Springingtiger's Blog


Practical Karma

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“No man is an island,Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.”
(John Donne)

There is a law in the Universe that says that every action has an appropriate consequence, when the actions are performed by people we call it Karma. There has been a lot said about Karma, but stripped to its basics the law of Karma is that every action has consequences for the one who performs the action. Not only are individuals subject to karma, but also families, social groupings and nations and from the moment an action is conceived karma begins to work, even before the action is performed. The thoughts that inform action are the food upon which Karma feeds rather than the deed.

We can see Karma working out in Egypt. The people, having overthrown a military backed dictatorship, elected the Muslim Brotherhood who proceeded to betray the voters by following an oppressively partisan agenda. Once more the people rebelled and now the military are once more in power.

The United States provided the funding and arms to establish the Mohedjadin, including Al Qaeda, in Afghanistan in order to embarrass the Soviet Union. After the defeat of the Soviets Al Qaeda turned on the US and then the USA and UK invaded Afghanistan.

In response to some actions committed by certain Muslims we have seen revenge attacks and mosques burned and vandalised. Rhetoric is polarising our society and causing Non-Muslims and Muslims to retreat into defensive positions.

What is obvious, as even a cursory examination of history shows, is that a culture of revenge and retribution leads to more, no act of revenge goes unavenged. Violence breeds violence, corruption tends to infect whole nations. Selfish and partisan behaviour locks society into a downward spiral of degeneration.

The problem with negative behaviour is that it impacts, indirectly, all of us. Like it or not we are all connected. Although we may not be directly involved all creation is bound by an invisible web of consciousness.  As the poet says, “no man is an island” each of us is in relationship with everyone else and with the whole.

Practical Karma recognises that if every action gives rise to appropriate conferences. Then deliberately raising the level of our behavior not only elevates us, but also those around us. Each positive thought and each positive action elevates us all. You don’t have to be in a position of authority, you don’t have to save the world, you just have to do the right thing. Positive Karma is like “The Prisoner’s Dilemma” one chooses the course of action which provide the optimum good for everyone.

People may say that it is massive to believe in the possibility of everyone acting insidiously, however if someone is capable of choosing evil they are equally capable of choosing good. Every action impacts on everyone and thing in our networks so every positive action raises the level of our network, increasing the likelihood of further positive actions. Should our positive actions be joined by a sufficient density of positive actions across the network it becomes all good and, because all our networks overlap, that goodness passes to connected networks. By deliberately choosing good we can create an upwards spiral that elevates our morality and raises the consciousness oh humanity. All you have to do is choose good and the only person who had to choose good is you.

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