Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Someone once tried to explain the laws of karma (cause and effect), by using a metaphor. They asked us to imagine a figure in the sky that not only watches everything we do, but rewards us with blessings for our good deeds, and punishes us with bad luck for each harmful act.
While the intentions of that metaphor were sincere, karma isn't judgment, it's consequence. We are the ones responsible.
If you steal from someone today, for example, it must be because you don't fully understand the pain of being robbed (if you truly did, you wouldn't steal). You essentially set the universe wheels in motion to cause someone else to steal from you so that you can understand what it feels like. This will happen again and again (over multiple lifetimes) until you finally understand and vow never to steal again. Come to think of it, this can be seen as a wonderful reward, for you are given the opportunity to learn something new. We should, therefore, think of everyone we meet as a teacher.
Buddhism honors where everyone currently is on their path. That is why we don't have a list of commandments, so to speak, but a gentle invitation to be more mindful. With a raised awareness we don't need someone else telling us to do no harm; we naturally vow not to because we are aware of the suffering it causes.
What lesson have you learned in the past but haven't yet vowed to never do to someone else again? Can you start today?
Taken from buddhistbootcamp.com. Quite a very good explanation of karma...at least I think so!