Thursday, September 4, 2008

September 8, 2008—It is about good Karma


Consider This for September 8, 2008—It is about good Karma

Karma: The good or bad emanations felt to be generated by someone or something.

Or to put it in more easily understood terms: You will get what you give, What goes around comes around. In biblical terms: Give and it will be given to you, Out of the abundance of the heart. To whom much is given, much is expected. I think you get the point. If things are not going well in your life it probably has more to do with you than someone or something else. The person you need to blame is the person looking back at you from your mirror in the morning.

It is part of spreading good karma to some and bad karma to others.

In the summer of 2005 I spent part of three months living and studying in San Miquel de Allende in the central mountains of Mexico about 200 miles north of Mexico City.

The very first day I met three other students who were there from Dallas. Wayne Lane (real name), Rob Castiglione and Bonnie Murphy. I think in their own way they each had a profound impact on my life. I have not seen or talked to them for years but we keep in touch by e mail.

This is about Rob. He was a second generation Mexican-American. He is a married, family man with a good government job. He rides Harley Davidson motorcycles and is a Christian. Rob understands Karma.

There are not a lot of beggars in San Miquel. It is truly an upscale historic Mexican city with many million dollar homes and a lot of highly educated families with good incomes.

The beggars would come into the city each morning and line the streets around the many open markets. Most were indigenous (Indian or Mayan) and would wear brightly colored clothing. Most would sit in one place on the sidewalk with their hand outstretched asking for money.

There were no cardboard signs about how their car broke down or how they needed food for their children or that they were veterans. There was no deception, no scams, just begging.

Wayne, Bonnie, Rob and I would walk around town a lot and Rob could not pass a beggar without giving him or her some money. It was an automatic act. Rob never questioned them about changing their lives or not buying alcohol or getting a job. Rob just gave them money.

Rob was also giving and getting good karma. Rob was a happy man and the more he could give to the beggars the happier he would become.

Rob was here in Colorado with friends riding his Harley through the San Juans a few weeks ago and I thought about him a lot. He is an unusually good man.

I am teaching Ethics this semester so I am spending a lot of time thinking about and talking about what is right and what is wrong. I get into long discussions with my students about good and bad and how our ethical and moral structure is based on modern and ancient philosophers.

I have never talked to Rob about the source of his feelings about giving. I do know that he has a fine tuned sense of right and wrong. He probably has never taken a course in ethics and comes by it naturally.

I get angry about some things at times. I try not to express my anger but when I do I know that I am spreading my bad karma all over the place.

During this political season bad karma abounds in both political parties and is especially present at the national conventions. I am not naïve about politics but at my now advanced age I wonder if the men and women who are spewing those negative words and feelings understand that it will all come back on them some day.

Rob is in San Miguel again and I can picture him reaching deep in his pocket to grab some good karma and give it to some beggar in the street. He knows that will come back to him soon.

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