Karma is the end result of an immutable Universal Law, that Law being that every action will, ultimately, be balanced with an effect. Karma is "created" by the vibrations of our every thought, word and action. Every vibration we send out attracts to it a like vibration. If we send out positive vibrations, we attract positive experiences to us and if we send out negative vibrations, we attract negative experiences to us.
Western thought and Christianity have long ignored or submerged the Law of Karma. The Bible makes reference to Universal Law when it says, "As ye sow, so shall ye reap." What you send out, in the form of thought, word or deed, comes back to you in the same form in which you sent it out.
"An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth" is another Biblical saying, one which I believe is almost universally misinterpreted in the Western world. I have long heard people use this saying as an excuse for taking revenge on someone for something that person has done to them, or as an excuse for "settling the score" with someone.
While many people would agree that it is immoral to take revenge on someone for a wrong done by that person, it is also the case that in some instances, people excuse their taking of revenge through the Biblical saying "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth." Using this saying as an excuse for taking revenge on someone is, in my opinion, a complete misrepresentation of the meaning of this saying. I believe that this saying means not that we are given license to "settle debts," or to take the law into our own hands by doing unto others what they have done to us when we feel that we have been "wronged," but rather that if we "take an eye," our eye will be taken from us by another in compliance with the Law of Karma.
We of the Western world have long seemed to believe that the only karma that exists is "bad karma." This comes, I believe, from our tendency to believe that when good things happen, we are simply experiencing "good luck," and that when bad things happen, we are being punished for a sin. In reality, karma is neither good nor bad, but simply a Law based on energy, and karma can be either the result of having sent out negativity (in either this lifetime or a previous lifetime) when what we think of as "bad karma" comes back to us, or the result of having sent out positive, loving energy (in either this lifetime or a previous lifetime) when what we think of as "good luck" comes to us.
It is a principle of physics that energy can neither be created nor destroyed; it can only be transformed from one form into another. The Universal Law of Karma is based on this principle and this Law is relentless and unwavering, regardless of our awareness of the Law. During the Age of Pisces, the one out of which we have just come to enter the Age of Aquarius, we reaped in one lifetime primarily what we had sown over the course of many, many previous lifetimes. The Age of Aquarius has brought with it a much higher vibration for our Planet and as a result, each and every thought, word and deed brings much more immediate repayment, retribution or reward than in any other time.
One of the reasons that many of us have a hard time "buying" that Karma exists is that the Law of Karma has until quite recently not had a place in our culture. We Americans focus quite strongly on our legal system laws not Universal Laws, and believe that justice is to be meted out through our court systems. Much of what we are exposed to in life seems unfair and it is difficult for us Westerners to believe that any Law at all is in operation. The idea that some people live in poverty in this country because of something they have done in a past life is anathema to many of us. (In fact, poverty may actually be a choice made by a Soul in order to learn certain lessons that will advance that Soul. More on this later.)
The Law of Karma in many ways run counter to our belief that we live in the land of opportunity where anyone, from any circumstance of birth, can rise to the top of the heap and become rich, famous, powerful or successful. We teach our children from birth that they can do anything they want to. We focus on education as the route to success, never taking into account the myriad other factors that operate in the life of a successful person. (Don't ask me to define success. I cannot. I can say, however, that in the United States, success is almost always synonymous with wealth.)
We cannot really know why some people have chosen poverty as a life circumstance in this lifetime. Nor can we know whether one's circumstances are the result of choice by the Soul as a lesson in this lifetime, or whether as the consequence of the Law of Karma for mistakes made in previous lifetimes. We souls, before we reincarnate, decide which lessons we would like to learn in the next incarnation, and we set up, between lifetimes, the circumstances of the next incarnation which will be most conducive to our "education." Souls are always evolving and are given the opportunity before each incarnation to decide which lessons in the next lifetime will most promote their evolution to a higher consciousness.
Were it not for the Law of Karma, we might never be able, as Souls, to recover from the mistakes we make. What if it were the case that once a mistake was made by a Soul, that Soul had to "live" forever with the consequences of that mistake? Fortunately, through Karma a Soul is able to right a past wrong and move on.
