Last article in “Karma: the universal rule of consequence”, we established karma as being the ‘sandbags’ that keep the soul trapped in the cycle of birth, death, and reincarnation. Karma, both ‘good’ and ‘bad’, keeps the soul from breaking free of this cycle and rising up to Nirvana, the state of enlightenment/freedom. We also established that in order to break this cycle, one must first stop gaining karma, and second, get rid of the karma that one has already gained throughout one’s lifetime. The question we left off with was “How?”. Here’s what yoga philosophy says…
How does one stop gaining karma?
Well, remember that karma is a result of the “intention” behind an action. If one has ‘good’ intentions, one gains ‘good’ karma. If one has ‘bad’ intentions, one gains ‘bad’ karma. So logically, if one has ‘no’ intentions, one gains NO karma. How does one do this? By acting in line with one’s dharma or duty. Here’s how it works using last week’s example: My child comes to me and asks for $10,000 to go to university. My action is to give him/her the $10,000. If I gave my child the money in order to make him/her happy, I would gain ‘Good’ karma. If I gave the money in order to have my child feel indebted to me, I would gain ‘Bad’ karma. If however I gave the money because it was my duty as a parent to make sure that my child got his/her education and so stand on his/her own two feet, then I would gain no karma. Following the rule of karma makes a lot of hard decisions much easier.
The second question is how does one get rid of karma already gained? The answer to that is easy. Remember that karma is the Universe’s way of keeping track of what you still need to learn. Your current circumstances and situations are actually provided as opportunities to learn these lessons. As you learn the lessons, karma is released. If you do not learn the lesson, you retain the karma, and the Universe will continue to provide opportunities for you to face it. With that in mind, you need to pay attention. Take note of the issues that arise in your life over and over again. Do you have problems with jealousy? Trust? Ego-based fears etc.? Issues that occur over and over, do so because you are being provided with repeated opportunities to release karma. How many times have you heard yourself or someone else say… “Why does this always happen to me?” There’s an answer to that question. Learn the lessons… it’s the only way to freedom.