What is karma ?
The best way to explain what "karma" is is to change the word "karma" to "action". Therefore "good karma" can be thought of as "good action(s)" while "negative karma" can be thought of as "negative action(s)"
Some people think of karma as something one has done in a past life. While this is partly true this is not the whole story. Karma is something we have done in a past life. Karma is something we have done/are doing/will do in our current life. Karma is something we will do in a future life/lives. In other words any action is karma.
Now you might think "If I sit on my chair and do nothing then I will incur no karma." This is incorrect. Sitting and doing nothing is making the choice to do nothing. It is the "action" of sitting still. In fact the action of doing nothing can earn you negative karma ! Keep reading.
To put the above comments another way "As we sow so shall we reap." If we do positive things in our life towards other people then positive things will be done to us. Not necessarily by the person we help/try to help. The same goes for negative actions. These will come back to us as well. These things sometimes however come back in a future life. Not necessarily in this one.
You might say "But I want all the good deeds I have done to return to me in this life." Fine, but would you want all your negative actions to be returned to you that quickly as well ? In reality it is better if our negative actions do not return immediately. This gives us time to reconsider what we have done and perhaps make restitution for mistakes made.
If you want to know what negative karma you have then you do not have to remember past incarnations**. Generally, but not always, the areas where we are having difficulties in our lives are areas where we have made mistakes. For example if we constantly have health problems then we may have adversely affected other people's health in the past. Money problems are often the result of creating financial problems for people etc. etc.
So, to sum up the above. If you want to be "sowing" more positive karma in the future then sow more positive things to others now. In the earlier example of "action" I gave the situation of "doing nothing". This may mean that someone we might have helped wasn't helped. Think about that. Particularly if you find yourself in a situation where no one seems interested in helping you.
**Few people are interested in consciously recalling their past lives , but for those who are, this can be a great help in one finding out what we have done wrong in the past. The source of our "bad karma". If we know the mistakes we have made in the past then this helps us to not repeat them again. It is very common for people to repeat the same mistakes life, after life, after... Creating more negative karma, or at the very least, not progressing spiritually.
Even if we know what past life errors we have made it is still important to know how to "reverse" one's karma. This is because we often have "unfinished business" with people we meet in this incarnation. Working with a past life regressionist, who has a good understanding of how karma works, can help a lot here.
Further reading :
Our page on "Past Lives".
"Karma and Reincarnation" - Barbara Y. Martin and Dimitri Moraitis.
"Many Mansions" - Gina Cerminara.
"Life Lessons: our purpose in being human" - Peter Watson Jenkins and Toni Ann Winninger.
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