Unpacking Karma

I have a lot of different spiritual beliefs, often times I don’t bother to explain them or try to get anyone else to understand my personal views because I feel like they are my personal views and it’s not my job to convince anyone else what to believe or to justify why I believe what I do.

But I think that karma is an interesting topic and one that gets rather confusing along the way. I really think many people get the whole idea of karma all wrong, thinking it’s a punishment system of sorts, but I don’t really think that’s what it is. I believe in the Law of Attraction, both on a spiritual level and a scientific level. Many people believe it’s all just metaphysical mumbo jumbo, but the science behind it all is proven and real, but the things that can’t be measured and proven throw people off along the way.

Everything is made of energy, every atom and every molecule, it’s just energy vibrating at a certain frequency. It’s been proven many times over that our brain waves, our thoughts, are also energy vibrating at a certain level. These waves of energy, in everything, attract each other. The things vibrating at a certain frequency attract to the things vibrating at the same frequency. These are the things that can be proven and measured. It’s fascinating to me really, and makes complete and total sense that the energy you send out into the world, is what you are also going to attract back into your world, both positive and negative. There’s also the theory that there isn’t even such a thing as positive and negative or good and bad, but that’s a completely different subject and I’m not tackling that today.

There are many great articles out there that break down the science behind it all, of quantum physics and vibration energy, it isn’t hard to find them, but here are a couple to get you started if you are interested in that sort of thing: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/srinivasan-pillay/is-there-scientific-evide_b_175189.html , http://www.the-benefits-of-positive-thinking.com/quantum-physics-and-positive-thinking.html .

It has been proven that our brains have a Mirror Neuron, which mirrors the brain waves of the people around us. This is why fear is contagious and spreads in panic situations. It’s also why we can pick up on and feel anxious around other people who are displaying anxiety, or how someone who is cheerful and happy can also make us feel cheerful and happy. Our brain will actually mirror the brain waves of people in close proximity to us and it will feel like we are experiencing the same things that they are, again this is all scientific and can be proven and measured. Negative people can be like vampires and suck all the positive emotion right out of you, and positive people can lift you up and make you more positive. This is also why it’s very important on who you surround yourself with, the quotes that say you become just like the people you spend the most time with isn’t just feel good life advice, it’s real.

But the Law of Attraction is just part of this idea of karma as well. With the Law of Attraction though it makes total sense to me that if you are grateful for all the things in your world, then you will attract more things to be grateful for into your world. If you constantly complain about the things that you don’t like, you will attract more situations that cause you to complain. The brain is amazing at giving us what we focus on, attracting the same things on that energetic frequency. Our brain doesn’t see it as good or bad, it just sees what we are focused on, what energy we are putting out, and it attracts the same things back. Which is why the law of attraction explains that if you worry about money, and not having enough, you are actually creating an environment where you won’t have enough, because this is what you are focused on.

Worrying about things will actually create them. Sometimes I think we forget just how amazing and powerful our brains and thoughts can really be. It’s also been proven that positive thinking can heal our bodies and can make the difference in life and death in people who are battling cancers and diseases. There are just as many scientific articles out there which show that the people that have a strong will and drive to beat something fare far better in health than those that just give up. Again, it’s all fascinating to me.

But that’s not karma and not really what I wanted to focus on with this blog post. It’s just the same principles that are behind all of the similar energy attracting similar energy, and I think you need to have an understanding of that to unpack what karma really is and how you create and attract situations in your life based on your choices and actions. This probably veers more into the spiritual and metaphysical side of things. I don’t see karma as reward and punishment like so many people do. I don’t think the Universe rewards and punishes so much, as it just provides opportunities to grow and evolve as a person.

