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Everything you do comes back to you. That is the Universal Law of Karma.

We have all heard it before. You reap what you sow. What goes around, comes around.

Karma is the consequence, both good and bad, that is brought to you based on your actions, good and bad.

So, how do we create good karma in our lives?

It’s super easy!

All you have to do is to be conscious of your intention – at all times – with every action. The way to do this is by asking yourself – ‘what is my intention with this task at hand?

If your intention is for self-gain, then that is the energy you project into your environment. Therefore, this is what comes back to you tenfold. The reason it comes back to you at a speed of force is that it accumulates whatever else is of that same frequency or vibration back to you. We get served what we deserve because of what we put out.

You will know within your heart of hearts when you are not aligned with an intention that is aligned for the greater good because we are beings of service. Our purpose in life is to help others, to be of service and to create meaning. Benevolence is the characteristic element of humanity, and the highest benevolence acts without purpose.

The way that you will know when you are creating bad karma is when you feel a level of resistance, when you feel guilt, fear or when you start to tremble.

That, my friend, is you going against your inherent nature.

Karma has no menu

We are held responsible for all of our actions and, more precisely, for the intention of our actions.

We are hardwired to empathise because we closely associate individuals who are close to us with our very own self.

Compassion is deeply rooted in human nature. The clue is right there – we are human beings, and humanity in itself is human beings collectively.

On that, there are three words that also unfold our karma.

There is empathy, which means you are walking a mile in the other person’s shoes. In other words, you feel what they feel. That’s okay for a short period of time. However, if we remain present in the other person’s shoes for too long, we are at the cost of carrying their burden because we so want to help them that we deprive them of their learnings or lessons.

Then there is sympathy, which means that you understand what the other person is feeling, when really, we don’t always know what the other person is feeling, but we feel sorry for them. When we feel pity for another human being, we almost fall into the trap of thinking that they are in so much pain that there is no chance for them to change or get out of it alive. Therefore, they remain stuck. Or vice versa, we can remain stuck in that thinking pattern.

However, there is also compassion, which is the willingness to relieve the suffering of another by walking side by side with another. If you practice compassion, you allow that person to know you acknowledge and support them, but you don’t take away their learnings or lessons. You know this is a growing period for them and they have all the resources they need to succeed.

We are humankind and, if you split the word itself, we are human kind. We are human compassionate. We are kind-hearted and sympathetic beings.

We are wired for care, love and connection. And when we do a good deed … our brain lights up and we feel good.

But when we cause pain to others, we feel the pain as if it was our own physical pain.

The meaning of Karma

Before we explore the twelve laws of karma, let’s unpack what karma is in the first place.

Karma comes from the Sanskrit word for action and it means ‘to do’ or ‘to act’. It is equivalent to Newton’s law of ‘every action must have a reaction’.

When we think, feel, speak or act, we begin to create a vibration that will respond accordingly. Now, it may not happen instantly, but it will happen because an action is never wasted. It will come when we least expect it.

That is how karma works.

Karma is not here to punish us. It is here to teach us. It is here to show us that we may not escape the consequences of our actions.

The 12 Laws of Karma

1. The Great Law

Whatever we put into the Universe will come back to us.

As you sow, so shall you reap. The simple explanation of the Great Law is that, with all of our thoughts, feelings and actions, there comes a consequence, immediate or not, whether good or bad.

If we desire harmony, love, happiness, freedom, friendship and prosperity … we must be willing to act accordingly.

This is also known as the Law of Cause and Effect. Essentially, what this means is that every effect has a definite cause. Likewise, for every cause there is a definite effect. Everything that we currently have in our lives is an effect that is a result of a specific cause. The cause is why it happens. The effect is what happens.

This law teaches us that nothing happens by chance; we create it no matter what the circumstances.

So, given this is the case, then it is far more empowering to be ‘at cause’ rather than to be constantly making excuses because you’re living on the ‘effect’ side of this equation. To be at cause is to be responsible and accountable for all of your actions!

2. The Law of Creation

Whatever we desire comes through participation.

Life doesn’t just happen, it requires our participation. Basically, the life we experience was created by our intention. Since we are a part of the whole spectrum of life, our intentions determine the evolution of creation.

Knowing that what we surround ourselves with becomes part of us, it’s our responsibility to ensure that these surroundings are conducive to our desires.

Therefore, it is in our best interest to surround ourselves with what we want to have present in our life.

3. The Law of Humility

Whatever we refuse to accept what is will be what is.

In other words, what we refuse to accept will continue for us.

Acceptance is a Universal virtue in many belief systems … we must first accept the present circumstances in order to change them.

Humility is not thinking less of ourselves, it is thinking of ourselves less. However, the extended version of that is – if we focus on others’ defaults or see others as the enemy, then we ourselves are not focused on a higher level of existence.

As a result, we remain stuck in the negativity instead.

4. The Law of Growth

Our own growth is above any circumstance.

For us to grow physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually, it is we who must change. Not those around us, nor the places or elements within our environment.

The only thing that we can control is ourselves. However, this takes discipline, practise and deep work. Legitimate change only occurs if we make the commitment to change what is in our hearts.

Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.

When we change everything in our life … it follows suit and changes too.

5. The Law of Responsibility

Our lives are of our own doing, nothing else.

When there is instability in one’s life, we only need to seek within to see that the turmoil we are experiencing is often internal. Only we have the power to change our lives. We can do that by shifting our mindset and surroundings.

Whenever there is something wrong in our lives, this tells us there is something wrong with us. We can use our environment as a clue to what is taking shape within us.

If we use the world around us as a mirror – because we are projecting into our environment all the time – and if we can be fully responsible for our life, then we know that we can’t point the finger at anybody but ourselves.

We are the master of all creation.

6. The Law of Connection

Everything in the Universe is connected, regardless of the size, style, colour or culture.

Our past, present and future are all connected. We would not be who we are without our past, and our future relies on who we are in the present moment.

If we want to change our present state, we must give the past a different meaning. Once we are conscious that they are all connected, we can manifest in our present state a future to be worth celebrating.

To read the second piece in this two-part series on understanding karma, click here.