In its most basic sense, the Law of Karma in the moral sphere teaches that similar actions will lead to similar results. Let us take an example. If we plant a mango seed, the plant that springs up will be a mango tree, and eventually it will bear a mango fruit. Alternatively, if we plant a Pong Pong seed, the tree that will spring up will be a Pong Pong tree and the fruit a Pong Pong. As one sows, so shall one reap. According to one’s action, so shall be the fruit. Similarly, in the Law of Karma, if we do a wholesome action, eventually we will get a wholesome fruit, and if we do an unwholesome action eventually we will get an unwholesome, painful result. This is what we mean when we say that causes bring about effects that are similar to the causes.
The law of Karma teaches that responsibility for harmful actions lies with the person who commits them. Karma thus has to do with cause and effect. Every action you take creates the cause for events to happen to you. This means that, every single thing that happens to you – good and bad – is in truth caused by you, yourself, your own actions and your own thoughts. There is no escape from one’s karma. There are many ways to create good karma.
- ACTIONS REPEATEDLY DONE CREATE POWERFUL KARMA
When the same action is repeated many times, be it good or bad, powerful karma gets created. Actions directed at powerful objects such as one’s parents, one’s spiritual teachers or at monks, nuns or temple priests also create powerful karma. This is true of even the smallest disrespectful act or the smallest virtuous action.
The karmic results of actions done to powerful objects can usually be experienced in this life. Suffering results come from negative actions while favorable results arise from virtuous actions. It thus follows that we should really be very mindful of our actions and the thoughts that accompany our actions, because it is from mindfulness that we can develop habits that lead to actions that create good karma. This is especially important in the present era, a time Hindu masters refer to as the period of the kali yoga when karmic results tend to ripen much faster, usually within this same lifetime.
Chanting mantras is the easiest way of getting started on the road towards opening new horizons for the mind. To start with, it is a very powerful way to purify the negative karmic imprints we all bring into the world with us. Negative imprints linger on in every one’s consciousness, the mind-stream that we carry from one lifetime to the next. Start with the most famous mantra in the world, the mantra of the Compassionate Buddha: Om Mani Padme Hum
This is a very popular mantra. It is wonderfully uplifting as it is the mantra of the Buddha of Compassion whom the Chinese know as the Goddess Kuan Yin. Reciting one mala of this mantra 108 times a day will awaken hidden yogic abilities within you. This mantra will calm your fears, soothe your concerns, heal your broken heart and answer all your prayers. Chant this mantra aloud, as you eat, as you bathe, as you make up your face or when you are waiting for someone or for something. You can chant it anytime anywhere. Chant it aloud or silently, inside your head, inside your mind. Asleep. Awake. Let this mantra permeate your being. Do not worry about the pronunciation. What is important is your motivation.
While reciting the mantra try to concentrate on its sound and allow it to penetrate deep within, into your inner consciousness and eventually, into your subconscious mind. Always chant it with the thought of benefiting others. It will not take you long to sense wonderful benefits permeating through your consciousness. In no time at all, you will feel yourself become kinder, more tolerant, and less prone to getting upset.
Many high lamas say that just reciting Om Mani Padme Hum can bring us all to Enlightenment, simple and easy though it is. This mantra is one of the ten most powerful mantras of all time.
- MAKE KINDNESS YOUR RELIGION – My religion is kindness
Creating good karma is not about being religious. One need not even be a Buddhist or belong to any religious faith to create good karma. What you do need is to develop a kind attitude towards others. So creating good karma is simply about being kind. Not just for a moment but always, throughout one’s life, in every aspect of our living, in every relationship – in the way we conduct our business, in all our interactions – when you approach everything you do motivated by an attitude of kindness, you are creating a great deal of good karma, the kind that creates the cause for others to be kind to you. It is the surest way of developing a life where aggravations simply dissipate.
- PRACTICE SPIRITUAL MEDITATION
When you sit down on a cushion with your legs crossed, your spine straight and your eyes slightly closed looking three feet in front of you, the first thing to do is to set your motivation. Tune into your mind and focus on why you are doing the meditation – to develop your mind to benefit all beings. Setting this altruistic motivation establishes the basis of meditation practices. And from then on you can meditate on any subject related to the development of your understanding of life. When you meditate this way lightly reflecting on how precious your life is, how lucky you are to have been born at all, to be alive and to be well … in time you will come to realize just how lucky you really are in just having a human life, having the ability to think, to analyze, to understand and yes, to philosophize. This is how meditation can lead to wisdom realizations and good karma.
I have blogged some time back that meditation is therapeutic. Check out the post here.
- CONNECT WITH A SPIRITUAL TEACHER
Start by meditating on your path to ultimate happiness, the kind that is permanent rather than transient. Think through all the things that make you happy and slowly come to the realization that nothing makes us happy forever. All of life is in the nature of impermanence. The pathway to ultimate happiness is elusive and permanent happiness seems so impossible to attain, since in the end we all grow old and die … so unless we are able to grasp new attitudes and perspectives; new ways of rationalizing our existence, how can we find permanent happiness?
To see the light, we need to connect with a spiritual teacher who has affinity with us and who can open our eyes to a greater awareness of our own Buddha nature, our own spirituality, our own continuing consciousness which lives on from life to life. By generating the desire to meet a special teacher who can show us the way to think and meditate correctly, we are creating the cause for just such a sage to manifest in our life. The genuine and heartfelt inner expectation of wanting to connect with a higher spiritual being generates the karma for it to manifest. And then when you are ready, the right teacher for you, will come along. As i have always said: “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear”
With Love & Light,