Karma

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The phrase ‘Karma’ gets thrown around so much, both in a positive light and a negative one.  There is memes upon memes about letting karma fuck people up because of something they have done wrong.  The thing about karma though is that we rarely get to see it in action, at least not in a way that we see justified.

There is talk about ‘the karma bus’ and people getting what’s coming to them.  I don’t think that is what karma is supposed to be about.  Karma isn’t about vengeance it’s about receiving back what you put out into the world.  It’s not be used as a ‘sucked in’ when someone who wronged you gets hit with exactly the same kind of wrongs that you did.  So many times I see it being used in the context of cheating partners, liars, gossips and a plethora of other blights on the world.

On Monday I saw it at work for the purpose it was intended, to make people think about their own actions.

A young woman stepped on the bus and when she attempted to pay, she was short by 50 cents.  The bus driver said if she couldn’t pay then she couldn’t get on the bus.  This bus isn’t a bus that takes you from one side of town to the other, and could be walked if you so desired. No, this bus went to the next town 45km away.  An older gentleman stepped forward and gave the bus driver the money to cover the young woman’s bus fare.

The bus driver looked at the man like he had completely lost his mind and said why on earth would you give this woman money, you don’t even know her.  The man’s response blew me away, something that has stuck with me since, two days later.

This morning my car broke down and someone stopped to help me so I could come into town on the bus and get parts.  I’m paying it forward.  The world is about paying forward the kindness we receive. It’s what makes life worth living.

THAT is what karma is about.  You might never see your deeds being paid forward but that’s ok.  A good deed isn’t performed for personal accolades, even though some people forget this.  A deed is done because it’s what makes the world go around.  If we all did everything for only the good of ourselves then the world would be a lonely, dark place.

Have you seen karma at work lately? Maybe you have been the instigator of it, I would love to hear your stories.

This post is part of my weekly series called A-Z of Mental Illness.  To check out the rest of the posts click here

 

32 thoughts on “Karma

    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      I’m not 100% sure if I believe it, but it is a nice concept to think of.

      Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      It’s something that I need to do more of. It’s so easy to get caught up in the thought process of ‘no one else does so why should I’

      Reply
  1. Kathy

    Hi Tegan – Lovely story and I totally agree that karma is about giving, paying forward – it is a positive energy. So-called ‘bad karma’ is just a wish for revenge or punishment. When people say that karma caught up with someone they are saying they wish they could have punished them in person.

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      So true. I have to admit that it’s a feeling that I have experienced myself and while it’s ‘nice’ initially it never lasts long.

      Reply
  2. Me

    I believe in karma and paying it forward. I have given money to people ahead of me in Coles when they were buying essentials and didn’t have enough money. I have a Pay It Forward project and Project Brighten Someone’s Day because I truly believe that we can all make a difference in the world by just doing small things that bring a smile to someone else.
    Have the best day !
    Me

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Those projects sound awesome. I have paid for someone ahead of me too if they didn’t have enough money because I know how horrible it feels to not be able to even buy the basics.

      Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      They bus driver had me scratching my head for sure. Although he was quite rude to me as well so maybe he was just having a bad day.

      Reply
  3. Megan

    I completely agree, the word gets thrown around way too much & like anything, the original meaning gets lost. There is a whole Pay it Forward movement down here in Tas which is really heartening, given we are the poorest State in the land 😉

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Yep it definitely gets thrown around too much. I blame Facebook and those stupid bloody memes about the Karma bus.

      Reply
  4. Becc

    I absolutely love this story. I would not have hesitated to give the girl the money either. What was really sad was the bus drivers reaction. I understand that he, himself couldn’t provide the money or he’d be penniless in the end, but to question a rather small but significant gesture is unfathomable.
    Becc @ Take Charge Now

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Yes I thought it quite strange as well. What impact does it have on the bus driver if the man paid for her? He still gets his fare at the end of the day.

      Reply
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  6. Alex

    “Pay it Forward” is something that’s finding it’s way into popular culture through an American-run internet company called TheChive. It started out as a sort of Frat-boy, hey let’s look at semi-nude photographs of college girls website but their charity drives are amazing. It’s got to a stage now whereby people will see folks wearing TheChive merchandise and do things like pay their bills, buy them lunch, leave money on their car… all with a little note that says “Pay it Forward” KCCO (Keep Calm and Chive On)

    One of my grade 12 boys brought it to my attention… he readily admits he wasn’t there from an altruistic purpose but it gives me hope that even in something that could be seen as sordid, there are folks doing good things.

    My wife and I once had our drinks paid for by an anonymous person who left a note saying “When we were new parents, someone anonymously paid for our lunch, I wish we could afford to do that for you but please have a drink on us”

    Faith restored.

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      What an awesome movement! Love that your wife and you had your drinks paid for, it’s nice to hear other peoples stories of paying it forward at work.

      Reply
  7. Francesca

    This is a great way of looking at things. I often here people talking about Karma in a vengeful negative way. I don’t know if I believe in “Karma”, but I definitely think there’s never too much good people can bring to the world. That man’s kindness changed her day and only put him out 50c.

    Reply
    1. Musings of the Misguided Post author

      Yep I agree there is definitely never too much good. In fact lately it kind of feels like the selfishness is overtaking the selflessness.

      Reply
  8. Alex

    Damnit! You got me all introspective and thoughtful and whatnot! I’ve gone mental on my blog, four posts in two days and I’m blaming you!

    😉

    Reply
  9. Emily @ Have a laugh on me

    I’m a bigt believer in paying in forward, do good things for others and maybe when the chips are down someone might help you. I’m a universe girl – so what you put out is what you get – good or bad me thinks.

    Reply
  10. Lani

    That’s definitely a nice theory. But I like the idea of just helping people for no reason at all. 50 cents is nothing. How depressing that the bus driver had that reaction, has that seriously never happened to him before?!

    Reply

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