According to karma yoga, our true purpose in life is to return to a state of pure bliss. We do this by reincarnating back to earth living out our lives in an attempt to remove negative karma from our being. In earthly terms, it is a change in attitude that usually brings about a change in karma. However, be careful with attitude, because what may work in one moment may not work in another. It is our desires that keep us in the ever -- repeating pattern of karma. While there is value in repetition, it is of a higher value to transcend the rebirth cycle of karma and find our true self, which is a perfect state of balance, harmony, health, happiness and peace.
An example of karma that needs to be addressed, would be a difficult marriage or relationship. In this piece of karma you have the opportunity to learn the lessons of unselfishness, sharing, compromise, respect and truth. According to karma if you had learned these lessons in a prior life you would not need to experience a difficult relationship in this life. Learning the lesson, a space opens and instead of anguish and strife, we experience joy and happiness.
If you choose to break the pattern of your karma you will free your energy to explore the rest of the universe, and through the wisdom you have gained you will realize that you can choose rather than being compelled by karma. Life is creative because you have the power to determine how and why you act.
The root of all karma is seeded in the four great passions. One of these passions is more intense in your life than the others, but they all appear at one time or another. These four great passions, which are the major causes of all of life's problems, are: deceit, greed, anger and pride.
These negative emotional states lack honesty, tolerance, unselfishness and humility, and are the triggering mechanisms for all negative karma. These states of our being lack sincerity, fairness, joy, admiration, detachment and courage, and give rise to prejudice, sorrow, disloyalty, fear, disgust and mocking, which activates negative karma and get us into trouble.
Of the four great passions, anger is the one which we can all identify. It is something we all have experienced. Although no one likes to readily admit anger, it is somewhat easier than deceit, greed and pride. Anger is sometimes seen as a worthy passion, especially when it is used to right an injustice. However, it is very difficult to activate the right amount of anger, at the right time and for the right purpose.
To learn to express anger in the right way and thereby remove it, takes self-discipline. Karma teaches us that there is a big difference between not doing something, suppressing something, and removing the root cause of something. When we repress or resist something it will continue to surface in our lives. To remove it is to annihilate it, and this is the only way to change our karma.
So how do we change our karma? Awareness is the answer. We must become fully aware of the process by which karma operates. First, we must realize that there is no such thing as good or bad karma. Karma simply means action. It means that for every cause there is an effect; for every action there are consequences. So when emotions arise, if we can learn to take a breath, step back and carefully choose the nature of our course, the results will bring just rewards. To annihilate karma is a major task. If you try, and then slip back into old ways, don't be tough on yourself, but learn to smile and laugh at yourself, pick yourself up and start again. One of the most important aspects of living a healthy, balanced and happy life is a sense of humor. If you take yourself too seriously, you will take life too seriously and risk developing a self-righteous attitude, which brings about heavy karma.
Here is a fun way to deal with anger, should it arise. Download this song from iTunes and listen to it. If it doesn't make you smile and simmer your smoldering anger, send me an email and maybe just the conscious awareness act of venting will lift your spirit, your karma will shift and you will realize that life truly becomes what life does. Go to iTunes and download "Simmer Down" by the Mighty Mighty Bostons (from the album "Ska-Core, the Devil").
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