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It is in giving that we receive

I remember long ago hearing stories about this distant cousin who claimed his prosperity was a consequence of the regular donations he had been making for years. It was not uncommon for him to encourage people to give away up to 30% of their income! "Easy for a multi-millionaire like you", I would think. Today I wish I had considered his track-record and learned this lesson earlier, as it goes way beyond material and financial prosperity.

Fast-forward a couple decades, there I was on the phone catching up after so many years with that friend who had just recently introduced me to Pranic Healing. I remember telling him the story of a person who had been quite nasty to me - at least in my opinion back then - and to my surprise, instead of doing what all my other friends had done by reinforcing my victim mentality, he simply said "unless and until you forgive this person for what they have done to you, you will not have peace".

Of course, I didn't like that advice. Forgive? How am I supposed to do so knowing that I was right? Besides, that person hardly manifested any sign of remorse in order to deserve my forgiveness! My friend did not insist. He seemed to be satisfied to know that the seed had been planted in my mind. Also, he knew I was already practicing the Meditation on Twin Hearts on a daily basis and that, with time, its transformational power would inevitably end up breaking my pride.

A few months later, exactly on my birthday that year, I suddenly had a realization which greatly expanded my understanding of "life, the universe and everything". While ruminating once again over all the "evil" and "unfair" things that person had done to me, flashes of very similar bad things I  had done to other people in the past started to pop up in my mind. The similarities between past and present situations were so undeniable that it was impossible for me to just ignore.

Back then, it was not uncommon for me to blame others for my misfortunes. Even when I was clearly the one in the wrong, I would find a way to rationalize the situation so it was never my fault. In that moment, however, I began to understand that if I wanted to be the just person I so proudly claimed to be, I had to apply the same criteria to both myself and those who had hurt me: If I was so quick to forgive and accept my own wrongdoings, I should be just as quick to forgive others as well. Period.

This conclusion enabled me to open up to the possibility that past and present situations may somehow be connected; a concept all major spiritual traditions have been teaching for millennia: "whatever we sow we shall reap".

The Law of Karma is essentially Newton's Third Law - Action and Reaction - regarding non-physical things. Neither are good nor bad, and as it is the case with laws of nature, the deeper we know them, the more we expand our possibilities. Understanding the Law of Gravity, for instance, enabled us to build rockets and go to the Moon. Karma's purpose is not punitive, but educative, using both positive and negative reinforcements. Had I not experienced the pain inflicted on me by that person, I would not have been aware of the pain I had inflicted on others.

Learning that all causes have consequences and that there's no consequence without a cause can be just as liberating as the development of agriculture once was to humankind: by planting the right seeds we can all harvest what we want. The fruits that will come will gradually feel less unexpected or arbitrary.

The key is that whatever we want to receive - prosperity, love, health, knowledge, etc. - we have to give. Master Choa Kok Sui synthesizes it in a brilliantly way: "The Law of Karma is not fatalistic. It is a spiritual technology that allows you to create and navigate your future".

When so many prosperous people - that cousin of mine included - keep saying that the secret to their prosperity is in their charitable giving - another concept heavily emphasized by most spiritual traditions - it's probably a good idea to take it seriously and challenge our preconceived ideas that may say otherwise. Just like the Law of Gravity works exactly the same regardless of our believing in it, so does the Law of Karma. As Master Stephen Co often humorously emphasizes: "It's called the 'Law of Karma', not the 'Opinion of Karma'!".

There is a lot more to be talked about karma, forgiveness and charity. For now I'll leave you with a short video on Master Choa's Kriyashakti course, the science of materialization, which heavily relies on the active and intelligent application of the Law of Karma. I hope this plants a seed!

- Eduardo Sztokbant