Watch your thoughts; for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.
There you have it. Five lines, thirty-six words and absolutely free of charge. You want fries with that? Since I absolutely abhor hypocrisy and make no bones about it, I will be the first to admit that I have royally messed up in the areas of lines one and two. Luckily I am currently in recovery from lines three and four. I was not going anywhere near line five unless my character could be defined as authentic and honorable. I am happy to report that I am almost there; the pinnacle of self-respect. A couple more rungs of life's ladder and I will finally be the woman, mother, friend and partner that I have admired in so many others. Never mind, I am taking back the mother part as that is the one area of my life I have down to a science. Although, I am a firm believer that there is ALWAYS room for improvement in any area of one's life.
I have been a "student" of life for the past 11 years, ever since someone informed me that I could have one, and furthermore, that I actually deserved one. I had no idea what I was missing. Somewhere along my zen journey, I discovered the wonder of karma. I embraced the concept and quickly fell in love with its magic. At first it seemed too simple; how could anything come that easily? I didn't have to take a class. I didn't have to purchase a book. I didn't have to spend one red cent on my new appendage. To give back, I have spent the last ten years spreading the joy of my discovery, a self-appointed Karma Commissioner, if you will. Some get it, some have got it, some, sadly, don't want it. It is an absolute lesson in futility if you think for one second that you can change anyone. You can purchase all the books you want and take all the classes you can fit into your hectic schedule and unfortunately the end result will still be the same.
This past week I was "fortunate" enough to be privy to the Mother of all "karma-tastrophes." I use the word fortunate because the experience validated, once again, "my" oh so very simple philosophy on life. My knee jerk reaction was to "get this schitt on tape!" Now there's a documentary worth filming, Mr. Moore! Scared Straight Part II. Take it into our classrooms, show it to our children. Make it part of the hiring process at a new job. "Interrupt our regularly scheduled programming to bring us an important word about KARMA!" Get *Karma Donor* stickers for our drivers licenses. Okay, I guess I am getting a little Karma'd away. That's just me. I am passionate about sharing any and all of my good fortune and perpetual life lessons.
One of my favorite movies of all time is Pay It Forward. If you haven't seen it, you should. A 12 year old boy, believing that people are basically good, sets out to change the world with an experiment in paying it forward. Wherein, a good deed done is not payed back, but rather payed forward by doing a good deed for someone else. It is karmessence at its finest...once again, so simple and yet so hard to grasp. It is a beautiful movie and like that 12 year old boy, I, too, always believe that people can be shown the way, pointed in the right direction. What they choose to do with the gift of knowledge is completely out of our hands. Invariably there is always that one damn "domino" that refuses to follow the path laid out. And that's okay. That is their karma, not your karma. That is the poetic beauty of karma.
Since it's almost Halloween, make a batch of "Karmal" apples or some "Karmal" covered popcorn balls and share them with friends, family and co-workers. Attach Karma inspired suggestions on little notes. Or even tell someone how important they are or what they have meant in your life. Attach a "coupon" entitling someone to a ride to the store, a free hour of babysitting or dog walking. Just do something for someone you love, want to love, someone who might need some love or even someone that you know you has a snowballs chance in hell of finding/getting love. And all the while, do not forget the most important ingredient, you must do it for yourself and yourself alone because it gives your heart joy. Love selflessly because YOU are good, expecting nothing in return or your "pay it forward" will be a big hot steamin' bowl of heartache, a lesson that I learned the "heart" way. I can only "teach" you what I continue to learn.
Reap what you sow; sow what you reap.
The Paper Whisperer