are responsible for all our actions, including words and thoughts and we cannot escape punishment. With Karma, there is no escape we don’t need to be caught by the police, we will face reactions to each and every action we take in the future, With the normal law and order system some people do get away with murder and other crimes, but they don’t with karma, everything is noted and has a consequence.
We Cannot Escape Karma!
With Karma, we are punished for our bad actions in future lives for the actions we have taken in past lives and we are rewarded for good actions that we take: Remember, as the old saying goes: “What goes around comes around” This is the principle that underlines Karma.