When most people I talk to mention Karma, it is seen as this Cosmic Big Guy judge and jury, who is watching over everything we do and doling out rewards for good deeds and punishment for bad deeds. The expression, ‘instant Karma’, which was coined by John Lennon, says it all. You do something bad and get hit over the head, figuratively, in some way almost instantly. So, Karma is seen as this ‘spiritual police’ that is constantly watching over us and keeping track of whether or not we are being a good person. Therefore most people are afraid of getting some ‘bad Karma’ and do not often even think about good Karma. But what are the words ‘good’ and ‘bad’ anyway? What makes something good, and what makes something bad? If you examine these carefully I think you will find that good is something that we want to happen, something we are hoping will happen and bad is just the opposite, something we do not want to happen and are maybe afraid will happen. It has nothing to do with the intrinsic value of an event or occurrence. Its all about whether we want it or not. And our minds are always coming up with a list of things we want, as well as a list of things we would rather avoid. Its all kind of silly, because our minds are not really capable of knowing whether something that happens to us is actually good or bad. We do the best we can with our limited awareness of the world and are more often than not, way off base.
This mental, story-self that we think we are, is very limited in its ability to see what is truth and what is real. It only knows what things would match its preferred future and what things it wants to avoid at all costs – all of which are about it’s story of our life how ‘it’ thinks life should turn out. So, most of us are constantly struggling with life and the events as they unfold. Some match what we think they ‘should’ be, and many do not and cause us frustration, fear, anger, and other forms of resistance. All this resistance just causes more pain in us. None of it is life-giving or helpful. And no matter how ‘right’ you are about how bad certain events or circumstances are, if you are resisting what is happening, you are completely wrong.
Karma has nothing to do with right or wrong. It is an unchangeable law that governs this mind-conceived physical reality that most of us call life. It is interesting that in the Science of the Cards, we have these two grand spreads, one which I call the Spiritual Spread and the other, the Life Spread. In the Spiritual Spread, all the cards are in perfect order, from the Ace of Hearts to the King of Spades. One might say they are in perfection and it is often called the Perfect Spread. However, in the Life Spread, the cards are in apparent disarray. Nothing is flowing as in the perfect order of the Spiritual Spread, and no one’s Life Spread is perfect. There is always something, often many things, that are out of whack. And the life we live, in the aforementioned story-self world that must of us recognize, is never perfect. It is full, minute by minute, with countless challenges to the story we have created for ourselves. One might say that ‘truth’, which is what is actually occurring, is constantly challenging our life story, which is based on ideas we have about what we think is best for us. Countless times I have heard stories of people who had really bad things happen to them, that turned out to be the highest blessing? What if everything that happens to us is the best thing? Consider that.
But in the material, story-based world, Karma is king. Saturn, the planet commonly known as the Lord of Karma, is also the Lord over the material realm, he being the last of the visible planets, the 6th planet from the Sun, and the 5th planet from the earth. On the crown of the planet Saturn, on its north pole is storm that forms a perfect pentagram. It is a wonder to behold and scientists do not know how long this storm has been raging or how it maintains itself. But there it is, a pentagram, with six sides and 6, among all the numbers, is the number of Karma.
Karma is simply a law that governs our physical existence. However, even ancient sages and mystics proclaimed that ‘the ways of Karma cannot be comprehended by the human mind.’ Because Karma involves things like past lives, of which we rarely know anything about. So, the Karma we experience in today’s events and circumstances may have its origin in things that occurred many lifetimes ago. There is just no way to completely know one’s Karma. However, a great deal of it can be ascertained by reading one’s natal astrology chart or understanding of one’s Birth Card and ruling cards in the Science of the Cards. I have often called the natal astrological birth chart, our ‘map of Karma.’ Just knowing one’s birthday reveals quite a lot. And there are so called positive and negative Karma indications to be found there, which can be specifically detailed. I am avoiding calling these good and bad because of the aforementioned definition of good and bad. Even negative Karma can have a positive effect, and vice versa. So, be careful when you label something as good or bad.
