Why does mainstream society get karma so wrong?
Karma in pop culture often means that people get what they deserve.
How did we develop this view?
Because we have this misguided perspective that we need something outside ourselves in order to be happy.
It’s because of this false view that we desire to transform karma into a sort of cash machine based on our ethical and spiritual behavior.
However, if we can let go of this understanding of happiness, we can see that all we really need is to live deeply in the present moment with mindfulness and discover our true nature.
Karma is simply an energy. It’s our intentional thoughts and actions. The energy we generate now and in the future will affect us. It has nothing to do with reward or punishment. Karma is unbiased and it’s ours to control.
Watering the garden of your mind: How to use karma as a guiding force
The best way to think of karma is an energy that you’re creating every moment. Every intentional action or thought generates this energy.
We feel this every day, and it’s not stored for future punishment or reward.
However, if you’re reacting with anger all the time, you’re conditioning the mind for anger. Similarly, by reacting to things with peace and calm, you’re conditioning the mind for peace and calm.
All these qualities, such as anger, discontent, joy, harmony etc can be seen as flowers and the seeds they sprout from.
When we’re born, all these mental qualities and emotions are seeds. Now imagine these seeds resting in the garden of your mind and constantly being either watered or neglected with your intentional thoughts.
Depending on what you do, you’re either watering the bad seeds or watering the good ones. These seeds can eventually grow into flowers or they can wither and die.