Whenever you hear someone mention karma, it’s usually not in a flattering way. “Oh, karma’s a bitch” or “what comes around goes around, karma will get ‘em”.  The pressure to live your life in a way that doesn’t harm others or else you’ll be tarred and feathered by consciousness seems a bit like negative reinforcement from my parenting 101 book.

What I’d like to share with you today is a more liberated approach to achieving a balanced, dynamic life. This morning I read a game changer quote by Swami Vivekananda. The venerable swami states:

Karma is the eternal assertion of human freedom…our thoughts, our words, and deeds are threads of the net we throw around ourselves.Swami Vivekananda

It seems so obvious that with every action there’s a reaction. That basic tenant of physics replays its power, and not just from a physical place. Our minds either liberate or bind us. This ripple can either be pleasant or destructive to your experience here on this beautiful planet. The Yoga Sutras by Patanjali speak to this directly:

As the mind, so the person; bondage or liberation are in your own mind.Yoga Sutras by Patanjali

Isn’t now the time we get in on the game instead of giving into our urge to be defiant for the sake of some kind of individuality?

You see, I truly believe in the concept of maya. One interpretation of maya is “this world is but an illusion of our making.” And depending upon what illusion your physical self manifests, the reality created will be what you experience in this life. I know this all sounds a bit pedantic or esoteric, but stay with me here as when you get to the sweet spot you’ll just smile whenever anyone in the future mentions karma.

Ok, so if we have the ability to create illusions, then we must accept the responsibility of these illusions, right? Right. And here’s the key. If we practice yoga consciously, we are actually practicing a form of karma manipulation. Yoga helps us spiritually avoid potentially harmful karma. Without disciplining our minds, this kind of karma multiplies in the form of destructive maya and conceals the unity of our absolute being. Our minds forget that we actually came here to be in harmony with each other and nature.

When we put a spotlight on the negative illusions we manifest, we begin to see them as the threads of a spider’s web and we’re sitting in the middle, surrounded by a life of our own making. These negative strands look like destructive self-talk that keeps us from living from a place of abundance, being critical of others, stealing, hoarding, being judgmental, selfish, destroying our environment, etc. Rolf Gates, in the novel “Meditations from the Mat: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga,” states that “our thoughts, words and deeds are the threads of our web; all together, these strands form karma. To transcend the web of karma is the definitive aim of yoga.”

Yoga = Good maya = “Sweet” karma

Once you understand that all you are experiencing in life starts in your mind and isn’t just a result of happenstance, you can then begin to release yourself from the grip of the bad karma. You do this by actively choosing to mentally create a new way of being. Begin and end each day in gratitude. Identify how much negativity you have in your mind and give yourself permission to let it go. Make room for this new way of being that will allow you to start experiencing the beauty of the “sweet” karma.

Yes, this is it. This is where true liberation happens. When you begin to gain positive karma and make different choices with your thoughts, words and deeds, guess what happens?  Your life changes. Your web becomes Technicolor! The destructive maya begins to drop away with all the bad karma it created. Once we learn to live in that sweet spot, guess what happens? We reunite with our divinity and the ultimate harmony we came here to experience manifests into a beautiful life. Bam! Now that’s freedom.

So you see, it’s a game to play. Choices to make and a life to live. It’s all in your mind so why not dare to have fun with this game, this illusion called life, and create such an amazing experience connecting with your inner divinity because you know what, you can. Go ahead, I dare ya!

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[Photo by Raul Lieberwirth – CC BY]