Karma, according to the Spiritual Encyclopedia states, “The law of Karma teaches us that all of our thoughts, words and actions begin a chain of cause and effect, and that we will personally experience the effects of everything we cause.” Buddha states it plainly: “You harm yourself, as dust thrown against the wind, comes back to the thrower.”

What is Karma?
According to Buddha.net,” any kind of intentional action whether mental, verbal, or physical, is regarded as Karma. It covers all that is included in the phrase “thought, word and deed,” Generally speaking, all good and bad action constitutes Karma. In its ultimate sense, Karma means all moral and immoral volition. Involuntary, unintentional or unconscious actions, though technical deeds, do not constitute Karma, because volition, the most important factor in determining Karma, is absent.”

What Should Karma Mean to You?
Based on the law of Karma, you may begin to consider your thoughts, your words and your deeds. Are they with a willful intent to harm or is the intention to add value to another? The key word is “intent.” The definition of intent, per Webster’s Dictionary is: “a determination to act in a certain way.” At the moment when you are determined to act in a certain way, what is the outcome that you are intending? According to the law of Karma, the mere thought of your intention begins the cause and effect of your actions. While nothing physical has occurred, the “thought” has occurred and that is within the definition of Karma. The next question most likely asked is “what if I stop at the thought and not follow with any action?”

Karma; is not a punishing law, for all the thoughts that are entertained on a daily basis. It is a thought map; that helps to keep you on track, to experience all the good that can be generated by thoughts. Like the air that moves through our lungs, thoughts move as quickly and sometimes without intent. Now, another question arises “what if your intent at that moment was unkind? What if you were so angry, that all of your being “felt” that negative thought? Reading the complete laws of Karma; reveals no indication, you will be punished for the remainder of your life. Karma is a law; it is not the Creator.

The law of Karma is to Buddhism, what the Ten Commandments are to Christians. The law of Karma is one of the five orders or processes of Buddhism as the Ten Commandments are a part of the Bible. Both are moral guides, as to how we should be living our lives. You don’t have to be afraid that you will be immediately sentenced to a life of bad karma for the rest of your days on earth. Once you are aware that your thoughts are leading you away from your natural center of good; that is the time to re-center your thoughts on what you know to be true.

You know what’s true and isn’t true. You know that wishing harm upon someone isn’t a law of the universe, whether you are a Buddhist or a Christian. It’s not the correct or wise action to use. As Wayne Dyer states “How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.”