Karma for Dummies

Karma is something that is really misunderstood. It is usually considered something that we earn – we earn good karma or we earn bad karma. Just how do we earn this karma? It seems like we earn it by either doing something good or doing something bad. However, if karma were a bucket the size of the earth, those explanations would be drops the size of mothballs.

Having done a number of past life regressions for people, I have found a whole new appreciation for and understanding of karma, sort of karma for dummies. Karma is really something that we have to learn – plain and simple. Here is an example of karma for myself, in this life. I have carried over into this life a feeling of extreme vulnerability in the physical world. My father was one of those larger than life characters, someone my husband would call a “Mans’ man”. I grew up feeling completely safe with him around. I did not take into considerations his character flaws, I just saw him as a MAN who was tough and strong and so he could keep the monsters away and insure my safety.

As I began dating, I was attracted to men who could protect me. The type of man that many woman are attracted to – MACHO. I was attracted to dragon slayers. I liked men who kept the masses at bay either through their financial power, or that physical energy that some men just emit. I met these men, and, as was my karma, they were equally attracted to me. We would even fall in love, or, more aptly put when referring to karma, we would fall into obsession. After countless disappointments, and sometimes a little violence, I found that the men I attracted to my life were not strong, at least not when it came to a strength that required more than lifting heavy rocks. In the end it always came back to my own strength. It was my karma to take responsibility for myself. Each time I handed over responsibility for my well-being to someone else, I paid a price, in love, in business, in anyway. Another karma that I had was with my self-worth and my lovability. Each time that I turned to someone else to show me that I was worthy, they challenged my worth. Karma is not necessarily about something that you have done to someone else, or to others in general – sometimes, very often, it is about something that you have to do for yourself.

My grandmother believed that she could not be loved for herself; she believed that she had to buy it, or place herself in a position that others needed her. She couldn’t give, although that is what she thought that she was doing – but there was a debt to pay for her giving and somehow in her mind this exchange was as close as she could come to being loved. My grandmother held on to every penny that she could. She did nothing, went nowhere and only used her money to hold on to the people that she loved. She believed that no one really loved her or could love her so she saved every penny. In her mind, no one would be there for her when she was old so she didn’t want to be in a position to have to depend on anyone, who she believed, would only reject her. After an unfortunate and unforeseen karmic turn of events she lost everything and had no choice but to rely on the kindness of strangers. However, those people that she was so sure would not be there for her when she was in need, turned out with open hearts blessing her with all of the love that she never believed possible in her life. That too was karma. It was the karma of learning. It is all the karma of learning.

I have a friend that I regressed to a number of past lives. In each one she was some kind of slave. Someone who was not given any value, except for one life, in which she did find and relish her own value and her own accomplishments after a childhood of being devalued. However, old habits die hard and she brought that same unworthy mindset into this life and was treated as a lesser being by the same souls who had done it to her in her past lives. However in this life she is learning and beginning step by step to assert her own power. And with each experience in which she does this – she finds that those souls who once intimidated her begin to treat her with greater respect. This is karma also. Perhaps with this karmic reinforcement she will become one with her own power and her own worth and the lesson will not require more lives, the karma will have been released. Most times we return to learn our lessons with the same souls but wearing different costumes in a different set. I believe that we choose to experience these lessons with the same souls not because they owe us, or we them, but because that soul level contact awakens in us those feelings that we need to rise above. We are innately intimidated by those who have left us with scars of feeling less than in past lives. Just as we awaken in them a need to treat us in a way that they may not really understand themselves in this lifetime. It is not so much that they do it to us, and then we do it to them. It is better explained as they do it to us over and over again, lifetime after lifetime until we do not allow it anymore. I have often heard someone say to me, “I don’t understand it, I only act this way with you”. It is because this drama is between us. Generally, this drama, repeated over lifetimes on different stages teaches a lesson to all parties involved, and it is repeated until the lessons are learned.

Of course there are the karmas that involve race, religion, social status, and power. Someone may be very poor in one life, and feel enormous resentment towards those who have more. That person may come back again poor, but in the next life that soul has the opportunity to amass great wealth. The lesson is in how they handle that wealth, just as there is a lesson in how one handles poverty. All roads lead to love, compassion, empathy, understanding, acceptance and brotherhood. All of these things must be learned but not just for the benefit of others but equally for the benefit of ourselves. Karma is ultimately about learning the lessons of unconditional love which inevitably leads us to the knowledge that we are all One, and that the totality of that One of which we all are is God.

