By best-selling paranormal author Joni Mayhan
People often think of Karma as a vengeful force that turns the tables on poor behavior, giving bad people what they deserve, but it goes much deeper than that. In many ways, Karma is nothing more than a scale, balancing the good on one side and the bad on the other. The problem is determining what is good and what is bad.
If someone deliberately hurts someone else, that would be bad karma, right? On the surface, without any further details, it’s easy to make a determination, but what if there are other factors involved? What if the person is acting in self defense? Or perhaps the person is mentally incapacitated and doesn’t know better? When I was a child, I was often spanked as a part of my parent’s mode of discipline. The spanking was deliberate and I suffered pain from it. Would this be considered bad karma for my parents?
To determine good versus bad karma, we often use the Golden Rule: do under others as you would have them do unto you. Basically ask yourself, ‘Would I like it if someone did this to me?’ If your answer is no, then you are probably generating bad karma.
The concept of Karma traces its roots back to both Hinduism and Buddhism and has evolved to mean different things to different people. Many feel that karma from past lives can impact our current lives as well. If you were brutal to others in a past life, you might find yourself in a life where you are repaying that karmic debt. If you were an abuser in a past life, you might find yourself being abused in this lifetime. This would mean that you came to this life with a bill of bad Karma that you have to work to repay. According to believers, you must work off this bad Karma before you can even start to work on the supply you generate from this lifetime. If this is true, it doesn’t hurt to generate as much positive Karma as possible. Here are some methods:
How to Improve Your Karma
1. Do the Right Thing
Listen to your heart when you’re confronted with a decision and ask yourself several questions. Is this in my best interest? Will this hurt anyone else? Is this the best decision? Would I like it if someone did this to me? This could be as simple as prostrasticating on a task that affects other people to as complex as stealing company funds for your own benefit. Wrong is wrong and you know it in your heart. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Make your decisions with your conscience fully engaged. Ask yourself two questions. Would you do it if someone were watching? Would you still do it even if you knew you wouldn’t get caught?
2. Practice Empathy
It’s important to understand that people are complex organisms. When you come into contact with someone who is angry and hurtful, you can’t see the blueprint below their surface to understand why they became the way they are. They might have experienced loss or suffering that was so powerful, it changed the way they interact with others. Life isn’t easy for anyone. Everyone suffers at one point or another, some more than others. While some people might have the self fortitude to rise above it, others sink to the bottom with it. Instead of allowing the negativity to ripple outward, try giving that person the benefit of doubt. Something bad might have happened to them, something that has absolutely nothing to do with you. Give them a smile or a helping hand, offer kindness and understanding and turn the negative into a positive.
3. Understand That Failing isn’t Bad Karma
When something goes wrong and you don’t get the results that you hoped for, try again. Thomas Edison was quoted as saying, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” If something is important to you, keep trying until you find success.
4. You Reap What You Sow
If you put negative energy out into the world, you will get negative energy in return. According to the Law of Attraction, like attracts like. Try focusing on the positive aspects of life and allow the negative emotions to take a back-seat instead. Be grateful for what you have and more good things will come to you. Afterall, why would the Universe send you anything else if you aren’t happy with what you have? Karma tends to have a “cause and effect” aspect to it. If you don’t tie your shoe, you might trip over the laces. Take good care of your actions in order to reap better results.
5. Be Kind
Even the smallest act of kindness brings good Karma. The ripple it creates could continue on and on like a gift that continues giving. Imagine doing something as simple as letting a car go in front of you. The person driving that car could be a doctor who is on her way to an emergency. The three seconds you gave her allowed her to save a life. Or it could be a mother on her way to pick up her child from school, a man on his way to an important job interview or just a person who has had a terrible day and needed something good to happen to him. If that person takes the act of kindness and passes it on, it creates a ripple of kindness that might continue further.
6. Let Go of the Past
They say that hindsight is 20/20, but if you’re looking in the rearview mirror, you won’t see what is directly in front of you. By holding onto memories or misdeeds from the past, you miss opportunities that are being presented to you now. While this isn’t necessarily bad Karma, it could prevent you from seeing opportunities to help you improve your Karma. it will also allow you to heal and move forward to a happier future. Accept lessons from your past as learning experiences and move forward.
7. Don’t Find Pleasure in Other People’s Bad Karma
We’ve all seen the memes, but it’s important to understand that taking pleasure in someone else’s misfortunes could result in your own bad Karma. Revenge in any form is a negative emotion. When you latch onto it and allow it to impact your emotions, you absorb the negativity. It’s okay to recognize it and acknowledge it, but utilize empathy instead and hope that the person learned his or her Karmic lesson. What goes around, usually comes around.
You don’t have to be a student of Karma to be a good person, but it helps. Understanding that the decisions we make as human beings have long lasting effects is a good step towards seeing a brighter future for yourself. Be good. Be happy and most of all, be true.
Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator and the author of 13 paranormal books. To learn more about her, check out her website Jonimayhan.com.
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