Karma and carry om
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The hindu word KARMA is truly profound and encompasses several dimensions. Beyond common interpretations of ‘selfless action’ or ‘duty’, if we interpret Karma based on the verses of Srimad Bhagwad Gita and Mahabharat the amazing dimensions come to light.
Karma is a superset that holds:-
To start with our span of control is maximum on ‘action’, and with conditioning possibly ‘intent’. And we have zero control over outcome or consequences. With noble thought and free will every Karma is destined to fructify to consequences. With ebullient disposition when good intent is coupled with committed action, the Karta i.e. performer of action experiences fulfilment beyond words.
As narrated in the Udyoga Parva 93.6, Mahabharat “Even if a man does not succeed, he gets all the merit of doing his duty, if he strives the utmost to his capacity.”
Another reference to Karma from Srimad Bhagwad Gita which is interpreted as “You have the right only to work, but not to the fruits thereof.” (2.47) focusses on the outcome or consequences. Most interpretations of this amazing verse border on renunciation or lack of expectation, the true intent of this verse is the ‘futility’ or our lack of control over outcomes.
Leading keynote speaker, and business guru Stephen Covey articulates this really well in his 7 successful habits as
“Between stimulus and response we have the freedom to choose”
Hence more than labelling Karma as “we are entitled only to act, and should be detached from the consequences”, we should understand our inability over the outcomes. Our freedom is restricted to intent followed by action..
When we follow up good intent with committed action, it is truly fulfilling. And then, we find our voice and our greatest selves. I encourage each of you to find your voice, especially during this festive season. It is in Karma that we receive life’s greatest blessings.
Thank you for all that you do in your families, workplaces, and community! Wishing each of you a Happy and Prosperous Deepavali. May the millions of deities in Ishta Devata bless you in abundance
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