It is interesting that Saturn is exalted in the sign of Libra. Exaltation in astrology is which sign that particular planet shines the brightest and best, and it tells us a lot about the planet itself. With Saturn, the message is clear – always consider how your thoughts, words and deeds may affect those around you, and be mindful of this as you make the decision to do what you do. Libra is the sign opposite of Aries. Aries is the ‘all about me’ sign, and Libra is the ‘all about the other’ sign. And Libra’s symbol, the scales of justice are very connected to the Six of Saturn, the two scales forming two triangles, having six sides total. The Star of David, the six-sided star, is also the same. It may sound like the judge and jury and indeed it is often represented this way. But actually Saturn’s message is more life-giving. Saturn wants each and every one of us to have the ‘complete’ experience of the physical material realm, not just one side of it. So, if we perform an action or deed that affects someone else without the understanding and awareness of how they will be affected, Saturn guarantees that we will have that missing experience someday, to make up for it. It is not really a punishment, it is a completion.
It is pretty difficult by most measures, to have a Six as your Saturn Card in your Life Spread in the cards. The 9 of Clubs, 6 of Hearts, Jack of Diamonds and 4 of Hearts all have Sixes as their Saturn card, and in most of these cases, it does appear like punishment, because Saturn is already a Six by nature. Then, we put a Six there and it is like a triple dosage. Any deviation from responsibility and awareness of one’s choices seem to be severely punished by these cards, in their respective suit. The 9 of Clubs cannot escape being ignorant of their partner’s needs just as the 4 of Hearts cannot be disrespectful to their bodies in their lifestyle choices. And those these cards are singled out, none of us escape Karma at all. It just may not appear so dramatic as in these cases.
So, as I have mentioned earlier, Karma spans lifetimes. And what this means in practical terms for most of us are these two things.
- Some things that happen to us seem to have no connection to what we are doing in the current lifetime, and cannot be understood, since we have no memory of those lifetimes.
- Some negative Karma’s payoff may not occur until a future lifetime.
Taking this a step further, we can see horrible things being done to people around us every day. Just read the news or watch television. One could never imagine why someone, like a child, would have to endure such tortuous experiences, and death. And, on the other hand, we see people who are perpetrating horrible acts upon others, in complete disregard for how it is affecting them, and yet seem to be escaping Karma’s grasp. But in truth, everything that happens has its origins in Karma and Karma will be met whether now or in the future. One saying I heard before seems very true to me, ‘the justice system is not perfect, but Karma is.’ This may be little consolation to someone who has been horribly abused by another, but it remains to be true. Perhaps that child who is being tortured to death was the perpetrator of similar acts in a previous life? Again, this does not excuse the perpetrator in the current lifetime and they accumulate their Karma for their acts, which will be met in this lifetime, or the next. You can see how complicated this can be when you delve into it.
One thing I am sure of is that whatever is happening now, is perfect. It may be the death of millions of people or just getting stuck in traffic on a hot day, but if it is happening to you, it is perfect, for you. This leads us back to ourselves and staying connected to what actually is, the truth. We can sit around and try to figure out Karma, which is impossible. Or, we can just watch our reactions to things, events, people around us and see where we are resisting. Which of these causes a resistance reaction in us? Which cause us anger, judgment, name-calling, fear, self-pity, complaining, etc. These are all the expressions of resistance. This is us, resisting what is actually occurring right in front of, resisting what is real in favor of a mentally created idea of what we think it should be. This resistance is at the root of the insanity we see in the world today. It is at the root of most of the horrible things that people perpetrate on others. And it is at the root of our unhappiness and lack of peace and contentment. One actually escapes completely the jaws of Karma when one starts to stay aligned with what is real. We can transcend Karma, forever. And until then, the Law of Karma will continue to operate in our lives, every moment of the day.