We write our karma as we go along. We write the plot for our next life in this one. Reincarnation is about walking a mile in someone else’s shoes. Karma is the path that we walk that mile on so that we may learn the true love of God, of other and of self and know that there is not differentiation between the three. That is the trinity that has existed since the beginning of time and before. Karma is not complicated. It contains no judgment, no punishment and no reward, except perhaps the reward of becoming the Love that we so desperately seek.

THE POWER OF CHOICE

All that we need to be in control of our lives is to know that we have choices. We do not even have to exercise them so long as we own them.


Our lives are not determined by the situations that confront us, but by the choices that we make when confronted. If I am born into a poor family I can accept my lot and make the best of it, I can work hard to overcome it, or I can become a thief, or a drug dealer. We are not victims of the situations that life puts us in, we are victims of the choices that we make within those situations. It is vital to living a full life that we accept this fact.

I knew a woman who began with every advantage and ending up on welfare. I saw my daughter reacting to life in the same way and it worried me. I feared that if my daughter saw through the same lens she might end up same way. My daughter’s response to my fears was, “Don’t worry I won’t end up like her”. That statement had such an impact on me, because I knew that no one decides to destroy their lives. Our lives follow the paths determined by our choices and those choices are made one at a time. When we perceive that a choice we made was not right, we should then try to make a choice that is right for where we are now. Instead, most of us lose sight of where we wanted to be and instead focus our choices on making our initial choice right. Each choice is taking us in one direction or another. If we are not aware that we are making choices, we will not look around for options. The path that my friend was on was not the path that she thought that she had chosen it was the path that she took because she believed she had no other choice.

When we are in a place that is not where we had planned to be, we feel unhappy; either with ourselves or with the circumstances we hold responsible for putting us there. Usually we prefer to believe that it is anything other than our own choices that put us where we are. It is generally a partnership, life presented the choices and we made them. Acknowledging that we made the choices helps us to be more aware of the choices available to us in the future. It helps us to stand back when things seem bleak and see other options, and other ways. If we feel like victims, we react without assessing our possibilities, if there is a turn – we miss it because we are not looking. We continue on the path that has caused us suffering since our initial choice. What we can do is we can choose to dig ourselves out instead of choosing to dig ourselves in deeper.

My childhood was very difficult and I felt that I was a victim. I got involved in drugs, tried to kill myself, and I married for the wrong reasons. I married to escape the pain at home. As victims do, I sought escape from the suffering of my life, rather than a better life altogether. I exited through the only door that I could see simply because I was not aware that there could be others. I was not living in choice. I married the first man who asked. I felt very sorry for myself. Each choice that we make out of a feeling of helplessness places us in a situation that increases our helplessness. All of my limits, fears and pain simply changed form but remained consistent with my belief that I was a victim. I continued to make choices dictated by my perception of the situation rather than dictated by what I wanted, or who I was or where I wanted to be.

One day during therapy the therapist asked me why I chose to take drugs. I came from a town where taking drugs was the accepted means of dealing with our pain. However when I had to explain it as a choice, something changed. I never thought of anything that I had done as a choice; I just did what I believed I had to do. This covered anything, I had to react, I never thought that I could choose to act. Suddenly it dawned on me that I had made a choice and it was one of many choices that I could have made.

When we are children we do not have many obvious choices, we can fight, we can hide but we cannot change our situation. We actually have very little apparent power. Within that context I did not see myself as making choices I simply reacted.

I accept the choices that I made then; I accept my reaction to that environment because I did not see at the time that I had choices. I could never look back and blame myself for walking through a door that seemed to me to be the only one open. It was the door according to my belief system, but not the only one according to who I was and what I really wanted. Victims are always blind to where they are going because they live their lives running from instead of going to. They never plan a future – only an escape. Yet knowing even after the fact that I did have choices gave me the power that I needed to move on. I finally realized that each step along the way in my life I did make a choice for which I alone, not my parents, not my life, and not my situation, was responsible and one hundred percent accountable. I made the only choice that I could see, and that was fine, because a person who owns the power of choice owns his life. A person who makes choices, regardless of the outcome of those choices, is a person with a future to live, a life ahead of them rather than merely an expanding prison cell. I may have made choices that did not turn out as I planned, but those choices were mine. This freed me.

The fact that my life is made up of my choices has given me my wings. Nothing could stop me but I myself, and that was fine. I knew that in my life I may reach many dead ends, but if I built the road that reached them, I could build the road that would take me around them.

We suffer not because of what happens to us in our lives but because of the choices that we make in reaction to what happens. Each moment we live, we are making a choice, and that choice will determine the next experience. There is no choice is our last choice until we take our last breath.