I had an in depth conversation with a girlfriend not too long ago about this concept when we were discussing how things flip around for some people, one person we knew in particular. This person went from putting herself in various situations where she was the “other woman”, to being the person who was being put aside for “other women”, and while many people sat back on the gossip train and smugly said “Ha! That’s her karma, she’s getting what she deserves.” I personally believe it’s so much deeper than that (I also believe having that kind of attitude and passing judgment like that will find you in your own karmic lessons, more on that soon). They aren’t punishments, they are lessons.

I believe we are here on earth to learn, to grow, to evolve into the best possible version of ourselves as possible. The Universe (or God, I prefer to say Universe because it’s all encompassing no matter what you believe and doesn’t alienate people who may not believe in God, or who shut their brains off when anything spiritual is being discussed in the name of God because of their own beliefs.) wants us to grow and learn and become better humans and it provides us with the lessons we need based on our choices and actions to become better. This is karma. It’s definitely something I have experienced in my life and has made me open my eyes a time or two.

 Now as I continue on this subject, I am in no way shape or form saying that I am perfect or have always made perfect choices, or haven’t slipped up and made mistakes or poor choices. I am human and I have found myself in various situations where I made a terrible choice and needed to learn my lesson and change my choices accordingly. So nothing I say here is in judgment or pointing fingers or putting myself above any of the situations I describe. I simply try to be the best version of myself, and when I do something that doesn’t line up with that, the Universe quickly teaches me something to help me be better. Which is why I feel like I have an understanding of karma, because I’ve paid attention and realized how it works in my own life.

I learned quickly as a young adult, that any time I judged someone, and looked down on them or felt like I was better than something someone else did, the Universe quickly showed me that it wasn’t my place to judge, and I may not have known what it was like to be in their shoes. The Universe taught me this lesson by putting me in the same positions, so I could feel it personally. I had many “a-ha” moments where I felt shameful for judging, and I began trying to cultivate a non-judgmental outlook on life and people in general (I am only human, I do still find myself occasionally judging, but I try to be as nonjudgmental as possible). I learned quickly that whenever I said “I would never do that.” the Universe would respond with “Oh yeah? Watch this.” And boom I was faced with a similar situation and I began to see how sometimes people can make poor choices that you never thought you would make.

I became very cognizant of these patterns in my life quickly and realized the cause and effect of my attitude. I’m grateful for these lessons as a young adult, because it’s helped me to grow and change and evolve into the person I am now, and I love me. I obviously am not perfect and there is always room for evolving and changing and I constantly strive to be better than I was yesterday, but on the whole, I feel like I have an amazing character and I am happy with who I am.

Back to karma. When we do things that are not lining up with being the best version of ourselves, we open ourselves up to the same things happening to us. When you steal from people, you are attracting people and situations into your life where your things will also be stolen. When you cheat people, you are attracting people and situations where you will be cheated. When you treat friends and loved one poorly, you are attracting people into your life that are going to treat you poorly. When you talk badly behind people’s backs, you will attract people who will talk badly behind your back. When you look people in the eyes and lie to them, you are attracting people into your life that will look you in the eye and lie to you. When you put yourself into a situation where you are the “other” person, when you knowingly engage in relationships with people who you know are in a relationship already, you are attracting situations into your life where the person you get into a relationship with will do the same things to you.

This isn’t punishment, or getting what you deserve. This is the Universe showing you how you made someone feel, to open your eyes and say, “oh wow, this feels awful. I can’t believe I made someone else feel like this, I should be a better person and not make anyone else feel like this again.”  It’s a lesson to show you how to be a better person. We are doomed to repeat the same lessons until we learn them. If you continually attract the same kinds of relationships and situations into your life over and over again, you are missing the lesson that you need to be learning and you will continue to have the same story play out over and over again until you learn it and change your behaviors.

It boils down to treating people how you want to be treated, not necessarily how they have treated you. The cycle of being vengeful and doing the same things back to someone keeps you locked in a cycle where you attract it over and over again. I refuse to play those games with people who “do me wrong”. There have been many times in life that someone has done something shady or downright mean to me and I have an opportunity to do the same things to them or “repay” them. I choose to be a better person, and people will ask “Why don’t you just go ahead and do that? They did it to you or they would do it to you.” But at the end of the day I have to be at peace with my choices and like who I am as a person, and I refuse to let someone else make me drop down to their level to lower my vibrational frequency, and do the same types of things. I choose to do better for my life. I also choose to not have to face the karmic lessons that those choices would bring.