The acquisition of knowledge of the Universal Laws carries with it the responsibility to obey those laws. The more knowledge one has, or the more enlightened one becomes, the more one must try to live in accordance with the Universal Laws. Children are less aware than adults and so are less subject to Universal Laws. As we grow up and become aware of morality and unconditional love and the consequences of living an immoral or unloving life, the Universal Laws acquire more impact.
Different Kinds of Karma
Several kinds of karma exist. Our souls bring with them into each incarnation karma from other lifetimes. We also create karma with every thought, word or action in our present lifetime. Because the vibration of this planet is increasing at a very rapid pace, we are all experiencing a "quickening" of the karmic effects of our thoughts, words and actions.
Not only are we experiencing (and thereby neutralizing) in one single lifetime karma which used to take several lifetimes to experience, but it is also the case that each thought, word and action produces almost immediate results in this lifetime. We are not accumulating karma the way we used to because the time between cause and effect has been decreased to the point where we experience results of our actions almost immediately.
We now have the opportunity to release, through positive, loving thought and action, that karma which we have accumulated over many lifetimes. We no longer are required to experience all of the karma we carried into this lifetime; we no longer are required to beat our heads against brick walls in order to learn the lessons our Soul wishes to learn. We are being given the chance to learn our lessons through love and understanding.
The process of releasing karma through enlightenment instead of living through its effects is a simple one and is accomplished through affirmations and positive intention. One affirmation you might use to release karma is: "I call on the law of forgiveness. I am free from mistakes and the consequences of mistakes. I am under Grace and not under karmic law." This affirmation was written by Florence Scovel Shinn in 1928
Karma has more to do with our intention than with our actions or deeds themselves. Our thoughts and our emotions create an intent before we perform any action, and it is this intent that sets up the vibration which will eventually attract to it an intent of similar vibration. Killing someone will result in negative karma if one's intention was to take someone's life. If, however, one's intention is to protect oneself or someone else from being killed, one will not accrue negative karma based on the deed he has committed.
Affirmations are positive statements, in the present tense, which ultimately become embedded in our subconscious. Using affirmations is a wonderful way to reprogram the old tapes residing in our subconscious, and to replace old, out-dated, no longer serving beliefs and thoughts. Affirmations immediately raise our vibration by focusing our minds on positive thoughts. Choose affirmations which "resonate" with your own way of speaking and thinking. Just keep them positive and in the present tense, and spend a few minutes every day saying those affirmations which resonate with the things you wish to change or release. It takes only 21 days of daily affirmations to change (reprogram) a belief. Do not try to cover everything in one affirmation (affirmations should be short and easily memorized.) Choose only 3 to 5 affirmations to repeat daily. After 21 days, you might wish to drop one or all of the affirmations and use new ones. Below are some affirmations you might use to release karma.
- "I forgive myself for all past misdeeds and open myself to receive only love and light."
- "I call on the law of forgiveness. I am free from mistakes and the consequences of those mistakes. I am under grace and not under karmic law."
- "I am open to receive the Abundance of the Universe."
- "I release all that is unserving in my life and choose to live out of love not fear."
- "I release all negativity, fear, anger and doubt. I am a clear and open channel for love, light and knowledge."
- "I embrace my Divine Perfection."
Many of the ancient schools knew the importance of breath in connecting with the Divine. We are once again being given this ancient knowledge in order that we might use it to raise our vibrations.
A very simple form of breathing can be used to release karma. Sit comfortably with your spine erect but relaxed and breathe in deeply and slowly through your nose. As you breathe in, visualize yourself breathing in White Light and Love from the Source. While holding your indrawn breath, picture White Light filling up your body. As you breathe out, breathe out through your mouth and say, "I release _________ (fear, anger, doubt, all that is unserving, karmic debts, etc.)"
Try to breathe in, hold the breath and breathe out for equal amounts of time. For example, if you breathe in for 3 seconds, hold the breath for 3 seconds and breathe out for 3 seconds. You may also, as you breathe out, simply name the vibration you are breathing out. For example, you might breathe out, for 3 breaths, anger. In this case, as you breathe in you would simply say "White Light," visualizing as you do so, and upon the release of breath, simply say, "Anger."
Affirmations and breathwork can be done regardless of your current beliefs. If you wish to breathe in God, instead of White Light, do so. I do not believe that working these tools conflicts with any major religion.
May the Sun, Moon and Stars shelter you and energize you with love and peace,