picture of toppling dominoes in a circle shows that karma is sowing and reaping. What goes around, comes around.
What goes around, comes around…


Sowing and Reaping.”

Call it what you will, there is a universal acknowledgment that not only our actions, but our intentions will have repercussions that in the unfolding and endless cycle (circle) of life will find their way back to us.

A quick look at the etymology of Karma shows that it derives from a Sanskrit word meaning simply, ”action”. There is no ethical implication attached until much later.

When it comes, it connotes the familiar western idea, found in the laws of Isaac Newton, father of Physics, that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. The idea of causality mingled with that of reciprocity.

This is the basic idea hidden in the simple word Karma, but the meaning transcends the merely physical world of Newton’s laws, and suggests that it is an all-encompassing truth, affecting not just bodies at rest, or in motion, but everything, in all worlds, everywhere, in all time (whatever that is).

The biblical metaphors of sowing and reaping are not talking about agriculture, but about one’s life. The Christian disciple is warned about the inescapability and inevitability of this principle when he is instructed, ”Do not be deceived, God is not mocked, for whatsoever a man sows, that will he also reap.”

A couple of Grateful Dead lyrics posit the same idea. This from the song, Deal

Since it costs a lot to win

And even more to lose

You and me better spend some time

Wonderin’ what to choose.

Goes to show you don’t ever know.

Watch each card you play and, play it slow.

Grateful Dead: Deal

or this from Franklin’s Tower

Some come to laugh their past away

Some come to make it just one more day

Whichever way your pleasure tends

If you plant ice you’re gonna harvest wind.”

Grateful Dead: Franklin’s Tower

Truth is not limited to be found only in the Bhagavad Gita, or in the Bible, or any other sacred text, or even in Grateful Dead lyrics.

Truth is found when the seedling erupts from the soil, then it doesn’t matter if you thought you were planting corn. If you planted tomatoes, tomatoes grow for harvest. The truth of what was planted becomes evident.

In life, it doesn’t matter what you tell yourself to justify the seeds you sow and the actions you take, the harvest, when it comes, will show plainly what you actually planted.

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