The Karma of Karma

Over the past few decades the word Karma has made its way into the western language and cultural expression, one of the many spiritual concepts inspired by the teachings of Yoga and the eastern spiritual traditions.  The popular and general understanding of Karma that pervades the world today is mostly limited to the idea that Karma is all about “consequences.”  How many times do we hear someone reacting to a “bad” or “good” situation in their life as being a “result of past karma”?  Most people seem to believe that karma is about receiving in life whatever one puts out into the world through one’s own actions and vibrations, that one’s actions determine the future result.  There is this perception that karma boils down to a sort of mystical “reward and punishment” distribution system, like a mechanical machine that simply doles out only the same as what one gives, sort of like “an eye for an eye”, where one is trapped in a vicious cycle of re-creating the same vibration and the same experiences throughout life.  It seems that many people think that the only possible way for there to be “justice” and growth comes from being subjected to the same ignorance or wrong actions that one has been living and expressing.  This way of perceiving Karma is simply a very narrow, partial, and negative understanding of a Life that is far more vast, far more diverse, and far more Magical and Powerful than this limited understanding of Karma presents.  I would like to suggest to all the yogis and yoga teachers that now grace our world in these times that we must go beyond this negative perception of Karma as being only a system of rewards and punishment, of consequences for past actions, and discover that there is a Higher Truth to Karma hidden behind this old way of thinking which we have not yet awakened within our collective consciousness.  Karma should be envisioned instead as being the Eternal and Infinite Opportunity to Grow, to Experience, to Live and Become more of the Divine Truth and Being that we ultimately Are.

Now, before all the traditionalists start screaming and crying that we are here in life to liberate our Souls from Karma – which certainly makes Karma sound like not such a good thing, or at least a neutral Law that is just doing it’s duty for the sake of our evolution and growth – I would like to make known that I am not attempting to deny that our actions  have consequences, for we are indeed the creators of our lives on all various levels of our being and existence, in every moment and with every breath.  What I wish to do is simply introduce that there is a more positive work behind the Spirit of Karma.   When we look more deeply into what the origins of the word Karma are, we find that the root word kr in Sanskrit actually means “to do, to make“.  The real meaning behind the word Karma is essentially “work” or “action“.  This gives us an entirely different vision of what Karma really is.  The understanding of Karma as being a cycle of consequences is only secondary to what its true meaning and purpose is – to be a Power of Work and Action in Life, a Power of Creation and Evolution.  In fact, I would like to take the word Karma even a little further and suggest that it really means “Opportunity”.  It is about having ever-new Opportunities to Create, to experience life, and to learn and grow and evolve from past mistakes while becoming more conscious and aware of oneself and our Existence, of our Divine Source.  It is not about a punishment for doing wrong, and it is not about a simplistic and limited goal of becoming “liberated” from the body and life and the cycles of rebirth and reincarnation.  These may be steps along the process of evolution, but they are not the Goal, nor the Essence of Karma.  Karma is about being more and more conscious of just how creative one truly is, of how Creative Life Is, which is all of Us. 

There may be times, of course, when one receives a “knock” in equal proportion to what one has done or given in life, and this may come from this life or from many past lives, but this is not Karma’s sole truth and function.  Karma is ultimately about the movement of Life and the Divine Source  bringing you ever more experiences and opportunities to see where one has been mistaken or flawed or imperfect, to awaken more deeply within to the Truth, and have the opportunity to grow and transform oneself towards this Greater Truth.  Again, this certainly involves becoming aware of the consequences of one’s actions and how one affects the world, including ourselves, but it is not in any way limited to this.  It is the Wheel of Opportunity for Growth and Awakening of Consciousness…and that can happen in as many diverse ways as one can imagine.  In some cases, the most perfect experience for someone to grow beyond their ignorant ways, their violence and anger and hatred, may very well involve being Loved in a particular way, in a way that is more powerful than the intensity of their violence and ignorance.  And yet in other cases it may be that the Soul needs a “knock” in some way, not necessarily the exact same way as they have knocked others, or even to the same degree, but in just the right way for that Soul to realize something new, or make some new effort towards growing.  It may seem to our small and narrow minds that the only way for spiritual justice and growth to happen to a murderer is for them to, in turn, be murdered also so that they can know how it feels and live that experience, but the Divine has many more ways to push and guide the growth of a Soul beyond its unconsciousness and ignorance.  There is no mechanical dispensation system at work here…but a Consciousness of Perfect Attentiveness and Detail for each and every Soul, according to the true Inner Need of each Soul, and even more, for the Whole Soul of Humanity and the Earth.  Life and the Divine Source are not a robotic force of energy but a living, breathing, Conscious Being that is not limited by any Law or any Idea that we humans may believe as truth.  As expressed below by Sri Aurobindo, who challenged all past Yoga traditions with a new Vision of humanity’s evolution, Karma must also be seen in a new and fresh way:

“Take the popular account of reincarnation and Karma—it is based on the mere

mental assumption that the workings of Nature ought to be

moral and proceed according to an exact morality of equal

justice—a scrupulous, even mathematical law of reward and

punishment or, at any rate, of results according to a human idea

of right correspondences. But Nature is non-moral—she uses

forces and processes moral, immoral and amoral pell-mell for

working out her business. Nature in her outward aspect seems

to care for nothing except to get things done—or else to make

conditions for an ingenious variety of the play of life. Nature

in her deeper aspect as a conscious spiritual Power is concerned

with the growth, by experience, the spiritual development of the

souls she has in her charge—and these souls themselves have

a say in the matter. All these good people lament and wonder

that unaccountably they and other good people are visited with

such meaningless sufferings and misfortunes. But are they really

visited with them by an outside Power or by a mechanical Law of

Karma? Is it not possible that the soul itself—not the outward

mind, but the spirit within—has accepted and chosen these

things as part of its development in order to get through the necessary

experience at a rapid rate, to hew through,……

even at the risk or the cost of much damage to the outward life

and the body? To the growing soul, to the spirit within us, may

not difficulties, obstacles, attacks be a means of growth, added

strength, enlarged experience, training for spiritual victory? The

arrangement of things may be that and not a mere question of

the pounds, shillings and pence of a distribution of rewards and

retributory misfortunes!”    Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga 1 p. 523

We must begin to see that our Karma is Action and Creation itself, including the world of work, physical or otherwise, that the world seems to loathe and try very hard to get away from.  Work is not a bad thing but a part of Yoga, the power and the way by which we become Conscious Creators in the world and Existence.  This Karmic Creation is not only about what we create as individuals, but as a Collective.  For we are not separate, but One, and our Karma is not separate, but One, a Collective Karma which we must embrace in order to build a greater Harmony amongst all and transcend the cycle of the world’s ignorant and unconscious ‘ego-separation-driven’ life of creation and destruction.  Our Work is our Path, and as we are better able to align our physical actions and creations with the Inner Soul and Divine Spirit in all the parts of our Being as individuals and as a Collective Humanity, then we shall take the next leap towards a Karma of Perfection, a Perfect Action of the Divine Identity as One Body of Consciousness in Harmony with all of Itself, and all of Us as Its Divinely Embodied Workers.

Karma1

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “The Karma of Karma

  1. i really like this.
    “Karma is about being more and more conscious of just how creative one truly is, of how Creative Life Is, which is all of Us.” for a long time i felt so powerless to some outside force of ‘karma’, documenting my every move (from other lifetimes, no less!). thank you for sharing this knowledge. aleya

    • Thank you for your lovely comments Aleya….I appreciate your support and interest in what I have to offer….I wish you much Love and Light as you Create your Life, with Grace and Joy…Noel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s