We cannot assess our worth based upon one choice. Rather we must assess ourselves based upon our willingness to accept responsibility for each choice. If we do this, it will drive us to make each choice responsibly. Remember that so long as we have another breath we have another choice. Sometimes we are meant to make what we believe to be the wrong choice so that we can arrive at the right destination. When a situation is painful it is not working. If we cannot find a way to make it work there probably is no way. Here is where we have to make a choice. If we stay that is our choice and if we keep moving that too is our choice. The controlling factor is not the situation it is the choice that we make.

If I want my partner, but only if he or she fits into a certain image that I hold, I really want the image and not the person. I should look elsewhere or change the mold. If I need a job but I will only work under certain conditions, I cannot complain that I cannot get a job. I just have to choose what I want more and follow my choice. It does not matter what we do or do not do, we are making choices. What happens to us is and will always be a result of those choices not ever a result of the reason that we made those choices.

There is a person with one leg who chooses to play tennis and live a full life and joyful life. Then there is the person with one leg who chooses to sit in a room lonely and bitter feeling that life has given him nothing but pain. Both choices are understandable. The former is the choice of one whose choices are founded in a belief in challenges and not limits. The latter is the choice of one whose choices are founded in limits, a victim. Why should we sit and make ourselves miserable over those things that we cannot control? The time that we are wasting, and that pain that we are suffering is due to our choices, and not due to our situations. Difficult and painful things happen in our lives, but how we choose to deal with them will affect our entire lives. When we find ourselves facing an ocean of suffering we can choose to swim through it, facing only the far shore, or drown in it.

It used to anger me when every time I said that I could not do something because it was too hard, or even impossible to accomplish someone else did it. Someone would come along with less going for them than I thought that I had and do what I thought that I couldn’t. But I chose to let that help me grow. I could have said that that person was lucky, I chose to look at that as a sign that it could be done. When I took responsibility for my choices I had to examine their foundation. My choices were founded on my belief that my life held only a lose lose potential. Those who accomplished what I chose not to even attempt chose based on a belief that anything is possible.

I once would have decided that they must have been better or luckier than I. That way of thinking was once a choice that validated my self-pity. Instead I now choose to allow the accomplishments of others to empower me, and to make it more difficult for me to say, “I can’t”. We have to take responsibility for our choices, and embrace our ability to choose.

Some souls have chosen a more difficult road than others, yet however difficult or easy the road may be, we have all come here with everything that we need to reach our own destination. The pot of gold is behind one of the doors. All that we have to do is to find it. And we find it by choosing doors. Life is a treasure hunt, each experience gives us something, a direction, a tool, or a clue to the next door until we have it all.

The key is not to give up if it is not behind door number one. We have to keep in mind that the goal is just to find the treasure not to be right. First we find the treasure and then we know where it is, we do not have anyway of knowing where it is before we find it, so we should not expect that of ourselves. God knows where it is and He will lead us to it so long as we choose to seek it. Life does not force us ever to give up, that is a choice, sometimes it is the wise one, but in any event it still is a choice.

The Evolution Of Man

When I read Shakespeare, Greek mythology, or the writings of ancient philosophers, even ancient spiritual writings I wonder about the real meaning of human evolution.  Long ago, in studying genetics I realized that many of our choices as a group or as a society are not really choices, they are genetic programming designed to insure the survival of the species for as long as it is meant to survive.

Many people are astounded by the number of homosexuals there are today.  Some would say that there were always as many, just not so many out of the closet.  I don’t think that this is true.  I believe that there are many more than ever before and the number will continue to increase.  Today, woman who are attracted to younger men are called cougars, this number too is increasing and the relationships between older women and younger men will increase as time goes on.

In time homosexuality will no longer be an issue that drives politics and religion, and older women with younger men will no longer be stigmatized by a label.  This is because these are genetic directives meant to address the overpopulation of the earth by humans which left unchecked would lead to human extinction.  There are even ancient legends regarding war, telling tales of how the gods used to come down and eat men and women.  Finally there was a truce wherein man promised to fight wars rather than to be eaten by the gods in order to prevent the world from being overrun by humans.

There are many of our behaviors that seem to become epidemic before them become commonplace, evolutionary mutations, so to speak – genetic reprogramming that we are unable to override because to do so would be to cause our extinction.  Older woman and younger men, homosexuality, sexually transmitted diseases that cause infertility, and wars upon wars upon wars – all leading to an inevitable and necessary population decrease.  Whenever there is a societal change of direction – we have to ask ourselves what will be its outcome?  Today the greatest threat to the earth and to our species is not war, it is overpopulation.  Overpopulation causes a greater drain on our resources than anything that we do.  In order to intelligently deal with overpopulation, we would have to deal with the problems of poverty and ignorance, problems that we as a species have not evolved enough to adequately tackle without Divine intervention.

