I think I’ve told this crowd before that I purchase this ice tea called Honest Tea. First of all, isn’t that just the coolest name???!!! I love it! But, even cooler than the name–the glass bottles I buy at the grocery store have these amazing quotes on the inside of the cap. I have saved a bunch for future posts, but today’s is this:
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours. Dr. Wayne Dyer
Oh that brings some real richness to mind! Just for background, I looked up the definition of karma and here’s what my Google search gave me:
(in Hinduism and Buddhism) the sum of a person’s actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences; destiny or fate, following as effect from cause
Of course, we were just speaking about Pope Francis and the love, mercy and grace he shows all those he comes in contact with. Just think about the magnitude of his karma!!! But, I think this statement is so true. I think our behavior influences our karma–or outcomes–or fate. True, there is much that comes from chance, luck, unavoidable encounters and so forth…but how we deal with even those things, I think tells alot about the character of a person.
It is so easy to fall into the “eye for an eye” mentality. When someone does you harm, it is so easy to sink into the mode of righteous indignation and think about what you could say or do in return. But, as I know I have quoted Stephen Covey before:
Between stimulus and response there is a space; in that space lies the power to choose your response; in your response lies your growth and your freedom.
What if we chose “love” instead of righteous indignation? What if we chose “mercy” instead of justice? What if we turned the other cheek in grace instead of lash out with anger, hatred or even just judgment? What if we chose optimism versus pessimism? I am reminded of Jesus’ Parables. What lessons was he trying to teach us?
Richard Rohr talked about karma in a recent post on his blog:
Karma is an absolute law of cause and effect. Even thoughts and desires have a predictable karma. You are responsible for your own thoughts and motives, and you cannot avoid the consequences. Thoughts and motives are real and create the Real. You cannot walk around thinking negative thoughts, or they will destroy you.
Conversely, no love is lost in the universe. I believe you are actually punished by your sins; whereas Western religions tend to teach that you are punished for your sins. Goodness is its own reward and evil is its own punishment, karmic law would say. These are two very different world views, and frankly, I am convinced that Jesus taught the karmic one. “You cannot pick grapes from thorns or figs from thistles. A good tree will bear good fruit,” He said, “and a bad tree will bear bad fruit” (Matthew 7:17-18). Jesus also said, “If you show mercy, mercy will be shown to you.” (Matthew 5:7, Luke 6:37) and “The standard you use will be used for you” (Mark 4:24).
I think we could all have really awesome karma–don’t you?