 I forgive people and their poor choices, because I also hope to be forgiven when I make a mistake. However, forgiving doesn’t mean you accept what they have done, nor does it mean you can’t remove them from being able to do it again. If someone takes advantage of the fact that you are forgiving, and thinks that’s a reason to do something over and over again because you will forgive them, they need to learn that their actions have consequences and it’s time to remove them from your life. Forgiveness never means it’s ok to keep toxic people and situations around. It’s ok to give second chances because we hope people will also give us second chances, but it’s not ok to take advantage of those chances and not change the behaviors that caused the problems in the first place. The only sincere form of apology is changed behavior. Sometimes the lesson is how to stop giving people so many chances and how to learn that forgiveness doesn’t mean accepting. There’s usually a lesson for both sides of every story.

If you aren’t continually learning, growing and changing, then you aren’t really living. If you are exactly the same person that you were a year ago, you have wasted a year of your life. The point is to become better, to grow, to change, to evolve. The Universe gives you the situations and experiences that you need to strengthen the parts of you that need work. The point is to pay attention and see the patterns and figure it out. So many of us stay so busy, we never stop to think about it all. We distract our minds with various stimuli; social media, TV, work, activities…. We stay so busy that our mind never has a chance to just stop and think and unpack how we feel and what we should be learning. Too many people are afraid of their own thoughts, that they refuse to get lost in them.

You can also clear your karmic energy though. Sometimes we don't need to be put into the same situations to learn our lesson, sometimes we do think about it and realize our folly and learn and change without having to go through the same events. At that point you should admit to whatever it is you have done and ask for forgiveness from the person you have wronged, and then choose to not do it again. That cleanses your karmic energy. Sometimes it's impossible to ask for forgiveness directly, and instead you offer your apology to the Universe and take action to be better and vow never to treat someone that way again, or make someone feel that way again. Meditation, reflection, journaling... it all can help cleanse your karmic energy. Simply acknowledging what you have done and what you have learned is enough sometimes that you don't have to face the same things to learn the lesson, you have already learned and changed your energy and are now attracting better things and situations into your life. The point is learning the lesson, once you have truly learned it and changed your behavior accordingly, you don't have to repeat it again.

I am a loving, giving, generous and nurturing person, and I expect that I will attract those same qualities back into my world from other people. Not as a “reward”, but because we attract into our lives what we put out. It doesn't mean that everything will be sunshine and roses if we are "good" people and always do the "right" thing, life is life after all and nothing is perfect. We all have strengths and weaknesses and the Universe sends adversity into our lives all the time to help us strengthen the areas that we need to work on. But if you want good things, you have to put out good things. It doesn’t mean that the good you do for one person will come back from that person necessarily, it may come back in completely different ways. Same with the negative things, it doesn’t mean the same person you treated poorly will treat you poorly, but it will come back around from someone. This is all just a way for us to learn empathy and compassion, not to punish us, but to teach us.

Sadly most people don’t ever learn, they don’t see the patterns or attribute their circumstances to their own energy and choices. They blame others, or fate, and just complain about it all instead of learning that they have the power to change it. If you want something different, you have to do something different. If you want better friends, then you have to be a better friend. If you want a better relationship, then you have to be a better partner. If you want people to be genuine and authentic towards you, then you have to be genuine and authentic towards others. If you want honesty, you must be honest. If you want love, then you must be love. It’s not about the other people and what they are doing, it’s about your own choices and actions. That’s what karma is all about. You might stop and think about that next time you judge another person, because the Universe just might say, “Oh yeah? Watch this….”


Tonya LittleComment