If we were to go back in time, as far back as recorded history permits we would find that man has not evolved into a higher form of human.  Our chimpanzee cousins live in groups in which men form bonds of kinship, and patrol the borders of their territories.  They live in their own little countries and have distinct power structures.  For all apes, it is good to control the most power, to have to most resources and to form alliances that guarantee these things.  Although the males fight each other to show who is the most powerful, more and more research is revealing that behind every chest pounding males is guiding female.  Our chimp cousins have rudimentary tools for building what they need to build and for foraging for food.  They have a number of medicinal plants that they use for wounds or infections.  They do not use words, but through the teaching of sign language we now know that they have the capacity to communicate their desires.  With few exceptions, we have not evolved beyond our ancient ancestors or even our ape cousins.  What we have done I find very hard to label evolution because it is really only an increase in an already existing ability. What we have done is that we have far exceeded all other animals in the making and use of tools to satisfy our basic animal instincts.  We have become technologically advanced apes.  We still haven’t broken off of the family tree and formed our own.  A chimpanzee is not a gorilla, and a gorilla is not an orangutan – but the differences among them, and their differences from us do not amount to enough to move any of us to a new tree.  Yet, I believe that we were and are meant to strive for that.

It is through our ability to connect with the spiritual, with the intangible, with God, love, art, music, poetry and a sense of connectedness with and responsibility for every other living organism on the planet that is the key to true human evolution.   It is not through the left brain that we will evolve, the left brain is basically good for making and improving tools.  It is through the right brain that we have the capacity to reach up and become the meaning of the image of God.  Obviously, man was created with the ability to live as the image of God, loving unconditionally and being caretaker for all life on the planet and the planet herself.  But we clearly have a choice.  God changed Abram to Abraham and thereby changed him from being a man to being a man of God.  Saul’s name was changed from Saul to Paul thereby changing him from a persecutor to a follower of Christ.  If we, can change from being the human race, to becoming the humane race, this could signal our own evolution from the greatest ape – to the image of the God.

Evolution is always building something better upon what was.  The new brain built not instead of the instinctual brain but built from it.  We have instinct and we have choice.  That choice allows us the option of not just perfecting the ability to fulfill our instinctual desires and protect ourselves from our often self-perpetuating fears by designing better tools.  It allows us to rise above those desires and fears and see them for what they are – to use love and compassion in finding ways to eliminate them without fight or flight.  The animal instinct does not transcend me and mine.  The God in us cannot see me or mine as less than the whole.  We only need to be the race of beings that we came here to become.

It is the animal nature to hoard, to become fat before winter.  It is the animal nature to find the richest territory and defend it against all intruders.  It is the nature of the beast to take and to keep and the nature of God to give and to share.  We will be called upon now to show our true nature.  In the end, all that is hidden – even from ourselves will be disclosed.

Matthew 12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.  12:2 For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. 12:3 Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.

12:15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. 12:16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:  12:17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?  12:18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.  12:19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.  12:20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?  12:21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.  12:22 And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.  12:23 The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.  12:24 Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?  12:25 And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit?  12:26 If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?  12:27 Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  12:28 If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?  12:29 And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.  12:30 For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.  12:31 But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.  12:32 Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.  12:33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.  12:34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more12:54 And he said also to the people, When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is.  12:55 And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass.  12:56 Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time?  12:57 Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?

Just as the God gives to the raven so we are given.  Nothing that we have belongs to us it is all given to us as steps in Jacob’s ladder.  We each have been given what we need to shed the animal and become the human.  We are each unique and through our uniqueness we are to find that which we can give to God by giving back to the earth and its inhabitants.  We can only truly say that have earned that which we give to others.  Whatever we have in abundance we must give abundantly.  The signs are all here, the change is approaching.

The world is on the threshold of a new beginning.  It will not be one in which the power of the few rules over the many, but of power in the whole.  It is one of those evolutionary leap times.  Those of us who have felt like mutations throughout our lives will finally see that evolution is only accomplished through mutation.  This “economic downturn” that seems to be the catalyst of change in the world will continue until we all let go of those things of the world that stand between man and God.  Whatever we cling to is our treasure – therein lies our hearts.  It is the end, at least for a millennia – of the world of mammon.  Those capable of giving away what they have hoarded to those in need will make the transition.  Those who cannot let go, will find that it is taken anyway and there will be no place of comfort.  It is the blessing and the responsibility given to man to become the image of God.  It is that image that will shine in the times ahead.  Those who hope to evolve, who see the path to evolution and hear its call must know that the time is now.