Karma is an interesting concept, or perhaps, it is the law of the universe.  The law of karma tells you that everything that happens to you is a result of something that you did in a past life.  Past life means in your past.  You don’t have to believe in reincarnation to believe in past lives.  You just have to believe in yesterday.

Accepting the idea of karma helps you accept the idea that you are responsible for everything that happens to you.  This concept is quite at odds with the blame culture of modern day North America. Karma says, “My fault”.  It can save you a lot of trouble, figuring out who to blame or credit for your current situation.

Karma also helps to encourage you to watch your actions by creating an understanding that your actions have far reaching consequences.  If you are currently suffering, it doesn’t help you to see what other people are doing.  It helps you to see what you are doing that contributes to suffering.  Are you speaking to people in a kind tone of voice? Are you talking about people who are not there with you?  Are you being nice to others? Are your actions creating harmony? These are important considerations, considering you spend your days thinking and acting.

Karma, in this life, can help you take responsibility for your actions.  If you are acting in a way that is causing you to suffer, noticing what you are doing may be the first step in major life improvements.

From Smell the Coffee and Wake Up: A Zen Guide to Mindfulness and Self-Discovery


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